Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Monday, September 1, 2014

2009-10 Game Thread: NYK @ ORL

With 3:09 left in the first, the Knicks are only down four, 21-17.

And as Z noted, the Knicks have a current lineup of Hughes, Gallo, Lee, Harrington and Jeffries.

It’s actually an interesting lineup.

Discuss the game here!

95 comments on “2009-10 Game Thread: NYK @ ORL

  1. SeeWhyDee77

    I’m a lil late turnin the game on..I was havin my halftime hennessey break…which knick team showed up tonite?

  2. SeeWhyDee77

    y’know…when Starks took 3 after 3 instead of goin to the hoop or takin a midrange J, it pissed me off. Now Rooster’s doin the same thing. It’s nice when he hits them, but why is he usin it as his primary weapon? I guess i’m ol skool. Thas my round-about way of sayin he shouldn’t have taken that las 3

  3. Ted Nelson

    I should say a few possessions, not minutes. Then you know, maybe stick in one of the best 6th men in the NBA, instant offense off the bench. Oh, yeah, we’re not playing him now…

  4. Z

    CYD77– Gallo shooting 3′s every possession is better than Chandler shooting every possession, which seems to be the primary option.

  5. Sandy

    the Jared Jeffries I know and love. draws a good charge and then fumbles a simple pass out of bounds. jared missed the crucial pass and catch part of his basketball development.

  6. Ted Nelson

    I need something stronger than that to continue watching the Knicks… They were actually in it until the end of the quarter. What a joke, though.

    I am watching leaguepass. Orlando’s announcers and coverage in general are terrible. They were ripping the Knicks and it was pretty funny, though. Saying their startegy is not to guard Dwight… 8 for 9, 6 for 7, they might as well not guard him.

  7. Brian Cronin

    I have some problems with Mike Breen, but yeah, he’s leaps and bounds better than 95% of all other NBA announcers.

  8. BigBlueAL

    Hahn tweeted that Nate is out of the rotation. Dunno if D’Antoni made an announcement before the game or Hahn is just assuming so since he didnt play in 1st half and Toney D played ahead of him.

  9. irvin

    Chandler is despicable! 4 straight bricks to during the first 3 minutes of the second quarter put Knicks 8 behind.

  10. SeeWhyDee77

    Is it just me? I don’t think Nate’s all that bad. Sure he’s a lil boneheaded at times, but u gotta love his energy. Win or lose, he’s out there havin a ball and I think players with that type of energy never get infected by losing

  11. SeeWhyDee77

    I mean…what could he possibly do 2 piss coach off THAT much? Cosidering whatb he brings 2 the table, D’Antoni should not be benching him-at least at this point in the season

  12. Ted Nelson

    It’s not just you, SeeWhyDee77. I am furious with D’Antoni right now. Benching Nate reminds me of the kind of crap Larry Brown pulled in NY.

  13. Z

    Maybe it’s worth surrendering the 2nd game of a back-to-back, on the road, to the best team in the conference, to teach Nate a lesson…

  14. SeeWhyDee77

    If there was ever a game to give Darko some run, it’s against Orlando…what is D’Antoni doin?

  15. tastycakes

    Owen, yes! The Donte Award is catching on!

    Well, reversion to the mean can be a bitch. How many more Phoenix style Knick blowout wins will we see this year? I’ll set the over/under at 1.5

  16. Gorky

    No, Nate didn’t play particularly well but I don’t think he did anything so bad that it deserved a benching.

  17. BK

    D’Antoni is not Larry Brown…he’s one of the most player-friendly coaches in the league and doesn’t like to embarrass players. I’ve constantly heard stories of Nate waving off coaches or saying stupid stuff on the bench…just last week I saw him wave off Herb Williams after a substitution. If Nate is being benched in this kind of game, I’m going to give the benefit of the doubt to the coaching staff until I hear otherwise.

    I hate seeing a guy who scored 22 points in a quarter sitting, but given the track record I can’t honestly say I’m surprised.

  18. ess-dog

    So if the opposing team actually has a center, we can’t beat them.

    That leaves the Suns and… uh… damn.

  19. Ted Nelson

    In fairness, I have no idea why D’Antoni isn’t playing Nate. If he weren’t already in the doghouse, putting it on cruise control for the garbage minutes last night when he felt insulted probably put him there.

    D’Antoni is pulling a Larry Brown at this point. I am not saying they are the same coach, but the ego tripping, mind games, playing worse players because you like them, lack of a coherent game plan, lack of effort, and losing are all very reminiscent of Brown as Knicks coach.

