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Friday, August 1, 2014

Knicks Draft Hill/Douglas

In the 2009 draft, it seemed as if the stars would align for New York. Rubio was passed over for the first 4 picks, and it seemed he might drop to the Knicks. But Minnesota snapped him up with the 5th pick. At that point it appeared that the Timberwolves would be done with taking point guards, but they grabbed Syracuse’s Flynn with the following selection. All that stood between New York and Stephen Curry were the Golden State Warriors. Clearly they didn’t need a guard, especially with 6’3 Monta Ellis signed to a lucrative $66M deal. However the Warriors grabbed Curry with the #7 pick, giving them a 6’3 backcourt for 2010. New York’s dreams of either Rubio, Evans, or Curry were not to be.

But the oddities didn’t end there. The Knicks, in desperate need of a guard, took 6-11 forward Jordan Hill with the 8th pick. New Yorkers seemed stunned by the move. Some of the non-profanity laced comments from the KnickerBlogger chat session from draft night:

Lee: lock your doors.. we may have a riot.
Thomas B: Even stern was like..wait what?
Dan Panorama: listen to the boos!
BigBlueAL: Channing Frye part 2
Owen: There goes David Lee
Dan Panorama: no one wants jordan hill, who would we even trade him for???
Thomas B: Okay when the 1st thing you say is wingspan…..
jon abbey: there had better be a trade in the works
Brian Cronin: this is so not cool

At this time it’s unknown if New York will keep Hill. The Timberwolves selected point guards in back to back picks (Rubio, Flynn), so it’s possible that a trade might be in thw works. New York can’t officially trade either Lee or Robinson until the first week of July when the veil lifts on restricted free agents. It’s possible that Hill was selected for another team, in a trade that will be announced in the coming days.

From all accounts, Hill appears to be an energy big man, who has an unpolished offensive game. He can rebound and block shots, both things that are needed by New York. However Hill was rated poorly by two statistical studies. Hollinger had Hill in his disappointment section, noting:

The other big surprise down here is Jordan Hill, who could go as high as No. 4 but rates 26th in the Draft Rater. Hill had solid rebounding and scoring numbers, but his percentages weren’t off the charts, and his poor assist and turnover numbers were a red flag. Although one might think that ballhandling categories wouldn’t matter for a power forward, apparently they do — pure point rating (a measure of how a player passes and handles the ball) is a pretty strong success indicator for frontcourt players, and only four prospects rated worse than Hill.

While Ed Weiland’s words were just as unkind:

…Hill just doesn’t look like anything more than a career journeyman. There is some good stuff in his career. I like that he shot over 60% his first two seasons. I like that his rebound rate has consistently improved. I like that he destroyed both Cole Aldrich and Josh Heytvelt in head-to-head matchups this year. I don’t like that he can’t get his SB40 over 3.0. This is something that even the rawest of top PF prospects should be able to do. I don’t like that his team was so ordinary despite featuring two first round draftees. What bothers me the most is his .537 2-point pct. this year when he became a top scoring option. History simply hasn’t been kind to such players. I feel any team drafting Jordan Hill in the top 10 and expecting him to become something of a cornerstone will come to regret it. He looks like nothing more than a decent journeyman.

The Knicks first round didn’t end there. New York bought Los Angeles’ pick and took defensive minded guard Toney Douglas with the 29th pick. Again Hollinger was down on Douglas, ranking him 62nd among potential draftees. Weiland was a little more positive saying that “his defensive chops and the scoring ability he flashed this year, Douglas should be a lock to go later in round 1… When investing a 1st round pick after #20 in a weak draft a player like Douglas who meets all the important criteria on scoring, efficiency and defense seems like a better gamble than most.”

As I said earlier it’s still unknown whether the team will keep both players. Most likely Douglas will stay, but the waters seem murky around Hill. And these picks don’t really give any insight to what the team might do with their unrestricted free agents. Had the Knicks taken Stephen Curry, I thought it was going to signify the end of Nate Robinson, since the two would provide the same roles and weaknesses. Meanwhile Hill should be able to play alongside Lee, so Knick fans shouldn’t feel threatened by the move. New York will have to wait until July to see how things might play out.

209 comments on “Knicks Draft Hill/Douglas

  1. Ray

    I guess we’ll have to wait and see. It is kind of stupid that Minny would select so many guards but maybe one of them are for us. Who knows? Only Donnie

  2. DRed

    I thought this was a pretty terrible draft for us. Why not gamble on Lawson? Not really sure what we were doing with either pick.

  3. BigBlueAL

    I do like Douglas alot. You watch he will have a great Summer League. Dunno really about Hill. I mean he was in the Top 5 draft board for Chad Ford and Jay Bilas for whatever that is worth. The Summer League is going to be real interesting to watch, too bad Gallo wont be able to play.

    One last thing, if Amare is traded by PHX, Steve Nash may be the Knicks PG not in 2010 but in 2009.

  4. DRed

    A 6’2″ 5th year senior 2-guard just doesn’t sound like a good investment. I guess with the 29th pick it’s not a bad gamble, but he doesn’t sound too promising

  5. cwod

    I’m hearing from someone that Biedrins, Belinelli, and Curry are Phoenix-bound in a deal for Amare.

  6. BigBlueAL

    So the Knicks are idiots for not taking 2 players whom apparently nobody else in the NBA were that high on???? Lawson was picked 18th by a team who got him for the sole purpose of being a backup PG, and Blair fell all the way to the 2nd round.

    I was as disappointed as anyone when we took Hill but that was because the guys we really wanted were gone. Lets at the least look at Hill and Douglas in Summer League play (which I know is meaningless but still) and see what happens during the summer before really getting carried away.

    Although trust me I am as bummed as everybody else about tonight….

  7. jon abbey

    I’m just first-guessing as opposed to second-guessing, we’ll see. I was pretty convinced Tim Duncan would be a bust in the pros, so I’m not exactly infallible either. :)

    but to me the inexcusable part is not taking a shot at a PG with the 8th pick, we haven’t had a top 10-12 leaguewide PG since when? Clyde? Michael Ray Richardson? it sure has been a long time, and Walsh should have taken a shot at one of the available guys in that situation IMO, Lawson or Jennings.

  8. BigBlueAL

    LOL about Duncan.

    Yeah I totally understand, but if the PG’s they wanted were off the board, would you want them to take a PG they are not really that high on as oppose to the top PF on their board????

    To me at least they didnt pick Henderson at #8 which is what I had been reading recently could happen. At the least Hill is considered a Top 10, heck most say a Top 5 talent, compared to someone like Henderson who wouldve been a real reach. We’ll see what happens in the next couple of months and again I just trust Donnie Walsh and will surely give him the benefit of the doubt.

    Not having our 1st round pick next year though looks like will really bite the Knicks in their ass. F***ing Isiah!!!!

  9. Brian Cronin

    Douglas I’m fine with – the story there is apparently the Knicks went for the Lakers’ pick only after falling in love with Douglas’ game, so that they would do that suggests to me that there was something about his game that they really liked, and if they really liked him, I can’t complain for a late first rounder.

    It’s Hill that I’m just aghast at.

    If he and, say, a re-signed Nate gets Rubio, then fine, but I find that hard to believe.

  10. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    The Knicks squandered the opportunity to trade down, getting what appears to be a solid PG prospect in the late teens while surely being able to unload a bad contract therein.

    Instead we’ve got another year to brood over what the draft could be if the Knicks would stop winning enough games to screw the lottery and losing enough to be sitting at home in May. I may be pessimistic at this point, but if we’re the die-hards and we’re this weary and disappointed, what hope does the franchise have for the fans who only turn on the TV when the team’s over .500%?

    I am fucking down on this team, dudes.

    I really hope that someone in the front office reads this blog; its articles are unfailingly thoughtful and to say that it’s one of the best-written sports blogs is a safe statement. That said, why is it a Moneyball-type situation? Why is it that the dudes-in-parents’-basement are able to grasp new, provocative concepts in player valuation and analysis while the salaried executives seem to turn their heads? Why is the disappointment such a constant for this franchise?

  11. Z

    Here’s D’Antoni on Hill:

    “Our scouts have him rated as the second best player in the draft. I don’t want to get ahead of myself but I think he can be a really good player. He’s long. He can really run the floor. He’s got range and he can block shots.”

    Here’s Stephen A Smith on Hill:

    “ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith wrote on his Twitter account that he wouldn’t be surprised to see the Knicks trade Hill and guard Nate Robinson to Golden State for the 6-3 Curry, who led Division 1 in scoring last year at 28.6 points per game and was a high priority for Knicks’ brass.”

    Here’s Lang Whitaker (?) on Rubio:

    “the Knicks could send Hill and Robinson to Minnesota in exchange for Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio, the No. 5 pick.”

    Seems to me that the Hill pick isn’t all that bad. Even if he is an inefficient scorer for us and looks bad in an advanced statistical analysis, he could still put up some gaudy numbers, making him a valuable asset down the road. He seems pretty psyched to play for D’Antoni and with Duhon.

  12. Z

    I hope Walsh actually made the offer to the Wizards of Chandler for the #5 and got rejected. That pick turned into the #2 talent in the draft. It better have gone to Minn because they out-bid us and not because Walsh balked at giving up Chandler!

  13. Ted Nelson

    So the Knicks best move on draft night was getting Darko???????????????? Man do I wish this was 2003…

    Our scouts had Jordan Hill as the #2 player in this draft????????????????????? FML.

    I want to be optimistic, but I think the Knicks took Jordan Hill not to trade him but because they really love him and have no concept of statistical analysis. The T-Wolves seem like they’re even dumber and think Rubio/Flynn is a good backcourt… I’m holding out hope, but I don’t think Rubio-Hill/Nate goes down.

  14. TDM

    Wouldn’t it have been cheaper to just keep Chris Wilcox? So many guards at 8, or options to trade down. Damn.

  15. Ted Nelson

    Good point TDM.

    “In New York, they’ll ask Milicic to play more like a European center. He’ll run the floor, shoot jumpers and even handle the ball a bit. Milicic is capable of all of that but has rarely shown it on the court in the NBA.”

    Yeah, I mean he hit an eFG% of .333 on jumpers last season (getting 15% of his JUMPERS blocked, how is that even possible?) and .296 the previous season, but in an empty gym he’s very capable of hitting jumpers. He’s a career 59% FT shooter, but good old D’Antoni is going to magically turn him into an outside shooter? I’ll eat my hat if it happens. Same goes for ball-handing: he’s got a career assist rate of 6.8 and TO rate of 15.4.

    If D’Antoni can really make Milicic and/or Hill useful for a winning team I will not hesitate to call him the best coach in the NBA, even if he’s 10 rings behind that other guy.

  16. Ted Nelson

    “Esteve Rubio (Ricky’s father): “With this pick, it’s possible Ricky plays a year or two more in Europe.” Marca.com

    “He could go now, he can stay one year… or even two. Everything is open, although the most likely is he continues in Europe for a while. We have to talk the Minnesota people… and see what happens because, as of now, we could be in Minnesota or somewhere else.” Marca.com”

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Ted Nelson

    I’ll stop clogging up the blog, I swear, just wanted to also mention that all this Darko/Hill mania probably means no run at Gortat unless something changes.

  18. BigBlueAL

    Ive just finished reading a bunch of draft pick analysis and while as Ive mentioned before I was heartbroken when neither of the guys the Knicks wanted were still available at #8, everything Ive read except for Hollinger’s ratings speak very highly of Hill and Douglas.

    We may be disappointed the Knicks didnt get who they truly wanted, BUT we cant say they reached at #8 or drafted guys who werent talented and athletic.

    We’ll see how this all turns out but I am not as bummed out about the draft as I was as soon as the #7 pick was announced.

  19. Owen

    Real disappointment with our draft, and shock that blair fell all the way to San Antonio…

  20. TheShipBeSinking

    If there’s anything I’ve learned from following pro soccer, it’s: never, ever trust anything in Marca :)

    I’ve yet to really research our pick and Darko’s numbers killed off any enthusiasm I may have had for that trade; it turns out there’s at least a hundred statistically advanced ways to say “mediocre beanpole.” Let me ask though, since I’ve been a bit out of the loop- with the Knicks trading a wing for a 5 and drafting a 4, is it general consensus that this means Lee is probably gone?

  21. cav0011

    I am actually ok with this draft. I watched douglas play quite a few times and he always looked good. I am not sold on the hill pick but I am deluding myself into believeing that it is going to get us rubio. That or maybe this time the Knicks will get a productive top 10 pick. Also I am 100% convinced that gallinari is going to be amazing next year. I find that being completely delusional helps make things alot easier to stomach. It worked for the lakers if you ask thier fans every laker is a future first ballot HOF’er.

  22. cav0011

    oh also and correct me if i am wrong. Isnt it a violation of the CBA to even discuss trading nate and lee at the moment. Since the knicks dont technically control them. So maybe the fact that nothing has gone down yet is simply people waiting for things to be legal.

  23. Ray

    Jeez, you guys are so depressing. Listen, we still have major bargaining chips!!!! David Lee with the sign and trade and Nate with the same. This is not over yet. We have to wait at least until July first when those negotiations can be made public. Rubio does NOT want to play in Minny and we all knew that before the draft. Minny was obviously stockpiling picks to acquire assets. If Kahn and Donnie are close and then of course Donnie is trying to make this deal happen and Kahn will find a way to get his value in return. Id LOVE to see Rubio here. They were describing his passing as Magical. To see that in the garden would be awesome. So lets wait and see guys this could be a big summer for us after all. Trust the Walsh. Trust the Walsh.

  24. cav0011

    I have complete and total faith in walsh up until the day he makes a completely retarded decision. His moves have mostly been lateral but none of them have been bad. I also like the fact that he got rid of Z-blow. I found the end of year knicks team much easier to root for and watch then the early season version. I am of the thought that if you cant make the finals with the people you have then it doesnt matter if you can make the playoffs. For example Washington can probably make the playoffs if Arenas is healthy. Great…… now they get to be stomped in the first round while being unable to improve.

  25. ess-dog

    It could be worse (*cough* Gerald Henderson *cough*.)
    Frankly, I wasn’t that high on Curry. He’ll be a shorter Randy Wittman if he’s lucky. Rubio is fantastic in all of our minds, but he is not a sure thing. Evans or Harden would’ve been nice, but we couldn’t trade that high. Hill was the right pick for D’Antoni. Coach D. doesn’t like projects. He doesn’t want to have to teach someone really raw (*cough* Jennings *cough*) and watch them walk for more money in 3 years. He wants guys that can contribute now. I’m not sure why he didn’t like Lawson more then. I would rather have Lawson than Toney D, but mabye Toney can fill the bench guard role hopefully. I really don’t see us trading for Rubio… Minny needs a 2 or a 3, and they can do better than Chandler. One idea could be Gallo straight up for Rubio? Then resign Lee and you have Hill, Lee, Chandler, xxx, and Rubio. Gallo’s too much of a risk with the back though. That would be the only trade that I could see Minny possibly taking. We’ve sure got a roster full of junk! I just hope Donnie can snag a pick for next year when the draft is good. God, please don’t let Hill become another Mikki Moore!

