After a tough defeat to the Thunder where we had Parker and Duncan back, my mind began to wonder about what might be wrong with our lineup.
Now I'm not on the "Bench Parker and Duncan" wagon yet, but you have to wonder how we went from locking down a Mavs team loaded with offensive talent like Marion, Howard, Terry, and Nowitzki; to getting aced by the Fighting Durants.
Yes there was a lot of bad calls (9 Durant free throws in only the first few minutes), but there was definitely some problems with the way we played. Yes we had some good defense going early on and we forcing high 30's to low 40's in shooting percentage, but we weren't much better. While the Thunder were throwing all their defensive aces at us, we should have been able to get something going on offense.
Ginobili was suffocated to the sound of 0-8 from the field, Dyess had no offense game for most of the game, and Parker was on lockdown in the first half. But the most startling stat of all?
4 points for Richard Jefferson. The same RJ who dropped 29 on the Mavs just one game earlier. The same RJ who was supposed to come in here and be "our fourth star". Only in two games has he impressed me, and those were the two that Duncan and parker were out. Is it just a manner of there being too many stars on the court? That can't be it if Wallace is getting good numbers in Boston where there's arguably four stars already on the court (I don't count Rondo as a star but many do)
Perhaps.............it's his position. Yes he was brought in to be that great offensive SF we'd been lacking for so long. But let's face it, he's not getting much offense from the SF spot. But from the Power Forward slot, he drops 29. So is there perhaps a way we could get some sort of lineup where Jefferson can play PF but the team wouldn't be missing anything from the SF spot and still be good on D?
Indeed I do believe there is.
C: While this move will spark some controversy on here, the center spot would belong to Duncan. His home is PF I know that, but he's played a lot of center in the past (mainly last year) and he can still keep his low post spot while Jefferson spreads the court with his athleticism and mid-range shooting touch.
PF: Jefferson obviously. I think his problem with SF is that in the scheme he's forced to stick to the perimeter, which completely misuses his best quality. His elite speed. Speed that catches the opponent off-guard and allows him to get the great penetration we saw versus the Mavs. Dare I say, it is Ginobili-esque. However, going from the three-point line all the way to the rim gives the defense more time to react and cut him off forcing a difficult shot or forcing him to pass.
From the Power Forward spot, he's closer to the rim, can penetrate faster, take the D off guard, and get better mid-range shot opportunities.
SF: Yet another move of controversy, but why not put Bonner at SF? He already struggles with close-range shots and layups (though we are seeing some definite improvement). His home is the 3-point line, aka the perimeter from which he would be based. And with his size versus opposing SF's, he might be able to muscle his way close to the rim for the occasional non-3.
SG: Though Manu will obviously get the most time here, I'd like to see Bogans and Hill get a nice split at this spot when Gino isn't on the floor. Both are defensive experts, with Bogans being the better of the two in my book, and Hill can bring offense to the spot for when Ginobili takes a breather. It's really just based on the situation as to when either plays. Trying to protect a lead or limit the opponent from extending a lead, play Bogans. Trying to keep offensive momentum with Ginobili going to sit, play Hill.
PG: Obviously this is Parker's spot and Hill will be the primary backup and Mason should never ever set foot on the court.
Now then, for all you defensive fans who say that Bonner playing the athletic SF's of the league and Jefferson at a size disadvantage, fret not. Have Bonner play the big men and Jefferson keep defending small forwards. Just make sure that Jefferson and Bonner are in their correct spots on offense.
As for when Jefferson would go the bench for a rest, have Duncan return to the PF slot, Finley go in at SF, and Bonner or whoever else play C. If Bonner needs to sit before Jefferson swaps out, Finley would then be charged with SF. The one major flaw to the plan I suppose, but Finley still has some good D and his shot isn't all that bad.
Your all's thoughts?