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Old 08-25-05, 07:36 AM
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Buck Harvey: Time to heal? Parker's shot

http://www.mysanantonio.com/sports/c....17a42330.html

Buck Harvey: Time to heal? Parker's shot

Web Posted: 08/25/2005 12:00 AM CDT


San Antonio Express-News

Tony Parker's knee has healed. His jumper has not.

The Spurs are working on that. Just as they are in Chicago today trying to convince Michael Finley to shoot for them, they are also in Paris trying to convince Parker to make a few for them.

The Spurs are optimistic, mostly because they hired a shooting coach who has helped others. But even this coach will be pressed to change Parker this offseason, and this goes back to the sore knee, and this fits into Gregg Popovich not wanting Parker to play for the French national team this summer.

During the European championships — with pride and country on the line — will Parker want to risk a new shooting stroke?

Chip Engelland will make do. He was a Duke captain in the early '80s before bouncing around the minor leagues. But it's as a shooting guru where he has made his name.

Parker won't be Engelland's only project. The way the Spurs shoot free throws, Engelland should stay busy.

Earlier this month, for example, Engelland worked with Ian Mahinmi, the Spurs' 2005 draft pick. Everyone understands he will need a few years, but Mahinmi showed off one number when he was in San Antonio that means more than any shooting percentage.

The teen measured at a full 6-foot-11, an inch more than before.

Still, if there's one player who the Spurs had in mind when they hired Engelland, it's Parker. Not even Finley would improve the Spurs next season as much as an accurate Parker would.

So it's no coincidence that Engelland is in Paris now, and Parker has reason to listen. Engelland worked for the Nuggets last season, and Phil Jackson wanted him this season.

But Parker should be most impressed with Engelland's credentials because of one player he helped. Steve Kerr. About a dozen years ago the two went to dinner — they attended the same Los Angeles-area high school — when Kerr was in a shooting slump with the Bulls.

Engelland told Kerr to open his legs wider for better balance. Kerr listened, found success and later hired Engelland as his personal coach.

Grant Hill later did the same, and Engelland took Hill back to the basics. Hill stood 5 feet from the basket, his legs balanced, shooting with the ball in one hand, over and over again. Hill had to earn the right to shoot from farther out.

"It was a little humbling for him, I'm sure," Engelland said then. "You have to start out like a 10-year-old. In some ways, it's easier to teach a 10-year-old this stuff because they have not developed any habits yet. Someone who's older has a lot more to erase."

For Parker, the erasing will be an emotional chore. The Spurs questioned Parker's form from the day they drafted him, and he's tried to change. But when the tension grew — when he needed to score — he would go back to what he knew.

Sometimes, on the way to two championships, the old form came through. In overtime against Denver, in the close-out game against the Suns. Weren't those moments enough?

Parker knows the answer, and he's mentioned Tiger Woods as his model. Parker isn't a golfer, but he understands what it meant for Tiger to twice rebuild his swing.

But Parker never had Tiger's basics, nor has his stroke ever been compared to Kerr's or Hill's. Parker, instead, has a contorted shot that doesn't begin to fit into Engelland's equation.

When Parker cocks his head and spins the ball, is there anything balanced about it?

Engelland will proceed slowly, with bites of advice that Parker can swallow, and he will begin by finding a better ball position. Given time — and some trust — the combination could mesh.

But Engelland works with a distinct disadvantage now. Instead of being able to practice what he's learning, Parker will have to play with it.

Popovich knows all about this. He tried to talk Parker out of the European championships because of tendonitis in one of Parker's knees, but Parker was obstinate.

Was Parker being insensitive to the Spurs? Both Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili played for their respective countries in Athens last summer.

Popovich and Parker compromised. Parker agreed to skip practices this month to rest the leg, and the plan worked. Parker has no pain today.

Still, that doesn't mean the European championships won't hurt him. Parker should be in a gym, going over Engelland's tutorial, using this time to rebuild his stroke. He will instead be on the floor.

So what happens then? Won't Parker naturally go back to what he knows, just as he has done as a Spur, because there simply hasn't been enough time?

The Spurs will see soon enough.



