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Thursday, September 20, 2018

Knicks Morning News (2018.05.16)

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks awarded ninth pick for 2018 NBA Draft
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 8:23:50 PM)

    The Knicks will have the ninth overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft following the Draft Lottery Tuesday night.

  • [SNY Knicks] A look back at the Knicks history in the NBA Draft Lottery
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 1:10:00 PM)

    With the NBA Draft Lottery set for Tuesday night in Chicago, the Knicks are hoping to move their draft position up for the first time since 1985.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks candidate Woodson reportedly not returning to Clippers
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 11:32:18 AM)

    Mike Woodson, who was a candidate for the Knicks’ head coaching search, will not return to the Clippers as an assistant next year.

  • [NYTimes] Inside the Hamptons House Where Kevin Durant Hosted Suitors in 2016
    (Wednesday, May 16, 2018 9:00:13 AM)

    The estate at 189 Further Lane was the venue for one of the most significant courtships in N.B.A. history. Durant paid $100,000 for the 10-day rental.

  • [NYTimes] Corner Office: Chris Paul: Point Guard, Activist, Union Boss
    (Wednesday, May 16, 2018 9:00:09 AM)

    CP3 plays many roles in the N.B.A. Besides being the starting point guard for the Rockets, he is an outspoken voice on social issues, and leads the player union.

  • [NYTimes] N.B.A. Playoffs: Celtics Take 2-0 Lead in Eastern Conference Finals
    (Wednesday, May 16, 2018 4:10:58 AM)

    A triple-double by LeBron James was not enough for the Cavaliers who are in a huge hole as the series moves to Cleveland.

  • [NYTimes] Sports of The Times: That Warriors-Rockets Epic May Well Be Over
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 7:58:21 PM)

    Judging from Monday night’s gut-punch to the home team, looks like it’s time to book N.B.A. finals hotels in the Bay Area.

  • [NYTimes] Not at the Game: Come Watch the Warriors-Rockets Series With Us From an Expert’s Couch
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 7:48:54 PM)

    We want to see how great basketball minds not at the games see them. Here’s David Arseneault Jr., the men’s basketball coach at Grinnell College.

  • [NYTimes] N.B.A. Draft Lottery 2018: Phoenix Suns Get Top Pick
    (Wednesday, May 16, 2018 1:19:33 AM)

    Some teams earn a No. 1 draft pick by playing badly. Some get their No. 1 by playing badly on purpose. Others get their No. 1 by getting really lucky.

  • [NYTimes] Jerry West Just Wants to Feel Wanted
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 2:49:26 PM)

    For his last act, can the N.B.A. legend have a hand in fixing the Clippers once and for all?

  • [NYDN] 4 potential players Knicks could take with the ninth overall pick
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 10:16:40 PM)

    The Knicks have options as they own the ninth overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

  • [NYDN] Knicks will have 9th pick in 2018 NBA Draft
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 9:28:47 PM)

    Knicks will have 9th pick in 2018 NBA Draft

  • [NYDN] Kristaps Porzingis’ timeline for return will be clearer in Sept.
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 6:49:13 PM)

    The Knicks should get a better idea of when Kristaps Porzingis can return by September.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks to pick ninth in NBA draft
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 9:56:00 PM)

    “I’m just happy we didn’t move back,” Knicks GM Scott Perry said.

  • [NYPost] NBA mock draft: Who’s going No. 1? Who will Knicks grab at No. 9?
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 10:15:30 PM)

    The lottery selections in the 2018 NBA Draft at Barclays Center on June 21 could go something like this (but likely won’t): 1. Phoenix: Deandre Ayton, Arizona, C, 7-1, 250 Suns hired Luka Doncic’s Slovenia coach, Igor Kokoskov. So naturally they’ll take the offensive athletic freak center (20.1 ppg, 11.6 rpg), the best guy in…

  • [NYPost] Former Knicks coach Mike Woodson, Clippers part ways
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 7:26:52 PM)

    Ex-Knicks head coach Mike Woodson is done in Los Angeles, according to multiple reports, where he was a Clippers assistant coach to Doc Rivers the past three seasons. Woodson interviewed for the Knicks’ head-coaching job and expressed interest to The Post in joining David Fizdale’s staff two weeks ago. Woodson gave Fizdale his first assistant-coaching…

  • [NYPost] Isiah Thomas fan of Fizdale hire, but he wasn’t his first choice
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 6:42:23 PM)

    CHICAGO — Former Knicks president Isiah Thomas had lobbied for Mark Jackson to get the team’s head-coaching job, but still thinks general manager Steve Mills did a good job landing David Fizdale. “They made a great choice,’’ Thomas said after the draft lottery here in his hometown. “I’ve known him through my travels. I saw…

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ lottery luck stays the same as No. 9 draft pick stands
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 4:27:43 PM)

    CHICAGO — The presence of general manager Scott Perry on the dais and new coach David Fizdale on board did nothing to change the Knicks’ stagnant lottery luck Tuesday night. The pingpong balls didn’t dance the team’s way in a downtown Chicago hotel ballroom, and any visions of Luka Doncic or Deandre Ayton suiting up…

