Just want to add, i noticed that Dirk's defensive rating was higher when he played alongside a defensive centerSo, your intent is to preach to the choir? A big problem with the Bargnani discussion is that most of the time it's ridiculously biased (and repetitive as their is no convincing people). Some people who are anti-Bargnani want to use everything aginst him and use every stat available that CAN be explained as something against Bargnani in total isolation of the total picture.
That was last year (him being MVP and winning for a change), and last year he did shoot 52% from 16-23 feet, but after 2007/8 he had three years where he shot 46/47/48 % which is only slightly better than Bargnani's 44% from last year (which was above the league average of about 40/42%). And, for example, if one is being honest one has to take into account the fact that it's easier for Nowitzki because of his supporting cast. Amongst others, Nowitzki last year had good 3point shooters spreading the floor, something which Bargnani does not have (besides Calderon) which makes it much more easy to defend Bargnani because opponents don't have to close out on shooters.
If you just say it's a bad shot because of the shotlocation, than it would be a bad shot for Nowitzki as well. If we take into account other factors for Nowitzki we should for Bargnani as well.
You can easily verify this by going to hoopdata.com and calculate it. Maybe there is even a site where you can directly get the percentages that I'm not aware of. No need to take my word for it.
I have to disagree, about DD as well as about Bargnani.
1) Between 16-23 feet are not all extremely long shots. A lot of those shots are from a position from where they can go to the basket as well as pull up for the shot. You don't really get that double threat from three point range. It's really hard to make plays that far away from the basket.
Bargnani's FTA/FGA (freethrows attempted / fieldgoals attempted) was 30%, which is not too bad (Derozan was at 35% btw). Logically the foulrate was much higher on isolation/PNR-man/Post-Ups (11%/9,5%/7,7%) than on Spot-Ups (5,5%).
2) And we need 1) because in our starting line-up of last year, those were the two players which were asked to be the primary scorers. Bargnani had a high usage rating, much higher than it should be in my opinion, but was that because he just look to shoot the ball any chance he got? Did he just go against the plays and plans of the coaches, was he just doing his own thing? I donít think so, I think thatís what was being asked of him and considering the lack of players with a diverse offensive arsenal that wasnít illogical. Just to reÔterate: besides Bargnani and Calderon there wasnít a player in our starting line-up (after Kleiza went down) that could shoot the three at a rate better than 25%(!)
Besides, taking 30% of his shots from 16-23 feet is only slightly more than some of the top teams average from that range. Atlanta 30%, Boston 29%, Chicago 27%, Miami 29%. Do you suggest they are all doing it wrong?
If you want Bargnani to just spot up at the threepoint line and you want DeRozan too just take jumpers if he is within 15 feet you are asking the team (we had last year Ė starting line-up of Calderon/DeRozan/Johnson/Johnson or Davis/Bargnani) to become extremely inflexible on offense. That would be terrible.
By the way, itís hard to get a jumpshot from 10-15 feet as itís only about 10% of the shots taken in the league. Iím glad DeRozan extended his range on the long jumpers to an acceptable level (just below or around the league average). For example: without range on the team, even though it was still limited, I donít believe for one second that Amir Johnson would have been able to be as efficient as he was cutting to the basket, on the PNR and on offensive rebounds.
I am not at all happy with Bargnaniís efficiency, in case you think I am. But you canít just look at his efficiency without looking at the team he played in and what and how much he was asked to do and at least think about how that might affect his efficiency. Bargnani getting more efficient has a lot to do with lowering his usage, which means we need more weapons.
Iím glad he didnít because the issues you mention are not the right ones. Accountability is very well if you can also teach and train the team to do things well. As bad as we were defensivily, thatís not just solved by holding people accountable (as we would have no player left after the first game!), you got to have some balance in the team and you have to be able to teach the right things.