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Friday, December 15, 2017

Knicks Morning News (2017.12.04)

  • [ESPN] Porzingis, Hardaway out Monday at Indiana
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 7:32:18 PM)

    The Knicks have ruled Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. out for Monday’s game against the Pacers. Porzingis has a sprained ankle and is ill, and Hardaway has a stress injury to his left shin.

  • [ESPN] Knicks without Porzingis, Hardaway vs. Magic
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 2:36:40 PM)

    Kristaps Porzingis — under the weather and injured — and Tim Hardaway Jr. (leg) will miss the Knicks’ Sunday matchup against the Magic, but New York will be able to play Frank Ntilikina, who previously was questionable with an ankle injury.

  • [NYDN] Jeff Hornacek complains about free throw disparity in loss
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 3:26:55 PM)

    The Knicks were shorthanded and Jeff Hornacek believes they were also shortchanged.

  • [NYDN] Kristaps Porzingis-less Knicks fall to Magic, 105-100
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 2:50:42 PM)

    The Knicks were forced to play without Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. Sunday.

  • [SNY Knicks] Hardaway, Porzingis won’t travel with Knicks for Monday’s game at Pacers
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 6:22:02 PM)

    Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. and forward Kristaps Porzingis will not travel with the team for Monday’s road game against the Indiana Pacers.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks fall to .500 with 105-100 loss to Vucevic, Magic
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 6:35:00 PM)

    The Knicks fell to 11-11 after they lost to Nikola Vucevic and the Orlando Magic, 105-100, Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

  • [SNY Knicks] Today’s game: Knicks vs. Magic, 3:30 p.m.
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 2:00:00 PM)

    Two days after allowing three Golden State Warriors to score 20-plus points in a 21-point loss, the Orlando Magic travel to New York on Sunday afternoon to face a Knicks team that could be missing its most dangerous weapon.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks fall to Magic down stretch without Kristaps Porzingis or Tim Hardaway Jr.
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 8:34:00 PM)

    The Knicks already were going to be without Kristaps Porzingis when word came that Tim Hardaway Jr. couldn’t play because of a leg injury. Things didn’t get much better for them after that.

  • [NY Newsday] Frank Ntilikina struggles after good first half
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 8:32:37 PM)

    Frank Ntilikina returned to the Knicks’ lineup after missing the previous game with a sprained left ankle, but he was a spectator for much of the fourth quarter Sunday afternoon.

  • [NYPost] The Kristaps Porzingis backup plan is proving he belongs
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 8:11:31 PM)

    A walking bucket. That’s what Michael Beasley labeled himself back in August. And when called upon, the 6-foot-9 forward has looked like the scorer believes he is. Making his third start of the season for Kristaps Porzingis (sprained right ankle, illness) on Sunday, Beasley notched a team-high 21 points on 10-of-19 shooting in a 105-100…

  • [NYPost] Why Knicks won’t get to feast on league’s worst like they should
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 6:47:28 PM)

    On paper, Sunday seemed like the start of something really good for the Knicks: Nine consecutive games mainly against NBA standings bottom-feeders. Only one team, the Pacers who are Monday’s opponent in Indiana, resided above .500. And the Pacers did so by one game. Yup, looking good. But the Knicks needed to start the run…

  • [NYPost] Knicks fade in fourth as missing weapons takes its toll
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 1:13:20 PM)

    The supporting cast wasn’t ready for starring roles. Without an injured Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. — whose surprising absence was announced to teammates just minutes before Sunday’s tipoff at Madison Square Garden — the Knicks overcame an early 17-point hole, but struggled in the closing minutes without their top two scorers, falling to…

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ injury problems get worse with Tim Hardaway Jr.
    (Sunday, December 03, 2017 10:15:59 AM)

    The Knicks weren’t prepared to play without Tim Hardaway Jr. Most of his teammates weren’t even aware it was a possibility. “Tim was definitely a surprise to all of us. I think even to himself,” forward Michael Beasley said. “But that [injury] bug is going around. It’s hitting hard.” With leading-scorer Kristaps Porzingis already sidelined…

  • 44 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2017.12.04)

    1. thenoblefacehumper

      I’m not against tanking, but there’s not a ton the Knicks can do to tank this season other than literally intentionally throw games.

