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Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Knicks Morning News (2017.12.31)

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis says Knicks needed key road win Saturday night
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 11:44:05 PM)

    Kristaps Porzingis played a key role in the Knicks’ come-from-behind win over the Pelicans on Saturday night, giving the team a much-needed road win to wrap up 2017.

  • [SNY Knicks] Kristaps Porzingis’ late effort propels Knicks to 105-103 win on the road
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 9:35:56 PM)

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Kristaps Porzingis scored 30 points, Jarrett Jack made two free throws to break a tie with 9 seconds remaining and the New York Knicks defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 105-103 on Saturday night.

  • [SNY Knicks] Tonight’s game: Knicks at Pelicans, 7 p.m.
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 4:07:05 PM)

    The Knicks hope to end recent skid against the Pelicans.

  • [SNY Knicks] Kristaps Porzingis shares personal theory for avoiding technical fouls
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 2:20:04 PM)

    Kristaps Porzingis, who recently complained about not getting enough foul calls, shares his theory on how to avoid technicals.

  • [NYDN] Kristaps Porzingis heats up late to carry Knicks over Pelicans
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 9:26:55 PM)

    Porzingis strapped on his cape and ended his 2017 with a bang.

  • [NYDN] Ntilikina earns more minutes, but won’t start for Knicks … yet
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 6:27:14 PM)

    Jeff Hornacek is not yet ready to start Frank Ntilikina. But that time is coming.

  • [NYTimes] Knicks 105, Pelicans 103: Kristaps Porzingis’s 30 Points Help Knicks Top Pelicans and End Skid
    (Sunday, December 31, 2017 5:08:31 AM)

    Porzingis scored 7 straight points in a late fourth-quarter push as the Knicks won for the first time in five games.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks come back, earn road victory over Pelicans
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 11:27:41 PM)

    The Knicks ended 2017 with a hard-fought victory on the road. Those have been hard to come by for this surprising team.

  • [NY Newsday] Jeff Hornacek wants to give Frank Ntilikina more minutes
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 9:51:50 PM)

    Jeff Hornacek plans to give Frank Ntilikina more playing time, but he’s not quite ready to start him.

  • [NY Newsday] Looking back and ahead at the Knicks and the NBA
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 7:53:35 PM)

    Jeff Hornacek isn’t one to make New Year’s resolutions. But when pushed on it, the Knicks’ coach said, “Road wins” and laughed heartily.

  • [NYPost] Joakim Noah makes the most of precious minutes in Knicks win
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 9:08:21 PM)

    NEW ORLEANS — This Knicks road trip started in Chicago with bad news for Joakim Noah. For the second time in 2 ½ weeks, he would not be dressing at the arena in which he was once an MVP candidate. The trip ended with one of Noah’s finest moments of a strange season — with…

  • [NYPost] Kristaps Porzingis busts slump to rescue Knicks in rare road win
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 4:46:51 PM)

    NEW ORLEANS — Kristaps Porzingis broke out of his slump with a 30-point game and rose up in the clutch. Jarrett Jack, this time, hit last-second free throws. And the Knicks celebrated wildly on the court at the buzzer, heading into the new year with a .500 record. Rallying from an eight-point fourth-quarter deficit, the…

  • [NYPost] Yankees rise, Giants crash, Knicks find hope: 2017 in review
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 12:25:59 PM)

    Well, there goes another year into the books that somehow marched merrily on without a championship from a New York City team. If you’re keeping score, come May 3, 2018, that will be 2,282 days since our last title (the Giants’ most recent Super Bowl run), and that will surpass, by one day, the most…

  • [NYPost] The Knicks are slowly expanding Frank Ntilikina’s role
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 10:24:06 AM)

    NEW ORLEANS – Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek isn’t ready to vault rookie point guard Frank Ntilikina into the starting lineup – at least not yet. Ntilikina is coming off his career-high 11 assists against French legend Tony Parker, logging a season-high 31 minutes in San Antonio. Meanwhile Jarrett Jack is starting to fade and Hornacek…

