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Friday, October 24, 2014

2014 Game Thread: Knicks @ Sixers

Are you swooning just a bit?  I’m still swooning just a bit.  I’m not ashamed to say that after the way this season started, I wrote this team off for dead but the way they have played over the last 5 games makes me say “I do believe I have the vapors.”

Between Stat looking something not quite but very close to spry, Shumpert doing his best Novak impersonation (17 of 28 61% from deep over the last 5 games), and Melo keeping the offense from looking like the GW bridge with two lanes shut down I’m actually invested in this team again. So much so that I took advantage of the fact that I still have editor access (Don’t tell Jim) and posted this little game thread.

Hopefully, our boys won’t spoil the party by taking a bad loss in Philly. The Knicks burned through their allotment of bad losses early in the year.  At this point, they need to beat bad teams–even on the road–if they want to get back into contention.

Your in-game thoughts here. Go New York, go New York go.

By special request, “What to watch for”.

The Sixers are 27th in the NBA in defensive rating and first in pace, which means there will be plenty of chances for the Knicks (17th in offensive rating) to score points.  The Knicks have fared well scoring efficiently of late (average eFG% .522 over last five games), so a big scoring night is to be expected if the Knicks keep up with the Sixers who lead the NBA in pace.

The Sixers don’t score efficiently at all (25th), so a solid defensive effort will make things easier.

Predictions:
A double-double from Melo (points and rebounds) and Felton (points and concession stand visits).
Everyone’s laces will stay tied.
If the Knicks win, a glowing recap from Jim Cavan.
If the Knicks lose, a scathing review from Robert Silverman with humor so dense only Stephen Hawking is bright enough to truly appreciate it.

189 comments on “2014 Game Thread: Knicks @ Sixers

  1. Owen

    Big game, can’t really afford to lose to these guys.

    And good thing you got this thread up before the KB community rends itself to pieces….

  2. ephus

    This game is different than four out of the last five games. Against San Antonio, Houston, Dallas and Miami, I was prepared to be content with good offensive sets, defensive rotations, high energy and intelligent play – even without a victory. Tonight, I cannot imagine walking away content without a Knicks victory.

  3. Thomas B. Post author

    What happened to the uncanny predictions-things to watch for Thomas?

    I didn’t realize anyone paid attention to those.

  4. cwolf

    Would be nice if MSG Network would get their remote truck shit together and actually SHOW the game.

  5. Kahnzy

    Would be nice if MSG Network would get their remote truck shit together and actually SHOW the game.

    I gave up and settled for the 76er feed.

  6. Kahnzy

    Also, as good as MCW has been this year (and as much as a surprise, at least to those like me who don’t pay much attention to college/highschool), the kid looks like, well…a kid. If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear he was just a really tall 16 year old.

  7. Thomas B. Post author

    I gave up and settled for the 76er feed.

    And boy are we settling with the Sixer play by play team. Not. Good. At. All.

  8. DRed

    Also, as good as MCW has been this year (and as much as a surprise, at least to those like me who don’t pay much attention to college/highschool), the kid looks like, well…a kid. If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear he was just a really tall 16 year old.

    Has he ever released his long form birth certificate? Maybe he really is 16.

  9. BigBlueAL

    Not surprised by this flat start from the Knicks. Annoying and pissing me off right now but not surprising.

  10. Kahnzy

    Not surprised by this flat start from the Knicks. Annoying and pissing me off right now but not surprising.

    This team has had this problem for at least the last 3 years now.

  11. Kahnzy

    The Knicks pretty much only get a 2-for-1 by random chance when the clock just to happens to line itself up that way.

  12. Nick C.

    MSG has Wally, Alan and the other dude calling using the Comcast feed. Different experience for sure.

  13. BigBlueAL

    Philly played last night btw and are 30th in the NBA on D. Fully expect the Knicks to eventually win easily but this is still an annoying start to watch. Really annoying.

  14. ephus

    Coaching tip. Make the opponent catch the ball going away from the basket when there are five seconds left in the quarter.

  15. Owen

    This defense is really bad. Who is Hollis Thompson? Who is Elliot Williams?

    We better not lose to this team

  16. Kahnzy

    JR driving and kicking, looking for the foul. I’ll take it. He should get DNP-CD’s more often.

  17. yellowboy90

    Melo needs to get out there on Young to prevent the easy 3. Young is knocking them down this year.

  18. ephus

    Tonight. JR has done everything on my rules list.

    Defensive intensity.
    Drives to rim.
    Kick to open wing shooters and cutters.
    Hit open 3s.

  19. Kahnzy

    I’ve said this before: I root for Amar’e probably more than any other current Knick. I love watching him play games like it’s 2010. They may not happen every night, but when they do they are a joy to watch.

  20. Thomas B. Post author

    Amar’e looking spry.
    JR playing smart..ish.
    What next, Chris Christie adopting Arnold and Willis?

  21. ephus

    I know he made it, but I do not like that step back 2 by JR.

    Melo clearly wanted to set up JR in transition.

