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Monday, September 25, 2017

Knicks Morning News (2017.09.11)

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis leads Latvia to Eurobasket quarterfinals
    (Sunday, September 10, 2017 9:06:16 PM)

    Oklahoma City Thunder C Enes Kanter spoke on his time playing with Knicks SF Carmelo Anthony’s alter ego, “Hoodie Melo,” on Timeout with Taylor Rooks.

  • [NYPost] Knicks will eagerly watch Team Porzingis vs. potential No. 1 stud
    (Sunday, September 10, 2017 10:58:40 AM)

    Kristaps Porzingis isn’t coming to Tarrytown just yet. On Sunday, Latvia advanced to the quarterfinals of the European Championships with a 100-68 bashing of Montenegro in elimination play. Porzingis, the 7-foot-3 Knicks phenom, starred again with 19 points on 5-of-8 shooting, six rebounds and three assists in 22 minutes. Latvia, with a record of 5-1,…

  • 40 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2017.09.11)

    1. Frank

      Re: The bballbreakdown video linked to yesterday – have to remember that Coach Nick has been beating the drum for the triangle forever. He basically cherrypicks some of the worst games the Knicks had, then further cherrypicks just a few of the plays. While I have no doubt that Melo ran the triangle poorly, you can take any player in the league and find a bunch of plays where they don’t run the offense well. Have to remember that the ENTIRE LEAGUE has the Triangle offense available to them, and very few teams run anything more than “triangle concepts”.

      And a lot of the “great looks” that Coach Nick says the Triangle creates are — you guessed it — long twos. Memo to coach Nick – those are the “great looks” the defense wants you to have. Coach Nick probably thinks a QB who throws a 4 yard pass on 3rd and 9 made a great decision. He was OPEN.

      At the end of the day, if the coaching staff and literally the greatest coach in the history of basketball can’t convince today’s players to play the Triangle, then literally it doesn’t even matter whether it’s a good offense. It’s a fool’s errand.

      Woj + Zach Lowe podcast from friday was interesting. I think this “lottery reform” is just the same shit, different day. As long as you incentivize losing in any way, people will lose on purpose whether it’s at the top of the draft or somewhere else. I will forever think that my “lottery reform” idea – which included actually incentivizing WINNING games in late season – is the right way to do it.

      Also interesting was Zach Lowe’s statement that Portland REALLY wants Melo. C’mon Melo – just say yes. Give me one of those 1st round picks and Mo Harkless, and I’ll even take back Meyers Leonard.

    2. Ntilakilla

      And a lot of the “great looks” that Coach Nick says the Triangle creates are — you guessed it — long twos.

      Actually, part of his argument was that if the Triangle was actually run correctly by the Knicks (which it was not) then it would have resulted in the availability of a corner three almost every time.

      Also, to be fair to Coach Nick, he chose the two worst offensive and the two best offensive games the Knicks played last season and looked at every offensive set the team ran. You can tell me that he’s biased towards the Triangle due to his background coaching it, but his quantification of the number of plays we ran it aren’t in question. So, ultimately, he’s right. The Triangle got a lot of blame for this team’s downfall it didn’t deserve. We barely ran it, and even then, we used Triangle concepts.

    3. Ntilakilla

      Oh Phil deserves plenty of blame (and praise as well) but the Triangle really isn’t what he should be blamed for. Expecting a team with Melo and Rose on it to run the Triangle is the blame he deserves.

    4. er

      I will say that Phil poisoned his time here. He had a golden opportunity to make a difference and he just acted like a grumpy old man. He should have been the coach or not taken the job.( I know 12mil is hard to turn down.)

      He tried to coach from the front office and that was his downfall. I still think Fisher could have been a good coach. The team was .500 when Melo hurt his foot in that Celtics game and then the guy gets fired because he was veering too far from big Chief Triangle’s system.

    5. fmikieo

      Phil’s biggest mistakes were (1) not doing S&T Melo to the Bulls (when #7 was at his highest value) and (2) getting cheap with Steve Kerr, a coach that actually UNDERSTOOD the triangle offence.

