Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

2011 Game Thread: Knicks vs. Hawks

For your game thoughts.

142 comments on “2011 Game Thread: Knicks vs. Hawks

  1. TheRant

    There are some wise GM-like minds on this page and I have a question too deep in the NBA salary structure to ask anywhere else. So let me pose it:

    We’ve all read a zillion pages about Melo — and it won’t stop for another eight days. And we keep hearing Melo would like to be in NYC, that he’ll only sign his extension if he arrives at a “preferred destination,” and that of course gives us leverage.

    That extension is continually reported as a “three-year, $65M contract extension.” I’m assuming that means Melo picks up $22/year for three years.

    Everyone keeps saying that Melo wants to sign that before the new CBA, which will have lower salaries. So obviously, Melo wants to get the deal done this week.

    But what do the KNICKS want? Let’s assume that Walsh believes Melo has burned his bridges to Denver and that neither LA, CHI, or NJN are going to show up. Then wouldn’t the Knicks benefit tremendously from WAITING until the new CBA if the max salary for a veteran might be, say $15M/year instead of whatever it is now? Wouldn’t that save the Knicks $7M/year in salary? (I’m making up those numbers, of course. I have no idea.)

    Of course, nobody knows anything for certain and there is huge value in sealing any deal now rather than hoping they’ll land it later. So there is a “certainty value.”

    But in a salary-capped league, don’t the Knicks start to have a strong incentive to wait for the new CBA, especially as they’ll start to see what Dwight Howard and CP3 are thinking, what the new cap is, etc.? I guess my question, in a sentence is this:

    – if Melo is indeed a great add on but a distraction to the search for a top-shelf PG or a defensive/rebounding center, then why not wait until a new CBA is arranged, pay less, and have more room left over for that top-shelf PG or defensive/rebounding center, whenever they might show up?

    What sayeth you all, Knickerblogger nation?

  2. ess-dog

    You really don’t know. I’ve been hearing a lot about salaries being rolled back, so what we sign Melo for now, might be less after all is said and done. Probably won’t be many changes at all. There should just be a higher cap and more revenue sharing.

    Half the teams made money and half didn’t. I’m all for dissolving teams that don’t have a market for pro basketball. Why should a healthy market like the Knicks and the Lakers have to pay to keep the Sactos and New Orleans’s of the league alive?

    One thing I know for sure is that it does not benefit Stern AT ALL to punish big market teams.

  3. John Kenney

    Sayeth I, I agree. You only pay the contract if you feel it’s risky to wait ie melo might go somewhere else.

  4. ess-dog

    For instance, New York should have three teams based on population. Hell, maybe 4. Chicago could maybe have two. San Diego and San Jose should be in the running…
    Mexico City if Stern is feeling bold!

  5. Brian Cronin

    I believe the issue, therant, is that they are unsure if Carmelo wouldn’t ultimately say, “I just can’t risk it” and sign the extension with Denver (or with New Jersey).

    Teams and “superstars” make up very quickly. Look at how close Kobe came to being an ex-Laker. Now it is like that never happened.

    So if Melo felt that the Knicks were playing games with him just to save a few bucks, I could see him balking.

  6. art vandelay

    I am not sure what fraction of the fanbase really thinks we need to go for melo at all costs, but it seems like a lot…very discomfiting as someone who is pro-melo acquisition but at a reasonable cost that doesn’t cripple the team long-term….I think it is a disservice to the team to have a guy like stephen a. smith spouting that we should be melo, STAT and 13 nobodies and expect to go somewhere this year or next…I have confidence that donnie doesn’t feel pressure from these morons, but I worry about dolan stepping in and giving up teh world for melo and really hampering the team’s ability to build a competitor to miami….because let’s be honest….the ONLY way we beat them is by having a STRONGER supporting cast….since there top 2 (lebron and wade) would be substantially better than our top 2 with melo and, then when you add in bosh, we really have to somehow beat them by outplaying their role players.

