National Celtics discourse

wade boggs chicken dinner

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The Pacers were also just... pretty good, period, more so than people realize. They initially lost 3 straight after acquiring Siakam in Jan but then went 20-12 down the stretch— exactly the same as Dallas, for that matter, but with a better point differential. Haliburton, Siakam, Turner, Nesmith and a playing-out-of-his-mind Nembhard with a strong bench: that's a legit conference finals roster most years, not just a "they lucked out and don't deserve to be there" team. It feels like people just can't take them seriously mainly because they're so slanted towards offense, and so this feels cheap and gimmicky, like they're not winning 'honestly'.Similar to how people feel compelled to write off the Celtics for their perceived over-reliance on the three-ball. That, plus the fact that it's Indiana and a 6-seed (never mind that they were 3 games out of the 2 seed).
Agree with your assessment of IND. Plus, when Halliburton went down, it seemed to me that IND’s defense got better but their offense didn’t miss a beat.

That’s probably because Nembhard is better than people think. The coach that does player development and goes on Lowe’s podcast thinks Nembhard has all-defense potential and this article - https://www.sportsinfosolutions.com/2024/05/06/unsung-playoff-star-andrew-nembhard/ - shows that he has some real talent on offense. I don’t know how much he’s going to grow but I think Nembhard has shown himself to be at least a solid rotation player on a playoff team.

Which, as you point out, makes IND a likely 50-win team next season (assuming they re-sign Siakam). I suspect some SOSHers will make $ on hitting the over on their win totals given the lack of recognition of what they are building.
 

astrozombie

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I wanted the Pacers based on the hype that the Knicks were playing out of their minds and on another level. Plus Haliburton was injured and it just seemed the Pacers were a bit more one-dimensional. In retrospect, they were a lot better than expected and hopefully, people remember how hard fought that sweep was and how it easily could have been a longer series.
In the context of this post, there seemed to be a lot of sentiment that the gritty Knicks were going to pull it off and the Pacers only won the attrition war, after beating a Giannis-less Bucks team. I don't think either of those are true - the Pacers were just a better team this year, though a healthy Giannis might have changed that. It seems like the discourse was some teams (Bucks, Knicks, Heat) are the actual good ones and the only reason they lost is injuries. Teams like the Celtics and the Pacers were able to coast, somehow, because these actual good teams had injuries or imploded; it could not possibly have been that they were actual good teams themselves.
 

Van Everyman

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I also wouldn't discount that the Pacers beat a NY Knicks team, which had the whole Big Apple Media Machine working in its favor as well as a guy who got MVP votes. And because of all the injuries, I think there was a sense that the Pacers somehow had lucked into winning (perhaps they did a bit) -- so then you had the Dorises of the world feeling like they needed to double down on how much the Pacers actually deserved to be there.

They were a good team. The Celtics were better, period, whether they faced a full series with Haliburton or not.

Edit: @astrozombie beat me to a lot of these points.
 
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wade boggs chicken dinner

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In the context of this post, there seemed to be a lot of sentiment that the gritty Knicks were going to pull it off and the Pacers only won the attrition war, after beating a Giannis-less Bucks team. I don't think either of those are true - the Pacers were just a better team this year, though a healthy Giannis might have changed that.
I hear what you're saying but the NYK with a healthy OG was a very good team - and, given that Nembhard apparently could not guard Brunson, a really bad matchup for IND.

I can't remember the exact stat - it's in one of JonAbbey's posts - but NYK also had a neat little run when OG and Brunson played together - something like 20-2.

IND, NYK (with OG) and DAL are all good teams. But the fact of the matter is that BOS is better than all three of those teams on both sides of the ball. That doesn't guarantee anything but at this point, I'm glad the Cs are the clearly better team (not just "better talent").
 

Eric Fernsten's Disco Mustache

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It feels like people just can't take [the Pacers] seriously mainly because they're so slanted towards offense, and so this feels cheap and gimmicky, like they're not winning 'honestly'.
I can't remember if I posted this somewhere in the last month, but the narrative around the Pacers feels to me a lot like the narrative around the 2013 - 2015 Golden State Warriors, before they won their first title. Not comparing the talent level, just the vibes. Lots of people talked into a semi-condescending way about how the Warriors could put up gaudy numbers in the regular season but could never win the playoffs. Curry was 'soft' and a liability on defense. They'd be exposed then the game slowed down and half court defenses keyed in on stopping their gimmicks. Etc. etc.

