Batum's YTD Review
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  1. BlazerManiac
    BlazerManiac
    Posts: 777

    Posted 01/28/2013 8:37 AM

    OK, I am getting a bit concerned about Batum’s play as of late.

     

    I will admit it, but overall this season I have seen some areas of improvement; his play making ability has improved, he has solid point production and rebounds which is on par from last year with his increase in minutes.

     

    Now Joe freeman of the Oregonian gave a great analysis of Batum’s play last night:

     

     

    http://www.oregonlive.com/blazers/index.ssf/2013/01/la_clippers_96_portland_83_blazers_lay_an_egg_in_l.html#incart_m-rpt-2

     

    “His all-around final line (eight points, eight assists, six rebounds) wasn’t horrible, but his play (passive, hesitant) wasn’t up to snuff either. Batum attempted just five shouts and was as perplexed as fans watching from their coaches about why.

     

    “I don’t know,” he said, when asked why de didn’t take more. “I can’t do that. That’ can’t happen.  That’s me.  That’s me. I don’t know.  I wasn’t in good situations to take shots; I have to work on that.””

     

    If you look at the last 4 out of 5 games, he has been a non factor in those games, in the last 9 games he has had an astounding 56 assists averaging 6.2 per game, however on the opposite side of that he has had 38 turnovers averaging over 4 per game.

     

    Last night he disappeared (which I have seen less of this year, but it still happens) however what concerns I have is the last 9 games is his turnover to assist ratio.  If you look at the month of January he has had 49 turnovers in 15 games and has had 88 assists in 15 games.

     

    In my humble opinion, Batum’s focusing on becoming a playmaker costing us with turnovers at that are unnecessary. He has had more turnovers this year in 44 games (123) then he did the entire last season (90). He needs to focus not only on his shot selection, but his assist selection as well.

     

    Your thoughts!              

    I am a fan of WES, the heart and soul of the Blazers.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/28/2013 11:17 AM

    Well I just wrote a lengthy response to this but since the message board system is crap and auto logged me out and doesn't allow you to recover messages if you try to submit while not logged in I lost it.


    So I will try and summarize.


    Batum has been good but he needs to:

    Stop jump passing it leads to offensive fouls and turnovers.

    Cut down on the 3PA 6.8 per game is too many for 35.7% shooter. 

    Increase his FTA, by improving his dribble penetration and developing a consistent mid range jumper.

    Improve his FG% by attacking the basket and cutting his 3PA to around 5 per game.

    Consistently take between 12 and 15 shots per game.

    Learn to body up on defense, adding a little toughness would take him from an above average defender to good or great. Watch Matthews play for suggestions.

    Don't force things Batum is trying so hard to fill up the stat sheet on nights his shot isn't falling that his turn overs really start to pile up. 9 turnovers in one game is never ever acceptable.


    Overall he is worth the money we gave him but we need him to keep improving so that next year he can make the all-star team and bring value to his contract.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. BlazerManiac
    BlazerManiac
    Posts: 777

    Posted 01/28/2013 11:48 AM

     

    I agrree with areas he needs to improve on.  I think he also needs to bulk up some as well to help that toughness.  He says he wants to be like Scottie Pippen. Pippen weighed almost 25 pounds more and it was all muscle.  That is what made him so tough.

    I am questionable on the money though, I do not think he is living up to the contract yet that we paid him.  I agree we had to do it for fear of losing him, but he needs to start really addressing the weaknesses that you outlined above in order to bring the full value to the contract we are paying him.

     

     

    I am a fan of WES, the heart and soul of the Blazers.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/28/2013 12:00 PM

    At 11 million Batum is worth every penny. He is posting a 16-5-5 with a steal and block per game. He is posting better numbers than Rudy Gay who makes a lot more money. 


    Right now I would say Batum has moved into the top 6 at the small forward position which is where we need him to be. 