  7. art vandelay

    Aside question: anyone know if they brought back the “go ny go ny go” song this year at the Garden and, if so, is it the original rendition from circa 1993, 94? silly question, but was just wondering….

  8. BIG STAT

    art vandelay: I am not sure what fraction of the fanbase really thinks we need to go for melo at all costs, but it seems like a lot…very discomfiting as someone who is pro-melo acquisition but at a reasonable cost that doesn’t cripple the team long-term….I think it is a disservice to the team to have a guy like stephen a. smith spouting that we should be melo, STAT and 13 nobodies and expect to go somewhere this year or next…I have confidence that donnie doesn’t feel pressure from these morons, but I worry about dolan stepping in and giving up teh world for melo and really hampering the team’s ability to build a competitor to miami….because let’s be honest….the ONLY way we beat them is by having a STRONGER supporting cast….since there top 2 (lebron and wade) would be substantially better than our top 2 with melo and, then when you add in bosh, we really have to somehow beat them by outplaying their role players.  

    This isn’t baseball or football where you need 20 ballers. This is basketball. Most teams need what 9-10 legit guys, a D’antoni team 7-8? You gotta add Melo by any means necessary. They could find a way to beat MIA. Would it be tough? Yes, but anyway you can think of it would be tough. Miami became incredibly stacked incredibly fast. The Knicks FO would have to make some saavy moves, but it unquestionably starts with another premier player. Amar’e and a bunch of role players ain’t gonna get it done. Ever.

  9. art vandelay

    I agree they should land melo at this point and that amare and the current squad will be nothing more than a speed bump for chicago, miami or whoever in the first round….but I don’t think they can give up felton, mozgov, fields, gallinari, chandler as some others in the mainstream media believe is reasonable…that is all….

    as for the nets rumors….I believe it is denver reengaging in a last ditch effort to get the best deal possible….frankly, I am not sold on favors to begin with…but that aside, I can’t understand how they proceed time and time again with negotiations without melo’s stamp of approval on the extension first….probably denver posturing

  10. BigBlueAL

    Best part is Yahoo is saying the Nuggets started up the talks again with the Nets, Chris Broussard is saying the Nets are the ones who started the talks again with the Nuggets.

  11. latke

    I’d be more than happy to see the Nets get ‘Melo and realize their dream of 5-8 years of mediocrity. There still seems to be a good chance that this is another play by the nuggets to try to get the Knicks to up their offer.

  12. totti

    help!
    i changed my mind again……

    if you pay stat 20 and melo 22
    if next cap is shrinking
    if wade and lbj are better than stat and melo
    if they have bosh too

    well…….

    you don’t even imagine to buy melo

  13. latke

    BTW, how poorly would it reflect on Billy King for the Nets to swing Favors + 2 picks for ‘Melo after they seemed perfectly willing to include Harris and Morrow, AND to take on Hamilton’s contract? The media claimed that King had no idea Prokhorov was going to back out of the deal, so all credit for the saved assets would be due to the Russian.

  14. BIG STAT

    BigBlueAL: Best part is Yahoo is saying the Nuggets started up the talks again with the Nets, Chris Broussard is saying the Nets are the ones who started the talks again with the Nuggets.  

    Broussard never actually knows anything. Come to think of it, ESPN reporters never have an inside scoop. It’s always the Yahoo guys, the Fox Sports guys, SI guys etc.

  15. Jimmy C

    latke: BTW, how poorly would it reflect on Billy King for the Nets to swing Favors + 2 picks for ‘Melo after they seemed perfectly willing to include Harris and Morrow, AND to take on Hamilton’s contract? The media claimed that King had no idea Prokhorov was going to back out of the deal, so all credit for the saved assets would be due to the Russian.

    Poorly. Given Prokorov’s gestures so far, I would be surprised if King is around next season.

