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Monday, November 18, 2019

Chicago Bulls 98 – New York Knicks 105 – Game Recap

Well, who woulda thunk. We witnessed The Bobby Portis game.

Now, hear me out. A win is a win and that’s good, especially because you don’t want to send RJ into the depths of despair so soon in his young and very promising career. But you know how it is when you’re trying to eat healthy to get yourself into shape and you have a cheat meal on your weekly schedule? Ok, now think of this season as that: eating healthy is the equivalent of losing competitively to get another top-5 pick and the cheat meals are the game where we win because, let’s face it, you can’t lose all the time.

Here’s the thing: not all cheat meals are equal. If you eat pizza (good pizza, not Papa John’s or those weirdly appealing abominations) as your cheat meal, you’re doing it right, same if you eat pasta – even lasagna – or a gourmet burger. There’s still a lot of good nutrients in there, and provided you go to the right joints (or do it yourself at home) the ingredients will still be high quality, which means vitamins and a lot of other things that don’t mess with your body and health. In this scenario, pizza is a win on the heels of RJ, Mitch, Knox and one between Frank, Trier and DSJ (and marginally Randle – maybe with a sprinkle or two of Dot and Iggy). If it happens, everything will still be good and maybe you’ll even get into shape faster!

Winning because Bobby Portis (on a 15mln, 1+1 contract) goes off for 28 points and 11 boards playing 30 (well earned this time, mind you) minutes while Mitch plays only 18, on the other hand is like wasting your cheat meal on three bags of Doritos and a six pack of Miller lite. It’s not good for you, it messes up with your diet plan and your health for no discernible reason. This creates a precedent that Fizdale would be tempted to go back to when things will be dire, possibly stunting Mitch’s development.

Look: this game went out of reach very early (our half court offense is simply terrible and if outside shots don’t fall or the other team doesn’t allow us to run in transition we’re doomed to slow start all season long) and if now for Bobby we wouldn’t have been able to score even 10 points in the first quarter. I’m being literal, you know. The Knicks scored 15 points (to the Bulls’ 33) in the first and Portis had 7. The Bulls’ defense looked particularly frisky and asphyxiating and Morris and Randle looked particularly dumb and out of their depths.

In the second quarter things went a bit better, thanks to improved play by Barrett and his already traditional good forays to the rim and some tough buckets inside by Randle. Our defense was definitely steadier too, and the period ended 27-19 for us (we were still down 10, 52-42).

The third quarter saw the starters being thoroughly outplayed and the Bulls go up by eighteen again led by a very strong Wendell Carter Jr. performance. Barrett wouldn’t let the game slip away that much though, and with a few focused drives and the help of Portis and goodish team defense the Knicks went into the final stanza down just eight, 80-72.

In the fourth, everything went right for us: triples started falling, the defense got tighter and the Bulls’ margin started to evaporate, with the Knicks tying the game 88-88 (on a Portis three, that’s gonna be a leit motiv). Right there the game seemed to be ripe for the taking, but alas no, a few more pages had to be written: a 10-2 run by the Bulls put the Knicks in a bad spot, down eight with just 3:33 to go. Portis and Ellington came back into game (Bobby was substituted just 55 seconds before) and the Knicks went on to score 15 unanswered points. Six were scored by Portis just in time for the Knicks to take the lead: down 98-97, those two triples catapulted the Bockers ahead 103-98, and that was the game.

I guess it’s nice that the Knicks got me a win for my birthday, but when I asked for a Ninja Turtle action figure I wanted Leonardo or Raphael, not Casey Jones.

The good:

– Well, of course we have to start from Bobby Portis (28 pts, 11 rebs, 2 ast, +31 +/-) had the game of his lifetime. 28 points on 14 shots, a double double, two blocks, no turnovers, a perfect 4-for-4 from three and a humongous, game-high +31 in plus/minus. You can’t get any better than that. And still, you can’t help but come away from the game thinking that you didn’t feel the weight of Portis’ impact until the last two triples. By that point, he had already scored 22 points, grabbed 11 boards and blocked 2 shots. Numbers aren’t debatable, but to me it was one of the lightest 28/11 games ever. I’m happy we won, I’m kinda happy for Bobby – who, when interviewed at center court by Rebecca Haarlow after game, looked like a nice person with cognitive dissonance between the words he were uttering and the intention in his eyes. I’m terrified by the conclusions Fizdale will get to after this game. But more than anything, I’m in fear of the validation feeling Pills will be experiencing today after reading the newspapers wax poetic on the fifth-year big man from Arkansas. Sometimes a season dovetails thanks to a few good moments. It’s usually when not-so-great basketball minds confuse correlation and causation.

– Here’s your systematic appearance in this section: there are a lot of things RJ Barrett (19 pts, 15 rebs, 5 ast, +5 +/-) has to improve and yet he might already be the most crucial Knick this season. Yeah, four games in. You see it when he’s on the court: when it counts, the ball seems to gravitate to him. It’s very weird, I know, to discuss such eye test things on one of the smartest basketball community in the world, and yet: the RJ Barrett experience is starting to feel like falling in love. Stats will tell you she’s got a pimple on her cheek, but your eyes will tell you that you’ve never seen such a beautiful imperfection on anyone else’s face. Stats will tell you she’s got cellulite in her thighs, but then again who doesn’t (that’s true, by the way. Screw anyone who’s into body shaming)? Stats will tell you she’s a pretty blonde girl, but you will feel, deep down, that she’s the making of the most beautiful blonde girl ever. And you know what? There’s a good chance she will be. That’s what being around for RJ’s first steps in the NBA feels like: he’s a pretty good player (with nice but not eye-popping averages), but you feel he’s much more than that. You can’t point to the exact stat, but you can look into your heart and oh goddamn I have butterflies in my tummy just typing this. As a bonus, here’s the list of other rookie wings and point guards who ever posted a 19/15/5 stat line: Luka Doncic, Magic Johnson, OJ Mayo (what), Ben Simmons, Oscar Robertson, Jerry West, Steve Francis, the absurdly underrated Tom Gola and your own Clyde Frazier. Among them, RJ is the youngest by a full 250 days.

The bad:

– Marcus Morris (10 pts, 5 rebs, 1 stl, -2 +/-) is the one who’s suffering the most playing for Fizdale. He’s never been a ball mover, but while his best role is to be a release valve for goodish teams, here he’s asked (?) to be a consistent shot creator while having the vision of a bull with a Chinese flag hung right in front of his eyes. His contributions to the team routinely verge on terrible, and even when he scores it’s hard to bring yourself to root for him. In the third quarter he scored while being fouled on a bad-looking turnaround fade away jumper from the left corner: as soon as the ball went in he gestured to the crowd as if he just sinked a game winning series shot. It’s official: I can’t stand him already. Also, is this “dawg” thing related to getting whistled for a technical every game? He looks such the part of a Fizdale special. We will never be flipping him to a contender. Book it.

– Elfrid Payton (3 pts, 2 rebs, 1 stl, -4 +/-) just had nothing going for him – and also went out with a sore hamstring. Sore hamstring or not, though, in a game like this one Elfrid is kinda useless. He’s no shooter and there’s nothing in place to help him penetrate deep into the defense, not even a Payton-Mitch PnR (I can’t understand for the life of me why that’s the case, but whatever). It’s hard to tally many assists playing in this “system”, but no assists in 21 minutes? Let’s just hope this was the worst he’ll ever look during this season and move on.

Fun-sized pieces of birthday cake:

– Is there a reason why Mitch and Portis can’t play together? I mean, I get wanting to keep Portis in the game. But why has there to be a Portis-Robinson dichotomy? Their skills don’t overlap at all, and we need all the rim protection we can get.

– Mitch played again only 18 minutes even if he committed “only” 4 fouls. Is he on a minutes restriction? I mean, he had the tremendous bad luck of being on the court during the worst stretched of the game, but his -24 plus/minus is not really that indicative of his impact on the game. Ten points, nine boards and two blocks are becoming a standard Mitch game. He also missed five shots tonight and is still sitting at 0.700 from the field.

– Somebody has to do something for Randle. He looks like he’s sulking and he’s turning the ball like crazy. I fear Fizdale is slowly eroding his confidence by forcing him to play in a way he’s not suited at all. Another 8 turnovers and only 5-for-13 from the field. He got better in the last two-three minutes when playing the PnR with Barrett enabled him to make passes out of the short roll. Is that hard to come up with such uninventive but effective ideas?

– Two words about Frank. His on ball defense is a real thing of beauty, but he does nothing else. Really nothing. 0-for-6 from the field, 2 boards and 2 assists in 22 minutes. I get he can be valuable in short stretches, but I fear his offensive game has a name, and that’s Godot.

– Knox keeps on playing semi-adequate basketball, which was the absolute best scenario during the offseason. As a shooter he’s a nice weapon. When he has to create something off the dribble, welp. Still, in four games he’s posting 12.5/4/1 with a .160 WS/48. That’s guaranteed to come down by a lot, but I surely didn’t foresee it. There’s a non-zero chance he really develops into a reliable 8th-9th man for a playoff team. It would count as a very unlikely win in my book.

And this, kids, is how Bobby Portis won a game for the Knicks on my birthday (edit: and DRed’s too! Happy birthday, future Knicks GM). See you on Thursday after a drubbing at the hands of a better than us Magic team!

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252 comments on “Chicago Bulls 98 – New York Knicks 105 – Game Recap

  1. DRed

    Bringing this over from the game thread

    I know people are high on Ellington but he and Dotson are identical twins in their stats.
    CLICK HERE
    Dotson’s able to shoot off motion; he shot the same % from 3 (36%) whether spot-up or off motion

    Ellington has had a long career-Dotson has not. Their career stats are similar, but if you look at Ellington’s recent numbers he’s mostly stopped taking 2 point shots. He shoots significantly more 3’s than Dotson. They might have similar skill sets but Ellington and Dotson aren’t equivalent in the way they actually play.

  2. Hubert

    Marcus Morris is the one who’s suffering the most playing for Fizdale.

    I don’t know if Julius Randle and Frank Ntilikina will agree with you there.

    Nice write up!

  3. bobneptune

    Ellington has had a long career-Dotson has not. Their career stats are similar, but if you look at Ellington’s recent numbers he’s mostly stopped taking 2 point shots. He shoots significantly more 3’s than Dotson. They might have similar skill sets but Ellington and Dotson aren’t equivalent in the way they actually play.

    Ellington looks like a huge liability on defense from the small sample I’ve seen. He seems to get beaten 1 v 1 pretty easily.

  4. Name is Bron - James Bron

    Frank added a couple of more notches to his belt. He put the clamps on fake Kobe and Zach died on LaVine when Frank guarded him. Kemba, Trae, Kyrie, Mitchell, Harden, LaVine… Frank’s approaching Roberson level defender. When the crowd chanted “We want Frank” they were really shouting “We Want Defense”. The best path at the moment IMO is to build a team similar to one we’re very familiar with.

    Mitch = Hibbert
    Randle = West
    RJ = George
    Frank = Hill
    Morris = Lance

    Everybody knew their roles and that team played prime Heat tough in the ECF. Yes it was offensively challenged but you substitute Beal for Lance and it’s a different story. If we’re not getting AD this summer, the odds are better of eventually signing or trading for an upgrade to Morris than hoping for a top 7 caliber 1 guard to appear.

    The offensive scheme would be clear: (1) PnR (Mitch and Randle as roll guys; RJ, Frank, Randle as handlers) and (2) motion offense to get Randle and RJ a step – they get a step and it’s game over. Randle’s been a 50th percentile ISO guy and 80th percentile in PnR. It’s not rocket science to figure out PnR along with catching and driving off motion maximizes his effectiveness. The nice thing is that such an offense rates to maximize RJ’s effectiveness as well. We need Frank to hit open 3’s and Mitch to take and hit open 10-13ft and there should be sufficient spacing.

  5. Farfa Post author

    I don’t know if Julius Randle and Frank Ntilikina will agree with you there.

    Well, Julius’s still putting up numbers (not only in the turnover department) while Frank’s the usual zero on offense. It’s a tight race but I think Morris wins :)

  6. Bo Nateman

    Happy birthday Farfa once again thanks for the recap. ( The late Bob Murphy would have called it the happy recap).
    Your lede begs the question- Can beggars be choosers? I happily scarfed down my Portis Doritos.
    If we are to create the image of upward mobility, we have to accept these types of wins even if it’s led by our temporary overpaid mercenaries, .
    ( Perhaps JK47 and you can collaborate on a rock opera: Waiting for Frank)

  7. Farfa Post author

    I happily scarfed down my Portis Doritos.

    In a vacuum I would too. It’s the coaching staff and front office perceived incompetence in evaluating basketball players that have me wonder if winning thanks to our worst signing of the offseason can be a good thing.

  8. wetbandit

    Sorry to keep harping on Frank, feel free to ignore, but I would argue having him on court the way he is playing right now is STILL better than Smith and Peyton. His shot is bound to come back to at least where it was last year, which was bad, but not the ‘0’ it is now. He had mediocre shooting numbers just a couple of months ago with France (with lots of plus minutes on a winning team). I would argue that he is the type of guy that if he gets his confidence and playing time, he may become a different player. (Again, speaking from experience, it is very easy to break a teenager’s spirit) I really blame Fizdale, if he ran some plays at all, and knew how to empower young players, we might have an actual rotation player here.

