2014-15 Game Thread: Knicks vs. Heat

The Knicks have just had some awesome luck these last few games, huh? First, Russell Westbrook returns from an injury just in time to face the Knicks and now Dwyane Wade is also choosing now to return to from an injury. Thanks a lot, guys!

I’m leaving for a show at the Gramercy right now (5:00 PM), so I don’t know if Melo is playing. He’s currently listed as “questionable” (upgraded from doubtful), so let’s hope that the Knicks get him back! They sure need him.

Let’s go Knicks!

Knicks Morning News (2014.11.30)

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Pro Basketball: Toronto Raptors Lose DeMar DeRozan (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 05:53:02 GMT)

    DeRozan, a 25-year-old All-Star guard, is going to be out an indefinite period with a torn tendon in his left groin.

  • [New York Times] Harden Scores 34 in Rockets 117-103 Win (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 04:49:02 GMT)

    James Harden had 19 of his game-high 34 points in the decisive third quarter and the Houston Rockets beat the Milwaukee Bucks 117-103 on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Griffin, Paul Lead Clippers Over Jazz 112-96 (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 04:46:09 GMT)

    Blake Griffin scored 28 points and Chris Paul added 17 points and 10 assists to help the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Utah Jazz 112-96 on Saturday night, and tally their fourth straight win.

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: With Loss to Mavericks, 76ers Set Franchise Record (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 03:55:11 GMT)

    Philadelphia got a triple-double from Michael Carter-Williams, but its record worsened to 0-16.

  • [New York Times] Love Leads Cavaliers Over Pacers 109-97 (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 03:22:09 GMT)

    Kevin Love scored a season-high 28 points, Kyrie Irving added 24 and the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Indiana Pacers 109-97 on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Millsap, Scott Lead Hawks to Blowout Victory (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 03:16:02 GMT)

    Paul Millsap scored 18 points, Mike Scott added 14 and the Atlanta Hawks handed the Charlotte Hornets a ninth straight loss with a 105-75 victory on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Chandler Leads Mavericks Over 76ers 110-103 (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 02:55:07 GMT)

    Tyson Chandler had 20 points and 13 rebounds to help the Dallas Mavericks beat Philadelphia 110-103 on Saturday night, sending the 76ers to a franchise-record 16th straight loss to start the season.

  • [New York Times] Gortat Leads Wizards Over Pelicans (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 02:25:04 GMT)

    Marcin Gortat had a season high 24 points and 13 rebounds, Bradley Beal scored 12 points and the Washington Wizards beat the New Orleans Pelicans 83-80 on Saturday night.

  • [New York Daily News] Amar’e: Knicks are in energy crisis (Sun, 30 Nov 2014 03:08:31 GMT)

    Phil Jackson tweeted at the Knicks on Monday to “go get some road wins this week,” but they didn’t even bring their team president back a lousy T-shirt.

  • Knicks 78, Thunder 105. Just End The Season.

    After another loss, New York is in dire straits. Despite a change in the front office, there seems to be no change for this perennially losing franchise. During games, they are completely outclassed by their opponent. The flaws of their coach have remained the same since game 1, one of which is the inability to see his own flaws. New York plays so badly, it’s hard to see if the coaching staff has not prepared them for the other team or if the players have just tuned their leader out.

    But enough about the New York Jets.

    The Knicks lost again yesterday, and again in embarrassing fashion. The Thunder, aided by the return of Russell Westbrook, took a 17 point first quarter lead, and expanded it to 26 by halftime. New York might have well been that team in your rec league that everyone beats, because they offered little to no resistance.

    The Knicks went into the game as the league’s worst defensive rebounding team. So how did their coach prepare for an above average rebounding team? Well he gave 31 minutes to two 6-10 guys that combined just barely top 10 reb/36. The results?

    40.9% to 15.2%
    Rebounding — OKC: 40.9% — NYK: 15.2%

    Honestly he did give a handful of minutes to Cole, who earned kudos from the Knick announcers when on the floor. (And I could have sworn he had 3 blocks, not 2). But it was less than either Wear or Smith. At this point it’s hard to determine if Fisher sees rebounding as a huge gaping hole on the Knicks defense, or if he just doesn’t have anyone else (other than Cole) that can fix the problem, so he just punts it every game. If the latter, then it’s up to Phil to put someone on the bench that can grab opponent misses.

    With the Jets, they’re likely to lose their coach after the season. The same is unlikely with the Knicks. But the Jets have another problem: is their front office GM the solution, or just another problem? Idzik’s drafts haven’t panned out. The Jets’ main problems before Idzik joined, QB and DB, have only gotten worse despite spending high draft picks on them. So far it’s unclear what kind of GM Phil Jackson is, but this team has a cavernous flaw in rebounding. Can he recognize the problem & help the team with a personnel move, or is he oblivious to what the advanced stats have made so obvious?