So, it feels like there's something of a template and pattern here. But someone smarter than me will have to articulate what's behind it
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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I can't remember if I posted this somewhere in the last month, but the narrative around the Pacers feels to me a lot like the narrative around the 2013 - 2015 Golden State Warriors, before they won their first title. Not comparing the talent level, just the vibes. Lots of people talked into a semi-condescending way about how the Warriors could put up gaudy numbers in the regular season but could never win the playoffs. Curry was 'soft' and a liability on defense. They'd be exposed then the game slowed down and half court defenses keyed in on stopping their gimmicks. Etc. etc.

So, it feels like there's something of a template and pattern here. But someone smarter than me will have to articulate what's behind it
Because most people who watch the NBA watch the ball and they're watching for guys who can dominate the ball and either score or make the pass that immediately leads to a score. They're not looking at how off-ball movement and picks can compliment the main action and lead to open shots that are basically unguardable.

I mean Steph and Klay are great by themselves but how many understand that a lot of their wide-open shots were because of actions they ran (particularly the Dray post action) - which basically became unguardable (as LBJ puts it himself) when KD joined GSW? (Discussed below by JJ and LBJ).

(EDIT: trying to embed the video at the right time but YT isn't letting me. Video starts around 39 minute mark; go to 33:30 mark to hear the discussion on the GSW post play.)

View: https://youtu.be/YSjimpC0fk8?t=2040
 

lovegtm

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I can't remember if I posted this somewhere in the last month, but the narrative around the Pacers feels to me a lot like the narrative around the 2013 - 2015 Golden State Warriors, before they won their first title. Not comparing the talent level, just the vibes. Lots of people talked into a semi-condescending way about how the Warriors could put up gaudy numbers in the regular season but could never win the playoffs. Curry was 'soft' and a liability on defense. They'd be exposed then the game slowed down and half court defenses keyed in on stopping their gimmicks. Etc. etc.

So, it feels like there's something of a template and pattern here. But someone smarter than me will have to articulate what's behind it
With the caveat that their talent isn't at the same level, there are similarities. Probably the biggest one is that they're guys are considered good, but not "name brand", and their offense is elite but seen as a bit gimmicky.
 

InstaFace

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As confident as I feel, there are some 2011 NY Giants (too soon, I know) vibes, in that they simply weren't a very good team. But, the 2024 Celts are much better than the 2011 Pats, relatively speaking.
Yeah we're closer to the 2007 Pats than we are to the 2011 Pats, imo. Still not invincible, clearly, but also above peer status with our opponent. And the undefeated Pats were favored by 14.5, I think, going into the big game.
 

BaseballJones

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The narrative if the Celtics win this, of course, will be that they played nobody in the East, and then a team in Dallas with one aging star who is no longer a superstar (Kyrie), a one-dimensional star in Luka (no D, which the Celtics easily exploited), and a bunch of nobodies, and didn't have to even play one of the best teams in the West.

The goalposts will always move for this group.
 

benhogan

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As confident as I feel, there are some 2011 NY Giants (too soon, I know) vibes, in that they simply weren't a very good team. But, the 2024 Celts are much better than the 2011 Pats, relatively speaking.
As a long-time NY football Giants fan I can tell you no sports team I root for has a bigger horseshoe up its arse (or gets more positive sports coverage). They've been sizeable underdogs in 4 of 5 Super Bowls but have walked away with 4 Lombardi's.

Eli Gump doesn't even sniff G6 if it was a best-of-7

Dallas is much more like the Greatest Show on Turf Rams
 

benhogan

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How many teams have gone from under .500 team to NBA Champs the following season?

Dallas tanked their way to 38-44 last season, which landed them Lively (credit to them on a clever strategic plan + draft pick)

The pre-AD Lakers were 37-45 before their Disney Chip

Otherwise, nothing else comes to mind.


