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Do you think Andre Iguodala has a shot at rookie of the year? But before you answer, read this article and watch him play, especially on defense.

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Although the 76ers' halftime lead was a stunning 22 points over the defending NBA champions last Wednesday, the last number on Andre Iguodala's halftime line on the stat sheet was zero.

As in zero points.

But that doesn't mean the high-flying Sixers rookie didn't play a part in building that 60-38 advantage over Detroit.

In those opening 24 minutes, Iguodala had seven assists and six rebounds, both team highs. He also had a steal while limiting Tayshaun Prince to 2-of-6 shooting.

''When I can impact a game without scoring it just shows how much of an all-around player I am,'' Iguodala said simply in a self-confident but non-arrogant tone. ''Once I start scoring the ball a little bit more I'm going to be able to show a little bit more.''

By the end of that game, Iguodala had his first career triple-double — 10 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds, to go with four steals in the 107-84 rout of the Pistons. And Prince, a 48 percent shooter, had become another victim of Iguodala's defensive talents, finishing 2-of-8 for 12 points.

Over the last two weeks, Iguodala put the clamps on two of the game's top offensive stars: the Lakers' Kobe Bryant (6-of-15 shooting, 20 points — just four after the first quarter) and Cleveland's LeBron James (3-of-20 shooting).

''We tell him to look forward to challenges like that,'' said veteran teammate Aaron McKie, who knows a few things about playing defense in the NBA. ''These are the guys who are at the top of this profession, and you go out there and defend them well, make it tough for them, and the next time they're about to play your team it's like, 'Aw, man, I've got a long night tonight.' That's the way you want to make your opponent feel.''

In Friday's 103-101 win over Toronto, Iguodala teamed up with McKie to hold Jalen Rose, a 45.3-percent shooter, to eight points on 2-of-16 shooting. Hounded by Iguodala in the final moments, a frustrated Rose missed three shots, including a potential equalizer at the buzzer.

Iguodala added nine points, six rebounds, four assists and a pair of steals in the win, and afterward, Sixers coach Jim O'Brien made the case that the 20-year-old deserves heavy consideration for rookie of the year.

''I think when you match up all the stats … what [the voters] don't look at, [what] they will not look at is what he means to us defensively,'' O'Brien said. ''If they factored in that objectively, that he plays the other team's best [wing] player every time out, then he'd win it hands down.''

''I kind of think they're going to look at the other guys,'' said Iguodala, who ranks among the top eight among rookies in seven statistical categories, including scoring (eighth), rebounding (fifth), assists (second), steals (first) and minutes (second). ''If it happened, I'd be very surprised.''

He faces an uphill battle for that award against the likes of Charlotte's Emeka Okafor, Orlando's Dwight Howard and Chicago's Ben Gordon, but the Sixers are certainly pleased he fell all the way to them at No. 9 in last summer's draft.

So eager was Sixers general manager Billy King to get the 6-6 Iguodala, who played only two years at Arizona, that when the league called after Toronto selected Rafael Araujo at No. 8 to notify him the clock had started for the Sixers to make their pick, King promptly informed them Iguodala was his choice.

Impressed by Iguodala's quick hands and defensive potential, O'Brien wasted little time anointing him the starter at small forward, sentencing disgruntled veteran Glenn Robinson to a season on the injured list before his deadline deal to New Orleans.

''I didn't realize how big he is, how strong he is, how excellent his hands are from the standpoint of being able to get a piece of the dribble, a piece of the pass,'' O'Brien said. ''He was really the only candidate in my mind from the standpoint of being able to play the other guys' top wing player for large portions of the game.''

That defensive intensity, more than anything else, has kept him in the lineup since that day. Long-time coach Dick Harter, an NBA coach for the past 20 years, said that particular week Iguodala was given as much defensive responsibility as any rookie he's ever seen.

''It was a tall order and I'm very impressed that to this date he has done everything we have asked him to do,'' O'Brien said, ''and has done it at a high level and very consistently.''

''That was what we liked about him,'' said Tony DiLeo, the Sixers' assistant general manager and chief talent scout. ''Big games, pressure situations do not faze him. He just played. He was cool, he was calm through these situations.''

At 6-6, 207 pounds, Iguodala — who McKie said is the most athletic teammate he's had in his 71/2 years with the team — has the reputation for being long and lanky. But his strength is what's impressed teammate Kyle Korver.

''He's real long, real athletic, obviously, but yet he's real powerful in his legs,'' Korver said. ''You can't back him down; you can't push him around. He's worked real hard in the weight room.''

Offensively, Iguodala's repertoire has mainly featured spectacular alley-oop dunks, mainly set up by Allen Iverson. He's basically the fourth offensive option — at best — but his two-point shooting percentage is 55.5 percent (65.4 percent since Feb. 1).

His offense will only get better, thanks to his work ethic.