  9. Frank

    The beauty of these contracts (except Morris) is that if by some strange occurrence Bobby Portis is about to take a big step, we still have him next year at a predictable number then have at least early bird rights on him next summer basically up to the max without using cap space (although his cap hold would be >$20MM). This is in contrast with the Arron Afflalo, Hezonja etc contracts where if the player overperforms he opts out, and if he underperforms, he opts into an overpriced contract.

    So in that light, I’m fine with this being the Bobby Portis game. Also – RJ is best served by having an open floor, and so while I’d rather have Mitch in the game in terms of future development, having that spaced floor is good for RJ and ergo that is good for the Knicks’ future.

  10. Owen

    Happy Birthday Farfa!!! Great work today. I turned the game on with 5 minutes left and saw there were like 220 comments already and thought this is going to be a hell of a game to recap.

    As others said last night, I am so delighted to be wrong about RJ and Knox so far. I don’t believe the latter will keep it up but if he does I look forward to someone smearing all the shit I have given him over the last year all over my face.

    And as someone else said, RJ’s biggest tool does seem to be his makeup. You can really seem him adjusting on the fly out there and figuring things out. Long way to go but really excited about him.

  11. JK47

    Frank has not converted a field goal and has not taken a free throw attempt. He has two assists and five turnovers. Small sample size, but not real encouraging. This is year three now and this is how this delicate little flower is playing. The defense is nice but come on already.

    It’s absurd to say he should be the primary PG over Payton, who is providing at least SOME occasional production.

  12. mase

    all frank has to do is knock down open shots and get to the line occasionally and he is a solid young. he’s almost there….tick tock

  13. Farfa Post author

    Has there ever been a player more irrationally loved than Frank?

    Full disclosure: I still love him and I don’t know why.

  14. mase

    i dont think you’d be saying that if he knocked down a few of those open three’s down the stretch yesterday(which makes portis’ career game even more impressive, in that he called his own number).
    frank is not incapable thats b.s.

  15. djphan

    happy bday farfa! great recap as usual….

    -randle is not an iso guy.. he’s not lebron.. and even lebron doesn’t iso as much randle has… the offense has broken down often which has sort of forced him into those situations… but he’s also called his number too often too… pelicans kept him moving a lot… off pnr and cuts… but they also move the ball a lot better… we havne’t had great ball handling so that’s probably why but we’re getting more rj and randle pnrs and that puts both of them in real good positions… hopefully that continues…

    -ellington was great.. he’s a bit shot happy but he’s the only guy that runs through the plays hard…. commits on his passes…. there’s a lot of loose handling and walking through screens… lazy screens with our offense… it could be that ppl are unfamiliar with the offense and the teammates but ellington doesn’t have those issues…. and the offense generally looks better when he’s in…

    i don’t get the infatuation with playing randle and portis together…. but it paid off last night finally…. that’s not a great pairing and really taj should be seeing center minutes and portis generally should be coming in for randle…. with randle+portis pairings sprinkled in instead of being the main dish… mitch needs to stay on the court longer for that to happen tho….

  16. Owen

    I still love Frank because he plays great defense which is something I care about.

    But he is awful. It’s incredible he came out of that FIBA experience and is doing this. I am so surprised he is still this bad.

    It would be interesting to know what kind of odds you could get on him ever being a productive rotation player. As terrible as I think he is, he does have a carrying tool. It’s possible to imagine him playing in a real NBA motion offense and not bringing it to a halt. I mean, you have to be a gifted and very creative fanboi but it is possible.

  17. d-mar

    If we had lost that game last night, a big reason would have been Frank bricking 2 wide open 3’s in the 4th quarter (and I mean WIDE open, no one within 10 feet).

    Yes, his defense was solid, but you can’t have a player on the floor who doesn’t hit open shots. Overall he’s still a net negative.

  18. Name is Bron - James Bron

    There’s no mystery about Frank and there’s nothing irrational about the fans affection. He’s an elite defender, arguably the best defender at his position in the NBA. He’s taken on the top gunslingers and won. The fans are sick of these guys for the last 20 years riding into MSG and shooting up the place. They know the team’s better when Frank’s on the court. It’s been that way since day 1. And fans for those reasons are willing to exercise some patience regarding his offense. Frank would be better as a 3&D starter at the 1 than a reserve because he would have less of a playmaking burden. As a starter, he’d have to hit open 3’s, run some PnR’s, set off ball screens for RJ and Randle, rebound and push in transition. Not that much. If he’s Roberson who’s able to hit 3’s, he’s valuable role player on a starting unit. He complements RJ well, able to take tougher cover to help spell RJ and enable him to spend his energy on offense.

  19. geo

    here’s the deal – if your team sucks at shooting from pretty much everywhere on the floor and you turn the ball over a million times a game, you better be able to rebound and defend…

    frank sets the defense for the team…if fiz is gonna roll out 8 to 10 players a night – one of them should no doubt be frank…

    fiz actually did a pretty good job using ellington and frank at the end of the game…

  20. thenoblefacehumper

    i dont think you’d be saying that if he knocked down a few of those open three’s down the stretch yesterday(which makes portis’ career game even more impressive, in that he called his own number).
    frank is not incapable thats b.s.

    It’s so unfair, man. If Frank just played a lot better, both last night and in general, people would think he was better! And yet they refuse to think he’s good, because he hasn’t played remotely well. So unreasonable!

  21. DRed

    So far for our backup point guard we’re arguing between the guy who has shot 1-11 and plays no defense and a guy who has shot 0-11 and plays defense. They both suck, but one at least is doing something. Play Frank and give Dennis some time to get healthy or figure out his shot.

  22. Dink

    Frank has shown almost no improvement since his rookie year. His handle may be slightly better, but it’s still garbage.

    Missing badly on wide-open three’s has nothing to do with coaching or player development. It’s just one of the worst offensive players in the game doing his thing.

    That said, his d looks good and I hope he gets a lot better at everything else basketball related before his option year is up. But it’s year 3 and he’s been the same guy he’s always been. So I’m not counting on it.

  23. Ingmarrrr

    We love Frank because when he defends someone you know the team is in good hands, which is all you can ask from a player, and more than what you get from most.

  24. Farfa Post author

    I think the real problem with Frank is not the lack of 3s in the 3-and-D taxonomy, but the fact that he can’t rebound, draw a foul and get inside the paint. He just compounds that by being unable to shoot. He’s miles away from Roberson’s floor (even if he is by all accounts a better on man defender, which is really saying something).

  25. KnickfaninNJ

    When the season started, I thought our front court was our strength. We had Mitchell, Randle, Morris, and competent backups in Portis and Gibson. It looked like Chicago thought the same thing and set up their defense to stop us down low no matter what and risk our outside shooting. It was probably smart on their part given that none of our point guards shoot well from outside and Barrett scores better on drives than by shooting threes. But then Portis started hitting outside shots and we finally won.

  26. Hubert

    It’s a tight race but I think Morris wins :)

    With so many candidates for “player most damaged by Fizdale,” it’s worth considering that Barrett is probably even better than he’s shown so far. Imagine if he wasn’t tasked with playing PG on a team with no system?

  27. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    “RJ Barrett is the new Carmelo Anthony: NBA scout”

    Except that this one is a capable and WILLING playmaker, plays with a high basketball IQ, and also defends well. I don’t think we are fully grasping the kind of player this kid can become if he develops an outside shot. He does everything else well and he’s only 19. He has franchise player potential with an outside shot.

  28. Owen

    The thing that confuses me about Frank is how he has the right kind of athleticism to stay in front of people and harass them on defense and then that athleticism doesn’t translate at all on offense. It’s like having a ball in his hands is his kryptonite.

  29. ess-dog

    Right now, the issue is looking like Randle’s contract, not Portis’. Randle has been really bad on offense over many minutes. His ts of .465 and turnover percentage are both absurd for a big. And his average-at-best defense and rebounding leave me unimpressed. He better turn it around – fast – but I don’t think he will because he’s a big that can’t defend the rim, or in other words, a dime a dozen in the NBA. He would have to have lead guard assist numbers to make up for that. And Portis also seems like a better fit with Mitch, who the organization needs to learn is a franchise-type player.

    As for Frank, you have to love the defense and to be fair, he’s only played 25 minutes this year. Though I doubt his offense will improve much, I’d love for him to get 30 minutes at sg with Barrett so we can really get a good look at him and let him get into a rythym.

  30. GianaDani

    Full disclosure: I still love him and I don’t know why.

    Superficially, he’s good looking nice guy. A well rounded first class young man. Perfectly fits the definition of a likable guy. On a deeper level, he embodies the defensive qualities and does all the small little things that have lead to Knick success in the 90’s – so folks squint their eyes and come up with a boat load of excuses when actually discussing basketball competence. This is why you and everyone else likes him. Hope this helps.

  31. KnickfaninNJ

    Someone quoted Fizdale as saying something like he thought Frank had a good game and the shots would start to fall. I’m skeptical about the “start to fall” part, but I could see what he meant about Frank’s shooting. The shots were taken when they should be taken and without hesitation. That’s not something Frank did much of last year. It’s an improvement, but not much of one.

  32. Early Bird

    My argument about Frank isn’t that he’s good, it’s that our other PG options are so bad that Frank might as well be out there. You should not construe it as an endorsement of Frank. He definitely does make an impact on defense too. He forced at least two turnovers that he won’t get credit for: (1) the 8 second violation; (2) the steal credited to Knox that turned into a fast break. That’s not to mention the generally harassing nature of his defense that disrupts the opposing offense. He’s affects things at the point of attack like Mitch does at the basket.

    Also, I’d like to reiterate that our other backup pg option has been as atrocious on offense and plays sub-par defense.

    Our first pg option, Payton, can’t shoot (despite his small sample percentage right now) and accumulated 0 assists in 21 minutes last night. Nor do I think Payton is a good defender despite grabbing a lot of steals. Again, not a great option.

    It’s at least conceivable that Frank’s defense outweighs his offensive ineptitude for a team that sucks at scoring anyways. I’ve been pretty vocally against Frank, but he helped turn the game around last night.

    If this were a good team, I’d probably bench Frank. But for now, I think the Frank/RJ backcourt as 2 pg-sg hybrids has some promise.

  33. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I don’t think we are fully grasping the kind of player this kid can become if he develops an outside shot.

    To be fair, you could say this about a lot of young athletic guys, including about four different players on the Knicks right now.

  34. Hubert

    Frank has been atrocious but I agree with Early Bird. His D is better than anything Smith offers and RJ shouldn’t be miscast as a PG.

    I know he’s a “delicate little flower,” but so what? Treat him like a little flower. See what happens. France did, and they were happy about it.

    Can we just try the Mudiay treatment and give him half a season of being the backup PG without jerking him around and see what happens?

  35. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    His D is better than anything Smith offers

    Maybe it’s time to cut both of them loose and roll the dice on someone who has actually played winning basketball over the age of 18. UDFAs are out there, and some of them will become legitimate NBA players (like Seth Curry). I think it’s time to be honest with ourselves that there is no Frank vs. DSJ dilemma if neither of them is a Knick.

    Trade them both for future 2nd rounders and start over.

  36. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Frank is 0-7 shooting so far this year. He’s taken SEVEN shots.

    1. One was a last second end of quarter heave (meaningless)
    2. One was blocked, but was a missed goal tending (should have been scored)
    3. One was a legitimate block on a drive

    That makes him 0-3 on legitimate 3 point attempts and 0-1 on legitimate 2 point attempts that didn’t get blocked.

    Let’s totally discard his improved play for France in pressure games on a team with good ball and player movement and conclude he’s made no progress because he has legitimately missed 4 shots so far on a team that’s running a shit offense for a bad offensive coach.

    Enough sarcasm. :-)

    He obviously has to get better as a shooter/scorer to get to where we want him to be. But a championship caliber team does NOT need and should probably NOT even have 5 high level scorers. It needs 2-3 versatile high efficiency scorers and 2-3 guys that can hit an open shot well enough so teams have to defend them “but that do something else at an elite level”.

    Frank IS going to become an elite IMPACT defender. He’s almost there now at 21.

    The gap between where he is now and a versatile high efficiency scorer is larger than the Grand Canyon. That will never happen in 1000 years. But that’s NOT the gap he has to close to be an important part of championship caliber team. All he has to do is knock down open shots to the point that he has to be defended and he can become a key piece because of his elite defense and secondary play making skills. He’ll win loads of games with just those skills no matter what garbage boxscore stats say.

    It’s guys like Knox , DSJr, and Trier that have to become elite scorers because they don’t bring any other elite skill to the table. Without being elite scorers, they are no more valuable to a team than any other random bench player (even though they do some things better than Frank).

    A well constructed team won’t need scoring from Frank. It will get that from the elite scorers. It will need elite defense or some other elite skill from its role players like Frank.

  37. JK47

    If we insist on playing Frank at PG he will fail. At most he can be a 3 and D guy who hangs out on the perimeter. As a ball-handler or somebody who is expected to do anything remotely point guard-y he will fail. He has no ball skills, period.

    It’s like trying to play Cecil Fielder at shortstop. It’s not going to work. Stop jamming the square peg into the round hole. The guy plays offense with almost unprecedented timidity. He’s not a point guard for the love of all things decent.

  38. E

    As a ball-handler or somebody who is expected to do anything remotely point guard-y he will fail. He has no ball skills, period.

    So I guess we’re just ignoring the play in the fourth quarter where he dribbled out of a double team and past the help defender into the lane and dropped a nice no-look dime to Randle?

  39. Hubert

    I think it’s time to be honest with ourselves that there is no Frank vs. DSJ dilemma if neither of them is a Knick.

    Trade them both for future 2nd rounders and start over.

    OK you got me there. This is the best move.