This is probably a question for Cellar wizard @Brand Name
 

bigq

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How many teams have gone from under .500 team to NBA Champs the following season?

Dallas tanked their way to 38-44 last season, which landed them Lively (credit to them on a clever strategic plan + draft pick)

The pre-AD Lakers were 37-45 before their Disney Chip

Otherwise, nothing else comes to mind.


This is probably a question for Cellar wizard @Brand Name
The 2008 Celtics come to mind.
 

Jimbodandy

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The narrative if the Celtics win this, of course, will be that they played nobody in the East, and then a team in Dallas with one aging star who is no longer a superstar (Kyrie), a one-dimensional star in Luka (no D, which the Celtics easily exploited), and a bunch of nobodies, and didn't have to even play one of the best teams in the West.

The goalposts will always move for this group.
I look forward to reading that article. I'll even offer copy editing services.

Let's cross fingers and hope for the hoop illuminati to write articles about how ring 18 has asteriks (sic). That's a great problem to have.
 

Auger34

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Ryen Russillo with a real all-star performance on the most recent Simmons pod. I think Luka might actually be Jesus reincarnated after listening to him
 

Euclis20

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24-58 the season prior.

Yikes, I forgot just how bleak things were.
Pierce got hurt and we tanked pretty hard that year, but weren't substantially better in 2006 (33 wins, with Pierce playing 79 games and having arguably the best statistical season of his career). Biggest turnaround in history (from 24 wins to 66), at least at the time.

I'm definitely one of the Timpf fans here, especially w/regards to how he talks about Tatum. He's got some of the same criticisms that we do (particularly around shot selection), and he is literally the only national person I've seen fully understand just how impactful Tatum's defensive versatility is. That said, this is some BS:

View: https://twitter.com/_JasonLT/status/1797650713029562764


This plus Lowe's work today and recently (100% putting Embiid over Tatum), it's 100% clear that one of Tatum's best attributes (reliability) just isn't valued, at all. This is baffling to me as the most important ability without a doubt is availability. If a guy can't be relied on to even show up close to 100%, then WTF are we doing here? This isn't a video game, asking who the best player is "when everyone is healthy" is a useless exercise. And nothing beats the Ringers final NBA player rankings of the year, which had Kawhi Leonard as the 6th best player in the league (ahead of Tatum in 7th). That aged exactly as well as you'd expect it to.
 

tims4wins

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The Spurs in the 90s also were awful with Robinson out before picking Duncan first.

Edit: wait, the Spurs didn't win it Duncan's rookie year? My memory has failed me
 

Auger34

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I feel like I am crazy listening to different podcasts...

Is Luka fun to watch? Everyone is acting like it's some precious joy to watch him play...IMO, for someone as talented as he is, it's a fucking chore to watch this dude play. It really reminds me of Harden, except he whines so goddamn much it's absolutely exhausting.

After every single goddamn play, it's throwing his hands up and running up to the refs and bitching. Do people actually like that?
 

RorschachsMask

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I’m currently on a sports media blackout until Thursday night. The takes were so disingenuous and dishonest that I checked out lol.
 

BringBackMo

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I mean, they very well could. Freaking TJ McConnell and Andrew Nembhard averaged 21.0 and 15.0 points a game on a combined 60-115 (52.2%) from the floor. Kyrie and Luka are much, much, much better than McConnell and Nembhard. It won't be easy keeping the two of them under a combined 60 points a game, if we're being perfectly honest. (They averaged 59.5 points a game combined during the regular season, FWIW)
The narrative if the Celtics win this, of course, will be that they played nobody in the East, and then a team in Dallas with one aging star who is no longer a superstar (Kyrie), a one-dimensional star in Luka (no D, which the Celtics easily exploited), and a bunch of nobodies, and didn't have to even play one of the best teams in the West.

The goalposts will always move for this group.
Including right here in this thread, it seems.
 

Dinkleberries

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I feel like I am crazy listening to different podcasts...

Is Luka fun to watch? Everyone is acting like it's some precious joy to watch him play...IMO, for someone as talented as he is, it's a fucking chore to watch this dude play. It really reminds me of Harden, except he whines so goddamn much it's absolutely exhausting.