  • [NYPost] Porzingis is simmering, but has a secret for avoiding technical fouls
    (Saturday, December 30, 2017 8:36:01 AM)

    NEW ORLEANS — Kristaps Porzingis admits he has had a tough time fighting frustration on the court over not getting a lot of calls. The 7-foot-3 Latvian said he has done his best not to lash out at referees, but said, “it’s getting to me a bit.’’ After fouling out in San Antonio in the…

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    68 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2017.12.31)

    1. Frank

      Have been so busy lately that I’ve missed almost all the games recently, but I did happen to catch the last 5 minutes or so of last night. Great to see KP come up big in the clutch, and hey, if our guy can play Anthony Davis to a standstill, I’m pretty sure everyone here would sign up for that. Seriously – other than the 5 fouls, great line for KP – 30 points on ~26 shooting possessions, ZERO turnovers, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, 2 blocks, and a +7 –> that’ll do. If his 3-ball starts falling again…

      Gotta watch the last play again to see WTF happened to give AD a wide open 3 to win the game. That is a major defensive mistake when the ONLY thing you can’t give up is an open 3. Oh well, at least it missed.

      Great to see Noah exhumed and playing well. His screening and passing is still useful on the offensive end, and he’s about 100x better than Kanter on the defensive end. I’d like to see a little more time given to Noah, and really think we should try and move KOQ if at all possible before the trade deadline. It’s just not smart to tie up 4 roster spots with centers, especially when KOQ is expiring. He’s played great this year though.

    2. Frank

      by the way – Ntilikina is def starting to figure it out a little — shot still isn’t falling as much as we’d all like, but he has a 3:1 assist/TO ratio over the last 10 games and has cut his TOV% to 10.5 during that time. By comparison his TOV% was 21.4 in october and 17.0 in november. And this isn’t a Carmelo-like decrease in TOV% (ie. just shooting a ton more so the turnovers/possessions-used is low) — his usage has actually gone down somewhat in December, down to 15.3%. And he now has the best on-court DRtg (102.1) of anyone on the team (that’s played real minutes).

    3. wetbandit

      I was shocked that with KP, OQuinn, and Kanter limited, Noah got all the minutes and none to Willy. WTF? He was starting just last yr!

    4. alsep73

      I was shocked that with KP, OQuinn, and Kanter limited, Noah got all the minutes and none to Willy. WTF?

      Even when he’s played well, Willy’s d has been Kanter-esque, and the problem in this game was that NO’s big men (Davis in particular) were killing us. If you can’t send in Noah as a defensive specialist in a situation like this, you might as well cut or stretch him and deal with the cap ramifications.

      And it worked.

    5. Z-man

      Man, NO is just terribly constructed and coached. If I were them, I’d fire Gentry and look to deal Cousins or AD. That combo is just not suited for today’s NBA.

    6. alsep73

      AD/Boogie is at the moment a superior version of what we have with KP and Kanter, though we’ll see how our team looks when Hardaway is back and Frank is getting more minutes.

    7. Z-man

      Enes Kanter and Joakim Noah are the best centers on the team.

      Both are overpaid and Noah is untradeable, which is why I’d look to deal Kanter.

      I’d also look to deal O’Quinn. Rolling with a KP/Noah/Willy trio at C would be fine by me. It’s a bit risky b/c KP and Noah are injury prone.

      Last night’s win knocked a tread off the stealth-tank. If we beat SA at home, there’s probably no turning back, once Timmy is reactivated we are not going to be bad enough to win less than 32 games. At that point, might as well make a playoff run and hope we get lucky in the draft.

    8. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      I’ve been saying all along that Noah is our best defensive and play making C. He may still be our best all around C when he’s healthy. We should have been using him all along when the opposing big man was a legit C and offensive threat. Kanter is a huge liability on defense unless KP is on the court covering for him (using up precious energy). O’Quinn is OK, but he does a lot of foolish things. I don’t care how the low the probabilities are, if we are ever going to move Noah, (even if it’s next year) teams have to know he can still play.

