Sunday, June 22, 2008

Irish Warriors 2007-2008 Report Card: Stephen Jackson

Stephen. Jesse. Jackson.
People in Indiana can't stand the man. The soft fans in Dallas can't stand the man. The refs can't stand the man. The NBA's vanilla fanbase can't stand the man. David Stern and the NBA's PR department can't stand the man.

But us?

We love him

Before he was run into the ground by Nelson Jackson was starting to prove just how hot an offensive threat he was. Before he hit the wall this year, Jackson was shooting a higher percentage, rebounding more, and getting to the line with regularity. He had a career year. He averaged 20 points for the first time in his career. He averaged four assists for just the second time in his career (both coming with the Warriors). He shot his best percentage from 3-point range ever. He averaged 39 minutes, five more than last season. His previous career high was 36.8. So Jackson certainly had a big year.

Much like the 06-07 Barnes many of the NBA experts attrribute Jacksons rise in scoring to his role in Nellieball otherwhise if he was still playing with the Indiana Pacers his scoring certainly wouldn't be like it was the first half of the season. On the contrary in my eyes because the Warriors offense relies a lot on non PG ball handling something which Jackson is really suited to. Also, compared to Baron’s contract and Monta’s soon-to-be contract, Jackson is a downright deal for a 20 point a night scorer.

Perhaps his weaknesses were his frequent inability of decent decision making hard to defend but I will say that when a game really does depend on scoring points asap, Jackson tends to be good about taking the ball to the hole and looking to get fouled rather than pulling up for a quick three. Because of all the playing time accumulated under Nelson he didn't get back on defense as quick as he did last season and certainly in the months of March April where S-Jax is found willing he dissapeared most notably the Spurs, Dallas or denver games. He wasn’t the stopper he proved to be a year ago, and he didn’t make it to the defensive end way too many times. That is mostly due to the amount of minutes he played. Yet he made huge strides in controlling his temper. He wasn’t the stopper he proved to be a year ago, and he didn’t make it to the defensive end way too many times. That is mostly due to the amount of minutes he played yet he is crafty and his game has almost no reliance on athleticism. It’s a combination that should allow him to continue to improve long after most NBA players have peaked.

Jax- I hope you're reading this man. I just have one simple request. I can live with the turnovers. I can live with the sparse rebounding totals. I can live with all those 3pt attempts. I can even live a few of those techs. BUT I can't live without that frisk intro with you and Matt Barnes during player introductions. Forget what David Stern might say or think, you gotta bring it back!


If you don't get pumped up everytime you watch the Warrior intros from last season's amazing run, then you need to run to the ER and get your pulse checked- seriously.)

Overall Grade B+

Irish Warriors 2007-2008 report cards

Chris Mullin C+

Kelenna Azubuike C-

Matt Barnes D-

Andris Biedrins A-

Marco Bellinelli D+

Austin Croshere C-

Baron Davis B-

Monta Ellis A+

Al Harrington C-

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