Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Knicks 99, Hawks 82

Atlanta Hawks 82 Final
Recap | Box Score
99 New York Knicks
Carmelo Anthony, SF 27 MIN | 7-16 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 15 PTS | +7

Judging by a pair of early passes that looked like they’d been shot out of a cannon, Melo’s forearms are doing quite fine. It’s the wrists – specifically of the shooting variety – that still need time to heel. Ditto the timing and the chemistry, both of which you can tell are coming back quickly and surely.

Amare Stoudemire, PF 24 MIN | 3-8 FG | 1-1 FT | 10 REB | 0 AST | 7 PTS | +9

Amar’e Stoudemire is the worst free safety in the history of basketball. We all figured Josh Smith would be upset, having been overlooked for the All-Star game not once, but twice – after Rajon Rondo, days removed from literally throwing a basketball at a referee, got a replacement nod – in the span of a few weeks. But leaving dust snacks for Amar’e on the first few Hawk outlets threw that anger into pretty high relief. Credit Stat for beasting the boards and handling Smith pretty well thereafter. Silver linings aside, sooner or later he’s going to be summoned to court to answer for all this rim heel abuse. Note it.

Tyson Chandler, C 34 MIN | 3-4 FG | 1-4 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 7 PTS | +15

Man, Chandler was hitting the floor like a boomtown drunk in this one. Word has it that TC was icing his back afterwards, which would be far worse a sign if the Knicks weren’t one meatgrinder of a game away from All-Star weekend. As per usual, the stat line doesn’t even scratch the surface of Chandler’s defensive presence, which continues to set tones and soil trousers in equal measure.

Landry Fields, G 33 MIN | 7-12 FG | 2-3 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 16 PTS | -1

For a guy pegged for being something of a lumbering oaf off the dribble, Fields has been attacking the tin with lightning aplomb of late. What’s more, he’s not just looking for his own – something he’s managed to do quite effectively – but working deft dishes into the program as well. Which makes watching his first three point attempt die like a birdshot-riddled mallard measures more forgivable. Meanwhile, Landry running some spot point was pretty intriguing, and further testament to his burgeoning passing skills. I smell another D’Antonistein monster rising.

Jeremy Lin, PG 32 MIN | 6-11 FG | 4-4 FT | 2 REB | 9 AST | 17 PTS | +9

After weeks of using a Spalding as his own personal paintbrush, it was inevitable that Jeremy would finally have a spell where it looked like he was trying to yo-yo a granite boulder. Not so much with the turnovers — he only had four — as with sheer indecisiveness and clumsiness. But after an extended Baron Davis spelling, Lin was quickly back to form, penetrating the lane and spearheading a potent fast break that helped the Knicks extend the lead into halftime and beyond. Hey, if The Human Highlight Reel says you’re for real, you best respect.

Baron Davis, PG 14 MIN | 0-3 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 6 AST | 1 PTS | +6

Things once again didn’t get off to the most auspicious of starts for the recently activated Boom Dizzle, who still looks a smidgen too anxious to set roof to sky. Still, I’ll take six dimes in 14 minutes…. No, not THAT kind!

Jared Jeffries, PF 26 MIN | 2-6 FG | 3-4 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 7 PTS | +11

Jeffries had maybe the loudest quietest 26 minutes in NBA history. First of all, dude accepts more charges than Saks Fifth Avenue AMIRITE!?!?!? Second, I know JJ wanted that barely-contested fourth quarter garbage time drunk so bad, but just throwing the ball over the rim and into the ninth row made my day. Third – and I don’t know if this is a new thing or not — the Knicks’ PA team blasting Mellencamp riffs every time Jeffries scores shouldn’t go away ever.

Steve Novak, SF 22 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 17 PTS | +14

Can we go back in time and have Steve Novak destroy the first Death Star? We promise he’ll have a much longer career than Mark Hamill! Seriously though, dude had as many bombs as the entire Hawks team! How do you leave a guy like this that wide open?………..Who the hell is Larry Drew?

