SportVU Matchup Data: Searching For Answers
The two remaining Conference Semifinal series tipped off on Tuesday with Miami and San Antonio both cruising to wins by 21 and 24 points, respectively. The Nets tried five different defenders on LeBron James, but could not slow him down. Meanwhile, the Blazers had no answer for Tony Parker's game-high 33 points or the Spurs bench, which outscored the Blazers, 50-18 in Game 1.
The Nets varied their approach to defending LeBron James in Game 1, with five different players guarding him in the half-court for at least one minute. They will likely continue searching for an answer in Game 2 since James shot a combined 6-of-9 against these players.
|S. Livingston||A. Anderson||M. Teletovic||P. Pierce||J. Johnson|
Ray Allen was the Heat's second leading scorer after James with 19 points, easily usurping in just one game his total points from the first round of the playoffs (13). Twelve of his 19 points came from beyond the 3-point arc, where he took all seven of his attempts in the half-court against different defenders.
In the regular season series, LeBron James guarding Joe Johnson was the third most common matchup with a total of 16 minutes against each other. Johnson had success against James, but Shane Battier primarily guarded him in Game 1, playing 26 minutes after having played just two minutes in the first round of the playoffs.
Joe Johnson vs. LeBron James
|Game 1||Regular Season|
|Total Def Time||13:03||64:16|
|% of Total||8%||25%|
LaMarcus Aldridge attempted more than twice as many half-court attempts against Tiago Splitter in Game 1 than he did over the course of the regular season, with the Spurs electing to defend him with Diaw and Duncan instead. While Splitter guarded Aldridge for just 22% of the time he was on the court in the regular season, that rate skyrocketed to 77% in Game 1.
|Game 1||Regular Season|
|Total Def Time||9:26||14:08||19:30||49:56|
|% of Total||77%||28%||22%||48%|
Damian Lillard had trouble keeping the Spurs from penetrating into the paint, allowing a game-high nine drives against three different players. This is a trend that has carried over from the regular season and will be worth watching going forward, as Lillard gave up nearly twice as many drives in the regular season (27) as the next closest player in Boris Diaw (14).
Marco Belinelli and Patty Mills provided a spark off the bench for San Antonio, scoring a total of 29 points in 40 minutes on the floor. They were both guarded most commonly by Mo Williams, and Mo Williams did a much better job defensively than the rest of the Trail Blazers did.
|Mo Williams||Rest of Team||Total|