    I’m sure Nate’s can be annoying or whatever, but if D’Antoni wants to win he needs to play Nate. The Knicks went through stretches of the game with 4 guys who can’t shoot/score on the court. The way the Magic shot, the Knicks weren’t going to win with Nate in there. The Knicks offense was terrible tonight, though. If you’re going to stand around, go one-on-one, launch a ton of long jumpers, and let whoever feels like shooting shoot… you might as well put your best scorers/shooters out there. Duhon (who had one of his best scoring nights tonight… which is pathetic) and Hughes in the backcourt? Chandler and Jeffries? Those guys are all such bad scorers. Playing 3 or 4 of those guys together is like forfeiting your offensive possessions.

    He has those guys out there for defense? They stink defensively. He’s got Duhon out there because he’s a playmaker? He’s not making any plays for others or himself.

    Glad to see the young huys getting run. However, at the same time I see why they’re not playing more. I like all of them, but I’m going to cool it on calling for Landry or even Hill to play more. I don’t think they’d do too much worse than the current rotation players, but I see why they’re not out there.

  20. totti

    danilo is as slow as paul pierce and he draws fouls like him, if you catch my point. Obviously pp is an all star, danilo’s not, yet.

  21. Z-man

    This loss was pretty predictable. Orlando is a formidable team and the Knicks just don’t match up well with them. In fact, they are more likely than not the class of the East. Coming off of an emotional win where everyone gave 110% and getting on a plane to play Superman and Co. on the road didn’t help.

    As such, I have no problem with the Nate benching for this game since it probably had no bearing on the outome. Enough of his BS. Not with TD playing harder and smarter and almost as effectively.

  22. Sandy

    face it. the o. magic are simply much better than us. they play inside and outside, play solid defense, and run 10 deep. i thought duhon actually played pretty poorly tonight. he couldn’t take advantage of anything. our point guard play right now is atrocious. but, again, never really expected to win this one. hopefully we bounce back against the hawks.

  23. Sandy

    i would not be surprised to see Orlando and L.A. in the finals again. The Cavs have not addressed their problems against Orlando (especially bringing in a terrible p and r defender in Shaq) and Boston, i dont think, can stay healthy. i agree with z, Orlando is the class of the East.

  24. d-mar

    We shouldn’t get too upset about this loss. 90% of NBA teams playing a back to back in Orlando don’t win this game. Yes, the 3rd quarter was ugly, with the Magic hitting every shot they took and the Knicks (esp. Wilson f—-in’ Chandler) firing up bricks, and some of our turnovers were atrocious, but this was one you would have pegged as a definite loss before the season. On a positive note, after 18 games, I don’t think it’s a fluke – Toney Douglas can really shoot. He’s definitely not a point guard yet, but do you think he might play a tad more defense than Nate? I feel bad for Nate in a way, he looked really depressed in the interview after the game, but I definitely don’t mind seeing Douglas getting burn.

  25. BigBlueAL

    Larry Brown hated Nate and now so does D’Antoni. I think I’ll take their assessment on Nate than anybody’s here. Plus like was mentioned above he and Herb Williams have gotten into it this season too.

    Seems like Nate after signing the 1-year contract for this season knows he is gone after this season and doesnt seem to give a shit or at least do whatever the coaching staff tells him to do.

  26. Sandy

    also, final thought, Gallo was getting burned by players he defended from beyond the ark. The two guys he covered, Pietrus and Lewis went 10-15 from three and accounted for all of Orlando’s threes in that devastating stretch. he has got to close out better even if all of those threes were not his fault.

  27. jon abbey

    Larry Brown changed the starting lineup virtually every game depending on which players were playing near their home. Larry Brown gave away Trevor Ariza to get an already washed up Steve Francis. Larry Brown refused to play David Lee.

    Mike D’Antoni is not Larry Brown. I will never ever forgive Larry Brown for his time in a Knicks uniform, he was unprofessional for his entire tenure here.

    I turned this one off in the third quarter, pretty ugly.

  28. Owen

    “Chandler shot 10-18, was he that bad?”

    Chandler was devastating in crunch time. Unfortunately we were down 25 when it started.

  29. daJudge

    Me too Jon Abbey. I am really sick and tired of coaches not adjusting and optimizing player’s skills. What else are they paid to do—smile and be politically correct. Wear sharp suits. Come on…, that’s their damn job. Do you really think Nate’s “D” is worse than the other’s. Marginally, maybe. Do you really believe this coach is focussed on his crappy defense. Please…. I shut the game off in the third quarter as well. I think Nate could have shot them back into it at some point. I have no problem with a coach benching a player w/o heart. That’s not Nate and J.Christ, can’t the coach deal with his issues and still get his ass on the court. You know what, let’s just allow the Knicks to play the “finesse” game. Coach will play his guys. It doesn’t matter anyway. It’s all about next year. Yea…right.

  30. BK

    Ted is right that the young guys are showing how raw they are with the extended minutes they’re getting, especially Jordan Hill. Toney Douglas is a very nice instant offense guy, no question, but he’s playing pretty much the way he did at Florida State — like he’s the primary offensive option when he’s playing. Not really someone who can run the offense.

