Ths Ship Be Sinkin’

Mar 6 vs Seattle L 99-100 Marbury 40/Richardson 9/Richardson 5
Mar 10 at Washington W 90-89 Francis 26/Curry 9/Marbury 5
Mar 14 at Toronto L 94-104 Marbury 31/Curry 6/Marbury 9
Mar 16 vs New Orl/OKC L 90-92 Francis 21/Frye 7/Francis 10
Mar 18 vs Toronto W 92-74 Marbury 21/Balkman 12/Marbury 9
Mar 20 vs Dallas L 77-92 Curry 22/Curry 12/Marbury 5
Mar 22 vs Portland L 86-92 Robinson 31/Francis 10/Marbury 6
Mar 23 at Cleveland L 68-90 Curry 27/Curry 9/Marbury 4
Mar 26 vs Orlando L 89-94 Marbury 32/Frye 7/Marbury 4
Mar 28 vs Cleveland W 97-93 Curry 25/Robinson 7/Marbury 8
Mar 30 at Dallas L 103-105 Marbury 43/James 7/Marbury 3
Mar 31 at New Orl/OKC L 94-103 Curry 34/Curry 13/Collins 6
Apr 4 vs Philadelphia L 90-92 Marbury 30/Balkman 16/Marbury 6
Apr 6 vs Minnesota L 94-99 Robinson 21/Balkman 8/Collins 5

The recent Knick slide reminds me of the start of the 2005 year (not season) that got Lenny Wilkens fired.

30 2005-01-01 NYK NJN L 87-93 16-14 Lost 1
31 2005-01-04 NYK SAC L 98-105 16-15 Lost 2
32 2005-01-05 NYK @MIA L 94-102 16-16 Lost 3
33 2005-01-08 NYK @CLE L 79-104 16-17 Lost 4
34 2005-01-09 NYK POR W 113-105 17-17 Won 1
35 2005-01-11 NYK NOH L 82-88 17-18 Lost 1
36 2005-01-15 NYK @CHI L 84-86 17-19 Lost 2
37 2005-01-17 NYK CHI L 86-88 17-20 Lost 3
38 2005-01-19 NYK @TOR L 81-98 17-21 Lost 4
39 2005-01-21 NYK HOU L 91-92 17-22 Lost 5
40 2005-01-23 NYK MIL L 96-101 17-23 Lost 6
41 2005-01-25 NYK PHO L 118-133 17-24 Lost 7
42 2005-01-28 NYK CLE W 99-96 18-24 Won 1
43 2005-01-29 NYK @DET L 61-91 18-25 Lost 1
44 2005-01-31 NYK @LAC L 89-96 18-26 Lost 2
45 2005-02-01 NYK @DEN L 76-96 18-27 Lost 3
46 2005-02-04 NYK @SAC L 115-116 18-28 Lost 4
47 2005-02-05 NYK @PHO L 106-114 18-29 Lost 5

At this point I’m nearly speechless. Normally I’d have an idea to get the Knicks going again, but it just looks like they’ve been repeating the same mistakes that has plagued them all year. Namely poor defense, slow starts, turnovers, and poorly designed plays in key moments. The first two are clearly due to a lack of effort from the players, the third might just be a function of the players’ skills, and the last falls squarely on the shoulders of the coaches.

On the positive side, I love watching Collins and Balkman get expanded minutes. These guys can defend and rebound pretty well. I love their intangibles, but they along with David Lee need to do nothing else this summer but shoot jump shots.

On the other hand I don’t know if I ever want to see Jared Jeffries on the court again. Maybe a defensive sub for the final minutes. The same for Malik Rose. Jeffries kills the offense. I’ve noticed that Curry seems to be passing better out of double teams, but the scoring opportunity just stops when the ball rotates to Jeffries. And his wide open layups have the same result of Charles Smith with 3 Bulls on his back. As for Rose, when Malik reaches 30% of his close shots blocked, they should just get him a recliner & a Cadillac.


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Mike Kurylo

Mike Kurylo is the founder and editor of His book on the 2012 Knicks, "We’ll Always Have Linsanity," is on sale now. Follow him on twitter (@KnickerBlogger).

111 thoughts to “Ths Ship Be Sinkin’”

  1. The Knickerbockers have slipped to below all but two teams in the West. Still ahead of five teams in the East but two (Charlotte and Philly) are within on and two games respectively.

    If the Knicks blow the next week, the Bulls could be looking at a real chance at Durant or Oden.

  2. and even if the knicks blow the next week, we’re still looking at more isiah.


  3. If the Bulls get a major lottery pick (1-3) Isiah will be gone very soon. Dolan being Dolan might hold out another season but the city will never forgive him for it and he will be pressured into a change.

  4. Some ugly losses in this stretch. Honestly, I’m royall unimpressed with Collins for the most part. He can’t hit a jumper to save his life and is as slow as molasses. Balkman on the other hand, is on has way to proving all the critics wrong. He’s got a solid handle, is an underrated passer on the break and has a knack for getting rebounds/putbacks. If he can scrounge up even a reasonable facsimile of a jumpre, he can be a very solid player.

    Lee looked to be really laboring out there last night. I’d shut him down at this point — why risk further damage to the leg?

    Isiah’s anti-ref tirade hasn’t helped during this prolonged schneid. The thing is, he’s right. Curry gets killed in the post and often nothing is called. Marbs has been getting hacked when he drives to the rim for the past four seasons. If Isiah were a “Zen Master” like Phil Jackson, who said the refs/league were on a “Which Hunt” for poor, oppressed Kobe, he certainly wouldn’t be called a ‘whiner’.

    And yeah, let’s go Mets!

  5. Woo Mets! Orange and blue all year long.

    I have an awful sinking feeling that this sudden focus on how awesome things will be next year (Curry will have a 15 footer! KG will be ours! Everyone will shoot free throws at 85%!) is both unrealistic to some degree and a sign of surrender from Isiah.

  6. Looking at the healthy players for the last 10 games or so, it’s hard to say that the team is really underachieving that much. The Las Vegas summer league team had more talent.

    As for the Knicks moving up (down?) in the lottery, the worst 3 records (which the Knicks, mercifully, won’t be among) are so heavily weighted for the top 3 spots (they get 60% of the ping pong balls) that it’s still quite unlikely the Bulls will draft in the top 3. Top 5 or 8 is looking like a real possibility though. Doesn’t bother me though, if they’re thinking of drafting Roy (Dr.) Hibbert.

  7. The team is playing about the same way a they have the past 3 months, except they are losing the close games they were lucky to win before, and of course injuries are hurting. At full strength, this is a .500-level team, at best.

    I don’t really care about these late-season losses unless the Bulls somehow pull off a Top 3 pick. I realize that’s irrational – it doesn’t affect our team one way or the other and whatever the lottery result, the fact we’re even discussing this shows what a blunder Isaiah made. But even though it’s irrational it will make me freak out. I think everyone here feels the same way.

    Unfortunately, I don’t see why we should expect any major improvement next year. The guys on the upswing (Lee, Frye, Balkman, etc.) are more or less offset by Marbury’s post-30 decline. If the roster stays about the same, I predict a win total in the low 40s. Of course, that’s respectable… and we do have some good trade assets over the next two years, especially as the big contracts get shorter.

    oh yeah, Collins is awful. No team that plays him 1000 minutes in a season will ever sniff the playoffs.

