Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Knicks 117, Cavs 86: Letters to David

EDITOR’S NOTE: Tonight was David Stern’s final Knicks game as NBA Commissioner. A few hours before tipoff, the Knicks were asked to write a short letter to Stern highlighting some of the ways the outgoing chief had touched their lives over the years. These are their letters.

Cleveland Cavaliers 86 Final
Recap | Box Score
117 New York Knicks
Carmelo Anthony, SF 30 MIN | 8-17 FG | 10-12 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 29 PTS | +9

Yo Commish,

It’s been great working with you. When I came into the league I was just a kid, and you helped me keep my head on straight and get rid of that haircut. They say it’s a star’s league and you sure know how to take care of your stars. Remember that time me and LeBron [REDACTED] and then you had Silver come [REDACTED]? That was some funny shit. Anyway I hope you have a great retirement. Any time your in NYC be sure to hit me up. We’ll go that [REDACTED] up in [REDACTED] with all the [REDACTED] you tried getting numbers from after we [REDACTED]. Good times.

Much Love,

Melo

Tyson Chandler, C 32 MIN | 4-4 FG | 3-5 FT | 8 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 1 TO | 11 PTS | +27

Dear Commissioner Stern,

I’ve never liked you. I don’t like your face. I don’t like your hair. I don’t like your glasses. I don’t like your suits. I don’t like your teeth. I don’t like your wife. I don’t like your pet monkey Silver. I don’t like your shoes. I don’t like your voice. I don’t like your Subaru. And I don’t like your face.

Just kidding boss congrats have fun.

Tyson

Raymond Felton, PG 36 MIN | 5-10 FG | 2-2 FT | 5 REB | 9 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 4 TO | 12 PTS | +33

Dear David,

Thank you for your service to the league. Every time I see you at an NBA event or All Star weekend you hand me your keys thinking I’m the valet, even though we shook hands at the Draft. But that’s OK. I liked parking your car. I’ve never driven a Subaru before. I didn’t know you were a Soulja Boy fan but it was playing pretty loud when I started the car. I’m a fan too. Speaking of cars I don’t know if this is the right place to tell you this but Andre Miller still hasn’t given my car back from when I let him borrow it in Denver. Just thought you should know.

Peace,

Ray

Pablo Prigioni, PG 22 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | +15

Mother David,

I would please like to belief that you are a wonderful basketball boss. When I come to league I was very old but you make me feel like baby. I hope that when you expire you may airplane down to my country. Here we will eat wine and I show you my roof filled with many grazing steaks. During day we can car to the plaza and purchase many short blue jeans, and at night we can disgust our loved game. I would like also you to taste my car collection. I have long empty road in front of my castle so we can swim fast. Thank you for letting me pray in America. It is a wonderful country and the peoples have very strange smells.

With a Heart That Is Bleeding and Yet Fantastic With Love,

Pablo

J.R. Smith, SG 35 MIN | 8-16 FG | 1-3 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 19 PTS | +16

Hey,

Shoes untied. [REDACTED]

Yours Truly,

Earl

PS — Use the money to pay for Cleveland’s ankle surgeries.

Jeremy Tyler, PF 22 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-1 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 8 PTS | +14

Commissioner Stern,

I’m not gonan lie, I’m still pretty pissed you made that rule about high school kids that made me go to Japan. I thought it was a good idea at first but then I got there and that Mr. Baseball movie wasn’t lying. I broke four showerheads my first week there. You don’t know what it’s like stepping on people all the time. But I got my chance and now I’m happy, so thanks for making the NBA great. You’re pretty short too so don’t get stepped on out there.

Jeremy

Tim Hardaway Jr., SG 30 MIN | 11-17 FG | 1-1 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 29 PTS | +10

Dear Mr. Stern,

We haven’t gotten the chance to get to know eachother, but everyone says you were a great commissioner. Well, my dad says you were a mother-effer, but I think he meant that in a nice way. You know how my dad gets. Anyway I’m glad I got to put on a show for you for your last game at the Garden. I kept giving you the monocle after I’d make a basket but you looked like you were choking on water a lot. Hope you’re alright. I know my uncle PJ Brown says choking is fun but I don’t think it really is. I hope Adam Silver is as good as people say you were. I sometimes have nightmares of him biting my neck. I should talk to someone.

