Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

2019-20 David Fizdale Coaching Death Watch: Game 4 – Knicks vs. Cavaliers

So far, the Knicks are 1-2 since the Fizdale Coaching Death Watch began, but that one win was an extremely exciting defeat of Kristaps Porzingis’ Dallas Mavericks team that probably counted for, like, three wins in the grand scheme of things, so that win bought Fizdale a lot of time.

However, if he’s going to keep his job, the Knicks are going to have to:

A. beat up on shitty teams like the Cavaliers (who are on the second half of a back to back)

and

B. win at least two games in a row at some point.

They can’t do B tonight, but they can do A and then possibly set up B, as well!

Mitch still coming off of the bench tonight. Hopefully he cracks 30 minutes played tonight!

Let’s go, Knicks!

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131 comments on “2019-20 David Fizdale Coaching Death Watch: Game 4 – Knicks vs. Cavaliers

  1. dtrickey

    No Kevin Love tonight, but it’s the Colin Sexton types we need to be concerned with. Would be nice if we can keep a average guard from having an All-Star performance on our home floor. It was Sexton last time, so could be time for Delly or Clarkson to have a big one.

  2. KnickfaninNJ

    The Hornets were coming off a back to back too, so I’ve given up on that being a hopeful sign.

  3. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    I don’t wanna hear Fizdale drew up that step back mid range jumper Julius Randle just shot.

  4. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    Knicks swarming on defense, attacking the paint and crashing the boards. Bring that for 48 minutes.

  5. Frank O.

    I almost hate when the Knicks look like a credible NBA squad because I know otherwise…but it unfairly tantalizes.
    Mitch is the man

  6. djphan

    knox is pretty much the same player as he was last year… except he gets bailed out a lot more on his drives now…

  7. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    knox is pretty much the same player as he was last year… except he gets bailed out a lot more on his drives now…

    eFG% last year: 43% this year: 52%

  8. djphan

    i mean if you think that’s gonna keep up on the backs of 42% from 3… then sure… i don’t think that’s happening…

  9. ptmilo

    can’t remember the last time league pass played the msg broadcast. knicks don’t have a turnover yet.

  10. Ntilakilla

    Nice couple of passes at the 3 point line for Frank.

    It doesn’t take worldbeater ballhandler to get guys the ball in open space against a crappy defense, just someone who is willing to do the math.

  11. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    I don’t think Knox will shoot 42% from 3 but he is shooting better. He had the worst FG% for all players that qualified last season. Now he’s average.

  12. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    Smith has a very good handle, but I think at times it translates negatively. At times he spends so much time dribbling trying to create something it can take time off the clock and hurt ball movement. I think he has to find that point where he realizes he’s not going anywhere and gives it up instead continuing to dribble.

  13. Z-man

    Let’s keep in mind that we are playing a very, very bad team. They started 2 rookies, a young soph and 2 journeymen. Any positive stats tonight are virtually meaningless.

  14. Ntilakilla

    I seriously don’t get Fizdale at all. He has no clue of what works on offense and allows for players to take so many stupid shots. Running Frank off the PnR has created good shots for our bigs and actually even made him look good going to the basket a few times. Yet he stops running for the final possession and allows Randle to go iso crazy.

  15. d-mar

    Let’s keep in mind that we are playing a very, very bad team. They started 2 rookies, a young soph and 2 journeymen. Any positive stats tonight are virtually meaningless.

    Yet somehow I feel almost certain we’ll blow this lead and it’ll be a nail biter

  16. Z-man

    I know we’re all gaga on Mitch and all, but isn’t avoiding totally unnecessary fouls an important skill?

  17. Frank O.

    I know we’re all gaga on Mitch and all, but isn’t avoiding totally unnecessary fouls an important skill?

    a basic skill

  18. djphan

    isn’t avoiding totally unnecessary fouls an important skill?

    it is and it isn’t…. almost everyone grows out of it….

  19. dtrickey

    On a G-League update, Iggy has 25 points at the midway point in the 3rd on 7-11 shooting with 6 boards, 2 steals and a block.

  20. Dink

    Mitch commits a lot of dumb fouls. Mitch should also be playing 30min a game or until he fouls out.

    Fiz had done that exactly once this season.

  21. DRed

    I know we’re all gaga on Mitch and all, but isn’t avoiding totally unnecessary fouls an important skill?

    If he wasn’t much better than everyone else on the team maybe this would matter but he is and it doesn’t.

