Would Westbrook be playing as well as Lebron in Finals?

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» Fri Jun 09, 2017 3:10 am
I heard someone mention this and it kind of made sense to me. Westbrook gets labeled as a stat padder. Well right now Lebron is basically averaging a triple double in the Finals. Got blown out the first 2 games and the 3rd game was very tight.

But I could see Westbrook putting up similar or better numbers against us with less help and losing a couple games by 20 or more and then having a strong 3rd game but then just coming up short against us in game 3 in his building.

So I don't really see much of a difference. This is not hate. I also noticed he tried to get a triple double last game, so instead of trying to drive on Draymond and get him fouled out, he dished it out to Korver. Instead of trying to win a finals game, he either shied away or just wanted to pass Magic Johnson in Finals triples, so thought he could win by doing it that way and it came back to bite him. I could see Westbrook making the same mistake down the stretch.

Lebron is a freight train, Westbrook is too in his own way, but Lebron rarely attacks the basket at the end of games, he always defers to someone else or takes a random, usually off balanced jump shot. Very hard to stay in front of, but in the clutch he struggles to come up with a go2 move.

I suppose Westbrook would put up triples against us and possibly be quite inefficient. But I would think he'd be less tired than Bron and would get his triples easier. Also, Westbrook is playing with FAR FAR less help than Lebron, yet won a similar amount of games in a much tougher conference. Both of them don't try to play defense anymore. Lebron gave Durant a wide open jumper right in his face.

I also think Harden could do what Lebron is doing in these Finals and come up with the same results. Harden has won a couple games against us in the playoffs before.
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» Fri Jun 09, 2017 1:15 pm
No, I don't believe Westbrook could not do what LBJ has done against us. The biggest difference is LeBron's defense, though it's not great against us (no player's D is), Westbrook's D gets destroyed against us (and most playoff teams) - he has significantly worse numbers vs us than most other teams.

LeBron is a freight train, but Westbrook is more of a speeding, reckless bullet - his ability to quickly drive past defenders is his best weapon.

I also don't believe Harden can do what James has, for the same reasons​ as Westbrook (we own him), and even less so given Westbrook's stat padding mentality.

I don't think LeBron has been trying to pad his stats - those have never been what makes him great, and besides his eye-popping career numbers, they aren't a large component of his legacy - only rings matter to him now.

I truly believe that this team is just far too much for LeBron (and the refs) to overcome, even if he had a better supporting cast. The Warriors team will be remembered as the most dominate team in NBA history, maybe not the "best," but so much better than the rest of the league.

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» Sun Jul 02, 2017 12:30 am
Great thread, Stairway Man!

It would be interesting to see if a smart coach can devise a style/system to combat the Warrior style/system. I find it almost laughable how teams are trying to duplicate what the Warriors are doing on offense with its interchangeable pieces and 3-ball threat.

A team like OKC with Westbrook, and now Paul George, would be quite formidable, and a possible threat, if it implemented a triangle offense which emphasized ball movement and mid-range shots for both Westbrook and George in a manner similar to how the 1990s Bulls had done this with Jordan and Pippen.

Amazingly, what both the Cavs and the Thunder never duplicated was the tough Warrior transition defense and the unselfish ball movement and passing, something that has to be bought into by the whole team.

I see both LeBron and Westbrook as great players and products of teams with bad systems.
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» Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:05 am
uptempo wrote:Great thread, Stairway Man!

It would be interesting to see if a smart coach can devise a style/system to combat the Warrior style/system. I find it almost laughable how teams are trying to duplicate what the Warriors are doing on offense with its interchangeable pieces and 3-ball threat.

A team like OKC with Westbrook, and now Paul George, would be quite formidable, and a possible threat, if it implemented a triangle offense which emphasized ball movement and mid-range shots for both Westbrook and George in a manner similar to how the 1990s Bulls had done this with Jordan and Pippen.

Amazingly, what both the Cavs and the Thunder never duplicated was the tough Warrior transition defense and the unselfish ball movement and passing, something that has to be bought into by the whole team.

I see both LeBron and Westbrook as great players and products of teams with bad systems.



Right. Lebron is great at driving to the rim, especially when you don't have a true rim protector in the paint. Look at last year how much harder it was for Lebron to score before Bogut went down. He wasn't getting easy shots. I can see the same for Westbrook.

But as impressive as Lebron is, has he ever proved he can do this while being in a team oriented system? I can obviously agree that he is special when we're talking about what one person can do by himself. But I have yet to see him play in a team oriented system and be part of that. He has seemed to want coaches and players that fit in with this style. That's why I have a hard time picturing him winning 73 games or doing something incredible like that with a team.