  8. Marc R, after Dolan gave Tus (Isiah’s high school nickname)the extension a good bit was written about how success was being measured against last year’s record (which is one way to do it). Giving Thomas a backdoor because of injuries I believe is unjustified. Fact is, the Knicks have a monster payroll and, four years in to Thomas’ reign, they are in the lower quartile of the league in terms of overall performance.

    With the Knick’s spend they should be in the playoffs eight out of ten years. It’s going to take a new, experienced GM who isn’t a communication savant (as Tus believes he is) with today’s players. And it’s goning to take Dolan at least another year to make that move.

    Agree with you that the Bulls are a very long shot for a top two or three pick, but it’s cold in Chicago and I can dream.

  9. There’s really no shortage of talent on this NY team, the problem is they don’t complement each other. The Knicks should really try to clean house this off-season and just keep the parts that work. Which Players would you say the Knicks should keep off the trading block? For me at this point, they only have two keepers : Lee and Balkman. (Q if he can stay healthy)

  10. Yeah, injuries are just a lame excuse. Let’s face it, Thomas has been a miserable failure. The Knicks were 37-45 the season before Thomas was hired. The Knicks improved on that by two wins in Thomas’ first season but didn’t come close over the next two seasons and barring a miracle will not come close again this season. This is a chapter of Knicks history that should be closed.

    Of course, I don’t think any of that really needs to be said. It’s been a while since I’ve come across a Knicks fan who will say anything nice on Thomas’ behalf beyond “well, he’s got a nice smile”.

  11. he’s a fantastic drafter, not sure how anyone could argue with that.

    look, loss after loss at this point is obviously tough to take, but this is a team that’s been playing without three of their best five players for a while, not too many teams in the league could keep winning games under those conditions, especially not one that’s probably a 40-45 win team with everyone in there.

    like I’ve said before, I’m going to be judging them a lot harsher next year, less than 45 wins will be a disappointment, but it’s tough to take too much out of these losses, except that we need Lee and Crawford and hopefully Q to compete, and that Frye has been a massive disappointment this year.

  12. To be honest, I don’t really care about this season. Even if you make an excuse for this season, it doesn’t change the fact that the Knicks were a slightly below average team before Thomas arrived, and after three and a half seasons with him they are average at best. That’s too long to go with no results and no discernable plan of action. Keep him on board to help out with the draft, but don’t leave him in charge. He is only making things worse.

  13. “no discernable plan of action”

    seems pretty discernible to me, dump the roster full of deadwood he inherited and try to stockpile as many young athletes as possible, using Dolan’s willingness to take huge financial hits. this doesn’t happen overnight, and even with his missteps, I’d say he’s done an adequate job in this phase, not great, not awful.

    the next step, as we discussed recently, should be to go after an out of favor All-Star type player, using some of the aforementioned stockpiled assets, and I believe the longer term plan is to hopefully snag LeBron in three years when guys like Curry, Lee and Balkman will be reaching their prime, and the out of favor franchise type player will hopefully still have a few years of quality time left as a secondary gun (Rashard Lewis?).

  14. -scarbury sits out and the knicks win!
    -scarbury sits out and finally the offense truly runs through eddy curry!
    -collins steps up!

    knicks need to sign mo williams wit the midlevel exception

    offseason trade:



    kevin garnett

    the wolves don’t need him, they fuckin suck! garnett on knicks w/o giving up lee/balkman (although unlikely) and the knicks are contenders in the east!

  15. knicks should def wait a couple yrs and go for bosh/paul/deron williams/lebron. lebron might want to go play for jigga in brooklyn tho.

  16. If Isaiah had sat on his hands and done nothing… I think this is the year Allan Houston’s ridiculous deal would have come off the cap, along with Eisley, Anderson and the rest of the garbage compiled by the worst GM in NBA history. So the last couple of years we would have been bad anyway, probably worse.

    That said… Zeke has made 3 big gambles, all of which have flopped, and extended our misery by 2-3 years.

    1) Marbury. A lot of people thought it was worth the risk – build the team around a 26 y/o 3-time all-star, a local fave, too. But… Didn’t work. He may not be a loser but his deal capped us out through 2009, and he is no franchise player.

    2) Eddie Curry. He’s ok – but worth a #2 and this year’s lottery pick? Come on. And, this one probably capped us out an extra year thru 2010.

    3) Larry Brown, ’nuff said

    The lower-level stuff has been a mixed bag – good draft picks, overpaid Fas… But you have to look at the big picture. Those three deals above weren’t crazy – many people supported them – but that is why the team is where it is.

  17. Wow, pigs were flying last night werent they Jon. I just about choked on my jockstrap. I have to say Eddy Curry’s last second jump shot was truly sweet. Who knew he had a Trent Tucker imitiation in him? That shot had rotation, a nice arc, and hit absolutely nothing but the bottom of the net.

    All credit it where it is due, Curry had a monster monster game last night. I went over to NBA BABBLE and checked his winscore, he had a 28 for the game in 50 minutes, which adds up to the tenth best game in the NBA this season for raw winscore. Granted the Bucks were without their starting center and power forward and are in fully tanktastic mode, but that was still a great, and completely unexpected win. If Curry can play like that more often, then he will definitely deserve the hype. However, his performance last night was so far off the charts, I mean it was by far the best performance of his career I can see, light years better, that I have to think it may have had something to do with the uhh porous defense the Bucks were playing. His best game previously this year was a 16 winscore, so a 28 is an enormous enormous leap.

    A few things. You guys are always complaining about how no one knows how to feed Curry. Well, Jared Jeffries, Malik Rose, Collins, and Balkman, did a really really nice job of getting him the ball last night. Rose and Jeffries each had five assists. Curry seems to be much better off when he flashes around the basket, cutting back and forth, rather than camping on the block. When he gets it on the block, his lack of a hook or jumper forces him to attack the basket and often draw the offensive. When he gets the ball free in the paint he is much better, he was quite deft last night, lot of very intuitive shots in the paint. Of course, he was being guarded by Gadzuric (who I dusted in high school) (alright I drew three offensive fouls and fouled him out but let up 12 dunks and 36 points), and Ersan Ilyasova who is an undersized small forward.

    Mardy Collins had an amazingly varied line last night, 19 points on 6-17, 6-10 ft, shooting, 12 rbds, 8 assists, 7 turnovers, 5 steals, talk about mixing the good with the bad.

    Balkman had yet another solid game and was emphatic with the rejection in overtime as Frazier would say. It says in the box score that he only played 22 minutes, which I found sort of amazing because it felt like he had a huge impact. His rebounding is really amazing. nine rebounds in 22 minutes.

    So, yeah, great game from Curry, I look forward to seeing more like it…

  18. “quite deft”

    “emphatic with the rejection”

    “fully tanktastic”

    Owen you must dominate in Scrabble.

