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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Knicks Morning News (2017.10.30)

  • [NYPost] Porzingis, Hardaway help Knicks stun suddenly mortal Cavaliers
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 5:42:01 PM)

    CLEVELAND — You can’t believe what happened Sunday in Believeland. Armed with a devastating 1-2 punch of Tim Hardaway Jr. and Kristaps Porzingis, the Knicks smashed their 10-game losing streak to the Cavaliers, hammering the three-time defending Eastern Conference champs in a 114-95 victory at a quiet Quicken Loans Arena. “We’re capable of beating a…

  • [NYPost] Phil Jackson’s firing made Derrick Rose rethink Knicks
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 3:03:59 PM)

    CLEVELAND — Derrick Rose couldn’t help but admit his interest in rejoining the Knicks rose after Phil Jackson got canned. The feeling wasn’t mutual. Entering Sunday’s match against the Knicks, Rose said he never had seen rookie Frank Ntilikina play and still hadn’t heard from the club. After Jackson was let go, Knicks president Steve…

  • [NYPost] Steve Mills commits to Ntilikina and Hornacek in State of Knicks
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 8:19:27 AM)

    CLEVELAND — Frank Ntilikina, Willy Hernangomez and Jeff Hornacek are safe. In a State of the Knicks address on Sunday at Quicken Loans Arena, Knicks president Steve Mills said Ntilikina and Hernangomez are keepers. He also dampened speculation about Jeff Hornacek’s immediate future, saying he’s not being judged by a won-loss record, and Friday’s Brooklyn…

  • [ESPN] Steve Mills: Jeff Hornacek, Scott Perry and I are on the same page
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 3:55:53 PM)

    Steve Mills: Jeff Hornacek, Scott Perry and I are on the same page

  • [NY Newsday] Tim Hardaway Jr.’s 34 points spark Knicks to rout of Cavaliers
    (Monday, October 30, 2017 12:16:48 AM)

    CLEVELAND — Tim Hardaway Jr. had put up brick after brick in his first four games as a Knick. He had seen so many shots miss the mark, but he finally watched them drop Sunday night.

  • [NY Newsday] Derrick Rose ‘would have loved coming back’ to Knicks
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 9:36:03 PM)

    CLEVELAND — Derrick Rose said he wanted to come back to the Knicks and would have listened if they had called him.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks president Steve Mills supports coach Jeff Hornacek
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 8:00:00 PM)

    CLEVELAND — Knicks president Steve Mills said this season is more about making progress than getting wins, and that he supports Jeff Hornacek and his coaching decisions.

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis, Knicks hope victory over Cavs can lead to bigger wins
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 11:30:00 PM)

    After scoring 32 points and recording 12 rebounds in Sunday’s 114-95 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers, Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis and the rest of the team hope that victory can be a sign of bigger things to come this season.

  • [SNY Knicks] Hardaway, Porzingis lead Knicks to 114-95 win over Cavs
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 9:31:00 PM)

    Tim Hardaway Jr. scored a game-high 34 points, Kristaps Porzingis and Enes Kanter recorded double-doubles and the New York Knicks beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 114-95 on Sunday at Quicken Loans Arena.

  • [SNY Knicks] Rose ‘would’ve loved’ returning to Jackson-less Knicks if team reached out
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 7:55:18 PM)

    Former Knicks and current Cavaliers guard Derrick Rose said he did have interest in returning to New York after the organization fired president Phil Jackson, however said he was content with being a member of the Cavaliers.

  • [SNY Knicks] Tonight’s game: Knicks vs. Cavaliers, 7 p.m.
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 3:57:05 PM)

    CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Cavaliers aren’t concerned by their slow start and porous defense.

  • [SNY Knicks] Steve Mills defends Jeff Hornacek after 1-3 start
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 1:27:19 PM)

    Knicks President Steve Mills voiced his support for coach Jeff Hornacek after a 1-3 start to the season.

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis, Knicks hoping to end drought against Cavs Sunday
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 9:54:22 AM)

    Knicks star F Kristaps Porzingis will have the spotlight shining on him in Cleveland Sunday when he takes on the Cavaliers on the road.

  • [NYDN] Loss to Knicks only latest blunder in Cavs’ poor start to season
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 5:48:36 PM)

    Shocking home loss to Knicks only latest blunder in Cavs’ poor start to season.

  • [NYDN] Knicks stun Cavs behind Tim Hardaway Jr.’s 34-point explosion
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 5:31:36 PM)

    Who saw that coming?

  • [NYDN] Derrick Rose: Knicks didn’t want to bring me back
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 2:57:14 PM)

    With Phil Jackson and the triangle out of the picture, Derrick Rose wanted to return to the Knicks.

  • [NYDN] Injuries are hindering Frank Ntilikina’s development with Knicks
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 9:35:52 AM)

    Given Frank Ntilikina’s injury history, Jeff Hornacek warned that starting the 19-year-old could be a detriment to his health.

  • [NYDN] Steve Mills gives Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek vote of confidence
    (Sunday, October 29, 2017 8:36:15 AM)

    Jeff Hornacek has the support of the front office so long as the team shows improvement.

  • 267 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2017.10.30)

    1. Frank

      Couldn’t believe what I was seeing last night, but man, is that Cavs defense just awful. At one point there was a Korver / Love combo guarding a PNR which predictably ended horribly for the Cavs. And Clyde often says “if they pass the ball, they get whatever shot they want”, but hardly is it ever about the Knicks and the opposing defense.

      RE: Timmy – he’s pretty much sucked this year, but you see what he can be on those days that he’s on. He is a plus athlete at the 2 position, and he just beat his guy to spots all night long with pure speed both in the half court and especially in transition. And WTF was up with the 8 assists (and 1 hockey assist)? Not sure how many of those assists ended up being 3’s (seemed like a lot), but scoring 34 points and adding 8+ assists… not bad Timmy!

      Re: KP – it’s sort of like the Happy Gilmore “Happy learned how to putt… Uh-oh” moment for him in that he’s realized he can freaking score over anyone in the post, even if that someone is Lebron James. He missed a couple of the shots, but he got to his spot and looked comfortable/unrushed. the Cavs decided not to send much in the way of doubles at him last night, and so we’ll see how that turns out when teams send the hard double. Another zero assist game for him, but it’s hard to argue with 32/12. And one last under-the-radar thing- has not come close to fouling out this year despite playing ~35 min/game.

      Courtney Lee was great last night. Shot the 3 without hesitation and without the lame fake and drive that ends up with a worse quality shot. Played as good D against Lebron as any 6’5″ guy can.

      And Frank – 8th in the league in deflections per 36, top 20 in loose balls recovered, averaging 7.8 assists per 40… the kid can play. Had a bunch of nice easy passes to the right guy, and that 3/4 court bounce pass to Timmy was a thing of beauty.

      BTW our old friend Langston Galloway has a higher TS (78) than DRtg (75). Is that good?

    2. Frank

      I’d be remiss waxing poetic about the Knicks without bringing up Jarrett Jack, who honestly has been amazing. I literally cannot believe I typed those words, but he really has stabilized that starting unit. Jack has a net + 21.2 rating (77 min) and that actually feels like it underrepresents how good he has been. hats off to Hornacek for making that change even those it was widely ridiculed (including by me) to put a 93 year old PG into the starting lineup.

    3. Frank

      I’ll just keep posting because that’s what I do when feeling wildly optimistic about the Knicks. I know it will last just another 12 hours or so, but if feels great.

      Anyway – great stat from Tommy Beer last night on Twitter (emphasis mine) –> Porzingis becomes the first Knick in franchise history to score at least 30 points in four of the first five games of a season.

    4. lavor postell

      I would imagine the Knicks halfcourt PPP allowed is pretty good after 5 games.

      If the Knicks don’t have a total letdown tonight this game should be pretty fun. Denver is a better team but the frontcourt matchup and THJ vs Harris will be interesting matchups.

    5. Frank

      Season is still very very young but Porzingis’s development in the post is really astounding so far.

      per NBA.com — his post-up #s

      2015-16 -> 2.3 possessions/game, 0.82 PPP, 44.8th perce
      2016-17 -> 2.5 possessions/game, 0.81 PPP, 30.5th percentile
      2017-18 -> 6.4 possessions/game, 1.09 PPP, 73.7th percentile

      his 3-ball hasn’t been there yet, and he’s shooting a surprisingly low percentage at the rim (51.7% in the restricted area vs. 68% last year), and so you imagine he still has a lot of room for improvement.

    6. Totes McGoats Makes 18mil For 14ppg

      Last night’s game was great to see, even if it felt a little fluke-ish. The Cavs defense has been horrible thus far, but I am excited about our offense. It has the feel of a top 7 offense when we get good PG play. The worst thing that came out of the game last night is the fact that we’re likely to break that chemistry up- which is why I think McBuckets needs to start. Lee doesn’t need to be showcased to be traded, as teams already know his value. He can do the same things backing TH2 up.

      Also, KOQ is likely to get moved as Kanter is playing really really well. My gosh, he is a valuable piece despite his salary. He should fetch a 1st if he gets traded. He’s still weak on defense, but not a total loss there. We may be in a catch 22 with him. Willy needs to improve his defense so he can get minutes, as we need to figure out which young big to keep. Right now Kanter is miles ahead of him, and as long as KOQ is around, Willy’s development will most likely be stunted.