  26. cav0011

    While all the stats back up the lawson over Douglas position, it wasnt really available as far as I can tell. It would be more lawson + douglas vs hill + douglas. I like douglas alot but I am a fan of the ACC (I am a carolina hater though). Having said that I would rather have hill + douglas or rubio + douglas (if the a miracle happens) then lawson and douglas. Then again maybe if there was a chance to trade down for lawson maybe the knicks get a future pick but no one knows if something like that was explored or an option other then GM’s.

  27. Frank

    I naturally would have been much happier with a, say, Curry/Rubio + Blair draft, but I can’t say that this is a bad job by Walsh et al. You can try and try but if you just don’t have the assets that people want, you need to take who you think is BPA.

    Re: Hill, I think he has some bright spots. VERY athletic from everything I’ve read. Only recently started playing basketball so his “basketball age” is probably less than his chronological age. 11th in all of NCAA in rebounding. Pac-10 all-defensive team. Sounds like he is at least interested in defense– and we all thought that interior defense was one of our weakest points last year. Between Darko *shudder* and some contribution from Hill, there should at least be a little more resistance at the rim.

    Also, drafting Hill gives us some flexibility in terms of Lee. We would have been in very bad shape if we didn’t come out of this draft with a reasonable alternative to him — would’ve really put us under the gun to match any offer for him, decreasing our bargaining position. So now we can either trade Hill to a team that wants young frontcourt help, or we can sign-and-trade Lee, and get rid of JJ’s contract in that kind of a deal. Maybe S&T Lee+ JJ + filler (ie. Mobley) for McGrady and a pick? I know McGrady is no good but at least he’s a huge expiring that could open up cap space for 2010 or be a huge chip at the trade deadline.

    Re: Douglas — at the #29 pick I think it’s hard to argue with him. All-ACC first team in a conference with Duke and UNC, leading scorer in ACC, defensive player of the year in the ACC. Sure he’s a little undersized but it’s not hard to see a little Derek Fisher (he of what, 12 rings or whatever) in him. I have a friend who is a huge Duke fan, very knowledgeable basketball guy, and watches just about any ACC game he can get his eyes on, and he’s been talking about Toney Douglas for months now.

    I also would’ve been quite happy with Danny Green, who seems to be a great defensive player with more size. Oh well.

    Blair sure fell a long ways — I think his knees really scared people off from giving him guaranteed 1st-round money.

    I think we’re onto plan D now overall — I see S&T of Lee and Nate coming with eyes mostly on 2010 draft picks and cap flexibility. I could very much see a revival of last year’s Nate + JJ for Kenny Thomas deal. Nate would fit in quite well with them now, and they need a fan favorite in Sac-Town.

    Hopefully D’Antoni can make this 09-10 team look good enough that a FA wants to come here in 2010. I do think we can safely say our defense will be better this coming year.

    BTW there is no way I trade Gallo at this point — even straight up for Rubio. Gallo showed last year that even playing with a serious back problem, he is a big time shooter in this league, good passer, smart player, and capable defender. I dunno… would be tough to pass up though.

  28. jon abbey

    Can we start a thread about proposed Rubio deals? I don’t quite see one that makes perfect sense all around, especially because Minnesota already has two PFs in Jefferson and Love (two PFs and two PGs and not much else). maybe something like Lee, Nate and Chandler for Rubio and Love plus matching contracts? I don’t really see how that would work, though, hence my request.

    Love/Gallinari/Rubio would be a tempting young core for LeBron, IMO. Gallo would be the one guy I would not deal, everyone else is available.

  29. cav0011

    I saw another rumor that had love going to the griz. So that makes the hill and nate thing make a little more sense if that was to happen. I think minn is an insane orginization. There could even be a 3rd team involved in the trade I think the Minn GM is awful so i think Hill and nate for rubio and thier next year first is totally concievable. :P

  30. chris.afroman

    I was disappointed when Curry was taken by the Warriors (who just spent 66 mil on their “point guard of the future” – seriously wtf?) but I don’t mind the Hill pick. That being said, I was hoping for Jennings. At that point, I felt the Knicks needed someone with actual game-changing star potential. Sure, Hill can contribute but the Knicks need someone who can actually be a big-time player. I don’t think any superstars find the Knicks current roster attractive enough to come over to New York next year, even if D’Antoni is the coach. We need to make more trades, still.

  31. cav0011

    “I don’t think any superstars find the Knicks current roster attractive enough to come over to New York next year, even if D’Antoni is the coach. We need to make more trades, still.” chris.afroman

    I have seen this reasoning alot from alot of people. I really dont think it matters how good our roster is. Look at the number one option for the knicks (lebron). His current roster even with Shaq isnt better then the knicks if you take him away. Even if you take off the best knicks player (probably Lee) I still feel like the knicks team would beat cleveland the majority of the time. Most of the big names we would try to attract are on teams that would be terrible without them I.E. Maimi 2 seasons ago. No wade they were pathetic. Toronto couldnt even win with a healthy bosh. Most of the big names that havnt won yet are that way because their supporting casts are not any better then a lottery team. The teams that could lose thier best players and still be competitive is a short list. So I dont think present roster make up will be the end all be all. The knicks in 2010 will have the ability to majorly upgrade the team. The teams that have the stars now dont have that same ability. (for the most part)

  32. Ray

    To be honest its not about the roster right now. Of course we want to put a competitive team out there to show a free agent that we have great pieces in place to win many games. The real motivation for a superstar is to take the challenge of brining winning basketball back to the Knicks. Ive always said that when the Knicks were one of the top teams and in the playoff the city was BUZZZING. It was so much fun. The Knicks would roll into the playoffs. Get the same haircut. Wear the same sneakers and it was fight time. Im looking for someone who can bring that buzz back. If a free agent is not looking to take up that challenge then let them go sign with the Nets or Memphis. Question is right now…..IS Donnie going to make it happen with Rubio. Minny is going to send him somewhere. Spain or someplace else but if Donnie is worth the money being paid then he will make sure he lands Rubio in a Knicks uniform. If we have the pieces to make this trade we have to make it happen.

  33. Frank O.

    This board is in some serious need of therapy…

    All three players improve on a Knicks weakness.
    Defense in the paint
    Perimeter defense
    Rebounding
    Overall size.

    In each case they will either complement or displace someone on the Knicks’ decidedly mediocre roster.
    The Knicks were a decidedly better team when they held the opposition under 100 points last year.

    People here seem to either love the unknowns they don’t have or love pieces of a mediocre team. Drafts are a crap shoot. I suspect there are other deals coming.

    One thing is a positive, Q is gone. None of this “he’s a leader…yet he sucks” crap. He’s simply gone. I’m not sure the leader of a team should be it’s crappiest player. Who was the Knicks leader before it was Q. Another crappy player, Malik Rose.

    Sorry, winning teams’ leaders are their best players.

    So by my count this team has shed Crawford, Randolph, James, Jones, Rose, Morris, Marbury, Collins and Balkman.

    That’s a lot of crap.

    And they still have a lot of crap to get rid of.
    But they also are in the best cap shape they’ve been in in years.

  34. cav0011

    Frank thats how I feel. While the new players dont thrill me I am hoping for the impossible and would be happy with just about the minimum out of them. Although if darko magically becomes a new person it would be hilarious.

  35. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    BTW Great article from TheShipBeSinking: http://theshipbesinking.wordpress.com/2009/06/26/in-which-the-chickens-come-home-to-chain-smoke/

    As for trade possibilities, I think it’s best to not get too wrapped up in this stuff. It would take a million monkeys on a million typewriters to come up with the Timberwolves drafting three point guards. Things might change greatly in the next few days/weeks, so we might not be able to foresee what might be possible. Or things may not change at all.

    Right now I feel like I’m at the beach in the water. The last wave was a doozy, but it’s passed and I’m still standing. The waters are moving but calm. Eventually the next wave will come, and it could knock me on my ass, or it could be fun to ride in. Right now there’s nothing to do but waiting.

  36. knickman82

    Ok folks we NEED a front court first and foremost, guards are easy to get but guys that can rebound are far and few between. David Lee is terrible downlow and we all know it, Harrington isn’t much better and why can’t they shoot free throws? What the heck is pro ball coming too?! Anyway we can get guards but we need domination on the boards and Hill will get it done with some real help. S. Curry we didn’t need but we do need someone, before his outburst that one day at a school most of you have never even heard of he was in nowhwereville and still is. We need a combo guard/sforward type that can really handle the rock and score.

  37. Ted Nelson

    The most depressing thing to me about last night was the Knicks draft strategy, which extends beyond these two picks and tells you about how the organization and future drafts will be run. They had Hill at #2 on their entire draft board. Either D’Antoni was blowing smoke, the Knicks scouts are terrible, or everyone else is really stupid to have missed a HoF PF right under their nose. They decided who they would take at #29 BEFORE the draft. They took two athletes with apparently no regard for statistical analysis whatsoever.
    So, the depressing thing is not so much that they took Jordan Hill as that they believe he is the next Amare Stoudamire. It’s not so much that they took Douglas as that they didn’t adjust when a bunch of first round talents fell into the 2nd.

    Hard to say who I would have taken at #8, probably would have traded down. Then again, if Minni is looking to deal then Hill at #8 is probably somehow more valuable either if they see him as a 5 or in a three-way deal. I can’t say that the Knicks had the worst draft, and would probably reserve that grade for the Kings or the T-Wolves. Suns also did a pretty crap job… I mean Taylor Griffin after drafting Robin Lopez?? Does Steve Kerr get confused as to which brother he’s drafting or what?

    The Knicks defense probably did improve, but we’ll see.

    The Walsh-Kahn connection could be a powerful thing (think about the Gasol and KG deals), but it’s hard to imagine that the T-Wolves won’t get a better offer for Rubio than the Knicks can make.

  38. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    The reason why fans are down on these players are:

    1. Upside: It’s hard seeing either of these guys blowing up. Hill isn’t going to turn into Amare, his offensive game just isn’t on the same level. So he’s an energy guy with a limited offensive game, so what’s his ceiling – Chris Andersen? Tyson Chandler? Ben Wallace? If he’s not a stellar defender then he becomes a nice player that could start for a bunch of teams, but won’t ever turn into an All Star. (In the Turiaf-Pollard category). And what’s Douglas’ ceiling? Mardy Collins?

    2. Statistical Ignorance: Neither of these guys were seen as good players from the stats guys. And in fact both were panned by them. The Knicks are half a billion dollar industry, and in the most critical aspect of it (player evaluation) they seem to be 40 years behind the times. If anything the Wafer/Roberson mistake illuminates this deficiency.

    3. Needs: OK we need defense. I’m 100% behind that. But we also need a PG. This is Duhon’s last year, and who knows if he’ll resign. Even if he does – he has major flaws in his game. We also need a SG in case Wilson Chandler isn’t cutting it there for you (and he’s not for me). This draft was loaded with guards. We could have easily gotten a good guard with upside with the #8, and still taken a fly swatter later in the draft, in free agency (Gortat, Andersen, etc.), from the NBDL, Europe, etc. FWIW Gortat & Andersen both played in the NBDL and overseas, so a little scouting might have unearthed another gem.

    We addressed a need at F/C that may not have been needed. With Lee, Harrington, Wilcox, Sene, Darko, Hunter we should have had enough big men.

  39. Frank

    I really think we’re being very hard on our draft picks so far.
    First of all, Jordan Hill has been playing basketball for how long, 6 years? And in his 3 years of college ball, he improved each year (except for a somewhat worrying drop in FG% his last year).

    Pace-adjusted P/40 went from 12.9 –> 21.
    Pace-adjusted rebounds/40 went from 11 –> 12.7.
    Pace-adjusted assists/40 went from 0.3 (Yinka Dare territory) –> 1.7.
    Steals from 0.6–>1.0.
    Turnovers increased probably due to the ball being in his hands for longer, but his PF decreased from 4.8/40 –> 3.4/40.

    And in DX’s breakdown of his season, the two parts of his offensive game that were the best were scoring off of basket cuts and transition — unfortunately in AZ’s offense he only got 1.1 cuts and 1.8 transition attempts/game, which ranked him 16th and 15th in terms of opportunities in their analysis. Clearly, he’ll get more of these in D’Antoni’s offense.

    Meanwhile, what in the world is pure point rating? Hollinger says it’s a good measure of frontcourt players, and Hill’s was -5.28 which I guess is bad? But in the same offense in PHX that Hill will play in here, Amare’s average was -4.84. And he’s pretty good.

    And re: Douglas, I’ve never seen him play, but 1st team All-ACC, ACC defensive player of the year, runner-up to Lawson in ACC player of the year, ACC leading scorer, good 3 point shooter (39%), TS 58%, and hard worker — what’s not to like with the 29th pick?

  40. Frank

    And re: point guard – I have a funny feeling Nash is coming, either this coming season or the year after. Closing out his career in his adopted hometown with the coach who got him 2 MVPs seems like a good possibility.

  41. Caleb

    A few thoughts…

    I don’t put any stock whatsoever in D’Antoni saying Hill was #2 on the draft board. He’d have said #1 if anyone would believe him. That’s what you say about your players.

    Rubio is almost unquestionably up for the highest bidder. He made clear before the draft he doesn’t want to play in Minnesota, and Minnesota reportedly loved Jonny Flynn. They just saw him available at #5 and knew he was the most valuable asset to have. I think the Knicks have a shot, but obviously other teams could jump in.

    It’s impossible to know Walsh’s intentions, and it’s not farfetched that he and Mike D. really do like Hill. But IF Walsh wasn’t crazy about anyone on the board, and wanted to keep his trade options open — Hill was the obvious pick. Based on pre-draft chatter, reporting and mocks, Hill had easily most value, league-wide, of anyone left. (the next 10 picks were DeRozan, Jennings, Williams, Henderson, Hansbrough, Clark, Daye, Johnson, Holliday and Lawson). In other words, we’ll have more trade options than if we took Jennings, who no one likes except the Bucks.

    Still, I’m not a Hill fan, for all the reasons Mike lists. The best you can say is that he fits a need, and offers some insurance if Lee is traded.

    I don’t think these picks mean anything, or much, about the Knick’s intentions on Lee and Robinson. Trade talk aside, we only had one functional big man last year, and you probably want 4. Even a 3-man rotation gives big guys 32 minutes apiece. There is plenty of room for both Hill and Lee.

    The Douglas pick might be more meaningful, because his skill set overlaps with Nate a lot more. To me, it’s very unlikely he’ll be as good. But I guess he’s insurance, if Nate goes. Also, Duhon could easily be gone in a year so this (in theory) gives us another PG who can defend.

  42. Frank O.

    I have to say, I’m not sure I see the Stephen Curry love.
    He’s a 6’3, 180 pound guard that shoots well.
    He shot at 45 percent and 37 from the college 3 pt., comparable with his dad’s stats at VA Tech.

    At 180 and 6’3 one must wonder what kind of impact Curry will have in the pro game.

    I hate to say it, but I also wonder about Rubio at 6’4 and 180. I mean Gallinari got put on his ass by the Tractor and almost an entire season was lost to injury.

    Some of these guys lack the size and strength to be effective in the NBA.
    Does anyone have a sense of Rubio’s and Curry’s strength? I mean, Nate is 5’9 and weighs 190.

    I mean, Duhon is 6’1 and 185 and, by all descriptions, had a motor. And yet he wore down physically. Now, he was playing ridiculous minutes for a large part of the season when the Knicks were short guards, but still, he was taking a pounding.