    I can’t get too worked about this game against one of the 3 or 4 best teams in the league on a back to back. In the 3rd quarter, everyone stunk it up on defense — no one wanted to get out on a shooter. Would have been nice to see better effort, but games in the NBA are like this sometimes.

    I will be curious to see how they come out against Atlanta, which put up 146 against the Raptors tonight. The Raps — now *that’s* a dysfunctional team that’s squandering its talent so far.

    Z-man, Chandler put up most of his good shots in garbage time. He was fairly awful when the game mattered for the first couple of quarters.

  31. d-mar

    “The Raps — now *that’s* a dysfunctional team that’s squandering its talent so far.”

    Likewise the Sixers, who believe it or not are only 1 game better than our beloved Knicks.

    On another note, Jennings was 7-21 from the field tonight. I believe that’s 5 straight games or so where he’s shot very poorly. Not sure if he’s just missing or if teams are starting to figure him out defensively. Doesn’t make me feel any better that we don’t have him though

  32. Ted Nelson

    I agree with everyone completely that the Magic are 10X better than the Knicks, obviously. It was a game you expect to lose, but that was painful. The offense reverted to whoever feels like it take a long J. Of course, you could also say that if more of those Js were falling it would open things up, who knows. Magic are also a strong defensive team.

    I don’t know the reason for the benching, so I can’t say if I disagree or not. All I can really say is 1. Nate is one of the Knicks’ best offensive players. 2. The Knicks best shot at winning is being a good offensive team, because they’re defense is solidly below average at best (especially without a 5). 3. Duhon (22.4%), Chandler (27.6%), Jeffries (27.3%), Hughes (28.3%), and Harrington (29.3%) all entered that game shooting under 30% from 3-pt range 4. The Knicks could expect to be a better team with Nate Robinson on the court. So, if this is a powertrip on D’Antoni’s part it’s irritating. Maybe there’s a good reason for the benching, Nate reacts well, and everyone is happy. If not, then I think the buck has to stop with the coach. It is his job to win games and get the best out of his roster. This is where the Larry Brown comparison comes from. I guess I should expect that D’Antoni is doing the best he can, but being a Knicks fan the past decade has made me a skeptic.

    One thing I will say is that I think this would have been a game where Nate could have helped. The Knicks lacked effort and they missed a bunch of jumpers. Nate usually plays balls to the walls and is one of their only decent jump shooters. The Magic’s PG aren’t very hard to guard effectively and they’re not Rajon Rondo on the other end. This could have been a good match-up for Nate.

    I don’t know if Larry Brown hated Nate, but he played him as much as a rookie as Isiah did as a sophmore. About as much as D’Antoni is playing him this season. Sometimes they say that a coach is only hard on a player from whom they expect a lot.

    I don’t think D’Antoni is half as bad as Larry Brown was in NY, but I think there are several similarities. Things with Larry just kind of kept getting worse and worse, even when you didn’t think they could get any worse. There’s still a lot of time left for D’Antoni to either hang himself or turn the season around (to some degree… the Knicks are on pace for 22 wins… granted they’re playing alright in a tough stretch). I think he’s bad in a different way, but with a common thread through some of the qualities.

  33. BigBlueAL

    I just saw D’Antoni’s post-game press conference and the 1st half was just the reporters asking him why Nate didnt play and D’Antoni said it was obviously a DNP-CD but didnt want to say why and said the situation is fluid and Nate could easily get back into the rotation.

    At least he didnt throw him under the bus and air their dirty laundry to the press I guess.

  34. greatscott

    I feeling something like this was going to happen. Two games ago that Nate would be running 5 laps.

    “The latest Fix analyzes how Nate burned out yet another coach and what it could mean for his future.”

    I have to agree with Hahn. Nate would be better suited for the Harlem Globetrotters.

  35. greatscott

    This situation reminds me of a passage, A Coach’s Best Friend, from one of my favorite books by John Wooden.

    A Coach’s Best Friend
    I used the bench to teach. When future two-time All American Walter Hazzard first came to us at UCLA, he had a tedency to get a little fancy. He didn’t continue being fancy because he liked to play…

    http://books.google.com/books?id=WGqj5MIQ1KgC&pg=PA128&lpg=PA128&dq=john+wooden+a+coach%27s+best+friend&source=bl&ots=RbYIuDrDfk&sig=tSznGJcmxYWKZoWe_92GBTuHHBM&hl=en&ei=X2EXS_WDM43plAeYgOXfAg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CA0Q6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=&f=false

  36. Ted Nelson

    My personal opinion on the benching aside, Hahn’s article is the worst kind of journalism. It’s pure conjecture stated as fact. “Let’s be honest here, D’Antoni didn’t really want to bring Nate Robinson back this season…” Did D’Antoni tell Hahn that? Then it shouldn’t be presented as a fact, but rather as his hypothesis on what happened behind closed doors and in D’Antoni’s mind this summer.
    Hahn doesn’t even know exactly why Nate is being benched. I know he HAD to write about the benching, but why not come out and say: D’Antoni didn’t reveal why he benched Nate, but this is what I think…” I guess that doesn’t sell to the general public, but I wish it did.

