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Thursday, October 2, 2014

2011 Game Thread: Knicks @ Heat

For your in-post game thoughts.

324 comments on “2011 Game Thread: Knicks @ Heat

  1. Peter87

    Well, the Lakers did even worse against the Heat than we did…let’s hope we can manage to win this one, although if LeBron plays like he did last time it’s not very likely.

    BTW, it seems to me that the refs are allowing more contact lately, does anyone agree with me? I kind of like it…it seems to me that it rewards true skills (making shots, or driving at the right moment) rather than just ‘drive to the basket and pick up an easy foul’. It’s not a skillfull play to drive to the basket when there are a bunch of defenders underneath, and I’d be happy to see it be less rewarded. Anyone agree with me?

  2. Peter87

    P.S. I’d like to point out with pride that this is my second time with the first comment, and I’ve had the self-control not to say “firsties” either time :-D doh! I just ruined it all…

  3. Spree8nyk8

    It’s bad luck to not do it, but oh well……..

    If the same refs are working this game as the last time we played the Heat we have a 0% chance of winning…..

  4. Spree8nyk8

    Peter87: P.S.I’d like to point out with pride that this is my second time with the first comment, and I’ve had the self-control not to say “firsties” either time:-D doh!I just ruined it all…  

    PS: This comment makes you look like a jackass….

  5. BIG STAT

    Spree8nyk8: It’s bad luck to not do it, but oh well……..If the same refs are working this game as the last time we played the Heat we have a 0% chance of winning…..  

    I agree with this. It’s difficult when they let it play on our end, but whenever LBGay and Wade get a little bump, the whistle is guaranteed to blow.

  6. Spree8nyk8

    BIG STAT:
    I agree with this.It’s difficult when they let it play on our end, but whenever LBGay and Wade get a little bump, the whistle is guaranteed to blow.  

    That accompanied by “nothing is a foul on the other end” definitely is tough to overcome. Last game in the third quarter it seemed like Miami was actually trying to find out how hard they could hit someone before a foul would be called. And honestly, if a game got that crazy with the “letting them play” thing going that far, if I were a player I would have flagrantly fouled someone just to get them to put a leash on the game. Because at least in that instance for the most part they will tighten up on both ends. But of course I hope it doesn’t come to that tonight.

  7. Spree8nyk8

    Sorry STAT I slightly misread what you wrote, you had already pointed out the let it play on our end issue and I didn’t realize it. I was laughing to hard at the LBgay thing…

  8. marxster

    Difficult one tonight to say the least. Let’s see what the boys have in store for us.
    Let’s go Knicks.

  9. BIG STAT

    @Spree: Honestly thats my big problem with the NBA, that it’s a “star’s league” and I think Stern oughta do something about it, but it seems like he likes it/ thinks it has improved the league under his watch. A travel should be a travel should be a travel, and call’s should be the same regardless of who has the ball. If the league can’t change that, it’s going to keep getting worse as it has the last few years. The league’s diva’s have become too accustomed to having the games called as if it’s a soap opera in which they’re the stars.

  10. Spree8nyk8

    I agree with you 100%, but honestly, I don’t mind stars picking up the tick tack fouls from time to time nearly as much as I mind the refs ignoring blatant fouls like they did in that last heat/knicks game (and also the last 2 mins of the Boston NYK game). That craps gotta stop immediately.

  11. jaylamerique

    I like the knicks just as much as the next guy but there is no way we win this game. The Heat defense is too good. Another thing i dont think we’ve ever beaten a LBJ team.

  12. daJudge

    Nice thing about this game is that if the Knicks win, it’s not a fluke. They may not, but have a legitimate shot. They are a good team. They will be (or can be) in every game, barring injuries. Let’s get ready to rumble.

  13. ruchop

    I don’t expect a win. We’ll see if we can steal one in miami.
    -Pound the inside and kick-out when double teamed.
    -Grab rebounds.
    -Felton needs to take over this game. He should impose himself on arroyo.

    Go Knicks Go.

  14. ess-dog

    Yeah I think Felton is the key tonight. He has to spread the ball AND score a lot on Arroyo. The 1 and the 4 are probably the weak spots on D for the Heat (if there is one) so hopefully Stat/Ray can go to work. Just watch out for LBJ coming on the weakside of the p and r. They don’t have a great chance, but it feels great to know we can play with these guys. I’m pretty psyched, even though I have to listen to the radio and post on the iPhone. Go Knicks!

  15. Mulligan

    Good god, watching the feed on ATDHE. Who is this douche doing the pregame stuff? I really hope he doesn’t call the rest of the game…

  16. BIG STAT

    They really do that on the jumbotron every home game???? I really hope these guys never win a single title, let alone the 7 or whatever James said they would do at the pep rally.

    :::Head Explodes:::

  17. Darrell H.

    Mulligan: Good god, watching the feed on ATDHE. Who is this douche doing the pregame stuff? I really hope he doesn’t call the rest of the game…  (Quote)

    Yeah. Bob Cousy South!

  18. BigBlueAL

    I dont think Ive ever seen Gallo make a 3pter when he wasnt set properly. When he just rushes or forces a 3pter its always way off.

  19. BigBlueAL

    BigBlueAL: I dont think Ive ever seen Gallo make a 3pter when he wasnt set properly.When he just rushes or forces a 3pter its always way off.  

    BTW I know you can say this about all shooters but Im just saying for someone who takes and makes so many 3pters Gallo you would think would occasionally luck into an ugly 3pter like we see Felton do from time to time.

  20. Michael Cline

    Felton looks good so far. He looks really amped up. Very feisty, jawing at the Heat players. He just has a very pissed off look about him

  21. JK47

    Oy, the rebounding. The rebounding.

    Wilson Chandler at the 4 just does not cut it. We absolutely, positively need somebody who can grab a damn rebound.

  22. Doug

    hoolahoop: Does anyone think the knicks need an enforcer at the 5 or 6 position?  

    The 6? Well, I guess if we had a sixth guy on the court, things would be a lot easier.

  23. Spree8nyk8

    This opponent right here is the only reason I wish the Knicks would make a trade. I don’t see us ever being good enough to beat them. And I’m not talking about this game, I mean in a series. I can’t see it happening now, next year, the year after….

  24. Michael Cline

    I’m not completely giving up on the game. I don’t think we’ll win, but I think we will make it a bit more respectable, at least more respectable than this. But if we can’t rebound, it’s over.

  25. Thomas B.

    You counteract big Z with his polar opposite. Get me Anthony Randolph.

    They should stop moving those rims every time Felton and Gallo shoot.

  26. Doug

    Thomas B.: You counteract big Z with his polar opposite. Get me Anthony Randolph.

    So I’m not so insane for thinking the same thing! Just put Randolph in the game and tell him to do nothing but get every single rebound.

  27. d-mar

    Guys, regardless of whether we lose this game by 3 or 30, it’s a road game against the hottest team in the NBA. We’ll be 18-13 when it’s over, still comfortably in the 5 or 6 spot, and maybe we steal one in Orlando. I’d like to see them make a stand in this game, but it’s no reason to panic.

  28. Doug

    d-mar: Guys, regardless of whether we lose this game by 3 or 30, it’s a road game against the hottest team in the NBA. We’ll be 18-13 when it’s over, still comfortably in the 5 or 6 spot, and maybe we steal one in Orlando. I’d like to see them make a stand in this game, but it’s no reason to panic.  

    In my head I know that it’s true, but in my heart it’s tough to see the Knicks get stymied like this.

  29. Spree8nyk8

    D’Antoni is going to have to play Amar’e with a big man next to him. I don’t really see another way.

  30. BigBlueAL

    Jesus Christ Gallo, you have James freakin Jones covering you and all you can do is pump fake, take 1 dribble before picking it up then giving the ball up??

  31. Michael Cline

    Doug:
    In my head I know that it’s true, but in my heart it’s tough to see the Knicks get stymied like this.  

    Sure. And no one here is thinking we should win this game. But I disagree that it’s ok to lose by 30 (I realize that is not exactly what you said, but it’s implied). I want to see us fight. The second we start to get complacent and expect to lose by 20+ to the teams we should lose to, we will start losing games we should win.

    I’d be happy if we kept this under 20.

  32. d-mar

    Michael Cline:
    Sure. And no one here is thinking we should win this game. But I disagree that it’s ok to lose by 30 (I realize that is not exactly what you said, but it’s implied). I want to see us fight. The second we start to get complacent and expect to lose by 20+ to the teams we should lose to, we will start losing games we should win.
    I’d be happy if we kept this under 20.  

    Your wish shall be granted

  33. Spree8nyk8

    d-mar: Guys, regardless of whether we lose this game by 3 or 30, it’s a road game against the hottest team in the NBA. We’ll be 18-13 when it’s over, still comfortably in the 5 or 6 spot, and maybe we steal one in Orlando. I’d like to see them make a stand in this game, but it’s no reason to panic.  

    And this argument will make us a perennial threat to be a 4-6 seed. Not that it’s bad this year, but this team is gonna be there EVERY year for the next 5-6 years.

  34. Michael Cline

    Douglas can miss 4 or 5 terrible shots and then out of nowhere hit one. It’s maddening.

    And other than Fields, no one on our team can rebound.

  35. Michael Cline

    It would be so nice if Turiaf had some offense. What happened to those 12 footers he was hitting so routinely to start the year? He’s wide open tonight and not even thinking about pulling the trigger.

    Instead, he gives it to Douglas he is looking like a black-hole tonight.

  36. hoolahoop

    Doug:
    The 6? Well, I guess if we had a sixth guy on the court, things would be a lot easier.  

    I meant the 4 or 5, but the with an extra guy on the court the knicks may have a chance.

  37. Michael Cline

    What’s Amare bitching about? That was just a terrible attempt to draw a foul. He threw himself at the defender. Shut up and play basketball.

  38. Spree8nyk8

    Michael Cline: What’s Amare bitching about? That was just a terrible attempt to draw a foul. He threw himself at the defender. Shut up and play basketball.  

    Isn’t that kind of exactly what Wade did on the other end of the floor when he ended up doing that shot from the 15 foot line twice while the clock was stopped?

  39. Spree8nyk8

    Anyone who thinks our team is ever going to develop into a team that can beat this team without adding another superstar is severely kidding themselves.

  40. Michael Cline

    Spree8nyk8:
    Isn’t that kind of exactly what Wade did on the other end of the floor when he ended up doing that shot from the 15 foot line twice while the clock was stopped?  

    How did I know that the second I talked about a foul call, Spree would be there to comment?

    I’m not going to get into, accept to say NO, Wade didn’t do the same thing.

  41. Michael Cline

    Amare just got shook out of his jock by Bron Bron.

    Wade got away with a nice shove in the back of fields on that board. That’s all folks.

  42. Spree8nyk8

    God damn it, nothing goes to the rim.

    And yeah this is where we need a Carmelo Anthony. He could start driving the lane which we don’t seem to have a single player that can do that.

  43. Spree8nyk8

    Michael Cline:
    How did I know that the second I talked about a foul call, Spree would be there to comment?
    I’m not going to get into, accept to say NO, Wade didn’t do the same thing.  

    Guess your watching a different game…

  44. Thomas B.

    In his Croc hunter voice.

    Crikey this is a rare treat. I’ve just spotted the elusive Bill Walker here in Miami. Knick fans havent seen this in long time. When you see a Bill Walker this early in a game it can only mean one thing: The Knicks are in some serious trouble.

  45. Michael Cline

    BigBlueAL: Fields playing by far his worst game of the season so far.  

