Bucks Horn Wizards 100-87: A Half's Worth of Screen Shots & Words | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

Bucks Horn Wizards 100-87: A Half’s Worth of Screen Shots & Words

Updated: March 4, 2010

Ok, a screen shot post. I don’t do these often enough,  here goes …

First, a disclaimer: Sometimes an opponent makes good, (relatively)unstoppable plays, and sometimes the defense isn’t up to snuff. Since defense wins championships, these screen shot posts tend to concentrate on the correctable defensive plays. So, sorry NBA millionaires if you are criticized and nitpicked too often. That just how it goes.

Because of the 8 pm start time, and then Duke-Maryland, I could only muster myself to re-watch the first half of last night’s Wizards-Bucks game, one where the Wiz lost 100-87. I’ll likely try to watch and chronicle the second half tonight, but I’m sure that a third quarter where, I believe, the Wizards had the same amount of turnovers as points (12), will be especially “fun” to watch. And yes, I realize this re-watching of Wizards defeats makes me seem a tad insane.

The Bucks are the Bucks. They are a playoff team, in the Eastern Conference … where sixth place is equivalent to “on the outside looking in” in the West. Still, no one thought the Wizards would really win last night. But they fought hard. They sorta tried. And as expected with this still young team, they more so got in their own way of winning than the other team. Although, do give Milwaukee credit.

{1st Quarter}

11:19 >> On the first play, Andray Blatche, bless his heart, acted like and NFL wide-receiver, perhaps Braylon Edwards. When the pass was coming he turned to make a move, and not when the pass was arriving. The ball was fumbled away — turnover #1 of 21, which was, of course, blamed on the passer, Mike Miller, in the stat book. This is one of the rare occasions where it isn’t always the passer’s fault.

Scott Skiles putting away his lucky charm, part of an actual Milwaukee buck hoof that he chews on during games. It gets tense with him. The chewing is a release.

And if Skiles’ face looks red, that’s probably because it is. That, and I adjusted the color balance a tad.

10:26 >> Here lies Mike Miller, catching the ball on a curl, ready to attack the basket … right? Wrong.

“Attacking” for Miller is jumping to pass (an aficionado in that area, he is) when Andrew  Bogut does not really step up to help on him. Instead of actually attacking the rim, Miller jumps and throws a risky pass back to JaVale McGee, who takes  a wild thing running hook shot that’s worthy of Denise Richards and Neve Campbell. The ball somehow went through the net. JaVale took off for his Ricky Vaughn-esque shot from further out than where Miller was when he passed McGee the ball.

{As Heard on T.V.}

Steve Buckhantz: “It looks like he shot down at the rim.”

Phil Chenier: “I think he did”

@bigdaddywookie (he needs followers y’all) then preceded to block Bogut and show proactive energy. A Very encouraging sign against the big Aussie.

9:13 >> Here Carlos Delfino (#1) drives and Randy Foye (#2) gets caught watching the action. His man, Brandon Jennings (#3), fades to the corner, receives the pass from Carlos (who, give McGee credit, is intimidated and doesn’t go for the layup). Jennings nails the 3-point jumper.

Defense: Where paying attention pays off, Randy.

8:41 >> Early on, Blatche saw the double team, passed to Randy Foye for a jumper, 7-3 Wizards. Nice work so far ‘Dray. He would, however, finish the night leading the Wizards in turnovers with five.

8:36 >> But right after Foye’s jumper, McGee didn’t get back. Gotta pay attention friend, especially after made baskets. The picture below of JaVale getting jammed on by Bogut looks kinda bad, but at least McGee tried to block him (and clobbered him) and didn’t exactly get dunked-“on”.

7:58 >> Here, help defense is the primary issue. If defense wins championships, then good defense is dependent upon intelligent help and awareness … something often lacking with the Wizards, the ability to adhere to the scheme.

As Al Thornton (#1) chases Delfino around multiple screens. Mike Miller (#2) looks to be kinda stepping in to help, but his man is also going toward the corner. If McGee (#3) didn’t allow himself to get sealed off by Bogut, he might be able to help. Or Andray Blatche (#4), he could be more aware of the action at this point, instead of standing erect next to his man (watch out Andray, he could be a Logan Circle cop).

Delfino gets all the way to the hoop for a bucket, which is the opposite of what Mike Miller would have done on offense. 9-8 Wizards.

7:13 >> At this point, Luc Mbah a Moute plows into McGee with elbows high. An unknown voice says, “What the f*ck?”, which is played over the television sound. JaVale goes flying under the rim and out of bounds.

Later in the game, Steve Buckhantz would relay a quote from Flip Saunders:

“The biggest thing with most young players as they come up, is that they don’t like contact. Kevin Garnett was like that, but they learn how to like it … if there’s going to be contract in the game, it’s better that you hand it out, rather than receive it.”

5:16 >> Andray  Blatche hit some “I’m on a roll” shots. The Wizards are a craps table. 17-12 DC.

