Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Game Thread: Knicks @ Nets.

I think Steve Kerr is conducting an intervention with Son of Wood.

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Anyhoo, here are some thoughts from Jeremy Gordon of Brooklyn’s Finest, a gent who’s suffered through almost as much terrible basketball as we have.

1. Hello fellow resident of basketball purgatory! It’s tough to say, but for Knicks fans, one of the few respites from the near-constant awful basketball and general ridicule has been watching you, our fellow Metropolitan team, suffer and struggle. (We’re petty like that) for one, thought BK had assembled a 50-55 win team. In brief, what’s gone wrong?

Basically everything? From the beginning this was a team for whom everything had to break exactly right if they wanted to reach that top seed tier. That meant the health of all the starters, the non-regression of KG and Pierce, the ability of Jason Kidd to learn on the fly… instead, everyone’s been super hurt and Kidd’s begun to acquire the feel of a hapless father who’s been tasked with coaching his son’s rec league game because the regular coach is at jury duty. I think the projected starting lineup has played all of a game and a half’s worth of minutes together, maybe? Plus the fact that they might just be too old and slow to do anything. That’s the tidiness of it: old + slow + don’t know what they’re doing. Doesn’t sound so good!

2, Like the ‘Bockers, aside from various injuries healing, there doesn’t seem to be an easy fix. Let’s say you wake up tomorrow and because you rubbed a magic amulet or made a wish to the wrong carny/gypsy, you’re Billy King. What’s your first move. And your second. And if you’re feeling really adventurous, your third.

Hard to say. They have to give it more time, obviously, because 20 games into a $190 million payroll is too soon to reach for the parachute. I don’t know, maybe I get everyone on the juice so they heal quicker, or maybe I see if KG’s willing to give it a go as a player-assistant. This team is just so banged up it’s hard to look at their roster and see what would work better than everyone’s bruised limbs being replaced with cyborg parts. They’re giving Toko Shengeila first quarter minutes in some of these games, it’s brutal. I think I wake up and fake having Lyme disease so everyone gets off my back.

3, And again, in the midst of all this crappy ball, there’s been a heap of off-court drama/nonsense. This week, Assistant Coach Frank was sent to file TPS reports and is now babbling about hiring lawyers. Did Lawrence need to go? And if not, is Kidd next on the chopping block?

I’m not privy to the interior workings of the franchise, but it does seem like Frank was hastily fired given the weak start and what appear to be ideological differences between him and Kidd. I don’t think Kidd is next to go: he’s just had his number retired and owns part of the franchise (Jay-Z’s former .000017% slice of it, at least) so it would be a pretty bad look if they cut ties a quarter into the season. I could see Kidd getting the whole year, with dramatic personnel changes in the off-season. This is a franchise that’s very heavily into its image and it would be the worst look to get rid of Kidd this quickly.

4. So who wins tonight’s Shame of the Century (See what I did there?)

The fans, clearly, since there should be more sarcastic Tweeting than a re-run of Sharknado. Besides that, gosh. It’s a push, right? How could anyone have the confidence to say it’s more than a push?

Damn skippy. I answered a few of his pointed queries here. Y’all know what to do… Go Knicks!

179 comments on “Game Thread: Knicks @ Nets.

  1. EB

    Who wins tonights’ Knicks vs. Nets matchup? Either Denver or Boston.

    Edit: Apparently Atlanta has rights to swap picks with Brooklyn.

  2. Nick C.

    Bargs off to his typical good start. He stoned Lopez one on one and, off a nice pass from Melo, knocked down a mid range shot.

  3. Mental Masochist

    Ah th2 has been forgiven for the sins of his father by me, only for the sideline energy antics.

  4. coyle022

    and also Hardaway jr looks like a damn fool on the bench thus far….that stupid thing Jr does after hitting buzzer beaters….tough to root for this group of knuckleheads but KNICKS!

  5. maxwell_3g

    im predicting TH2 dislocates his shoulder doing the stupid pipe celebration giving us all another reason to hate the pipe

  6. Mental Masochist

    Dre bargs has always looked like a 13 year old after a growth spurt. You’d think he’d be able to move without it all looking accidental by this age…hooray winningish ball

  7. maxwell_3g

    we don’t double lopez in the post (which is a good thing) but we double Joe Johnson, leaving wide open 3′s??

  8. yellowboy90

    I don’t want to see anymore prediction post from Brian and no gloating posts during this game thread until the game is over.

  9. Mental Masochist

    But it’s the nets yellowboy…and if we blow it, we may yet be relieved from the bondage of Woodson, so what’s to lose?