  • [NYPost] Ethan Hawke: Why I lost my spot on Knicks’ Celebrity Row
    (Tuesday, May 15, 2018 11:11:09 AM)

    Ethan Hawke’s biting words against the Knicks cost him a spot on Celebrity Row. Appearing on “The Bill Simmons Podcast” Monday, the “First Reformed” actor and longtime New York sports fan recalled how unfiltered comments about James Dolan’s team irked Madison Square Garden’s executive chairman to his core. “I’ve been a Knicks fan for a…

  • 81 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2018.05.16)

    1. english_knick

      From yesterday’s thread… the comp between Smart and Frank is a really interesting one. Clearly Smart grades out better on a number of stats from his rookie year. But the track record of euro players improving their shooting percentages early in their careers is good and it’s not unreasonable to think Frank could exceed Smart’s production for their age 20 seasons.

      I really like Smart as a Swiss Army knife player who can defend multiple positions, create a bit of offence etc. He’d be good outcome for Frank in my view.

    2. Brian Cronin

      Woody out in Los Angeles. Sure seems like he’s going to want to come here, no? Something must be up there, right? Seems unlikely he would just walk away unless something went down between him and Doc.

    3. Frank

      The Marcus Smart / Ntilikina comp is an interesting one –

      look at their per-36 stats just from this year (age 23 for Smart, age 19 for Frank)

      Frank – 9.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 1.4 steals. FG% 36.4, 3P% 31.8, FT% 72.1
      Smart – 12.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 1.5 steals, FG% 36.7, 3P% 30.1, FT% 72.9

      Certainly at this point in Frank’s career, he and Smart are similar-type players. Obviously Smart is much more impactful right now but he’s also 4 years older than Frank.

      Frank really does project to be an impact defender. Look at his percentiles by defensive play-type:
      Iso – 86th percentile (0.7 PPP)
      PNR-BH – 90.3
      PNR-roll man – 79.7
      Post-up – 97.7
      Spot-up – 7.4 (no one’s perfect)
      Handoff – 72.2
      Off-screen – 33.7

      As a 19 year old I feel pretty comfortably that these are elite-type stats. Offense… not so good though.

    4. Frank

      Anyway – too bad we didn’t move up, but on the other hand, we didn’t move down either, and we had 2x the chance of moving down as moving up.

      The Michael Porter thing is pretty interesting. Nate Duncan / Danny Leroux brought up on their podcast that Porter might in fact control his draft position more than you would think he would in that he can decide which teams to share his medical reports with — and that with a back injury that cost him an entire season, teams will need to see those reports before drafting him. ESPN/DX’s big board has him at #8 — can one possibly imagine Cleveland picking a possible medical red flag with Lebron’s free agency looming over them just a week later? Assuming they keep the pick, I see a Bridges or Collin Sexton as a more likely fit with Cleveland – assuming they actually keep Lebron, they desperately need more impactful defenders (both Bridges and Sexton probably fit that bill), 2-way wings, and shot creation from someone other than Lebron.

      I can see Porter working out for teams in the top 5 then shutting it down so if he drops beyond 5 he can more successfully choose his location.

      Say what you will about his weaknesses, but he was a high probability to go #1 or #2 pre-season, and assuming he is healthy, certainly didn’t do anything this season that should have diminished that level of talent.

    5. Frank

      btw I’ve generally been happy with the Mills/Perry regime, but the idea that we couldn’t dump Courtney Lee and KOQ on the Cavs for salary relief + a pick seems like a huge missed opportunity. Jordan Clarkson is awful, Nance barely plays, Hood sucks, and they gave up a 1st round pick to boot.

      Courtney isn’t great, but he tries on defense, is a fantastic 3 point shooter, and can be a secondary playmaker at times. KOQ would be huge in a series like this, providing much of what Thompson does on the boards while also not being a zero on offense otherwise and also giving rim protection.

    6. Hubert

      Doncic, Ayton, Bagley and Jackson will all be gone. After that, though, Things should be unpredictable, and we’re guaranteed one of the following if Perry and Milks want them.

      Porter
      Bomba
      Young
      Carter
      Mikael

      This seems to be the general consensus.

      I’m bracing myself for Perry deciding to take Sexton instead of one of those guys.

      Everything he’s said and done indicates he has no faith in Frank to ever develop as a 1 and is obsessed with finding a replacement. He went for Mudiay. Sexton is the Mudiay of this draft. I think it’s inevitvable.

      That would give us an insanely imbalanced roster which would force us to play smaller guards at forward:

      1 Sexton, Burke, Mudiay
      2 Hardaway, Lee, Frank, Dotson
      3 Thomas
      4 Porzingis
      5 Kanter, Noah

      That kind of mess seems about right, doesn’t it?

