David Thorpe on Brewer's progress...Brewer on why he's improved...Gomes on how personal life effects one's game...
Jonah Ballow: Specifically, what has changed about Corey Brewer's jump shot?
David Thorpe: Well, I don't really remember a lot of what it looked like before. I hadn't really watched it a ton before, prior to coming to our gym, I just remember thinking it was pretty broken when he got there. But I would say probably more than anything else was his selection. I'm a big believer in the fact that it really doesn't matter what kind of mechanics you have, bad shots and getting poor opportunities to take shots tend to miss. No matter how good of a shooter you are. One reason that the best shooters tend to miss more shots than they maybe should is that they just take bad shots, and I thought Corey in November was taking a ton of forced threes. Almost like forcing himself to be that player that he wasn't ready for yet. We talked a lot in December about slowing down, not taking as many threes, learn and read the game in other ways, and get more involved in the triangle offense as a passer, as a cutter, looking for the ball more. I told him that a three-point shot would come at the right time. And on the second part, the mechanical side, Corey was--and sometimes still does--he gets his head and shoulders far in front of his feet when he's going to shoot, because he's trying to stay low...
On why he has improved: "My shot started falling this year. It's a lot of hard work in the offseason. And it's a lot of changes. We have a new coach."
On whether there is room for even more improvement: "Yeah. I feel I have a lot of room for improvement. I proved to myself that I can play on this level. Confidence has a lot to do with basketball. If you feel good, your whole level changes. When I started making shots, I felt like, 'Man, they're going in. I can play at this level.' "
In a span of about 27 hours Friday and Saturday, Wade flexed that gift twice. First he scored 43 points at Indiana, then backed that up with 39 in Minneapolis, taking over both games when the Heat needed that. Not a bad start to April, on the heels of being named Player of the Month in the East for March. Sandwiched in there at the end of the week were dueling news accounts, the first on Wade's petition seeking sole custody, followed by Siohvaughn's response (the couple has been separated since August 2007).
"It has to effect you a little bit as a player and enter into your mental [state]," Timberwolves forward Ryan Gomes said prior to Saturday's game, before Wade's play argued otherwise. "Even though this is our job and this is what we love to do, it's kind of hard to just put it aside when you have things going on with your family or your relationships. You say, 'Go ahead and just focus on your work.' But I think it does take a toll. Just sitting here, you can be thinking about the game but your mind always veers off into different subjects, especially if it's something negative going on."