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Monday, November 24, 2014

Free Agent Roundup — Day 1

Baron Davis has reportedly agreed to a 5-year, $65 million deal with the Clippers. No offers or signings are official before July 9th, when the the league announces the final salary cap figures. Apparently it takes eight days for a team of chipmunks to work the slide rules over on Park Avenue.

Assuming a cap number in the realm of $58,130,000 – what I saw on real GM – just four teams have significant cap room.  WIthout Davis, Golden State has the most — about $24 million. However, they also need to save up to re-sign Monta Ellis and Andris Biedrins. They can go over the cap to sign them, but own Chris Cohan has said he wants to avoid the luxury tax. Meanwhile, Memphis has about $15 million to spend, as do the Clippers – if they renounce rights to Corey Maggette, as expected.  Philadelphia has about $12 million in space, assuming they keep Andre Iguodala. It’s even worse, actually, for the free agents – Memphis is supposedly in money-saving mode and is not expected to break open the bank for anyone. Seattle has about $8 million to offer, while every other team is limited to the mid-level (about $6 million) or else seeking a “sign-and-trade” if they want to get in on the action. 

Disclaimer: I occasionally saw Billy Knight at a Starbucks near my office, but now that he’s been fired I have no inside line. Therefore the information here is second-hand guesswork.  

Gilbert Arenas

     Arenas is reportedly weighing “max” offers from both Washington and Golden State. Call it a toss-up. Arenas has said he wants to stay in DC, but prior to his coming East no one thought he would ever leave his home state of California. Meanwhile, the Maloof brothers reportedly said they would give up their entire roster to get Arenas to Sacramento. Unless David Stern says he’ll let the Wiz play 15 vs. 5, I don’t think it’s worth it. Seriously, though – if Arenas is set on leaving, you have to think the Wizards would consider a deal involving Kevin Martin, a bad contract and a 1st round pick. 

 Elton Brand – Unrestricted

     Brand says he wants to stay and form a dream team with Davis. He also has Hollywood roots, as a successful film producer (like the Wernor Herzog-helmed “Rescue Dawn.”)  

Corey Maggette – Unrestricted

     Expect the Clippers to renounce Maggette, in order to re-sign Brand.  Then, unless Philadelphia or Golden States wants to pay him, it looks like Maggette will be taking the mid-level. The smart money is on Orlando, where he lives in the offseason and which is reported to be ready to make an offer.

DeSagana Diop – Unrestricted

   Reports are that Dallas will bring him home, offering the full mid-level.

Josh Smith – Restricted

     Philadelphia is reportedly set to make an offer starting at $11 million a year. The Hawks have vowed to match, but Sekou Smith, the astute beat writer for the Hawks, is pessimistic.

 Emeka Okafor – Restricted

    Last year Okafor turned down an offer in the $12 million range, and no one has enough cap room to offer that much, so it’s likely he stays in Charlotte. But there are reports of discord – Michael Jordan is fuming. If the two sides don’t calm down, Charlotte might look for a place to trade their big man. 

 Monta Ellis – Restricted

     Ellis might have been in play if Baron Davis had stayed put. As things stand, there’s no way the Warriors let him leave. They’ll match any offer.

 Ben Gordon – Restricted

    There’s no clear front-runner. Actually, Gordon had such a bad year that his value may have dropped to the point where the Bulls can afford to keep him.

 Other restricted free agents like Luol Deng, Andre Iguodala and Josh Childress, are assumed to be re-signing, since their teams are likely to match any offer.

Sign and Trade

     The sign-and-trade route is more complicated. It requires a team willing to let its star walk, another team willing to make an offer and a star who actually wants to go to the new team. For example, Miami reportedly loves Brand, and Pat Riley did sign him to an offer sheet a few years back. He’s only in L.A. because the Clippers matched it. Shawn Marion probably isn’t enough, but if Riley offered Michael Beasley and salaries to match – wouldn’t the Clips at least consider it?

     Another team that hasn’t been mentioned – but maybe should – is Detroit.  Joe Dumars says he’s willing to swap any of his starting five, and says he wants to make a big splash.  Houston – with risk-taking, stat-loving GM Daryl Morey – could also be a dark horse. Tracy McGrady is an injury risk, and the team actually has a better record without Yao Ming the past two years. Either might be tradeable in the right deal. 

179 comments on “Free Agent Roundup — Day 1

  1. cwod

    I think I read in Hollinger’s chat that the Bulls might slide Hinrich to the 2 and move Gordon in a sign-and-trade.

  2. Ted Nelson

    “Status Alert:The Celtics have made a contract offer to Maggette, a source told the Boston Globe. (Jul 1)”

    Don’t know if someone’s mentioned it, but I saw this on ESPN.com

  3. David Crockett

    Knicks-related rumors I’ve heard about:

    1. Signing Chris Duhon – If the price is right his playmaking (AST% of 24.4 and 26.5 the past two seasons) and 3pt shooting (around 35% the past two seasons) would be welcome. Given the number of teams that jumped right on him, I suspect the price may be a bit steep. The Post is suggesting it would mean the end for Nate Robinson, but when you could buy out Mardy Collins’ cheap contract (which has a team option for 09-10) that doesn’t make a ton of sense to me.

    2. Trading Jamal Crawford for Cuttino Mobley (linked at Hoopshype.com) – The numbers work out and the trade makes sense from a fiscal standpoint (not really from a productivity standpoint).

  4. caleb

    Crawford might be the only one of the Boys of ’11 who could bring back more than a shorter contract, so I wouldn’t trade him for mobley straight up. But if the Clips threw in Fazekas and a 2nd rounder…

    Fazekas would probably ride the bench for a while, until we make a few trades, but he was good last year in very limited minutes, and his college numbers project to star-like NBA ability. I wouldn’t go that far, but I think he’s comfortably as good as your typical mid 1st-rounder.

    Crawford for Mobley and a mid-1st? Nice deal.

  5. Dave

    The Baron Davis signing but it’s put Shaun Livingston and Corey Maggette in play. The Clippers had to renounce both so they can’t go over the cap to resign them and can’t take part in a sign and trade. Maggette has to accept the MLE from somewhere, likely a contender so the Knicks won’t be much of a player there. Be nice if Donnie made the call and found out for sure though. D’Antoni’s style of play can be a big draw.

    Shaun Livingston is the interesting one for the Knicks. I’m sure the recent developments with him have caught Ted’s eye.

    Since the Clippers have now spent their cap space and have renounced their rights to Livingston I believe they can’t offer him more than the veterans minimum. That suddenly makes any suitor more interesting if they put 2-3mil on the table and any contract length say two years to get healthy and prove yourself while earning some guaranteed money. Also, Baron Davis is now in town reducing his PG opportunities and his immediate future in the Clippers so suddenly a whole bunch of teams become more attractive to him. He’s very acquirable right now.

    With the Knicks hoping/deciding to split their MLE (not my favourite idea) between Duhon and some other player … Livingston suddenly makes some sense. I didn’t want him taking up any of the MLE but if the Duhon acquisition goes through that objection goes down the toilet. The second objection was that I didn’t want to pay him substantial money but would be content around the LLE (1.91mil) … if the MLE is split I’d be content splitting it on Livingston. If the Duhon signing falls through, I’d rather spend the majority of the MLE on the best available player.

    I’d rather a James Jones (or another solid role player who gives the team some more balance) but I’d be happy taking a chance on Livingston and seeing if he can revive his career. That’s something worth doing at low money.

  6. Thomas B.

    “To decrease the likelihood your comment is mistaken for spam, please Register & Login.”

    But it doesnt work for me. It says my name is already registered, and it refuses to mail me a password. Have I been pre-banned? I promise to stop making bad jokes, I even promise to read the layman’s guide to statistical analysis. Just let me register.

    ——

    Does anyone else think Stern’s decision to bring in an independent oversight officer for the refs is similar to Judge Landis-a retired Judge-coming to clean up baseball after the 1919 WS? Lets just hope General Robert L. Johnson has a better record on equal employment than Landis did.

    ——-

    Z-man,

    I suggested a sign and trade for Okafor that involved Curry but someone-TDM I think-pointed out the Larry Brown would have NONE of that. I say the same still stands.

    ——-

    Crawford is a 20 ppg scorer, that has to have some value to teams that needs scoring in the backcourt and dont have the cap room to sign a FA. Crawford and Davis in the backcourt..they would need to rename Staples the Turnover Areana.

  7. ess-dog

    It sounds like the buyout of Marbury is a hoax (at least according to the Post.) So it looks like Marbs and Duhon will fight it out for starting pg. Or… if the Crawford rumors are true, then maybe Marbs will move to the 2. These guys have some crazy secret ideas going on right now.

  8. Z

    “Trading Jamal Crawford for Cuttino Mobley (linked at Hoopshype.com) – The numbers work out and the trade makes sense from a fiscal standpoint (not really from a productivity standpoint).”

    What about Jamal for Mobley, Brevin Knight, the rights to DeAndre Jordan, and next years lottery protected first? (Do the Clips have the cap room for us to dump JJ on them instead of taking their pick?)…

  9. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    “To decrease the likelihood your comment is mistaken for spam, please Register & Login.”

    But it doesnt work for me. It says my name is already registered, and it refuses to mail me a password. Have I been pre-banned? I promise to stop making bad jokes, I even promise to read the layman’s guide to statistical analysis. Just let me register.

    I accept your promise & have deleted your account. Please re-create it.

  10. Z

    “Houston – with risk-taking, stat-loving GM Daryl Morey – could also be a dark horse. Tracy McGrady is an injury risk, and the team actually has a better record without Yao Ming the past two years. Either might be tradeable in the right deal. ”

    Seems like possibilities like this are the reasons to not buy out Marbury.

  11. TDM

    “I suggested a sign and trade for Okafor that involved Curry but someone-TDM I think-pointed out the Larry Brown would have NONE of that. I say the same still stands”

    I don’t think I made that point, however, its certainly possible. Yesterday, I quoted MJ about his displeasure with Okafor. MJ rules the roost, so whatever misgivings LB has about a trade with the Knicks would probably be secondary to MJ.

  12. Ben R

    I think we can do alot better than simply trading Crawford for an expiring.

    I would be okay with an expiring and a first or maybe an expiring plus an okay prospect. But honestly if we trade him we have no SG prospects unless we really think Chandler or Balkman can eventually land there.

    I still think we should use him as part of a trade for an upgrade like; JR Smith, Josh Childress, Leandro Barbosa, Mickael Pietrus or if we sweetened the deal Monta Ellis. (If their talks break down)

    All five of those players are much younger, better defenders and much more efficient players that could play the 2 for a long time.

    The only reason those teams might bite is Crawford is a beter PG than any of those players and all four teams need PG help.

  13. Dan Panorama

    If MJ is truly the new Isiah, an Okafor/Curry trade could be in the realm of possibility. Okafor, if he could stay healthy, would be a nice fit and could potentially mesh well with Zach Randolph as he would mask some of Z-Bo’s defensive deficiencies with his extreme shotblocking skills. Of course staying healthy is a pretty big “if” in his case and if his health truly tanks he could be even harder to unload than Curry is now.

  14. TDM

    Dan:

    You right about the health concerns. If memory serves, Okafor had back issues even when he was at UConn (anyone else remember?). However, I’d take him in a heartbeat of Curry, or Zebo. He’s a double-double guy that gets 2 blocks per game.

  15. ess-dog

    Now this would be a trade:

    “There are point guards out there within reach. My current choice would be the New York Knicks’ Jamal Crawford, a big, scoring point guard who may be trade bait as the Knicks seek to dump salary. If the Warriors offered Al Harrington (big contract that expires in 2010, right when LeBron James and Dwyane Wade can be free agents) and a protected future No. 1 pick, and took back Crawford and the horrible contract of Zach Randolph, would the Knicks bite? They might. Crawford can be erratic and he’s not the commander-on-the-court that Baron is, but Crawford is a giant talent worth a look if there is money to spend. Another name of interest is Chicago’s Kirk Hinrich, made less relevant there by the drafting of Derrick Rose.” — San Jose Mercury News

  16. caleb

    Giant talent, yes indeedy, step right up… a bargain price… we’ll even throw in a 20/10 power forward, yessirree….

