Erudite Warrior: Will Moses Moody play?
[opinion piece + video]
I started writing this on our YouTube channel when I got wind of the Moses Moody vs Dallas Mavericks highlights (see below), then thought, “Well, that’s what our website is for,” so here you go. Again, this is more stream-of-consciousness than a structured argument.
I’d been planning to put more of my thoughts on here anyways, whereas in the (now distant) past I would’ve tweeted them. Also, the Moody highlight reel — which tbh is offense-focused and not really part of the thesis below — will be added at the bottom after I publish this article. I have two more videos on deck before tipoff as well, especially in the wake of no morning shootaround for either the Golden State Warriors or Mavs today, due to the early tipoff of 6pm.
THE HOT TAKE
As I’ve been saying on our game commentary second-screen livestreams, I would like to see Moody get some burn in G1 of the WCF, perhaps in Damion Lee’s spot in the rotation and further as an option defending Luka Doncic, both 1-on-1 in Gary Payton II’s absence (grrrr Dillon Brooks!) and at the top of the 3-2 zone where Lee often plays. And I have nothing against Lee. If there’s anyone you can take out of the rotation not named Juan Toscano-Anderson, then reinsert him on a whim in case of emergency, as plug-and-play as you can ask for, it’s Lee. (In fact, I’ve praised Damion many, many times on our game commentary. He’s a steal at the veteran’s minimum. I should do a write-up on him too, although the weight of the toxicity on Lee on social media is probably irreversible.)
Rather, the Moody reasoning revolves around our leaders. As I’m sure you have, I’ve frustratingly been noticing the turnovers across many a game by our three Hall-of-Famers, even as late as Q3 in G6 of the previous WCS and I wonder: since we’re tossing the ball around like that and making what I call “AAU turnovers” anyways, why not just have Moody come in there at some point? What’s the worst thing that can happen with Moody out there, a lead pass by him that goes into the baseline seats? A one-handed sling pass that ends up a run-out turnover? Been there, done that. By future Hall-of-Famers, no less.
And btw something I’ve noticed is I’m starting to embrace the chaos little by little, almost to the same point where even Steve Kerr has given up talking about it behind closed doors, per his podium interview yesterday at practice. Think back to Stephen Curry’s eight first-half turnovers in his first game at Davidson as told to me by Bob McKillop. Maybe I’ll do a write-up on that Zen-ish thinking at some point.
So, to me, Moody is a low-risk option for Game 1. Yes, everything ultimately comes down to how our Big Three lead us, but as we saw from the Grizzlies, the NBA is only getting younger with the advent of pace-and-space, plus weird stuff happening anyways ever since an eventual champion like the Milwaukee Bucks lost by 39 in 2021, so why not start the 2023 playoffs development timeline for Moody (and Jonathan Kuminga) NOW, because if they’re not serious contributors in NEXT year’s playoffs, then something went awfully wrong. Plus, we’re getting better DURING these playoffs anyways, why not throw Moody in that mix? It’s like the playoffs are a season-within-a-season.
Again, I’ve been saying this for the past week on all of our game live chats so please come join our super-PVO community which comes with supportive cheering and erudite™️ critiques, and maybe win a free giveaway in the process! We and our “blue wrenches” (YouTube livechat terminology) have literally stamped out the toxicity you see on other social media platforms!
I also would like to see more of Moses Moody. Watching the reserves play in garbage time recently, and especially in Game 1 vs Mavs, it seems to me that the long term development of Moody and Jonathon Kuminga would benefit from some meaningful minutes with the veterans. Their end of game stretches have had lots of one on one offense and not so much trying to run plays, with basically one on one defense as well. Moody actually has looked to be less involved with this individual offense, but Kuminga looks to have regressed back to this style of play. Toscano-Anderson also is really pushing to take charge, ala Draymond, and has (IMO) way over done it looking to handle and create without it being in the context of offense sets. I might think all of them might progress more with some time during important minutes of the games. Even D. Lee looks so much better when he plays then, than when he is in at the games end. Just my observations and opinions.