Knicks Morning News (Friday, May 31 2013)

  • [New York Times] With Words and a Look, James Lifts Heat, 90-79 (Fri, 31 May 2013 07:12:03 GMT)

    LeBron James said a few words at halftime to try and coax something more out of the Miami Heat. Turns out, whatever he said was unnecessary.    

  • [New York Times] Game 5: Heat 90, Pacers 79: James Leads Third-Quarter Charge as Heat Take Game 5 (Fri, 31 May 2013 06:05:05 GMT)

    LeBron James scored 16 of his 30 points in a critical third quarter, as Miami took Game 5 over Indiana to move within a victory of its third straight N.B.A. finals.    

  • [New York Times] James Scores 30, Heat Take Game 5, 90-79 (Fri, 31 May 2013 04:12:04 GMT)

    The game was very much in doubt. A sold-out arena was basically silent. The chance of getting back to the NBA Finals for a third straight year could have slipped away.    

  • [New York Times] AP Source: Malone Reaches Deal to Be Kings’ Coach (Fri, 31 May 2013 04:00:12 GMT)

    Incoming Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadive is already making moves to rebuild the fallen franchise.    

  • [New York Daily News] Kidd ‘thinking about’ Knick return (Fri, 31 May 2013 04:51:12 GMT)

    Jason Kidd says he is still decided about whether he’ll return for another season with the Knicks.”I am thinking about it,” Kidd told reporters at Justin Tuck’s charity billiards event in Manhattan Thursday night. “We’ll see. I have to make a decision.”Kidd, 40, is under contract for another two years.    

  • [New York Daily News] Melo didn’t seem hurt, by George (Fri, 31 May 2013 04:37:09 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony played injured during the Knicks’ six playoff games against the Indiana Pacers, but Paul George, who defended Anthony brilliantly in the series, never detected a problem.    

  • [New York Post] Jason uncertain if he’ll be a comeback Kidd (Fri, 31 May 2013 03:49:27 -0500)

    Jason Kidd isn’t 100 percent sure yet about his future.
    Kidd said Thursday night his “plan” is to return to the Knicks next season, but added he still is “thinking” about retirement and has not made a final decision on whether to come back.
    Speaking at Justin Tuck’s…

  • Off-Season Musings 2.0

    If you missed Off-season Musings 1.0 check it out.

    Again, this is a quasi-open thread to discuss potential losses and additions. Same ground rules as last time, yeah?

    1. Let’s stay away from pure rosterbation, shall we? With little cap space for major free agent signings and few assets worth trading, Chris Paul is not walking through that door. It’s not impossible I suppose, but the Knicks aren’t well positioned for that kind of deal.

    2. Check out your idea before posting. You can check trades against the CBA any number of places, including realgm. You can also find player contract and team salary cap information at basketball-reference.

    POSSIBLE LOW-KEY ADDITIONS — PRO PLAYERS

    It’s always hard to anticipate these kinds of moves without inside information. We don’t know exactly what the future holds for New York’s free agents, Martin, Smith, Prigioni, and Copeland. Regardless, the Knicks still need a backup for Tyson Chandler. Last off-season’s plan was clearly to throw bodies at the position. Unfortunately, those bodies were brittle and old. So Chandler still ended up playing too many minutes, until he got injured, sick, and generally worn down. Enter Roy Hibbert, and it just got ugly. I will admit to feeling like scooping up older bigs with skill last off-season was moneyballing some market inefficiency. Mayhap we look at a few younger bodies this off-season?

    Here are a few under-the-radar names I’m keeping an eye on. They don’t address every need–certainly not Melo’s* alleged demand for an additional scorer–but I’m concentrating on potential bargains.

    *I usually turn a jaundiced eye to any “reporting” from the Post. So I don’t know how accurate Melo’s alleged demand is. I feel fairly confident, however, that someone at the Post believes New York needs another “scorer”. In my humble opinion the Knicks could use, as much as anything, for Tyson Chandler to develop a 15-18 foot jumper the same way Udonis Haslem did. 