    Here’s another GS idea – assuming they don’t reel in Arenas, would they swap Harrington and a 1st rounder for Marbury? That way we get something for Steph — the only price is Harrington’s salary next year, about $8 million, I think (double, for tax). Then Walsh could be a pal and buy the guy out.

    Golden State might do a one-year rental, to try and keep the team competitive — and since they shed Harrington’s salary next year, it only costs them about $4 million, total. And the pick. How about it, Mully?

    Step right up, giant talents for sale, right here, cheap, no better bargains anywhere, step right up…

  17. Hungry Ghost

    “That deal would be the best thing that happened to this franchise this century.”

    It would be good Karma for the Warriors to pay forward the Dunleavy-Murphy dump of several years ago…

  18. caleb

    “Warriors offer Brand gihugic contract.”

    Now THAT would be funny.

    Let’s see if the Clips counter-counter with an enormungous offer.

  19. caleb

    Funnier still… Davis would then back out of his verbal deal (nothing’s official for another week) and go back to the Bay. Take that, slumlord!

  20. Reebok1303

    Can someone please explain to me how Gilbert Arenas is worth almost twice as much as Baron Davis for the next six years? The guy has averaged 20-8 the last three years and is a top 10 point guard who loves stepping up and having the ball in his hands at crunch time. They both have injury issues, aren’t great on D, and hog the ball, so what separates them by 60+ million? (I realize Davis is three years older, but still, 60 million?)

  21. Reebok1303

    Mike K. I just used the password reset and it is working much better than before.

  22. TDM

    Out here in LA, there are calling it Baron Davis Day. Morons. It’ll be a rainy parade, if Brand bolts to GS. Ha. Besides, Baron Davis is great, but is he THAT much better than Cassell a couple years ago? Cassell couldn’t get them over the hump. Not so sure BD will be the savior everyone projects him to be.

  23. Reebok1303

    For anyone who was in favor of trading for Bargnani, as discussed in the last thread, should take a look at this Wages of Wins post. According to them he was the second LEAST productive player in the entire NBA, ironically behind only the recently acquired Jermain O’Neal. He was so bad that if the Raps replaced him with just a league average player they could have jumped from 41 to 54 wins! (Actually, if you put it like that, he kinda does sound like a Knick….)

    http://dberri.wordpress.com/2008/07/01/the-other-side-of-the-indiana-toronto-trade/

  24. tastycakes

    (Sorry for the off-topic post, but how do I set my avatar icon now that I’m registered? I can’t find anything on the settings page that would indicate a way to do this. BTW, everybody’s icon should be a Knick, past or present. Mine will be awesome, if I can figure out how to hook it up.)

  25. ess-dog

    well GS would have about 50 or so power forwards to move if they got Brand. Maybe we could get Randolph (the skinny one) and beidrins for Crawford. It really feels like we’re hanging around to clean up other teams’s leftovers… like a rodent…

  26. Ray

    How stupid is Washington to offer Areanas so much money….he should have been dealt for picks. That would have been the brilliant move. This guy is playing on one leg…so foolish. Id love to have Okafor here as long as he leaves his bad back in Charlotte. He is exactly what we need in the middle. Shot blocking and rebounds. If he if out of MJ’s favor maybe we can swing a deal for him.

  27. Thomas B.

    Well seeing Washington offer max money to a guy that played in less than half the season due to a knee injury should prove the LBJ will opt out of the last year of his contract. We wont have the cap room to get him so i say we concentrate on building through the draft.

  28. Z-man

    Wonder if Isiah has taken over this particular team for the first time how many bad moves he would have made by now. Looks like Walsh/D’Antoni want to really see what they have before pulling the trigger just for the sake of making deals. Remember how fast (imprudently) Isiah turned over the entire roster just so he could feel secure it was his team?

  29. danvt

    “I’ve had enough of seeing a new starting lineup every other day.”

    This is from another thread but I could not agree more. We need to stop auditioning guys, for example, Fred Jones at PG. If Duhon is coming in to play major minutes for a few games and then sit, no thanks. If he’s going to be a solid rotation player, play D, move the ball and hit shots then I’m on board.

    As to Marbury, I actually feel bad for him but he needs to leave. We need change. Buy him out, please. How can we expect this same roster to improve, again?

    If Gallinari is the real deal, if Duhon is a starter then we have a fresh start. If D’Antoni plays Lee and Balkman and instills some discipline on some of our chuckers maybe I can get fired up about the upcoming season.

    Obviously Walsh’s approach has to be more flexible and nuanced than simply slash payroll, suck, and get Lebron (maybe).

  30. TDM

    Tastycakes: Your avatar is up. Love it.

    For the rest of you, my experience was that it took about 12 hours for the avatar to start appearing on my postings.

  31. cwod

    Judging from his time in Phoenix, I don’t think D’Antoni will use a large rotation. A bunch of guys there never saw playing time. Hopefully we never see Malik Rose in crunch time again or Jerome James ever.

  32. Danisrob

    I am happy for the signing of Duhon for two years. Why not?

    Now the Nets have Lopez could we trade Chandler for Sean WIlliams? Then buy out Marbury and get what ever is possible for Randolph (seems like there is at least a bit of interest out there)

    PG: Robinson/Duhon
    SG: Crawford/ Q- Rich
    SF: Gallinari/Balkman
    PF: Lee/Rose
    c: Curry/Williams

  33. trentuckerule

    According to the Chicago Tribune Walsh offered Duhon two years, 6.5 mill. The Magic are also in play. Walsh’s plan B guys include Bassy Telfair and his guns and Tyronne Lue.

  34. foliveri

    I think the chances of getting Duhon will be positively influenced by the presence of D’Antoni and Walsh.

    I know that doesn’t add much to this discussion, but it felt decent to, at least, be able to type something like that without any nagging sense of embarrassment.:)

  35. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    I think the chances of getting Duhon will be positively influenced by the presence of D’Antoni and Walsh.

    Good point. His stats should look better as a starter in New York than a backup in Orlando. If he’s confident in his ability to be a starter in the NBA, then this would be the better way to go. Being a starter & putting up decent numbers will give him a better contract after this one runs out.

    Another thing to consider is that a lot of players say they want to play in New York. I’m just throwing that out there.

  36. caleb

    Agree, foliveri — the fact that Duhon even considered the Knicks is a testament to D’Antoni’s allure. I think that will really pay dividends within a few years.

  37. TDM

    Just read that Randolph Morris is attending the Celtic’s minicamp. I kind of wish we had seen a little more of this guy before letting him walk.

  38. foliveri

    Yeah, the Knicks are going to enjoy bank shots from D’Antoni’s successes in Phoenix for the past several years, but it probably will only last a year or two.
    There are plenty of coaches who arrived with an imprimatur only to watch it bleed away as their team struggled to win.

  39. Thomas B.

    If this is true, then Steph will be bought out. You dont want a sullen Steph on the bench.

    http://chicagosports.chicagotribune.com/sports/basketball/bulls/cs-080702-luol-deng-chicago-bulls,1,5589099.story

    “The Knicks have offered a two-year, roughly $6.5 million contract plus the promise of a starting job to free agent Chris Duhon, league sources said. Duhon met with Magic officials Wednesday and is expected to make his decision Thursday. Orlando is expected to offer similar financial numbers but already has a starting point guard in Jameer Nelson.

    Duhon is weighing the promise of a starting job and the appeal of playing for Mike D’Antoni, or joining a team that reached the Eastern Conference semifinals last season.”

  40. Ted Nelson

    Orlando is a good situation: they’re a winnter and while Jameer Nelson seems a good bet for 30 mpg for the next 5+ seasons he’s not really THAT good.

    However, if the Knicks really “promised” Duhon he’d be the starter (which I doubt Donnie Walsh would do), my guess is that Duhon’s agent is using Orlando to get the Knicks to offer, say, 2 years $7 mill or $8 mill or even the whole MLE. Everyone knows the Knicks don’t want to sign someone for longer than 2 seasons, but Dolan is willing to hand out the MLE like candy. Duhon has spent his career whining about minutes, so I don’t see him passing up a starting spot.

    Of course, if the “promise”/Marbury buyout stuff is garbage who knows?

  41. foliveri

    If I had a nickel for every time the NY Post and NY Daily News got a Knicks story wrong…

  42. foliveri

    Things don’t look good on the Duhon front.
    From the Orlando Sentinel:

    “The visit here went really well,” said Kevin Bradbury, Duhon’s agent, Wednesday night from his Orlando hotel room. “Chris wants to help a team win a championship. That’s what Orlando is trying to do. That’s different than a team looking to rebuild. He was flattered that a team of this caliber wants him.”

    Quite clearly the Knicks are rebuilding and are no where near even playoff ready…

    Regarding the idea of being a back up in Orlando:

    “Chris just wants a well-defined role,” Bradbury said. “He knows Jameer is the starter, but the Magic want him. Actions speak louder than words. He was the first free agent they brought in.”

    And they offered him three years and $10 mil…

    *sigh*

  43. Z

    Yeah– it seems hard to sell to Duhon that he’d be the starter when they are paying a guy $20 million at that position already. Seems like Marbury and the Knicks need to divorce in order for Duhon to sign.

  44. BiggieSmalls

    all this love Elton brand is getting HAS TO BE good for our prospects of moving Zbo.. thoughts?

  45. Italian Stallion

    I was hoping that Walsh would accomplish three things this summer.

    1. Pick up a quality player in the draft

    2. Find a replacement for Marbury (if a PG was not drafted) that distributes the ball well and plays team oriented basketball so we can get rid of his negative personality once and for all.

    3. Move one or more bad contracts, with a strong preference for Randolph’s being moved first. I am probably the only guy here that thinks Randolph is a pretty darn good player. It’s just that he doesn’t fit well with the rest of our players, is a bit of a distraction/personality risk, and his contract is too long and too expensive.

    So far he has accomplished only one out of three and the PG situation is not looking good.

    Anyone besides me have that sinking feeling that the Knicks are going to start next year with essentially the same exact team plus Gallinari. I like Gallinari a lot based on the little I have seen and some reports from Europe. But let’s be honest. He won’t be an impact player any time soon. He’s only 19. This team is still dreadful. D’Antoni may get a little more out of them, but this is basically the same team that Larry Brown couldn’t do a damn thing with either. Given that Miami and Chicago are likely to be a lot better and a few other teams have been actively improving, I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).

  46. Captain Merlin

    Sorry about that, just checking to see if the gravatar was working properly…

    In regards to Italian Stallion’s above post, I’d have to agree almost wholeheartedly with nearly everything he mentioned, excepting the bit about how “this is basically the same team that Larry Brown couldn’t do a damn thing with either.” To say that would be overlooking the terrific talent brought to the 05-06 squad by players such as Jalen Rose, Mo Taylor, and the always invaluable Qyntel Woods, et al.

    I’m not terribly sure how sarcastically that bit was meant to be perceived…

    As for this year, I’m cautiously pessimistic about the teams chances. Adding Duhon to man the ship ought to really be the franchise’s turning point. He really seems like the sort of player capable of working miracles with this bunch and leading them to, say…slightly worse draft position? Ahoy

  47. caleb

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”

    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.

    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.

    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.

    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.

    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

  48. Z

    “Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success?”

    I think that the long term goal would be helped by having another terrible season next year; however, I really don’t see how the Knicks could be worse next year. Maybe as bad, but even then, only bad enough for the #6 pick. I’m not sure if another miserable season is palatable just for another mid-lottery pick.

    I think that the short term goal (next two years) is to make the playoffs by year two. That way we can save ourselves the humiliation and the frustration of watching the Jazz take our lottery pick.

