December 27, 2009

Sophomore Sunday: A Tale Of Two Anthonys

Douglas ably covered last night's dazzler, and we've got plenty of time to anticipate being re-Biedrinsed tomorrow night. Let's take a quick breather and check in with our second-year men, who have seemingly been heading in different directions of late. How are the Anthonys doing, and how can they improve from here? Fill us in, clumsily-pastiched screenshots:

On a per-minute basis, Morrow's second season has not been wildly different from his first; he's passing a bit worse, picking off a few more passes, actually scoring a bit more efficiently (he's still 24th in the league in TS%, despite his recent struggles). The main differences: he's shooting fewer twos, getting to the line even less often, and grabbing offensive rebounds only half as often.

The Dubs fan CW is that Morrow hasn't been getting enough open looks from beyond the arc. And there's something to that -- it'd be good if he, Nellie, Monta and Curry could figure out a way to get him a few more threes. But part of the story here is that Morrow's not doing anything *else*... he's shooting midrange jumpers, driving and drawing fouls even less often than last year. It's possible that he's just too targeted of a weapon this year, and that he'll get more open threes if he can convince his opponents that he might try to hurt them in some other way.

Randolph has gone in the opposite direction... his FG% is even weaker than it was last year, but thanks to increased aggression and improved accuracy at the line, he's more of a scoring asset than he was a season ago. That's not to say that he's a big scoring asset -- his TS%, though improved, is still a tad below league average. But the combo of improved efficiency and increased usage is a heartening thing, as is the jump in Randolph's passing numbers; he still creates a bunch of positive defensive plays, and his foul rate, though high, is still normal for a young big. The only bad news here is a dip in his rebounding totals. This may have to do with his increased passing duties on offense and his tighter man assignments on D. It may also be that last year's numbers were a bit fluky high. At any rate, ten rebounds per 36 is no tragedy.

The easiest way for Randolph to improve? Rediscovering his solid touch near the basket; he's gotten blocked and spooked a ton down there, and a pump fake or two would do wonders. But it's worth noting that Randolph *doesn't* need to fix anything to be effective. His current warty approach is enough to make him a very good player; any meaningful improvements will make this Anthony an All-Star.


Dave said...

I'm not saying this was my favorite post ever. It wasn't. But this was a big challenge to take on for an upcoming young sports blogger. He started with nothing but a pair of statistical lines, identical to the naked eye. And then another pair of stats, nearly as identical. Nothing to unite them but an unprovocative last name. With no flinching, no blinking, Owen has just written his way through one of the thinnest post concepts in recent history. That anyone could read this post with interest right through to the end, as I did, might just mean that we're all in the hands of a budding young master, and we should just sit back and appreciate it. I know I'm preaching to the choir, but the choir is Owen on this one, and he deserves kudos, and PWPAD.*

Behold and tremble, Donald Nelson. The monster coming towards you is relentless, and even his turds have fangs.

*Props Where Props Are Due

Owen said...

Thanks, David! Seeing as I wrote this post on my phone on a Hood ferry, I'm okay with how it came out.

I love your blog, by the way.

Dave said...

Thank you! (I'm blushing)

We do our thing. We try to keep it simple.

FreeZarko said...

Good stuff as always. I wonder how much we'll be seeing of Randolph now that Biedrins is coming back from pubis warriorsmedicalstaffus?

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