Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Knicks 90, Pacers 80

Indiana Pacers 80 Final
Recap | Box Score
90 New York Knicks
Solomon Jones, PF 14 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | +2

Look, I get the logic behind wanting to throw a big body at Roy Hibbert, who, truth be told, is rilly big, aside from taking up more three-dimensional space than any other ‘Bocker, SOLOMOJO didn’t do much. After 26 minutes in orange of blue, my judgment of Solomon isn’t very generous. See what I did there?

Carmelo Anthony, SF 30 MIN | 9-23 FG | 5-6 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 25 PTS | 0

I’m sure there are still odd particles of David West’s tuft-y, Jazz-tastic goatee embedded deep within Melo’s epidermis. After starting the game dusting off All-Defensive first Team candidate Paul George with the nonchalance of a particularly nonchalant person doing something nonchalantly, the Children of the Corn put the prison trustee-esque brute West on to Melo, and I found myself flashing back to those evenings of yore when Anthony Mason/Xavier McDaniel tried to pound Scottie Pippen’s face until it resembled a piece of overly-tenderized, milk-fed veal (I mean, more than it usually does/did). It’s profoundly disarming, finding yourself on the other end of the. “Basketball is a game of grace/poetry/beauty, not a mean-spirited, blood-drenched bit of grappling in a hardwood mud pit! Where are the arbiters to put these dastardly, uncouth scallywags in their proper place — the gutter from whence they came! Good day, Sir….I SAID GOOD DAY!” argument. Two things: Melo has to learn not to lose his cool when he’s not getting the calls (and believe, me, he’s got a legitimate beef). This has been a season-long issue and, between the Chthulus in Round One and these self-same Hoosiers in Round Two (Assuming they get there, knock on an entire forest), the postseason’s going to be a constant stream of creepily irritating dudes doing everything imaginable — even pushing the boundaries of the rulebook/flinging handfuls of General Mills-brand cereals — to get under his skin. Amazingly, J.R. is better at keeping his composure than Melo is. (He’s not tryna get the gripe! I’ll show myself out…) Two, even if it meant losing this game, there was no need to send Melo back into the game in the 4th. When he wandered over to the sideline, I had horrible, sweat-soaked visions of Kobe’s shredded achilles tendon dancing in my head. The juice just ain’t worth the squeeze, Coach. Of course Melo’s not going to ask to remain glued to the pine and the subs managed to keep the lead at double digits, but that worried me.

Iman Shumpert, SF 25 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | +13

Here’s a fun fact. Shump’s rebound rate has jumped to 12.7 from 9.9 last year. Part of it’s due to the fact that he’s ostensibly playing small forward these days as opposed to exclusively seeing action at PG/SG in ’12. But if you watch, he’s got that J.R-esque knack for jumping into the fray from the perimeter before someone can box him out.

Raymond Felton, PG 33 MIN | 5-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 11 PTS | +9

More facts! More funz! Raymond Felton’s been shooting a nifty 47% from the field since the All-Star break, basically since he recovered from the multiple contusions to his flippers that he suffered in late December. At one point in the 3rd, Once again, he saved his finest bulldoggery for the final frame, going 3-4 and banging home a tough layup, a pretty floater in the lane and a trey.

Pablo Prigioni, PG 24 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 3 PTS | -12

I love Pablo. If only because, as the great David Roth pointed out, he really looks like the world’s tallest, sneakiest, cleverest, Modigliani painting (Slightly NSFW).

Chris Copeland, SF 34 MIN | 8-12 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 20 PTS | +8

Another very, very productive outing for the People’s Cope, who did a solid job tusslin’ with all those burlier, brawnier Nap Town PF/C’s. Oh, and if you haven’t read this article about Cope’s journey, do so now. The recap will still be here when you get back. He’s still far, far from being even an average defender, but if he can make the leap from “Starts drooling like one is facing Steve Novak” to sub-par/average, he’s a serious asset, especially given his ability to spread the floor/lur the opposing big out to the three-point line. He has to get PT in the playoffs, even in favor of….

Steve Novak, SF 18 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | +10

…If you’re like me, you probably were first introduced to Chaos Theory via the disaffected, oily, curiously-unbuttoned mathematical stylings of Dr. Ian Malcolm/Jeff Goldblum (There’s no difference between the two. That IS Jeff Goldblum. You can’t tell where Goldblum ends and Malcolm begins. Perfs casting.). I mention this because I have an example from tonight’s game that would set James Gleick’s heart ablaze. The only explanation for Steve Novak unleashing a hook shot on a pick and roll drive to the rim is that a butterfly farted in Indonesia. I just blew your minds.

