Last year

The real problems at the World Cup

I see the threads about choking and about sacking Lemanis.

IMHO they're all wrong.
We didn't choke, we collapsed through exhaustion.

That's what we need to fix.
And, perhaps surprisingly, the answer is obvious.

One option I suppose, is that instead of choosing Ballers, we recruit Marathon runners...

Put simply, our top guys played too many minutes. Across all games, and especially in the finals. The ONLY way to fix that, is to play LESS minutes.

Now I suppose one option might be to have one of the 5 on the court, lay down and have a rest in the keyway. Not sure what the rules say about that.

Otherwise literally the only way you can fix this is to have other players take some of those minutes.

Now yes.
In a perfect world, for Tokyo, we replace Sobey, Gliddon, and Barlow, with Exum, Broekoff, and Simmons. Problem solved.

But is that actually FIXING the problem?
For starters that's assuming that everybody is fit, firing, and available for Tokyo. It's assuming Simmons doesn't crack the shits starting on the bench. And its assuming we don't adapt by leaving Goulding, Creek, and Kay sitting on the bench polishing their balls.

In reality, I'd suggest the problem is some combination of the following:
> We picked 3 players who were literally useless.
> We made no attempt to inject them into the rotation
> In 3 easier games, Senegal, Dominicans, and the Czechs our starters didn't put the hammer down to allow the bench scrubbers to get minutes.

Who do we blame for this? Is it all on Lemanis? Do we not have assistants responsible for those players?

I saw in another thread many defending Sobey. So why wasn't he able to play minutes? By all accounts he's a decent 1/2, so why couldn't he sub Delly & Mills?
On his game I thought Gliddon was as good as Bubbles, yet he never even looked like getting on the court.
Creek seemed to have a limited role, and we didn't seem to have plan to sub Ingles. He played far too many minutes.

Topic #45916 | Report this topic

Last year

Who is to blame for our talent being top-heavy?

Uh... no one?

Reply #763523 | Report this post

Last year

It's over, move on.

We have Olympics, we'll have a team with some serious depth.

If we don't have injuries/withdrawals, if the current blokes don't get too much of a step slower, if we have some good chemistry - then Aussies will be right up there as one of the favourites for Silver.

Reply #763525 | Report this post

Last year

I suspect Lemanis now regrets moving away from a deeper rotation as he used in Rio. But then again, we didn't have the same depth as in Rio and this was a more challenging tournament than Rio. Perhaps it was this shallow rotation that led to our 6-0 start.

It's a case of damned if you do, damned if you don't. If you go deeper with lesser quality players, you create opportunities for being exploited, your chemistry isn't as strong. But then if you don't, you risk tiring out players, which is what eventuated.

This World Cup was so intense without easy games. One bad game at any stage can send you home. Then you have to consider that points difference can always come into it.

I think the key is to go deeper by giving the main guys some rest during the games against the minnows. I mean rest on the bench, not rest via sub-100% effort play like in the games against Senegal and Dom Rep. Even that is a risk. Hopefully we will have enough talent in Tokyo that it is natural to play with a deeper rotation, not a forced strategy just to rest Delly/Ingles/etc more.

Reply #763526 | Report this post

Last year

Nostraballmus says you are a genius Anon whoever you are.

Starters playing too many minutes because we selected players we couldn't play because ahead of better players and players who wouldn't commit to the programme

Player recruitment, team selection and then minutes played - yep, Nostraballmus says that's all on the coaching team

and just quietly Nostraballmus reckons surely they could have played Sobey or Gliddon for a few minutes at the end of quarters to give Mills or Delly a bit more rest especially vs Senegal and the Dominicans. What were they gonna do ? Turn it over? Allow cheap scores ? Miss an open look ? They had plenty of mates there.

Reply #763527 | Report this post

Last year

"Starters playing too many minutes because we selected players we couldn't play because ahead of better players and players who wouldn't commit to the programme"

Simmons reference I get, but were there any better [ball-handling] players that could sub for Delly/Mills/Ingles?

Reply #763528 | Report this post

Last year

The other threads you mention, they all have people talking about fatigue of Mills, Delly and Ingles already. And of ready-made options in place of Sobey like Martin or Lisch.

I think they just wanted to lock in every win as they could. That was the priority at each point. We had a tough group. Then we wanted to dodge the USA. Then we wanted the Gold game. So we threw everything or close to it at each game as it came. And it was about as close to working as you could get if you subscribe to the idea that they could've accounted for Argentina (which I do).

