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It comes down to Dwight and Milkhair

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Rileydog, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. Rileydog

    Rileydog Contributing Member

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    I haven't posted much lately, but I'm convinced we have enough talent on the team to win it all. Morey/McHale told Harden that for the team to advance, he would have to become a MVP level player. He's done that. Harden has done his job.

    We have quality bigs, we have long athletic wings, we have veterans, we have ascending youth, we have depth. Morey has done his job.

    It's time for Dwight and McHale to do their jobs.

    Here's the issue -- close and late, teams will deny Harden and dare others to beat them. See Chicago last night and Portland series last year. Until we solve that problem, we're not getting far in the playoffs. I'm talking close and late. All the threes, points in the paint, and free throws are great, but don't work close and late (unless you're SA, and nobody is b/c if it were that easy, everyone would be).

    IMO, there are three story lines for the rest of the season:

    1. DMO must continue to develop and must be established as our second option. DMO has done his job (and then some) by working his ass off and improving dramatically. If he can school the likes of Joakim Noah, he can take anyone. As a young ascending player, DMo needs more touches and reps, so that he can believe in himself when he gets the ball close and late. Think Neo in the Matrix. At this point, I think DMO is near untouchable in trade discussions.

    2. Will Dwight Howard sacrifice his offense for DMO to develop into that second option? All championship teams need players to make sacrifices. Howard wants to be a low post scorer, but that guarantees playoff failure IMO. What does he want more - a ring or personal stats? I'll be honest - at this point, I'm concerned that Dwight is who the naysayers said he is (kinda like McGrady, all that talent and missing the championship heart/mind). Stan Van Gundy always ranted about how Dwight needs to just dominate rebounding and playing defense. Harder to do early in your career and I get that, but how about now, when it's supposed to be about winning a ring? (If not sacrifice and win here Dwight, where?)

    3. Can McHale get Dwight to sacrifice? This is where great coaches make their living. Does Milkhair have what it takes to reach Dwight. Challenge him and massage his ego at the same time. Does McHale have the guts to tell Dwight that we can't win by going to you in the low post, but we can win it all by featuring Harden and DMo on offense, and you completely shutting down the paint by actually engaging and playing hard?

    I repeat - there's enough talent on this team right now to win it all. The team needs to come together with sacrifice. It comes down to Milkhair and Dwight.
     
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  2. DaDakota

    DaDakota If you want to know, just ask!

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    This post is 100% on the money - and it is why I was a little miffed that we gave McHale a 3 year extension so early, but what I hope and this is 100% a guess is that Morey and McHale know this, and in order for McHale to have the authority to do it, he got the extension early.

    Dwight is the key, both good and bad, he is not as good as folks think he is, his shortcomings are killers, lack of effort at times, and not able to hit free throws....but he is good enough, if he does the David Robinson thing and takes a back seat to an up and coming big.

    Here is to hoping McHale has the juice to pull it off and Dwight really does want that ring more than he wants to be known as an all around player - which he isn't and never will be.

    DD
     
  3. jayhow92

    jayhow92 Member

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    Pretty much this. Dwight needs to take a backseat to Dmo on the offensive side and become more of a PnR guy and less of a back to the basket creator. It's clearly his weakest attribute, but he just keeps trying to do it.
     
  4. Williamson

    Williamson JOSH CHRISTOPHER ONLY FAN
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    Repped. I agree with every single thing said.

    If we only we could transfer Ben Wallace's mind into Dwight's body. That's how he should play. He should dominate defensively and get his points off put backs and the pick n roll. There will be times when he has a huge matchup advantage that we can post him up, but it isn't all that often and shouldn't be a regular part of our offense as it is now. It generally results in turnovers or missed shots.

    When we move the ball we win. It's as simple as that. When we go to this type of style where it's either Dwight posting or Harden iso'ing it gets dicey.
     
  5. SeekingAlpha

    SeekingAlpha Member

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    Dwight's biggest weakness is his stubbornness to change his bad habits on offense. Dwight is similar to Kobe in that way. Dwight knows that he scores on about 3 out of every 6 touches in the post. If Dwight runs the pnr with the guards it'll result in a clean score at the rim for him only about 10% of the time. The other 90% will be either the guard taking an open jump shot or attack the basket, the defense setting up properly and resetting the offense, a dump off to Dwight who is immediately fouled and then put to the free throw line.

    In other words, Dwight is being selfish with respect to his own stats rather than the total offensive numbers for the Rockets. Combine that with Dwight playing lazy defense likely in an effort to protect his body from regular season injuries he shrivels to a sub all-star player easilly.
     