J.R. Smith, SG 25 MIN | 4-8 FG | 3-6 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 12 PTS | +13

Smith buzzing his Bishop ‘doo might have been the most disappointing follicle decision since Carlos Boozer’s Crayola fade. I swear I watched Smith brick at least 15 jump shots, but the numbers don’t lie. Unless your Enron or something…. Anyway, five steals!?!? Smith might’ve have arrived packaged as inconsistent insta-offense, but so far it’s his versatile D that’s helping him carve out major burn.

Jerome Jordan, C 2 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +2

Sooner or later, someone’s going to write a story about Jeremy Lin and Jerome Jordan riding on the same hay truck from Erie to Manhattan. And it will be grand.

Five Things We Saw

  1. Early on it was all like “you take the ball, Hawks,” and then the Hawks being all like “Nah brah, it’s yours,” and the Knicks just givin’ it right back to ‘em all “No for real, take it, we don’t wan it.” For all the flashes of beautiful ball displayed by our ‘Bockers, let’s not forget that they still committed 21 turnovers. Which added up to a combined 3,021 by both teams.
  2. As per @TommyBeer, the Knicks have allowed but one of their last 18 opponents to score over 100 points. That’s impressive. Earlier in the year we were all kvetching angry about Mike Woodson’s supposed “switch all the time even on double dates” defensive philosophy. But clearly something’s stuck, namely hawking passing lanes and late-shot-clock lock downs. Yeah, we know the Hawks were playing their 15th game in three nights or whatever. But 24 forced turnovers is downright nasty.
  3. Hey, these Hawks TV guys (Bob Rathbun and some guy named ‘Nique) are pretty straight shooters! Not only that, but they’re under-the-radar funny, too. My three personal favorites: 1) referring to a foul on Stat early in the third quarter as a “reach-around”; 2) Rathbun: “Boy, Jeremy Lin is such a cagey player.” — ‘Nique “….That’s exactly how I’d describe him…. cagey….”; and 3) Rathbun’s “I don’t think they’ll be sending tape of this second half to Springfield.”
  4. Alright, which one of you got the memo that Jerry Stackhouse would be making an appearance tonight?… No one? OK. For having made his last All-Star team during the Bronze Age, Stack Attack sure made the most of the few minutes he played during the second half. By that I mean he hit a couple corner threes. But really, nothing can compare to seeing one more time his one-of-a-kind, ass-to-floor free throw. Except maybe some really intricate form of magic.
  5. …That smile on Melo’s face after making a really, really good pass. You can see the Open Man concept spreading like a sublime contagion before our very eyes. I give it a few more games before a possession where every player touches the ball three times and a shot snaps the rim with ten seconds left on the 24 results in a MSG decibel level illegal in most cities.

43 comments on “Knicks 99, Hawks 82

  1. jon abbey

    you needed to follow up the Amare comment by leading the Smith one with “JR Smith is the best free safety in the history of basketball.” actually Iverson is the best I can think of, but Smith looked like Ed Reed tonight.

    Brian had the right idea tonight, the first post tomorrow night needs to be “Lin Lin”, whether it starts off that way or not.

  2. nicos

    I thought Smith had probably the best game for the Knicks- his defense in the first and second quarter was what blew the game open. And I think we’ll be seeing a few more of those BD to Smith Alley-oops as the season wears on. Do miss the hair though…

  3. A Voice of Reason

    Nice wrap up. I am encouraged with this team. I like our sudden depth, and it is simply amazing what one playmaker at guard can do for a team. Then we import another one from China (not Lin, ironically) and now we seem to be capable of getting good shots everytime down the floor. BDiddy got me giddy with those lobs he’s so adept at throwing. Im most excited for Melo, who was being destroyed by the population for not being a point forward. There is only one player who can be a point forward, and we will see him tomorrow. So lets let Melo be Melo and not crucify him because he’s not Lebron.

    Lets Go KNICKS. Big game tomorrow in MIA.

  4. jon abbey

    I thought it was a good move by Smith to get his hair cut, that front part silliness doesn’t cut it in the big city.