    Definitely true on the offensive end, but he’s hitting the glass well

  46. BigBlueAL

    Thing is the Knicks are actually playing good defense tonight. Heat shooting under 45% but the offensive boards killing the Knicks plus the Heat getting to the FT line.

  47. BigBlueAL

    Look at that, another offensive rebound for the Heat who continue to shoot horrible but it doesnt matter.

  48. BigBlueAL

    Damnit Chandler, extra pass to a wide-open Gallo wouldve been nice instead of pump faking, taking a dribble and giving it back to Felton to jack up a deep 3 at the end of the half.

  49. rama

    No need to worry – if we keep Bill Walker on the floor, we win this game. He had a +9 in four minutes. Eight more minutes and we take the lead!

    How he does it with no shots, no rebounds, no blocks, no steals, and one personal foul, I don’t know…but it’s working!

  50. BigBlueAL

    Heat only shot 43% that half. Problem is Knicks shot 36% while the Heat attempted 12 more FT’s and outrebounded them 30-17.

  51. ess-dog

    BigBlueAL: Fields playing by far his worst game of the season so far.  

    I knew when I heard him doing a pregame interview with Andres that it would be a jinx…

  52. Doug

    BigBlueAL: Thing is the Knicks are actually playing good defense tonight.Heat shooting under 45% but the offensive boards killing the Knicks plus the Heat getting to the FT line.  

    BBA that’s a good observation.

    IMO this game is NOT a good argument for needing Carmelo. If we had an interior big that could vacuum up rebounds, we’d be in this game. All those second chance points would be negated.

    *Anthony Randolph signal lights up the Gotham night sky*

    And WHOA Artest is rocking the full Rodman hair. I love it.

  53. BigBlueAL

    rama: No need to worry – if we keep Bill Walker on the floor, we win this game.He had a +9 in four minutes.Eight more minutes and we take the lead!How he does it with no shots, no rebounds, no blocks, no steals, and one personal foul, I don’t know…but it’s working!  

    LMAO

  54. Doug

    rama: No need to worry – if we keep Bill Walker on the floor, we win this game.He had a +9 in four minutes.Eight more minutes and we take the lead!How he does it with no shots, no rebounds, no blocks, no steals, and one personal foul, I don’t know…but it’s working!  

    He defended Lebron pretty well on that one possession, forcing him into an off-balance midrange jumper. Other than that, I am forced to conclude that Walker is a better glue guy than Fields and should take his minutes. Well, see ya!

  55. BigBlueAL

    Doug:
    BBA that’s a good observation.IMO this game is NOT a good argument for needing Carmelo. If we had an interior big that could vacuum up rebounds, we’d be in this game. All those second chance points would be negated.
    *Anthony Randolph signal lights up the Gothamnight sky*And WHOA Artest is rocking the full Rodman hair. I love it.  

    Well considering how horrible the offense was I think it might be a good example for “needing” Melo. I dont think the Knicks need him or should get him considering the price of both players and/or money but to say he wouldnt help this team I think is wrong.

  56. Frank O.

    A lot to be happy about. The Knicks took a pounding on the boards, and still they are within 13.
    If they keep up how they finished the second, by the fourth this game could be tied or the Knicks could be up.
    Heat is not shooting well. Knicks are challenging shots. They have to watch the silly fouls.
    If iggy isn’t getting all those put backs in the first, this is a different game.
    They need to keep playing their game, making the passes, moving the ball and maybe hitting a few more 3s, and this game could turn their way.

    Stat is due to blow up too. He seemed to solve Anthony toward the end of the half.

    Give it time. A lot of game to play. If this was a 20 point lead, I’d have my doubts.
    Now, the Heat is going to come out hard and try to knock the Knicks out. Need to pressure the ball and force the Heat into taking bad shots. Wade and Lebron from 3 pt is great for us. We win if those guys settle for those shots.

  57. Doug

    BigBlueAL:
    Well considering how horrible the offense was I think it might be a good example for “needing” Melo.I dont think the Knicks need him or should get him considering the price of both players and/or money but to say he wouldnt help this team I think is wrong.  

    You’re right. What I meant behind that statement was that a rebounding big is a much bigger need, and that I think the addition of one has more marginal value than adding a potent wing scorer.

  58. Spree8nyk8

    The Heat are just so good at finding a good at finding a great shot with like 2 seconds left on the shotclock.

  59. Brian Cronin

    It makes absolutely zero sense not to call the contact at midcourt. When do you ever see that not called? Wade’s not even in foul trouble!!

  60. Doug

    For anyone else who read the draftexpress.com piece on Landry Fields written by John Treutlein – he mentioned that when Landry drives, he either takes a straight line right to the hoop, or he takes two dribbles and kicks it out if his way is blocked.

    Landry did the two dribbles, stop, and kickout and it was really cool to read about it, then see it for myself.

  61. Spree8nyk8

    ess-dog: If Gallo makes 2 threes and Shawne makes 1 in the first half, we’re right in this…  

    Surprisingly, they are right in this. Maybe this will be a tale of two halves like last time.

  62. Brian Cronin

    Such a dumb play by Amar’e, cost them that possession and the transition bucket the other way.

  63. GHenman

    Doug: For anyone else who read the draftexpress.com piece on Landry Fields written by John Treutlein – he mentioned that when Landry drives, he either takes a straight line right to the hoop, or he takes two dribbles and kicks it out if his way is blocked.Landry did the two dribbles, stop, and kickout and it was really cool to read about it, then see it for myself.  (Quote)

    ditto

  64. Frank O.

    Chandler is a tough match up for the Heat. Knicks need to exploit that more. Chandler is the hottest Knick.

  65. art vandelay

    With such a thin bench…basically if the knicks don´t get solid contributions from just about every starter, they will lose….tonight they have gotten absolutely nothing from Gallo and Fields…tough way to win night in, night out….small margin for error and really not be sustainable long-term.

  66. art vandelay

    btw, I have noticed this season that TD suffers from the Chris Duhon disease….guy absolutely cannot finish at the rim to save his life!

  67. Brian Cronin

    Toney doesn’t suck – he just isn’t a guy who should be making decisions. Spot-up three-point shooter? That works. Decision maker? Not so much.

  68. BigBlueAL

    TD w/o the ball on offense and just catch and shooting is great. TD w/ball in his hands on offense is awful. lol

  69. Frank O.

    BTW, I disagree with the comments about the Knicks O.
    They have one of the top offenses in the game. The fact of the matter is the Heat has one of the best Ds in the game.
    And for whatever reason the Knicks are missing too many open looks.

  70. BigBlueAL

    Frank O.: BTW, I disagree with the comments about the Knicks O.
    They have one of the top offenses in the game. The fact of the matter is the Heat has one of the best Ds in the game.
    And for whatever reason the Knicks are missing too many open looks.  

    Knicks lit up the #2 and 3 defenses in the league in Boston and Chicago but yeah the Heat has been a different story.

  71. Mulligan

    Gotta hand it to our guys, they’re not playing the way they want to play, but they’re right in this. Let’s keep it going and surprise these jerks.

  72. Brian Cronin

    Wade is getting away with absolute murder on defense.

    He really is. The midcourt one was the one that was really maddening to me. He whacks Felton at midcourt!!!! You can’t not see that! And yet they didn’t see it.

  73. Frank O.

    BigBlueAL:
    Knicks lit up the #2 and 3 defenses in the league in Boston and Chicago but yeah the Heat has been a different story.  

    Exactly. They are not lacking on O. I think the point is that the Heat can match their O and they have a very good defensive team.
    I think, too, Felton struggles with very athletic guys like Wade. He’s a bit off his game.

  74. BIG STAT

    Worst. Officiating. Ever.

    It’s just not be called the same at both ends. Wade get’s tapped he gets the call, meanwhile Felton is being forced to limp up and down the court.

  75. Nick C.

    You gotta be kidding me!! Chandler grazes Wade’s arm, if that, and it’s a foul but Wade knocked down Felton a few plays earlier and nothing. Tough to overcome that all game long.

  76. BigBlueAL

    Of course Gallo answers with that 3pter. I have to keep reminding myself he is still only 22 yo….

  77. Frank O.

    Missing crucial shots here.
    Youth.
    This is the difference between a good team and a great team.
    They have missed some shots they needed to make, that were makable

  78. Frank O.

    So Felton gets nearly tripped by the defender, and no call. Finally a guy rakes his arm and he gets the call.

  79. BIG STAT

    LBGay just pinned the ball on his side accidently dribbling it up before the score….whats the point of even having rules anymore??? Why even make him dribble?

  80. Brian Cronin

    What was the theory behind not fouling for ten seconds?

    Heck, what was the theory behind not shooting threes the last two possessions?

  81. Frank O.

    They’re not a player away.
    they got dominated on they boards and still hung tough.
    The refs clearly favored the Heat, and they still hung tough.
    If they make some kep foul shots here they’re only four down

  82. Nick C.

    Well it looks over but they acquitted themselves well fighting right to the end and making Miami have to work for the win.

  83. Brian Cronin

    Yeah, I’m not all that distressed over this game. It’s a great opponent and they were down 6 shooting three free throws with a little over a minute left. Pretty impressive, really.

  84. steveoh

    I can’t wait for ESPN and TNT analysts who didn’t watch the game tell us how the Knicks losing in Miami proves they aren’t a very good team.

  85. BigBlueAL

    Good question on Twitter, if Knicks face Heat in a 7-game series how many games would they win if any??

    I say if the roster stays the same they pull out either Game 3 or 4 at home and lose the series in 5.

  86. Brian Cronin

    Carmelo…nuff said.

    I think something more needs to be said, because I don’t know what you’re talking about.

  87. Z-man

    In a way, that was the best possible losing outcome for the Knicks. Not as gut-wrenching as the Celtics game. Kept it from being the blowout it looked like it was gonna be. It took some superstar shots by Wade and LeBron to ice the game. Still in the game until the Rook misses 2 of 3 from the line. Bottom line is, the better team won, yet we showed that they better be prepared to play all 48 minutes against us.

  88. marxster

    In all fairness to Donnie Walsh, he’s not finished with his work. At the beginning of the season, a reasonable expectation was “to get into the playoffs”. Well, we’re comfortably in the playoffs, but we want more.

    Lots of positives here…team didn’t quit and got within 3 even though it looked liked they were going to get blown out early.
    This team is not going anywhere without some more trades.

    Heard Alan Hahn say that Donnie is more interested in Ramon Sessions than Telfair for backup point guard.

    If we can get Melo for Gallo, TD and Eddy Curry, I’m all for it.

    Then we need a big.

  89. BigBlueAL

    Magic hit 19 3pters today in blowing out the Cavs, have won 4 in a row and seem to be gelling now. Not a good sign for the Knicks on Thursday, although I think the Knicks can score at will on them if they are hot because after the trades the Magic got alot worse defensively on the perimeter.

  90. el-beau

    I’m proud of the boys. Clyde’s commentary was spectacular. I especially liked when the heat’s bench got a technical late in the fourth quarter and Clyde responded that you gotta have respect for the game. Boo ya.

    Quick tidbits:
    Chandler is tough and gorgeous.
    Felton is a precise passer but should not shoot unless he’s on the foul line.
    I like when amare gets angry. He had good reason-the refs were punishing him for smart play.
    Gallo needs to go to boot camp and become a man. He’s so talented and a great shooter but is still timid. He needs more competitive aggression.
    Laundry, Pressure. under pressure. I still love you.
    Turiaf-continue with the intensity but loose the needless fouls. Watch your arms, man. I too have long arms and know what it’s like to feel wild.
    That’s all for tonight. Shout out to the wench.

