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On Jason Maxiell’s defensive improvement

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MLive's A. Sherrod Blakely: "Look at Jason Maxiell. Maxiell blocked a lot of shots as a rookie, but other than that, he struggled defensively just about every time he got into the game. This season, he's learned how to be a decent positional defender." Umm ... Maxiell blocked five shots in 26 games as a rookie.

I respect Blakely's opinion, but I'm not sure what he's remembering. For context, he cites Maxiell's struggles as an example of how Amir Johnson will need to improve his defense before he can contribute next year, despite the awesome numbers he's putting up in the D-League right now. If anything, though, what I think Maxiell's situation really proves is that he just needed to play before he could really start to improve.