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Defensive habits and strategy

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by OTMax, Nov 5, 2015.

  1. OTMax

    OTMax Member

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    Today was a clear example of the 2013-2014 Rockets who tried to outscore every opponent instead of playing defense. Had we played defense throughout the whole game, as a unit and not just by some individuals and in spurts, we would've beaten the Magic by 10-20 points easily. So I am wondering, are we going to be defensive first team and do we have the right strategy to be one?

    Our strategy on defense, even last year, was based on aggressive perimeter defense. Even to the point of overplaying a lot to get steals so we could get our fast break game going. McHale talked about BJ Bickerstaff coming up with a plan to have more pressure on guys handling the ball. We do that, but it's mostly half-assed. Guys today did it until they got a screen set on them. Going underneath on good shooters, not putting in the effort to fight hard enough over a screen or the old classic switch. I did not see the switching like crazy that we saw in the Denver game, but I'm guessing it's a strategic thing.

    The funneling to Dwight, forcing a perimeter to drive towards the basket is obviously a great tactic. It does rely on guys help defense, rotating on time and if Dwight challenges the shot, to pick up his man and box out or at least jump to fight for the rebound. With some of our players' tendency to be lazy, slow to rotate or just lack of awareness it seems to backfire a lot. Today's game showed a lot of Dwight challenging a shot and nobody moving over to his man. This is clearly one of Dwight's frustrations that we even saw last year. It is also on our coaches though since with small ball lately, what can we honestly expect from some of our guys to do against a Smith, Dedmon or Gordon?

    Now I'm guessing the Rockets watch a lot of tape and there's different strategies for different teams. We're still in the early stage of the season, injury problems, shorthanded on the bench and a team still trying to figure things out. I get that. I also understand that the likes of Harrell and Capela are still trying to learn and Hayes just joined the team. However, with our strategy to switch everything, which is not working, and funneling guys to the paint with Dwight to challenge the shot when it comes to that, which is not working, I really would like to see a big men in there as much as possible. Hayes is still strong and can rotate quickly, Harrell is all energy and will go for rebounds and Capela can manage to stay with guys smaller than him.

    Now, I do hope that today's game with a lot less switching is either a change of strategy based on the opponent or in general. I also hope that our intensity will pick up and we will be more of a unit on defense with guys helping and rotating over quickly. The overplaying and going for steals though, mainly by Brewer, Harden and Ty is something that I really want to see change. Even Howard has a tendency to go for the ball, which leads to wide open dunks by his opponent. So while it might be a strategy, I also think there are a lot of habits involved and with our coaching staff lack of holding players accountable, so it seems, it might just be that it's more because of the player's mentality and personality (to gamble) rather than strategy. Generating steals can come from sound defense, Ariza gets most of his like this.

    So what do you guys think. Am I on point with this or way off? What defensive strategy do we see or think we have in general? Are some things just habitual or not? Just trying to see how everybody feels.
     
  2. bmd

    bmd Member

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    They don't have any PF's right now. That hurts their defense but helps their offense.

    I'm not sure we can accurately judge their defense yet considering...
     
  3. DraftBoy10

    DraftBoy10 Member

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    We can accurately judge. The **** they dont do on D is just so fundamental.
     
  4. BAHAMIANFAN

    BAHAMIANFAN Contributing Member

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    You forgot about challenging the 3. We were giving them away like candy.

    Only reason game went into OT was because we cant make our FT's, Harden in a slump, and Brewer playing like a scrub.
     
  5. xtruroyaltyx

    xtruroyaltyx Member

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    Harden has no interest in guarding pfs all game long.
     
  6. chandlerbang21

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    "Slump" doesn't apply anymore. He is a inconsistent player bottom line
     
  7. jayhow92

    jayhow92 Member

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    After 5 games?
     
  8. Will

    Will Clutch Crew
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    Please, God, let every player on our team be as inconsistent as James Harden.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. bmd

    bmd Member

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    Slumps can last for more than a month. All players go through them nearly every season at some point.
     