    I just don’t think Curry and Rubio are sure shots in the NBA.

  43. Ben R

    Rubio is only 18 which gives me hope he can bulk up. As for Curry I never saw what the big deal was. He was a huge scorer at a small school, huge scorers a small schools don’t usually do great in the NBA.

    I see Curry as a longtime productive role player in the NBA much like his father, I in no way see a star. I think his ceiling is Ben Gordon, and his basement is JJ Reddick.

    The thing that upsets me the most is that Denver was able to sweep in and get Lawson, I would have loved to see us make a move for that pick, it was obviously up for grabs.

    Lawson will be one of the top 4-5 players in this draft, I almost guarantee it.

  44. tastycakes

    So if Hill was #2 on the Knicks board, Curry was 1? D’antoni isn’t a very good bullshitter.

    From Newsday:

    ‘Mike D’Antoni admitted he was hoping for Curry. “I’m not going to lie to you and say no,” he said. “Might be better if I lied to you.”‘

    Hill was our last choice at 8. I am now going to set myself on fire.

  45. ess-dog

    Pistons get: Lee

    T-Wolves get: Prince

    Knicks get: Rubio, Cardinal, Telfair

    or:

    Chicago gets: Lee, T-wolves 2010 1st rounder

    T-Wolves get: Deng

    Knicks get: Rubio, Cardinal

  46. tastycakes

    I don’t see Minny moving Rubio. If you watched Kahn’s interview last night, he was gushing about Ricky. Called him “potentially transformational” if I remember correctly. And after drafting 3 PGs in the first round, they really want to come out of it with Jonny Flynn as their guy?

    While I don’t think Steve Kerr has any goddamned idea what he’s doing in Phoenix, at least he appears resigned to his fate and committed to the process. I don’t imagine the Knicks will snag Nash this year because (if he were rational) Kerr would demand the things the Knicks don’t want to give for an aging star (picks, cap relief). I bet Nash goes to a contender at the deadline. Cavs? Rockets? Magic to backup Jameeroquai?

    It might be for the best if the Knicks use Lee and Robinson as bargaining chips to improve their cap position, get a first rounder or two next year, get Rubio or Curry now, whatever.

  47. bm22

    I think Wayne Ellington will be a good scorer in the NBA and would have been a decent value pick at #29. Of course, as with Curry we will never know, as he was taken #28.
    BTW, as a lifelong Knick fan who just joined this blog, fantastic job at keeping out the trolls and garbage!

  48. Ted Nelson

    No one is a sure shot in the NBA, but muscle is relatively easy to add. Skill is not.
    You’d have a very, very hard time making a case that underweight guards struggle in the NBA. If so, Toney Douglas was only 183.

    Chris Paul was 178 coming into the league, somehow he’s the best PG in the world. Don’t have Rondo’s measurements at draftexpress, but wouldn’t be surprised if the best defensive PG in the league weighed in under 180 too (he was listed at 171 on nbadraft.net at the time).

    Hinrich was 186 pounds when drafted at 21 years old. He’s only listed at 190 today. Also a solid defender and known for toughness.

    Jamal Crawford came into the league at 6’5.5″ and 175. Of all the knocks against him, durability is not one.

    Aaron Brooks and Kenny Anderson, 161. TJ Ford, 162. Allen Iverson, 167. Devin Harris and Rafer Alston, 170.Farmar, 171. Rudy Fernandez and DJ Augustin, 172. Mike Conley, 175. Jason Terry, 176. Monta Ellis and Eddie House, 177. Stephon Marbury, 182. Brent Barry, Larry Huhges, and Delonte West, 183. Charlie Ward, 184 (and he won the Heisman…). Bobby Jackson and Earl Watson, 184. Sessions, 185. Steve Nash, 187.

  49. DRed

    The Hill pick is sort of understandable, but I have no idea what we think we’re getting with Douglas. He seems too small be a 2 guard, and in college his assist/To ratio was basically 1:1, so he’s not going to be running the point either. What does this kid bring to the table? Is he supposed to be a taller, somewhat less effective replacement for Nate?

  50. Ted Nelson

    Frank,
    Good analysis of Jordan Hill. Definitely appears to have some sort of work ethic, and will be a good fit playing for D’Antoni. Things are getting better (hopefully), even if not at the pace we all hoped for. Now it will be interesting to see what happens with Lee/Nate.

  51. chris.afroman

    I like the Toney Douglas pick. Led the ACC in scoring AND made an all-defensive team? At 29th in the draft? He’s a bit small and not much of an athlete, but that’s good value on that pick, I think. Good to get a shooting guard since the only one on the roster, Larry Hughes (no, Wilson Chandler is not as SG, he’s a SF), is often involved in trade rumors. Good to add some depth there.
    The point guard situation still needs to be looked at though, and I don’t think the Knicks want to keep Nate. Nor do I think he’s a real PG. With the Hill pick, Al Harrington (a terrible rebounder) becomes expendable. Of course, he has a big contract, but I think a shooting 4 that averages 21 points per game can be moved to another team. And I think (not sure though) that he has an expiring contract?

  52. Frank

    I think Douglas (assuming his skills translate to the pro game) is a perfect running mate for a Lebron- , Wade-, or Kobe-like player. Can bring the ball up but is not expected to be a traditional point, but can hit the open 3, and play tough D on the opposing team’s PG a la Derek Fisher or BJ Armstrong.

    Of course that all assumes we get someone like Lebron or Wade. I don’t see why he can’t be a Mario Chalmers sort of player for us. Same size, similar role, probably more athletic than Chalmers.

    Actually I think Douglas is a great pick — in case you can’t tell from my gushing throughout this thread. As much as I love Nate (and I am a huge fan), his size was a major problem on the defensive end, and *understatement alert* he’s a bit too much of a 1-on-1 player. This guy seems to be more of a team player, probably has 5 inches on Nate, and looks to be as blindingly fast (fastest 3/4 court sprint at the combine). And drafting him allows us to trade Nate + Jefferies to Sacramento for Kenny Thomas, which I still highly advocate.

  53. DRed

    Douglas was probably one of the oldest players in the ACC last season. You have to take that into account too.

  54. d-mar

    Does anyone think GS took Curry because they knew how much the Knicks had the hots for him and would look to pick up a player from us in a #7 for #8 swap? The Knicks should definitely NOT give up Lee or Robinson in that scenario.

    Not sure why some are so irate about picking Hill, I haven’t heard any compelling alternatives on this board.

  55. Dan Panorama

    DRed–

    I think Douglas’ job will be to defend hard and then stand still at the top of the key waiting for an open three point shot. There are a number of players around the league who’ve had long careers as role players with the same job description.

  56. jon abbey

    “Not sure why some are so irate about picking Hill, I haven’t heard any compelling alternatives on this board.”

    TY MOTHERFUCKING LAWSON.

  57. DRed

    You know who shot the 3 a lot better than Douglas last year? Ask Jon Abbey for his name.

  58. DRed

    For those without insider access, here’s what Hollinger had to say about our draft:

    Worst draft night: Knicks
    New York spent $5 million in trades to select Toney Douglas with the 29th pick and to acquire center Darko Milicic. Douglas is a 6-foot-2 shooting guard who projects poorly to the NBA, while Milicic is an epic draft bust who isn’t going to be suddenly cured by a “system.”

    I’m not thrilled with what they did at No. 8, either, getting Arizona big man Jordan Hill. Perhaps all the dysfunction in Tucson kept Hill from performing better, but I suspect the Spurs got a better player at No. 37 than the Knicks did at No. 8. New York needs a point guard, too, but passed on Brandon Jennings and Ty Lawson in order to take Hill.

  59. BK

    It’s nice for people to pitch a fit about Lawson and Blair (I did while the picks were being announced), but it’s not like analytics are a secret in this day and age. LOTS of teams passed these players up. Why? At this point, I think the statistical community has to provide a more level headed response than “you guys SUCK and I could run the team better than you!!!”. This isn’t an attack on anyone — it’s one thing to possibly make the wrong selection when you’re picking Evans instead of Rubio, or Curry instead of Jennings — but Lawson is being groomed as a backup on one of the final four playoff teams of 2009. There are doubts about him for a reason, doubts shared by many teams that could have used someone as good as some people here are claiming.

    I wasn’t crazy about the Hill selection, but Mike’s comment (“With Lee, Harrington, Wilcox, Sene, Darko, Hunter we should have had enough big men”) made me realize that the Hill selection may be better than we realize because that is a horrific selection of big men — defensive ciphers, offensive ciphers, and just plain ciphers. If Hill can provide competent help defense and actually block shots and not go all Jared Jeffries on offense with the ball, he will be genuinely useful. Plus as others have said, it’s David Lee insurance in the semi-likely event he’s traded.

    Douglas may turn out to be OK, but he still looks like fourth guard material to me, though I’m trying to stay cautiously optimistic for now. Great college player whose game may not translate very well.

    As far as Rubio, he’s going to go back to Spain or be moved. The reasoning offered by Kahn for drafting both Flynn and Rubio was bizarre in the extreme. You don’t cater to your prize prospect by drafting his competition one pick later, especially when you’re operating from behind as it is (no coach, less desirable market).

  60. d-mar

    “Not sure why some are so irate about picking Hill, I haven’t heard any compelling alternatives on this board.”

    “TY MOTHERFUCKING LAWSON.”

    First of all, there’s no need for the cursing. Secondly, why are you so absolutely f–ing sure that Lawson will pan out? Nine NBA teams after the Knicks passed on the guy, does that tell you anything? Who knows, Hill may turn out to be Melvin Ely and Lawson a Jameer Nelson, but I still don’t know how you can draw that conclusion today. Plus, there still may be a Rubio deal in the works, in which case our PG needs are satisfied.

  61. Frank

    “For those without insider access, here’s what Hollinger had to say about our draft:

    Worst draft night: Knicks
    New York spent $5 million in trades to select Toney Douglas with the 29th pick and to acquire center Darko Milicic. Douglas is a 6-foot-2 shooting guard who projects poorly to the NBA, while Milicic is an epic draft bust who isn’t going to be suddenly cured by a “system.”

    I’m not thrilled with what they did at No. 8, either, getting Arizona big man Jordan Hill. Perhaps all the dysfunction in Tucson kept Hill from performing better, but I suspect the Spurs got a better player at No. 37 than the Knicks did at No. 8. New York needs a point guard, too, but passed on Brandon Jennings and Ty Lawson in order to take Hill.”

    Bah. Lawson at 8 would have been a nice pickup but I don’t buy at all that Blair could be counted on to play in this system with those knees for more than a few years. As a second round pick, fine, but to choose him at 8 would have been ridiculous.

    I don’t know – Hollinger has to stand behind his “Draft Rater” and all the other analysis he does, which I think is why he had to pan this draft. You can’t exactly have a much-ballyhooed rating system that puts Hill at #26 and then turn around and say “good pick”.

    A closer look at his Rater tells me that it really is not particularly useful:

    http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/draft2009/insider/columns/story?columnist=hollinger_john&page=DraftRater-History

    If you look closely, the rater is wrong as often as it is right.

    - 2008 – it did not have 5 out of the top 6 or 7 rookies, also putting Derrick Rose behind Joe Alexander and CDR, leaving out Brook Lopez, Eric Gordon, Westbrook, Mayo, and Augustin completely.

    - In 2006, the supposed “best” year for the rater, 6 out of the top 12 rated players are complete busts (Shawne Williams, Morrison, Hilton Armstrong, Kyle Lowry, Shelden Williams, Marcus Williams). Where is Rondo, Millsap, or even Leon Powe?

    And the busts that the Draft Rater supposedly picked were many times OBVIOUS horrible picks. Did ANYONE think Rafael Araujo was going to be good? Patrick O’Bryant?

    And the “best” pick of the Rater was Carlos Boozer – very impressive I guess. Except that with him in the top 12 that year were Curtis Borchardt, Steve Logan, Casey Jacobsen, and our very own Jared Jeffries and Chris Wilcox.

    So anyway — although I like a lot of Hollinger’s material, I can’t subscribe to his view on the draft. Using his Rater would lead to as much a crapshoot as any GM’s draft board out there. In fact, I’d probably rather have Isiah. So given Donnie’s track record, which is at least as good if not better than the Draft Rater, I’ll reserve judgement in favor of Walsh for now.

  62. DRed

    Ty Lawson put up terrific numbers in college, and we need a point guard. We passed over him to draft a PF who makes David Lee look like Reggie Miller.

  63. DRed

    Ty Lawson put up terrific numbers in college, and we need a point guard. We passed over him to draft a PF who makes David Lee look like Reggie Miller.

  64. jon abbey

    “First of all, there’s no need for the cursing.”

    no, there really is. I’m fed up, and I can’t just shake off what I think was a dreadful choke job by Walsh on a hugely important night. now that may change after July 1, but as of now, I’m disappointed and disgusted.

  65. Nick C.

    Was Lawson worlds better than Felton who hasn’t exactly been anything earthshattering? May, McCants, Williams all have been underachievers at best so perhaps people are a bit gunshy.

  66. Owen

    D-Mar – Its always a crapshoot in the draft. My perspective always is, since it is a crapshoot, why not take the guard with the best stats who just led his team to the national championship.

    And on the value of analytics, I am not convinced teams are really paying attention to them. Just Listen to Mike Dunleavy talking about how Al Thornton scored 17 points per game for them this year and what a good draft pick that turned out to be. (ts% 50.2%)

    Other thoughts.

    Most of the great NBA players, at least those I consider statistically great, were also statistically great in college. Now, there are also a lot of players in the NBA who had great statistics in college and who didn’t prosper. But there are very few players who had poor statistics in college and then went on to be what I would call great pros, though there are many guys out there who have hung on because their high draft position gives them a toehold in the league which they parlay into longer careers.

    Obviously, I love my stats. And if I were starting a team I would rather have Richard Hendrix than Andrea Bargnani. But I think my line of thinking is pretty correct.

    I don’t know, anyone have good examples of players who blossomed in the NBA, who were just ok in college but became great in the pros?

    Edit – I should also add that this is basically going off what I have seen from Berri and Doerr. Don’t know anything about Hollingers rater, but I imagine it overrates scorers.

  67. jon abbey

    “anyone have good examples of players who blossomed in the NBA, who were just ok in college but became great in the pros?”

    I don’t know about great, but some of the recent UConn picks come to mind, Villanueva definitely and even the quite inconsistent in college Rudy Gay.

    and obviously drafting isn’t a science, but when common sense and statistical analysis agree, plus you have the opportunity, you jump at it. Lawson and Blair should be Knicks right now, and maybe they would be if Isiah was still handling the draft (yeah, that’s right, I said it).

  68. Frank

    Man, all this draft stuff has me tied up like a pretzel. My sheer unproductiveness at work over the last week is truly epic.

    Anyway, I can’t wait until NFL starts up and then the good ol’ NBA season. Hate the dog days of summer.

    Anyway, I am done second-guessing. We brought in Donnie to bring some sanity to our franchise, and D’Antoni to bring the magic back. One way or the other, we’re are worlds better off than we were even 2 years ago.

