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Thread: Should the Raps emphasize offensive rebounding?

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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Default Should the Raps emphasize offensive rebounding?

    Although this article isn't about the Raptors, it's a very interesting read debunking the myth that offensive rebounding leaves teams vulnerable in transition defense, something I always thought to be true.

    The Pacers were perhaps the league’s best offensive rebounding team — no. 4 in offensive rebounding rate during the regular season, no. 1 by a long shot in the playoffs — and the stingiest transition defense in the league by almost every available measure. There’s a fairly widespread assumption that it’s very hard to be good at both of these things. Crash the offensive glass aggressively enough to earn a meaningful number of extra possessions, and you’ll stab at your own transition defense.
    “We understand it’s extremely difficult to be good at both,” says Frank Vogel, the Pacers’ head coach. “But I think you have to try to be good at both. There are a lot of opportunities to explore.”
    If both big men are in the paint, Vogel expects them to pursue offensive rebounds. The third player will be a wing, typically the guy hanging out on the weak side along the baseline, Vogel says. Paul George has the size to be a solid offensive rebounder, and Stephenson brings a desirable combination of athleticism, anticipation, and a lunatic willingness to toss his body around. The other wing has to scramble back immediately upon the release of a Pacers shot, Vogel says. George Hill does the same, unless a given set play has him positioned along the baseline.

    There are sub-rules. If David West shoots a 20-footer on the pick-and-pop, he’s supposed to get back on defense instead of chasing his miss; a second wing is then allowed to take West’s spot in the crashing hierarchy. And there are techniques, McMillan says. Modern NBA offenses often space the floor by having a shooter in each corner, and under the Vogel-McMillan system, one of those guys is supposed to hit the glass. But that player cannot just take a straight-line path along the baseline, McMillan says. Instead, he should loop from the corner up toward the foul line when a teammate shoots, and once along that path, decide midway whether he’s got a shot at the offensive board.

    Following that curl pattern ensures the player will have already started retreating back on defense in case the rebound goes elsewhere, or if the player concludes he has no chance at it, McMillan says. Scrambling along the baseline would leave that player way behind the action.
    The general conclusion the authors presented at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in March, based on data from the 2011-12 season, was that teams could net about four extra points per game by recalibrating their philosophy toward offensive rebounding — that teams were being too cautious.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...sition-defense

    Based on these findings, should the Raptors place more emphasis on crashing the offensive glass, especially now that our starting front court (Amir and Jonas) actually play in the paint?

    EDIT: If the Raptors added an extra 4ppg last season, they would've increased scoring from 97.2ppg to 101.2ppg (a jump from 16th to 7th).
    Last edited by Nilanka; Thu Sep 12th, 2013 at 03:35 PM.
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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    Based on these findings, should the Raptors place more emphasis on crashing the offensive glass, especially now that our starting front court (Amir and Jonas) actually play in the paint?
    Yes they should.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Another important point from the article:

    ....having more players crashing the offensive glass might actually make their team’s transition defense better. If opponents know the Pacers are going to chase boards like maniacs, those opponents can’t start leaking out for fast breaks, the coaches say. “We always felt like if we were putting pressure on opponents to box us out,” McMillan recalls, “then they couldn’t get out and run.”
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    Raptors Republic Rookie Mundy's Avatar
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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    Although this article isn't about the Raptors, it's a very interesting read debunking the myth that offensive rebounding leaves teams vulnerable in transition defense, something I always thought to be true.









    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...sition-defense

    Based on these findings, should the Raptors place more emphasis on crashing the offensive glass, especially now that our starting front court (Amir and Jonas) actually play in the paint?

    EDIT: If the Raptors added an extra 4ppg last season, they would've increased scoring from 97.2ppg to 101.2ppg (a jump from 16th to 7th).

    [QUOTE=Nilanka;232470]Although this article isn't about the Raptors, it's a very interesting read debunking the myth that offensive rebounding leaves teams vulnerable in transition defense, something I always thought to be true.

    Yeah, it'd be nice but so far Val has been a horrid offensive rebounder for somebody his size. It's a nice thought but it'll be tough to go after it with two other players and still be back on D.
    The counter to that, I guess, is that we have so much energy up front that we could still hustle back, but until we have some proven o-glass workers (outside of Amir.....and I haven't looked up the numbers but something tells me Fields might be pretty okay) I'd say we stay the course and make ALL defense the #1 priority.

