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Thread: Expectations going into the new year and where we stand.

  1. #1

    Expectations going into the new year and where we stand.

    I think we are in a decent spot right now. Oustide of the top 2 there is a chance to still catch the other teams ahead of us if we can get it together somewhat on defense. Hopefully Hill can come back healthy and a trade of some sort can accomplish repairing the leaky defense. We are so close with the other teams all we need is to get on a roll against some of the weaker teams coming up.

    So, before the season started when we found out Rondo would miss time, if I told you we would be hovering around 500 and in the 8th seed and only 1 game out of 5th, would you have been happy with that?

    I'm happy for now but I want to see improvement. We need to find a way to improve. Even just a minimal improvement could push us into the top 5 or better.

  2. #2
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! Pelicanidae's Avatar
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    I'm really not worrying too much. A lot has been made of it, including by me, but we really have had to run the gauntlet to get this far. Over 65% of our games thus far have been against +500 teams. It's been a tough road.

    Obviously there's no guarantee, but I could see us really cleaning up over the next 6 weeks or so. I predicted us 5th or 6th seed before the season began, and that's still entirely plausible.

    "Kahwi Leonard will be a Pelican. Please make me a signature." - Silverfoxx

  3. #3
    The Pels can definitely be the 4th or 5th seed in the west if they clean up some of their defensive issues and take a little better care of the ball. If they don't, they are in danger of slipping out of the post-season all together as not that much is going to separate teams 4-10.

    To me the overall key is still Holiday. For the last month, he's looked more like the attacking two-guard we need to help balance out the scoring burden. He still lapses into passivity at times. If he stays focused and aggressive, he, Davis and Cousins are a trio that can carry the team to the playoffs and maybe even to the second round.

  4. #4
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    Frustrated, more than anything else. A nice run would help me get over the blown leads, etc... A 5th seed with a chance to advance would be incredibly important for this franchise. An 8th seed followed by four game sweep does very little for us.
    Thanks Pelicans Report - I get a laugh or three every day reading this thing. Hoping the magic returns to the SKC soon.


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  5. #5
    Just continue taking care of business against the weaker teams and hope that we get some help with the current 4-5 seedsí schedules getting harder.

  6. #6
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! Pelicanidae's Avatar
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    I'm expecting us to win against Miami, and also against the Nets pretty easily. So I'm just looking forward to that right now

  7. #7
    We had a really rough schedule thus far but we are still in pretty good shape. I hope no significant injuries but we should still be in line for a 4-5th seed. AD and Cousins are playing well together and I like what I see out of Holiday, Miller, Nelson, and Rondo. Moore needs to be more consistent and hopefully Hill takes Cunningham spot off the bench. Also, it would be nice to get a good big off the bench to spell AD and Cousins at the trade deadline. We need to cut down on the turnovers.

  8. #8
    We have a real problem with defense. Not as optimistic as most on this forum.


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  9. #9
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! Pelicanidae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pelicanchamp View Post
    We have a real problem with defense. Not as optimistic as most on this forum.


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    I think everyone is intimately aware of our defensive issues and all optimism is in spite of said issues rather than blind to them.

    That said, the defensive issue has been slightly exaggerated due to the quality of opponent we've faced. Not trying to downplay our defense because in general it's been terrible, just plain awful. But even solid defensive teams have been made to look bad by the caliber of team we've had to play thus far (Golden State multiple times alone tips the scales).

  10. #10
    I think this team is 3x better now than they were in October-early November. They still have to clean up the defense and turnovers but you can see the elite potential. Moore and Miller have become legit players. Jrue has been a top 5 SG over the last 15 games, it has been beautiful. Rondo has been amazing. Boogie is playing more under control and controlling his emotions, his game is growing he has been great attacking off the dribble as of late and taking smarter 3s. AD has been AD. Cunningham is way better at the 4. Tony Allen brings energy and toughness. Jameer has been great as a backup. And Asik chips in when he does play. I'm excited to watch the team continue to develop chemistry and get better. When Hill comes back we will be even deeper. I think we can be a real threat come playoffs.