  19. I can totally see you like spiking the wooden letter holder thing on the ground, TRIPPLE WORD SCORE BITCH —- YEAH WHAT

  20. Caleb – I agree with most of what you’ve said. I’m not sure I agree that Curry is a mistake, though, even at the cost of the #2 last year (Tyrus Thomas looks good, but it’ll be at least 2 or 3 more seasons before he’s playing at an All-Star level, which is where Curry is right now) and this year’s pick.

  21. I wish they could bottle whatever they did with Eddy last night. Owen those were great observations I thought, it was definitely unusual to see Jeffries and Rose getting him easy baskets like that instead of the point guard feeding him the ball in the post awkwardly.

  22. T-Mart – You know I have never played scrabble in my life, but I grew up listening to Walt Frazier on the Fan, which must have helped with the vocab.

    Dan – I dont know how many times I have seen Francis, Marbury, or Robinson out on the wing, peering in at Curry, trying to figure how to get him the ball in the low block against taller defenders. Marbury especially has no talnt. I would think they are a bit gunshy as well, his hands arent great so there isnt a big margin for error.

    By necessity, since we only had two healthy guards, we had to get other buys involved, and iit looked a lot better.

    It seems easier to feed him from the elbow as he turns into the paint. He has such a big body it’s hard to keep him from getting where he wants to go. And once he igets the ball there, its a lot simpler equation to solve than navigating past quicker defenders with his back to the basket.

    But you also can’t really discount the tank factor from the Bucks. Gadzuric played 30 minutes. He is a true center. Other than that they played ilyasova at the center position, and pretty much no one else over 6’6 on their frontline. It was a four guard line up. If you could bottle a four guard lineup for Curry to play against every night he definitely would be an all star.

  23. That 3-pointer absolutely came out of nowhere but it didn’t look like a lucky shot – I know he’s not going to turn into Jason Kapono but maybe Isaiah ISN’T smoking crack when he says we’ll see Eddie dropping 15-footers next year.

  24. The passes into Curry from the guards are quite poor. One reason is they don’t throw it high enough for Curry – he has bad hands, but good quick feet. This is why he’s better at catching alley-oops (have you noticed that he’s gotten more and more of those as the season as gone on?) than at catching Marbury’s feeble attempts to get him the ball. Plus you are more likely to draw a foul from an overzealous defender by going high to the big man than going low.

    Going high on the interior passes will also keep Eddy from bringing it down, where he is more likely to get stripped (his turnovers being his main weakness on offense).

  25. Supposedly the Knicks claim that the play was written up for Eddy to shoot the three. He sure looked like he expected it, that was not a chuck at all.

  26. Isiah IS NOT a “great” drafter!!! I don’t know why he gets that rep. Probably because he sucks so bad at trades and free agent signings, people don’t want to sell him out totally. Let’s see – wouldn’t you rather have Marcus Williams or Sergio Rodriguez AND Balkman, instead of Collins? Balkman would have been there at 29. And the year before? Andrew Bynum looks a heck of a lot better than Frye ever will be. Jarrett Jack actually has his head on straight, unlike Nate the mutt. And finally, David Lee looks like the one guy you can’t argue with – even a broken clock is right twice a day, right? So PLEASE – enough with the crap about what a great drafter Zeke is. He is atrocious through and through as a GM and a mediocre coach. 4 years in, the Knicks still suck, and will for at least the next 2 unless Dolan brings in someone who can actually run a team. Too bad Stern can’t force Dolan to sell – he is the real source of the problem.

  27. i’ve loved the knicks for a long, long time. probably before a lot of the people on this board were born. i’ve been a big sports fan my whole life, but the knicks were always special to me. and although, deep in my heart, i will always love the knicks i just can’t stand to watch them anymore.

    the problem with this team is not so much it’s lack of talent or physical ability as much as it is about winning,or losing, basketball philosophy.

    physically, marbury is a beast. compared to the two time reigning mvp, steve nash, he’s an adonis. throw the two them in a ring and nash would be down and out in three rounds. put them on a football field, marbury would run through nash.

    however, if you take a terrific athlete from any major sport and put him in a boxing ring with a professional boxer he’d have his head torn off. there’s an art to boxing that transcends shear strength, stamina and agility.

    the same holds true with basketball. i had the good fortune of being a kid watching the ’69 knicks. why does everyone love that team so much? it’s not simply because they won a championship. it’s how they won. they were gorgeous to watch because they played the game so efficiently – they worked the ball to the open man, and played tough defense.

    nate robinson is a disgrace. he throws up shit shots with regularity, often with twenty seconds remaining on the shot clock. do they still call guys like that chuckers? marbury too, just doesn’t understand the idea of setting up the team to score. he believes he can do it on his own with his superior athletic skills and strength. that type of basketball will win some games, but in the big picture it’s a losing style basketball.

    what do you think larry brown was trying to do? he was at war with the style the knick players insisted on playing. lb was never going to back down because he knows in his heart that to win a championship a team has to play as a team – work the ball to the open man and play tough defense.

    that’s what makes david lee a special player. he’s certainly not especially gifted athletically. but he understands he a cog. he plays a role that inhabits qualities of team basketball. getting rebounds and giving up the ball to the best positioned player.

    so, it really doesn’t matter that the knicks don’t get superstars. they need a coach that settles for nothing less than great TEAM basketball. with the best talent in the world, the olympic dream team lost to inferior players from another continent . . . who were committed to the winning philosophy of basketball.

  28. I disagree that Thomas is a fantastic drafter. He doesn’t draft busts, that’s true, but he doesn’t draft great players either. Lee is the best he’s ever done; possibly in his entire career. You can’t win playoff games with 12 guys as good as Frye.

  29. “with the best talent in the world, the olympic dream team lost to inferior players from another continent . . . who were committed to the winning philosophy of basketball.”

    well, also players who had played together for years and who were used to playing under international rules, it’s a bit more complex than that one-liner.

  30. “I disagree that Thomas is a fantastic drafter. He doesn?t draft busts, that?s true, but he doesn?t draft great players either. Lee is the best he?s ever done; possibly in his entire career.”

    Didn’t Isiah draft McGrady?

  31. Yeah, he did. McGrady was around for one good season and then left. It doesn’t do a lot of good to draft good players unless they are around to help your team.

  32. You can’t blame the guy for letting him walk after he did his contract. Unless you draft someone who you know will force a trade before the season even starts (ie. Steve Francis in Vancouver) you draft on talent and McGrady was nothing short of a fantastic pick in this regard. You can only dump so much on a GM. Also wasn’t Isiah gone when T-Mac left?

  33. Hindsight is terrible when looking at the draft. You don’t rate somebody’s drafting skills based on whether or not they got the best available player every time because that is just absurd. You rate them on whether or not the players chosen are worth the picks, so I would say that Thomas has a very good track record.

  34. “seems pretty discernible to me, dump the roster full of deadwood he inherited and try to stockpile as many young athletes as possible, using Dolan?s willingness to take huge financial hits. this doesn?t happen overnight, and even with his missteps, I?d say he?s done an adequate job in this phase, not great, not awful.”

    Oh, that’s what passes for a plan these days? “Stockpiling young athletes” is about as ambiguous as it gets. Nothing in the plan for cap flexibility? For a style of play? He certainly has not brought in complimentary talents and he has made the Knicks already terrible cap situation even worse, extending the problem by at least 4 years.

