Rashard Lewis is Expected to See More Minutes at Small Forward | Magic Basketball

«

»

Jul 29

Rashard Lewis is Expected to See More Minutes at Small Forward

Photobucket

Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Via George Diaz of the Orlando Sentinel:

I had a nice conversation with Magic Bob Vander Weide — now the chief executive officer and vice chairman of the franchise — following Wednesday’s press conference. Glib and insightful as always, Vander Weide addressed the team’s style of play last season.

Not surprisingly, Magic fans can expect some changes.

As many people have barked about in columns, blogs and casual conversations, expect to see Brandon Bass get a lot more playing time at power forward [four slot], a switch that will allow Rashard Lewis to shift to the small forward [three] slot in the lineup. […]

“In our post-season conversation, Stan [Van Gundy] said he should have practiced Rashard more at the three because on the baseline he’s probably the best post-up three when he plays that position, although we love him at four the majority of the time. If you don’t practice it, you don’t play it.”

8 comments
Eddy Rivera
Eddy Rivera

@hulKK

I agree, somewhat. Lewis' struggles defensively against small forwards is well-documented but he has an underrated post game.

@Dub

Bass ... can't defend. Sure, Bass has no problems defending players one-on-one but his inability to execute defensive rotations and schemes has always been a problem for him, even when he was playing with the Mavericks.

@Billy (slickw143)

Agreed.

@Darius

The Magic didn't play Bass because Lewis and Anderson are better than him.

@Jamie

Lewis can NOT play shooting guard. That's absurd. And what is a "true" power forward? People are so obsessed with designating positions to players in an era where it's becoming less and less relevant. It's no different than saying that Nelson isn't a "true" power forward. It doesn't make any sense. The NBA is changing, in that regard.

And want to know why Bass didn't play much last year? It's simple. Lewis and Anderson are better players, plus they're superior fits in Orlando's system. Bass' poor court awareness also undermined his ability to get on the floor and play consistently. It had nothing to do with a lack of playing time, either, given that he had the same problems with the Mavericks.

As for Lewis, he can't keep up with small forwards. Howard can only do so much to cover for Lewis' mistakes on the perimeter. It's easier for Howard to help Lewis at power forward because he's there on the weak-side to help him in the paint. Howard wouldn't have the same influence on defense if Lewis was at the small forward position.

@Brad

That's an uninformed comment. Lewis is not a horrible power forward.

Brad
Brad

About time. Finally at his true position! He is a horrible PF who can't rebound.

Jamie
Jamie

@hulKK
Lewis may have been a bad defensive player when he was with the Sonics but several things have changed. Number one is that he has gained more knowledge. Number two he is on a better team that doesn't require him to spend so much energy being the guy. Also he has Stan Van Gundy who managed to turn JJ Redick into a decent defender. Finally his weakness on D (getting burned by faster/quicker SFs) will to some extent be covered up by the human shot blocking machine that is Dwight Howard. He will be taller than most SFs so it will be tougher shooting over him. He also has gained toughness and should be able to hold his own when other SF's post him up. If he can keep up with the faster/quicker/creative SF's then actually he will be a pretty good defender. He also has the advantage that most SF's can't guard him either so opposing players will have to expend energy guarding him. I think he will be fine at SF as long as Bass plays well or we acquire a true PF. He may not be as good as Barnes defensively but I don't think he will be a liability either.

Jamie
Jamie

Well its about time. I hope this is true because Lewis is a SF who can play PF and even SG from time to time. He is not a true PF and while he can be effective we lose alot as a team with him there. I hope Bass gets more minutes but I do wonder why he didn't get much time last year. I know he was adjusting to a new system and Van Gundy wanted a shooter at the 4 but how can u sit a guy that was expected to contribute. So Bass has got to be prepared and play well. We need him to so Lewis can move back to his natural position more often. Lewis should be a better 3 as well. I think he has gained some toughness and under Van Gundy I think his D will be better than it has been while at the 3. He shud be able to post people up at near will and still shoot over them from close or very deep. He doesn't take people to the hole as much as he should and can so hopefully he uses that as well to keep people on their toes. In a Boston matchup Pierce would have to expend more energy on D to guard him thus making him a little less effective on offense. Matt Barnes wasn't that much of threat offensively as Lewis can be. If Bass isn't up to the task then I think we pull a trade for a PF by the trade deadline.

Darius
Darius

It about time.. I thought that was why Orlando picked Bass up and then we didn't play him..

Billy (slickw143)
Billy (slickw143)

I think it'll be something to go to maybe against a second unit that doesn't have a scoring threat at the 3. As said, Rashard might be the best post-up SF if he's playing the position.

I still don't believe it can be used for the majority of the time, and I'm glad as much was stated at the end of the article.

Dub
Dub

I think Shard and Bass will play great together starting. Bass is a beast on the block and can defend. Rashard is sick at posting up and given his height advantage over smaller 3's, this will be a huge advantage. Very excited for the season to start. Let's get it Magic!!

hulKK
hulKK

This won't last long. Rashard can't guard MOST SF's. And Rashard's post play isn't as effective as ppl might think. So he posted a few times last yr and it was SOMEWHAT effective. I doubt he's going to have the same consistent results.