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Old 08-10-2006, 03:03 AM   #31
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I see Tark's points, agree with 'em.

I think tray's idea is kinda off just because that really ain't who he is either. He's just a selfish human being. Not a "bad boy." Not a "nice guy." Just the guy you work with who is very smug and rubs you the wrong way.

It's just the fact that he's in the limelight.
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Old 08-10-2006, 07:36 PM   #32
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Besides that if Kobe decided to go AI and be the bad boy at this stage of the the game he would just get slammed for being a poseur and lose even more street cred.
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Old 08-10-2006, 09:54 PM   #33
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"Straight outta Lower Merion...crazy selfish ballhog named Kobe"

Just composing his rap song IF he goes the "AI" route.
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Old 08-19-2006, 04:41 PM   #34
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Same signs, same weaknesses....

I don't know what all the hype is about when this team, while decidedly better than the last, is showing the same Achilles Heel that dropped the USA from the top of the world.

Yea, the "new" Dream Team... That phrase when uttered outside a convo of the only Dream Team should be met with a mandatory prison sentence....

Team USA debuts with mediocre win


Charley Rosen / Special to FOXSports.com

Despite their 111-100 victory, Team USA's debut against a decidedly mediocre Puerto Rican ball club was not very auspicious.

Sure, there were plenty of pluses:

# Whenever they moved the ball crisply against Puerto Rico's shifting zone defenses (that ranged from a 2-3 to a 2-1-2 to a matchup alignment), there were open shots galore.

# Players (specifically Carmelo Anthony, Elton Brand and Chris Bosh) cutting from the weak side to the strong side high- or mid-post found themselves with enough space to operate freely.

# Even though Puerto Rico's big men (Daniel Santiago and Peter Ramos) are very mechanical, low-talented players who both fouled out in short order, Team USA dominated their offensive glass (16 total offensive rebounds to their opponents' seven).

# There were some terrific sequences on defense, especially when the passing lanes were attacked, and entry passes into the low-post were swarmed (14 steals and nine blocked shots).

# As ever, the Americans' running game was devastating.

# The team also played with admirable intensity throughout.

At the same time, there were multiple minuses:

# The outside shooting was poor (9-of-27 from beyond the arc compared with Puerto Rico's 10-fo-16). Indeed, in addition to Team USA's 3-pointers, they only made five jump shots from mid-range and beyond. Of their 39 buckets, 25 came on fast breaks, driving layups and flips or putbacks.

# While their initial pressure on Puerto Rico's screen/rolls was usually effective (mostly consisting of a quick double by the big man guarding the screener), their weak side rotation was poor. As a result, Puerto Rico's S/Rs generated too many uncontested shots. For the game, the losers shot 54.3 percent from the field.

# Team USA, likewise, did a poor job of getting back on defense.

# Carlos Arroyo, Elias Ayuso and Christian Dalmau routinely dribbled themselves into easy shots.

# Puerto Rico's use of baseline screens and curls repeatedly created open jumpers (especially in early-offense situations).

# Team USA forced too many shots and drives. LeBron James was guilty of five of these; Anthony, two; Dwyane Wade, three; Antawn Jamison, two; and Chris Paul and Elton Brand, one each.

# LeBron, Wade and Jamison were virtually useless in half-court sets.

# Paul had five steals, but he also reached too much on defense. James played no defense whatsoever. Neither did Jamison. In fact, except for one sterling sequence by Bosh, Shane Battier was the team's only staunch defender.

# Much more often than not, the Americans were impatient when they were forced to play a set-up offense.

Final analysis

Overall, allowing a so-so opponent to score 100 points and to shoot so efficiently is extremely bad news. Both Arroyo and Ayuso are sticky-fingered, shoot-first guards, which raises the question of how the Americans will fare against more pass-oriented backcourts.

The Puerto Ricans also played at the kind of fast pace that the Americans relish. However, it's been the slow-down teams that have stymied American teams in the most recent international competitions.

In their opening game, Team USA's depth and sheer athleticism sufficed to gain a victory. However, to overcome the tournaments better teams, the Americans will need to play much better defense and show more discipline on offense.

For Team USA, the Worlds began with more of a whimper than a bang. Let's hope the competition doesn't end the same way.

http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/5885834
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Old 08-19-2006, 09:39 PM   #35
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Speaking of defense, why is Bruce Bowen not on this team?
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Old 08-19-2006, 10:11 PM   #36
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He was the last cut. His offense was almost nonexistent which regardless of D, they'll need against the zones they'll face...
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Old 08-19-2006, 10:57 PM   #37
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Battier made Bowen redundant. Brown didn't grasp the offense like Battier did, nor did he add anything else than a defender, which players like Kobe(once healthy), Battier, and Joe Johnson can play the role of.
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Old 08-19-2006, 11:01 PM   #38
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Well, they do still have Joe Johnson, Shane Battier, Chris Paul, and Josh Howard who are very good perimeter defenders and provide more offensive versatility than Bowen does.

They did a much better job this time around of balancing out the star power on this team. They have the three studs in James, Wade, and 'Melo with the rest of the guys being mostly second tier stars who can play and defend multiple positions in the league.
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Old 08-20-2006, 01:43 PM   #39
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USA blew out China in their last game. I agree with doublee and think this team is capable of meeting their goals and avoiding disappointment like last time.
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Old 08-20-2006, 02:08 PM   #40
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Yeah, I had to laugh at the media saing that China could be threat because of Yao and the only thing I could think of was that Yao hasn't exactly made Houston a legit threat in the NBA so why should the US Team have to worry about him?
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Old 08-20-2006, 10:26 PM   #41
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Not to hijack and excuse the laziness but I have a question:

doublee...

What is the contract status of Yao? Is this his last year?
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Old 08-20-2006, 10:34 PM   #42
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No, the Rockets re-signed him to an extension last summer. I think the salary kicks in this upcoming season. I want to say they signed him to a seven year deal.

How about the US squad forcing 23 turnovers while only coughing it up 9 times against China. One of the biggest improvements on this year's squad is they have some pure PGs as opposed to SGs masquerading as PGs like they had under Brown.
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Old 08-20-2006, 10:46 PM   #43
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Well...

Outside of Chen Jianghua, China has about the same problem as the last US team. Shooting guards masquearding as points, only they lack the elite athletism. SP Wang, Yue, etc. Not impressed with them as they had trouble bring the ball up against freaking Australia. Only players on China are Jianghua, Yi, and Yao. Outside of those three, the rest are scrubs that can't don't much.

As for USA, Hinrich and Paul are much better than Iverson and Marbury. They can actually defend, run the offense, and don't gamble on defense. That is the biggest improvement, they don't gamble AS much.
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Old 08-21-2006, 09:49 PM   #44
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For the likes of me, I don't see a big man on the US squad. What's Coach K's reasoning behind that?
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:03 PM   #45
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Well, they wanted guys like Shaq, KG, and Duncan, but none of them were willing to give a three year commitment to the program.
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