  10. Owen

    Rachel Nichols is not hot. Her HS/48 is decidedly average.

    Cronin, keep your mouth shut.

    I would love to hear Chuck parse how Melo is the best player on the team but Tyson is the most valuable.

    Btw, I am so glad i am not a Nets fan. Phew….that feels good….

  11. KJG

    They’re not rushing the offense (except shump on that pull 3 brick) they moving the ball and the majority of looks are quite open. Everyone contributes… It’s an easy game, against the Nyets, thus far

  12. d-mar

    It’s really funny listening to these TNT announcers pretty much ignore that the Knicks are kicking the Nets ass

  13. Owen

    It’s true, basically nothing said about the game….

    But hey, an in depth breakdown of how crucial chemistry is on a coaching staff….

  14. Mental Masochist

    It doesn’t fit the pre-assumed story arc. Once the nets go on a 6-0 run to cut it to single digits, it’ll be all fire and brimstone and told yas.

  15. d-mar

    I disagree with Barkley on pretty much everything, but he hit it on the head with that last play of the quarter out of the timeout. And that’s the same thing that happens at the end of games too.

  16. Alecto

    Don’t worry guys as long as Amar’e is getting some burn we’ll have a pretty good chance of losing this game. This 1st quarter is a mirage.

  17. Mental Masochist

    I bet tomorrow it’s “day to day strain” then it turns out he’s out for the year because he cracked some vertebrae or tore something.

  18. Robtachi

    Amare better be hurt the way he was flopping on the deck like a suffocating trout after that block. Get up and rebound!

  19. BigBlueAL

    If there was ever a game for Aldrich to get some minutes specifically to guard Lopez its tonight.

  20. Brian Cronin

    I love that the Knicks at least used their 20 there to get final shot opportunities. It happens so infrequently. But yeah, not a good play.

  21. DRed

    Pablo is like the umami of the Knicks. You can’t put a name to it, but it makes everything better.

  22. Brian Cronin

    STAT at least looks good on offense! The whole team looks good on offense. Luckily, the Nets look shitty on both ends.

  23. Brian Cronin

    Pablo is like the umami of the Knicks. You can’t put a name to it, but it makes everything better.

    Agreed.

  24. Robtachi

    Liking what I’ve seen from Shumpert tonight aside from his early fouls and that one pull-up brick.

  25. BigBlueAL

    I hate saying this because I love Amar’e but he seriously needs to be removed from the rotation. Even more so once Chandler returns.

  26. d-mar

    I’ll say this, he Knicks are very good at leaving guys wide open whose only skill is hitting open 3′s

  27. Robtachi

    Can’t he just do one more ultimate nice-guy thing and retire for medical reasons? If he really wants to, he can pull a Brandon Roy, make a comeback after some time to get truly healthy(ish) and pick where he wants to give it a shot.

    Hold on a sec, I think I just spotted some pie in the sky…

  28. Mental Masochist

    I really enjoy the way the ball and the players are actually moving tonight. Even though the defense and rebounding suck per usual, it’s a wonderful reprieve from the stagnant isofuckery. Gotta hope they actually stick with something that works.

  29. Robtachi

    Ugh, Bargs didn’t even bother to mail in his absentee ballot for that help defense initiative.

  30. Robtachi

    I really enjoy the way the ball and the players are actually moving tonight. Even though the defense and rebounding suck per usual, it’s a wonderful reprieve from the stagnant isofuckery. Gotta hope they actually stick with something that works.

    I’d be more encouraged if the Nets were not dead last in defensive efficiency this year, and by an hilariously tremendous (or tremendously hilarious?) margin. Something like 110.8 dRtg, and over 5 points higher than the next worst team.

  31. Brian Cronin

    It’s weird Kidd has buried Evans. Do you think maybe Evans hit Kidd in the balls at one point during their respective playing careers?

  32. Will the Thrill

    You know who might contain Lopez a little more than Bargnani? Aldrich. Bargnani cant still play the PF, Woodson!!!

  33. hoolahoop

    Knicks first quarter was the best I’ve seen this season.
    Melo is playing his heart out and passing more than usual, bu still takes so many difficult (stupid; bad) shots.

  34. Owen

    I think they just showed some major knickerblogger commenters there…..

    Well, this is refreshing. I am going to pull a Cronin. Definitely going to win this…

  35. Robtachi

    I love the way Shump is looking tonight. This is the kind of play that makes him so enticing as a young talent.