      All in all, I think the team is playing better than expected. I expected the team to start playing like they have the past 2 games around December or January. I wonder how long it’s gonna be until Jack gives way to Ntilikina. He should be really good with the starters

    7. bockadoo

      Amazing what competent point guard play can do for a team, something for whatever reason we have been avoiding like the plague for years. Frank’s defense changes everything. KP is unstoppable. Both he and Frank will still have growing pains, but if we can trade a big for a defensive wing (Crowder?) to balance out the roster, and stay healthy, we will be flirting with a low playoff seed. Unfortunately no Luka, Bagley, Porter… we are destined for Miles Bridges!

    8. er

      That’s the thing with KP, he doesn’t need to get to the rim. He can just stand flat footed 5-7 feet away and basically throw the ball in cuz hes so damn tall. He finally seems to get that. That area hes now deadly, as long as he keeps a strong base, no one can keep him from that spot.

    9. 2FOR18, understands math

      competent pg play + Porzingis playing like a guy who is 7 ft 3 = profit! If these 2 things are really a thing, and they don’t trade O’Quinn, bye bye Doncic, hello interesting basketball and Miles Bridges.

    10. 2FOR18, understands math

      @11 Cousins has been out of control. He’s even playing some pg and shooting like Dirk, in addition to his beastly stuff down low. I’d like to see him keep it up for awhile though.

    11. 2FOR18, understands math

      I missed most of the game last night. I only saw the beginning of the 4th quarter, where LeBron made a concerted effort to try to take over the game (you can just see it with him – crashing the boards, running over people, firing passes), but it didn’t take; he just got no help and they couldn’t stop Timmy or KP.

    12. ptmilo

      It’s been really fun to watch KP hit shots from everywhere and get to the rim without many turnovers. But in the long run his passing level isn’t sustainable. He and Kanter have to be the highest-usage lowest-passing combo ever. I’m also a little concerned that he is floating a little more on defense, maybe to avoid fouls or conserve energy. I’m not complaining about 30+ in 4/5 games with pretty good efficiency, I’m just not sure I see a template of really productive player yet. He’s only a week into being the main option though, so it’s hard to say much at all except that he is doing some exciting stuff.

    13. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      KP is borderline unstoppable. He’s scoring from everywhere on the court in every way possible. You could almost think the comparison to Dirk is no longer hype. He looks that good. If he learns his role as the #1 option a little better and passes up some of the bad shots he’s still taking, his efficiency is going to rise and he’s going to be an ELITE scorer. Shot selection and play making are the next step.

      We are going to LOVE Frank as soon as he’s ready for the starting role.

    14. KJG

      In Kanter, we havent seen a knick battle as ferociously on the offensive glass in a long time. maybe the stats tell another story, who knows (someone here, im sure)… if you consider defense equal in the willy / kanter situation (and I dont, I think Kanter is just flat out more aggressive in all facets), the only situation where i give willy the edge is when kanter forces that baseline spin… other than that, if the team wants to win games, kanter gets the minutes… the big doubles were coming kanter’s way early on last night too…he was forcing a bit but those doubles tell you something about his game (either he forces the issue and turnover prone, or he’s actually a real threat to opposing teams)…

      Loving Franks poise so far… maybe a force here or there but for the most part he is no frills in his decision making… and i love that… timmy capable of exploding at any moment… lets hope he does that more often than not… ramon sessions to the curb please (sorry, ramon, dont take it personally)… KP playing well but would love to see him create once in awhile (as i think we are all hopeful of)

    15. danvt

      Best game in a very long time for the Knicks. KP6 growing. FN looks like he was worthy of the pick. Jack and Kanter are surprising. Hardaway looks like he may be worth his deal. Please no trade talk yet. If we keep winning we should keep Lee and O’Quinn.

      Of course we were 14-11 last year. Much can happen and usually does but that was a sweet as it gets last night.

      We’re keeping Jack for the season right? Who gets cut when Noah comes back? Sessions?

    16. hornyKnickfan

      Kanter provides gravitational pull.
      Frank gives us veteran leadership from a 19 year old.
      ThJr was all worldly last night. 8 assists??
      Courtney Lee has discovered the double double at age 32.
      Jack knows Jack.
      KP is a unicorn afterall.
      All is well today.

    17. swiftandabundant

      I know the Cavs are not as good this year but still…we beat LeBron James. Anytime that happens its kind of a big deal.

      These last two games have show that if this team stays healthy, they have a shot at being decent….like maybe even make the playoffs decent. If we are a fringe playoff team, I hope that the hand wringing about draft position doesn’t become an annoying recurring post on this blog. I get wanting a high draft pick but you can’t really have it both ways. You can’t develop good young players and develop a culture and system and suck your way to high draft picks. Either you make good picks and build a team and you start to win more games than you lose or you suck and get high draft picks but nothing comes out of it.

      If we’re the 8th seed or even if we barely miss the playoffs, that means KP has taken that next step, Hardaway is proving to be a decent addition and Frank is playing valuable minutes. Those are all things we want! And we can continue to get better next season with stability, KP, Frank, Willie (and Dotson and Ron) improving, free agent additions, first round picks that are later in the first round and second round picks, etc.

      I know I’m just high off the win and maybe tonight will bring me back down to earth, but damn it I want to be 500! Damn it I want us to be good!

      KP was the 4th pick. If we lost more games that year and got the 2nd or 3rd pick we could have ended up with Okafor or Russell instead. Heck, even Towns right now isn’t looking as good as KP.

      If we lost more games last year, maybe we don’t pick Frank. Of course its too early to tell but I am liking our pick just fine. I believe no matter where you pick in the draft, especially in the top 20, there is a player who can help your team get better to be had. So please, if we win games…please no hand wringing about our draft position. Melo and Rose are gone.

    18. djphan

      it’s only 5 games in but it looks like kp is making that 3rd year leap…

      ftr: .327 (yr 2 .256)
      2p fg: .512 (on 17 attempts per 36)
      reb: 9.1 (yr 2 7.9)

    19. alsep73

      swiftandabundant, I’m with you. In an ideal world, we get a top 2 pick and grab either Doncic or Bagley. But if we’re bad enough to get that pick without a lot of ping-pong ball luck, it means some combination of the following has happened:

      * KP’s progress has stagnated, or even gone in reverse;

      * Frank is many years away from being even a little bit helpful;

      * Hardaway wasn’t just a wild overpay, but an outright disaster;

      * The front office and/or Hornacek is as clueless as their many predecessors;

      * KP and the rest of our “young core” are miserable.

      If Hardaway turns out to be good (albeit wildly overpaid), if KP’s leap from these first few games is real, and if Frank turns out to be worth that pick (and then some), then that all has value to the club’s long-term future. We can argue about whether someone like Doncic would have more, but at the same time, if we are in a position to get him, chances are he’d be coming to a team without many other building blocks, and/or to a team where our current franchise player is absolutely miserable and has perhaps developed many bad habits due to the constant losing and organizational dysfunction.

    20. Bruno Almeida

      Cousins is averaging 5 turnovers a game, which is borderline insane, but can’t argue with anything else. He’s been beasting.

      The league has had a lot of very interesting performance stretches so far… Blake Griffin is killing it, Victor Oladipo is making it look like the Pacers won the PG trade, Aaron Gordon is shooting 58.8% on 4.3 3 point attempts and looking like a superstar… It’s been a weird start to the season.

    21. thenamestsam

      Not going to get too carried away with last night. The Cavs turned in one of the most lackadaisical efforts I’ve ever seen in an NBA game, and I’ve been watching the Knicks for 15+ years! One thing this weekend’s games definitely crystallized for me is that it’s going to be damn hard to tank in the East. There are just so many weak to mediocre teams that as long as we’re not completely mailing it in and KP keeps playing like a star we’re going to run into a decent number of wins almost by accident. I think there’s a pretty good chance the #1 seed in the East ends up around 48 wins. Possibly less.

    22. swiftandabundant

      Yeah I just think tanking as a strategy is not wise. I mean, if the season is lost by all means, phone it in, make your trades and play all your young players. But as a full season or season to season strategy it doesn’t seem wise. Are the 76ers really in a great position? I haven’t seen it on the court yet consistently.

      I believe Steph Curry was the highest draft pick the Warriors had and he was the 6th pick I believe? They also had an 8th pick…can’t remember who. But then Draymond was a second rounder. Draft well, have a good coach and system, make good trades, don’t overpay (too much) in free agency or at least get young on the rise free agents when you do…and your team will have success.

    23. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      I’ve been saying it on this blog for a while now. The Knicks are too good of a team to make Doncic or Porter Jr a reality. With the guards picking up their play, we don’t really have a bad player on the roster. Jack, Frank, Lee, KP, TH2, Kanter, O’Quinn, McDermott, Noah, and Hernangomez all seem like plus or break even type players. We have one useless player on the roster in Lance Thomas (who by the way tried to score in a one on one situation against LeBron James smh).

      We should hope for an early season trade so we can land Kevin Knox. We’re better than at least Dallas, Sacramento, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Chicago. We might be better than Brooklyn and Philadelphia’s medical staff as well.

    24. Brian Cronin

      You can’t develop good young players and develop a culture and system and suck your way to high draft picks.

      The Thunder did precisely that.

    25. swiftandabundant

      @ 28 – the thunder. That’s ONE TEAM.

      I can literally think of so many bad teams that have been consistently bad forever despite having high draft picks year after year. But hey, the Thunder did it once!

