1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

Let's talk about Dwight's defense

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by HtownRock, Mar 18, 2016.

  1. HtownRock

    HtownRock Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2015
    Messages:
    400
    Likes Received:
    15
    While all the critical eyes are focused on Harden's D, I find it quite interesting that no one is mentioning how much Dwight's defense has regressed over the years, especially this season.

    His foot speed has significantly slowed down, and this is impacting his defensive game all around. He really struggles in a switch or P&R situation, because he is not quick enough to cover opponents attacking from outside the paint. I have seen too many times where Dwight just lets his guy take a wide open jump shot without even bothering to challenge him. This is also the reason why he mightily struggles against a big man who can hit from the outside and has superior footwork. Ever wondered why Dwight commits so many goaltendings? Again, all related to this issue : lost athleticism and slow reaction time (which coincidentally, I think is the reason why Harden struggles in D also).

    Rim protection and other related stats all point to the fact that Dwight is not the defensive beast he once used to be, and if we want to be really honest, he has become quite sub par in this department.

    He and Ariza, Beverly together are all part of the reason why the Rockets are so god awful defensively this season. It's just not Harden, even though he has to take his fair share of the blame also. The guys we regard as our defensive core are all in declining stage of their career, and nobody even brings this up when talking about our defensive struggles.
     
    2 people like this.
  2. tim562

    tim562 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Messages:
    4,499
    Likes Received:
    198
    Personally, I don't think ANYONE on the team communicates on D. It seems like every team comes in and sets 3 point or great shooting percentage records against us. All teams have to do is a screen, double screen, back pick, make us switch and BAM!! Wide open shot.
     
  3. Houstunna

    Houstunna The Most Unbiased Fan
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25,036
    Likes Received:
    14,837
    Dwight's defense has been mentioned. It has fallen off since ORL. Dwight has always committed dumb goaltends. Intimidation purposes perhaps :confused:

    On the perimeter, he struggles not only with P&R, but his effort struggles (Harden-esk) when guarding 3PT regardless who is shooting them.
     
  4. Cstyle42

    Cstyle42 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2008
    Messages:
    18,766
    Likes Received:
    9,287
    Dwight seems to me to have a "take the easy way out attitude" mentality. That's how he plays on the court to me. He lives in excuses. If fouls are not going his way he shuts down gets demotivated... if his body feels weak same thing... if he doesn't get fed the ball enough same thing... during the season you will never see a consistent dominate play out of him at this stage of his career. He believes he's a champion... which wouldn't be a bad thing if he actually played one. Instead he plays like he's been there and done that... like he's already where Tim Duncan is. He needs a wake up call because he's not. You just don't see a man that wants it bad enough. However he gets paid 22 million a year... lol.
     
  5. HtownRock

    HtownRock Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2015
    Messages:
    400
    Likes Received:
    15
    I agree that communication is huge part of the problem, but good communication will only get you so far if individually players lack certain defensive instincts. Unfortunately, other than Ariza, I don't think we have any one who is capable of playing smart defense on this team.
     
  6. studogg

    studogg Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2002
    Messages:
    5,246
    Likes Received:
    1,187
    I've felt that's been the pivotal part of our regression all year long. Dwight stands with his feet stuck in the mud and rarely helps when things are funneled in.

    Add in power forwards and weak side forwards who rotate late when he does help and you create way too many points in the paint.

    harden's d has sucked, but it always has. With Trevor, Beverly and Howard in the starting lineup - that is supposed to mask his deficiencies.

    But Bev is now a shadow of himself.

    Trevor has lost a step.

    And Dwight was always looking at maximizing his next contract value through scoring this season. Lol at how that's worked out.

    I loved how on three straight possessions we tried getting him the ball early and he turned it over twice and we got no shot all three times. Even with as bad as he has played alongside Davis this year, I would prefer Asik over Howard.
     
  7. Blake

    Blake Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Messages:
    9,518
    Likes Received:
    2,256
    yup. he doesn't really contest or block shots anymore. i think some of this is physical deterioration but most of it is terrible team communication (teams usually get open layups because our defenders are not on the same page) and some of it is that other players don't try either.

    also, it can stem from not getting the ball. we have completely gone away from giving him touches and that frustrates big men and can dampen their effort.
     
  8. heypartner

    heypartner Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 1999
    Messages:
    59,990
    Likes Received:
    48,881
    Yeah, he does seem to sulk sometimes...you could also call it a personal agenda to still be the #1 offensive option.