  91. BigBlueAL

    Z-man: I think we match up much better with the Magic than with the Heat, but we’ll see…  

    Problem will be seeing Amar’e try to cover Dwight Howard.

  92. art vandelay

    I think honestly any other potential knick trade scenario or maneuver is on hold until the Melodrama sorts itself out….knicks kind of have their hands tied because it is really difficult to upgrade the roster short-term with back-up PG or a big to hold STAT download without a) taking on longer-term contracts that would take away our ability to offer max contract to melo or b) trading an asset that could be used in melo trade…consequently, I really don´t see the team addressing any of its short-term needs until they know for sure they are out of the melo sweepstakes or acquire him..not until either one of those things occurs at least.

  93. itztiz

    First Post, been lurking for awhile but I had to post after this game. This loss exposed the Knicks need for a big man to keep guys like Big Z from getting Allstar numbers in the paint. Turiaf did OK when he was out there but rebounding and interior D seem to be a reoccurring Weakness for this team. Dwade is a major mismatch and Toney D and Raymond Felton do a good job but its not nearly as good as having Azubuike(can’t wait to see him play) and Landry Fields putting 4 quarters of pressure on him. I’ve been loving Wilson Chandler who is quickly becoming a go to guy for quick offense. It was a great game sometimes the ball doesn’t fall and the other team gets it the calls.

  94. BigBlueAL

    itztiz: First Post, been lurking for awhile but I had to post after this game. This loss exposed the Knicks need for a big man to keep guys like Big Z from getting Allstar numbers in the paint. Turiaf did OK when he was out there but rebounding and interior D seem to be a reoccurring Weakness for this team. Dwade is a major mismatch and Toney D and Raymond Felton do a good job but its not nearly as good as having Azubuike(can’t wait to see him play) and Landry Fields putting 4 quarters of pressure on him. I’ve been loving Wilson Chandler who is quickly becoming a go to guy for quick offense. It was a great game sometimes the ball doesn’t fall and the other team gets it the calls.  

    I think you are going to be waiting a very long time to see Azubuike play. I dont think he will ever play in a game for the Knicks.

  95. daJudge

    Hate to be a downer, but the Heat will get better too—especially in the playoffs. While I’m happy the Knicks hung tough, I thought the score was not really indicative of the game. Maybe a better outing by Landry and/or Gallo would have altered the result. I haven’t checked the box score. Anyway, don’t you all think the Knicks need a rebounding, shot blocking, outlet passing presence at center over any other perceived need? On to Orlando.

  96. GHenman

    daJudge: Hate to be a downer, but the Heat will get better too—especially in the playoffs. While I’m happy the Knicks hung tough, I thought the score was not really indicative of the game. Maybe a better outing by Landry and/or Gallo would have altered the result. I haven’t checked the box score. Anyway, don’t you all think the Knicks need a rebounding, shot blocking, outlet passing presence at center over any other perceived need? On to Orlando.  (Quote)

    I don’t think D’Antoni will play anyone who can’t shoot. That’s why I threw Frye’s name out there.

  97. d-mar

    GHenman:
    Only if Amare can stay out of foul trouble against Howard.  

    I think you’ve gotta throw Mozgov out there at some point on Thursday and let him hack away at Dwight. He’s actually very skilled in that regard.

  98. GHenman

    d-mar: I think you’ve gotta throw Mozgov out there at some point on Thursday and let him hack away at Dwight. He’s actually very skilled in that regard.  (Quote)

    Good idea. Hope D’Antoni uses him

  99. John Kenney

    There’s absolutely no way Washington includes McGee in that trade. He’s so young and cheap, why wouldn’t they want to keep him as a piece to build around with Wall?
    If we could finagle Hinrich tho, I’m all for it… this assuming that we use Curry to get a center.

    Thomas B.: If Washington wants to speed up the tanking and save some money next year. We could use the big and the bench depth.
    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=238y64vThat team could fight for a top 4 spot in the east.  

  100. massive

    The Wizards will at least sell tickets starting John Wall, Nick Young, Josh Howard, Rashard Lewis, and Javale McGee. I doubt that they trade McGee, he’s their 2nd best player.

    Amar’e dunked on LeBron. I must own that poster.

  101. Z

    Sorry to have missed this game. Thanks to everyone who posted on the thread. I felt like I was watching the DVR of the game. When Frank O. Said “down 1″ and “come on rook” I could honestly feel the tension. May have been more fun that watching this one :)

  102. Z-man

    It seems that we just don’t match up physically vs. Miami. We got absolutely murdered on the boards. Besides LeBron and Wade, Joel Anthony is a very, very good defender, he could be their Rodman/Ben Wallace-type. Our babes have to muscle up if we ever want to truly compete with them.

  103. daJudge

    Tommy Dee reporting that McGee is actually on the trading block. At first blush, I think he might be a good fit on this team. I love Thomas B’s trade, but I don’t think the Wizards would bite. There are many other possibilities though to acquire this nice young defensive big.

  104. Frank

    Pains me to say it but Bosh absolutely killed us on isolation plays last night. Chandler is good enough to guard probably 50% of the 4′s in this league, but some of the more athletic top-flight 4′s will eat him alive like Bosh did last night. I would have liked to see D’Antoni put Amare on Bosh and let Chandler guard Joel Anthony and roam on help defense when he was in the game. IMO you can’t be a superstar PF/C unless you are guarding the best PF/C on the other team.

    Randolph might have done reasonably well against Bosh as well. He must really be sucking it up in practice/workouts.

  105. daJudge

    If you live by mismatches, you die by mismatches. I think sometimes you have to just match up. Chandler and Amare burn by many 4′s and 5′s, but also get burnt by the elites. We need a big stopper to match up in those situations. As our expectations rise, we will need to face up and match up to teams that have these elites. At least defensively. We could still then use situational mismatches when appropriate. I really don’t think AR or Moz can get the job done, at least at this time. I’m not sure if giving them burn would help.

  106. d-mar

    @229
    I was thinking about Randolph vs. Bosh also, Frank. I guess he’s just so clueless on offense, that D’Antoni can’t afford to have him out there even for 5 minutes. Pretty sad.

    On another note, Tim Duncan goes 1-7 with 4 rebounds and the Spurs beat the Lakers by 15? Wow. I guess we’ll see first hand next week the secret to their success, IMO a lot of it is Popovich, still the most underrated coach in the NBA despite his success.

  107. Thomas B.

    John Kenney: There’s absolutely no way Washington includes McGee in that trade. He’s so young and cheap, why wouldn’t they want to keep him as a piece to build around with Wall?
    If we could finagle Hinrich tho, I’m all for it… this assuming that we use Curry to get a center.
      

    Its a long shot I acknowledge that. But here in DC we’ve read reports that McGee has beef with Blatche. So maybe the Wiz want to address that. And its not like they wont get a young cheap big back in the deal with Randolph. Honestly I see Randolph for Mcgee as a push. Randolph could be as effective as Mcgee if they let him play a bit. They are about equal in offensive lostness.
    Basically, Mcgee is the price they pay to get out of the last year of Hinrich’s deal. The Wiz save money and still have a young cheap thin rebounding shot blocking offensive dead zone they can stick in the middle.
    If the Knicks don’t plan to be a player in next years Free agent market (lock-out anyone?), then this couldnt hurt to much. Hinrich can back up the point way better the TDDWTDD.

  108. Thomas B.

    Just one year ago a beef between players turned into an embarrassment for the Wizards involving guns and all sorts of stupid stuff. If this fight between players is even anywhere close to being that ugly even without guns, the new owner, Ted Leonsis will put a stop to it. Mcgee isnt that good that Wiz will want alot for him.

    Trust me, I watched Mcgee play he is good at what he does rebound, block shots but he really is a push against Randolph. He is not a good passer, he can’t hit free throws, and he has no polish on the offensive game (all dunks). He rebounds very well and blocks shots. I’d hardly call him an enforcer but he is active on defense.

    I included Hinrich because we really need a back up point. TD just aint getting it done. It doesnt have to Rautins, pick any player you think would make it work.

  109. Frank

    I would love the Thomas B trade – unfortunately I don’t think the Wiz would go for it. Young 7 foot athletic shotblocking true centers have too much cache in this league and AR has lost much of his luster due to his benching and overall cluelessness. Hinrich, 31% 3P% this year notwithstanding, would be a great addition.

  110. Frank

    itztiz: Wade got 40 points on us and we’re talking about Bosh?  

    I think you pretty much have to accept whatever Wade and LeBron do on any given night and try to minimize the damage that the other lesser players do. I thought the biggest problem last night was the horrific defensive rebounding, not the defensive effort. The one part of the game where the defense was just BAD (not counting D rebounding) was in the 3rd when the NYK were trying to make a run and Bosh just scored at will 1-on-1 with WC.

  111. itztiz

    Honestly we are forgetting that Bosh is a perennial all-star and easily a top 5 PF in this league. I don’t see his contribution being enough to ignore D Wade’s easy scoring. Rebounding was definitely key in this game, I agree with you there.

  112. ess-dog

    Nick C.: Thing is Wade’s 40 included 13-16 from the line much of which was on “superstar calls”  

    A strong argument towards getting ‘Melo.

  113. tastycakes

    Tough game to watch. Never really felt like the Knicks should be in the ballgame, and yet they’d make these little mini-pushes but never really get on a strong run, or Miami would always have an answer.

    What is it about Wade that gets him all those ticky-tack calls? Man, it drives me crazy, you frickin’ breathe on the guy and he falls down and gets the call every time. It’s how they won the championship a few years back and it’s still happening!

    Landry had a pretty rough game. Overall, nobody really looked that great for more than a minute or two at a time. The bench did a respectable job again, which is nice to see.

    Knicks lose to Miami 9 out of 10 games, I think. It was an off-night for LeBron and we still had an outside shot at best.

  114. Caleb

    As a Randolph holdout, it’s frustrating to see him sitting behind a Williams/Walker combo while the Knicks are completely demolished on the boards.

    McGee is playing great but I don’t see why the Wiz wouldn’t trade him for another good prospect if they could dump those ugly salaries (i.e. Josh Howard, maybe Hinrich too) in the bargain.

    With Randolph nailed to the bench the Knicks probably aren’t in the running, but if he were on the court playing like he did the last two years, the Wiz might consider it.

    Chandler for McGee might be something to consider. Yes, Chandler is a good young player but you have to give to receive.

  115. Caleb

    p.s. With some coaches I would assume that Randolph’s “nailed to bench” status is a result of poor play in practice, but given D’Antoni’s history (“The N8Rob Memorial Doghouse”) I wouldn’t draw that conclusion.

  116. Frank O.

    I confess I have covetted Washington’s McGee all year. He’s big, athletic and a great shot blocker.
    And he’s young, meaning he will fit right in with this young squad. Just as a great center needs a PF to watch his back, a great PF also needs a center.
    A straight up JaVale for Anthony Randolph works: http://www.realgm.com/src_tradechecker/3/

    Personally, I have been unimpressed with what appears to be AR’s sulking about being on the bench, and his lack of improvement. Other young Knicks players have shown development and AR hasn’t yet. I think he hasn’t reacted well and, as a result, the well may have been poisoned with him.
    On the other hand, Washington cannot go through another Hayward/Thomas bad blood feud that runs for years. Blatche and McGee brawled outside a night club.
    The Hayward/Thomas dynamic destroyed, IMHO, the dynamics of what could have been a very good team.
    And after the weird dynamics last year involving handguns and bad blood, the Wiz will want to nip this in the bud ASAP.

