Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Game Preview & Thread: Knicks @ Clippers

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

For some insight on the Clips, Fred Katz and Jovan Buha of the phenomenal ClipperBlog were kind enough to answer some questions. I should perhaps note that Katz was the only guy in my basketball team’s Senior Class who made it all the way to the storied heights of Division I ball—his elite high school bookkeeping skills got him a team manager job at Syracuse.

The Clippers, in a big offseason trade, added wing players J.J. Redick and Jared Dudley. How are those two fitting in with the team so far?

Fred Katz (@FredKatz): Dudley got off to a slow start, but has strung together a few hot games to bring his percentages back up to respectability. Redick, meanwhile, is the ultimate staple of stability. Who works better with Chris Paul than a dominant spot-up shooter who is also an assassin running off screens?

Redick’s shooting numbers are a bit lower than what could have expected coming into this year, but that 36 percent 3-point shooting is going to go up. He’s yet to sustain the Chris Paul Bump, a jump in 3-point shooting numbers upon going to play with Paul, but it’s going to happen. It’s happened for everyone else. It will happen with one of the best shooters in the league.

Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha): Redick and Dudley have fit in about as well as expected, if not better. Offensively, neither is shooting as well as one would expect given their array of open 3-point looks — Redick is shooting 35.8 percent on 3s, Dudley 38.5 percent — but Redick has drawn significant attention from opposing defenses because of his hot first quarter starts, and Dudley is dealing with bothersome tendonitis in his right knee that has sapped his legs.

Defensively, both have exceeded expectations. Redick is particularly adept at denying entry passes to guards posting up, sticking with wings who run off tons of baseline screens, and pinching down on the post. Dudley is a much better on-ball defender than I remembered him being in Phoenix, and is almost always in the right position in help defense. Overall, I’d say it’s been a seamless fit.

It’s always fun to get an outsider opinion about certain Knicks players. How do non-Knicks fans see Iman Shumpert and Pablo Prigioni?

Katz: I love Prigs. There’s nothing not to love about Prigs and you can’t make me not love him. It doesn’t make much sense to me why he doesn’t play more. The Knicks’ ball movement is better when he’s on the floor, the defense is feistier, and he seems to help in the transition game on both ends, which is something with which the Knicks really struggle. On top of that, he’s been in the league for more than a year and he’s never taken a bad shot. That’s true. You can look it up.

Shumpert, meanwhile, is already a quality player and is someone who has the ability to become a top-of-the-line contributor on a good team. But I understand why the Knicks would throw him on the block. What I don’t understand is why the Knicks felt the need to throw him under the bus. If you think a player has a high ceiling, but you’re starting to worry that he may never reach that ceiling, then see if you can sell high on him. It’s Trent Richardson logic. But why in the world a team would let that situation become so public is beyond me.

Buha: I don’t have a strong opinion on either player, honestly, but I do think both are underrated and undervalued by the Knicks organization. Prigioni was clearly an integral part of last season’s success, as his plus-minus and lineup data showed, but I don’t think management and Mike Woodson views him as such.

As far as Shumpert goes, I think he’s an intriguing, versatile young player who has a decent amount of potential. I could possibly see him in a Thabo Sefolosha or Tony Allen role down the line, given that he continues to improve defensively and from deep. Those type of players don’t grow on trees. At the same time, I can understand the Knicks testing his market value in hopes of improving their frontline. It’s a complicated, nuanced situation, and I don’t think a clear answer has emerged yet.

True or false: The Clippers needed a rim protector during the offseason, and they still need a rim protector. If true, give us some possible trade targets?

Katz: True. Jamal Crawford is the guy whose name was thrown around before the season when it came to trade rumors, but Crawford has been so good this season (even for him) coming off such a weak bench that he’s becoming tougher and tougher to trade with each spot-up three he hits off a Chris Paul dish.

A Crawford for Samuel Dalembert made more sense at the start of the season, when the Mavericks were going to be a 38-win team, but now with Monta Ellis having it all, the Mavs may not be as willing to give away a quality center for another score-first guard. The Clippers’ best chance to shore up the third-big-man problem might be waiting for Emeka Okafor, who is injured now, but may find himself as a free agent if the Suns buy him out once he’s healthy.

Buha: False. The Clippers already have a rim protector, for better or worse, and his name is DeAndre Jordan. He’s shown considerable improvement defensively this season, even if some of the numbers don’t necessarily reflect that (i.e. opponents are shooting 62 percent against him at the rim).

What the Clippers do need, however, is an above-average defensive big man off the bench. Lamar Odom is an available and likely option, and a buyout candidate like Emeka Okafor could be a late-season addition. Either way, the Clippers need to address their lack of a third big before they can compete with San Antonio or OKC, because it’s that bad.

Do you understand just how lucky you are to be able to watch Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and most importantly Jamal Crawford on a nightly basis?