  22. DRed

    Mitch sprained his ankle last game and we’re up 20 so I can’t really be upset he hasn’t been playing tonight specifically

  23. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    Mitch had ZERO fouls on Sat vs CHA and he tweeked his ankle late in the game too. If Taj can play, it’s smart to keep his minutes down.

  24. Z-man

    How many players in the history of the game who averaged 5.7 fouls per 36 or more (Mitch’s numbers last year, this year it’s 5.9 so far) have played 30 mpg?

  25. Z-man

    Answer: one (Kenyon Martin at age 29)

    …meaning that it’s virtually impossible for Mitch to play 30 mpg right now

  26. DRed

    They should keep him nailed to the bench while they talk to him about defensive fundamentals and play bobby portis.

  27. Dink

    …meaning that it’s virtually impossible for Mitch to play 30 mpg right now

    Mitch should also be playing 30min a game or until he fouls out.

    He’s only fouled out once this season. Play the dude enough when he has 5 fouls and it might help him play defense more intelligently down the line.

  28. DRed

    per 36 minutes mitch leads the knicks in points, rebounds, blocks and fouls

    z-man: mitch leads the knicks in fouls, he fouls a lot

  29. d-mar

    Nets getting their asses kicked by the Pacers at home. I know Kyrie is out ( and so is Brogdon btw) but that supporting cast on Brooklyn is way overrated

  30. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    Randle had a terrific outside shooting night no matter how you slice it, but I wonder how many minutes he played with Mitch tonight?

    On a recent play he drove to the hoop and it was one of the rare times there wasn’t anyone near the basket to help.

  31. DRed

    that rj/mitch pnr works because the big has to play the lob and RJ is strong enough to hold his man off from contesting his left

  32. djphan

    feels good to blowout a team we should beat…. esp with this tough stretch coming ahead…

    i didn’t really notice anything different with randle tonight… he was just hitting those midrange and 3p shots… and cleveland doesn’t really have length to give him any issues down low… good all around game tho so he deserves kudos….

  33. Bruno Almeida

    Yeah, Randle seemed to be taking the same shots he always does, but they went in tonight. At least he’s cutting some of those reckless drives from the 3 point line that always ended up with him giving up a charge.

    It’s weird to see the Knicks get a simple, uneventful win, but I won’t complain, specially when the next 10 games are a murderer’s row of good teams.

  34. Owen

    I love that DRed is becoming a single issue candidate here with Mitch being the only plank in his platform. .

    His campaign manager is clearly the ”Rent is Too Damn High” guy.

  35. Grocer

    Nice to win when we’re favored. Nice to see how the offense is supposed to look when the other team can’t play defense. Back to the real world next game.

  36. KnickfaninNJ

    I don’t agree about Randle. He wasn’t taking shots the same way tonight as before. He took shots more quickly than before so they didn’t have time to double or triple team him down low.

  37. Z-man

    @85 but the Cavs’ interior defense was putrid in every regard and he could pretty much do whatever he wanted to. Let’s see what happens vs. Philly.

  38. d-mar

    RJ with 2 steals and 2 blocks tonight. I really like his defense, very rarely do you see him get beaten off the dribble or lose his man on a cut.

  39. alsep73

    Luka is… good?

    I missed most of the second half, but DSJ’s slump continues after that one outlier game against the Mavs. Frank obviously isn’t losing his spot in the rotation, whether or not he continues to start. But it sounds like Payton’s hamstring is finally improving. If Smith has another bad game or three before Payton comes back, does he go in the dungeon? Given that this team’s going nowhere this season, should he go in the dungeon? For whatever dumb reason, it doesn’t sound like we’d use Westchester to try to get him right.

    (On the other hand, Iggy scored 36 points tonight — albeit on 28 shots.)

  40. DRed

    I’m certainly not high on Dennis but we might as well try to get him some regular minutes, even if it’s something like 10 a night.

  41. Bruno Almeida

    If he could only jump twice really fast, he’d be in Sacramento or Phoenix, instead of destroying our dreams of good picks from the Mavericks…

    But yeah, Doncic is just too entertaining to watch, I can’t root against him. 42/11/12, and somehow it doesn’t seem like an outrageous line for him.

  42. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    @knicks_nuance

    Over 150 minutes played.
    Deflections per 36:

    1) Thybulle 6.6
    2) Murray 6
    3) Dunn 6
    4) J. Holiday 5.2
    5) S. Hill 5.1
    6) Ball 5
    7) Ntilikina 4.7

    Frank’s the youngest guy on this list by almost a year.

