Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

A Few Adjustments for Game Two

With a night to sleep on it, a few things I think I think heading into Game Two.

1. The defense was the biggest Game 1 culprit, part I. For all the huffing and puffing about NY’s offense, 95 points (inefficient though they were) really should be enough against the Pacers. The game should at least to be closer than three possessions. The Pacers shot 35% from three and corralled 28% of their misses, basically their season averages in both categories. Um… That’s not going to cut it gents. You have to take something away.

As I noted in my preview, New York is well-positioned to limit Indy on the offensive glass. Guards who clean up misses are a big part of that. The defensive rebound totals, respectively, for Shump, Felton, Prigioni, Smith and Kidd in Game 1? Try 3, 2, 0, 5, and 2. Add Chandler’s three measly boards, and that–frankly–is some bullshit. (To his credit, Melo brought his big boy britches with him to the defensive glass if nowhere else. He had 10 defensive boards.) We got out-rebounded by 14 but still got off five more shots than Indy. Had we gotten off 10 more shots at the same PPS we most likely win, without being any more efficient. Yeah, and if wishes were horses then beggars would ride. I get it. Still, 11 defensive boards for Stevenson is pretty ridiculous. I’m not happy with Chandler’s play, but Hibbert and West didn’t kill us on the boards. Stevenson did. The guards have to show up better on the glass.

2. The defense was the biggest Game 1 culprit, part II. As I’ve been kvetching about since yesterday, DJ Augustin had 16 points on four triples and a layup in just under 13 minutes (a preposterous 2.67 PPS). Augustin is, evidently, a Knicks season ticket holder because all of his shots were compliments of the house yesterday. He wasn’t knocking down the same looks Jason Terry got in the Boston series off the fast break and the faux break. Not a closely-guarded shot in the bunch for Mr. Augustin. Maybe he’ll hit those too, but we know he can hit the unguarded ones. So, let’s try guarding him next time shall we?

3. We have to turn Chandler into a useful offensive player. He cannot possibly play well against Hibbert in a wrestling match. For Chandler to be more effective we need to get he and Hibbert moving. Stashing him on the weak side and using Melo to set screens was a subtle yet awesome move against Boston that won’t work in this series. With Chandler on the weak side we are still in Hibbert’s recovery range. We need Hibbert another half-step away from the basket. Putting Chandler at the top to set screens for Felton should net us the extra half-step we need. I’d be stunned if Woody doesn’t make this adjustment. Though, speaking of being stunned by Woody…

4. For all the talk of Melo’s “trust” issues, Woody is the one driving me to drink. Raymond Felton is making things so much easier for people right now, particularly Melo and Chandler. Sigh… Additionally, Copeland is easily capable of the kind short scoring outburst we saw from Augustin. But Woody can’t find 5-8 minutes of run early in the game to see what he’s got?

5. I know an unfocused team when I see one. I think even Pacers fans would acknowledge that the first round was more cognitively and emotionally draining for New York. Indiana, to its credit, did a better job of re-focusing for Game 1. The Knicks were by contrast all over the place, unable to focus. Finding the focus to simply keep playing regardless of what just happened is a huge part of the NBA playoff grind. The non-stop carping at officials is a common symptom of a team unable to focus. Although the officials had a “generous” interpretation of defensive verticality, they were remarkably consistent. You can’t say you didn’t know what’s being called from one play to the next, or from one end of the floor to the other. So, this was a textbook example of players and coaches needing to adjust but lacking the emotional resources to do so. It was obvious that emotionally, the Knicks just couldn’t get to that place Sunday. It was classic displacement.

I’m less inclined than some fans and media types to go right to (lack of) maturity as an explanation. They tend to exaggerate the extent to which teams–even championship teams–maintain focus under all circumstances. Very few teams never waiver. The Spurs come to mind. Jordan’s Bulls do too.  But they are exceptions, even among championship teams. For most, focus is a state variable rather than a trait variable. It varies by episode. So the key is less about never losing it, and more about getting it back. Miami, Dallas, L.A., and Detroit are not champions who you think of as having invariant focus. What mattered for them is the ability to re-set. To his credit, Woody has been really good at getting the focus back after the Knicks have lost it this season.

