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Friday, December 19, 2014

2012 Report Card: Steve Novak

Stats:

Player Age G MP MPG PER TS% eFG% TRB% AST% TOV% USG%
Steve Novak 28 54 1020 18.9 15.9 0.684 0.675 5.9 2 5.7 16.2

Per 36 Minutes:

FGA 3PA 3P% FTA FT% ORB DRB TRB AST STL BLK TOV PF PTS
11.9 10 0.472 0.9 0.846 0.3 3.4 3.7 0.4 0.6 0.3 0.7 2.1 16.8

Hello Knickerblogger Nation. As you may remember, there was once a time when the 2012 off-season appeared from afar to resemble an excursion down a small river; while there might be some twists and turns along the way- look! It’s Pablo Prigioni!- nothing too drastic would occur, and with a steady hand at the tiller- that Glen Grunwald, he just does his job quietly- the Knickship would safely dock at port, provided OH GOD IT’S A WATERFALL WHAT DO WE DO *TOSSES JEREMY LIN OVERBOARD.*

Suffice to say, ye old Knicks Report Cards were moved to the back burner, there being the tragic death by waterfall of Jeremy Lin to deal with. (Footnote: This is my coping mechanism. He died. Constructing alternative histories is a skill any Knicks fan who follows the draft acquires by necessity. I simply put the tool to a new use.)  Then Mike did a report card for Toney Douglas’s brother who doesn’t play basketball yet impersonated him all season (See, it’s easy! Make your own at home!) and I remembered that a report card for a very special Knick had been sitting in my WordPress drafts for months. And so here we are.

 

And my, how things have changed for Sir Novakaine. When I first started writing this article, I planned on composing a eulogy for Steve’s tenure with the Knicks, in recognition of the fact that the CBA seemed to indicate quite clearly that Novak would have to take a large pay cut to remain with the team (Because of course we’d be using our mid-level exception on Jeremy Lin, right guys? Right?) Then the NBAPA scored a victory against the NBA allowing Novak to retain his Early Bird Rights, ensuring that the Knicks could make a competitive offer, and now Stevie is signed with the Knicks for another presidential term. Which is – and there’s no other way to say this, on a family-friendly* website like ours- FRICKIN’ AWESOME.

*excluding those articles penned by Bob.

I found Novak’s success story last year inspiring on a number of different levels. Some were obvious -He makes a lot of threes, duh- some were subjectively rewarding -Midwesterner makes good under the bright city lights!- but I believe that the main reason Novak’s season so excited Knicksdom was that his expectations-to-performance ratio stood as a complete inverse to that of the team as a whole. Since Carmelo’s arrival the Knicks have consistently been worse than numerous prognosticators’ predictions, despite the mounting evidence that the team wasn’t that good. Lest you fear I’m simply clubbing straw fans, remember how John Hollinger was almost drawn-and-quartered for suggesting the Knicks would end the season in 7th place? Whereas Bill Simmons and his partner in crime’s prediction of 3rd in the East was met largely with praise. I don’t need to remind you who ended up being correct. Belief in the Knicks means expectations dashed.

Steve Novak, on the other hand, carried no expectations whatsoever. A no-risk signing expected to sit on the end of the bench and contribute, at most, the occasional three, the Spurs rejectee barely featured in D’Antoni’s game plans for the first part of the season. It was only injuries to Amar’e and Carmelo that would open up time for Steve- the only opening he needed to start triple-discount-checking his way into our hearts.

Separating Novak’s impact from Linsanity is still difficult to accomplish. As was written quite well on this site, Novak emerged as the remora fish on the side of Lin’s Great White Shark. The joy of a Novak three often followed a dish from Mr. Lin.  The slash-and-kick game that briefly became our predominant mode of offense left him open all the time, and did he ever take advantage. Yet really, I don’t have to separate Novak from Linsanity to appreciate what he did- the whole phenomenon of that team was exceeding expectations, and while its figurehead may have been the point guard, the other players on the floor all made important contributions. That Steve would continue to knock down threes once Baron Davis assumed the starting role has helped ease uncertainty over how he would fit into an offense based primarily around Carmelo’s isolation abilities. And while he may have struggled against the Heat’s suffocating defense, the same has been said of many men.