    Brandan Wright is a solid two-way rotational big (not a small forward though) who probably carries too little bulk to ever be more than an 18-20 minute, matchup dependent 4 or 5. He may never play 82 games. So even though there is a lot to like, his price tag might stay reasonable. Here’s a great write up on Wright at MavsMoneyBall. Sure, Dallas likes him but if they’re serious about getting in on Dwight Howard they may have to let Wright walk even if its for reasonable money.

    Al-Farouq Aminu is only 22. I’m not sure how much bloom is left on that rose though. The Pelicans failed to pick up his option, despite the fact that he seems to have come into his own as a one-dimensional (elite) rebounding forward. The Pels need offense and they have already invested a high draft pick (Xavier Henry, plus a lot of other backup bodies) at his position. They like Aminu, and may not let him walk unless someone overpays. Given his limited skill set though, no one may back a dump truck filled with cash up to his door. New Orleans could probably keep him for reasonable money, but with another high draft pick on the way the numbers game may not favor Aminu staying in New Orleans. For the right price Aminu could provide New York the flexibility to go big without having to play Melo at the 3. He’d generally allow Woodson to keep a rebounder on the floor when Chandler is resting.

    Shaun Livingston is a fairly safe bet to return to Cleveland. In fact, I’m not even sure he could play for New York since he can’t shoot the three. Still, I’ve always liked Livingston. He’s a solid defender, excellent passer and rebounder. He also had a good season backing up Kyrie Irving. The second-tier guard market is a buyer’s market this off-season. So pair Livingston’s injury history with Irving’s, and the Cavs may consider finding a backup with less injury risk (not to mention more scoring punch). For his part, Livingston won’t be able to command much, which may well lead him back to Cleveland.

     

    Knicks Morning News (Wednesday, May 29 2013)

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks great Ewing could join Charlotte staff (Wed, 29 May 2013 05:13:36 GMT)

    Patrick Ewing has emerged as a candidate to join former Knicks assistant coach Steve Clifford with the Charlotte Bobcats. Clifford agreed to become Bobcats head coach on Monday, and his relationship with Ewing dates back to the late ’90s when Clifford joined Jeff Van Gundy’s staff.    

  • [New York Times] Column: LeBron Gets More Attention Than He Wants (Wed, 29 May 2013 07:57:08 GMT)

    LeBron James likely did himself no favors with the refs by fueling the debate over flopping just ahead of Game 4.    

  • [New York Times] Pacers Beat Heat to Knot Eastern Final at 2 Apiece (Wed, 29 May 2013 07:53:57 GMT)

    The open looks Udonis Haslem and Chris Bosh took advantage of to help the Heat win Game 3 disappeared in Game 4, and so has Miami’s lead over Indiana in the Eastern Conference Finals.    

  • [New York Times] Game 4: Pacers 99, Heat 92: Pacers Hold Off Heat’s Charge and Even Series (Wed, 29 May 2013 05:26:43 GMT)

    Miami held an 89-86 advantage with just over 5 minutes to play, but the Pacers, led by center Roy Hibbert, went on an 8-0 tear and never trailed again, evening the series at 2-2.    

  • [New York Times] Game 4: Pacers 99, Heat 92: Pacers Get Even With Game 4 Victory (Wed, 29 May 2013 04:51:42 GMT)

    Roy Hibbert had 23 points and 12 rebounds and Lance Stephenson added 20 points as Indiana charged back late to beat Miami and tie the Eastern Conference finals at 2-2.    

  • [New York Times] Pacers Fend Off Heat to Square Series (Wed, 29 May 2013 04:02:50 GMT)

    The Indiana Pacers withstood a late Miami charge to beat the Heat 99-92 and square their Eastern Conference final at two games all on Tuesday.    

