Lance Stevenson
Two years ago

If Yugoslavia still had a National Team

If Yugoslavia was still around you'd think they'd be better on paper than the Croatian/Yugoslavian teams of the past with Divac, Kukoc, Petrovic, Radja.

Jokic and Nurcik were unlucky not to be considered All Stars and Dragic made it this year (by default).

This list doesn't include quality players in Europe.

Nikola Jokić - Nuggets (Serbia) (F)
Boban Marjanović -Clippers (Serbia) (C)
Miloš Teodosić - Clippers (Serbia) (G)
Bogdan Bogdanović - Kings (Serbia) (G)
Nikola Vučević - Magic (Montenegro) (C)
Mario Hezonja - Magic (Croatia) (F)
Bojan Bogdanović - Pacers (Croatia) (F)
Dragan Bender - Suns (Croatia) (C)
Goran Dragić - Heat (Slovenia) (G)
Beno Udrih - Pistons (Slovenia) (G)
Jusuf Nurkic - Blazers (Bosnia + H) (C)

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Ain't that great, starting 5 would be good but not much else.

Teodosic
Dragic
Bogdanovic
Jokic
Nurkic

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Why is the Yugo zone so good at basketball? Not familiar with the culture there but ball is so strong.

Reply #677787 | Report this post


Ricey  
Two years ago

Basketball is the sport of gods in that area. Everyone goes nuts for it.

Reply #677799 | Report this post


Melbourne Boy  
Two years ago

They're not soft like us, they train their kids twice a day 6 days a week from a young age. It's also why their shots all look so fluent compared with ours.

Reply #677807 | Report this post


Isaac  
Two years ago

'787, height would be a factor.

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Todd  
Two years ago

People may not realise that our current defensive rotations was created to slow down the Yugoslavian drive and kick motion offense.

Reply #677827 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Um.. no.. the current defensive rotational system was invented by Bob Kloppenburg in 1987 with the Seattle Supersonics

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Not just volume of practice, but they practice the right thing. They actually know and teach correct fundamentals.

Reply #677845 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Two years ago

How can our current defensive rotations be created against a team that doesn't exist, you in the boomers camp?

Reply #677870 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

It was created first in the nba by Kloppenburg, by 1988 every other nba team had adopted this strategy, by 1991 it had gone international. Prior to this the concept was "help and recover" rather than “rotation”.

In 1987 Kloppenburg also created the concepts of weakside inversion and conceived the way to double team the post which is commonplace all over the world now. Again this was copied by all other nba teams by 1988' This is the main reason for the decline of post up oriented offenses, which only happen now in cases of mismatches. Switching on screens was also his innovation which you see everywhere now, especially on late clock when shot clock is under 8 seconds. Watch the Adelaide 36ers and you will see they switch everything. You see Kloppenburgs influence in every game just no one realises he was the original architect.

You will find all innovations happen at the highest levels (usually nba) and filter down. The exception to this is the modern offensive style of having the post not occupying a spot down low all game long but rather using them high either as a ball screener or passer (hence the prevalence of big men shooting the three) on the floor which is the drive and kick game you refer to. The Europeans started this and now the nba has adopted it within what they call their downhill concept of play. Points per possession dictates this ie. a 40% 3ptFG is same points per possession as a 60% 2ptFG. Dean Smith of UNC talked of this concept within what he termed “possession analysis” in the 1970’s which is the forerunner to what the modern game call analytics. Same concept just a new age term.

Reply #677890 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

And yes I agree the European coaches teach the game better to their juniors than we or the US coaches do. Decision making and passing in particular are areas that the Europeans are much more adept in at an earlier age than our players. They are a different breed of player over there. The US have always excelled in teaching and drilling defense and individual skills. Our coaches in Australia are also good at teaching individual skills but don't teach reading the game within the team concept, not even at the nbl level.

Watch a euroleague game and you will see offenses that vary around how the opposition defend situations like on ball and off ball screens. They have a profound solution against every defensive rotation which they require their players to firstly recognise the rotation then secondly to understand precisely what they want offensively against that rotation. Over here we teach offenses as a basic movement rather than a move then read then use one of multiple options according to such. The best example is coach Obradovic of Fernebache Istanbul am absolute genius of offensive innovation. So much so, the San Antonio Spurs adopted his strategy to obliterate the Miami Heats vaunted defense in the 2014 nba finals. Even Popovic admitted to borrowing Obradovic’s concepts. If you watch you will notice they get an uncontested shot on almost every possession despite the fact the Heat were a great defensive team.

Reply #677893 | Report this post


Melbourne Boy  
Two years ago

Original JR, that's some of the best info ever given on this forum, unfortunately half of the readers on this probably read the first sentence and skip over the rest due to a lack of true understanding of the game.