  36. Robtachi

    I can’t figure out whether the Knicks’ D has been very good tonight or if the Nets’ offense is just abjectly “turrible.”

  37. coyle022

    how about this statistical nugget- Raymond “Even though I’ve made it and I’m successful in my career, I’m Still, Raymond from Latta” Felton .. is a +30 on the night !!

    PLUS THIRTY!

  38. coyle022

    Melo with 6 dimes and 10 boards. Possible triple double if he continues distributing. Why can’t he do this consistently. (I know I know, “he’s not Lebron”)

  39. Robtachi

    how about this statistical nugget- Raymond “Even though I’ve made it and I’m successful in my career, I’m Still, Raymond from Latta” Felton .. is a +30 on the night !!

    PLUS THIRTY!

    Turns out it’s very easy to stand around watching other guys drain wide open shots.

  40. coyle022

    “Turns out it’s very easy to stand around watching other guys drain wide open shots.”

    LOL just throw him a cheeseburger and have him stand in the corner

  41. BigBlueAL

    This has been fun to watch, but I wont be too excited until they win their next 2 games which are extremely winnable home games. Im not going to to start assuming Knick wins until they actually start consistently winning games they should win, especially at home.

  42. Robtachi

    Amazing that among all this cautious optimism in a cathartic blowout, JR Smith still manages to play like lukewarm dogshit.

  43. maxwell_3g

    I actually like KG, but it was inevitable that he try to pick a fight with bargs (ie, someone he thinks he can punk)

  44. coyle022

    Gotta Love it. “Let’s go Knicks” chants, Bargnani getting into it with KG. Knicks up 30. Give me a blunt and a brew and we’ll call it a night

  45. Robtachi

    Definitely looked like KG tried to swing his hand into Bargs’ face while they were tangled up.

  46. maxwell_3g

    amare has all of this energy in a feel good blowout….too bad he plays like shit in reasonably close games against reasonably NBA caliber foes (yes, Im done with STAT)

  47. Alecto

    Yeah this game isn’t indicative of any kind of improvement on the Knicks part. Brooklyn is just bad (as bad? Worse?). Though I am really pleased with Carmelo/Shumpert’s play tonight.

  48. Frank O.

    Aha! KG shows his embarrassment.
    I like that Bargs stood up for himself.
    He’s played well tonight.
    Brooklyn is Knicks country.
    Hope this is a catalyst.
    Guys standing up for each other.
    Melo and Amare playing together.
    We’ll see

  49. DRed

    Time to spread World Peace. It’s what Mandela would have wanted.

    And god bless Marv for bringing up the Kevin Johnson game.

  50. coyle022

    Well Bargnani is obviously not the scrub we thought he was. Even the most anti-bargs person on this site has to enjoy Bargs getting ejected for trash talking KG-after draining a 3 ball

  51. maxwell_3g

    I gotta say, I kind of like the spunk bargs has shown. I kind of assumed that if anyone f’d with him, he would instinctively curl up in the fetal position like a catepillar

  52. ephus

    I believe the correct spelling is G-A-R-B-A-H-J time.

    Joey Crawford kicking out Bargnani to get control of the game is self-defeating when Woodson is just subbing in the Knicks biggest MF – Metta World Peace.

  53. Mental Masochist

    I love a game when Bargnani gets booted for smiling and speaking. How about Ol Joey crawfish?

  54. Robtachi

    Can we start calling him Cole Eldritch?

    Am I the only D&D nerd that would appreciate how apropos that would be?

  55. BigBlueAL

    I know this is against the Nets who are horrible right now but seeing the Knicks playing like this tonight makes it even more frustrating that they were 3-13. Absolutely inexcusable regardless of Chandler’s injury and thats why alot of the blame for this start deserves to be put on Woodson. Still plenty of talent on this team not to be on a 9 game losing streak.

  56. JK47

    Can we start calling him Cole Eldritch?

    Am I the only D&D nerd that would appreciate how apropos that would be?

    I don’t know what you’re talking about, but how about this one: “The Three Stigmata of Cole Eldritch”

  57. Brian Cronin

    Man, this has been such a long time coming. I definitely won’t make a prediction next game. ;) (Do note, though, that I predicted that they’d beat the Hawks seemingly years ago and that worked out okay!).

  58. KJG

    Everyone’s favorite Aldrich gets O rebound 1 ft under left side of basket…. He doesn’t dunk, and he chooses to go to the right side, for who knows why… And he misses… Get this guy more PT!