Katz: Before Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and (most importantly) Jamal Crawford, the best thing ever to happen in my basketball-watching life either ruined his career with a gruesome knee injury (Shaun Livingston), left after agreeing to a handshake deal with the Clips (Elton Brand), or had the nickname “Bad Porn” (Corey Maggette). Let’s face it: Clippers fans have seen some painstakingly depressing basketball. We’re just happy to be along for the ride.

Buha: Yes, I know. I’m extremely lucky. I would add DeAndre Jordan to that list of exciting players, because some of his in-game dunks (and dunk attempts) are actually more impressive than Blake Griffin’s.

I’m obviously biased, but I think the Clippers are the most entertaining team in the league to watch. Paul and Griffin are two of the 10 most entertaining basketball players in the world, plain and simple. I’m blessed.

A friend of mine said the strategy of intentionally fouling DeAndre Jordan (42 percent from the line this year, 39 percent last year) should be called Deck-A-DJ. Should the Knicks go to that strategy (assuming the Knicks employ any strategies/tactics whatsoever)? And, in a big game, can Jordan stay on the floor in crunch time before the last two minutes?

Katz: Deck-a-DJ! Can we make this a thing? I’ve been writing it for a year now and no one wants to keep it going. Thank you, Jon. This is the best thing you’ve ever done for me. Please, please, please will someone else write deck-a-DJ? Just for me?

And as for the actual strategy, the Clips are even more prone to it this year than they were last year just because they don’t have a legitimate replacement for Jordan when he leaves the game. So yes, fouling Jordan might make sense for the Knicks down the stretch if they need to create a few more possessions to mount a comeback, provided Mike Woodson doesn’t call it hack-a-Jordan or some other awful, non-alliterative, non-rhyming version of a phrase that only makes sense when Shaq’s name is at the end of it.

Buha: First off, I like the name. It’s catchy. Second, yes, the Knicks should absolutely use the strategy. Until Jordan improves his free-throw shooting into the 50-to-60 percent range, I completely understand teams using his greatest flaw against him. It messes with his confidence, to an extent, which has the ability to take him out of the game mentally and, sometimes, literally. Since he’s the Clippers’ most valuable interior defender — they have practically no rim protection when he’s off the floor — the opposition gains a considerable advantage when he’s sitting late in games.

I believe Jordan can stay on the floor, though, depending on the circumstances. By intentionally fouling him, the opponent is racking up team and individual fouls, so at some point it has to stop (or they’ll have to play their bench players more minutes, which will ultimately favor the Clippers). This isn’t to downplay the issue — Jordan’s free throw shooting is a problem — but I think its impact is slightly overblown.

Nearly 65% of shots for Byron Mullens, an awful 3-point shooter, have been 3s. That is a real statistic. He will also likely guard Andrea Bargnani if he gets into tonight’s game. Please talk about this situation.

Katz: It’s hard for me to decide if I love Mullens or Bargnani more. It’s such a simple sort of love, the kind that you’d have for your pet dog that keeps peeing all over the carpet. It’s not the love I have for Chris Paul. I love watching Paul the same way I love watching Citizen Kane. I love watching Mullens and Bargs the same way I love watching The Room.

Buha: I said this on Twitter a couple weeks ago, but the only difference between Andrea Bargnani and Byron Mullens is that one is Italian and one is American. Other than that, they’re essentially the same player. I don’t expect Mullens to play unless it’s for a couple minutes early in the second quarter and/or in the fourth quarter of a blowout, so the likelihood of them actually being on the floor at the same time is slim. But if they do end up facing off against each other, I expect it to be hilariously awful.

This game has all the makings of a truly ugly blowout. What weaknesses or advantageous matchups might the Knicks be able to exploit to keep this close or possibly even steal this game?

Katz: Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith have to combine for 60 (or close to it), but even then, that might not be enough. With Matt Barnes out, the Clips don’t really have anyone who can defend either of those two guys one-on-one. The Clippers have no wing stopper coming off the bench.

The Clippers will have to throw the kitchen sink at Melo. You’ll see Jared Dudley on him. You might see some Reggie Bullock or even Blake Griffin (who has admirably defended both LeBron James and Kevin Durant for short stretches this season). But ultimately, Anthony is going to get his points against a defense that has smart wing defenders, but ones who aren’t particularly athletic. If he can score at an efficient rate and Smith can find his stroke, which he hasn’t had ever since the Curse of Jason Terry consumed his basketball persona, the Knicks have a chance to pull out a road upset.

Buha: For the Knicks to keep Wednesday’s game close or possibly steal it, I think they have to attack the Clippers early with their perimeter scoring — i.e. Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith — and then use the attention they draw to find open shooters (and hope the 3s rain down).

Already, we’ve seen the Clippers struggle to defend the likes of LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Dwyane Wade, etc. this season. If Carmelo and J.R. can get hot, and force the Clippers to adjust their defensive game plan, it’ll tilt the defense ever so slightly and the Knicks can find weak-side 3-point shooters.

Defensively, there isn’t much Knicks can do. They don’t have the size or acumen to hurt the Clippers on the glass or prevent Griffin and Jordan from living at the rim. Who exactly is going to contain Paul? Shumpert, maybe? I just don’t see it. The Knicks have to turn this into a shootout, as their only chancethe of beating the Clippers will be to use their porous defense against them. If they are unable to do so, though, it’s going to be a long night.