    I also like Blatche; I’m just not sure D’Antoni wants another center who has fitness issues. Andre carries a little too much extra weight.
    He also carries a bigger contract. It would cost the Knicks AR and Mosgov to get him: http://www.realgm.com/src_tradechecker/3/

    Personally, I’m over AR’s seemingly limited basketball IQ, and his inability to rein in his tendency to take really selfish, kind of stupid pick-up game-like shots. Not so sure I’m ready to give up on Mosgov. It’s hard to find a legit 7-footer who moves as well as he does.

    In the end, JaVale makes the most sense. He, too, is a legit 7-footer. I think he would be an instant upgrade at center and would be a great platoon with Turiaf. And with Mosgov, that makes a nice future tandem.
    I hope Walsh is on the phone with Grunfeld right now.

  117. Frank O.

    I no longer support parting with WC.
    There were times last night where he was able to take the ball into the belly of the three-headed beast and bested them.
    He looked, at times, like the Knicks best scoring option, as Amare struggled with his Joel Anthony *issue.*
    There is something about how Anthony calls upon the ancient “Cartright against Ewing MOJO” and nullifies one of the most irresistable power forwards in the game. It’s mystifying how one of the most dispassionate players in the game not named Wilson Chandler is able to stymie Amare, but he does during swaths of the game.

    So, no, I would be very against a WC trade for JaVale. As much as I like McGee, Chandler is in a different class. WC has become incredibly efficient, which is why I’m a bit stunned to see Caleb proposing it…

  118. StevenU

    @tastycakes-agree 100% re: wades ability to bamboozle the refs and that the knicks while remaining respectable were never actually fully in the game
    i think it was the first time all season fields looked just like a rookie
    I’ve coveted Javale for two years-he’d be a great fit but I do not think AR straight up makes any sense for the Wiz-Javale is bigger, better, more mature, and a lot stronger- and from the NYK side, despite Dantonis love of a whipping boy it would be nice to see what we’ve got
    (isn’t player development part of the league? Especially when talented immature 19 year old kids come in??? With some strength training, and a little refinement this kid does have a lot of tools-including great height, speed, quickness, hops, and shot blocking ability. With AR I really think it’s “just” a matter of reining his game in a bit and learning shot selection.
    Blatche would be an awful fit-he is a VERY poor mans Amare with no compatible strengths

  119. Caleb

    @244-245 With due respect, I don’t see how you can complain about poor play or lack of development in a guy who has literally played 100 minutes all season, mostly in 4-minute spurts. (After playing a few thousand in past years). No one has any idea if his game is improving or not.

  120. ess-dog

    Don’t forget, McGee is 2 years older than AR.
    AR is crazy young and I still think he can be a great player.
    It’s just up to Walsh to determine need and who D’Antoni will actually play.
    And also don’t forget, AR is necessary to get a draft pick if we want to do a Melo trade.

  121. Caleb

    p.s. I’m not exactly proposing Chandler for McGee but I would say their value is about the same – and conventional wisdom would have it that with equal talent you take the big. Whether or not you agree, the Knicks already have at least one good small forward (Gallinari, with Fields and Randolph available) but they have no “center of the future.”

    As a 7-footer McGee has a higher ceiling but a lower floor, IMO. Is Chandler’s optimistic ceiling really better than #3 or 4 on a great team – maybe one or two All-Star games? Overall the talent swap looks about even and it would balance out the team.

    Washington might say the same on their end.

    From the Wiz perspective, the trade-killer might be that McGee has an extra year on a rookie deal, which would give the Knicks a few million in cap flexibility this summer.

    On the Knicks side, McGee is really not a D’Antoni kind of guy – he can’t shoot if he’s more than 3 feet from the basket and he’s a turnover machine – paired with Stoudemire we’d have some ugly TO numbers. I and most of the posters here probably like McGee (and his rebounding) more than D’Antoni does.

  122. Z-man

    I agree, TC. There is no question that we are not nearly as good as Miami. Or Boston. Or Orlando. Or the Lakers. Or the Spurs. Even if we steal a few games here and there, that doesn’t change the reality. This is still a star’s league and the relity is, we only have one.

    Yes, we are a young, fresh team playing in a fun system for a crafty coach. We have more trade leverage than we have had in years and a GM that is patient and smart. There are actually people who want to keep this core intact and just add role players…a rebounder, a back-up PG, etc. That is fun for now and I’m thoroughly enjoying the resurgence, but it is not gonna lead to a championship in the next 5 years.

    However, if we ever want to realistically compete with the Heat while Amar’e is still young, we need more. The Heat are starting to remind me an awful lot of the ’90s Bulls, especially on defense… and they are only going to improve as Mike Miller and later, Haslem come back. They will add FAs and draft picks along the way, just like the Bulls did, and the big 3 will make them look good, just like Jordan and Pippen did. At best, our team as currently constructed will be to the heat what the Knicks were to the Bulls in the ’90s.

    The best take on the current situation is that NY is looking like an attractive place to play, thanks to Amar’e. I think Melo is absolutely coming, and I think he will prove lots of doubters wrong.

    I also agree with d-mar that Mozgov needs to be back in the rotation. If not, send him to the D-league or something. He needs to play.

  123. StevenU

    The Knicks are clearly just not in Miami’s class right now.
    There is no shame in that, neither are 25-26 other teams.
    My one huge beef with last nights game-and only a huge beef because it is an obvious ongoing issue and well expressed by DaJudge (230).
    The general strategy of putting a 4 at the 5 and gaining quickness advantages all over the court is often a great edge on offense. In some games, in a crystal clear incredibly obvious easy to predict before the game even starts way the defensive disadvantage outweighs any offensive edge. In such situations (i.e playing a team with a legit center who can score and get offensive rebounds and tip ins) the Knicks need to match up.
    Watching Amare do his best to avoid fouls while Z goes nuts is painful when Turiaf or even Mosgov is right there on the bench ready to play aggressively, grab a rebound or two, and use some fouls, if nothing else.
    Dantonis stubbornness is his-and by extension the Knicks-biggest weakness and it slays me.
    So we watch the beginning and Z is Wilt-just as Shaq was and Howard and Lopez….I mean…I mean
    Is it just me or this a pretty simple straightforward adjustment?
    And is it just me or is the only reason the adjustment is not made is because Dantoni is incredibly stubborn, a really poor defensive coach, and a poor in game substitution guy?
    At the risk of going all Zen on the board there is a philosophy that states essentially: There is strength in yielding. In martial arts they say, be like a fir tree. Being brittle leads to breakage.
    Dantonis mind is brittle.

  124. Frank O.

    …and then there is Gallo…
    I am alternately cursing him and praising him, sometimes within seconds.
    He utterly disappeared through the first half, and then, in the third, he actually asserted himself against Lebron, and forced his will over Lebron.
    I suspect part of the problem with Gallo is that he needed to focus so much on Lebron on the defensive side of the ball.
    But when he tried to drive, when he forced the issue in the paint, he was incredibly effective, and he was able to get to the line. I want to see that Gallo. I ‘m tired of seeing the Rooster.
    I want to see an Italian Bull. I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but Gallo has muscled up. At 6’10, he’s become more physically imposing. When he stands next to Amare, he looks comparable, if not bigger, actually.
    With his size, his ability to put the ball on the floor, his touch, and his passing ability he can be very dangerous.
    And when he’s in the right mindset, he’s very tough because you have to go out to meet his shot beyond the arc. It opens up a lot.
    He was a weapon that Knicks did not exploit enough last night. They need to start making more plays for Gallo and recognizing that his game is more than a shooter..
    Gallo needs to become a Bull, a toro, a Maschio, an omone if you will ( new word for me). :)
    Gallo’s father was a thug of a player. Big, tough, an enforcer. We have seen a little of that in Gallo. Time to stir up the Italian in him. Time for him to play like and omone

  125. ess-dog

    Frank O.: I no longer support parting with WC.
      

    But let’s be honest. How many people, 2 years ago thought that WC was an expendable bonehead? Only in his 23 year old season has he been able to put it all together. And actually, AR’s 20 yr old season was much better than Chandler’s 20 yr old season.
    Who’s to say that AR won’t be as good as Chandler in a couple of years?
    Maybe you can make an argument that we are in “win now” mode and that we should trade AR for a more ready product since Amare is already 28.
    But AR could be good. He just needs more reps.

  126. Frank O.

    Caleb: p.s. I’m not exactly proposing Chandler for McGee but I would say their value is about the same – and conventional wisdom would have it that with equal talent you take the big. .  (Quote)

    I respect your views, as always. But Wilson has become very efficient. He’s the perfect guy for this team.
    And his defense has caught everyone’s attention.
    I see also that he would be an attractive get for a team like Washington, which currently has four 7-footers, but lacks an effective slasher from the wings.

    Caleb: @244-245 With due respect, I don’t see how you can complain about poor play or lack of development in a guy who has literally played 100 minutes all season, mostly in 4-minute spurts.  (Quote)

    I think what have seen has been pretty bad, mostly.
    But I have read that he’s not getting the court because he’s not showing a lot in practice either. And his quotes haven’t exactly been great. He seems disgruntled.

  127. Frank O.

    …but I too wonder about his potential.

    The patient thing to do it to wait. If you feel the team is fine as a fifth or sixth seed this year, then you wait on AR and hope he makes a leap.
    I think he can. Clearly the Knicks feel he can work this out in practice, but the quotes from Walsh and D’Antoni seem to indicate it’s going to take a while.
    But I respect your point about the time he’s played. It has been limited and he may suffer from that.
    But, frankly, I don’t think a veteran should be allowed to play himself into shape, and I don’t think a young guy can work out his shortcomings in games.
    He needs to get sorted out. The Knicks are in the thick of the hunt in the east and there is not time for OJT. Perhaps in years past that was okay. Now, they need to win games when they can and they can’t have him killing momentum as we saw him do earlier in the season, IMHO.
    .

  128. Frank

    @252 — Gallo DOES seem to be taking it to the hole much more aggressively when he actually drives. Very few of those ugly prayer flip-ups. It seems like he wants to throw it down every time he drives now — now if he could just do that more than 2x per game.

    Trouble with Gallo is that he ALLOWS himself to be uninvolved in the offense. We all want him to be an alpha dog type (or at least a beta- to Amare’s alpha) and there is no alpha that would be happy with a usage rate of 17.7. His usage rate was 19.3 last year and I think we would all be happy if it were at least around 20 especially since he is so efficient and such a great FT shooter. It seems like he is playing the Raja Bell role in this offense, which was the 4th option in PHX (behind Amare, Nash, and Marion).

    Meanwhile, how much does it say about this offense that the LOWEST TS% amongst our starters is Felton at 56.5 (which is itself 4% higher than his previous career high?). I guess this D’Antoni guy is a pretty good offensive coach.

  129. Frank O.

    ess-dog: But let’s be honest. How many people, 2 years ago thought that WC was an expendable bonehead? Only in his 23 year old season has he been able to put it all together. And actually, AR’s 20 yr old season was much better than Chandler’s 20 yr old season.Who’s to say that AR won’t be as good as Chandler in a couple of years?Maybe you can make an argument that we are in “win now” mode and that we should trade AR for a more ready product since Amare is already 28.But AR could be good. He just needs more reps.  (Quote)

    Ess:
    Hard to argue with that.
    And perhaps AR is better to be used in a package to get an elite player, rather than a role player.