Play Sobey in a game that we lose and people say "Why are we playing the full bench? We have to play our best to win!"

That said, I don't think Sobey/etc are significant steps down from Goulding on his average day, but it wasn't Goulding we needed to rest in the end.

Patty and Delly were running around screens at both ends of the court all tournament. Wouldn't surprise me if they topped the comp for distance covered.

Reply #763529 | Report this post

Last year

Isaac, Nostraballmus says that's the whole problem. We can’t say 'we are going to win the gold’ but the plan for that be to hit and hope.

Reply #763535 | Report this post

Last year

Every game for the Boomers was a must-win, so it made it difficult to insert untried players and just 'see how they go'. You can't just 'see how they go' when you're struggling even build a league on a potentially dangerous Senegal or Dominican team.

I think a case could have been made for starting the bench in those games but in the end, once again, every single game we played was essentially a 'must win'. Although, interestingly, we could have possibly tanked against France, drawn America in the quarters, then Argentina, and probably had a better shot at gold, but I digress.

For those talking about guard depth, it's important to answer that question with who you would have picked in place of Gliddon and Sobey? If you don't have an answer for it other than acknowledging Adel and Motum - who don't even play that position - you have to acknowledge that there was no clear answer to the problem.

The Boomers were forced to rely too much on Delly, Mills and Ingles. And by the business end of the tournament, they were tanked. Goulding's form dropped off a bit. We were cooked. But the depth isn't entirely on the coaching staff, although you could easily make arguments for the types of players who might have slot in instead of Barlow (yes Adel could have been a consideration).

Fact of the matter is unless we were going to dust off the fossils that are Damien Martin and Kevin Lisch - which I wouldn't personally disagree with - Sobey and Gliddon was about as good as we were going to get.

Looking forward to 2020, I see no real way that Gliddon, Sobey or Barlow are in any way under consideration assuming Simmons, Exum, Maker, Adel and Motum are available, or possibly even Bryce Cotton. The issue of depth will not be an issue in Tokyo, assuming guys actually put their hands up. And then there is Bolden, and who knows where the situation sits with him.

But every team heading into the Olympics is sure to be stacked. The USA wont be bringing the dregs this time. Spain have another level they can go to, so do Serbia and Canada. We'll be in the mix, for sure. But I don't think we can look at Tokyo as a surefire medal opportunity. If fate should have you crossover with the US in this particular tournament, you're probably done. Serbia? Probably done. Spain? pretty tough. Canada, who knows?

Whether through fatigue, poor planning, bad player management, poor playing or shit coaching, the Boomers bellyflopped on the best opportunity they will ever have to get a gold medal in a major tournament. I'm not all too convinced we have the cavalry to make it happen next year because we seem to seriously lack nerve. And that's what a lot of those losses comes down to - simple nerve. Exhaustion was a factor of course, but we just didn't have that inner belief we could get it done. We need that and we need depth to medal.

I've been following the Boomers for 20 years now and I am massively invested in how they go. But as things stand, whatever happens with player personnel, I don't trust them at this point to get it together and medal. I feel like the 2020 Olympics will be this iterations version of the 2000 Olympics - their best talent, last roll of the dice, but eventually fruitless. I hope I'm very wrong.

Reply #763536 | Report this post

Last year

Given how poorly we played against Senegal and the DR, throwing in some guys who had no need to conserve energy and every reason to play as hard as possible and maybe earn more minutes, would have been worth a shot.

My problem with all these threads is that rotations and selections and whatever are all easier in hindsight. Most of the comments in the Senegal and DR game threads aren't "why aren't we playing Sobey and Barlow?" they're "stop turning the ball over!!!" and "we have to play in the green uniforms." Everyone made the best judgement they could at the time. Sometimes those are wrong, but it doesn't mean it wasn't the best decision with the information available.

IMO the senior players have to take some responsibility for how many minutes they played, too. The lackadaisical effort against Senegal deprived them of the opportunity for meaningful rest in the most obvious game in which to get it.

Reply #763543 | Report this post

Last year

ME, Nostraballmus thanks you for your articulate and considered post. As always, he adds.

Nostraballmus agrees that these selections were probably just a poor read. The saving grace for them is that the plan was for them to play minutes and rest the big boys v Senegal (which surely was the only expected 'easier' game heading in. ) Turns out we turned up unprepared for Senegal and then couldn’t play them. The unpreparedness is Also on the leadership team Nostraballmus would adds, and stems from the underlying unjustified arrogance which has seemed to characterise this group which Ballmus has discussed elsewhere.