      But then you have the spurs. a team that got one lottery pick in 1999. And that was after they “tanked” a season due to injuries to their key players. Before that they were a consistent 50 win playoff team in the 90s. They got Duncan and have been amazing ever since. Why? Was Tony Parker a top 5 lottery pick? What about Ginobli? what about Leonard? Nope. They drafted well. They sign good players. They have an amazing coach and a system. Players come there and they know exactly what their role is and they are expected to fulfill that role.

    26. 2FOR18, understands math

      @29 you need to calm down. You criticize Brian for bringing up a team that did what you said you can’t, then, for crying out loud, you use an outlier like the Spurs to try to prove your point. Put down the pipe and don’t overreact to this win.

    27. thenoblefacehumper

      The Sixers have made some questionable decisions (Okafor pick, trading Noel for a bag of balls, overpaying for Fultz IMO), and yet here they are with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid both looking like potential franchise players. They have plenty of money and picks left to play with, too. We don’t, and yet they might be better than us this year. This is all at the cost of exactly one more consecutive losing season than us. How does this validate a non-tanking approach?

    28. Ntilakilla

      Embiid needs to prove he can play more than half a season without breaking down. People acting like he’s on a path to superstardom underestimate what a major problem his health history poses. Its great to be freakishly talented and all, but you need to actually be able to take the court in order for your team to take advantage of this.

    29. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      @32 when I say bad I mean a guy who is a complete waste of minutes like a Lance Thomas, a Dion Waiters, a Derrick Rose, or even an overrate volume scorer like Andrew Wiggins that can power a team’s tank efforts. Most of the bad players we have are marginally bad and not tanktastic like Lance Thomas. We aren’t the Warriors by any means, but we have a decent roster. If Tim Hardaway Jr and Ramon Sessions were powering the tank on their own. If that stops, we’re closer to 35 wins than 23.

    30. chrisk06811

      What impressed me last night was how we responded to the Cav’s 4Q run, called a TO, didn’t panic, and came out and built the lead right back up.

    31. Frank

      I’m really torn about where I’d like this season to go. On the one hand, it’s obviously in the team’s best long-term interest to get a guy like Doncic or Bagley or Porter. On the other, there isn’t a team in the league that needs more of reset of culture and competitiveness than this team.

      While we do have some bad players on this team, our weakest spot going into the season was clearly at the PG position. Jarrett Jack will eventually turn back into a pumpkin, but barring injury, I feel pretty comfortable that Ntilikina will a net positive player for the 20-something minutes/game that he plays. Even Baker can probably give competent minutes at the 1 if Sessions and Jack both ultimately play to their recent stats.

      We have competent players at the 2 and 3, KP at the 4, and a whole host of reasonable players at the 5. Barring injury of course, if this team gets competent PG play for the majority of minutes and KP is going to play at an All-Star level, it feels pretty unlikely that we’re going to get a top 3 pick.

      The Glass Half Rebuilt maybe oversold it, but I think what he was trying to say is that we have a lot of players on this team that would actually be at least rotation players on good teams, as opposed to in the last few years during which some really bad players were playing very significant minutes for us.

    32. Mike Honcho

      Tanking this year would be extremely prudent, especially considering the new changes in the draft starting next year where you don’t have to have an abysmal record to get a shot at a decent draft pick. Why not tank this year, get a blue chip prospect, and then focus on winning from there on out?

    33. Bruno Almeida

      @33

      I mean, everyone that has ever talked about Embiid has said “if he doesnt get injured he’ll be great”, I’ve never seen anyone assume he will just stay healthy.

      He is supremely talented tho. Still loads of turnovers, still bad shots, but there’s no way a fan of basketball doesnt get excited about his potential. He honestly is on a path to superstardom if he can stay healthy. I think people react this way because it’s different from a guy like Oden for example, who’s injuries have ravaged his career so much that we didn’t even get to see the potential on court.

      Also, all this anti-tank talk using the Spurs as example is a bit tiresome. The Spurs model is not replicable if you don’t have legends such as Popovich, Duncan and RC Buford. The end. If the Spurs drafted 2nd in 1997 and picked Keith Van Horn I’m pretty sure they would be considered much more of a failure than the model of franchise they are now. 99% of the top teams in recent NBA have either been tales of draft success or inexplicable trades that should have never happened or being the Lakers / Celtics / Heat and attracting players just because.

    34. thenoblefacehumper

      Re: tanking vs competing this year

      For me it’s pretty simple. If we win games because players who have a long-term future here (i.e. Porzingis, Willy, Frank, THJ, and maaaaaaaybe Kanter) play well, that’s a good sign and no one should complain. If those guys just kind of tread water and we win a few more games than the other bad East teams due to the Phil-era “hybrid approach” holdovers (Lee, KOQ, Noah, Thomas), those are wins that quite simply do nothing but hurt us going forward.

      As you can see, because of the weird makeup of our roster there are some guys I don’t quite know how to classify. Alas, I don’t think we have to worry about winning games on the backs of Baker, Beasley, Sessions, et al.

    35. DRed

      @32 when I say bad I mean a guy who is a complete waste of minutes like a Lance Thomas,

      I mean we still have Lance Thomas.

    36. danvt

      The Sixers have made some questionable decisions (Okafor pick, trading Noel for a bag of balls, overpaying for Fultz IMO), and yet here they are with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid both looking like potential franchise players. They have plenty of money and picks left to play with, too. We don’t, and yet they might be better than us this year. This is all at the cost of exactly one more consecutive losing season than us. How does this validate a non-tanking approach?

      I think the Sixers are the outlier. They’ve made a strategy of stashing high draft picks on IR. You can’t really even blame them because the guys have been hurt. They’ve signed no big name FA’s and asked their fans be patient year after year. NYK has tried to win but been stupid about it. That’s why our record of losing seasons has been similar. A competent team with motivation and deep pockets would certainly have been more productive then PHI.

      Who’s the last high draft pick to turn a franchise around singlehandedly? LBJ?

      What team has tanked their way to a championship type roster in the last twenty years? OKC?

      GSW? Smart picks and FAs. CLE? LBJ + Kyrie + trades (kind of de facto tank while LBJ went to MIA). MIA? High pick DWade + FA’s and Trades.

      My takeaway is that there’s a high pick in there somewhere (Curry at #6 could still be considered that) and then an all out effort using all the tools at a teams disposal.

      If KP and FN can become top ten talents we may have our foundational pieces and then it’s a question of finding impact value to surround them with. Big “If”obviously but I do think there’s benefit to giving fans hope through chasing multiple avenues of improvement.

      Even if the Sixers get it done I don’t see anyone replicating the strategy, if you can call it that. I mean, “Hey 1st pick monster center, how about blowing out a knee and spending a season living in a hotel drinking pitchers of Shirley Temple’s?”

    37. Frank

      The Spurs model in my mind relies/relied on 2 things –> their international scouting, which brought so many undervalued players into their system, and their player development system, which has taken all kinds of guys and turned them into valuable contributors.

      Kawhi – biggest weakness = shooting? Fine, let’s just make him into one of the best shooters in the league.

      Lamarcus – biggest weakness = subpar defense? Fine, let’s make him the centerpiece of one of the best defenses in the entire league.

      DeJounte Murray? biggest weakness = lackadaisical on defense. Fine, let’s make him an absolute weapon at the point of attack.

      It goes on and on. They rarely have bad draft picks because they know how to develop all of them.

    38. Frank

      btw most surprising of this young season — Knicks are currently ranked 14th in the league in defensive rating, while playing a harder-than-average schedule from a defensive standpoint — we’ve played OKC (13th in offense), Detroit (9th), Boston (20th), Brooklyn (9th), and Cleveland (15th).

    39. Mike Honcho

      @39 I meant there on out as in after we get a high draft pick for this year. We suck this year, get a top 5 pick, then focus on winning after that. Our current young players (Frank, Porzingis, Willy) plus a top 5 pick and any other picks we can acquire would probably be a decent enough core to transition from tanking to what comes next.

    40. Ben R

      @28 that’s not true at all.

      The Thunder won 50 games in Durant’s 3rd season. That was Westbrook’s 2nd year and Harden’s rookie year.

      As soon as the Thunder got their star they were winning by year three. This is our year three, the only reason we don’t have a full cupboard of young players is because we had no 1st in 2014 and 2016.

    41. Ntilakilla

      I mean, everyone that has ever talked about Embiid has said “if he doesnt get injured he’ll be great”, I’ve never seen anyone assume he will just stay healthy.

      The point is that he’s already been injured. The statement should be “if he can get healthy he’ll be great.” I mean, the guy couldn’t even play half a season last year resting every other game.

    42. swiftandabundant

      @ 43 – yes but that’s the point. It can be done. Everyone says the spurs are the exception but still, it can be done. We’re New York. We should have a leg up on international prospects wanting to play here cause NYC is an international city. We’ve shown to have good scouting going back to even the Isiah years we just haven’t had the draft picks to actually utilize it. And we’ve had a revolving door of coaching staffs. and trade away our young players so development has never happened. But it can.

      The thing is the whole “its NYC people will want to play here” angle is overhyped mainly because we’re usually a bad and dysfunctional team. But all things equal…we should have an advantage over other teams bc we are NYC and our owner is willing to spend money. If we have good coaching, scouts, development and we don’t make dumb trades or over pay for aging free agents, it should be easy for us to be good even if we don’t have top 5 picks every year.