    It’s funny, I remember last year someone was like “let Frank go play with the Warriors in their system and he’ll be just fine.” And we all laughed because why would the Warriors play Frank? And now the Warriors might actually want to take a flier on him!

  40. JK47

    So I guess we’re just ignoring the play in the fourth quarter where he dribbled out of a double team and past the help defender into the lane and dropped a nice no-look dime to Randle?

    I guess instead let’s ignore the other 2600 minutes the guy has played. Because he made that good play that one time.

    Whatever, I hope Frank gets 2500 minutes as PG this year because I want a high draft pick and I could use the lulz.

  41. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    @34

    Don’t worry about Randle. Randle is as good or better now than he has ever been. The problem is that he’s primarily an inside player. But when he tries to go inside at times for us there is often a wall of defenders waiting because we have no spacing. That leads to tougher shots than he’s been getting in the past on well constructed teams coming off the bench or as the 3rd option in the offense. It’s also leading to a lot of TOs because he’s probably never played in such an idiotic situation before. So he’s forcing things and making mistakes.

    I don’t think there’s a quick fix because we don’t have enough shooters to begin with and only one that can shoot and defend (Dotson) and he’s buried in Fizdale purgatory. But ideally, if we can improve the spacing, he’ll be fine on offense. You just don’t want to throw multiple sh$t defenders out there for better spacing because then you are just creating a new bigger problem.

  42. djphan

    if you ignored the other times where we couldn’t beat his guy or settled for a difficult shot… then yea you can probably ignore it…

  43. Dink

    So I guess we’re just ignoring the play in the fourth quarter where he dribbled out of a double team and past the help defender into the lane and dropped a nice no-look dime to Randle?

    Frank is averaging twice as many TO’s as assists. He still picks up his dribble with just a hint of pressure. He’s shooting 0% from the field, 35% for his career. Frank is not a player you want with the ball in his hands, ever. The ball skills ain’t there.

  44. E

    I guess instead let’s ignore the other 2600 minutes the guy has played. Because he made that good play that one time.

    It’s more that people keep exaggerating that he did “nothing” on offense and that’s false.

    Basically everything Frankophiles said would happen if he played more happened last night. White and LaVine didn’t do shit against Frank and the team pitched a shutout down the stretch to win the game with a PG who can play elite defense as opposed to one(s) the other PGs routinely light up. He should have been in in the 4th against SA and especially BKN, too. Same thing likely would have happened there.

  45. djphan

    wow… ok… let’s stop this lunacy…. we did not win the game cause of frank…

    the prophecy did not come to fruition…. let’s calm down…

  46. GianaDani

    At NOLA, Randle played in a high octane system run by an offensive genius coach which inflates player ratings by at least 20% and played with a legit PG.

    More importantly, he’s game is not conducive to leading and making others around him better.

  47. TheClashFan

    Understanding why people are pulling for Frank is really simple: he plays very good D. He tries hard and seems to anticipate well. He also switches very well and also seems to recover better than any other Knick when initially beaten by his man. Most Knicks pretty much give up when initially beaten, just gliding behind or floating around, not trying to recover or switch.

    His best hope on offense is to play with RJB or Trier in as the primary ballhandler in the half court offense. Spot and up and shoot.

    His D last night was terrific, but he wasn’t a liability late last night on offense only b/c Portis was unconscious shooting. But how many games will someone be red hot like that in the 4th? Very few. He’s got to contribute more on offense.

  48. Frank

    Look, we want Frank to be Mario Chalmers. No one is expecting him to be Chris Paul.

    The great part about RJ is that he is eventually (and maybe already) going to be the guy that lets Frank or someone like Frank be what he’s meant to be — multi-position defender, secondary ballhandler, low usage guy. Not a traditional PG.

  49. Hubert

    and the team pitched a shutout down the stretch to win the game with a PG who can play elite defense as opposed to one(s) the other PGs routinely light up

    He was on the bench for the 15-0 run that ended the game.

    Look, I’m a Frankophile, but we have to be serious. We’re irrationally in love with a player who probably sucks.

    I just want to see him get an extended run of playing 15-20 minutes a game with Barrett as his partner in the backcourt. Give me half a season of that, and if he still looks lost, so be it. But just please give us that. If only to shut us all up.

  50. JK47

    If you stop making Frank try to play a position he quite plainly cannot play, maybe he’d get that massive bump in 3PT% that he’d need to be a viable player. As it stands, he’s being asked to do way, way, way too much.

    Play defense. Go stand in the corner and wait for somebody to pass the ball to you. If nobody guards you, which is probably what will happen a lot, shoot. If somebody does guard you, try to make a dribble or two and pass the ball. That, he can probably handle. I mean he has a career .400 eFG% so, uh, he has kind of a ways to go to even be able to handle that role, but at least make the game simple for the kid.

    Breaking down defenders, making entry passes, driving into the paint, running pick and rolls, those are things he cannot do.

  51. Hubert

    the prophecy did not come to fruition…. let’s calm down…

    haha. i thought i might have seen him pull the sword out of the stone but i admit i had a few drinks.

  52. Farfa Post author

    Look, we want Frank to be Mario Chalmers.

    Watching the game last night I caught myself thinking that if RJ is for real (and I think he is) we could have the luxury of having no need for a classic PG, we would just need to find our Damon Jones ok Derek Fisher du jour. Maybe in that sense pairing Frank with RJ 15 minutes per game could give us the definitive proof about Frank’s chances of sticking in the NBA. So I’m with Hubert (and possibly with JK47 and Z-Man long-running theory about Ntilikina) on this one.

  53. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Whatever, I hope Frank gets 2500 minutes as PG this year because I want a high draft pick and I could use the lulz.

    How about we play Frank with Barrett and Dotson so the 3 of them can easily switch defensively 1-3 with an occasional switch to a smaller 4. With Robinson rim protecting the only weak defensive link would be Randle and he’s not as bad as I feared at PF (at least so far).

    IMO, that would give us an average or mildly above average defense with all very young players.

    Then between Frank, Barrett, and Randle we’d have enough ball handling and playmaking to keep the offense at least tolerable to watch as long as we run, move, and keep the ball moving. Barrett is showing he can handle a lot of the ball handling and playmaking load if you don’t have a pure dominant PG on the court (which by the way has been more successful long term than playing with a dominant P&R PG).

    Then we wait for Robinson to learn anything about basketball at all, Frank to be able to make a shot in the ocean, Barrett to develop a 3 pointer and become a superstar, and see what else we can come up with over the next 2-3 years to get even better as that’s happening.

    Defense, play making, ball movement, player movement, team construction, spacing etc…. all matter, but we are thinking about and doing some of those things wrong now. IMO we could be a lot better and could add players that actually fit together better later if we focused on the right things.

  54. ptmilo

    it would be crazy to complain about frank failing to help on the arcidiacono layup right in front of him or letting porter blow by him to get the missed ft orb, because overall he played excellent defense even with a few mistakes.

    similarly, his singular half court assist (the other was a friendly score keeper throw ahead) against three really ugly turnovers and zero points doesn’t make his offensive performance anything less than terrible. and while it was a nice dish, he didn’t actually have to dribble out of the double team. the bulls showed but retreated twice on that play and randle made a timely cut that caught lavine showing and sleeping.

    frank is going to have to become at a least a decent shooter to stick. he’s an excellent defender. he’s a better ball handler than, say, tony snell, but far worse than the worst rotation pg. his solid pocket passing is useless bc the risk reward ratio of getting in position to make those passes is terrible. if he shoots it even a little, he can use some of those half baked skills on lower congestion closeouts instead of running pnr or top of the key iso: he’ll still be a pretty bad offensive player but at least he’d be playable. roberson could finish at least. he dunked the ball more times in a home stand than frank has his entire career. i still think he has a more likely path to being a productive player on a good team than dsj, but bother are extreme long shots.

    i don’t know what to make of mitch this year. he’s still superhuman and his stats are even better than last year. but he actually looks like he’s regressed in some ways from a pretty
    unkempt starting point. he does some things that look almost like category errors, like he’s playing laser tag or something. i think i was too optimistic given how little coaching he’d had that we’d see more progress up the refinement curve straight away.

  55. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    The problem here is that too many people look at BPM, WS48 etc… and think that tells you how valuable a player is. IMO it doesn’t! It gives you a kind of overall assessment. But it’s missing too several valuable things and can’t get at the interrelationships between players, their roles, their systems etc… and how to construct a team to maximize output with pieces with varying skillsets.

    Player A can be better than Player B overall, but the team can be way better with player B on the court because of his unique skillset.

    The idea is not to just figure out who the best overall players are. It’s to maximze the team output. So not only are the metrics wrong because they are missing things, they are not telling you about the conditions those stats were earned under or who you’d be better off playing on your team and what his unique skills can add.

  56. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats

    All I want is for Fiz to stop treating Randle like he’s Lamar Odom and *clap* PLAY *clap* FRANK! SHEESH! Randall’s not even Mase with more range yet because defense. What he is though, is LJ minus the vertical explosion. And that’s a REALLY good player. But, one who passes effectively out of double teams and such with a decent handle and quickness for a bullying big- not a point forward. Rowan Jr is the “point forward” of the roster. Randle is turning the ball over at an insane rate. Otherwise, he’s actually pretty productive. Oh..and please PLEASE hold Mook accountable for chucking. RJ is better than we expected this early, we don’t need Mook to take the 2nd highest amount of shots. The pecking order should be RJ, Randle, and (for now) Mook.

    That is all.

  57. ess-dog

    Does anyone know the details on the two 1st rounders we got from Dallas? They are 2021 and 2023, correct? Protections?

  58. Count de Pennies

    Frank sucks but at least he sucks in a way that’s markedly different than the kind of suck that’s been a hallmark of the Knicks franchise for decades now.

    In fact, he’s the polar opposite of the low-IQ, low efficiency chucker that, season after tedious season, seem to disembark at Penn Station by the subway-car full. I daresay his timidity and near-pathological reluctance to involve himself in the offense – maddening as it is – has nonetheless endeared him to a large part of a fanbase who’s seen far too much of the likes of Marbury, Rose, JR Smith, Hardaway Jr over the years. No doubt that the excitement exhibited by the Garden crowd whenever Frank tiptoes into one of his rare, inevitably ill-fated, offensive forays is irrational as fuck. But it’s also an honest expression of a fanbase desperately longing for a departure from business as usual in Dolanworld. Granted, Frank is an unlikely hero upon which to pin such lofty hopes but, along with Mitch and RJ, he’s really all we got at the moment.

  59. ptmilo

    strat, no thoughtful person believes that win shares or bpm or raptor/rpm is all you need to know. every day you walk into chemistry class and lecture the naive students on how they’ve missed the quantum mechanics revolution and really need stop talking about particles with properties because everything is actually fields in superposition interacting probabilistically with observer effects. they know, strat, they know. or at least the ones worth talking to do.

    but do you know that chemistry is still useful? that some jokers use the word “quantum” as a cloak to hide behind, a way to say almost nothing at all; they use it to avoid untangling their own generalizations and instead just repeat vague aphorisms about “interconnectedness,” “complexity” and “systems?”. do you know that it is possible for a player to look to the unwary like the archetype of a so called systems player but still be so fucking bad at some things so as to be marginally useless in almost all practical circumstances? even phds in quantum mechanics like clarence gaines can be fooled by their lying eyes if they just sit around watching brownian motion and try to come out with grand proclamations, all the time waxing pedantic about how imperfect the formulas are?

  60. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @63 – We get the 2021 no matter what. The 2023 is 1-10 protected. I copied the following from RealGM

    2023 first round draft pick from Dallas:
    Dallas’ 1st round pick to New York protected for selections 1-10 in 2023, 1-10 in 2024 and 1-10 in 2025; if Dallas has not conveyed a 1st round pick to New York by 2025, then Dallas will instead convey its 2025 2nd round pick to New York

  61. bidiong

    Frank needs to go under hypnosis and get the demons out of his subconscious. I’m not saying that sarcastically either.

    I really think that’s a way to help with his shooting.

  62. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    Is there a reason why Mitch and Portis can’t play together?

    I was asking the same thing. There’s no reason to take Mitch out of the game until he gets his 6th foul. I would much rather have him defending the paint and have had Morris come off the bench.

  63. thenoblefacehumper

    I agree with everyone saying Frank needs to be moved off the ball to have any kind of offensive value (someday, anyway). Having said that, one problem with the idea is that his AST% is the closest thing he’s had to a normal looking offensive skill to this point in his career. So if he’s moved off the ball (and again, I think he should be), he’ll be starting from scratch in terms of being able to contribute anything at all offensively. That’s not a big deal, because he’s pretty much coming from, well, scratch, and his AST% isn’t high enough to justify any kind of on-ball role anyway.

    Just keep in mind that if he’s moved off the ball, you’re asking him to develop an entire offensive game (shooting, driving, offensive rebounding, etc.) we have not seen at all. My opinion remains that we might as well give it a shot because we ain’t doing much else. But if one day we do actually want to do some more interesting things, this might become an issue. Especially if you assume all of this development isn’t happening for a while, which seems to be the one thing we can all agree on re: Frank Ntilikina, seeing as how he’s under contract for one more season.

  64. Max

    Happy Birthday to the Bard Of Our Recaps and to our de facto Knicks’ GM.

    Sometimes is good to win, I talked shit about Portis and he made me pay, at least yesterday.

    I’m totally in love with RJB, he got the basketball IQ and the intangibles to be a star.
    With his style of play he’s going to get a lot of FTs so it’s time to raise his FT%.