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Thanks Melbourne Boy, if yourself and the purists follow me, it was worth sharing. You have to be a knowledgeable player, ex-player or coach to follow my usage of coaching jargon!

Reply #677901 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

And there is a hint to those who think they understand the game well. If you didn't follow a damn thing I said perhaps you don’t know the game as well as you think you do. A few coaches in WA fit this discription perfectly I’m sad to say.

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

What level do you coach at JR?

Reply #677917 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Currently I'm not coaching anonymous.

Reply #677918 | Report this post


hoopie  
Two years ago

Original JR, many thanks for your contribution, most of which I agree with.

I remember that one major reason why Yugoslavia was so strong was said to be because they were paid by their government to spend hours in the gym just doing shooting, whereas most other countries couldn't or wouldn't.

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hoopie  
Two years ago

And Toni Kukoc was my favourite player behind Michael

Reply #677922 | Report this post


KingPodge  
Two years ago

bloody fantastic, JR.

Reply #677923 | Report this post


Todd  
Two years ago

Thanks Original JR.

Do you think that we Australia don't teach reads due to lack of practice time or do you think that it's a mindset?

Reply #677924 | Report this post


hoopie  
Two years ago

Todd, I'd say lack of practice time, lack of quality coaching, and too many playing more than one sport.

Reply #677928 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Thanks for the positive feedback everyone!
Hoopie- I agree, I have been to the former Yugoslavian states and watched their coaches, their school system had them working on fundamentals and shooting for an hour prior to school and in many cases another hour afterwards. Getting up a minimum of 500 three point shots daily is as regular as brushing their teeth which is why they shoot the ball so purely and so well. Guys like Petrovic upped the ante on those numbers.

Todd- my opinion, and it's only an opinion is that it is probably a bit of both. Many coaches are ex players who run what they did when they played in the 90’s and do not keep up with the latest trends worldwide. The AIS and state basketball federations tend to copy the US system which whilst is quite good, does inherit the same limitations as the US. The state federations dictate that they don’t like coaches overstructuring things then te ah what they call "receiver principles" as just that, a structure. The receiver principles are nothing more than a loose set of guidelines based on both Dribble Drive Motion )as used by NCAA coaches like Wahlberg and Calipari) and the European ball screen offense. By trying to be the best of both worlds they effectively throw out the baby with the bath water and confuse many coaches except those who are very experienced to understand what they are trying to do. They need to go with one or the other rather than fence sitting or our best talent will continue to develop better at the NCAA system of the European system. David Anderson is the best example, from AIS he didn’t learn much at all, he learned everything in Europe which made him the great players he was and still is.

Reply #677938 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Two years ago

"And there is a hint to those who think they understand the game well. If you didn't follow a damn thing I said perhaps you don't know the game as well as you think you do. A few coaches in WA fit this discription perfectly I’m sad to say."

Absolutely. But most on here defend them and get offended at such notions.

Also most on here don't understand that even the best performed coaches in our country are nothing, i.e. NBL champ, compared to overseas coaches.

Reply #677946 | Report this post


MACDUB  
Two years ago

Don't forget Luka Doncic as well; over Beno Udrih;

p.s. Slovenia will be a future powerhouse moving forward; some great players coming through;

Reply #677953 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

When I met the legendary Zjelko Obradovic at his clinic in Europe a few years ago and told him that in Australia 99% of coaches (even at the highest levels) only defend the ball screen one way (out of 8 or 9 possible ways) in a many given game he couldn't believe it. He says in Europe you will see an opposition change it up three of four ways in just one game. I said the adjustment coaches over here is to go to a zone, over 95% of the time a 2-3 zone. His look was one of utter confusion as he shook his head. Zoning against him or any other coach in the ex Yugo states is simply an invitation for them to set up their best three point shooter in the weakside corner. He jokes that his comment is "look at these idiots trying to zone us".

That’s how different we are to the European system, it just makes no sense to them. I guess when coaches only defend the balls screen in one specific manner, then we don’t have to teach reads, rather have another structured play for it any adjustments which I still see much too often.

Much of this lack of coaching know how, certainly in WA at junior and state league levels is due to club administrators picking their favourite mates for coaching positions rather than those who are most qualified. Sad but true and as such the coaches over here learn that the way to get ahead is to play politics, load up management board of clubs with people favourable to them and thereby they don’t have to get better. This is endemic in WA but I can’t speak of other states. That’s where the blame lies as to why our best talented players leave our shores to develop their games better overseas. I’ve seen the same thing happen for over 30 years.

Granted their are some very knowledgeable coaches who are extremely few in number but they usually don’t last in the face of the political animals as they spend time developing their skills rather than playing politics. They are also targeted by the political animal coaches who know very little as they fear looking like idiots if they allow them to coach. A lot of here who talk the talk but don’t walk the walk.