  5. themark

    Hello all, just joined this blog though I started following it this season (kinda got sick of espn and the community). Been a knicks fan since i was a kid though I don’t remember much until the stephon marbury era.
    one thing..i love the recaps and I hope I can have some good discussions about the knicks here.

  6. A Voice of Reason

    @6
    Welcome. I do more reading than writing here, but it is a great place to come for a Knick fan. The personalities are also great, with some posters being more notorious than others. Intelligent opinions, advanced statistical analysis/lamenting, great lead writing, recaps, and the ever churning trade finder all work together to make KB the place to be.

  7. hoolahoop

    Random thoughts
    - JR really ads another dimension to this team. So far, so great.
    - Nothing short of idiotic – MDA’s keeping guys in the game too long that really need rest, and more importantly, not put at risk to injury.
    If I was Dolan, I’d rip him a new one. Those are expensive race horses.
    - The four seed is within striking distance. Only three games behind Phila in the loss column. That would make a world of difference.
    - kudos for Melo.
    - Miami is going to come out storming tomorrow. Can’t wait.

  8. TheXman

    Honestly did the knicks really play that well (I only saw the 2nd half) or did the Hawks just shit themselves all over the place? Judging from the 3rd qtr, it was a bit brutal, yet the Hawks found a way to keep blowing it with careless TOs.

  9. hoolahoop

    I love what I saw in BD tonight. I know, no points, but for a guy who just walked on the court for the second time in nine months, you could tell he got game. Poise, ball handling skills, excellent court vision. Just needs some WD40 and to keep his shootinitis in check, and he’ll be stealing Lin’s minutes down the stretch of the season.

  10. Juany8

    Man this team hasn’t even had a practice yet, having multiple people who can dribble and pass competently has totally opened up this offense. Melo and Amar’e have taken some tough, quick shots, but in general both have been able to stop trying to go one on five for fear of passing to Toney Douglas or Bill Walker. The Knicks are going to be able to have lineups with multiple capable shooters, multiple capable ball handlers, and multiple people able to score inside efficiently. Couple that with a very aggressive, if inconsistent, defense and I think the Knicks might already be the third best team in the East. We even have a solid chance at home court advantage, Philly is only 3 games ahead and playing pretty badly.

  11. d-mar

    TheXman:
    Honestly did the knicks really play that well (I only saw the 2nd half) or did the Hawks just shit themselves all over the place?Judging from the 3rd qtr, it was a bit brutal, yet the Hawks found a way to keep blowing it with careless TOs.

    Some of the Hawks turnovers were literally just throwing passes directly to Knick players, I guess those count as steals?

  12. A Voice of Reason

    BD is a step slow but he handles the ball with effectiveness. I hope he can start getting by his defender when his legs come back..a driving BD kicking to JR and Novakaine (i like this one for him..) is a good second unit to have. Pick and pops with Melo and Amare, pick and rolls with Amare and Tyson, Landry slashing and dashing, Lin driving and thriving, Melo posting and toasting….the potential is palpable.

  13. ephus

    Someone clearly got it into Fields’ head that his best chance to keep his spot in the rotation is to attack the basket. He has been much more aggressive over the last five games.

    Lin had a really solid game, with only a couple of defensive lapses. He still is having trouble staying with his man on off-the-ball screens, and he sticks in the lane rather than hustling back out to recover to his man after PnR. But that is small beer, given that he has totally stabilized this offense.

    JR Smith had a great game. He brought energy and athleticism to a game that the Hawks were determined to sleepwalk through. He made two bad alley oop passes look great with his spectacular finishes.

    Jared Jeffries is having a great run. He takes charges, rebounds and plays strong defense. But he still has some of the worst hands I have ever seen on an NBA player. He vultured BD’s assist on the behind-the-back from-his-knees pass, but grabbed the rebound and converted. Jeffries’ attempted dunk was not replayed, but it looked like he just threw it into the third row. I am hoping that he was fouled, and it just was not called.

    Carmelo looked much better tonight than he did against the Nets. The full court lead pass from Lin was a thing of beauty. Melo had some nice finishes tonight. If teams do not double team him when he has the ball, he will punish them.