  59. Robtachi

    I don’t know what you’re talking about, but how about this one: “The Three Stigmata of Cole Eldritch”

    An Eldritch Knight is a slender, quasi-undead hulking giant, so the connection was inevitable for me.

    I’ll show myself out…

  60. maxwell_3g

    woodson has managed to keep melo on the bench this whole quarter. soooo. at least he did that right

  61. maxwell_3g

    its becoming increasingly clear that TH2 would eat end of the bench players for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. hes a player fellas

  62. Owen

    Honestly, how can Woodson watch Aldrich and conclude he isn’t worth a single primetime minute? The guy can play.

  63. coyle022

    Every active player scored tonight….big win and with a soft schedule upcoming this could be the turning point

  64. maxwell_3g

    Every active player scored tonight….big win and with a soft schedule upcoming this could be the turning point

    turning point to what though??? 1st round exits don’t excite me. I guess I should just enjoy this win

  65. flossy

    I thought the Knicks were depressing, but the Nets… wow. They’re practically booed off their own court, and Kevin Garnett looks every bit as washed up as Amar’e Stoudmire. For this they’ll be sending picks to Boston FIVE years from now.

  66. ephus

    Six more games before December 15 when the trade restriction is lifted for summer free agents.

    I would love to see the Knicks get to 8 – 15.

  67. BigBlueAL

    If the Knicks win the division they will be the 4th seed regardless of their record. The Knicks should still make it to the 2nd round of the playoffs. So yes this could be the turning point to at least watching the Knicks possibly play into May. Its not a turning point to a championship run obviously but shit I still want them to play as deep into the calender as possible.

  68. maxwell_3g

    today we learned that bargs at least has a backbone of some sort. now we just need to feed him water and raw red meat for the next month and hope he becomes a hot tempered Italian assassin ready to mix it up anytime, anywhere, with anyone. that would be great TV at least

  69. maxwell_3g

    seriously, can the refs stop giving these BS charge calls to Battier and the rest of the Heat. everyone knows its ruining the games except NBA officials (or their supervisors)

  70. ephus

    I strongly expect that 41 wins will top the Atlantic division this year. Automatic 4 seed (although the 5 seed could have home court if they have a better record).

    Atlantic winner looks likely to face Indiana in the ECSF.

  71. FrankGrimes

    Loved Bargs getting after KG even if we all know neither of them will do more than stare at each other menacingly.
    Strong night for Shump and TH2, hope we can hold on to both and don’t panic trade either/both.
    Toure Murray looked good in garbage time, would love to see him get more minutes.
    Rachel Nichols is somewhat hot in the right light

  72. maxwell_3g

    Is there any way we can reach out to Rachel Nichols so she can know of the admiration (in the right light) that this blogger community seems to have for her. she should probably know

  73. Z-man

    Wow, a win. seems like forever since I’ve been able to enjoy a 4th quarter.
    Shump was the MAN tonight. Please don’t trade him!

  74. Unreason

    I only caught a bit – the meaningless bit – of the game so I don’t know: Did the Knicks actually play some good defense tonight or did the Nyets just shit themselves cause they’re locked in a death spiral?

  75. flossy

    I only caught a bit – the meaningless bit – of the game so I don’t know: Did the Knicks actually play some good defense tonight or did the Nyets just shit themselves cause they’re locked in a death spiral?

    Our defense was whatever, the Nets are awful, but our offensive execution looked about ten times as crisp as at any other point this season. It helps when people hit open shots!

  76. Unreason

    Our defense was whatever, the Nets are awful, but our offensive execution looked about ten times as crisp as at any other point this season. It helps when people hit open shots!

    Thanks. Yes it was startling and good to see ‘em go in for a change. Hoping for Woodson to learn something useful from this is probably asking too much though, I assume.

  77. Brian Cronin

    Wow, a win. seems like forever since I’ve been able to enjoy a 4th quarter.
    Shump was the MAN tonight. Please don’t trade him!

    Yeah, definitely an enjoyable game. I miss being able to just enjoy these games! :)

  78. Eternal OptiKnist

    not just the P&R with melo and stat, but the P&R with stat and anyone has been nice to see the last 2 games. I get he has a little postgame now, but the man made his name on P&R. Epecially with Tyson out, im shocked it took them so long to start getting him going in P&R. It sucks in the defense and opens up shooters. keep doing it.

  79. FrankGrimes

    Amare’ had a nice night but ended in the trainers room Based on prior experience gotta think he’s done for the year.