    Wish list for the summer:
    1. Resign David Lee
    2. Failing that, S&T Lee for cap flexibility and/or 2010 picks. Preferably both.
    3. S&T my favorite Knick, Nate Robinson, in package for Rubio, cap flexibility and/or picks
    4. Get Eddy Curry on the Biggest Loser somehow
    5. Send Darko to the Pete Newell Big Man Camp. In fact, when Curry is done on the Biggest Loser, send him too.
    6. Heal Gallinari.

  69. BigBlueAL

    No offense, but calling Tony Douglas’ ceiling Mardy Collins is an insult. Douglas’ offensive game, particularly his shooting ability, is miles ahead of Collins its not even close.

  70. Frank O.

    Ted:
    On the weight issue, some of the low weight guys you mention – Chris Paul, Aaron Brooks, et al – were muscular guys. Chris Paul has got some shoulders and guns. Larry Hughes, Charlie Ward…
    I mean these guys were low weight, but the weight they had was all muscle. And remember, Rubio is 6’4 and Curry 6’3. Most, not all, but most of the guys you mentioned were shorter. Hinrich is 6’3 but 190, I think, and 10 pounds is not a little difference at that size.

    You look at Rubio and Curry and they are soft, with pipe-cleaner arms.

    Perhaps just citing weight is imprecise…

    But most of the guys you cited were very muscular guys. I mean Charlie Ward played as a running quarterback. He was a powerful guy.

  71. BigBlueAL

    LOL Abbey I LOVE your passion because its people like you and all of us really that make this a great blog for Knicks fans!!

    But again my only argument is to be disgusted with who they drafted because they passed over a couple of guys who went as low as they did is a bit unfair to me. I love reading Hollinger’s stuff too but even he admits his Draft Rater isnt exactly a perfect science and that it is prejudice against certain type of players, Douglas being one of them. Every other draft recap I have read only have praises for Hill and Douglas especially where they were drafted.

    At the least, the roster is much more balanced now with the 3 new players and Walsh didnt have to give up any assets at all to acquire them. Again maybe I am putting too much faith in Walsh and D’Antoni but again what else can I do….

  72. ess-dog

    Isn’t it nice just to think that we don’t have to discuss Mardy Collins any more? And yes, my work is suffering horribly, but it’s worth it to analyze these draft picks some more:
    For all you Jennings lovers, I think it’s possible that Milwaukee could move Jennings. It looks like they just took the BPA to protect against a free agent leaving – like us. If we could offer them cap relief and maybe Chandler… maybe?
    I would love to do the Nate/Sacto trade again and maybe get a 2nd rounder back…
    Also, a Ben Gordon signing could set off a chain of events that could help us out. I’m so curious to see the final free agent price tags this year.

  73. Ben R

    Owen – I am in no means defending the draft, although I kinda like the Douglas, selection, not as much as Blair or Calthes, but still I think he is a solid selection as a role player off the bench to provide d and spot up shooting. But there have been many players with non-impressive ncaa careers go on to big nba careers. Looking briefly at Hoops Analyst there are two players I see who compare very closely to Hill; Karl Malone and David Lee:

    Name — 2 pt% — p40 — r40 — sb40 — A/TO
    Hill —- 53.7% — 20.7 – 12.5 — 2.9 — 0.5
    Malone -54.1% — 22.9 – 12.4 — 2.8 — 0.9
    Lee —- 53.2% — 19.4 – 12.8 — 2.6 — 0.8

    Both Malone and Lee had success that their NCAA careers could not predict, Malone going from being an average prospect into a hall of fame PF and Lee going from an average prospect to a very good PF. More likely than not Hill won’t end up as good as either but it is not out of the question. Also Hill’s biggest statistical weakness is his low 2 pt% but in his first two years he averaged over 60% from 2 pt range. So while his expanding role probably contributed to his drop he also could have just had a slump, or maybe was trying to expand his game and his percentage dropped.

    I am expecting Hill to end up as nothing more than a solid role player but would not be shocked if turned out a little better than that. If Lawson was not availiable I would be completely fine with the Hill selection at #8 because I do not see any other clearly better players, Blair while great seems a poor fit in a fast tempo offense.

    With all that said I am still with Jon in being pissed for passing up Lawson, He is perfect for this offense and will be an amazing player. I would try very hard to pry him away from Denver, maybe for Nate or Chandler or Harrington.

  74. TDM

    Did any of you guys hear the story that the Knicks were bringing in Oakley as a coach to teach the big guys how to bang? It came out a couple weeks ago. One thing about Darko, he plays with a chip and a mean streak. If anyone can turn him into a low post defensive player, it is Oakley.

    I’m actually happy to be rid of Q and get Darko in return. Its been said above, but when he gets minutes, he puts up above average numbers.

    I think Douglas was a waste of a pick. I would have rather seen the Knicks take a flyer on a pg prospect like Patty Mills.

    Not sure what to say about Hill, other than he was projected to go a few slots higher in most mocks. And, given the dearth of quality bigs in this draft, as opposed to guards, maybe he will have some trade value now or in the future. Also, if the Knicks lose Lee, we will need to replace those minutes.

  75. TDM

    Found the article mentioning Oakley:

    http://www.nypost.com/seven/06192009/sports/moresports/lincoln_star_stephenson_in_sights_175022.htm?&page=1

    “Meanwhile, Charles Oakley is under consideration by Walsh to help big men get down and dirty at the defensive end. Does that mean the Knicks president is unhappy with how easy and how often opponents scored last season? My second question is, how do you teach bringing intimidation and intensity to work every time you get on the court? Oakley also was contacted by Portland officials who suspect it might be good for the team’s health if a trace of his brutish attitude rubbed off on Greg Oden.”

  76. BigBlueAL

    Just read this in an article on ESPN.com talking about the Knicks introducing their draft picks and comments from Walsh:

    In hindsight, the Knicks had some huge regrets Friday. Two weeks ago, they were convinced Rubio would be off the board at No. 5, leading them to turn down a deal that would have sent Larry Hughes and Chandler to Washington for Etan Thomas, Mike James, Oleksiy Pecherov and the No. 5 pick (New York would not have surrendered the eighth pick in that trade), and Washington ended up getting Miller and Foye for the pick.

    Interesting. Although its funny because I have read alot of reports saying that the Knicks really werent that high on Rubio and thats why they didnt trade up because they didnt think it was worth giving up anything to move up to get him.

  77. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/090625

    5:21: The Knicks settle on Arizona’s Jordan Hill amid boos and jeers from the crestfallen New York fans, and rightfully so — instead of the first Stephen Curry, they ended up with the next Melvin Ely. Here are Hill’s weaknesses according to ESPN.com’s Draft Card: “Needs to add strength … still very raw offensively … needs to add moves in the low post … basketball IQ is low.”

    Sounds like a keeper!

  78. BigBlueAL

    Hey more than 50%!!! Chad Ford, Foxsports.com, whoever covered the draft on Comcast.net, i believe Yahoosports praised Jordan Hill.

    OK so what 4 other recaps, well hell 4 out of 5 is 80%!!!! So much negativity shit, normally I am as negative as the next person but all of a sudden I am trying to become the voice of reason. Something is not right here….

  79. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    “How do you teach someone to be hard as a wall and meaner than anyone else…?”

    Slap his children with deli meats and shave his elderly relatives while they sleep. That’s how.

  80. Ted Nelson

    “Who knows, Hill may turn out to be Melvin Ely and Lawson a Jameer Nelson, but I still don’t know how you can draw that conclusion today.”

    Theoretically that’s where stats can help you, it’s not like these guys haven’t played basketball before. It’s an imprecise science but a lot of times you can spot the Melvin Ely’s before the draft, and maybe more importantly the Jameer Nelson’s. Generally it’s not so much that you regret who you took as that you regret not taking someone better (if no one picked late was better then you can usually feel pretty good about your pick). Frye doesn’t really hurt so much if Bynum turns into Jerome James. No one’s slacking Balkman if Rondo’s not a beast (btw, WoW had Rondo rated very highly in that draft based on his NCAA stats, Hollinger isn’t the only one who analyzes prospects statistically just one of the most thorough and the most widely publicized).

    Hill’s potentially a late bloomer and looks like he’ll be a solid rotation player. I’m not devastated by the pick, but in a draft where there was a lot of value to be had it doesn’t seem like the Knicks did as well as they could have.
    There’s little doubt Lawson will be a good NBA player, though, and it’s hard to pass on a sure thing.

    “Was Lawson worlds better than Felton who hasn’t exactly been anything earthshattering?”

    Yes.

    I agree that the UNC factor might deflate Lawson’s stats a bit, but they’re still very good. They were absolutely incredible overall, and still very good discounting for UNC.

    One of Felton’s biggest problem’s has been that he’s been a terribly inefficient NBA scorer and hasn’t added NBA 3 pt. range. I suppose people are worried about Lawson’s low release point, but he was a much more efficient scorer in college than Felton. It’s sort of like Dikembe vs. Hasheem: there are similarities but one is clearly superior (in that case it was Dike).

  81. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    “No offense, but calling Tony Douglas’ ceiling Mardy Collins is an insult. Douglas’ offensive game, particularly his shooting ability, is miles ahead of Collins its not even close.”

    You’re right. I read a few scouting reports about Douglas – tweener, can score at a good rate, draw fouls, awful at passing, awful with regards to turnovers. Sounds like Al Harrington. (ha!)

    I’m not terribly upset with Douglas, as I don’t expect much from the 29th pick. The turnover/assist thing scares me, but then again I don’t expect him to be playing 30+ minutes. And the team needs a perimeter defender.

  82. Owen

    Ben R – Oof, that cuts to the quick. David Lee himself! Did not realize he was marginal in college. My world just shook on its axis…

  83. d-mar

    I get to some degree all the Lawson love on this site (national championship, stats, stats, stats) but no one has offered an expanation as to why the Raptors, Bucks, Nets, Bobcats, Pacers, Suns, Pistons, Bulls and Sixers all passed up on him after the Knicks pick. Are all those GM’s morons also? And I don’t want to hear they drafted based on need, if he’s as great as everyone says, he would have been picked earlier and the existing PG shipped out. I’m just trying to figure out what you all know that 17 GM’s don’t…?

  84. Ted Nelson

    Frank O.,

    My point is just that I challenge you to find a pattern of underweight guards underperforming in the NBA. I think my examples show pretty clearly that it doesn’t exist.

    I can’t see your logic. Where are Curry and Rubio hiding their weight that they weigh the exact same as these other guys but are mysteriously less muscular? Isn’t it more likely that your memory of how big those other guys were when they were drafted is clouded by how they filled out once they got into the NBA?

    Curry measured at 6’2″, Rubio wasn’t mesured but his Spanish team has his at the metric equivalent of 6’2.8″ (190 cm). Some of the guys I listed are shorter than those two, but some are also taller or the same height. BTW, Hinrich is 190 now, at the age of 28. Paul (who in fairness is shorter than Rubio (by 3 inches)/Curry (by 2)) is not listed at 175 on ESPN and B-R, which would mean he’s lost 3 pounds since the draft combine.

    Tayshaun Prince has been durable, Pau’s been pretty durable, AK-47, there’s just no basis to say skinny guys can’t play in the NBA. Some of the heaviest PGs in combine history are Mardy Collins, Marcus Williams, and Frank Williams. Doesn’t mean Tyreke Evans can’t make it due to his weight, though: Billups, Kidd, Wade, Baron Davis have also been among the heavier PGs weighed.

    I just don’t think you can look at a player’s weight at 18 or 21 and say that says anything about what kind of player he will be in 5 years. NBA training staffs are very good at adding strength to players who work hard.

  85. Ted Nelson

    d-mar,

    Just think for a second how many good players have fallen to the late 1st, 2nd, and undrafted. Think of how many top 15 picks have been busts to one degree or another. Are all the GMs who passed on Gilbert Arenas, Boozer, Prince, Parker, Ben Wallace, Brad Miller, Monta Ellis, Okur, Manu Ginobili, Luis Scola, Rajon Rondo, etc. etc. morons? How about Amare, Marion, KG, Dirk, Paul Pierce, Roy, Chris Paul, Kobe, JO, Nash, etc.? Was Portland’s GM a moron for taking Bowie over Jordan? Some probably are, others probably aren’t. NBA GMs make mistakes all the time, some are immediately obvious. Who knows, Lawson supporters may prove wrong for a variety of reasons, but he’s a good bet to be a good player based on his college numbers and that’s about all you can ask for in the draft.

  86. Ted Nelson

    I find them interesting to read, but I can’t say that I’m too worried about what pundits say about our draft unless there’s some sort of credibility check of their past draft grades.

  87. Thomas B.

    Considering our additions thusfar, I hope the people who don’t think Chanddler can be an impact player are wrong. We will need impact from him.

    I do think Darko makes the team better-that is to say not as bad as they were. He is a better defender than anyone they had in the middle last year.

  88. VicKnick

    It has been reported that Eddy Curry is up to 5 push-ups and 8 sit-ups because of off-season work-outs. He’s also switched to “Diet” Pepsi to cut down on calories. He should be ready for D’Antoni’s run & gun offense when the season starts. Oh yeah!!!

  89. sj12

    everyone is being way to critical. Sure, we didn’t have the best draft ever, but none of these guys have even put on a practice jersey yet. It is WAY too early pass judgements on how they will pan out as players. The front office hasn’t made any bad decisions yet and their judgement should be trusted until we have reason to think otherwise, in my opinion.

  90. VicKnick

    ” Knicks president Donnie Walsh said today he will call the Timberwolves to inquire about Rickey Rubio’s availability in the wake of his father threatening the point-guard phenom would play in Spain the next two years.

    Walsh and Wolves GM David Kahn are friends, with Kahn having worked for Walsh in Indiana.

    “I haven’t spoken to Minnesota; I will,” Walsh said at the press conference to introduce draft picks Jordan Hill and Toney Douglas. “He (Kahn) took a lot of point guards. I want to ask him why he did that. I just want to find that out.

    “He (Rubio) was one of (our) top players,” Walsh added. “I would never say never to anything. We’re in the offseason. We’ll be checking everything out.”

    The Knicks privately believe Rubio wants to be in New York and his agent Dan Fegan will work hard to make that happen. The Knicks have intricate knowledge of Rubio’s buyout contract; their European scout, Kevin Wilson, lives in Barcelona and is friends of the family.

    Though the buyout is stated at $6.5 million, the Knicks believe it can easily be worked out.

    Before Thursday’s NBA Draft, Rubio said New York was a “dream city” to play in and the Rubio camp, according to a source, is hopeful the Knicks move in and strike a deal with the T’wolves.

    Rubio said before the draft the only thing he knew of Minnesota was its cold weather.

    “I want to play in the NBA. I don’t know if it’s this year or next year, but we’re going to see,” Rubio said, according to The Associated Press. “Because, you know, my buyout is big. We are talking about that with my agent and he’s working hard.”

    ESPN.com reported that Rubio’s father was quoted in the Spanish newspaper Marca saying it was probable Rubio would not come to the NBA this year.”

  91. Ted Nelson

    How about calling Toney Douglas “Toney Touch” or if the Knicks get Rubio then “Toney Toca???”

  92. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    “I get to some degree all the Lawson love on this site (national championship, stats, stats, stats) but no one has offered an expanation as to why the Raptors, Bucks, Nets, Bobcats, Pacers, Suns, Pistons, Bulls and Sixers all passed up on him after the Knicks pick. Are all those GM’s morons also?”