Good Luck,

THJR

Cole Aldrich, C 8 MIN | 0-1 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | +5

Dea rCom mis sioner,

Iapologize ifth is ishard to r e ad but I have to wr i te wit h my mouth on acc ount m y han ds do n ‘t work sowell% g oo dlu ckwith vrything.

You rs,

Cloe

Toure’ Murry, SG 6 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | +2

Mr. Stern,

Thanks for signing the balls and also my checks.

Toure’

Metta World Peace, SF 19 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-2 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | +24

Hari Krishna,

You know what the Vikings said about forgiveness? Nothin. But I think we should forgive each other. I was wild back in the day. Like a giraffe. That’s how I learned to steal lunch from the window washers. We should get together over All Star break down in the French Quarter. You know why they call it that right? Because same money buys you four times the trouble. Napoleon said that. HA! Remember when I was an All Star that one time? You probably wanted Scott Pollard. I don’t blame you. He’s an Aquarius. Hopefully once we’re both retired we can hang out at the golf course. Stack Jack and I go golfing with baseball bats. By hole five we have the course to ourselves. I actually invented the Arnold Palmer, but I call it the Peace Palmer. Did you know I rap? I’m putting out an album this summer. It’s called Taco Talk. I had cab drivers record all the beats. The Arab ones were the best. See you out there.

Jah Bless,

Metta

Five Things We Saw

  1. Simply put, the Cavaliers are like that time the lake in front of their city caught on fire. That’s how polluted and toxic the situation has become. You could read it in their movements, see it on their faces, and hear it in the emptiness that was their communication. The Cavaliers are bad, they are lost, and we beat the holy hell out of them. Like any half-decent team should.
  2. To achieve this, the Bockers burst out of the gate with the aplomb – and the small-ball lineup – that we’ve seen for going on a week. The rock ricocheted around the floor when it had to, stuck to Melo’s stove-hot mit when it wanted to, and generally continued looking like an extension of the team’s very basketball being. The looks were clean and unencumbered, the strokes confident and followed through. The spacing was [mostly] ideal, and the chemistry — mercifully, finally — looks locked-in, hopefully for the long haul.
  3. Is it just me, or does Kyrie Irving have a very distinct Richie-Tenenbaum-just-took-off-his-shoes vibe going on? I know he’s intimated that he would like out off of the flame-engulfed oil tanker that just careened into an iceberg please, but man, he’s not doing a very good job of hiding it where it matters most.
  4. As you’ve probably gathered from the above, David Stern was in attendance tonight – his final Knicks game as Commissioner. I can’t offer anything that hasn’t been or won’t be said in the myriad retrospectives and oral histories guaranteed to exhaust our open tabs in the coming days and weeks. But I will say this: Thank you for inventing an envelope-sized freezer.
  5. By my count, that’s four wins in a row. Celebrate accordingly.

86 comments on “Knicks 117, Cavs 86: Letters to David

  1. Kahnzy

    I about lost it with MWP’s section. If I didn’t know better, I’d actually believe he said it himself. Good stuff.

    4 wins in a row is 4 wins in a row. But they’ve been against teams that are actually worse (way worse) than ours. A good test will be Saturday.

    I’m still not optimistic enough to hope for another win against Miami (even though it has seemed like we’ve had their number the past year and a half or so); but if they can be competitive, stick to what works and adjust what doesn’t, and not blow it on something really stupid I’ll be happy.