    Weird thing is, if you look at nba.com play stats, it has Dwight #1 in the league at the sum of Post Touches plus Lane Touches. Haven't looked in a month, so maybe Drummond has past him again. Post touches alone he's been in the Top 3 most all season.

    Also, Deandre Jordan mind playing the defensive anchor/rebounder and PnR guy role, without getting post touches. And many would be happy if Dwight would be happy with that.
     
  9. Deuce

    Deuce Context & Nuance

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2001
    Messages:
    26,173
    Likes Received:
    33,956
    Good post! The "foot speed" limitation really is key in my mind. He just can't seem to "clean up" mistakes from the guards like he used to.
     
  10. Blake

    Blake Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Messages:
    9,518
    Likes Received:
    2,256
    Wouldn't have expected that. However, that may just be a sign of the times in the sense that there are not really any dominant offensive centers in the league at this point (think of Drummond and DJ more as guys getting dunks and putbacks) so the benchmark is pretty low, but this is pure conjecture with zero research :grin:

    I don't think it's about him not being #1...I think he (smartly) knows that Harden is the offensive alpha by a long stretch...but I think it is more about him being #3 or #4 and rarely getting alley-oops or letting him try (not prettily) to post up his man more often.

    But regardless of reasons, his defense does seem to be a shadow of it's former self. Perhaps some of that comes from the fact that we ridiculously switch on EVERY pick and roll and in that situation as his man sets the picks, he ends up trying to guard a smaller, faster player far away from the paint.

    JBB defense at it's finest :rolleyes:
     
  11. HtownRock

    HtownRock Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2015
    Messages:
    400
    Likes Received:
    15
    The problem is his post up game is quite inefficient (0.83 points per possession, which is below league average per NBA.com) and really slows down our offense. Honestly, I don't think we are getting anything of value out of Dwight on both sides of the court these days, maybe except for rebounding. And that is definitely not good enough, since we are paying him well over 20 mil this season.
     
  12. IvanLCPM

    IvanLCPM Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    273
    I agree.. we are better off without him. Do you guys think there's any chance Morey gives him a new contract this offseason? It just seems like the one thing that could derail us for good for the next 5 to 10 years besides a Harden injury (even though i think Harden's defense/effort/style of play is also a big problem).
     
  13. Mathloom

    Mathloom Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2008
    Messages:
    14,633
    Likes Received:
    9,833
    I don't think he's regressed that much. He's been terrible the past few weeks for sure but prior to that he's been a very good defender. Not elite, not team-anchoring.

    I've said it many times, I find it strange that all of our defenders got worse over one summer. I think it has more to do with our defensive coaching.

    Dwight is still a great starter to have at the C position. We just need to be more realistic about our expectations.
     
  14. bmd

    bmd Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2012
    Messages:
    7,627
    Likes Received:
    3,145
    I said a while ago that it seems like Dwight does not get the same lift that he used to, and he isn't as ferocious of a defender inside and he isn't intimidating like he used to be because other players know he's not the same. I basically said his defense has fallen off a lot, even compared to last season.

    And I basically got called an idiot. I'll see if I can find the thread.
     
  15. #Pursuit

    #Pursuit Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2015
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    18
    THIS. I don't think anyone saw this when they were saying we had to get Dwight more than 4 shots a game. He had his chance, and he was hurting the team by not even getting a shot up. Harden and the team made the right choice by not passing it to him in the post anymore.
     
  16. JoeBarelyCares

    JoeBarelyCares Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2001
    Messages:
    6,326
    Likes Received:
    1,386
  17. OTMax

    OTMax Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2013
    Messages:
    8,352
    Likes Received:
    3,670
    Let's not talk about it.
     
  18. linkz1993

    linkz1993 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2015
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    4
    Hes been with a bunch of ****ty coaches with crappy defensive players and rotations... Just saying
     
  19. rocketsballin

    rocketsballin Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    Messages:
    8,041
    Likes Received:
    1,483
    can be solved with a compeptent defensive team play. he has regressed but most of it is is just team play. he's otu of position a lot always helping out on the ball handler. no one picks up his man. easy layup. and diwght can be mentally weak so he's more prone to half ass when his team does the same.

    he's far from over. but pointless if he's gonna be used like this.
     
  20. linkz1993

    linkz1993 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2015
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    4
    Replace Howard with a retiring Duncan.. and the spurs will continue to have the anchor in the middle with a all time great coach ..
     

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now