  • [New York Post] Source: Carmelo wants Knicks to add another scorer (Wed, 29 May 2013 02:02:42 -0500)

    Carmelo Anthony agrees with the sentiment of Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim regarding the state of the Knicks’ roster — he needs help.
    According to a source, Anthony has told a confidant he is concerned management will stand pat this offseason and said he believes the team needs to add a bona…

  • Knicks Morning News (Tuesday, May 28 2013)

  • [New York Times] Rookies Shine During WNBA’s Opening Weekend (Tue, 28 May 2013 07:36:46 GMT)

    Brittney Griner and Elena Delle Donne put on a quite a show to cap off an impressive opening weekend for the WNBA.    

  • [New York Times] Spurs Back in NBA Finals After Sweep of Grizzlies (Tue, 28 May 2013 07:33:16 GMT)

    It may seem as if the San Antonio Spurs are playing for an NBA title every year. Tim Duncan and Tony Parker know only too well how very long it’s been since their last chance.    

  • [New York Times] AP Sources: Bobcats Hire Lakers Assistant Clifford (Tue, 28 May 2013 07:33:12 GMT)

    Michael Jordan felt he needed a head coach with a little more NBA experience this time around to improve his struggling Charlotte Bobcats.    

  • [New York Times] Game 4: Spurs 93, Grizzlies 86: Parker’s 37 Carry Spurs to Sweep and Finals (Tue, 28 May 2013 05:09:09 GMT)

    Tony Parker scored 37 points in his best game of this postseason as San Antonio defeated the Grizzlies in four games and advanced to its first N.B.A. finals since 2007.    

  • [New York Times] Spurs Sweep Into NBA Finals (Tue, 28 May 2013 04:38:50 GMT)

    Tony Parker delivered a season-high 37 points as the San Antonio Spurs completed a sweep of Memphis on Monday with a 93-86 victory that booked a trip to the NBA Finals.    

  • [New York Times] Game 4: Spurs 93, Grizzlies 86: Parker’s 37 Carry Spurs to Sweep and Finals (Tue, 28 May 2013 04:30:52 GMT)

    Tony Parker scored 37 points in his best game of this postseason as San Antonio defeated the Grizzlies in four games and advanced to its first N.B.A. finals since 2007.    

  • [New York Times] AP Sources: Bobcats Hire Clifford as Coach (Tue, 28 May 2013 00:45:19 GMT)

    The Charlotte Bobcats have hired Los Angeles Lakers assistant Steve Clifford to become their new coach.    

  • [New York Times] In W.N.B.A. Debut, Delle Donne Leads Sky to Victory (Tue, 28 May 2013 00:21:17 GMT)

    Elena Delle Donne outplayed No. 1 draft pick Brittney Griner and had one of the best rookie debuts in W.N.B.A. history, scoring 22 points to lead Chicago to a 102-80 victory over Phoenix.    

  • Off-Season Musings 1.0

    With the conference finals in full swing, and Knick fans left dreaming of what might have, it is time to think about what is coming up next. Free agency and the draft are right around the corner.

    For the most part, the Knicks core of Anthony, Chandler, STAT, and Shump is set. Roster changes will most likely involve the other players and are likely to come from the draft, via minor trades and low dollar free agent signings.

    Given that, I figured I’d put up a quasi-open thread to discuss potential losses and additions—but with some ground rules.

    1. Let’s stay away from pure rosterbation, shall we? With little cap space for major free agents and few assets worth trading, Larry Bird Chris Paul is not walking through that door. It’s not impossible I suppose, but the Knicks aren’t well positioned for that kind of deal.

    2. Check out your idea before posting. You can check trades ideas against the CBA at ESPN and RealGM. You can also find player contract and team salary cap information at basketball-reference.com.

    I will add a few words about potential losses and additions, and update this post throughout the off-season.

    POSSIBLE LOSSES

    1. J.R. Smith – Odds favor Earl’s return, and not without some justification. His detractors and agnostics will surely point his to piss-poor shooting and remind us that it wasn’t just bad in the playoffs. His regular-season .522 TS% was well below his career mark of .540. His supporters will point to real improvement from “bad J.R.” Most nights he brought an improved floor game to at least partially offset his awful shooting. We saw sustainable career bests in DREB % and TOV %. We also saw a little less 3PT gunning (more than one full 3PTA/36 below his career average, his 4th fewest), and more willingness to challenge the defense (a near career best FTA/36). The major question is whether the Knicks overpay.