  2. Jack Bauer

    JR , High Risk, High Reward…… (Thus the Pipe nickname). All kidding aside, he has played well the past few games , which is hard for me to write as I was completely fed up with him after his shoelace antics. Melo is really locked in and Woodson is FINALLY giving Tyler some burn and he as been rewarded for it. Not going to get carried away, but this is a pretty huge improvement over the horseshit hoops we’ve been forced to suffer through to this point. As long as Bargnani remains out they have a chance to be decent.

  3. iserp

    My only worry is if Woody regress back to bigs when Bargs/STAT/K-Mart come back.

    I think big units with K-Mart are not a problem since he is a good passer and offers cuts. I would say the problem is that when 3 out of Melo/Bargs/Chandler/STAT are in the game. They stop the ball way too much, and are usually static in the offense (unless involved in the P&R).

  4. flossy

    “I kept giving you the monocle after I’d make a basket but you looked like you were choking on water a lot.”

    I just fell out of bed.

  5. flossy

    Tim Hardaway Jr–score one for the eye testers!

    On another note, Jeremy Tyler >>>>> Bargnani. Our depth chart at center when everyone is healthy should really be Chandler, K-Mart, Amar’e or Jeremy Tyler, Country Cole Aldrich, Herb Williams, Bargnani.

    But seriously, I will ragequit this season if Bargnani goes right back into the starting lineup (or even the rotation) when he gets back. I know the teams we’ve beat since he got injured are not good, but the qualitative difference between how we play with him and without him is unbelievable.

  6. Nick C.

    Re: Bargs
    There are no longer a half dozen or so possessions spent in the first quarter to get him going, which inevitably leads to lots of clangs by Barg. Otherwise he is generally standing uselessly around the area between the elbow and the arc taking up space on the other possessions (and a bit lower down on defense lol).

  7. Hubert

    Fuck David Stern. I will never say a good word about that man after what he did to us in ’97, and no self-respecting Knicks fan should, either.

    Anyway, I know it’s unusual to fire someone during a winning streak, but doesn’t this good form just reinforce how stupid the coach has been all year?

    Fire Woodson.

    Also, this was my favorite recap of the year. I broke out laughing at my desk several times, and lost it during the Prigioni letter, causing several coworkers to wonder what I was smoking. Nice work.

  8. Hubert

    Loathing
    January 31, 2014 at 2:00 am

    My only worry is if Woody regress back to bigs when Bargs/STAT/K-Mart come back.

    You and all of us, both, my friend.

  9. lavor postell

    I don’t think even Woodson is dumb enough to insert Bargnani back into the starting lineup. I’m rooting for STAT and K-Mart to comeback and get into a groove relatively quickly, because otherwise I definitely see Woodson giving Bargs 15-20 minutes off the bench. It’s inevitable that Woodson is at least going to use Bargnani in some capacity any time we play a team that’s committed to playing with real size at the 4 and 5 like Indiana.

  10. Hubert

    I don’t think even Woodson is dumb enough to insert Bargnani back into the starting lineup.

    He isn’t stupid enough to do it right away. But the first game we lose in which we get seriously outrebounded, he will throw it all away and put Bargs (or some other big) back in the lineup.

    You know he will, too. Because Bargs is a big part of what we do here, and we’re not gonna just kick him to the curb.

  11. lavor postell

    You know he will, too. Because Bargs is a big part of what we do here, and we’re not gonna just kick him to the curb.

    Hahaha love this. Everytime I see these “quotes” from Woodson here or on P&T I can’t not laugh hysterically.

  12. Hubert

    With all the Super Bowl parties tonight, does anyone else think it’s possible that JR oversleeps and misses tomorrow night’s game?

