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View Full Version : The greatness of Elias depends not so much upon becoming a 3



ZagsGoZags
10-09-2011, 01:28 AM
IMHO, as passing off more. Harris, and Dower for that matter, can both create shots when guarded, often double teamed. That is a rare and great talent, but they are both their own worst enemy when they get the ball, because the opponents know what their predictable moves are. This allows double and even triple teaming with effectiveness.

The solution to that problem is for each guy to dish to others once in motion, frequently, in order to keep the other teams honest. Once either one of these guys cannot be successfully boxed in, they can work on their other moves and score more. Also the team will score more from the dishing off. Just my thought on the subject .... I will be eager this year to see if either one will be more focused on assists.

OK he is ranked 33, that's great. But just think where it could go for Harris if he looked more for the pass.

He could also make himself valuable for the NBA by intensifying skill sets for rebounding. He could watch, no make a sacred calling of watching, Dennis Rodman rebounding videos. Rodman was one of the all time great NBA rebounders and it wasn't because Jordan and Pippen missed so many. Elias Harris and Rodman have about the same height and weight. Harris is quick too. The difference is rebounding savvy and skill sets.

awberke
10-09-2011, 08:48 AM
I think his defense could improve also, at least his 3-pt defense. There were so many times last year that teams shot the corner three with him coming in after the shot goes up.

You know what, that was the whole team, we were one of the worst 3-pt defending teams (#297 kenpom) in the country.

Edit: We were also one of the best 2-pt defending teams (#11 kenpom). I guess its a balance.

LAZAGFAN11
10-09-2011, 08:55 AM
It's not so much our concerns of Elias at the offensive end, but rather, his inability to guard at the 3 position. He is simply too slow to guard other 3's and gets beat off the dribble consistently. Few will not change up what has worked for Elias and the team the past 2 seasons.

Elias will play at the 4 this year.

roxdoc
10-09-2011, 11:40 AM
+1

MDABE80
10-09-2011, 11:43 AM
Not sure he's too slow to guard with his new 25 lb weight loss. Looks decently quick to me. Later movement could use some help though....he needs to stop "stutter stepping" and take full more a a full lateral stride in selected occasions. He can learn to play defense....he's got the tools. He needs to practice it.

JPtheBeasta
10-09-2011, 12:15 PM
Offense comes so naturally for him that it is easy to assume he should be a great defensive player. He is too athletically gifted to be as bad as he is on the defensive end if he wants to be an all around payer (he's not horrible, just could be a very good defensive player). I think defense is more cerebral than people give it credit for. Harris tends to be slow on rotations and not really anticipate well on that end. I hope he makes a leap in his understanding on defense this year.

BobZag
10-09-2011, 04:46 PM
Good health is the key.

izzjess
10-09-2011, 05:11 PM
He will not play the 3...there are far to many people for the 3 spot to play him there....Guy,morningoff,kieta,drangenis,saraba, sorry for the spelling...even if we red shirt two of them thats still leaves 3 players sitting if we play harris at the 3....

DCZag
10-09-2011, 05:17 PM
I truly don't care how you label where he plays - if E is healthy and playing his game, we'll be successful and he'll get his shot at the next level.

Ekrub
10-09-2011, 06:03 PM
He will not play the 3...there are far to many people for the 3 spot to play him there....Guy,morningoff,kieta,drangenis,saraba, sorry for the spelling...even if we red shirt two of them thats still leaves 3 players sitting if we play harris at the 3....

Huh?Just because we have other options doesn't mean that Elias won't be the best option at the three.

webspinnre
10-09-2011, 06:41 PM
Sometimes he'll play the 3, sometimes the 4. Our lineups will be fluid, depending on whether we need more size, or more handling.

kylasdad
10-09-2011, 08:54 PM
I think he will play the 3.5

Therunner
10-09-2011, 09:10 PM
When Elias played the 3 last season, it hurt his performance along with our team. He couldn't hit double-digit scoring or rebounding until he moved back to his original position at PF.

Seriously, the moment he switched back to the 4, we started playing better and so did Harris. That is enough evidence for me where he should play next season and beyond. I love the hypothetical lineups and perfect Zag world of Elias, Dower, & Sacre on the floor together, but its not meant to be, imo. Elias does not have the natural or savvy ball-handling skills of a SF/Wing type player -- ever notice he stares down at the ball when dribbling in transition? IF he plays this position in the NBA, he'll be a garbage-man or change-of-pace type player where he's utilized for cleaning up rebounds, a gunner in transition, play above the rim on both sides of the court, and occasionally asked to hit the open shot. He's not implementing a cross-over anytime soon.

I, for one, could care less about Elias' "projected" NBA position, but rather how he plays and performs during his time at Gonzaga. The rest will take care of itself...