    Novak loves shooting the ball, and he is quite good at it. I am surprised when he misses an open look.

    Amar’e was upset about getting burned on two early breakaways, and I think that it was probably not his fault. Others (probably Fields) were not rotating back quickly enough.

    Solid win. Even if the Knicks do not win in Miami tomorrow, it has been a great last three weeks. If somehow they pull it out in Miami, I may not be able to stop smiling through the ASG weekend.

  14. Tony Pena

    Again, in Walsh/Grunwald we trust. The Knicks formula for success is going to be Melo, JR and BDiddy playing under control, and MDA using a 10-man rotation while having his team play actual defense. That’s visionary, lol.

  15. rururuland2

    Juany8: Man this team hasn’t even had a practice yet, having multiple people who can dribble and pass competently has totally opened up this offense. Melo and Amar’e have taken some tough, quick shots, but in general both have been able to stop trying to go one on five for fear of passing to Toney Douglas or Bill Walker. The Knicks are going to be able to have lineups with multiple capable shooters, multiple capable ball handlers, and multiple people able to score inside efficiently. Couple that with a very aggressive, if inconsistent, defense and I think the Knicks might already be the third best team in the East. We even have a solid chance at home court advantage, Philly is only 3 games ahead and playing pretty badly.

    I’d say it’s about 60-65 percent of what it wil bel, under the assumption that Melo and Amar’e play close to their capabilities, but more so the easy baskets this kind of talent creates– especially one that can create turnovers, long rebounds and running opportunities.

    I said they’d have a top 3 point differential the rest of the season from the time Melo came back, a top 3 seed and 40 or more overal wins.

    getting ahead of myself, granted, if they can avoid both Miami and Chicago they have a real shot. I think they have a decent chance of knocking one of them off if things start to come together as they should. Naturally both teams have a fair advantage given the continuity they’ve developed over the years.

    23 assists again tonight (close to 20 percent assist rate). Can’t wait for tommorow to start.

  16. rururuland2

    ephus: Someone clearly got it into Fields’ head that his best chance to keep his spot in the rotation is to attack the basket. He has been much more aggressive over the last five games. Lin had a really solid game, with only a couple of defensive lapses. He still is having trouble staying with his man on off-the-ball screens, and he sticks in the lane rather than hustling back out to recover to his man after PnR. But that is small beer, given that he has totally stabilized this offense.JR Smith had a great game. He brought energy and athleticism to a game that the Hawks were determined to sleepwalk through. He made two bad alley oop passes look great with his spectacular finishes.Jared Jeffries is having a great run. He takes charges, rebounds and plays strong defense. But he still has some of the worst hands I have ever seen on an NBA player. He vultured BD’s assist on the behind-the-back from-his-knees pass, but grabbed the rebound and converted. Jeffries’ attempted dunk was not replayed, but it looked like he just threw it into the third row. I am hoping that he was fouled, and it just was not called.Carmelo looked much better tonight than he did against the Nets. The full court lead pass from Lin was a thing of beauty. Melo had some nice finishes tonight. If teams do not double team him when he has the ball, he will punish them.Novak loves shooting the ball, and he is quite good at it. I am surprised when he misses an open look.Amar’e was upset about getting burned on two early breakaways, and I think that it was probably not his fault. Others (probably Fields) were not rotating back quickly enough..

    You know you’re heading into a good place when all you can really complain about is a couple of bad transition defensive sequences.

  17. formido

    ephus: Lin had a really solid game, with only a couple of defensive lapses. He still is having trouble staying with his man on off-the-ball screens, and he sticks in the lane rather than hustling back out to recover to his man after PnR. But that is small beer, given that he has totally stabilized this offense.

    I’m going to keep on saying this every time someone criticizes Lin’s defense anywhere on the Internet. Lin had the number one defensive rating for any player in the D-league last year. (He’s even faster and more explosive this year). He averaged 4.33 steals per game with Golden State last year. This year, with the Knicks, the Knicks give up 4 points per 48 minutes fewer with Lin on the court. So, when you think you see mistakes in Lin’s defense, understand that the aggregate numbers don’t agree. He makes the right gambles and they pay off long term. Basketball is an offense-oriented sport. You can’t stop all threats.

