Welcome back to SportsCastr News, where, as always, I'm Adam or Obrecht coming to you on a Friday, almost evening.
Now the week has gotten away from us here and talking.
Of course, all things end a action.
Matt Brooks recently was having this discussion around a couple of these players, so I wanted to dive in onto onto a little bit.
I was hoping to be more adversarial towards his points, but But by and large, actually think, as you probably would expect if you follow Matt Brooks on his work.
Pretty sound logic, a reasonable approach to this discussion around Westbrook and Paul George.
And how do you really evaluate their talents? There's a pretty clean things that I look at when you get to these discussions, and one of them is really more ****ing about ah position than it is so much about the individual player.
What I will say is, when you go back and think about, you know, some of the best point guards to an N B.
Obviously you can talk about Magic Johnson.
You can talk about John Stockton.
You could even think Isaiah Thomas, obviously, and even think more contemporary with a guy like Chris Paul.
One of the reasons why you look at a lot of those players.
You have their scoring prowess, certainly, but the facilitation aspect is also equally is important and maybe even beyond the ability to facilitate an offense and put other players in good positions.
Toe have success and a have high percentage shots is also that that that's the first thing that you look to dio.
And that doesn't mean that that has to be the case for point guards across the board.
But what I think the reality comes down to is that that is the best functionality off a point guard in the MBA.
I think that you need to be facilitating everyone else first, because, ah, lot of times what you can see it fall prey to is.
And really, Westbrook is a great example of this.
Ah, lot of numbers, a lot of great stat lines, but but what is the end result of that? And I used to There's a brief period where I went back and looked at Oklahoma City and said, Man, how did you miss out on this incredible opportunity when you have James Harden and you had Westbrook and you had Kevin Durant.
Why not try to keep that nucleus together and keep building? But you didn't know what Harden was yet, and you weren't sure if all these pieces were gonna fit together to the point that that Matt Brooks made about this, though some of these guys and I think Westbrook and maybe even pull Georgia's well, are best suited to be an elite borderline number one button elite number two on a team because it means that they can default to the superstar talent that can do certain things consistently that really aren't a part of their game now.
The difficulty here is so like if you take a look at Westbrook, the biggest knock that I would One of the knocks that would have towards him is when you look over the course of his career, the fact that he still likes to take that three point shot.
And yet Onley knocks down a career 30% and has actually been doing worse year by year.
Over the last handful of seasons as well, his best seasons came in 2010 at 33%.
That's the spike for him from beyond the arc actually see p 34% in 2016 as well, but then 29 29 down to 25 with the Rockets.
Now you can say that that relationship with Harden and Westbrook, now in Houston, has worked out four better than anyone anticipated.
And I understand all of the ACA leads and you can put at Westbrook's feet.
But, like I think most would say some of those stats, especially in the O.
K C years post James Harden.
Those are those hollow numbers, right? Post post.
Ah, Kevin Durant.
Those air those hollow numbers in a lot of ways, because if you're not having success postseason success, then I think you started.
Take that step back and say, Are you Kevin Love in Minnesota early in his career, right? Putting up stats but not getting results on that the later deeper that I could go on that if you want to. I know.
Listen, I'm a stats driven guy.
I like to get inside the numbers.
I feel like there is value there, and this rapture rating is one that I also enjoyed a lot, and it's because again, if I go inside and take a look at where Westbrook stacks up.
You tell May in this past season for everything that he's been worth offensive rating, just barely at 0.
3 on the offensive end, minus 0.
6 on the defensive end, the window wins above replacement.
4, which is a respectable number, But on the whole, what you're saying is that this guy is not really a needle mover for you on either end of the floor.
And this goes to the broader picture that I have about the point guard position.
I think for the moment and by the way, heavily informed through discussion that I've had with Doug Nori from DFS are on these topics.
I just think that the point guard is this interchangeable piece for the reason that there's a lot of players that can produce similar results.