      I just think tanking is not a good strategy. Again, if a season starts super poorly and is lost by January, then tank away. But intentionally going into a season with that strategy is not good for the players or the franchise. We want our young players to succeed. I think I said this the other day but there is no magic tank season where we compete hard every night but barely lose most of the games so that our players are improving but we still lose enough to get a lottery pick, which is what people want. You either are good and improving and start to win games or you suck and get blown out and players get apathetic.

    43. ClashFan

      @40

      For me it’s pretty simple. If we win games because players who have a long-term future here (i.e. Porzingis, Willy, Frank, THJ, and maaaaaaaybe Kanter) play well, that’s a good sign and no one should complain. If those guys just kind of tread water and we win a few more games than the other bad East teams due to the Phil-era “hybrid approach” holdovers (Lee, KOQ, Noah, Thomas), those are wins that quite simply do nothing but hurt us going forward.

      Totally agree. I hope the Knicks have a goal set to trade Lee (despite how well he played last night) and OQ. Play Willy. Etc.

      By January, hope the team is fully committed to playing all the young guys, inc. Dotson, as much as possible.

    44. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      Joel Embiid might become a superstar if he ever realizes that he has Lebron-lite on his team and stops trying to handle the ball to the tune of 6.3 TOs per 36. Just catch the damn ball in the post and go to work, Joel.

      Tanking is a strategy, and like every other strategy it has a variable success rate. The core idea of tanking is a sound one, though: put yourself in a position to acquire the best draft pick possible, because doing so gives you the widest array of options possible when building your team for the future. Philadelphia’s tank is still a work in progress, but the point is that they had multiple shots to take, whereas we basically had one major shot in drafting KP and hit on it. Getting a top draft pick isn’t foolproof; you still need a FO with a good eye for talent and healthy organizational culture in order to make the right decisions. Philly has a mixed record on that score, but they seem to be trending upward. Tanking also doesn’t preclude you from making long-term value signings, so long as you’re later in the tank process (i.e. one or two years away from going for broke for wins.)

      Re: the Knicks, I’m just letting the chips fall where they may this season. If we suck, we suck, and we get Doncic or Porter. If we’re close to a playoff team, that means we have a few players (likely young players) exceeding expectations. It’s a win-win. And, to be honest, I like a lot of the early-mid first G/Fs like Troy Brown, Miles Bridges, Kevin Knox, and Rui Hachimura. It’s not the end of the world if we’re the 12th pick this year. That said, I’d prefer that we trade away Lee + KOQ and lose plenty of games in order to grab Doncic. I’m not gonna be upset either way, though. So long as the won games are won because of the young ones and not because of fucking Noah and Beasley.

      This ought to be the last year where we want to lose games, though. Next year our sights should be set on the playoffs, and more like a 6 seed than an 8 seed, imo.

    45. Bruno Almeida

      @50

      I agree completely.

      I was actively rooting for the Knicks to lose games last year, because we were playing a damn 4 man core of Rose, Lee, Melo and Noah, mediocre to bad veterans who would have no place in the Knicks future plans anyway.

      Now I’m definitely rooting for wins, if the young players are a big part of it (and they have been so far). I’ve always expressed doubts over whether KP was our Durant (in the OKC analogy, the star who allows the team to start winning earlier than predicted), but if we win 37 games this season it’s because he made a considerable leap, and that’s very fine by me.

      If we win 20, that very probably means either we got ravaged by injuries or KP is not the #1 dude, and in either case adding Doncic or Porter or Bagley would be amazing.

      It seems very unnatural to say this about the Knicks but things are looking good either way (except for the huge stupid veteran contracts but those will eventually go away).

    46. alsep73

      It seems very unnatural to say this about the Knicks but things are looking good either way (except for the huge stupid veteran contracts but those will eventually go away).

      I don’t want to overreact to a couple of wins (one over a borderline playoff team at best, one over a team with title aspirations that’s been a mess all season), but we do seem to be in more of a win-win zone than I’d have expected a week ago. The two most likely outcomes of the season:

      1. We are truly awful and end up with a high draft pick, even if it’s not the top pick.

      2. We are non-awful, but because some combination of KP, Hardaway, and Frank are playing well enough to cost us ping-pong balls.

      TeamTank and TeamTryHard both have reasonable arguments, but unless Michael Beasley and Lance and (when unsuspended and vaguely healthy) Noah are playing a ton of minutes, the fate of the team will largely rest on the guys who are part of our long-term future.

    47. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      As soon as the Thunder got their star they were winning by year three. This is our year three, the only reason we don’t have a full cupboard of young players is because we had no 1st in 2014 and 2016.

      Exactly.

      We would likely be in an mouth watering position if we had those 2 picks.

    48. Z-man

      So I’m wondering which stat is being used thus far to suggest that Frank is a) playing well and b) on his way to becoming anything more than a 3 and D combo guard. So far, I see a kid who is a long defender with good feet and team defense instincts, and has a nice stroke when he can get his feet under him. He makes some very nice passes, but most of his assists are pretty basic swings and drop-offs. OTOH, he turns the ball over a lot, fouls a lot, doesn’t get to the rim, and doesn’t get to the line. He’s taken 18 shots and not a single one of them was within 10 feet of the basket and hasn’t taken a free throw yet. I agree that by the eye test he looks like a future NBA rotation player, but thus far by the numbers he’s been pretty awful.

    49. Nick C.

      Reading through this I saw Beasley’s name and realized I don’t think he played much, if at all in the last two games. Perhaps Hornacek needed a few games to settle on a rotation. He swapped Jack in for Sessions. The main backups seem to be McDermott, Frank and KOQ. Admittedly, Frank was not available for every one of the prior games. I would like to see Willy get the type of meaningful portion of the game playing time he did v. Brooklyn, but this will do. I’m in danger of becoming a see the glass half full guy with this team, which is refreshing and something I haven’t been able to say for years.

    50. geo

      It’s been really fun to watch KP hit shots from everywhere and get to the rim without many turnovers. But in the long run his passing level isn’t sustainable. He and Kanter have to be the highest-usage lowest-passing combo ever.

      it’s funny to watch – hopefully as the season progresses they’ll actually think about passing it out from the paint on occasion; but, yeah, those two guys get super happy and excited whenever they’re around the rim…

    51. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      @54,

      Sure, his advanced stats are not up to snuff (-.039 WS/48, -2.9 BPM, but with a positive DBPM! [.1]) But compare his stats with the rest of the rookie guards drafted around his number:

      Dennis Smith: -.016 WS/48, -3.8 BPM
      Lonzo: -.027 WS/48, -1.2 BPM
      Fox: .016 WS/48, -3.1 BPM
      Monk: -.094 WS/48, -6.5 BPM
      Fultz (admittedly injured): -.072 WS/48, -7.5 BPM
      Mitchell: -.105 WS/48, -7.5 BPM (yikes)
      Kennard: -.017 WS/48, -3.1 BPM

      Frank has played one of the league’s tougher schedules and has been without a doubt the best defender at his position among all rookies, which isn’t well accounted for by the offense-biased advanced stats. He’s doing fine and will continue to do so. As far as I’m concerned, he’s outperformed all the other rookie guards besides Fox and Ball. Presumably many of these players will become more than a 3 and D combo guard; likewise for Frank, who shows more pure PG skills than he was given credit for at draft time. He’s got a long way to go, but he’s a rookie and that’s to be expected.

      OT: Jayson Tatum currently has a .223 WS/48 and a 7.3 BPM and that is absurd and unsustainable but still so incredibly annoying

    52. swiftandabundant

      Damn it, Z-man. Why you gotta be like that?

      Are you watching the games? I mean, I know the dreaded eye test. But those deflections. Those no look bounce passes and also those TWO WINS SINCE FRANK STARTED PLAYING.

    53. ILoveHatetheKnicks

      @ 54 – Aside from his good defense, which he still needs to improve on to fulfill his potential, he sees the floor like a point guard, as illustrated by some of the very nice and basic passes he’s made in his admittedly small sample size as an NBA player. If that doesn’t demonstrate the potential for anything more than just a 3 and d combo guard for you, don’t know what else to say for you to view him through a different lens.

    54. Frank

      So I’m wondering which stat is being used thus far to suggest that Frank is a) playing well and b) on his way to becoming anything more than a 3 and D combo guard.

      hmmm how’s this. He’s the only 19 year old player in NBA history to be averaging (per 36) as many as 10 points, 6 assists, and 1.5 steals. (Frank is actually averaging better than those #s at 11/7/2.3).

      If you raise the age bar to age 20, the only guards in NBA history who have averaged what Frank is averaging now are Isiah Thomas, Chris Paul, Magic Johnson, and Baron Davis.

      Yes, we’re only 44 minutes or whatever into his career, but you did ask for statistical stuff!

      At the end of the day, he’s already shown himself to be a plus defender even at this age. He’s shot 5 3 pointers (1 of them was an end of quarter heave) and made 2 of them. He airballed a few shots in his first NBA game, which is only to be expected. But he’s made both the smart/basic and spectacular passes, and doesn’t look lost out there. Rookie 19 year old PGs are invariably awful, and he hasn’t been awful.

    55. swiftandabundant

      and who cares if his passes are “basic.” Making the right play, playing basic, fundamental basketball is a highly underrated skill that A LOT of players who have been in the league a lot longer than Frank do not have.

    56. Frank

      I do worry a little that he looks completely uninterested in going to the hoop. That I will definitely agree with you on, and he basically never drew fouls in Europe either.