The turn of events by which the player who carried no expectations could suddenly bring the Garden to its feet merely because they could see he was about to take a shot is extraordinary. He so thoroughly entranced those watching that throughout the arena the expectation became that the ball would go in; on those rare occasions when it rattled off the side of the rim, something felt wrong, like a demonic spirit had interceded against the laws of physics. That feeling, coupled with Novak’s surprisingly efficient determination on defense, guaranteed that his import to Knicks fans’ reached beyond merely his numbers.

Of course, if his numbers sucked, he’d get booed out the building. In a victory for advanced-stats-defenders* everywhere, Novak’s 2012 season statistics are quite comparable to his minute samples from the three teams he played for the season prior (*They would, however, caution you to avoid using too small of sample sizes. Here advanced stats can cut both ways.) While the uptick in USG% did slightly decrease his averages, the fact that he was able to maintain a near-similar rate of efficiency (.684 TS%!!!) while playing more minutes is another case study in how players often only need an expanded opportunity for them to make an impact in the “PPG” so many people find interesting. In another advanced statistic, ETPMWISN (Ecstatic Tweets Per Minute Wherein I Scream NOVAKAIIIIINE) Steve blew away the field. I have great expectations for Steve in the year ahead. I only hope that, just this once, that won’t mean disappointment.

Grades (5 point scale) (Don’t ask me how 5 different numbers can be averaged out into a letter grade. They don’t pay me enough to answer that question.)

Offense:4
Defense:2
Teamwork:5
Rootability:5
Performance/Expectations:5
Final Grade: A

35 comments on “2012 Report Card: Steve Novak

  1. Nick C.

    Nice write up. He sure provided a lot of fun and all caps and !!!! filled game posts. Those numbers are as one dimensional, but what a dimension as they come. 3/6 reb/36 for a F?!?

  2. d-mar

    Novak was a complete non-factor in the entire Miami series, which was eye opening to say the least. Unlike guys like Ray Allen or Reggie Miller, I don’t know if Novak has the ability to run off of screens, but he has to figure out ways to free himself up. We can’t have him become invisible come playoff time when defenses ramp up the intensity level and open shots are less available.

  3. SeeWhyDee77

    Excellent write up. I love Novak on this roster with or without the “D’Antoni Offense” because he keeps defenses VERY honest..no matter how one dimensional he may be. Dolan may be overpaying a little for his contributions if u look at the face value of it. But this is what he’s really paying for: Awesome shooting, role player who fills his role without fail or complaint, great locker room and team guy just happy to be there, and the premium on the 3 ball. Novak’s what, 32? U don’t hafta worry about any knuckleheaddom with him in any aspect. So lookin at it that way..his contract is cool.
    If I had my druthers, my depth chart would go like this:
    C- Chandler, Camby, Thomas, Sims
    PF- Stat, Novak,Thomas, Copeland
    SF- Melo, Brewer, Novak, Copeland
    SG- Shump, Smith, Brewer, White or Thompson
    PG- Felton, Kidd, Prigs, Shump
    But..it will problee look like this:
    C- Chandler, Camby, Wallace
    PF- Stat, Wallace, Thomas
    SF- Melo, Novak, White
    SG- Shump, Smith, Brewer
    PG- Felton, Kidd, Prigs
    Not alot of minutes to share with that scenario..an no young players to develop other than Shump. Which would mean that once our 2-3 year window closes..we become the Bobcats. Not a good look. While I won’t mind adding Sheed..his presence will limit the future as young guys in positions of future need like Sims and Copeland and maybe Thompson likely won’t make the roster. But on the flipside we have our first capable roster since Spree an H20 led the charge.