107 comments on “A Few Adjustments for Game Two

  1. maxwell_3g

    All good points. If Woodson doesn’t understand #3, then we are screwed. Remember last year, the heat were having the same problem, and eventually forced Hibbert to get on the move that same way. of course, Bosh presents more or a threat as a pick and pop guy than tyson, but hibbert’s big problem against the heat was containing the ballhander enough for his teammate to recover. Felton or melo (whoever is the ballhandler) should be able to exploit him. By the way, Im a Gamecock Alum. Goooooooo Cocks!!! and goooooo knicks too

  2. Donnie Walsh

    There is some guy named “Roland” in the Yahoo comments sections going off on all the Carmelo haters.

    I wonder if Roland ever posts here?

  3. Frank

    I feel like Kidd either needs the Prigioni talk (shoot the freaking ball when you’re open) or he needs to sit. The other team doesn’t even bother covering him anymore, and they barely even run out on him when he has an open shot since they know he won’t shoot it.

    In fact, Shumpert, Kidd, and Prigs all need to shoot the open shot when they get it. This is the playoffs – very few shots are ever going to be totally unguarded, especially against a defense as good as this one. There must have been 5-6 open (not WIDE open, just open) 3′s that were passed up by these guys. Once we hit a few of these shots, the driving lanes will open up.

  4. Frank

    The other thing – this summer Tyson Chandler needs to take a look in the mirror and realize that he can’t stay stagnant in the development of his game. Has he developed at all on the offensive end since his CP3 days? Improved FT shooting? That’s it??!!?

    I love me some Tyson Smash but right now I wonder whether he’s even a top 5 center in this league:
    1) Dwight
    2) Gasol
    3) Noah
    4) Brook Lopez?
    5) Hibbert?
    6) Healthy Bynum?

    The other day we saw Noah shoot a few 18 footers when left totally alone at the top of the key. That encouraged Lopez to come out and guard him. Then Noah drove past him for that huge dunk. Yesterday we saw Hibbert drain a couple 18 footers.

    Tyson needs to go to Houston and work with Olajuwon if only just to get 2 or 3 go to post moves when he gets deep position. Then he needs to shoot 300 15-18 foot jumpers/day until he can hit them in his sleep. Dude shoots 70-73% from the FT line, he should be able to shoot 45% on totally unguarded 15-18 shots. It would transform him as an offensive player, and open up so many things for this offense if he could just take 3 of them a game.

  5. cgreene

    I think if the game plan is eventually to go bigger w Melo playing some 3 then I would roll out Amare with the Felton, Shump/JR, Melo, Tyson. I would not put Martin and Tyson together. I think putting Amare with that unit would throw the Pacers for a loop. West would really have to stay home on Amare because he can finish in traffic off the bounce unlike Chandler who has hands of fucking stone.

  6. Keniman Shumpwalker

    Frank:
    The other thing – this summer Tyson Chandler needs to take a look in the mirror and realize that he can’t stay stagnant in the development of his game.Has he developed at all on the offensive end since his CP3 days? Improved FT shooting? That’s it??!!?

    I love me some Tyson Smash but right now I wonder whether he’s even a top 5 center in this league:
    1) Dwight
    2) Gasol
    3) Noah
    4) Brook Lopez?
    5) Hibbert?
    6) Healthy Bynum?

    The other day we saw Noah shoot a few 18 footers when left totally alone at the top of the key. That encouraged Lopez to come out and guard him. Then Noah drove past him for that huge dunk.Yesterday we saw Hibbert drain a couple 18 footers.

    Tyson needs to go to Houston and work with Olajuwon if only just to get 2 or 3 go to post moves when he gets deep position. Then he needs to shoot 300 15-18 foot jumpers/day until he can hit them in his sleep. Dude shoots 70-73% from the FT line, he should be able to shoot 45% on totally unguarded 15-18 shots.It would transform him as an offensive player, and open up so many things for this offense if he could just take 3 of them a game.

