2010 Game Thread and Preview: Knicks at Wizards

The Wizards (20-35) host the Knicks (19-37) in my adopted home town of  Washington, DC.  Both the Wizards and the Knicks changed their rosters before the trade deadline.  Wizards sent Butler, Jamison, and Haywood out bringing back Josh Howard and some cap flexibility.  So far it has worked out better for the Wizards than our Knicks in that the Wizards won a game since the trade deadline while the Knicks are still searching for a victory. This 8 game losing streak has been pretty sad.

Knicks Offense Eff eFG TO OREB% FT/FG
Stat 106.1 50.4 15 23.4 19.1
Rank 17 10 10 27 29
Knicks Defense Eff eFG TO OREB% FT/FG
Stat 109.5 51.5 15.7 27.6 21.2
Rank 23.5 26 13 27 9
Wizard Offense Eff eFG TO OREB% FT/FG
Stat 105.5 48.1 15.4 27.5 22.3
Rank 22 24 14.5 8 16
Wizards Defense Eff eFG TO OREB% FT/FG
Stat 109.4 50.2 14.5 27.1 24
Rank 22 19 24 22 19

What to watch for: Rebounding.  The Knicks have not done well on the boards of late.  The total rebounding is down compared to a month ago.  Washington lost their best rebounders in the Haywood and Jamison trades.  They waived Ilguaskas, leaving the team without a play that pulls down more than 7 boards per 36 minutes.  The Knicks really need to work on securing defensive boards to limit second chances.  The Wizards don’t shoot the ball well (24th in eFG%), so limiting the second chances is very important.

What to watch for 2: Wizards’ defense.  The Wizards defend about as bad as the Knicks’.  With their best post defender–Haywood–traded, the Wizards are without a defensive presence in the post.  Al Thornton can block a few shots as a help defender but he isnt exactly Haywood.  I know I’ve been screaming it all season, but the Knicks have to try to get inside.

What to watch for 3: Open casting call.  Struggle or not, we need to see if we have anything in the young players we brought in.  Maybe Bill Walker can show us something that makes Nate’s departure a bit easier to take.  Hope to see he and Rodriguez continue to get playing time.

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Thomas B.

@Don't bother; I don't tweet

136 thoughts to “2010 Game Thread and Preview: Knicks at Wizards”

  1. I’d add…

    4: Andray Blatche. Since the Jamison deal, he’s been a monster.
    Numbers for Last 5 Games – 35.8 mpg, 51-88 fg, 22-26 ft, 9.8 rpg, 24.8 ppg.

  2. He’s (Blatche) another 7-footer that Lee/Harrington/Chandler are going to have a lot of trouble dealing with.

  3. “Veteran smarts” = he gets the calls b/c he’s a star. I’ve lost track how many times Chandler, Harrington, Gallo, and Rodriguez have gotten mauled going to the basket.

    But T-Mac’s a “star”, so you know, it’s different.


  4. Good thing we’re playing a team that actually closes out quarters worse than we do otherwise we’d be down by 15.

  5. Thru 3 quarters Wizards shooting 59% from the field, 7 for 11 from 3pt range. I dont think they could shoot that good by themselves in a gym alone yet against the Knicks they are lights out. As are most teams against the Knicks sadly.

  6. You watch Al Harrington for one game ans wonder why he isn’t an all-star. Watch him for a season and you wonder why he isn’t glued to the bench. He’s a walking, breathing conundrum, I tells ya…

  7. Now if Gallo had that kinda confidence like he had in that last move, we wouldn’t lose so many games.

  8. When Al got knocked over, I had a feeling he would come back with something stupid; he did not disappoint.

  9. Clyde just summarized Harrington’s entire career: “Al magnificent at times, but also stumbling and bumbling” Well said.

  10. I cant believe they are going to blow this game. This is really beyond pathetic/embarrassing.

  11. I’m starting to worry that Duhon has become Sergio’s Yoda.
    “Drive to the hole you must. Make lay up you must not.”

  12. Strange, Al with a clutch defensive play? Followed by a clutch offensive play? White is black. Up is down? I’m freaking out here.

