Bucks struggle with old school power forwards

I think the reason the Bucks are able to get away with playing Luc Moute and Ersan Ilyasova at power forward is because of the changing nature of the position.  There aren’t many Kevin McHales or Karl Malones or Charles Barkleys or even Horace Grants left in the NBA.  The position now features a lot of power forwards who play more like quasi small forwards.  The Bucks duo can defense the newer kind of power forwards, but struggle against the old school.

Thankfully most of the old school power forwards — David Lee, Al Horford, Carlos Boozer — now spend most of their time playing center.  But a few of the old model exist.  Memphis has one named Zach Randolph (he would probably be deployed at center on most teams, but because he and center Marc Gasol both score so well from the post, both play together a lot, moving Randolph over).

Today against the Bucks Randolph had a monster, monster basketball game.  He did whatever he wanted to do.  The Bucks were helpless to stop him.

The Bucks initially tried Luc Moute on him but found that was hopeless.  So they went with Ersan Ilyasova and the results weren’t much better.

Ilyasova looks and generally rebounds like a traditional power forward, but he started his career as a small forward, and I think for that reason he cannot defend the post.  That’s why he puts up poor Marginal Win Score numbers when he plays center.  He’s a big physical looking player, but he can be walked backwards with ease by most of the post specialists in the Association.

Looking toward the play-offs, and assuming the Bucks can hold the 5th spot, the match-ups at power forward would either be Josh Smith of Atlanta or Kevin Garnett of Boston.

Ironically, I think Garnett would be the preferred matchup.  He’s a jump shooter.   Josh Smith used to have almost the same game as Garnett (without any of the production) but then this season he had an epiphany.

“I’m 6’10”, Smith must have told himself, “with leaping ability and standing reach that make me  more like 7’0”.  What in God’s name am I doing hoisting jump shots?”

And so,  Smith almost completely cut three point shooting from his repetoire, and the results have been fantastic.  He’s never produced wins like he’s producing them this season, and that fact, NOT the addition of Jamal Crawford, has allowed Atlanta to take a step up.

So maybe Boston is a better bet for the Bucks in terms of  the 4 position.  It certainly is anytime Baby Davis is on the floor.  But Kevin Garnett remains very, very scary.

Come Back, Senor Bullfighter

First things first, however.  The Bucks MUST, MUST, MUST get Carlos  Delfino back or the whole “competitive playoff team” ship be sinkin’.  Today’s game was a prime example of  that.

Delfino’s absence pulls Salmons out of the 2 spot, and causes a Dominoeffect that is all bad for the Bucks.

So we need the Argentinian Bullfighter (not Spanish, as I recently claimed) has to return to the ring, and Bogut’s back has to get better.

Bucks Win Chart will be updated

And I have to do the Milwaukee Bucks Win Chart.  I haven’t updated since St. Patricks, and I’m way behind.  I’m going to make a “major push” as Hubie Brown would say, to get it current.  I will alert you when I do.

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2 Responses to “Bucks struggle with old school power forwards”

  1. Blake Says:

    What I wanna know is why Skiles wouldn’t put in someone like Kurt Thomas at PF, and then have Thomas guard Gasol with Bogut on Randolph. That would have seemed pretty smart to me going into the 4th quarter.

    • tywill33 Says:

      I kinda thought about that too. But you know what? Thomas can barely cover centers anymore. I don’t think he’s qualified any longer to cover the modern power forward. He looks out of shape and old, doesn’t he? Remember how I hyped him so much in the preseason? What a disappointment. But, he’s been a notch better than either Gadzuric or Elson, and I’m thankful for that, I ugess.

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