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Sydney_Fife

Game 64: Pistons @ Bulls

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That was a real gut check win. Like Casimir, I was ready to give up after the 1st half because it seemed like one of those games where they just didn't have it but good on them for turning up the effort, getting in the Baby Bulls faces and pulling away late.

My one worry is these slow starts in the last few games with the starters not bringing the necessary effort to start games. They can't fall behind good teams and expect the bench to get them back in it. 

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4 hours ago, Buddha said:

reggie looked like crap.  ish played well.  drummond played well.  galloway and kennard played well.  i thought brown played well too.

blake looked tired.  i hope sunday is a blowout and they can give him some rest.  god help them if he gets hurt.

that's the bulls for you.  they can score when lavine is going well.  but when the other team turns up the defense, lavine turns the ball over and then takes dumb shots.  dunn is useless.  porter is a good all around player.  markannen is going to be good.

You’re right. LaVine, Markannen, and Porter is a nice core of 3 players. Get a chance at Ja Morant in the draft. They’d have something going there for sure. 

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20 hours ago, Hart said:

Stop passing it to Maker.  Very little good is going to come out of that.  

Maker seems to have zero offensive skills.

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8 hours ago, Gehringer_2 said:

Embiid is always going to be a tough match-up for Drummond. I don't think the 'new Drummond' is likely to be any more effective against him. The question is can he accept it and do what he can to keep Embiid occupied so as to facilitate others. Even great players have particular guys they can't do much against - e.g. IIRC, Kareem often struggled against Bob Lanier, but he didn't lose his cool over it.

Tough matchup is fine as long as long as Drummond can rise to the occasion rather than play poorly.

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13 minutes ago, Casimir said:

Tough matchup is fine as long as long as Drummond can rise to the occasion rather than play poorly.

And I would say the thing is, that if he tries, Embiid can probably stop him from putting up 20 even if Andre is at the top of his game. So I guess I would say 'rising to the occasion' might have to take a different form than conventional measures. Or to put it another way, Embiid can dictate how Andre will have to play for the team to have success, and not vice-versa. Drummond will have to find peace in playing off of what Embiid is doing.

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Drummond is likely to finish in the top 10 in rebounds, blocks, steals, defensive rating, defensive WS, box plus/minus, PER and has a chance at top 10 in overall win shares.   He has his flaws no doubt but those are some impressive stats.  Plus it's still hard to believe how young Drummond is.  Him and Embiid are only 6 months apart, that is just crazy to me.   

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5 hours ago, RandyMarsh said:

Drummond is likely to finish in the top 10 in rebounds, blocks, steals, defensive rating, defensive WS, box plus/minus, PER and has a chance at top 10 in overall win shares.   He has his flaws no doubt but those are some impressive stats.  Plus it's still hard to believe how young Drummond is.  Him and Embiid are only 6 months apart, that is just crazy to me.   

That is impressive and legitimizes what we are seeing watching these games.  Probably more valuable than Blake at this point from the standpoint that I would rather see Blake in foul trouble than Andre.

We have see Drummond go thru great stretches before and then falter but I don't know if we have seen it to this extent yet.  The true test will be how he performs in the playoffs, especially if he is matched up with Embiid. 

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Definitely a great stretch of games by Dre. Maybe all the trade talk and the All-Star snub finally woke him up. I'll believe it when it lasts, but it's been nice to watch for sure. The issues with Dre for me have always been:

1. Know your role - The most frustrating part about watching Dre over the years have been the bonehead plays that just kill the team. Over this stretch he's stopped being directly responsible for 5-10 "turnover" possessions per game. That alone makes a massive swing in his efficiency and the team's +/- when he's on the court. If he can keep up this level of maturity, then this year will be remembered as the year he really turned the corner. A Playoff matchup against his nemesis (Embiid) in round 1 will be the real test here.

2. Contract - The fact is that 25+ Million for a Center in today's NBA is tough to swallow. This issue was made worse by the fact that SVG left us with few good, cheap prospects on rookie contracts and signed a bunch of bench (or worse) players to large deals. There really was/is no room to improve the rest of the team, so Dre's contract became the thing to point to and the only real asset to move to get a player and try to fix the situation.

3. His defense - Dre has been a less than average defender through most of his career. He's gotten better this year, but he still needs to step up his game in this area. Defensive boards are a big part of it, and he's great at that, but I'm talking about the rest. The initial penetrating drive gets to the rim way too easily against this team and Dre's one-on-one skills are average at best. That also means the rest of the team needs to step up the defensive rotation because Dre's man is going to get layups all day if he becomes a true help side presence. He's improved his blocks this year, but it needs to be more consistent. As for steals, I don't value that as high as others because he's gambling, getting out of position, and getting into foul trouble as a result.

Anyway, it's nice to see him making strides in the right direction. Hopefully he can keep it up. Having him become more valuable as a player helps no matter what, because even if you're still in the "trade him" camp, you want to get a better return.

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