    6. fmikieo

      And if the league is serious about eliminating tanking, they should consider the original lottery format or some variation of it:

      One team, one envelope or ping-pong ball

    7. Frank

      Any real lottery reform will need to incentivize WINNING of games down the stretch.

      Even in my long-lived fantasy football league, we noted that owners outside the playoffs were checking out if they weren’t playing for anything, so we instituted a “toilet bowl” by which the winner of the non-playoff-team bracket either got the #1 pick (when we did snake draft) and now gets a “trump card” now that we do auction drafts. You have to incentivize winning, and if you do that, then all the teams will actually be trying to win, whether for playoffs or for lottery balls.

    8. DS

      Also interesting was Zach Lowe’s statement that Portland REALLY wants Melo

      Agree. It would be nice if he cared about playing for a team where he’s more appreciated by the fans and management, where he could make the playoffs in the West and possibly winning a series. But he just doesn’t.

    9. stratomatic is despondent

      The triangle was not even in the top 5 of the Knicks problems except in the minds of bunch of sports writers and analysts that don’t understand a damn thing about it to begin with. The entire story was one of those crazy narratives that the media gets hung up about that has little or nothing to do with reality. The coverage was a diversion that annoyed Phil as much as some of the players.

      The Knicks sucked because they didn’t steal the ball, create turnovers, and otherwise defend very well.

      The offense was mediocre because 2 of their 3 high usage players have never been high efficiency scorers no matter offense they’ve been part of and their 3# option was a kid that was still struggling with shot selection and that was playing worn down and/or hurt for part of the season.

      If the offense is better this year it will be because KP got better, WH got better and gets more minutes, THJ demonstrates that his development last year was not a fluke, Frank plays efficiently etc… It won’t be the system change.

    10. stratomatic is despondent

      Portland has a terrific team. They are 1 high level player away from making serious noise. They have one of the best backcourts in the NBA, are set at Center, and have a few other decent role players to create a nice bench. Their problem is they have a few overpaid payers (now lost Crabbe because they wanted to clear some of it out) and they are stuck out west and you have to be 4 or 5 deep of really solid players to be on the same level as some of the teams chasing Golden State (who is a lot deeper than that).

      I’m not sure Melo would help them all that much, but I’m also not sure why he’s so against playing with them if the goal is winning games and he believe he’s a difference maker. It’s different for us because we don’t think he’d make that much of a difference.

    11. JK47

      The Triangle failed because Phil brought in bad players to run it. When you install a system that prioritizes ball movement, unselfishness and team play, then try to get Carmelo Anthony and Derrick Rose to run it, you’re going to fail. It’s like trying to run SSOL with Toney Douglas as your point guard. That shit is just not going to work. If you’re going to be all obsessive about running “system basketball” you have to at least get players who make sense in the system.

      I think Phil believed that he could “triangulize” players like Melo and Rose, and they would become cerebral team-oriented players once they fell under his motivational spell. He overestimated his own ability in that regard, and he overestimated the effect of the Triangle in general. He ran the team like some dumb vanity ego project, like he was going to prove to everybody that his way is the best way, and that old-timey basketball was better than this three-point shooting “how’s it goink”-ball the kids all play these days. He passive-aggressively sniped at players in the press. He made impulsive roster moves that resulted in the whole roster getting turned over every offseason. Since there is no Triangle coaching tree he burned through every available Triangle coach within two seasons then had to hire a guy who didn’t really want to coach it, then forced his incompetent and unpopular toady on the poor guy as “defensive coordinator.”

      The Triangle is dead forever after this, so good job, Phil.

    12. stratomatic is despondent

      I agree with one thing you said. Phil did think he could get Melo to buy in and play Kobe’s role in the triangle as the “bailout” option when they didn’t get a good shot.

      It wasn’t a crazy idea on the face of it because no one I know ever considered Kobe a team first passer either. He’s been accused of selfishness and taking way too many bad shots just like Melo. The problem was this. Melo is no Kobe as a player or as a personality. When Melo is not happy he’s willing to poison the team to get his way. We saw that with D’Antoni.