Jason Kidd, PG 30 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 5 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +17

So much beautiful, hands-y goodness from our ol’ chum, Jason but his shot, which seemingly had all the kinks and bugs and old man smell washed out over the last few games, got really bricktastic.

James White, SG 3 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -4

JAMES WHITE ANAGRAM FUN: MEET JAWS…HI?

J.R. Smith, SG 30 MIN | 7-16 FG | 0-1 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 15 PTS | +7

I know Smith’s been playing the best ball of his career, but it’s amazing the way the narrative has swung from, “J.R an All-Star? That’s so redonkulous!” to, “J.R. IS the 6th Man of the Year–no bout a doubt it.” I don’t know if 1.5 months of great play is more important than 40 games of inefficient chuckery (Actually, you use that same paradigm for the entire team this year.), but it’s natural to recall what Earl’s doing now when punching chads than Crawford’s stylings in LA or the way that Jarrett Jack transformed Golden State. I’m not saying he doesn’t deserve the big, shiny trophy, but three’s certainly a case to be made otherwise.

Mike Woodson

LOOK OUT, COACH!

BH1upYrCMAEVSod

Five Things We Saw

  1. This was as aggressively sloppy/sloppily aggressive a game as I’ve seen in awhile. Things started off all sunshine and lollipops, with Melo ailing jumper after jumper. (Side note: Is there any sound more immediately pleasurable than a pretty jumper swishing through the hoop? That ‘thwock’ [When it's a Knick doing the thwocking, natch] encapsulates something essential, something pure that I can’t really put into words. Maybe it’s just me.). Indiana clawed their way back, with BK’s own Lance Stephenson scowlingly driving to the tin and banging home threes. A 18-6 run in the 2nd, fueled by the kind of sweet, Socialistic ball-movement that even a guy who carries around the Gadsden Flag would love and banking 5 of their first 9 heaves from downtown produced a lead that ballooned to as much as 20, before the Athenians of the Prarie whittled the deficit back down to a disturbingly last-Thursday’s-Bulls-game, all-too-manageable 7 by the intermission.
  2. Evidently the Lead Horses watched a series of inflatable anthropomorphic animals batter Ed Burns around during halftime, because they came out of the locker room determined to win the fight, if not the game itself. The refs decided to (as the oft-used expression goes) “Let them play.” In this instance, that meant allowing Messrs. Hibbert, West, et al do everything this side of ripping off one of Solomon Jones gangling limbs and using it to bludgeon the New Yorkers within an inch of their lives. Shump got a bit of amateur rhinoplasty on a layup attempt. Melo was struck in the ‘nads, (And, as our fave member of the Basketball Algonquin Round Table, netw3rk, put it, “Oh, no, Melo’s hurt….whew, he only got hit in the nuts.”) hands and finally a serious zetz to the shoulder, which sent him to the bench where he was given doses of Deer Antler Spray. The lead vacillated between (See, Clyde. THAT’s the proper use of “Vacillate!”) 7 and 14 (and I was sure there was a run coming that was going to make this one a down-to-the-cuticles-chomping nail-biter. But Cope and Felt and the 2nd unit pushed the lead back to 15 on a corner three by J.R., Indy couldn’t hit the open threes that the Knicks were giving them (and if they had shot even decently from the outside/not missed oh-so-many tosses from the charity stripe, this game might have unfolded in an altogether different manner), and that, got the hyperadiposic, Nordic woman doing her vocal warm ups.
  3. Not sure if you caught it, but Clyde unleashed what might possibly be my fave rhymed couplet he’s ever slung. In reference to Melo’s injury, the poet laureate of the hardwood hath spake this glorious bit of verbiage: “Luckily his contusion didn’t cause any confusion.” [Slow, teary-eyed clap]
  4. So the seedings are locked. The Knicks are the two seed, have home court through ’till the Eastern Conference Finals, they’ve won 15 of the last 16 games, snaggled 30 wins at MSG for the first time sine 2001, and word is starting to trickle out via corporate whistleblowers that Tyson, K-Mart and even SHEED are close to returning. This is fun. This is a fun team. It’s been a slightly tortuous journey getting here, and I have to admit that I certainly didn’t see it coming in September and proclaimed this team dead on more than one occasion during the awful 20-21 dirge of winter, but here we are. Let’s end it with some swell pictures from Jonah Kaner. Go Knicks!
  5. BH2BTvSCQAEkJQP

    BH2B5J7CIAA18IH

25 comments on “Knicks 90, Pacers 80

  1. johnno

    What is really amazing that it was just four weeks ago today that most of us were starting to feel that the season was starting to swirl down the toilet and that any dreams of doing much in the playoffs were just that, dreams. (For those of you who don’t feel like looking at the schedule, tomorrow is the 4 week anniversary of the Kurt game.)