      I would trade KOQ for something we need more and move Willy/Noah into the backup role depending on specific matchups. We could even consider starting Noah against certain matchups once Hardaway is back and there is more scoring on the court. Trying to trade Kanter is still possible also, but I’d wait to see what we have with Willy first. Plus he won’t be easy to move either.

    9. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Man, NO is just terribly constructed and coached. If I were them, I’d fire Gentry and look to deal Cousins or AD. That combo is just not suited for today’s NBA.

      When they made that move last year, I bet against NO in quite a few games and did fine. $$$

    10. GoNyGoNyGo

      I was shocked that with KP, OQuinn, and Kanter limited, Noah got all the minutes and none to Willy. WTF? He was starting just last yr!

      I think it was because of Cousins, who was manhandling Kanter and O’Quinn. If those two were dominated by him, Wily would have been roadkill. He’s not good defensively. Also, it’s clear to me that Hernangomez is getting traded soon,

    11. Z-man

      @8 Cousins is a 2-way player who theoretically should have way more trade value than Kanter. He’s a head case, but on the right team with the right coach he could be the best 2-way big in the league.

    12. Z-man

      @12 I hope you’re wrong b/c I like Willy as a home grown product and would love to see whether he can develop. That said, it seems like 1-way bigs are pretty readily available (we have 3 of them!), so we probably wouldn’t miss him much. I just think that there are much better ways to spend $18+ million of cap space than on Kanter, especially now that Noah is showing signs of life.

      Seriously, do we win that game if Kanter played instead of Noah? Noah’s playing chess out there while Kanter’s playing checkers.

    13. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Seriously, do we win that game if Kanter played instead of Noah? Noah’s playing chess out there while Kanter’s playing checkers.

      Kanter is playing tic tack toe and losing to the chicken in Chinatown. Unless KP is on the court covering for him he’s a clear net negative because of his defense.

      The problem is that we’ve needed more scoring on the court given that Jack is not much of a scorer and Lee is just OK. With Hardaway out it’s more of a problem. So we’ve needed Kanter to get OREBs and score in the paint.

      If we had a legitimate two way scoring SF and Hardaway at SG, we could probably get away with starting Noah and Frank and have a pretty good team that would only get better as Frank improves his shooting and ability to create.

    14. d-mar

      I love Noah on the defensive end and he’s a good screener and passer on offense, but the problem is defenders can play 5 feet off of him because they know he won’t shoot. That seriously clogs up the paint and allows defenders to double on other players.

      But he was great last night and just what we needed to slow down Boogie and AD.

    15. Will the Thrill

      Cousins is a 2 way player? I thought he struggled mightily on D. I can think of a better 2 way big on the Pelicans.

    16. Ntilakilla

      by the way – Ntilikina is def starting to figure it out a little — shot still isn’t falling as much as we’d all like, but he has a 3:1 assist/TO ratio over the last 10 games and has cut his TOV% to 10.5 during that time. By comparison his TOV% was 21.4 in october and 17.0 in november. And this isn’t a Carmelo-like decrease in TOV% (ie. just shooting a ton more so the turnovers/possessions-used is low) — his usage has actually gone down somewhat in December, down to 15.3%. And he now has the best on-court DRtg (102.1) of anyone on the team (that’s played real minutes).

      You mean rookie PGs actually improve as their season progresses? Nooo…..

    17. Z-man

      Ntilikina is still one of the suckiest PGs currently getting minutes in the NBA. He has sucked less recently. So yeah, he’s improved!

    18. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I can imagine in a future in which 100,000 deluded NBA fans talk for decades about how Cousins could have been the best 2-way big man in the league if he had just played better on offense and defense like he totally could have but also refused to

    19. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      He has, however, performed well relative to his peers, which is what actually matters. He’s been the third best rookie PG and has seriously outperformed DSJr, Monk, and Fox despite the advanced stats undervaluing his defense.