    The rest of the article is alright. As far as ripping Nate’s “bravado,” though, should the Knicks just role over and die? I’m all about sportsmanship and acting with class. But when you’re on a terrible team, is the best course of action to hang your head (maybe sit on the bench with a towel over it) and accept that you suck? Or to go out there every game, every minute like you’re going to win, forgetting about all the losses and how badly you’re getting your butt kicked?
    The Globetrotter thing is a joke, and if it’s not it shows how little Hahn knows about statistical analysis.

    By celebrating a teammate’s play he makes it about himself? I really don’t get that vibe… He always looks genuinely excited for his teammates. I know a lot of people here hate Nate, but I love the guy’s passion.

    I don’t know why he assumes Nate is not about the end result… I mean these are the Knicks we’re talking about… How many Knicks in the last decade have really given their all and truly cared above all else about winning? A handful, maybe. Even the current roster is packed with career losers, less so than previous seasons. Duhon is the “leader” and while he’s won (as a back-up in the pros) he’s known for partying. Curry, Darko… ‘nough said. Jeffries seems to really care, but plays so clumsily and absent mindedly you’d never know (his foul in the backcourt on Nash was at least as dumb as Nate’s on Dragic). Harrington? Really showed he cares about winning when he forced his way out of a contender in Indy to take the leading role on a TERRIBLE Hawks team! Hughes, great addition to every lockerroom he’s been in… right?
    Why does Hahn feel the need to single out Nate Robinson as the guy who doesn’t care about the end result? I think it’s pretty simple minded to look at a player who has fun on the court and assume that means he doesn’t care. (That’s one reason D’Antoni benching him in the first place makes me uncomfortable.)

    Is dancing on the bench really the Knicks biggest problem? I would say that playing terrible basketball is a bigger problem and far more embarrassing to the organization. I don’t know what point of the game the dancing was, but if it was still a winnable game then I don’t see why a losing team doesn’t need someone to loosen them up and get them in a positive frame of mind. If it was in the 4th quarter then that’s a different story… (If Harrington and Jeffries were both on the bench it was probably 1st or 4th, I’d think.) Would have to see it to really know what I’m talking about.
    I realize that you want your team acting professionally, but I think it sends the wrong signal and creates the wrong incentives to say Player A goes something like 5 for 50 and plays flat D over a 5 game stretch and he’s going to play 40 minutes tonight, and Player B was dancing so he’s benched. What scares me is that it may be D’Antoni unable to look beyond his own ego: he can’t control Nate so he has to punish him like a little kid. Duhon is his best bud, so he keeps playing him even though he’s turrable. Sorry, couldn’t write about the subject without bring up my feelings on the benching…

  37. BigBlueAL

    Nate acts like a little kid, thats the problem. I dunno man but again I grew up in the 90′s and stuff like acting nuts because you crossed someone over and hit a jumper to cut the lead down to 12 to me thats a joke.

    I mean LJ had his L when he made a 3 but then he would go back on D and you know actually play some D and his team usually won. Starks had his antics but nobody played harder than he did, ditto Spree. Now I know about statistically how Lee and Nate are “better” players than most of the players on the 90′s Knicks teams except for Ewing but please I cant stand Nate’s act and the type of D Lee plays. Plus the best players I saw growing up never did the stuff Nate does. Hell even now you dont see much of that with someone Kobe. Wade and Lebron get pumped up but usually its after a big play and they were fouled or the other team called a timeout. Oh and there team is almost always winning.

    Now dont get me wrong I would much rather Nate play than Duhon, hell I wish Nate played 35 mins a game and Duhon maybe the rest of the minutes at PG. BUT I dunno I guess I understand why D’Antoni is benching him. Now if this team was 8-11, 9-10 and fighting for the playoffs it would be another thing because benching Nate would be directly hurting the team’s chances of winning and making the playoffs. But with the way the team is going if he is trying to send a message to Nate whatever fine by me, its not like Nate will be here next season anyway.

    I have a feeling though judging by D’Antoni’s comments after the game Nate will be back in the rotation pretty soon.

  38. JohnAnthny

    I read an article where D’Antoni said “We want to win, and if he’s conducive to winning, then he’ll obviously be back in the lineup.” That means D’Antoni does NOT think Nate is conducive to winning right now.

    I sometimes thought D’Antoni’s benching of Nate was sometimes juvenile but now I am on the other side.

    Its been summed up. Crossing someone over and hitting a jumper to cut the lead to 12 doesnt warrant this kind of behavior. Passion is needed and Nate has that. He just needs to channel that more precisely towards a greater focus….a focus more conducive to winning!