    Knicks Morning News (2014.11.29)

  • [New York Post] Thunder’s Westbrook puts on a show in front of ‘mentor’ Fisher (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 05:16:59 -0500)

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Russell Westbrook hugged Derek Fisher after the Thunder shredded the Knicks 105-78 Friday night. The hug was little solace for the Knicks coach, who played for the…

  • [New York Daily News] Carmelo Anthony warms up, but still out for Knicks-Thunder (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 06:03:01 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony was back on the court and firing up shots two hours before tipoff on Friday following a few days of back-spasm hell.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks trounced by Westbrook, Thunder, 105-78 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 06:02:33 GMT)

    An injured star triumphantly returned to his team’s lineup here on Friday night, but it certainly was not Carmelo Anthony.

  • [New York Newsday] Russell Westbrook returns with 32 points as Thunder beats Knicks, 105-78 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 00:22:36 EST)

    During the pregame on-court invocation, the officiant prayed for Russell Westbrook. But the Knicks were the ones in need of prayer, and they didn't have one against Westbrook.

  • [New York Times] T-Wolves Beat Lakers After Kobe Misses 3-Pointer (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 06:25:06 GMT)

    Rookie guard Zach LaVine scored 18 of his team-high 28 points off the bench in the second quarter, and Mo Williams had 25 points and 11 assists to lead the Minnesota Timberwolves over the Los Angeles Lakers 120-119 on Friday night. Kobe Bryant missed a 3-pointer as time expired that helped seal the win for Minnesota.

  • [New York Times] Grizzlies Snap Blazers’ Streak With 112-99 Win (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 05:46:05 GMT)

    Marc Gasol had 26 points and nine assists as the Memphis Grizzlies held off the Trail Blazers 112-99 on Friday night to snap a nine-game Portland winning streak.

  • [New York Times] Derek Fisher Returns to Oklahoma City, Where He Ended His Career (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 05:19:14 GMT)

    The game was the first trip back to Oklahoma City for Fisher, who closed out his playing career with the Thunder before he accepted the Knicks’ coaching job in June.

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Hot Warriors Hold Off Slumping Hornets (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 04:58:36 GMT)

    Golden State extended its winning streak to eight games with a 106-101 victory at Charlotte.

  • [New York Times] Thunder 105, Knicks 78: In Return to Thunder, Westbrook Dominates the Knicks (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 04:57:14 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony missed his second straight game for the Knicks, who struggled to keep up with a Thunder team that benefited from Russell Westbrook’s return.

  • [New York Times] Afflalo Scores 22, Denver Beats Phoenix 122-97 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 04:55:03 GMT)

    Arron Afflalo led seven Nuggets in double figures with 22 points, and Denver won its fourth straight at home by beating the Phoenix Suns 122-97 on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Parker Leads Spurs Over Kings (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 04:10:02 GMT)

    Tony Parker had 27 points and the San Antonio Spurs held on to beat the Sacramento Kings 112-104 on Friday night, —their second straight victory without Gregg Popovich.

  • [New York Times] Westbrook Scores 32 in Return; Thunder Beat Knicks (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:49:16 GMT)

    Russell Westbrook scored 32 points in his first game back from a broken right hand, and the Thunder rolled past the Knicks 105-78 on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Griffin Leads Clippers Over Rockets 102-85 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:46:37 GMT)

    Blake Griffin had 30 points and 10 rebounds and Jamal Crawford added 21 points to help the Los Angeles Clippers coast to a 102-85 win over the injury-depleted Houston Rockets on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Speights Leads Warriors Over Hornets 106-101 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:40:28 GMT)

    Coach Steve Kerr knew when he arrived at Golden State that Marreese Speights would figure into the mix somehow this season with the Warriors.

  • [New York Times] Stuckey Leads Pacers Past Magic 98-83 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:34:17 GMT)

    Rodney Stuckey had a season-high 24 points and David West had 18 points in his first game of the season to lead Indiana to a 98-83 win over Orlando on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Ellis Scores 30 Points, Mavs Beat Raptors 106-102 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:34:14 GMT)

    Monta Ellis scored 15 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter, Tyson Chandler had 11 points and 10 rebounds and the Dallas Mavericks won for the eighth time in 10 games, beating the Toronto Raptors 106-102 on Friday night

  • [New York Times] Teague’s 26 Points Lead Hawks Past Pelicans 100-91 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 03:16:04 GMT)

    Jeff Teague scored 26 points, DeMarre Carroll added 19 points as the Atlanta Hawks held off the New Orleans the Pelicans 100-91 on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Illyasova, Dudley Lead Bucks Beat Pistons 104-88 (Sat, 29 Nov 2014 02:58:06 GMT)

    Ersan Ilyasova scored 22 points and Jared Dudley added 16 points as the Milwaukee Bucks beat the slumping Detroit Pistons 104-88 Friday night.