    Not all of them, just 4 or 5. :-)

    Teams make mistakes in the draft. It wasn’t the first time 7 teams pass on the better player. It won’t be the last.

  93. Frank O.

    Ted:
    I’m willing to accept you point about weight. I think Gallinari last year spooked me on some of these bean poles.
    And I could very well be transposing my image of some of these guys as they are now with who they were at draft time.

    I’m also convinced that Minnesota picked Rubio for the Knicks with a trade in mind. The fact that their GM and Walsh are old friends and Walsh’s apparent interest in why the wolves took three guards struck me as misdirection.
    I’m thinking chandler and maybe nate are going to be traded for Rubio and another player.
    Another shoe is going to drop.

  94. Caleb

    Nate & Chandler or Hill for Rubio & Brian Cardinal – wouldn’t surprise me.
    And I bet they do that, before they keep Rubio and Flynn (or rather, let Rubio sit in Europe).

    But I’m sure Minny will see if someone else bids higher. Golden State, could, and should – Rubio/Ellis could play together – but they won’t.

  95. Caleb

    Just to finish the thought, I won’t be surprised if Rubio lands here. He’s not the kind of super-coveted prospect that Derrick Rose or Chris Paul was. Good teams, playoff teams aren’t that pumped about him because it will be 2 or 3 years before he can hold his own. And most bad teams – Rubio will stay in Spain before he comes over. These days, most teams don’t have the luxury of giving up assets for a guy who won’t show for a year or two. I think Minnesota is in about the same boat.

    To be honest, I don’t think there are many teams at all who can bid on Rubio. Detroit, Houston and Portland are the only playoff teams I could see who might have interest, and who have any assets to spare. You can probably scratch Portland, because we hear so many reports about McMillan being sick of rookies and wanting a vet. You can probably scratch Detroit, on Rubio’s side — although you never know. It’s a much better organization than Minny.

    Of the lottery teams, I think Rubio would rather stay in Spain than play for Memphis, OKC, Minnesota or Milwaukee. Charlotte maybe, and they don’t have anything to trade, anyway. Indiana?

    So as potential bidders – who Rubio might accept – we have the Clippers, Kings, Knicks, Raptors, Nets, Suns, Rockets and maybe Pacers or Pistons. (I already scratched the Warriors – they want Baron Davis and Amare, not an 18-year-old),

    Of those nine teams, the Clippers, Kings, Nets and Pacers have nothing the Wolves could want – except future draft picks, and that’s not gonna cut it.

    Of the remaining five…
    - the Raptors’ only trade chips are Bosh and DeMar DeRozan. In other words, nothing. Bosh isn’t signing an extension in Minnesota.

    - The Suns could swap Amare, but shy of that, they’ve got nothing, either. Seems very, very unlikely.

    - The Pistons could be interesting – would they move Tayshaun Prince? Is that better than Chandler/Hill and Nate? WOuld they do it, or are they committed to Stuckey? In the end, I think they want a faster rebuilding plan, more than Rubio.

    - The Rockets are another dark horse – they can afford to wait, and they have loads of good if not great trade chips. One problem is that their best young player is a tiny PG, not what the Wolves are looking for. So it would have to be quantity over quality. But they could offer Battier, Carl Landry and Joey Dorsey, something like that. The Wolves might listen.

    - But honestly, the Knicks have the best shot of anyone, IMO. If they’re willing to move Lee, I think they clearly have the best offer. That might mean bringing in a 3rd team. Even without Lee, Nate & Chandler/Hill is about as good as the offers will get – unless Golden State or someone really surprises me. I don’t get the feeling Ricky has a secret lover, or they would have moved in to make the trade last night.

  96. Z-man

    Right now, our F/C list reads: Hill, Gallo, Chandler, Darko, Curry, Lee, and I guess Jeffries, Wilcox, Harrington and Sene. If Gallo’s back heals, if Chandler continues to develop, if Curry reports in shape (for him), if Darko works better in this system, if Hill plays like a legit #8, if Lee is kept, we have the makings of a decent front line here. Not the Magic, but better than we’ve had in a while. Is anyone out there optimistic about this scenario?

  97. Frank

    I really can’t figure this guy Kahn out. I figure he’s playing it one of two ways — either he drafted Rubio to be the PG of the future or he drafted him as an asset to make a trade. Trouble is, his leverage is all wrong.

    If you want Rubio to be the PG of the future, then you tell him that right off the bat — or, in Kahn’s bizarro world, you draft another PG 5 minutes later. Makes no sense. I truly can’t imagine he thinks that Flynn is a 2 guard offensively. Defensively, maybe Flynn can guard opposing points but it doesn’t seem Rubio could possibly guard NBA 2′s at this point.

    So let’s say you draft him as an asset. But Rubio doesn’t want to be there and has compelling reasons (6 million and dislike for cold places in the relative middle of nowhere) to NOT show up. And it’s not like Rubio will be twiddling his thumbs in Europe — he’s a huge star there. And it’s home. And he doesn’t have to play for free in Spain.

    And then Kahn says he’s ready to wait 1-2 years and THAT’s why drafted Flynn? That’s crazy talk — you don’t spend a #6 pick on insurance for your #5 pick. Not to mention, that’s pretty insulting to Flynn, that’s he just Spanish insurance. If Kahn is really ready to wait two years for Rubio, he may be waiting from sidelines as an ex-GM by the time Ricky shows up.

    Weird thing is, it’s not like Kahn wouldn’t have played all these scenarios out in his head a million times before draft night. You HAVE to know that Rubio probably doesn’t want to play there — so you either put on the full court press pre-draft to get an idea of his willingness to play in Minnesota or you ransom off the pick to the highest bidder. The Knicks probably would have given them Wilson Chandler and the 8th pick for Rubio — then they could’ve picked Flynn and Curry or something, and had Chandler to boot — Flynn, Curry, Chandler, Love, and Jefferson is a pretty reasonable core.

    Too late now — I almost feel like Kahn said he had to pick BPA regardless of anything without taking into account any logistics or real-world concerns.

  98. ess-dog

    Ahem, Caleb, my post again from 2pm:

    Pistons get: Lee

    T-Wolves get: Prince

    Knicks get: Rubio, Cardinal, Telfair

    or:

    Chicago gets: Lee, T-wolves 2010 1st rounder

    T-Wolves get: Deng

    Knicks get: Rubio, Cardinal

    The numbers aren’t exact, but you get the idea. It really hinges on how badly the Bulls/Pistons want Lee.
    Following the Suns/D’Antoni/Colangelo connection, Hill and Darko could possibly become a poor man’s Bosh and Bargnani next year. Now that I say it out loud, it doesn’t sound very exciting. Eh.

  99. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Caleb:

    I have a hunch that Shane Battier is staying on the Rockets until he’s no longer effective against the West’s top SG/SFs. Was it the Michael Lewis essay that claimed that the Rockets have some kind of unreleased advanced analysis that shows just how valuable Battier really is?

  100. Z

    “If you want Rubio to be the PG of the future, then you tell him that right off the bat — or, in Kahn’s bizarro world, you draft another PG 5 minutes later. Makes no sense.”

    Flynn actually seemed just as coveted as Rubio when it came down to it. Maybe they drafted Flynn with the intent of trading him, maybe to the Bucks who were salivating for him. Or to Indiana, who seemed to want a PG and drafted Hansbrough. Or Phoenix who doesn’t have a replacement for Nash’s (imminent) departure. Or Dallas. Or Memphis. Or Sacramento. Etc…

    The best indication that they plan to trade Rubio and not Flynn is that they chose Rubio first, making him more expensive. If they know they are going to trade him, they’re saving a few bucks in their long range planning. But it’s really not THAT much $$.

    Besides, if all Rubio knows is Minnesota is cold so he doesn’t want to play there, he probably doesn’t know much about New York in winter.

    “Of those nine teams, the Clippers, Kings, Nets and Pacers have nothing the Wolves could want – except future draft picks, and that’s not gonna cut it.”

    What does Minnesota want? They need a better team, but where exactly are the holes they need filled? They have a C, they have a PF, they have several PGs, they are under the cap, and they are under the luxury tax line. They could use a swing man, but Chandler isn’t going to make or break them.

    Also, the Kings seem like a viable option in a Rubio deal. Rubio didn’t rule out playing there, they selected a SG, and they probably can put together a package, especially if Minnesota is willing to take on some salary (not such a bad thing, since they probably aren’t 2010 players with or without cap space).

    Maybe they love Chander. We can only hope…

  101. knicks2010

    I have faith, but if nothing mega happens after July1, we deserve to be terrible. If you ask me Donnie blew it. He denied the trade offer with the Wizards 2 weeks ago. He could of traded Chandler and larry hughes and cash for the number 5th pick in the draft and still keep their 8th pick. Can you say Curry and Rubio? Wilson is good, but only a role player, I would of traded Chandler in a heartbeat to obtain the 5th pick. Mark my word Knick fans, Jordan Hill is a role player at best. I will say this, considering that 2009 is a weak draft, we had no choice but to pick Jordan hill After everybody else we wanted was gone. look knicks blew it last year and could probaly rblew it this year, my bad they did. Faith is the only keeping me from jumping off the ledge. Knicks fans got to ask themselves when is enough is enough.

  102. Ted Nelson

    Interesting situation that the T-Wolves got themselves into… Having just traded for the pick makes it even weirder.

    My first reaction would be that Nate and Chandler isn’t enough, but it will be interesting to see what else is offered. I think Kahn may be serious about waiting a couple of seasons, but wonder ownership lets him.
    I would almost say he might not trade with his old colleague (Walsh) to avoid looking like McHale 2.0, but he clearly isn’t too concerned what others think.

    —————————

    Frank and knicks2010: How in both of your scenarios does Curry last till the 8 pick?

    “look knicks blew it last year and could probaly rblew it this year, my bad they did.”

    Danilo was blowing it? It’s hard to foresee a random back injury in advance. But, anyway, the kid can flat out light it up: 15 pts/36, .621 TS%, and .444 3P%. If he’s healthy Danilo’s going to surprise a lot of people this season, those who weren’t paying attention anyway.

  103. Ted Nelson

    I will say that I admire Kahn’s decision to take the two top players on his board regardless of position (on the other hand, not sure I’d have Flynn that high on my board, although I have warmed up to him a little). I also admire Kahn’s long-term vision.

    In most normal situations he would have gotten his chance to see how it worked out, but he had to recognize before hand that this was not a normal situation. That’s why I suppose he’s ready to keep both of them, even if it means letting Rubio develop in Europe.

  104. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    If Kahn drafted Flynn as insurance for Rubio that was a really dumb move. He had 2 more later picks. He could have taken a player at another position (S. Curry) and drafted a Plan B PG later in the draft. In fact he did draft Lawson (albeit to trade him).

    And why would Sacramento trade for Rubio, when they passed on him the first time?

    If Minnesota drafted Rubio just to trade him it was a dumb move. They’re aren’t a lot of eligible buyers, UNLESS they previously worked out a deal with a team. If that isn’t true, then maybe they’re looking to move Flynn? Or they’re gambling that Flynn turns into a good NBA player, waits it out 2 years until Rubio is ready, then trades Flynn.

    FYI

    The yearly average temperature for St. Paul (44 degrees) is 10 degrees lower than NYC. Here are two charts showing the temp by month. Check out the winter months.

    http://www.cityrating.com/citytemperature.asp?City=Minneapolis+-+St.+Paul
    http://www.cityrating.com/citytemperature.asp?City=New+York

  105. Frank

    “Frank and knicks2010: How in both of your scenarios does Curry last till the 8 pick?”

    TWolves pick Rubio and then trade him to the Knicks for #8 + Chandler.
    TWolves then pick Curry.
    GS picks whoever, almost certainly not Flynn.
    TWolves pick Flynn with #8.

    “If Kahn drafted Flynn as insurance for Rubio that was a really dumb move.”

    - I got that from Hahn’s column yesterday:
    “But before we explore the options, you should know that Kahn was on with Mike & Mike on ESPN Radio this morning and vehemently denied any intentions to trade Rubio. Kahn said he was quite aware that Rubio might decide not to report and that’s why he took Flynn with the very next pick. The T-Wolves can play Flynn now and take their time dealing with the Rubio situation.”

    Again that’s just crazy talk which I don’t understand at all given I am not a crazy person. It makes me think that maybe they do have a S&T in place that they can’t talk about until July.

    Problem is, Kahn has really backed himself into a corner with the fans if he wants to trade him — he’s calling him the “master conductor of the orchestra of basketball” or some such nonsense.

    And Z – I’ve never been to Minnesota but the winters are WAAAYY worse there. Like you don’t see the ground from October to March. And negative 20 wind chills. No thank you. Sorry to all the Minnesotans out there that read this blog.

  106. Z-man

    Mike,

    If Wolves could fill needs with proven players (e.g.Lee) and future assets by trading Rubio, that part would not turn out to be so dumb. Kahn knows the Knicks and other teams are absolutely drooling over Rubio and might overpay for him. If you can parlay the #5 and #6 picks in a weak draft into a stud PG (Flynn?) and a starter at another position (Lee?) and have assets left over, you’ve done well. It is a big gamble, though.

    I think the dumb part was taking Flynn over Curry. Ultimately it makes sense that Kahn should move Rubio because the real risk is in the waiting fir 2 years if Rubio decides not to report. It’s not like there’s no downside risk to Rubio. Suppose he starts to reveal limitations e.g. on D over the next 2 years. If Flynn turns out to be limited to a marginal starter or backup role by his size or whatever, then this draft might turn out to be a total bust for Minnesota. It would be maddening (but very possible) if the PG they traded first (Lawson) turns out to be the best pro of the 3 of them.

    When is the deadline for a RFA to sign? In other words, after July 1, if we want to package Nate or Lee in a deal, how much leverage do they have in holding up the deal?

    On another note, I was surprised to learn that Darko is still only 24. This seems like a steal for us. At worst, he’s a functional backup, probably not as good as Gortat right now, but great value at low risk. At best, maybe the light goes on for him under D”Antoni. If you think of him as another draft pick, Walsh did a good job in bolstering the front line.

    I think that Walsh is definitely going to move Lee even if he signs him, unless Hill turns out to be another Chris Wilcox (DraftExpress mentioned CW as Hill’s upside potential–scary!) Walsh probably doesn’t think Lee’s worth the $10 mil per he will command and probably envisions Hill as more of a D’Antoni-style player. There are definitely teams who would love to have someone like Lee, even at $10 mil. Hopefully Minnesota is one of them.

  107. chris.afroman

    Well, we already know Hill is a better rebounder and shot blocker than Wilcox, so I’d put his ceiling as a bit higher. It looks like he’s got better footwork too, and it’d be nice to see that turn into some good post moves.
    I don’t think the Wolves would be interested in Lee. Their best two players (excluding Rubio) are both PFs (Kevin Love and the dominant Al Jefferson). Their roster has something like 8 players right now that could be classified as a power forward. So, if Walsh is gonna trade with MIN, he should be looking to move someone else. Not so sure they’re interested in Nate, but it gives them an explosive backup to Johnny Flynn that can score in bunches. Could make the team more watchable during the rebuilding process.
    I can’t help but think that there’s gotta be someone interested in Al Harrington on some level. He’s a bit one-dimensional, but he does score 21 PPG and can shoot the 3. Maybe someone’s needed a shooting big man and can give us something moderately useful in return (maybe a decent veteran PG to use for a little while).