202 comments on “Game Preview & Thread: Knicks @ Clippers

  1. DRed

    Would Shumpert for Waiters be the Knicksiest trade of the last 20 years, or would we need to toss in a draft pick as well?

  2. Frank O.

    Watching Rockets and Wolves (I know I said I didn’t like watching Lin these days), but Kevin Love is friggin amazing.
    He has a sequence where he nearly gets an O board, runs back on a fast break to defend, plays it perfectly, gets the D board. Then outlets and grabs another O board. Then he gets the ball on the three, draws foul, continues the shot and clearly intentionally banks the 3.
    He’s just constantly working and thinking and he has willed in the last few sequences his team back into a game where they were down 13.
    Would love to see the Knicks big men put in that kind of effort.
    By far, the best PF in the game today.

  3. Loathing

    Shump n’ Waiters’ salaries don’t match. Extra will have to be thrown in on both sides for this to work.

  4. Owen

    Great preview. Love these cross promotions.

    We are going to get killed. But at least we get to watch Chris Paul.

  5. stratomatic

    Watching Felton try to guard Paul, getting pissed off, and then hoisting up bad shots and bricks in retaliation is not my idea of fun. But hey, we get to watch the Nuggets run them off the court next game.

  6. Jake S.

    Like most everyone else on this site, I don’t want to trade Shumpert. But considering it’s a fait accompli, and Knicks management is incompetent or worse, would Waiters be such a bad haul? Can he play any D?

  7. stratomatic

    Waiters is young, but he’s an inefficient volume scorer that shouldn’t be in the rotation for any good team (at least at this stage) . Why the Knicks feel compelled to trade Shumpert is beyond me. He’s not playing well, but we saw some of his upside last year in the 2nd half

  8. Brian Cronin

    Nothing would ever be more of a prototypical Knick trade as STAT for Gerald Wallace and Courtney Lee, but Shump for Waiters would be right up there.

  9. Brian Cronin

    Knicks win tonight

    I don’t know what to do predictions-wise! I predict that they win and they lose. I predict that they lose and they lose. So…uhm…the Knicks will tie tonight! Yeah, let’s try that!

  10. EB

    Knicks win tonight

    I don’t know what to do predictions-wise! I predict that they win and they lose. I predict that they lose and they lose. So…uhm…the Knicks will tie tonight! Yeah, let’s try that!

    I’ll meet you halfway. Prediction: Knicks play tonight

  11. Zanzibar

    Why the Knicks feel compelled to trade Shumpert is beyond me.

    Because he did something which ticked off the petulant Dolan and now he has to go, just like Jeremy Lin and Woody Allen. Even if you’re not directly involved you’re not safe when our charmless Arthur throws a hissy fit (Knick City Dancers). The fact that Waiters is being discussed puts a lie to the whole “we have too many SGs” rationale. The real question: why doesn’t Melo tell Dolan to keep Shump and put the kibosh on all of this?

  12. Brian Cronin

    Watching the Lakers/Nets game made me think of a question – we know MDA is going to likely be fired sooner than later in L.A. But do you think he has done a good enough job with the Lakers this season to merit him getting another head coaching gig when the Lakers fire him?

  13. JK47

    Waiters is very similar to Tim Hardaway Jr, and has a bit of an attitude problem, which means he’s a perfect fit here because Knicks. And I’m a ‘Cuse homer who loved Waiters as a college player.

    Luckily Shump-for-Waiters doesn’t work salary cap-wise, even if you throw in THJ to balance out salaries.

  14. DRed

    MDA should be getting coach of the year votes for the job he’s doing right now. Why is he getting fired?

  15. Kahnzy

    If we’re to trade Shump (don’t wanna, but then again I don’t have my own band), then I’d MUCH prefer to trade him for someone whom I can enjoy rooting for, like Fareid, rather than someone who comes off a bit too much like a petulant child, like Waiters. Even though, ironically, it would almost undoubtedly mean that Fareid’s career, which I unabashedly cheer for, would take a turn for the worse in such a poorly run and very nearly toxic organization because Knicks.

  16. ruruland

    Broussard reported that the Knicks aren’t interested in a Waiters for Shumpert trade, and since Melo said Shumpert is part of the Knicks long-term plans, there have been no rumors of the Knicks shopping Shumpert.

  17. ruruland

    It’s a perfect MDA team, Dred.

    But it’s not the kind of team the Lakers will have for very long, I would assume.

  18. stratomatic

    Ruru,
    There have been non stop rumors of the Knicks trading Shumpert for months and stories of management being pissed off because be blew off summer league. Perhaps, the rumors were false, but they’ve been reported by reasonably reliable sources in NY and even sources from other teams that were supposedly on the other side of the rumors.