    57. lavor postell

      It’s going to be pretty hard to tank if KP’s leap is legit, THJ comes back to normalcy as he got on the path to doing last night, our C rotation stays being solid and our PG play is semi-respectable. I guess you could tank by pulling the plug on some of those things, but I don’t know why you would.

      As a major market one of the Knicks’ advantages is that if they put a good team together it will be attractive to stars to join. That doesn’t mean you put all your eggs in that basket and clear cap space at all costs, but it’s something we should be cognizant of. See what the young kids can turn into, keep your picks, try to get assets for some of the vets when you get a good offer and have the flex to be a free agent player in 2019, 2020 and beyond.

    58. Z-man

      Oh, I agree that the guards from this crop have been weak, which is pretty typical. The reasons are varied, though. Monk and Mitchell have shot terribly, but the consensus is that they will at least do that well in the NBA, but that they have limited upside due to things like size (Monk) or finishing (Mitchell.) Fox is projected to be a lousy shooter, so it’s no mystery that he’s struggling there; but otherwise he’s in positive territory and looks like a PG.

      As to the schedule, most of Frank’s minutes came against the Nets and Cleveland, both of whom have horrid PG situations; I’d hardly call that one of the league’s toughest schedules.

      Quibbling aside, I’d sure like to see Frank drive the ball and draw a couple of shooting fouls. Remember, he’s pretty much unscouted right now; teams don’t know who he is yet and haven’t learned his NBA tendencies yet. If he can’t drive and finish at all, and doesn’t compensate somehow with a killer floater, mid-range or 3-pt game, he can’t be a PG in any PnR-based offense.

    59. Z-man

      But he’s averaging those assists with a high TO rate, and playing D with a high foul rate (7 fouls per 36!)

    60. ILoveHatetheKnicks

      @63 – yeah, that is a bit of a concern. obviously he will never be fox or dsjr when it comes to that facet of the game, but i wonder how much of it is him still trying to figure out the pace of the nba game and how to pick his spots when it comes to driving to the hoop. i’m hoping that’s the case and we will eventually start to see that as he settles and gets more comfortable. again, he’s not dsjr or fox level athlete, but there are a couple of highlights of him taking the ball aggressively to the hoop and dunking in live competition.

    61. JK47

      I don’t think I will ever understand why Z-Man lurves him some Ron Baker and hates Ntilikina. Baker stunk in the NBA at age 23 in a fairly large sample size, yet Z-Man thinks there’s lots of untapped potential in there. Yet Ntilikina, who has barely seen court time and is 19, ain’t never gonna make it as a point guard and is a likely bust.

      I honestly don’t get it.

    62. Z-man

      JK if you’re gonna criticize, at least be accurate. I “love” Ron Baker as an undrafted near-minimum salary glue guy and a feel-good story. I don’t “hate” Frank, just worry that he will not be the star I hoped for as a #8 pick in a deep draft, and may top out as a 3-and-D rotation combo guard. Why is that so hard for you to get?

    63. JK47

      Knicks are #2 in offensive rebounding and #7 in defensive rebounding.

      Small sample size, but that is pretty surprising. Maybe Enes Kanter is actually somewhat valuable?

    64. JK47

      You give Ron LOTS of benefit of the doubt, and give Frank NONE. Even relative to their own potential roles and draft positions. It seems personal.

    65. Z-man

      Well, based on your posting history here, you generally look at life from the a-hole out, so not surprising you see it that way.

    66. Frank

      Z-man – the definition of a 3-D guard is a guard who literally can only shoot 3s and play defense. They can’t put the ball on the floor, they can’t be trusted to run an offense, etc. Frank has already shown the ability to run an offense, and 7 assists per 36 even in limited minutes is nothing to sneeze at. That by definition has basically turned him into something more than a 3 and D guard.

    67. nicos

      Frank’s per 36 numbers are moot because at the rate he fouls (7 per 36) he’d never last 36 minutes. Add to that the fact he hasn’t actually guarded a starting pointing guard- maybe Rose or Russell for a possession or two but for the most part he’s guarded Felton, Dinwiddie, and the player formerly known as D.Wade- the question of whether he can actually guard quick penetrating guards without fouling remain unanswered. I do think he’s going to be a plus on that end no matter what but I’m not convinced (yet) that he’s going to be a stopper at the point.

      Also (just to continue being a downer) KP’s TS% is .548 with a plus 30 usage and low turnovers which basically makes him a slightly worse version of Melo in his two good years with the Knicks (or a little better than the last few) on the offensive end. It’s true he doesn’t hold the ball as long as Melo but he doesn’t pass at all- once he touches it it’s most likely going up. Remember that KP had a TS% of .597 on fairly high usage last year through the end of November before running out of gas. It’ll be very interesting to see how he does tonight on the second of a back to back.

      I have to say the eye test stuff with both Frank and KP does look good- KP does look stronger in the post and Frank certainly looks like he’ll be a menace on the defensive end and has some point skills- but the results haven’t quite matched the eye-test as of yet.

    68. Farfa

      Just to say that Ron is nowhere near to the minimum, and in fact is earning almost 1mln more than our boy Nikki Frenchise.

    69. Frank

      Add to that the fact he hasn’t actually guarded a starting pointing guard- maybe Rose or Russell for a possession or two but for the most part he’s guarded Felton, Dinwiddie, and the player formerly known as D.Wade

      That sequence with Wade was pretty awesome though!

      (poor kid pretty much got run over by Lebron, but hey, lots of great players have)

    70. JK47

      You know absolutely nothing about the way I look at life. All you know about me is how I look at the New York Knicks, and I think my cynicism about that particular basketball franchise is perfectly reasonable.

    71. lavor postell

      Parsing through stats given the miniscule sample we have on Frank at this point is fucking asinine. You have to actually use your eyes right now and make a subjective judgment on him. If you were impressed cool and if not that sucks. Using numbers after 40 minutes or whatever it is means very little.

    72. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      I think Frank’s stats are about as close to irrelevant at this stage as is possible. He has only played a grand total of 46 minutes. That meaningless.

      I’m impressed by what I am seeing.

      1. He’s keeping players in front of him, fighting over picks, disrupting passing lanes and getting deflections, poking balls away, getting steals etc.. He’s showing all the sign of being a hugely positive and disruptive defender at guard.

      2. He’s made a number of passes that displayed the kind of accuracy, court vision and awareness needed to be a legitimate PG (something I thought was a legitimate concern coming in).

      3. He hasn’t shot well, but his form looks good and he’s made a couple of 3 pointers. I don’t think he’ll ever be the kind of player opposing defenses can sag off. Personally, I still think he’s going to a plus shooter, I just don’t know if he’ll create a lot for himself. He hasn’t shown too much of that yet.

      Things like personal fouls, turnovers, and his rough start shooting are very typical of young rookies that are battling nerves and getting used to the speed and quality of play at the NBA level. It’s extremely likely he’s going to clean a lot of that up and start shooting better too.

      To me, it feels obvious he’s going to be a solid NBA PG that’s also a plus defender. How much he contributes on offense as a scorer will be dependent on how he develops other skills. But if we get 12-15 efficient points a night, 7-8 assists, and an elite defender, I’m going to be satisfied. More than that scoring and I’ll be thrilled.

    73. Frank

      @79 exactly

      Kid looks comfortable with the ball in his hands.
      He knows where the ball is supposed to go in the half court.
      He makes the simple / correct pass, and also the spectacular pass in the half-court (see: Beasley alley-oop after he made the correct read on the Triangle set — thanks @Knicksfilmschool!)

      On the break, he has consistently made the right pass, including the spectacular ones – see KOQ in stride for the dunk against the Nets, that unreal bounce pass through traffic last night to THJ.

      Defensively, he moves his feet, gets around screens, deflects everything. In addition, he seems to know what opposing offenses are trying to do, leading to that deflection on the basket cut in the Nets game (off ball) and even last night when he instinctively knew that in transition the ball might be getting passed near/over him so he got his pterodactyl arms up and deflected it.

      I honestly don’t know how you look at his first couple games and could come away unimpressed at his play as the 2nd youngest player in the NBA coming from a 2nd level French league.

    74. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      @74

      Melo with elite rim protection is a pretty good player though. Agreed that he needs to up that TS before I get super excited, though.

    75. geo

      one big surprise for me in the game came at the conclusion…rose actually got a little love from some of the knicks…maybe he wasn’t such a horrible teammate after all, or, they were just super happy to see him in a different uniform…

    76. lavor postell

      KP with Melo efficiency, rebounding like he is and withe elite rim protection is a damn good player. If THJ gets rolling it’s going to open things up for him as well I suspect.

      But honestly if he stays hovering around 54-55 TS this year on 30+ USG that’s an awesome step to take in his 3rd year especially if he couples it with improved work on the glass and the same elite rim protection. He does that and he’ll be an All-Star this year on the verge of a true superstar breakout with an improved level of scoring efficiency.

      A major encouraging thing for me is that we’ve now seen KP and Kanter bully the absolute crap out of our last 2 opponents who played small. If we can do that consistently and maintain relative consistency in halfcourt defense that’s a huge development for us moving forward.

    77. Z-man

      You know absolutely nothing about the way I look at life. All you know about me is how I look at the New York Knicks, and I think my cynicism about that particular basketball franchise is perfectly reasonable.

      Well I’ll tell you what, you stop reading into my motivations and I’ll stop reading into yours. Deal?

    78. Frank

      A major encouraging thing for me is that we’ve now seen KP and Kanter bully the absolute crap out of our last 2 opponents who played small. If we can do that consistently and maintain relative consistency in halfcourt defense that’s a huge development for us moving forward.