OZZY
10-09-2011, 10:29 PM
When Elias played the 3 at the beginning of the last year he was overweight and still nursing an injury. He is in far better shape and quicker now. Elias at the three would allow a better front court rotation giving KO and Dower (and perhaps Spangler) more time. IMO our front line is our biggest strength. and if Elias can play defence at the three then we kick some serious butt.

bullzag23
10-10-2011, 07:18 AM
I think his defense could improve also, at least his 3-pt defense. There were so many times last year that teams shot the corner three with him coming in after the shot goes up.

You know what, that was the whole team, we were one of the worst 3-pt defending teams (#297 kenpom) in the country.

Edit: We were also one of the best 2-pt defending teams (#11 kenpom). I guess its a balance.

3 Point D has been an issue for us for most of the past decade

titopoet
10-10-2011, 08:01 AM
Good health is the key.

+1 for Bob-bing for truth

BULLDOG#1
10-10-2011, 08:47 AM
call him whatever you want, but in most situations he will essentially be the 4. If Rob is playing up front with E and:

KO is the other forward: E is on the block.
MM is the other forward: E is on the block.
MK is the other forward: E is on the block.
Carter (3 guard) is the other forward: E is on the block.
Bell (3 guard) on the other forward: E is on the block.
Hart is the other forward: E is on the block.

OR

Dower is the other forward: E will play on the wing.
Spangler is the other forward: E will play on the wing.

Playing Dower (or Spangler) with E and Rob will be situational and shouldn't happen a lot. Any team with good perimiter players would kill that lineup. We could offset that by scoring a lot of points in the paint on the other end, but it seems to me we're going to do that anyway...

I'd be proven wrong if E has improved like people have indicated, or if Dower can really operate away from the bucket. It all remains to be seen. I still think Harris is way more effective as a 4 who is faster than other 4's than he would be a slower, although bigger 3.

If he's playing to get into the NBA, right now he's a lot closer to an NBA 4 than an NBA 3. That is to say that TODAY he'd have an easier time guarding Amare than Melo, or Bosh than LBJ, or Gasol than Kobe... While I agree that if he's going to make it in the NBA, his place is probably the 3, it just seems like he's a long way from that right now. His strength and athletisism would make up for height more than his height would make up for his lack of NBA quickness and sub-NBA-par perimeter skills.

For him to make the NBA, he's going to have to either get a little bigger and rebound like a monster, or he's going to have to gain more perimeter skills and improve his quickness... But his best place for this particular zag team is as a 4.

gamagin
10-10-2011, 09:35 AM
Not sure he's too slow to guard with his new 25 lb weight loss. Looks decently quick to me. Later movement could use some help though....he needs to stop "stutter stepping" and take full more a a full lateral stride in selected occasions. He can learn to play defense....he's got the tools. He needs to practice it.

You got a link ?

As far as I'm concerned, this weight canard is made up of thin air and, yet, with each retelling, seems to be expanding (pun intended).

I have looked and asked, but so far, not one single coach or person who really knows can corroborate that EH turned in to Fat Albert somehow about this time last year.

The history of all this was a post that stated EH was overweight, having bulked up during rehabilitation. The declaration appeared then and now to be made out of whole cloth. Or else I missed the post that said the trainer, or a coach, or even EH or a teammate, said EH's latest problem was too much weight.

Hondo and I, who know a little about fat and what it looks & feels like, stood within a few feet of EH about the same time last year and looked him over. We saw clearly that EH had only one chin, no puffy face or neck fat, normal breasts, etc., and did not appear to be above a lean 10-15% body fat.

Whether 3-5 pounds would make him quicker or better can always be debated. He may even have been out of shape. The kind of shape that workouts and drills bring on, not necessarily calories. He looks to me like a fellow who needs to remind himself to eat, fwiw.

I think this overweight myth came from deep in the shallow recesses of this board and someone's mind. Summers seem to be breeding grounds for such nonsense.

What did seem to have legs, and made sense way back then, which I remember reading, were the matters of his dealing with nagging injuries and perhaps needing to concentrate more on getting healthy and his fundamentals instead of playing overseas.

That makes sense last year and even again, this year, imo. We'll soon see whether EH has improved his overall game as he clearly needed to do. I don't think weight had anything to do with it.

The too-much-buttered-popcorn theory, however, seems to persist & could really use some proof to move it from fiction to fact. For the legend has now grown to 25 pounds, seemingly without an ounce of proof in the first place.

ZagNative
10-10-2011, 10:13 AM
25 lbs may be overstating it, but Elias sure looks to me like he's trimmed up a ton.

Photo from last year:

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-xfy-8eMVXL4/TpM0tMRz7OI/AAAAAAABSXk/H9-oRdO5d-U/s512/2011-10-07%252520Elias%252520Harris%252520Rivals.jpg

Screen shot from his recent video:

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-kJAhjb-s0UE/TpM0teaEVII/AAAAAAABSXo/ptlYpHYvm-Q/s465/2011-10-06%252520Elias%252520Harris.jpg

Could be just different angles, but he's sure looking considerably leaner to me.