  13. lavor postell

    1 – Anthony Bennett SF/PF
    2 – Victor Oladipo SG/PG
    3 – Otto Porter SF
    4 – Cody Zeller PF/C
    5 – Alex Len C
    6 – Nerlens Noel (injured all year) C
    7 – Ben McLemore SG
    8 – Kentavious Caldwell-Pope SG
    9 – Trey Burke PG
    10 – C.J. McCollum PG/SG
    11 – Michael Carter-Williams PG/SG
    12 – Steven Adams C
    13 – Kelly Olynyk C
    14 – Shabazz Muhammad SG/SF
    15 – Giannis Antetokounmpo G/F
    16 – Lucas Nogueira (still overseas) C
    17 – Dennis Schroder PG
    18 – Shane Larkin PG
    19 – Sergey Karasev SG/SF
    20 – Tony Snell SF
    21 – Gorgui Dieng C
    22 – Mason Plumlee C
    23 – Solomon Hill PF
    24 – Tim Hardaway Jr. SG
    25 – Reggie Bullock SF
    26 – Andre Roberson PF
    27 – Rudy Gobert C
    28 – Livio Jean-Charles (still overseas) SF
    29 – Archie Goodwin SG
    30 – Nemanja Nedovic PG

    Obviously there’s a lot of time for this draft to pan out, but at the least I think the Knicks landed a nice rotation piece in Hardaway which is great value No. 24. Makes it even more frustrating we gave away our 2014 and 2016 picks. THJ I think has contributed far more so far than the first 7 picks (Noel is injured so jury is still out) which is awesome for us and a real indictment on how bad the top of the draft was.

  14. GoNyGoNYGo

    With all the Super Bowl parties tonight, does anyone else think it’s possible that JR oversleeps and misses tomorrow night’s game?

    If Woodson is smart, he needs to have set special curfew for tonight. He won’t, though.

    I don’t think even Woodson is dumb enough to insert Bargnani back into the starting lineup.

    Since I don’t think he’s smart enough to enforce the curfew, I also think he’ll try to insert Bargnani back at the starting 4.

  15. thenamestsam

    4 wins in a row is 4 wins in a row. But they’ve been against teams that are actually worse (way worse) than ours. A good test will be Saturday.

    Crazy thing is how close our record is to theirs. Watching the game last night my main reaction was disbelief that we have basically the same record they do. Really underscores just how dramatic our underachievement has been so far this year. 4 straight wins is great but still only gets us to 4-3 on this critical homestand with Miami coming to close it out. Speaking of which the schedule is about to get a whole lot tougher again. Next 8 games include the Blazers and Nuggets at home, Thunder on the road, and a road back to back against the Grizz and Pellies on top of the aforementioned Heat. Not too difficult to conceive of a 1-7 stretch, and just maintaining some positive momentum with 4-4 or 5-3 would be a real accomplishment.

    Hopefully Bargnani stays away. Impossible to trust Woodson to utilize him appropriately (i.e. sitting his ass on the bench other than in very specific matchups) at this point.

  16. Jake S.

    I’m not emotionally prepared for the Knicks regress to their excremental selves when Bargnani returns. Semi-encouraging Woodson seems to be embracing the smaller lineup, but he’s still saying shit like this:

    “With the small lineup, we know that it works,” he said. “I don’t know if I’ll even go away from it this time. With big lineups, I like Bargnani at [power forward]. That was the reason for bringing him over. But we haven’t had a chance with that core group to develop some chemistry.”

    Just kill me.

  17. Owen

    That is a hilarious quote….

    The absence of Varejao had a big impact on the Cavs. He is a pretty critical piece for them with sims and Bennett being the alternatives….

  18. MSA

    @18

    Except for Steven Adams and Giannis Antetokounmpo (maybe Nerlens Noel too), there’s not a single player in that draft list that I would pick ahead of THJ right now.

  19. Garson

    Any past or current player comparissons for Timmy H Jr ?

    A lights out 3 point shooter who can posterize you at the rim with high level fast break ability.

    Little playmaking ability as well a Defense although can improve.

    Drawing a blank….

  20. iserp

    Don’t be so hard with Bargs. He is not a good basketball player, but lineups with him but without Chandler or Stoudemire have played reasonably well. The problem is the really big lineups where there is not ball movement at all.

    And i still would play him on Hibbert (instead of Tyson) if we play the Pacers. Just play small ball, or if Melo is at the 3 then K-Mart at the 4.

