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Should the Bucks be playing at a faster pace?

Feb 2, 2011, 5:56 PM EDT

Scott Skiles

Alex Boeder of BrewHoop thinks so:

The Bucks have played 46 games. In their 23 fastest-paced games, they are 14-9. In their 23 slowest-paced games, they are 5-18.

That’s a very interesting statistic, to say the least. Boeder goes on to point out that the Bucks are an excellent defensive team who rebound the ball very well and have shot-blockers who tip the ball to their teammates instead of swatting it out of bounds, so they have plenty of opportunities to play transition basketball rather than inbound the ball from under their own hoop. (The only thing I would add to that is that the Bucks may be such a good defensive rebounding team because they aren’t looking to leak out on the break: Indiana, Cleveland, and San Antonio are the only teams who are in the top-1o in defensive rebound rate and play at a faster-than-average pace.)

However, the Bucks have not capitalized on opportunities to push the break, and continue to play at a very, very methodical pace under the direction of Scott Skiles. There’s always the requisite causation/correlation questions about a statistic like the one above — were the Bucks trying to play faster in their fastest 23 games, or were they successful in those games because the good things they did allowed them to play faster? Still, the numbers clearly suggest that Scott Skiles should be making more of an effort to get his team out in transition when the opportunities present themselves.

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