Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Author: Jonathan Topaz

Jonathan Topaz is a reporter for POLITICO. He can be reached at or on Twitter @JonathanTopaz.

Recent Articles

Preview & Game Thread: Exchanging Emails about the Knicks and Clips

The Knicks take on the excellent Los Angeles Clippers tonight at the Garden, a difficult task on a back-to-back. Ahead of the contest, I exchanged some emails with ClipperBlog senior contributor and my good friend, Fred Katz. JONATHAN TOPAZ, KNICKERBLOGGER: So we have a deal, right? We give you the 30-year-old who said he wants to be a free agent next year (Carmelo Anthony) in exchange for the phenomenal and still-very-much-improving 24-year-old superstar who is under four more years of team control (Blake Griffin). Cool? Just sign here and here. If you want, we’ll even throw in a petulant man-child …continue reading

Um, why is JR really bad this year?

JR Smith was a crucial member of a 54-win team last year. He is also just 28 years old. These things seem relevant because his awful offensive play this year is something of a mystery. The Knicks are dreadful and Smith has emerged as whipping boy for basketball purists and statheads alike. JR should be in his prime and is coming off a season in which he posted a 17.6 PER, a 52 true shooting percentage, and 19/6/3 per-36 numbers, all of which earned him 6th Man of the Year honors. Before this year, Smith was still frustrating, erratic, and …continue reading

Knicks 92, Mavericks 80

New York Knicks 92 Final Recap | Box Score 80 Dallas Mavericks Andrea Bargnani, PF 26 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 13 PTS | +7 It seems like every time you’re about to make fun of him for an awful defensive rotation or awkwardness pertaining to but not exclusively A) ridiculous drives to the basket, B) “contesting” a shot when he is more than 5 feet away, C) his mouthguard, he makes another midrange jumper. He finishes with respectable lines yet the …continue reading

Next Day Notes: The Beautiful and Tragic Amar’e Stoudemire

A friend of mine went to the Knicks-Rockets game last month. He told me that midway through the second quarter, a bunch of fans began to heckle Amar’e Stoudemire, who at the time was terribly ineffective in his very limited minutes. The fans insulted his play. They talked about his notoriously balky knees, the ones that have derailed his career. They yelled at him for his 5-year, $100 million contract, which might be the worst in the NBA. Stoudemire was upset by the taunting, and quietly asked a security guard to remove the fans, or at least tell them to …continue reading

Game Preview & Thread: Knicks @ Clippers

Well, this game should be fun. The Knicks travel to Los Angeles to take on the 10-5 Clippers, a bucket-getting juggernaut that ranks 2nd in the league in offensive efficiency. The Clips have high-fliers (Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan), sharpshooters (J.J. Redick, Jared Dudley, Jamal Crawford), and the best point guard in the world (Chris Paul). It’s not hard to foresee trouble for our beloved Knicks, who rank 28th in defensive efficiency and seem confused with how to defend the NBA’s latest newfangled craze, a play these nutty kids are calling  the “pick-and-roll.” For some insight on the Clips, Fred …continue reading

Next Day Notes & Errata: Knicks v. Wizards

Before getting into the big-picture stuff, some assorted notes from last night’s game, in no particular order: 1. The Knicks underused and misused Iman Shumpert. In the first seven minutes of the game, Shumpert scored four points on one shot, had three assists, two steals, and a rebound. He held his counterpart Bradley Beal to one basket. John Wall and he were by far the most athletic guys on the floor to start the game. Mike Woodson rewarded that efficient performance by sitting Shumpert for 12 straight minutes. Upon his return, Shump promptly hit another jumper and grabbed another steal. …continue reading

Next Day Notes & Errata: Knicks vs. Rockets

Last night’s game was something of a Rorschach test for Knicks fans — what do you see? Do you see a team, after a very rough six games, competing gamely on a back-to-back against a potentially title-contending Rockets team? Or do you see a team that has now lost four straight at home and has some serious defensive issues? Several hours later, I can’t totally commit to either narrative (and you can’t make me!) So, I’ve decided to make some old-fashioned Things I Liked and Things I Didn’t Like lists to express my aforementioned ambivalence and my apparent proclivity to structure …continue reading