      I knew it. Lots of people knew it. Phil probably overestimated his ability to influence Melo positively. Kobe was a tough stubborn sob, but he valued winning a million times more than Melo and he was a WAY better player on both ends.

      Rose was blip on the radar. He was brought in to appease Melo. Phil understood that Melo’s window was closing and he had to keep him happy. So he took a flier on a player he knew Melo liked (Melo strongly considered going to Chicago to play with Rose and Noah). He was willing to take a shot because if it didn’t work Rose would be gone in a year and he’d have a ton of cap space to work with anyway. It was an utter non event. They were going nowhere anyway and everyone knew it. That cap space was used to sign THJ to a bad contract after he was gone.

      It was the Noah signing that was bad because he gave too many years to a guy that already looked like he might be breaking down in a permanent way.

    13. Frank

      It’s like trying to run SSOL with Toney Douglas as your point guard.

      Who in the world would ever do that?

      *vomits in own mouth*

    14. Grocer

      And a lot of the “great looks” that Coach Nick says the Triangle creates are — you guessed it — long twos.

      And most of those were contested.

      Memo was clearly bad at the triangle, as was Rose. But ever single player in that video, including ones he calls out as being good at the triangle like Baker and KP, fuck it up at some point. If you’re running or coaching the team and you find the players only rarely run your offense correctly it’s time to change the offense. Either you don’t have the right players for it or you suck at teaching it or both. Triangle failure was ultimately Phil’s failure.

    15. Cock Jowles, #1 Tanking Denialist

      The Blazers’ frontcourt is better than most, but among the best? Nah. This year they finally hit “productive,” but we’ll see if that continues. The best you can say is that they play a ton of minutes at an above-average production. I’d love that on the Knicks, so I can’t hate, but they’re not the stars that they’re made out to be. This opinion has not made me new friends out here in Portland.

    16. ClashFan

      IIRC, at his opening presser, Phil said that Melo “has another level.”

      But Melo did not have a higher level.

      So, Phil resigned him and gave the NTC. That’s the fatal error, b/c despite making some other decent decisions he ultimately doubled down on his Melo bet by trading for Rose and signing Noah.

      Instead of offering any kind of insightful analysis of the Knicks, the vast majority of the lazy NBA media went with the lame “Triangle” narrative. Now with Phil gone, they’ll probably just resort to the equally lazy “same Old Knicks” narrative. As long as Dolan owns the team, that narrative at least does have some truth to it.

    17. johnnyhoops

      We have our draft picks for a change plus KP, Willy, Frank and possibly Dotson and Jaramaz so I like where we are going forward.

    18. stratomatic is despondent

      The Blazers’ frontcourt is better than most, but among the best?

      I said backcourt.

      Who is better than Lilliard and McCollum?

      CP3/Harden (better)
      Curry/Thompson (better)
      Wall and Beal (probably better)
      Lowery and DeRosen? (I’d take an assassin like Lilliard over Lowery in the playoffs)

      Edit: Oh yeah, I forgot Frank and Junior. :-)

    19. stratomatic is despondent

      @ClashFan

      I also think re-signing Melo was a basketball mistake. I’m sure I was ranting about it at the time on the forum because I’ve been ranting about Melo ever since the trade for him. But I think I’ve learned a bit since then (finally at 58 lol). There is the kind of fantasy basketball and GMing we play here and there is the real world where people have to consider the basketball aspects of a move, but also jobs at the team, fan perception, ticket sales/prices, merchandise sales, and the business as a whole.

      If Phil would have come in and one of the first things he did was to let Melo walk or do a deal for him that would have started a rebuild, he wouldn’t have even lasted as long as he did. Melo was considered the star of the team. He’s more highly regarded around the league among coaches, GMs, media, and other players than he his among some stats guys. Phil had to re-sign him unless he was getting a deal he could sell to the fans, media and Dolan in NY. Nothing like that was on the table. The speculation usually involved Phil having to take back Boozer’s salary (which he was against) and I doubt a pieces like Butler were on the table even though Butler had yet to fully break out as a star. The NTC was a brain fart, but I’ve always speculated that was the trade-off for getting a small discount and at the time it appeared there was no chance Melo would not finish his career in NY. So it probably seemed irrelevant to Phil. It was a mistake.