''The thing about the NBA is that everybody becomes a good shooter,'' Hall of Fame center and TV analyst Bill Walton said. ''The defense, rebounding, that's mental preparation and commitment. But shooting is repetition, and with his work ethic he will only get better.''

''He's always one of the last guys shooting every day, one of the first guys up on the court [at the start of practice],'' Korver said. ''Just because of his athletic abilities, he has the capabilities of creating his own shot but it's just the whole confidence thing. He's pulled out some step-backs, he's taken some guys to the hole — he's just going to get better and better.''

That seems to be the most common thought when it comes to Iguodala's future.

''His potential is just off the charts,'' Korver said.

And Iguodala, many believe, won't stop until he reaches it.

''He's somebody that wants to get better,'' King said. ''He's not a guy that's going to sit back and enjoy the fact that he had a good rookie year.''

''I have never seen him rattled all year,'' O'Brien said. ''I have never seen him, if he's been criticized, ever roll his eyes, ever duck his head.''

''He's blessed with unbelievable gifts physically, but also determination and professionalism,'' said Walton, whose son Luke played with Iguodala at Arizona in 2002-03. ''He's the kind of guys who relishes a challenge. At the top of John Wooden's Pyramid of Success is competitive greatness, defined as doing your best when your best is needed, and that's what Andre Iguodala brings.''
Holding Kobe to 6/15 shooting, LeBron to 3/20, Jalen Rose to 2/16, Prince to 2/8, McGrady to 7/23, Pierce to 5/15.......

Iguodala's defensive capabilities are absolutely phenomenal, and his offense is good as well (55.5% from inside the arc, and 65.4% from inside the arc since Feb. 1). He just takes a back-seat on offense to Iverson, and now Webber, because he understands they are great scorers, and knows they like to score, so he lets them instead of taking his own shots. Some may think he is just "gun-shy" but I don't think he is, I think he could create on offense if he is asked to (actually in one game where Iverson was out, he scored 18 points on 8/15 shooting). He is also a great passer, rebounder, and gets plenty of steals. Do you think he is a candidate for rookie of the year?
 

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kiss my grits
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...

No. He's a good one, but no, not this year.
 

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Iggy can play, but ROY, I'm not so sure due to Okafor and Gordon's seasons. He'll definately be a great player though. He was a good defensive player in college, and he is in the pros, and hes gotten better since the season has progressed. Weren't there predraft comparisons to Scottie Pippen?
 

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I've watched him play numerous times defensively, both in his college and NBA career, and Andre is not a spectactular one-on-one defender. As of right now, I'd put him at slightly above average. He still makes way too many stupid mistakes. I'm far more impressed with his off the ball defense, in terms of rotating and guarding space.

And Iguodala is nowhere even close to deserving of the ROY award. But that's nothing against him. Gordon and Okafar are the only players warranting consideration.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
showstopper496 said:
Canidates better deserving then him,

Howard
Gordon
Okafor
Krstic
Why is Nenad Kristic more deserving then Iguodala.

And again, everyone is looking at Gordon's scoring, or Okafor's double doubles, but I think Iggy's defensive capabilties should get him some consideration, more then it is currently giving him. People are just writing him off as if he isn't even a candidate. He is also the best all around player in the draft, and one of the best passers, and the best rebounder that is not a post player. He probably won't win it, I would just like to see him get more consideration then he is currently getting.
 

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He certainly has a good chance, but nothing more than the loosely used "chance/candidate" term. I see either Okafor or Gordon getting it.
 

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Ps!ence_Fiction said:
Why is Nenad Kristic more deserving then Iguodala.

And again, everyone is looking at Gordon's scoring, or Okafor's double doubles, but I think Iggy's defensive capabilties should get him some consideration, more then it is currently giving him. People are just writing him off as if he isn't even a candidate. He is also the best all around player in the draft, and one of the best passers, and the best rebounder that is not a post player. He probably won't win it, I would just like to see him get more consideration then he is currently getting.
He might get some consideration, but he just really has no shot at winning. I've felt it was Okafor's to lose all season and I still think Okafor should and will win it, with some votes going to both Gordon and Howard.

Not everyone who votes gets to watch these guys play every night. So Iggy might be doing some amazing things defensively, but these votes still heavily take statistics into consideration and always will ... and those other 3 have just been better all season.
 

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I agree I beleive he should get some consideration. But they tend to go by stats, and Okafor averaging double double even on an expansion team and Ben Gordon's scoring average will have them ahead of A.I. II
 

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Nenad and Andre are having comparable rookie years. I put them on a similar tier, with Okafor and Gordon being at the top, Deng and Howard at a level right below them, and Nenad, Igoudala, and a few others right below them.
 