Pure
10-10-2011, 10:34 AM
I think we get to hung up on a position / Number.

Elias looks cut to me. I am not hung up on the position , I am excited about how in shape he looks, and his abilities.

The Only number I care about at the end of the season is Wins.

If he remains Injury free , it will be exciting to watch him light it up from wherever he is on the court.

MDABE80
10-10-2011, 10:52 AM
Well I've been around him since he's been here. Socially last year I spent some time and he's was doughy and large. I'd say an easy 20 lbs over. Being what I am, I know a little bit about overweight people as well.

This past Summer, most of the bulk had vanished. I don't need a link...I am the link. I've been watching fatties for over 30 years...up close and personal.

sharpzag
10-10-2011, 11:11 AM
From a good souce: Elias is in GREAT shape right now (and he wasn't last year).

cjm720
10-10-2011, 11:18 AM
Regardless of injury, weight, or shape the fact that he's been on campus all summer will pay big dividends.

JPtheBeasta
10-10-2011, 11:35 AM
From a good souce: Elias is in GREAT shape right now (and he wasn't last year).

Didn't Donnie D also say as much in that youtube video? Which also implies that he wasn't last year. Great shape can also mean great conditioning- even if he lost only a few lbs (or none at all) his cardiovascular and springs/motor could be in "great shape." Either way, I'm just hoping we have the E that finished the season and not the one who started it.

gamagin
10-10-2011, 12:15 PM
Didn't Donnie D also say as much in that youtube video? Which also implies that he wasn't last year. Great shape can also mean great conditioning- even if he lost only a few lbs (or none at all) his cardiovascular and springs/motor could be in "great shape." Either way, I'm just hoping we have the E that finished the season and not the one who started it.

exactly. I'm more concerned that his confidence is back for good; that he has some new moves; has improved his court vision and ball handling; and will be a tiger on defense &/or on the boards.

MickMick
10-10-2011, 03:32 PM
His best chance at becoming a pro is by implementing the exact vision that Mark Few has for him. Few, more than anybody, knows his strengths and limitations. Learning what it takes to be at the top of your game. Taking advantage of all that the staff has to offer including support for conditioning, diet, lifestyle, and academics. The cumulative effect of many small things that give you an edge.

Elias has to completely dedicate himself this season if he has any hope of playing at the next level.

JPtheBeasta
10-10-2011, 04:40 PM
exactly. I'm more concerned that his confidence is back for good; that he has some new moves; has improved his court vision and ball handling; and will be a tiger on defense &/or on the boards.

His confidence did seem lacking early on. A few mentions were made of it around here, but not a lot. The killer instinct or the eye of the tiger or whatever you want to call it early on would have probably resulted in a much better OOC record last year (and expectations on him seemed to fuel the Final Four talk early on, too, IMO). I guess we will never know if it was playing out of position, injuries, weight, or international play that did it, but my money is on the injuries and subsequent lack of explosiveness and confidence.

Baldwinzag
10-10-2011, 08:05 PM
I wonder if we realize E practiced in less than 5 practices before the 2010 season began -- most get 25-30 practices -- and didn't practice more than once per week until Xmas break. He was pretty much on a "games only" regime during OOC. His shoulder was nagging him and his achilles was constantly sore until half-way through WCC play...

I'm not sure if it was the 3 months he spent in Germany last summer or what, but a fellow peer & player said his diet was terrible and notorious for "the worst on the team".

The only difference he made was staying in Spokane for the Summer to actually work-out(never had a chance in Germany) and dramatic changes to his daily nutrition. In certain instances it can make a world of difference. I don't think he lost much 'weight' to be honest, but is just in better shape and healthier overall.

He'll tell you himself the key was changing his diet. The off-season rehab probably didn't hurt either...

ZagsGoZags
10-13-2011, 12:47 AM
Does anyone agree with this, or is something else the Crucial, Limiting Factor in Harris taking a BIG step up to the next level; the NBA level?

cjm720
10-13-2011, 08:10 AM
Does anyone agree with this, or is something else the Crucial, Limiting Factor in Harris taking a BIG step up to the next level; the NBA level?

Better defense and the ability to beat his man (not a traditional college 4, but more a pure wing) off the dribble, would help him out.

MickMick
10-13-2011, 10:19 AM
Does anyone agree with this, or is something else the Crucial, Limiting Factor in Harris taking a BIG step up to the next level; the NBA level?


I'll quote what I wrote in another thread:



The Zags sorely missed Matt Bouldin and no one missd Matt more than Harris did.

I believe this to have as much influence on his sophomore production as any other suggested factor.