    What I find utterly amusing is the “conventional wisdom” that Derrick Favors + x is better than almost any package the Knicks put together. I mean, the kid could be great, don’t get me wrong. But we’ve all seen him. He’s as raw as raw can be.

    That said, this latest move is such a transparent posture as to be comical. And if Melo does an about-face and figures “New York? New Jersey? Close enough…”, good for him.

    Still, the idea that Denver might actually be crawling back through the Russian’s door just goes to show how inept that front office is.

  16. totti

    ah
    all this melo story

    ferrari is better than lamborghini?
    Michelle pfeiffer than grace kelly?

    hard to say

  17. Richmond County

    I’m curious how attached we are to Turiaf. Denver wants to get out of some of its longer contracts so if a package includes Turiaf in exchange for Birdman, Denver’s salary commitment is cut in half and both teams retain a serviceable big man.

  18. BigBlueAL

    Why is it that the Knicks any time they have a few days off come out looking sluggish as hell?? They look like they are in slow motion out there so far.

  19. art vandelay

    We should just be pleased the opposing team is not shooting 70% in the first quarter as seems to be the knicks’ MO….giving up ludicrous shooting FG% in Q1

  20. BigBlueAL

    Nice to see Knicks playing good D at the start in back-to-back games. Hopefully this continues after the AS break.

  21. Jimmy C

    Brian Cronin: Maybe showcasing Walker a bit?  

    That’s a possibility. Then again, he’s guarding Zaza, who is, how do we say, offensively challenged? Walker does have a more well-rounded offensive game, so maybe D’Antoni’s just playing the matchups.

  22. art vandelay

    Best defensive first quarter for knicks in what seems like ages…can’t even remember last time they held a team under 20 in Q1

  23. Brian Cronin

    The Unit looking about as good as they ever have! Man, when the Unit is even looking good, you know things are breaking your way!

  24. Jimmy C

    I feel like Atlanta’s the kind of team that would take this game off (said whilst knocking on a large oaken table).

  25. latke

    man, I thought the hawks were a good defensive team, and I thought horford’s trash talking would get them pumped…

  26. Brian Cronin

    Also, with Gallo and Amar’e's injury woes, I have no problem with usage of the Unit this game – even before they went out and started playing their best basketball of the season.

  27. Jimmy C

    Say what you will about The Unit, but when you look at them top to bottom, they’re actually 5 of our best defenders. I feel like if they can forge more of an identity on D, and allow their offense to flow from that, they could be quite solid going forward.

  28. art vandelay

    I think atlanta also puts up some real stinkers on occasion…didn’t they lose by 40 to new orleans earlier in the season and as recently as last week or 2 weeks ago were blown out badly by someone…maybe philly, can’t remember….if we keep the pedal to the medal we can really bury them here…let’s hope so….would be out of character for knicks to do that….

  29. Brian Cronin

    Walker and Williams are not good defenders. The other three are definitely the Knicks’ top three defenders, though, so yes, the Unit can be good on D.

  30. Jimmy C

    Brian Cronin: Walker and Williams are not good defenders. The other three are definitely the Knicks’ top three defenders, though, so yes, the Unit can be good on D.  

    I was just going to amend my earlier statement and say “actually, Bill Walker is the worst defender on the team”, but I think Williams is OK, particularly in the post.

  31. cgreene

    The Wilson Chandler. Bad TO followed by stupid defensive play to try and make up for it. Just can’t get my head around Wilson. He’s not a smart player at all. Great athlete. Good guy. Low bball IQ. Hurts the team.

  32. Brian Cronin

    Williams is interesting. After the D-trio of Chandler, Toney and Beardy, the Knicks don’t really have any other good defenders in the rotation (because one of their best defenders, AR, never gets to play at all). So yeah, I guess Williams might actually be the Knicks’ 4th-best defender, but that’s more of a shot at Gallo/Felton/Fields/Moz than a compliment of Williams. I think those five are all basically a toss-up for #4.