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Krstic's season numebrs are equal to Iguodala even when Igoudala plays a lot more min

Krstic: 9.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks in 25 min
Iguodala: 8.7 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3 assists, 1.7 steals, 0.6 blocks in 32 min

Now look at what Krstic does as a starter
11 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks
 
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Discussion Starter #13
7M3 said:
Nenad and Andre are having comparable rookie years. I put them on a similar tier, with Okafor and Gordon being at the top, Deng and Howard at a level right below them, and Nenad, Igoudala, and a few others right below them.
You vastly underrate Andre Iguodala, why do you think he isn't at the level of Deng or Howard?

On a side note, I don't think Iggy will win it, I'm just trying to show people that he is better and is more deserving then some think.
 

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I think Gordon's the ROY, without question especially considering how big of a role he's played in the Bulls turnaround, and all of those huge fourth quarter performances.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
fruitcake said:
Krstic's season numebrs are equal to Iguodala even when Igoudala plays a lot more min

Krstic: 9.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks in 25 min
Iguodala: 8.7 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3 assists, 1.7 steals, 0.6 blocks in 32 min

Now look at what Krstic does as a starter
11 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks
1) As a starter for the Nets weak front-court, he only averages roughly the same amount of rebounds as Iggy who is a guard/forward.

2) Same with blocks

3) He doesn't play with Iverson, so his points will be higher. He gets all of his points within the flow of the game as well.

4) Kristic isn't a shut down defender like Iguodala

5) Iguodala has a greater impact on the game as well because he does everything on the court.

6) Iguodala is also shooting 65.4% from inside the arc since Feb. 1.

7) Iguodala also has a developing jumper that is good enough now that defenders can't slack off of him.

These are just several reasons of why Iguodala is much better player then Kristic.
 

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Ps!ence_Fiction said:
You vastly underrate Andre Iguodala, why do you think he isn't at the level of Deng or Howard?
Why? Because I put him on the same level as Krstic, who is averaging 13 PPG on 50% shooting since the All-Star break, along with playing strong low post defense? I don't underrate Igoudala, I'm a big fan. In his prime, I see him as an 19-7-4 player, on strong shooting, along with 2.5 steals and close to 2 blocks a night.

Anyway, I'm not really rating them as players. I'm rating their years. In significantly less MPG, Nenad's and Andre's statistics are very comparable. The reason I put Howard and Deng above them is because both are statistically stronger, and I feel they have made larger impacts on their respective teams.
 

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Ps!ence_Fiction said:
1) As a starter for the Nets weak front-court, he only averages roughly the same amount of rebounds as Iggy who is a guard/forward.
As mentioned, he plays 7 less minutes. Although I agree Andre is a better rebounder for his position than Nenad.
2) Same with blocks
Nenad averages .3 more blocks in, again, 7 less minutes. He's also much more of a presence at the basket.
3) He doesn't play with Iverson, so his points will be higher. He gets all of his points within the flow of the game as well.
Yes, and Nenad plays with Vince Carter. Both get their points within the flow of the game. However, the Nets have given the ball to Nenad in postups, and he has displayed the footwork, and passing ability of a young Z. Igoudala has not proven he can create scoring oppurtunities for himself.
4) Kristic isn't a shut down defender like Iguodala
Igoudala isn't a shut down defender. He's an excellent defensive player for a rookie, and better for his position than Nenad, but he is nowhere near an All-Defensive team canidate.
5) Iguodala has a greater impact on the game as well because he does everything on the court.
Nenad dosen't? His passing and defensive presence have made a significant impact for the Net's.
6) Iguodala is also shooting 65.4% from inside the arc since Feb. 1.
Because he's a finisher.
7) Iguodala also has a developing jumper that is good enough now that defenders can't slack off of him.
And Nenad isn't developing? Every aspect of his game has improved significantly since the beginning of the season.
 

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Ps!ence_Fiction said:
1) As a starter for the Nets weak front-court, he only averages roughly the same amount of rebounds as Iggy who is a guard/forward.

2) Same with blocks

3) He doesn't play with Iverson, so his points will be higher. He gets all of his points within the flow of the game as well.

4) Kristic isn't a shut down defender like Iguodala

5) Iguodala has a greater impact on the game as well because he does everything on the court.

6) Iguodala is also shooting 65.4% from inside the arc since Feb. 1.

7) Iguodala also has a developing jumper that is good enough now that defenders can't slack off of him.

These are just several reasons of why Iguodala is much better player then Kristic.
You Forgot Krstic is a legit 7 Footer in a center deprived league who is putting up 11/5 as a starter in 25 minutes
 

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Gordon, Howard, and Okafor are going to get a lot of votes, with Deng suckin in a small number, and Iggy might get 1 or 2. Don't expect him to come anywhere close to winning. And yes, Ben Gordon doesn't deserve to win, he's overrated coming from a Bulls fan. He's not even that great of a scorer, only in the 4th quarter. He usually plays like crap for the first 3 quarters, and his 4th quarter outbursts are nothing without the rest of his teammates, and I think his team would still be winning without him.

Dwight Howard is who I think is deserving of rookie of the year so far, but things can change in the final 3 weeks.
 
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