  19. stratomatic

    Brian,

    A very good case can be made that The Lakers have the worst roster in the NBA with Nash and Kobe out. MDA won’t get coach of the year because they aren’t a serious enough contender, but no coach in the NBA has done a better job. Having that Laker team at .500 in the west is miraculous.

  20. er

    Off topic real quick. Jabari Parker looks eerily like melo In the garden tonight. He just hit that patented contested wing jumper lol. Spooky

  21. DRed

    The Stat/Nash team was the perfect MDA team. But playing .500 ball in the west with a squad of castoffs,retreads and the shell of Pau Gasol is pretty impressive.

  22. ruruland

    ‘Ruru,
    There have been non stop rumors of the Knicks trading Shumpert for months and stories of management being pissed off because be blew off summer league. Perhaps, the rumors were false, but they’ve been reported by reasonably reliable sources in NY and even sources from other teams that were supposedly on the other side of the rumors.”

    There were many rumors earlier in November substantiated by different media. Those rumors have basically died off, and the Knicks, according to Broussard, turned down the Waiters deal.

    In combination with Melo saying Shumpert is a part of the Knicks future,the chances that Shump stays a Knick seem much greater.

  23. ruruland

    “The Stat/Nash team was the perfect MDA team. But playing .500 ball in the west with a squad of castoffs,retreads and the shell of Pau Gasol is pretty impressive.’

    yeah… MDA’s system works well for those kinds of players.

  24. stratomatic

    Off topic, but the Thunder look like a serious contender again despite concerns about the health of Westbrook and the loss of Martin as the 3rd scoring option. Ibaka is stepping up, Jackson is developing into a scorer quickly, and their draft choice (Adams) is playing solid ball at C for a rookie. They may finally be able to bench Perkins late in the season.

  25. maxwell_3g

    if we lose tonight, im burning my Linsanity t-shirt with the turkey tomorrow as a sacrifice to the basketball gods.

  26. BigBlueAL

    Amar’e, Bargs and Udrih on the floor together. Getting a stop on D is virtually impossible when you have your worst 3 defenders on the court at the same freaking time.

  27. maxwell_3g

    Amar’e, Bargs and Udrih on the floor together. Getting a stop on D is virtually impossible when you have your worst 3 defenders on the court at the same freaking time.

    I here you, but am I the only one who sees bargs’s defense as at least 2 notches up from amare’s. im so sick of amare and the myth of Donnie walsh. every GM/pres has completely failed us since Checketts

  28. stratomatic

    Bargs should never be on the court…PERIOD. Amare you can play with Martin. At least there’s a chance you’ll get an efficient night of scoring and some rebounds from Amare just based on memory.

  29. stratomatic

    I have to agree. Woodson is one of the worst coaches in the NBA. He’s throwing spaghetti at the wall hoping something sticks.

  30. maxwell_3g

    awesome d amare. hollins dunks all over you. in case you have not realized, you are far from a star. CHALLENGE THE SHOT AND FOUL IF YOU HAVE TO!!!

  31. cgreene

    The biggest thing that speaks to the lack of respect / accountability from Woodson is MWPs relentless chucking. Like Pop, Thibs, Doc etc would let him chuck with impunity. Woodson never says a word. He’s scared of him

  32. thenamestsam

    Starting to wish I had just gone to bed when we were up 9. Could have had all night before facing the music.

  33. Kahnzy

    This comically bad defense is more enjoyable when you finally give up your hopes for a reasonably successful future for this team. If we’re gonna be bad, might as well get a few chuckles out of it.

  34. maxwell_3g

    I am no melo fan. that being said, it is almost impossible to have a talent like him and still be this bad. if that doesn’t get woodson fired, what does?

  35. Brian Cronin

    Shitty defense but Bargs is at least hitting his shots. They’re not giving up yet which is great. Sadly, they pretty much have to have Melo and Bargs on the court at all times to have any chance in the game (much more so Melo than Bargs, of course).

  36. DRed

    K-Mart might be our best point guard. I’m not kidding about that. All things considered this game is going really well.

  37. coyle022

    The officiating in this game has been horrendous. both ways. but specifically the Knicks are being called for every little thing…and some questionable out of bounds calls as well

  38. maxwell_3g

    please take amare out. he follows paul on a jump shot but doesn’t contest him on a layup. the quicker we distance ourselves from his style of play the better. I miss oakley

  39. DRed

    And did it really take the Clips this long to realize we couldn’t stop Chris Paul pick and rolls with 7 guys on the court?

  40. EB

    I’d rather have Bargs right now. Amare looks terrible on D. Bargs is bad but Amare just looks so much worse.

  41. Kahnzy

    Why any Knick continues to pass the ball to MWP is no beyond me. I like the guy, and I was very happy when we picked him up…but man, I think cgreene has a point and I’ll take it one further; maybe MWP is purposefully taking the worst shots reasonably possible just to force Woodson’s hand. Doubt it, but it’s a better thought to the likely fact that MWP is just basically saying “screw it” and throwing up one legged, side falling 30 footers with plenty of clock time left just for the hell of it.

