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Toot It or Boot It: Jrue Holiday

I wonder what everyone's going to vote!

The Jruth: You can't handle him.
The Jruth: You can't handle him.

TOOT IT. Done.

Oh, what's that? I have to actually explain why? Well, friends, it would be my pleasure because I just love talking about Jrue Holiday.

It's no secret that Jrue isn't going anywhere nor should he be. He's still a young talent (only 22 years old). He was rewarded with a reasonable contract. He took a step forward in the 2012-2013 season. He was an All-Star (Reserve) and could be again in the future. He dunked on LEAGUE MVP LEBRON JAMES. He LAWAD'd Kyrie Irving so hard that one night. And he's downright cute as a button. (Remember that time he was a Modell's employee?) What's not to love?

Jrue started the season hot and was on a tear prior to the All-Star Break. His perimeter defense was great. He was averaging 19 PPG with a 51.2% TS. Although Jrue's shooting numbers didn't take a huge leap forward, his passing improved dramatically. This season Holiday finished with an assist rate of 36.5% as compared to 21.6% in the previous season. Holiday didn't just initiate the offense, he was the offense.

And keep in mind those numbers are without having a reliable post presence (HELLO ANDREW BYNUM) to dish the basket to for high percentage shots. No, quite the opposite. The Sixers front court (aside from Thad Young) was just terrible. The addition of a competent big man could help Jrue evolve even more (from Jruetortle to Jruestoise).

It's not all sunshine and rainbows with the Sixers feature player though. Jrue really struggled as the season started to wind down. It's probably just because he's a sweetheart and understands the merits of tanking, but even so his slipping performance was a little concerning. There were logical reasons for his struggles however. It was clear that Holiday was not only exhausted from all the minutes he was playing, but also from the responsibility of solely initiating the Sixers offense at times. Jrue's end of season performance in low pressure, high garbage time basketball won't concern me much unless I see it carry over into a longer period of time. Hopefully that's not the case.

Jrue definitely has weaknesses that need work: namely drawing contact and getting to the free throw line. The Doug Collins Offense(TM) notoriously featured an over-reliance on the long 2 shot. In effect, it discouraged players from attacking the rim in fear of turning the ball over. Perhaps in a new system that emphasizes attacking the basket, Jrue could increase his FT numbers. Some like to say Jrue is contact-averse, and I can understand why that's said at times. He's surely not a master of drawing contact. Hopefully he can find a way to improve that.

All said, Jrue, by himself, isn't the difference between this Sixers team contending or not. He is, however, a valuable core member of such a hypothetical contending team. He was supposed to be the Robin to Andrew Bynum's Batman, but as we all know that didn't work out because Batman grew his hair out weird.

I just don't see a realistic situation where it makes sense to "Boot It". Jrue is too valuable for the Sixers to get rid of and it doesn't make sense to trade him unless it helps land a bigger star.

Plus we just decided to keep his brother Justin Holiday so if we booted Jrue the awkward tension would be unbearable.

He'd probably make a face like:


So there it is. Toot It for Jrue.


Previous Toots: Dorell Wright, Thaddeus Young, Evan Turner, Andrew Bynum, Jason Richardson, Justin Holiday

Previous Boots: Nick Young, Royal Ivey, Lavoy Allen, Damien Wilkins, Kwame Brown, Spencer Hawes

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