Bucks Diary

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Villanueva's defense: as bad as advertised

Bucks PF Charlie Villanueva was finally introduced to the local media yesterday (why the delay?). Now somebody better introduce him to the concept of defense.

Villanueva's defense last season was awful. It was worse when he played small forward, but it can rightfully be described as putrid when he played power forward as well.

When playing the power forward slot, Villanueva allowed the opposing players he guarded to shoot a combined effective FG% of 55.9%. Compare that to the opponent eFG of 47.9% allowed by Bucks PF Andrew Bogut. Very bad.

I haven't done an extensive survey of power forwards league-wide, but a sampling (along with common sense) shows that Villanueva was one of the poorest defenders in the Association at the 4 spot last season.

However, his poor defensive numbers may have been exaggerated by his situation. Consider that Toronto starting PF Chris Bosh's defensive statistics are nearly as horrible, as he allowed opponents to shoot an eFG% of 54.7% when he played the 4.

So perhaps it was a generally poor attitude throughout the Toronto organization that led to Villanueva's awful defensive statistics. That could be, but if I were the Bucks I would be concerned about the team's overall lack of defense. It is alarming, to say the least, as I will illustrate in a future post.


At July 19, 2006 at 10:45 AM, Anonymous Sam said...

Toronto played one of the fastest paces in the league last year, and they want to get faster this year, hence the T.J. trade. Generally, rookies' play terrible defense their first year, and then get progressively better, and I imagine it was even worse for Villanueva having to play out of position and having to run up and down the court on the break for 82 games, after playing only 30-some games a year in college.


At July 19, 2006 at 1:56 PM, Blogger Sky Hook said...

Yeah, I think you're right. Toronto's overall team defensive eFG was a hideous 53%, so maybe he just got caught up in the tidal wave of indifference.

As far as rookies and defense, though, Bogut was playing out of position and his defense was, statistically speaking, not bad.

Generally speaking, if you are going to be defensively effective, you are going to put up at least a decent account of yourself, whether you're a rookie or a veteran.

Defense is mostly just effort and understanding. The latter is why so many of the early entrants are so bad. No one ever taught them the principles of defense. Did you ever see LeBron James drift around an just follow the ball on defense? Its kind of funny.

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