    What makes it worse is that I remember reading somewhere, I think last summer, that Tyson came into the league with a scouting report that waxed poetic about his ability to hit that mid-range shot. He was billed as an athletic big who could step out and knock down a jumper. That same piece talked about how Tyson wasn’t asked to practice that shot, much less take it in a game, early on in his career so he lost confidence in his ability to knock it down. Those EXTREMELY rare occasions we have seen him take little baby Js, they don’t look terrible. His shot doesn’t look broken (certainly prettier than Noah’s). And man, if he could add that little wrinkle, make himself into even a mild pick-and-pop threat, it would open up so many…

  7. Keniman Shumpwalker

    …things for himself, and the offense as a whole. Talk about creating space, if Hibbert had to step out to the elbow or above to guard against a Tyson jumper, that would not only make it more difficult for him to hedge on the ball handler and retreat in the paint in time to cut off the driving lane, it would also free up space for baseline cuts.

  8. Keniman Shumpwalker

    While I would love for him to develop some go-to back to the basket moves ala STAT, I’d be thrilled with at least the semblence of a competent 15-18 footer. All the other names on Frank’s list (with the exception of D12) have developed that shot and it’s a major part of their relative offensive value.

  9. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Donnie Walsh:
    There is some guy named “Roland” in the Yahoo comments sections going off on all the Carmelo haters.

    I wonder if Roland ever posts here?

    What comments sections?

  10. nicos

    Keniman Shumpwalker: What makes it worse is that I remember reading somewhere, I think last summer, that Tyson came into the league with a scouting report that waxed poetic about his ability to hit that mid-range shot. He was billed as an athletic big who could step out and knock down a jumper. That same piece talked about how Tyson wasn’t asked to practice that shot, much less take it in a game, early on in his career so he lost confidence in his ability to knock it down. Those EXTREMELY rare occasions we have seen him take little baby Js, they don’t look terrible. His shot doesn’t look broken (certainly prettier than Noah’s). And man, if he could add that little wrinkle, make himself into even a mild pick-and-pop threat, it would open up so many…

    Skiles snuffed out any desire to do anything other than dunk for Chandler. While he got good results in Chicago, Skiles snotty belittling style didn’t do Curry or Chandler any favors.

  11. nicos

    Keniman Shumpwalker:
    While I would love for him to develop some go-to back to the basket moves ala STAT, I’d be thrilled with at least the semblence of a competent 15-18 footer. All the other names on Frank’s list (with the exception of D12) have developed that shot and it’s a major part of their relative offensive value.

    While I’m sure he could add a reasonably effective 15-footer, I’m not sure about any post game- his handle is pretty poor (and for as good a rebounder as he is, his hands are pretty shitty in general) so anything other than a basic hook shot might be a lot to ask. The beauty of Amar’e's post game this year was he had had multiple counter moves depending on how he was defended down low plus the ability to turn and face up and either drive or shoot.

  12. Keniman Shumpwalker

    nicos: Skiles snuffed out any desire to do anything other than dunk for Chandler. While he got good results in Chicago, Skiles snotty belittling style didn’t do Curry or Chandler any favors.

    No it most certainly did not. And, for all his bravado and TYSON SMASHness, it’s clear there is a sensitive side to the man, which was probably magnified a hundred times when he was 18 years old and trying to learn the NBA game.

  13. Hubert Davis

    Off topic, but I loved the cognitive dissonance here from Derrick Rose:

    *****
    With many of his teammates fighting through injuries and illness to play, former Bull and TNT analyst Steve Kerr said last week that Rose owed it to his team to play if he is healthy. Asked if he owes it to his teammates to be on the court, Rose said Monday: “Everybody has their own opinion. The key words that he said is, ‘if I’m ready.’ Right now, I’m not ready so I’m just trying to take my time and just really, really be smart.”
    ******

    Uh, no Derrick he said “if you’re healthy”. No one said “ready” except you. We all know you’re healthy. Ready got nothin to do with it.

