What was Dead and Gone Might Be Back! As Well As a Special Announcement
Swish Weekly - April 6th
Today we have a quick version of Swish Weekly since we have a very special announcement at the end of this one. We have some great pieces from the Ringer and ESPN as well as a site that we haven't featured before making its debut on the newsletter. We expect more great articles next week with the playoffs coming around and that means that NBA Awards season is right around the corner. Expect a lot of picks and hot takes to make their way into Swish Weekly. With that, let's get right into the action.
The Post Up is Dead, Long Live the Post Up - Cleaning the Glass - Ben and Ryan Nguyen
Cleaning the Glass is a website that is truly on the cutting edge of analytics and that's why we wanted to showcase them here at the top of this week's Swish Weekly. We're going to try to throw more of their stuff into the newsletter because they do a great job of analyzing the things that the casual fan isn't necessarily going to notice in each game. In this article, Ben and Ryan Nguyen go off about the death of the individual post up, but show examples of how coaches are drawing up plays that involve a post up as merely a piece of the puzzle. It's a fascinating read and shows where the game will migrate to in the near future.
Want to Shock and Elite NBA Team? How About a Dash of Zone Defense? - The Ringer - Kevin O'Connor
I've always found zone defenses to be fascinating and every time I watch an NBA game, I wonder why more teams don't deploy the zone defense as a way to keep opponents off balance. On the rare occasion that a team in the NBA runs a set of zone defense, it often works initially before the opposing offense can understand the zone and attack the weaknesses that it presents. The zone defense has seemed to do one thing in the past though, throw off opponents and allow overmatched squads to pull off upsets. The Mavs successfully used the zone defense against the Miami Heat in the NBA finals in 2011, but players are faster, stronger, and more skilled than just a few years ago. Will we see the zone defense make a comeback in this year's playoffs? Only time will tell.
Schedule Alert! Who should be on notice in April? - ESPN - Baxter Holmes
Another month and another schedule alert article. Unfortunately, with so few games left in the season, there's actually only one game that makes the schedule alert column for this week. The bulk of this article is a recap of last month's schedule alert games and boy was it a spicy one. It's actually quite crazy how these things can work out. This is one of the aspects of the NBA that doesn't get talked about much and I think the fact that these schedule alert games can be so lopsided simply due to the schedule is strong evidence for reducing the number of games in the season.
The Luke Walton All-Stars: Surprising and thrilling role players - ESPN - Zach Lowe
This is always one of my favorite columns to read toward the end of the NBA regular season, primarily because I think we naturally gravitate towards cheering for an underdog. Each player on this list certainly qualifies as an underdog. They all play with a grit and tenacity that any coach would love. These are the unsung heroes of playoff teams and the lone bright spots on non-competitive ones. Every single name mentioned in this column is well deserving of their spot on the list.
The Other NBA Awards - The Ringer - Multiple Authors
It's always fascinating to read about the guys that fly under the radar, but are the absolute best at what their team needs. That's what this article is about, along with some other fun awards that need to be given out at the end of every season. Big shout out for Justin Verrier who had arguably the greatest paragraph to grace an NBA related piece this week in the "Who the fuck is that guy" section of the piece. Just an astoundingly hilarious article that deserves your attention.
'Group Chat': Kyrie Irving's Shutdown, Sixers Stay Hot, West Playoff Carousel, and Hope for Bottom-Dwellers - The Ringer - Chris Ryan, Justin Verrier, and Paolo Uggetti
This is probably the perfect piece to end the week on since it's a quick breakdown of the major things happening in the NBA right now. Two of the biggest storylines of the week were Kyrie having knee surgery that will end his season, and the thought that the Sixers could potentially make the NBA finals with the way their playing (assuming Joel Embiid can make a full recovery). The East's playoff bracket has been set in stone, but the West is still up for grabs and will come down to the final few games of the season. Highly recommend taking a listen/watch of this episode of Group Chat from the Ringer.
That's it for this week in terms of NBA content, but that's not all we have for you from Swish Weekly. We've finally gotten our act together and wanted to show you the newest piece to the Swish Weekly Puzzle... T-Shirts!!!
You can purchase official Swish Weekly branded T-Shirts directly through Amazon so you don't have to worry about poor quality or shipping hassles. They're even eligible for Amazon Prime. There are two designs, but we think you'll like them so much that you'll want to get both! It's a great way to support Swish Weekly and we would love to see you rocking one of these! Tag us on social media wearing your Swish Weekly t-shirt and we'll feature you on our page!
Hope you enjoyed this week and stay tuned for next week's installment!