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Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

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Old 11-05-2012, 02:50 PM   #1
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Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

Been wanting to talk to you guys about Russell Westbrook who happens to have such a polarizing effect on the minds of many people.For one he's one of the most explosive PG's in the game.Secondly, when he's on, he is ON...and when he's off, well he looks like the Thunder's kryptonite.

So here we have a young player who has made it to the finals once, and is worth taking a risk on because of that fact plus his physical tools and the fact that sometimes he can win you games as is.

The problem now is that he has had a few years under his belt, and while you can't say he should be fully matured at this point, the guy loves to gun and gun even when his shot isn't falling. This most certainly hurts the team as seen last night vs. Atlanta when both KD and Kevin Martin had great games but Russ went into bad Russ mode and gunned his team into a loss.

The Thunder needs his scoring, but at this point, I think KD and Brook's lack of making him do more playmaking and less shooting or say more efficient shooting is hurting his growth.

He's had enough time to do what he has been doing but where does he take the next step? What's the next evolution in his game? Should the Thunder move him to the 2 and get a more pure PG/combo PG that can set guys up including Russ?

At this point with their current offense, im not sure they can go into the future as is, which means someone has to either come to this team or someone needs to evolve and it starts with the guy who has the ball alot because most of the others aren't good enough to create their own shot or for anyone else.

What do you guys think?
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:00 PM   #2
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

Well, here's the thing about Westbrook's gunner mentality.

There's nothing you can do. If Westbrook doesn't want to give you the ball...Westbrook isn't going to give you the ball.

I've counted 10 instances in the past two games (against the Spurs and against the Hawks) I watched, Durant would be wide open on the wing or in the corner for 3 and Westbrook would look him off, run the shot clock down, and take a heavily contested midrange.

Westbrook does this regardless of whether his shot is on or not. When his shot is OFF...and he still does this? This is where he starts irritating everyone who watches him play.

The only time Durant has full possession of the ball is when he goes and gets the rebound himself and brings the ball up the court. That's simply unacceptable.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:02 PM   #3
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

As much talent as Westbrook has I blame the locker room and coaching staff.I honestly don't think no one talks to him about his jacking or anything.

KD makes excuses for "oh were 34-8 when he takes more shots then me"blah blah blah.I still don't know why of all people Mo Cheeks hasn't talked to him.Cheeks played PG and was pretty good for 76ers he understands the game.

To me Westbrook is the Mark Sanchez of the NBA.You know oh leave him alone he's young.We did this with him we did that with him but it gets old.I think he wants to be Derrick Rose or be the star of the team so bad its hurting the team.I don't have a problem with the amount of the shots he takes it's when he taking them is a problem****nning around pulling up then when shot clock running down "oh here KD now you can touch the ball".I'm a Laker fan but I feel bad for KD.He has Steve Francis 2.0 on his team.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:04 PM   #4
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

If they want to embrace Gunner Russ, then they need to maybe use him as a Manu type scorer off the bench. I don't know if Gunner Russ and KD are a good fit on the floor for extended periods of time.

I'd like to see them try and use Maynor as the starter for a few games and see what would happen. Explain to Russ that he'll still get crunch time minutes and everything, but he'll be handed the keys to the offense from the bench.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:11 PM   #5
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

I just don't think his BBall IQ is great, He needs to distinguish what's a bad shot between a good shot. He has all the gifts in the world but mentally this is his downfall. I'm not sure if he will ever learn. I also think He needs to be the #1 Option. Some where between his 3rd and 4th Year he just decided to look for his shot more instead of getting others involved. He had two years in a row Averaging 8APG and then out of no where last year his FGA increased and his APG dipped to 5.7 I think Russell will be better suited if someone else was the playmaker instead of him
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:15 PM   #6
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

This is the point, Russ' issues are all mental which are correctable at this stage being that he is so young.

That said KD and Brooks probably doesn't try to do that in light of not trying to force him into anything or to not cause friction or be the bad guy

I think this will hurt Russ in the end, unless they move him to SG, because more than anything they should still be focusing on his development and that sometimes will mean getting on him about the decisions, not just saying nothing at all or to keep saying he's young

It doesn't automatically get better as he gets older
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:16 PM   #7
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Re: Let's talk Good Russ- Bad Russ and what's next

Scott Brooks is not the right man for that job.

Russ can have that gunner mentality if he was on the 7 seconds or less Phoenix Suns offense. But he goes into that mode in halfcourt sets and no one holds him accountable.

OKC needs a coach that'll give him the side-eye and yank him from the game if necessary until he learns.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:18 PM   #8
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Would Maynor, Russ, KD, Baka, Perk be a realistic starting line up to put Russ in a more natural position?
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