  4. steveoh

    Yes, Novak was bottled up in the Miami series. But we were basically playing Iso Melo without any sort of the ball movement or drive-and-dish that Novak needs to get his shots. He’s limited. But within those limits, he’s a stud. And that makes me fear what’s ahead. I’m not sure Woody or Melo is interesting in playing that way.

    But that’s why they play the games.

  5. Brian Cronin

    The thing that weirds me out about Novak on the Knicks this season and going forward is that they locked him up for four years at not exactly a tiny salary (he’s making 33% more than JR Smith, for instance), so you’d think that he’d play a pretty major role on the team, and I suppose he will, but at the same time, couldn’t you easily see him being squeezed out of the rotation? One-dimensional players are the easiest guys to get squeezed, and that’s certainly Novak. And we’ve already seen an inability on Novak’s part to adapt. So this is odd for me.

  6. thenamestsam

    I’m also very worried about Novak’s role for this upcoming season. I think Woodson is going to be very tempted to keep all the old front court guys in the mix, and along with normal minutes for Chandler and Amare they’re going to eat all of the minutes at the 4 and 5, squeezing out Melo and Novak and leaving them only the minutes at the 3 to split, which Melo will take most of. And Novak has to play, because he’s one of 2 guys on this team who can stretch the floor.

  7. Z-man

    You guys iz crazy. Novak is gonna play plenty. He had a tough time vs. Miami, but so what? He was a monster against most of the league. Kidd will see to it that he wins us a few games this year, bank on it.

    Come playoff time, the Knicks will adjust the rotation to the opponent, maybe costing Novak some minutes if he remains as one-dimensional as he was last year. The improvement in the team around him should actually help his cause. We should have solid, healthy PGs this year to help get him the ball in good spots. We have additional defenders to help cover up his weaknesses on that end.

    Novak also got his first taste of what he could be if he expanded his game even a litle bit, and it sounds like he has been working on some things.

  8. knicknyk

    Brian & thenamestam I agree wholeheartedly. I have been saying this for a while how many minutes is Steve really going to get not that many imo.

  9. SeeWhyDee77

    Z-man:
    You guys iz crazy. Novak is gonna play plenty. He had a tough time vs. Miami, but so what? He was a monster against most of the league. Kidd will see to it that he wins us a few games this year, bank on it.

    Come playoff time, the Knicks will adjust the rotation to the opponent, maybe costing Novak some minutes if he remains as one-dimensional as he was last year. The improvement in the team around him should actually help his cause. We should have solid, healthy PGs this year to help get him the ball in good spots. We have additional defenders to help cover up his weaknesses on that end.

    Novak also got his first taste of what he could be if he expanded his game even a litle bit, and it sounds like he has been working on some things.

    I agree that better PG play will get Novak better looks. But if Sheed signs, I doubt Novak will play a whole lot or be as efficient as he was last season- as he is a much better stretch 4 than a 3. He shoots MUCH better than Sheed from the perimeter, but he is not the inside presence that Sheed USED TO BE. Truth is..after 2 years away..with his most recent effort being lackluster..we really don’t kno what he’s gonna give us. I, like everybody else, am expecting Sheed to do what he used to do for 12-15 mpg. At least I hope he does. That should offset Novak playing primarily at the 3. For all of Sheed’s skills in defense and rebounding (supposedly), I think we’re better with Novak as our stretch 4 because Sheed is a HUGE unknown rite now. Even still, I welcome the addition if he signs and is in shape. One thing I don’t understand is why people say Sheed brings rebounding. Wasn’t his career high 8.2?? But what will make us dangerous is that 2nd unit with Sheed. Between him, Novak, Smith and Kidd..that’s alot of perimeter stress on the defense..plus Sheed can go inside. Let’s hope he’s healthy and in shape.