  14. nicos

    Keniman Shumpwalker: No it most certainly did not. And, for all his bravado and TYSON SMASHness, it’s clear there is a sensitive side to the man, which was probably magnified a hundred times when he was 18 years old and trying to learn the NBA game.

    Early in his career (pre-Skiles) he did shoot jumpers and try to put the ball on the floor with predictably poor results for a 18-20 year old not physically ready to play in the NBA. Skiles came along midway through year three (or was it four) and basically said (in the horribly snotty arrogant manner he had back then) don’t ever do that again and he didn’t. It did wonders for his efficiency but made him into the one-dimensional player he is today. Obviously, Chandler turned out pretty well so it’s tough to say Skiles was wrong but Chandler did have some skills that Skiles forced to atrophy.

  15. Douglas

    Marco Belinelli fined $15,000 for doing the Sam Cassell “big balls” dance in Game 7, lol

  16. Hubert Davis

    flossy:
    An interesting read for the “refs robbed us” crowd:

    http://hoopchalk.com/2013/05/06/knicks-pacers-game-1-was-carmelo-anthony-the-victim-of-uncalled-fouls/

    I’m not in the “we were robbed” crew, but this isn’t good analysis.

    For example, here:

    “It’s hard to tell if Anthony is just pumped up or in want of a foul on this play, but it again appears to be a rather perfect contest at the rim from Hibbert.”

    ["this play" is hyperlinked to show the play]

    It was a good contest by Hibbert. I watched this replay on my TV. But then Melo got the rebound and was fouled by George from behind, Hibbert from out of bounds, and West on the way down. That was one of the more egregious sequences of the game. For Dubin to call it clean just tells me he’s trying to distance himself from being seen as an unobjective Knick fan. Kind of like Breen on a national telecast.

  17. Hubert Davis

    Hubert Davis: I’m not in the “we were robbed” crew, but this isn’t good analysis.

    For example, here:

    “It’s hard to tell if Anthony is just pumped up or in want of a foul on this play, but it again appears to be a rather perfect contest at the rim from Hibbert.”

    ["this play" is hyperlinked to show the play]

    It was a good contest by Hibbert.I watched this replay on my TV.But then Melo got the rebound and was fouled by George from behind, Hibbert from out of bounds, and West on the way down.That was one of the more egregious sequences of the game.For Dubin to call it clean just tells me he’s trying to distance himself from being seen as an unobjective Knick fan.Kind of like Breen on a national telecast.

    Here’s the play I’m talking about:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-4L_VL8O20&feature=youtube_gdata

  18. d-mar

    Don’t know if you guys have seen this, but it’s an excellent analysis of how to solve the Roy Hibbert “problem”:

    http://www.postingandtoasting.com/2013/5/6/4303540/knickstape-how-to-solve-the-roy-hibbert-problem-knicks-pacers

    Essentially, all Hibbert does is camp under the basket and raise his hands straight up, so driving right at him doesn’t work. Melo, JR, Felton et all are going to have to take the mid-range shot or floater and make Hibbert pay for just being a “goaltender”.

  19. nicos

    flossy:
    An interesting read for the “refs robbed us” crowd:

    http://hoopchalk.com/2013/05/06/knicks-pacers-game-1-was-carmelo-anthony-the-victim-of-uncalled-fouls/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2gXSpJCcf0&feature=youtube_gdata
    They showed another angle of this where it was clear that a moving Hibbert hip-checked Melo and then hit him on the arm on the pump fake. Neither was particularly egregious but there’s no way you should be able to get away with both. One or two calls against Hibbert could have had a real impact on the game. That said, for all that Melo was +7 and Hibbert was actually -1. It was really the awful Melo-less line-ups that killed the Knicks. Amar’e anyone?