  80. Z-man

    Bargs got creamed on the offensive boards by Lopez and had an ice-cold spell in the 3rd. But overall, he played a solid game and gave it to Garnett. I just hope that KG doesn’t turn the tables on him later, that dirty, chippy prick.

  81. JK47

    Look at the future assets the Nets gave up to put together this stinking shit pile of a team:

    2014 first rounder to Boston
    2014 first rounder to Atlanta
    2014 second rounder to Philadelphia
    2015 first rounder to Atlanta (swap rights)
    2015 second rounder to Atlanta
    2016 first rounder to Boston
    2016 second rounder to Clippers
    2017 first rounder to Boston (swap rights)
    2017 second rounder to Atlanta
    2018 first rounder to Boston

    It’s official, Nets! You’re even dumber than us!

  82. ephus

    JK47 – that is not to mention the package the Nets sent to Utah to acquire Williams: Favors, 2011 1st Round (Kanter) and 2013 1st Round.

    Nets are old with no infusion of fresh blood for Five Years.

  83. Unreason

    It’s official, Nets! You’re even dumber than us!

    That list is awesome. It is a balm for the chaffing caused by these shabby Knickers. Thanks.

  84. d-mar

    Kidd really doesn’t have a clue, every coach in the NBA knows that to beat the Knicks you set high screens and run the pick and roll and watch the Knicks D break down. I don’t care if you don’t have a true PG, run it with Livingston, Johnson, any guard. Instead, their offense consisted of molasses-slow post ups by Lopez and endless dribbling by Johnson.

    But I’ll take it, thanks J-Kidd!

  85. Brian Cronin

    The one thing that I will say for the Nets is that they are currently missing a whole lot of perimeter players (D-Will, Pierce, AK47 and Terry) and we all know how well teams kill the Knicks from the perimeter. But that’s all I will say for them. They were awful.

  86. Owen

    Can’t get that Aloe Blacc song out of my head. Good commercial even if KG is a punk.

    Tyson Chandler, you are the man…..

  87. hoolahoop

    The best game I’ve seen Melo play, ever! Is this the new Melo, passing to Amare rolling to the hoop, or just a one game enlightenment?
    Is Melo man enough to enjoy the W, only scoring 19? That would make him a real hero, and league MVP.

  88. hoolahoop

    I think Doc Rivers squeezed every bit of remaining life out of KG and PP.
    Maybe my hate for them biases my perception, but they are the two ugliest players in the NBA.

  89. AvonBarksdale

    I can’t believe how low the bar was that this feels like heaven but fuck it i’m happy and if melo amare pnr makes an appearance tomorrow i will be ecstatic so simple so enjoyable to watch, when melo hit the jumper on an amare screen in that sequence i was in another world of joy. this reminded me of last season in every way except bargs which is an upgrade his dunks and outside shots and on ball defense and mid range shots, his block early in the first quarter was probably more important than anything in the 4th but he is getting gritty game by game…until we get a winning record in place both teams still stink but i saw definite chemistry on the court and thats a start. we have a pulse ladies and gentlemen.

  90. ruruland

    I’ve never understood, from MDA on, why Amar’e/Melo hasn’t been the staple of the offense when they’re in the game together.
    It’s always seemed (and I can spend some time on Synergy to confirm) an incredibly efficient play.

    I also don’t understand why the Knicks don’t run more side pnr with Melo just inside the 3-point line.

    Shots go in, everything changes, including Melo’s tendencies and the haste with which opponents play offense.

    Melo has had 5 assists or more in about 25 percent of his career games, and he can go into facilitator mode for awhile here if guys are playing confident around him and making shots.

  91. Zanzibar

    I’ve never understood, from MDA on, why Amar’e/Melo hasn’t been the staple of the offense when they’re in the game together.

    Indeed baffling. I remember an article about a year ago which talked about how devastating a LBJ/Wade spread PnR was according to statistics but that Heat rarely used it and how Wade seemed surprised when given the stats on its effectiveness. I believe all of Melo/Amare PnRs last night came in a spread offense (no Kmart) which means it’s the old Suns half-court offense only Melo instead of Nash as the ball handler. JR’s game also could be kick-started by also making him the ball handler in spread PnR/PnPoP. And how many times have you cited Synergy showing Melo to be an elite roll man in the PnR? Those plays in a spread offense would trigger ball movement leading to open 3s against much better defenses. The skill sets of our particular players scream out for that approach especially in Chandler’s absence. I’d gladly take Tyson’s injury and a 3-13 start in a weak EC if it leads us to this season’s equivalent of last season’s 2pg lineup epiphany.

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