  33. art vandelay

    Of guards, is there anyone in the NBA worse at hidding the mid-range jumpshot than Toney Douglas….I think he has maybe hit 2 all season!

  34. Brian Cronin

    Of guards, is there anyone in the NBA worse at hidding the mid-range jumpshot than Toney Douglas….I think he has maybe hit 2 all season!

    Roger Mason.

  35. Jimmy C

    cgreene: The Wilson Chandler.Bad TO followed by stupid defensive play to try and make up for it.Just can’t get my head around Wilson.He’s not a smart player at all.Great athlete.Good guy.Low bball IQ.Hurts the team.  

    As per D’Antoni’s postgame comments from a few games ago, his nickname is now “Wilson and Stuff”

  36. cgreene

    Brian Cronin: The Knicks really don’t have a lot of high basketball IQ guys, true.  

    I think Gallo and Felton and obvioulsy Fields are very high IQ. Amare mediocre (better than Ewing) and low IQ guys like Chandler and AR.

  37. Brian Cronin

    I think Gallo and Felton and obvioulsy Fields are very high IQ. Amare mediocre (better than Ewing) and low IQ guys like Chandler and AR.

    I agree that those three, and maybe Beardy, are the only four high basketball IQ guys. I think I labeled those exact four earlier this season when I was having this same discussion in a game thread, so I’m pleased you picked the same guys. :)

  38. Jimmy C

    I actually predicted before the game that Marvin Williams would be the guy to give us fits. Just makes sense.

  39. Brian Cronin

    For a highbrow sports legend, my latest sports legends revealed this week at the LA Times involves Vladimir Nabokov’s novel Pale Fire.

    Check it out here.

  40. Jimmy C

    Yes, NJ’s losing Favors, but they’re getting another raw prospect (AR) in return, as well as cap space with which to continue rebuilding.

  41. art vandelay

    makes for fun, but last thing in the world NJ would ever do is help us acquire anthony, or vice versa

  42. cgreene

    d-mar: At halftime, Nets are tied with Boston, Cleveland is up 5 on the Lakers. Welcome to bizarro NBA.  

    there is always a little pre all star break weirdness. teams take foot off gas. especially older ones like those 2. lakers look a little out of whack in general though… except when they came here of course

  43. art vandelay

    yeah, we may not have to worry about new jersey as a threat for melo….if LA loses to cleveland tonight they may trade bynum for melo tomorrow!!!

  44. Nick C.

    One of their better all around games (so far). I’m still pissed about the Isola “can get another role player ” comment about Fields. Yeah right one who leads That NBA in 4th quarter 3% and probably all wings in rebounds.

  45. d-mar

    Is it in Felton’s contract that he must take the last shot of every quarter?

    I think this is the Knicks best effort (so far) in a long time. Good to see.

  46. Frank O.

    How is it that they can look this solid and then bomb like they do…?

    I know it’s youth. It just can be frustrating…

  47. Jimmy C

    I hope Stat just comes out of nowhere during the All-Star game and puts Horford’s shot in the 9th row.

    On a side note: Chandler?

  48. Frank O.

    Frank O.: How is it that they can look this solid and then bomb like they do…?I know it’s youth. It just can be frustrating…  

    I mean, they’re crushing a very good team with all its weapons available to it.

  49. tastycakes

    2 consecutive beautiful Felton-to-Chandler plays.

    Enjoyable game to watch, nice to see us get these guys for a change. Almost too bad we go into ASB after a solid all around performance like this one.

  50. Frank O.

    tastycakes: 2 consecutive beautiful Felton-to-Chandler plays.Enjoyable game to watch, nice to see us get these guys for a change.Almost too bad we go into ASB after a solid all around performance like this one.  

    And they could be coming back with a very different team.
    I think AR is gone no matter what.
    But the rest, who knows?