That’s why the coaches in WA are much worse than everywhere else in Australia let alone the rest of the world. It’s the clubs and the politics to blame mainly. BWA does what they can but the coaches they have are by and large bloodthirsty Johnny come lately’s who crave recognition without the prerequisite know how. The best coaches in this state are not in the SBL I can assure you, they lost interest years ago in participating.

Reply #677956 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Yes agreed to MACDUB. Slovenia is a monster considering they have population of significantly less than the city of Perth. Now those guys can reallly coach! But like I said, why learn from them when coaches (at least in WA I can't speak for other states) get ahead by currying favour on management boards of clubs. It’s really sad and it’s the players and the game that suffers

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

It's not just WA but all of Australia, but WA are by far the worst.

I get criticised for saying Lemanis, Gleeson aren't that great. Oh but they win championships - LOL. Well yes, but the coaching pond here is so shallow it's laughable. Thanks for highlights real coaching in Europe as many don't understand it on here.

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Thanks for highlighting*

Reply #677960 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

And thank you for agreeing Anonymous, it's obvious you know what you are talking about as you state many of the same things I do. You can tell a persons depth of knowledge in this sport by the quality by what they say very quickly as expert knowledge is a prerequisite. Whenever I have coached in the past I have within 30 seconds won the respect of the players because they know the difference between the real coaches and the pretenders. They figure this out very quickly as I am sure you know well. They judge coaches on what they hear and what they see which is fair enough. No amount of politics fixes that as many of the bloodthirsty newcomers find out in time.

Reply #677963 | Report this post


Todd  
Two years ago

It amazes me that Gleeson still runs Flex and Lemanis plays "Flow" but it's more of continuity offense than a style that reads the defense.

As for Fearne, on the ball reversal his corner moves to the wing and one game his import was over played and he went backdoor. Now, he calls it Irish and it's a set play that the corner goes backdoor (not a read).



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Anonymous  
Two years ago

"Granted their are some very knowledgeable coaches who are extremely few in number but they usually don't last in the face of the political animals as they spend time developing their skills rather than playing politics. They are also targeted by the political animal coaches who know very little as they fear looking like idiots if they allow them to coach."

and never a truer word was written.

Well said JR.

Reply #677966 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Amazing Todd- Fearne is amongst the best in the country. I don't watch him close enough to know the specifics you do but find very interesting your noteworthy perceptions. Anonymous- agreed Lemanis and Gleeson are big fish in a very small pond. I heard Homocide say the other day on his new YouTube program "go and get a Serbian coach!".. I long and pray for the day that happens, it would shock the establishment in this country. I can’t say too much without giving myself away but I ran an Obradovic offense once in State wabl juniors, you should’ve seen the confusion from other coaches when they realised we had one play that dealt with everything, man, zone, combinations, junks you name it. Then every coach copycatted the structure but didn’t understand why we did it. The players loved me for it, they still refer to the “greatest offense they have ever seen” when I see them these days many years later. It took them awhile to lose the structured mentality but when they did OMG we were undefendable. And boy did they love being allowed to play with freedom

Reply #677969 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Flex was good in the early 2000's when the Lithuanians used it in a manner such that they almost nailed the Dream team at the 2000 Olympics. Last time I saw it internationally was around 2004. I agree there is much better than Flex or Flow around these days. They are too prone to being stymied by an opposition team and coach that does it’s homework. They get bottled up too often on late clock against the 24 seconds.

Spread pick and roll with 1/5 man and downhill style offense are all you need these days. More attack and less set up and structure. I was chatting not so long ago with an excellent nbl referee who noted that with the change in FIBA rules that favour offenses over defense there is no need for structures of the past. I had to agree with him, he is very astute and has been around the game as a top notch ref for years. Even he said the coaching in this country is backwards on the world stage, again I had to agree.

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Original JR great contributions to this website. Hope you post a lot more and on the regular.

Reply #677973 | Report this post


hoopie  
Two years ago

JR, Homicide was a bit late re Serbian coaches - I was saying that a couple of years ago on this forum, because there was too much focus on only USA or Aussie.

You mention your Obradovich offense. I'm interested in knowing more - any links or anything you could point to or share?

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Hoopie- didn't know that, hats off to you for saying that long ago.

Re Zeljko offense, goto YouTube and search "Zeljko Obradovic matchup offense"
to find a clinic on it. As I speak his native language I attended a clinic in Slovenia back around 2011. This covers it in english, he has 3 plays for any kind of defense being fist, 2 side and 1 move. My guys fell in love with 1 move which is covered at the end. It’s quick hit and even these days Zeljko always uses against late clock.

