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Enjoy the Undercarriage of a Bus, Orien

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I'm not one of these yahoos who will sit around and yell about how "NBA players don't respond to criticism! You've got to coddle them!" There's no generalization to be made about motivating people -- grown men, impressionable youths, little girls, prison inmates; if we knew a fool-proof cure for motivation, there'd be no such thing as FreeCell, blogs, or coffee breaks. We'd all be under the effects of some government gassing which forced us into a subconscience persistent productive state.

But Reggie Theus' print attack on Orien Greene seems entirely misplaced.

Coach Reggie Theus said he provided free-agent guard Orien Greene an opportunity to run the team, and it wasn't embraced.

"The real side of that was I gave him the ball, and I didn't think he embraced it," Theus said of Green, who started the first two games. "I didn't see that burning desire. I know if it was me, I'd have been slobbering at the mouth. I'd have been like a rabid dog, and I didn't see that."


I hesitate to call two six-minute stints to open games an opportunity. Even if you do, look at the first half of the only winnable game on the trip: The Kings outscored New Orleans 21-16 in nine first-half minutes with Greene was in the game, and were outscored 41-21 in 15 first-half minutes with Greene on the bench. Offense is a problem for this team, yes. Defense is a problem for this team, also. Is there any freaking question -- especially after The J.J. Barea Experience -- Greene isn't the best choice on defense for the point guard position? (82games.com says the defense is 20 points per 48 minutes better when Greene's on the floor.) And he's not killing the offense (he doesn't shoot when he shouldn't and hasn't turned it over much); it's clearly the front court which has dragged this down by failing to convert deep, failing to grab any offensive rebounds or hold onto the ball, and... just failing in general.

If you're going to start Francisco Garcia because he holds more value to the franchise and you think he gives you a better chance to outscore the Sonics, say that. Blaming a rabid PG (whose weakness is running an offense) for being patient and calm on offense, looking for the right play instead of the first play is ridiculous. We know Greene can play rabid defense. His concern is not making mistakes on offense. Do you really want your point guards to feel as if they need to be deranged on offense? Really?

This lack of logic and/or common sense does not bode well. I love Francisco and hope he keeps gunning away... but Theus hasn't given Greene a chance.