After every single goddamn play, it's throwing his hands up and running up to the refs and bitching. Do people actually like that?
The Harden comp is perfect.
 

Captaincoop

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I feel like I am crazy listening to different podcasts...

Is Luka fun to watch? Everyone is acting like it's some precious joy to watch him play...IMO, for someone as talented as he is, it's a fucking chore to watch this dude play. It really reminds me of Harden, except he whines so goddamn much it's absolutely exhausting.

After every single goddamn play, it's throwing his hands up and running up to the refs and bitching. Do people actually like that?
I'm going to hate Luka next week and the week after, he'll make a great villain. But if you don't appreciate watching him play, I question how you can enjoy watching basketball at all.
 

shoelace

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This plus Lowe's work today and recently (100% putting Embiid over Tatum), it's 100% clear that one of Tatum's best attributes (reliability) just isn't valued, at all. This is baffling to me as the most important ability without a doubt is availability. If a guy can't be relied on to even show up close to 100%, then WTF are we doing here? This isn't a video game, asking who the best player is "when everyone is healthy" is a useless exercise. And nothing beats the Ringers final NBA player rankings of the year, which had Kawhi Leonard as the 6th best player in the league (ahead of Tatum in 7th). That aged exactly as well as you'd expect it to.
When I heard a clip of Zach Lowe on Windhorst's podcast recently saying that Tatum is the "7th, 8th, 9th, 10th" best player in the NBA, I kept thinking about the availability point you raise and also the issue of playoff success. Lowe has repeated some variation of this claim multiple times on TV and on podcasts recently. Podcasters should go to podcast jail if they make a statement like that without naming the 9 guys who are definitely or possibly better, but that's an aside.

When certain guys are getting MVP, DPOY or All-NBA awards, the justification for lavishing these accolades on players like Embiid or Gobert is that "It's a regular season award" and so we have to discount their playoff failings. There's definitely a logic undergirding that and I can sort of agree with it in some instances. But when we're doing dumb guy Bill Simmons stuff where you're on a podcast or writing an article for a blog ranking the 10 best players in the NBA, why does availability and playoff success not matter at all? It feels like Zach Lowe is dying to say that Jalen Brunson or Anthony Edwards are better than Tatum, but he doesn't want to actually say it out loud because he doesn't want that to be thrown back in his face if they or their teams end up stagnating or regressing next year. He just wants to vaguely insinuate it and be kind of smarmy and dismissive toward Tatum, which is weird. Kawhi is an interesting example, though, because I feel like he is often lower down on these rankings lists recently because of his issues with availability (I think ESPN had him in the 20s going into this season), but Embiid isn't discounted in the same way, though it seems like he should be at this point.

I am surprised at this turn toward negativity for Zach Lowe, though. Maybe Zach had more access to the Celtics front office under the Ainge regime or something, the dude seems ultra dismissive during any Celtics talk when I've checked in recently. Part of me wants to attribute it to Celtics fatigue, but it's also feels like the media has been hyping Luka up for his entire NBA career. He made first team All-NBA in 19-20 over a clearly better Kawhi when he shot .316% from three. I get shitting your pants about Luka this season when he's shooting significantly better from three but these guys were crowning him when he was a .338%/extremely below average 3PT shooter for his career going into this season. And his teams have never won anything. It feels like he was kind of an inefficient stat compiler for most of his early career who is a mediocre to bad defender and I thought we had learned our lesson about giving accolades to compilers after the Russ MVP, but I guess not.