So it doesn't make them nearly as valuable as having the LeBron James or the Kevin Durant's.
Or if you're going to go the way of a guard, you better be looking to Steph Curry, who could do something otherworldly from beyond the arc.
And that's why all of a sudden, his values even more increase.
And why, when you look at him on the defensive end, that can be a taker, read kind of stat line for you.
But unfortunately, for all of the the impressive physical, athletic nature of Westbrook, I don't know how much he is really going to impact your wins and losses at the end of the day and ultimately the goal of championships now, conversely, on the other side of it the reason why maybe it Maybe I disagree here when it comes to Paul George and whether or not he could be the true elite number one on the team.
A supposed to wait the way Brooks look at it now.
I will say he's in a position right now, where with quite Leonard, he is the elite number two.
I don't know if there's ever a phase when you go back to Indiana and say he really had an opportunity there to fully showcase what his value was.
Matt Brooks highlighted the injuries that's going to play a factor and going to make it difficult to assess because it comes in really a crucial portion of his career.
2014 on Lee playing in six games.
You know, that's that's, ah, hard time when he's 30 years old.
Now you're talking about mid twenties, pretty important to be able to get those games under about now, go back to the two seasons that he played in O k C before he joined the Clippers.
This is where it gets kind of interesting for me.
The point totals really in that second season.
28 points 43 nearly 44% from the field for a guy that shoots 43% for his career, UH, you want to compare these guys apples to apples in terms of Westbrook and George, the three point shooting Obviously a big difference there if you combine that with the fact that over these last couple of seasons, even including the 2018 year with the Thunder, he's a 3.
3 assists per game guy.
But the last two seasons has been closer to four.
That's that's a big needle mover for May.
Now the rebounds aren't required of him on L.
A. And that's okay.
But then you talk about the other aspect and this is where I elevate pulled George in a way that I don't look at Brian Westbrook the same way, and that's plain and simple.
You want to go again? I know I'm going towards of, Ah, simple Stack, but this is also that the eye test proves for you as well, so you can do to do this.
You can see this by this watching games.
And that's the fact that Paul George is a plus 4.
1 on the offensive end and wrapped a rating and then also a plus 1.
8 on the defense event.
We said this before used the eye test.
He's an elite defender when you talk about the n B A level, so that aspect of his game is what transitions from saying you can flood poll George into any team around the nd a, and you're going to get one quality offensive output.
The fact that he has size is obviously an advantage for him.
He has a smooth shot, mid range as well as from the perimeter and then on the defense event.
A is such a great chance this season is because you have to elite defenders that can lock down the best shooters on the opposition.
If you don't have the ability to be.
If you want to go by Rapture rating or you want to go by the eye test to be elite and then also plus on the other side, whichever way you want to swing it, you can be an absolute elite defender and then be a positive on the offensive end.
Or you can flip flop those.
But you need to be able to do both successfully and consistently.
And unfortunately, Westbrook, in my eyes, has been a product off devoid of talent.
Once you moved everyone away and it got to be the rest book show there in O. K.
Until he finally got moved on to the Rockets or Paul George, where I think just the lack of secondary options consistently on some of those teams in Indiana is what ended up holding him back, or either one of these players in the class of LeBron James or K D or dishonest.
No, But that doesn't mean that you couldn't build around Poland, George.
I think Paul George could have been the focal point, and Matt Brooks brought this up to the thing will get out on about how where you are in your career and what you're surrounded with.
At what point in your career also dictates how your game of balls if it evolves.
So when you talk about it. Brian Westbrook.
He had that bulldog downhill attacking mentality his entire career.
And as you pull away James Harden and then as Katie moves on old, a sudden, you're basically left saying, Well, that's it.
You're the Alfa here, and you're expected to lead this team from a scoring standpoint, and that's gonna get you.
So far, it's gonna get you into the playoff picture.
But it's not gonna move the needle in terms of championships.