    As far as the Hughes-Chandler deal goes, that would leave us with just one SG (Toney Douglas) and one SF (Danilo Galinari), neither of which have shown us they can be NBA starters and play all the minutes at their position.

  108. Thomas B.

    Is Minny going to hold on to Rubio and package him in a sign a trade after July 7th. They must have known he did not want to play there; why take him at all then?

  109. cwod

    Yeah, the Wolves really have no use for Lee, especially not at $10 million, unless they plan on moving Love for some reason, which also doesn’t make too much sense. That’s why people keep floating a third-team in trade scenarios.

  110. cwod

    From TrueHoop. A somewhat intriguing point:

    “Kahn has an unusual asset: No coach. Kahn said in a press conference that ‘one thing I’ll guarantee you: It won’t be an easy ride. It’ll be a bumpy ride.’ As Kahn fields offers from other teams for Rubio, he can convincingly tell them that if Rubio stays in Europe, it’s no big deal to him. So the Wolves might lose a few more games. It’ll help their long-term strategy. On any normal team, the person who would be irate when expressing a willingness to lose games would be the coach. But there is no coach to worry about. If he wants to, Kahn can make a strong case that what happens this coming year isof no real concern.”

  111. Z

    “The yearly average temperature for St. Paul (44 degrees) is 10 degrees lower than NYC.”

    Cold = Cold.

    It’s like comparing Eddy Curry to Jerome James– one may not be quite as bad as the other, but compared to Tim Duncan they both suck shit.

    The climate in Barcelona is pretty much the same as San Diego, which I dare say is quite a bit less oppressive than a NY winter…

  112. cwod

    Cold is not still cold. Those ten degrees make a huge difference. I quite enjoyed this past winter here in NY — and all my past winters in NY — compared to the four years of winters I had just spent in South Bend. It’s one thing for it to be cold, and another thing for it to be -20 with windchill for weeks at a time. You go outside and just want to die, and the feeling lasts, as someone said, from October into late winter/early spring.

    I mean, just this past January in Minneapolis/St. Paul, they had four straight days of below zero temperatures. New York’s coldest days this past January were in the teens. It’s really no comparison.

  113. ess-dog

    Who wants to go from Manchego and bistec to the american cheese platter and processed beef?

    The way I see it, Lee is our only real asset (for a winning team) so we have to bring in a 3rd team that wants/needs Lee. ‘Sota needs a swingman maybe two. If I were them, I would move Love for a real center, but not many are on the block (Love back to Memphis for Thabeet makes too much sense.) Kahn’s really made a mess. I like the Flynn pickup, they need a vocal leader, but they really should’ve made a move for the #2 pick… couldn’t have Love and Mike Miller gotten it done? Then they have Thabeet and Flynn. A well rounded team. I guess he thinks that what he can get for Rubio will be better than Thabeet. We’ll see…

  114. Z-man

    I have been checking out videos, articles and chatter on the two Knicks picks. I have to say that I am very impressed by what I saw. Both players look skilled and tenacious. Hill seems like he can be very effective at PF and his offensive game is much less raw than I was led to believe. He seems to have a mean streak that is sorely lacking on our team. If he bulks up a bit and works on his game, Stoudemire comparisons might not be as far-fetched as I originally thought, with a downside no worse than Dale Davis, who was pretty good in his younger days, esp. on D. I can definitely see him as Lee insurance.

    I was even more impressed with Douglas. Check out this blog chatter:

    http://community.msgnetwork.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/55310655/m/605104992

    He would appear to make Nate expendable, seems more mature, way better defensively, and as good of a shooter in a top conference. He recorded the 6th fastest 3/4 court sprint time EVER at the NBA combine and the fastest at this one. I was very upset that we passed on Blair for this guy, but now can understand the attraction. He has the chance to be a very exciting player in our system.

  115. TDM

    I don’t know if this was mentioned above, but apparently Rubio blew off the press conference in Minnesota where they introduced the new draft picks. This is going to heat up quick.

  116. d-mar

    For what it’s worth, the current Memphis coach, Josh Pastner ( who was an assistant at Arizona) thinks Hill has the most upside of any player in the draft. I know coaches have a tendency to overhype their own players (see Williams, Roy) but he was really high on Hill and thinks the Knicks will love the guy.

    I also love the fact that Douglas was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year. Would be a huge upgrade over Nate in that department.

  117. Ted Nelson

    I listened to the Mike & Mike clip on espn.com and got a very different impression than Alan Hahn. I don’t remember David Kahn implying at any point that Flynn was Rubio insurance. He said that he took the best player on his board. Everyone is so sure Kahn has ulterior motives (an maybe he does), but it seems like he just thinks both guys can play together.

    I don’t know why everyone is so sure that he’s wrong. I mean defense and outside shooting are the questions marks. Steph Curry would have solved one (outside shooting) but hurt in the other area (defense) compared to Flynn. Flynn’s 3p shooting took a dip from frosh to soph, so maybe it was a glitch and Kahn is satisfied he can shoot from outside. I wouldn’t be very comfortable with Flynn as my “pure” PG anyway, so maybe this alignment makes some sense, at least compared to the alternatives. As I said Curry is a defensive question mark and no one is even sure his scoring ability will transfer against NBA athletes. So, who do you take? Hill to compete with Love and AJ? DeRozan? Jennings gives you the same problems.

    What happens next may depend on how much latitude Minni’s ownership is willing to give him. This is a PR nightmare, so they might just want to get out of it. However, if Kahn doesn’t get a very good deal for Rubio then I think he might be best off just waiting him out.

    “GS picks whoever, almost certainly not Flynn.”

    If the pick was, in fact, for the Suns then it might have been Flynn. Who knows though.

    “If Wolves could fill needs with proven players (e.g.Lee)”

    With Jefferson and Love on the roster how much of a need do they have for Lee?

    “Suppose he starts to reveal limitations e.g. on D over the next 2 years.”

    I’m not saying that he’s going to be Gary Payton, but why does everyone slack Rubio’s D? He was the defensive player of the year in Spain as an 18 year old PG…

    “I can’t help but think that there’s gotta be someone interested in Al Harrington on some level.”

    His contract expires at the end of the season, so most teams would be very interested in dumping salary to get him. The Knicks want 2010 cap space as badly as anyone, so the only kind of deals that makes sense for them is a lateral move for an expiring that fits the roster better or a worse expiring + a pick/prospect.

    “Cold = Cold.”

    Not exactly… Plus NYC is far more of a cultural center. Even if the temps were the same you’d be more willing to suck it up to live in NYC, be a big star, and make big endorsement $.
    I have no idea what Ricky’s mother is like, but I think she’d be inclined to suffer a few months of winter to live on Park Ave.

  118. Caleb

    Pistons can just sign Lee; they don’t have to trade their best player to get him. I think they will have 20+ million in cap room. So I don’t think that scenario is likely.

    Would Chicago swap Deng for Lee? Would the T-Wolves take Deng for Rubio?

    Hard to say.

  119. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    Just out of curiosity I was digging through the archives. Went to the draft page from 2 years ago. New York drafted Wilson Chandler, and traded for Zach Randolph.

    http://www.knickerblogger.net/?p=549

    Some comments:

    fyi Hollinger’s new collegiate prospect predicition system had Chandler rated as the 18th best prospect in the draft, not counting internationals.

    The best thing about this draft is that the Bulls took Noah at #9 and he is going to be absolutely worthless in the NBA. Thanks, Paxson.

    Okay guys hold up look at this trade again, we got rid of Steve Francis. And we got Fred Jones, a very good defensive 2 or 3 who is also a good slasher. Zach Randolph can flat out play, hes not a great defender but he is a very good offensive player. Now we have a whole new dimension, we can run a high low offense which I think could work extremely effectively.

    D-Lee shouldn’t get pissed because if anybody his best friend hogged his playing time, and with Rose most likely going to be bought out, his minutes are going to be just fine. If he wants more PT, maybe he should develop a reliable jump shot.
    I love D-Lee but the talk of him starting only started because Frye did nothing with his PT while D-Lee was putting up double doubles off the bench.

    I dunno about you guys, but if Randolph stays with the Knicks, I’m buying his Jersey. He was a Beast in the West, and should tool dudes in the East.

    This is the absolutely classic Isiah Thomas trade.

    Take a look back at every deal he has made since he came. On paper it ALWAYS looks like he got the best of it.

    But when you look at the pieces playing together, or the contract situation, it turns out to be a disaster.

    Marginally better than the absolutely no hope we used to have with Scott Layden, but we are still going to suck.

    And I am sick of people saying we were never getting under the cap. When he keeps piling on contracts, that is true. But the common theme to every trade Isiah has made is he opens up cap room for another team to get immediately better (See PHX, TOR and now PDX).

    This absolutely sucks.

    I think this Zach trade is going to pay off in the long run !! I wonder how many of you all are really Knicks FANS ! Never happy with player moves but are the first to BEEF about EVERYTHING !!! Tonight we as a team is much better !!!!

    The next day’s post/comments were just as interesting.

  120. jon abbey

    “The Grizzlies had agreed in principle to acquire power forward Zach Randolph Thursday night but Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling later nixed the trade, according to two NBA sources.

    During the NBA draft, executives from both teams hammered out a package with Randolph and Darko Milicic as the key pieces. Griz guard Greg Buckner would also have been included in the transaction.

    The Griz ended up dealing Milicic to the New York Knicks for swingman Quentin Richardson after they waited on a final answer from the Clippers and received a curious no.”

    http://blogs.commercialappeal.com/the_memphis_edge/2009/06/griz-fail-to-land-randolph-and-much-more.html

  121. ess-dog

    Well, we could match Lee, unless they overpay, which wouldn’t be smart. I just don’t see anyone giving up proven players for rubio just yet. maybe Holiday and Thad Young if the 6ers even want him. We should just sign Sessions, he’s a good young player, only 23. What are some other available FA pg’s?

  122. Ricky_J

    Regarding the weather, obviously Barca has absolutely optimal weather so Rubio knows he’s almost certain to trade down to play in the NBA. However, the average temperature on the planet was only 3 degrees colder than currently during the last ice age. A ten degree average is an absolutely massive difference.

    Sorry for the tangent but I’m a weather connosieur. (BTW NYC’s 2009 weather so far has been the Isiah Thomas era of climates).

  123. Frank

    BTW- courtesy of TKB I watched this highlight video of our 2 draft picks — worth watching…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxV3nlbuTCU&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Etheknicksblog%2Ecom%2F&feature=player_embedded

    Granted it is a highlight film but I still liked what I saw out of Jordan Hill.
    - aggressive rebounder
    - runs the floor very well
    - seems to be a good finisher
    - showed a jump-hook over L shoulder
    - showed a counter-move to a turnaround jumper, also lefty layup, also up-fake from the counter-move to draw the foul+1.
    - jumper form looks pretty good.

    Douglas highlights were pretty bland — bunch of jumpshots and pull-ups. What I’d like to see is him distributing and playing defense. We all know he can shoot.

  124. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    Frank – re your vid:

    Looks like a lot of energy buckets off of rebounds and in transition. Of the post up moves, until 1:32 the footwork looks pretty bad. On most of them he’s falling away from the hoop. The hook is impressive (1:32). At 1:53 is the first time he drives to the hoop. He takes it baseline for the flush. 2:10 he unleashes the jumper. And after that is a nice drive with a turn around hook. 3:37 is another drive, but ends with another jumper going away from the hoop. Think Wilson Chandler. Soon after that are some post moves where he just dominates the other guy.

    All in all I’m a bit more impressed, and somewhat concerned at the same time. His athleticism seems to be great. He consistently beat the other team down the floor & had lots of transition buckets. And he was very active on the offensive boards. If the defense is as advertised, he’ll play well alongside David Lee.

    A lot of his baskets were assisted (which should drive the guys that constantly criticized Lee & Balkman for this crazy. Right you guys are still out there?) As for his created shots, a lot of them were falling away from the hoop – which are low percentage and unlikely to draw contact get get extra points from the foul line. I’d prefer bigs to get to the rack & draw contact. He didn’t seem to do that often. Of his baskets I actually preferred the shots that were created by others. He’ll probably keep a high TS% if he makes that his main focus for scoring. His hands looked good, but I guess a video isn’t going to show him fumbling passes.

    I don’t see him ever scoring 20 a game, so I guess it all comes down to how good he is under the glass and on the defensive end. Early on that will be the litmus test. Because if he’s not cutting it there, then he’s not going to be worth that #8 pick. If he’s a real strong rebounder, defender, and scores with high efficiency (even at a low rate) then I’ll be happy.

  125. Ted Nelson

    I agree with Henry Abbott that Rubio’s NBA trade value could go up if he settles his buyout. However, his agent could very easily turn around and get Real Madrid and FC Barcelona into a bidding war over the most popular young player in the country. They’ll pay his buyout and give him maybe 2 million euros per after taxes… all without ever having to leave Cataluna.

    “If he’s a real strong rebounder, defender, and scores with high efficiency (even at a low rate) then I’ll be happy.”

    Agreed.

  126. Frank

    Interesting topic on TKB — trading for Lawson with David Lee in S&T as part of the package. Would anyone go for this?

    Denver sends: Lawson and a signed Linas Kleiza, + trade exception, maybe filler too (Balkman?)
    New York sends: Duhon and signed David Lee.

    Figure Kleiza will probably get a bit less than the MLE, maybe 5 MM per, and Lawson is signed to a low number. We would be taking much less salary than we are sending — would actually save us money for 2010 if I understand the use of their trade exception correctly. (if I’m not, please correct me).

    Denver would get an excellent veteran PG to back up Billups, which was a big problem for them last year. Lee would add to what would be a GREAT PF/C position for them — Anderson, Nene, Lee, and Kenyon Martin would match up well against just about any front line out there. A lineup of:

    PG: Billups, Duhon
    SG: JR Smith, Dahntay Jones
    SF: Melo
    PF/C: Anderson, Nene, Lee, Martin

    would be very tough to beat.

    For us we’d be dangerously thin at guard, but Kleiza is a great piece and of course we all love Lawson.

  127. Ben R

    I read somewhere, I unfortunatly don’t remember where, that said Hill had a really high efficiency converting baskets on pick and rolls and cuts to the basket but In the Arizona offense he only got 1.8 of those shots a game. Our offense is built around cuts pick and rolls and transition all things hill excels at.

  128. Frank

    “Denver is (way) over the cap so can’t take back more salary than they send back.”

    But they have all those huge trade exceptions — doesn’t that mean they can take more salary back than they give in a trade? I might have this wrong…

  129. Z

    Interesting trade rumor Frank. You are right, Denver does have trade exceptions to use:

    $9,800,000 (Iverson)
    $3,200,00 (Atkins)
    $711,000 (Samb)
    $576,000 (Camby)

    I’d be just as happy taking a trade exception over Kleiza. How about Lawson + Iverson’s trade exception for Lee; or Lawson + Klieza + TE for Lee and Jeffries; or Lawson + Hart + Atkins TE + future pick for Lee…

  130. Z

    Wait– what is “TKB”? Is that a news source or is this Denver thing just made up speculation?