    He has just replaced the dead wood with more dead wood. If this has been his plan, then he definitely needs to be fired.

  35. “Also wasn?t Isiah gone when T-Mac left?”

    Yeah, he was run out of town shortly after drafting McGrady if I recall correctly.

  36. Isiah has not made any mistakes drafting thus far, sure Bynum looks better than Frye, but im not at all mad about that because everybody said Frye was a poor man’s second coming of Tim Duncan. But about the coaching…

    + He has the players claiming they are dedicated
    + Marbury tries on defense
    + Q has become a solid defender, and his play in the post is notable

    – Just about every player on the Knicks with the exception of Eddy Curry (NOT Eddie, for people who spelled it wrong, you should have read it 1,000 times if u watch the Knicks); the only issue is that they are bad at defense. They don’t seem to know what they are doing. Jared Jefferies was solid last year, this year he is forgetting about rotating and letting Jamison get open lay-ups to win. nate looks like hes trying but he doesnt know how to slide on defense.
    – He can’t call plays for his life: Curry took a 3 to tie the game. If he had missed he would have been KILLED by the media and i think he should be, TERRIBLE idea.

  37. Dan Panorama:

    Every team hires firms to do personality profiles on players before they are drafted. Either Thomas failed to do that with McGrady, or he ignored it and drafted a guy who hates the cold weather and had a bit of an ego about sharing the spotlight.

    For the record, I’m not counting McGrady as a bad pick for Thomas, I’m just not counting it as a good one. Unless a player helps your team, then it can’t possibly be considered a good pick. Ditto for Camby, by the way.

  38. As I recall McGrady was instrumental in upsetting the Knicks in the first round to kick off our current era of disaster. He also drafted T-Mac to a team in which the star player he had to share the spotlight with was his own cousin, something one would have thought might help influence him to stay.

    “Oh, that?s what passes for a plan these days? ?Stockpiling young athletes? is about as ambiguous as it gets. Nothing in the plan for cap flexibility? For a style of play? He certainly has not brought in complimentary talents and he has made the Knicks already terrible cap situation even worse, extending the problem by at least 4 years.”

    I don’t think stockpiling young athletes has been ambiguous at all. Frye, Lee, Robinson, Collins, Morris, Balkman, Crawford, Curry. That’s 8 quality young athletes with upside and trade value. He said that’s what he was looking for and he got it. Now what he does with them (trade for a superstar, develop one or more into all-stars or solid starters) is more the question, but as for this phase, he’s more than kept his word without any necessary qualifiers.

    As for style of play, the team actually had a game plan begin to develop this season based around a center-led half court offense that also emphasizes offensive rebounding and (when we get the proper players according to Isiah) will include three point shooting. Better than anything else we had the last few years and having a game plan means you can look for players that fit into it well and trade players that don’t – before we were just twisting in the wind.

    As for the cap – Indefensible there for the most part, but he never claimed that was his plan, did he? He set us back with Francis, Marbury, and JJ2’s contracts certainly but keep in mind we wouldn’t be in even half-decent shape til next season because of Houston’s contract. If he added cap for another two years (at least one JJ will be tradeable by then and Kevin McHale will gladly take Jerome at that point for some unproven rookie) in exchange for all the draft picks we got out of it (David Lee alone, for example) I think that’s a fair deal.

  39. What I mean is that “stockpiling young talent” is not a plan in any way. It’s a vague BS term that is used because saying “I don’t know what I am doing” will likely kill any thought of a contract extension.

    To use a good example, look at Brian Colangelo. This is a man who has a vision for what kind of team he wants to assemble and then he goes out and finds the necessary players. That’s obviously much more effective than just throwing together a bunch of young guys and hoping something decent comes out of it, which is apparently what Thomas has done.

    I would love to keep Thomas around to help out with the draft. I think he’s had enough success there that it’s obvious the man can identify developing talent; he just has no clue how to build a team.

  40. Colangelo inherited Chris Bosh, really not a fair comparison. it’s a lot easier to have a clear “vision” when you’ve already got a stud young franchise player.

  41. Dan:

    McGrady was good that year, but I’m pretty sure teams don’t use lottery picks in hopes of getting only 1 good year out of a player. Whether or not Thomas thought McGrady would stay is unimportant; he didn’t stay, and therefore the Raptors got very little out of that draft pick (1 good year).

    I’m looking out Thomas’ draft resume right now and it’s fairly unimpressive. As I said previously, it is pretty remarkably that he hardly ever drafts busts, I’ll give him that, but he has a reputation for being a great talent evaluator. However, how many people has he drafted that have any business being starters on a good team? If we count McGrady and Camby (and I say we shouldn’t), then that’s what, 3 or 4 starter-quality players?

  42. xduckshoex:

    Another thing about the “stockpiling” strategy (and I agree that it’s not much of a strategy), is that when it comes time to cash in, teams largely are only willing to part with the mediocre young players. If it came down to it, I’m not sure Thomas would be willing to trade Lee.

    And the strategy is too dependent on perfect timing and a bit of luck. How often do “superstars” get put on the market? And how do you know that another team isn’t going to have a more attractive offer? The Knicks could probably land a Baron Davis level player but I don’t think that’s what fans are talking about when they talk about “stockpiling”. The Knicks did that once, trading the young prospect Trevor Ariza for Steve Francis (I know that Thomas wasn’t wholly responsible for that).

  43. “And the strategy is too dependent on perfect timing and a bit of luck. How often do ?superstars? get put on the market? And how do you know that another team isn?t going to have a more attractive offer?”

    The same argument could be made against getting under the cap and seeking a non-midlevel free agent.

  44. “Colangelo inherited Chris Bosh, really not a fair comparison. it?s a lot easier to have a clear ?vision? when you?ve already got a stud young franchise player. ”

    Inheriting Bosh had nothing to do with trading for Ford and Nesterovic and signing Parker and Garbajosa. In fact, the Raptors have 7 new faces on the squad this year, so inheritance isn’t relevant at all. And, of course, Colangelo didn’t inherit anybody that was on the Suns before he left.

  45. Marc R: the difference in the two scenarios(cap space and stockpiling contracts) is that it is easier to make a deal if you have cap space. And it’s not just about getting those big names; you need to have the flexibility to tweak your roster if you want to stay on top of this League, but that’s not something a team can do in the Knicks situation.

  46. It may be easier to make a deal if you have cap space (though I can’t think of an instance where a team benefited from cap space in a trade situation, but it still doesn’t mean that superstars come on the market that often, which was the point of the original post.

    Also, the Knicks, in one respect, have more flexibility than any other team. They have the only owner that is not afraid to pay the luxury tax.

  47. Marc R:

    Really? It seems like there are quality free agents nearly every offseason. Not like waiting for Garnett or Gasol to become available via trades (a real rarity).

    For the record, I’m not a huge advocate of free cap space either. Free agents usually get overpaid, because there are several teams vying for them. I think, like xduckshoex says, that having cap space is a good idea just for flexibility, but I don’t think it’s something that teams should spend all their efforts on insuring.