    I know why I still could not surrender myself to the reality that Frank sucks.
    Nearly two years ago, november 6th and november 8th 2017.
    Back to back fourth quarter comebacks, KP at his apex and a rookie guard from France right in the middle of it. These are the boxscores:
    https://www.espn.com/nba/boxscore?gameId=400974893
    https://www.espn.com/nba/boxscore?gameId=400974903

    Our record was 6-4 and until the dawn of the RBJ’s era I’ve never felt so good on the Knicks’ future since the 2012-2013 season and Frank was one of the reasons. So I think I owe him a 25-27 mpg, injury free season before let him go…

  65. E

    Cosign 60 in its entirety. Last night is a perfect example of the deficiencies of the box score. Knox got the credit for the steal on the play where it was really Frank’s defense that set it up.

  66. Owen

    Sometimes I feel like I should be paying ptmilo per post.

    I was just about to make the very same point about quantum chemistry and basketball analytics.

  67. Ben R

    What we really need in the starting lineup is spacing. I think we should move Morris to the bench and replace him with either Knox or Ellington. I also think we should start Frank over Payton for now. See if he starts hitting his 3’s, I’m not holding my breath but I want to see him shoot 15-20 before I start drawing any conclusions. I think RJ/Frank has the potential to be a good backcourt if everything breaks right for Frank.

    I would also maybe play around with starting Portis over Randle. It adds more shooting and might help with spacing. I like Randle but we are not putting him in a position to succeed and his turnovers are really hurting us right now. Finally, I would try and get at least spot minutes for Dotson to see if he deserves a spot in the rotation.

  68. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    he does some things that look almost like category errors

    We need more similes for Knicks who look like they’re playing other sports, or maybe even other motor skills altogether. I am pretty sure I’ve confused a dribbling Zach Randolph for trying to roll a blunt with one hand while cleaning his AK-47 with the other.

    What we really need in the starting lineup is spacing.

    Inherent in the oft-used phrase “spacing” is the tacit understanding that the players can actually put the ball in the hole.

  69. Knew Your Nicks

    Judging by his box score Frank should have changed his job to make a livin.
    Watching the game you (might) get that his shit is making a difference in the game.
    Despite his Negative offense and his mistakes & turnovers…
    all i know is that i feel better watching the team playing with Frank..
    Another Energy Level Defensively.

    Truth is in the heart.

  70. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    Like everyone, I’m frustrated with Frank because of the way he’s being used. He’s NOT a point guard in any way, manner, shape or form. He cannot break down a defense or make the defense come out to defend him on the perimeter. He has average, at best, ball handling skills. He can’t run the pick and roll. But he can defend! So pairing him with a point guard that CAN do those things makes all the sense in the world!

    That’s why I’m suddenly seeing people see things my way – RJ is our point guard for now (and probably the future). He needs the ball in his hands, is not afraid to break down the defense, keeps his head up and shares the ball willingly. He has a good handle and is a willing defender. His drives will open up shots for Frank and everyone else.

    When Frank and Elfrid return, they should be on the 2nd team. Elfrid should run the point and let’s have Dennis (if he gets his head screwed back on right) be his wing man.

    IMO, as soon as we can, we must trade away DSJr for a backup center – a rim defender.

    This team needs to be a defense-first team. There’s barely any 3-point shooters so holding the opposition down is paramount. BTW, that approach benefits from an expanded rotation. I have no problem with us playing 12 deep if that means that the players go all-out with their somewhat limited minutes.

  71. thenamestsam

    The amount of digital ink spilled on a guy who even his defenders are basically arguing might, someday, a ways down the road, like probably 4 or 5 years from now, be a pretty useful role player, never ceases to amaze me.

    So I’ll look at a different much maligned prospect and say that I’m feeling like my cautious Knox optimism may be looking okay through the first few games. The shooting numbers are going to come down of course, and he still does basically nothing well except shoot it, but the idea that the shot selection might look a whole lot better on a real team is working out okay so far (long midrangers down; 3pa up) and the jumper looks really sweet. Little tick up in rebounding, little tick up in passing, little tick down in turnovers. He’s not, like, good or anything but he’s 20 years old, 6’9″ and can stroke it from outside (and as I’ve argued in his favor before the bar for big wings who can shoot is real low in other areas). That’s a guy you can at least think might become something which is a big step in the right direction for him.

  72. JK47

    The problem with all of this shit is that RJ is NOT a point guard. So we’re gonna play our legitimate blue chip prospect out of position so we can shoehorn our French draft bust into the lineup. Fuck that shit all day long. RJB should be playing WITH a point guard. If you must play Frank, go small ball— play Payton at the point, Frank at the 2, and RJ at the three. Carmelo Morris can come off the bench.

  73. Ben R

    @82 – It’s nice to see some hand wringing from the Nets. Think of this if the Knicks had executed at all down the stretch against Brooklyn then they would be 0-3 and the press would be flipping out.

  74. Bruno Almeida

    I mean, when we watch Barrett and Frank, there’s a clear example that can be taken by the eye test alone, no need for stats on this one. One can already at his early age understand the game and look like a real NBA player because he’s assertive and in the middle of everything that’s going on the court; he hustles for rebounds, works to break down defenses, has confidence in using his athleticism to overpower smaller guys etc. The other is always passive, never asserts himself, never seems to be involved in the flow of the game (unless it’s on defense) and still struggles with the same stuff he struggles when he first came to the league.

    One is a NBA player, the other is not. It’s very simple.

    Play Frank because we have nothing better to do instead, but that’s it. He has two seasons to figure it out, and it’s on him.

  75. Bruno Almeida

    And I’m 100% with JK47 on this one, this is and should be going forward R.J Barrett’s team, it’s his development that is the most important thing this franchise can work on going forward. Adjust the other guys so he can play in a more comfortable situation and develop his skill set; everyone else who’s a much lesser prospect are the ones who have to adjust to that.

  76. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Barrett obliterated Ntilikina’s career-high of 11 rebounds just 4 games into his career. They’re virtually the same height and play the same SG/SF position. Frank is simply not good at acts of basketball. We can try to enumerate the reasons that he is bad, but the endpoint will still be that he is very bad.

  77. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    And I really mean this: Irving should see a psychiatrist. Therapy is a good thing for virtually anyone, to say nothing of a guy who has exhibited antisocial and isolated behavior, found himself drawn toward baseless conspiracies, and spouted some of the most inane word-salad bullshit I’ve heard come out of an athlete’s mouth.

    I can’t diagnose the guy, but he seems an awful lot like a dude who thinks he’s way smarter, more composed and well-adjusted than he actually is, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he has some mood disorders lurking down there. I wish I could switch bank accounts with him, but I am more glad that I’m not so rich, powerful and famous that my closest associates can’t (or won’t) call me on my bullshit without a productive effect.

  78. E

    Frank is simply not good at acts of basketball.

    Defense isn’t an “act of basketball” now?

    Frank’s not as good as RJ Barrett and never will be — I’m comfortable with that one.

    Kyrie’s a chemistry problem less than a week after opening night when he’s actually been playing well. LOLNets.

  79. geo

    @64 and @65 …pennies and milo – ya’ll are spoiling us…

    keep it coming though…too much of your writing would be just enough :)

    reminds me of what daniel cormier had to say one time about someone challenging him for his title – there are just different levels to this thing…

  80. DRed

    We seem to be arguing past one another.

    Frank is

    1. Not good

    2. Probably better than Dennis Smith (at least right now)

    2 is what’s important at the moment.

  81. Name is Bron - James Bron

    Lot of semantic meanderings more unfocused than Kevin Knox on defense.

    Let me simplify this because I have a feeling the Frank haters are intentionally skirting the issue.
    (1) It would be nice if we could land an excellent modern slashing drive-and-kick guard who plays acceptable defense. That doesn’t appear to be on the horizon. Sure draft a 1 guard but you wanna pin your hopes on waiting 3 years to determine if it might work out? Or hope that an unhappy 30yo Lillard forces a trade to Knicks? Just bide our time with a mediocre Payton? Bring in Ish Smith?

    (2) So what do we do? One thing which looks achievable – even in the short-term – is to start a top 10 defensive unit (Frank/RJ/Morris/Randle/Mitch) and on offense distribute the playmaking across RJ, Frank, and Randle. Yes Randle is adept at initiating a PnR. (BTW People are selling their real estate on Randall’s Island way too soon.) A halfway decent coach should figure out how to get decent production out of that unit. It’s kind of obvious already. So Frank’s the NOMINAL 1 because most of the time he would be guarding the opposing 1. His archetype is Beverley/Hill.

    (3) Is RJ better than THJ? Is Randle better than Vonleh? Is Morris better than Dotson? The answer is yes to all of those questions. I hate to repeat myself but Frank/THJ/Dot/Vonleh/Mitch had a positive net rating against the opponent’s starters in 93 minutes, not a large sample but not a trivial one either.

    There’s enough there to test drive it especially since the alternatives are not all that appealing. And no we wouldn’t have to wait 4 years to get an idea of how it’s working – maybe just a couple of months. FTR before the season started, I wanted to start Payton (24 mpg), DSJ as reserve (24 mpg), and send Frank to G League for a couple of months. RJ’s performance and DSJ’s problems have changed all that. Frank haters need to stop whining (btw giana dani is ProjectKnicks) and offer constructive

  82. rama picked up his option

    they use it to avoid untangling their own generalizations

    nicely done.

    @75
    Pretty much agree with all of this.

    And Owen, thanks for this. Reposting for anyone who hasn’t clicked – you owe it to yourself to do so:

    Wow!

  83. Z-man

    he seems an awful lot like a dude who thinks he’s way smarter, more composed and well-adjusted than he actually is

    this describes just about everyone who posts here. pt and count are obvious exceptions…

  84. geo

    start a top 10 defensive unit (Frank/RJ/Morris/Randle/Mitch)

    we’re “stuck” with randle (swipes at ball, doesn’t move feet) in the starting five (i actually like julius a lot from watching him run the bench unit for the lakers years ago), and hopefully bullock can play better and replace morris (who moves around the court at the speed of phil jackson – like phil jackson 2019)…

    as long as those two are out on the court, it’s gonna be hard for us to consistently hold folks under 110 a night no matter who else we run out there with them…

  85. geo

    this describes just about everyone who posts here. pt and count are obvious exceptions…

    i know i’m way smarter than i actually am…

  86. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Someone hasn’t lost confidence yet.

    Clarence Gaines
    @ClarenceGaines2
    @FrankLikina will be on the @NBA All-Defensive team one day – yes, the shot & ability to score will come with more consistent minutes – showed more aggression getting to basket in 2nd half – his time is coming & the naysayers will soon be silenced – expecting many to @ me.

  87. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    this describes just about everyone who posts here. pt and count are obvious exceptions…

    There is a handful of poster who write like they’re on r/nyknicks, but no one sounds this stupid.

    Before we dive into the importance of why we’re all here, I want to appreciate everyone here on the stage and the opportunity that is in front of us to go after something that is bigger than ourselves.

    I just wanted to say, sometimes we get lost in these two hoops and a basketball, the most humane things that make us human, we lose track of sometimes and I wanted to take the time now to wish my well energy and heartfelt to Jae Crowder and his mother, cuz that is a hard situation to go through, especially when he gets wrapped up in all this, as well as IT’s sister, and as well as those affected in Charlottesville and Houston, that is all reality-based and I live in that world.

    This is basketball and perfecting my craft is very important to me. But outside of this game I live a very much real life. I appreciate all the people around me,as well as all the human beings I wind up meeting. I just wanted to come out and say that my appreciation for this world goes deeper than a lot of people realize. I take my respects for all those people, as well as anyone affected by anything, we’re all here with you and my prayers are with you.

    It was my time to do what was best for me in terms of my intentions and that is going after something bigger than myself, honestly, being in an environment that is conducive to my potential. I think that statement is pretty self-explanatory, it is pretty direct in terms of my intentions and to be with a group of individuals that I can grow with.

    That’s not a knock on anything that transpired in my six years, because it was an unbelievable experience and to think about what we accomplished in Cleveland and individually as well, it bypasses all the moments that I have with the special people out there…

  88. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Clarence Gaines
    @ClarenceGaines2
    Only advice I’m giving @FrankLikina
    this year — “Carpe Diem” — it’s your time, your moment, your year to take the next step. Seize it!

    Clarence Gaines
    @ClarenceGaines2
    The funniest comebacks regarding @FrankLikina are those that don’t think he’s @NBA player – It’s tough to have an extended career in the league, but y’all need to crawl outside of your head with that line of reasoning. “For everything there is a season” — Ecclesiastes 3

  89. DRed

    Anecdotally Randle seems to be having trouble trying to dribble through double/triple teams. Maybe we should try to put more shooters on the court when we’re planning on posting Randle.

  90. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Anecdotally Randle seems to be having trouble trying to dribble through double/triple teams. Maybe we should try to put more shooters on the court when we’re planning on posting Randle.

    That might require a few trades unless we are willing to have one of the worst defenses in the league so Randle can score efficiently. :-) #FreeDotson

  91. djphan

    if you look at some videos from last year… randle … from my observation and recollection … had more room to operate… defenses generally didn’t collapse so aggressively towards him….

    i don’t think the pels had much better shooters and it seemed they cleared a whole side for him when he wanted to iso sometimes….. but i think it’s more that defenses are adjusting when he puts his head down… help comes when he puts the ball on the floor which is generally how nba defenses operate these days and realize he’s gonna keep making buckets one on one…

    he needs to pass more off the dribble… there’s a wind up to his passes which makes it hard and he doesn’t have the best ball control but he’s a willing passer…. he’s capable it just needs to happen more…

    but right now it’s not good and if we want to win games instead of drilling it until he gets it then it needs to go back to what he’s good at…. which is getting him the ball while him and his defender are moving….