He can't do things like catch and shoot quickly, go on fire from 3 consistently, or let his teammates make plays consistently without him. What I see with Lebron is being able to do a lot of things without much talent around him and making certain spot up shooters better. But when I see him play with stars added to his team, I still see a lot of help needed for him. You see, he's a great physical specimen who resembles a cheetah. And he does have good court vision. But how is he supposed to be part of a true system with his isolated playing style? That's why I believe Curry and Green are better system players than Lebron. Lebron would probably win 1 on 1 or do better with a team with no system. But with a system, I don't believe he's the best team player.

You can argue he's the best solo player in the playoffs. But in the regular season, Harden and Westbrook can win just as many games as him and put up even higher stats from an individual standpoint. But to me, you have to look at what players can be part of a system and be unselfish at the same time. Basketball is not a 1 on 1 sport or a 1 on 5 sport. It's still a complete team sport. To me, Curry and Green are better system players than Lebron and Wade. They make others better instead of subtracting certain players. You need to build the puzzle. When you have Lebron or Harden running things, it's harder to find other pieces to fill that puzzle. Pieces like Iguodala who are glue guys. If you put Iggy with Harden, his game might be a little compromised.

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» Sun Jul 02, 2017 7:27 pm
Stairway Man wrote:
uptempo wrote:Great thread, Stairway Man!

It would be interesting to see if a smart coach can devise a style/system to combat the Warrior style/system. I find it almost laughable how teams are trying to duplicate what the Warriors are doing on offense with its interchangeable pieces and 3-ball threat.

A team like OKC with Westbrook, and now Paul George, would be quite formidable, and a possible threat, if it implemented a triangle offense which emphasized ball movement and mid-range shots for both Westbrook and George in a manner similar to how the 1990s Bulls had done this with Jordan and Pippen.

Amazingly, what both the Cavs and the Thunder never duplicated was the tough Warrior transition defense and the unselfish ball movement and passing, something that has to be bought into by the whole team.

I see both LeBron and Westbrook as great players and products of teams with bad systems.



Right. Lebron is great at driving to the rim, especially when you don't have a true rim protector in the paint. Look at last year how much harder it was for Lebron to score before Bogut went down. He wasn't getting easy shots. I can see the same for Westbrook.

But as impressive as Lebron is, has he ever proved he can do this while being in a team oriented system? I can obviously agree that he is special when we're talking about what one person can do by himself. But I have yet to see him play in a team oriented system and be part of that. He has seemed to want coaches and players that fit in with this style. That's why I have a hard time picturing him winning 73 games or doing something incredible like that with a team.

He can't do things like catch and shoot quickly, go on fire from 3 consistently, or let his teammates make plays consistently without him. What I see with Lebron is being able to do a lot of things without much talent around him and making certain spot up shooters better. But when I see him play with stars added to his team, I still see a lot of help needed for him. You see, he's a great physical specimen who resembles a cheetah. And he does have good court vision. But how is he supposed to be part of a true system with his isolated playing style? That's why I believe Curry and Green are better system players than Lebron. Lebron would probably win 1 on 1 or do better with a team with no system. But with a system, I don't believe he's the best team player.

You can argue he's the best solo player in the playoffs. But in the regular season, Harden and Westbrook can win just as many games as him and put up even higher stats from an individual standpoint. But to me, you have to look at what players can be part of a system and be unselfish at the same time. Basketball is not a 1 on 1 sport or a 1 on 5 sport. It's still a complete team sport. To me, Curry and Green are better system players than Lebron and Wade. They make others better instead of subtracting certain players. You need to build the puzzle. When you have Lebron or Harden running things, it's harder to find other pieces to fill that puzzle. Pieces like Iguodala who are glue guys. If you put Iggy with Harden, his game might be a little compromised.


I keep thinking about the Chicago Bulls with Michael Jordan before Phil Jackson took over as coach and after Phil Jackson took over as coach. MJ was unstoppable; yet, the Bulls could never get past the Pistons in the East until Phil implemented Tex Winter's triangle and got Jordan to play a more efficient game. I am not so sure if Lue and Donovan have the gravitas to implement a similar system.

What actually causes me some real concern, as a Warriors fan, is what the Timberwolves and Tom Thibodeau are doing with their roster makeover. The team is potentially a defensive juggernaut with the additions of Jimmy Butler, Taj Gibson (a really tough player who plays hard-nosed defense) and Jeff Teague, and the potential departure of Shabazz Muhammad. With Andrew Wiggins, Karl-Anthony Towns, Gorgui Dieng, and Nemanja Bjelica also on the Timberwolves roster, I view that team as a potential real threat to the Warriors, especially with Tom Thibodeau coaching that team with his emphasis on a smothering defense and an efficient offense.

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