    20. Ntilakilla

      I can imagine in a future in which 100,000 deluded NBA fans talk for decades about how Cousins could have been the best 2-way big man in the league if he had just played better on offense and defense like he totally could have but also refused to

      It is amazing how player evaluation works. A 19-year-old Ntilikina gets written off one moment three months into his NBA career but there are still people holding hope that 27-year-old DeMarcus Cousins will figure out how to maximize his talent as the two-way centerpiece of a winning team after just ten years into the league.

    21. Ntilakilla

      He has, however, performed well relative to his peers, which is what actually matters.

      Hahahaha! You idiot! Don’t you know how this works? You’re supposed to compare the second youngest player in the NBA during his rookie year to every point guard in the league!

    22. wetbandit

      Wow, Z-Man, doubling down huh? In science, guys that do that are usually wrong and thinking emotionally.

      I don’t see how not playing a guy is a sign of a trade; rather, overplaying a guy to boost his per game stats is usually how it’s done (?oquinn?)

    23. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Frank is slowly improving his TOs and PFs like I said he would, but at an even faster rate than I expected. So the one thing missing at this point is making open 3s, scoring more efficiently, and creating for himself and others a little better. I don’t see anything broken in his shot. I don’t think he’s going to be like Rondo or Rose as a shooter. I think this is simply a rookie fighting through nerves, the speed of the game, getting used to better defenders etc. He’s going to get more efficient as a scorer and create better. The only question is how far he’ll take it. But if we have a player that’s an elite defender at PG and average as a play maker and scorer in a year or two, that’s already a really good player. If he gets beyond that in 3-5 years, we are all going to be very happy.

    24. djphan

      i mean frank still isn’t good in probably the most important and hardest to improve area of offense…. and because of that he’s not good on the whole….

      so not much has changed and i don’t think anyone’s opinion should be swayed after one month of mostly similar basketball from him…..

    25. johnno

      Do the rules allow the refs to call a personal foul on a the defensive player and a flagrant or technical foul on the offensive player on the same play? Baker fouled AD first on that dunk but AD clearly purposely swung an elbow at his head.

    26. Bruno Almeida

      On Cousins, Clyde said it best in yesterday’s broadcast: he doesn’t win games.

      I don’t care if he can score 30 with 15 rebounds every night, he’s still a turnover machine, he couldn’t care less about team basketball and has stretches in which he just fires threes and ignores defense. He’s an overrated player who falls in the same category of “but he has so much talent!”, which is always an excuse for a guy who doesn’t make his teammates better (he might actually make them worse) and yet gets a free pass because it’s always everyone else’s fault.

    27. Brian Cronin

      Man, NO is just terribly constructed and coached. If I were them, I’d fire Gentry and look to deal Cousins or AD. That combo is just not suited for today’s NBA.

      The combo, the coach, everything about that team makes no sense.

    28. BigBlueAL

      Frank still has a TS% slightly below 44%, no amount of solid defense can make up for that. While he has started to cut down on his turnovers he still has a TO% over 20% which is pretty horrific considering his low Usage rate.

      As much as I criticize his offense (he’s the #8 pick, to be this bad on offense even at his young age is a bit startling) I’ve said it many times I want him to play more and even start.

    29. Bruno Almeida

      Ntilikina’s ts% is definitely worrying, but Rondo for example is a guy who made a successful career with a .500 ts%, because he was a great passer and defender (when engaged).

      I dont think Ntilikina will be as good as Rondo was creating shots in his prime because Rondo has a great handle, but he has all the tools that Rondo never had in terms of shooting skill. He has good form and should be able to hit threes consistently as he progresses, and for all we know he’s a model kid, a hard worker and overall good influence.