      +1

    79. nicos

      Melo with elite rim protection is a pretty good player though

      No doubt, Melo had a couple of years here where he was a good player if not worth the salary. Just thought the raves about KP’s offense early in the thread were interesting since he’s basically (in a very small number of games to be sure) turned into Melo with a lower assist rate and most folks around here couldn’t stand Melo. And he got off to an arguably better start last year before fading. He absolutely does look stronger in the post- let’s hope he can keep that up. I think it’s pretty clear that as long as his stamina holds up he’s a very good player with the potential to be great.

      As for Frank, I just want to see him guard an actual starting caliber point guard before I try to draw any conclusions about his defensive ability at the one.

    80. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      KP’s efficiency is suffering now because he’s the #1 option taking a handful more tough shots per game than he took last year. He’s also getting doubled here or there. That comes with the territory. However, as I alluded to earlier, some of it is self inflicted. He takes 2-3 bad shots per game that he probably should have passed on. I think he’s going through some growing pains where he’s learning his role as #1 option with the responsibility to create and take more shots but without taking the obviously bad ones. If he doesn’t learn that, his efficiency will always suffer relative to what it should be the way Melo’s did because he never learned that. The next step is shot selection and making plays for others. He’s got to use his scoring skills to make others better too when he draws defenders.

    81. Webjai

      @27 — Don’t blame Lance on that play. Blame whoever called the “Melo Iso Play”. Watch it again, it’s a full on clear out for Lance Thomas, ISO master!

      That was the one play in the game where I scratched my head and was dumbfounded for like 5 minutes afterwards…

    82. Zanzibar

      Are you watching the games? I mean, I know the dreaded eye test. But those deflections. Those no look bounce passes and also those TWO WINS SINCE FRANK STARTED PLAYING.

      Frank Nolookina?

    83. er

      No doubt, Melo had a couple of years here where he was a good player if not worth the salary. Just thought the raves about KP’s offense early in the thread were interesting since he’s basically (in a very small number of games to be sure) turned into Melo with a lower assist rate and most folks around here couldn’t stand Melo.

      To be fair. Most Melo critiques were legitimate because of the ball stopping and bad shot taking and also the feeling that he wasn’t getting the most out of his talent. KP is getting mostly good looks and is finally using his natural height to his advantage and dominating in the post so its a bit different.

    84. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      Since the board is unusually salty for a Knicks team with a surprisingly positive SRS, I’ll add some salt:

      AYYY JACK BAUER, WHERE’S YOUR DENIALIST ASS AT, BRO?

    85. swiftandabundant

      Yeah I mean no one is saying KP is perfect yet but I think people are just excited because he’s doing this as the number one option without Melo, so fears that he can’t be the top dog at least for now are quelled. We shall see if he keeps this up but to start out this way as the number one option is very encouraging.

    86. Zanzibar

      KP doesn’t want to play much at the 5 until he gets that lucrative extension this summer. That plus all of these centers could prove to be a blessing in disguise. We’re at the stage where we’re beginning to build a team identity. Of course active team defense is obvious, but what should be our identity on offense? I’d like to suggest that maybe it should feature heavy use of off-ball screens and cutting and passing. Our young guys Timmy/Dotson/Frank/McD are willing and able cutters and Timmy/Dotson/McD/KP are all proficient shooting from off-ball screens. Willy/Kanter/Noah are all very useful in this regard in terms of screening and passing. That might also mitigate too much reliance on PnR, KP ISO and needing a 1 guard who busts it to the rim to create shots.

      That’s also why I’m hoping Kanter could be traded or he leaves this summer. He does set nice screens but he’s an atrocious passer. Plus better playoff teams will kill him in the PnR and we need to be building a playoff worthy team for the future. He’ll help get wins in the regular season but Willy offers more promise for the playoffs. Willy and KOQ are much more versatile options able to set screens, pass, rebound, and shoot from outside. And there’s no way they’re as bad as Kanter on defense.

    87. djphan

      using ws48 this early in the season is not going to show much because a large part of it is going to be influenced by high volatility numbers…. dennis smith and lonzo ball have similar ws48s but smith’s is depressed by a ft% of 45% for example…

      things like ftr and 2p fg% give you a much better picture of who a player is even in a small sample… and smith scores highly in that regard and he should be way ahead of ball by season’s end…

      for frank it’s cause for alarm since he didn’t really get to the line in france… he’s not doing that at all so far and it’s because he is pretty weak getting to the hoop… his 2p fg% points to the same thing and so does the eye test… his dribble is way too high to blow by smaller quicker guards…

      it’s not a death knell since he’s young and it’s only 40 minutes… but he can’t really continue to shoot exclusively from 15-20 ft out and be a successful player… the bar is going to be something like .420 on his 2p fg% so it’s something to monitor as the season progresses…

    88. swiftandabundant

      Building a team identity – this is why I would not be so quick to trade Lee or even KQ (or Kanter). I know…I’m too hyped for a team that is 2-3 and has gotten blown out twice. But forming an identity is very important. Lee is solid in that role. He also is replaceable, hopefully by Dotson eventually…but I think its going to be easier for Dotson to fill his role and play that part if Lee clearly establishes it now. I don’t know if that makes sense but Lee still has 2 years left on his deal after this one. The time to trade him might not be now but later….like next season. And KQ…man I just wish we could keep him long term. If he was 2 years older and we didn’t have Noah it would be a no brainer.

    89. Ntilakilla

      I’d like to suggest that maybe it should feature heavy use of off-ball screens and cutting and passing.

      So basically Jerry Sloan’s flex offense. Gee, if only we had a head coach with experience playing/coaching in that system.

    90. Ntilakilla

      Are we already using advanced stats to judge Frank’s minutes? LOL. Forget small sample size, you guys do know he missed all of the Summer League and most of the preseason, including practice, right?

    91. nicos

      Kanter really presents a dilemma- the guy’s just an offensive machine. The turnovers are a bit high (more than a bit this season but it’s early) but his efficiency is great and he’s almost Rodman-esque on the offensive glass. Outside of the OKC game where he was just horrendous on defense I think he’s been just garden-variety bad on that end so far this year. I don’t think there’s any question that he’s been a plus overall so far this year. Unfortunately, his defensive reputation combined with the fact he’s expiring makes him almost impossible to move for anything of value (at least for the moment) but he’s going to cost a lot of money if you want to keep him around. Do you trade him for a good team’s second rounder at the deadline? Do you just let him walk at the end of the year? Obviously there’s a ton of time to figure it out but I have a feeling that those questions won’t get any easier to answer as the season moves along.

    92. Zanzibar

      So basically Jerry Sloan’s flex offense. Gee, if only we had a head coach with experience playing/coaching in that system.

      Not to mention his apprenticeship with the eccentric cult leader of the dying Triangle offense. The question is how willing to embrace that approach in the short-term is Hornacek when it really pays dividends more intermediate term. Most vet NBA players are not used to offenses featuring player movement but we have a lot of young guys who might be better suited to that type of offense (plus Noah and KOQ). BUT even if Hornacek believes that, he also might feel his job is on the line and he’s got to maximize short-term success.

    93. Bruno Almeida

      Frank has been impressive and better than advertised. To focus on what he didn’t do yet honestly seems like a personal vendetta of wanting to be right more than watching games. People who criticized the pick, like Z-man, said there was NOTHING to like about Ntilikina’s game. Now the issue is the turnovers and lack of penetration. If you watched him play those minutes and still think there’s 0 to be excited about, you’re obviously just wrong. Hell, people were saying he was a G-League player who would be embarassed on the court for god’s sake.

      Make up your minds at least on what the issue with him is. You must have loved Derrick Rose, since he could drive the ball and get past defenders.

    94. DavidCorperial

      Also guys, KP’s 3pt shooting is nearly 40 points off his career average and has taken a lot of them with clean looks that have not been falling and that should turn around some.

    95. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      for me, personally, like my own opinion, I think that the several seconds during which he stayed in front of the ancient, no-good, shitty Dwyane Wade on one possession suggest that he could be an All-NBA player… small sample tho so I’d wait until December to offer him the designated player max

      mabey Janurey if we are being conservative

      idk could be a bust… what does the advanced stats says?

    96. Mike Honcho

      Advanced stats clearly indicate that we have a Milicic level debacle on our hands, or the second coming of [insert favorite Hall of Famer]. There is no middle ground here, obviously. 47 minutes is as definitive as it gets.

    97. Jack Bauer

      @93 – I was out of town for a few days until today and have had an action packed first day back at work if you really want to know where my “DENIALIST ASS” has been.

      I assume you are talking about the indictments that Mueller and his gang handed out to Manafort and Co. today. Not a huge surprise and personally I’m not sure what that proves as they were investigating Manafort long before his 3 month stint as Trump’s campaign manager. I come to this site to talk bout the Knicks and sports and to get away from all of that. However, knowing you as I do this will never go away until I admit it came to something so I will go with accused equals guilty and I won’t argue or get in the way of the Impeach Trump bandwagon that’s so popular now. It’s like a Greek Tragedy that keeps unfolding including entangling the Democrats in their own Russia Collusion accusations. We’ll see where it all ends up.

      I didn’t get to see much of the Knicks Cavs game, but it was very nice to beat the Lebrons for once. KP seems to be stepping up and Frank getting consistent minutes hopefully continues. I did see that World Series game last night, that was completely insane. The balls must be juiced to have that many home runs in one game.