  2. Z-man

    Looks like we are well positioned for a playoff run. Nice job, Woody, Grun, and yes, for once, Dolan!

  3. jon abbey

    Z-man:
    Looks like we are well positioned for a playoff run. Nice job, Woody, Grun, and yes, for once, Dolan!

    and CAA for somehow keeping JR in town.

  4. maxwell_3g

    if we somehow manage to do something this year, “The Kurt Game” will be one of those events that all Knicks fans will talk about for years and no one else will have any idea of what the hell we are referring to. is Kurt still haning out with the team? Please say yes, because if not, signing this stiff Jones was no worth it at all

  5. jon abbey

    Chris Copeland says that getting back their big men will be a turning point for the Knicks. um, Chris, when you’ve won 15 of 16, a turning point isn’t a good thing.

  6. BigBlueAL

    jon abbey:
    Chris Copeland says that getting back their big men will be a turning point for the Knicks. um, Chris, when you’ve won 15 of 16, a turning point isn’t a good thing.

    Cope shouldnt be excited about getting their big men back since it will probably mean no playing time for him.

  7. d-mar

    So when Tyson and K-Mart come back what’s our starting lineup? Felton, Prigs, Shump, Melo, Tyson? Or do we put Prigs back on the bench and go with a front line of Melo, Tyson and K-Mart with Felton and Shump at the 1,2.

    Either way, something was really working with Prigs in the starting lineup, as in quick starts and a 14-1 record. I hope Chandler doesn’t eff that up.

  8. mr.JayP

    d-mar:
    So when Tyson and K-Mart come back what’s our starting lineup? Felton, Prigs, Shump, Melo, Tyson? Or do we put Prigs back on the bench and go with a front line of Melo, Tyson and K-Mart with Felton and Shump at the 1,2.

    Either way, something was really working with Prigs in the starting lineup, as in quick starts and a 14-1 record. I hope Chandler doesn’t eff that up.

    If it isnt broke, dont try and fix it. Leave prigs in there and have Ty start at Center.

    At this point, you sorta have to give Cope playing time on the 2nd unit, he can def. play the 4 and draw out another big body from the middle. And pairing him with Novak will def. help people operate in the paint.

  9. BigBlueAL

    Its gonna be very interesting to see what Woodson does in the playoffs with the rotation especially if Chandler/KMart/Sheed are all healthy and ready to play. Thats not even taking into consideration if Amar’e can play but at this point I am not expecting anything from him nor do I think Woodson is even expecting/wanting him to play. He constantly talks about Chandler/KMart and now about Sheed being ready for the playoffs. Dont think Amar’e is even a consideration for Woodson in the playoffs but who knows.

  10. Eternal OptiKnist

    BigBlueAL: Thats not even taking into consideration if Amar’e can play but at this point I am not expecting anything from him nor do I think Woodson is even expecting/wanting him to play. He constantly talks about Chandler/KMart and now about Sheed being ready for the playoffs. Dont think Amar’e is even a consideration for Woodson in the playoffs but who knows.

    Yea, very telling that Woody doesn’t even refer to him anymore. Maybe not since that report that he was pissed he was shooting an ESPN special and not updating him on progress. And i think timetable-wise…he was a faster return than sheed. Hopefully, the amare return doesnt become ill-timed drama. I actually think he’ll help in a very positive way if he does play.

  11. MeloDrama

    It’s gonna be tough to really incorporate Amar’e in the middle of a playoff series. Even as well as he played on his first comeback this year, it took him awhile to round into form.

  12. Eternal OptiKnist

    MeloDrama: It’s gonna be tough to really incorporate Amar’e in the middle of a playoff series. Even as well as he played on his first comeback this year, it took him awhile to round into form.