    2. Pablo Prigioni – Will someone price the Knicks out of the market? I doubt it but that is the question.

    3. Kenyon Martin and Chris Copeland – Ditto.

    4. Raymond Felton and Steve Novak – With 3 more seasons left on their respective deals neither is likely to go anywhere, especially Novak with his newly balky back. And yet, either could be flipped for a complimentary player or be part of a bigger deal to make numbers work. To that latter point you could add James White and possibly Marcus Camby.

    5. The Rabble (Quentin Richardson, Earl Barron) – Neither is likely to return, though it’s worth noting that Q-Rich shot 35% from the arc in Orlando just a season ago. He looked to be in good shape, and if Novak is going to be chronically back spasmy you could do worse at the end of the bench.

    POSSIBLE ADDITIONS – THE DRAFT

    Virtually everyone is saying that this is a role player-heavy, beauty-is-in-the-eye-of-the-beholder draft. That’s fine for the Knicks, who pick at #24 anyway.

    I have included draft prospects ranked #20-28 on the “big boards” of three different sites (i.e., DraftExpress, NBADraft.net, and SBNation. These boards have each been updated since mid-May. They just give you an idea of some of the names likely to be linked with New York in the coming weeks.

    Prospect Rankings, #20-28

    Draftexpress

    NBADraft.net

    SB Nation

    20 Tony Mitchell, PF, 21 years old, Sophomore6′ 9″ 236lbs.North Texas Tim Hardaway, Jr., SG, 21 years old, Junior6′ 6″ 185lbs.Michigan Dario Saric, SF, 19 years old, International6′ 10″ 223lbs.Cibona Zagreb
    21 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG, 20 years old, Sophomore6′ 6″ 204lbs.Georgia Giannis Adetokunbo, SF, 18 years old, International6′ 9″ 196lbs.Filathlitikos Rudy Gobert, C, 20 years old, International7′ 2″ 238lbs.Cholet
    22 Dario Saric, SF, 19 years old, International6′ 10″ 223lbs.Cibona Zagreb Shane Larkin, PG, 20 years old, Sophomore5′ 11″ 171lbs.Miami FL Reggie Bullock, SF, 22 years old, Junior6′ 7″ 200lbs.North Carolina
    23 Shane Larkin, PG, 20 years old, Sophomore5′ 11″ 171lbs.Miami FL Gorgui Dieng, C, 23 years old, Junior6′ 11″ 230lbs.Louisville Shabazz Muhammad, SF, 20 years old, Freshman6′ 6″ 222lbs.UCLA
    24 Allen Crabbe, SG, 21 years old, Junior6′ 6″ 197lbs.California Rudy Gobert, C, 20 years old, International7′ 2″ 238lbs.Cholet Kelly Olynyk, C, 22 years old, Junior7′ 0″ 234lbs.Gonzaga
    25 Jeff Withey, C, 23 years old, Senior7′ 0″ 222lbs.Kansas Lorenzo Brown, PG, 22 years old, Junior6′ 5″ 189lbs.N.C. State Steven Adams, C, 19 years old, Freshman7′ 0″ 255lbs.Pittsburgh
    26 Glen Rice, SF, 22 years old, Senior6′ 6″ 211lbs.Rio Grande Valley Tony Mitchell, PF, 21 years old, Sophomore6′ 9″ 236lbs.North Texas Kenny Kadji, PF, 25 years old, Senior6′ 10″ 242lbs.Miami FL
    27 Giannis Adetokunbo*, SF, 18 years old, International6′ 9″ 196lbs.Filathlitikos Sergey Karasev, SG/SF, 20 years old, International6′ 7″ 197lbs., 1993BC Triumph Jamaal Franklin, SG, 21 years old, Junior6′ 5″ 191lbs.San Diego State
    28 Archie Goodwin, SG, 18 years old, Freshman6′ 5″ 189lbs.Kentucky Allen Crabbe, SG, 21 years old, Junior6′ 6″ 197lbs.California Brandon Davies, C, 21 years old, Senior6′ 10″ 242lbs.BYU

    *I have seen multiple spellings of this guy’s name.