  6. Scionxa

    Scionxa Contributing Member

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    He should take more than just a back seat. He needs to get traded. His 20 million dollar salary is a waste in my opinion. He doesn't deserve to get paid that much more than Harden
    We won 45 ****ing games in 2012-2013 without Dwight and with half the talent we have now. We could easily win 60 without him, and with just a nice servicable big, and a better PG.
     
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  7. marky :)

    marky :) Member

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    Agreed. I truly believe if Dwight changed his playing philosophy into that we would become real contenders. He could still easily average 20/10 a night with his size and athleticism.

    Sadly, I don't think he'll change. Hopefully he'll prove me wrong.
     
  8. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    I'm more concerned about Dwight's knee than his drive to win.

    That said Riley is right. Dwight doesn't need to be the number 1 post up option. Harden and DMo are the best post options we have. Harden, Howard, and Smith should be dominating with the pick and roll. It frustrating to see that we aren't crushing teams with it.
     
  9. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

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    hhmmm . . so DMo is the next Tim Duncan?

    Rocket River
     
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  10. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Possibly better than Duncan ;)
     
  11. delishman

    delishman Member

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    Haha... Well Played RR. You are no DDingleberry.
     
  12. NL Rocket

    NL Rocket Member

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    Spot on. By the way, did you see how Dwight set picks against the Bulls, it was embarrassing!! He just used his hand and hip to sort of get in the way and then didn't roll, WHICH HE NEVER DOES, but just starts to post up. The guy is stupid and detrimental to the team concept.
     
  13. Zbed

    Zbed Member

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    Great post, I agree with everything, but sadly I don't think Dwight is willing to sacrifice to Harden let alone Dmo.
     
  14. heypartner

    heypartner Contributing Member

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    Great post. This is where Coach is supposed to flex his HOF Big Man credentials. I think he can manage Dwight and Dmo as well as any coach. I have to believe he loves DMo, and will make this work, especially if Harden has his back wrt changing Dwight.

    Don't want to derail the thread, but you're bound to get comments of slight homerism wrt "there's enough talent on this team right now to win it all." So I might as well chime in.

    I believe as many others: We need one more way to score from the perimeter. Even SAS's top ball movement still had two perimeter scorers plus Kawhi, who you could just throw the ball to.
     
  15. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

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    I am not gonna go Chicken Little . . .. I think they got more than half a season to right the ****

    I am not concerned about Dwight

    I look at his last year's Playoff numbers
    HE WAS NOT THE PROBLEM
    26pts
    2.8 Blks
    13.7 rbs
    55%
    38 MINUTES

    career
    20PTS
    14RBS
    59%
    39 MINUTES

    Rocket River
     
  16. Rileydog

    Rileydog Contributing Member

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    I had not thought of this angle on the McHale extension. I hope you are right.
     
  17. macho87

    macho87 Member

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    Great post.
     
  18. Deuce

    Deuce Context & Nuance

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    Rileydog, well said.

    I agree that with DMO's ascension at that PF/C position, he just is too valuable to trade unless the return is significant.

    Howard can be dominant at times, but a lot of the times he is just Tyson Chandler, a good defensive rebounder, shotblocker. Dallas isn't throwing the ball into Tyson to "go to work in the low block." He just fills his role defensively. While Dwight CAN be more than that....much of the times he settles for just that.

    More DMo low post touches please! And get Dragic! :)
     
  19. Rileydog

    Rileydog Contributing Member

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    If, and my big if, Dwight buys in, we have the top defense in the league by far. Beverly, Harden (yes, I included Harden), Ariza, Dmo and Dwight -- there is no defensive weakness in the starting lineup. Dmo may not be a perfect post defender, but he is outstanding at moving his feet and serviceable in playing his space in the post, especially if Dwight is willing to play shadow defense on the weak side. Nobody in the league has the defensive talent of Brewer and Josh Smith coming off the bench. That is seven legitimately good to great defensive players that can exert max effort (because of depth) to stifle any offense. Thats enough of a team identity, combined with the existing offense focused on Harden, that can win it all IMO.

    Morey still has the trade chips to get Dragic or the like. That is the fourth storey line for the season (and further evidence that Morey has done his job), but I didn't include it b/c it would derail the discussion re McHale and Dwight. If you can add Dragic without losing DMo, look out.
     
  20. topfive

    topfive CF OG

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    Solid post, RD. I would add this:

    4. Smith needs to sacrifice his waning "stardom" and become the ultimate role player. If he insists on being a third star in this system, we're going to crumble under the weight of his ego. On the other hand, if he can learn to be a key cog off the bench and provide scoring and defense in and around the paint, it'll make everyone else's roles that much easier.
     
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