  22. Kahnzy

    After reading JR’s comments about this entire drama, it seemed like he really didn’t get it. Maybe I misinterpreted. He’s having a great game so far, I just hope it continues, not just tonight.

  23. Kikuchiyo

    I hope this lead is large enough so that Tyson can have his last bowl of chicken noodle soup and get some beauty rest.

  24. Kahnzy

    I’ve seen this team before…

    Where was it…

    Where was it…

    Ah yes! I saw this team last season. I liked that team.

  25. ephus

    The lesson I take from the first half is that JR is physically capable of playing the way he did during his great streak last spring.

    Will he continue to do it? I have no idea.

  26. BigBlueAL

    Sixers fans should be happy. They should get a Top 5 pick at worst in the draft plus have Noel back for next season. MCW looks like a real good player too. Problem is they got alot of roster spots to fill since Turner and Young will most likely be gone soon. This isnt a 1yr rebuild.

  27. vpac

    That was a fun quarter to watch… Pretty offensive basketball by the Knicks …had 15 assists on 21 field goals at one point

  28. Kikuchiyo

    I have a bold, slightly outrageous idea. You might want to sit down for this:

    What if our coach were to play JR major minutes when he is playing well,
    and take him out when he’s not playing well?

    I know, I know. I’m a genius.

  29. BigBlueAL

    Whoa, Nets up 10 in Toronto midway thru the 3rd quarter. They were down double-digits early in the game and are w/o KG along with Derron and Lopez obviously.

  30. ephus

    Second half, I would like to see Felton run the double PnR with Melo and Stat or Melo and Bargs.

    Great second quarter.

    Murry will be a strong defender. He let Wroten get to the rim too easily. Also made some good plays. Should play ahead of Udrih, when he returns.

  31. Thomas B. Post author

    Man, that was a really good quarter of basketball for the Knicks. Actually a good first half, but the second we “held” them to 12 points on 5 field goals and two free throws. Even for a bad offensive team, that is really impressive.

  32. Frank O.

    That was a fun quarter to watch… Pretty offensive basketball by the Knicks …had 15 assists on 21 field goals at one point

    I’m certain philly found it offensive as well.
    Badabum.

    I’m here all night…

  33. d-mar

    Yeah switched to the Nets game for a while, pretty huge turnaround.

    Why do I find Ryan Ruocco so annoying?

  34. Frank O.

    I watched the Nets and Miami last night. This is no fluke. They’ve found some players on the bench, as the Knicks have, that make them better.
    Shaun Livingston is very good, too.

  35. Frank O.

    Missing Wade was rough for the Heatles, but Chalmers being out kind of hurts too.
    Lebron looked tired.

  36. ephus

    If Nets win tonight, they are within 1.5 games of Toronto. I think Nets are more likely than Raptors to win Atlantic.

    MLK game against Nets will be huge.

  37. Kahnzy

    I have a bold, slightly outrageous idea. You might want to sit down for this:

    What if our coach were to play JR major minutes when he is playing well,
    and take him out when he’s not playing well?

    I know, I know. I’m a genius.

    Whoa there. That might be a bit to radical for Woodson. Maybe start small, baby steps. Bench JR at the slightest sign of loose shoelaces, but then play him 35 min/game regardless of how he’s playing. We can’t expect too much from this coach too quickly, or we’re just setting ourselves up for disappointment.

  38. Thomas B. Post author

    After reading JR’s comments about this entire drama, it seemed like he really didn’t get it. Maybe I misinterpreted. He’s having a great game so far, I just hope it continues, not just tonight.

    I would not confuse his play with whether he gets it. If anything playing well will likely stall his ability to get it, if he even has the ability to get it. It’ll take much more than one half of ball to convince me. Look how well he played last season, then the moment the playoffs stated his true colors showed.

    JR Smith is the Deadpool of basketball. You have no clue what he will do next and you generally value him based on him being not as bad as you know he could be. Really who else but Deadpool would untie your laces when he knows the camera is on?

    Ah well. Tonight I’ll just try to enjoy the chimichangas while they are hot and fresh.

  39. Kahnzy

    Also, is it any coincidence that JR is having his best game of the season and Udrih is out hurt?

    Just say’n maybe everything really is his fault. He goes down, polar vortex calms down, Rodman admits to a drinking problem, I got a raise at work, and JR plays like last season’s good JR.

  40. Frank O.

    Thomas B.
    I can’t agree more.
    If we know JR, his performance has nothing to do with what happened.
    Knowing him, he probably woke up this morning randomly engaged and fell into a kind of focus for the game. This dude follows his own beat, which is how at times he seems utterly tone deaf.
    It’s random as a roulette wheel. You go with it when it’s hot and pull out your money when cold.

  41. ephus

    Great offensive board by Shump.

    Great passing by Melo and KMart out if the double PnR to get Bargs a wide open 3 (missed).

  42. ephus

    I love that pass by Melo to a wide open Bargs in the corner. I like Bargs taking advantage of the hard close by taking it to the rim.

  43. Owen

    Hawes doing an impeccable Bargs impression….