  13. Not that they’d EVER call it, but that was a loose ball foul by McGee on that alley-oop.

  14. It’s hard to win when you score 3 points in the final 3 mins AND blow two free throws, just spitballin’

  15. If David Lee wants a big contract he should be looking to shoot not pass it to AH every play in overtime.

  16. “Why am I wasting my time with this puke-fest when I have LOST DVD’s upstairs???”

    Trust me, Lost is more frustrating this team. And at least the Nix don’t have self-indulgent pretentiousness up the wazoo

  17. Gallo might set a record for fewest touches on offense by a player who plays 40 minutes in a game.

  18. “This game should be played to “key Stone Cops””

    Or that Benny Hill music.

    May go down as the worst overtime performance by 2 teams in NBA history.

  19. Seriously, I was watching the Globe Trotters on ESPN 2 earlier, and I think the Generals are the better Washington team. Sadly, the Trotters, too, are the better New York team.

  20. I wouldnt be surprised to see Gallo literally run away from the ball at this point. He really just stands there and does nothing. What is wrong with this guy?

  21. What do you think is causing House’s troubles, the bad leg which requires that cane or the Vicodin addiction that helps with the pain?

  22. The icing on the cake here would be a 4 point play. Paging larry Johnson, larry Johnson please pick up the white courtesy phone.

  23. @76 or they could have a FT contest to win the game like a shootout in hockey which would mean this game would last another hour or so.

  24. Why didn’t they just foul McGee?

    Crispino – “It’s like a recurring nightmare!”

    Ya think?

  25. That’s what I call having your best player take the last shot!

    Interesting that even Nick Young, not known for his defense, knew Al Harrington was going to spin.

  26. Gallo is going to have to ice his right arm down tonight with all those shots he took tonight. Gallo has become not Dirk Nowitzki but Dikembe Mutombo.

    Seriously though, with Jeffries gone Gallo is now by far the best defensive player on the team.

  27. As I watched on league pass rather than MSG- was there any word during the MSG broadcast on why McGrady sat all of the 4th & overtime? I’m assuming they just want to limit his minutes.

    Nice to win the point in the paint & fta battles for once.

    And while AH could have made things a lot easier by making free throws I have to give credit where credit is due- no way the Knicks win without him tonight; he even played pretty good defense on Blatche in the second half (though he remains one of the worst team defenders in the league).

  28. Really, Gallo’s improved defense has made up for his tentative offense for me, especially considering it is very very likely that he is playing with a bum arm (therefore he is more hesitant than normal to shoot, but not hesitant at all on defense).

  29. Does seem like Gallo is physical enough to be a 4-man, though his rebounding is weak for that spot. Next to a legit 5 or an offense-focused team could work nicely.

  30. No one watching tonight? WOW. Sergio alley oop to Walker – perfect. The defense is bad though. Lots of rookie missed assignments.

  31. Walker takes a lot of ugly 3 pointers.
    God, we need height and length in the post on defense so badly. Gasol and Z-bo are both playing a foot over the Knicks.

  32. No game tread for the Knicks vs. Grizzlies game and only ess-dog seems to be around..must be the weekend blues and the Knicks trail this one by 4. Hope another win is in the offing for this one.

  33. Ha, yeah Dz79, at the in-laws tonight. Pretty entertaining game actually, despite the complete lack of interior D from both squads. And Gallo again, disappointing. He needs to learn to get involved in every play, not just a few here and there.

  34. Gallo’s a pretty tough bastard though. Blocks Z-bo’s shot from right under the basket and then rips down the board… then hits a SWEET three to tie the game!

  35. We should’ve traded Lee at the deadline. I just hope we can use him in a sign and trade for Bosh this summer.

  36. The play that signifies how little DLee cares about defense was when Zbo was doubled down on the left block and spun into the middle of the lane. David’s right there but literally just stands there as Z puts in the layup. The announcers gush about how he finds space when there is none, and I agree. David Lee is spaced on D.

    I’ve read bits and pieces over the past couple years that say David is a bit Zbo-like in his mindset towards getting nice stats, especially rebounds. I’ve usually discounted them, but when I see shit like that I see a nice player, but not one who’s doing his best to get a win. What’re you saving your fouls for, David?