  49. Italian Stallion

    Caleb,

    I agree with you. I have no set amount of wins in mind that will make me happy.

    What I want is the feeling that we are heading in the right direction.

    All I want is for Walsh to begin moving the bad personalities and contracts. I would gladly even sacrifice wins to get Marbury off the team.

    I want D’Antoni to develop some of our young talent a little (never happened under Isiah) and use the pieces properly. That way I can feel like all we have to do is add and subtract a little more to be where we want to be in 2-3 years.

    However, if Curry is looking like a fat useless slob, Chandler shows no progress, Lee is the same 10 and 10 player, Balkman looks like he’d rather be smoking reefer somewhere, Galinari is looking mediocre, and Marbury/Randolph/Robinson are acting like AHOLEs, I’m going to need a case of Jack Daniels to get through the season.

  50. caleb

    “That way we can save ourselves the humiliation and the frustration of watching the Jazz take our lottery pick.”

    As that guy used to say, “Yessssss!””

  51. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    I was hoping that Walsh would accomplish three things this summer…

    So far he has accomplished only one out of three and the PG situation is not looking good.

    Rome wasn’t built in a day. The free agent season hasn’t even officially started yet. You know when they say you can’t rebuild in New York because the fans aren’t patient, this is what they’re talking about. I don’t care much what the Knicks do next year on the court, with the exception of the younger players getting burn. If Nate, Lee, Balkman, and Chandler are scrounging for minutes I won’t be happy. Other than that – I realize this will take time.

    Anyone besides me have that sinking feeling that the Knicks are going to start next year with essentially the same exact team plus Gallinari.

    I think the difference between this season and the last will be there’ll be some hope. For once I don’t have to wonder if Marbury is going to commit to defense. I don’t have to wonder if the coach is going to be the root cause of the problem. I don’t have to wonder if the next overpaid no-defense slob is coming to our team for a handful of draft picks.

    If Marbury is gone, and D’Antoni plays our younger guys, that’s enough of a step forward for me.

  52. Captain Merlin

    If the team survives the offseason without managing to bite on one of the “Lee for Felton” quality level deals, I’d have to deem it a success. Being rid of Zach without taking back a major headcase would make it far more than that even. Funny how 10-15 years ago this sort of talk would have never occurred.

  53. Z-man

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”
    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.
    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.
    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.
    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.
    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”
    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.
    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.
    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.
    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.
    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”
    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.
    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.
    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.
    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.
    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”
    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.
    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.
    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.
    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.
    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

    “I think there’s a very good chance either the Knicks or the Nets are going to be the worst team in the East (if not all of basketball).”
    Pending other roster moves, I think the Knicks will win about 35 games, but you could be right — I do think the Nets are in worse (short-term) shape, and the Bucks, Pacers and Bobcats will be in the mix, too. I don’t think anyone will compare to the worst Western teams.
    Still, that doesn’t mean it will be a failure of a season. We know that shedding the albatross contracts is important, but we’re not getting cap space before 2010 – if then – so this season it doesn’t matter. The future of the team is the young players, anyway, and if the Knicks have a terrible record this season when Gallinari is 19 and Chandler is 21, it doesn’t mean they’ll be bad players in a few years.
    There are obvious imbalances — all the best prospects are forwards, there’s no real point guard or center — but there’s no point in a stopgap solution just so we win 35 games instead of 30. Chris Duhon is a nice role player but I’m glad Walsh isn’t giving him $3 million of our 2010-2011 cap room. He’s right to be patient.
    Anyway, I think the Knicks will be fun to watch. They’ll be a mess on defense, but I think they’ll please the fans as long as the players play hard, and show improvement over the course of the season. We’ll see promising young players develop in front of our eyes, and figure out who’s part of the long-term plan. The W-L record this year is almost irrelevant.
    Is this a minority opinion? Do other posters think we need to win a certain number of games, for the season to be a success? I know it’s early to ask….

    Ditti Caqleb and Mike K below, but I am a little more ambitious. Having consistently watched the good, the bad and the ugly since 1966, I go into every season with expectations of the best case scenario for this year as well as hope for the future. On paper, this team is better than it has performed and there is no reason why this team as presently constructed can’t play exciting basketball and win 40 or more games this season. Isiah’s negative influence as both an overbearing, shortsighted GM and a lousy x’s & o’s coach has been weighing on this team for the better part of this decade.

    Under D’Antoni and Walsh, what I expect to see more than anything else is a coherent offesnive and defensive system, where the productivity of each player is maximized within a team concept. In the unlikely event that the overpaid, underachieving veterans turn it around under new management and start outplaying the younger guys, I have no problem with them playing. What I have a problem with is playing the older guys when they are clearly being outplayed, and more importantly, outworked by the younger guys.

    Isiah was boxed into playing Q, Jeffries, Zach, Curry and Steph. D’Antoni has no such obligation. On the other hand, Lee, Nate, Balkman and Chandler aren’t rookies anymore. If they are not playing well and/or developing, I don’t think they should get carte blanche to stink up the court when they’re still making rookie mistakes.

    Even if you hate the idea of playing the veterans, it doesn’t help us to get rid of their contracts when they are disgruntled and not getting at least some opportunity to win over other GMs. Being a 35 win team would maake it harder to get rid of these guys than being a 45 win team. I have no fear that D’Antoni or Walsh are going to get deceived into wanting to keep Zach and Eddy around by the additional wins.

    And a healthy Steph is probably worth more wins for one season than Duhon, Lue or Arroyo, and is already paid for, so why throw money at another backup-caliber PG and guarantee them that they will start (as some reports are saying Duhon was offered)? If Walsh made that guarantee, I would lose a ton of respect for him.

    I would rather not make any moves until the new regime has a chance to get a handle on how to maximize the trade value of each player, unless something stupid falls into out lap, e.g. Curry for Okafor. I’m still rooting for 82-0 and 16-0 in the playoffs and if they lose the first game I’ll be rooting for 81-1, etc. If they are 32-50, I won’t be consoled very much by the knowledge that the young guys got to play.

  54. jon abbey

    “On paper, this team is better than it has performed ”

    it absolutely isn’t, it honestly could even be worse than the 23-59 record of last year. it’s a dreadful, dreadful team. again, last in team blocked shots, last in team assists, and nothing in sight to improve either of those.

  55. Ray

    That was horrendous Z-Man. Dont ever do a quintuplicate post again. Its seemed it went on forever. Im hearing Monta Ellis is pushing for NY. Might a Crawford trade be possible? Perhaps for a true PG?? Walsh has been a little quiet so I hope hes cooking up some deals. Hopefully somebody will take Zach off our hands. C’mon Donnie do some magic….somebody out there needs a 20 -10 guy. Hes more like 16-8 now.

  56. z-man

    Jon,
    We’ll have to disagree in that I think the Isiah factor is bigger than you do. I will entertain that notion for the time being, especially since we are undefeated in ’08-’09 thus far.

  57. Dave

    “On paper, this team is better than it has performed ”

    In terms of individual talent it’s far far better than it’s record.

    In terms of collective talent the Knicks 07-08 record is a fair indication of where the team is. The team is roundabout that 23 win mark, maybe worse, maybe a bit better. This is a horribly unbalanced basketball team, the most unbalanced in the NBA. Players don’t complement one another – heck forget complement one another they limit each other (lack of shooting for bigs) and worsen one another (Zach and Eddy) – and whole areas of skill (interior defense, perimeter defense, perimeter shooting, passing, movement off the ball) are ridiculously poor to the point that it kills the team on a nightly basis.

    The team needs to lose 50% of it’s 8/9 man rotation. The guys that remain will play better just because the others are gone. It doesn’t matter who goes or who stays. They just can’t stay together because they’re ruining each other.

    …. ………

    Also one other thing. I don’t for a second believe that Duhon got a promise of a starting job. KC Johnson normally gives good coverage but I can’t believe he’s correct about that. Orlando’s offer is better and Duhon should go there. Be interesting to see how it plays out over the next few days.

    * The registering worked this time, got the email. Everything works. Thanks.

  58. jon abbey

    why would GS possibly do a sign and trade with Ellis to us, especially when they’ve got tons of cap space (after Brand presumably turns them down) and no one to spend it on?

    z-man, Isiah was an awful coach, but we’re still a terrible defensive team and a one on one offensive team. if we’re not in the five worst teams in the league again, it’s a major feather in D’Antoni’s coaching cap, the personnel right now is worse than virtually every other team out there.

  59. Z-man

    A couple of other points, Jon, to acentuate the Isiah effect:
    1. The Knicks were 10 wins better in 06-07 with virtually the same team, despite Steph, Crawford and Lee missing long stretches in the second half of the season.
    2. The young guys are a year older and should play more and better
    3. Gallinari will hopefully be less raw since he has been playing against better competition, although we will know better on this one in 2 weeks when summer league play begins.
    4. Shotblocking is a major void, but not the difference for a .500 team. Assists will go by virtue of an offensive system that is predicated on ball movement and fast break play, rather than Jamal, Zach and Curry going 1 on 1.

  60. Dan Panorama

    This team is way better than it’s record, but it’s still bad. What really killed it last season wasn’t entirely the makeup of the team but that it became a circus by the end of the second month of the season. Once that happens and the players can tell which way the wind is blowing (ie. Isiah’s going to be fired, it’s going to be one of “those” years) the team doesn’t even pretend to care about winning. They become mercenaries trying to boost their averages taking every shot they can in the hopes they’ll be traded or score a contract somewhere else. It’s a horrifying spiral to watch, but it is in large part due to the toxic atmosphere created by Steph and Isiah.

    It’s hard to believe, but the Knicks actually started 2-1 last season, including a thrilling win against a quality team in Denver. If you watched the Denver win you would have thought it was a different team playing — players were passing to each other unselfishly, playing within some sort of larger offensive strategy, and at least making a token effort on defense. After Steph went AWOL and Isiah went against the team vote, though, it was all over. No one was going to buy into a team system at that point, let alone some lousy coach like Isiah’s. My guess is getting a credible president and coach and some semblance of accountability will boost the win total by 10 at least.

  61. Z-man

    Ironically, my favorite win of the season was the one vs. Utah early. Steph and Zach had huge games, Curry had 2 big shot blocks, includong a monster block on Deron Williams at the end of the game, and the young guys played minimal roles. I remember thinking that Eddy and Zach could work together and that Steph had turned the corner…

  62. jon abbey

    “Shotblocking is a major void, but not the difference for a .500 team.”

    total lack of interior defense is a major problem for any team.

    “Assists will go by virtue of an offensive system that is predicated on ball movement and fast break play, rather than Jamal, Zach and Curry going 1 on 1.”

    well, if D’Antoni can pull that off with the current personnel, more power to him. I’m personally not holding my breath, there’s a reason he’s trying to get Duhon.

  63. Z-man

    Maybe we should be pursuing an interior D guy rather than a 2nd rate PG. I’d rather live with Steph and Nate for one more year than give penetrators and post players the red carpet treatment like we did last year.

    Slim pickings in the free agent market…is there an undrafted rookie shotblocking type anywhere out there worth taking a gamble on?

    That said, I would argue that some of the problems on D were also due to bad coaching. Lee, Balkman and Chandler all have room for improvement and good attitudes. Zach and Eddy, well…

  64. Frank

    Remind me again why we want Chris Duhon?
    7 assists per 40
    51% TS%
    10 pts per 40
    Marginal 3 pt shooter, 35%
    1.2 steals/40
    ~3 rebounds/40
    I guess he’s supposed to be a good defender.
    Doesn’t seem to be a meaningful addition in any sense.
    Part of Nash’s magic in D’Antoni’s system was that he is such a threat to score himself — if people could play off him all day long he wouldn’t be nearly as good. So– getting a player not nearly as good as Nash at shooting, passing, ballhandling, etc. just doesn’t seem like an important move at all.

    I’d rather take a chance on a cheap undrafted free agent like Jamont Gordon, Gary Forbes, etc. or someone who can really shoot the lights out like Eddie House etc.