  43. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    Man Luka….

    If he could play any defense….

    He may have to average 30-10-10 to be an EV+ player. :-)

  44. Bruno Almeida

    The kid is 20 and he has a case for being a top 5 MVP candidate this season. It really does feel like LeBron, in the sense that the hype and the expectations were incredibly high and he’s been somehow better than expected and there’s room for improvement in his shot selection and silly turnovers.

  45. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    I can’t believe I missed this one on the tough loss the other night. I spent 2 days in bad mood over that play. This is the kind of thing Mitch will learn over time. In the mean time block shots.

    David Fizdale: The scheme was for Mitch to come up, but sometimes 21-year-olds don’t do exactly what you tell em to do…If you look at how Frank contested that shot, that kid hit a bomb and that’s how it goes sometimes. #NewYorkForever  @EliteSportsNY

  46. dtrickey

    That Luka line is insane. I know Atlanta should be happy with Trae, but anyone who had the chance to draft him and didn’t is a dead set dickhead.

    On another note, I know we bemoan the defence, but the Knicks currently sit 6th in steals per 100. The trapping and switching may not always work, but they are getting their hands on the ball on defence.

  47. KnickfaninNJ

    I don’t bemoan the defense. I was very surprised to find it was better than our offense. But once that sank in, I was ok with it.

  48. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    Iggy finished with 36 points. Kadeem Allen played for Westchester tonight also. I didn’t realize he was back in action. Also, one of my favorites (Wooten) had 4 blocks and 5/6 from the field. They lost, but we have some nice pieces down there.

  49. djphan

    draft time.. it’s a bit early but decided to take a look since some folks like it and i’ll be gone for a cpl weeks.. this isn’t a great draft so don’t expect much from our pick unless we land in the top 2..

    #1 – James Wiseman – may not play another game but it doesn’t matter.. he’s played against cream puffs but dominating cream puffs does matter… there’s some larger than normal risk with him since his eybl stats were just soso.. he’s probably not on the level of KAT or embid but he’s probably not all that far…

    #2 – Anthony Edwards – the 2p% is a lil bit of a concern but it’s early.. he can get to the hoop at will and he’s physically imposing.. the knock on him has always been shot selection and that remains to be the case..

    #3 – Nico Mannion – a lot of folks say that this draft is pg heavy.. that’s kind of a lie.. most of these guys aren’t even pgs or they aren’t good… nico is one of the few who actually is a pg and doing ok atm… keep an eye on him!

    #4 – Killian Hayes – one of the two french pg’s.. the other guy plays like frank and not in a good way.. hayes plays nothing like that.. he has a very american looking game and has had a great start to the year… he will be climbing on draft boards soon..

    #5 – Cassius Stanley – not entirely sold.. but #s are hard to ignore and he can get up…

    #6 – Tyrese Maxey – not a pg… and i hate short sg types.. he can ball tho and in this draft that’s probably enough..

    #7 – N’Faly Dante – hasn’t played yet but judging by how some others performed that’s not bad.. eybl #s look ok.. should suit up in dec i think..

    #8 – Cole Anthony – not a pg either.. very much a gunner and while the athleticism markers look good… he is struggling mightily in 2p land.. and it’s not an accident.. he has trouble getting to the rim… still early tho so he can adjust..

    #9 – Jalen Smith – one of the few returning players worth paying attention to..

    #10 – LaMelo Ball – just…

  50. geo

    I like star spangled banner instrumentals…cool story about when key wrote it…been a while though since I’ve read through all the verses…

    just read through them…now I remember who francis scott key was…

  51. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats

    If we would have lost last night, it would have been bedlam at The Garden. Some Knock fans are excited, but we were SUPPOSED to win this one. This is not an achievement. Progression, but certainly not a good win to get you pumped. Randle was supposed to body the Cavs last night considering they didn’t have Love and Nance.