  131. Z

    “Trade exceptions can’t be packaged with players.”

    This is a pretty gray area. You may be right. I have no idea. Hopefully Glen Grunwald, or someone on the Knicks knows for sure. All I can offer is this passage from the “Salary Cap FAQ”, Re: Non-Simultaneous Trades:

    “A good example of this occurred in 2004 when Houston traded Steve Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato to Orlando for Tracy McGrady, Juwan Howard, Tyronn Lue and Reece Gaines. As a single trade, it could only be simultaneous since multiple players were moving each way. However, Houston was able to reorganize the trade into three separate trades. In one trade, they acquired McGrady and Gaines for Mobley and Cato. In another trade, they acquired Howard and Lue using an existing Traded Player exception from their earlier Glen Rice trade. That left them trading Francis essentially by himself for nothing, which generated a new Traded Player exception in the amount of Francis’ base year value. From Orlando’s perspective, it was a single, simultaneous three-for-four trade.”

    Seems like it can be done, even if it is exploiting loopholes that the CBA probably didn’t intend.

    Still, what’s the point of an exception if you can’t use it to get a player you want? The Knicks have a few of their own, some of which expire in a matter of days.

    Does anyone, other than the guy that wrote the Salary Cap FAQ and the lawyers of teams’ GMs really understand all this??

  132. BigBlueAL

    Sorry, if we sign-and-trade David Lee, it better be for a helluva lot more than Ty Lawson and Kleiza. Also why would you throw in Duhon too???? He is in his last year of his contract and is our only PG on the roster assuming Nate is gone and we all know he isnt a true PG anyways.

    I hope they find a way to keep Lee and sign-and-trade Nate and somehow find a way to trade Jeffries and his contract. Ive given up hope of trading Curry, at least for now, but I hope there is a way of trading Jeffries’ contract if only because it would help keep Lee.

    You should all know I am not Lee’s biggest fan and definitely not around here, BUT we finally have a few big bodies now and I would like to see Lee and Hill play together and if God forbid Curry is in shape you know with him and Darko the Knicks would actually have 3 real big men along with Lee.

    Not great big men mind you, hell maybe not even decent, but at least some actual size for once….

  133. chris.afroman

    I think I’m one of the few that thinks the Toney Douglas pick was a steal. Runner-up for ACC player of the year, All ACC First Team AND the conferences defensive player of the year. He can shoot the hell out of it, which is great in D’Antoni’s system and he FINALLY gives us someone who can defend the good SG’s in the NBA. Plus, having him makes it easier to move Larry Hughes, who has been involved in trade rumors lately.
    I like the Hill pick, but…I don’t really know what we’re gonna do with Darko. I guess they expect him to block a shot every now and then. I hope they don’t start him….or Eddy Curry. He can score on the block pretty damn well actually but he’s an absolutely horrendous rebounder (Nate can get more boards than his sorry ass) and he couldn’t jump to save his life.
    So, we have a few pieces we could move for a decent PG or one with some potential.
    Hughes, Harrington, Jeffries, Curry (if he can show somebody that he’s in shape and can rebound – a lot of teams desperately need post scoring and I think he can MAYBE work in a half-court game). Actually, I’d rather not see Lee go, but Nate in a sign-and-trade would be great. It’d be interesting to see if someone will overspend on him because he’s an exciting player that can attract fans, even though he’s not really a good PG.

  134. Frank

    Sorry — to clear up, TKB is theknicksblog.com. Not any official news source of any kind. So this is not a rumor, at least not anywhere that’s not just in my head.

    The only reason I would throw in Duhon is because he’s not in the long-term plans anyway, and he would probably make the Nuggets more likely to do it. I don’t know, we could ask them to throw in a 2nd in 2010 and a 1st in 2012 too. They shouldn’t care so much about the picks since they’re going for it all the next 2 years anyway?

    So if you made it Lawson, Kleiza, 2010 2nd, and 2012 1st, and Balkman (for Caleb) – for Lee and Duhon, I think you’d have to do that, no?

  135. Caleb

    “Trade exceptions can’t be packaged with players.”

    This is true, but the deal can be broken into separate ones, e.g. Denver uses it’s $9.8 million exception to trade for Lee (for, say, a 2nd rounder in 2020), and separately trades Lawson and Kleiza for Duhon.

    Sorry for shooting it down, didn’t realize Denver had such a big exception.

    It’s not the craziest idea ever but I don’t think it’s worth it. If there were a way to swing Lawson and an expiring deal I might go for it. Otherwise, you don’t get a lot of cap savings (about $3 million) and that’s not worth a Lee for Lawson swap, IMO.

    I still wouldn’t be surprised to see a Lee for Rubio trade (with salaries thrown in) — there just seems to be a lot of semi-informed speculation – but I think it would take a 3rd team, to move Kevin Love for a wing player.

  136. Caleb

    hey, just saw your Balkman suggestion which to be honest might put this over the top! Close, at least.

    But Walsh and Mike D. hate the guy so now we’re in fantasyland. Oh well.

  137. Frank

    From the Vecsey article linked above:

    “I remain convinced the Knicks could’ve pressed for a playoff spot had [Zach Randolph and Jamal Crawford] not been sent packing early on for Cuttino Mobley’s sick ticker and Al Harrington’s leading-man mentality, and Mike D’Antoni had done right by Stephon Marbury.”

    This sentence in itself convinces me that Vecsey should immediately lose his job as a writer and instead, the posters at Knickerblogger should get a weekly or semi-weekly article instead. Is he actually serious? Does he think Donnie’s job is to sniff the 8th playoff spot year to year? Or is it to go for the championship.

    I think Donnie’s done an AMAZING job so far. We all knew this was going to take a few years to clean out IT’s junk. That he found takers for Randolph and Crawford and got expiring contracts was truly worth of GM of the year. Gallinari was a good pick, even if Brook Lopez may have been better last year — certainly the jury is still out on both of them.

  138. jon abbey

    “That he found takers for Randolph and Crawford and got expiring contracts was truly worth of GM of the year.”

    not really, Crawford was traded again last week, and Memphis agreed to trade for Randolph before lunatic Donald Sterling vetoed it.

    Walsh has done an adequate to lousy job so far IMO, but really it’s impossible to say until the 2010-2011 season begins.

  139. ess-dog

    While player extraction is only half of the job of GM, I think Donnie’s done a great job of it. The only thing Vescey says that could eventually have merit is Donnie passing on Jennings, who is a rare talent, it seems. But of course, Jennings is the sexy pick, Hill is the safe pick. From what I’ve seen of Hill so far, he seems much more nimble than Wilcox with greater elevation and shot-blocking ability. This is an important distinction that Vescey overlooks.
    Still, would’ve been fun/interesting to watch Jennings at MSG.

  140. TDM

    I just read this article about some “interview” that Jennings did with a rapper named, Joe Budden (no idea who that is). Let me just say that I am so relieved that the Knicks did not grab this guy at the 8th spot, or even the 28th spot. What a PR nightmare. This guy is going to be the Joe Biden of the NBA. He may be the first player to get fined/suspended by the league before he even laces up his shoes for preseason. Budden, to his credit, profanities aside, really took it to Jennings.

    http://www.sportingnews.com/blog/The_Baseline/entry/view/26042/social_media_biting_back_at_brandon_jennings

  141. ess-dog

    TDM, that transcript is hilarious. Jennings is 19. Unfortunate for him that it got out there like that, but it really means nothing. If he can play, he’ll stick around, if he can’t he’ll ride the pine. I’d still take him. He’s right! “Duhon ain’t gettin’ it done.”

  142. Frank

    What worried me about Jennings is that his idol is Iverson. I think there was an article in ESPN the Mag about him and how he watches some playoff performance of Iverson’s on Youtube every single day. Yikes.

    Who know, maybe he is different now after the Europe experience.
    I wouldn’t have been unhappy if they had chosen him.

  143. ess-dog

    Charley Rosen is advocating the Knicks signing A.I. to a one year contract. He also thinks we’re the best destination for Marion. I just can’t imagine Donnie doing either of these, but a year of Iverson would be really interesting…

  144. ess-dog

    I think we should rent out Iverson and McGrady for one year just as a basketball experiment.

  145. chris.afroman

    No to Iverson. No to Marion. Neither of them want to play for one year, anyway. They want long-term deals and big money.

  146. ess-dog

    agreed, afroman, but is ANYone going to give those guys more than a 1 year deal? Maybe Phoenix could resign Marion for 2 years and a severely reduced rate, but they are cutting costs… I’m just so curious who’s going to get these guys. Is Charlotte going to take a risk on A.I.? It’s such a massive fall from grace.

  147. ess-dog

    If I were A.I., I would go after the biggest 5-6 year contract I could get in Europe…

  148. TDM

    As crazy as it sounds, I think I’d rather see Marbury back in a Knicks uni before Iverson.

    Jennings is too immature to start for any team. He called out Rubio and got hammered for it. Then, he basically apologized because the press hammered him. Now, in the article I posted, he claims that he made the statement about Rubio because he’s the only pg in the draft that had the guts to say it.

    The kid is talented, but he needs more than one year in Europe to get his head on straight. Where the hell was his agent when he agreed to do that interview? Jennings is going to make N8 look like a pillar of maturity and level-headedness by comparison.

  149. ess-dog

    Hey Mike James on the Wiz has a 2010 expiring right? Can’t we just do a straight up Jeffries trade for him since the Wiz expressed interest and they are thin at center now? He’s not sexy, but James is from NY and could give Duhon the help he needs at point this year…

  150. Ted Nelson

    chris.afroman,

    I think everyone is intrigued by the Douglas pick. His athleticism and shooting definitely look good. NCAA awards don’t mean too much, though. They’re subjectively given to the best college players, not the best pro prospects. Plenty of great college players don’t do well in the NBA. You have to also remember that he was a man among boys in the NCAA (literally at 23), which may mean nothing but leads to some skepticism.
    “he FINALLY gives us someone who can defend the good SG’s in the NBA.” At 6’2″ is he really going to clamp down Kobe, VC, Paul Pierce and the other big guards in the NBA? Maybe better than any Knicks guard in a while, but I don’t think he’s the long-term solution there.

    I think it’s more a matter of what Darko and Curry will do for the Knicks than what the Knicks will do for them. It’s up to them to show up ready to play and ready to be coached. Curry actually may only have to show up in half way decent shape so that the Knicks can try to inflate his trade value. I don’t have high hopes for Darko because Walshtoni seem convinced he can shoot the ball based on 2003 predraft workouts or something, but there’s a lot of evidence that he flat out can’t shoot. Could be a decent rotation player for the interior D starved Knicks if he brings the right attitude.

  151. Ted Nelson

    ess-dog,

    I’d be all for it. One variable is whether the Wiz were actually interested in Jeffries or Walsh leaked that info to inflate his trade value. Another variable is that last time Jeffries was in DC he was their SG, not C.
    Would be great to get the cap space, and as you point out James might even be useful for the Knicks.

  152. chris.afroman

    I didn’t say he’d lock them down, but he’ll defend them far better than the players we have right now. And I know that not all great college players excel in the pros, but I think he has the tools to be at the very least, a solid role player. His combination of shooting and defense should get him good playing time in the rotation for years. Not saying he’ll be a starter but I think he’ll be a very useful player.

  153. Ted Nelson

    I’m not disagreeing with you, just think everyone is a little more cautiously optimistic with a #29 pick than anything. I was a little bit surprised by all the talent on the board at that point which the Knicks passed up, but I’m excited to see what Douglas can do.

  154. knicks2010

    Hey! Ted Nelson, what are you talking about? We could of got the 5th pick 2weeks ago, that’s how we could of drafted Curry. Walsh didn’t beleive that Rubio was going to be there at 5. So that goes to tell you if it came down to Curry or Rubio, they would of chose Rubio first, you can thank D’Antonio for that. So we could of had Curry and Rubio, becausde nobody else wanted to trade with Minnesota besides Washington. Far as Last year pick Danilo ,the Knicks blew it. I’m not trying to hear next season he will be awesome, geez who knows. The knicks could of drafted Westbrook, served well for Oklahoma City. The knicks been cursed since Patrick Ewing leaving. They always mess up drafts, i’m tired of it. 1 or 2 more seasons I might be a Oklahoma Thunder fan, lol, al least they draft well.

  155. knicks2010

    Frank what are you talking about? The senario would of worked well. If Walsh would of pulled the trigger on the trade with Washington 2 weeks ago. We could of drafted Curry at 5 and Rubio at 8, because goldenstate didn’t want rubio. Rubio fell for reasons. 1. Some teams think he have big bust potential 2. He might pull off what he is doing to Minnesota right now, a dissapearing act, lol. I don’t know why everbody keep thinking Chandler is a allstar or going to be a great player. Not to many great players from Depaul anyway, He has good upside and potential, but him to me is a trade chip. Knick fans wake up, not only do we lose on the court, we always lose in the draft as well. Now if the draft picks work out this year, I’ll be the first to say I was wrong. But Hill! like Skip Bayless said is a journey man and good luck to him because he is going to need it. Far as Douglas goes a good career backup, probaly a starter for the clippers if Baron wasn’t there. We blew! it We blew! we blew it!

  156. Ben R

    knicks2010 – The Knicks could not have had Westbrook he was choosen before Gallinari, and though I was extremely upset about the Gallinari pick I have started to come around because, in admitedly small minutes, last year he was great.

    Also I do not see what the big deal about Westbrook is anyways, he had a TS% of 49% and led the league in turnovers. There was a reason Oklahoma had the 29th rated offense last year. He is a good defender and could possibly turn into a solid player but at this point I would much rather have Gallinari and his 62% TS% and 44% 3pt%.

    There is no way Rubio slips to 8 if we picked Curry at 5. We would have picked Rubio at 5 anyway if we had pulled the trigger on the trade with Washington. As for Hill I am not thrilled but other than Lawson, who definately would have been much much better, there is no one else that I am too sad about passing up.

    Douglas seems like a solid pick that late in a thin draft, Blair would have been preferable but his knees must be worse than we know because he was a lottery pick just a couple of weeks ago and fell out of the 1st round because of them.

    I would give the Knicks a C overall because we failed to pull the trigger on the Washington trade and passed on Lawson, but other than those two rather large blunders I think the draft was okay.

  157. Dan Panorama

    I always thought Isiah was talking out of his ass when he said New Yorkers wouldn’t tolerate a rebuilding phase, but reading Vescey’s “are you there yet?” whining I’m starting to see what he meant.

    Vescey is absolutely full of it. The entire piece is premised on basic intellectual dishonesty. He says Walsh is overrated because Knicks were already $7 mil below the cap in 2010 before the Crawford/Randolph trades — as if that was going to bring in Lebron, let alone anyone else? He makes it sound as if the goal of the trades was to make the Knicks more competitive for a playoff run which is a ridiculous notion (he does seem to be at least somewhat aware we’re building for a future winning team, right? That’s why it’s called the 210 plan) So as for the title, “IF MILICIC IS BEST WALSH CAN DO, HE DOESN’T DESERVE ALL THE PRAISE,” I wholeheatedly agree, but you’d have to be insane to think that that’s either the best Walsh has done so far or that enough time has lapsed to judge him on his player acquisition when the entire team’s strategy is based on the 2010 and 2011 free agent periods and a bunch of developing young players whose worth is not at all clear yet.