      Lee should absolutely be traded, but beyond that most of the players getting major minutes are players we need to evaluate in as large a sample size as possible.

      Anyway, a Lee trade combined with injuries might render this a non-issue. I don’t think it’s fair to be mad at Hornacek/the front office for not tanking with this group just because there would be no easy way to go about it.

    2. bobneptune

      One of the problems trading Lee is you need a team that wants a 30+ year old 2 guard AND has picks AND 10M in expiring contracts. Most well run teams that are significant playoff teams that could use Lee generally don’t have crap expirings to take back.

      Teams like the Celts and SAS don’t have shit expirings on the books.

    3. Bruno Almeida

      @2

      The Cavs kinda do, with Shumpert and Frye, but why would they want Lee is another good question.

    4. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Courtney Lee is currently better than every wing on that roster not named LeBron. That’s why the Cavs would want Courtney Lee.

    5. Totes McGoats Makes 18mil For 14ppg

      I agree that Lee should be traded. I love the way he fits in with the team, but I love the idea of McBuckets starting at SF, and Dotson getting most of the backup SG minutes. Plus, we still have at least 2 guards on the bench- outside of Dotson- that can play SG as well. Trading Lee won’t hurt the team at all. If Perry can land a draft pick for a player whose absence won’t really move the needle for us, then Perry wins that trade. He even wins that trade if it lands a bigger SF who can make open shots and plays defense, but isn’t necessarily a better player. A KOQ trade hurts the team more for this season, but there’s no way Perry gets back less than a decent 1st in such a deal so it’s ok. Both guys should be traded for picks and young players. I think thus team has proven that it has alot of fight and sufficient players to build with. Hell, I’d even trade Willy if it gives us a 2nd top 15 pick

    6. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Losing Courtney Lee would absolutely move the needle for us. I think he’s second on the team in TS% and eFG%, and then he’s a team captain. I doubt Dotson and McBuckets, and I like both players, will be able to replicate his value if we made a trade.

    7. bobneptune

      Cleveland is the team that should be focused on if there is any way to improve the team to get LeBron to stay and if IT looks like he can be healthy at some point.

      Something wild like THJr, Lee, & KOQ for Shump, Frye, Crowder and the NYETS pick :-)

    8. chrisk06811

      I’m sorry guys….. I don’t get it. Say you trade Lee to Cleveland. You can trade him for Shump who has 1 less year and $3M less. Or you can trade him for Frye and Osman; Frye is expiring, Osman makes $2.6M. So what else do you think Cle is going to give you back? And what does that buy you? it lets Dotson play? or McBuckets? As opposed to KP / Frank / etc learning from lee?

    9. chrisk06811

      and…..at this point…..to tank…..why? Unless KP gets hurt we aren’t going to finish lower than the 6th worst record. As it is, we will probably finish about 12th worst. I know the 6th pick is worth a lot more than the 12th. but when you add in draft uncertainty, is it worth it?

      I’m not saying we shouldn’t trade KOQ, Lee and Kanter for a deal that helps us.

    10. Brian Cronin

      I know the 6th pick is worth a lot more than the 12th. but when you add in draft uncertainty, is it worth it?

      Yes.

      I agree that they likely won’t get even to the 6th worst record, so they’re pretty much in a damned if they do/damned if they don’t situation (this is the Knicks, after all, that’s their home), but if they could get the 6th versus the 12th, that would be huge.

    11. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Lee is a respected around the league. He’s a solid 2-way player on a fair contract that’s showing no signs of deteriorating due to age. In fact, he’s having a career year so far. Any playoff team that’s a little weak at SG or that has an injured player should be salivating for him right now.

      There’s no way I’d take back expiring contracts for him.

      That’s the kind of move that makes you worse now (tank) for only a marginally better pick outside the sweet spot where the actual difference makers are typically located. It’s a losing move.

