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5 Things Golden State Warriors Need Marreese Speights to Improve in 2014-15

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5 Things Golden State Warriors Need Marreese Speights to Improve in 2014-15

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Golden State Warriors big man Marreese Speights provided valuable depth for the Dubs last year in a depleted frontcourt. This season, Speights will be leaned on even more, as Andrew Bogut and Jermaine O’Neal are both older and have long injury histories. To provide ample frontcourt support, here are five things Speights needs to improve.

5. Cut Down on the Fouls

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5. Cut Down on the Fouls

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Per 36 minutes, Speights averaged 5.4 fouls last season, meaning if he had played starter's minutes he would have fouled out every game. Speights has had issues with keeping his fouls in check throughout his career, but to be a valuable third big man, needs to quit giving up so many free trips to the charity stripe.

4. Be a Rim-Protecting Threat

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4. Be a Rim-Protecting Threat

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Because he is a jump-shooting big who spends so much time out of the paint, Speights has never amassed the block numbers of most big men. However, with Bogut a constant injury concern and O’Neal’s age, Speights needs to show his versatility to protect the rim in case he is tasked with such a job.

3. Get to the Line

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3. Get to the Line

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Because Speights relies so heavily on his jump shot, he is not feared as a post presence to draw fouls. Speights needs to improve his ability to draw fouls to open up spacing for the Warriors’ offense beyond the arc and to add more dimension to the bench’s offense.

2. Improve Inside-Out Passing

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2. Improve Inside-Out Passing

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Coach Steve Kerr has specifically expressed his desire to increase the Warriors’ ball movement on offense, and Speights’ inability to pass is a detriment to the bench’s offense. If Speights improves his ability to pass out of the post, the bench’s offense can run much more smoothly and within Kerr’s vision.

1. Quit Shooting Long Twos

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1. Quit Shooting Long Twos

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Speights’ biggest issue is his tendency to shoot long twos, the least efficient shots in basketball. Instead, Speights either needs to expand his range to beyond the arc or focus more on getting into the paint and post play. Either strategy would greatly benefit the Warriors’ offense and increase its efficiency, as Speights often ends possessions with poor shot attempts late in the shot clock.

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