Good luck with it, it took 6-8 weeks for my players to get used to it and become adept at trading. Mind you everyone went under or jam against ball screens which made it easier only having to know the screen/ rescreen cat and mouse game to gain advantage.

The first time I showed my player they asked was it against man or zone. When I said both they looked at me like I was a madman. I had to explain to them who it came from and to allow me to opportunity to convince them, whxhb they kindly did.

Let us know how you go with it if you teach and use it, I’d love to hear about it.

Good luck!

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Replace trading for reading.. fat fingers on iPhone error!

Reply #677979 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Given what you have said I think you will find the read based nature of this style of play very refreshing. We all certainly did

Reply #677981 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Thanks all for the nice things you people have said. I will post regularly, I did call myself JR til another recently started using that moniker so I became then became the original JR ;) I can be controversial at times but please forgive me for that!

Can't wait to see the GF series and either Adelaide or Melbourne winning a chip for the first time in quite awhile. Look forward to sharing comments on it with you all!

Reply #677984 | Report this post


Todd  
Two years ago

Now you got me youtubing Obradovic.

Reply #677986 | Report this post


Original JR  
Two years ago

Please go ahead Todd, based on what you have said here I am certain you will love his style. I don't keep secrets when it comes to things like this, I just like to see the standard improve in our country overall.

I watch his team this year a few times and have noted a couple of more recent things he is doing. He is the greatest offensive innovator in the game today by far. I love his style but once you understand his philosophy from the above clinic you will find it easier to understand what he is doing.

In Europe they refer to him as the Grandmaster of Chess in relation to basketball offenses. He has the perfect solution for every scenario a defense could throw at him.

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hoopie  
Two years ago

Would it be fair to say, JR, that Euro players need a much higher basketball IQ to succeed over there than NBL players need over here?

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

Obradovic has pretty much won the Euroleague (nine times) wherever he has gone (teams in Serbia, Spain, Greece and now Turkey).

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Yes that would be fair to say but they are also taught this from any early age. Most good aussies can make that transition to playing euro ball when they are older, more experienced and end up playing well within that system also. Doesn't mean it works for all of the Aussies who try play over there, some really struggle and end up coming back here very quickly.

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Yes Obradovic is a God in Europe. Joe Dumars tried to get him to Detroit a few years back but I think Zeljko understands the NBA is a players league and they wouldn't put up with his shit. Just watch him on the sideline when a player of his gets a read wrong, he goes ballistic at them. NBA guys wouldn’t stand for that and Zeljko knows this I’m sure.

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

JR you already know this but the problem is in Australia everyone just thinks of basketball, even basketball junkies, that the world of ball is NBL and NBA and nothing in between. Europe gets overlooked even though they are who we should be learning from.

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Anonymous I agree with you, the Europeans to date have been the best outside the NBA at developing NBA level talent. We could learn a great deal form that. Of our own Australian team, though we are loaded with NBA players they have all developed to their highest levels offshore.

I think this is slowly starting to change but we are at the moment only really a stepping stone for the likes of the Terence Ferguson, James Ennis types who are already developed for the most part and really just "maturing" their games more than anything.

It's a step in the right direction but until we get the grassroots junior and underpinning state leagues right, the best players will continue to leave. The best example of this is looking at the SBL here in WA then trying to figure out how many made the jump directly to NBL to be successful long term players and not just bit part role players.. I put it at about 3 in 20 years (Harvey, Hire and Jervis) but two of those played NCAA ball and did the majority of their developing overseas. Harvey is really the only one when you consider it that way. Can’t think of any others the SBL can lay credit to for developing to NBL level. Others may throw a few names out but have they developed here or overseas is my question

Reply #678005 | Report this post


Todd  
Two years ago

In regards to Harvey. He had a good coach at Stirling but the coach wasn't a good influence off the court. Then he went to Perry Lakes.

Harvey basically taught himself and with hours of hard work.

I think you have forgotten Gliddon, Worthington, Loughton,

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Original JR  
Two years ago

Wortho and Loughton I credit to NCAA, I don't know Gliddons story.

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Anonymous  
Two years ago

The basketball culture in WA is so so lazy.

Reply #678042 | Report this post


Melbourne Boy  
Two years ago

I just watched it, here's the link below to the clinic in English with good audio. It goes through his 3 plays to run against any D, it's very good in that he provides simple solutions or reads to different things the defense may try. It's very modern NBA or more specifically D'antoni... on ball screen, react to the D, use spacing to get a shot or attack where the advantage is. When you're in his position where you can recruit to fit, just like Houston it's great. It would struggle if you have 2 guys who just can't shoot the 3 in that there's a lot of standing ready to catch and shoot relying on the rotation to come.


https://youtu.be/Wy9ihi-GhCA

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