  48. Let’s say that Isiah did nothing but let contracts expire when he took over. Made no trades and signed no free agents with long term deals. They would have Channing Frye, Kurt Thomas, the player chosen with the pick given to the Suns in the Marbury trade, Tyrus Thomas (or LaMarcus Aldridge), and this year’s lottery pick. And maybe Trevor Ariza and Randolph Morris. They would also have enough cap space to get a top free agent this year.

    The top free agents this year are Billups, Vince Carter, and Rashard Lewis. If you added any of those players to the team I listed above, how good would the be in the near and/or distant future?

    And who are the quality free agents that switch teams? The only top quality players I could think of in this category in the last ten years are Grant Hill (actually a sign and trade where the Pistons got Ben Wallace), Shaq (to the Lakers), Nash, and McGrady.

  49. “Inheriting Bosh had nothing to do with trading for Ford and Nesterovic and signing Parker and Garbajosa.”

    of course it did, those guys are all complementary players to their superstar Bosh. Nesterovic? come on.

  50. “Let?s say that Isiah did nothing but let contracts expire when he took over. Made no trades and signed no free agents with long term deals. They would have Channing Frye, Kurt Thomas, the player chosen with the pick given to the Suns in the Marbury trade, Tyrus Thomas (or LaMarcus Aldridge), and this year?s lottery pick. And maybe Trevor Ariza and Randolph Morris. They would also have enough cap space to get a top free agent this year.”

    the other thing to keep in mind besides won/loss record and roster composition is attendance. bringing in Marbury helped on this front, and that was also part of Isiah’s job, putting an entertaining product on the floor as opposed to the dullest team in NBA history, which is what he inherited.

  51. Marc: willingness to pay the luxury tax does not offer flexibility when you are over the cap and any players that another team would want are under long-term contracts for well over their market value.

  52. “This is the type of team that causes problems for us because it’s a small, quick team,” Thomas said. “We’re a much bigger team. We pound the ball inside, we get to the foul line. So teams like this, where they create a lot of mismatches, are teams that really give us problems.” Zeke 2/15/07 re: Golden State
    He also says that about Charlotte especially Gerald Wallace. This does not sound like a GM/Coach of an athletic team.

    “McDyess is one of six power forwards on the roster that Layden assembled, and the team lacks depth at the shooting guard and small forward positions. The Knicks have shown themselves to be especially vulnerable against younger, quicker teams.” A direct quote from ESPN article about Layden firing/Isiah hiring at the time.

    So despite the alleged athletes no change, just like the record. Layden had a bunch of guys that were once useful to winning teams whereas Isiah has a bunch of guys that Q and the odd year for Stephon, Curry and Jeffries have never been and give limited signs of ever being in the rotation for a winning program.

  53. jon: A move to acquire complimentary players has nothing to do with the superstar that is already in place. It may dictate what type of player is brought in, but the GM still has to acquire them. Colangelo brought in 7 new faces who have averaged double figures in minutes for the Raptors. Four of the Raptors top 5 scorers were not on the roster last year. None of that has anything to do with Bosh being on the roster already. His presence did not make those moves, Colangelo did.

  54. Gerald Wallace and GS cause matchup problems for everyone, GS is playing Harrington and Jackson as their C/PF now.

    “So despite the alleged athletes no change, just like the record.”

    this roster is full of potential, the roster he inherited had zero potential, the bulk of those guys are out of the league already.

    I hate to be the one (or one of the ones) defending this plan, it still may not work, but I just think it’s too early to judge it as harshly as most people here have been doing, we’ll know a lot more this time next year. I would feel better with a smarter coach, but that’s not going to happen.

  55. “on: A move to acquire complimentary players has nothing to do with the superstar that is already in place. It may dictate what type of player is brought in, but the GM still has to acquire them. Colangelo brought in 7 new faces who have averaged double figures in minutes for the Raptors. Four of the Raptors top 5 scorers were not on the roster last year. None of that has anything to do with Bosh being on the roster already. His presence did not make those moves, Colangelo did.”

    the point is that there is a superstar already in place, which is like 60 percent of building a good team. in lieu of that, you have to acquire players like Curry and Crawford and hope someone can develop into a franchise player.

    having a superstar in place changes everything, and it makes the players he acquired that much better. if the Knicks signed those same 7 guys, they wouldn’t be nearly as good for NY as they’ve been for Toronto. the better your best player is, the less the other guys are asked to do.

  56. Jon – One of the non-controversial, well received findings of the Wages of Wins was that NBA attendance correlates quite closely to the number of wins a team produces. While the conventional wisdom is that people pay to go to a game to see exciting, mercurial players like Starbury, the truth is that what they really care about is winning. Exciting, shoot-first players do sell more sneakers however.

    You will also be happy to know that there were two articles today, in the Post and Times, praising Curry to the sky. I was laughing as I read them, it’s amazing how one phenomenal game against Dan Gadzuric and Ersan Ilyasova can validate a season in which he has committed so many effing turnovers…

    Hoolahoop – Nice post. Big fan here as well, I was raised on stories of the selfless team play of the Championship Knicks, my parents actually went on one of their first dates to the famous Game 7. I agree with you about team basketball, but it isn’t quite so simple, its not like a great coach can use a team concept to somehow turn a mediocre group in world beaters. The vintage Knicks had two top fifty players and four hall of famers total I think. Still, you’re right, it makes all the sense in the world to build your offense around the idea of seeking high percentage shots wherever the can be most efficiently found, rather than giving it to a “star” player who shoots 40-45 percent.

  57. “One of the non-controversial, well received findings of the Wages of Wins was that NBA attendance correlates quite closely to the number of wins a team produces.”

    the rest of the Knicks home games for this year are sold out, so much for that (in this case).

  58. obviously winning is the primary goal, but that wasn’t going to happen right away no matter what the plan was. bringing in Marbury helped ensure that the local fan base wouldn’t lose interest entirely during the rebuilding process, it’s a real world aspect that needed to be factored into the actual decision making process.

  59. Potential is another word for never accomplished anything yet. The Celtics are full of potential. Theoretically so is Atlanta with the Wialliamses, Josh Childress, Joe Johnson, Josh Smith and Zaza Pachulia along with Salim Stoudemire. Portland with their backcourt Aldridge and Randolph is young and full of potential.

    “The bulk of those guys are out of the league already.” It’s five years later the bulk of a lot of teams are out of the league.

    I hate to be the one (or one of the ones) defending this plan, it still may not work, but I just think it?s too early to judge it as

    You conveniently sidestep the fact that the quotes describing the team are identical. How can that be if the whole plan is to be more athletic? It’s a damning indictment of a plan that from the Tim Thomas trade was to get more aathletic.

    “Gerald Wallace and GS cause matchup problems for everyone, GS is playing Harrington and Jackson as their C/PF now.”

    Please don’t insult everyone’s intelligence by bringing up the fact that for the last four games GS plays Harrington at C and Jackson at PF. You oalso omitted Monta Ellis from the equation. When the quote by Isiah about GS was made they were still at PF and SF/2G respectively. Wallace may be a difficult player to guard but that doesn’t explain the problems the Knicks have with the backcourt or Milwaukee’s among others.