  20. max fisher-cohen

    One of the things that scared me a lot last game was the fact that Indiana did such a good job of punishing NY’s traps. From what I could see most of Indiana’s threes came off of fast ball movement out of the top of early trapping. This trapping has been a key to NY’s ability to force turnovers and generate easy points — NY did still force 16 turnovers but when they didn’t get the TO, Indiana was getting wide open 3s.

    Indiana also did a great job of hitting their bigs deep in the post in position to take shots immediately, negating NY’s strong help defense. Yeah, Augustin made a lot of them, but at the same time, the rest of the team was 4/18 on mostly wide open threes. If anything I’d expect that to improve if NY doesn’t make adjustments.

    The big problem for NY here is that it’s tough to force Indy to downsize their lineup when you have smalls who suck at dribble driving and especially at pulling up. With Hibbert’s poor lateral quickness Indy’s strategy is to concede the 12-18′ jump shot. Shumpert did a good job of attacking off the dribble, but that’s certainly not a skill of his and he beats Prigioni and Kidd in that department. Even Felton is pretty bad off the dribble across his career. It just so happens that he has been shooting lights out all playoffs. This allows Indy to hide West and guard Anthony with George or Stephenson.

    In the end I think NY is going to have to play Indy way more honestly on defense than they could Boston. Chandler HAS to control hibbert in the post. He has in the past. Anthony has to use those baby boy thighs to keep West from catching in the paint. The Knicks are NOT going to just outscore Indiana and they’re not going to be able to take away Indiana’s rebounding advantage. Indy is too physical, too disciplined, and have a smart coach who surely studied Boston’s effective D on NY last series.

  21. dogrufus

    It should be pretty obvious that the series is lost and we’re not going to win 4 of 6 against this team.

    Melo’s either hurt, or just not good in the playoffs. Woody is clearly not up to the task. JR’s too busy banging shots and groupies in the clubs. Kidd’s cliff fall is as complete as it was predictable. Once again any decent defense exposes our gimmick offense and surprise, we’re by far the worst offensive team left in the playoffs.

    Thibs could probably lead this crew to the finals. Like the Celtics, we were at our best when we had him and have been less since we let him go. In our case we let him go in ’94, so that’s been especially rough for us.

  22. ess-dog

    d-mar:
    Don’t know if you guys have seen this, but it’s an excellent analysis of how to solve the Roy Hibbert “problem”:

    http://www.postingandtoasting.com/2013/5/6/4303540/knickstape-how-to-solve-the-roy-hibbert-problem-knicks-pacers

    Essentially, all Hibbert does is camp under the basket and raise his hands straight up, so driving right at him doesn’t work. Melo, JR, Felton et all are going to have to take the mid-range shot or floater and make Hibbert pay for just being a “goaltender”.

    This is why we need a full game from Prig. He can hit the mid range better than any other guard on the team.

    You know who really would’ve helped out in this series? Sheed.

  23. er

    dogrufus:
    It should be pretty obvious that the series is lost and we’re not going to win 4 of 6 against this team.

    Melo’s either hurt, or just not good in the playoffs.Woody is clearly not up to the task.JR’s too busy banging shots and groupies in the clubs.Kidd’s cliff fall is as complete as it was predictable.Once again any decent defense exposes our gimmick offense and surprise, we’re by far the worst offensive team left in the playoffs.

    Thibs could probably lead this crew to the finals.Like the Celtics, we were at our best when we had him and have been less since we let him go.In our case we let him go in ’94, so that’s been especially rough for us.

    hey buddy

  24. d-mar

    Holy crap, Bulls are up by 2 with a minute left in Miami. They are truly a ballsy bunch.

  25. Juany8

    Nate Robinson dagger!!!! Holy shit the bulls look like they’re going to pull this out

  26. BigBlueAL

    dogrufus:
    It should be pretty obvious that the series is lost and we’re not going to win 4 of 6 against this team.