    I confess, I think highly of JaVale’s potential. I recently watch live as the Wiz dismantled the coming apart Bobcats and JaVale’s length and athleticism was impressive.

    Your point about AR and WC is a solid one, tho.
    But WC never pouted. AR is slumping a bit. That could be youth. It’s certainly unscientific on my part. Probably relying on feel a bit much there. But I haven’t like his game.

  130. Frank O.

    StevenU: .Watching Amare do his best to avoid fouls while Z goes nuts is painful when Turiaf or even Mosgov is right there on the bench ready to play aggressively, grab a rebound or two, and use some fouls, if nothing else.  <A class=comment_quote_link title="Click here or select text to quote comment" onmousedown="quote('308169', document.getElementById('name308169').innerHTML, 'comment','div-comment-308169', false);try { addComment.moveForm('div-comment-308169', '308169', 'respond', '5039'); } catch(e) {}; return false;" href

    I have to say I agree with this. I have never supported the idea of Amare as center.
    Especially, when you have Mosgov, Turiaf and then AR on the team.

    But I also see what D'Antoni sees: The Knicks are close to being very good. What you give up when Mosgov plays or when Turiaf plays is a guy that can score, whether it's Amare or WC, and right now that scoring is important.

    But my inclination is to keep a big at center. Watching Amare avoid fouls is troubling, and I think he might be an awesome weakside help defender for Mosgov or Turiaf.
    I also think Mosgov needs the time. Frankly, and I may get lashed for this, I think he's closer to be an NBA big than AR is right now.
    And so what if he picks up fouls. I don't care. Use him. Use him for the 20 minutes you can get out of him. He alters shots. He's six fouls against another teams big guy.
    And he makes some plays. He doesn't try to be a guard or a slasher as AR does. He's got the footwork on PnRs, he's just got to improve his hands.

    I think D'Antoni needs to give Masgov more burn.

  131. Frank O.

    Frank: @252 — Meanwhile, how much does it say about this offense that the LOWEST TS% amongst our starters is Felton at 56.5 (which is itself 4% higher than his previous career high?). I guess this D’Antoni guy is a pretty good offensive coach.  (Quote)

    That is a great point.
    the ball movement and flow is creating great shots and most nights they knock them down.
    D’Antoni has impressed me with some of his moves, and he coaches a beautiful game.
    I do wish he would give the centers more burn. I think Amare is better at PF.

    Gallo needs to have the ball more. Period. D’Antoni would be well advised to push that. The Knicks made a point at the start of the second half to create a play for Gallo. One wonders what that game looks like if Gallo actually forced Lebron to play defense all game.
    I know it sounds weird to say, but Gallo looked like an overmatch for Lebron. James has real difficulty defending him.

  132. StevenU

    ty Frank O, I am glad I am not the only one seeing what I’m seeing.
    I know it’s out of fashion to bash Dantoni (I am even bowing to the current giddy climate and refraining from using my pet nickname for him).
    STILL, for all of his offensive “genius” his utter lack of feel for EVER altering his substitution pattern based on what is taking place on the floor is: Infuriating. Stupid. Stubborn. Irrational. The reason Pheonix did not want to resign him even after all those regular season wins
    I don’t know if it is his stubbornness or if he truly doesn’t see it. And I am not sure it matters.
    Speedball can be very fun to watch. Offense can keep a team in a game just like defense can. That’s cool.
    But would it kill him to adjust in game even once???
    I think his inability or unwillingness to communicate well is also an ongoing and very serious problem. AR looked close to becoming a player in Golden State. The Knicks traded for him. Dantoni should tell him EXACTLY what he needs to do to get in the rotation. He seems to hold himself above this sort of communication as if it is beneath his status as some sort of Guru/Coach/Genius. Not his job.
    But…it is his job. That’s the way the league is now. Whether or not it SHOULD be part of an NBA coaches job to teach it IS.

  133. Frank O.

    StevenU:
    I don’t know if it is his stubbornness or if he truly doesn’t see it. And I am not sure it matters.

    Or perhaps D’Antoni sees other benefits from committing to a solid rotation: Greater team continuity (remember Larry Brown’s and Isiah’s never ending rotations?); better team defense; and healthy competition among the subs to earn playing time.

    I’m not sure I’m ready to criticize D’Antoni for how he’s running the team. His record in Phoenix was pretty astounding, and this year, finally with some talent, he’s got this team playing every minute hard.
    But I think the flaw in his system is in the playoffs or in playoff caliber games like last night or the Celtics game last week. You need a big that can guard the boards, alter shots and impose his will in the paint.
    Of all people, Iggy hurt us last night. He got 5 O boards and they all led to points.
    I don’t look forward to playing against Howard with Amare defending. That may end badly.

    I think he compensates for the lack of a 7-footer out there by being somewhat oversized at the 3 and 2. Gallo is an enormous 3 and Fields is a very big 2.
    Fields is using his size to be very effective on the boards. Gallo isn’t playing his position big, however. At 6’10, he should be physically muscling other 3s. And he should be getting more boards than Fields.

    So, StevenU, IMHO, I respectfully disagree with your general description of D’Antoni. But I agree with your point about Amare at center wholeheartedly. The Knicks need to have a pure center out there.

  134. Brian Cronin

    Yeah, I really don’t get the usage patterns when it comes to Gallo. Remember that ugly shot he took towards the end of the game? It was a terrible, terrible shot, but at the same time, I at least could sympathize with what seemed to be “If I don’t shoot this now, I’m not getting it back.”

    He gets hot and then they just stop giving it to him. It’s maddening. Who stops feeding the hot streak shooter?!?

    How they didn’t go back to him after his three-pointer cut it to three (on any of the next umpteen possessions) is beyond me. It seemed like a no-brainer.

  135. Frank

    StevenU — I’m not sure whether D’Antoni slept with your sister or something, but complaining to this extent about him not playing AR or Mozgov has to be one of the more tone deaf complaints I’ve heard here in a while. For all his reputation for being inflexible and not liking to develop players, he’s starting a rookie and has a guy who was the 12th man now getting major minutes (and with a TS of 78%) in Extra E Williams. He’s got Felton and Chandler playing well above their career averages. He’s got our team comfortably in the playoff hunt (90.4% probability according to Hollinger’s odds tool) and overachieving by anyone’s expectations. If anyone was to tell us in the preseason that we’d be 18-13, we’d all sign up for that in a second.

    You are just speculating as to why AR has not played yet. Maybe D’Antoni HAS told him what he needs to do and he hasn’t done it yet. Maybe he’s insubordinate in practice. Who knows? It’s hard to argue with this fact regardless of whether there is a causal relationship: when AR last received regular minutes, the Knicks were 3-8. Since then, they are 15-5, and the losses are to Boston, Miami x 2, a letdown game to the Cavs, and to a good team in Atlanta. And re: his in-game adjustments — the Knicks have been a very good second half team since that collapse in Minnesota (1st Miami game notwithstanding). I just think that there are no perfect coaches in the NBA, and that currently, it appears that our coach is doing a good job.

  136. Frank O.

    Brian Cronin: He gets hot and then they just stop giving it to him. It’s maddening. Who stops feeding the hot streak shooter?!?How they didn’t go back to him after his three-pointer cut it to three (on any of the next umpteen possessions) is beyond me. It seemed like a no-brainer.  (Quote)

    Yeah, I struggle with that, too.
    It maybe a symptom of the free flowing system. If you are looking to move the ball to one hot guy, the ball in general won’t move around as much, and the open shooter is king in D’Antoni’s offense.
    Indeed, it seems like his offense requires that there only be on big dog. It’s far more difficult to defend five than it is to defend one or two.
    So, perhaps another weakness to the D’Antoni offensive scheme is the fact that it doesn’t tend to exploit the hot hand as it should in crunch time. It seems like that is easily fixed.

  137. Frank O.

    Frank: Wow – and on cue, from NBA Playbook:http://nbaplaybook.com/2010/12/29/knicks-adjust-their-offense-stay-competitive-with-the-heat/  (Quote)

    Thanks, Frank.
    Interesting read. It makes a lot of sense that if you have a hyper-athletic physically defensive team, moving the ball and finding the open shooter is most effective. It also tends to spread the floor.
    But my contention from last night was the Knicks shot poorly from 3 pt. If they knock down those shots more frequently, the Heat cannot pack in the paint as they did against Amare.
    The Heat have found a way to beat the Knicks where other teams have had less success: The Heat focus on stopping Amare and let the Knicks 3 pt shooters get their shots. Knicks hit only 29 percent from 3 pt last night.
    Last time they played, the Knicks only hit 33 percent.

    If the Knicks hit their average 37 percent from 3 pt, both those games end very differently.

  138. StevenU

    Frank, I always liked Dantoni from afar. And my feelings about him are purely basketball related nothing personal at all-I assure you. I wish him a long and happy life, I just happen to agree with Steve Kerr and Robert Sarver that he is incredibly stubborn, knows nothing about the defensive end of the court, that he has never led a team to any post season success and that unless he get s a great defensive assistant (an idea that he bristled at to the extent that he left Phoenix under a dark cloud despite all those wins) that he will never win.
    Frank O: With the talent on those Phoenix teams I think it is ridiculous to cite that tenure as validating Dantoni as a coach or a leader; those teams underachieved, and as you go on to point out: This holds true in the playoffs and in regular season games with play off intensity.
    I agree that Dantoni IS doing a good job. I just happen to believe that this specific weakness is what holds him-and his teams-back from the next level of success, and I thought that is exactly what we are going for; Not beating up bad teams, playing good teams close (close enough to lose, but retain some and exiting the first round of the playoffs.
    That rookie Landry Fields has such great maturity, savvy, and feel for the game does not in any way indicate that Dantoni has become any more flexible or adaptable. Fields is the exception, Dantoni is the same as always.
    I am also entirely unimpressed that he was forced to work Williams into the rotation when guys were getting tired and wearing down-and after he’d given up on Mosgov (too quickly?).
    I knew that anything negative regarding Dantoni would be met with resistance since the team is playing well. I still believe this problem will prevent the team from taking it to the next level.

  139. StevenU

    Frank, of course you are right that I am speculating but be assured: If AR was being insubordinate they’d suspend him. I am not even saying he should be in the rotation right now. I saw how poorly he played. I just think player development is part of the equation anytime you have players who are in that 19-23 age range. And I have seen nothing to indicate that they are helping him develop.

  140. DS

    @265 – Frank, good column.

    Just to sort of tie together all the posts I’ve read and agreed with:

    I think it’s clear from last night the Knicks need all 5 players to buy into D’Antoni’s offense, to be capable passers and poss. even ball handlers. In other, words, I think the ‘Melo talk looks more ridiculous than ever. And I feel to a greater extent, we need a (mythical?) center who will fit into the offense as well as all of the current starters but who would do a better job than Amar’e of preventing Big Z, Bosh, and Brooke Lopez from playing Bill Russell when the Knicks are on D.

    I have not watched enough of McGee but my guess is that he would slow down the Knicks’ offense if he were to start alongside Felton, Fields, Gallo, and Amar’e.

    …I think the Knicks should lock AR in the film room and make him watch film of Camby in his prime: 51% TS%, 3 APG to go along w/ his 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 3 blocks.

  141. JK47

    I think that AR is a uniquely bad fit for this system in the same way that Fields is a uniquely good fit.