If you want to argue Luka and Embiid are clearly in this indisputable tier above Tatum, why are their track records so much worse? I understand putting Jokic and Giannis above Tatum, they have won, they are both to me indisputably better than Tatum because of their individual and team successes. If you're arguing that guys like Luka and Embiid are more valuable than Tatum and impact winning more, why haven't they done that? I don't think Tatum should have won MVP this year and I'm not even arguing that he is better than Luka. Ranking stuff in that way is dumb horseshit, but I don't see that it's obvious that there's some huge unbridgeable divide between him and the guys who could conceivably be ranked above him. I don't have a ton of specific ire for Doncic as a player or a dude, I have no issue with him being an MVP candidate or even an argument that he's such an offensive weapon that it offsets his defensive shortcomings, but he is covered in a kind of tedious way. If the Mavericks lose and Luka plays poorly during the Finals, he'll go into the press conference and get asked about his knee. If Tatum has a bad game, he'll go into his press conference (despite not being a top two player in this series, or whatever) and have some dipshit like Gary Washburn basically ask him "Isn't this proof that you're a weak willed choking coward? How are you going to live with yourself after this gutless display?" It does get tiring that any attempt to contextualize some of the Celtics failures is an "excuse", but no one will be saying that about Luka when the Mavericks lose. He'll be a warrior who gutted it out and dragged his team to the Finals.

This is why I don't really engage with NBA media at all, but I get how it's frustrating for folks who do, especially when you're trying to enjoy a fun team that has had a great season.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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I’m currently on a sports media blackout until Thursday night. The takes were so disingenuous and dishonest that I checked out lol.
This 4ever. Yet some people love them some gatekeeper takes. There are Cs fans who can't wait to drink from the toxic firehose.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Actually I lied. Pardon My Take had CJ McCollum on when I was listening and he thinks this is the Cs series to lose. He did emphasize that if a game comes down to the end, that favors the Mavs because of Luka and Kyrie's ability to generate own looks but he thinks Boston should win.
 

benhogan

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I'm going to hate Luka next week and the week after, he'll make a great villain. But if you don't appreciate watching him play, I question how you can enjoy watching basketball at all.
I don't care for Luka's foul grifting + incessant Ref complaints throughout the game
(or Tatum's whine while not getting back on D).

I've gone back and watched both Dallas/Celtic games this year. Jaylen rinsed Luka (crossed up LD & put him on his ass in G1). Both Jays got to the rim at will. C's had plenty of open 3s in both games. Drew Carter also torched Luka with the Karate Kid headband reference.

Game 1 in Dallas. The Celtics on the 2nd night of a road back-to-back with Dallas coming off 3-days rest. Didn't matter Boston handled them throughout.

Is that the ultimate "scheduled loss"?

paging @HomeRunBaker
 

benhogan

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I’m currently on a sports media blackout until Thursday night. The takes were so disingenuous and dishonest that I checked out lol.
I'm pretty much on podcast blackout (don't really listen to Lowe/ESPN talking heads)

I've been going back and re-watching select Celtic games to get my fix
 

Curt S Loew

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I’m currently on a sports media blackout until Thursday night. The takes were so disingenuous and dishonest that I checked out lol.
I can't do it either. I generally don't listen anyway, but I figured I would try a little.

Great reminder for why I don't. It really is trolling at it's absolute worst.

I'm gonna stick to YouTube of past Celtics championships. That makes me happy.
 

RorschachsMask

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I'm pretty much on podcast blackout (don't really listen to Lowe/ESPN talking heads)

I've been going back and re-watching select Celtic games to get my fix

I can't do it either. I generally don't listen anyway, but I figured I would try a little.

Great reminder for why I don't. It really is trolling at it's absolute worst.

I'm gonna stick to YouTube of past Celtics championships. That makes me happy.
I logged out of Twitter, the whole nine lol.

It’s not even that it bothers me, I just don’t have the bandwidth for that level of intellectual dishonesty.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I don't care for Luka's foul grifting + incessant Ref complaints throughout the game
(or Tatum's whine while not getting back on D).

I've gone back and watched both Dallas/Celtic games this year. Jaylen rinsed Luka (crossed up LD & put him on his ass in G1). Both Jays got to the rim at will. C's had plenty of open 3s in both games. Drew Carter also torched Luka with the Karate Kid headband reference.

Game 1 in Dallas. The Celtics on the 2nd night of a road back-to-back with Dallas coming off 3-days rest. Didn't matter Boston handled them throughout.

Is that the ultimate "scheduled loss"?

paging @HomeRunBaker
This is the part where Dallas has matchup problems and we advanced the ball quickly to get them moving their feet in transition. That’s the recipe for beating Dallas and neither the Clippers or Wolves had the right ingredients. OKC was too busy getting pummeled in the paint that it opened up everything else for the Mavs with Luka able to pick his spots.