  65. ben bow

    why the hell is everyone so against trading lee for felton????? lee is way overrated by all knicks fans, simply because compared to the rest of the team he is great. raymond felton is one of the higher class PG’s in the league. this season he averaged 7.4 assists a game. that was seventh in the league. i thought one of our weaknesses was a need of a pass first point guard????? also, now that we have gallinari, we have a PF to replace lee, so its not a big deal. Finally, i’ve heard many people say he hasnt improved over his time in the league. i disagree. his assist number has gone up each year he’s in the league, and his fg percent has risen. i think that he will probably continue improving, and best yet, he’s only 24, with a low salary of 3.3 mil. if we got felton, i would be a happy knicks fan.

    also, i hope if that doesnt happen we sign telfair. he’s still really young, we could just pay him what we will pay duhon. i’d rather have telfair. he had like 6 assists a game this year.

  66. cwod

    “why the hell is everyone so against trading lee for felton?????”

    Because we could do better than Ray Felton. Really.

  67. jon abbey

    Duhon’s like a NBA version of Mardy Collins, we have no PG right now.

    Telfair won’t happen as long as Marbury’s on the roster, I don’t think they can be on the same team.

  68. Brendan

    By WoW: Lee, 7th PF in the game last year, which was not his best. Felton: not listed among PGs.

    By PER: Lee, 18.01; Felton, 13.85

    Subjectively: if Ray Felton was any damn good, he wouldn’t be getting pushed out the door at age 24 by a Charlotte Failcats team which would rather start a rookie, despite Felton being a North Carolina guy.

    One of these days there needs to be a serious discussion among NBA fans about whether the pass-first PG is overrated; after all those years of watching Jason Kidd, I know which camp I’m in. Didn’t Tom Ziller or someone like that write a big post about this somewhere, recently?

    In re: Zbo- it may be stretching a point, but I thought this year’s draft, in which long-term projects like Randolph and Jordan dropped, was indicative of an ongoing trend in NBA GMing culture away from projects and troubled-but-talented vets, and towards players who are more equipped to get the job done now. Given that we’re coming off the victory of a Celtics team which exemplified the point and given the league’s tendency to ape a success story, I expect the trend to only continue for a while.

    If I’m right, none of this is exactly great news for Randolph’s market value. Even serious veteran-driven teams like the Spurs which are willing to gamble on a head case here and there generally aren’t interested in one like Randolph, since his contract is enough so that you have to structure him as one of your top 2 or 3 players. Teams interested in him would generally want to add him as a bonus to a veteran core who could help a coach control his silliness, but at his current cost, that’s not really possible. If he gets moved, I think it’s going to require extreme bribery- the days of finding a Sucker GM and convincing him that Zbo is about to become Elton Brand are over, at least since Zeke got “reassigned.”

    PS, Put in me the pool for 48 as the max wins the Bullets ever get with Gilbert “now owns the” Arenas.

  69. Mel

    “By WoW: Lee, 7th PF in the game last year, which was not his best. Felton: not listed among PGs.

    By PER: Lee, 18.01; Felton, 13.85″

    sometimes stats lie Lee is not the 7th best power forward in the league , he is not close to that.

    felton probably isn’t the answer , only a stopgap.

  70. foliveri

    A few things that occurred to me while reading the last 60 posts or so:

    – Sad, but the only time the Knicks are interesting to me in the past few years is in the off season just before and after the draft, the opening of free agency and the summer league.
    – To those who say the Knicks will be entertaining on offense this year, but defense will be tough…: There is nothing more ruinous for my basketball enjoyment than a team that shows offensive promise but then gives it back two-fold on the defensive end in missed assignments, lax coverage, weak boards, and uncontested shots. This Knicks team is one of the worst and most disinterested defensive teams I have ever watched.
    – I saw the Duhon trade as a way to fill a gap at point as a back up to Marbury, and so I thought a PG that gets 7 assists per 40, and is competent would help the team. I maintain that despite all his troubles, in a contract year, Marbury will be productive. A reach, for sure.
    – I am deeply suspicious of anyone that is willing to give away a young point guard like Felton. Something must be missing, or else as the stats show, by position, Lee was a far better player and other teams are using the Knicks’ desperation to pick their pockets.

    In my mind, if the Knicks trade Lee, they likely are getting a lesser talent back. And because the team will not be appreciably better this year, that move would be a bad one…unless the goal is simply to unload what will become an expensive player deemed unaffordable given the 2010 cap scenario…which leaves me finishing this string as it began: sad.

  71. Ted Nelson

    “Remind me again why we want Chris Duhon?”

    I think he makes sense because he’s a smart player who knows the game and plays defense. For a team with no defense like the Knicks it’s especially important to get the ball in the hands of your more efficient scorers rather than having two inefficient/high volume scorers in the backcourt (Crawford and Marbury). No one expects Duhon to be Steve Nash, but he’s a guy who is going to get the ball to Curry and Gallinari in favorbale positions, actually take advantage of Lee’s ability to move without the ball, and only get the ball to Crawford, Randolph, and Wilson if they’re doing what they’re supposed to. He’s not a scorer himself, but his two best seasons (05-06 & 06-07) he posted a TS% of about .535, a eFG% around .495, and shot about .360 on 4.6 3PAs/36 min: in a good season he’s more efficient than Marbury and not someone who necessarily want to sag off of.
    (Of course, now that I post this I bet there’s a story out there that Duhon’s going to Orlando.)

  72. Ted Nelson

    “sometimes stats lie”

    If stats are recorded properly they can’t lie (they’re numbers), you just have to interpret them. I have no idea if Lee’s the 7th best PF in the NBA (I really don’t care to be honest), but he’s a very good basketball player.

  73. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    Duhon’s like a NBA version of Mardy Collins, we have no PG right now.

    Telfair won’t happen as long as Marbury’s on the roster, I don’t think they can be on the same team.

    Mardy Collins with a three point shot. And free throw shot. And the ability to pass.

    Boy does Mardy Collins suck.

  74. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    Remind me again why we want Chris Duhon?

    Because he plays decent defense, can setup the offense and doesn’t cough up the ball.

    But mostly because he’s crappy enough to sign for half the MLE for 2 years.

  75. Z-man

    Even with the apparent glut at PF, Lee is more valuable to this team right now than Felton would be. Let’s not forget he is also a backup center for us at times. While I disagree with those who think he is a top-10 PF, and have been critical of his game, his heart, attitude, youth and game are all highly sought after and marketable, not to mention his fan appeal.

    Other than possibly Gallinari, Lee is our most valuable asset and shouldn’t be squandered for anything but a sure-fire solution at a given starting position. I don’t think Felton falls into that category and would rather see us take a risk on giving Nate the keys to the car for now. Maybe I’m deluded about Nate’s potential and I understand the stats don’t paint a pretty picture about his passing, but I think he is slowly getting better and he has athleticism and heart that can’t be taught.

    I have no problem with trading Lee for the right guy or draft pick and I think if we’re patient the right deal will come along.

  76. Ted Nelson

    “Maybe I’m deluded about Nate’s potential and I understand the stats don’t paint a pretty picture about his passing, but I think he is slowly getting better and he has athleticism and heart that can’t be taught.”

    He’s a solid player, just not much of a PG. On a team with such a low basketball IQ I feel like everyone (the fans/media) is hoping for a “pass-first” PG mostly to cover up for other player’s lack of judgement/understanding of what they need to do to help the team win (also because it’s the fad with Steve Nash winning MVPs, Chris Paul and Deron Williams making huge impacts early in their careers, and now Derrick Rose being a top prospect/going #1). If you have (good-great) players who understand the game and their roles you don’t necessarily need a “pass-first” PG to keep them in check. I think concentrating on getting good players all around is a better strategy than this obsession Knicks fans have with a PG, but I would still say Nate is not the answer at PG. (Combo-guard for 25-30 mpg I think he’s a fine solution.)
    ———————————————————-

    I can see both sides of the “the Knicks are a 20 win/40 win team” argument: the Knicks roster is poorly constructed, but they won 10 more games with a pretty similar roster in 06-07 and last season was a real circus.

    The thing that gives me hope is that D’Antoni is a guy known for sticking to a short rotation. All 15 guys on the roster don’t have to fit together well, he only has to find 8 or even 7.5 who are somewhat complementary.

    I keep harping on basketball IQ + character because I think it’s the main reason the Knicks don’t complement each other. The biggest complaint is that the Knicks have too many scorers, but that’s not a problem if all your scorers understand and are willing to stick to their role in the offense.

    I’ve given up on defense at this point, and just hope the Knicks can do something close to the Wizards last season: 22nd defense, 11th offense, 43 wins, and Eastern Conference 5th seed. (Maybe not 5th seed, but I’ll take 8th seed at this point.) I think the key is to get guys who will/can “buy into” whatever offense D’Antoni installs. Under Isiah either there was no system, the system was flawed, the players didn’t buy into the system, or the players didn’t have the skills required to execute the system. (I think all of the above were true to some extent at various times.)

  77. Frank

    I honestly think that Steph and Nate will be fine running the point for now — I think unless we really can get someone to take a 2 year contract that is anything decent, I guess we should do it but otherwise, we should just make sure to save the cap for moves that actually matter in the future.

  78. Ray

    I mean unless we get a Conley or a Monta Ellis I say let Nate and Steph run the point too. We keep those pieces until trade time if necessary. Everyone on our team will have value the problem is this group just cant play together. The most versatile guy we have right now is Danillo. Wo can be a point foward and get to the line and shoot. Id like to see the linup look like this

    Steph/ Nate
    Craw
    DAnillo
    D. Lee
    Curry

    Maybe Coach D will teach Zach not to black hole the ball. ITs Take him too long to get into his move once they throw it into him in the post. We have to shoot in 7 second or less!!!

  79. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    I mean unless we get a Conley or a Monta Ellis I say let Nate and Steph run the point too. We keep those pieces until trade time if necessary.

    I think the problem with keeping Marbury is that he doesn’t fit D’Antoni’s system and he might undermine the coach’s credibility. Given the events of last year (the team vote to send him home) D’Antoni would lose a little bit of respectability with the rest of the team handing over the keys to the kingdom to Stephon.

  80. Z-man

    I think the problem with keeping Marbury is that he doesn’t fit D’Antoni’s system and he might undermine the coach’s credibility. Given the events of last year (the team vote to send him home) D’Antoni would lose a little bit of respectability with the rest of the team handing over the keys to the kingdom to Stephon.

    I see the point but the optimist in me is thinking this will not be as much of a problem as it might have been in the problem. Steph is in a contract year. He is finally tradable, or as a last resort, can be bought out. Before he got hurt in 06-07, he was playing well and within the team concept. He may have been hurt all of last year and did require surgery. I think that the effect of Steph being allowed to play after the vote is grossly overstated and would not want to keep any player that uses it as an excuse for poor play. If it undermined isiah’s authority, that was more about Isiah than about Steph.

    Anyway, Steph still represents the best option we have for next year and will have no bearing on the following year. I say give him, and every other current Knick, a look at least into preseason, and let them cut/trade themselves as their play and attitude within the D’Antoni system indicates, unless a good trade opportunity presents itself, e.g. Okafor. I, for one, see no reason why a healthy Steph can’t play D’Antoni-ball if he truly wants to.

  81. Italian Stallion
    I mean unless we get a Conley or a Monta Ellis I say let Nate and Steph run the point too. We keep those pieces until trade time if necessary.

    I think the problem with keeping Marbury is that he doesn’t fit D’Antoni’s system and he might undermine the coach’s credibility. Given the events of last year (the team vote to send him home) D’Antoni would lose a little bit of respectability with the rest of the team handing over the keys to the kingdom to Stephon.

    The problem with Marbury is that he’s a low class self centered malcontent that needs to be the center of attention all the time.

    It’s not about his talent and skill. At his best he put up some very impressive assist and point totals. He’s lost a step, but he’s not that old. It’s about all the negative intangibles his brings with him.

