Royal Ivey seen from Bucks fans
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on August 4, 2008
Ok, given that Lou Williams will sign a 5 year-25 million deal soon, and given that Kareem Rush has already had his breakdown (see the previous post), how about hearing Brew Hoop’s thoughts about Royal Ivey?
I did another Q&A session with the guys from the finest Bucks blog, and here are Frank’s answers:
S4G: do you think you will miss Royal Ivey?
Frank: “There are worse options for a third-string point guard off the bench than Ivey, but Bucks fans should be very pleased to have Tyronn Lue replacing him in 08/09. Last season the Bucks were forced to play Ivey like a primary backup (a career-high 19.1 mpg in 75 games) and that was definitely not a good thing. All told, I’m not surprised that the Bucks didn’t make more of an effort to bring him back”
Which are his best skills, that you think Sixers fans will appreciate?
Ivey’s short on skills but long on work rate and gumption. He’s a good bet to lead the Sixers in dives for loose balls, plus he at least provides some versatility in that he can play both guard positions (I’d say he’s about equally inept at both). He’ll hit open mid-range shots and was vaguely passable from beyond the arc last year as well (.327).
On defense he works hard but with only limited success. He’ll also try to draw offensive fouls against screeners with this really dramatic flopping move, where he stops his upper body at the slightest contact, throws his arms up, and then lets his legs keep going so that he goes down in a heap on his back. It’s occasionally successful but always amusing.
By all accounts he’s a very good guy off the court. Ramon Sessions in particular has talked about Ivey being the guy who really tried to help him adjust to the NBA and taught him some tricks of the point guard trade. I hope Sessions didn’t learn *too much* from Royal, but as a Bucks fan I certainly appreciate his unselfishness.
Lastly, his name is pronounced “Roy-YALL” (as in “Royale with Cheese”), which I definitely would consider a strength.
Which are his weaknesses, that we’ll see exposed?
Anything skill-related tends to be a weakness for Ivey. He can’t create shots for himself or others, and he’s an extremely poor finisher around the hoop. When he does make a few shots he seems to inevitably get the mistaken impression that he can drive to the hoop, which usually leads to his shot getting packed into oblivion.
The most surprising thing about his play last year was how ineffective he was defensively–especially given that defense had always been his one supposed strength. Superficially, Ivey looks like a good defender because he’s always in a nice defensive stance, he works hard, and he’ll often pressure ballhandlers as they bring it up. But that aggressivness also meant that he was constantly burned by guys getting into the lane and he fouled at a very high rate as well. Overall, his opponent stats last year were downright ugly against both guard positions. Combine that with his poor offensive abilities and it’s tough to justify the playing time he got.
You see him doing well in Philly, giving the team and the role he will be asket to play, or struggling and getting booed around December?
Ivey’s not a bad pickup if the intention is to play him only spot minutes. He’ll also be a hard-working practice player who won’t mind helping out a youngster like Lou Williams. Overall, it’s tough to boo a guy like Ivey who gives it his all every night, but if you see him for extended stretches you might want to consider booing Mo Cheeks for leaving him on the court too much.
Also, Ivey will miss the first couple games of 08/09 because of this.
Thank you Frank for taking the time to reply to my questions. I consider Brew Hoop a great blog and its crew (Alex + Frank) really knowledgeable, so I think its views on the new Sixer should be considered seriously.
(On a side note, I would like to welcome Greg’s “View from the bottom” on my blogroll, it’s a nice site about Philly sports, with wider coverage about Phillies and Eagles. Good job Greg !)