  10. SeeWhyDee77

    SeeWhyDee77: . One thing I don’t understand is why people say Sheed brings rebounding. Wasn’t his career high 8.2??

    lol..still a helluva lot more boards than Novak tho

  11. flossy

    Last time Rasheed Wallace played professional basketball (three years ago, if you’re keeping score at home) he jacked up a career high 6 3 point attempts per 36 and made, wait for it… 28% of them.

    If he ends up taking minutes and shots away from Steve Novak, I am going to break something.

  12. JC Knickfan

    Brian Cronin:
    The thing that weirds me out about Novak on the Knicks this season and going forward is that they locked him up for four years at not exactly a tiny salary (he’s making 33% more than JR Smith, for instance), so you’d think that he’d play a pretty major role on the team, and I suppose he will, but at the same time, couldn’t you easily see him being squeezed out of the rotation? One-dimensional players are the easiest guys to get squeezed, and that’s certainly Novak. And we’ve already seen an inability on Novak’s part to adapt. So this is odd for me.

    Weird or rewarded for his loyalty? He was ultimate team player this offseason and reward in typical Dolan fashion by Knicks outbiding themselves for Novak services.

  13. ruruland

    Z-man: You guys iz crazy. Novak is gonna play plenty. He had a tough time vs. Miami, but so what? He was a monster against most of the league. Kidd will see to it that he wins us a few games this year, bank on it.Come playoff time, the Knicks will adjust the rotation to the opponent, maybe costing Novak some minutes if he remains as one-dimensional as he was last year. The improvement in the team around him should actually help his cause. We should have solid, healthy PGs this year to help get him the ball in good spots. We have additional defenders to help cover up his weaknesses on that end.Novak also got his first taste of what he could be if he expanded his game even a litle bit, and it sounds like he has been working on some things.

    No, Woodson is to stupid to adjust his line-up. He likes isolations. Iso-Melo.

  14. ruruland

    flossy: Last time Rasheed Wallace played professional basketball (three years ago, if you’re keeping score at home) he jacked up a career high 6 3 point attempts per 36 and made, wait for it… 28% of them.If he ends up taking minutes and shots away from Steve Novak, I am going to break something.

    Yeah, that’s bad.

    But Sheed is not likely to take minutes over Novak. Moreover, if he gets minutes, it’s likely because of foul trouble, injuries or match-ups. PLus, he can share minutes with Novak. Either at the 5 or 4. They actually complement one another.

    If he wasn’t a well-known player, this wouldn’t be a conversation. He’s the 12th man. In all likelihood, a really good 12th man. Only in New York is this a fucking controversy.

  15. ruruland

    SeeWhyDee77: I agree that better PG play will get Novak better looks. But if Sheed signs, I doubt Novak will play a whole lot or be as efficient as he was last season- as he is a much better stretch 4 than a 3. He shoots MUCH better than Sheed from the perimeter, but he is not the inside presence that Sheed USED TO BE. Truth is..after 2 years away..with his most recent effort being lackluster..we really don’t kno what he’s gonna give us. I, like everybody else, am expecting Sheed to do what he used to do for 12-15 mpg. At least I hope he does. That should offset Novak playing primarily at the 3. For all of Sheed’s skills in defense and rebounding (supposedly), I think we’re better with Novak as our stretch 4 because Sheed is a HUGE unknown rite now. Even still, I welcome the addition if he signs and is in shape. One thing I don’t understand is why people say Sheed brings rebounding. Wasn’t his career high 8.2?? But what will make us dangerous is that 2nd unit with Sheed. Between him, Novak, Smith and Kidd..that’s alot of perimeter stress on the defense..plus Sheed can go inside. Let’s hope he’s healthy and in shape.

    Sheed can play center.

    He will compete with Thomas for minutes. Woodson understands that Melo can play four, Amar’e 5, Novak four et al.