    98. Z-man

      Aww Bruno, don’t pay attention to that bad, bad Z-man. I made some special Frankie cupcakes with orange and blue frosting, you can share them with your playdate.

    99. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      I assume you are talking about the indictments that Mueller and his gang handed out to Manafort and Co. today. Not a huge surprise and personally I’m not sure what that proves as they were investigating Manafort long before his 3 month stint as Trump’s campaign manager. I come to this site to talk bout the Knicks and sports and to get away from all of that. However, knowing you as I do this will never go away until I admit it came to something so I will go with accused equals guilty and I won’t argue or get in the way of the Impeach Trump bandwagon that’s so popular now. It’s like a Greek Tragedy that keeps unfolding including entangling the Democrats in their own Russia Collusion accusations. We’ll see where it all ends up.

      Damn dude! Pretty much verbatim from Fox and Friends this morning. Good job with the “Democrats colluded” angle. I’m not sure that you’re going to be very happy for the next few months.

      But of course — no comment on the Papadopoulos guilty plea. Enjoy the popcorn!

    100. JK47

      “Hillary was colluding with the Russians” is maybe the dumbest thing I’ve heard since “Why did Beno pass him the ball?”

    101. Ntilakilla

      The funny thing is that the people claiming collusion on the Manafort aren’t saying shit about the coming Tony Podesta indictment. BTW, I hate both Democratic and Republican establishment corruption – almost as much as I hate partisan hypocrisy.

    102. Z-man

      For the more credible posters, by 3 and D, I mean along the lines of, say, Shump (who played lots of PG for us early on, if you recall.) Meaning a guy who doesn’t really score anywhere but on the perimeter or on dunks when there’s a seam in the defense. In my book, a guard who can’t finish is either not a PG or a badly compromised PG, just like a PG who can’t shoot 3’s is compromised in today’s game. If you’re the fastest guy in the league (Wall) or a savant as a passer (Rubio) you can overcome.

      But if you want someone from recent times who made a pretty good living as an outside-in PG, who wasn’t particularly athletic but made up for it in other ways, here’s the guy:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOPFJastfow

      Can Ntilikina be him? I don’t see it. Clearly I’m blinded by some mysterious personal vendetta. Whatever.

    103. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      I assume you are talking about the indictments that Mueller and his gang handed out to Manafort and Co. today. Not a huge surprise and personally I’m not sure what that proves as they were investigating Manafort long before his 3 month stint as Trump’s campaign manager.

      I’m not a lawyer, so I’ll defer if I’m wrong. But to me it looks like nothing he was indicted for has anything to do with the Trump campaign and collusion. It all happened well before that time. I would say the only reason they even bothered is that they are hoping to get him to spill the beans on anything he might know about Trump in order to avoid a long stay in jail.

      It looks to me like the Podesta brothers may have a similar problem (at least Tony does, sleazeball John may have left his brother holding the bag).

      For the record, Alan Dershowitz (who seems like a rare voice of reason in this country given the incredible amount of hate and bias being exhibited by both sides) has suggested there’s absolutely nothing wrong with seeking out “dirt” on the opposition from the Russians, Wikileaks or anyone else. That is not a crime (though it may smell bad). It would be a crime if someone was involved with the actual theft of the materials that exposed the dirt. No one anywhere has ever accused Trump of anything even remotely close to that.

      IMO, if Trump is any danger it’s from his financial dealings. He has unquestionable had dealings with the Mafia in NJ and NYC as part of his real estate and casino businesses because there’s no way he could have gotten anything done if he didn’t. lmao Most likely he’s also done some other grey are stuff given his vast international empire. He better hope he has good lawyers and accountants because the democrats, republicans, and mainstream media are all after his scalp. He has absolutely no support within the establishment. His only support is from the people that elected him.

    104. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      BTW, I hate both Democratic and Republican establishment corruption – almost as much as I hate partisan hypocrisy.

      To say that I hate most republicans, democrats, mainstreams media organizations, and all the intelligence agencies to the point that it impacts my health negatively would not be an overstatement. Many are just horrible human beings. I was happier when I was naive dimwit that thought I was informed because I read the NY Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, watched several night news shows. enjoyed Charlie Rose and Macneil Lehrer etc… I was freaking moron years ago.

    105. JK47

      Alan Dershowitz has a long history with Mueller, and has a rabid anti-prosecution bias. It’s laughable to think he is unbiased just because he’s a “lifelong Democrat.” He quite clearly has deep antipathy towards Mueller.

    106. Ntilakilla

      @113

      Seriously, just stop. It is been 38 minutes of actual NBA playing time for 19 year old Frank, followed by no Summer League, one preseason game, and barely any practice time. You sound like someone forcing an argument that shouldn’t even happen yet.

    107. GoNyGoNyGo

      @113

      Can Ntilikina be him? I don’t see it. Clearly I’m blinded by some mysterious personal vendetta. Whatever.

      I don’t see Frank becoming like Mr. Big Shot but what does that mean? The player I thought his game is similar to is Jason Kidd. He’s not super fast but has great court vision and used it to push the action. If he ever shoots like Kidd, I’ll name my next dog PJ for drafting him. I think he could be better than Kidd on defense with those long arms.

      Of course, he could end up being a bust.

    108. hornyKnickfan

      We’re looking really good so far. KP and Kanter compliment each other well. Jack is a steadying influence. Lee and Tim look comfortable in our system. Horny has a cough, though.

    109. Jack Bauer

      @114 Good luck convincing THCJ and JK of any of that – it’s hard to hear in the echo chamber they reside in. I’d rather stick to sports, but it won’t go away so I’ll say I find it amazing that DTJR gets roasted for seeking out dirt on Hillary but it’s fine that that the DNC paid for the dirt on Trump that came from similar Russian connected sources. Now it’s all about the content, it doesn’t really matter where it came from -” that’s almost as funny as Why did Beno pass him the ball” . Go ahead and call me names and say I’m following Fox, etc… trust me I’ll be fine for the next few months and years. If Trump committed impeachable acts he should be impeached, but not just because Maxine Waters thinks it’s a good idea.

      Ok George Papawhatever pleaded guilty, I looked him up, here you go – “George Papadopoulos, the former adviser for President Donald Trump’s campaign who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russian officials, was a young, relatively inexperienced “nobody” in the Trump campaign, and his career before the presidential election was described as “unremarkable”

    110. Z-man

      I don’t see Kidd, who had excellent north-south speed and amazing ball skills, aside from the highest b-ball IQ maybe ever.

      Billups, on the other hand, moved similar to the way Frank moves…methodical, lots of stops and starts, got to his spots.

    111. nicos

      The player I thought his game is similar to is Jason Kidd. He’s not super fast but has great court vision and used it to push the action. If he ever shoots like Kidd, I’ll name my next dog PJ for drafting him. I think he could be better than Kidd on defense with those long arms.

      Kidd was one of the fastest players end to end for the first 8-10 years of his career. He wasn’t a great leaper but he was very quick. And probably a top 5 all-time defensive point guard so Frank is even close to him defensively that will be great.

    112. geo

      ugh, can only look at boxscores at the moment – but, sure looks like we’re feeding the ball down low…

      man, all last year it sucked with melo and rose holding the ball a bunch… the whole time it was like – ‘hey we got a 7’3″ – let’s get the ball to him’…finally happening…

    113. Bruno Almeida

      Beasley needs to be fucking glued to the bench.

      Amazing start right until he came in. KP has been forcing Jokic to defend him and it’s really gonna end well for him if he continues to do so.

    114. english_knick

      This would be that whole ‘as long as they play hard and are fun to watch’ thing – only as it goes, We’re also winning.

      I could get used to this!

    115. ptmilo

      KOQ has been the chaperone for his lineup. If he looks away they would immediately eat ten pounds of candy and fall asleep.

    116. Bruno Almeida

      I know rationally we kinda need to trade O’Quinn but I just love him so much.

      Ntilikina having more issues today, turnovers and fouls, some nice defensive plays and a pass here and there.

    117. thenoblefacehumper

      Kyle O’Quinn is every positive stereotype of a backup big embodied. He is just rock fuckin’ solid.

    118. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      Alan Dershowitz has a long history with Mueller, and has a rabid anti-prosecution bias. It’s laughable to think he is unbiased just because he’s a “lifelong Democrat.” He quite clearly has deep antipathy towards Mueller.

      Dershowitz has been saying the same things since before Mueller was even named as special prosecutor.

      In a country suffering from a level of cognitive bias (both sides) that borders on mental illness, imo he’s a breath of fresh air.

    119. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      Ok George Papawhatever pleaded guilty, I looked him up, here you go – “George Papadopoulos, the former adviser for President Donald Trump’s campaign who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russian officials, was a young, relatively inexperienced “nobody” in the Trump campaign, and his career before the presidential election was described as “unremarkable”

      He has already plead guilty. So at this point I don’t know why he would lie about something like this because the truth will come out if he is lying, but who knows.

      He posted this today.

      Pinned Tweet
      George Papadopoulos?Verified account @feeonlyplanner 10h10 hours ago
      For the nth time, I am NOT Trump’s foreign policy adviser! I have NO association with the Trump camp! NONE!

    120. thenoblefacehumper

      Pinned Tweet
      George Papadopoulos?Verified account @feeonlyplanner 10h10 hours ago
      For the nth time, I am NOT Trump’s foreign policy adviser! I have NO association with the Trump camp! NONE!