      The only trades I’d even consider would have to include a 1st round pick in the low 20s, a young player that’s not as good now but considered to have equal upside, or a player of equal ability/age/contract that fits a need better.

      Trading Lee is a great theoretical fantasy league idea because he’s not on the same timetable as some of our younger players, but right now it looks like he has 3-4 very good years left. IMO, taking back someone else’s expiring trash to get extra cap space is foolish. We’d probably wind up bringing in a worse player for more money and the pick differential for losing a few extra games has very little value. We are probably going to wind up on either side of the lottery by a few notches.

      It’s all probably moot anyway.

      As I’ve been saying since long before the season started, the Knicks love LEE and do not want to trade him. I already knew that, but there was confirmation in the paper the other day from Lee himself. He was told after Hardaway was signed that he would NOT be traded because they like him and want to keep him. The idea that the Knicks can’t find a deal for him is nonsense. They love him. That’s why he hasn’t been on the block.

    12. thenoblefacehumper

      Some teams teams that would definitely benefit from having this year’s version of Lee, and might realistically trade for him:

      -Philadelphia–actually pursued him as a free agent and are 15th in 3PT% despite having Redick and 18th in offense overall. Okafor, Stauskas, and whatever pick package we can get from them works (obviously, the picks would be by far the most important part of this deal).

      -Milwaukee–16th overall in both 3PT% and ORtg. A straight swap for Teletovic and pick(s) works. Again, this is all about the pick(s).

      OKC–bottom 3rd in the league in both 3PT% and overall offense and desperately need to turn things around. Abrines and Singler would be annoying to take on but might be worth it for their own pick?

      I think if we did real due diligence it’s likely we could find a partner, but this is probably all moot because I don’t think our FO will enter sell mode unless/until things get really bad.

    13. chrisk06811

      It’s hard to find a draft since 2000 where there weren’t 3 – 5 busts in the top 10. I’m not saying Its not good to have a higher pick. I just don’t like the idea of tanking, losing on purpose, so you can maybe move from 12th to 6th.

    14. djphan

      i’m not sure if there really is going to be a big difference between the 6th pick and the 12th this year… the draft takes a nosedive after the top 4 or even 5….. the type of prospects after porter are like the mid to late first rd types that we had this past year…

      duval is interesting but he’s just kind of ok…. and he’s probably in the discussion for being #6… he’s kind of like donovan mitchell… knox is also interesting but he’s a lot more like justin jackson than tatum…. there are guys later in the draft who are probably on their level as prospects…

    15. Brian Cronin

      As I’ve been saying since long before the season started, the Knicks love LEE and do not want to trade him. I already knew that, but there was confirmation in the paper the other day from Lee himself. He was told after Hardaway was signed that he would NOT be traded because they like him and want to keep him. The idea that the Knicks can’t find a deal for him is nonsense. They love him. That’s why he hasn’t been on the block.

      That’s not what he said at all. He said they told him he wouldn’t be traded. Not that they wouldn’t trade him because they love him, but just that he wouldn’t be traded. Which would also be the case if they tried to trade him and no one else wanted him (for anything worth trading him for). You don’t call up a guy to tell him, “We’re not trading you because we couldn’t find anyone willing to give up a first rounder for you.”

      In the very same interview, Lee talked about how he was involved in a bunch of trade rumors the previous year, to which he noted, “That’s every player in trade rumors, whether you like it or not. You still have to be professional, show up. Was I supposed to pout, get down on myself? Nah man. Part of the NBA.” Which would completely be in keeping with him being shopped around the previous year, which is precisely what was reported at the time. No one would part with a first for him, so they kept him.

    16. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      It’s hard to find a draft since 2000 where there weren’t 3 – 5 busts in the top 10. I’m not saying Its not good to have a higher pick. I just don’t like the idea of tanking, losing on purpose, so you can maybe move from 12th to 6th.

      I agree. 12th to 6th may make some sense, but that’s probably not what’s going to happen. It’s a way of framing the debate so your perspective makes sense. I think our pick is going to be lower. Unless the whole team falls apart with injuries, we are going to win more games than last year.