    #1 Lebron

    #2 Durant

    #3 Anthony

    #4 George

    #5 Deng

    #6 Batum

    Batum with his play has moved himself above Rudy Gay and compares pretty closely with George and Deng who I have slightly higher then him based on their defense. Batum won't get any higher than #4 on this list but for 11 million dollars he is worth the investment right now. If he keeps improving and becomes an all star then 11 million becomes a bargain. 

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. BlazerManiac
    BlazerManiac
    Posts: 777

    Posted 01/28/2013 12:36 PM

    Posted By cmeese47 on 01/28/2013 12:00 PM

    At 11 million Batum is worth every penny. He is posting a 16-5-5 with a steal and block per game. He is posting better numbers than Rudy Gay who makes a lot more money. 

    Right now I would say Batum has moved into the top 6 at the small forward position which is where we need him to be. 

    #1 Lebron

    #2 Durant

    #3 Anthony

    #4 George

    #5 Deng

    #6 Batum

    Batum with his play has moved himself above Rudy Gay and compares pretty closely with George and Deng who I have slightly higher then him based on their defense. Batum won't get any higher than #4 on this list but for 11 million dollars he is worth the investment right now. If he keeps improving and becomes an all star then 11 million becomes a bargain. 

     

    Why isnt' Demar De Roza or Arron Afflao on your list>

     

    OK Deng is at $13,500,000 and he is an 8th year.  You indicate he was a steal, Paul Gorge is making only $2.5 undr his rookie contract. Once he becomes an RFA someone will structure a Jeremy Lin Deal to get him.

     

    Until  Batum cuts his T/O's in half and gets better defensively, I am afraid he is going to Stay at 6.

    I am a fan of WES, the heart and soul of the Blazers.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/28/2013 1:11 PM

    Afflalo and Derozan are both primarily SG's and neither are better than Batum. Afflalo is closer than Derozan but still well behind. 

    As an All-star and former member of the NBA all defensive team Deng is certainly a better deal than someone like Rudy Gay. 

    Paul George like most rookies is an amazing bargain but he won't get a Lin type deal cause he will be a third year free agent meaning he will likely get more money. Probably around 10 million a year maybe more if he becomes an all star again.

    Still I am okay with having the 6th best SF in the league.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. riverman
    riverman
    Posts: 1431

    Posted 01/28/2013 3:04 PM

    In fairness to Batum, he took the home game win against the Clips on his own shoulders the night before, it was a back to back and he just had an off game. Wish people wouldn't panic everytime a player has an off game. Especially one that has won so many for us this year. I remember JJ followed a huge game earlier in the season with a 3 pt effort the next night. Happens to all players but in my opinion is far from a character flaw. Given the minutes our starters log night in and night out I think they should earn some slack from the fanbase.
    I am a fan of A team that plays like Tower of Power on a big stage on a good night
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/28/2013 3:07 PM

    To his defense maniac was talking about a trend over a few games and not just one but regardless 5 shots is not acceptable.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. schwabbii
    schwabbii
    Posts: 205

    Posted 01/28/2013 5:51 PM

    I'm not exactly sure how having one bad game is a cause for concern, especially against the Clippers in LA. I wanna know how he can be a non-factor in games when for the most part he is contributing very well and even had a triple double recently. 