    The Knicks have one of if not the most flexibile rosters in the NBA. But not all diverse rosters are equal. Veterans are less stubborn about roles and consistent rotations than younger players.

    Camby is going to miss games. You want to keep Chandler and Amar’e fresh for the real season. Having a pool of guys at then end of the bench makes perfect sense.

    If they don’t have it anymore, or can’t play as much as you expect, Melo/Novak can play four, Amar’e can play 5 and you play offense until your bigs are ready.

    Simple stuff.

  16. ruruland

    steveoh: Yes, Novak was bottled up in the Miami series. But we were basically playing Iso Melo without any sort of the ball movement or drive-and-dish that Novak needs to get his shots. He’s limited. But within those limits, he’s a stud. And that makes me fear what’s ahead. I’m not sure Woody or Melo is interesting in playing that way.But that’s why they play the games.

    Woodson likes an offense that relies on difficult shots. WTF is this nonsense.

    Isolations and post-ups are often used as substitutes for dribble penetration. if you have really good post-up/iso players, they CAN create rotations and open shots in a similar way to dribble penetration.

    The Heat didn’t have to double team Melo very much or worry about dribble penetration (which changes with Felton). They could overplay shooters and passing lanes, which is how they suffocated Novak.

    Woodson has played a lot of post-up and isolation basketball because he’s rarely had penetrating guards. Did the Knicks run a lot of pick and roll when they had Lin? Yes. Will they run a lot of it with Kidd and Felton? Of course.

    You don’t become an NBA head coach, especially today, without using or implementing pick and rolls, especially when you have two of the best pick roll finishers in the game, and two good pnr passers.

    It’s completely assinine to suggest that an NBA coach would prefer an offense that didn’t create open jump shots for great jump-shooters.

    Unfortunately, many in the media and even more Knicks fans continue to put the idea forth.

  17. massive

    Rose: WP/48 – .161 (10.16 Total Wins)
    Brewer: WP/48 – .245 (9.11 Total Wins)
    Deng: WP/48 – .146 (9.75 Total Wins)
    Boozer: WP/48 – .108 (4.23 Total Wins)
    Noah: WP/48 – .255 (8.37 Total Wins)

    That was the starting 5 the Bulls had when they won 62 games. They produced 41.62 wins between themselves (Bogans, Gibson, Asik, and Korver all produced 4+ wins that season). I think this is what our team’s WP/48s will look like, roughly:

    Felton: WP/48 – .135 (he’s usually really good on playoff-bound teams)
    Brewer: WP/48 – .220
    Melo: WP/48 – .130
    Stoudemire: WP/48 – .140
    Chandler: WP/48 – .295

    Kidd, JR, Camby, and Novak should be our Gibson, Asik, Korver, and Bogans this season (they put up WP/48s of .177, .155, .117, and .146 respectively that season). I like the comparisons made between the 2011 Mavs, but I think we resemble the 2011 Bulls, too. Those teams won 57 (WP/48 said they’d win 53) and 62 games that season. Do I think we’l be that good? I think 57 is our ceiling, but I think there’s a lot of reason to be optimistic this season. We look like legitimate winners this season, and the jerseys look great. I just hope Melo has the .200 WS/48 and .150 WP/48 season I believe he can.

  18. knicknyk

    ruruland:
    He’s the 12th man. In all likelihood, a really good 12th man. Only in New York is this a fucking controversy.

    And only in NY was our 14th man and 15th man integral to our success just last season.

  19. Brian Cronin

    If I thought Woody was going to give Sheed unearned playing time or if I thought that there was some interesting younger guy that Sheed was blocking, I’d be irked by the Sheed signing. But I don’t think Woody will give him unearned playing time and I don’t think there’s anyone interesting getting blocked by this. Heck, Chris Smith has a camp invite, for crying out loud! It’s not like there’s a bunch of great young guys being burned here.

  20. sidestep

    Novak was assisted 161 times last season.
    This is the break down for who assisted him, and how many times.

