By: Sam Meyerkopf / @HoopLikeDrazen
Monday evening the Golden State Warriors were nice enough to play a home game vs. the Toronto Raptors and noted Lithuanian, Jonas Valanciunas. It was an offensively driven game that the Warriors took home 125-118. Below are some notes of things I noticed about Valanciunas during the game and then there is a interview video I had with that same European center after the game.
– How different, truly different Andrea Bargnani and Valanciunas are. Bargnani hit five three’s in the game was all over the floor looking for his offense and showing real effort when he could get the ball. Everything Valanciunas did was off the ball and rarely involved scoring but more hustle and rebounding. Different worlds but possibly a combination that could play more together. They both started.
– Bogut was real tough match-up for Valanciunas. He’s so much stronger than Jonas and stuffed him twice in the opening minutes. Without a refined post game, Valanciunas is going to have a real tough time just banging and trying to get energy buckets against strong bigs like Bogut.
– Valanciunas picked up an offensive foul and then a defensive one, and then is benched with five minutes left in the first half. Since they didn’t play him at all in the fourth and foul trouble really doesn’t matter if that’s the case, it seemed odd to sub him out then, only a few minutes into his second time on the court.
– It seems Kyle Lowry and Valanciunas will make a good pick and roll team but still need time to develop chemistry on it.
– Valanciunas did a good job all game of staying open on offense but he only got a few touches and almost none in a post up situation.
– He had a pretty awful shooting night going one for seven from the field but it more seemed he was uncomfortable trying to score. Blocked, missed jumpers he hesitated on, and little half hooks with no touch. Not having one go-to move in the post is really hurting his offensive confidence, especially since he’s not being utilized on the pick and rolls much.
– Final Stat Line: 16 minutes | 3 Points (1-7 FG’s) | 5 Rebounds (2 off.) | 4 Fouls