TKB welcomes Ryan Wallace, who worked for the Knicks' basketball ops on Matt Harding's staff for 8 years. Ryan was responsible for compiling data the team would use in scouting reports. Here are his thoughts on:
Offense: The Bobcats started a defensive minded lineup in their last game against the Indiana Pacers. This did not hinder them in the first quarter as they were able to score 32 points. However they only scored 47 points the rest of the game. Running much of the same offense teams can now focus on stopping Gerald Henderson on the wing. BJ Mullens has been a bright spot and his minutes should continue to climb.
Defense: The Bobcats are starting a much different lineup since Tyrus Thomas’ return and Corey Maggette’s injury. They are a much bigger defensive minded club starting Thomas and Diop instead of Maggette and DJ White. They have given up 102 and 99 points which is a little better then their league worst 105 ppg avg.
DJ Augustine: (17.3 ppg, 7.5apg) The offense starts with DJ’s playmaking. Looks to create shots for others with his penetration as he gets into the paint at will. Is also a very capable shooter when left unguarded off the pick and roll. Has Scored 21 and 20 points in two games since last played the Knicks. Looking to fill the scoring void since Corey Maggette is out.
Gerald Henderson: (14.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg) Gerald is an athletic slasher who looks to attack the paint with his drive. He will take the jumper when it is given to him. Does a pretty good job rebounding as well at 5.5 per game. In contrast to Augustine, Henderson has really struggled since Maggette is out. Scoring only 4 and 14 points in his absence. Defenses are now able to key on Henderson as he is Charlotte’s only threat on the wing.
Boris Diaw: (9.9ppg, 5 apg, 6.8rpg) Boris looks to create from the elbow and is one of the best passing big men in the game. Will play most of the game away from the basket looking to draw bigs out of the paint. Diaw’s last two games look nothing like the Knicks game. Against Indiana he fouled out in 27 minutes scoring only 2 points.
Tyrus Thomas: (8.5ppg, 6rpg)Has played over 30 minutes in both games since returning. Providing a much needed defensive minded player. Thomas does the most damage in the paint and does not have much range on his jumpshot.
DJ White: (10.1ppg, 6rpg) Has lost starting job with Tyrus Thomas’ return and more of a focus on defense. Primarily shoots 15 foot jumpers. Does not look to establish in the post. Minutes are way down since losing starting job.
BJ Mullens: (11.4 ppg, 4.3rpg) BJ’s minutes are on the rise. Including the Knicks game he has played at least 20 minutes in the last three games. Scoring in double figures and grabbing at least 5 boards in each game. Much more comfortable away from the basket.
Kemba Walker: (10 ppg, 3apg) Kemba really looks to pick up the tempo when he gets in the game. Has a tendency to penetrate too deep into the paint instead of taking a floater or 10 foot jumper. Has struggled with shot selection. Kemba has been up and down. Scored 19 points on 10 shots vs Atlanta then 6 points on 10 shots vs Indiana. Playing more 2 these days.
DeSagana Diop: Started the last game vs. Indiana. Clearly Paul Silas is looking for some defense out of the starting five. Diop provides no offense but is a big physical defender. While starting he only played 17 minutes.
Derrick Brown and Bismack Biyombo: Both have played about 15 minutes a game in last two. Biyombo leads the team in blocks in very limited minutes getting 3 in the game vs Atlanta.
Keys to victory:
The Pacers game plan was clear as they scored 46 points in the paint and only took 9 threes.
Boris Diaw had his best game of the season vs. the Knicks. It’s imperative to contain him as he can hurt with his creativity. Boris has struggled since the Knicks game and hasn’t been able get going as a result.
Gerald Henderson also had a big game last time out vs. the Knicks. The defense should be able to focus more on him with the absence of any other scoring on the wing.