    Melo’s either hurt, or just not good in the playoffs.Woody is clearly not up to the task.JR’s too busy banging shots and groupies in the clubs.Kidd’s cliff fall is as complete as it was predictable.Once again any decent defense exposes our gimmick offense and surprise, we’re by far the worst offensive team left in the playoffs.

    Thibs could probably lead this crew to the finals.Like the Celtics, we were at our best when we had him and have been less since we let him go.In our case we let him go in ’94, so that’s been especially rough for us.

    Huh?? JVG is the one who brought Thibs to the Knicks prior to the 1996-97 season. He stayed with the Knicks even after JVG left. He left the Knicks to join VG when he went to the Rockets prior to the 2003-2004 season.

  27. johnlocke

    Nate is annoying but he has BiG BALLS….Noah on the Knicks would be so amazing…one of the most underrated players in the league

    Juany8:
    Nate Robinson dagger!!!! Holy shit the bulls look like they’re going to pull this out

  28. Juany8

    Suddenly the Knicks game 1 loss doesn’t look so bad, the bulls are so thin that Marcus Teague got minutes and jimmy butler is playing 48 minutes a game. Who needs rose when you have Nate Robinson?

  29. er

    johnlocke:
    Nate is annoying but he has BiG BALLS….Noah on the Knicks would be so amazing…one of the most underrated players in the league

    Bellineli, showed his in BK and they were massive as well lmao

  30. BigBlueAL

    LeBron has acted like a straight bitch this game. Pouting like crazy. He didnt bother shooting at the end of the 1st half when they inbounded to him with a couple of secs left, he just caught the ball and dropped it while walking away. In the end he didnt bother chasing Nate to foul him. Ray Allen eventually fouled him after 10 secs ran off the clock while LeBron never bothered trying.

  31. johnlocke

    Butler is actually also another under the radar guy…he is a really food defender and he doesn’t hack and whack….played very well on the offensive end today too, though you cant count on him hitting those jumpers consistently

    Juany8:
    Suddenly the Knicks game 1 loss doesn’t look so bad, the bulls are so thin that Marcus Teague got minutes and jimmy butler is playing 48 minutes a game. Who needs rose when you have Nate Robinson?

  32. johnlocke

    Sometimes there is such a thing as too much balance….Lebron needed to be more aggressive. Melo missed 2 less shots in Game 5 than on took tonight. These guys really have opposite issues sometimes

    BigBlueAL:
    LeBron has acted like a straight bitch this game.Pouting like crazy.He didnt bother shooting at the end of the 1st half when they inbounded to him with a couple of secs left, he just caught the ball and dropped it while walking away.In the end he didnt bother chasing Nate to foul him.Ray Allen eventually fouled him after 10 secs ran off the clock while LeBron never bothered trying.

  33. DRed

    Lol if the Heat do somehow manage to salvage this series we’re going to crush them. They couldn’t even beat the tattered husk of the Bulls lol

  34. johnlocke

    BTW…if we beat the Pacers, part of me would rather face Miami, Chicago is just not a good match up for us

  35. johnlocke

    they had a long layoff, I can see the game 2 blowout coming already

    DRed:
    Lol if the Heat do somehow manage to salvage this series we’re going to crush them. They couldn’t even beat the tattered husk of the Bulls lol

  36. johnlocke

    I really hope this is your attempt at reverse psychology, bc if you’re going to do this all playoffs and only show up for losses it’s going / already getting to be , annoying very quickly

    dogrufus: Too bad we lost in round 2.

    The Heat are easily good enough to overcome this.We aren’t.

  37. Brian Cronin

    From Simmons:

    Congrats to the Bulls play by play guy on Sirius channel 85 who’s giving the no. 1 over the top homer performance I have ever heard.

    He is so dead on. I mean, don’t get me wrong, like I just posted, great win for the Bulls, but damn, their announcers are terrible.

  38. Brian Cronin

    Bizarre Durant stat (also from Simmons, courtesy of ESPN’s Stats department):

    Durant is 4-for-4 attempting go-ahead FG’s in final 24 secs of 4th Q last 2 playoffs; rest of NBA is 2-for-23.