I could put this in the worries thread but both of those games occurred prior to this group coming together….no matter how much anyone wants to talk about strength of schedule, net rating, etc you don’t win 28 of your last 35 games (omitting final two reg season games) in the NBA without being really freakin good.

I’m certain that the team we beat was not the same team that we beat as my ratings of each of those Mavs weren’t remotely close to being similar. So we’ve got big matchup advantages on one end compared to now facing a team that is playing on another level than where they were. The other underrated aspect is how another Boston villain in Jason Kidd has been beyond brilliant with this team down the stretch and in these playoffs.

I know many are calling Boston in 5 or 6 and while of course this can occur I feel that this series result will be more volatile. IF Boston can dictate pace which is how you exploit Luka defensively in forcing him to move his feet and get him out of his comfort zone offensively then I don’t see how Dallas will win a game. IF Kidd devises a strategy to counter this and able to slow the game to force halfcourt execution then I feel they could be a real problem for us and affect our 3-pt shooting. So basically I feel the Celtics sweep or Dallas wins 3+ games.
 

Brand Name

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How many teams have gone from under .500 team to NBA Champs the following season?

Dallas tanked their way to 38-44 last season, which landed them Lively (credit to them on a clever strategic plan + draft pick)

The pre-AD Lakers were 37-45 before their Disney Chip

Otherwise, nothing else comes to mind.


This is probably a question for Cellar wizard @Brand Name
Thank you! As bigq mentioned, 07-08 Celtics. Others not mentioned elsewhere by you or him, with the year listed being the team's championship season:

-1955-56 Warriors: 33-39 in '54-55, 45-27 in '55-56.
-1957-58 Hawks: 34-38 in '56-57 (yet we beat them in the Finals that year 4-3), 41-31 in '57-'58.
-1976-77 Trail Blazers (RIP Bill Walton...): 37-45 the prior year into a 49-33 title season.

Bonus ABA:

-1968-69 Oakland Oaks. 22-56 in their inaugural season of '67-'68 but improved to 60-18 the year after.
-1973-74 New York Nets: Went 55-29 that season following 1972-73's mark of 30-54.
 

m0ckduck

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One dumb narrative footnote over the last week has been the insistence that the Mar 1 game between the two teams (138-110 Boston) means NOTHING because Dallas WAS NOT the same team. "They just weren't, Jim! The new guys hadn't worked their way into the rotation yet!" The media talks about this game like it happened the day after the trade deadline. Gafford and PJ Washington had been with the team for three weeks already. Indeed, Washington plays 35 min and the game basically gets away from the Mavs in the second half when his three-ball stops falling. OK, there wasn't much Derrick Jones Jr. ... but, whoop-de-doo, Tarantula Town.

I don't place a lot of stock in the outcome of one regular season matchup, either. And, yes, the game was close in the 3rd Q before turning into a blowout. So, I agree it doesn't tell us much about what will happen in the series. My point is just that, had Dallas won, it would absolutely be waved around as predicative evidence of what's going to happen in the Finals, and we'd be hearing all about "a Mavericks team that had already found its identity!"

Edit: the 'strained media narrative' counterpoint would be that Derrick Jones Jr was inserted into the starting lineup three games later, which led to a Dallas ripping off a 16-2 stretch before resting starters— and so this is where the team "found its identify", blah blah.Thing is, there was a real weak schedule component to that 18 game run. Whatever, I just don't believe that 15 extra minutes of Jones Jr per night can utterly transform an NBA team.
 
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astrozombie

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Beating a dead horse, but from today's ringer article (https://www.theringer.com/nba/2024/6/4/24170986/nba-finals-preview-2024-boston-celtics-dallas-mavericks):

"Doncic is tall, strong, bold, skilled, and smart enough to outmaneuver every coverage specifically designed to slow him down. At 25, he’s a less athletic but better 3-point shooting iteration of LeBron James in his prime."