    .....oh, wait. I forgot about Psycho T. He's awesome. Maybe we put the pressure on their second unit, try to get some extra buckets that way. Amir and Hansborough will be tough for a lot of smaller/finesse lineups to deal with..
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    Raptors Republic Veteran white men can't jump's Avatar
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    Oviously it's possible to be good at ORBDing and D....but I think given where the Raps are, D needs to be stressed first. I'm not sure you can confidently send your guys to the offensive glass if you haven't already hammered home defensive fundamentals and overall strategy, which is clearly critical in the posted article about the Pacers as they have a well oiled D. I do like having JV, Amir and Hansbrough, all guys who can be a handful on the glass...but I think trying to stress both right away will just lead to inconsistent D with this group. Totally just an opinion though.

    The Pacers are a nice example....but the flip side is San Antonio, who avoid offensive rebounding like the plague. Both teams are solid in their defensive strategy in terms of everyone knowing their role and being on the same page. Defense first, then figure out how you're going to get any other advantages.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran white men can't jump's Avatar
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    Quote Mundy wrote: View Post

    Yeah, it'd be nice but so far Val has been a horrid offensive rebounder for somebody his size. It's a nice thought but it'll be tough to go after it with two other players and still be back on D.
    The counter to that, I guess, is that we have so much energy up front that we could still hustle back, but until we have some proven o-glass workers (outside of Amir.....and I haven't looked up the numbers but something tells me Fields might be pretty okay) I'd say we stay the course and make ALL defense the #1 priority.

    .....oh, wait. I forgot about Psycho T. He's awesome. Maybe we put the pressure on their second unit, try to get some extra buckets that way. Amir and Hansborough will be tough for a lot of smaller/finesse lineups to deal with..
    This is something I thought of when we got Hansbrough. We don't need to send both bigs either if Fields is on the court as a good rebounding wing. Anyway, we should certainly have more potential to do it this year, but I'm still not sure it's something they should stress from the start, but rather something they build on as the season goes on if their D is up to par.
    Last edited by white men can't jump; Thu Sep 12th, 2013 at 04:24 PM.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Mr.Z's Avatar
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    Shouldn't every team emphasize offensive rebounding? lol
    "You clearly don't know who you're talking to, so let me clue you in: I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No! I am the one who knocks!"

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    Raptors Republic Veteran white men can't jump's Avatar
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    Quote Mr.Z wrote: View Post
    Shouldn't every team emphasize offensive rebounding? lol
    Again, SAS consciously avoids it, and they made the Finals last year.

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    Quote white men can't jump wrote: View Post
    Again, SAS consciously avoids it, and they made the Finals last year.
    True, but the Spurs are in a world of their own. How does a team stay so good for so long? It's not so easy to recreate what they do with other franchises
    "You clearly don't know who you're talking to, so let me clue you in: I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No! I am the one who knocks!"

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    Quote Mr.Z wrote: View Post
    True, but the Spurs are in a world of their own. How does a team stay so good for so long? It's not so easy to recreate what they do with other franchises
    But they didn't always avoid offensive rebounding. Of course they are in a world of their own, but just because the Pacers are not the Spurs, does not mean that makes their success or strategy replicable. Many teams do not excel at both offensive rebounding and defense.

    The point is that you can't have a blanket strategy, and that the common thread with both teams, and closest thing to a "blanket strategy", is that they both have very disciplined defensive systems where their coaches do not permit slippage. Does that sound like the Raps? It sure doesn't yet.

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    Quote white men can't jump wrote: View Post
    Again, SAS consciously avoids it, and they made the Finals last year.
    Exactly. And they were the worst offensive rebounding team last year. AND the 3rd worst offensive rebounding team, also another of the top defensive teams, won the Finals.

    Hmmmm, the best coach in the game avoids it, making his team, along with the other Finals team, 2 of the 3 worst in the league, but some analytics guy is saying they're wrong, and the myth is busted? Gives me yet another reason to ignore even the "advanced" stats in evaluating players/teams.

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    Quote p00ka wrote: View Post
    Exactly. And they were the worst offensive rebounding team last year. AND the 3rd worst offensive rebounding team, also another of the top defensive teams, won the Finals.

    Hmmmm, the best coach in the game avoids it, making his team, along with the other Finals team, 2 of the 3 worst in the league, but some analytics guy is saying they're wrong, and the myth is busted? Gives me yet another reason to ignore even the "advanced" stats in evaluating players/teams.
    And since you throw the Heat out there....They also have a very disciplined defensive system, which is critical since they lack personnel to play traditional lineups with a true big anchoring the paint. They can't afford for people to miss assignments because it would expose that very weakness, potentially leaving far too many opportunities for their opponents in the paint, with basically no resistance.

