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Wednesday And-1 links: LeBron, Kobe among the most clutch in the league

Apr 3, 2013, 6:35 PM EDT

Miami Heat v Los Angeles Lakers Getty Images

Here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points like Mark Cuban loves to tweak Phil Jackson….

• Does it really surprise you that a look at the best players in the clutch finds LeBron James and Kobe Bryant near the top of the list? Interesting to see Kyrie Irving there, however.

• Gregg Popovich and R.C. Buford talk about the greatness of Tim Duncan and his resurgence this season.

• When teams face the Spurs in the playoffs, did the Heat give them the blueprint on how to beat them?

Carmelo Anthony says the Heat can be beat. And he said that before he dropped 50 on them.

• What’s it like to watch JaVale McGee highlights with JaVale McGee?

• I’m not fully sold on Henry Abbott’s call for Erik Spoelstra as Coach of the Year, but his point about coaching less rather than over-coaching a team is spot on.

Stephen Curry is really, really good at shooting the basketball.

• Along those same lines, here is a breakdown of the habits of the game’s best shooters.

John Wall thinks Derrick Rose should sit out the season. Because everybody has to be asked about this.

• The documentary about Amare Stoudemire‘s life is set to air on April 19, the night before the NBA playoffs begin. At least we know Stoudemire will be in the documentary.

• Knicks owner James Dolan did the whole “don’t you know who I am?” thing and fired a security guard that didn’t recognize him. But at least later had a change of heart.

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins talks about the Rudy Gay trade and why the team is doing so well since it happened.

• The Pacers playoff losses to the Heat last year shaped the basis of their success this year.

Looking at the Pistons NBA draft lottery odds.

• And for fun, watch next year’s No. 1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins throw down an impressive dunk at the McDonald’s All American dunk contest.

  1. 808raiderinparadise - Apr 3, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    Reminds me of the kinda dunks i do daily ….

    in my office when I ball up a piece of paper and pretend to jump and actually move in slow motion and throw paper ball down at the 2ft trash can.

    sick dunk.

  2. aldavis4president - Apr 3, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    “• Does it really surprise you that a look at the best players in the clutch finds LeBron James and Kobe Bryant near the top of the list? Interesting to see Kyrie irving there, however.”

    Are you kidding me? Of course I’m surprised to see LeBron near the top for best clutch players in the league!! He’s been a choke artist his whole career! He didn’t hit his 1st GW shot until like his 4thyear!! I really lost respect for this site for that post, I mean Rly?! We get it Kurt helin, your a heat fan. now do your job better.

  3. davidly - Apr 3, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    No, it doesn’t surprise me that the default setting at the nba.com/clutch would place Bryant at the top because, in spite of his game percentage edging downward, they conveniently base the default interpretation on his taking so many more shots than anyone else, thereby getting the most points.

    Giving it more than a cursory view, however, demonstrates that his percentage consistently creeps downward until the minute mark, beyond which it begins to plummet. Of course, the refs don’t discourage him from iso-ing at the end of games by giving him so many of those “they aren’t gonna call that sh**” calls.

  4. kb2408 - Apr 3, 2013 at 9:01 PM

    I’m just glad the people that really count,(those that study the NBA for a living and make these types of lists) aren’t as blind & stupid as you seem to be, davidly.

    • zblott - Apr 3, 2013 at 11:12 PM

      Of the top-10 players who took the most shots in that situation, the other 9 averaged 43% FG. Kobe averaged 41%. But I guess if I was a biased LA fan I’d assume that meant he was supernaturally great at those shots in a way the others were not.

    • jaerba - Apr 4, 2013 at 3:36 AM

      Except he’s right, and they do realize it.

      Kobe is one of the best players in the league at accumulating points in “clutch” situations (last 5 minutes of a game, within 5 points) but because he takes such a high volume of shots per minute and at a below average make %, he ends up hurting his team (which the SI article explicitly says.)

      “Bryant has a similar green light, if only because he refuses to let it extinguish. Fantastic though Bryant is, there’s no question that he does himself and his team a detriment by gunning so relentlessly in crunch-time situations. ”

      There’s some question of whether the Lakers really have a better alternative, but even a few years ago when the Lakers were good, Kobe was shooting too many shots at too low a make % when someone else could’ve been taking a higher % shot. Kobe as a clutch player is part of the narrative sports journalists built around him, but he’s a very inefficient scorer in the last 5 minutes, last 1 minute and final shot of the game (where he misses 2/3.)

      The point of measuring these things is to get away from the stupid sports journalist subjective narrative and look at what’s really happening. What’s really happening is that Kobe scores a lot at the end of games, but he also hurts his team a lot at the end of games.

      • kinggw - Apr 4, 2013 at 9:00 AM

        Well said

    • davidly - Apr 4, 2013 at 5:22 AM

      Perhaps if I had framed my comment in as thoughtful and differentiated a fashion as jaerba did, you wouldn’t have taken it so personally, kb2408. And I suppose I could have forgone the little jab-by-way-of-paraphrase in my last sentence.

      Nevertheless, it is a strict analysis based on reality. And, no, those that study the NBA for a living are not blind–obviously not so, when you consider the aforementioned NBA website, and how they go to pains to try and maintain the Kobe is clutch myth by making the default setting the one with the number of points at the top of the list.

      Does it mean that KB is not one of the greatest players in the history of the game? Absolutely not. But–if you’ll allow the use of a metaphor–it does mean that the guy rides the clutch of his Maserati (ie. the Lakers), and in case you are not aware of it: when you ride the clutch, you wear out the transmission (ie. the ability of the team to play team ball).

  5. kb2408 - Apr 4, 2013 at 9:21 AM

    All I know for a fact is he has “hurt his team” to the tune of 5 championships. It’s amazing that people still try to dissect his game.

  6. lakerluver - Apr 4, 2013 at 10:15 AM

    All that other “crap” means absolutely nothing. Count the rings!!

    • fanofthegame79 - Apr 4, 2013 at 10:42 AM

      Yeah, I bet Robert Horry says the same thing. I’m sorry but it’s not all about the rings or we’d stop all conversations about who’s the greatest at Bill Russell.

  7. pglive21 - Apr 4, 2013 at 10:35 AM

    Where is the link about the Pacers? The bullet point is not hyperlinked.

  8. lakerluver - Apr 4, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    Is Horry a top 5 scorer in NBA history? Dumb analogy.

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