  18. formido

    Oh, and the Knicks score more per 48 when Lin is on the court, so the defensive efficiency isn’t from slowing the game down or anything like that.

  19. limpidgimp

    When Baron Davis was handling the ball, he seemed to be rushing the possessions instead of running down the shot clock some. When the Knicks’ lead was starting to get pared away, he still was like that. I guess he was over eager since he finally got to play after a long hiatus. In contrast, when Lin came back on the floor, he immediately started running down the clock, takes less energy too.

  20. rururuland2

    formido: I’m going to keep on saying this every time someone criticizes Lin’s defense anywhere on the Internet. Lin had the number one defensive rating for any player in the D-league last year. (He’s even faster and more explosive this year). He averaged 4.33 steals per game with Golden State last year. This year, with the Knicks, the Knicks give up 4 points per 48 minutes fewer with Lin on the court. So, when you think you see mistakes in Lin’s defense, understand that the aggregate numbers don’t agree. He makes the right gambles and they pay off long term. Basketball is an offense-oriented sport. You can’t stop all threats.

    I’m not sure I’d sign off on him being a great defender though. Steals are nice, but Lin is not getting a ton of on-ball steals like Shumpert does…. There’s an inherent risk to the kind of steals Lin attempts.. Yes, it’s probably quite favorable overal, mistakes vs steals.

  21. er

    Nothing to say I’m in tears lol…and we aren’t even @ our best yet still subpar melo and stat imagine if the can get their full games back..look out 4 seed

  22. steveoh

    Wasn’t it like two weeks ago we were complaining that we didn’t have enough depth to compete?

    Shump’s gonna be the tenth man (with a specific defensive assignment) when he gets back. Jorts will be the eleventh. That’s an amazing turnaround.

  23. Matt Park

    Jeremy Lin doesn’t gamble that much for steals, honestly. He gets most of them when the bigman (guards sometimes too) gets trapped in the high post or from sloppy ball-handling from the opposing guard, which results in an easy pick-up for Lin. He doesn’t play the passing lanes much (from what I’ve seen, I may be mistaken), but his steals are rather low risk because he doesn’t leave his man to double team. Rather, he gets the steal coming from the high post player’s blind side.

  24. GoKnicksGo

    rururuland2: I’m not sure I’d sign off on him being a great defender though. Steals are nice, but Lin is not getting a ton of on-ball steals like Shumpert does…. There’s an inherent risk to the kind of steals Lin attempts.. Yes, it’s probably quite favorable overal, mistakes vs steals.

    Lol, you guys got a miracle, but that’s not enough. Now you want Jesus. What’s next, you want God on the team too? Seriously, the kid is going to improve, everyone else on the team is going to improve. Defensively and offensively. First he can’t shoot, now he can. Then you guys complain he can’t go left, so his first basket of the night he finishes with his left. He makes too many turnovers, now in the last two games he only makes 3-4. Keep them coming, Lol. As people always said… Micheal Jordan had a huge weakness in his game and that was, he couldn’t play center.

  25. massive

    Just a thought, but how bad would it have been if we let Walsh hire Chris Mullin as our GM? The Grunwald/Gabriel/Warkentien triumvirate is working pretty well right now.

    Another thought, do we have two of the top 5 players from the 2010 draft class? Off the top of my head, I can only think of Greg Monroe and Paul George as the only blossoming sophomore players this year outside of Lin and Fields. Just another testament to good front office work.

  26. Brian Cronin

    Holy crap, I had not realized how poor the 2010 NBA Draft was until you brought it up. Plenty of decent players, but wow, very few stars. Then again, I’m sure there will be some late bloomers. Al Horford and Lamarcus Aldridge, for instance, were both late bloomers that made their draft positions look better than they seemed their first season or so.

  27. Nick C.

    If you read the Post take a look at the Lindsey Lohan pix and then ask yourself who looks older for their age her or Novak?

    Nice wirte-up as per usual. Kinda surprisd Melo had only three assists and Landry but one. It seemd as if they had more I guess they were all of the wow variety and stuck out.