    WINNING is the goal. At all costs. If thats not happening why the personal celebration? Why werent you celebrating in the 1st quarter? and so forth.

    This was on my mind so glad to come here and see this topic immediately.

  39. cwod

    I enjoyed that SI piece. Kind of an indictment of keeping Isiah’s scouting department.

    “When I saw him play in Vegas, I did go to our scouts and I told them, ‘Look, if you knew he was that good you should have come to me every day in my office and said, ‘You’ve got to look at this guy,’” said Walsh. “I said, ‘I listened to you. You said, ‘He’s good,’ but that was about it.”

    “When the draft room opens up, you’ve got to tell me what you think and don’t play politics with it,” he said, while acknowledging that he must differentiate the boldly-opinionated scouts from the fence-sitters who bend with the prevailing opinion. “Unfortunately, every scouting room does do that — they check out where the coach is, you know, and they try to align themselves. I knew who they were in Indiana; here I didn’t quite know.”

  40. Ted Nelson

    I don’t know whether the cross-over, jumper, jumping up and down play that Clyde and Breen flipped out about is why Nate is not playing. He got into the next game in the 1st Q, but then was pulled due to a foul and/or match-ups. Then went out there in garbage time and didn’t play hard, noticeably disinterested. D’Antoni isn’t watching the games on TV, so he may not have even noticed the play. If he were upset about it why not pull Nate out right then? He was encouraging him while he had the hot hand and then disciplining him for it after? I hope not.

    Nate WAS getting back on D while he was jumping up and down. Breen’s rant about how he should be getting back on D was completely unjustified. The camera panned to him in the middle of it as I recall, but I didn’t even feel it was as much a celebration as it was pumping himself up and saying “alright here we go.” As in, let’s get back in this game and win it. That was the beginning of a stretch where Nate picked the offense up on his back. The Knicks couldn’t get a stop, but neither Magic PG scored a single point in the 4th so I don’t see that being Nate’s fault. Not any more than the rest of the team.

    I don’t know which play the jumping up and down incident happened on, but the Knicks were only losing by 6 points as late as 6 minutes to go in the 4th. At that point Nate had scored 11 of the Knicks last 13 points, and assisted on the other 2 (Hughes and Harrington were both 0-2, a combined 0-4). They were also only down 8 with 5 minutes to go. I believe the incident in question happened on one of Nate’s first shots of the period. 6 points is a 2 possession game and 6 minutes is an eternity. Why not get pumped up and try to win the game with that much time left?

    I would be really interested to know what D’Antoni means by “We want to win, and if he’s conducive to winning, then he’ll obviously be back in the lineup.” In all seriousness.

  41. Z

    “We want to win, and if he’s conducive to winning, then he’ll obviously be back in the lineup.”

    Chris Duhon is conducive to winning?

  42. Ted Nelson

    My feelings exactly, Z.

    Sandy, Knicks are 21st or 22nd in offensive efficiency.

    The SI article is very interesting. Maybe the most insight I’ve heard Walsh offer since he got here.

    No one really knew how good Jennings was. Everyone knew he had been amazing in high school, the top PG prospect in the country, but when he went to Europe and struggled it naturally raised some red flags. There was really no precedent. What scout was going to go into his office every day and say, “hey, you know that kid who is averaging a couple points per game and went 0-4 last night in Italy… he’s freaking amazing.”
    In fairness, the rumors were that the Bucks were also very high on Hill.

    Walsh must have felt Isiah’s scouts were pretty good, or he would have axed them all. It’s fair to say he’s still getting to know the group and their personalities, but if he didn’t expect them to be good he would have replaced them.

    The part about D’Antoni being over-optimistic is very insightful. It seems to me like a trait that’s great on a good team, but kills you on a bad team. Explains a lot of his decisions, I would say.

  43. Sandy

    yea, Ted you are right. im not sure what was wrong with the stats i was looking at on that site. maybe it was ppg.

  44. tastycakes

    Very revealing and entertaining article on Walsh, great quotes in there.

    I mean, it’s great for Donnie that he can absorb the criticism and roll with the punches and all, you know, since he’s OLD, but if you’re calling out your scouts for making serious personnel mistakes, what does that say? We’re talking about the man who decided NOT to fire Isiah’s people when he came in. A lot of buck-passing, is what I’m saying.

    His patience is his best attribute. This is a lost season. I just hope for continued patience in the offseason — there will be no miracle fix this year (ok, LeBron would be a miracle, but I don’t believe it will happen) and it will be important to pace the rebuilding effort.

    Don’t pull a Detroit and give a bazillion dollars to a couple of role players like Villanueva and Gordon. That’s my biggest fear.

  45. Sandy

    tastycakes, right on. i just hope they don’t fold to the pressure that they must sign “someone” this offseason. again players are good for one price and not good for another.