      I’m still excited about him and I would like to see him starting, but he’s got to get a better handle and hit shots more consistently. If he ever does, he’ll be a very good player with a long prime.

    30. Stratomatic says "NY basketball is back"

      Here’s some data on Frank.

      9 TOs in 62 minutes in October. – .145 per minute
      27 TOs in 280 minutes in November – .096 per minute
      24 TOs in 364 minutes in December – .066 per minute
      Last 3 games 1, 1 and 1.

      13 PFs in October – .209 per minute
      34 PFs in November .121 per minute
      38 PF is December .104 per minute

      .413 TS% October
      .402 TS% November
      .467 TS% in December

      TS% other Rookie PGs all 1 year older.

      Frank .438%
      Ball .425%
      Fox .451%
      Smith Jr. .470%

      It’s tough for rookie PGs to score effectively in this league. Frank was born one year later than some of the other top prospects and is improving rapidly in every area of concern at the start of the season (I said TOs and PFs would not be a problem). He still has a long way to go, but he’s moving in the right direction rapidly. Another month or two and he’ll be the starting PG, not because we are tanking or trying to give him minutes, but because he deserves it.

    31. d-mar

      @36 interesting stats. It should also be noted that Frank plays way less minutes and attempts way fewer shots than those guys. They’ve all been basically handed the keys to their teams and have the green light to shoot as much as they want.

      Not to imply that Frank’s shooting would automatically improve with more attempts, but I’m pretty sure he’d get more comfortable and gain more confidence on offense if he were in those other guards’ situations.

    32. nicos

      The big issue with Frank is that any ball pressure just stops him dead in his tracks. Once teams actually start game planning for him- as they probably will once he inevitably moves into the starting lineup- he’s going to struggle until his handle improves. He’s drawn 7 shooting fouls in 700 minutes of play so he’s got to figure out a way to leverage his size into getting downhill if he wants to have long term success as a point.

    33. hoolahoop

      The biggest problem I see with Frank is that he pulls up his dribble and passes off as soon as he approaches the top of the key. I’d like to see him hold his dribble and “create” a lot more – attack, penetrate and finish, penetrate and dish. penetrate and kick it out. That would catapult him to the next level.

    34. Frank

      @39 – this is what pretty much happened in the Chicago game — between Kris Dunn and Justin Holiday, the Bulls have pretty good on-ball defenders in the backcourt, and they just hounded Ntilikina and Lee in that 4th quarter and our guys couldn’t make them pay for over-pressuring. This offense really needs Hardaway back – someone who if he gets a step, will take it all the way to the rack.

      ultimately – the backcourt combo of Ntilikina and Hardaway makes reasonable sense — they’re pretty complementary. Courtney Lee has played great this year, and he’s displayed way more off the bounce than I thought he had in his arsenal, but he just isn’t that attacking guard that we need right now.

      Meanwhile how about this Trae Young character? he is freaking unreal.

    35. Z-man

      Frank actually benefits from being a backup. If he were handed the keys to play 30+mpg as a starter since day one, his TS% would probably be in the .30’s. Frank is 9 months younger than Ball, 8 months younger than DSjr and 7 months yonger than Fox, does that really matter? And in @36 can we cherry pick a bit more? Smith Jr.’s TS went up every month, and he just put up a triple-double vs. the same Pelicans that Frank put up an 8-5-4 on a 40% TS. Fox, as woeful as his shooting has been, put up a TS .012 higher than Frank. And comparing Frank’s December stats to Lonzo Ball’s is just comical.

      Maybe Frank becomes Gary Payton 2.0 some day, but please, stop pretending that he has played anything like a NBA-caliber PG thus far. When he does, I’ll let you know.

    36. BigBlueAL

      Yeah I don’t get using Frank’s age as an excuse when he is barely younger than the other PG’s drafted in the Top 10. Plus shouldn’t the fact that he has been a professional for a few years give him an edge over the 1 and done college kids? Also Ball and Smith Jr have higher AST% and lower TO% than Frank.