  37. Probably saving it for next year when he’ll be playing for a different team who would be willing to overspend for him. Your offense and rebound is nice on the stat sheets but your apparent lack of athleticism and effectiveness on D would always be a liability. I say ADIOS to you!

    Maybe the great JJ imparted his wisdom to Gallo prior to being traded that its okay to fumble in the offense and simply make it up in D. Hopefully next year we do get a decent center to man the paint and Lebron of course…

  38. Don’t get me wrong. I want Lee back next year. He was a PG when he was younger so he has the court vision(Kevin Love isn’t the only one big man with outlets), the ability to finish which can be under appreciated at times, …why am I extolling his virtues on THIS site? I just want him to give a damn on defense and pretend he cares that he wins games this season. I think there’s something to be said for having your entire professional career gestate in an atmosphere of constant losing, “what’s the point”, and “get mine”, but I really think he has even more to give as the culture around the team continues to change.

    I just want the matador shit to stop.

  39. I wrote about this issue awhile ago, but I’ll raise it again since there is no thread. My preference is for a team to have players that specialize in the skill set that corresponds with their position. I like to see a point guard with court vision, a handle and passing skills. Similarly, the other players should excel in what their position calls for on the court. My opinion is based on two factors: (1) I prefer to watch kind of old school hoop, not run and gun. (2) With several notable exceptions (e.g., LBJ), basketball players , like any other professional, require a sharply honed, sometime narrow skill set. When you get a team of players with these different skills playing unselfishly as a team, IMO, you get synergistic beautiful hoop. This sounds quite subjective, but I bet it can be measured. In my view, when you get 5 athletic players running up and down trying to ‘make shots’, you sometimes achieve excitement, but little real success. Starting with this premise, I would like to see the Knicks try to achieve this type of balance. They certainly need a real center like Bosh. I love Lee, but a 4/5 must have a greater physical presence on D. I know he’s popular, but I have little use for Gallo. I know he’s very young and has a great shot, but he is 6′ 10″ and seems do little but occasionally block a shot. Getting back to my point, what is his role? Chandler may have the skill set for a 3, but I really do not see him as a 4. As far as guards, all I can say is wow. On an optimistic note, the Knicks will clear cap room and the team will be blown up. If we can sign LBJ, we will need to sign someone like Bosh. None of the current players should be or will be safe. Finally, I have many concerns about Coach D and his view of how the game should be played. With a player like LBJ or even Wade, this will not be an issue, as they will run the team. Stay tuned.

  40. Robert Silverman inadvertently (I think) quoted Ben Stiller’s “Dodgeball” movie in his analysis of Knicks trades… weak.

    Zach Randolph was a monster last night. We could use a guy like that. Maybe, also, a Jamal Crawford type for some offensive punch. I hear Nate Robinson will be an unrestricted FA this off season. What do you guys think of him?

    David Lee is a great player. We actually won against the Wizards because he took a shot in a crucial possession. Imagine that, a shot from close in when we need a bucket. Still, he’s not a center and we lose almost every game because he plays out of position. Does anyone else think our coach is overrated?

    The thing that burns me the most is how comfortable opponents feel against our team. You can sense their confidence. The best players feel they can set records. Journeymen have career nights. Ex Knicks come in and just embarrass the hell out of us. No pride. No Fight.

    Oh except it did get chippy. You can see the frustration. Gallo is lucky Marc Gasol didn’t knock his block off last night after his post whistle elbow. What’s up with him anyway? Harrington launches more shots in one quarter than our young “prodigy” does in a week.
    We were supposed to be competitive this year, weren’t we?

  41. I don’t know if it’s too early and my sarcasm meter is broken, butwha? I’ve actually read in comments at other sites that people want Zach/Crawford back, too. Has the walk through the desert been that long?

    People blame the coach for poor execution at the end of games. For our horrendous offense/defense. For some guy in the stands ordering Heineken and getting a Bud(apologies to McGrady). Some of these things, yeah, he’s culpable because he’s the coach and the buck stops with him, but these were all shit before he got here. Does Lee have some kind of Mutumbo-like defensive potential D’antoni is incapable of bringing out or something? The guy’s an undersized C, just like Bosh, with very comparable stats especially if you compare contracts. Who on the roster would you trust to start at the 5 every game other than him?