    “I still think we need to get a little more athletic and a little better,” Thomas said. (made on day after or day of Marbury trade). Over three years later still the same quotes.

    He also said the goal was to win a championship. At the time the lineup was Motumbo, Kurt Thomas, Van Horn, Steph and Houston. They were 11-8 before he made the first of many bluders by trading for Tim Thomas/Nazr Mohammed. The record includes Stephs first game v. Houston which was a blowout loss as he had not even practiced with the team.

    It’s obvious that there is no plan and never has been. He first came here and said after the Marubry trade that NY won’t wait to rebuild and you can’t get good in this league with draft picks. Within two years the tune had changed and he was gushing over the picks he had acquired.

    I can’t fathom how anyone can be pleased or impressed with four years of treading water much less defend the job that was done. There would have been young players coming in anyway as there are every year via the draft so the team would have been younger no matter what.

  60. At best, this season was a 3 and out in the first round. No way the Knicks would be competitive against the 1st or 2nd seeds in the East.

    Even the fact that we could talk playoffs is a major step in the right direction. Curry is another.

    The backlog of Forwards, Guards…well, it’s pretty clear that the Knicks have alot of talent, but they only really gel when Marbury is on the bench, as others have noted.

    Isiah has been stockpiling players for a run at someone…any package that brings a Garnett quality player to the Garden is the next step. Keep Curry, make do with whatever you are left with, get an All-Star.

    Then we can talk about 2008-9 as a legitimate contender. Maybe.

  61. “Marc: willingness to pay the luxury tax does not offer flexibility when you are over the cap and any players that another team would want are under long-term contracts for well over their market value.”

    Only the Knicks could and would take on the additional year’s salary due Jalen Rose. That deal also brought in Renaldo. The same with the Malik Rose deal that brought in David Lee and Mardy Collins. A team that couldn’t/wouldn’t pay the luxury tax wouldn’t have been able to take on the salaries that came with those three picks.

  62. Francis is an idiot! Thrown out of a close game with everybody else injured. The definition of stupid! I hope he is gone after the season. He is the poster child for selfish play.

    I guess with the playoffs out of reach now and half the team injured the only interesting thing lately has been the play of Balkman and Collins.

    Collins has looked better then I expected. He can’t shoot well but at least he looks like a point guard at times. He actually seems to look around and try to get a flow to the offense and make passes. His defense is pretty good too. I’ve watched the Knicks so much I had forgoten what that looked like to have a pass first guy and one that can get stops on the perimeter. Overall, not bad for his first games with real minutes. He has to develop a jump shot though or he will be history. He can’t help the team much if all he is capable of is what he is doing now. Since I have given up on the possibility of Crawford, Francis, Marbury or Nate getting better on defense or passing the ball, I would like to think of a better day in which Collins and Balkman have developed a jump shot and contribute on both ends of the court. While I’m at it, I’d like to think of Lee developing a jump shot too. Why not. I would add Jeffreis to the list but that would just be delusional.

    Thinking of the future, does anybody know if the Knicks have their own draft picks in 2008 and 2009?

  63. The Knicks owe a 1st-rounder to Utah, but unless we’re one of the top 6 or 7 teams in the league we won’t have to pay up until 2010.

  64. Funny box scores from last night. The Knicks shot a higher percentage from the field than the Pistons, (.423 v .414) and hit more foul shots at a higher percentage. (19-24 v 14-20. The Pistons hit one more three pointer, but took eight more, so the Knicks were more efficient there too. The Pistons had just two more net individual rebounds, but the Knicks had five more team rebounds. So, unless I am mistaking the nature of team rebounds (I may be), it seems the Knicks had the rebounding edge as well last night.

    Yet the Pistons won by 8. What gives?

    Well, somehow the Pistons took sixteen shots more than the Knicks. The only way to explain that given whats above is that they had nine fewer turnovers than the Knicks. Mardy Collins and Eddy Curry together committed more turnovers than the Pistons.

    Turnovers matter a lot. When you commit a turnover you lose a shot attempt for your team and give one to the other team. Its a double swing.

    This may be slightly heretical, but I think if we really want to improve next year, instead of finding a hot rod outside shooter, we probably should focus on cutting back on turnovers. Its not sexy, but I think it might work.

  65. Leaving Mardy Collins and Steve Francis on the bench next year would solve a lot of it. So would benching Eddy Curry but that has a substantial downside, too.

    Has anyone looked at whether there have been successful high-turnover teams (like high-penalty teams in football, who have sometimes been very successful)?

    Off the top of my head, I’d bet the early ’90s Knicks had relatively a lot of turnovers – Ewing had the ball a lot and the guards all had mediocre A/TO ratios..

  66. Yeah, those Knicks typically ranked anywhere from 15-20 in the League in turnovers if I recall correctly. I know there was one season where they were last in the League in turnover ratio, but I think that was mid-to-late 90’s.

  67. The Knicks have had by far the most unstable roster in the league over the last three seasons, Isiah has traded away every last person from the Layden era and then some. I think TOs are likely to go down as we get a set rotation and people are comfortable playing together and also as Curry has help with his double and triple teams, other than that I don’t think there’s too much we can do.

    Oh wait, we can buy out Steve Francis.

  68. “Turnovers matter a lot. When you commit a turnover you lose a shot attempt for your team and give one to the other team. Its a double swing.”

    this isn’t true, the other team would get the ball next no matter what. some turnovers lead directly to fast break baskets for the other team, but that’s probably only a third of overall turnovers, and even then, you get the ball next. it’s one lost possession, no double swing.

  69. Yeah, you’re right Jon. (ooh, that hurts to say)

    Turnovers do hurt just once. They still hurt quite a bit though.

    Counting foul shots as half a shot, the Pistons had 97 shots last night, to our 83. That is a huge disparity. And turnovers had to be a big part of that.

  70. Having commented on NY’s turnover problem ad nauseum over the past couple years I consider myself something of an expert. Once upon a time I thought NY had a ball handling problem, but in truth NY has a basketball IQ/decision making problem.

    I know I’ve referred to a story that’s probably apocryphal in other discussions, but it’s so apropos of the Knicks. Doc Rivers allegedly asked Magic what he’d done to get James Worthy to cut down on his turnovers. Doc wanted some advice on how to get Dominique to cut down his turnovers. Magic purportedly said, “if I gave Worthy the ball where you give it to ‘Nique, he’d turn it over too.” It’s not just about the person that turns it over; it’s about who gets the ball where.

    NY’s turnovers are an outgrowth of this fundamental problem. We just don’t have enough smart basketball players, particularly among the vets.

    To cite just one of potentially innumerable examples, have you ever noticed how NY almost never scores in 3-on-1 or 3-on-2 situations unless the lead ball handler scores? That is, the ball almost never moves side to side forcing the defenders to move. It’s not a selfishness issue. Even Ricky Davis will give it up early so he can get it back in a position to dunk. It’s an issue of understanding the game.

    Unfortunately, Isiah the GM has put Isiah the coach in a terrible bind. Isiah the coach cannot just lecture or practice the players into being good decision-makers. Players learn it by having it demonstrated on the floor. Right now, the Knicks have only two guys that turn it over fewer than 10% of the time, which just makes me scratch my head.