Failing to trust the selected players for the role they were selected (spot back up minutes) was also a bad read. Ballmus wonders what’s the worst that would have happened if Sobey or Glidds or Barlow, all fine players, were each played for 4-6 possessions at the end of a quarter spelling a big boy at a time ? It’s all speculation, and with respect the Ballmus isnt in the group, but unavailability, withdrawals are often the symptoms of players who are unhappy or unvalued.

Btw the Ballmus is probs taking cr$p cause he ain there. But he can clearly see the results ie no medal.

As a long time Boomer lover The Ballmus shares your concern. Fundamental change, now, may be the only way to fundamentally change the result in Tokyo.

Reply #763544 | Report this post

Last year

Straightaway people leap to the wait til nexttime defence, the same thing we say after every failure.
What people are implying is that Lemanis spat the dummy when he couldn't have the players he wanted and so stacked the bench with spuds but thats ok because next time will be better. I disagree.

As for hindsight isn't that the coaching teams job? It doesnt take much foresight to figure out that if you flog your guards senseless that will bight you later on.

Reply #763549 | Report this post

Last year

We might as well use these last 3 spots to blood Tamari Wigness, Josh Green and Makur Maker. They are the future of the boomers. Barlow, Gliddon and Sobey were a waste of rotation spots. I am sure Tamuri and Green would have given Patty and Delly some decent back up minutes.

Reply #763550 | Report this post

Last year

"I am sure Tamuri and Green would have given Patty and Delly some decent back up minutes."

Hmm... no. No Wigness is pretty raw still. And if we are talking about at this particular moment I'd trust Gliddon before Green. You can't put guys who've never played against men up against some of the toughest and physically gruelling basketball on the planet.

Reply #763558 | Report this post

Last year

The lack of practice games affects the ability to select young players. If playing the young guys was seriously considered, you need the practice games to test them out. In Bogut's first Boomers campaign in 2004, the Boomers had a lengthy tour of Europe prior to the Olympics. He ended up asserting himself as a starter, but it took several games to prove that he was capable in that role against quality opposition. One such practice mini-tournament on that tour included Italy, Croatia and France. By the way, France and Croatia didn't even qualify for Athens, but sent young teams along, and France ended up winning one such practice tournament.

This connects to a problem for Australia. Lack of quality opposition. Lack of opportunities to nurture young talent into the team. If the Boomers had, say, 8+ games before this WC, I can imagine it would be more feasible to go with a 14+ man squad to let players like Adel learn and prove their worth. It's tough when these young guys are not available in qualifier windows and BA organises so few games before the major tournament.

Reply #763559 | Report this post

Last year

2018-19 Cleveland 19 3 10.3 .306 .261 1.000 1.0 .3 .1 .2 1.7
Career 19 3 10.3 .306 .261 1.000 1.0 .3 .1 .2 1.7

Last season stats for Adel, bit scrambed but you can work it out, 30% shooting 26 from the three. Should have been first player picked with that nba record.

Reply #763560 | Report this post

Last year

To come in.

For sure...
Simmons, Broekhoff

On the fence...
Cotton, Exum, Bolden, Maker

Unlikely to make it...
Mcdowell-white, Adel, Cooks, Motum, Humphries

To go out.

For sure...
Sobey, Gliddon, Barlow

On the fence...
Goulding, Creek, Kay, Landale

Unlikely to drop out...
Mills, Dellavedova, Ingles, Baynes, Bogut

Reply #763561 | Report this post

Last year


Straightaway people leap to the wait til nexttime defence, the same thing we say after every failure.
What people are implying is that Lemanis spat the dummy when he couldn't have the players he wanted and so stacked the bench with spuds but thats ok because next time will be better. I disagree."

No one has implied that at all

Reply #763562 | Report this post

Last year

This wasn't our best or last chance at a medal at a major tournament, but you'll have to agree, this could have been our best chance at a GOLD medal yet and certainly could have been the last chance for a GOLD medal for a long, long time!

Reply #763565 | Report this post

Last year

I'll tell you right now, if Cotton gets naturalised and manages to play in Tokyo, ther'll be threads here asking why Cotton isn't playing more minutes. Boomers have always had their "pecking" order hence why we never got many minutes from previous imports who were at their peak and dominated, Grace, Fisher, Redhage. All were MVP level players who were dumped on the bench to play garbage minutes, and in those garbage minutes performed incredibly well. I've always felt that politics has controlled the national team.