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"We would have two less championships here if it wasn't for Manu Ginobili," Popovich said. "In my book, Manu Ginobili is the stud of the world.
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Old 08-25-05, 07:54 AM
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Seems critical of TP, at least IMO. But at least he acknowledged that Duncan and Manu both played in the summer last year. I think a shooting coach will help, but the one person who helped him immensely was Steve Smith in 2003. Back then it was normal for TP to come out in the 3rd and get 19pts. But in his defense, the lanes are more open for him to drive because of the attention Manu now gets. I think he's ok now, but if could perfect his jumpshot, were talking top 3 PG.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:13 AM
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This has been bandied about but to some extent Tony has been unfairly criticized. He is only 23 and has steadlily improved from year to year. Yes he has room for improvement and I think that's what's so frustrating to some. Jump Shot? If he can consistently hit a jumper he's an all star and the Spurs could be a monster. Here's a player that along with Manu forced teams two years in a row to alter their defense in the playoffs because they couldn't stop the penetration. While the above article has a slightly critical tone- I am looking at it half full- he is working on his shot- and he i limiting his participation with the national team.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:32 AM
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It's going to be even harder because as the article mentions, Tony has no definite form or real foundation in his shooting mechanics to work with. Some shooters don't fall into the perfect catergory for shooting. He is a streak shooter, when they fall they fall, when they don't they don't. At least it's a start having Engelland out there working with him, and hopefully, Tony is taking advantage of it. Doug Collins made an interesting observation about Tony, he said more than half of Tony's shots come from drives and are inside the paint, but that a consistent 15-20 jumper would put him at another level and make him more dangerous as a scorer, and I've read that here any number of times, so it's no secret where Pop wants Tony to go, it's no secret that teams have basically found a way to neutralize Tony when they load up in the paint and he isn't hitting his shots.

I hope the plan works, I'd love to see Tony avg. 18-20 pts a game while taking no more than 14 shots a game. He can do it, just on the pick and roll if he hits that jumper with Cassell consistency he will be a nightmare for other teams.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:38 AM
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Only in today's NBA do player actually NEED to work on their jump shots.

In times past most everyone could shoot, they didn't have handles and couldn't drive fro anything...but they could shoot. Now the pendulum has swung the other way.

Its a good move for Tony to be working on his weakness without losing anything on his strength.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:38 AM
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Already posted:

http://www.spursreport.com/forums/sh...ad.php?t=41338 (parkers shot)
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Old 08-25-05, 08:43 AM
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I don't think that the article is OVERLY critical of TP. Unless, you think the truth is too critical. He needs to work on that J this summer. It needs to be priority. He'll need it just as much, maybe more, next season as he did last.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:58 AM
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the Spurs have one of the best shooting coaches on their staff now...someone that even helped Steve Kerr

Thats going to pay some dividends I think
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Old 08-25-05, 09:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enuff_sed
Only in today's NBA do player actually NEED to work on their jump shots.

In times past most everyone could shoot, they didn't have handles and couldn't drive fro anything...but they could shoot. Now the pendulum has swung the other way.

Its a good move for Tony to be working on his weakness without losing anything on his strength.
I think that is a bit of a myth, I watched the NBA for along time and disagree when people say they used to shoot a lot better. the other night while being up with my infant son I watched a finals game from the mid 80's between the Celtics and Lakers- a LOT of missed jumpers- (open jumpers). The interesting part was 3 point shot attempts where rare, and you almost never saw anybody standing behind the 3 point line. If you look back at the the Celtics dynasty in the late 50s and 60s they never shot above .44% as a team and defense was not what it was today.
Also the best shooters- Kerr for instance work at their shot constantly.
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Old 08-25-05, 10:17 AM
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I see this as a similar situation to what we had with AJ in his early years. He never became a great shooter, but he did become proficient enough to punish the defense for leaving him to double other players.
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Old 08-25-05, 10:24 AM
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Earlier this month, for example, Engelland worked with Ian Mahinmi, the Spurs' 2005 draft pick. Everyone understands he will need a few years, but Mahinmi showed off one number when he was in San Antonio that means more than any shooting percentage.

The teen measured at a full 6-foot-11, an inch more than before
.


I'm suprised nobody has anything to say about this!
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Old 08-25-05, 10:28 AM
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Hopefully the Spurs can get him working with someone to develop a low post game too. That's where we're going to need him down the road.
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Old 08-25-05, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuffedmushroomz
Earlier this month, for example, Engelland worked with Ian Mahinmi, the Spurs' 2005 draft pick. Everyone understands he will need a few years, but Mahinmi showed off one number when he was in San Antonio that means more than any shooting percentage.

The teen measured at a full 6-foot-11, an inch more than before
.


I'm suprised nobody has anything to say about this!
Yep near 7' with a > 7' wingspan, athletic and humble. Might be a steal.
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Old 08-25-05, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddog
Yep near 7' with a > 7' wingspan, athletic and humble. Might be a steal.
Its amasing that the dude is still growing! Shows how young and raw he really is, like a blank canvas ready to be created. The beauty of it all is, there is no rush with this guy. Bring him up when he's ready to blow the league off its ass! Maybe just in time for TD's last season as a Spur? Passing the torch on to the next great Spurs big man....sorry I know its a stretch, just a little mid morning day dreaming.
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Old 08-25-05, 05:28 PM
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how about they make sure parker gets his layup drills and teach him to pass better we can leave the jump shots to finley
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Old 08-25-05, 05:59 PM
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Good thing Mahinmi is already working with the Spurs to develop some sort of shot. He sure didn't have one in that U18 tourny.
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