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    Quote white men can't jump wrote: View Post
    Oviously it's possible to be good at ORBDing and D....but I think given where the Raps are, D needs to be stressed first. I'm not sure you can confidently send your guys to the offensive glass if you haven't already hammered home defensive fundamentals and overall strategy, which is clearly critical in the posted article about the Pacers as they have a well oiled D. I do like having JV, Amir and Hansbrough, all guys who can be a handful on the glass...but I think trying to stress both right away will just lead to inconsistent D with this group. Totally just an opinion though.
    I think this is spot on. Before offensive rebounding is emphasized too much, we need to get back to the defense we were playing in Casey's first year. And this current roster is more than capable of doing that.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Quote p00ka wrote: View Post
    Exactly. And they were the worst offensive rebounding team last year. AND the 3rd worst offensive rebounding team, also another of the top defensive teams, won the Finals.

    Hmmmm, the best coach in the game avoids it, making his team, along with the other Finals team, 2 of the 3 worst in the league, but some analytics guy is saying they're wrong, and the myth is busted? Gives me yet another reason to ignore even the "advanced" stats in evaluating players/teams.
    The idea that teams can't crash glass AND defend in transition is what's been debunked. The article doesn't say you must to do both in order to contend. The purpose of this thread is simply to discuss whether the Raptors can gain a competitive advantage by tweaking their gameplan, and whether or not they have the personnel to do it.

    Also, the article points out that both Boston and San Antonio potentially shy away from crashing the glass because KG and Duncan (i.e. their primary rebounders) are in the twilights of their respective careers, and thus spend less time in the paint offensively than they once did.
    Last edited by Nilanka; Thu Sep 12th, 2013 at 05:25 PM.
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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Another point to note is that up until last year, nobody really considered the Pacers a legit finals threat. They certainly don't have the Hall of Fame talent that both San Antonio and Miami possess. So the question is, how did the Pacers makeup for this gap in talent?

    This offensive rebounding strategy (as well as other potential strategic tweaks that seem to go against preconceived basketball knowledge), might be part of the Pacers' answer.
    "I don't lie. I willfully participate in a campaign of misinformation." - Fox Mulder

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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    The idea that teams can't crash glass AND defend in transition is what's been debunked. The article doesn't say you must to do both in order to contend. The purpose of this thread is simply to discuss whether the Raptors can gain a competitive advantage by tweaking their gameplan, and whether or not they have the personnel to do it.

    Also, the article points out that both Boston and San Antonio potentially shy away from crashing the glass because KG and Duncan (i.e. their primary rebounders) are in the twilights of their respective careers, and thus spend less time in the paint offensively than they once did.
    Yup. And Miami doesn't because they need to get their D set to avoid giving up the inside space to any big opponent since they lack a big guy.

    Personnel matters, and the Raps certainly have what's probably their best ever roster in that sense, with good rebounding bigs, athletic wings with good size (man I hope Fields can have an impact on O, because he's a great rebounding wing) and quick PGs who can get back. Again though, until I see some stability on D, it just seems like it's jumping the gun. Lots is on Casey's shoulders to establish a defensive philosophy that the team never gets away from.

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    Amir Johnson and Jonas Valanciunas both ranked in the top 20 for points scored per putback, so year, they should really capitalize on it.

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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    The idea that teams can't crash glass AND defend in transition is what's been debunked. The article doesn't say you must to do both in order to contend. The purpose of this thread is simply to discuss whether the Raptors can gain a competitive advantage by tweaking their gameplan, and whether or not they have the personnel to do it.

    Also, the article points out that both Boston and San Antonio potentially shy away from crashing the glass because KG and Duncan (i.e. their primary rebounders) are in the twilights of their respective careers, and thus spend less time in the paint offensively than they once did.
    Yeah, I guess I sidetracked it a little. That being said, perhaps this discussion is a little premature when speaking of the Raps. As someone (White Men...?) said, the Raps need to establish their team defense before they can toy with that idea, and so much depends on personnel as well.

    Interesting topic. Good find, especially considering the dearth of good topics these days.

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    Raptors Republic Veteran Nilanka's Avatar
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    Quote white men can't jump wrote: View Post
    Yup. And Miami doesn't because they need to get their D set to avoid giving up the inside space to any big opponent since they lack a big guy.

    Personnel matters, and the Raps certainly have what's probably their best ever roster in that sense, with good rebounding bigs, athletic wings with good size (man I hope Fields can have an impact on O, because he's a great rebounding wing) and quick PGs who can get back. Again though, until I see some stability on D, it just seems like it's jumping the gun. Lots is on Casey's shoulders to establish a defensive philosophy that the team never gets away from.
    Probably is jumping the gun a little. I guess I'm just itching to talk X's and O's instead of uniform colours and shoe collections
    Last edited by Nilanka; Thu Sep 12th, 2013 at 09:52 PM.

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    Quote Nilanka wrote: View Post
    Another important point from the article:
    Love this point.

    "...If opponents know the Pacers are going to chase boards like maniacs, those opponents can’t start leaking out for fast breaks..."

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