  28. Frank

    Don’t look now but we are only 2.5 games out of the 6th seed. Our schedule is tough, but hopefully that will be offset by the fact that we will have 4-5 actual practices over the next week to get our act together.

    My thoughts on last night:

    1) Gotta give some credit to Amare like Jim did above. He looked AWFUL defensively in the first quarter, but like the leader he is – no sulking, no trying to make up for it on the offensive end with stupid charges and forced shots. Just played tough D and cleaned up the boards. Atlanta’s not a great rebounding team, especially with Horford out, but STAT’s defensive rebound rate last night was FORTY. I think he and JR will benefit the most from all this practice time coming up.

    2) Speaking of JR – wow is this guy an athlete. He has that “suddenness” of movement that people talk about when they describe Michael Vick. His close-outs are seriously LBJ/Wade-like, and his body control on those alley-oops were awesome. And for all the talk about him being a chucker – I feel like he’s been pretty restrained. I’ve seen him pass up an open 3 several times now to pass to AutoVak who’s even more open.

    3) Very excited to see how J-Lin handles being guarded at times by LBJ tonight. Can he keep up his ridiculous national TV stat line? 38 and 7 against LA, 28/14 against Dallas. By the way – kid is now shooting 35% from 3 for the year (and 40.6% in the last 10 games). He’s shooting what seems to be an unsustainable 60% from long-2 which puts him in the top 3 G’s in the league, in the company of Nash, Eric Gordon, and Stephen Curry. Unsustainable…right?

    4) Do you realize that if we had just held serve AT HOME against two of the worst teams in the NBA (NOH and NJ) we’d be riding an 11 game winning streak and would be only 0.5 games back of the 6 seed with a record of 19-15? Shows you how much of this game is mental.

  29. ruruland

    Melo has historically lit up Lebron and Battier, at least that’s been the case the last 5 years or so.

    If Miami is truly focused on slowing Lin down first and foremost……..it might be one of those games Amare and Melo come alive.

    Both of these guys are due… Big time. If one of them can get their stroke going…. Thatll be the key to me.

    Melo is due for one of his lights out games….and there’s clearly a certain kind of energy ready to come out if he can just hit a couple shots and uncork his confidence.

  30. KnickFanInCelticLand

    Nick C.: Nice wirte-up as per usual. Kinda surprisd Melo had only three assists and Landry but one. It seemd as if they had more I guess they were all of the wow variety and stuck out.

    That is because the recipents of those passes were fouled before they could score. The points were earned errrrrrr mostly earned from the charity stripe. Too bad there isn’t an advanced stat for these half assists. Such plays have important positive impact on the game and are apparently not tallied. Maybe they could be nickles rather than dimes.

  31. ruruland

    Frank:
    Don’t look now but we are only 2.5 games out of the 6th seed. Our schedule is tough, but hopefully that will be offset by the fact that we will have 4-5 actual practices over the next week to get our act together.

    My thoughts on last night:

    1) Gotta give some credit to Amare like Jim did above. He looked AWFUL defensively in the first quarter, but like the leader he is – no sulking, no trying to make up for it on the offensive end with stupid charges and forced shots. Just played tough D and cleaned up the boards.Atlanta’s not a great rebounding team, especially with Horford out, but STAT’s defensive rebound rate last night was FORTY.I think he and JR will benefit the most from all this practice time coming up.

    2) Speaking of JR – wow is this guy an athlete.He has that “suddenness” of movement that people talk about when they describe Michael Vick.His close-outs are seriously LBJ/Wade-like, and his body control on those alley-oops were awesome.And for all the talk about him being a chucker – I feel like he’s been pretty restrained.I’ve seen him pass up an open 3 several times now to pass to AutoVak who’s even more open.

    3) Very excited to see how J-Lin handles being guarded at times by LBJ tonight.Can he keep up his ridiculous national TV stat line? 38 and 7 against LA, 28/14 against Dallas. By the way – kid is now shooting 35% from 3 for the year (and 40.6% in the last 10 games). He’s shooting what seems to be an unsustainable 60% from long-2 which puts him in the top 3 G’s in the league, in the company of Nash, Eric Gordon, and Stephen Curry. Unsustainable…right?

