Sunday, April 20, 2008

Actually, it is on T-Mac

Down double-digits late in the 4th, it seems obvious to everyone except perhaps T-Mac. The man should have the ball in his hands. The fact that it wasn't or rarely was is nobody's fault but Mcgrady's. This game, this series, the playoff losses, all of it being "on him" is perhaps not a fair characterization, let's give him that. But, as far as it is a team effort and everyone has to contribute to win, Tracy McGrady did not make his contribution.

It's not about how much better McGrady's numbers are supposed to be in the playoffs than the regular season (they certainly were not last night) and it's not about how many of his teams have been seeded 1 through 4 in the post-season and thus favored to win. Both points were made repeatedly in the ESPN broadcast as part of what appeared to be an "it's not T-Mac's fault" campaign. It's about every player making their contributions and everyone did except McGrady. He did a lot of good things, but he didn't do the only thing he needed to, which was control the game in the 4th and lead his team. It's not disappointing that McGrady didn't make any shots in the 4th, it's that he didn't take any (only 3 FGs). In fact, he rarely touched the ball.

At times he looked like he didn't want it. As much as the Jazz were more physical on both sides of the ball and executed better on offense, the Rockets still had a chance to win this game. Yes, it is a team effort. Everyone has to make their contributions. T-Mac, his teammates, his coaching staff, have all made a point of stating that in defense of McGrady's 0-6 playoff record. But it was McGrady who didn't hold up his part of the bargain this game. He'll get another chance Monday night.

Originally posted at Yao Central on April 20, 2008 12:36 PM

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