I hate this backcourt. Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics Preview


Michael Redd was twice the player that Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis currently are combined. Redd had a great understanding of what he could and couldn’t do. Redd couldn’t pass. So he didn’t pass. He couldn’t rebound, so he didn’t rebound. He couldn’t play defense, so he never even tried. But he could shoot. His understanding of himself created a plan and a purpose for each and every possession. Sure, that plan was just to make it rain (which at the end, totally chafed fans), but for one and half seasons, his mindset plus his skill lead to self-actualization. Michael Redd was a flawed basketball player, but he was the perfect Michael Redd.

Ellis and Jennings have no clue who they are as basketball players. They do things just because that’s what starters are supposed to do. Passing is good, so they pass. Threes are good, so they shoot threes. There is no plan from possession to possession and the offense is impotent because of it. They’ve never taken the time to think: am I capable of this? Is this a good idea? Am I any good? They scaled their usage to all-star levels and now they’re trying to find their efficiency. That’s not how that works. You find your efficiency, then you scale your usage up.

There may be an argument that the structure of the rest of the team demands much out of them. I’d argue that the structure of the team doesn’t demand all the stupid things they try. I’d also say that Redd’s teams had A LOT of weaknesses, but Redd played to his strengths, not the teams. Those teams were not good, but this isn’t an argument of results. It’s an argument about process. The only way the Bucks will ever have a good team is if the players know who they are and the team has fewer weaknesses.

I’d much rather go back to Michael Redd do his absolute best and fail than watch Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings ruin my life.

Choose the Form of the Destroyer

Rajon Rondo is the perfect player for what I’m talking about. He has such a great understanding of what he can and can’t do that it’s almost a detriment to himself and his team. Dude deliberately passes up open lay-ups to get assists.

Since I was so mean to Ellis this entire preview, I will say that he’s an exceptional interior passer. However, Rondo is the best interior passer in the game. Celtics possessions don’t even start until Rondo is deep in the paint.


I’m really upset that Drew Gooden is playing again. I’m not upset because he’s a bad basketball player – he’s serviceable, but goofy. I’m angry because I was really liking the idea of Gooden getting paid millions to watch NBA games courtside. He seemed to really enjoy himself – doing the “Flexing” celebration with Marquis Daniels and lecturing the rookies about the virtues of passing the ball into the stands.

Ekpe Udoh All-Star Watch

I’m looking forward to an eleven rebound effort for Udoh tonight. The Boston Celtics have just completely given up on rebounding. They’re 28th in the league in true rebounding percentage and dead last in offensive rebounding percentage. Kevin Garnett is the only viable big man for the Celtics. Every other big man is generally bad. Jared Sullinger can’t jump, but Boston fans like him. Don’t listen to them. Boston fans are terrible people.


I mutter greater than 37 obscenities at Jennings and Ellis tonight.

Categories: Game Previews

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  1. As a coach, one of your main priorities is to create roles for your players, and help them understand where they fit in.

    Scott Skiles misinterpreted this important lesson, and disregarded it completely.

  2. ESPN is reporting that the two players sat out during shootaround today Ellis (back) Jennings (ankle again) expect alot of Doran Lamb 2nite

    • Jeremy… which is worse? Gooden celebrating on the bench or Danny G would would sit in the last two seats of the bench, arms sprawled out and relaxed demeanor? Sometimes he wouldn’t get up for time out talks…

      Along those lines, is Skiles just blatantly benching Dalembert right now?? Why??

  3. I cannot agree at all. Skiles has young talent, like any great coach, when that young talent is what he has to rely on, he tries to TEACH him how to play the role they NEED him to play. Monta is an above average passer at the 2, BJ is an above average passer. They have problems with bad passes, everyone else does. Drew Gooden is no bum. He has been one of the best role players for the last decade. Bucks problem is and will be until its fixed, spacing the floor. The Bucks failing has more to blame towards Ersan than BJ or Monta, if other players ACTUALLY could make shots, they would take less. You apparently don’t understand a 3 guard system. To shine, they require the bigs to space the floor. If our face up big is shooting worse than a blind man in the middle of combat, they’ll know to go straight after the artillery to stop the outside attacks. Which is why the bucks are seeing issues. Because they have 3 and 4’s getting in their face night in and night out. Ersan is the second option for Monta and BJ both, Beno thrives because he is a better passer than either. But if Ersan doesn’t pick up his game, we won’t win. The offense cannot flourish, its a fact. Not an opinion. That’s why trading Jon Leur was stupid. He isn’t an all star or anything special, but at the very least we would have two shooters at the 4 instead of one player that can space the floor(yea dunleavy can play the 4 but thats a horrible idea) Luc Richard at the 4 is doable because you see more 3’s going to the 4, however, that takes away from the game he dominates at… the 3, can guard guards, and forwards. He needs to be able to roam the court, defend their best shooter. Bucks woes will continue until they remedy the 4. I feel Gooden for now is our best option to win today. Henson is our best option to win in the future.. All this being said, until Ersan picks his game back up.

    • No you didn’t nail it. Drew Gooden is terrible. He is terrible now and he will always be terrible. We don’t want Drew Gooden now we don’t want him ever.

      And we don’t want Marquis Daniels either.