  21. DRed

    Don’t be so hard with Bargs. He is not a good basketball player, but lineups with him but without Chandler or Stoudemire have played reasonably well. The problem is the really big lineups where there is not ball movement at all.

    Bargs is not a good basketball player. I bet those lineups would be even better with a good basketball player in them.

  22. DRed

    Fuck David Stern. I will never say a good word about that man after what he did to us in ’97, and no self-respecting Knicks fan should, either.

    Amen!

    Anyway, I know it’s unusual to fire someone during a winning streak, but doesn’t this good form just reinforce how stupid the coach has been all year?

    Amen!

    Fire Woodson.

    Preach on!

  23. lavor postell

    Very interesting read from Chris Herring

    http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303277704579347272543933580?KEYWORDS=CHRIS+HERRING&mg=reno64-wsj&url=http%3A%2F%2Fonline.wsj.com%2Farticle%2FSB10001424052702303277704579347272543933580.html%3FKEYWORDS%3DCHRIS%2BHERRING

    Basically says that part of Iman’s struggles have to do with the fact he is strongest operating from the right corner and right wing, but Felton generally initiates the PNR from the right side of the floor. Felton assists Iman on a bucket once every 70 minutes. Iman’s best games as a Knick have come with pg’s who operate from the left side of the floor like Baron Davis in 2011-12 (hold in your laughter) and Beno this year during the Texas trip. The first two games with Baron he put up consecutive 25 point games and against San Antonio and Houston with Beno this season, Shump put up 27 and 26 on a back-to-back.

    Also from Herring on Twitter:
    Shumpert last season through 28 games: 34.8 FG% and 38% from three
    JR this season through 28 games: 34.8 FG% and 33% from three

    Shumpert last season 29th game forward: 46.8 FG% and 43% from three
    JR this season 29th game forward: 45.5 FG% and 44.3% from three

    This is in relation to the fact that both were recovering from pretty serious knee surgery.

  24. gransoporro

    I think it is absolutely terrible to wish a long recovery to an injured player.

    But it keeps the coach on the right (and known) path: what are the odds the coach to finally become a good coach?

    So I am reduced to be an absolutely terrible person…

  25. DRed

    “If field-goal attempts are a measure of confidence, he’s not lacking,” said ESPN analyst Doris Burke, of the man who ranks 108th in FG/A per 36 minutes out of the 113 guards in the NBA who have played 500 or more minutes this season.

  26. JK47

    With THJ’s recent minutes bump, he is now starting to show up on some of the league leaderboards. He currently ranks #15 in the NBA in TS%, but for some reason does not show up on the eFG% leaderboard where he would rank #10. He ranks #14 in individual offensive rating and is #3 in turnover percentage.

  27. domiknick

    Is it just me, or does Kyrie Irving have a very distinct Richie-Tenenbaum-just-took-off-his-shoes vibe going on?

    lol, nice.

  28. Hubert

    Obviously there’s a lot of time for this draft to pan out, but at the least I think the Knicks landed a nice rotation piece in Hardaway which is great value No. 24. Makes it even more frustrating we gave away our 2014 and 2016 picks. THJ I think has contributed far more so far than the first 7 picks (Noel is injured so jury is still out) which is awesome for us and a real indictment on how bad the top of the draft was.

    Speak of the devil, this just came out on si.com

    http://nba.si.com/2014/01/31/2013-nba-draft-redraft-giannis-antetokounmpo/?eref=sihp

    (it’s a redraft of the draft, and it has Hardaway going FIFTH!)

    By the way, what did Nostradamus say about Hardaway again? Remind me.

  29. massive

    Don’t look now, but Timmy Jr is on pace to have a better rookie season than both Reggie Miller and Ray Allen.

    The Knicks should give up on Rondo’s forcing a trade and hope Kyrie Irving forces one instead. You get Irving and Hardaway in the same backcourt and you have a more athletic version of the Splash Brothers. I’d trade the farm for that.

  30. Hubert

    Any past or current player comparissons for Timmy H Jr ?