    Date Opponent Result MIN FGM-A 3PM-A FTM-A OFF DEF REB AST STL BLK TO PF PTS
    Regular
    Jan 27 LAC L 83 - 96 35 3 - 5 0 - 0 2 - 3 1 5 6 8 0 0 4 1 8
    Jan 26 vs. LAC W 101 - 100 41 7 - 15 4 - 9 2 - 2 3 7 10 12 1 1 5 1 20
    Jan 23 vs. IND W 100 - 80 36 4 - 10 2 - 5 0 - 0 0 5 5 8 1 1 4 2 10
    Jan 21 vs. WAS L 95 - 98 41 5 - 10 0 - 3 2 - 2 3 7 10 11 3 2 2 3 12
    Jan 19 vs. MIL L 104 - 110 39 2 - 9 1 - 2 2 - 2 3 4 7 5 1 0 4 2 7
    Jan 16 vs. CLE L 88 - 93 38 8 - 17 3 - 9 4 - 5 3 9 12 2 1 0 9 5 23
    Jan 15 DEN L 111 - 115 45 8 - 17 2 - 9 4 - 6 2 5 7 7 2 0 3 2 22
    Jan 13 vs. OKC L 83 - 87 44 6 - 17 3 - 8 6 - 6 2 5 7 2 1 1 3 4 21
    Jan 11 GSW L 97 - 103 43 5 - 11 3 - 7 3 - 4 3 6 9 1 1 0 4 0 16
    Jan 10 vs. MIA W 92 - 90 42 8 - 15 3 - 9 9 - 11 3 4 7 5 2 1 2 2 28
    Jan 07 vs. ORL W 125 - 119 45 5 - 14 2 - 5 4 - 4 0 4 4 10 1 1 2 1 16
    Jan 05 MIN W 102 - 97 38 9 - 11 5 - 6 3 - 3 0 5 5 3 0 3 1 1 26
    Jan 04 MEM W 86 - 84 40 4 - 11 3 - 8 0 - 0 2 3 5 4 3 0 3 1 11
    Jan 02 TOR L 79 - 102 35 4 - 12 0 - 6 2 - 2 1 3 4 4 0 1 0 0 10
    Jan 01 NYK W 105 - 100 40 7 - 13 6 - 12 6 - 7 1 3 4 6 1 0 3 1 26

    You'll have to highlight the stats but I don't really see how we could complain about his production other then a few games.

    I am a fan of
  1. commontongue
    commontongue
    Posts: 1864

    Posted 01/28/2013 5:56 PM

    However allegedly inconsistent, he remains the most consistent on our squad. Worth every dime we're paying him.
    I am a fan of our new roster playing with and for eachother.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/28/2013 6:04 PM

    Schwabbi I think the concern was over the growing number of turnovers, which as you can see from your own game chart have been fairly high the last few games with the worst being a 2 assist 9 turnover night. Still for the most part Batum has been the key to us even considering the playoffs.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. Blazer247
    Blazer247
    Posts: 591

    Posted 01/28/2013 9:08 PM

    To say he's been a non-factor in the last 5 games is more than a little biased, dude... 2 triple doubles in the last 4 games??? With that kind of contribution, "factor-ness acquired!" is automatic.

    Among non-guards, Batum is 2nd in the NBA in assists per game, behind only Lebron James.

    Among non-guards, Batum is tied for 5th-6th in turnovers per game, tied with Greg Monroe and behind Kevin Durant, Josh Smith, Dwight Howard, and Demarcus Cousins. Lebron James is next on the list, so he's not exactly blowing away Nic with the assist/turnover ratio, and no other non-guard holds a candle. Lebron is the all-round best player in the game; I'd say that's good company to be in. Oh yeah, and pretty sure alot of players have logged 9 turnovers in a game, including LBJ... so yeah... just sayin. Same way that alot of players follow a tremendous game with a stale one, including some other Blazers, who don't seem to get nearly the same criticism for it... hmmm...

    Among all players, Batum is 3rd in minutes played per game. Of the player listed above, only Durant plays more, and he averages less than a minute more than Nic. Obviously we're not expecting Nic to put up Durant's points, but he's making more assists this year, and way more in January, but most importantly, he's making big steps in his game and there's simply no denying it. Let the adjustments happen and get settled, and lets see if those turnovers don't drop a bit!

    As for the areas of improvement, I agree completely that Nic could benefit by

    taking less 3's (so could Damian and Wesley),

    less jump passes (so could Damian),

    more FT attempts (so could Damian and Wesley and LaMarcus, that should be this young running team's identity),

    enjoy the improved FG% from attacking the basket and cutting down 3pt attempts (so could Damian and Wesley),

    take consistently more shots per game (so could LaMarcus, long as it's not more outside J's), and

    could help his team by bodying up his D a little more (so could Hickson, but really the WHOLE TEAM could improve their fundamental defense, and it would take the pressure off the individual).