      Both Marquis and Drew KILL the flow of the game. They have no offensive rhythm, and their defense blows. Why is Marquis known for his defense! I have never seen someone with worse defense. He is lazy and slow. He gets burned all the time. The only thing Drew Gooden does for the bucks is catch the ball when it falls through the hoop–Hey, he is great at that! Because he is ALWAYS under the hoop.

      When we don’t play either Drew or Marquis, we actually play great basketball. We play better offense because [a] we get better ball movement and [b] we have a shooter in Ersan or Dunleavy whom stretches the floor which gives room for Monta and Brandon to drive and score AND they can hit Ersan and Dunleavy for 3.

      We need a new and experienced C. Larry Sanders does a great job and most of all he continually shows improvement. He is worth every minute he gets. The rest of the PF/C are not helpful at all. Udoh does an average job. The rest don’t deserve to be on the court.

      Until we get an established C, we should NOT decide to split the Bucks apart and start anew. If we can get a complete team with an established C, then we could accurately judge whether or not Monta Ellis and/or Brandon Jennings are franchise quality players. Until then, we can’t split them apart, they are all we have!

      We should go far Amare Stoudemire or Pau Gasol. Starting 5:
      C: Pau Gasol
      PF: Ersan
      SG: Dunleavy
      G: Monta Ellis
      G: Brandon Jennings
      Off the bench: Beno Udrih, Larry Sanders, and Mbah Moute.

      Wow! I love to see that!!!!!!!!

      • I went back and look at the spread of Marquis Daniels for the past 7 games. Here is what I found:

        Date Opponent Marquis Spread Bucks Spread
        09/21/12 Boston -8 5
        09/19/12 Memphis -4 -10
        09/18/12 Indiana 1 5
        09/15/12 Clippers -30 -26
        09/14/12 Cleveland -2 4
        09/12/12 Kings 7 13
        09/09/12 Nets 4 9

        Now, I realize basketball spreads are far from the end-all-be-all. Instead, I think end-all-be-all is performance on the court. Marquis has terrible performance on the court! The spread only used to support this. Please, Scott, stop playing Marquis.

      • Was referring to ersan needing to step up and space the floor when I said nailed it. Gooden is terrible I agree. And daniels hasn’t been worth a darn since he left indy.

    • i agree with most of what you said but throw all that we need drew gooden shit away, but right now our starting lineup is just defenders jennings and ellis cant win like that, ersan or dunleavy need to be starting to spread floor. id like to see dunleavy for fun but luc richard is to good of a defender for him not to be at sf, problem is that ersan is a god awful defender and dunleavy is under rated defender but isnt good enough to guard the all stars in this league that all play sf

      • oh and they need to involve sanders in the offense way more like they did tonight at boston, he is probably the most athletic almost 7 footer in the league with his speed and length he should be playing a tyson chandler type role. sanders is really talented at making guard type moves in the paint as well as throwing it down

        • I would love to involve Sanders more, but it’s not our option. Niether is Scotts. Its up to Sanders. He needs to learn where to be where to go, so when our guards drive then they can dish it to him he can slam it down/ take it to the whole. But until Sanders learns where to go or until he develops a jump shot, he is just going to be a roaming big-guy athlete that doesn’t get the ball much and his sole purpose will be for rebounds.

          • i think its more of the offense run by skiles, bucks offense is dribble hand off its whole point is to set the guards up which works well with jennings and ellis but if sanders is going to be involved they seriously need to mix it up and play a little of that and a little pick and roll

          • Yeah, maybe we should try a different type of offense. I can’t save I love the dribble hand-off.

    • BS Bill, look at the shooting percentages on this team. BJ and Monta are the ones who cant make shots.

  4. Well with all those turnovers and missed FTs I guarantee that 37 obscenities mark was far surpassed if not doubled.

  5. Can’t believe I wasted my time reading this. Actually thought the writer was some actual journalist whom I hadn’t heard of. Then I get to the bottom only to see it’s just some guy.

  6. Backcourt inefficiencies be damned, Bucks just took the season series from the team regarded by most experts as the 2nd best team in the Eastern Conference in the Preseason, they might not have been deserving of that honor but still pretty cool for the Bucks proving head to head superiority over the Celtics is a nice little feather in their cap.

    • It was a head shaker of a game to watch, but somehow this scrappy bunch got it done. Difference between this game and the Memphis game is that everyone on the TEAM participated in the game.

      Go Bucks 😉

  7. A little harsh Ian, but somewhat agreed. the back court inefficiencies is mind-numbingly frustrating, but I refuse to lose my faith in those two. Too many people already hate the bucks. 95% of Madison(where i am from) could care less about the bucks and it makes me sick.

  8. Spot on.

    Take a player like Larry or Mbah a Moute, they know what they can do. They know their offensive limitation and they usually go out and play within their skill sets and deliver good results.

    Jennings and Ellis don’t seem to be aware of what their skills are (nor am I). Both should be good at getting to the rim, neither are. Neither can defend at all and are constantly getting out classed by every single opposition match up.

    Perfect example of Ellis not having a clue about his game: Under 20% 3 pt shooting this year, under 32% for his career and yet he just keeps shooting 3 pointers. He is by far one of the worst 3pt shooters in the league of people who actually attempt to shoot them on a regular basis.