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Practice and Scrimmage on NBA TV

For those that missed it (I just found out about it as it was coming on) here are some thoughts from the practice and scrimmage that showed on NBA TV today.  Keep in mind, this is just my frist look at the team.  It is a very small sample size and thus not enough to judge the new guys. 

  • I love watching the interaction between the coaches and the team.  I never realized before how much of a bulldog Tom Thibbodeau is.  He's right there in the middle of the court showing the players exactly how to do it.  Between drills he was showing Scal which side of his man to start out on in a particular set.  He was showing Tony how to duck his head down to fight over the pick.  Really down in the trenches kind of stuff. 
  • Doc does some of that (focusing on the offense more than defense) but usually he stands off to the side and interjects his thoughts and highlights what he think is important.  He'll even stop or change Tom's drill to focus on something he's seen.  I would say that Tom is the Drill Sargent while Doc is the General.  There's no question at all who's in charge.  (He even told the guys to skip the drill on pick and roll defense because he didn't want them taped by the TV crew.)
  • I'm impressed by how hard KG and Paul go on every drill.  When they are crisp and look that good on the first week of camp, you know that sets a great pace for the rest of the team.
  • JR Giddens looked lost on a number of occasions.  Clearly he's still trying to pick things up, and you can only expect so much from rookies.  Still, Bill Walker didn't look lost.  In fact, there was one time when Doc had to pull Giddens out of the drill because he had never been in it before.  He had Walker show him how it was done. Giddens may be just fine, but he's clearly behind Walker in development early on.
  • Patrick O'Bryant looked ok.  There wasn't much to compare him to other than KG (which isn't fair) but he looks like he's got some skill.  In the scrimmage he hit a foul-line jumper and blocked a shot but also looked mechanical and flustered when he got the ball on the post.  I get the feeling he'll benefit from the attention KG gets on the floor (read: open dunks) but we'll have to see if he develops that post game.
  • Pruitt also seemed up and down.  It was interesting to see Doc call him out for not getting around a screen.  On the next run of the same drill he did it right and Doc really encouraged him.  It was nice to see Doc be hard on a guy and then pick him up with encouragement when he did it right.
  • Miles didn't stand out in any way (good or bad).  He might have been a little sore since this is the most days he's played in a row in a while.  Danny, when interviewed, still sounded non-commital about keeping him making the team.
  • Also, it was nice to see Perkins throw down one of his typical monster dunks in a non-contact drill.  Danny called him the most healthy person in camp, explaining that they were just playing it extra safe while they have time to do so.
Like I said, it was a very small sample size, but it was a fun look at the team and how they run practice and how they look early, early on.

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