    The best thing Walsh could do is dump his ass ASAP.

    I would happily win 5 fewer games without Marbury than have him poison this them any more than he already has.

  82. Italian Stallion
    I was hoping that Walsh would accomplish three things this summer…
    So far he has accomplished only one out of three and the PG situation is not looking good.

    Rome wasn’t built in a day. The free agent season hasn’t even officially started yet. You know when they say you can’t rebuild in New York because the fans aren’t patient, this is what they’re talking about. I don’t care much what the Knicks do next year on the court, with the exception of the younger players getting burn. If Nate, Lee, Balkman, and Chandler are scrounging for minutes I won’t be happy. Other than that – I realize this will take time.

    I have plenty of patience. At least a much as anyone here.

    My requirements for this offseason were fairly modest.

    1. Get a good draft pick. DONE

    2. Get a reasonably competent PG. I am not looking for the long term solution. I am looking for a way get rid of Marbury because he’s walking poison.

    3. Move at least 1 bad contract. I don’t care if we get a ball boy or a an expensive cup of coffee back.

    The problems with the Knicks are immense. I am fully aware it’s going to take 3-4 years to turn this around.

    We have too many overpaid players with horrible contracts.

    We have too many one dimensional role players.

    We have too many players whose game doesn’t compliment other players. They take away instead.

    We have too many low class, immature fools, and poisonous disruptive personalities etc…

    WE don’t have a single All Star.

    That’s a massive project, but it’s easy to get rid of at least some of the radioactive waste. Start with buying out Marbury and stop worrying about whether he’s the best PG we have or whether it will cost us games. Just get his ass out of here!

  83. Count Zero
    The best thing Walsh could do is dump his ass ASAP.
    I would happily win 5 fewer games without Marbury than have him poison this them any more than he already has.

    Agreed.

    Agree as well. I really don’t want to see the cancer that is Stephon Marbury anywhere near a rebuilding Knicks team. Players like Lee will see this coaching team as a crucial moment in the direction of the franchise — a clear signal that Stephon DOES NOT run this team is important.

  84. Z-man
    The best thing Walsh could do is dump his ass ASAP.
    I would happily win 5 fewer games without Marbury than have him poison this them any more than he already has.

    Agreed.

    Agree as well. I really don’t want to see the cancer that is Stephon Marbury anywhere near a rebuilding Knicks team. Players like Lee will see this coaching team as a crucial moment in the direction of the franchise — a clear signal that Stephon DOES NOT run this team is important.

    I disagree completely. That was the attitude that Isiah had when he got here when he had to turn over the entire roster. Steph can’t be a cancer because he can be dropped at a moments notice. If his valuable expiring contract brings a decent player in January or February, any “damage” he would have caused is more than made up for. By then, maybe Memphis has a point guard controversy and is willing to deal.

  85. Frank

    I don’t think you can underestimate how much a complete lack of disrespect for the coach can undermine a team sport. It was so clear by 20 games into the season that the team didn’t respect Isiah, so is it any surprise that no one played within the team concept? I think Walsh is doing the right thing by not doing anything crazy right off the bat and seeing how things work out.

  86. Z

    I was just looking down the road to the summer of 2010 and noticed that the Cavs have $0 committed past 2010. That seems to give them a great shot at keeping LeBron from opting out. They can spend heavily on the other A talent that summer and pair a superstar with LeBron. If it doesn’t work out, he can still bolt in 2011.

    Seems like the 2010 goal of wooing LBJ is more of a long shot than we’d care to admit.

    (I know, jon– you’ve been saying it. It’s slowly sinking in now…)

  87. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    Seems like the 2010 goal of wooing LBJ is more of a long shot than we’d care to admit.

    (I know, jon– you’ve been saying it. It’s slowly sinking in now…)

    If all our eggs were in one basket to get LeBron, then yes it would be a foolish idea. But LeBron isn’t the only big free agent available that year. I believe Wade and Bosh are free agents that year as well.

    But even if that weren’t the case, becoming a more fiscally responsible team will help us in the future no matter who will be a free agent. Even if we don’t get a big free agent in 2010, having cap room (or rather not grabbing crappy players with huge contracts) will make us stronger in the long run. If spinning it to the masses as the hunt for LBJ helps the team stay this course, then I’m all for it.

  88. Z

    “But LeBron isn’t the only big free agent available that year. I believe Wade and Bosh are free agents that year as well.”

    Yes, but it looks like Wade and Bosh could BOTH sign max deals with Cleveland AND play with LeBron. It’s pretty hard to compete with that.

  89. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    Ok, here’s my highly sentimental, unscientific view w/r/t Stephon Marbury…

    It’s strange to me, that, in a forum that is usually populated, by such, level-headed, objective, statistical analysis of a player’s relative worth, that the question of our beloved Starbury brings forth the inner yahoo/hooligan in all of us. Heck, even our esteemed Grand Poobah-in-chief (Knickerblogger, himself) is willing to say “Dump his ass! Fuhgeddaboutit! No disrespect. All due respect.” No cries of “the team wins X number of games w/him v. Y w/o him. No “the Knicks +/- w/Marbury on the court/off the court. no WinShares (somebody let Owen know that he can halt his hunger strike – it looks like Lee’s gonna stay). No PER. No nuttin’. Just pure, emotional, bile/dissatisfaction.

    And all of this is based on the assumption that he’s such an A-hole, that he poisons any group of apples. Honestly, I don’t think any of us have any idea what Steph is like – crazy interviews notithstanding. There’s a ton of circumstantial evidence, w/o a doubt, but it’s still circumstantial

    Imagine if at your workplace, someone who didn’t like you had the ear of the NYC beat writers and could mutter off the record, “He’s a tool!” – then suddenly you were a cancer in the office. We all know how office politics work. Why should the NBA be exempt from the clique-iness and petty rivalries that mark any group of individuals who work together.

    In watching him play for almost 5 years, he’s proven to be a good player, w/great penetration skills, good court vision, a streaky jumper, and at times, plus defense.

    If it IS true, that he’s such a hateful malcontent that the team would be better off w/o him, then by all means, give the man his walking papers ASAP, so that Steph could find another team to play w/[yeah, I genuinely LIKE the guy. Perhaps that’s b/c I read the book “The Last Shot”, by Darcy Frye {check it out. It’s one of the best books on HS BBall EVER}, which chronicles the deeds of derring-do of a 14 yr old Steph.]) I like Steph’s weird interviews and at times, foolish honesty w/the beat writers.

    Seriously, who in NYC wouldn’t LOVE a redemption tale for Mr. Marbury after all he’s gone through here. Wouldn’t that top Josh Hamilton/Rick Ankiel on the heartwarming/madison ave./hollywood couldn’t have come up with this-o-meter?

    So yeah, I guess my opinion is just as uniformed and emotionally based — the dark side of the “Eff Steph” emotional coin.

    But since we’re all wildly speculating here, I guess I put my faith in his (and all of our) better angels.

    Now pardon me while I bask in the glow and glory of my christ-like capacity for forgiveness, hope, and love. Selah.

  90. jon abbey

    it’s not the Cavs that you have to worry about getting LeBron in 2010, it’s the Nets.

    “In watching him play for almost 5 years, he’s proven to be a good player, w/great penetration skills, good court vision, a streaky jumper, and at times, plus defense.”

    are you sure you haven’t been watching Tony Parker?

    the Marbury I’ve seen is an awful decision maker who’s lost at least one step if not more, whose penetrations to the basket too often get blocked because he can’t jump anymore, who constantly loses his man on D and gives up penetration and wide open jumpers, and who’s incapable of feeding the post. and yeah, that’s just on the court.

  91. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    Oh yeah – Chris Duhon just signed w/the Knicks. If you believe Isola, this means Marbury’s gone. If you prefer Berman, Duhon is Marbs’s backup

  92. Ben R

    I just read on Hoopshype that Duhon has agreed to sign with the Knicks for 2 years about 12 million. The Knicks up the offer to the full midlevel but still kept it two years.

    I personally like the signing. I think he will be a solid starting point guard and his defense will be a nice change. If he does not pan out he expires very soon.

    I think he will bring solid mistake free play to the Knicks. He is not a great talent and he will not put the team on his shoulders but at this point solid defense and solid offense is a huge step up for the Knicks at the PG position.

    For those who thought that Felton was a much better option I think Duhon is easily as good statistically and has a reputation as a much better defender. Also we gave up nothing for him and he expires before 2010.

    Per 36 Minutes:
    Duhon – TS% 51.3% – 3pt% 35.6% – Ast 6.3 – Tos 1.9 – Pts 9.7
    Felton – TS% 48.8% – 3pt% 32.7% – Ast 6.9 – Tos 2.7 – Pts 13.9

    Great first move by Walsh.

  93. TDM

    I don’t have strong feelings either way on whether the team buys Steph out or not. My inclination would be to keep him on the team this year.

    What strikes me about Marbs is that he is a business man, above all else. I think his decision to shut it down last year and have surgery was largely (if not entirely) a business decision. He knew that last year the team wasn’t going anywhere. He knew that this year is a contract year, and that if he is going to get one last big deal, he needs to have a great year.

    So, last year, he gets spurs removed from his ankle which have been bothering/hampering him for years. He did it last year so that he would be 100% ready to go this year.

    I think he is going to surprise a lot of people this year. He’ll get one more obnoxious deal from some team, and then revert back to his malcontentious, me-first mentality.

  94. Ben R

    I actually also kind of like Marbury. He does lots of charitable works and has never done anything worse than be a poor teammate. No spousal abuse, DUI’s, etc. How Kidd, who beat his wife, has an infinitly better reptation is beyond me.

    I also think in his prime he was a good player, not a great one but a good one. I think he still has a future as a solid player in the NBA and will probably have a good season next year.

    With all that said we need a change and he has in alot of ways worn out his welcome in NY. I think cutting him loose and starting fresh with a new PG, one that is less talented but fully buys into the concept of working hard and playing defense will be a good message to everyone on the Knicks.

  95. jon abbey

    an overpay for Duhon, but at 2 years, it doesn’t matter. D’Antoni’s going to have spme tricky decisions about playing time. if the roster doesn’t change, if he plays the best players, I’d go with something like:

    Duhon
    Crawford
    Chandler
    Lee
    Curry

    with Balkman, Nate, Randolph, Gallinari off the bench. you could make an argument to start Balkman over Crawford, but you’ve got a very offensively weak starting five then.

    you’ll note that Marbury and Q-Rich aren’t in this rotation. we’ll see if D’Antoni has the balls to do that. hopefully Curry/Randolph/Marbury/Q-Rich won’t all still be on the team in the fall.

  96. TDM

    Jon,

    I like that starting 5 also. However, I still think Marbury would need to get some time on the court. If Balkman were to start over Craw, it seems that the offense would have to run through Curry as it did 2 years ago.

  97. Ted Nelson

    I won’t be upset either way. Marbury should put up good numbers this season, but moving on may be a good step as the Knicks try to create a more positive atmosphere. I have no personal issue with Steph, he may very well be a very nice person, but once you’ve burned all your bridges it’s time to move on. Duhon also gives the Knicks the option to play Steph at the 2. Marbury is a more efficient scorer than Crawford. Trade Crawford for a short contract.

    Jon

    Really? Wilson Chandler is the Knicks’ best SF? Marbury doesn’t deserve any minutes?

  98. Z

    “it’s not the Cavs that you have to worry about getting LeBron in 2010, it’s the Nets.”

    I disagree. The safe bet is that he stays in Cleveland. They can offer him more money, they can surround him with the best free agents available, and it’s his hometown. Those are the three main factors players take into consideration when deciding where to play next, and the Nets and Knicks can’t compete with any of them.

    I think when it’s all said and done he will re-sign with the Cavs and win a few titles for them.

  99. Italian Stallion

    I actually also kind of like Marbury. He does lots of charitable works and has never done anything worse than be a poor teammate. No spousal abuse, DUI’s, etc.