    This system is good for guys who can knock down open shots, who move well without the ball, understand the concept of floor spacing and who can run the floor. Randolph can run the floor, but is abysmal in all of those other areas. He has one of the ugliest jumpers you’ll ever see and his basketball IQ is near zero. Put that guy on the floor and all the pretty ball movement and spacing go in the crapper. The more I watch this team the harder it is to imagine Anthony Randolph contributing to it. Right now we’re more than the sum of our parts because everyone on the floor is executing the SSOL concept pretty
    well. Adding a bonehead like Anthony Randolph into the mix will unravel all of that real fast.

    But the rebounding situation is dire– there’s no question about that now. A proper glass cleaner would make us a much better defensive team. Time and time again last night we played solid defense and forced an awkward shot attempt, only to see Z get an easy tip-in. Giving up tip-ins seems to be a chronic problem– I don’t know how you can resolve that without a classic big-booty 5 muscling for position and wrestling those short rebounds away.

  142. Frank O.

    StevenU:
    Frank O: With the talent on those Phoenix teams I think it is ridiculous to cite that tenure as validating Dantoni as a coach or a leader; those teams underachieved, and as you go on to point out: This holds true in the playoffs and in regular season games with play off intensity.

    Not ridiculous. There were plenty of teams in the West that had great talent that had no more playoff success than Phoenix. Did you forget how talented the West was during those years?
    I mean, the Spurs enjoying a mini-dynasty, the Lakers, Dallas and Utah were full of Hall of Fame talent. Not sure it’s fair to say they underachieved. Actually, it’s just unfair.

    Again, I agree he needs to have a true center. I just think you’re being a bit heavy handed. And, you’re right: probably not the best time to be critical of D’Antoni.
    The Knicks are way ahead of schedule.

  143. Thomas B.

    ess-dog:
    And actually, AR’s 20 yr old season was much better than Chandler’s 20 yr old season.
    Who’s to say that AR won’t be as good as Chandler in a couple of years?

    The answer to that question would be “Mike D’Antoni.”

    The trade i brought up was not out of my inability to see Randolph’s value–it hard to find but it is there. I just don’t think the coach is going to develop him. I think a fresh start with new player with a similar skill set is the way to go here. The trade may be a bit of a reach but I’ve seen real trades that were far more lopsided (cough) Kevin Garnet (cough).

    The Wiz cant have their players coming to blows, not at 15 games under .500, not after lockergate, not after Gilbert’s antics. Oh and a quick aside, why would a guy with gun trouble change his number to 9? Seriously, wouldnt his agent or an NBA office suit say something? “Uh Gilbert, that gun you had was a nine millimeter, often called a 9. How about we rethink the number change.” How about 6? Oh no too close to six shooter. I guess 22 and 44 are out the picture too. So what number is least associated with a gun?

    Anyway my AR point, why let the fruit spoil on the bench? Use it or barter for something you can use.

  144. Frank O.

    JK47: I think that AR is a uniquely bad fit for this system in the same way that Fields is a uniquely good fit.This system is good for guys who can knock down open shots, who move well without the ball, understand the concept of floor spacing and who can run the floor. Randolph can run the floor, but is abysmal in all of those other areas. He has one of the ugliest jumpers you’ll ever see and his basketball IQ is near zero. Put that guy on the floor and all the pretty ball movement and spacing go in the crapper. The more I watch this team the harder it is to imagine Anthony Randolph contributing to it. Right now we’re more than the sum of our parts because everyone on the floor is executing the SSOL concept prettywell. Adding a bonehead like Anthony Randolph into the mix will unravel all of that real fast.But the rebounding situation is dire– there’s no question about that now. A proper glass cleaner would make us a much better defensive team. Time and time again last night we played solid defense and forced an awkward shot attempt, only to see Z get an easy tip-in. Giving up tip-ins seems to be a chronic problem– I don’t know how you can resolve that without a classic big-booty 5 muscling for position and wrestling those short rebounds away.  (Quote)

    Frankly, David Lee would be a fantastic fit for this team…:)

  145. gransoporro

    Frank O., believe me, Gallinari is typical Italian. Not the macho type, the introvert one.
    He may be big (omone: big man), but not necessarily hard or assertive. Intensity is his weakness (sometimes confidence) and it comes with maturity.

    Last time I checked we Italians (as in Italian born and bred) mature around 25. Gallinari is definitely more mature than his average Italian counterparts.
    But still I have a feeling he is missing the nurturing environment that surrounds young players in Europe (basketball and other sports). That environment that would keep his confidence high.
    However the NBA is different form European Basketball, where there are at most 2 games a week, and 2-3 practice sessions to prepare each game (btw,it is the coach task to cultivate the intensity of the team as part of the preparation). It’s easier to be intense when you have time to prepare a game…

  146. Thomas B.

    One more thing, the trade wasnt just about Randolph v McGee. It was about adding a competent person to back up Felton, and a veteran who can help score by doing something other than hoisting up bad threes.

    Since Chandler joined the starters, the bench scoring has been bad. TD reminds me of that He-man character Man-E-Faces where his personality and skills changed at random intervals. Toney’s faces are Jason Terry, Pistons years Ben Gordon, and Mardy Collins. But just like my Man-E-Faces somebody–perhaps my little brother–stuck candy between Toney’s gears and he is stuck on Piston’s years Ben Gordon.

  147. Ben R

    I am quite high on AR and I think with time he will become a valuable part of this team, but I think the reason he is not playing right now is he is not as good as the players in front of him. He is a great rebounder and shot blocker but not a great defender so if he got Turiaf’s minutes then we would suffer defensively, if he got shawne’s minutes we would lose alot of three point shooting and still probably not gain alot of defense.

    Right now we have an eight man rotation in which 6 of the 8 players are threats from three, 7 of 8 have a TS% of over 56%, and 6 of the 8 are at least 6’7″. Other than rebounding I don’t really see what Randolph brings at this point. I seriously doubt he is a defensive upgrade over Chandler or Turiaf, he’s not getting Amare’s minutes and I would rather have Shawne’s 72.2% TS% than Randolph’s potential rebounding.

    As for not making adjustments I totally agree with D’Antoni’s approach, make other teams adjust to you. Almost every single team we’ve played is forced to adjust to us. They almost always end up going a little small. Even Miami had to bench Big Z in the second half after we started attacking him.

    Playing small is a trade off but our offensive success is largely due to going small so unless the defensive upgrade is huge it is not worth damaging our offense by going big and playing a conventional starting 5.

    Miami is a better team than we are, right now they are the best team in the NBA, they just destroyed the Lakers in LA. We were two points away from being the first team this month to score over 100, we held the Heat under their season average at efg%, we got within 3 with less than 2 minutes to play, after a bad first quarter we scored 80 points in three quarters against the best defense in the NBA, and frankly we outplayed Miami in the second half.

  148. Frank O.

    gransoporro: Frank O., believe me, Gallinari is typical Italian. Not the macho type, the introvert one.He may be big (omone: big man), but not necessarily hard or assertive. Intensity is his weakness (sometimes confidence) and it comes with maturity.Last time I checked we Italians (as in Italian born and bred) mature around 25. Gallinari is definitely more mature than his average Italian counterparts.But still I have a feeling he is missing the nurturing environment that surrounds young players in Europe (basketball and other sports). That environment that would keep his confidence high.However the NBA is different form European Basketball, where there are at most 2 games a week, and 2-3 practice sessions to prepare each game (btw,it is the coach task to cultivate the intensity of the team as part of the preparation). It’s easier to be intense when you have time to prepare a game…  (Quote)

    We do often need to remind ourselves that Gallo is 22.
    So I didn’t screw up “omone?” So glad to hear. :)

  149. daJudge

    This is a very interesting conversation. At the risk of being simplistic, I think the Knicks do need a 5. However, to play on this team, right now, the center needs to possess several special skills on the offensive end. The player either needs to be able to pull the opposing defender out of the post or, at a very minimum, pass out of the post. If we get some defensive beast who lacks these skills, the paint will become too crowded to effectively run this offense. While a player who lacks these skills could certainly help on defense, the lack thereof will accrue to the detriment of Amare, Wilson and Gallo. Also, to a lesser extent, the center needs to throw the outlet on the defensive end. Generally speaking, the center will need some smarts and court vision. As such, I am not convinced that AR or McGee can thrive under the current system. Certainly not w/o patience, development and a willingness on the part of the Knicks and the player. Maybe Moz, but I kind of doubt it. I know this choice is unavailable and a pipe dream, but I guy like Kevin Love probably would fit the bill. At least relative to board work and stretching the defense. There may be other’s out there, but I’m not sure who. Maybe Bill Walton is looking for work.

  150. Frank O.

    @278
    Ben R: As much as I like JaVale, the best answers for the Knicks at center may just be on their own bench. Blatche isn’t the guy for them.
    One thing is clear, the Knicks in the second half seemed to have found a way finally to beat the Heat.
    Perhaps next time they play, they’ll understand it from the opening tip.

  151. Frank

    Frank O.: @278
    Ben R: As much as I like JaVale, the best answers for the Knicks at center may just be on their own bench. Blatche isn’t the guy for them.
    One thing is clear, the Knicks in the second half seemed to have found a way finally to beat the Heat.
    Perhaps next time they play, they’ll understand it from the opening tip.  

    I agree, sort of… although I also sort of agree with Clyde’s statement last night that the Heat were basically just toying with our Knicks — let yus get close then put us away. I honestly think Lebron can score at will on this team, and just didn’t feel like doing it too much last night. Seriously, he looked pretty apathetic last night until the last 2 minutes. I think that was Lebron playing at about 70% — if we ever got the lead it would have been Lebron at 100% — and we do not have the Celtics D to deal with that.

  152. Frank O.

    Frank: I agree, sort of… although I also sort of agree with Clyde’s statement last night that the Heat were basically just toying with our Knicks — let yus get close then put us away. I honestly think Lebron can score at will on this team, and just didn’t feel like doing it too much last night. Seriously, he looked pretty apathetic last night until the last 2 minutes. I think that was Lebron playing at about 70% — if we ever got the lead it would have been Lebron at 100% — and we do not have the Celtics D to deal with that.  (Quote)

    Well, with Wade taking 28 shots, I’m not sure there was room for Lebron to be Lebron either. I mean Wade was 1-7 from 3 pt.

  153. StevenU

    DaJudge, Kevin Love is absolutely awful on D. He is David Lee with some more girth, and a drop more range. A nice player but not as good as STAT and not particularly complimentary with him either.
    It is a legit conundrum: Almost any player who improves the defense will hurt the offense. If this were a simple problem it’d probably already been fixed. People seem to think I am just bashing Dantoni cuz I don’t like him or something and that has zero to do with the point I keep trying to make (apparently not very well).
    I’ll try once more: Even with a team that wants to emphasize offense, quickness, fluidity etc, where the more shooters with range on the floor the better at ALMOST all times, there are certain situations…for a few minutes a game here and there where is you can not defend you lose. I love STAT. He gets knocked for his D but he is a huge upgrade on DLee because he aggressively blocks and alters some shots. And he more than makes up for any defensive shortcomings with his offensive aggressiveness against 4s or 5s. Recognizing those situations, particularly when the opposing team plays a true 5, and putting someone on the floor to guard the 5, even at the risk of hurting the offense at times is absolutely necessary-and, in my opinion, adapting to situations is a huge weakness where Dantoni is concerned-especially defensively.
    I truly believe it is a personality flaw of his, and not just an Xs and Os thing. One reason why I believe this was how quickly he banished Darko. I know everyone loves to bash Darko (like any guy who was picked too high as if it is in any way relevant to what he is as a player), but I think what we want here is not that easy to find: a big that can defend the basket area, get some defensive rebounds, use a few fouls and at least pass well enough to not mess up the O too badly. hate to say it but Darko fits that combo better than most. Camby would be great as well.