    Jeremy Lin 34
    J.R. Smith 24
    Baron Davis 22
    Iman Shumpert 16
    Mike Bibby 15
    Carmelo Anthony 13
    Landry Fields 8
    Jared Jeffries 8
    Toney Douglas 6
    Amare Stoudemire 3
    Josh Harrellson 2
    Tyson Chandler 2
    Bill Walker 1

  21. sidestep

    Novak gave me so much pleasure watching him last season. But he is a black-hole of his own unique variety. When he can’t get the shot off, he has a hard time getting rid of the ball. At most, he can take a few dribbles with his non-existent handle, but once he picks up his dribble, the defender can hound him and cut off his passing angles. Novak is perhaps the only person in the NBA who can be trapped by a single defender, LOL. (Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but the general point stands.)

    When he can’t get the shot off, the best case scenario is when he is at the front wing, where he can just dump the ball back up top. That ends up resetting the play after losing time, sometimes considerable time, from the shot clock. The worst case scenario is when he is in the corner, because if a defender runs up on him and prevents him from shooting, then Novak is totally trapped by the defender and the sideline, sometimes two sidelines. (I can recall one occasion in which Novak was responsible for a 24 sec violation because he was stuck with the ball in the corner with one defender on him.)

    The corner 3 is an especially dramatic example for Novak — it’s the best three in the game, but if he can’t get the shot off, he is effectively trapped, ending in a turnover, a failure to assist another shooter, or just wasting time on the shot clock. It doesn’t take a super athletic player to guard his shot, and athletic teams like the Heat can even cheat by playing off of him a little, in effect making it a game of 4 on offense versus 5 on defense.

    Novak is either the bomb, or a black hole. The two results are really divergent.

  22. SeeWhyDee77

    ruruland: Yeah, that’s bad.

    But Sheed is not likely to take minutes over Novak. Moreover, if he gets minutes, it’s likely because of foul trouble, injuries or match-ups. PLus, he can share minutes with Novak. Either at the 5 or 4. They actually complement one another.

    If he wasn’t a well-known player, this wouldn’t be a conversation. He’s the 12th man. In all likelihood, a really good 12th man. Only in New York is this a fucking controversy.

    nice point..but we all know hell quit if he ain’t gettin playin time. And given his history on defense an relationship with Woody..he’ll play. lol let’s just hope he doesn’t think he’s Novak and camp out at 22 feet…we don’t need him there as much

  23. SeeWhyDee77

    Brian Cronin:
    If I thought Woody was going to give Sheed unearned playing time or if I thought that there was some interesting younger guy that Sheed was blocking, I’d be irked by the Sheed signing. But I don’t think Woody will give him unearned playing time and I don’t think there’s anyone interesting getting blocked by this. Heck, Chris Smith has a camp invite, for crying out loud! It’s not like there’s a bunch of great young guys being burned here.

    Copeland is a guy i’d like to keep and develop for the future..Sims too

  24. JC Knickfan

    SeeWhyDee77: Copeland is a guy i’d like to keep and develop for the future..Sims too

    You do know Copeland 28 right? He should be in his prime. If he can’t make rotation this year, I would be surprised he back with team next year.

  25. Juany8

    sidestep:
    Novak gave me so much pleasure watching him last season. But he is a black-hole of his own unique variety. When he can’t get the shot off, he has a hard time getting rid of the ball. At most, he can take a few dribbles with his non-existent handle, but once he picks up his dribble, the defender can hound him and cut off his passing angles. Novak is perhaps the only person in the NBA who can be trapped by a single defender, LOL. (Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but the general point stands.)