    I guess being married and treating interns working for the Knicks like trash doesn’t count.

    Seriously, he does a lot of charity work etc… which is very admirable. But he’s basically a classless street thug that was blessed with athletic talent and worked hard to become a pro. In addition, we aren’t talking about a single incident, single coach, single team mate, or single organization that has complained about him or tried to move him. Even Isiah wanted to buy him out and he’s another classless individual!

    The stats should always be the primary focus, but sometimes a single personality is so obviously poisonous to a team, he needs to be removed. Marbury is that kind of guy. He never grew up.

  100. Italian Stallion

    Great first move by Walsh.

    I totally agree.

    The amount we pay him for a two year deal is almost irrelevant. It gives us some needed help at PG and does nothing negative to the long term cap plan. As much as people dislike Dolan, this is one very big plus side to him. He’s willing to pay whatever it takes to improve the team. He just needed good management in place to use his money properly!

    Walsh has delivered on two out of three of my goals for this summer.

    If he can figure out a way to trade one of the bad contracts, I’ll be one happy camper!

  101. bud

    I love the “at two years it’s not completely devastating” reasoning – totally legitimate and I feel the same way. Just part of being a Knicks fan.

  102. Z-man

    I think we overpaid for Duhon, but it is relatively low risk. I hope it doesn’t make Nate expendable.

  103. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    IT – classless? Seriously? You know that how? He cheated on his wife. Shocker, there. That was my initial point, we make ALL kinds of serious character judgments about Marbs based on nothing. He may well be a crappy teammate and a general pain to be around.

    The best evidence of Stephon is in the book I mentioned in my last post. He comes across as driven, egotistical, intelligent, thoughtless, caring, etc. – a whole MESS Of contradictions.

    But calling him a “thug”, is well, IMHO, intellectually dishonest and borderline racist.

  104. Ted Nelson

    Any thoughts on Brandon Jennings considering playing professionally in Europe instead of at Arizona?

  105. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    Cut myself off in the last post – I meant to say, “He may well be a crappy teammate and a general pain to be around, but us fans really have no way of knowing.” And we certainly don’t know enough about him as a person to call him a “Street Thug”

  106. Dave

    I have no problem with having Stephon on the team this coming season. Long term? Not so much no.

    Chris Duhon was a very good signing. Mirror image of the Steve Blake Portland deal 12 months ago. Sign a veteran point guard who can steady the team short term while they get their house in full order and manage to maintain the salary cap flexibility they want. Good move.

  107. Italian Stallion

    IT – classless? Seriously? You know that how? He cheated on his wife. Shocker, there.

    Did you miss the 10 million dollar sexual harrassment case he lost?

    How about the statements that Marbury made about having some serious dirt on Isiah that would prevent him from being benched?

    Maybe Marbury was FOS, but personally I doubt it. If he was, then that says something about Marbury anyway. I think they both of them have lots of dirt on each other because that’s the type of individuals they are.

    Look, sometimes things are so obvious even a dead man can recognize the truth.

    Both Isiah and Marbury are of extremely dubious character. Neither of them ever grew up and left the streets behind them.

  108. jon abbey

    “Really? Wilson Chandler is the Knicks’ best SF? Marbury doesn’t deserve any minutes?”

    we need to see on Chandler, both him and Balkman need tons of minutes so we can see just what we have with those guys. and, no, I’d prefer to see a rotation without Steph, I think. don’t release him, but if everyone is healthy, maybe send him home again. this team isn’t going anywhere, so the main goal is to evaluate just what we have on the roster going forward.

  109. jon abbey

    “Really? Wilson Chandler is the Knicks’ best SF? Marbury doesn’t deserve any minutes?”

    we need to see on Chandler, both him and Balkman need tons of minutes so we can see just what we have with those guys. and, no, I’d prefer to see a rotation without Steph, I think. don’t release him, but if everyone is healthy, maybe send him home again. this team isn’t going anywhere, so the main goal is to evaluate just what we have on the roster going forward. if Gallinari is ready, he needs regular minutes also.

  110. Bernard King

    “we need to see on Chandler, both him and Balkman need tons of minutes so we can see just what we have with those guys”

    I see Q Richardson starting at SF this year. He knows the system, shot well under D’Antoni and plays hard. If he puts up decent numbers that could be the ticket to moving his salary. I like Balkman but I thought he wasn’t a good fit for this system b/c he can’t shoot – although he can definitely get up and down the court. Maybe Balkman can be traded for a young PG. If Marbury is bought out we’ll need a true PG to compete / backup Duhon.

  111. Ted Nelson

    I’m just not sure Chandler NEEDS minutes to develop. I think he needs to learn how to play the game well enough to deserve the minutes. If he comes to camp just chucking the ball towards the hoop every time he touches it I think giving him minutes would send the wrong message and create the wrong incentives. Of course, I hope that’s not the case and he reaches his potential.

    Marbury, I don’t know. He’s a total wild card at this point. If he shows up 100% and is killing it in practice not playing one of the team’s best players is as bad as playing him when the team voted that he shouldn’t play: it kills the coach’s credibility. The press has latched onto Skiles not playing Duhon (who according to the press the rest of the team thought was clearly the best PG on the roster) more as one of the main reasons he “lost” the team.

    I think Danilo will be ready to contribute (as much as you can expect from a rookie and as much as you can expect for whatever quality of NBA player he ends up being), the Euro guys who don’t contribute as rookies usually aren’t 19 year old, 6-9 forwards with natural scoring ability who were among the Euroleague leaders in PPG.

  112. NYC3D

    So You People Really Believe That Stephon Marbury is Going to Allow a Bump like Chris Duhon to take his spot??

  113. Italian Stallion

    “Really? Wilson Chandler is the Knicks’ best SF? Marbury doesn’t deserve any minutes?”
    we need to see on Chandler, both him and Balkman need tons of minutes so we can see just what we have with those guys. and, no, I’d prefer to see a rotation without Steph, I think. don’t release him, but if everyone is healthy, maybe send him home again. this team isn’t going anywhere, so the main goal is to evaluate just what we have on the roster going forward. if Gallinari is ready, he needs regular minutes also.

    I don’t think all of them can get a lot of minutes as long as QRich is also on the team. Personally, I think Qrich should be the odd man out. He’s not the future of the team and we need to evaluate and develop Chandler, Balkman, and Gallinari anyway.

    However, some of the “time questions” are going to be dependent on the additional moves the team makes.

    If Zach is traded and Marbury is bought out, that’s two scorers removed from the lineup. It’s going to be tough to have a line up of Duhon, Lee, and Balkman unless you want to run the offense through Curry again.

    I think there are loads of questions to be answered AFTER we are finished making moves. The one thing I feel confident the NEW KNICKS will try to do is put a more balanced attack on the floor. I think that’s why Gallinari is such a good pick. He can take the ball to the hoop, shoot from outside, pass, and ballhandle. When you have a guy like that on the court, it allows you put a wide variety of other types of players on the court with him and continue to be balanced. His role can adjust.

    The Knicks have too many limited players. That’s one of the major problems. Some of them would be terrific role players elsewhere, but not on a team of mismatched talent like the Knicks.

  114. Z-man

    Hey guys, this isn’t the D-League. I would be outraged if the Knicks became a team where playing time was based solely on developing potential.

    I have no problem with sitting the vets when they stink up the joint. However, any veteran that plays better than the young guys deserves the playing time, period, whether it is Steph, Zach, Q or Curry.

    The problem last year was that the veterans stayed on the court even when they played poorly. Hopefully, that won’t happen now.

  115. Ben R

    I for one am not totally opposed to running the offense through Curry. As long as Lee is starting next to him and Chandler is playing as well as he did during the last 14 games of the season I think we will be fine on offense. (Chandler was great over the last seven games and good over the last 14)

    Year before last right before Q, Crawford and Lee went down with injuries we had the ninth ranked offense in the NBA. That was with Curry as the main focus on the offensive end.

    I personally want to move Crawford for a very good outside shooter. If we can have a great three point shooter at the two it will give us alot more freedom at who plays at the three.

  116. Thomas B.

    I just saw CD agreed to sign with the Knicks. That is great news because we can stop wondering about Lee going out for Felton. Dodged a bullet on that one.
    —-

    Omar Cook to miss some time, Beasley has cracked sternum. Injury bug hit Miami early. If this is a sign of things to come then I might be right about them not winning 39 games.

  117. Italian Stallion

    Z-man and Ben R,

    I agree with both of your comments. I just think it’s unlikely that Qrich will give us any more than a D League player. So we might as well play the kids. ;-)

  118. Ben R

    I actually really want the Knicks to buy Q Rich out. His contract ends before 2010 so it is not worth trying to move and he is clearly not the future of this team.

    Plus I am worried he would cause problems if he got benched behind Gallinari, Chandler or Balkman.

    All he will do is take playing time away from younger more promising players and other than the 3/4 season he played year before last he has been horrible, since becoming a Knick. At his best he was only pretty good anyway and I think we all agree his best is behind him.

  119. caleb

    The Duhon signing is interesting — as others have noted, it doesn’t affect our cap situation even if we overpaid. It does seem to signal a huge lack of confidence in our other PGs.

    As for Marbury, it’s obvious he’s not part of the team’s long-term plans, barring a miraculous comeback/turnaround. With that in mind, it doesn’t matter if he’s here or not. I just think it’s foolish to cut someone loose for nothing, when they might be turned into another asset. Maybe Golden State would take him, for Al Harrington and a pick (or let us trade Harrington to someone else for a pick). Or maybe there’s another deal out there. Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face.

    And thanks to Ken the Animal — nice tribute. And, “The Last Shot” was a great book.

    And Ted — I also saw that about Brandon Jennings — in general. I enjoy seeing anything that highlights the reality of college sports being a total scam re: the notion of “student-athletes.”

    re: LeBron, he’ll have his choice of cities and teams in good situations — all his joking aside, we’ll see what his favorite city really is.

  120. caleb

    “I for one am not totally opposed to running the offense through Curry”

    I know where Ben is coming from — the guy is our only center, so he’s going to play, and if he’s playing he should probably have the ball, or else he’s worthless — killing the team in every other area.

    But I don’t think this offense will run “through” anyone, except the point guard. It will be geared to run and get quick shots — for Curry or anyone else.

  121. Thomas B.

    The other thing about CD signing with the Knicks is that Step is 99.98% out the door via buyout.

    Where might he land? I think a few teams might be interested if they are sure he wont be a distraction. I would think that the Clippers might have some interest. They will need cheap help if they blow their wad on Davis and Brand. Davis and Marbury could be an explosive backcourt in more ways than one.

    The Lakers might give him a look because Steph is better on offense than Fisher but he would likely be a 6th man on that team. The Laker bench needs a steady vet to lead them (has anyone ever used the term “steady vet” to describe Steph? I think not).

    Orlando could use some punch in the backcourt. They have a hole at the 2 and Steph could slide into the two or act as insurance against poor play from Nelson. Miami may also give Steph some consideration. The injury to Omar Cook weakens an already razor thin backcourt. Plus Miami really wanted a guard that could take some pressure off Wade. Although, if you were worried about Beasley’s attitude, Steph will make Beasley look like Hubert Davis in terms of poor attitude.

    I think its a safe bet that the Wolves, Suns, Nets, and Utah will not make an inquiry. The first three for obvious reasons; Utah because Steph is not a Jerry Sloan type of player.

    Finally, I will write this in stone and set it in front of my house: “I, Thomas B., will cut off my own middle finger with a rusty spoon if Stephon Marbury signs a free agent deal with the Charlotte Bobcats.” Aint no way, no how, and no chance that Steph will be reunited with Larry Brown. To borrow from Warner Wolf: “If you had Stephon Marbury signing with the Charlotte Bobcats, YOU LOST!”