  92. ptmilo

    sample size is tiny tiny but randle is averaging 10 TO/100 with 41%TS playing with Mitch vs 5 TO and 50%TS without him.

  93. E

    I hate to repeat myself but Frank/THJ/Dot/Vonleh/Mitch had a positive net rating against the opponent’s starters in 93 minutes, not a large sample but not a trivial one either.

    I don’t think all the minutes were necessarily against the opponent’s starters, but yeah — and 93 minutes isn’t that small a sample unless we’re going to say all the 5 man lineup data is small sample.

    For what it’s worth (for me a good chuckle), subbing in Mudiay for Frank gave that lineup, albeit in only 8 minutes together, a minus-62 net rating.

  94. DRed

    sample size is tiny tiny but randle is averaging 10 TO/100 with 41%TS playing with Mitch vs 5 TO and 50%TS without him.

    Where do you get that info?

  95. Ntilakilla

    RJ Barrett is balling out and we’re still arguing about Frank’s future for the 1,982,288th time. Is this why we can’t enjoy our little bit of success here? I dunno. But put me down as someone who wants to see him play off the ball in a backcourt with RJ Barrett for a while.

    Anyways, according to some ESPN metric, RJ Barrett is the 10th best player in the league so far. Take it with a grain of salt, but the assessment is that he’s been lucky with his high shooting percentage so far.

  96. Dink

    Strat with the ol’ argumentum ad verecundiam.

    The last big basketball decision Clarence Gaines was involved in was the drafting of Frank Ntilikina. Dude may be a bit biased.

    He also hasn’t worked in the NBA in almost 18 months. Possibly because he’s an overrated scout who advocates for players with dismal stat profiles, like our Frank.

  97. Hubert

    btw giana dani is ProjectKnicks

    No, that’s reub. I nailed that one. You I can’t figure out. I was def wrong about you being project Knicks but I know you’re someone who changed your name and it’s driving me nuts.

  98. JK47

    You can tell it’s ProjectKnicks when it seems like somebody has gotten lost and thinks they’re posting on the incel Reddit

  99. Name is Bron - James Bron

    No, that’s reub. I nailed that one. You I can’t figure out. I was def wrong about you being project Knicks but I know you’re someone who changed your name and it’s driving me nuts.

    No Giana Dani is ProjectKnicks. 90% confidence. It’s hard to change one’s writing style. reub did not write like that at all. It’s PK – the unrelenting negativity and writing style are the tells.

    I didn’t really change my ID. I used to post under Name is Bron – James Bron just for thematic Optimists versus Pessimists style humor. When I upgraded my computer, I didn’t remember my password for my regular profile (it was buffered so I never had to key it in) and there was a problem because KB.net enabled me to assign my email to the two different profiles. It wouldn’t send me the password to my main profile so I just decided to use the existing NIB-JB profile. I did enjoy a bit of trolling at the beginning under this ID because people didn’t know who I was. I post the way I always did in the past and haven’t tried to hide my previous profile. Don’t people know who I am?

  100. geo

    The NCAA’s top decision-makers voted unanimously Tuesday to start the process of modifying its rule to allow college athletes to profit from their names, images and likenesses “in a manner consistent with the collegiate model.”

    well, it’s about god damn time…

  101. Early Bird

    I hate to repeat myself but Frank/THJ/Dot/Vonleh/Mitch had a positive net rating against the opponent’s starters in 93 minutes, not a large sample but not a trivial one either.

    When do 5-man lineups start becoming meaningful? I legitimately don’t know. However, it would not surprise me if a couple hundred minutes were necessary. I mean 93 minutes encompasses 3 games, give or take. Were those good teams, bad teams, or mediocre teams? It isn’t that unimaginable to have a good 3 games in a row.

    Also teams may start ignoring Frank if they ever needed to adjust.

  102. djphan

    top 5 man lineup was 900 (okc starters) followed by 850 (orlando)…. and the other lineups played about 300-600…

    it’s not all that meaningful as a forward looking metric… plus minus season to season is very volatile…

    backwards looking it tells you how the lineup performed but you’re generally missing the why….. given the volatility of shooting you’re gonna need a representative sample of shots which depends on your shooters… with good shooters you don’t need much… like mitch… with bad shooters you probably need more of a sample…

    lineup data ilike anything plus minus isn’t all that informative in isolation… but it does give you a point for further analysis… to hunt for the ‘why’ part…

  103. d-mar

    Random stat of the day: Mike Conley Jr. has attempted 45 shots in his first 4 games.

    He’s made 9 of them

  104. geo

    No Giana Dani is ProjectKnicks. 90% confidence. It’s hard to change one’s writing style. reub did not write like that at all.

    to be honest – i never pegged giana as reub either…whew, it’s been a while now, but, yeah, reub seemed to have more personality (no disrespect intended giana), or, at least shared more life kind of stuff…i actually liked reub – i could never quite figure out why he liked fucking with folks so much (especially at his age), but, oh well…

    I’m having a hard time recalling some of project knicks writing – i only really remember one or two tirade’s and that’s it…

    it’s a trip though the kind of recall abilities some of you all have here…

  105. geo

    finally getting out of work – in about oh, maybe 15 minutes or so (i live a block away, yeah, i drove) – i’ll be lighting it up…

  106. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Herro scored 29 points on nine shot attempts. What the fuck!

    Also, Reddish shot 2-10 for 6 points and 6 (!) turnovers in 26 minutes. Dude has bust written allllllll over him.

  107. Bruno Almeida

    And if we won 5 more games like people wanted us to we would probably be discussing Reddish and not Barrett right now…

  108. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Update on Cam Reddish. I just love this shit.

    97 MP
    7-32 FG
    0-14 3PT
    3-4 FT
    17 points
    17 rebounds
    7 assists
    7 steals
    9 turnovers

    0.1 PER

    zero point one

  109. bobneptune

    AD 26/27 from the FT line through 3/4 tonight with 40 points and 7 field goals……. B. Clarke -21 in 13 minutes

  110. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Also, Reddish shot 2-10 for 6 points and 6 (!) turnovers in 26 minutes. Dude has bust written allllllll over him.

    If Cam Reddish was the player everyone assumed he’d be, Duke would have destroyed college basketball this year and RJ Barrett would have gone #2 overall to Memphis instead because of an NCAA championship.

    In retrospect, we should thank God every day for Cam Reddish. I know everyone loves Ja Morant, but something tells me we’re gonna love this Barrett guy in New York.

  111. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @83

    he problem with all of this shit is that RJ is NOT a point guard.

    I’ll take this on.

    What is a point guard in today’s NBA anyway? The game has changed. You’ve got the “point forward” and postition-less basketball is all the rage these days. I’m a real believer in utilizing players to take advantage of their skills and not expose their weaknesses. Call it what you want, but the ball belongs in RJ’s hands. It just suits him.

    That’s not to say he can’t play without the ball, but he makes the right decisions with the ball most of the time. He either finds open team mates, stops and pops or attacks the rim. If you watch the game you can see him set up his team mates. Watch that little jumper that Robinson took. Barrett kicked it back to Mitch and screened his man giving him the open look. He doesn’t just pass, he puts others in a position to do good things with the ball. If the Knicks didn’t miss so many open looks, he might have had a triple double yesterday.

    So, call him whatever you want. I just want the ball in RJ’s hands because it is who he is.

  112. Frank

    Good / short article here on Knox. I am really pleasantly surprised with him, and even though it seems obvious to us that every players should be doing this, it is clear he is really thinking about shot selection — pretty much any interview with him has him saying he has to cut bad shots out.

    Last year – only 43% of shots were catch-and-shoot (zero dribbles), 52% of shots with touch time <2sec.
    this year – 54% of shots are catch-and-shoot (and 54% touch time <2 sec)

    Only 7 out of 33 shot attempts are counted as midrange by NBA.com
    He still can't make a layup (3 out of 9)

    It'll never happen but I would really like to see a starting lineup of RJ, Ellington (or Frank), Morris, Knox, and Mitch. That starting lineup really needs more shooting.

    Good test tonight – Orlando's defense is legit.

  113. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    RJ Barrett should not be on the ball for a majority of the time because he can’t create jumpshooting offense for himself. He can shoot off the catch, but if he has to cross up a guy to get separation we’re in for a long night because he’ll separate but miss a ton. That part of his game as well as the free throw shooting is what’s left to develop, and that’s okay. He’s 19.

    So no, I do not want the ball in RJ Barrett’s hands as the main guy for more than a couple possessions at a time. I will say this though; he’s a closer and the ball absolutely belongs in his hands for every possession during the last 3 minutes of the game. He’s a good passer and he’s a calm presence who won’t barrel his way to the rim with 17 seconds left on the shot clock.

    Also, there’s temptation to like LaMelo Ball, but hard pass. His field goal percentage sits at 34% for the season and 18.9% from 3. He’s very fun to watch but his stats say “undrafted free agent.”

  114. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    And we’ll know a lot more about Kevin Knox after we hopefully trade Marcus Morris to Golden State or Philly. I like Knox’s awareness on court these days and think he’s better at creating his own offense than given credit for. He’s our best 3 point shooter, and that’s a good place to start for a 20 year old. When he got drafted, his footage was giving me “I’m a taller Devin Booker,” and it took that kid some time but he’s looking like a real difference maker these days. What Knox needs to do is build his offensive game from the 3 point line inward and try not to get cooked on defense. If he’s a reliable 3 point shooter and below average defender instead of a terrible one, you’ve got yourself a 20 year old prospect with a ton of potential.

  115. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    It’ll never happen but I would really like to see a starting lineup of RJ, Ellington (or Frank), Morris, Knox, and Mitch. That starting lineup really needs more shooting.

    I don’t know about Ellington in the starting lineup. To me he’s someone that we want coming off the bench to light it up when we need points fast.

    But Knox over Morris in the starting lineup is going to come because Knox is the future, Morris is December trade bait. As I’ve said in the off-season, this season will be a success if Robinson can log 30 minutes without fouling out, Knox and Ntilikina improve their FG% to become at least average and RJ Barrett is the real deal. So far, Knox and RJ are holding up their ends of the bargain. Mitch can’t seem to log 20 minutes yet and Frank is 0-7 having scored zero points this season.

    And Randle has to be a starter.

  116. Hubert

    he problem with all of this shit is that RJ is NOT a point guard.

    If you put Frank and Barrett together in the backcourt, it doesn’t matter who you call a PG. RJ likes the ball in his hands. He’ll have it in his hands. Frank will basically be an outlet pass for him who swings the ball to someone like Randle or Morris. Maybe every now and then he even drives or takes a shot. I don’t know. Crazy shit happens sometimes.

  117. Hubert

    And I’m 100% with JK47 on this one, this is and should be going forward R.J Barrett’s team, it’s his development that is the most important thing this franchise can work on going forward. Adjust the other guys so he can play in a more comfortable situation and develop his skill set; everyone else who’s a much lesser prospect are the ones who have to adjust to that.

    I agree. But this supports playing Frank. Out of the three nominal PGs on this team, Frank is the one who helps Barrett the most because he can cover the opposing team’s best guard. So far we’ve seen Barrett have to chase the likes of Kyrie and Kemba all over the floor. How does that help him?

    Frank taking that off his plate does more for Barrett than anything Smith or Payton bring to the table. Frank should be carrying water for Barrett the way Oakley did for Ewing.

    Smith ain’t gonna do that. He couldn’t even take a back seat to Luka. He’s going to want the ball in his hands and he’s going to take shots away from RJ.

  118. Hubert

    https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/27926833/early-some-teams-already-looking-fix-holes-their-rosters

    ^ Decent round up of the developing trade market.

    I think DRed nailed Ellington to Philadelphia. I hope we’re able to do that for 1 (or both, if they’re desperate) of our 2nd round picks.

    Marcus Morris could be a viable Plan B for all the teams seeking forward help that don’t want to pay the price for Kevin Love. Portland seems like a solid destination. Gallinari would make more sense for them but OKC is swimming in picks and may not want to dump him if they’re in the playoff mix.

    Hell, a few more Bobby Portis games and even he might fetch something decent. There’s not a lot of sellers. I just pray to god we are one of them. You never know with these guys.

  119. KnickfaninNJ

    Rationally, more draft picks would be nice, but we’re likely to get sscond round picks or well protected first round ones. Emotionally, that just doesn’t interest me much. I’d rather have a competent team that has some players that stay next season who are rootable. So I just don’t see any trades on the horizon that I like.

    From management’s point of view, they don’t sound like they are interested either. I think they might trade a player if he’s not getting playing time and he wants to go somewhere else Otherwise, I don’t expect them to do much unless there is suddenly a good player another team wants to move.

  120. Bruno Almeida

    @138

    Yeah, on defense I agree, but on offense it forces Barrett to be the only playmaker on the court, and if Frank can’t even hit wide open 3s, it shrinks the floor and makes it even harder for RJ to operate.

    I still think the best option for now is Payton, as he can at least handle the ball and is also an ok defender, and I would love if Frank would develop into the better player, but I still don’t see it with him at the 1.

  121. thenamestsam

    And Randle has to be a starter.