      Just for debate’s sake, let’s say Lee is worth 8 wins per year. We are a 1/4 of the way through the season. So he’s worth ~6 from here. If he’s traded, his minutes are not going to be replaced with 0 wins. They will be replaced with another player that will probably add a couple of extra wins with those extra minutes. That means the lack of Lee is not going to move the chain enough to make a huge difference on where we draft. Drafting 6th is wildly optimistic. That would mean we are going to be worse than last year even though KP is better and we added Kanter/McBuckets to replace Melo.

      Lee has value. He’s a good player. It’s foolish to dump good players. If someone wants to give us a good deal, but all means move him. But tanking for trash expiring contracts is a terrible idea.

    17. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      That’s not what he said at all. He said they told him he wouldn’t be traded. Not that they wouldn’t trade him because they love him, but just that he wouldn’t be traded.

      Please stop.

      We’ve been debating this point for months. The “fake news” and “speculation” that Lee hasn’t been traded because they can’t find a deal for him is not true. I kept telling you he’s not getting traded because they are not trying to trade him. They love him. Now he comes out and point blank says that management told him he would not be traded (just as I said) and you are going to debate the fact that he didn’t use the literal word word “love”? lmao

      It is what it is. I have a reliable source on Lee. He is not and was never on the block because they love him as a player and in the locker room etc….

      Now, do they love him enough to keep him if they got an amazing offer?

      No!

      No one is totally off limits. Phil would have considered moving KP for a different young stud and a couple of good 1st rounders. So would I. But that was a fantasy also because his asking price was so ridiculous no one took him seriously.

    18. 2FOR18, understands math

      Jumping in. We’re not going anywhere this year. Trade Lee and O’Quinn for any type of pick, play the kids, continue to play hard, and let the ping pong balls fall where they may. We get to see more of what our kids can and can’t do, and we most likely get a better pick. It’s a win/win.
      I just don’t understand why anyone would not be in favor of not trading Lee for anything, even the 45th pick. A month ago, how many of you wanted to extend O’quinn, which was a ridiculous thought? Well, that was when he should have been moved, just like Lee should be moved now, at his highest point.

    19. swiftandabundant

      This blog is so lame after a loss. Its always “we have to tank or else we’re fucked.” Give me a break.

      I can name tons of players drafted later in the first round or second round even who are good players that winning teams would love to have. Guess what? Good teams draft well no matter where they pick in the draft! They also develop players well, have good coaches, good systems, make good trades and sign good free agents at good prices.

      The Kings have SUCKED since the early 2000s. How many top ten picks have they had in that time?

      The Thunder drafted three players who are all in their prime right now and are all top ten players (two are probably top 5). But guess what? After that they mismanaged their team and now two of those players are playing elsewhere and they kept the one out of the three who is the worst and they’re not even 500.

      The Spurs haven’t had a good pick in ages and are currently above 500 without their franchise player (who wasn’t drafted in the top 10).

      WE have youth. We have room to improve internally with lots of players. We have our picks going forward. There’s really just one albatross contract on the team with Noah and that will hurt us but its not a killer. Lee is fine. People say “oh he’s not going to be here in 5 years.” So what? He is under contract for 2 more years. In two years we could be competing for the ECF if we play it right and the team develops. Maybe Lee could be part of that.

      Why the rush to blow shit up? Cause we lost to the magic without KP or Hardaway?

      I would hate to watch games with most of you.

    20. Brian Cronin

      We’ve been debating this point for months. The “fake news” and “speculation” that Lee hasn’t been traded because they can’t find a deal for him is not true. I kept telling you he’s not getting traded because they are not trying to trade him. They love him. Now he comes out and point blank says that management told him he would not be traded (just as I said) and you are going to debate the fact that he didn’t use the literal word word “love”? lmao

      He said he wasn’t being traded while saying he was involved in trade rumors last year, when it was reported that they couldn’t get a first for him. Of course, if a report doesn’t fit your narrative, it’s fake news, which, hey, that’s your prerogative to only accept reports that fit your narrative.