    4) Do you realize that if we had just held serve AT HOME against two of the worst teams in the NBA (NOH and NJ) we’d be riding an 11 game winning streak and would be only 0.5 games back of the 6 seed with a record of 19-15?Shows you how much of this game is mental.

    yeah but that wolves…

  32. Owen

    “Too bad there isn’t an advanced stat for these half assists.”

    There ought to be a way to include passes that result in foul shots. Lin has had so many of those this year between Chandler and Jeffries.

  33. Z-man

    Was at the game with my 12yo son (great seats, d-mar!). Had two Taiwanese nationals on my right and two Harvard alums in front of me. Lin jerseys all over the plave. At the end of the game, I let my son venture down to the top of the tunnel. I see a scrum developing down there as Amare went past and lost sight of my son. A minute later he comes bounding up the aisle with an ear to ear grin clutching something to his chest. Apparently, Amare sharpied an autograph on one of his size 16 game sneakers and threw it into the crowd. The guy who won the tug-o-war for it just hands it to my boy. You’d think he’d won the lottery he was so thrilled, clutching it inside his coat the whole train ride home like a winning ticket. Great dad moment, thanks to STAT and the random act of kindness of an unknown fan.

  34. Z-man

    GoKnicksGo: Lol, you guys got a miracle, but that’s not enough. Now you want Jesus. What’s next, you want God on the team too? Seriously, the kid is going to improve, everyone else on the team is going to improve. Defensively and offensively. First he can’t shoot, now he can. Then you guys complain he can’t go left, so his first basket of the night he finishes with his left. He makes too many turnovers, now in the last two games he only makes 3-4. Keep them coming, Lol. As people always said… Micheal Jordan had a huge weakness in his game and that was, he couldn’t play center.

    You’re right, Lin is totally above criticism of any kind. He is clearly the greatest basketball player who ever lived.

    formido: I’m going to keep on saying this every time someone criticizes Lin’s defense anywhere on the Internet. Lin had the number one defensive rating for any player in the D-league last year. (He’s even faster and more explosive this year). He averaged 4.33 steals per game with Golden State last year. This year, with the Knicks, the Knicks give up 4 points per 48 minutes fewer with Lin on the court. So, when you think you see mistakes in Lin’s defense, understand that the aggregate numbers don’t agree. He makes the right gambles and they pay off long term. Basketball is an offense-oriented sport. You can’t stop all threats.

    This is the most asinine statistical argument I have ever seen on this site. D-Leag stats? 200 minutes of garbage time with a pitiful Golden State team? Giving up more points during the 1 out of 5 minutes when he’s off the court when the team has has no offense at all because we haven’t had an even marginal backup PG? What’s next, Lin for DPOY?

  35. Gamecockerbocker

    Owen:
    “Too bad there isn’t an advanced stat for these half assists.”

    There ought to be a way to include passes that result in foul shots. Lin has had so many of those this year between Chandler and Jeffries.

    You get XP in NBA 2k for passes that lead to foul shots in “my player mode”. … . For what it’s worth.

  36. firedolan

    Felt like the guys around Lin all night were competing to get more looks. Almost like Lin was implicitly saying: I’ll give you the ball, but only if you are planning to attack the basket. Loved seeing aggressive penetration moves from Amare and Melo rather than the usual weak jump shots.

  37. ruruland

    firedolan:
    Felt like the guys around Lin all night were competing to get more looks. Almost like Lin was implicitly saying: I’ll give you the ball, but only if you are planning to attack the basket. Loved seeing aggressive penetration moves from Amare and Melo rather than the usual weak jump shots.

    Wonder if that has anything to do with improved spacing?????

  38. WeirdJohn

    Just wanted to say that I’ve just started to frequent this site more and these recaps are the best I’ve seen. Some of the stuff is laugh out loud funny. Really helps to enjoy the wins and get over the losses.

    Nice job guys!

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