    This is the part I’m questioning at the moment. He’s a better player than he has shown thus far, but he really needs to be in lineups with more shooting, and his scoring mentality is a natural fit for the bench anyway. Flip fopping him and Knox is the change I’d be looking at. The starting lineup could desperately use the extra shooting, Morris could take the harder defensive matchups, protecting Knox and it lets us pair Randle and Portis together more which is the better fit than Randle/Mitch. Only problem is that starting Knox/Morris is a problem because the roster is really lacking in 3s. Randle will still play big minutes and close games when he’s playing well, but I don’t think he’s ready to be the #1 option the way some may have thought this summer.

    I have a feeling the change Fiz will be looking at is starting Portis instead of Mitch though (for some reason we seem to see Portis as a 5 when to my eyes he’s more of a 4).

  122. Hubert

    Yeah, on defense I agree, but on offense it forces Barrett to be the only playmaker on the court, and if Frank can’t even hit wide open 3s, it shrinks the floor and makes it even harder for RJ to operate.

    It’s a trade off, I admit. I don’t know that Dennis Smith is helping him much more on offense, though. And I think Randle is potentially a second playmaker when he straightens out. You can build a strong two-man game with that pair, and let things flow from there.

    Ultimately it’s about Barrett. The best partner for him so far seems seems to be Ellington. That’s not what I’d expect, since it makes Barrett a PG.

  123. DRed

    Payton, Smith and Trier are the only perimeter players we have who can penetrate, so there is probably going to be problems with the offense with a Frank/RJ backcourt. Maybe we can try running more pick and roll?

  124. rama picked up his option

    I’d love to see Gallo get traded to Portland and be part of a deep run in the west. Not sure OKC would trade him, though.

    As for us, I don’t see how we don’t make at least one trade, since there’s no way all these guys stay happy with their minutes over the course of the season. Eventually someone will be on the outside looking in, and it’s possible, even with this brain-damaged franchise, that it will be a veteran and not one of the potential building blocks of our future.

    I also liked this ESPN piece – I was hoping the Nets wouldn’t extend Dinwiddie a few years ago:

    https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/27928993/how-spencer-dinwiddie-created-own-footwear-path

  125. JK47

    I don’t think it’s good for RJ’s development to play alongside a fake PG who can’t set him up, can’t generate spot-up jumpers for him and can’t even hit a three, thus shrinking the floor. Here RJ, here’s the ball, now you and your three teammates go do some damage. FUCK THAT.

    I get it, Dennis Smith looks terrible. Dennis Smith being bad does not make Frank a viable player. Frank is still possibly the very worst offensive player in the NBA. Barrett should be playing with the only viable point guard on the roster, Elfrid Payton, as much as possible.

  126. djphan

    randle is the most talented guy on the team…. hes just not an iso guy… thats both fiz and his own fault….

    he did make some good adjustments down the stretch in the bulls game altho they were throwing up 2-3 zone looks which accounted for those open portis 3s… not sure how much of it can be repeatable but he made good decisions when it mattered…

    turnovers for young players are good as part of their development… it means they are trying to expand their game… we are seeing that with randle in an extreme fashion and its painful to watch but he is ready to take that next step….

    how big of a step is gonna depend on how he adjusts through this period… it will probably mean passing a little earlier at least… this is similar to how rj was last year in duke… recognizing spots where he can be the most efficient and putting himself in those spots more often…

    that means not forcing things… rj seems to have gotten past that at a young age.. randle is going through it now and it behooves us to let him work through it…

  127. wetbandit

    I’d love to see a Frank/Ellington/RJ/Randle/Mitch lineup. An OK amount of defense, with a lot more rebounding to make up for it. Ellington should be getting a high frequency of kickouts from 3, and Frank would guard the better opposing 1/2. I would hope Randle, Frank, and RJ would pass/lob to Mitch at will. RJ can handle the ball more when Frank brings it down. (I honestly don’t see Smith or Peyton as better than last year’s Frank, but that’s subjective and eyetesty and not based on facts probably, so f u- and if FIBAFrank can make an appearance, I’m very happy)..

  128. Bruno Almeida

    @144

    Oh Smith for sure isn’t helping too in the games he played, and Payton himself isn’t much of a better option. The answer for now is to honestly keep playing these guys in a rotation and see what happens, maybe one of them develops something, maybe they all continue to suck, but we don’t have any other option.

    I’m ok with RJ playing the 1 on occasion, for specific matchups, but it really doesn’t seem like that will be his best position going forward.

  129. thenoblefacehumper

    Frank will basically be an outlet pass for him who swings the ball to someone like Randle or Morris. Maybe every now and then he even drives or takes a shot. I don’t know. Crazy shit happens sometimes.

    It seems like you realized as you were typing this why it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense…

    Let’s be blunt: Frank Ntilikina cannot do jackshit on offense. If you want to give him big minutes, you are accepting playing 4-on-5 offensively in those minutes. Are the other options on this team so, so bad that his defense is worth that absolutely enormous trade off? I certainly see why people might feel that way, but personally I’d rather see what Payton and DSJ can do in extended minutes before I concede that this team is best off with a guy who plays offense like someone’s 6 year old son at a pick up game.

  130. djphan

    payton is the best pg on the roster by a country mile… it’s not close…. he has a ws48 of 0.86.. which is completely inline with what he’s done in his career… that’s not winning any awards but at pg that deserves nba minutes…. and on this team right now that’s the only one playing at that bare minimum level….

    if someone wants to make the argument that the value of perimeter defense overcomes that… ok… but i don’t think it’ll be convincing…. in terms of where frank is offensively and elsewhere in his box score and just what you can see with two eyes…. you would need a mountain of evidence that no one to date has put forth….

  131. ptmilo

    so no payton/dsj/allen against a pretty good defense. seems like a lot to ask from RJ and Frank. what’s the O/U on turnovers, 25?

  132. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    With Elfrid Payton out, I’d like to see us call up Kadeem Allen. He was the best guard on our roster last year.

  133. Farfa Post author

    I think Frank might be the worst offensive guard I’ve seen in a Knicks uniform

    I beg to differ. Ron Baker and Chris Smith give Frank a run for his money.

  134. DS

    KP 4-14, Luka 3-12 and the Mavs still beat the Nuggets? WTF?</blockquote

    Led by THJ 5-9, +23 +/-. Weird game. Looks like Denver couldn't get anything from its bench.

  135. djphan

    i mean there are people who are slotting frank in with george hill on the pacers in their dream lineup…. and also think he’s destined to be rj’s partner in crime…. and possibly turn into king arthur too…

    so the sentiment sort of exists…

  136. thenoblefacehumper

    Kadeem is injured, otherwise he should’ve been up for a while a now.

    The very existence of Kadeem Allen kind of gives the lie to the Frank Ntilikina mythology. There are just tons of guards out there who can give you, say, 60%+ of Ntilikina’s defense while also being able to give you literally anything at all on offense. All of them are better at basketball than Ntilikina.

  137. bobneptune

    Frank need to talk to my favorite shrink Stinky the Dog played by Charlie Murphy:

    http://www.cc.com/video-clips/b4ylib/chappelle-s-show-kneehigh-park-pt–2—uncensored

    Or…. he could go with the musings of the philosopher George Clinton:

    Free your mind and your ass will follow
    The kingdom of heaven is within
    Free your mind and your ass will follow
    The kingdom of heaven is within
    Free your mind and your ass will follow
    The kingdom of heaven is within

    Open up your funky mind and you can fly
    Free your mind and your ass will follow
    The kingdom of heaven is within

    or more advice to Frank from a young Tom Cruz:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geDCtBQeN8c

    For God’s sake someone make Frank watch these……

  138. bobneptune

    With Elfrid Payton out, I’d like to see us call up Kadeem Allen. He was the best guard on our roster last year.

    I don’t think the g league opens til next Friday

  139. E

    Let’s be blunt: Frank Ntilikina cannot do jackshit on offense. If you want to give him big minutes, you are accepting playing 4-on-5 offensively in those minutes.

    As long as the offense still functions, who cares? I ask this seriously. The team’s ORat with Dennis Smith on the floor is 77. If Frank stands around at the three-point line every possession and does literally nothing, and the team’s ORat is 100, that’s way better. I would hope we would have consensus on that.(*)

    Having to play 4 on 5 is only a detriment if the detriment actually gets reflected in a tangible offensive number.

    (*) And the reason for this is pretty clear. Dennis Smith can only play offense in a way that he’s extremely crappy at playing (at least right now). That has lower value than a guy literally standing at the three-point line every possession and doing nothing.

    Is there a single poster here who thinks Frank should be starting over Payton if Elfrid is healthy?

    I do. Frank’s defensive advantage more than offsets the utterly miniscule offensive advantage Payton nominally holds. And Frank has a greater difference between actual and potential than Payton does. To hit that potential, Frank needs reps. The team functions better with Frank in the games than with Payton in the games. That’s all I need to know.

  140. swiftandabundant

    @ 165 – THIS TIMES A THOUSAND.

    Like we get it. Frank is bad on offense. But he’s REALLY GOOD on defense and his bad offense isn’t selfish, its just nothing. So if the team is overall playing better with him on the floor, why does it matter if he’s bad on offense? ON THIS TEAM RIGHT NOW he deserves minutes because he is our best defensive player and when we have seen him and RJ share the backcourt, the results have been positive.

    Its not that hard to figure out.

  141. Dink

    Frank’s defensive advantage more than offsets the utterly miniscule offensive advantage Payton nominally holds.

    ?

    Frank: .426 TS%, .124 FTr, 19.7 AST%, -4 OBPM
    Elfrid: .499 TS%, .250 FTr, 33.8 AST%, -0.5 OBPM

    There’s nothing minuscule about that offensive advantage.

  142. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Having to play 4 on 5 is only a detriment if the detriment actually gets reflected in a tangible offensive number.

    lol

    the cat is both dead and not dead

  143. Hubert

    It seems like you realized as you were typing this why it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense…

    Let’s be blunt: Frank Ntilikina cannot do jackshit on offense. If you want to give him big minutes, you are accepting playing 4-on-5 offensively in those minutes.

    I know that this is true now.

    As a card-carrying Frankophile, though, I hold out hope that it may change if he’s ever given a consistent role and has his coach and the team behind him. They left Frank unguarded in the FIBA tournament, and he eventually made teams pay.

    But I admit that you don’t do this at the expense of Barrett. If he doesn’t make life easier for RJ, bench him.

  144. Hubert

    Just a reminder: the other night, a professional PG was incapable of getting past Frank to midcourt in 8 seconds. There is something special about his defense. There is nothing special about DSJ other than his jumping ability. Payton is competent. I like competence. I’m saying it should be Payton starting and Frank off the bench, consistently, for a while. That’s all.

  145. Z-man

    As it regards Frank, funny how I’ve drifted from doom n’ gloom outlier towards the middle of the KB opinion spectrum. I actually think this is a perfect time to find out what Frank has. Payton is out with injury (what a surprise!) and DSjr has sucked beyond belief.

    Frank’s best contribution to offense is that his defense is disruptive and seems to get the Knicks out in transition, where he is less of a liability. It certainly helps that Fiz is committed to running a 5-pg offense where everyone brings up the ball, so less responsibility there. We can reasonably concede that Frank’s 3-pt shooting is going to improve…he just needs to knock a couple down to get his confidence back.

    So I can squint a bit and see a defensive combo guard with RJ alongside him, so long as his “running the offense” responsibilities are whittled down to the nub. I don’t want him standing in the corner on D because he excels in transition D and it’s hard to be at the point of attack when you’re not especially fast from the furthest part of the court. Tonight will be a great opportunity for him to show something.

  146. djphan

    I do. Frank’s defensive advantage more than offsets the utterly miniscule offensive advantage Payton nominally holds.

    people keep saying this… and it’s getting annoying…

    someone please prove this… if you’re not using data… then use game film….

    here i’ll start:

    during the bulls 4th quarter… frank played 5 minutes… including only 1 minute in the last 8 when he got yanked for ellington when the bulls went on a 6-0 run… he played none of the 15-0 run… that was ellington on the floor…

    out of those 5 minutes… he gave up a bucket to porter without contesting at the rim… gave up an offensive rebound to the guy standing right next to him… and a foul on lavine ….

    the only nice defensive play in the whole quarter was a contest on a layup that fell short… that’s literally it…. he had one nice assist where a normal nba guard could’ve finished on his own… and missed two wide open 3 pt attempts….

    where was this defensive impact in the bulls game that overcame his zero points in 20 minutes?

  147. Early Bird

    Slight change of topic, how do the Knicks play their pg rotation tonight?

    Frank starts with RJ and Trier off the bench??

    RJ starts with Frank off the bench??

    Trier starts again??

    Randle plays point forward??

    I’m thinking Trier plays backup to Frank.

  148. Hubert

    For God’s sake someone make Frank watch these……

    Frank is admittedly so delicate that I’d start him off with Dumbo and give him a feather before the game tonight.

  149. Hubert

    Slight change of topic, how do the Knicks play their pg rotation tonight?

    Fizdale is the coach, so my money is on 42 minutes of RJ at the point with 6 minutes for Frank.

  150. Early Bird

    Fizdale is the coach, so my money is on 42 minutes of RJ at the point with 6 minutes for Frank.

    Lol, I had a more pithy version asking if a rookie has ever played all 48 minutes of a game. I don’t think that will be the plan, but I could definitely see it happening after a few Frank miscues and a Trier off night.