  71. My guess is that high TOs are not like football penalties but rather a kiss of death.

    Here are the 5 teams, this season, with the lowest % of posessions ending in turnovers (the best):

    and the worst:
    Your New York Knicks

    Sense a pattern?

    Basketball fouls are a better analogy to football penalties. In football, highly penalized teams often do well. My guess why: for every penalty that’s called there are several plays where the team takes an illegal advantage but the refs miss it, or ignore it.

    I suspect that’s often true in b-ball, too. Think about the last seconds of a playoff game, where brutal fouls often go uncalled.

  72. “NY?s turnovers are an outgrowth of this fundamental problem. We just don?t have enough smart basketball players, particularly among the vets.”

    yeah, and even more specifically, among the PGs.

    that’s why Owen’s constant harping on Curry’s turnovers seems a bit silly to me, obviously a good chunk of those are his fault, but just as obviously, he constantly gets the ball in a position where he’s instantly double or triple teamed, and his teammates are rarely much help after he gets the ball.

  73. Dave:

    That was one of the most inciteful posts I’ve read here in a while. The most important aspect Isiah needs to focus on for next season is focussing on 2 intangible variables that are very complimentary: 1) maximizing basketball IQ on the floor at all times to the best extent possible with the current roster and 2) continuing to have the overall chemistry level of the team appreciate by solidifying a rotation which also conforms with aforementioned element #1.

    1. Marbury: 35
    2. Q: 30 (injuries)
    3. Balkma: 30
    4. Lee: 40
    5. Curry: 40

    Crawford: 25
    Collins: 25
    Frye: 15

  74. Yes, turnovers are a double swing.
    If the score is 0-0, and you have possesion of the ball, that gives you an opportunity to make the score 2-0. If you turn the ball over and the other team converts, the score is now 0-2. At that point in time it’s a four point differntial – that’s a “double swing”.
    If you disagree, try explaining your logic to an NBA coach.

  75. “If the score is 0-0, and you have possesion of the ball, that gives you an opportunity to make the score 2-0. If you turn the ball over and the other team converts, the score is now 0-2. At that point in time it?s a four point differntial – that?s a ?double swing?.”

    no, because at that point you have possession of the ball with an opportunity to make the score 2-2.

  76. It seems what Jon is saying is that whether you take a shot or turn the ball over, the other team will have the same opportunity to score coming back. What you sacrifice with a turnover therefore is the expected value of a shot, which is one point, (since teams roughly average a point per possession over the course of a season.)

    Suppose the other team doesnt score when it comes back. Then what have you lost. Just the Expected Value of a shot attempt.

    So a nine turnover difference should on average be worth about nine points in point differential, not eighteen.

    That’s how it seems to me now that I have reflected on it, but I am sure there are more eminent basketball statisticians who have a better view on this.

    We can at least all agree that turnovers are a bad thing and the Knicks make too many of them.

  77. I’ve been skeptical that our guards really have THAT big an impact on Curry… but I just checked and his turnover ratio (percentage of posessions ending in a turnover) actually went from 14 or 15 percent in Chicago… to 17.7 percent this year and last.

    That’s even though you’d expect turnovers to come down as a player gets more experience.

    Of course even 15 percent is a terrible turnover rate, but maybe it’s not all his fault, after all.

  78. I guess we should be rooting for the “real” Knicks team (The Chicago Bulls)now that we have given them all the picks while “rebuilding”. May be Isiah wanted to give his hometown a good team so his buddies in Chicago could enjoy the playoffs while we in NYC watch baseball. All I’m asking is for DOLAN TO BE RUN OUT OF TOWN!….and he can take Isiah with him and his extension…

  79. ahahahahahahahah!!!!! Very funny!Ship be sinkin’Your ships would sink just by putting it in water!!!!!!!!

  80. nah, I just think people are too quick to rush to judgment. I’ll be right there slamming him if this all doesn’t decidedly improve in the next year or two, but right now, I just think it’s a bit over the top.

  81. Here is my (optimistic) prediction for next year.

    Next year, David Lee will return full strength. Isaiah will give him 38 minutes. He will average 17 and 12. Q after the back surgery will be rejuvenated. He will start at shooting guard and play the majority of the minutes there. Balkman will be made the starting small forward. Steph will play as well as he did this year. Francis will continue to provide useful minutes as a backup point and shooting guard. Eddy Curry will step up his game as well. By this I mean he will finish 23rd in the league in turnovers, rather than second. He averages 20-7 and boosts his .25 ast/to to .40. Jared Jeffries bounces back after his benching and embraces his role as defensive stopper while efficiently scoring those garbage and transition buckets not scored by David Lee or Renaldo Balkman. Channing Frye will rediscover his jump shot and return to being a serviceable backup rather than the full on stink job he has been all season. Jamal Crawford’s minutes will be pared back drastically, we make him into our Eddie House. Nate Robinson will provide microwave services off the bench, as he has shown himself very capable of of late.

    This team actually manages to play fairly decent defensive (except for Curry), rebounds ferociously, and scores more effectively in transition.

    Perhaps we win 45 games in this case, this is pretty much the best case, and you tell us Isaiah is a genius.

    There is no way we win more games than that though.

    Lol, isn’t it amazing to live in New York, where people hate A-Rod and love Eddy Curry, lol…

  82. hahaha, Owen, you WOULD love A-Rod. Probably makes your alchamyetic Winscore score machine have an orgasm and start smoking when you plug all his stats in. But ofcourse in the end A-Rod is the poster child for why WOW and Co. truely is alchamy unless you’re using it strictly as a supplemant to legit hands-on human analysis of the sport.

  83. lol, yeah figures you would say something like that too.

    I am a mets fan, so perhaps I dont know the score, but it seems to me Alex Rodriquez will retire as one of the two or three best players of his era. Why Yankees fans wouldnt want a player like that on their team is a total mystery to me.

    But thats another argument from another sport…

  84. “two years jon? I?m thinking two months into the next season.”

    I’m reserving judgment until the next big move comes, I really think that’s the one that Isiah’s tenure here will be judged on in the long run (unless the Bulls luck into a top two pick, of course). I think he needs to wait for the right superstar to become available, and if that doesn’t happen this offseason, I can live with that.

    I’m a Yankee fan, A-Rod has serious head issues (which he’s admitted to), but he seems to have maybe turned the corner this year, although it’s obviously very early. the out clause is the key, he knows he can leave after this year if he wants (and he probably will), so he sees the light at the end of the tunnel. but yeah, not the place to talk about this, and honestly, I was all talked out on A-Rod long ago, I just hope he keeps it going.

  85. “he seems to have maybe turned the corner this year”. You are aware he won the MVP award (deservedly) in 2005 aren’t you? While playing for the Yankees and everything. God, Yankees fans are the biggest bunch of morons I have ever come across. I hope A-Rod does opt out. Yankees fans don’t deserve him.

  86. “You are aware he won the MVP award (deservedly) in 2005 aren?t you? While playing for the Yankees and everything. God, Yankees fans are the biggest bunch of morons I have ever come across. I hope A-Rod does opt out. Yankees fans don?t deserve him.”