    I could go on but the point is this roster was built more on the bones of Isiah’s roster and for their cap space potential, not championship potential. Let’s try not to prove everyone right when they say NY’ers can’t abide rebuilding seasons in order to get the ship right again. That’s led to the patchwork-type team building and culture of losing that has gone on since the Layden years. That’s why it’s almost Mets-like how players who come here seem to lose 40% of their game, and then suddenly have a career rejuvenation elsewhere. That’s why we get no respect from opposing players, because they know our own players aren’t really into the game and we turn low-rents into all-stars. I’ve been waiting for cap space since ’96, and hope since 2000, and I trust the current management to know what to do with it.

  42. GAx,
    Yeah, sarcasm re Randolph-Crawford.

    I just hope that if we whiff on LBJ-Wade we don’t end up with a repeat of the max contract hell we just lived through.

    I do think D’Antoni gets off too easily. I mean, a journeyman 7 footer could probably have improved us defensively. Darko must have shown absolutely nothing in practice to get no minutes. Either that or our coach seriously thinks we can make up for poor interior defense by shooting three point shots.

    I also think Dodgeball was a really bad movie and Robert Silverman shouldn’t steal lines from it.

  43. Roadking, the style you’re talking about more or less describes the Spurs. Tony Parker is the only player with an untraditional skillset for his position, but the key to the Spurs’ success is that Popovich knows how to make players play within themselves. What you see in the end is unselfish play. Players realized that the game is not all about them. What you lose (and the reason why the NBA has been trying to shift the rules so as to make the Spurs’ ways less successful) is creativity. Players never make risky plays or try to do what they aren’t sure they can. The game becomes very methodical.

    Most other championship teams have at least one player who does lots of things well. Jordan, Kobe… even Chauncey Billups takes liberties/risks that Popovich would have squelched. The problem is you can’t have every player trying to be that transcendent player.

    As far as the knicks go, if I’m Donnie Walsh, I listen to offers for Lee. If you can pick up two players who can be effective contributors as starters and have reasonable salaries in exchange for Lee in a sign and trade, I think you have to take that offer. Lee is in his prime. He might get a little better, but really what more can you ask of him? It seems to me that he’s getting the most out of his skills that he can.

  44. It’s not like David Lee has ever been particularly good at defense, but that doesn’t mean he’s not a very, very good player, and it doesn’t mean a team can’t win with him.

    A couple of years back, I’d say stuff like “Well, if David Lee is your best player, you’re not going very far.” After the first T-Mac game, I thought .. this is (was) probably the best player David ever played with. But T-Mac is looking pretty cooked, and he’s over the hill anyway.

    Point being: D Lee can’t do it alone. If he leaves the Knicks, I could see him going to the Thunder and being a perfect fit for a team that is: A. already good defensively, B. offensively challenged outside of Durant, C: doesn’t have a great rebounder. A team that masks his limitations would be ideal.

    As for the matador D .. the Knicks have NOBODY else in the frontcourt. What is David supposed to do? Getting into foul trouble will kill the Knicks chances, but as it is, teams with legitimate front court players are abusing this Knick team.

    Season’s over.

  45. Yeah, if I were Lee I would give serious thought to going to OKC. He would be a perfect fit there. They have the third best defense and just the 18th best offense in the league.

  46. So how about the newest rumor about Lebron wanting to play for Phil Jackson with the Lakers, OR if not then Phil Jackson becomes the head coach of the Knicks this off-season bringing Lebron James with him to NY.

    This summer cant come soon enough, if anything to stop all the rumors….

  47. Latke: My franchise model goes back to the 69-73 Knicks. With re: creativity, I think knowing where your guys are and what they are doing enhances creativity, for those select players, like Clyde and Monroe. I don’t want to see a fascist system, but laissez faire with regular players is awful to watch. Again with the true top shelf player, not an issue, except for the supporting cast. I do not like the idea of so-called athletic players chucking the ball up as quickly as possible. It might be my generation, but I believe many of my peers would agree. Of course, this is not to say athleticism isn’t important. Anyway, I just wanted to state my preference to guys that do their job in their respective position. If I needed surgery, i’d go to a surgeon, not a dermatologist. If I want someone to pass me the ball, I want a point guard, not a swing man.

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