    Hopefully not Landry Fields.

    Remember it was about this time in his rookie year when there were redrafts that had him in the top 5 and we all thought he was untouchable.

    Timmy has been excellent, but I was seriously burned by that so I have withheld my enthusiasm accordingly.

  31. flossy

    Well, I am already chasing the wax for my life-size cast bronze statue of Tim Hardaway, Jr., so…

  32. DRed

    If Timmy had made 7 fewer threes he’d be shooting 37% from downtown and we wouldn’t be making plans to go see him in the hall of fame in 20 years. But he’d still be a lot better than I expected.

  33. massive

    Landry’s problem was his inability to play with Melo. Timmy Jr can already play with him, and he’s the exact type of player who thrives in a traditional D’Antoni system. And there is too much irony for him not to retire a New York Knick, so there’s always that.

  34. thenamestsam

    I think the question of THJ’s player prototype going forward is a very interesting one. Offensively he has already shown himself to be extremely capable as a catch and shoot guy and great in transition, but we haven’t gotten a chance to see much of him as an A option in the half court offense, and what we have seen has been mostly pretty ugly isolation stuff. I’d like to see the coaching staff add a lot more action with him running off screens to see whether he can continue to hit shots at a consistent rate when his feet aren’t as set. Going forward I think that will be the area his offensive game grows into most naturally because I’m not sure he has the court vision and handle to be a good secondary facilitator off the pick and roll. Defensively he obviously has a long way to go, but that’s typical for rookies. He certainly isn’t lacking any tools in terms of athleticism or height/length to become at least decent on that end.

    He has the athleticism and shooting ability to be a truly elite 3 and D type…if he can figure out the D part. If he struggles with the defense then in order to become a really good player he’ll have to find a way to expand his offensive game considerably either through the PnR or more of a game working off screens. If he can’t do that then dunking Steve Novak would be right. There’s nothing wrong with that – it’s basically what he is now and it’s pretty darn good, but hopefully he’ll continue developing and become a borderline all-star type. Maybe right–handed Michael Redd as a comp?

  35. DRed

    I don’t get why Hardaway is so bad on defense. But I do wish we had someone I had more confidence in teaching him how to play it.

  36. DRed

    Landry’s problem was his inability to play with Melo.

    That and nerve damage in his shooting arm. His shot has vanished completely. He’s only taken 19 threes since he left the Knicks. (and since he’s only made 2, that was probably 19 too many)

  37. flossy

    If Timmy had made 7 fewer threes he’d be shooting 37% from downtown and we wouldn’t be making plans to go see him in the hall of fame in 20 years. But he’d still be a lot better than I expected.

    If he’d made 8 more threes, he’d be the best 3 point shooter in the NBA this season. So.

  38. Crumple

    Let’s Go Knicks!

    What fun…4 straight. And they look goooood.

    Melo…what can you say? A beast.

    I know, I know, bad opponents. But still.

  39. DRed

    If he’d made 8 more threes, he’d be the best 3 point shooter in the NBA this season. So.

    Exactly my point. Tim derives the majority of his value this year from a pretty volatile statistic. Is 41% from 3 his true ability, Tim on a hot streak, Tim actually not playing his best? I have no idea, so it’s hard to say what we’ve got going forward.

  40. Garson

    How About Thunder Dan Majerle?

    I was younger when he was playing but remember him being a solid shooter with a decent finish

    I recal a nice dunk he has where he grabbed the rim from one side and dunked from the other… might have been a dream.

  41. Hubert

    How About Thunder Dan Majerle?

    +1 for a rare cross racial comparison.

    -2 because I hated Dan Majerle.

  42. Z-man

    “Any past or current player comparissons for Timmy H Jr ?

    A lights out 3 point shooter who can posterize you at the rim with high level fast break ability.

    Little playmaking ability as well a Defense although can improve.

    Drawing a blank….”