  11. #11
    Yeah, I like the way Jrue has been playing as well. Getting Rondo back has been a big deal, obviously. But also I think they decided to let Jrue play more to his natural game--off the bounce, attacking the rim, some mid-range mixed in--sort of in the the DeMar DeRozan mold. It's a good fit, much better than trying to make him a catch-and-shoot guy at the arc.

    Defensive improvement is the whole deal. We are going to score, if we can just be a middle-of-the pack defense, we should be a solid playoff team. As much of the good analytical work posted on this forum and elsewhere has shown, we are actually ok in the half court. We struggle in transition defense off turnovers and missed shots. Getting back and maintaining good floor balance shouldn't be that hard to achieve with proper coaching and motivation. We'll see.

  12. #12
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! AusPel's Avatar
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    I really don't know why it's so hard for the guys to box out a lot of the time. When the ball goes up, body your man, or the guy near you. It's just a focus thing

    I'm looking squarely at you, Dante

  13. #13
    REAL men play BASS Contributor MSU-Sousaphone's Avatar
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    Coming into the season, the only people who were playing the same roles as the previous season were AD, Hill, Moore, and.......that's it. Hill went down. Cunningham had to play way more SF than we wanted, Jrue moved to SG, Boogie really didn't get a majority of a season with us and then a bunch of new people. It's 2am, I may have missed someone but I think it is safe to say of anyone in current Western Conference playoff positioning we were the least experienced team. And then, like someone said, Rondo goes down.

    Anyways, all that stuff and we are one game from 5th. You better believe I'm OK with that. It seems like a good argument could be made that we have the most potential to improve. Continuity is so huge in the NBA. Especially for defense. And especially for our style of offense.

    All that being said, I don't think we are title contenders. This season. But this will set us up so that we will be there soon. Soooooooon.
    Last edited by MSU-Sousaphone; 12-24-2017 at 02:47 AM.

  14. #14
    I think we continue to putz around and stay in the 7-8 seed range unless we make a trade for a quality fitting SF. And for reference, I dont think Hill returning is a viable substitute. His shooting will hinder a lineup with Rondo and Jrue.

    If we can do that I think we could realistically get into the 5 seed and than you are talking about possibly winning a playoff series against a team like the Wolves.

  15. #15
    I think this year has kind of been crazy. I mean there are only 3 games that separate the 4th seed from the 8th seed. Only 1 game between the 5th and the 8th seed.

    That's a smaller gap than between the Pels and the team at the 9th spot.

    This all means there is a lot of stuff still up in the air.

    How good are the Thunder now that they are finally clicking? Are the Wolves really just fool's gold or will their bodies even be able to handle the grind Thibs is putting them through? Who will break feel from the Nuggets, Blazers, and Pelicans group? Who will regress back to the mean? What will we need to actually do to make the playoffs?

    In some ways this team has answered some questions we were all curious about. But in other ways, we still have a ton of questions or maybe even more questions than we had before the season started.

    This is an exciting time to be a Pels fan and also an absolutely frightening time. Personally, I have no idea how it's going to play out.

    This team is Jekyll & Hyde. I can see them finally catching on and once they get a few more wins above 500 getting that confidence needed to go on some serious runs right into the playoffs...

    Or I can see them never quite figuring it out and being super frustrating to watch because they aren't consistent at all, as try struggle to hang on or the 7/8 seed.

  16. #16
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! Pelicanidae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mythrol View Post
    I think this year has kind of been crazy. I mean there are only 3 games that separate the 4th seed from the 8th seed. Only 1 game between the 5th and the 8th seed.

    That's a smaller gap than between the Pels and the team at the 9th spot.

    This all means there is a lot of stuff still up in the air.

    How good are the Thunder now that they are finally clicking? Are the Wolves really just fool's gold or will their bodies even be able to handle the grind Thibs is putting them through? Who will break feel from the Nuggets, Blazers, and Pelicans group? Who will regress back to the mean? What will we need to actually do to make the playoffs?

    In some ways this team has answered some questions we were all curious about. But in other ways, we still have a ton of questions or maybe even more questions than we had before the season started.

    This is an exciting time to be a Pels fan and also an absolutely frightening time. Personally, I have no idea how it's going to play out.

