Too many minutes?
Some believe the KU players are playing too many minutes. The players think they are ready for the NBA. Here’s a look thru an NBA players eyes for perspective.
“It’s great to have bodies,” James said. “Obviously, in the playoffs, you go down to what, eight max? And if somebody gets in foul trouble, you go to nine. You’re not playing back-to-backs. You have two days in between. You’re able to lock in.”
He contrasted that to the Cavs’ schedule this week, which includes five games from Monday to Monday: at New Orleans, home against Sacramento on Wednesday, home against Brooklyn on Friday, home against Oklahoma City on Sunday and on the road in Dallas on Monday.
LeBron is convinced that 2 days off is enough to be fully rested. KU’s most intense stretch of the season has 3 games in 6 days. Fully rested by NBA standards.
This is why the NBA players/coaches take/give games/possessions off during the season, but when they get all kinds of rest in the playoffs, 2 whole days between games, they play 100%. KU will always have at least 2 days off between games. No reason to play tired barring injury or sickness.
One thing that you have to take into account is the amount of time that NBA players can spend on preparation versus college athletes. Lebron doesn’t have to go to class, and has lots of money to spend on things like a personal trainer, chef, etc. to make sure his body is in top condition. He’s not sitting in a classroom half the day.
Add to that the fact that he is fully mature from a physical and athletic standpoint. Remember, these college guys aren’t nearly as strong or well conditioned as they will be when they reach the NBA.
That’s part of what makes the NBA a job. It is your job to take care of your body in a way that allows you to recover. That’s why these guys hire massage therapists and personal trainers, chefs, use all of the latest recovery therapies, etc. That’s their job, so it’s worth spending the money to do that.
I would say fully rested by college standards is two and a half days off. That’s why you see guys sometimes wear down during the tournament. They aren’t used to having to come back and play that second day. It’s also why guys hit the “rookie wall” where they just run out of gas because they aren’t used to playing so many games, and the conditioning it takes to get there.
@dylans I get fairly frustrated with the “not enough rest” excuse that is frequently tossed around for college athletes. Do you remember when you were 18, 19, 20 years old? You can’t wear 'em out. I wasn’t a college athlete, but I was athletic and played a lot of sports. We would frequently play basketball 3 on 3 (outdoors in Houston’s 97% humid summertime) for HOURS, then go fishing in the summer heat, go bar hopping until 2 am and start all over again the next day. Fresh. You can’t wear out teenagers. It’s a weak excuse.
@justanotherfan Recovery time is less the younger you are. I remember being dog tired leaving basketball practice and feeling fairly decent an hour later in HS. But playing a rec league game now would leave me sore for days…
These players are in the sweet spot between those ages. There is recovery time, but it’s not as great as it is for us more mature people. And by mature I mean over 35. That’s ancient by sports standards.
@nuleafjhawk My HS team was short handed (and not very good, ok we were terrible). I played 3 regulation games as part of a tournament in one day. The first two games were back to back. I played every minute of the first too games and sat out 3 minutes of the second game when my legs cramped up to where I couldn’t move them. Got some fluids, stretched and went back in (ala Graham).
I never played at a high level, but I was giving it my all.
@dylans Exactly! I don’t know who came up with that “not enough rest” excuse - whether it was the middle aged to old coaches, the middle aged to old announcers or the middle aged to old fans. It wasn’t the young people. Every one of them would play every minute of every game - and like you say, they could go two or three games consecutively if they needed to.
@nuleafjhawk Yes, I love these when I was a kid discussions! I worked my way through college as a masonry laborer. I worked my tail off all day, stocking scaffold, making mortar, hoisting buckets of mortar up levels of scaffold, getting the bricks up there, etc. I’d get home from work and grab a little dinner then off to the park to play ball for a couple of hours! Like you, I was no athlete, but I played a ton of ball whenever I could which also explains my poor grades whilst at KU!
Many of us played a lot of ball in our youth.
But there is a big difference between the intensity we played at and the intensity level in D1. I have no doubt that our guys need a couple of days just to be partially rested.
Think back to your glory days… Was that a D1 full court you played on, or a 3/4 court? Just that one factor makes a big difference. And were you running back and forth and getting on either end of the court in 3 seconds?
I tend to agree with @justanotherfan . “Well rested” gets exposed at the intensity level these guys play at.
And it must be exhausting just because of the nerves… knowing hundreds of thousands of people are watching on tv and in the arena.
@drgnslayr I respectfully disagree, for example: I don’t think Vince Young was more intense than anyone else, but he effortlessly ran like a gazelle leaving all in his dust.
Talent and effort don’t directly correlate. Nor do output and effort. It’s a combination of talent and effort that relate to the output, but not recovery time. Recovery time is driven by age, diet, and specific individual genetic traits. IMHO
Texas Hawk 10
@drgnslayr There is little difference in the intensity from college to NBA to the over 40 rec leagues. The difference is talent, ability, and fitness between those levels.
You guys think the intensity level of rec ball equals the intensity of D1?
I found out the hard way when I jumped up to euro league play over a lower level of play.
The game moves much faster at D1. Not even close. First… just playing with guys that run so much faster makes it a big stress to keep up.
There was a guy I know that used to officiate pro basketball. He was officiating a game in one of the non-NBA pro leagues that had Korleone Young (Wichita East star in the 90s) playing in it. Young was only a year or two out of HS.
During a break, the guy caught up to Young and asked how it was going. Young remarked “these blankety blanks play hard every blanking trip every blanking night!”
There’s a difference in intensity, and it is enormous. Sit close at an NBA game sometime and see how hard those guys are working on defense. Count how many steps it takes for them to cover court space, then see how hard you have to work to cover half that much space.
And that difference doesn’t even include the differences in talent, ability and fitness that you point to in your comment.
Texas Hawk 10
@justanotherfan You did not describe a difference in intensity, you just described a difference in talent. An average player in the Wichita city league guarding a future pro is not going to appear to be playing as hard as a pro because of the talent difference.
If you or I tried guarding Josh Jackson and then LeBron James tries guarding him, it’s going to appear James is playing harder every possession because of the talent difference.
@justanotherfan speaking of young, I saw him play in some summer ball, such a huge disappointment! He could have been so good.