    If you’re looking for rookies who could come right in and play a role a few names jump immediately to mind.

    1. Gorgui Dieng (Louisville) would be a godsend. He is Tyson Chandler-lite. He can run, block shots, and board. If you watched the title game you also saw an emerging pick-and-pop game. My guess is that he won’t be around for New York at pick #24.
    2. Tony Mitchell (North Texas) has an NBA body and athleticism (6’8-3/4” in shoes, 235#, 7’2-1/2” wingspan—yes, please). Boy, is he raw though. His ability to contribute right away probably depends on what you ask him to do. He should be able to defend, rebound, and run the floor, but there are question marks. After the former Missouri recruit sat out for academics and signed with North Texas he had a promising freshman season. He surprised many by staying in school after a coaching change. It did not go well. The team disintegrated and he regressed across the board. A red flag for me is that he should have been renowned as a physical player in the Sunbelt Conference with his measurables, but he wasn’t that sophomore year. He boarded well as a freshman—not dominant, but well—then fell way off as a sophomore. He took more 3s and fewer free throws. At #24, New York should throw confetti if a talent like Mitchell falls to them. I’d be happy to get him but he definitely comes with a caveat emptor sign. Update: Instead of writing all that I should have just sent you over to P&T for Jonathan Tjarks’ excellent write up on Mitchell.
    3. Allen Crabbe (Cal) is just about tailor-made to play in New York’s offense. (Watch the video scouting report at DraftExpress.) He probably has a lower ceiling than the other two, but could theoretically step into his long-term role right away. Mike Montgomery is a very good college coach, so Crabbe knows how to play. He’s mostly catch-and-shoot, but with enough handle to beat overplays. Think Miami’s James Jones, but with better handle.

    Of the three, I suspect that Crabbe is most likely to be available.

    Next time: Possible Pro Player Additions

    Knicks Morning News (Monday, May 27 2013)

  • [New York Times] Heat Break Out in Game 3 for 2-1 Lead Over Pacers (Mon, 27 May 2013 07:18:47 GMT)

    The Indiana Pacers didn’t see this version of Udonis Haslem coming. There was no reason to.    

  • [New York Times] Heat Offense Puts Away Pacers 114-96 in Game 3 (Mon, 27 May 2013 04:45:03 GMT)

    Miami put LeBron James right in the middle of the action Sunday night, and this time, the Indiana Pacers didn’t have an answer for him or his Miami Heat teammates.    

  • [New York Times] Game 3: Heat 114, Pacers 96: Reasserting Control, James Leads Heat to Rout in Game 3 (Mon, 27 May 2013 04:09:00 GMT)

    LeBron James put distance between himself and Pacers forward Paul George as Miami handily won Game 3 to take a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference finals.    

  • [New York Times] Flagrant Foul Called on Wade, 2 Days Later (Mon, 27 May 2013 02:04:30 GMT)

    The N.B.A. allowed Miami’s Dwyane Wade to play in Game 3 here after issuing him a retroactive flagrant foul-1 penalty on Sunday for his elbow in Game 2.    

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Duncan Boosts the Revitalized Spurs (Mon, 27 May 2013 01:48:03 GMT)

    Days after being named the oldest all-N.B.A. first-team player, Tim Duncan, 37, bulldozed the younger Grizzlies as the Spurs took a commanding lead in the Western Conference finals.    

  • [New York Times] Sports of The Times: From Brooklyn to the Pacers, Roger Brown’s Story of Torment and Triumph (Mon, 27 May 2013 00:02:53 GMT)

    A new documentary focuses on Roger Brown of Brooklyn, who starred for the Indiana Pacers in the A.B.A. after his life was derailed by an association with a gambler.