    This team is Jekyll & Hyde. I can see them finally catching on and once they get a few more wins above 500 getting that confidence needed to go on some serious runs right into the playoffs...

    Or I can see them never quite figuring it out and being super frustrating to watch because they aren't consistent at all, as try struggle to hang on or the 7/8 seed.
    Definitely a crazy season. Personally I think OKCs clicking is just a temporary thing, and before February Melo will flip out at his off the ball role.

    Wolves have had a cakewalk schedule. It has to get tougher at some point, so hopefully they'll slow their roll at some point.

    Nuggets seem to have something going but I'm pretty sure this is almost their peak, even with so many people out.

    Portland, on the other hand, have already begun their slide. 3-7 over their last ten, I think, and destined to drop below us.

    Meanwhile, our season is finally easing up a little but and hopefully we'll rack up some more wins. Excited as we come into the new year.

  17. #17
    Another thing is learning to play with large leads. Which I think is a reflection of the defensive issues so far. If they can figure out how to maintain leads we will be really good moving forward.

  18. #18
    The Franchise
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    All I want for Christmas is for this team to cut down on the turnovers. I'll settle for a 25% reduction. Nothing drastic. Cutting down on the live ball turnovers will also allow the defense to get set on more possessions which should also help.

    I'm not greedy. Lets just go from 16 TO to 12 TO and I'll be happy.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by NMThreeMVP View Post
    All I want for Christmas is for this team to cut down on the turnovers. I'll settle for a 25% reduction. Nothing drastic. Cutting down on the live ball turnovers will also allow the defense to get set on more possessions which should also help.

    I'm not greedy. Lets just go from 16 TO to 12 TO and I'll be happy.
    The Bucks are best in the league with only 13.0 TOs. So...we're not too greedy -- we just want the Pels to become the best TO team in the league by a large margin.

    I'm not too greedy either -- just let my girl look like Gal Gadot and I'll be perfectly satisfied.
    Last edited by Bricklayer; 12-24-2017 at 05:51 PM.

  20. #20
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! Pelicanidae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bricklayer View Post
    The Bucks are best in the league with only 13.0 TOs. So...not too greedy -- just want the Pels to become the best TO team in the league by a large margin.

    I'm not too greedy either -- just let my girl look like Gal Gadot and I'll be perfectly satisfied.
    I'm not too greedy either, don't need too much, all I want is the team to score the most points per game of any team in the league while also maintaining the league's best defense and turning the ball over a maximum of 2 times per game and also Jrue Holiday will cut me half of his paycheck. Nothing too much, don't wanna be greedy

  21. #21
    I expect this 2 game win streak to extend to 11. Should be a 28-16 record going into Boston next month. The only leeway I'm giving is a possible L @ NY the game before that.

    So 28-16 or 27-17. It's extremely possible. No excuses. Time to stop the BS and start streaking.
    Last edited by luckyman; 12-25-2017 at 01:20 AM.

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by luckyman View Post
    I expect this 2 game win streak to extend to 11. Should be a 28-16 record going into Boston next month. The only leeway I'm giving is a possible L @ NY the game before that.

    So 28-16 or 27-17. It's extremely possible. No excuses. Time to stop the BS and start streaking.
    You sure you wouldn't just like Gal Gadot as well? As long as you are aiming for unlikely pie in the sky scenarios, might as well make it something within theoretical reach.

  23. #23
    Pistol Pete Would Be Proud!! AusPel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luckyman View Post
    I expect this 2 game win streak to extend to 11. Should be a 28-16 record going into Boston next month. The only leeway I'm giving is a possible L @ NY the game before that.

    So 28-16 or 27-17. It's extremely possible. No excuses. Time to stop the BS and start streaking.
    It sounds ludicrous, but it's actually possible if we crank up the D. No reason why we can't beat anyone

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by luckyman View Post
    I expect this 2 game win streak to extend to 11. Should be a 28-16 record going into Boston next month. The only leeway I'm giving is a possible L @ NY the game before that.

    So 28-16 or 27-17. It's extremely possible. No excuses. Time to stop the BS and start streaking.

  25. #25
    We go on an 11 game win streak and he wouldn't be alone on that street.

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