Friday, August 3, 2012

Running it up

It seems as if Coach K is taking some heat for beating Nigeria by seventy points yesterday.

How to respond to such an accusation? What could the Americans have done to stop the differential from being so great? Should the Americans have done anything?

The answer is that the US could not have done anything more than what it did.

I watched the first quarter of the game when it seemed as if no player from the US could miss a three point shot.  The coach could not have put in weak benchwarmers, because on this team every player is an all star. Carmelo Anthony played less than 15 minutes and still scored thirty something points. 

Should the players have not played hard? If you have ever played the game you know that if you do not try hard you can, in fact, get injured when playing opponents who are working relentlessly regardless of their talent level.

Two things the Americans could have done were to stop pressing and not go for fast break baskets unless they really had no other choice.  I have not seen the whole game, but I understand that the Americans did in fact stop pressing and breaking after the first half. 

You can't tell players to miss shots.  If you don't take threes, then you are taking twos. Twos are easier to make than threes, so by driving to the hoop or pulling up for short shots you run the risk of being perceived as running it up.

Basketball does not have a mercy rule like little league baseball.  The US and Coach K could not bring people from the stands into play. The weakest player on the team was the first pick of the NBA draft.

It might be time to substitute for the pundits. Bring in some second string experts as the first team "experts" are not working hard enough at their craft.

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