    Hopefully this is the start of some form of consistency. I would like that very much lol

  52. Frank

    Well, it’s certainly enjoyable playing a crappy team playing without 2 of their best players (Love/Nance). But hey, a win is a win is a win, especially when it’s in a dominating fashion.

    re: Randle – definitely made quicker decisions and dribbled the ball less.
    Last night per NBA.com – in terms of # of dribbles per shot (last night vs season):

    0 dribbles -> 41% vs 36%
    1 dribble –> 17.6 vs 15.2%
    2 dribbles –> 23.5 vs. 14.6%
    3-6 drbbles –> 5.9 vs 25.8%
    7+ dribbles –> 11.8 vs 8.6%

    so last night he took about 82% of his shots on 0-2 dribbles vs about 66% on the season
    3-6 dribbles 5.9 vs 25.8% is a big change too. 11.8 vs. 8.6 is probably 1 shot difference.

    btw – Frank “will never be an NBA guard” Ntilikina now with by far the highest net rating on the team of players playing regular minutes of +11 — next best is Marcus Morris at 5.4. Part of that of course is how terrible DSJ has been, but the offense has also been way better with him on the floor in spite of his horrific TS. Funny, for his 2+ seasons he’s been on complete dumpster fire teams yet has had positive +/- every year. On/off stats are of course noisy, but at some point maybe we should just not fight it so hard.

    Last thing- i’m super happy Dot is getting some run. His 3-ball hasn’t come around yet but he’s so active on both sides of the ball. Small sample still (90 possessions, a little less than a full game) but the Frank/Dot 2-man combo is 100% percentile on both offense (123) and defense (76.3) per cleaning the glass. In an even smaller sample, Frank+Dot+Mitch is also 100% on both sides in just 31 possessions (129 Ortg, 64.7 DRtg – that seems good?).

    Hint to Fizdale – play the good defenders more!! With Frank/Dot/Mitch on the floor you can even play bad defenders next to them and those 3 will cover up a lot of mistakes.

  53. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @107 – I drove down to Virginia 2 weeks ago and on the way back I stopped at Ft McHenry. Here’s a photo that I took of the Star Spangled Banner Yes, it’s different than the flag we salute today. It is the same “type” flag that flew over the harbor in 1812 with 15 stars to include Kentucky and Vermont, the first two states admitted after the original 13.

  54. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @105 – Most boards have Anthony and Ball much higher on the list and are considered true PGs. I don’t know about Ball in NY but Anthony would be a great addition. The draft isn’t bad it’s deep. While there’s no Zion-type hyped players, there are a lot of legit NBA starters in it.

    Some player that other sites list in the top 10 that you didn’t list:
    Jaden McDaniels (F Washington Huskies)
    Deni Avdija (SF Maccabi Tel Aviv)
    RJ Hampton (PG New Zealand Breakers)
    Samuell Williamson (G/F Louisville Cardinals)

    It’s way too early to worry about now, but the depth says that there may not be a big difference between picking early or later in the lottery, that we’ll still get a really good player. It’s a good draft to have a lot of picks. It would be nice to turn around some of our vets at the deadline for some.

  55. alsep73

    It’s way too early to worry about now, but the depth says that there may not be a big difference between picking early or later in the lottery, that we’ll still get a really good player.

    You say that, but as much as I irrationally love Frank, I’d much rather have Fox, you know? Just as I’m much happier that we got RJ than if we’d slipped to get, say, Jaxson Hayes.

    It’s a good draft to have a lot of picks.

    We only have two picks in 2020: our own 1st, and Charlotte’s 2nd. Next year, we have our own 1st, Dallas’ unprotected 1st, and Charlotte’s 2nd.

  56. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    @110

    Thanks for posting my thoughts exactly. You saved me the time. :-) Defense is wildly underrated. When done well, it helps the offense too.

    I think Dotson is going to improve. I’ve seen data in the past about players slowly improving their shooting as the season progresses and they get sharper. That might be dated info, but in Dotson’s case he didn’t shoot at all in the offseason. That cost him valuable development time and also probably has him behind other players in sharpness. The best is still ahead for him. I’ve long felt he was very good pick and a potentially good two way rotation player. I still think that.

    Frank looks WAY more comfortable now that he’s not looking over his shoulder. I think he looked hesitant on only 2 shots last night (both missed). It’s going to take years for him to get to where we would like on offense, but he’s taking baby steps on the path there and IMO too potentially valuable to give up on.

    Some quotes by Randle in Berman’s articles indicate that he understands the defensive issues he’s facing related to spacing and being the #1 option in NY instead of the 3rd option or playing off the bench elsewhere. Hopefully he and Fiz will figure it out. That was a fun breakout night for him.

  57. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    Kevin McHale is a great basketball analyst on NBA TV. I love when he’s on. He always adds a few subtle insights into players and strategy that you don’t get elsewhere.

