Down 0-2 to the Miami Heat, the Pacers are searching for answers. In two largely close games, the offense has continued to stall out in crunch time and when plays break down. While there have already been numerous tweaks and adjustments on both sides of the ball, one hasn’t happened that I’m hopeful we will see today and moving forward.
Bam Adebayo is feasting on Indy’s ball-handlers at the top of the key, forcing Malcolm Brogdon and Victor Oladipo into suffocated drives to the rim and deep pull-up threes that he closes out on with ferocity,
When Myles Turner is used as the screener, Bam Adebayo switches onto the ball-handler just about everytime, giving Myles a mismatch against smaller players.
How often has Myles received the ball when he finds a mismatch? I counted three times across two games.
He’s gotten opportunities against smaller players A TON across the first two games.
Myles is not an elite interior offensive player, but he’s solid when he gets the opportunity to operate in the post. He’s scoring .96 points per possession on post-ups, which is in about the top third among bigs who’ve played 500+ minutes per Basketball Index.
If the team can start finding Myles on these mismatches, it could do wonders to A. force Bam to stick to him B. draw fouls.
Myles draws fouls at a 50% rate on post-ups. That’s in the 94th percentile! So even if he’s not finishing the shot, he’s generating points and offense. I don’t expect Myles to morph into Jermaine O’Neal and carry this offense to a series victory. However, if the team can find Myles, it could change the series.
Punishing the mismatches is one of the keys to attacking a switch-heavy defense like Miami’s. Duncan Robinson, Jae Crowder, and Andre Iguodala have been the primary Heat players Myles has gotten switched onto. It may be tricky to force in a post-entry pass (something this team is not great at), but those three players are negative defenders on Myles in the interior.
If Myles can hit three or four shots and draw a foul, it could warp the Miami defense and open things up for the perimeter players. With nothing else consistently working, why not try it?
Hopefully we’ll see Myles get the opportunity.
Enjoy the game today!