I legitimately question my own sanity when I read stuff like that. Between this and "Ant is MJ 2.0", it seems like people have lost all sense of perspective. Tatum still kinda sucks though because he doesn't hit every shot and occasionally plays ISO ball.
 

benhogan

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I'm definitely one of the Timpf fans here, especially w/regards to how he talks about Tatum. He's got some of the same criticisms that we do (particularly around shot selection), and he is literally the only national person I've seen fully understand just how impactful Tatum's defensive versatility is. That said, this is some BS:

View: https://twitter.com/_JasonLT/status/1797650713029562764


This plus Lowe's work today and recently (100% putting Embiid over Tatum), it's 100% clear that one of Tatum's best attributes (reliability) just isn't valued, at all. This is baffling to me as the most important ability without a doubt is availability. If a guy can't be relied on to even show up close to 100%, then WTF are we doing here? This isn't a video game, asking who the best player is "when everyone is healthy" is a useless exercise. And nothing beats the Ringers final NBA player rankings of the year, which had Kawhi Leonard as the 6th best player in the league (ahead of Tatum in 7th). That aged exactly as well as you'd expect it to.
Timpf's criticism of Tatum's shot selection while incessant has some truth to it

KP injury is my #1 concern
#2 is JT settling for mid-range fadeaways or ISO PU3s (esp from the right side).
The good news is a team like Dallas will not force those shots (like the Wolves or Nuggets would have).

Agree. Tatum's AVAILABILITY is criminally underrated by the NBA Media especially compared to Embiid, AD, Kawhi, etc.
His Body Type & Work Ethic are built for GP/MPG/health going forward (the same applies to Jaylen Brown).

Jayson's yearly skills improvement, added muscle, + positional versatility on defense also don't meet Player Rankings criteria but are a big part of his continuing greatness (again Brown checks a lot of these boxes).

Tatum will be an NBA MVP when Boston wins a Championship & if he regains being a 40%+ 3pt shooter. Simply put, those two things will change the NBA Media narrative.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
38,900
Hingham, MA
Timpf's criticism of Tatum's shot selection while incessant has some truth to it

KP injury is my #1 concern
#2 is JT settling for mid-range fadeaways or ISO PU3s (esp from the right side).
The good news is a team like Dallas will not force those shots (like the Wolves or Nuggets would have).

Agree. Tatum's AVAILABILITY is criminally underrated by the NBA Media especially compared to Embiid, AD, Kawhi, etc.
His Body Type & Work Ethic are built for GP/MPG/health going forward (the same applies to Jaylen Brown).

Jayson's yearly skills improvement, added muscle, + positional versatility on defense also don't meet Player Rankings criteria but are a big part of his continuing greatness (again Brown checks a lot of these boxes).

Tatum will be an NBA MVP when Boston wins a Championship & if he regains being a 40%+ 3pt shooter. Simply put, those two things will change the NBA Media narrative.
It's both of the Jays, really.

JT has played 76, 76, and 74 games the last 3 years.
JB 66, 67, 70 (didn't he break his face one year?)
AD 40, 56, 76
 

themuddychicken

New Member
Mar 26, 2014
97
Since there's so much to be negative about, I just want to be positive for a minute and give a shout-out to The Dunker Spot podcast. I'm listening to their NBA Finals preview right now and it is the best discourse I've heard about the Finals. It feels revelatory to hear people talk about what the teams do well and poorly, and how those things should interact, without degenerating into Luka being an unstoppable golden god or Boston being a bunch of chokers.
 

benhogan

Granite Truther
SoSH Member
Nov 2, 2007
21,159
Santa Monica
It's both of the Jays, really.

JT has played 76, 76, and 74 games the last 3 years.
JB 66, 67, 70 (didn't he break his face one year?)
AD 40, 56, 76
When MAX players are not AVAILABLE for a game or can't play extended minutes, teams are basically forced into playing minimum-ish level players. Thus AVAILABILITY has a major impact on winning, and should be a major criteria for player rankings.

For example, Embiid should be massively penalized for his inability to be healthy or in shape (both due to injuries) for the playoffs. BUT the vast majority of fans/media label all injuries as "unexpected or unlucky" when that couldn't be further from the truth.

Credit to the NBA/Silver with GP mandates for Awards, since they recognized the NBA Media, has been ignoring it for decades.
 