    A friend of mine had suggested Rolando Blackman as a comparison. For those who saw Rolando in his prime (not the ancient ’94 version that still should have been played in game 7) the similarity in shooting form and body type is clear, but TH2 has a long way to go to reach that lofty level.

  43. domiknick

    How About Thunder Dan Majerle?

    I was younger when he was playing but remember him being a solid shooter with a decent finish

    I recal a nice dunk he has where he grabbed the rim from one side and dunked from the other… might have been a dream.

    If I remember correctly, Majerle got the “thunder” nickname for his dunking ability, which I think is what he was originally known for, and then reinvented himself as he got older as a 3-pt specialist.

  44. Owen

    Klay Thompson?

    It’s still early for Timmy. I am happy to have been proved wrong so far but three point shooting stabilizes later than other stats.

    But very pleasantly surprised so far, been the rare guy so far to shoot significantly better in the NBA than college….

  45. lavor postell

    I think its safe to say that if THJ keeps his 3 point shooting to spot up opportunities hovering around the 40% mark is his norm. He shot slightly above 40% on spot up threes in 3 years at Michigan so I’m inclined to believe this not Landry Fields 2.0. His shot is also picture perfect compared to however you would describe Fields’ jumper which makes me more confident.

  46. flossy

    His shot is also picture perfect compared to however you would describe Fields’ jumper which makes me more confident.

    Yeah, exactly. Landry Fields lining up a 3 in his rookie year looked like someone loading a catapult.

  47. Garson

    Feilds’ pre-draft scouting report was the exact opposite of THJr – Poor Shooting ability and Zero Athleticism… Loved Feilds as he was easy to root for on with Gallo, Chandler Stat etc… but a very poor model for THJr.

  48. lavor postell

    @ Owen

    I think his shooting percentages have been much better, because of how his shot distribution has changes. He’s always been an elite spot up shooter, which is pretty much all he did his freshman year (his most efficient season), but struggles a lot when he gets put into a role of creating and initiating his own offense.

  49. mokers

    I know you don’t want to get too excited because all of these wins are against bad teams and the schedule is toughening up, but beating the bad teams when you are supposed to is something the Knicks haven’t been able to do this year.

    As for everything schedule, the immediate schedule is tough, but overall the Knicks have 14 games against the west left, but 9 of those aren’t currently playoff teams. Not that those will be easy games (Denver, Memphis are currently not in the playoffs), but not the end of the world. Once Portland and OKC are over, the knicks will have finished with the top 4 seeds in the west.

    Of the games with the east, there is Miami for 3 games and the pacers just once more (at home). Of the last 7 games, 2 are against Toronto and 2 are against the Nets, so there is opportunity if the Knicks play even semi competently to do well.

  50. massive

    I think Tim Hardaway is a part of the NBA’s new “shoot or die” breed of shooting guards. Klay Thompson shoots over 7 a game, and Brad Beal shoots close to 5 a night. It should be an encouraging thought that those guys play next to some of the best guards in the league in Stephen Curry and John Wall and Hardaway Jr has been playing next to arguably the worst PG situation in pro basketball. And then when you consider that while playing next to worse guards, he’s also scoring on a higher efficiency level which is pretty great.

    If we could get a good point guard in New York, we might just have something.

  51. lavor postell

    If we could get a good point guard in New York, we might just have something.

    If we are sticking with Melo-Tyson through 2015 then this has to be the area of need to be addressed soonest. Felton looks a bit more spry the past few games and has shown a better ability to penetrate, but watching him “defend” is beyond frustrating. Raptors look like they’re trying to create a market for Lowry, but with his contract expiring there may not be much of one. If we can swing Felton/MWP/lottery protected 2018 pick that would be ideal, but I also would be ok with Lowry for Felton/Shump if that’s what it takes. Unfortunately I actually take Dolan at his word and I don’t expect the Knicks to make any moves this season.