    Great analysis on Novak that most people seem to ignore when discussing limited players like Novak and Korver. It’s one thing when Ray Allen or even Jason Kidd gets prevented from taking a 3 because they have moves to counter that, and they are good passers who will move the ball around and make the defense pay for closing out too fast. Novak just gets stuck with the ball and kills the possession. Fields had this exact same problem too, which is why Melo had no chance has the team’s only creator, pick and rolls and post ups only work well at creating opportunites for others when his teammates are capable of making the extra pass or making a play in space. This year this should be less of an issue since a full year of JR, Kidd, Felton, and Brewer/Shump is world’s better than what the backcourt was last season. Hopefully Amar’e will make his jumpers too…

  26. johnno

    massive: Brewer: WP/48 – .245 (9.11 Total Wins)

    I used to think that WP as a stat is a load of nonsense. However, now that I know that Ronnie Brewer can produce 9.11 wins all by himself over an 82 game season, I realize the error of my ways and suddenly believe (or want to believe) that WP is an incredibly good predictor of a guy’s value to the team…

  27. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    johnno: I used to think that WP as a stat is a load of nonsense.However, now that I know that Ronnie Brewer can produce 9.11 wins all by himself over an 82 game season, I realize the error of my ways and suddenly believe (or want to believe) that WP is an incredibly good predictor of a guy’s value to the team…

    You sound like jon abbey: “If it doesn’t reinforce my preconceived notions of player value, it can’t be valid.”

    “lol”

  28. SeeWhyDee77

    JC Knickfan: You do know Copeland 28 right? He should be in his prime. If he can’t make rotation this year, I would be surprised he back with team next year.

    I thought he was younger. In that case I’d like 2 keep Sims over him to develop

  29. Zanzibar

    Novak led the Knicks in raw +/- and was second to Melo in adjusted +/-. Woody’s got a Rubik’s cube of lineups to try, and finding a way for Novak to be effective against the better teams will be just one of Woodson’s many challenges. One intriguing lineup would be Kidd/Novak/Camby/Melo/Amare using a zone defense. We would have our best spot-up 3 backcourt out there spacing the floor for Amare/Melo and Camby would drift out to keep his man from discombobulating Amare. We’d have to hope the gains in offense would outweigh any deficiencies of the zone defense.

  30. johnno

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: johnno: I used to think that WP as a stat is a load of nonsense.However, now that I know that Ronnie Brewer can produce 9.11 wins all by himself over an 82 game season, I realize the error of my ways and suddenly believe (or want to believe) that WP is an incredibly good predictor of a guy’s value to the team…
    You sound like jon abbey: “If it doesn’t reinforce my preconceived notions of player value, it can’t be valid.”
    “lol”

    I’m kind of like the financial analysts on the radio who “predict” how the stock market will do after the market closes for the day. If the Fed lowers interest rates and stocks go up, they say “The market went up today because the Fed lowered rates.’ If the Fed lowers interest rates and stocks go down, they say “The market dropped today because the Fed lowered rates, sparking fears of inflation.” Just like I can say that I knew that Faried and Shumpert would be good but the truth of the matter is that, if I were GM, I would have drafted Chris Singleton over both of them. Oops.

  31. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: You sound like jon abbey: “If it doesn’t reinforce my preconceived notions of player value, it can’t be valid.”

    “lol”

    Correction: If a bench player is supposed to be better than the former MVP on his team, then nobody getting paid for their professional basketball knowledge has any idea what they’re doing. Except for David Berri of course

  32. ruruland

    Zanzibar:
    Novak led the Knicks in raw +/- and was second to Melo in adjusted +/-. Woody’s got a Rubik’s cube of lineups to try, and finding a way for Novak to be effective against the better teams will be just one of Woodson’s many challenges. One intriguing lineup would be Kidd/Novak/Camby/Melo/Amare using a zone defense. We would have our best spot-up 3 backcourt out there spacing the floor for Amare/Melo and Camby would drift out to keep his man from discombobulating Amare. We’d have to hope the gains in offense would outweigh any deficiencies of the zone defense.

    Camby is best in zone. It’s kind of how he always plays defense anyway.

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