  10. napalm06

    napalm06 Huge Flopping Fan

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    Please don't.
     
  11. basketballholic

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    The first issue is coming from up top. The first principle of our defense from last year was to turn the opponent playmaker to the sidelines. Ty, obviously, ain't doing that. And this is why I say we need to trade Bev. Bev is no longer doing this consistently. I suspect it is because he can no longer do it physically. And without that little key, Beverley becomes just another backup point guard. That's why I have advocated and will continue to advocate trading Bev unless and until he gets back his defensive tenacity and starts turning opposing points to the sideline early so they can't get into pick and roll play without being way outside shooting range.

    This has to be fixed or we will not have the quality perimeter defensive overplay that we had last season.




    As to the next issue of guys driving the opponent into a showing Dwight and then not picking up Dwight's man.....this is an issue of size and intelligence. And this is why I pick on certain players and I keep telling you they are undersized and slow to react. Our small ball guys....they're being somewhat lazy defensively in this area. But ......they are severely outmatched in these situations and they are undoubtedly making some decisions to take off early and get the bucket back on the other end quickly as opposed to committing entirely to stopping the play in front of them, hoping that Dwight makes the stop, gets the board and gets the ball out (best case scenario) or that the opponent scores quickly and they get back down and get a man advantage situation bringing the ball up.

    In other words......a small ball lineup is gonna have to play some gimmicky defense in these half-court situations. We all know it.
     
  12. Joe Joe

    Joe Joe Go Stros!
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    So far, small ball with a center has outplayed the opposing teams starters for three straight games, though not by too much. When DMo gets back, and the small ball goes against the opposing teams reserves, the defense won't look so bad and won't be over-matched as much.
     
  13. hakeemthagreat

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    James Harden's effort is atrocious. Beyond bad. It's like if he doesn't have the ball in his hands, he doesn't have much interest in anything else. He defense is unacceptable, and his turnovers are even more unacceptable smh.

    There is NO WAY we're going anywhere if Harden continues turning the ball over like he does. These aren't aggressive turnovers either. These are careless, lazy bad fundamental turnovers. Should've stopped last season, not sure why we're still having the same problems
     
  14. sealclubber1016

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    Harden, Lawson and Thornton are all subpar, at times terrible defensive players. Combine that with not having an actual PF. We have nobody showing or hedging screens to redirect ballhandlers. Players are coming off and getting whatever they want. Harden specifically looks terrible, he's regressed from last season when he was at least adequate defensively. He's losing people again.

    D-mo would really be a perfect tonic to out defensive struggles, he excels at all of things we are lacking. Unfortunately we are alarmingly unsure of when D-mo is coming back. Until we get D-mo back, or address the PF via trade, we aren't gonna have a good defense. Particularly anytime Dwight isn't on the floor.
     
  15. basketballholic

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    I think you're right as long as we get back at least last year's version of DMo. But even with DMO back, we still need a 4th big that effectively makes Capela our 4th big along with me perimeter shooting at the 4 spot and another defender up top.
     
  16. Houstunna

    Houstunna The Most Unbiased Fan
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    Very true. Lacking a PF prevents guys from getting back on defense.
     
  17. Hakeemtheking

    Hakeemtheking Member

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    I think Morey needs to use that 15th roster spot and sign a center. When D12 is off due to back to backs, we have only Capela as the only true big. This is magnified by Jones and D-Mo's absence.

    What is Dalembert doing these days?
     
  18. OTMax

    OTMax Member

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    I really don't see the bad defense by Thornton people keep spewing.
     
  19. freddyg956

    freddyg956 Member

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    Chuck Hayes? that's what he is there for.
     
  20. Houstunna

    Houstunna The Most Unbiased Fan
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    From what I've seen, Thornton has a difficult time keeping people in front of him.
     

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