      I get the defensive factor though and it’s a huge one cause Smith and especially Ball are horrible on ball defenders and Frank truly is great at it already, I absolutely love watching him play D. Reminds me of the days when Harper, Starks and Anthony would give opposing guards headaches all game long with their defensive pressure. It’s awesome to finally see a Knicks PG play great D, we haven’t had that since the Ward/Childs days and even they had their issues at times vs bigger PG’s.

      But you can’t minimize just how bad Frank has been on offense, it’s truly been awful.

    37. Grocer

      Teams are already putting extra pressure on Frank bringing the ball up, trying to trap him at the half court with double teams is getting more common too. His handle is a problem but his bigger problem is confidence. Pressure works against him because he slows down and pulls up, ceding control of his direction and options to the defender. He can’t penetrate because even with an open lane he’s worried about taking it inside. He shoots poorly partly because he’s frequently hesitating about shooting at all. He might just be bad at all of that anyway, he’s certainly not good at it right now. But I’m not worried at this point. He’s got no fear, no hesitation on the defensive end. Doesn’t worry about screwing up, gets aggressive against everybody he’s defending. He’s starting to get more aggressive on offense so hopefully we’ll see that same attitude there. Once he’s got the mental fortitude to not constantly question himself when he’s got the ball we’ll have a better idea of what he can do on offense, what he might develop into. I’ll only get worried if he starts getting less aggressive, starts to pull back more.

    38. hoolahoop

      As well as Frank’s skill deficiencies, confidence is partly innate. Aggressive offensive players have very short memories and aren’t afraid to miss a shot.
      Frank is so young and inexperienced that it’s extremely difficult to tell what he’s going to become in a few years. And suppose he makes a giant leap, is the conversation going to be “he’s not worth max money”.
      That’s why I like the idea of drafting players that are a little older with more experience. Hopefully, you get a more NBA-ready player, and more bang for your buck on day one.

    39. d-mar

      If he were handed the keys to play 30+mpg as a starter since day one, his TS% would probably be in the .30’s.

      And you know this how?

    40. Z-man

      I love Frank’s attitude, his work ethic, and his team-first attitude. He can play for my team any time, I just think we need to keep it real as to how he has done as a PG thus far.

    41. Z-man

      And you know this how?

      I don’t know it for sure. It just makes sense to me that for most players, higher usage is correlated with lower TS%, all else being equal. It doesn’t make sense to me that having license to take any shot at any time without worrying about minutes is conducive to better shooting, especially for rookies. Imagine if Frank weren’t limiting his shot attempts to when he was wide open or in his very narrow comfort zone, and if from day one he was expected to start and play 28 MPG and take 17.6 shots per 36 like Smith, instead of 21 mpg and 10.8 shots per 36. Do you really think that if he were taking 8 more shots per 36 (10 more per game), he’s be shooting better?

    42. djphan

      trae young doesn’t look all that athletic out on the court but the numbers are pretty tough to ignore…. they are very weird tho … over 50% 3pr and ftr…

      most ppl probably wont’ have him ahead of ayton but i think he should be #2 behind doncic…

    43. BigBlueAL

      @49 Frank is 9, 8, and 7 months younger than Ball, Smith and Fox. Is it really that big a difference that it’s OK to use his age as an excuse but not for the other 3? Frank played for a professional team in Europe for the past 3 years, shouldn’t that make him more polished and further along in his development than college 1 and done kids?

    44. kevin5318

      Frank is still incredibly raw physically compared to a guy like DSJr and Lonzo to a lesser extent. Fox is also very skinny at 170 so him and Frank have a lot of filling out to do.

    45. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Evaluating young players:

      1) Bad play during rookie year is okay.
      2) Bad play during sophomore year is okay, so long as it’s not as bad as the first year.
      3) Player should be pretty good by year 3, or player is probably not going to be good.
      4) If player is not good by year 4, you are almost certainly overpaying for an extension. Avoid these players unless they come on cheap deals.