  • 2014-15 Game Thread: Knicks @ Thunder

    Isn’t it just so perfectly Knicks that they get the Olakahoma City Thunder just as Russell Westbrook comes back? Plus, after trying to work out before the game, Melo is officially out for the game, so they get their star back just as the Knicks confirm that they will be without their star.

    However, if the Melo-less Knicks could hang with a healthy Dallas team, they might be able to do well against a Thunder team that has been garbage without Westbrook. He might not be 100% tonight, also.

    So there’s hope!

    Let’s go Knicks!

    Knicks Morning News (2014.11.28)

  • [New York Post] ‘One point in time’ I picked the Bulls, Melo says in documentary (Fri, 28 Nov 2014 04:01:14 -0500)

    OKLAHOMA CITY — A new documentary detailing his two-week free-agent odyssey in July depicts how close Carmelo Anthony was to requesting a sign-and-trade to join Chicago, saying, "There was one…

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks may have to face Westbrook, Durant without Melo (Fri, 28 Nov 2014 03:50:12 GMT)

    The teams sport matching 4-12 records, but their star-quotient injury situations suddenly are headed in opposite directions.

  • [New York Times] Huskies Beat Spartans 78-56 in Wooden Opener (Fri, 28 Nov 2014 06:43:04 GMT)

    Donaven Dorsey scored 17 points and Robert Upshaw tied his own school record with seven blocked shots, powering Washington to a 78-56 rout of San Jose State on Thursday night in the opening round of the Wooden Legacy tournament.

  • [New York Times] Sports of The Times: At 0-15, 76ers Are Perfecting the Art of Tanking (Fri, 28 Nov 2014 02:04:32 GMT)

    The 76ers say the team is undergoing a disciplined rebuilding plan, but others might see it as manipulation of the team’s roster and schedule to put themselves in a better draft position.

  • Mavericks 109, Knicks 102

    New York Knicks 102 Final
    Recap | Box Score
    109 Dallas Mavericks

    Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

    I’m sure we’re all bracing ourselves for a Eugene O’Neill-esque sea of simmering resentment and forced pleasantries, a slew of social/political/economic issues that you might be dragooned into to “discussing” with various chain mail-forwarding relatives that you haven’t seen in a year (or more), the drinking habits of various grabby, rant-y family members and possibly screwing on a smile when face-to-face with their new significant others, such that you can practically see the unspoken cartoon thought bubbles bobbing menacingly above everyone’s head: “Hey, where’s Aunt Sheila?

    Until then, let’s be thankful for the Knicks.

    No, really. This was fun! Yes, they lost in overtime, but a scrappy effort filled with some unlikely heroes and some peak J.R.-ness was really the most one could have hoped for, what with Carmelo Anthony (hopefully) covered from head-to-toe in bubble wrap and sealed in a hyperbaric chamber in a shady, semi-legal experimental Texas medical center.

    So, a few notes on the chief characters in this Serial drama, and we can all prepare to slip into a nice Tryptophan coma.

    Like I said, a fun game. The tendency might be to focus on the six—count them, six—turnovers in turnovers in OT, or the ridonkulous last-second, score-knotting shot from the performance artist still known as Earl Joseph Smith III, but instead, I’m choosing to focus on the nice things, like an undermanned and talent-deficient ‘Bocker squad scrapped and clawed to hang with an absolutely devastating, record-setting (to date) Mavericks offense.

    This isn’t as nice. Yes, the defense was better than we’ve seen in awhile, but even if the Texas School Book Depositories finished a brutal 4-31, they weren’t firing threes at a Morey-an pace because of some fealty to the sacred texts of advanced analytics. The shots were good, open looks, if slightly less wide open than say, Kyle Korver looking like he was exiled to Elba, where he’d have all the time he like to dream his dreamy dreams and perfect his stroke.

    There were also gobs of turnovers, both of the forced and unforced variety, but a small lineup did a dandy job jumping passing lanes when the opportunity arose, and scrambled to keep up with Dallas’ constant pick and roll churn.

    On offense, there were times the triangle hummed and vibrated like a well-struck…er…triangle, but boy, oh boy, would it be nice to have at least one complete PF or C that could really make it work. Mainly, when things were getting geometric, it was because the lineup was packed with point guards, overflowing on our Knickerbocker plate, like so much delicious, starchy stuffing n’ potatoes. Hey, Jose. Whatcha got for us? [h/t Kevin McElroy]

    That was impressive. Serious Guernica stuff, from a revenge-minded floor general. Whether he was carving out an inch or two of space off a two man game or straight catch and shoot gunning, he tickled the twine to the tune of seven threes, including a super-clutch heave with two minutes to go that briefly retook the lead, 89-88 and a devilish alley-oop toss to STAT in the final minute.