  151. E

    Frank came back in with 1:47 to go, Knicks up 2, Bulls with the ball and absolutely locked down the perimeter. The clips on the NBA.com play-by-play are a bit abbreviated, but you can kind of tell even on them. (There was running commentary on it during the game.) He had LaVine 1-on-1 on two of the possessions and locked him down completely. On the first one, he played Carter the roll man perfectly, shut him down as an outlet completely, and then got the d-rebound on LaVine’s brick. It was a tour-de-force of perimeter defense that should have been on display in the fourth in SA and BKN.

    Bulls really didn’t even get off a good shot on any of the key three possessions. Which is what happens when your offense starts with a guy guarded by one of the elite perimeter defensive guards in the league.

  152. djphan

    locked down is a bit extreme… he got picked both times and lavine managed to put up a shot against someone else…

    what else are we looking at? is that it?

  153. JK47

    I guess this is what happens when you’re a bottom 5 defense for 20 years. You get so desperately thirsty for decent defense that you’ll convince yourself Frank Ntilikina belongs on an NBA floor.

  154. Knew Your Nicks

    I love ‘betting’ on misfits, dark horses and shy ‘princes’ when i see fire and character in them.
    Wanna see Frank starting tonight and establishing his presence in the rotation.
    East is big.
    Rare is good.
    Frank is Frank.

  155. E

    LaVine only got one shot, the one where Frank didn’t let him turn the corner or reverse the pick and roll, completely negated the roll man, and rebounded LaVine’s brick.

    Do we really believe that shot was remotely the one LaVine wanted, or that it’s even remotely in his comfort zone?

    On the Markkanen shot, Frank denied LaVine even getting the ball and still managed, primarily by wingspan, to leave LaVine enough to bother the shot. Also terrific defense.

    I want Frank on the perimeter guarding the other team’s PG or best perimeter guy in these big possessions down the stretch. We all should. He’s a fantastic perimeter defender.

  156. TheClashFan

    E and djphan seem to have been watching two different Chicago games!

    FWIW, I do think Frank plays very good defense, and did vs. Chicago, late. I don’t have any stats, but watching live he did seem to be harassing LaVine.

    However, he needs to bring much more on offense in order to get consistent minutes. Sure, play him down the stretch in tight games. At this point, I pretty much agree with Z-man about Frank.

  157. djphan

    even if you give full credit on those plays… he was still directly responsible for at least 4 other points earlier in the quarter…. we can thinslice the plays you want however you choose… but you can’t extrapolate that out to every single possession because he wasn’t even doing that the whole game….

    if you prefer his defense… that’s ok… i’m not killing ppl on preferences…. but if you’re gonna make such a ridiculous claim that his defensive ability overcomes his offensive output… well you’re gonna need to back it and i call bullshit…

    i’m counting a -2 or 0 if we’re taking his whole 4th quarter on defense alone giving generous assumptions on your take on things…. that’s not impactful….

  158. Ntilakilla

    Man, the guys at Posting and Toasting really ripped djphan a new asshole for challenging the consensus on Frank’s defense there. I don’t think many of them like us at Knickerblogger and I know many of them aren’t too kind to harsh critiques of Frank’s game. I respect him for going there. My own perspective is why not play Frank with RJ if tanking is still the plan?

  159. Ingmarrrr

    @182 hahahahhaaaaaa, it’s going on my desktop background, great stuff.

    Now let’s hope Frank’s wave function stops collapsing so quickly on offense.

  160. jazzfunk

    When Wally is Emceeing Frank Ntlilikina’s Jersey Retirement Ceremony at the Garden in 2041 the second narrated highlight (after his draft selection) will be the time he forced Zach Lavine to take an off-balance shot.

  161. Owen

    Are the posting and toasting types super gung-ho on Frank?

    I will continue to straddle the fence on Frank. It’s rare and somewhat interesting to see a perimeter player with such a polarized skill package. He’s a little unusual. But he is so bad on offense. I always go back to his first preseason game where we were all instantly like, this guy has a really terrible handle. And nothing has changed.

    I don’t know, if Kevin Knox can turn things around I think anything must be possible.

    Also, #182. Hilarious.

  162. d-mar

    Just imagine what happens if by pure happenstance Frank goes off for 15/5/5 tonight.

    Does that stand for 15 minutes played/5 shot attempts/5 misses?

  163. djphan

    those guys are militant about frank… they took it real personal!

    i imagine part of the frank brigade here has been crawling from there…. and a bunch who hatelurk…

  164. JK47

    We have three shooting guards on this roster who are pretty duplicative: Bullock, Ellington and Dotson. Obviously only two of the three are available now, but Frank should be in that group of players. He should be a reserve shooting guard defensive specialist. I can get down with him in that role. He might be good at it. He simply can’t play point guard, he can’t pretend to play point guard, he won’t ever be able to play point guard.

    When Bullock comes back, dump one of those other shooting guards or put them in the Fiz doghouse or whatever and let Frankie have those minutes. In the meantime try to find some other reasonable facsimile of a point guard, even a third point guard type or a hobbled Isaiah Thomas-type veteran who is languishing on a crummy team. Fuck, Jeremy Lin would have been a good idea. Somebody like that.

    I’d like to see Frank succeed. I like defense as much as the next guy. But shooting guard is his only path.

  165. thenoblefacehumper

    Is there a single poster here who thinks Frank should be starting over Payton if Elfrid is healthy?

    Guess so!

  166. thenoblefacehumper

    As long as the offense still functions, who cares? I ask this seriously. The team’s ORat with Dennis Smith on the floor is 77. If Frank stands around at the three-point line every possession and does literally nothing, and the team’s ORat is 100, that’s way better. I would hope we would have consensus on that.(*)

    Is…is this really the argument you want to make? Individual ORtg? Huh. Okay then. Well, DSJ’s career ORtg is 94 and Ntilikina’s is 88.

  167. Owen

    https://www.sny.tv/knicks/news/scouts-weigh-in-on-rj-barretts-strong-start-looks-like-the-knicks-have-something-special-here/311340392

    SNY on Barrett. One quote…

    A Western Conference scout who watched the Knicks throughout Summer League came away wondering if RJ Barrett would be able to compete in the NBA as a rookie.

    He had questions about Barrett’s shooting, ability to get by defenders and overall athleticism.

    That same scout watched Barrett on Monday night, nearly four months later, and came away with a different impression.

    “He looked like a different player,” the scout said. “I couldn’t believe it. He didn’t press, didn’t force anything. Looks like the Knicks have something special here.”

    Barrett’s numbers through four games put him in elite company.

  168. wetbandit

    I think Frank might be the worst offensive guard I’ve seen in a Knicks uniform

    I agree 100%, but he may also be the best defensive guard. That’s what makes many of us see him with glasses so rose-colored we basically end up with albinoid red-eye foveal hypoplasia.

  169. Hubert

    The “RJ Barrett will be rookie of the year” hot take definitely looks less absurd than it did during summer league.

  170. Hubert

    go ahead, get them hands up…

    This is great. The guy with his hand held high is the P&T crowd, and the bald dude is the KB guys like me who love Frank but know deep down that we’re wrong.

    (for the record, 100% start Payton; I only want Frank to get 15-20 minutes backing him up consistently while Fiz gives him the Mudiay treatment.)

  171. Z-man

    Well they picked up his option so that’s another reason to play him. But tonight, I mean, the pickins are slim.

  172. Z-man

    I’ve never posted under another name on this site. BELIEVE THAT!

    You mean there’s two people like you out there?

  173. JK47

    “He looked like a different player,” the scout said. “I couldn’t believe it. He didn’t press, didn’t force anything. Looks like the Knicks have something special here.”

    I’m no NBA scout and in fact I’m just a dude on the internet but this is exactly how I feel about him. He really does look like a different player than he was at Duke.

    The word I always used to describe his play at Duke was CLUNKY. Nothing seemed smooth, everything looked herky-jerky, and when you combine that with his good-not-great athleticism and his poor decision making at Duke, he looked like he was overrated based on his profile as a prep player.

    There’s no question to me that he has ironed a lot of that shit out. He looks downright smooth a lot of the time, there is no way I would describe his play as “clunky.” He looks polished. He still favors his left but he can go right pretty effectively too and look good doing it. Defensively he’s strong and sturdy, he competes hard and he seems to have a knack for disrupting plays. He absolutely looks the part of a versatile, well-rounded player. I feel pretty good about things when he has the ball in his hands.

    I talked a lot of shit about this guy when he played for Duke, but he’s my favorite player now.

  174. JK47

    GianaDani has also never pretended to be a soccer mom so he’d be allowed to post here after getting banned for being a rape apologist.

    Oh what’s that, that wasn’t you, reub/Giana? Are you still pretending to be a soccer mom or what?

  175. Owen

    I’m no NBA scout and in fact I’m just a dude on the internet but this is exactly how I feel about him. He really does look like a different player than he was at Duke.

    Yeah, I mentioned this wrt Coach K being competely overrated but I too can almost not believe how different he is from his time at Duke.

    I mean, every highly touted Mcdonald’s guy who struggles for a year in college but still gets drafted has this narrative at draft time. You should have seen him in AAU! Cam Reddish was voted most likely to exceed expectations by his fellow draftees! Or whatever it is.

    But this time, with a Knicks player, it seems to hold a little weight.

    Honestly, I really feel so stupid. I feel so certain that Dolan’s razor is setting up to chop my d#^* off.

  176. Knew Your Nicks

    @192 & @203
    :-DDDD

    I don’t post anywhere else. Neither read posting & tosting.

    The scout may had seen different stuff on summer league about RJ but i had ‘seen’ exactly the same.
    Am i a scout ?
    Nope.
    Just a hungry knicks/bball junkie.

  177. Hubert

    I can’t wait til RJ Barrett owns this city next year and says “the cool thing right now is not Kevin Durant”.

    Getting a little carried away.

  178. Bruno Almeida

    I’m riding on the RJB train too, I don’t care. I’ll give it up for the glass half rebuilt, because he was touting the kid long before we believed in him, but I watched him a lot in Duke and it never seemed like he was the player we’re seeing right now. Maybe he had an extra gear, maybe he was getting held back by poor coaching, maybe it was a small sample size and he progressed a lot during the summer, I’m just enjoying it right now.

  179. KnickfaninNJ

    i’m counting a -2 or 0 if we’re taking his whole 4th quarter on defense alone giving generous assumptions on your take on things…. that’s not impactful….

    That sounds about right, but since no one is advocating Ntilikina over Payton, the question is how would DSJ do in a similar assessment.

  180. geo

    unpopular opinion number 2, 537:

    I like bobby portis and them crazy eyes…I mean hell, at least you know he’s engaged…

    and yeah, he does remind me of ‘ol kurt thomas, and, that ain’t such a bad thing…

  181. djphan

    RJ was really good at duke…. he’s not a completely different player… he still kind of gallops on his drives… he’s still very aggressive to the hoop…. and still uses his body versus explosion to shield… his shot distribution is probably identical….

    but he’s added a couple things…. more right hand finishes… more leaping off one foot… and smoothed out his rough edges…. that’s multiple small incremental improvement but those things taken together result in a better nba player….

    his 2p fg% was 53% on ridiculous volume at duke… it sits at 50% in the nba.. he’s different for sure but he’s not completely different…. he was good.. and he was an elite prospect… and it translated about what you expect from an elite prospect….

  182. Ben R

    The thing about RJB was he was very productive in college when it came to putting up numbers in much the same way Young was so productive the year before. When looking at prospects, production is more important than efficiency, as long as the efficiency is not terrible. Barrett hit the efficiency threshold of 50% from 2 and 30% from three so after that his very good production was more predictive than his mediocre shooting rates.

    It is the reason I touted both of them so much. I am a big fan of the draft analysis Ed Weiland did when he was at Hoops Analyst, he now works for an NBA team, so there isn’t anything over the last couple of years but before that, I thought he was really onto something.

  183. Ntilakilla

    Is anyone worried about RJ’s free throws? Man, I don’t want to see him struggle there ala Ben Simmons. It would be a real shame if he can’t take advantage of his physicality and ability to draw fouls by not sinking his charity stripe shots down.

  184. DRed

    Orlando is a very good defensive team and we are going into this game with no point guards so you should all brace yourselves for a hideous performance.

  185. JK47

    Orlando has also underachieved a bit so far, as Vucevic and Gordon have both played really badly to start the season. Gordon is not a very good player but he’s not a complete bum, which is how he has played so far this season. Based on their talent level they look like a fringe playoff team to me in the East.

  186. djphan

    is weiland really on an nba team? i thought he died or something…. i’m guessing it’s toronto… i’m very curious…

    weiland had the most simplistic draft model out there and even after all these young bucks try to get fancy adding all these variables… his is still one of the best… i have been a long admirer of his work…

  187. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    John “gets it”! #FreeDotson

    John Schmeelk
    @Schmeelk
    While the Knicks worry about who will play point guard tonight, what they need to do is break up the Morris/Randle/Robinson front line. Morris needs to go to the bench with Ellington or Dotson entering the lineup. They need spacing!

  188. Bruno Almeida

    @219

    Simmons and RJ shot the same exact percentage from the line in college, 67%, so yeah, it’s a bit scary. At least Barrett is very willing to shoot from elsewhere and seems confident about it, so we can only hope it’s just a period of adjustment he’s going through and that he can figure it out eventually. I don’t see anything in his mechanics that screams it’s busted or anything, so at this point I think we can still chalk it up to confidence / being tired / taking some time to get used to it.

  189. Name is Bron - James Bron

    Man, the guys at Posting and Toasting really ripped djphan a new asshole for challenging the consensus on Frank’s defense there. I don’t think many of them like us at Knickerblogger and I know many of them aren’t too kind to harsh critiques of Frank’s game. I respect him for going there.