      OR

      1) Player is good during rookie year.
      2) You are both lucky and smart, unless you trade that player because pointzz or something like it.

      You can’t keep signing projects hoping that you find the next late-blooming Steve Nash. But writing a player off during his rookie year is total silliness.

    46. Grocer

      Is it really that big a difference that it’s OK to use his age as an excuse but not for the other 3?

      Yeah, it’s not a great argument. On the other hand, his defense is already top notch so it’s not like he’s behind, he’s just differently ahead.

      Happy New Year Knickerblogger!

    47. johnno

      Young men develop at very different times and rates and nine months can be a huge difference physically at age 19. Some high school seniors have full beards and the bodies of grown men while others look like they are young kids. Frank looks like he hasn’t started shaving yet.

    48. ClashFan

      All the first year point guards deserve some slack as they learn and adjust to the NBA game. Frank seems to be improving over time. That’s good, and let’s hope that continues.

      I never got into the argument here over whether Frank playing in French pro leagues is more or less tough than the NCAA. I really have no idea.

      I do wonder, how many minutes did he play last year vs. the minutes guys like Ball and Smith played last year? Anyone know?

      Also, how much PG did he play? I’ve heard not much.

    49. danvt

      I love Frank’s attitude, his work ethic, and his team-first attitude. He can play for my team any time, I just think we need to keep it real as to how he has done as a PG thus far.

      I agree with this but I’d put it in a different order. You can’t argue he’s an all star or a lock to be one. He just hasn’t shot well enough or penetrated and created enough and he’s had some bad turnovers. But I do think there’s reason to be sanguine on his prospects. The team plays really well when he’s in there. His technique looks pure. His shooting form is good, he can make a range of passes, and other teams offenses operate much less well when he plays. We’ve seen that coach already trusts him in crunch time. I think coach is also seriously constraining the things he’s allowed to do, and the fact that he’s listening is why he’s getting minutes. A lot of times the play is for him to throw it to the big man at the three point line and then be a pressure release valve.

      In some ways this reminds me of Michael Ray Richardson’s first year. He looked all kinds of bad and no one thought anything of him. His second year the coach set him free and he blossomed. Another player that comes to mind is Darrel Walker. He always looked gangly and horrible and only became a good defensive player. Hopefully, Frank is more Michael Ray (minus the extra curricular activities.) I do think he seems to be ahead of both of these players progressions in some ways.

      What do you think of these comps Z-Man?

    50. hoolahoop

      Young men develop at very different times and rates and nine months can be a huge difference physically at age 19. Some high school seniors have full beards and the bodies of grown men while others look like they are young kids. Frank looks like he hasn’t started shaving yet.

      Lebron came straight from high school and he looked 40.

    51. Z-man

      danvt,
      I think Michael Ray was a naturally more gifted offensive player, but with a much lower b-ball IQ. I liked Darrell Walker as a hustle guy off the bench but see him as a worse than a worst-case for Frank.

      Frank is a tweener right now. If he develops his PG skills to the point where he can be a legit starter on a contender, he’ll be more of a defensive combo guard; a good ceiling comparison is someone like Nate McMillan, or if he shoots better, maybe Terry Porter.

    52. Ntilakilla

      Frank is 9 months younger than Ball, 8 months younger than DSjr and 7 months yonger than Fox, does that really matter?

      It matters a lot. Already Frank has dramatically improved his turnover/assist numbers in just 3 months of NBA play. By another 3 months, I anticipate he’ll be a far better player than he was when he started the season.

    53. ess-dog

      It’s amazing how bad we’ve been on the road. One of the worst teams out there, save for Charlotte and Atlanta. I don’t think you can chalk it up to youth, either. Maybe there are conditioning or travel issues, or maybe Horny can’t motivate his guys well enough. Whatever it is, they need to solve it.

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