  46. cwod

    That article implied that Dolan didn’t want Walsh to fire/replace the entire front office. Or something.

    “I could have hired some amazing people,” said Walsh, who was rumored to be courting Billy Knight, Chris Mullin and Mark Warkentien as prospective GMs. “But there are some things you can’t ask the owner to do, and that’s eat some of these (front-office and scouting department) numbers.”

  47. Z-man

    “On another note, Jennings was 7-21 from the field tonight. I believe that’s 5 straight games or so where he’s shot very poorly. Not sure if he’s just missing or if teams are starting to figure him out defensively. Doesn’t make me feel any better that we don’t have him though”

    In last 6 games:
    Jennings 32/105 30.5% (Duhon was 18/47 for 38.3%)

    This is not necessarily an anomaly. If you take out the 55 point game (21/34, 7/8 3pt), Jennings is shooting just under 40% for the season. He is avging 6 assists, 4 rebounds and 3+ turnovers per 36. Obviously he’s a good young talent, but it’s still a bit early to go nuts over him or to rue taking Hill over him.

  48. Ted Nelson

    tastycakes and Snady,

    I don’t think Villanueva and Gordon were bad signings. Gordon is overpaid, but not terribly so. They’ve both played pretty well so far, maybe the two best players on the Pistons. The reason the Pistons are doing so poorly (which is to say they might not be great otherwise, but almost definitely a lot better) is that Hamilton has played only one game and Prince three. Jerebko has been forced into the rotation for Prince, and Bynum and Stuckey are picking up Hamilton’s minutes. (Stuckey never improving his offensive game is another reason the Pistons are underachieving… when Joe D throws a bazillion $ at Stuckey, that will be a big mistake.) Joe D has always built with a by-committee approach and Detroit is not a good free agent destination by any means. I do agree 100%, though, that the Knicks have to be careful not to throw their money at players who aren’t worth it.

    cwod,

    Good call. On the other hand, calling Mullin and Knight “amazing people” when referring to them as NBA executives is a joke. They were bad GMs in their times. Knight passed up Paul AND Deron Williams for Marvin Williams and then took Shelden Williams #5 the next year. He has stated that players who are 6-9 make the best players, and should be taken above other players. Was he really going to help the Knicks in the draft? My guess is he would have favored DeRozan or Earl Clark… (He did leave Atlanta with a lot of talent that’s allowing them to win now, but it took him years to assemble.) I recall Mullin actually doing a decent job in the draft (don’t know exactly what years he was in GS, and I recall the front office being a total mess and power struggle the whole time), but he did take Patrick O’Bryant #9… Mullin is a buddy of Walsh’s, but we’ve seen how well that’s worked out with Bird running Indiana.
    After he’s been dishing out $150-200 mill per year in payroll, I think you could convince Dolan to spend a couple million to overhaul the front office and explain to him that a good front office will save him a lot of money in the long-run. The Knicks are more inefficient than American health care: in the same stretch where they have lost the most games in the NBA (the last 10 years or something, someone mentioned it on another thread), they must have spent the most money…

    Z-man,

    I agree. Jennings was knocked for not not being a good shooter, so I was surprised how hot he shot it coming out of the gate. (As his efficiency dips and his usage doesn’t, he’s starting to look more and more like Iverson, by the way.) Scoring efficiency is something a lot of young guards develop with time, though, to varying extents. Jennings is a better playmaker than Duhon, though, and I would say (off hand) as good defensively.
    The thing about saying that he averages 3+ TOs is that he makes a lot of plays: his usage rate and assist-rate are both about 30. Duhon only has 2 TOs/36, but he also never does anything good. His usage is under 14 and his ast-rate under 25… Thus, his TO-rate or % is higher than Jennings’.

  49. Z-man

    Good point about Jennings vs. Duhon, Ted. I only put Duhon in to emphasize how poorly Jennings has been shooting. He is already a much better player than Duhon, but if Jennings and Ty Lawson were swapped I would wonder who would be getting talked about more…Lawson doesn’t have nearly the opportunity that Jennings has and is putting up better per minute stats.

    Hill is not looking terrible but so far not looking worth having taken over either of these two. However, what about Flynn and Curry? Walsh and D’Antoni (and many here) were drooling over Curry yet both Jennings and Lawson seem to be the much better point guards thus far. Looks like Minn and GS might regret passing on these two more than we do.

    Do you still think that Jennings is better than Evans?

  50. Owen

    Z-Man – That’s interesting on Jennings. Small sample size theater is obviously a possibility but I didn’t realize how much of an impact that one game had. Whether he plays well or not, or better than Lawson, who was the top rated guard by WS and third overall, we ought to have taken a point guard.