    20. er

      He was brought in to appease Melo. Phil understood that Melo’s window was closing and he had to keep him happy. So he took a flier on a player he knew Melo liked (Melo strongly considered going to Chicago to play with Rose and Noah). He was willing to take a shot because if it didn’t work Rose would be gone in a year and he’d have a ton of cap space to work with anyway. It was an utter non event. They were going nowhere anyway and everyone knew it.

      I don’t think this is true at all and statements like this have been made for over a year. Phil likes something about Rose. It has nothing to do with Melo. If that were the case Rose wouldn’t have been on track to be resigned while Melo was being bought out under phil

    21. ClashFan

      I wondered aloud before last year if Phil was under pressure to have the Knicks make the playoffs. Perhaps pressure from Dolan or maybe pressure within himself as the Knicks had had two bad years in a row.

      So, maybe he “panicked” in a way with those two deals. But whatever the motivation, Melo’s presence and NTC were probably a major factor in all of that.

    22. d-mar

      The NTC was totally indefensible, and probably the worst move Jackson made as GM.

      Melo would be a Blazer right now if not for the NTC.

    23. Ntilakilla

      I don’t think this is true at all and statements like this have been made for over a year. Phil likes something about Rose. It has nothing to do with Melo. If that were the case Rose wouldn’t have been on track to be resigned while Melo was being bought out under phil

      This is true. Phil was going to resign Rose while getting rid of Melo. That, to me, was a last straw.

    24. ClashFan

      @25
      Actually, who knows where Melo would be right now because Phil might have dealt him before the trade deadline last year? Even now, if no NTC maybe New Orleans or some other team makes a sweet offer?

    25. Cock Jowles, #1 Tanking Denialist

      Even now, if no NTC maybe New Orleans or some other team makes a sweet offer?

      Anthony Davis for Carmelo? Otherwise, who? They have nothing but garbage.

    26. GoNyGoNyGo

      Melo would be a Blazer right now if not for the NTC

      Or a Cav or a Celtic or any other team in the NBA.

      As far as Phil is concerned, it’s a closed book. I don’t care about it any more.

      What I care about is what we do going forward from now. I feel (maybe too optimisticly) is that we have a good, young core to build from. That doesn’t include Ntilikina, who we haven’t really seen. KP, Wily and Kuz have a future. I’m hoping that THJr and Baker are half as good as their contracts. LT and Lee can be good complimentary pieces. If we simply were able to replace Melo with a player that develops into a legit 2-way all-star with our next lottery pick, this could be a team to reckon with in two years.

      The worst thing that can happen right now is that Dolan et al, will listen to the media and react to it and do something really stupid to make this team a better form of mediocre (like trading Melo for Ryan Anderson) that prevents the Knicks from moving forward with this plan.

    27. er

      I agree. I think this year the team will win around 45 games. I think this is a big year for KP and Willy. If THJR can keep improving and we get Melo from 2 years ago, as well as healthy Noah and somewhat competent frank especially on D.

      I know I’m always the optimistic one but I like the youth. Kuz might even be ok.

    28. Bruno Almeida

      I would have taken the Cousins offer for Melo in an instant. Hield is young and shot really well post trade in Sacramento, so there’s potential there, Galloway would be fine as a potential starting PG / solid backup again, Casspi is fine and Tyreke was expiring anyway. We could have packaged the 8 + 10 pick to get maybe Isaac or Fox or just take Ntilikina + Collins or Monk anyway. The offer for Melo would probably be less attractive but Hield + Asik + Evans + pick would still be much better than anything the Knicks will ever get for Melo. Having Hield on the team would probably also make sure THJr is never considered, so more cap space.

    29. ClashFan

      @29
      If NO would offer their 2018 and 2020 picks, unprotected, plus some garbage salary for Melo, I’d be very interested. But, yeah, they don’t have any players to offer.

    30. TheOakmanCometh

      New Orleans just stole Tony Allen away from Memphis for $2.3m. That’s a great move for them and bad for the Knicks. It’s one less dumb team to trade with.

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