    Dang.

  39. BigBlueAL

    I think Id rather play the Heat than the Bulls lol.

    Seriously though the Knicks and Heat are very much alike and have similar problems vs teams like the Pacers and Bulls. But yeah Id still much rather play the Bulls than the Heat if they do beat the Pacers which I still believe they will.

  40. d-mar

    Jimmy Butler has played 48 minutes in 3 straight playoff games. I know there’s rest between games, but damn.

    Also, the Bulls scored 35 points in the 4th quarter. Mind boggling.

  41. BigBlueAL

    d-mar:
    Jimmy Butler has played 48 minutes in 3 straight playoff games. I know there’s rest between games, but damn.

    Also, the Bulls scored 35 points in the 4th quarter. Mind boggling.

    I know the next 2 games are on Wed and Fri so no extra rest for the Bulls in the near future.

  42. Brian Cronin

    Oh yeah, totally, Al, the Pacers and the Bulls are both very much “bully” teams and the Knicks and Heat are very much…well, you know, not.

  43. Brian Cronin

    Also, the Bulls scored 35 points in the 4th quarter. Mind boggling.

    It really is.

    The Warriors, by the way, are totally taking it to the Spurs, as well. And not even with three pointers!

  44. JR Sec 112

    Due to historical context, I hate the Bulls. But I’m not sure after that game. I mean, how much would I love Noah or Nate or Butler on the Knicks. I hope Nate plays this into a big contract. He deserves it. That was amazing.

  45. massive

    If the Bulls beat the Heat for a second time this series, that’s more than they can say for when they had a healthy Derrick Rose. They should definitely trade him to the Knicks.

    But in all seriousness, the Bulls don’t need Derrick Rose if this is who Nate Robinson really is. He may have turned the corner for good, and he seems much more like a player you can root for than Derrick Rose. Good for Nate, and better for the Bulls if they can keep both players over the long haul.

  46. massive

    Gun to your head, who are you choosing between Curry, Harden, and a healthy Derrick Rose?

    I’m taking Stephen Curry. He’s the most complete half court option out of all three, and he probably plays better defense than both other options. Half court execution wins in the playoffs.

  47. mr.JayP

    massive:
    Gun to your head, who are you choosing between Curry, Harden, and a healthy Derrick Rose?

    I’m taking Stephen Curry. He’s the most complete half court option out of all three, and he probably plays better defense than both other options. Half court execution wins in the playoffs.

    Harden.

    i cringe every time i see glass ankles step over a pebble. His physical health is HIGHLY questionable.

    D. Rose; His image has taken a huge hit and now he seems like he’s mentally weak.

  48. Brian Cronin

    Gun to my head? Harden.

    But Rose is very close. Give me a year of healthy Rose and I might think otherwise.

  49. Brian Cronin

    Crazy ending in San Antonio. Golden State loves blowing big leads. Until Jack just hit a two to put them up three, the Spurs were closing the game out on a 15-0 run!!!

  50. Brian Cronin

    Steph Curry just played the end of the fourth quarther horribly. I get the idea of wanting to take the final shot, but if the opposing defender is bigger than you and is literally not going to let you get a shot off, don’t try to shoot it anyways. Pierce tried it on Chandler and it didn’t work and Curry tried it on Leonard here and it didn’t work.

  51. mr.JayP

    Curry could have passed it to that wiiiiiidddde open player on the wing.

    shout out to green representing Long Island! oohh yeeeaa!

  52. mr.JayP

    Brian Cronin:
    Gun to my head? Harden.

    But Rose is very close. Give me a year of healthy Rose and I might think otherwise.

    you dont question his resolve going further after this knee injury? Granted every player is different. But his situation is completely different and we probably havent seen something like this in some time.

  53. Brian Cronin

    So, how clearly better than Melo is Steph Curry?

    Melo is definitely better than Curry.