  51. John Kenney

    Was at the game- wow, Atlanta played flat. At no point did it feel like they were giving 100%. just a weird weird game

  52. d-mar

    Cavs beat Lakers to avenge 50 pt. blowout, but on the last play of the game, a meaningless Fisher heave, Jamison turns his ankle and hobbles off the court. From magical to tragical, the Cavs in a nutshell.

  53. rohank

    I only caught the end of the game (had my own intramural game tonight ;-)). Knicks looked really good on D. FINALLY! Maybe that “Go NY, Go NY, Go!” song is inspiring them to play D like the Knicks of ’93/’94.

    Meanwhile, Cavs win too…

  54. nicos

    Rare game where both Chandler and Gallo played well at the same time. Atlanta did seem flat but the Knicks probably played as active defensively start to finish as they have all season- didn’t wait until the 4th to start playing D! I was a little surprised Horford wasn’t more fired up- a little low energy considering the chatter back and forth between he and Amare.

  55. cgreene

    philly is our only comp for 6 seed. indiana losing back to back. charlotte 6 games back of knicks and knicks own tie break.

  56. BigBlueAL

    Regardless of how they got to their current record if before the season started we wouldve been told the Knicks will be 28-26 at the All-Star break, I think we all wouldve signed up for that in a heartbeat no??

  57. Z-man

    Great D except on Bibby. Jamal was pretty invisible tonight. Why can’t we always play like that at home?

    I have soured on Felton a bit, he just seems to make too many questionable decisions. TD is a joke at PG. We need something more there, like soon.

  58. Z-man

    Ha anyone looked at our March schedule? Grueling, to say the least. That’s why I had hoped we would have more of a cushion right now.

  59. BigBlueAL

    Z-man: BBA I pretty much agree.After 13 out of 14 run, though, not so much.  

    Sure, but after the 3-8 start we wouldve been thrilled with a 28-26 record at the break.

  60. massive

    Meanwhile in Milwaukee, Carmelo Anthony is keeping the Nuggets in the game. He has 36 points on 28 shots. He’s going hard to the basket but the refs aren’t trying to call fouls, as his 3 for 3 from the line would depict. Too early to start rooting for Melo?

  61. bockadoo

    watching melo on espn. been going back and forth on this. sometimes i think it’ll be like having bernard king back, and we need another unstoppable go-to guy, but other times i think he’s a ball stopping gunner who won’t fit in with our style. he’s got 36 right now, but he literally shoots every time he gets the ball. how’s that gonna work with stat? they don’t complement eachother, they don’t make other players better. you have one or the other. lebron and wade can handle the ball and make other players better, stat and melo don’t. we need a great point guard and interior defense period. how many small forwards do we need? cp3 seems injury prone, so i say we target dwill and howard.

  62. d-mar

    Been watching the Bucks-Nuggets game on ESPN, and damn, I would really love to see Melo in a Knicks uniform. He is just shredding one of the better defensive teams in the NBA from inside and outside. Now I”m not in the screaming “Get him now, whatever it takes, DO IT” camp, but for anyone to argue that he’s not an elite player in this league is crazy. He doesn’t make us a contender, but we would become a scary offensive team.

  63. knickterp

    In the NY Times article just posted tonight, a Knicks official says Denver wants Gallo, Chandler, Felton, AND Fields for Melo/Billups. A person close to the negotiations says they’re making it easy for NY to say no.

  64. Brian Cronin

    Too early to start rooting for Melo?

    Certainly not when he’s playing a team behind the Knicks in the standings!

  65. Brian Cronin

    In the NY Times article just posted tonight, a Knicks official says Denver wants Gallo, Chandler, Felton, AND Fields for Melo/Billups. A person close to the negotiations says they’re making it easy for NY to say no.

    Awesome. I love that. Stick with that Denver. Don’t budge!

  66. Brian Cronin

    Why does D’antoni leave all the starters in, up by 15 with two minutes remaining in the game?

    He actually has some odd philosophy where he is against putting his bench players in unless the game is waaay out of hand (think 20 point lead with a few minutes left). He specifically has noted he is against it.