  58. Stratomatic: Frequently wrong, but never in doubt

    I’m going to take the non mainstream view on Doncic. I think he’s as offensively talented as anyone in the NBA right now, but his defense is still bad and he’s trying to do way too much. He’s trying to make a big play on almost every possession. When you control the ball and play that aggressively you will pile up stats, but I don’t think it maximizes the team output. He has to learn when a possession requires him to do something special and when he should just pass the ball and encourage movement and a more balanced attack. He’ll get there, but I don’t think he’s adding nearly as much value now as his box scores suggest. That team has a great future (there go the value of our picks) if he settles down, KP gets more comfortable and his shooting and stamina improves off the long layoff, and then they can add some defenders later this year or next year.

  59. Frank

    Pretty frustrating how much luck is involved in team-building. We get the #3 pick in 2019 and land RJ, who looks like a nice player but whose absolute ceiling is probably 2nd or 3rd best player on a contender (probably 3rd). Dallas gets (through an aggressive move – kudos to them) the #3 pick in 2018 and get Doncic, who at age 20 is probably a top 10 player in the league already.

    (To be fair to RJ – he’s been better than I was expecting, especially defensively where he looks like he will likely be a plus defender in his career)

  60. alsep73

    So, for all the deserved grief Fizdale gets, credit him for mostly figuring out the correct choices about the rotation. Some were situations where he had no choice, like with Frank starting, but in other cases like Taj moving ahead of Portis or Dotson moving ahead of both Trier and Ellington, Fizdale seems to have finally recognized that heady two-way players are more valuable on a team where at least one of Randle, Morris, or RJ is going to be on the court most of the time. Though he’s in a shooting slump right now, Knox generally looks like a much better and smarter player, and 20-odd minutes off the bench seems the right role for this stage in his development. Even Mitch coming off the bench isn’t bothering me that much, because his foul rate is ridiculous and this might motivate him to clean that up.

    I imagine we’re about to get our asses kicked in this upcoming slate of games, and that I’ll be right back to yelling at our coach about his theoretical offense. But last night, at least, we did exactly what we were supposed to do in soundly thrashing a clearly inferior (without Love and Nance) team.

  61. djphan

    It’s way too early to worry about now, but the depth says that there may not be a big difference between picking early or later in the lottery

    it is early but if there’s anything i have high conviction on this early is that the top 2 should be wiseman or edwards… and that it’s a pretty weak draft… all the guys you mentioned aren’t exactly performing at the moment so they are names… they exist… but they’re not good right now… particularly jaden mcdaniels who i had high hopes for but looks like he’s far away from the nba at the moment… i do have a soft spot for williamson and he’s much closer… he’s #11 on my board but he also needs to show more…

    cole anthony is a tough one to judge…. but again he hasn’t been all that dominant… even against weak comp… if he keeps this up ppl will start questioning what he really is… and right now he isn’t a pg and he hasn’t been all that good…

    alot of mocks haven’t been updated yet and i generally don’t make too many judgements this early either but that’s how i have it as of right now…. i’m not the only who think this draft is weak either… you can just compare a guy like lamelo ball .. who’s getting serious buzz at #3 for some unknown reason… and a guy like rj barrett…. these guys are not on the same planet…. and that alone should tell you something….

  62. thenoblefacehumper

    Pretty frustrating how much luck is involved in team-building. We get the #3 pick in 2019 and land RJ, who looks like a nice player but whose absolute ceiling is probably 2nd or 3rd best player on a contender (probably 3rd). Dallas gets (through an aggressive move – kudos to them) the #3 pick in 2018 and get Doncic, who at age 20 is probably a top 10 player in the league already.

    There’s definitely a frustrating amount of luck involved. Having said that, last year was the very first year the Knicks tried to make their own luck so to speak. Under Phil Jackson, we just putzed around with 28-32 win teams with no regard for the implications that had on the lottery and no plan for how we were going to improve if it wasn’t going to be through the draft. We wound up with the young players we deserved–Knox is looking like a fringe rotation guy and I don’t think even the most dedicated Frankophiles think he’ll be a top-75 or so player in the league at any point in his career.

    Last year for the first time we mostly just played the young players we had and let the results shake out. Lo and behold, we discovered that Mitchell Robinson is really fucking good at basketball and wound up drafting one of the better prospects we’ve had in a while.

    So naturally, the front office went right back to the putzing around approach. It’s much better to putz around with 1-2 year deals than 4 year deals a la Phil Jackson, but it’s still just putzing around.

