I’m going to start this post with some information. Every week, editors of the FanSided NBA sites are required to submit their plans for the week to Andrew Kennedy, editor of Thunderous Intentions and FanSided NBA. I don’t generally do game-by-game previews and recaps, so I try to come up with post ideas that can sustain the site throughout the week. Admittedly, many of my post ideas never come to fruition. But I had one in mind for today, which I titled “post on Jodie Meeks“.
That post was intended to say that Meeks needed to finally be pulled from the starting lineup. I sent the email to Andrew a few hours before game time, before I knew Evan Turner was slated to start. My reasons, however, were nothing to do with Turner – it was just Meeks wasn’t cutting it anymore.
Meeks’ 3-point shooting comes up just a tad bit short from last year – still 39% – but he’s giving even less in other categories. His PER stands at less than 11, a far below average player overall. That would be acceptable if he were shooting a higher percentage from three, but he’s not. In fact, his shooting from the corners makes him a liability there, at only 29% (according to StatsCube). Meeks has also struggled immensely on the defensive end of the floor, with all kinds of players.
However, I was going to not suggest Turner as the solution. I was going to suggest Lou Williams. Even with all the frustration that Lou brings to the table – the lapses in judgment, the ill-advised shots, the sometimes passive defense that would be worse than Jodie’s – he brings something that no one else would: mass scoring. Lou leads the team in scoring, in case you haven’t heard. The leading scorer in our previous starting five, Jrue Holiday, averages 13 per game. Not enough for a team that intends to compete for a title, in my opinion. The 16 per game that Lou Williams puts up isn’t elite, but it’s certainly an improvement. And while Lou is not a knock-down shooter, he would still leave the Sixers with three above average three-point shooting percentages on the perimeter. He’s also a much better corner three shooter than Meeks, at 44%.
The reason I proposed a Kevin Martin deal was for this same reason – Martin is an elite perimeter scorer, and this team probably needs one. However, Lou seemed to me to be the best in-house option, as he’s our best scorer. Turner’s performance on Monday led me to believe I was correct. Needless to say, tonight will certainly make me reconsider. If he can play consistently well (not this well, mind you, but well enough), then Doug Collins clearly made the correct decision.