Tonight’s 4 Factors (vs SEA, 12/12/07)

Knicks lose to Sonics, 117 – 110

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
SEA	95.0	123.2	61.1%	22.2	22.2	12.6
NYK		115.8	50.5%	14.7	40.4	14.7

The Knicks finally got their act together on offense. Unfortunately, they also had perhaps their worst defensive performance of the season as well, considering the competition. Seattle had been 29th in offensive efficiency coming into the game, scoring less than 100 points per 100 possessions. And yet they came onto the Knicks home turf and blew the doors off, scoring 7 points per 100 possessions more than the average offensive output of the NBA-leading Dallas Mavericks.

Folks, sorry to bail so soon, but I think this is my last installment of the 4 factor game reviews for this season. With more than a quarter of the season gone, the Knicks have shown they are at the bottom of the NBA barrel. They have the 26th worst offense, the absolute worst defense, and the worst Pythagorean expected win % in the league. It’s no fun writing about how bad they are after each game, and it’s probably no fun reading about it either. Here’s to the lottery.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (vs DAL, 12/10/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks lose to Mavericks, 99 – 89

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
DAL	84.0	117.9	59.7%	28.4	21.9	10.7
NYK		106.0	43.9%	20.7	34.1	14.3

All things considered, the defense wasn’t too bad tonight. Not great or even good, but not awful either. The Knicks surrendered a high number to Dallas– 117.9 points per 100 possessions. But Dallas was the NBA’s 2nd best offense coming into the night, and tonight they only scored 3.2 points per 100 possessions above their season average. For a Knicks team that was dead last in defensive efficiency coming into the game, this is actually a pretty good showing relative to the norm.

By this point it might be trite to say, but it’s true– what let the Knicks down in this game was their inability to mount a consistent offensive attack. Dallas is one of the poorer defenses in the NBA thus far (allowing 110.3 points per 100 possessions, 23rd in the league). And yet the Knicks failed to capitalize, scoring only 36 points in the first half. It was only in the 2nd half when they put up 53 points– and not coincidentally, when Zach Randolph awoke from his mini-slump– that the Knicks made the game remotely competitive. What doomed the offense was simply inefficient shooting from the field– Curry (3-13), Richardson (3-9), and Crawford (6-22) being the main culprits.

The Knicks don’t have great perimeter shooting and the D is consistently bad, so at a minimum they must establish one of Curry or Randolph as a scoring threat in order to have a decent chance to win. Tonight they didn’t do that til the 2nd half, but by then it was too late.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (vs PHI, 12/8/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks lose to Sixers, 105 – 77

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
PHI	91.0	115.4	57.4%	14.8	42.4	17.6
NYK		84.6	39.3%	31.4	19.5	19.8

Unfortunately I find myself agreeing with Mike Breen’s assessment. It’s worse to get blown out by 28 points at home by one of the league’s worst, than to get blown out by 45 on the road by one of the league’s best. This one is more embarrassing and hurts more, if that’s even possible.

Philly, one of the league’s worst offenses, scored at will on the Knicks. Especially in the 3rd and 4th quarters, unleashing a prolonged flurry of dunks and 3 pointers. Even so, they scored only marginally more efficiently than they did last night (112.2 points per 100 possessions) when the Knicks only lost by 10. Appearances to the contrary, the Knicks were so much worse off in this game than they were last night because of another atrocious offensive output. Last night they managed to score at a clip of 100 points per 100 possessions. That’s already a bad number, but tonight it dipped in a big way to an unconscionable 84.6.

The Sixers once again completely shut down Randolph and Curry (8 points combined). The starting guards had another off night (12 points combined). And Quentin Richardson continued his season long drought (5 points). Collectively, the starters combined to score at an average clip of 8.3 points per 40 each. If not for Nate Robinson’s 25 points, the offensive output tonight would have rivaled what New York put up in Boston. For a team built around the offensive talent of its starters, these recurring no-shows on offense are particularly devastating. Things cannot go on like this– something is going to need to change, one way or another.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (@ PHI, 12/7/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks lose to Sixers, 101 – 90

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
NYK	90.0	100.0	47.7%	9.3	31.3	13.3
PHI		112.2	51.2%	15.1	31.6	13.3

Subpar effort on both ends of the court tonight. A good offensive rebounding and ball handling effort was sabotaged by bad eFG% and a horrendous showing at the line (only 8 makes on only 17 attempts). Zach Randolph is the goat, continuously forcing poor shots and finishing 2-11 from the field with no FTs. Curry did some modest damage but was limited by foul trouble (12 points, 5 fouls in 26 minutes). And so the Knicks had no interior presence offensively in this game. The Sixers are an above average defensive team thus far (allowing 106 points per 100 possessions, tied for 12th) so the bad offensive showing against a lottery bound team isn’t quite as bad as it might seem. But don’t let that fool you– it was still awful.

