Daniel Hackett – Key player analysis before EFES-CSKA
Daniel Lorenzo Hackett
Hackett has been in EL nearly for a decade and he knows his ways around the loopholes in the game. Especially in the Final 4 environment he will use experience and will be a major weapon for Coach Itoudis in order to control the game tempo wise.
When I looked at CSKA’s lineups I saw that their most efficient lineup for 2021 were (Lundberg,Strelnieks,Clyburn,Shengelia,Voigtman) that lineup were +16 while playing a total of 28:45 minutes for CSKA. Strelnieks is there to knock down behind the line or to initiate a PnR action when things get stuck. Sometimes he is replaced by Ukhov who likes to move without the ball more often and knocking down 3 pointers after catch&shoot action. CSKA knows Efes seems like prime GSW when they have the opportunity to run. That’s why I think that Coach Itoudis would try to utilize Hackett as a brake system. He is clearly bigger than Efes’s guards and would try to use his advantage by playing through much contact both on defensive & offensive end. This season he’s been shooting great from behind the line as he showed at previous series versus Fenerbahce Beko. Efes also have to conserve Larkin on the defensive end. Itoudis will start his Larkin defense on the offensive end by initiating contact which will make his legs lose condition and explosiveness which he relies on so much. It would be not ideal to sub-out Larkin if CSKA works him out, he has to stay in the game if you lose him mentally he will be gone for a long time.
Hackett Post ups:
He likes to play at left hand side, bringin help defense is not ideal since Itoudis will place shooters within his passing vision and Hackett would convert those easily thanks to his size&skill and experience. He likes to use a dummy dream shake when he enters the paint and prefers to turn over his left shoulder after initiating a contact with his shoulder then finishes with his right hand. You would expect him to go for a left baby hook yet it’s not his style. Yet if he makes a full spin move he would go for a left handed finish at that moment Efes’s big men should come for help since Hackett won’t be able to see the rest of the court, whole spin move and his position afterwards gives Efes a chance to bring help. My solution: make him turn over his right shoulder this would put himself in a much more difficult position to convert a pass and gives defence a chance to bring help.
3 point shooting:
There is no doubt that he improved himself behind the arc and 50% is beyond anyone’s wildest dreams yet he has one downside which is he shoots much better when he takes one dribble to his right. Actually he never pull-ups while dribbling towards his left which means Efes’s guards can attach themselves to his right hip and follow him towards the basket where Efes’s center would handle the rest of it.
Hackett PnR Defending:
He’s mobile, has a great wingspan and positional knowledge and prefers to go over the screen while constantly making contact with the handler’s hip while CSKA’s big men like to stay attached to their roller. This action creates a gap around the foul line, Efes’s guard may take a little stepback towards their left then knockdown a jumper to keep in mind Hackett’s reach is extra he would contest those just enough to make them miss. My solution is to use roller as a blockage in front of CSKA’s rim protector since Hackett likes to follow from hip and his big man wouldn’t be able to prevent a lay-up.
There is no doubt that Efes likes tempo more than any team in this league and they are smooth with it yet Coach Itoudis may try to prevent tempo and damage Efes’s playmakers by using Hackett as a post up weapon on the offensive end while expecting him to follow Efes’s guards like a shadow at the same time being physical. I tried to break down a few crucial actions. Hackett is great and can impact the semi final. Thank you for your time