      That’s not the guy who plead guilty, lol. It’s a guy with the same name who was getting blown up on Twitter by people mistaking him for the guy who did.

    121. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      Frank had 2 steals in his minutes, but a couple of TOs and 3 fouls. It’s going to take time.

    122. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      That’s not the guy who plead guilty, lol. It’s a guy with the same name who was getting blown up on Twitter by people mistaking him for the guy who did.

      Thanks.

    123. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      Jarret Jack has 9 assists?

      I compared him to a stiff from the morgue a few days ago.

    124. Z-man

      Jarret Jack has 9 assists?

      I compared him to a stiff from the morgue a few days ago.

      Watching him is making me stiff.

    125. bidiong

      KP looks good but only 3 rebounds that half. Looking like another 30 point night though unless they don’t need to play him much in the second half.

    126. 2FOR18, understands math

      I’m not sure how KPs gonna score efficiently with a higher useage without melos gravity effect spacing the floor for him.

    127. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      Watching him is making me stiff.

      lmao

      I have a few passionate basketball friends I talk Knicks with all the time. I was bashing the hell out of him to the point of ridiculousness the other day. I’m so beyond shocked. It’s not like I ever watched him every night, but this is the best basketball I’ve ever seen him play.

    128. d-mar

      Gotta give Horny props for putting Jack into the starting lineup. When he did it, I thought it was pretty much rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, but Jack is a smart player and really runs the offense well.

      A good defensive team will probably expose him a little bit, but he’s been great so far.

    129. stratomatic is sold on Frank!

      So is KP the best player from the 2015 draft or not?

      Towns is on his way to becoming a great player, but he’s not as good a defender and it just feels like KP can score in more ways. Time will tell but I’d put Towns ahead of him until KP shows he can sustain this kind of crazy good 2-way play. At this point I’m so deliriously happy we have KP who cares.

    130. ClashFan

      I feel bad for Willy. Kanter and OQ are playing so well.

      Any wild chance that the Knicks will eat Noah’s contract? Nah, I guess Sessions is in danger of going. OR maybe Beasley?

    131. Bruno Almeida

      In the back of my head I know this Jack impersonating as Chris Paul thing will probably end very soon, but I’ll enjoy it while it lasts.

    132. Early Bird

      You know that thing where a player kills us everytime we play them and we joke “if only we had him he’d play like that every game!!!”

      That player is Jarrett Jack and that joke apparently is true.

    133. TheRant

      As of halftime, Jarrett Jack has a total of nine assists and zero turnovers.

      Thank you, Mr. Jack.

    134. Zanzibar

      Hit the road JackRamon and don’t you come back
      No more, no more, no more, no more
      Hit the road Ramon and don’t you come back no more
      What you say?
      Hit the road Ramon and don’t you come back
      No more, no more, no more, no more
      Hit the road Ramon and don’t you come back no more

    135. d-mar

      I was gonna say at halftime that it would be very Knicksy to blow a 20 point halftime lead and suffer a crushing home loss to destroy all of this good karma.

      Wow

    136. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      Not concerned about the 0-5 with 2 TO from Timmy. Did he create space? Did he draw in the opposing defense? Did he demonstrate hustle?

    137. Zanzibar

      Don’t doubt the Dot! Dotson’s better than Timmy.
      Redick’s on a 1 year deal. S&T free agent Covington to Knicks for Timmy.
      Or wait til Embiid is injured and trade Kanter for Covington.

    138. Bruno Almeida

      At least when Hardaway forces shots he fires 3s, that’s an improvement over the patented Melo jab step elbow jumper.

    139. ptmilo

      KP is tired but putting KOQ back in for kanter was smart. Jack can’t handle well enough when Murray is pressing

    140. geo

      that 3rd quarter was FUGLY…

      yeah, who’d have thunk it – jack making a big difference early in the season…

      price tag aside – tim jr is a gamer…

      seems kp absolutely loves being the man…

    141. Bruno Almeida

      That was a nail biter, damn!

      Lots of good and bad things, but KP has got to take the ball tonight. He looked damn tired but pulled it through, major props.

    142. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Fouls aside, Kyle O’Quinn is ridiculous and needs to be traded. 15 points on 4 FGA, 12 total rebounds (5 offensive), and 5 blocks in 21 minutes?

    143. nicos

      The Knicks with 27 points (8-12 from the field), 21 rebounds and 7 blocks out of the center position. Kanter even had 2 assists. Obviously no one wanted to follow Jokic out to the three point line but other than that a phenomenal game from the big men.

    144. ClashFan

      If the Knicks can figure out a way to counter other teams upping the defensive pressure, it could get interesting. The good thing is that teams can’t keep up that kind of relentless for too long in a game.

    145. hornyKnickfan

      Frank will have growing pains but every minute he’s out there will just make him better. He looks like an extremely fast learner. Like a sponge.

    146. Z-man

      Denver hit 18 3-pointers at 44%. Usually that’s a winning formula. We just murdered them with our size.

    147. hornyKnickfan

      Why not extend O’Quinn and stretch Noah after the season instead of trading him? He’s too valuable to get rid of.

    148. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      we should have extended O’Quinn before people realized how good and productive he is

      he could replace David West on the Warriors tomorrow and they’d probably win more games

    149. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      haha remember when Dion Waiters got $52M/4 to be fucking terrible at basketball

    150. Bruno Almeida

      @239

      Hm, I did watch it, did you? Yes, O’Quinn was amazing and a huge reason the Knicks were even in the game after the collapse, but KP was literally the Knicks offense. 38 in 26 shots while carrying the load by himself earns the game ball for me, even aside from the big shots and the blocks.

    151. Ntilakilla

      Jesus, payback is a bitch. KP ABUSED Milsap and Jokic out there. It was brutal.

      He’s going full PorzinGod mode right now.

    152. Ntilakilla

      In the past 40 years, only two players have scored at least 30 points in at least 5 of the first 6 games of their third NBA season: Michael Jordan and Kristaps Porzingis!

      Just saying…

    153. Cock Jowles, #1 All-Rookie Benchwarmer

      Anyone watching GS-LAC? The Warriors reached their playoff form. The passing makes me so envious…

    154. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      The Warriors always have an amazing performance against the Clippers. I don’t know what’s going on between LAC and GSW, but last year the Warriors scored 50 points in a quarter against LAC. The Clippers never get the Clippers on an off night.

    155. lavor postell

      KOQ is a very valuable bench big but if the league valued him as much as some people on here then we’d have moved him for a nice 1st round pick by now. I’m actually thinking the Knicks may have stumbled onto a major inefficiency in how talent is currently being evaluated in the league.

      Teams are so uninterested in bigs right now that you can stockpile effective ones and, for lack of better terminology, beat the utter shit out of teams inside for 48 minutes. The trade off is you’re going to give up 3’s, but if KP is balling like this and ups his efficiency a bit then it’s one you may be able to win out on more than not. We have 3 C’s in Kanter, KOQ and Willy that can tilt a game in your direction at any given time with their offensive rebounding prowess.

      Interesting to think about anyways and it’s certainy to early to say it’s a fact with any certainty. We’re 3-3 and haven’t necessarily dominated quality opposition or anything.

    156. BigBlueAL

      Wasn’t home tonight but was able to watch the last few mins of the game on my phone while eating at Pollo Tropical. Amazing start to the season by KP, Knicks have a huge stretch of home games coming up and it would be pretty cool if they could be over .500 by the end of it.

    157. DRed

      The Knicks had 10 turnovers over 3 quarters and 12 turnovers in one quarter. I’m not really sure what happened there. How hard is it to find a PG who can dribble under pressure?

    158. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      @260

      The most effective lineups against GSW have historically been Cleveland lineups with Love and TT at the 4/5 positions just picking up O rebounds and out muscling them off Lebron drives. Iirc the Spurs did better with Aldridge and Dedmon at the 4/5 as well. As did OKC when they pushed GSW to 7 with their elite rebounding. Offensive rebounding and second chance points from your bigs are best the way to punish small ball. The lesson seems to be: if you can’t go small, go extra big. And this makes sense, since ORBs usually lead to shots very close to the rim or to open jumpers off passes from the rebounding big (something else Kyle is very proficient at doing.) All of our bigs besides KP can do this and that’s been a big part of our success–I think we legitimately have the best big man rotation in the league (NOP is only two players deep at the 4/5, despite those two players being Cousins and AD.)

    159. Bruno Almeida

      When Porzingis is destroying opposing bigs on the block the Knicks are legitimately very hard to guard. Once he figures out how to approach double teams, specially since he’s definitely not used to it yet, his passing numbers should get a little better at least and the offense will be very dangerous.

      Jokic did not have a chance against him, and Millsap, while he fared better, was also ineffective. That opens up a lot of opportunities to kick outside and move the ball to open men even when the Knicks dont have a PG who can penetrate or get to rim with a single screen.

    160. Bruno Almeida

      The Sixers also best the Rockets in Houston, with Ben Simmons running all over them. 24/7/9, even though he had 5 turnovers and missed 5 of his 9 free throws. This kid is going to be insane.

    161. Brian Cronin

      Oops, I thought that they were playing on Halloween! My apologies. Looks like I missed a great win! Good for them! Yay, Porzingis!

    162. Ntilakilla

      Nikola Jokic is a wonderful player and a major offensive talent who makes everything look easy on that side of the court. But he looks like he couldn’t care less about playing defense from what I see.

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