  54. Brian Cronin

    Manu just tried a behind the back pass that was picked off. Shake my head bad.

  55. Brian Cronin

    you dont question his resolve going further after this knee injury? Granted every player is different. But his situation is completely different and we probably havent seen something like this in some time.

    Rose has handled things about as poorly as you could handle it (just admit you’re done for the season, dipshit!), but I don’t think we can judge the guy’s injury better than he can. Percentages like “85% ready” are misleading since knee injuries are extremely susceptible to reinjury if you’re not fully recovered. Gilbert Arenas is the clear example.

  56. johnlocke

    Bad is harsh. He was just not aggressive. He shot about 50%, close to a triple double and had 25 or so pts. That’s a great game for everyone but a handful of players in the league.

    er:
    Lebron was pretty bad today, excep for a 3 min burst in the early 4th

  57. Brian Cronin

    Kent Brazemore for the lead with 3 seconds!! I love that the Warriors didn’t call the timeout.

  58. Brian Cronin

    is it me, or is there some girl in the stands just screaming her lungs out?

    Yeah, she’s been right close to the speakers.

  59. Brian Cronin

    Hole. E. Shit.

    That’s the NBA for you. Goat, goat, goat, goat, goat, goat. Hero?

  60. d-mar

    I don’t know what I’m still doing up, but this is one of the greatest playoff games I’ve ever seen. Wow.

  61. Brian Cronin

    I don’t know what I’m still doing up, but this is one of the greatest playoff games I’ve ever seen. Wow.

    Definitely. One of the greatest of all-time. Easily.

  62. mr.JayP

    d-mar:
    I don’t know what I’m still doing up, but this is one of the greatest playoff games I’ve ever seen. Wow.

    dude who you telling lol. i got a job interview in the morning my ass gotta go to bed!

  63. johnlocke

    Warriors running triple screen curl to get him open…Curry didn’t run the right way. Should be free at top of key

  64. johnlocke

    They had Jefferson (the guy who choked at the line) …inbound the ball and wasn’t patient. You gotta run the curl play there, looks like they over thinked it and ran a different play. What a wasted effort by Curry.

    Brian Cronin: 99
    Brian Cronin
    May 7, 2013 at 1:04 am
    Can’t believe they couldn’t get Curry open. Seriously?
      
    (Quote)

  65. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Down by 16 with 4:30 left. I turned it off and caught the last couple possessions of regulation when I saw the score on ESPN.com

    Hate to be the guy who left to beat traffic…

  66. johnlocke

    I really don’t think Spurs tie it up if Richard Jefferson makes just one FT in regulation….how did he miss both…goat

  67. er

    johnlocke:
    Bad is harsh. He was just not aggressive. He shot about 50%, close to a triple double and had 25 or so pts. That’s a great game for everyone but a handful of players in the league.

    You know you are right. But it just felt like he didn’t want the game bad enough. He was being too cool

  68. er

    That ginobilli shot makes me laugh also. He was 4-17 at one point and kept shooting. People act like only Melo does this

  69. Brian Cronin

    Pop on Manu’s last two threes, “I went from trading him on the spot to wanting to cook him breakfast tomorrow. That’s the truth. And when I talked to him, Manu said ‘This is what I do.’ So…I stopped coaching him a long time ago.” Classic!

  70. Douglas

    How do you leave Manu wide open, all alone for the three? What a backbreaker.

  71. Brian Cronin

    How do you leave Manu wide open, all alone for the three? What a backbreaker.

    His man (Brazemore) had to switch on to Diaw because Diaw was wide open underneath the basket. He couldn’t get back in time to block Manu (he gave it a hell of an effort, though). The problem was that Diaw’s guy switched off Diaw to double Parker.

  72. Douglas

    Brian Cronin:His man (Brazemore) had to switch on to Diaw because Diaw was wide open underneath the basket. He couldn’t get back in time to block Manu (he gave it a hell of an effort, though). The problem was that Diaw’s guy switched off Diaw to double Parker.

    Ah, thanks.

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