  154. Caleb

    @264 IMO it’s hard to argue that AR had more than a miniscule role in the 3-8 start – he barely played.

    @268 D’Antoni had plenty of success in the playoffs – more wins than all but 3 coaches over the past 7 or 8 years, I think. Just didn’t beat the Spurs. And whether he knows anything about defense, his teams have been about average on D, even with Nash & Stoudemire as featured players.

    @270 AR actually has a BETTER career TS% than Marcus Camby. I’m just sayin’!

    @272 I agree – AR is not a D’Antoni-type player. But I think this speaks to a flaw in his coaching approach; he’s good but a better coach e.g. Gregg Popovich adjusts the system to the talent. Based on what I’ve seen the past two years, MDA is also too stubborn and plays favorites.

    I agree that Knicks are in win-now mode and shouldn’t be emphasizing player development over wins. I also think D’Antoni’s short rotation – for continuity – is a good thing. I’m not lobbying for AR to get 30 mpg; I’m saying that on many nights he would offer critically needed rebounding and defensive length. He would offer a lot more RIGHT NOW than Mozgov. In sort of an apples to oranges comparison, I think he would probably offer more RIGHT NOW than Walker or Williams. You’d make the GM happy by developing a guy who is an important long-term asset, but you wouldn’t have to sacrifice the here and now.

  155. Caleb

    I think MDA could have found a use for Darko, but let’s face it – the guy was worse than awful on offense. Career TS% of .480. For a center!
    He’s not much of a rebounder either. 13.7 RR. He’s no Anthony Randolph there, for sure!
    He does block shots..

  156. JK47

    With the talent on those Phoenix teams I think it is ridiculous to cite that tenure as validating Dantoni as a coach or a leader; those teams underachieved, and as you go on to point out: This holds true in the playoffs and in regular season games with play off intensity.

    I completely disagree. In 2004-2005 D’Antoni won 62 games and went to the conference finals with a team that had Quentin Richardson logging 2800 minutes. The leading scorer off the bench was a decrepit 34-year old Jim Jackson. That team had practically ZERO depth, and won 62 games and went to the conference finals.

    The following year they went to the conference finals again. Raja Bell was second on the team in minutes; Boris Diaw was third in minutes. Amar’e Stoudemire played three games that season. D’Antoni’s rotation in the playoffs was essentially Steve Nash, Shawn Marion, Boris Diaw, Raja Bell, Tim Thomas, Leandro Barbosa and James Jones. Look at that lineup again: it’s Steve Nash, Shawn Marion and a bunch of journeymen. Yet that team won 54 games and lost in six games in the conference finals to the Dallas Mavericks.

    I’d say some of D’Antoni’s teams actually overachieved by quite a large margin.

  157. StevenU

    Caleb, I know he is no great player but the Knicks acquired him and the Dantoni put him in his ever popular doghouse and we never really saw what he might-or might not-be able to do. My point is not that darko is a great player just that he actually does possess the qualities that this fantasy big man we all seem to want has to have: Size, shot blocking and-at least passing if not scoring so the offense can work.
    I think we’ll end up feeling the same way about AR: he may not be a great player but he might be able to help this team with some glaring weaknesses. Weaknesses that are exposed whenever the Knicks play a high quality opponent. And he will likely develop into whatever player he can be…eventually-on another team.
    I think this speaks to my ongoing (relentless?) criticism about Dantoni. He is stubborn. He lacks defensive expertise. He wouldn’t know how to utilize a big man even if he had one. A lot like Nellie. Or Doug Moe. It is not as if Dantoni is the creator of this style. I respectfully disagree with the assessment that his Phoenix teams played to their potential in the playoffs; their talent base was AMAZING.
    I like this team a lot. I can appreciate speedball. I still steadfastly stick to my belief that if you can not create better balance at both ends of the floor, and adapt to certain defensive needs in a game by game, quarter by quarter way, then the team will never be elite.
    And nothing in Dantonis resume suggests to me that he’s capable of doing this

  158. JK47

    Hey, it looks like our friends over in Minnesota Timberwolves world are interested in our mercurial forward Anthony Randolph.

    Sure, just give us that guy who’s playing in Europe– what’s his name, Rubio or something?

  159. StevenU

    JK-you know what? I forgot the year STAT was out. I agree with you about that year-they did overachieve-though I’d credit Nash playing at a spectacular level more than anything Dantoni did.
    Jim Jackson was a great fit and played very well. Again, I can’t see how anyone would think a coach would make a 34 year old player better-he was always a good scorer, and did not need to be very athletic to succeed in this style.
    QRich, much as I hate him was also a perfectly fine fit. Those were very talented teams, and his D and respectable 3pt shooting worked fine-that’s; why he got all those minutes.
    You can look at any great team and point out a guy or two that doesn’t seem that great, but they fit.
    Kinda like Turiaf on this team. If this guy was healthy and could play 25-30 mins a game I don’t think any of us would be talking about the gaping hole in the middle of this team. And Turiaf is not a great player. Or particularly fast. Or a good scorer or rebounder. But his presence allows STAT to do what he does best. And he improves the team defense immeasurably.
    I think the 62 win team was ahuge disappointment in the playoffs and had the best talent in the west that year.

  160. Frank O.

    StevenU
    I think you have seen some level-headed, accurate refutations of your contention about D’Antoni’s past teams @288, @285 and, humbly, @273.
    His talent base was good, but not “amazing” and he coached in the West, which was loaded with Hall of Fame talent and elite, dominant teams.

    I agree that they need a center. They have one of the best Os in basketball. It may not hurt to lose a little O to gain some D. Perhaps that balance would push them into elite, but if you look around the NBA, there aren’t that many quality bigs available.
    Indeed, there aren’t that many quality bigs, period.

  161. Frank O.

    Frank O.: StevenUI think you have seen some level-headed, accurate refutations of your contention about D’Antoni’s past teams @288, @285 and, humbly, @273.His talent base was good, but not “amazing” and he coached in the West, which was loaded with Hall of Fame talent and elite, dominant teams.I agree that they need a center. They have one of the best Os in basketball. It may not hurt to lose a little O to gain some D. Perhaps that balance would push them into elite, but if you look around the NBA, there aren’t that many quality bigs available.Indeed, there aren’t that many quality bigs, period.  (Quote)

    did see @291 before I posted this

  162. Frank O.

    As for D’Antoni’s communication issue, SBNation posted this from Mosgov’s Russian Blog:

    After the Cleveland game where I [got] another DNP – Coach’s decision, I have read – yet another time – that Mozgov is losing the trust of the coach.

    I’ll say this: on my part there’s no panic!

    First of all, I’ll repeat myself: coach has talked several times about the different rotation schemes. Second, we have talked with him about it, even though briefly. He promised to get me back on the court, and I have no reason not to trust him. Third, I think right now he’s just found the game he was looking for and that got us rolling.

    This tempo and playing style have helped us win eight straight games. And, by the way, it also helped to calm down [Amar'e Stoudemire] who got a little disappointed. Did you read anything new about him not being happy? There you go. And morale of the leader is very important!

    Seems as if D’Antoni is communicating well.
    And to a guy for whom English is a second language… :)

  163. StevenU

    Frank O: I appreciate your level headedness and fully admit that I am angry about Dantoni. I am. Even in this good time I can’t help it. I think he is a jerk. I think that when a team gets rid of a coach that has won a lot of games it is important to look at the reasons why. It’s what happened with Rick Carlisle in Detroit a couple years earlier.
    The reason I find it all maddening, is because I see the writing on the wall. ‘He who does not learn from history is doomed to repeat his mistakes, type of thing. I see exactly what Dantoni can and can not do. Put it this way: Will any of us be happy if this team peaks-in a year or two or three-at winning in the high 50s and never getting to the finals?
    I would not be happy or satisfied. I believe strongly that the same shortcomings that led to his exile from a situation where he was supposedly sooooo successful just should not be ignored.
    I do not think he will ever lead a team to an NBA title. I do not believe that sticking to one style all the time is a winning formula.
    I think he is a good coach (really, I do). I just think a very good or great coach is able to have a style but also to subjegate his ego-and his style-when needed. (see Popovich this year; see Riley when he came to NY)
    And I do not believe that he has the intelligence and flexibility to adapt to situations that beg for tweaking his system from time to time.
    I think at least twice in the Phoenix years he had the best talent.

  164. JK47

    I think at least twice in the Phoenix years he had the best talent.

    I don’t mean to be snarky, but tell me which two years those were. I’m curious to hear in which years D’Antoni had the best talent in the NBA to work with.

  165. StevenU

    and Frank O-That’s a nice little piece but it tells more about Mosgov having a good attitude-as a rookie should- than it tells about Dantoni. And maybe Mosgov-and/or AR will find his way back into the mix and there will be a happy ending. I’d like to think so, but despite Mosgov believing in his coach-which is great, I think an outcome more like what I just suggested as likely is a LOT more likely: IF they blossom it will be somewhere else and Dantoni will never lead this or any team to an NBA championship.

  166. Frank O.

    StevenU: I think at least twice in the Phoenix years he had the best talent.  (Quote)

    He never had Tim Duncan, and that made all the difference, IMHO.

    You’ve got a thing with D’Antoni. That’s cool.

    It’s been almost 40 years since the Knicks won a championship. So, it ain’t easy. It takes a good GM, a good coach, healthy players, solid drafts and lots, and lots of luck.
    Right now, if the Knicks can grow this team into a 50+ game winner, I’ll be real happy.
    If the Knicks had managed to get Jerry Sloan as a coach, I would have been thrilled, and, yet, he never won a championship, even with perhaps the preeminent point guard and power forward in the game at that time.

    Basketball isn’t baseball. The Yankees can say they expect to win a championship every year because they can spend as much as they want to get any player they want, in most cases.
    The NBA has a cap. It ain’t easy. Building teams takes time, and shit can happen over time. Who would have thought that Yao would have these problems, or what’s his name over in Portland?
    And after 1999, for me the key is getting there. After that, who knows?

  167. StevenU

    JK, I do not think it’s snarky at all; just good spirited debate. That you asked about that last sentence, but didn’t comment on the other points I made in that post means you agree with the rest? :-)
    Do you not think he is a jerk?
    Do you believe he is a championship caliber coach-or that he will ever guide a team to one?
    Do you “get” the Rick Carlisle comparison?
    Or the Riley/Popovich reference?
    I gotta do a couple of things but will get back to you-shortly- on which years I think Phoenix was the best team and should have done better in the playoffs.

  168. daJudge

    I’m kind of with Frank O on this with a wrinkle. I think it’s pretty hard to characterize the coach as a jerk or otherwise w/o having direct experience. Even then I’m sure the opinions would differ. I think he can guide a team to a championship, but I probably do not see a coach’s influence on NBA success as great as some. Assuming basic competence, maybe 3-5 games either way. I also think defense is not necessarily ‘separate’ from offense. They both influence each other a great deal. In any case, IMO, the Knicks lack a big in the middle to parlay some match-ups. Hope they either have one or get one. I just don’t who.

  169. Caleb

    I think Phoenix arguably had equal talent to the Spurs once or twice, but there’s no way to say they were clearly better. They didn’t flame out in the playoffs – they lost close, bitterly contested series. D’Antoni’s playoff record is actually a good one. Without suspensions, withouth losing Stoudemire for a year – who knows?

    That said, I agree w/StevenU about his flaws – too stubborn, too wed to the system, too prone to have a doghouse, etc. The same kind of things that sank Rick Carlisle. Who’s also a very good coach.