    Although to be fair, i can’t remember Bargs getting torched like this face to face.

  44. Kahnzy

    Anyone else fear that the 4th quarter meltdown is almost inevitable?

    Don’t get me wrong, there has been very little evidence to suggest it’ll happen tonight. By all accounts we should win this going away…

    …but Knicks. Hope I’m wrong, but this season has made me a rather paranoid fan.

  45. BigBlueAL

    Lets just hope that Woodson doesnt start ramping up Stat’s minutes like he did last season which lead to another knee injury.

    Also Melo flirting with a triple double.

  46. Kahnzy

    Lets just hope that Woodson doesnt start ramping up Stat’s minutes like he did last season which lead to another knee injury.

    That’s one of my biggest fears for this team. I love watching Amar’e play like this, but I don’t want to see an increased load lead to another season ending knee surgery.

  47. Kahnzy

    Letting Stat run on a wet floor also seems like a bad idea…

    If something happens, I’m blaming you for the jinx.

  48. Frank O.

    Really need to stop letting these guys stand around.
    The O kind of stops when Amare is on the bench…
    I know, weird.

  49. Owen

    If i were to say something like, what are they worrying about, no way anyone hurts themself. These are NBA athletes right?

    That would be a jinx

  50. ephus

    Stat is still an asset.

    JR is taking the first step back towards being asset.

    THJ is improving.

    KMart is playing well.

    Melo is filling the Stat sheet.

    Felton is back.

    Murry is earning rotation minutes.

    This team has clawed its way out if the abyss.

  51. Kahnzy

    Every time I see a Felton floater, it looks like it slipped out of his literally buttered fingers.

  52. Frank O.

    Melo is playing but he’s kind of keeping it low key. Resting, and maybe letting the other guys do the work tonight.
    I like to see it.

  53. Robtachi

    Man, Bargnani is just so bad at shooting threes, it’s no wonder opposing Ds are content to give him those open looks all day.

  54. yellowboy90

    Didn’t like Melo’s shot selection tonight after they got the lead. It’s like he is at shoot around but his passing has been their all night. only one reb in the second half though.

  55. vpac

    One of the more complete games that the Knicks played all season … I never really felt like the 76ers we’re making a real run. Reminded me of last year!

  56. Kahnzy

    If you wanna watch a 4th quarter meltdown, Washington just took the lead on Houston after starting the 4th down by 20.

  57. Robtachi

    The Sixers definitely suck, but I think you’d be hard-pressed to deny that since Texas, the Knicks have looked much more like last year’s bunch than the pallid husk that limped through this season’s first trimester.

  58. Brian Cronin

    Oh definitely. You can’t look down on this win. This was a very good win. The Detroit win you can look down on a little bit, but not this one. This was a very good win. Not as good as the Miami win, but still very good.

  59. Frank O.

    No doubt. A good win, and Melo didn’t have to exert himself. He played, but not intensely. He let Amare dominate.

  60. Robtachi

    I think what I’m most encouraged by is that I think I saw everyone contribute something positive tonight, even if it wasn’t in shooting well or what have you. Nobody who played was just universally a negative.

  61. Kahnzy

    Wiz now down a deuce, after an 8-0 rockets run.

    Too bad. I kind of like Washington. Oh well, every eastern conference team that loses helps the Knicks that much more I suppose.

  62. Kahnzy

    Knicks .5 game out of last playoff spot. Tied in the loss column.

    2.5 out of 6th, which would be worlds better than 7th or 8th and having to play Miami or Indiana in the 1st round.

  63. Brian Cronin

    They should easily get the 5th seed. I just want to see them still win the division. They totally can do it.

  64. ephus

    Knicks, in 2014, have climbed out of the hole they dug in 2013. They have a real opportunity to win the Atlantic. They should be a playoff team.

    Effort does not guarantee success, but lack of effort guarantees failure.

  65. Z-man

    How can anyone enjoy this win after reading knickster’s brilliant analysis on the last thread? Stop deluding yourselves! The Knicks suck! They will always suck!

  66. JR Sec 112

    The better Amare plays, the more I think bargs should be cd-dnp. If he can’t make 3s it hard to think of him as a net positive.

  67. ephus

    Teams with cap space cannot be impressed with Evan Turner. I do not think he is a starter on a playoff team.

  68. Z-man

    We still have Chandler, Metta and Prigs in the chamber. Good times!

    Toure looked like a rookie today, though.

  69. Kahnzy

    We still have Chandler, Metta and Prigs in the chamber. Good times!

    It seems like we really haven’t seen what MWP can bring to this team yet. Early on he wasn’t being used much, and when he was it wasn’t very effectively. As much as I think the guy is still a nut job (his elbow on Harden a couple of years ago, for example), I’m really looking forward to seeing him make a positive contribution to this team when it’s actually playing like it belongs in the NBA.

  70. Z-man

    Yeah, MWP has been largely disappointing. I wonder if he will come around once the games get more meaningful and his knee gets healthier. He’s still a versatile defender with championship experience. I hope he can be a KMart-type of contributer.

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