So rather than him having some nice secondary and maybe even third pieces on that team that he felt like he could rely on consistently.
That's when you can go back into the stat lines and say, when you see him on the Rockets with eight rebounds, seven assists on knocking down 27 a half points, a game that's pretty balanced alongside of the James Harden those previous years.
Those rebound titles as we talked about right getting the triple double season average.
How hollow does that ring when the team isn't having success.
And when you look over those rosters, you don't see other players that are necessarily carrying the line.
Not to mention the fact that we've seen games where Westbrook literally had players blowing out of the way so we could grab that extra rebound to maintain that average.
The assist numbers are great.
You go back all the way to 2015.
He had four consecutive seasons with double digit assists, that something that dropped off a little bit here, as you would expect with Ah Hardin alongside of him cause he's on the ball.
Doesn't need that level of assists when you come to the offensive end.
But I don't I don't know.
I really I hate to knock either these players I love, I love Westbrook's game.
I love the way he plays, but I also don't think that I ever put him as being a centerpiece off my team.
Whereas based on who you could put around him, I think Paul George could have been that player if you got rid of the injuries as well and maybe you would have seen a different product in Indy on the Pacers in his time there.
Now, alongside Kawai Letterman, Sky is the limit for them.
I heard you know, Brooke said.
I like the way the L.
A Clippers looked right now because they have that defensive side of the ball so locked down coming into the return of the MBA.
And then from the rocket standpoint, it's interesting the layoff helps.
Then we talked about this previously, everyone to get a little bit healthier.
But when you play that small ball lineup at some point, especially if the matchup ends up coming down to one l A Lakers against the Houston Rockets, I just don't see how size and length how those matchups are going to be, ones that you can overcome.
You actually may be able to be the better basketball team on the court for 3.
5 quarters, but then late in games when you need the rebounding and when you need the fouls and get into the line, that to see batter in the West that I talked about with Keith McPherson and Mac Brooks as well.
But But now it's just about getting back on the court and really seeing what the's teams could put together.
Because, by the way, when you turn around here and shout out Teoh devils Adam, how are you, sir? Thank you for the thumbs up When you think about these guys, man, remember D'Antoni might be on the way out in Houston.
And if he's on the way out in Houston, that may mean that Harden or Westbrook or both these players are You know, this this organization could be stripping things down in the very near imminent future.
And then you start to think about where would you like to see Westbrook? Where would you like to see hard, maybe end up if the franchise goes into full rebuild mode, depending on how this return looks for them, and then you say, Lose the better value there.
Who would you like to see plugging alongside your superstar to help build out that roster and give that secondary offensive option? In the case of Harden and Westbrook, only gonna be offense on Obviously, Paul.
Those guys are attached to each other there in L.
A. For the foreseeable future.
Whatever the results are, they're gonna live with those before you see any type of movement.
There so very excited to see the n b A.
Get back underway as we know coming to us at the end of July, so we'll be keeping our eyes and ears open for that.
I wanted to troll Matt Brooks so hard on this one, but at the end of the day, he's just He's a smart gentleman.
He does his research. He's got his fax in line.
If I had to split hairs that they might say that I think I really would be able to look at Paul George and say You could surround him with talent having be the number one on your team, Not maybe not this stage of his career, but as Matt Brooks was highlighted.
Go back to their early twenties and what would you have liked to have been able to accomplish? I think Paul George would offer you the higher upside.
Now I just want to be elite and be that complementary piece of Kawai Leonard and hopefully give himself to get a championship out there in L. A.
Unfortunately for Westbrook, unfortunately for Harden, I I just don't see that being the case there for them as currently constituted, and you start to wonder what the other options will day.
As always, we remind you to follow Matt Brooks and Keith McPherson and Simeon Russell along with myself right here on SportsCastr news.
As we break down all things Endia, I will be back soon talking exactly that.
All things envy. A news.
Thank you for joining in with those.
We will catch up with you Soup.