    And then there’s his fellow Tau Vittoria alum, PABLOOOOOOOOOO.

    I love “Give Zero Fucks” Pablo. It’s as if all our plaintive cries and pleas for a more liberal shot selection have finally reached his elfin ears. He’s just chucking from deep and deeper and his form seems to be devolving into a granny-shot free throw, but damn, it’s working and it’s just so much damned fun. I would pay serious ducats to just watch a three-point shooting contest between these two guys. There were sneaks galore, an attempt to steal a jump ball from Chandler and a moment where he whipped the ball off Tyson’s noggin. Our man Pablo, placed his healing hands upon his former teammate, presumably to unleash some form of Vulcan Mind Meld/steal his powers.

    Hi there Quincy Acy! For the bulk of the game, I kept scribbling notes that were more or less, “Hey, nice job on Dirk!” He did a nifty job of hedging on the pick and roll, and still having the giddyup to at least jab a mitt close to his Teutonic mug. By the end, the Mavs just let Nowitzki go to work down low, and when he’s on, there really isn’t much that anyone, let alone Quincy Acy, can do. Some mean-mugging, bricked uncontested mid range shots, and utterly goofy low post shots rounded out the evening, but yay Quincy!

    Speaking of cats that might have a beef with Cuban (Mark, not the sandwich or say, Reinaldo Arenas), Samuel Dalembert did some nice board-crashing and rim defending, but he doesn’t actually have functional hands. Look, I found a photo. (No idea why he’s sporting white fingernail paint.)


    As such, he got royally whupped by…



    I kept flashing back to Stephen Curry’s 54-point outing at MSG way back in 2013, when Tyson Chandler eviscerated a Bogut- and Lee-less Warrior front line to the tune of 16 points and 25 redounds. All the beastly stuff that we loved was there, the clever roaming to the hoop for smashes, the dastardly back-taps and the beastly help defense. No, this isn’t an open invitation to re-litigate the deal, but yeah, Tyson’s still good.

    And when he says, post-game, “You know, at the beginning of the year you always look at the calendar and mark it [playing your former team], but honestly, once you get caught up in the season, it’s not as big as it’s made out to be,” it does feel a tad like some shrewd PR flack started whispering in his ear, that all his extempore chatter about “scapegoats” and whatnot was starting to fill up too many column inches.

    Granted, he could be telling it like it is. After all, the ‘Bocker bigs are just terrible, which dovetails quite nicely into some thoughts about…

    …Jason Smith and STAT. The former’s starting to become my personal white whale. You just know that that moment he chucks his warmups off that the scoreboard’s going to go tilt. Whether it’s silly fouls, a Charles Smith-ian inability to score down low/box out/rotate on defense, or his ever-worsening shot selection, steam comes out of my ears whenever he checks in. By all that is holy and good, no more. To his credit, Fisher yanked him pretty quickly in the second half, but for the life of me, I can’t see why one would play him over Cole Aldrich (quelle surprise, coming from yr. humble correspondent). If nothing else, the latter can at least clean the glass.

    And Amar’e? Gah. He actually tried to pass out of the post tonight, and promptly began knocking over beverages in the pricey seats. Afterwards, he limited his turnovers to plowing into Tyson Chandler, dribbling the ball off his tooties, or getting stripped by Barea and the rest of the Mavs’ mighty mites and then foolishly hacking away till the John McCain’s were strolling to the charity stripe.

    The weird insistence on forcing the ball his way was a big reason that New York coughed up an 83-78 lead with a little over 300 ticks left in the fourth. Just awful.

    And then, down two after Monta bricked 1-2 from the line, I was genuinely curious to see what Fisher might dial up.

    That’s silly. This is a new era, one in which glorious, sanctified basketball principles have replaced staid ISO-tomfoolery. There’s no way that Fish will go Heroball, especially considering the guy that without a doubt said, “I got this” in the huddle, came into the final stanza shooting a robust 1-for-10. But yeah. That’s what we got. And it was glorious, if profoundly dumb.

    So, on to the land of the Frackers, one step closer to our sweet and wholly just reward for all this crappy ball.

    But before we go, one zetz at the tech-bubble oligarch pouting like an Emo teen, because what is Turkey Day without a few snide remarks fired off at the end of a too-long eating marathon.

    Okay, one more.

    Happy Thanksgiving, Knickerblogger-istas!