Please keep in mind in no way am I questioning anyone’s strategy or philosophy on the following study. There are way better coaches than me out there who do what they feel is best for their team. This is just a research study to see what coaches prefer to do in this late game situation.
Last night in the NBA during the Memphis Grizzlies win over the San Antonio Spurs in overtime, the Grizzlies were in a Foul or Defend twice!
In regulation Memphis was heading back on defense and the Spurs Tony Parker rushed the ball up the court and got off a three-point attempt from the left-wing (27 feet away)…nothing but net at the buzzer.
“That was an incredible shot by Tony to give us a chance to stay in the game and get five more minutes to figure it out,” Spurs forward Tim Duncan said.
Parker on his shot: “Pop told me to push it and if nobody came to help then to take it.”
“I had told them when Tony Parker hit the 3, I said, `You have two ways to go. You can hold your head and feel sorry for yourself, or you can suck it up and go back and win the game again.’ We got down, we fought back, and we did win the game. It was a good test of our mental toughness and our togetherness because we did stick together.” -Grizzlies head coach Lionel Hollins
In overtime, the Spurs took the ball out on the left sidelines with 3.2 remaining in the game. Manu Ginobili caught a pass and threw up a shot from the left side…no good.
The Grizzlies gave up a three in regulation but still elected to defend in OT.
This was the second meeting of the year for both clubs and the second time the game has gone to OT.
There were three other Foul or Defend situations last night around the country.
In high school basketball there were two.
Mt. Clemens decided to rely on their defense against New Haven and what do you know? New Haven banged a three to force overtime.
At Olivet, the Eagles were up three and decided to defend against Pennfield and got the stop.
And in college basketball last night, the University of Dallas played defense against Colorado College and came up with the stop. Dallas assistant coach Matt Grahn told me, “We haven’t practiced fouling.”
If you happen to see or are involved in any Foul or Defend situations, please let us know. Up three, on defense and :07 or less remaining in the game.
268 total “Foul Or Defend” situations
Teams that have fouled have won 27 of the 28 games.
240 times a team has defended and 46 have given up a three-point shot. (19% success rate)