  42. BigBlueAL

    Knicks 0 for 11 from 3pt range at halftime. The other night in Portland midway thru the 3rd quarter they were 0 for 8. Last season is a distant memory.

  43. yellowboy90

    Can they just continue to feed Amar’e where he can have some fun and become engaged on D?

    I would sit MWP, Beno, and JR if he comes out shooting wild.

  44. ruruland

    Bargs with some nice defensive sequences in first half (the blocks were nice, too).

    Confirmation bias never ends when it comes to Bargs. He’s so much better than Novak/Copeland on defense.

  45. Jake S.

    Does anyone find it bananas that Chandler went down eight games ago (eight games ago?) and Cole Aldrich has played a total of 8 minutes since (or thereabouts)? I don’t pretend the guy is Bill Russell, but Jeez Louise, you don’t even want to give him a spin? He can’t be worse defensively than the rest of our bigs (Kenyon excepted).

  46. yellowboy90

    I should have said curls towards the basket. Those two screens away from the rim won’t cut it. lol.

  47. Brian Cronin

    Bargs with some nice defensive sequences in first half (the blocks were nice, too).

    Confirmation bias never ends when it comes to Bargs. He’s so much better than Novak/Copeland on defense.

    He had some nice sequences amid a much larger amount of sequences where he played shitty defense. When he’s hitting shots and rebounding like he is tonight, he’s still a net positive, but identifying a couple of good plays compared to a larger amount of bad plays and choosing to spotlight the good plays sounds like the definition of confirmation bias.

  48. Will the Thrill

    He’s so much better than Novak/Copeland on defense.

    No one disagrees. Still horrible compared to the average center, though.

  49. Brian Cronin

    I do like that the Clippers are being foolish enough to accept the outside shots that the Knicks are giving them instead of driving.

  50. yellowboy90

    Well STAT +/- continues to increase. Woody that’s on you for having Bargs and Stat together. Chandler would solve that issue.

  51. maxwell_3g

    I don’t care about what ifs and theories…..In reality, amare is an awful NBA player. I don’t care how much we are paying him. we would be better playing earl barron or any replacement level player.

  52. ruruland

    “When he’s hitting shots and rebounding like he is tonight, he’s still a net positive, but identifying a couple of good plays compared to a larger amount of bad plays and choosing to spotlight the good plays sounds like the definition of confirmation bias.”

    To what end? I’ve never said Bargs was even a mediocre defender overall (especially for a center).

  53. Will the Thrill

    The only teams we have a chance against are teams with stagnant, basically simple offenses (like ours) because we really have no disciplined defenders. This is why we did well against Indiana. If we beat Denver it will be the most surprising game of the season for me.

  54. BigBlueAL

    Someone on the Knicks has to tell Woodson how awful many of his lineup combinations are +/- wise. We are supposed to be more stats oriented now right??

  55. Glew

    Among other head scratchers, Woodson needs to be asked;
    1. Why does he refuse to go with felton, prigs, shump, melo, and kmart lineup? Even for a few minutes

    2. Why is shumpert never assigned to guard the opposing pg? Felton just gets torched its been going on for years now.

    3. What is he seeing on tape that makes him thinking constant switching is a good idea?

  56. Jake S.

    BigBlueAL
    November 28, 2013 at 12:19 am
    Someone on the Knicks has to tell Woodson how awful many of his lineup combinations are +/- wise. We are supposed to be more stats oriented now right??

    It’s so insane. Does no one give him this data?

  57. thenamestsam

    Ruru for you to argue that others are determined to see the worst in Bargs and not acknowledge that you’re determined to see the best in him is nuts. You said the other day that anyone who said he’d been bad on D this year was delusional!

  58. Will the Thrill

    You said the other day that anyone who said he’d been bad on D this year was delusional!

    So he isn’t even mediocre on defense (ESPECIALLY at center) but if you say he’s been horrible at defense, you’re full of shit.

  59. Brian Cronin

    We are supposed to be more stats oriented now right??

    Well, I think we all knew that that was full of shit, right?

  60. thenamestsam

    In JRs defense I think he was trying to go 2 for 1. In JRs prosecution I’m not sure he understands how a 2 for 1 works.

  61. Brian Cronin

    I dont know how Woodson can be so damn patient with JR. That last shot attempt was beyond awful.

    But that three was awesome! And he did a good job getting the offensive board and the follow through.

  62. Kahnzy

    I’m watching the game on NBATV and I’m getting the Clippers feed. Regarding JR Smith’s last shot at the end of the 3rd:

    Something Smith (Clipper’s color analyst I think?): “That’s not a good shot,” in a painfully surprised tone as if he is unaware of who JR Smith is.

    Ralph Lawler: “Well, JR Smith is a noted bad-shot taker.”

    They’ve had a few of these where no-name guy is amazed about something the Knicks do badly, and Lawler basically responds with “Well, duhhhh.” Gotta hand it to Lawler, he knows his game.

  63. EB

    I dont know how Woodson can be so damn patient with JR. That last shot attempt was beyond awful.

    I have to imagine JR was trying to rush and go 2 for 1 but took too long.