  170. ess-dog

    Who. Says. No?

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=23dnhvm

    also a randolph-as-a-first-rounder would go to Denver, and maybe our 2014 pick goes to Charlotte.

    We’re left with Felton, JR, Melo, Chandler, Stat. Shawne, Turiaf and TD from the bench. But also, that gives us about 19 mil to play with in 2011 to resign Chandler and and get a player like Kendrick Perkins, Kapono, Tyson Chandler or others.

    Not saying I would do it, but does it seem fair?

  171. ess-dog

    *I am aware that my math could be terribly wrong, but I know we can resign WC and at least get another player w/ the midlevel…

  172. daJudge

    ess-dog–Not sure if the trade is fair or not, but I would vote no as a Knick fan. I’m not real hot on dumping Gallo, Fields or Chandler. If it takes two of those for Melo, I would nix it. I do like the creative cap space you created though.

  173. Z-man

    ess-dog: Who.Says.No?http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=23dnhvm
    also a randolph-as-a-first-rounder would go to Denver, and maybe our 2014 pick goes to Charlotte.We’re left with Felton, JR, Melo, Chandler, Stat.Shawne, Turiaf and TD from the bench.But also, that gives us about 19 mil to play with in 2011 to resign Chandler and and get a player like Kendrick Perkins, Kapono, Tyson Chandler or others.Not saying I would do it, but does it seem fair?  

    Here’s a no. I want no part of Smith.

  174. ess-dog

    Z-man:
    Here’s a no.I want no part of Smith.  

    I’m pretty sure he’s an expiring after this year. If not, I would agree. It would really mess up our flow this year but we might be in a better position next year. I’d love to keep Fields but he’s probably our most desirable player to Denver. As for Gallo, I’m just not sure he’s athletic enough to play the 3 in this offense, even though he’s a great shooter. I would like to get Ray Allen and put Felton, Allen, Melo, Chandler, Amare out there. There really wouldn’t be a more D’Antoni lineup than that.

  175. rama

    ess-dog: Who.Says.No?http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=23dnhvm
    also a randolph-as-a-first-rounder would go to Denver, and maybe our 2014 pick goes to Charlotte.We’re left with Felton, JR, Melo, Chandler, Stat.Shawne, Turiaf and TD from the bench.But also, that gives us about 19 mil to play with in 2011 to resign Chandler and and get a player like Kendrick Perkins, Kapono, Tyson Chandler or others.Not saying I would do it, but does it seem fair?  

    Uh, no. Unconditional No. Not even close No.

  176. Brian Cronin

    I don’t want to give up Gallo for Melo, I certainly don’t want to give up Gallo plus Fields.

  177. rama

    StevenU: Caleb, I know he is no great player but the Knicks acquired him and the Dantoni put him in his ever popular doghouse and we never really saw what he might-or might not-be able to do. My point is not that darko is a great player just that he actually does possess the qualities that this fantasy big man we all seem to want has to have: Size, shot blocking and-at least passing if not scoring so the offense can work… I think this speaks to my ongoing (relentless?) criticism about Dantoni. He is stubborn. He lacks defensive expertise. He wouldn’t know how to utilize a big man even if he had one.  

    StevenU, you kind of kill any credibility with your defense of Darko. If Darko really had those qualities, not only would D’Antoni have played him, he wouldn’t be stinking up the joint (aside from the occasional good half) in Minny.

    Really, the only criticism I can agree with is D’A’s “in-game” adjustments. At the half, he can regroup and come up with a new plan, but he definitely does struggle sometimes with drawing up plays or changing his substitution patterns during the half.

    Beyond that, you’re totally off. He started a rookie C, then pulled him when he stunk. AR saw time, then he didn’t when he stunk. He’s continued to start a rookie 2 because, well, he doesn’t stink! He has definitely adjusted his game plan to his players’ talents. SSOL is no longer the core of what he’s doing, since he doesn’t have Nash to execute it. “Spacing and PnR” seems more the theme.

    As for a doghouse, what player in it has ever succeeded out of it? Arguably, only Nate – and that’s because he’s with a team of vets that wouldn’t accept his BS. D’A didn’t have that luxury last year.

  178. rama

    StevenU –

    Also, forgot to address the Defense criticism of D’Antoni: haven’t you noticed the Knicks have done it with D several time in the last few weeks? They held the Heat below their average; the kept the Bulls from scoring more than half the fourth quarter before that. In general, they seem to be able to play superior D when they want to/need to. It isn’t consistent yet, but to say it will never be after only a third of a season seems way, way premature, more indicative of your feelings about D’A than observable reality.

    Look, the guy has weaknesses. But as someone who posted at the beginning of the season that this year is all on D’Antoni – Donnie Walsh did a pretty good job of restructuring a balanced roster (though with neither bet at the 5 coming through yet) – I have to give him a B+. Not perfect, but the team came together quickly, has a record better than we could reasonably have expected, and is still growing. Every comment D’A makes to the media is about how it matters how the team is playing in March and April, not December. He clearly expects to have them playing better – meaning he doesn’t believe that their play to date is acceptable.

    Considering most of us hoped for a .500 record, and D’A has them higher than that and hoping for more, to engage in “he can’t succeed at the highest level” talk at this point really makes no sense.

  179. daJudge

    I was really upset with coach last year, primarily because I am 5′ 5″, still play hoop and loved Nate. Most of my ire was subjective and silly. I thought about this and decided that while I think Coach has been bit draconian in his treatment, there was probably alot of culpability on Nate’ part. Of course I can still criticize the coach for the reasons well chronicled here in this thread. Nevertheless, I will not become all negative, which I am reserving for the Giants at this moment. The Knicks have IMO over achieved at this point and at least a portion of this success is on the Coach. I’m kind of old school, so it took me awhile to get accustomed to this offense, but come on, it has been a gas to watch. No? Again, the Centers need to make reads in this system and Moz and certainly AR have not done so. Whether they can remains to be seen. Finally, am I all wet on Kevin Love like Steven U states? Is his D that bad?

  180. daJudge

    By the way, the Red Storm are on SNY right about now playing a significant game. I know this is a Knick blog and I hope it’s OK, but to all you alums and fans—–let’s beat West Virginia!

  181. Thomas B.

    ess-dog: Who.Says.No?http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=23dnhvm
    also a randolph-as-a-first-rounder would go to Denver, and maybe our 2014 pick goes to Charlotte.We’re left with Felton, JR, Melo, Chandler, Stat.Shawne, Turiaf and TD from the bench.

    ess, I want you to step away from the trade machine before someone gets hurt. This fine site is part of the truehoop network, so what if tommorows dime is “Knick fans chat up sending Gallo and Fields for ‘Melo, Smith.” Then that gets picked up in a NYT online article that finds its way to the laptop screen of a Knick media intern who collects this data and includes it with her daily media breifing to Donnie Walsh. He reads it–while under the influence of one of the many anti-inflammatory drugs he is taking, then mistakes it for an email from Denver’s GM. He call Denver and Charlotte and before you can say “side effects may include making horrible trades” we lose the best rebounding guard in the NBA, a great shooter, and two expiring contracts for an overly compensated no defense playing headcase..and we get JR Smith too.

    Even the trade machine says this trade helps none of the teams. Every one of them losses more games than if they did nothing. You asked “Who says no” and I’ll answer. I say no. A thousand times No. By Grabthar’s hammer, by the suns of Warvan No. No. For the love of God NOOOOOOOO!

    Have I already said No? :-)

  182. ess-dog

    Hahaha!
    Well all I’m saying is, I think the trade will happen, whether we like it or not… So how do you think it will go down?
    I just can’t imagine Melo ok’ing a trade to NJ.
    But anyway, I’ve developed a similar trade where we keep Fields and trade out Douglas and take on Hinrich. Washington is involved. Maybe I’ll post it later.
    Shine on you crazy diamonds!

  183. Thomas B.

    Make any trade you like. Just exclude Landry, Gallo, Felton and Chandler unless you are bringing back Chris Paul.

  184. daJudge

    ess-dog and others. How about Melo as a straight free agent, no chaser. Should we just dig in on this position and develop what we have? Maybe this is the best option except for salary cap issues, which are unclear at present and I’m not so hot in figuring out. But heck, who plays center? Will AR or Moz have an epiphany? Anyway, Melo doesn’t carry us to the promised land, does he? Where are we setting our bar, short-term, long term. If we are really looking at a ring, no way w/o a guy that can at least negate someone like Ilgauskas and not disturb the rest of the flow. I don’t think it’s reasonable to think we can just outscore everyone, certainly not in a playoff scenario. Isn’t that what Melo brings? Sorry for all the questions.

  185. latke

    I don’t see why we don’t just bring in Boris Diaw. He expires after next season, and I’m sure Charlotte would give him up for expiring contracts. It would allow Chandler to play back to the basket, and Amare to not have to cover centers.

    Hinrich would be nice as a backup. Honestly, barring ‘Melo coming for scraps, that’s what I would do – trade our expirings for Diaw and Hinrich (who also expires in 2012) and resign Chandler over the summer along with an MLE player. We’d have plenty of expiring contracts to use in a deadline deal in 11/12 that would hopefully put us into contention.

  186. rama

    Z-man: Maybe we should have just kept McGrady….check out the game he had vs. the Celts tonite!  

    I advocated offering him the vet minimum – couldn’t see what we had to lose. (And isn’t that what he signed for?) But I figured that the medical crew got an up close and personal look and decided it wasn’t a good idea.

    Guess they were wrong.

    Still, not a huge error. Yeah, I’d rather have him than Mason, and he would have meant us not needing to trade for a backup PG (a role he totally could have handled off the bench with TDDWTDD). But not a huge mistake.

  187. latke

    Belated thoughts on Miami: The Heat, despite having three of the most celebrated offensive players in the league, are winning through defense; IMO they are an average offensive team; they score well off the fast break, but the fast break is offense that is generated through defense — it wouldn’t be such a weapon if the Heat weren’t playing so hard on defense. Beyond that, they largely rely on their ability to make very difficult shots. If you gave the shots the Heat took to any other three players on another team, that team would have shot closer to 40% (they ended up shooting 48%).

    The interesting thing to me is that I think the Heat would be nearly as good if you took away, say Bosh and James, and replaced them with some top defensive players like, say, Josh Smith and Joakim Noah. Wade is just as capable of getting difficult shots as easily as any of the other guys. He could take all of them likely to similar results.

    I give Spoelstra a lot of credit — his “get a stop and you can freelance” bargain with the team motivated these guys defensively, while allowing them to maintain the illusion that their superstar offense skills are making a difference. I also credit fear. Unintentionally, the “big three” put a lot of pressure on themselves. Before changing teams, they had excuses. They already got their props for sticking it out on teams without any other great talents, and any success they had was sugar on top. Now the bar is raised, and anything short of championship contention would be greatly humiliating. It’s a great motivator, especially for Bosh and James who have shown questionable ability to raise their intensity level.

    The fact that their egotism and selfishness has sort of accidentally led them to come to realize the level of intensity required to win a championship is kind of disappointing to me, but maybe that’s how we all learn.

  188. jon abbey

    that “average” offensive team scored 125 in Houston last night and are still playing without their 4th best player and best outside shooter in Mike Miller.

    and the “unintentional” thesis is ludicrous, they went there to try to win titles. it’s possible they didn’t fully realize how hot BOS/SA/DAL would start off, forcing them to up the intensity a bit, but basically I think that post is wrong from start to finish.

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