On the other end of the court, the Sixers have been as poor offensively as the Knicks thus far (averaging 101.9 pp100, 23rd). The Knicks allowed them to score over 10 pp100 over their season average though. That number that is almost identical to NY’s average points allowed per 100 possessions (112.3), despite the fact that the Sixers are a below average offensive squad. Tally it up and you have a quite bad defensive performance, even by the low standards set by the Knicks’ average defensive efficiency.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (@ NJN, 12/5/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks defeat Nets, 100 – 93

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
NYK	87.0	114.9	53.0%	45.5	10.3	11.5
NJN		106.9	45.7%	41.4	31.4	14.9

Another Knick win powered mainly by the offense, but in a bit of an unusual way this time. The offensive rebounding, usually powerful, was almost non-existent. The shooting from the field was very good but not out of this world. Credit the very strong offensive performance primarily to a fantastic showing at the FT line (30 FTM on only 66 FGA) and great ballhandling (season low 11.5 TOr, including only two TOs in the second half). Do not expect to see many games like this this season.

The D seems adequate enough, and indeed the Knicks had a better defensive performance than their season average (112.5 pp100). But considering the circumstances it was a weak effort. The Nets have awful offensively this season, scoring only 100.3 points per 100 possessions, and tonight they just happened to be missing the straw that stirs the drink, Jason Kidd. The bulk of the blame goes to too much fouling, allowing the Nets as monstrous an impact at the FT line as the Knicks themselves had. But the Knicks also did a poor job protecting the offensive glass and forcing TOs from the league’s most turnover prone team, even though (again) they were without their primary ballhandler. Tally it all up and it’s another pretty poor defensive effort by the Knicks, first appearances to the contrary.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (vs PHO, 12/2/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks lose to Suns, 104 – 115

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
PHO	93.0	123.7	62.5%	11.9	20.0	11.8
NYK		111.8	50.0%	20.9	32.6	11.8

Going into the 4th quarter, the Knicks were matching Phoenix basket for basket. The score was 85 – 84 Phoenix, with both clubs featuring an offensive efficiency north of 120 points per 100 possessions. However, the wheels fell off in the 4th, as New York lost its offensive flow. The Suns ended the game with an offensive efficiency close to what they had been producing through 3 quarters, whereas New York’s offensive efficiency dipped by more than 10 points per 100 possessions between the 3rd and 4th. Once again, the fickle offense determines the difference between wins and losses.

Overall it’s hard to be too disappointed in this game’s outcome. Phoenix outperformed their typical offensive performance this season (111.4 pp100), but against the Knicks that is to be expected. Meanwhile, in spite of the poor 4th quarter the Knicks posted a strong offensive performance, even though the Suns have been a solid defensive team so far this season (allowing 104.1 pp100, 8th in the league). It just wasn’t strong enough for long enough to overcome an elite team.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.

Tonight’s 4 Factors (vs MIL, 11/30/07)

After each game this season, we’ll be taking a look at what the four factors have to say about the game– how the winner won and the loser lost. For an intro to the four factors, see A Layman’s Guide to Advanced NBA Statistics.

Knicks defeat Bucks, 91 – 88

	Pace	Eff	eFG	FT/FG	OREB%	TOr
MIL	87.0	101.1	49.4%	14.1	21.6	13.8
NYK		104.6	51.3%	17.1	21.6	14.9

The formula for tonight’s win was a lukewarm offense combined with a solid defensive effort. The offense was underwhelming given that the Bucks are defensive slouches, allowing 111.1 points per 100 possessions coming into the game. The Knicks actually shot pretty well from the field, bucking a season-long trend (45.5% eFG, 27th in the league), and kept their TOs down to acceptable levels. But they also had a meek showing from the free throw line and had an unusually weak offensive rebounding effort (paging David Lee).

On another night against a decent defense this game is likely another frustrating loss. But the mediocre offense was enough because of the defensive effort. The Bucks came into the game with an above average offense fueled by a platoon of perimeter shooters, a formula usually spelling doom for New York’s D. But they managed to hold the Bucks to their season average eFG%, while also not sending them to the line and thwarting their usually strong offensive rebounding (29.5 o-reb%, 8th). Not exactly an effort reminiscent of the Spurs, but for one of the league’s worst defenses, it’s a strong effort.


4 factor stats were acquired using the ESPN4Factors script by Cherokee of the ABPRmetrics board. Firefox users can use this script (after installing the Greasemonkey extension) to see 4 factor stats automatically displayed in all NBA boxscores on espn.com.