    Perhaps the status quo outstanding regular season mvp statistics are acceptable in communist Russia, not so much here when they translate into complete garbage every single year in the play-offs. I’d rather have had Jim Leyritz take every single one of his at-bats in the post season. We’d probably have 2 more world series’. Alex Rodriguez is insecure, he tries too hard, and psyches his weak mind out every single post-season because of it.

    Capisce Comrade?

  87. T-Mart, you were happy when the Yankees replaced Dave Winfield with Jesse Barfield, weren’t you? Wanting Jim Leyritz over Arod in the playoffs is like wanting Robert Horry over Kevin Garnett or Karl Malone. Horry has had some big moments, but you’d be crazy not to take the infinitely more talented player.

    The playoffs are just another example of small sample size. Yogi Berra, who has more world series hits than anyone, hit .188 in his first 5 world series. His next 5 he hit .328. So is Yogi Berra a clutch World Series hitter, or a World Series choker?

    BTW on RLYW, they have an AROD cover count. That is, they count the number of times the NY newspapers put AROD on the front/back cover. It was 9 before the season even started (obviously all bad). The 7 since have been all positive. AROD just needs to go 0 for 12 in June for the witch hunt to be back on again.

  88. he didn’t deserve the MVP in 2005 either, his stats always look good, but if you asked opposing managers /pitchers to rank the Yankees as to who they’d prefer to see at the plate in a pressure situation, A-Rod wouldn’t even have been in the top three, possibly as low as sixth or seventh, in the 2005 season and throughout most of his career in NY.

    but there’s really nothing duller than A-Rod debates at this point. two schools of thought, both thinking the other is insane. we should stick to hoops here, IMO.

  89. “nah, I just think people are too quick to rush to judgment. I?ll be right there slamming him if this all doesn?t decidedly improve in the next year or two, but right now, I just think it?s a bit over the top.”

    Exhibit A of the mindset that will keep the Knicks aspiring for mediocrity. Next week will be three full seasons and the bulk of a fourth for Isiah. His squads have yet to crack 40 wins. Yet you put him on a 6 year plan at a minimum. Mindboggling.

  90. dude, it doesn’t matter what I think. I’ve been calling for Dolan’s head for years, who cares? I don’t pay to go to games, MSG doesn’t cost extra on my cable, so my opinion of Isiah is totally irrelevant.

    I could go through again what a hole this team was in when he arrived, and there’s absolutely no way that we could be serious contenders at this point. blame Dolan, blame Layden, but I personally don’t see a scenario where Isiah could have done that much to position us too much better entering next year. obviously he’s made mistakes, but just as obviously, he started in a huge hole. Charlotte’s a good comparison, they started three years ago and had the advantage over Isiah that they were building from scratch, with no ridiculous salary obligations. they haven’t come close to 40 wins yet either, but are positioned reasonably well going forward, especially if they sign someone like Rashard Lewis or Vince Carter this offseason.

    and I haven’t put him on “a 6 year plan” (you just made this up for the sake of hyperbole, 3 1/2 plus 1 or 2 doesn’t equal 6), I just don’t see the point of rushing to judgment when we’re clearly in the middle of an attempted plan, whether people want to recognize that or not. the next big move will be crucial, as I’ve said multiple times here.

  91. Wow so now being as well off as an expansion team is a feather in Isiah’s cap. That hole was a 37 win team, by the logic of all the one star away threorists that team was one KG or other star away. Steph just wasn’t that star.

    Jon what number plan is this?
    – the can’t win with rookies need established players plan (when asked about trading the Knicks current draft picks for Marbury);
    – the get more athletic with Tim Thomas and the key to the trade Nazr Mohamed (though we still don’t match up qith quick athletic teams);
    – the expiring contracts plan;
    – the we got two number one picks plan (after trading Nazr and someone else (Davis?);
    – Steph will really blossom with the hall-of-fame PGs to learn from (Wilkens and Isiah);
    – the Jamal = Vinnie Johnson plan(s);
    – the Eddy Curry plan?

    I’ve lost count its a close contest between that and the excuses:
    – need a training camp;
    – Tim Thomas had deaths in the family;
    – need a full season to get used to each other;
    – Curry couldn’t work out in the summer;
    – other team got hot (after every game where a team knocks down uncontested 3s);
    – injuries;
    – too young;
    – rough early schedule; fans not on our side; refs; FTs; don’t do the little things, etc., etc., etc.

  92. yeah, you’ve convinced me, he should be drawn and quartered for not bringing this disaster of an organization back to back rings by now. arrange for the horses, but let’s at least wait until after the draft, ok?

  93. He’s got them to where they might crack 40 wins and get an 8 seed next year. Great job and it took all of three and a half years to do it. Colangelo took 1/2.

  94. Drawn and quartered is a little extreme. I’d be satisfied with tar and feathered.

  95. Colangelo has done a great job. Anthony Parker has been a fantastic player for them. The WOW stats may lie, but they show he has been roughly three times as good as Steph. TJ ford is a nice guard too. Everyone he picked up with the exception of Bargnani has been productive, and the rook may turn it around yet.

    I, for one, applaud Jon, because if he werent here, who the hell would we be left to argue with about Isaiah?

  96. “Colangelo took 1/2.”

    Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh. Colangelo has done a very good job so far, but HE INHERITED A YOUNG STUD SUPERSTAR. do you really not get how much easier that makes it?

  97. Chris Bosh has very little to do with it. The difference between the Raptors this year and the Raptors last year is not huge improvement from Bosh, but the addition of Anthony Parker, Jorge Bargajosa, Andrea Bargnani, TJ Ford, Rasho Nesterovic and to a lesser extent Juan Dixon, all of whom were brought in by Colangelo.

  98. ludicrous. obviously Colangelo is a better GM than Isiah (and better than most of the other 28 guys in the league too), and just as obviously, it’s far far far easier to be a GM with a young stud superstar than when your best player is Marbury or Curry, two decidedly flawed players.

  99. That is completely irrelevant because Thomas chose to bring in those decidedly flawed players.

    Here is the point: nobody realistically expected Thomas to build a contender in a couple of season in New York, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to expect progress, and the Knicks have not made any. They have not improved their wins and have not put themselves in a position to improve their roster barring a miracle trade for Garnett. The Knicks are in the exact same situation they were in when Thomas took over, except all of their overpriced players are young and stupid instead of old and slow.

  100. Then why did Toronto win 27 games last year with Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh? Why does Minnesota stink?

    Also, it’s far easier when you didn’t trade for other team’s garbage and pseudo stars. Who traded for, gave up multiple draft picks and built the team around these flawed players?

  101. “Then why did Toronto win 27 games last year with Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh, Chris Bosh? Why does Minnesota stink?”

    it doesn’t mean it’s a sure thing, it just makes it much easier. the Cleveland GMs have been dreadful, arguably decidedly worse than Isiah, but LeBron is so good that he’s carried them to close to 50 wins anyway.

    anyway, I’m done for now, I have a busy work weekend ahead. if we really are in serious danger of losing our #1 pick entirely as I posted about on the other thread, I’m not very happy.

  102. Actually Bosh has been quite about 25% better this year than last, but you are right Nick, a lot of it has to do with acquistions that Colangelo made.

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