Quote yertu damkule wrote: View Post
whether anyone wants to admit it or not, there is a degree of luck involved in any sporting event...and DD's point, as rooted in excuse-making as it is, is simply a reflection that the teams feels that they've been unlucky to some degree. he's wildly exagerating the # of L's that would have been W's if not for bad luck - i'd put the number in the 4-5 range, optimistically.

basically, win probability (the % likelihood that a team will win at any given point in a game) fluctuates during a game depending on how that game is going; a team up 20 with 2 minutes left has a very high win probability. but a close game that goes down to the wire is essentially a 50-50 proposition to very end, and often is decided by 1 or 2 plays. good/great teams simply turn those plays to their favour in close games more often than not. the difference between what separates a 'horrible' team from an average one (and an average one from an elite one) are often much smaller than we generally assume.

i know we like to whip hollinger something fierce around here, but his rankings are more objective in nature than most (being stat-based), and he slots the raps in with other teams with much better records...which in & of itself doesn't say a whole lot, other than the stats bear out the notion that the team is playing better (and is playing their opponents tighter/tougher) than their record would indicate.

so yes, at the end of the day, their record is what it is...but i feel better about this team when i factor everything in (new players, injuries, bargs shitting the bed on a continual basis, luck/karma/pissing off the basketball gods by continuing to play bargnani signficant minutes when he's a lazy motherchucker, etc) than i probably should. yes, the losses are dispiriting, but i'd rather they struggle now, fight through the rough patches, learn how to play together, incorporate JV into the gameplan, #freeED, etc) and realize they need to move on from certain players (and start freeing the reigns on other players th fool themselves into thinking they're better than they are by eking out wins & having a record that artificially inflates how 'good' they really are.
Those are all fair points and they might indeed be "better" than their record indicates.

For some reason i just don't get that feeling though. Last year I looked at the roster and I coudln't believe how they were competing and winning games here and there. I never thought they were one of the worst teams last year, even though at the start of that season I thought they were top 3 lottery for sure. They ended up battling on the defensive end and won some games they probably shouldn't have.

This year however, they are losing to Pistons, Bobcats, etc who are teams I had already assumed they had passed in this stage of the game in team development. One game is one game so I shouldn't overanalyze it but it feels like these other teams wised up and started to defend and Raps have taken a step back with new emphasis on offence and fading in 4th quarters.

I will be patient and observe until the end of the year but I am not pleased with what I'm seeing on the court. It seems more like a mess, than a work in progress.