    Uh, no. It was dumb of djphan. P&T’s a fine blog. While it tilts pro-Frank, there are plenty of people there who hate Frank. They’ve had plenty of heated debates about him. djphan is not even a semi-regular on P&T yet his hatred for Frank appears to run so deep that bashing him here was insufficient. He had to set sail for other lands to set the heathens straight. What irks them is that a lot of posters have emerged from the woodwork to bash Frank; these are people who have never posted on P&T before or the only time they post is anti-Frank stuff. It’s understandable why the blog would react that way. They don’t treat their regular posters who are anti-Frank the way they treated djphan.

    Farfa talked about the irrational affection people have for Frank. You know, he almost had it right – off by just one word. It’s more the irrational vitriol some people have which is puzzling. djphan’s popping off on other blogs and I get the feeling Noble’s about to pop a vein every time he posts here.

  190. Knew Your Nicks

    @219
    Rjs FTs was and still is the one and only (fixable) thing that worries me on his game.
    Let’s hope that he’ll find the way to turn it around.

  191. rama picked up his option

    I wouldn’t say we should start Payton over Frank; I would say we should be looking for combinations that work well together. If RJ can handle some playmaking duties, if Randle is a willing passer, maybe Frank works in the starting lineup because his egregious offense is hidden enough not to offset his disruptive point-of-attack defense.

    I also think Mitch and Portis are more complementary than Mitch and Randle. And Randle has to start, so…hmmm. Start Taj with Randle?

    We also desperately need shooting to open it up for Randle and whoever inside. Ellington instead of Morris? That wouldn’t go down well, but do we care much if Morris is unhappy?

    Point being, we should be looking for synergies and not get caught up in who starts or, for that matter, who finishes. The coaches should be focused on finding groups that play well together.

  192. thenoblefacehumper

    It’s more the irrational vitriol some people have which is puzzling. djphan’s popping off on other blogs and I get the feeling Noble’s about to pop a vein every time he posts here.

    I didn’t really know your opinion on the matter because I tend to skip over your posts when I’m catching up, but if you and djphan disagree I am very happy and reassured to see that I fall on his side.

  193. rama picked up his option

    A further thought: one of Knox and Ellington should be on the court at all times. Both are great outside shooters (yes, that’s you Kevin!), and neither is a good creator. Ellington’s off-ball movement is textbook, so he should probably start, but either way, you need one of them on the court since they are the best we have from outside who can’t also penetrate and do other things.

  194. djphan

    it was dumb of me to goto a different blog to make a comment about frank’s shooting? you telling me it was my fault for popping the bubble? and that it was my fault that they reacted so harshly to get personal about it? and you have the peanut gallery egging everyone else to pile on me? you want to villainize me because they’re that sensitive about it?

    is this the argument you want to make?

    i was trying to have honest conversation about it… literally tried multiple times… no one took me up on it… why do you think that is? is it because p&t is the 4chan of the knick fanbase? could that be it?

    if you have a problem with me you can take it to where it belongs… i can be very petty about this if you like… but don’t bring drama here…

  195. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    if you prefer his defense… that’s ok… i’m not killing ppl on preferences….

    Defense and offense should be thought about differently.

    Players have the varying offensive skillsets. Their usage will tend to vary with their skillset. However, many players can remain as efficient (or at least close) on higher usage IF ASKED OR REQUIRED. What that means is that if you have one player that’s low usage, that does not mean the OVERALL offense will score less or be less efficient than it would be if he could do more and scored more. It just means the total number of shots will be distributed differently than if he could do more. You can have a top offense with 3 high level scorers on the court and a couple of role players that do other things well but barely score. The negative impact of one low usage scorer is minimal. In fact, that’s the whole point behind teams typically NOT having 5 scorers on the court. The extra scoring does not help (there’s only one ball) but you NEED other things.

    One the flip side, 1 defensive player can have a MASSIVE impact in the right matchup.

    For example, if you could really limit or shut down James Harden but did almost nothing else well, you would muck up the Rocket’s offense so much it would have a big impact. The same could be said for any number of players in the NBA that are critical to their offense. Shut down that one guy and you are going to win a LOT of those games.

    A LOT of NBA teams these days are very dependent on one of their guards (usually the PG) to score a lot, run P&Rs, and quarterback the offense. If you have a guard that can limit or stop that key player (let’s call him Frank Beverley), you are going to do a lot of damage to the opposing offense. That has enormous value. The fact that he may not be able to score a lot has minimal impact as long as you have other good scorers on the court with him.

    You need very good players. The better they are the better. But a big part of it is TEAM CONSTRUCTION, maximizing TEAM output and matchups.

  196. E

    If — I’ll believe it when I see it — Frank replaces Payton in the starting lineup, he’s joining the most frequently used Knick lineup of the year. It has a net rating of minus-20.3, and an assist to turnover ratio of an almost unspeakably bad 0.47. (And yeah, the spacing sucks. The fear though is that they’ll fix the spacing not by replacing Morris with Knox or Ellington or Dotson, but by replacing Mitch with Portis. Portis in for Mitch actually has way better numbers so far this year, but it’s a very small sample size.)

  197. Name is Bron - James Bron

    While the Knicks worry about who will play point guard tonight, what they need to do is break up the Morris/Randle/Robinson front line. Morris needs to go to the bench with Ellington or Dotson entering the lineup. They need spacing!

    Not sure I understand this. Morris and Dotson are career 36% 3FG%; Ellington 38%. Morris has shot 43.8% from 3 so far to Ellington’s 40%. Morris is a better defender than both of those guys. My worry is that Morris is/might break the offense to ISO to boost his counting stats eyeing his next contract. If that happens Fiz should bench him. If Mook starts jawing at Fiz the way his brother did at Hornacek, my opinion of Fiz will soar. Marc Gasol was a Grizz star player for a decade; Morris is a mediocre mercenary.

    I don’t care one way or the other whether Morris starts. What I do want is for Fiz to try very hard to make Randle and Mitch tandem work before he splits them up because those are 2 of our 3 best players who might be starters for the next few years. Make it so Fiz.

  198. E

    My starting lineup would be Frank/Ellington/RJ/Randle/ Mitch. My go to offensive plays would be Frank/Mitch and RJ/Mitch pick and roll with Mitch rim-diving and Ellington camping out behind the three line.

  199. rama picked up his option

    Morris is/might break the offense to ISO to boost his counting stats

    Um, yeah, exactly. You’ve watched the games? Randle is a good and willing passer – at least at times. I can see a very positive future for him (on offense, at least) despite his rough start. Morris, on the other hand, got a tech after the half ended (bonehead), and consistently has 20% usage despite a career VORP of 4.9. When he gets the ball, he’s going to shoot it. His 3 point percentage is fine, but I bet his overall effect on the offense isn’t.

  200. Dink

    I dunno man, I really like P&T (RIP Seth) but there’s a bunch of ridiculous homerism in the comment section. It’s gotten better though. I remember when Melo got dealt to OKC and a number of regulars there thought the Knicks got fleeced. Wild times.

  201. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @214

    I’m riding on the RJB train too, I don’t care. I’ll give it up for the glass half rebuilt, because he was touting the kid long before we believed in him, but I watched him a lot in Duke and it never seemed like he was the player we’re seeing right now. Maybe he had an extra gear, maybe he was getting held back by poor coaching, maybe it was a small sample size and he progressed a lot during the summer, I’m just enjoying it right now.

    I think, when you’re playing next to Zion, a lot gets skewed. It makes sense to me that RJ deferred to Zion more than if he was the stud of the team. I’m beginning to think that although Zion will have a good year, RJ might be the stud of this class. Their numbers last season:
    R.J. Barrett 22.6 Pts, 7.6 Reb, 4.3 Ast
    Zion Williamson 22.6 Pts, 8.9 Reb, 2.1 Ast

  202. E

    I’ve toasted but never posted at P&T, but the consensus there is basically the same as KB on KP. Big divergence on Frank, to be sure. They’re less box score and box score inference there than here. The debate on Frank is so hot because it goes right to the first principle argument over the importance of box score-ish quantifiability — which is probably the biggest point of contention in 21st century sports discussion.

  203. JK47

    djphan is one of the better posters here, he has takes on things that are from a different and intelligent perspective, and unlike certain posters (like myself) he’s not a snarky smartass, he’s generally pretty polite and sticks to the facts. I think P&T is kind of fanboi-ish and it’s not my jam, so if they don’t like hearing that Frank is ass, fuck ’em.

  204. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Here’s my rank of the Knicks PGs on an all around basis.

    1. Payton
    2. DSJr
    3. Frank

    Here’s my rank of the Knicks PGs in terms of how valuable they could be to the right team.

    1. Frank
    2. Payton
    3. DSjr

    Those are two subtly different questions that can require different answers.

    The reason Frank is last in terms of all around skills is obvious.

    The reason he’s first in “value” is he’s the only one that does something at a very high level on the way to becoming elite.

    Who should start?

    It depends who else is on the court.

    If you are starting Curry, Durant, and Thompson and you didn’t answer Frank you don’t understand basketball at all. Go back to the basics. (I’m being extreme here to make the point. It doesn’t have to be those 3 elite scorers)

    If you are starting 3 defensive minded lower usage players you should start DSJr.

    If you have a pretty balanced offense and defense with enough space and scoring and no glaring weaknesses on defense, you should start Payton.

    But almost unquestionably, Frank is the one guy that could have LOT of value on the right team because he’s the only impact player of the 3. He just has to be in a lineup that already has enough scoring whereas DSJr and Payton do not .

  205. GianaDani

    JK, everything posted on this under my name is me. I was never banned; left for a while because you and few others, were harassing me and didn’t like my political views. Anyway, why are you so obsessed with me?

  206. Bruno Almeida

    I really don’t see why we should care if folks at P&T have reacted poorly to a pretty sensible argument made by a long time poster here who always contributed very
    well to discussion. If they can’t engage reasonably with a reasonable argument, well, that’s just a shame and not really that relevant.

  207. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    I’ve toasted but never posted at P&T, but the consensus there is basically the same as KB on KP. Big divergence on Frank, to be sure. They’re less box score and box score inference there than here. The debate on Frank is so hot because it goes right to the first principle argument over the importance of box score-ish quantifiability — which is probably the biggest point of contention in 21st century sports discussion.

    Advanced stats were developed so the mathematically inclined could contribute to our understanding of basketball the way they did for baseball

    The problem is, basketball is a team sport where you are trying to maximize team output using complex interrelationships via different systems, different skill combinations, different paces, different emphasis between offense and defense, specific matchups etc… Players will perform differently depending on who they are on the court with (and against) and what strategies everyone is using. Their value will also change defending on the same factors.

    That means basketball is not a game where you should even be trying to develop a single number to capture a player’s contribution.

    That’s a bad idea.

    IMO, what you should be doing is creating comprehensive spreadsheets with player skillsets, then using advanced math to measure those individual skills more accurately, and then using more advanced math to measure how to mix and match those skillsets and strategies to maximize the team output.

    Honestly, stats are “the way, the light, and the truth”, but one the “one number” boxsore metrics are garbage.

  208. Name is Bron - James Bron

    It’s irrelevant whether or not djphan was offering Einsteinian insights on Frank. Blogs are a kind of ecosystem, there are certain tacit protocols. For example, the reaction’s very different when long-time poster neptune makes a pro-Trump statement versus when ProjectKnicks aka CNB aka GianaDani does. You enter the ecosystem, nobody knows you, and you start in on a hot button issue, you have to expect a strong reaction. Even P&T posters who agreed with djphan on Frank believed that.

  209. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    I think, when you’re playing next to Zion, a lot gets skewed. It makes sense to me that RJ deferred to Zion more than if he was the stud of the team.

    I pointed that out before the draft and posted the stats.

    Zion did not play in a handful of games for Duke. Barrett put up more impressive numbers without Zion than he did prior. He carried the team even though the loss of Zion was too great to win each game. But you could see (albeit in that very small sample) that Barrett was a very good college player. He was not playing “off Zion”. He was holding back as second option. The questions were defense and shooting, but it was almost a certainty that if he worked hard he was going to be able to score inside, make plays, and rebound well at this level. I’m just kind of surprised how quickly he’s doing it.

  210. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    I’m almost tempted to read the P&T forum just to see the discussion, but I’m at the point where even this is too much. Discussing basketball with fans is not an EV+ activity. If you want to know how much you know about basketball, bet on the games, team win totals, under/over etc… when you think the consensus view is wrong like I do. The bottom line will tell you.

  211. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    djphan is a very good poster, even when I disagree with him

    P&T has a lot of philosophical and discursive crossover with r/nyknicks — not a compliment

  212. JK47

    JK, everything posted on this under my name is me. I was never banned; left for a while because you and few others, were harassing me and didn’t like my political views. Anyway, why are you so obsessed with me?

    Well, for starters, you’re a liar.

    I’ve never posted under another name on this site. BELIEVE THAT!

    So wait, you’re not reub, but you’re reub? But you’re a soccer mom named GianaDani? What’s with the fucking games?

    You’re a troll and you come here to disrupt. Whatever, do your thing dude. But you’re the worst.

  213. djphan

    thanks guys for the kind words.. means a lot coming from you caliber of ppl…

    mr. bron – nothing i said there crossed a line.. multiple ppl crossed it… multiple ppl endorsed and encouraged it… how you excuse that behavior based on some make believe world… i can’t offer you any help on that but that’s probably why you want to be part of that club….

    nobody cares here… if you want to quit the sockpuppet charade and take it over there let me know…

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