    I'm not sayin all that in critique of the points, but those factors you're pointing out I think are pretty standard outlines of smart basketball and we need more of it... and I'm pretty sure we'll continue to see an increase in all of it, much like Batum's assists, the more this team plays and learns to gel together.

    No sense in acting like it's all on Nico. Or on JJ, LaMarcus, Wesley, Damian, or even the bench, for that matter. All parts of a Pinwheel-shaped clock, my friends. We need them all running together if it's going to work whatsoever.

    I am a fan of BLAZER BASKETBALL. Not drafts, not business, not trades, not David Stern. Just BLAZER BASKETBALL.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 01/28/2013 9:24 PM

    Players that create commit turn-overs.  Batum is 2nd for all non-PGs in Assists. Assist to Turnover ratio is a stat for PGs.  Using that stat to compair non-PGs to PGs is an incorrect use of that stat.  LeBron, Harden, and Kobe are the only non-PGs with more assists. Batum is 2nd in APG in the NBA for SFs.  Both Kobe and Harden have a worse Assist/TO ratio.  I would like Batum to have fewer turnovers, but I think the critisism being made in this thread takes his contributions out of context. 

     

    I disagree with the subjective opinions that Batum is passive or is somehow hurting the team by not shooting more, any more than I agree with being critial of Batum after dropping 2 triple doubles in a week.

     

    Translate his assists into points, and Batum is averaging 27 points per game over the past 2 months (28 games).

  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 01/28/2013 9:26 PM

    And... I totally just piggy backed off of much of what Blazer247 wrote. ; )
  1. knorton181
    knorton181
    Posts: 264

    Posted 01/28/2013 10:55 PM

    I'll say this, his defense to me is definitely not what it was last year. It's not "put batum on rondo and stop him, put batum on lebron and slow him down at least" No longer can I say that, he may run down some blocks but his perimeter defense to me is not what it was.

    All around though, he has totally taken another step as a playerinto greatness.
    I am a fan of
  1. knorton181
    knorton181
    Posts: 264

    Posted 01/28/2013 11:10 PM

    As for turnovers, adding to his FTA, taking away 1 or 2 3PA per game, this can all be adressed if he adapts to the game in one way: DRIVE TO THE BASKET MORE!

    Every game at most 2 or 3 times he drives to the hoop and it looks spectacular, and then he doesn't try to do it anymore. It's a thing of beauty when he does, though. If he can do that more he will be close to a complete player. Which would be great. It might be Stotts not drawing up plays that way, but I just think he's great when he can drive the ball

    And I'm not asking for batum to be perfect, but I do see that he definitely CAN do it all. And I believe he will (he's already well on his way, just a few more steps along the process)
    I am a fan of
  1. Siccolo
    Siccolo
    Posts: 1250

    Posted 01/28/2013 11:10 PM

    I agree with Knortan- I thought I was the only one who felt Batum used to be a better perimeter defender.

    But Batum is 24 and is doing a lot of great things out there on the court. I KNOW that he will improve on a lot his problems. 

    Wes, Batum, and Lillard NEEEED to stop shooting so many 3s.

    Turnovers and shot selection is something our guys should and will improve on.

    The Bench is another story tho..........

    I am a fan of This Quote "One Love. One Heart. One Human race."
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 01/28/2013 11:20 PM

    Posted By knorton181 on 01/28/2013 10:55 PM
    I'll say this, his defense to me is definitely not what it was last year. It's not "put batum on rondo and stop him, put batum on lebron and slow him down at least" No longer can I say that, he may run down some blocks but his perimeter defense to me is not what it was.

    All around though, he has totally taken another step as a playerinto greatness.