  64. maxwell_3g

    Ruru for you to argue that others are determined to see the worst in Bargs and not acknowledge that you’re determined to see the best in him is nuts. You said the other day that anyone who said he’d been bad on D this year was delusional!

    while I have no problem with him personally, why anyone values what “ruru” says is beyond me. Im sure that he is a nice guy but he is a fan boy who has supported the melo move, the amare move, the bargs move, etc……. basically, he is Dolan’s cheerleader. Im fairly confident that he is not right I the long run

  65. thenamestsam

    Meta has seriously worn out his welcome with me. He has to be as bad an offensive wing as there is in the league.

  66. Brian Cronin

    Prigs had to take that three. Hopefully that missed Clippers layup ends up big. What a terrible call by the refs there as Prigs got mauled!

  67. Will the Thrill

    Most NBA players decline physically. MWP is declining mentally it seems. His decisions on offense are cringe-worthy.

  68. ruruland

    “You said the other day that anyone who said he’d been bad on D this year was delusional!”

    In the context of what his role was supposed to be!!

  69. maxwell_3g

    amare is playing way too many minutes for what he adds. its almost as if woodson is trying to injure him so we can just move on without worrying about giving him his minutes

  70. thenamestsam

    Seems like the Clips have had a ton of around and outs this game but that might just be because I have their announcers and he acts like every one is a crime against basketball justice.

  71. Brian Cronin

    while I have no problem with him personally, why anyone values what “ruru” says is beyond me. Im sure that he is a nice guy but he is a fan boy who has supported the melo move, the amare move, the bargs move, etc……. basically, he is Dolan’s cheerleader. Im fairly confident that he is not right I the long run

    I don’t think that’s fair. If you want to argue against a guy’s point, that’s fine, but there’s no need to reduce a guy’s position to “fan boy” like that.

  72. Unreason

    I chose to believe that the creature impersonating JR Smith will stride to center court at the end of the game, unzip his skin, and finally reveal the evil German-speaking extra terrestrial lizard being within.

  73. DRed

    Ruru, you said I didnt know shit for saying Bargs was a bad defender. But you don’t even think he’s mediocre.

  74. maxwell_3g

    while I have no problem with him personally, why anyone values what “ruru” says is beyond me. Im sure that he is a nice guy but he is a fan boy who has supported the melo move, the amare move, the bargs move, etc……. basically, he is Dolan’s cheerleader. Im fairly confident that he is not right I the long run

    I don’t think that’s fair. If you want to argue against a guy’s point, that’s fine, but there’s no need to reduce a guy’s position to “fan boy” like that.

    again, I like the guy because he makes this board more interesting…… but he has consistently told us that amare will make us a much greater team as he is a devastating player in the post; that melo is a 1A type player who can lead a team to a championship; and Bargs was a great haul and is an average to plus defender. he has been vocal in these , especially his support of melo. again, I like his passion, but wrong is wrong. the reason I am pointing this out is that this exact type of star player (Marbury, amare, melo), fan boy way of looking at this league has led us down the rabbit’s hole repeatedly over the past 3 decades. im just praying that someone in power in our organization realizes this

  75. Brian Cronin

    That was hilarious. Crawford traveled and waited to give the ball to the ref but they never blew the whistle! Hilarious! Thank goodness the Clippers didn’t get a score there.

  76. BigBlueAL

    Knicks down double digits with time winding down so Shump and Bargs both pumpfake open 3pters to step in and take a 20 footer which both missed.

  77. coyle022

    How about the Jamal Crawford travel, which did not receive a whistle. RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE REF!!!!!! he literally jumped in the air, with the ball, looked around for a second, then passed. all in front of the official. and no call, play resumes….unbelievable

  78. BigBlueAL

    Im going to be thankful while eating Thanksgiving dinner that I wont have to watch the Knicks play Thanksgiving night.

  79. Brian Cronin

    Knicks down double digits with time winding down so Shump and Bargs both pumpfake open 3pters to step in and take a 20 footer which both missed.

    I was just about to note that there are few things I hate more than pumpfaking a three and then taking a 20 footer.

    I can’t believe they’re losing to a Paul-less Clippers team.

  80. thenamestsam

    Man Shump looks so bad right now. I’m really not sure there’s a future for him here at this point. Such a shame.

  81. Will the Thrill

    And to pile on top of the shithole that has been this season, it seems like Shumpert has totally lost it. Like, Landry Fields-level lost it. He was basically the only guy we could really watch for the future on this team, and I don’t even want to watch him anymore.

  82. Jake S.

    Brian Cronin
    November 28, 2013 at 12:53 am
    They seriously should just cut Aldrich if they’re never ever going to play him.

    This. Really, if he can’t get a minute of playing time with Chandler out, what is the point?

