Postgame Notes: Game 2 vs OKC Thunder
My pregame "PVOA-based" prediction was the Bucks would win the game, 95-91. I was off by 3 on the Bucks score and -4 on the Thunder score, but I got the ultimate result correct. Pretty good.
The game was obviously decided by either the Bucks defense or the Thunder's incompetence. Its hard to say for sure. I texted that question to the Diesel during the game (he's got impeccable basketball judgment) and even he said "Unsure".
One thing is sure. The Thunder sucked. Their team Win Score was an unbelievably bad 20.5. Going by last season's NBA average team Win Score per game (43.6), the Thunder averaged a remarkable -4.6 Win Score per on-court player. That is bad to the bone (by the way, that is the Milwaukee Bucks team Defensive Win Score, meaning the Bucks defensive Win Contributions will be simply awesome).
The Return of RJ???
Wow was it great to see the RJ of three seasons ago show up for the first time in a Bucks uniform. Jefferson had an Offensive Win Score of +7.8. When you figure in his percentage of playing time, that computes to a huge Win Contribution of +1.130. Of course I temper myself because he was matched up against last season's Bizarro MVP, Jeff Green. But still, he hadn't done it against anyone yet so it was great to see. Go RJ!!
Redd, how bout some boards, buddy??
I hate to be negative on such a positive night for the Green and Red, but what the hell is with Michael Redd grabbing a big ZERO rebounds?? Redd was brilliant in the opener, that's for sure, but tonight his offense was awful evidenced by his Offensive Win Score of -7.41. His numbers were so low because, besides shooting the ball, he was unproductive. He's the team's highest paid player so I think I am within my rights to demand that he bring it every night, and tonight he did not.
When did Ridnour become Rodman?
Tonight Luke Ridnour demonstrated the value of rebounding when you can't score. He was pathetic offensively, but for the second straight night he was all over the boards (for a guy his size), grabbing 6 rebounds. That boarding effort gave him an Offensive Win Score of +0.0. That's how you can contribute and give your team a chance to win when your offensive game aint working.
Good game for Lue
Tyronn Lue has established himself as the backup point guard. Tonight the veteran had an excellent game, scoring a +3.0 Offensive Win Score. We need good play from the point, and tonight he provided it.
Dont get down on his Royal Highness
Coach Skiles said he loved Luc Richard Moute's performance in the preseason, but he wanted to see if it would carry to the regular season. Thus far it sort of hasn't but I hope Coach Skiles doesnt give up on the Rook because he can play and he is going to be a very important Milwaukee Buck in the years to come.
Where'd Joe go?
We are witnessing one of the perks of having an established coach at the helm. On a team with the Bucks modest prospects, there is normally enormous political pressure to play a high draft pick whether he deserves the minutes or not. Last season Coach K, being a rookie coach, was forced to play high pick Yi Jianlian. As my Win Profiles showed, Jianlian had a negative impact on the team. He was given minutes he probably did not deserve.
Coach Skiles, faced with the same situation and a similarly unready player in lottery pick Joe Alexander, has thus far resisted any political pressure to play Joe Alexander. Playing Alexander would hurt the Bucks and Skiles knows it, and, more importantly, has the juice to avoid it.
The 2007-08 Bizarro MVP
As you remember, my "Bizarro MVP" for last season was Thunder SF/PF Jeff Green. He had the largest negative impact of any player in the NBA. He's at it again. Against the Bucks tonight, Green recorded an absurdly bad Offensive Win Score of -12.1, and an Offensive Win Contribution of -1.379. And, when you figure that Bucks SF Richard Jefferson was his Counterpart Opponent for most of the night, and RJ had a huge night, that means the reigning Bizarro MVP is at it again.