    I don't really agree with this.  Stotts does put swap Nic and Wes specifically to shut players down, and with effective results.  And Wes and Batum broke LeBron's streak of some 56 games of scoring 20 pts or more.  Portland beat the 76ers specifically because Batum asked to be put on Holiday who was going off on Portland, and shut him down.  Holiday only had  4 points in the entire second half.  He shut down Crawford in Portland, as Crawford missed his final 3 shots in the final 2 minutes that was a big part of Portland's 10-0 run to pull out the win.  It's a game of match-ups, and Batum is still the nightmare match-up against many elite players. 
  1. CarlJ1
    CarlJ1
    Posts: 399

    Posted 01/29/2013 2:42 AM

    I think Batum has play well this season so far and yes while the TO's have been a concern I not that worried because the way he has been improving he'll clean those up in due time the next step I want to see from him is like knorton touch on is to be more aggressive on his drives and get to the foul line while driving and looking for his teammates is nice that's where a majority of his TO's comes from he just needs to find that balance of knowing when to be aggressive and when to pass to his teammates I think once he does that the TO's and 3pt attempts will go down.

     

    All in All he's done the job this team has asked of him to do and he's only gonna get better.

    I am a fan of Respect, Loyalty, Honor & Pride the same thing the Blazer & their true fans are made of RIP CITY STAND UP!
  1. uprised
    uprised
    Posts: 136

    Posted 01/29/2013 5:57 PM

    If you look at Batum's stats vs. the top 6 teams in the NBA, and compare them vs. the bottom 6 teams, you see few real statistical differences.  Portland is 11-11 in these games as well.  The only stats that stick out when you compare these matchups are Batum's scoring, and his +/-.  Batum scores on average 3.43 points more per game against the best teams than he does against the worst teams in the league.  He's scored 20 points or more in 7/10 games against elite teams but only 3-12 times against poor teams.  It's good that he gets up against quality competition, but also frustrating that he can't seem to get over on teams that a contender should be destroying.  His +/- however takes a 6 point swing in the wrong direction.  Batum is -4.6 against elite teams, and +2 against garbage teams.  

    I can't say it definitively, but to me it seems that anecdotal evidence aside (highlight blocks, clutch shots, etc.) Batum's defense against elite teams/players may be a liability.  Batum's 3pt shooting and rebounding has been big for the team and he's certainly done a good job "filling the stat sheet" as Mike Rice notes nightly 2-3 times.  However I'm not sure that his impact on the team in terms of W/L has been as important as a guy like JJ who is averaging a double double.  Just imagine if JJ didn't leave 2-3 layups on the rim every game.  That's another thread though.  

    Bottom line is, Batum's improvement has been pretty significant over last season and the course of this season.  In my mind he's the 3rd best player on this team right now with Lillard breathing right down his neck.  He's shown some fire here and there, willingness to take over games, and become a real threat from 3pt land.  Defensively I don't think he's all that amazing.  The crowd is definitely skewed by some of the blocks he pulls off.  I'd take Batum going to the ground to fight for possession over highlight blocks from behind every day of the week.  I'd trade Batum for a legit big man in a heart beat, but since he's apparently here to stay I can say that we have a lot worse problems on this team and Batum gets a solid B+ on his mid-year report card.

    I am a fan of winning
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/29/2013 5:59 PM

    If you look at the stats Batum's defense has improved this year as he is doing a better job closing out on the perimeter. His opponents EFG% is down as is their PER. So I certainly, cannot agree that his defense has gotten worse.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 01/29/2013 6:23 PM

    Orlando said on the pre-game jump, Batum need more shot.  I agree.  But what he did not say is that Batum needs to drive more.  He said he needs to shoot the ball from the out side, which then opens up the middle, allows him to drive and dish, or simply take it all the way to the rack.  I agree Batum needs more shots, but I agree with Orlando, that those shots need to be from the perimeter.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 01/29/2013 6:30 PM

    To contrast that he said he makes the shots from the perimeter that the lane opens up. If those shots do not fall then Batum has a tendency to start forcing things and his turnovers start to pile up. 


    I would be okay with him taking more perimeter shots if we ran him off screens and got him open perimeter shots. Just taking more perimeter shots is not the answer these shots have to be high percentage.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
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