  83. coyle022

    I think it’s time for a starting lineup overhaul. Murry-Melo-Bargs-Martin-Aldrich. the knicks play slow as molasses anyway, might as well bulk up and try to rebound. shooting w/ melo and bargs, interior d with martin and aldrich, and a quick pg in murry. at this point, after losing 7 in a row, what is there to lose? there’s certainly nothing to gain by sticking with the terrible status quo of felton/jr/shump/metta/amare. Woodson needs to send a message and the only way is to bench the players who are hurting the team right now….although Felton did look better tonight, he’s still a backup PG in this league, Jr and Shump are ghosts right now, Metta and Amare look washed up. The ship has already sunk and we’re now on flotation device status

  84. DRed

    I know he was okay tonight, but playing Andrea Bargnani 40 minutes a night at center and thinking you’re going to win NBA games is a terrible miscalculation.

  85. yellowboy90

    the second unit has continually sucked the life out of the teams momentum. MWP, JR, Amar’e, and Beno needs to sit. Let the others get some burn. Murry, Cole and even Hardaway needs to play. Also, the knicks just need to feature Shump early to get him going. The problem is how do you do that. He is not that great coming off screens, he doesn’t have a good handle, and can’t post so what do you do. I guess a few back door screens or a few nice curls going to the basket. However, since he is not a good finisher those might not end great

  86. Jake S.

    And why won’t they try Murry either? If they routinely get their faces eaten by point guards, isn’t it in their interest to at least see what they have in a supposed defensive specialist?

  87. Kahnzy

    Right now we have the 3rd worst record in the league. So…it could be worse? Hooray for the two teams worse than ours?!

  88. JK47

    14th in the Eastern Conference, no draft pick next year, capped out until 2015, star player about to head out the door, no draft pick in 2016.

    Is there another team in the NBA in a worse situation than the Knicks? The Nets, I guess, but that’s about it.

  89. Owen

    Amazing that our closest game lately was against the Pacers.

    Didn’t see it. Doesn’t sound like it went too well.

  90. Jake S.

    Not that I think this will begin to solve things, but at what point does Woodson get fired? Or does that Dolan Q&A mean we’re locked into this guy for the rest of the year?

  91. Brian Cronin

    This is the first time in Melo’s career that he has ever played on a team that has lost seven games in a row (in games that he played). Wow!

  92. Bison

    I’m probably delusional, but I think there’s some hope. Our starters outplayed theirs; their bench was what killed us. Can you believe CP3 was only +0?

  93. Will the Thrill

    I LOVE when Woody blames it on missing open shots. How come we only get get mid-range shots/3 pt shots and every other team gets a layup line?

  94. Brian Cronin

    “I don’t know why the three-point shot isn’t working for us this year. It’s almost as if we lost our two best three-point shooters.”

  95. Jake S.

    Brian Cronin
    November 28, 2013 at 1:18 am
    “I don’t know why the three-point shot isn’t working for us this year. It’s almost as if we lost our two best three-point shooters.”

    Or, ya know, stopped using a 2-point guard alignment that was phenomenally successful last year.

  96. JK47

    The Knicks scored 80 points against the 21st ranked defense in the league. Andrea Bargnani is undisputedly one of the best players on the team.

    Hope? I have no hope. This team is garbage.

  97. FrankGrimes

    If Knicks are serious about competing in 2013, you trade felton + amare for Gerald Wallace and Humphries and then explore a shump for waiters + picks deal ( or can throw in bargs and get back varejao $ works) Let beno, prigs, and toure compete for minutes at pg and then we will have some bangers to grab boards and play valuable minutes at backup center once chandler gets back.
    Otherwise wait til 2015 and pray for K Love.
    Melo isn’t going anywhere, hes not saying no to the $33MM more knicks can pay.

  98. DRed

    I seriously still think they win on Friday.

    Do you remember that poster who blamed our losses on Clyde? I’m not sure how he didn’t realize you were the real problem with the Knicks.

  99. Brian Cronin

    Do you remember that poster who blamed our losses on Clyde? I’m not sure how he didn’t realize you were the real problem with the Knicks.

    Yeah, I am quite diversified. I predict wins, losses and ties and they all end up as losses.

    But come on, there’s no way that they can’t beat Denver! It is not like Denver just outclasses them. Is Denver better? Yes, but come on, even a blind squirrel finds a nut occasionally! I think it’ll happen on Friday.

    Phoenix just kicked Portland’s ass tonight! Like Kevin Garnett said (as quoted by The Lonely Island in “I’m on a Boat”), “Anything is possible!”

  100. Brian Cronin

    Speaking of the Suns, I’m happy to see Lindsey Hunter have success. I really thought that Terry Porter was going to be a great coach and he sucked in Phoenix. I thought Hunter would be a great coach and so far he has looked good. Unlike Porter, he didn’t try to make the Suns play a way they weren’t prepared to play.

  101. Brian Cronin

    Portland due for a loss = NYK due for a win

    Exactly! The expansion Raptors beat the 72-win Bulls!

  102. coyle022

    “Speaking of the Suns, I’m happy to see Lindsey Hunter have success. I really thought that Terry Porter was going to be a great coach and he sucked in Phoenix. I thought Hunter would be a great coach and so far he has looked good. Unlike Porter, he didn’t try to make the Suns play a way they weren’t prepared to play.”