    I’m not sure it’d be that hard. 1) he had a layoff of what…9 months in his first return this year? This was just a cleanout…no exploding cyst. 2) he’s already established the role off the bench and got the confidence in his post game. i.e. we know what he can do already. 3) who knows what our big-man injury situation will be. He might be one of very few options.

  13. yellowboy90

    Can the Knicks start Prigs if Celtics start Green at the 2? Felton can’t guard Green down low. It should make for some nice offense considering Paul would be on Prigs trying to cover the PnR. I think the best option is to go with a Prigs and Kidd back court with the second unit to start the 2nd quarter.

  14. ephus

    This is a GREAT time to be a Knick fan.

    Win Atlantic Division – Check

    Stay healthy – not so much

    Get healthy for the playoffs – we still have hope

    Home court for first two rounds – Check

    Favorites against Celtics – Check

    Harnass superfreak JR Smith – Check

    Iman Shumpert still channeling Christopher Reid – Check

    ‘Melo doing the best Lamar Mundane imitation in thirty years – Check

    Bernard King to get enshrined – Check (I’m going with the family, so should you)

    Ray Felton, Pablo Prigioni and Jason Kidd moving the ball exactly like the Knicks couldn’t last season – Check

    Chris Copeland proving that I was watching the wrong player during summer league – Check (but Chris Smith really was entertaining to watch).

    Par for this year was set at a first round victory. I am still hopeful for that rare Double Eagle (and a parade down the Canyon of Heroes).

  15. Frank

    Yeah the playoff bigs rotation is really going to be interesting. Currently we have 6 guys who could/should be playing the 4 or 5 (96 total minutes). Figure Melo plays 40 min/game and Chandler plays 36. That only leaves 20 minutes for the other 4. Copeland and Melo can downshift to the 3, but probably only if Sheed is one of the other 2 bigs — or else the spacing will blow up.

    Chandler
    Melo
    Wallace
    Martin
    Copeland
    Camby

    I personally think Copeland deserves 10 min/game at least. He has been an absolute revelation on offense, and when he can pull one of the opposing bigs out, it really opens up that 2nd unit’s offense. We can go offense/defense at times with Cope or K-Mart I guess.

    Camby I wouldn’t take off the bench unless there was an emergency.

    I think all 6 bigs will play if we make it to the ECFs, if for no other reason than to foul the sh*t out of LBJ and Wade. That will be one seriously physical series, especially since Lebron has already made it clear that physical play bothers him.

  16. Frank

    The great thing about having some depth again is that Chandler can stop playing like he’s scared of picking up fouls. Now that we’ve shown we can win without him if necessary, we need to see him play balls to the wall like the DPOY he was last year. If he fouls out, so be it – lots of guys to pick it up for him.

  17. danvt

    Frank: we need to see him play balls to the wall like the DPOY he was last year. If he fouls out, so be it – lots of guys to pick it up for him.

    Hrumph! Tyson’s absence seems to mean less of a role for a roller on the pick and roll. The offense has come more times, starting with a high screen, but then coming off a pass to the wing to Melo or JR. This has meant that anyone can really play center as long as they play defense and get out of the way on offense (Copeland at the three line is perfect!) and that there’s fewer games where Felton is taking 20 shots.

  18. danvt

    http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/44414872/

    Nice, but it’s not enough to just be worthy of NY. It’s about ending the drought. Right now the Knicks look clearly ready to get to the conference finals. I think they match up well with MIA, judging from the regular season results. They WON’T BE THE FAVORITE PROBABLY EVER in this era but they could steal one ala NYG 2007.

  19. d-mar

    I think it’ll be interesting to see if opposing coaches decide to double Melo or not. Personally, I’d stay with single coverage and let him get his 40, as opposed to throwing another defender at him, the ball swinging around and wide open 3′s for Felton, Shump.

    The Pacers strategy was to have Hibbert hedge over towards Melo when he received the ball, anticipating a Melo spin towards the baseline. At that point, we need Chandler diving to the rim for easy dunks.

  20. yellowboy90

    d-mar:
    I think it’ll be interesting to see if opposing coaches decide to double Melo or not. Personally, I’d stay with single coverage and let him get his 40, as opposed to throwing another defender at him, the ball swinging around and wide open 3?s for Felton, Shump.

    The Pacers strategy was to have Hibbert hedge over towards Melo when he received the ball, anticipating a Melo spin towards the baseline. At that point, we need Chandler diving to the rim for easy dunks.

    yeah teams are starting to double him from the baseline. there needs to be some cuts implemented because they are taking away the diagonal pass too

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