      I agree that they’re not desperate to move Lee, but other teams are also not knocking down the door to trade for him, either. Hence them telling him he’s not being traded.

      But if his career season continues, hopefully they will be able to get the first rounder this year that they couldn’t last year.

    21. 2FOR18, understands math

      @23 in case that’s directed at me, I haven’t changed my tune. In fact, most of the “pro-tankers” have been very consistent in their views. Play the kids. If they play great and we make the playoffs, great! If they don’t and we suck and get a top pick, great!
      We just don’t see the point in winning 35 games-40 games playing guys like Lee and O’Quinn. Nothing against them, I like them. They’d make nice role players on a contenders.

    22. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      He said he wasn’t being traded while saying he was involved in trade rumors last year, when it was reported that they couldn’t get a first for him. Of course, if a report doesn’t fit your narrative, it’s fake news, which, hey, that’s your prerogative to only accept reports that fit your narrative.

      You seem to be missing the point. I had an inside source telling me what was going on with Lee. I am not speculating based on reports from journalists (who are themselves often speculating). I personally thought Lee was gone after we signed THJ, but I was told I was wrong.

      I can’t read Lee’s mind, but what he probably meant in that interview was that there are always trade rumors and he’s been part of them too (both last year and this year after Hardaway was signed). I am telling you the rumors were not true because someone told me so they were not true. If you choose not to believe me or him, that’s your prerogative. I believed the guy because his record was good. Now that Lee has come out and said publicly that this year’s round of rumors and speculation were false, if anything, we should both want to know what that source is saying in the future. He was correct about Lee (among other things). So my view of his reliability has grown.

    23. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Since I am in the anti tank group, I should at least be clear about what I object to.

      I object to trading and dumping good players on fair contracts in an effort to lose more games and get a better draft pick. Except in the situation where you are well into the season, already well into the lottery, and would like to get into one of the very top picks (that’s where the future all stars are likely to be located) the advantage of losing some extra games does not add much value. The lottery itself has some randomness to it and the expected value of the players outside the top few is fairly similar. The advantage is small enough that imo the positives of developing a winning culture, keeping players happy, and fighting for playoff experience (which you might actually gain) are more important. If at some point this year we are dead and buried, then I would start playing the young players more than they deserve on the merit alone.

      I’m on board with trading either Lee or O’Quinn for some of the same reasons as everyone else, but not so we can get worse, tank, and get a better pick. I’d trade them if we get back more long term value than we give up.

    24. Bruno Almeida

      Again, I understand the fact that people hate tanking, I understand good players are available in the bottom picks, but please, please, please, let’s stop the idea that a 6th pick is not much better than the 12th.

      It’s is 100% better and by a wide margin, there really shouldn’t be a discussion about this. If you don’t care about having 6 less players to choose from when NBA drafts are typically too heavy, I get it. If you think wins and team chemistry are more important than those choices, it’s fine. But the draft is not a complete crapshoot and having more options is 100% always better.

      You can’t make decisions based on the assumption that the front office will blow the draft and pick a bust. If that’s the case, then theres no point anyway because the guy drafted at 12th will be bad too.

    25. Bruno Almeida

      That said, this year is already lost in terms of tanking. We won’t get a top pick and there’s little reason to believe we could reach even 6th or 7th, so there’s not much point. If KP get a seriously injured or something then yes, maximize draft value is the way to go. If the team is 100% healthy, theyll eventually just win more than the terrible competitors out there.

    26. 2FOR18, understands math

      @ 27, but why wait until later in the season to start selling off? Why not do it from the jump when you’re in the situation the Knicks are in(non contenders)? I don’t want this half assed, let’s wait until February stuff. I want to go full assed.

    27. Hubert

      O’Quinn needs to be traded now because he will have no value to us at the end of the year when he opts out.

      Lee, I don’t see the rush. Cleveland isn’t giving up the Nets pick to get Courtney Lee. And nothing else they have is good. You could just bench him if you want to tank so bad.