  52. lavor postell

    Also it’s pretty amusing looking back at the ESPN player rankings before the season. Irving, Curry, Westbrook (injury), Rose (injury), Gasol (injury), Parker, Harden and Howard all ranked ahead of Melo and George. I can see an argument for Howard based on what he’s contributed defensively for him to be ahead of those 2 guys, but I don’t think anybody else on that list has been as good as either Melo or George so far this season. Parker, who I thought was the best point guard in the league last season, look a step slow this season to me.

    Griffin was ranked ahead of Melo and Love was ranked ahead of both as well. Can definitely see the argument for either of those guys. Griffin in particular seems to have elevated his game in the absence of Paul quite effortlessly.

  53. Webjai

    When I read “Mother David”… I lost it for like 3 straight minutes giggling.

    That was Gold, Jerry! GOLD!

  54. nicos

    I’m with MSA- Detroit era Allan Houston is a pretty good comp for THJ. He shot the three well and scored on the break and that was about it- no rebounding or passing to speak of.

  55. Robtachi

    Every time I search “Allan Houston” on Basketball Reference in the Chrome URL bar, it directs me to Latrell Sprewell. Seriously, try it. Weird.

  56. art vandelay

    I would like to see them occasionally (maybe once a game) try running THJ off of a curl play (they did it once in the LA game and it worked perfectly) a la Rip Hamilton in his Detroit days. I think he could prosper in these sets and we could see how to broaden his skill set beyond just being a 3-point sniper essentially. He could evolve to run defenders ragged off of screens, tiring them out at that end once he starts getting enough minutes, and potentially draw some fouls that way.

    Right now, if you watch him play, on offense he pretty much stands out on the 3-point line and waits to receive a kick-out off of a Melo-generated double. Obviously, this has worked well for him thus far because his 3-point FG % has been excellent, albeit over a small sample size. I’d like to see what else he can do and also to see if, when he potentially cools off from beyond 3-point line, he can still be a contributor in other ways on the offensive end.

  57. Jack Bauer

    “I don’t think even Woodson is dumb enough to insert Bargnani back into the starting lineup. ”

    Until he proves me wrong , I think Woodson IS stupid enough to go right back to starting Bargs and regressing back to the poor excuse of a basketball team they were before.

  58. mokers

    When I heard torn elbow ligament, I thought that Bargs would be done for the year, but I agree that Woodson is stupid enough to force Bargnani into lineups even if it kills the flow of the offense and defense.

  59. bockadoo

    Possible THJr comps, while showing my age: Andrew Toney, Cazzie Russell, Rex Chapman, Charlie Scott, Otis Birdsong, Super John Williamson, World B Free,…

  60. lavor postell

    OKC is just putting it on Brooklyn tonight. Makes me much less embarassed to have lost by 30 on XMas day with how they’ve been playing recently.

  61. Owen

    Was at the Nets game. Buddy has tickets. Most absurd shooting display. Durant we know but Ibaka has a beautiful stroke. Think Goldsberry had him as the best midrange shooter in the league last year right? He looked it tonight.

    At least we aren’t Nets fans, that’s my current feeling about the Knicks

  62. Kahnzy

    At least we aren’t Nets fans, that’s my current feeling about the Knicks

    That’s been the only saving grace for this entire season for me.

  63. Jack Bauer

    Pierce and Garnett looked so done last May in the playoffs. Stick a fork in them, both are D.. O.. N.. E

  64. alsep73

    Bynum ends up in Indiana! Who the heck expected that?

    That’s hilarious, especially since the only reason other teams seemed interested in him was to help combat Hibbert.

  65. KnickfaninNJ

    Mahinmi is a good backup center. If Bynum shows he is good again, then they can trade one of them, so it’s sort of a possible win/no lose for the Pacers.

  66. Z-man

    TH2’s shooting has been incredible during this 4-game winning streak. I am really looking forward to see how he does vs. the heat, probably with dad watching. This is a pretty big game for us!

  67. mokers

    I am guessing they picked him up and will release him right after he can’t be added to a playoff roster, but it’s possible the pacers could get his head out of his assistant. Maybe Vogel thinks the East is big, man?

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