Our team is broken. Worst start in franchise history, worst record in the league. Under performing, over paid Okariza. Under performing third overall pick from this year's draft. Badly under performing sixth pick from last year's draft. The outlook is bleak.
The good news is that our problems have an easy solution. It's simple: we just need to pass the ball faster. Watch the Spurs play. The ball swings from one side of the court to the other in the blink of an eye. Simple passes, done quickly. They "hot potato" the ball. As a result, the defense is kept off balance, constantly scrambling, trying to catch up to the ball. With the defense scrambling, driving and passing lanes open up, and the Spurs exploit those temporary weaknesses in the defense.
In contrast, watch our Wizards. The ball goes from side to side, but each player along the way stops the ball for a second or so. That pause allows the defense to catch up. The driving and passing lanes close down, and we're left with no options but contested jump shots.
My worry is that those pauses might actually be by design. Randy Wittman is reportedly trying to institute a motion offense. I believe that Wittman was first exposed to a motion offense in college as a player for Bob Knight, and Knight has always taught his players to take a couple of seconds to read the defense whenever they receive the ball:
Knight's offense... revolves around a two-count. Players in the post are expected to try and post in the paint for two seconds and if they don't receive the ball they go set a screen. Players with the ball are expected to hold the ball for two seconds to see where they are going to take it. Screens are supposed to be held for two seconds, as well.
"Everything is a count of two," Knight said.
Two seconds is an eternity in NBA basketball. In the NBA, a good offense flows. The ball moves constantly and never stops. Holding the ball like we do is a recipe for bad offense.
You want proof? Guess which player on our team makes us +11.0 points better per 100 offensive possessions? Jan Vesely. The only thing that Ves has been able to do in the half court offense this season has been to hot potato the ball, and the numbers say that he has made our offense immensely better. So far overall this season, our offense scores only 92.8 points per 100 possessions. Worst in the league. By far. An 11.0 point improvement would make take us to 103.8, which would put us in a tie with Denver and Brooklyn for ninth.
Basketball is a simple, beautiful game. We can do this.