    Jeff Hornacek is the current Suns coach…Hunter served as interim HC last year

  103. ruruland

    George Karl took over in Denver in 2005 with the Nuggets 17-25 and five games out of the 8th seed.

    Karl proceeded to win 31 of his first 37 games in Denver, and the Nuggets finished the year 50-32.

    There would be a JR Smith situation to deal with, but Karl is a very good NBA coach obviously, and I think he’d like another chance to coach Melo, especially in NY.

    If anyone could turn around Shumpert, I think it’d be Karl. He values defensive intensity over pretty much everything else, and I think he’d know how to push the right buttons with a guy like him.

    Prigs would play a lot more.

  104. Brian Cronin

    Jeff Hornacek is the current Suns coach…Hunter served as interim HC last year

    Ugh, duh. My bad. Thanks for that. I still think Hunter would make a great head coach. But good for Hornacek!

  105. Brian Cronin

    George Karl took over in Denver in 2005 with the Nuggets 17-25 and five games out of the 8th seed.

    Karl proceeded to win 31 of his first 37 games in Denver, and the Nuggets finished the year 50-32.

    There would be a JR Smith situation to deal with, but Karl is a very good NBA coach obviously, and I think he’d like another chance to coach Melo, especially in NY.

    If anyone could turn around Shumpert, I think it’d be Karl. He values defensive intensity over pretty much everything else, and I think he’d know how to push the right buttons with a guy like him.

    Prigs would play a lot more.

    Besides the JR thing, though, Dolan doesn’t seem to be interested in coaches who want a lot of say with the team and that’s Karl to a tee. That, more than the JR thing, is why the idea struck me as funny as Karl is soooo not Dolan’s type of coach.

    But yeah, he’d be a great get for this particular Knicks team.

  106. ruruland

    Karl has battled most of the GMs/Owners he’s worked for, and has had a lot of say in getting them moved.

    It seems unlikely to be sure, but he’s really good with new teams. He gets stale and apathetic over time, but he’d bring in a lot of the right kind of energy to the Knicks, especially with the chip on his shoulder had has about being let go.

  107. MSA

    Didn’t watch the game, but how the hell Amare was -29 in 20 minutes?

    Maybe we should go back to the 10min/game limit.

  108. Frank O.

    I think Woodson is in deep trouble. When they ask Knicks what is wrong, they say they don’t know. When they ask Woodson he said shots aren’t falling.
    That means the players aren’t seeing it the same as the coach.
    It feels like Woody has lost them.

    His bench guys don’t know what they are doing. JR’s shot is not the only problem. His passing and defense has been irregular. I recall him guarding redick. JR was late to close on the three and immediately after he loses redick who swoops in for a layup.
    Our big allow a lay up parade.
    They’re not playing together.

  109. Z-man

    The Good:
    Melo was good, but has this thing where he feels he needs to show up lesser players that have the audacity to guard him 1-on-1.
    Bargnani was basically what you would expect on a good night. His stats were deceptive though, at least 5 of his boards fell into his arms at shoulder level. He went 0-4 to start the decisive 3rd Q. Still, he was the 4th best Knicks player on the court.
    K-Mart is doing all that can be asked, especially passing the ball. His play might be the brightest spot of all.
    Felton’s presence kept this game close. Without him, it’s a 30-pt blowout. Some of his passes were ill-advised or too hot to handle, but his overall performance was encouraging.

    The Bad:
    I think Prigioni is overrated by many here. Sure, he’s smart, unselfish and hustles his ass off, but he is just not a good match for the personnel and he can’t really guard younger, quicker PGs. He is very much an “as the team goes…” kind of player, and since everyone else is missing, he seems useless.
    JR is simply not the same player he was last year on either end. I was truly ambivalent about re-signing him, and now wonder if he is going to develop into a cancer. His dumbness seems to be contagious.
    STAT: Sucked Tremendously and Totally. One of the worst all-around performances I have ever suffered through. Single-handedly blew up at least a dozen possessions on both ends in every conceivable way.
    MWP: Must We, Please? As in, watch you clang another wide-open 3 or contested 18-ft fade-away?
    THJ: If he can’t score, he is useless, and for now, he’s missing everything. That said, Jr.’s outplaying JR.
    Beno: Had the brief, putrid impact of a fart at the Thanksgiving table.
    The Ugly:
    Shump: Who would have predicted that this shell of the cocky, in-your-face up and comer would be reduced to a total non-entity after 14 games? Not a 0-0-0 like last game (should we dub that performance the “pearl necklace?”) but still flatter than a PTSD patient. Truly sad.

  110. Z-man

    I agree that Woodson is in trouble. I wonder if Shump is trying to sabotage him the same way that Melo sabotaged D’Antoni. Not that he’s dogging it, but his youthful exuberance is a big part of the team. Woodson needs to get him to bust out, or he is doomed. I truly hope that Shump outlasts Woodson and gets a chance with a new coach before he is jettisoned for the likes of Waiters.

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