      In the offseason, he’ll be a quality shooting guard on a reasonable contract (2 years, $24mm) in a dry free agent summer. I can see a team like San Antonio being happy to acquire him as a Danny Green replacement if Green wants more money.

    28. Hubert

      This blog is so lame after a loss. Its always “we have to tank or else we’re fucked.” Give me a break.

      We don’t have to tank. But it’s pretty obvious we’re going to start sinking like a stone in the standings whether we want to or not. This isn’t a good team. Porzingis started the season on fire while most guys were rounding into shape, and we had an extremely fortunate schedule. We’re 1-6 on the road, we’ve hardly been on the road, and we’re going to play 16 of 20 on the road after Christmas.

      The writing is on the wall.

    29. MSA

      Unfortunately, this team is not lottery pick material.

      Dumping Lee for trash to move a couple of spots in the draft probably won’t make any difference. I just don’t belive in the ability of any NBA FO to evaluate a whole class of college and international players and spot the difference between the 10th and the 12th pick. The draft is a crapshot after a certain point.

      If they really want to tank, they can do it with Lee and Oquinn. I mean, they have been part of some pretty terrible teams in their careers. It’s a matter of minute allocation. Just go full Ntilikina mode and lose a lot.

      Now, if they could get a 1st in return (which I doubt), it’s a whole different conversation…

    30. Bruno Almeida

      I just wished we could get one lucky break and find a great dude in the lower picks / 2nd round. I just read that Clint Capela is currently leading the league in both offensive and defensive rating and I’m jealous as hell of the Rockets.

    31. swiftandabundant

      @ 33 – c00l. Can you also tell me what the power ball numbers are? I’d like to be a millionaire and since you obviously can predict the future, then I’d like those numbers. I’ll even split the earnings with you.

      Seriously, you have no idea what is going to happen. Yeah Zinger started out on fire but Hardaway started out cold. Frank could gain some confidence and improve a bit and help us out. Maybe Willie gets out of his funk or Dotson has some hot games. Maybe those road losses early are learning lessons and we weather the January storm just fine. Maybe we get hot and rattle off 5 or 6 wins. Maybe Zinger heats up again for a 10 game stretch.

      Will all of that happen? Who knows. Maybe, maybe not. But you can’t just say for certain bc we have a tough road schedule in January that we’re doomed. This team is still new, a lot of young pieces and seemingly likes playing together and works hard. Even in the bad losses they don’t give up. Maybe their best play is in front of them.

    32. MSA

      I just wished we could get one lucky break and find a great dude in the lower picks / 2nd round.

      Willy Hernangomez

    33. Bruno Almeida

      @39

      Well, I do like Willy, but specially this year its been hard to think of him as a great find.

    34. MSA

      Clint Capela is on his fourth season.

      His first was a total disaster and the second couldn’t play the fourth quarter of any game because of his FT shooting.

      Jordan Bell played 180 minutes for GS.

      Willy will be fine.

    35. 2FOR18, understands math

      I have a special fondness for Jordan bell because I stay up late gambling on West coast college games, and I just couldn’t believe how talented he looked at times. I think if he went to Duke or Kentucky he would have gone in the first round.

    36. Brian Cronin

      You seem to be missing the point. I had an inside source telling me what was going on with Lee. I am not speculating based on reports from journalists (who are themselves often speculating). I personally thought Lee was gone after we signed THJ, but I was told I was wrong.

      And I’m saying that the journalists themselves are also dealing with “inside sources,” and the story that their “inside sources” were telling them can easily coexist with what your “inside source” says, so no, your “inside source” has not gained any extra credibility from saying Lee wasn’t going to traded, since the journalists, using their “inside sources” said the same thing, but for different reasons.

      Plus, Courtney Lee categorically did not say the stories that said that they tried to trade him last season and couldn’t get a first rounder for him were false. He only said that they called him and told him that they weren’t trading him this current offseason, which also fits with what the Knicks’ reporters had been saying all offseason. Last season was a different story.

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