  122. caleb

    btw, Duhon is supposedly a nightclub party animal, which is why Skiles didn’t like him.
    That’s probably why he picked New York.
    Not saying it’s a bad thing — Skiles is a terrible coach who failed because he found all sorts of reasons not to put his best players on the court. Like IT, in that regard.

  123. Ben R

    Caleb – You are right the offense hopefully will be alot more fluid than anything we have seen in NY for a long long time.

    Theoretically though Curry in a faster paced offense would be very dangerous. He is good at the alley oop and one on one he is almost unstoppable. If Curry can run down the court and establish position before the defense can get set he should get alot of easy opportunities.

    Also maybe he would get winded and his minutes would be limited which would hopefully spell more minutes for Lee and Balkman.

    If we keep Curry, I hope when he is on the court he gets lots of shots because like you said if he is not shooting he is a liability in every other way. If he is shooting though he is very efficient.

  124. Ted Nelson

    In 06-07 Q shot .376 on 3PAs, .507 TS%, .532 eFG%, and grabbed 7.8 reb/36min…. the season before he was equally awful as last season. If he’s playing better than Wilson Chandler (whose career TS% stands at .480) than he should play ahead of him, if not he shouldn’t. For a team in need of outside shooting to buy out a guy capable of shooting .376 from downtown would be foolish.

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/r/richaqu01.html

    “Plus I am worried he would cause problems if he got benched behind Gallinari, Chandler or Balkman.”

    Q Rich has been as much of a team player as the Knicks have had over the last few seasons…

  125. Italian Stallion

    Ted,

    Put it this way, if we don’t have a SF better than Q Rich, we will suck again, PERIOD. He was horrible last year.

    He was 32% on 3 pointers and 36% overall.

    If you look at his overall record, 06-07 was actually his shooting peak. LOL

  126. Ted Nelson

    “Although, if you were worried about Beasley’s attitude, Steph will make Beasley look like Hubert Davis in terms of poor attitude.”

    The guy dominated the Big 12 and led his team to the second round of the tourney (upsetting OJ Mayo and a much deeper and higher seeded USC team), who’s worried about his attitude? I guess not Pat Riley.

    “Skiles is a terrible coach”

    .528 winning %, 35 playoff games, terrible? Not Phil Jackson, but the guy’s won. He’s coached a 51 win team, a 49 win team, and a 47 win team. He does seem to grind his players way too hard.

  127. Ted Nelson

    IS,

    I did look at his career stats, that’s why I posted the link. If his “shooting peak” was 2 seasons ago, how does it follow that he’s obviously completely washed up? He was never that good, but has been terribly inconsistent from season to season throughout his career and played a large role for D’Antoni in the past. I’m not saying he’s LeBron James, I just don’t see any reason to pronounce him dead until the season starts. If the team needs a guy who knows the game, can shoot 3s, rebound, and defend on the wing (which it does) Q just might be the man. Chandler has the potential to be that guy, but he’s a career 30% 3p shooter who showed no sign of understanding basketball as a team game so I’m not pronouncing him the SF of the future yet. I certainly hope Chandler is the Knicks’ Shawn Marion, I’m just waiting to see.

  128. Italian Stallion

    <PBut I don’t think this offense will run “through” anyone, except the point guard. It will be geared to run and get quick shots — for Curry or anyone else.

    I used the term “run through” inappropriately.

    What I really meant to say was that with certain lineups (assuming Marbury and Randolph are gone), Curry becomes the clear cut primary scoring option like he was two years ago.

    Personally, I don’t think that can work. Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats, it gets easier for players to sag off their men and double/triple team Curry. He doesn’t pass well out of doubles. Even if he could, if he’s throwing it back out to bricklayers, it doesn’t help much. He could score some in other ways, but I think for Curry to be truly effective offensively the Knicks need some sharpshooters in the lineup.

    There was an interesting article I read today about why Wade is so hot for another playmaker in Miami (that’s where the Mayo rumors came from). It’s because teams are sagging off defensively because he’s often the only playmaker on the team. There is something to the idea of finding the proper balance/mix/chemistry of players on the court at any given time.

  129. Thomas B.

    “The guy dominated the Big 12 and led his team to the second round of the tourney (upsetting OJ Mayo and a much deeper and higher seeded USC team), who’s worried about his attitude? I guess not Pat Riley.”

    Ted,

    All I could read coming into the draft was that people were concerned about Beasley’s attitude. I don’t know what they based that on and I did not agree with it. I only wrote what I wrote to put Beasley’s so called attitude into perspective.

  130. Ted Nelson

    “Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats”

    Again, I think this is a fallacy. Nate shot 39% on 3s in 06-07, Q shot .376, Marbury .357. I remember finding that if you replaced Jamal with a 35% 3 point shooter that season–when the O was run through Curry– the Knicks would have been in the top 1/2 of the NBA in 3p% (9th or 12th or something). The Knicks have added Duhon a career .356 3p shooter and Danilo, plus Chandler might get it together.

    The problem was never that the Knicks didn’t have outside shooting, it was that they were trying to run a mid-90s offense with a center who couldn’t pass. Curry should get a good number of looks, but on quick easy baskets not with everyone else standing around and watching him. If he doesn’t have the skills/quickness/whatever for it, sit him or trade him.

    Teams were sagging off Wade last season b/c he was playing on the D-League champions.

  131. jon abbey

    just for the record, I watched most of the 2004-2005 Suns games, the one year that Q was there. keep in mind that he was playing alongside not just Nash, Stoudemire and Marion, but also Joe Johnson, as talented a top four as you’ll ever find in the NBA.

    so he hit so many threes largely because no one ever considered covering him, he was the fifth option most of the time he was out there. when Johnson got hurt in the playoffs, Q immediately disappeared and was promptly shuttled off to Isiahville after Phoenix got knocked out. if he’d actually been a good fit in the system, they wouldn’t have traded him.

    anyway, at his best, he’s a mediocre player with no future. I don’t see the point of giving him minutes, but I don’t make those decisions.

  132. Ted Nelson

    “All I could read coming into the draft was that people were concerned about Beasley’s attitude. I don’t know what they based that on and I did not agree with it. I only wrote what I wrote to put Beasley’s so called attitude into perspective.”

    It’s because he played at several high schools and had a rep as a goofball/troublemaker in high school. He had no publicized issues in college. It sounds a lot like Amare or C-Webb to me: not a KG/TD guy who’s going to be an all-time great, but a guy who’s going to be one of the more dangerous players in the NBA. Put him on a roster with Wade, a wing (Marion, but he might be done when Bealey’s ready to shine), and a top D, and he might finish with one or more rings. But he might not be the “franchise player” someone like TD or KG is. That’s just my read on him.

  133. Ted Nelson

    “anyway, at his best, he’s a mediocre player with no future. I don’t see the point of giving him minutes”

    I’m not saying he’s great or he was great on the Suns. He played decently enough for D’Antoni before and shot .376 on 3s while grabbing 7.8 reb/36 in the 49 games he played in 06-07. I’m not making any emotional judgements here, just think the Knicks could use a hard working, professional, .376 3p shooting, 7.8 reb/36 grabbing, defense playing wing. If that’s not Q so be it. I’m just not ruling out the chance that he could do it, since he did it recently coming off a similarly piss-poor season as 07-08. Even if he’s on fire in 08-09 he probably spends half the season on the IR, I just don’t see the point in force-feeding undeserving players minutes if Q’s playing well (unless you’re going to a tanking/rebuilding strategy, which I don’t think the Knicks are).

  134. caleb

    “Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats, it gets easier for players to sag off their men and double/triple team Curry. He doesn’t pass well out of doubles. ”

    There’s some truth to this, but remember –the point of “seven seconds or less” is to not run these sets at all, but to run down the court, find the open man and shoot before the defense is set.

  135. caleb

    Healthy, Q has been an excellent rebounder for a guard, a pretty good defensive player and a decent all-around offensive player — average shooter with range, and a good post-up game.

    However… he has a degenerative back condition which has now required two surgeries, and he’s getting close to 30, so we’re not headed back to the glory days.

    He no longer has any post-up game at all, and can barely jump on his jump shots. He still rebounds, because he’s given up trying to guard his man and concentrates on boxing out.

    I guess if he’s truly healthy for the first few months of the season, he could be a decent starter and we could trade him at the deadline to some desperate team — maybe get a draft pick out of it. But that’s the extent of it — he’s never going to be healthy and effective for more than a few months at a time for the rest of his career, if at all.

  136. Ben R

    Ted – I think Balkman is a step up from Q because he is a better defender, better rebounder and while he is poor on offense at least he has the sense not to shoot very much. Also Balkman had a TS% of 49.2% last year compared to Q’s TS% of 44.4%. Also in Balkman’s rookie year he had a TS% of 53.1%, Q’s career high TS% is 53.4%, for their careers Balkman’s TS% is .51.4%, Q’s career TS% is 49.8%.

    Also Chandler looked very good to end the season last year. If he can be as good as he was at the end of last year he should be a very good player. I broke down the numbers in a previous thread and I will repeat them here:

    After barely playing Chandler finally got consistant minutes at the end of the season. He played consistant minutes in 21 of the Knicks last 23 games. He showed remarkable improvment during those 21 games.

    All the stats are per 36 minutes:

    In the first seven games he was awful:
    35.0% TS% – 20% 3pt%
    7.5 pts 6.1 rebs 1.6 asts 0.8 tos

    In the next seven games he was solid:
    52.8% TS% – 25% 3pt%
    14.9 pts 6.4 rebs 1.3 asts 1.1 tos

    In the last seven games he was great:
    56.5% TS% – 41.7% 3pt%
    15.4 pts 7.2 rebs 2.1 asts 1.6 tos

    As you can see once Chandler got used to playing in the NBA he was a very good player. On top of both of them we added Gallinari who should get some minutes to speed up his development even if he is bad next year.

    I see no reason whatsoever that Q should get any minutes unless two of our three young SF’s get injured.

  137. Z-man

    I don’t get it. If you have Duhon, Balk and Lee on the court at the same time, who scores?

  138. TDM

    “I don’t get it. If you have Duhon, Balk and Lee on the court at the same time, who scores?”

    The other team.

  139. cwod

    The whole point of D’Antoni’s offense is to score quickly. I can see Balkman and Lee beating their men down the floor for easy baskets.

  140. Ted Nelson

    Ben R,

    I certainly hope Balkman and Chandler have great seasons.

    I just don’t see how people can say with such authority Q is done because he had a terrible season in 07-08: he had almost as terrible an 05-06 and came back in 06-07 to shoot the ball as efficiently as he has since he was 21. If I remember correct 06-07 was a season during which his brother was shot and I think he had another family tragedy of some kind as well, but he brought it every night on both sides of the ball as much as any Knicks vet (maybe extra motivation, numbed back pain?). He only played 49 games that season anyway, but as I’ve said a couple times I just don’t see force-feeding someone minutes if Q is playing better than they are. Especially if he’s shooting well since the Knicks have no proven deadeye long-range shooter (Danilo?). If he’s not playing better than Chandler/ Balkman/ Danilo/ Crawford/ Nate/ Marbury (which he probably won’t) then he shouldn’t play.

    If they all deserve minutes (big if, I know) Q can probably also be on the court simultaneously with Balkman, Chandler, AND Danilo for D’Antoni, as Balkman and Chandler seem capable of guarding bigs ala Marion and Diaw.

  141. Ted Nelson

    “I don’t get it. If you have Duhon, Balk and Lee on the court at the same time, who scores?”

    They’re 3 of the Knicks’ best 4 or 5 defenders so I don’t get TDM’s comment.

    For his career, Duhon (.356 on 4.4 3PA/36) is actually a better 3P shooter than Crawford (.345 on 5.4 3PA/36) or Marbury (.326 on 3.5 3PA/36). In his best season he scored 10.8 pts/36.
    As we hopefully all know at this point Lee is a very efficient scorer whose pts/36 have gone up every season in the NBA (11, 12.9, 13.4). If he continues this trend and D’Antoni gives him 36 mpg he should be able to score 14 ppg on a TS% above .600.
    Balkman actually scored 11.3 pts/36 as a rookie on a TS% of .531 and an eFG% of .515.
    D’Antoni is also likely to install a fast-paced offense where all there pts/min numbers would go up. A more coherent offense should increase the number of easy baskets Lee and Balkman get with their superior off-ball movement (cwod’s point). Finally, if Duhon is actually the starter and especially if Marbury is gone, he might step up a bit as a scorer.

