Rotation, Rotation, Rotation (The Numbers: 23/2/14)
It's a famous phrase coined by a basketball coach from the 1800's when asked what the key to coaching basketball is. Ok.... I may have made that up but rotations are no doubt a massive part of modern day coaching.
Somewhere along the line it was decided that most fully healthy teams would run at least nine, sometimes ten guys in a game. Marty Clarke gained a reputation for regularly getting all ten guys onto the court in the first quarter. Even though we've gone from 48 minute to 40 minute games in the last decade, we rarely see players play 90% of the game anymore. In our inaugural podcast with Sixers legend Rob Rose, he marvelled at how much rest the stars get these days. Adelaide's minutes leader is Adam Gibson, who plays just a shade under 33 minutes a game.
Since Adelaide released import Jarrid Frye, Joey Wright has played around with his rotations in a big way. He decided to start Brendan Teys, leading to a big jump in his minutes. With Adelaide moving Teys up the pecking order, that meant Jason Cadee and new signing Rhys Carter would only see spot minutes. The player who every 36ers fan figured would get Frye's spot, Mitch Creek, has only got an extra two minutes a game since the change.
Three games is a small sample size but let's look at the numbers so far.
Avg. minutes game: 7.13
Avg minutes last 3 games: 13.09
Avg points game: 1.1
Avg points last 3 games: 1.67
Avg. minutes game: 16.37
Avg minutes last 3 games: 18.50
Avg points game: 8.5
Avg points last 3 games: 5.33
Avg. minutes game: 18.53
Avg minutes last 3 games: 19.7
Avg points game: 6.7
Avgpoints last 3 games: 4.67
Avg. minutes game: 12.67
Avg minutes last 3 games: 12.67
Avg points game: 3.3
Avg points last 3 games: 3.3
Jarrid Frye was averaging 21.27 minutes a game and pretty much all of those minutes have been distributed amongst those four players.
Creek and Cadee are scoring less, despite the slight lift in minutes. Teys is scoring half a point extra as his minutes have basically doubled.
Rhys Carter is obviously only three games in to his latest Sixers stint but giving his that many minutes at this point seems a little generous. I'm hopeful Joey Wright, who has a far more impressive coaching resume than me, is simply playing guys in the aim of settling on an 8 man rotation come the playoffs.
Common sense to me would suggest splitting the minutes as below.
Despite his poor form over the past 3 games, I'm still rooting for Mitch to start. I'm going out on a limb and saying he'd thrive if Wright gives him the nod (and the sooner the better). Still give him 20-25 minutes a game and give the other "3" minutes to Gibbo when we run small ball or Peach when we play big.
I'd like to see Carter almost exclusively used to rest Gibbo instead of in weird small ball lineups.
Teys, while having some good moments yesterday, probably needs to move back to the bench to get whatever minutes are left.
BJ Anthony probably needs to take the dreaded 10th man role at this point. He's struggled mightily of late and the ankle injury certainly didn't help.
In 2014, he's averaging 2.9 points, 1.6 rebounds and 2.1 fouls in 8.79 minutes a game. He's missed 2 games because of the ankle and since reaggravating it in the warmups against Melbourne, he hasn't scored or got a rebound in 9:45 of action. Hopefully the team learns from the Frye injury and gives him some rest so he's got something to give come the playoffs.Anthony also has the worst +/- on the the team of -60, or -2.9 per game. The second worst is teys at -12, or -0.67 per game.
And for all the former bashers of Marty Clarke's penchant for running all ten guys in the first quarter- Joey ran all ten in the last quarter yesterday......