  67. Brian Cronin

    By the way, it was patently obvious to all of us that as it got closer to the deadline, “reports” would surface designed to erode the Knicks’ leverage. A mystery team. Carmelo wants to stay in Denver. Carmelo might not sign with the Knicks if they don’t trade for him. All sorts of rumors. Rumors that we all predicted would pop up at this time months ago.

    And yet, the media is reporting them as though they’re totally for real, without a hint of “hey, maybe this is just a bluff, like the Laker rumors were and like this thing was and that thing was and this other thing was.” But no, they’re just dutily doing Denver’s bidding and writing about how the Nets are “eroding” the Knicks’ leverage.

    I’m just pleased that it seems Donnie Walsh does not buy that load of BS.

  68. Brian Cronin

    Sheridan, though, wrote a good piece today. He ultimately came down on the side of saying that the Knicks will throw in either Gallo or Fields, but he allows that he is stating that only because he has to literally make a guess, as he knows Donnie is saying he won’t and Denver is saying he must. So it is effectively a case of each side trying to call each other’s bluff, and since Donnie caved in to Houston last year, Sheridan is guessing that he will be the one who gives in here. For a guess, that’s really not a poorly though out point. Sheridan also makes the point of stressing:

    A. That the Knicks don’t believe the Nets are seriously interested

    and

    B. Any concerns about Melo getting angry at the Knicks for not making the trade is completely speculative.

    A surprisingly balanced article from Sheridan, which is particularly notable as it was released the same morning as Ian O’Connor’s insipid “the Knicks owe it to Amar’e to get Carmelo at any cost” article.

  69. Frank

    Through the whole Lebronathon and this Melodrama (I’ll be happy once these stupid names are a thing of the past), I think Alan Hahn has been the most even-handed and non-dramatic — he wrote a great article today about the whole thing:

    http://mobile.newsday.com/inf/infomo;JSESSIONID=F633831D88E08A418905.3058?site=newsday&view=sports_blogs_item&feed:a=newsday_5min&feed:c=sports_blogs&feed:i=1.2693095&nopaging=1

    Basically – saying that the Knicks are still pretty sure this is a one horse race. So stay strong Donnie!

    That being said – one factor that we as regular fans know nothing about is how Azubuike has been looking. If he is somewhat close to full strength, it may make it less painful to let go of Fields. I can’t say I’ve ever really seen him play much, but a few things stand out just looking at his stats — his career rebound rate of ~9+ would put him in the top 10 of all guards. His TO-R is half of Fields’s rate. And he’s a career 41% 3 point shooter.

    Meanwhile – did Gallo look extra motivated last night or what? 9 rebounds, took the ball strong, 17 points on 12 shots. Safe to say he wants to stay.

  70. Brian Cronin

    I think Howard Beck has been the most even-handed and non-dramatic. Hahn is definitely not dramatic, but I think Beck has him beat on even-handedness (and Beck is not dramatic, either). But yeah, Hahn is leaps and bounds ahead of guys like Isola and Berman and {shudder} O’Connor.

  71. Frank

    Brian Cronin: I think Howard Beck has been the most even-handed and non-dramatic. Hahn is definitely not dramatic, but I think Beck has him beat on even-handedness (and Beck is not dramatic, either). But yeah, Hahn is leaps and bounds ahead of guys like Isola and Berman and {shudder} O’Connor.  

    Totally agree. I like and read them both — hardly ever read anything by Berman or Isola, and the ESPN guys are pretty nauseating to read also. Ken Berg from CBS sports is also another good read. He wrote a good article yesterday about this whole thing and why Donnie feels like he’s in a great position:

    http://www.cbssports.com/nba/story/14697636/trade-buzz-swap-not-only-way-melo-ends-up-with-knicks

    One thing about Hahn — he seems to have more sources than Beck — Beck usually seems to report on what Hahn reported, whereas Hahn often has newer stuff.