  63. JK47

    Imagine where we’d be today if we had passed on the MMM/Afflalo/Noah/Rose era and instead just started the rebuild in 2014. Sign and trade Melo for assets, trade Chandler for assets, get a high pick in the Ntilikina draft…

    Man that would have been sweet. We’d probably be pretty good by now. You can’t take those Courtney Lee memories away from me though.

  64. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    they say that now but they’ll come around

    I laughed out loud, and hard, at this

    I think I called Doncic’s first MVP at age 22. Looks like I was far too conservative. He is a freak.

  65. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Imagine where we’d be today if we had passed on the MMM/Afflalo/Noah/Rose era and instead just started the rebuild in 2014. Sign and trade Melo for assets, trade Chandler for assets, get a high pick in the Ntilikina draft…

    Your 2019 New York Knicks!

    Collin Sexton
    Frank Ntilikina
    Josh Jackson
    Marquese Chriss
    Max Porzingis

  66. swiftandabundant

    Looking at what might have been can drive a man insane.

    Here’s where I stand.

    We got RJ and he’s going to be really good. I don’t get why people think he can’t be a top player in the league in a few years. He fixes the free throws and improves shooting and you’ve got a very well rounded player who plays smart and isn’t selfish and is also pretty good on defense all ready. Doncic is sweet but he is not good on defense and call me crazy, but I think that still counts for something.

    We got Mitch. He’s gonna be a beast.

    Knox and Frank can be good role players. If we had drafted higher could we have ended up with Fox or somebody special? Sure. But they are uber young and Frank’s defense is game changing. Having that bench role player who can change the game on the defensive side is very important. And there is still a lot of time with him. Knox I think can eventually settle into a good 6th man.

    So that’s 2 starters and two bench pieces that we’ve got to build with.

    We got 6 picks coming our way in the next 4 years and I bet at least one of them is a lottery pick. Maybe more.

    And the vets are all short term contracts.

    We just gotta show growth with RJ and the other youngsters and we can turn this into an attractive place in a few years.

    Now we just gotta get a good coach.

    Also, Randle is not beyond hope. He’s just had a rough start.

    We need a PG. A legit one. Frank is doing fine as the starter but long term I think he is best suited as the back up PG.

    The media and internet really revs shit up on the day to day but if you take a breath and take a step back and look at the long term, things are actually pretty good for us. There’s plenty of opportunity to screw it all up but there’s also good chance to build something real here for the first time in a long time.

    Keep your head up.

  67. Bruno Almeida

    Saying Doncic is trying to do too much is really unfair in many ways, especially when you look at his team.

    Porzingis has a .504 ts% and never passes, every time he touches the ball it goes up, THJ just went 0/5 last night and is shooting at Ntilikina levels (.468 ts% so far). Kleber, Curry, Powell, Wright and Finney-Smith are efficient shooters on low volume who can’t create anything for themselves or others, and Brunson also can’t shoot.

    If he doesn’t do “too much” every night they lose every game. I’d rather have the dude with a 12 BPM, .266 ws48 and 47.3 ast% in his sophomore season have the ball in his hands every single possession. Yes, he does take some bad shots and turns it over in silly ways here and there, but I’ll take him wasting 8 or 9 possessions per game when the overall production is at this level of excellency.

  68. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I don’t get why people think he can’t be a top player in the league in a few years. He fixes the free throws and improves shooting and you’ve got a very well rounded player who plays smart and isn’t selfish and is also pretty good on defense all ready.

    I noticed you elided the “if” in your second sentence, you imp.

    Doncic is sweet but he is not good on defense and call me crazy, but I think that still counts for something.

    Of course it does. It’s just that no one is as good at defense as Doncic is on offense. And you don’t have to put Doncic on the opposing PG or ball-handling wing. You can hide him on the worst backcourt/wing player on the floor and try to minimize his mistakes.

    There is no coaching on the planet that can teach Doncic’s ball skills. He is a demigod and he is 20 fucking years old. If Barrett is remotely the offensive player at 25 that Doncic is today, we will be lucky.

    And re: turnovers — sure, it would be better if he didn’t cough it up so much. But some of the best individual seasons of the last few years, that of the mantra “give your MVP the ball and let him work” (Curry, Westbrook, Harden), came with exorbitant turnover totals. Aside from the ridiculous behind-the-back pass, wherein Curry threw the Larry O’Brien trophy out of Klay’s reach, those turnovers are simply the cost of doing business.

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