    Flynn I think was very overrated. Curry was hard to judge. His college stats were superb, but slightly suspect given the strength of his college competition. But given how many people have succeeded (or at least been average) in the NBA after posting great college stats, that was an acceptable gamble.

    Speaking of rookies, Dejuan Blair is playing the Celts right now, just tipped a ball into his own basket…

  51. Ted Nelson

    As far as Jennings v. Evans, I’m certainly a lot less certain than a couple weeks ago. A case for being careful with small sample sizes, maybe. I still think Jennings is a better point guard/playmaker (not that I’m orthodox on a team needing that kind of a player). His assist rate is way higher and his TO-rate slightly lower. He’s a slightly higher usage scorer still, but now less efficient on the season. His outside shot is better, but Evans has the size and athleticism to beast his way to the basket.
    Sacramento, a much better offensive team than Milwaukee it’s worth noting, is 10 points/100 possessions worse offensively with Evans on the court. Evans and Udrih play a lot together, but the offense is +7 pts/100 with Udrih on the court. Jennings has sort of the opposite impact on Milwaukee, where he makes their mediocre offense a lot better, but hurts their strong defense. +/- is hard to read, but I’m using it because it supports my feelings about Evans going into the draft: basically, that he’s a head down, no conscious scorer who gets his but doesn’t necessarily help the team offense. I haven’t seen enough of Sacramento to really know, though.
    Both very promising young players, and I wouldn’t personally proclaim either one the better prospect at this point. The better one will probably be whoever works harder. If that was you who said the trend of Jennings falling off and Evans coming on would continue, good call.

  52. Ted Nelson

    Of course, I love Lawson. Really looks like a valuable NBA player. Turns it over too much, but that’s normal for a rookie. He’s getting a good amount of hype, but I feel like he’s the kind of player who will be underrated his whole career.

    I like Hill so far (play and potential), and agree that both Minni and GS have more to regret right now. Especially Minni, who took 2 PGs before Jennings AND actually drafted Lawson before trading him to Denver… I’m still really high on Rubio, though, so I think Minni will get some redemption should he ever play there. He’s playing ahead of Jaka Lakovic, a good veteran guard. He’s doing a great job of running the offense. His jumper is falling, but his scoring efficiency in general is still not great: TS% of 55.7% in Euroleague and 57.3% in Spain. Still not a strength, but not a weakness to the point some thought it was. He’s a good rebounding guard and won DPOY in Spain last season. Still a great prospect.

    I also thought Flynn was one of the most overrated players in the draft. He’s played alright, though, as well as or better than I thought. Should become a solid NBA player, but they probably could have done better.

    Curry is interesting. He’s struggled, but he shows some flashes. If we thought that Danilo was getting the cold shoulder, Monta Ellis literally refused to pass the ball to Curry for a while. I’m living in the Bay Area right now, so I watch a lot of Warriors games. One time Ellis was in the middle of making a move to pass it out to the perimeter, saw a man, went to pass, realized it was Curry, and quickly looked away and threw it to someone else… it was ridiculous. He literally started throwing the pass and then held onto it as you saw a look of recognition cross over his face that it was Curry. Anyway, that’s a long way of saying that between Don Nelson and Monta Ellis GS is a less than ideal situation. Curry is shooting well from behind the arc and makes an occasional brilliant pass. He’s overmatched physically, though. Sort of what some people thought might happen.
    I see some parallels to a young Steve Nash, though. I know that was a popular comparison at one point, and that it’s unlikely Curry develops as much as Nash has. In pretty similar sample sizes, though, their numbers aren’t that far apart: http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=1&p1=nashst01&y1=1997&p2=curryst01&y2=2010 Nash’s scoring efficiency and assist rate were significantly better (over a full season, but a lot less MPG), but a couple decent games and maybe Curry’s right there.

  53. Z-man

    Thanks, that was me, Ted.
    I think what defines great vs. other NBA players is how well they continue to adjust to adjustments made against them once they are successful. Kind of like how a batter in baseball might enjoy success initially but once the word gets out, pitchers make adjustments…it’s the players who react successfully to the ongoing adjustments that are the most successful. The truly great players e.g. Jordan, Kobe, Duncan, defy adjustments…it becomes a matter of picking your poison.

    I’ve been saying all along that Duhon’s initial success last year was before the league had not had a chance to adjust to the pick and roll. It might have been coincidence, but his overusage/injury came at around the time that teams were seeing the Knicks for the second time. This year seems to confirm that Duhon had nowhere else to go; he just doesn’t have the talent to overcome the adjustments.

    I think the league has adjusted to Jennings somewhat and he now needs to figure out how to deal with it. He said himself 6 or 7 games ago that teams were playing him much more physically. I do suspect that he has the talent to figure out how to adjust back, and he will continue to develop into some type of star…whether more iverson or more CP3 or more Nash remains to be seen.