  72. Brian Cronin

    Yeah, I think that’s fair to say that of the guys who “break” stories, Hahn is definitely the best (at least of the New York writers).

  73. d-mar

    Broussard made an idiotic statement this morning while trying to pump up the Nets story to the effect that the Nets package is much more enticing because they can offer a promising rookie like Derrick Favors. Um, last I checked, Chris, Landry Fields was the 2nd best rookie behind Griffin. Just typical BS, and why exactly would Melo agree to an extension with NJ as opposed to a few months ago? I agree with Brian, stay strong Donnie and tune out the noise.

  74. Brian Cronin

    I think it’s safe to say that, from a PR standpoint, Favors is still a more promising rookie than Fields. It might be completely off-base (like much of what the media believes), but it is likely still true.

    The #3 pick versus a “replaceable role player” is how the media (and likely Denver fans) see it.

  75. Brian Cronin

    By the way, it is annoying to see that Denver might deal Nene, a great player who actually fits a significant area of need for the Knicks, and he’s the Nugget the Knicks aren’t looking to get!

  76. Caleb

    I love me Landry but no way is he a better prospect than Favors, who’s 6’10 and 3 years younger. And doing quite well, on his own. See where he is in 3 years.

    It’s all moot because the Jersey deal won’t happen unless Melo signs an extension there, and if he wouldn’t back then, I doubt he would now.

  77. Brian Cronin

    I love how Sheridan writes a well-balanced piece and then the headline on ESPN’s Rumor Central is “Fields or Gallinari must be part of a package for Anthony”

    Right after the headline, it shows a snippet of the article…

    “This might have been the last night to see Landry Fields or Danilo Gallinari in a New York Knicks uniform at Madison Square Garden, because if the Bockers are going to get the Carmelo Anthony trade done, one of them might have to go.”

    Lordy.

  78. massive

    ESPN really is the worst when it comes to rumors. They’re usually off about anything that isn’t completely obvious, so I can only imagine how the rest of the country feels about hearing about their young guys (Mayo, Thompson, Cousins, Noah, even Curry) being moved or seeing their names in the ESPN rumor mill. Still, it is interesting to read, and gives us something to discuss.

  79. ess-dog

    I was at the game last night and was fairly impressed with the Knick effort.

    -Was very surprised to see this morning that Mozgov had so few stats – 4 pts and a rebound – while seemingly strongly effecting the game while he was in. It doesn’t show in the stats, but he changed a lot of shots and could be part of the reason that the Hawks’ shooting was so cold in the first half. He also looked really good as a man defender and only takes smart looks on offense. Then Turiaf played more in the 2nd half and also did good things. Atlanta doesn’t run a traditional center much, which helped those two but I remember the Hawks brutalizing us in the paint the last time we played. That was not the case last night.

    -Gallo looked great. His dunks are always so surprising, I would jump out of my chair a bit and think “oh right, he’s practically seven feet tall.” And his outside shot looked much better than it has of late. He looked like a complete offensive player, and at least respectable on defense.

    Chandler looked confident off the bench. Had a few bonehead mistakes, but that runner in the lane of his is seemingly unstoppable. He gets up really high, pauses, and fires sort of like Jordan minus the tongue. His value off the bench is immense.

    -Our biggest standout flaw was clearly Felton’s shooting. He shot too often and not well enough. To be fair, often our guys had trouble getting open and Felton would have to take a shot at the end of the shot clock, but other times, he would take a three 5 seconds into the shot clock and brick it. There is really no pnr game with Ray anymore. It’s more about him dumping it into Stat than a two man game. I which case I wish Gallo or Fields would just take over the dumper roll. Felton had some nice passes (he has a good feel with Wil) in transition and his D was good aside from Bibby scorching the nets.