CreedBratton

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 6, 2009
3,865
To be fair to Simmons, he has routinely brought up that Tatum & Brown actually play a lot & this should be taken into consideration, but agreed with many here, for some reason it doesn’t get brought up enough.

The best ability is availability. I give Luka a lot of credit for this too. He is hurt often and guts it out unlike a lot of guys (Kawhi etc.) gotta give him props for that.
 

Jimbodandy

Member
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Jan 31, 2006
12,372
around the way
Beating a dead horse, but from today's ringer article (https://www.theringer.com/nba/2024/6/4/24170986/nba-finals-preview-2024-boston-celtics-dallas-mavericks):

"Doncic is tall, strong, bold, skilled, and smart enough to outmaneuver every coverage specifically designed to slow him down. At 25, he’s a less athletic but better 3-point shooting iteration of LeBron James in his prime."

I legitimately question my own sanity when I read stuff like that. Between this and "Ant is MJ 2.0", it seems like people have lost all sense of perspective. Tatum still kinda sucks though because he doesn't hit every shot and occasionally plays ISO ball.
Gotta step away from the computer/phone, brother.

Love the "Less athletic" version of Lebron reference. Comparing a below-average athleticism guy to the most athletic basketball player that most of us have ever seen is pretty incredible.
 

m0ckduck

Member
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Jul 20, 2005
2,010
Beating a dead horse, but from today's ringer article (https://www.theringer.com/nba/2024/6/4/24170986/nba-finals-preview-2024-boston-celtics-dallas-mavericks):

"Doncic is tall, strong, bold, skilled, and smart enough to outmaneuver every coverage specifically designed to slow him down. At 25, he’s a less athletic but better 3-point shooting iteration of LeBron James in his prime."

I legitimately question my own sanity when I read stuff like that. Between this and "Ant is MJ 2.0", it seems like people have lost all sense of perspective. Tatum still kinda sucks though because he doesn't hit every shot and occasionally plays ISO ball.
How about this? Top-line pointz-y stats comp for the 2024 postseason:

Tatum: 44% FG, 29% 3PT, 10.4 REB, 5.9 AST, 26 PPG
Doncic: 44% FG, 34 3PT, 9.6 REB, 8.8 AST, 28.8 PPG

Even before getting into Tatum's defensive contributions and so on, there just isn't a big difference there. And yet, I just heard both Mismatch guys pick Dallas because "No offense, but Tatum's gotta prove it to me... with Luka, I know what I'm getting." You would think the way the two are being discussed that there's a crater-like divide between them in terms of offensive production.
 

GameEight

New Member
Oct 23, 2013
54
One dumb narrative footnote over the last week has been the insistence that the Mar 1 game between the two teams (138-110 Boston) means NOTHING because Dallas WAS NOT the same team. "They just weren't, Jim! The new guys hadn't worked their way into the rotation yet!"
The narrative is especially dumb when paired with the "Mavs have the best 1-2 player(s) in the series, that's all that matters" tripe. Are Luka and Kyrie the difference makers, or is it about the role players?

Great players beat good players if you have enough of them. And Boston has at least 5, possibly 6 if KP has 100 or so productive minutes left in the tank.
 

Auger34

used to be tbb
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
11,344
How about this? Top-line pointz-y stats comp for the 2024 postseason:

Tatum: 44% FG, 29% 3PT, 10.4 REB, 5.9 AST, 26 PPG
Doncic: 44% FG, 34 3PT, 9.6 REB, 8.8 AST, 28.8 PPG

Even before getting into Tatum's defensive contributions and so on, there just isn't a big difference there. And yet, I just heard both Mismatch guys pick Dallas because "No offense, but Tatum's gotta prove it to me... with Luka, I know what I'm getting." You would think the way the two are being discussed that there's a crater-like divide between them in terms of offensive production.
To be fair to Verno, that's kind of his schtick. He's the "eye test" guy. It doesn't make him right, but I can at least understand.

KOC sucks now. It's kind of a shame that he's decided to put aside any sort of serious or thought-provoking analysis to try and chase becoming a media "personality" and a tv guy. And if you've seen or heard him...that's not really his lane (he's kind of a weird looking dude with a weird voice)