FanPost

Meyers Leonard Improvements

I've been watching the Summer League games and Meyers has shown some improvement. In most of the first games he was rebounding SO poorly that it really overshadowed the good things he was doing and hence everyone was pretty down on him. His rebounding was the worst I've ever seen though. He wasn't blocking out and letting other people get the board (only on the free throw line did he do a GREAT job at this) he was literally just standing there or worse....it was that bad.

Nevertheless, this what I've seen from him.

  1. Rebounding - Terrible still, though this last game he and coach talked about it beforehand and he then proceeded to grab 13 and work real hard. I think he has just been focusing and working in the other areas so much that we probably won't see much improvement here. This is fine. One thing at a time.
  2. One-on-One Defense in the Post - I've seen MARKED improvement here. Summer League doesn't have much post play but when they go down low to Meyers guy I've seen him literally dominate the guy so badly that the player barely hit the backboard with his hook shot. I saw this occur more than once. Wow factor here. He moved his feet, didn't give up ground, didn't just lay on the guy and let him spin by either (all last season he did this) and he contested the shot without fouling while being on the move. Clearly this has been their #1 focus for his defense. It shows, though its just SL for now.
  3. Help Defense - He is getting there quicker and helping to alter shots. Still fouling, still a bit late but he isn't as clueless here and certainly makes an attempt. No big blocked shots but guys are definitely adjusting to him (floater instead of layup). He even is staying vertical at times on layup attempts when helping. Looking better but still fouls.
  4. PnR defense - I didn't watch as much for this but from what I did see he is ok. Not sure how much improvement is here but I wasn't paying much attention and there isn't a lot of this going on. He has shown aptitude for being a decent perimeter defender though, surprisingly, when a switch happens. Saw some of this last year.
  5. Blocking out - he is doing a better job at times. Especially on free throws. Most of time I hardly see this happen...certainly not on the offensive side even when he has position he lets it go. Seems more skilled at it when he does it though.
  6. Jumpshots - looking great. No hesitation. When he does hesitate, he has a nice jab step shot that goes in if he doesn't pass out. He's been pretty efficient here. Shooting too much from deep but whatever it's summer league and a few have gone in.
  7. Post Play - weird. He has a go-to-move in his right hook shot from the right block and NOTHING else traditional. He also has a VERY quick standing floater from 6ft that NO ONE seems to ever be able to contest or see coming. Its like something that 70yr old guy at the gym kills you with. It's weird and is kinda of a hook/shot put but is VERY natural for him and goes in ALOT. He operates best on the right side of the court which is GREAT considering LMA has no idea what the right side of the court looks like.
  8. Hands - still average
  9. Post Seal - Weak, doesn't fight for deep enough position and doesn't overpower smaller guys. Doesn't seal great but tries at times.
  10. High Post - likes it here I think. Passes decent enough. Likes to shoot from here.
  11. Dribbling - fair i guess. Doesn't do it a lot but can at times. His moves out of it are predicable enough to strip easily. Not much power driving here.
  12. Finishing around the rim - I dunno...don't see a lot of it in Summer League due to poor passing and weak offense. He has always finished fairly well though, saw it last year at times with some reverse layup stuff. He did miff that one nice pass from TRob and get rim checked. Needs more power, more grab and dunks etc.
  13. Passing - Fair to decent.

So the biggest defect is Rebounding. It seems like he is focusing on a few topics and as such certain things like rebounding suffer. As he becomes a more instinctual defender...his rebounding will open for coaching. This might happen half-way through the season depending on minutes or it might happen next year. He did show some potential for hustle and boards last game...thats the only reason I'm not predicting it will never ever happen for him. Before that game, he legitimately showed to be the worst NBA rebounder I've ever seen out of sheer lazieness. So it seems like its coaching. Remember that Meyers made a BIG jump in college. He has the ability and attitude to improve with dedicated, off-season coaching and has shown a bit of it this year and in college. We'll see if Gortat is still owning him like a 4th grader though in the regular season.

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