    With Evans, his size is the X-Factor. I see him more as a passing 2 than a scoring 1, a prototypical combo guard. He’s also only 20 and is already shooting 45% and has triple-double written all over his game. He seems for the moment to have out-adjusted the opposition, while Jennings is being out-adjusted. That might change next week, though. And to be fair, Sac seems to have played the easier schedule in recent games.

    I still would put my money on Tyreke to end up as the better player, though. It’ll be fun to watch.

  54. Captain Merlin

    At this stage, excepting jennings, there is actually nobody who was selected after either of our two picks who i would rather see on the team. Of course, this is subject to change, but at this point I’m intrigued enough by both picks to not write them off as mistakes just yet…except with regard to jennings….but that’s why time travel’s around.

  55. Owen

    Captain Merlin –

    You wouldnt rather have Ty Lawson, currently averaging 3.6 boards, 6.1 assists, 15 points and 2.3 turnovers per 36 with a ts% of 62%? And rocking a +8…

    Blair is currently 5-6 with 5 rebounds and one turnover in 11 minutes against the best team in the NBA…

  56. Owen

    Man, Blair really had an amazing game. Finishes so well around the hoop. Took it right at KG too in the low block, successfully.

    Finishes with 18 points on 9-11 shooting, 11 rebounds (5 off), 1 turnover, 2 blocks in 21 minutes. And a +10.

  57. Captain Merlin

    eh, I kinda like what Toney Douglas do that Toney Douglas gon’ do and would like to see him get a little more court time, especially when the game matters, so we can find out if there’s more of it. Ha–sorry, there. But that’s still the gist of how I feel about Toney Douglas–I’m intrigued and curious to see if he can be further developed, refined, and live up to that defensive stopper reputation after some adjustment and, hopefully, improvement time–this in blind spite to his 23 year old age tag. Although Lawson would certainly do wonderfully in D’Antoni’s system, I have the dreadful feeling he’s near capped out as a player developmentally. In addition Lawson is sort of redundant with Nate Robinson if he escapes the doghouse. I don’t really know…I know my justifications sound off, but Douglas over Lawson will be justified if only because I say so, dammit!

    Regarding Blair, I feel a bit like he’s not going to advance beyond being a bit of a one trick pony who can also make all the gimmes and knows only to take them. And although he’s shown flashes in San Antonio, Jordan Hill has shown definite potential which perhaps could properly manifest if given the minutes, and also seems much better fit to run for D’Antoni than does the slightly less mobile, Ligament nightmare Blair. Again, the rationale may be broken since a lot of it is just gut feel maybe a bit drunk on optimism, but I think they’ll play out A-OK…..Aside from the Jennings miss.

  58. ess-dog

    OK realistically, we would need to do a Hughes/Curry for McGrady deal first – that is what Donnie is probably waiting on.
    Then he can pull the trigger on the Thomas deal. I know a lot of people aren’t that high on Thomas, but he’s the same age as Douglas, would be great in Mike’s system, and makes Hill expendable if we want to make a bigger trade (and/or Lee.)
    I’m starting to think Donnie’s patience is going to pay off.

  59. cwod

    That article says Thomas’ cap hold is $13M. With Jeffries and Curry still on the books, doesn’t that kind of preclude any real pursuit of this guy? Or are we just looking to rent him for a year and then renounce our rights, simply swapping his contract for Harrington’s?

    Are the ongoing Curry-to-Houston rumors credible at all? I thought Hahn was the only one pushing that. Although if Houston really (really, really) want to dump T-Mac, maybe something could be worked out. Of all the GMs out there, I suspect Morey would be the one who’d know how to use Curry effectively, which is to say, very sparingly and in absolutely ideal situations. And then again, Curry needs to get back on the court. As always.

  60. cwod

    Ted,

    In the SI article, Walsh is quoted as saying, “I could have hired some amazing people.” The author, not Walsh, is the one who then alludes to the rumored courtships of Mullin and Knight, which are still just rumors, right? Walsh might have meant something entirely different, such as scouting and personnel people who actually are amazing and are not Mullin and Knight. He might have just meant bringing in some exceptional lower-level people from his Indiana days. Of course, because the universe hates the Knicks, perhaps Walsh did in fact have those two in mind specifically. In that case, the author merely provided a context for those remarks (and to great comic effect).

    I think I’ve seen a handful of Mullin-to-front-office rumors in the past few months. It’s somewhat troubling. I think they were all in Newsday, since I refuse to read the Post or Daily News.

  61. slovene knick

    Patience is mother of wisdom.
    And this one goes even more for this TTJJ/Al trade. We don’t get anything with that. I hope it’s a joke.
    The more the time and games go by my confidence in Donnie is growing and less I trust in MDA’ s couching skills.

  62. slovene knick

    on hoopshype it looks like Thomas’ QO for 2010 is 6,2M….is it possible to trade Jared(I mean theoretically) for Thomas?

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