This bloke asked for a pony for his 16th birthday*

[*that is an unconfirmed]

>> Don’t worry, you dirty mind you, Flip Saunders is just coaching JaVale McGee, not asking him out for “Date Night.” Flip is likely telling McGee to use his long arms to better deny the ball on defense, something he has talked about the young player needing to do more of before.

What about the picture with the mascot part … G-Wiz? I think that people would rather have their picture taken with Gheorghe Muresan. In fact, Big Gheorghe should be the team mascot. He’s at just about every game, active in the community. He represents the franchise well.

The Washington Gheorghe Muresans.

MC Hammer on crack.

For some reason, the refs called two early offensive fouls on Fabricio Oberto and Andray Blatche. The guys seemed set and stout. Could have been one of those subtle things that refs do to favor something or another. Neither pick was completely still in the upper body (but they definitely were in the lower body). Steve Buckhantz called screens, “one of the most baffling calls in the NBA because it is made so inconsistent.”

0:06 >> Here’s the deal — sure Mike Miller attempts the shot and the man who was guarding him (John Salmons) takes off toward the other end and winds up with a buzzer-beating dunk. But Mike Miller was also the guy taking the shot, give him a small break. What were Earl Boykins and Al Thornton doing up there in the upper-right corner? Watchin’ somethin’? Exactly.

The floor is imbalanced. The transition defensive is not following coverage assignment protocol. Blame Miller some, I guess, but in this case, the other guard, Boykins, in the least has a responsibility to get back on defense, as does, possibly, the small forward, Thornton. 28-26 Milwaukee.

{2nd Quarter}

Big respect to these bros, unless they are part of some Milwaukee gang called “Bullets” or are hipster(ish) guys doing it for the statement.

11:11 >> JaVale pivots the wrong way, finds himself under the basket, tries to throw up a silly attempt, and gets blocked by Kurt Thomas.

Thomas is old enough to be McGee’s father, if ‘Vale were born when Kurt was 15. It also strikes me odd that Thomas and Millhouse’s dad have the same first name.

9:52 >> On offense, JaVale does a great job when he sneaks in and plants himself under the rim after a teammate takes a close shot. Dunks. 32-30 Bucks.

8:29 >> If you see a Earl  Boykins turnover in the books (and he did have a lot against the Bucks, four off the bench to be exact), or get frustrated that he’s dribbling and such, this time, perhaps calm that down and get frustrated at our friend JaVale McGee instead, who, instead of cutting down a wide open lane, hangs out at the elbow … uh, ready to take a jumper?

7:56 >> Jerry Stackhouse picks off a JaVale McGee pass and converts on the other end. JaVale, along with Earl Boykins, were getting pestered into turnovers and stalled offense by a typical Scott Skiles defense. 36-32 Bucks.

At this point, the Wizards have six turnovers leading to 10 Milwaukee points.

7:39 >> The next time Boykins drives to the basket, McGee dives toward the rim and gets a dunk. Thumbs up kiddo. 36-34 Bucks.

Sidebar: If you would have told me in June of 2004, when the Jamison-Stackhouse-Devin Harris trade happened, that one day Jerry would be playing with an ex-Bullets player as his coach in the city where an ex-Wizards all-star who went rogue and became a Maverick was from (well, close, Racine is his actual hometown), and that the player the Wizards acquired for Stackhouse (and Devin Harris), Antawn Jamison, would be playing for a then unknown, now ex, rival team with a hated budding superstar, I would have shrugged my shoulders and said ‘Whatever.’ Tell me that last September, and I’d need to enter therapy. If any of that makes sense.

4:12 >> Ok, so Quinton Ross (white circle) goes to double Bogut (which I’m assuming was the plan), who makes a cross-court pass (orange arrow) to Ilyasova. And here’s where I would like to know the actual assignments that have been coached.

Nick Young and Andray Blatche, circled in blue, go to cover the guys where the respective blue arrows are pointing. This clearly leaves a man open in the corner. And just so you know, the play ends with Ilyasova swinging the ball to Delfino, who makes the corner three.

Ross (red arrow) goes from his double team of Bogut toward the corner to somehow try to cover Delfino, which was as close to an impossible task as imaginable.

The green arrows are how the rotations, in my opinion, should have gone … but that’s just me.

44-38 Milwaukee.

Other Notes:

  • I think James Singleton is a keeper. The perfect role player who needs to be cultivated and matured into a team with future goals. He’s only 29. Why not give him a 2-year, $4 million contract? (Or something like that)
  • Al Thornton was taken out of the first half, 0 points, 1 rebound in 16 minutes. Bogut was also held to zero rebounds.

And that was the first half where the Wizards went into the locker room down 56-48 to the Milwaukee Bucks. More to come …

{More face time for these cats}

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Kyle Weidie
Founder / Editor / Reporter / Writer at TAI
Kyle founded TAI in 2007 and has been weaving in and out the world of Wizards ever since, ducking WittmanFaces, jumping over G-Wiz, and avoiding stints on the DNP-Conditioning list. He has covered the Washington pro basketball team as a member of the media since 2009. Kyle currently lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife, loves basketball, and has no pets.