Reply #763586 | Report this post

Last year

Completely agree that the seas parted and this was a golden opportunity missed. Also agree that the Olympics will be so competitive that even an upgraded Boomers roster will be up against it, but might be a chance for a medal as it will mostly be the USA making significant upgrades, and possibly Canada. The following World Cup will be really interesting. Current generation going out, and it will come down to which of the next generation can commit. Simmons could be the same guy or could be at the next level by then. Or might not play WCs at all.

Senator, were they all naturalised in their prime or were they trending down by the time they were eligible? Lisch at the Hawks was superb but he didn't seem an absolute run for the Boomers?

Reply #763594 | Report this post

Last year

"Senator, were they all naturalised in their prime or were they trending down by the time they were eligible? Lisch at the Hawks was superb but he didn't seem an absolute run for the Boomers?"

They might have been on the downward trajectory, but when they were on court for the Boomers they made things happened and had immediate impact only to be benched seconds later.

Reply #763604 | Report this post

Last year

To the original post.. In what world will Ben Simmons need to accept coming off the bench?!

Reply #763615 | Report this post

Last year

"Boomers have always had their "pecking" order hence why we never got many minutes from previous imports who were at their peak and dominated, Grace, Fisher, Redhage."

Is this really the case? Look at each case:

In 1992, Loggins was given starter minutes.

In 1994, there were no naturalised players.

In 1996, Fisher was 6th man. Ronaldson was ahead of him. Remember, Fisher was undersized internationally.

By 1998, Fisher fell out of the rotation (sitting at the end of the bench alongside young Melmeth, Dwight), with our frontcourt including Anstey, Rogers, Ronaldson, Mackinnon, Vlahov. It's hard to argue Fisher ahead of any of these guys, especially with Fisher aging and new young Aussies coming in.

In 2000, it was Grace injected into the team with our "best team ever". This is where I believe Barnes overplayed Heal at 35mpg, with Grace getting the backup point scraps. Definitely an argument to play Grace more here. I recall a lot of people suggesting this at the time too.

Somewhere in between, but not in a major tournament, D-mac played under Smyth as one of the two guards on the team.

In 2008, Redhage was at the end of the bench (alongside Ingles and Saville), behind bigs that included Nielsen, Andersen, Bogut, Anstey. Unless you want to play him at the 3 ahead of Barlow and Newley. Good luck arguing that.

Then we have to skip to Lisch in 2016, who often looked out of his depth in the international game, didn't warrant more minutes.

I see that only argument applies to a part of the Barnes era.

Reply #763616 | Report this post

Last year

Thanks for that info rjd, the Grace one was definitely the stand out for me and may have effected my opinion of the other imports at the time.

In 2008 NBL season Redhage was better than Barlow and think Newley was playing overseas at the time so there is an argument that Redhage should've been playing more than both.

Fisher yeah was probably getting on by 1998.

Reply #763633 | Report this post

Last year

Grace & Fisher Naturalised at roughly the same time.
Grace was selected for 96, but then Longley was unavailable, so Fisher was brought in to add a little height. Albeit he was playing the SF role.

By 2000, although arguably still the pest PG in the league, Grace was 34.

You've got to remember that in that era, the Boomers were basically the "Gaze & Heal" show.
I also never rated Barnes that highly as a coach.

Reply #763637 | Report this post

Last year

Right, that is the problem.
No, that is a lame excuse for what transpired. I will not repeat what I said in the CHOKE thread .... go read them. I will only add that unless you take shots you do not make points and in that pathetic attempt to maintain the lead we saw a frantic passing period with hardly a shot in the first third of each scoring run, then in the last few seconds dumb shots were made. So who is to blame? Well clearly it is the coach who could not or would not take the offensive. Fear of losing is losing. How about we get a coach that only knows offense at both ends of the court. Killer instinct is what is required. Or do not bother playing.
Time for the old and established dinosaurs to be relieved of their influence on our national team. If you do not do this you can forget the Olympics because the other nations saw what we had and they know now exactly how to clean us up.
PS You can attack me as much as you like but that does not take away the truth of what I am saying. Players who can not take shots when its money time are useless and BTW putting the entire team on the shoulders of one small guard (Mills) is a ridiculous strategy.

Reply #763784 | Report this post

Last year

we'll have to agree to strongly disagree on that

Reply #763800 | Report this post


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