    If all three are on the court simultaneously they’ll likely be out there with 2 of Curry, Danilo, Crawford, Nate, Randolph, or ?Marbury? All fairly high volume scorers.

    Of course the Knicks are a JV version of the 04-05 Suns (D’Antoni’s most offensively efficient team) in the very, very, very best case, but for fun I looked at their pts/36.

    The rotation: (player, MPG, pts/36)
    1. Joe Johnson………………….39.5 15.6
    2. Shawn Marion……………….38.8 18
    3. Amare…………………………36.1 25.9
    4. Q Rich…………………………35.9 14.9
    5. Nash…………………………..34.3 16.3
    6. Jim Jackson…………………..24.9 12.7 (40 games)/ Casey Jacobsen 19.2 9.9 (40 games)
    7. Leandrinho…………………..17.3 14.6
    8. Steven Hunter……………….13.8 12

    PTS/36
    1. Amare………………….25.9
    2. Shawn Marion……….18
    3. Nash…………………..16.3
    4. Joe Johnson…………15.6
    5. Q Rich…………………14.9
    6. Leandrinho…………..14.6
    7. Jim Jackson…………..12.7 (40 games)
    8. Steven Hunter……….12
    9. Casey Jacobsen……..9.9 (40 games)

    Current Knicks’ highest pts/36 over last 3 seasons

    1. Randolph (06-07 Portland)………23.9
    2. Curry (06-07)………………………..19.9
    3. Crawford (07-08)…………………..18.6
    4. Nate Rob (07-08)…………………..17.5
    5. Danilo (07-08 11 Euroleague games)…16.9
    6. Marbury (05-06)…………………….16
    7. Q Rich (06-07)……………………….14.1
    T8. David Lee (07-08)………………..13.4
    T8. Wilson Chandler (07-08)………..13.4
    10. Balkman (06-07)……………………11.3
    11. Duhon (05-06 Chicago)………….10.8

    Again, the Knicks have an infinitely small chance of being anywhere near as efficient as those Suns (114.5 offeff vs. Knicks 105.7 in 06-07 and 104.7 in 07-08).

  142. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    “I don’t get it. If you have Duhon, Balk and Lee on the court at the same time, who scores?”

    The other team.

    Ludicrous statement. I guess we’d be a better defensive team with Marbury, Richardson, and Zach Randolph? Oh wait these guys can all hit jumpshots so they’ll be scoring in droves. Of course they’ll only need a hundred more possessions given their scoring efficiency.

    Besides if you have Duhon, Crawford, Balkman, Lee, and Curry as your main 5 – shouldn’t Crawford & Curry score a bulk of the points? If Crawford & Curry aren’t adding the highly desirable skill of being able to score lots of points, what are they giving the team?

  143. Italian Stallion

    “Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats”
    Again, I think this is a fallacy. Nate shot 39% on 3s in 06-07, Q shot .376, Marbury .357. I remember finding that if you replaced Jamal with a 35% 3 point shooter that season–when the O was run through Curry– the Knicks would have been in the top 1/2 of the NBA in 3p% (9th or 12th or something). The Knicks have added Duhon a career .356 3p shooter and Danilo, plus Chandler might get it together.
    The problem was never that the Knicks didn’t have outside shooting, it was that they were trying to run a mid-90s offense with a center who couldn’t pass. Curry should get a good number of looks, but on quick easy baskets not with everyone else standing around and watching him. If he doesn’t have the skills/quickness/whatever for it, sit him or trade him.
    Teams were sagging off Wade last season b/c he was playing on the D-League champions.

    Ted,

    You are cherry picking Q Rich’s stats.

    My point was specific to certain lineups we were discussing that IMO would not be effective with Curry because of the lack of shooting (Balkman, Lee, and Duhan for example).

  144. Italian Stallion
    Besides if you have Duhon, Crawford, Balkman, Lee, and Curry as your main 5 – shouldn’t Crawford & Curry score a bulk of the points? If Crawford & Curry aren’t adding the highly desirable skill of being able to score lots of points, what are they giving the team?

    In large part, some of us believe that very efficient scoring does not occur in a vaccum. It occurs in part when you have the right “combinations” of players on the court because most only have a subset of all the skills required to create a balanced and good team.

    IMO, a guy like Curry can be highly efficient scorer in the post if he gets to play against single coverage a reasonable amount of the time. For that to happen, it helps to have enough outside firepower on the court with him to prevent defenses from sagging off and doubling/tripling him at will. Some combinations will be more effective than others.

    IMO, Crawford is actually a better shooter than he appears to be statistically. Part of the problem has been his shot selection. But part of the problem has been he was the #1 scoring option and often found himself in a position of HAVING to take a bad shot because the shot clock ran out. In a well run offense, I think his shot selection will improve simply because the Knicks “in general” will get better shots more often. It could also happen if the Knicks had a better scoring option and Crawford became the #2 or #3 guy. It won’t happen if Crawford is the #1 scorer and also has to be a playmaker because the Knicks don’t have a legit PG. Perhaps Duhon’s PG skills and DAntoni’s system will help Crawford’s efficiency and reveal him to be quite an effective shooter when he’s not heaving up bad shots with 2 seconds on the clock as often.

  145. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats, it gets easier for players to sag off their men and double/triple team Curry.

    My point was specific to certain lineups we were discussing that IMO would not be effective with Curry because of the lack of shooting (Balkman, Lee, and Duhan for example).

    Yeah but you’re putting the horse before the cart. Teams don’t double team Curry because the Knicks have no outside shooters. Teams double team Curry because he can’t pass out of the double team. It’s irrelevant who else is on the court, and as Ted noted the Knicks have had good three point shooters on the court with Curry without it being a detriment.

    Watching over the last few years it seems Eddy usually knows what he’s going to do when he gets the ball irregardless of what the other team does. Hence why he gets so many charging calls.

    I know in the past that Jon Abbey has said he wants to see what Curry can do with a different point guard feeding him the ball. I suspect his FG% may rise, but I’d be shocked if his AST or TO improve (unless D’Antoni’s system changes Curry’s role dramatically).

  146. cwod

    I think D’Antoni will try to be a little more creative with Curry. The dump-the-ball-into-the-post-and-stand-around offense is so mid-90s. Seven seconds or less!

  147. Italian Stallion
    Once a team recognizes that the Knicks have no serious outside scoring threats, it gets easier for players to sag off their men and double/triple team Curry.

    My point was specific to certain lineups we were discussing that IMO would not be effective with Curry because of the lack of shooting (Balkman, Lee, and Duhan for example).

    Yeah but you’re putting the horse before the cart. Teams don’t double team Curry because the Knicks have no outside shooters. Teams double team Curry because he can’t pass out of the double team. It’s irrelevant who else is on the court, and as Ted noted the Knicks have had good three point shooters on the court with Curry without it being a detriment.
    Watching over the last few years it seems Eddy usually knows what he’s going to do when he gets the ball irregardless of what the other team does. Hence why he gets so many charging calls.
    I know in the past that Jon Abbey has said he wants to see what Curry can do with a different point guard feeding him the ball. I suspect his FG% may rise, but I’d be shocked if his AST or TO improve (unless D’Antoni’s system changes Curry’s role dramatically).

    Mike,

    I can’t totally agree with your view about putting cart before the horse.

    It’s true that Curry turns the ball over too much when doubled and tripled, but it’s not like he never passes out of there. During his terrific offensive run 2 years ago he did pass back out many times. The problem was that he was passing out to a guy that could NOT knock down the 3 pointer consistently enough to discourage his defender from doubling. Improving Curry’s passing a little might reduce turnovers and create an extra good shot here or there, but it’s not going to get Curry single coverage and allow him to really shine.

    As I said before, it’s possible to put together a line up that will compliment Curry, but IMO some of the lineups including Balkman, Duhon, and Lee would be problematical if you are trying to make Curry a the major scoring option he would have to be with those guys on the court.

  148. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    Mike,

    I can’t totally agree with your view about putting cart before the horse.

    It’s true that Curry turns the ball over too much when doubled and tripled, but it’s not like he never passes out of there. During his terrific offensive run 2 years ago he did pass back out many times. The problem was that he was passing out to a guy that could NOT knock down the 3 pointer consistently enough to discourage his defender from doubling. Improving Curry’s passing a little might reduce turnovers and create an extra good shot here or there, but it’s not going to get Curry single coverage and allow him to really shine.

    As I said before, it’s possible to put together a line up that will compliment Curry, but IMO some of the lineups including Balkman, Duhon, and Lee would be problematical if you are trying to make Curry a the major scoring option he would have to be with those guys on the court.

    #1. Duhon is nothing else but a spot-up shooter.

    #2. Eddy Curry didn’t have a break out season 2 years ago. His per minute stats were nearly identical to that of last year & his career averages. What made it appear that he had a break out season was gaining 10 minutes per game.

    #3. During that season the Knicks’ top 5 minute getters (after Curry who was #1) were: Marbury, Crawford, Frye, Lee, Richardson, and Robinson. Other than Lee, those are some pretty good jump shooters. And Curry’s ast/36 was still only a pathetic 0.9 (Curry’s career average is 0.8ast/36).

    Curry has never been a good passer not because of his teammates, but because of himself. (Boy how many times have I had to type this sentence out?)

  149. Ben R

    Mike K – I agree that Curry is pretty bad at passing out of the double team but during the 40 game span between when we made Curry the focus and when Lee, Crawford, and Richardson all went down we were a top 10 offense in terms of overall offensive eficiency. I think there is potential in an offense centered around Curry and I think it is actually what D’Antoni has in mind for next season.

    Curry is a great finisher, good at alley oops, good on the pick and roll and almost unstopable one on one. He only really struggles when the offense grinds to a halt and he is forced to try and score against or pass out of double teams. Isiah drew up a lazy offensive scheme that tried to treat Curry like the second coming of Shaq which as we all know he most certainly is not.

    If D’Antoni runs Curry down the court and lets Curry operate before the defense can get set he should be very productive next season. I look at the way Pheonix uses Amare. They either get him to score early in the shot clock before the defense can get set or they isolate and run a two man game with Nash. While Curry does not have as well rounded of a game as Amare he is even better inside so if we can force single coverage either by running down the court or using good ball movement he should get alot of easier looks.

  150. Ted Nelson

    The problem 2 seasons ago was that the Knicks were running their offense through Curry as if he were Patrick Ewing… But it was pathetic. First off all it’s not the mid-90s anymore and the league has evolved, but they executed terribly anyway. They would try for 10 seconds to dump the ball in to Curry, often losing the ball because it was so painfully obvious what they were doing. Then Curry gets the ball and either goes for a score or throws a lazy lob pass back out to Jamal Crawford who all too happily throw up a ridiculous shot. Like Mike said, it didn’t really matter who the outside shooters were, but this was a terrible season for Jamal Crawford in which he ruined the Knicks’ offense. It still would have been a good enough offense if you put out a good defense, but the Knicks have been completely incapable of this for years.

    I agree Curry can be a very useful scorer for D’Antoni, but he’s going to have to get his shots off quicker. It remains to be seen whether he is capable of not holding the ball for 10 seconds before shooting (other than the rare Crawford alley-oop). I certainly hope he can.

    “The problem was that he was passing out to a guy that could NOT knock down the 3 pointer consistently enough to discourage his defender from doubling.”

    Again, IS, this is way off base. Jamal Crawford was the only guy who couldn’t hit a jumper that season (32% 3p shooting). Nate shot 39% on 3s, Q 37.6&, and Marbury 35.7%.

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