    -Also, the Hawks just didn’t have it last night. Smith looked terrible and Johnson seemed low on…

  80. JK47

    “Denver is demanding Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, Landry Fields, Raymond Felton, Timofey Mozgov and a first-round pick (obtained by trading Anthony Randolph) in exchange for Anthony and Chauncey Billups.”

    Good luck with that, jerks. What’s our team supposed to be then? Billups-Douglas-Melo-Stoudemire-Turiaf, with Shawne Williams and Bill Walker off the bench? Go F yourselves.

    “Hahn writes that the Knicks are not confident that Denver actually knows what it wants from a deal for Anthony and offers his opinion that it is “amateur hour” in the Nuggets’ front office.”

    That sounds about right.

  81. ess-dog

    …It was good to be on the other end of a game like that.

    In conclusion, last night it sure didn’t look like we needed Melo at all. He might bring a little more scoring than the Gallo/Chandler combo, but he won’t bring more defense which is mostly what we need at the 3 or 4 and that extension could effectively kill any future moves. I know you can’t judge on one game, but it does look like the guys are starting to gel: Ray is getting it to Gallo now and Mozgov and Turiaf really help move the ball around as well. If Stat could be just a little less of a ball stopper, we would have a very nice offense.

    But back to Melo, would it help us to improve our offense from 4th to 2nd? The only pro-Melo argument I still cling to is that he is likely to help us get CP3, but will we even have the assets by then? Right now we really need our depth. Having guys like Gallo and Chandler who overlap somewhat is a luxury, not a problem.

    And I think Rautins should get a little bit of a shot at pg. He’s there and knows the system so he’s worth a look before getting another back up pg. But that seems like our greatest area of need right now.

  82. JK47

    @137

    Our offense isn’t #4, it’s #8. If we’re going to win with SSOL our offense is going to have to be a lot better than #8. D’Antoni’s Suns teams were all either #1 or #2 in offensive rating. Right now the Nuggets are the #1 offense in the NBA.

    If we could swing something like #1 in offensive rating and #15 in defensive rating we’d be a contender. We need to improve on both ends of the ball really.

  83. Frank

    @137 – I think we’re not so worried about the Atlantas of the world, more about the actually good defensive teams out there that will be able to take STAT out of the game, or at least make him much less efficient.

    And Melo’s not a BAD defender – he’s probably average to above average. He’s a better defender than Gallo, especially when he applies himself, so it would probably be a net + defensively if he replaces Gallo in the starting lineup or if Gallo gets traded.

    I’ll tell you this much though – if WC has been playing poorly because of the stress of the situation, Carmelo has been the exact opposite. Dude is seriously lighting it up despite all the distractions. Numbers for February — 9 games, 33 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 53% from the field, 46% from 3. That’s a TS of 64% and a relatively palatable TO-R of 10.6.

  84. ess-dog

    JK47:If we could swing something like #1 in offensive rating and #15 in defensive rating we’d be a contender.We need to improve on both ends of the ball really.  

    Even if this is true, we have as far to travel to get to #15 on defense as we do to get to #1 on offense. And I don’t think Melo’s an improvement defensively. I just don’t think it’s as clear cut a get as the media makes it out to be…

  85. ess-dog

    Frank: @137 – I think we’re not so worried about the Atlantas of the world, more about the actually good defensive teams out there that will be able to take STAT out of the game, or at least make him much less efficient.  

    Atlanta’s the 13th best defense so far and was better last year. They’re no Boston or Miami, but they are a good defensive team.

  86. d-mar

    Caleb: I love me Landry but no way is he a better prospect than Favors, who’s 6’10 and 3 years younger. And doing quite well, on his own. See where he is in 3 years.
    It’s all moot because the Jersey deal won’t happen unless Melo signs an extension there, and if he wouldn’t back then, I doubt he would now.  

    OK, I get that Favors is younger and taller and might have more upside than Landry, I guess I just get peeved at this constant drumbeat of how superior any Nets offer is to any Knicks deal, like the Knicks players are garbage and Favors plus draft picks is nirvana.

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