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Tag: UNC defense

Winning the Transition Battle

Winning the Transition Battle

Led by Roy Williams and his love of up-tempo basketball, North Carolina generally doesn’t worry about winning the transition game. The Heels, in fact, usually relish the opportunity to play a fast-paced opponent who won’t mind running with them (like, say, Florida State this season). But is this a typical Carolina team? If you believe the numbers, this particular edition of UNC has been more comfortable in the half-court (on both ends) than in transition. When Florida State, 16-1 overall…

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Kentucky: The Morning After

Kentucky: The Morning After

After spending a few hours re-watching and charting the Carolina-Kentucky game, then a few more sleeping it off, I’m feeling equal parts proud of how the Heels competed and disappointed in how they let it slip away with some questionable late-game decision-making. Well, maybe not equal parts: I’m more proud than disappointed. Sometimes, when an opponent had a game like Malik Monk did, you just need to tip your cap, accept the loss, and move on. Or, in my case:…

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Defensive Charting vs. Davidson

Defensive Charting vs. Davidson

Defending Jack Gibbs: Jack Gibbs, averaging 24.3 points per game, is one of the nation’s elite scorers. Slowing him down without Joel Berry, probably the Heels’ best on-ball defender, figured to be a daunting challenge. And, while Nate Britt (who drew the primary assignment on Gibbs) did a better job upon further review than I thought while watching in real time, Gibbs was still able to score 30 points in a fairly efficient fashion. Let’s start with a breakdown of…

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Defensive Charting vs. Oklahoma State

Defensive Charting vs. Oklahoma State

Some quick thoughts on the defense against Oklahoma State– first here’s the defensive boxscore: Guarding Juwan Evans: Evans is a really talented lead guard, who’s especially adept at utilizing the high-ball screen. While the comparisons to Chris Paul may be a bit overstated, Evans did consistently make good decisions following a ball screen (and the Cowboys set one for him on nearly every possession he was on the court). Luckily for the Heels, his teammates (a mediocre group in general)…

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Early-Season Defensive Charting Insights

Early-Season Defensive Charting Insights

While the last post dumped a bunch of defensive charting data, it didn’t do much in explaining a.) what the numbers mean, or b.) what else I’ve observed beyond the numbers based on careful re-watching/charting. So, without further ado: Ball-screen defense: there are many ways to defend a ball screen, but Roy Williams’s preferred technique has alway been for the on-ball defender to fight over top of the pick, while the help defender hedges then recovers to his rolling/popping man….

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Intro to Defensive Charting

Intro to Defensive Charting

Defensive charting is a concept formalized by basketball analytics pioneer Dean Oliver in his seminal work,¬†Basketball on Paper. More recently, it’s been used by basketball writers/analysts like Luke Winn at Sports Illustrated and David Hess at TeamRankings.com. As Hess explains here, defensive charting consists of rigorous review of a game tape (the 8-second rewind button is a charter’s best friend!) to allocate credit and blame to individual defenders. Compared to traditional methods like boxscore stats (steals and blocks) and the…

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