  158. Thomas B.

    “Frank what are you talking about?” -Knicks2010
    “Ted Nelson what are you talking about?” -Knicks2010

    Knicks2010, What are YOU talking about? :-) Seriously though, I just don’t see how that could happen, Curry 5 and Rubio 8. I’m sure there is some alternate reality, pocket dimension, or perhaps even a graphic novel in which that would be posible but not on this version of Earth. Do you think Minny would have still taken Flynn 6th with Rubio still on the board? You think Nelson would pass up on a guy like Rubio who would push the ball and put a few butts in the seats? To quote the bosses from the game Smash TV: “NO WAY!!”
    The BEST case senario is one of those teams taking Rubio and listening to trade offers, which is exactly what Minny is doing now-well, they should be since he aint going to play for them.

  159. Frank

    I’m not entirely sure was Knicks2010 is talking about but in any case, does anyone out there have any hope that Darko will actually develop into a good player? This might be bleeding-heart of me but he was buried on the bench in Detroit on a veteran team, then played decently in Orlando and Memphis. If we keep in mind that he was basically a high school kid who, on top of playing in a league way more advanced than any league he’d ever seen, moved across the world to play with a bunch of players that didn’t like him and a coach that didn’t pay attention to him. Would a reasonable comparison be Jermaine O’Neal, who needed 4 years to become productive? I know this is Darko’s 5th year but given all the extenuating circumstances, maybe we’re all being a little hard on him?

    I dunno, one can only hope.

  160. Z-man

    Frank, I agree that Darko has not had great situations and could develop further, but in watching his youtube videos, which had clips from his european days, he doesn’t seem to have developed much at all to this point. Same is true for Wilcox, who has impressive physical tools but not much skill. Both guys seem like career backups, although Darko has more natural size and probably more upside. Great move, though, in only for the glimmer of hope that was no longer there with Q.

    Ted, nobody really locks down the premier SG’s in the game 1 on 1, they just have off nights or are schemed against. Still, I am optimistic because Douglas WANTS to lock guys down and that attitude is refreshing. Regarding his NCAA awards, I agree that they don’t necessarily translate, but if you factor in the competition he played against, it means more than it might for, say, Curry.

    When Coach K says he was his favorite non-Duke player, that’s high praise. It also appears that he excelled in the Knick pre-draft workout against some other highly touted guards.

    He was the go-to guy on his team and put up gaudy shooting % numbers against lots of top-20 teams that must have game-planned for him. Other than Curry (against much weaker teams) who shot better than he did? He was also the fastest guy at the combine. Seems like the perfect guard for D’Antoni’s system.

    Based on what I’ve seen and read, I wouldn’t trade him for anyone picked after #25. I guess we’ll find out lots more in the summer league.

  161. cwod

    Are we really citing Skip Bayless as an expert on anything?

    Also, Darko sucks. Maybe he’ll block a shot or two. He also gives us some size. That’s all we can hope for. This upcoming year will probably be like last season: exciting, infuriating, ultimately irrelevant. We’ll see how the youngsters develop and what becomes of the 2010 free agents.

    If we don’t re-sign Lee, he better be involved in a trade for a legitimately good player.

    On the subject of Douglas, couldn’t we have him guard the opposing team’s point guard and keep Duhon off the ball? Didn’t Duhon play a great deal off the ball on defense last season? Thus, we don’t need to pretend like Douglas will be trying to stop Kobe. That’s what Jeffries and Chandler are for. Clearly.

  162. Ted Nelson

    It was not my intention to knock Douglas’ D, but at 6-2 it’s unlikely he’ll be an elite defensive 2-guard ever let alone as a rookie. I agree that no one can stop a Kobe, Wade, etc. one-on-one consistently, but some people do a better job than others and most of them probably have a few inches on Douglas. Maybe Douglas is a very special defender, I’m just not ready to anoint him DPOY yet.

    Guys like Redick, May, etc. dominate ACC comp every year. Maybe Douglas’ accolades speak to how good he’ll be in the NBA, I just don’t think they’re the most solid evidence of what he’ll do in the pros.

    “Other than Curry (against much weaker teams) who shot better than he did?”
    He’s a solid shooter, but not uniquely efficient. Plenty of guys drafted shot as well or better than Douglas. That’s not to say he can’t shoot. If you want 2 examples of small ACC guards who shot significantly better than Douglas: Lawson and Teague.

    “I wouldn’t trade him for anyone picked after #25.”
    I think it was a good pick. There are a lot of guys drafted after #25 that I would think about taking for Douglas, but I can’t say that I know they’ll be better pros.
    There are some red flags, though. Age is one. Another is that his steal, block, and rebound numbers don’t match up with his athleticism, they’re respectable just don’t scream “out of this world athlete.” Athleticism needs to translate onto the court, although maybe he’s a great on-ball defender who just plays with his feet and doesn’t go for steals and blocks. Finally, maybe the most important red flag is that he’s 6’2″ and not a PG. He’s either got to learn to run a team, play with a wing who can run a team (anyone come to mind???), or guard 2s.

    I’m very excited about Douglas and his potential as a Knick, just playing devils advocate for the sake of discussion.

  163. Ted Nelson

    knicks2010,

    I have no idea what you’re referring to or talking about.

    Frank,

    I think there’s definitely a chance that Darko develops into a decent player. How likely it is depends how you define “good” I guess. I think it’s very, very unlikely that he comes close to justifying the #2 pick in 2003, but I think it’s pretty likely that he justifies the Q-Rich trade. His statistical output last season was pretty passable, but oddly he blocked less shots and fouled more than his career numbers which seems counterintuitive. If he can keep or improve on his .533 TS% and 15.7 reb-rates from last season while getting back to 2.6 blocks/36 (his career average) and playing good D generally then I would be thrilled. It would be great to have both the #1 and #2 picks from the greatest draft in NBA history in Knicks uniforms come 2010…

  164. Z-man

    I don’t want to go over the top with Douglas either, but I think he’ll be a factor this year, and probably will go on to be a very valuable backup. That’s a pretty good find at #29. He appears to be not as athletic as he is fast and tough, if that makes any sense. On balance, if he is a reasonable (and less infuriating) replacement for Nate, another very valuable backup, I could live with that. On paper, it seems like their strengths and weaknesses balance each other out. My hope is that Douglas is as good offensively and better defensively, less spectacular but more efficient and consistent, and less of a sideshow. I used to love Nate, but his antics and technicals have worn me down and at this point I won’t be sorry to see him go.

  165. Z

    KB– the 2007 draft thread is interesting for many reasons. Another parallel between ’07 and ’09 may be the similarities in stat-favorites Fazekas (’07) and Blair (’09) both falling. Both were highly valued by the statistical analysts. Faz was passed over and now he’s not in the league. For all those people cursing GMs for not drafting Blair, he too could follow Fazekas to the D-League in just a few seasons.

  166. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    “KB– the 2007 draft thread is interesting for many reasons. Another parallel between ‘07 and ‘09 may be the similarities in stat-favorites Fazekas (’07) and Blair (’09) both falling. Both were highly valued by the statistical analysts. Faz was passed over and now he’s not in the league. For all those people cursing GMs for not drafting Blair, he too could follow Fazekas to the D-League in just a few seasons.”

    Fazekas went to Europe after spending a year in the NBDL. He has European roots, so it made sense. FWIW he dominated the NBDL, with a PER of 23.8 and did pretty well in limited minutes in the NBA (PER 19.6).

    NBA GMs aren’t infallible. Ben Wallace went undrafted and played less minutes than Fazekas in his first season at the same age. Fazekas out rebounded Wallace and nearly tripled his scoring output (at a TS% of 58.4 to Wallace’s 34.7%) at the same age. Is there any thought that he wouldn’t have at least an average NBA career? I think it’s more likely that he would be an above average player, if given the chance.

  167. KnickGem

    Can anyone tell me why we didn’t take a more imaginative pick with a higher risk/reward ratio say like a Terrance Williams who the Nets picked? I mean after trading away Quentin Richardson we only have one SG on roster. We could use an exciting athletic SG !!!

  168. Ted Nelson

    “Can anyone tell me why we didn’t take a more imaginative pick with a higher risk/reward ratio say like a Terrance Williams who the Nets picked?”

    Ideally you’re looking for someone with a low risk/reward ratio, in other words, a high reward/risk ratio.
    Williams is an excellent rebounder, passer, and defender on the wing, but he cannot score a lick. He’s going to have to become a true lock-down defender and/or PG on offense to make a huge impact in the NBA. Certainly he has the tools, but I’m not upset that the Knicks passed him up for an athletic bigman with a pretty well rounded game.

  169. Z

    “NBA GMs aren’t infallible”

    Neither are the pre-draft statistical analysts. Point is, for all those in the past few days cursing Walsh for seemingly ignoring the statistical dominance of guys like Blair and Lawson, remember that the #1 statistical prospect of 2007 DID in fact go on to dominate the league…

    But it was the D-League.

    Not exactly someone people still curse for having slipped past them in the draft.

  170. Ted Nelson

    You don’t have to look at stats to know that Blair can play. By all accounts he slipped so far because of concerns about his knee. ESPN literally reported that teams’ doctors told them it was too risky. There are a long line of sub 6-8 PFs who have slipped in the draft and had NBA success, including Chuck Hayes, Carl Landry, and Paul Millsap. think it’s reasonable to expect Blair to join them, essentially in the role long ago vacated by another sub 6-8 2nd rounder: Malik Rose.
    I see your point with Fazekas, but don’t think it’s that relevant here.
    I also see Mike’s point. The analysts we’re referring to attempt to project how well a prospect will play in the NBA. As expected, Fazekas played very well in the NBA. Just not for very long (at least to date).

  171. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    “the #1 statistical prospect of 2007 DID in fact go on to dominate the league…

    But it was the D-League.

    Not exactly someone people still curse for having slipped past them in the draft.”

    The only way we can tell if someone is good if they play well in the NBA, and the only way to play in the NBA is if someone takes a chance on said player & gives him a chance. But of course if the player doesn’t get that chance then the GMs were right. And if they do get that chance and show it then the GM is a genius for finding him. It’s an impossible argument to win from my perspective, isn’t it?

    If their methods of scouting players is too blind to realize the good players they are letting slip past them, then of course they won’t be cursing themselves for those mistakes. Ignorance is bliss.

  172. Nick C.

    What’s the deal with Fazekas anyway? Is it his D or just the tired old pre-conceived notions about pigmentally challenged players.

  173. Z

    “It’s an impossible argument to win from my perspective, isn’t it?”

    Not really. It’s impossible to lose, if NBA minutes is the only way to prove that the GMs were right or wrong.

    The fact is, Fazekas was on several team’s rosters, and all of them (after playing him and presumably comparing him to the other big-men on their team) rated him low on their depth charts. He was waived by the Nuggets; he was waived by the Clippers, a demented franchise, but one with luxury of time to let promising young players develop; he was even waived by Dallas in favor of signing a retired Kieth Van Horn (a claim to fame he’s probably still bragging about).

    Very few players dominate the D-League and then dominate the NBA. Maybe Fazekas will be the exception and prove all those teams wrong, but its not like he never had a fair shot. Even the stat-savvy GM(s) didn’t show much interest.

    But I’m really not trying to argue that stat guys were wrong about him. My original point was that on draft day we tend to curse GMs for passing over guys we think are “good picks” based on their stats. But, if one was to go back over the years, these players aren’t the ones we regret letting slip by. In 2007 both Ramon Sessions and Marc Gasol were drafted after Fazekas. I think more people regret letting them slip by.

  174. Ted Nelson

    “My original point was that on draft day we tend to curse GMs for passing over guys we think are “good picks” based on their stats. But, if one was to go back over the years, these players aren’t the ones we regret letting slip by.”

    I mostly agree with you. The fact is, though, that sometimes the players we wanted are the ones we regret our teams letting slip and sometimes they aren’t.
    There are obviously countless examples, of course, but here are a few that come to mind. If I were a Hawks fan I’d have been pretty upset about passing on Paul. Some Knicks fans were upset about taking Frye over Bynum. I wasn’t thrilled with them taking Sweetney over Pietrus.

  175. Caleb

    Blair is a weird poster boy as a stat-head obsession – he was hardly under the radar in college — a first-team All-AMerica as a sophomore.

    I think his falling to 37 says a lot about GMs inability to understand odds, and the true value of draft picks. Basically, once you get by #10 in a weak draft, it’s worth picking a guy who dominated in college and has a decent chance of being a really good pro – even if there’s a 50+ percent chance that his knees blow out inside 5 years. YOur average #10 pick projects to be a below-average starter – it’s silly to play it conservative, at that point. Especially once you hit teams in the late teens or 20s, playoff teams that could be good in a year or two.

    I think it’s telling that “stat favorites” Lawson and Blair ended up with teams with great management.

    re: Fazekas, a caveat – no one ever said that because he had the highest number attached to his college stats, he was the “best” prospect in the draft – just that he should have gone much higher than 35.

    I agree with Mike on this one — I won’t be a bit surprised to see Fazekas surface as a good NBA player. Getting cut as a 2nd-round rook doesn’t prove he can’t play – Nuggets were loaded at his position and I put Dallas & the Clips in the category of teams with crappy personnel departments.

  176. Garson

    “Jason Kidd plans to meet with Knicks officials Wednesday morning reports the New York Daily News. The Knicks could sign Kidd to the mid-level exception or try to negotiate a sign-and-trade with Dallas.
    The Knicks, according to the newspaper, may look at Ramon Sessions if they can’t acquire Kidd.”

    First time caller… long time listener.

    Is Kidd enough to bring LBJ to NY? personally i would prefer sessions after watching him disect our Defense many a time. However , if Kidd is the route towards the King … thats where my heart is.

  177. Ted Nelson

    I don’t think Kidd does much to get LeBron. He’s not getting younger, so it’s hard to sell the future. Plus they both want the ball in their hands to make plays.
    Kidd’s a good-to-great short-term move for the Knicks and would help them win games in 2009-10: he will excel running D’Antoni’s offense, can guard 2s thus freeing Nate (if re-signed), Douglas, or Duhon to play with him and guard 1s, and will get the ball to our big finishers–Lee (if re-signed), Hill, Curry, and Wilcox (if re-signed)–and make our wings better.
    Long-term it doesn’t do much for the Knicks to bring in a 36 year old PG. I hope he gets a one year deal, maybe two.

  178. jon abbey

    speaking of pits in stomachs, is there any sane Knicks fan out there who doesn’t have a bad feeling that we’re about to lose David Lee for nothing? someone will pay him too much and refuse to do a sign and trade, knowing that Walsh won’t go over a certain amount for him (hell, he said it in the paper today, $7 million), calling his bluff.

    the way that recent Knicks history has gone, I’ll believe this doesn’t happen when it doesn’t, and not before.

  179. Olbrannon

    Slow night for news. here’s some take on Douglas that isn’t in Abrans Times post from today.

    http://www.dukebasketballreport.com/forums/showthread.php?t=16425

    Not a real long thread. Coach K is a Douglas fan ….I heard that best on the ball defender in college somewhere else …-might- have been to the Tallahassee press But he did I know say Toney was his favorite player. Then quickly amended outside of his own team.

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