    7. Frank

      To be fair to Sexton, it sounds as if he is a high level defender as well as a super competitive dude. There have been a fair number of DeAaron Fox – Sexton comparisons and to be honest it sounds as if Sexton compares favorably — super fast, just as good a defender, and clearly a better shooter (even if he’s not a great shooter). But yes, I think it would be ridiculous to have Frank, Sexton, Burke, and Mudiay all on the roster at the same time. And like others have said – I think the only way you draft into such a position of “strength” is if the guy really is that good — and it’s hard to see that he is really that good. Bad 2p%, shaky shooting numbers, <1 steal/game, poor assist/TO ratio, and on top of that he's probably just a 1 position defender even if he's a good defender at that position. Pass.

    8. Frank

      Will be so interesting if Trae Young is somehow still on the board for us. Talk about a boom-bust proposition. He would be absolutely victimized on the defensive end, even if his offense is as good as advertised. Hard to know whether he could become adequate like Steph — Steph is significantly taller (although is his wingspan only 6’3″?).

    9. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Don’t we already have a score-first, short, bad-on-D guard named Trey?

    10. Z-man

      Some here (including me) were not very high on Smart, Rozier, Brown or (especially) Tatum. So all of our draft prognosticating is highly suspect. Perhaps our best move is to find out who the Celts and Spurs think highly of and draft one of those guys.

      As to last night, there are 2 silver linings:
      1) the Celts didn’t get #2
      2) all the recent dialogue about who we should draft at #9 isn’t wasted

    11. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Joking aside, if we draft another guard – Sexton, Trae, SAG – it’s going to be hard to continue to root for the team, because it’ll only be a matter of time before the inevitable dumb trade of Frank for 2 second round picks.

    12. Frank

      @9 – yes, but Trae seemingly has far superior offensive upside than Trey… literally no one in college basketball history has put up Trae-type numbers, much less as a freshman in a real conference.

    13. lavor postell

      Not a big fan of Sexton, but I can see a future where Frank is capable of defending both wing spots so it wouldn’t be a huge long term problem. If Sexton is who they think is BPA then they should take him, I’m just skeptical he is or should be the BPA when we’re on the board at 9.

      In Sexton’s favor is he’s a very high character kid and an insanely hard worker. He was an unranked recruit in his junior year in HS who through hard work turned himself into a 5 star.

      Sexton had a schedule at Pebblebrook High School (Mableton, Georgia). He’d rise before 6 a.m. to pump iron and run lung-busting conditioning drills. Then it was off to school (he carried a 3.7 GPA) before heading to practice with either his high school or AAU team. After practice, he’d go through a skill-focused workout that saw him repeat different dribbling, shooting and lay-up moves until he could execute them in his sleep. The session couldn’t end until he’d drained 300 jump shots. Sexton never shared these grueling workouts on social media, because he never had interest in creating an account. No Instagram, no Twitter, no Snapchat, no nothing. “You can’t follow me on social media. Don’t have it. In my opinion, it’s a waste of time. Likes won’t make you better at anything,” Sexton wrote in a piece for The Player’s Tribune.

      …….

      Washington bought him an altitude mask to help him prepare. Sexton worked out three times a day, often in the blistering south Georgia sun, with that mask affixed to his face. “He wanted to be on that team so bad,” Washington told SB Nation. “A lot of those other guys had been there before, so they were privileged. His job was to be the hardest worker. I told him, if you out work everyone, they can’t deny you.” Sexton bolted through the tryout and impressed the coaches with his elite conditioning. He went on to make the team and win tournament MVP at the 2016 U17 FIBA World Championships:

      <a…

    14. Frank

      @13 – yeah you get the feeling that Sexton is just super-competitive on both ends of the floor and a really hard worker. That game where Alabama played 3-on-5 or whatever and actually made it a game was pretty awesome.

      Maybe a little Scary Terry to him?

    15. Farfa

      I have no problem with Frank not being developed as a full-time PG. I have a problem doing that while we have a gazillion 2-guards on the roster.

    16. mase

      the issue is that we have a gazillion 2 guards because we dont have a playmaker 1 guard, so they all get moved to the off guard spot. frank, trey, mudial, baker, lee, thjr, none of them are lead guards

    17. Farfa

      Well, no, Mudiay is trash but he is clearly a PG (who should play in China and not here, but nevermind). Trey is a PG but his size makes his ceiling just a good bench player. It’s THJ and Lee who are clogging the rotations (and the payroll).

    18. lavor postell

      @16 – Honestly aside from Frank and arguably THJ and Burke none of the rest would factor into my decision. Baker, Lee and fucking Mudiay shouldn’t be part of any consideration. If Mudiay or Baker make some quantum leap that would be a good problem to have, but if Stevens can find minutes for Kyrie, Rozier and Smart when they’re all healthy then it shouldn’t be an issue for us.

      @14 – Yeah, I agree. If you’re looking for a kid who would outperform his draft slot you probably want to bet on the one who has been obsessive about maximizing his abilities and perfecting his craft since his balls dropped.

    19. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and one of the Bridges will take us to the promised land"

      To me, this draft is either Mikal Bridges, Wendell Carter or bust. Primarily, I want a defender that fits. I might be talked into Miles Bridges if they think he can defend multiple positions. I’m more skeptical of him because I don’t think he’s long enough to handle some PFs and actually is more of PF than SF, but I like his rebounding teamed with KP.

      BPA is a great theory on paper, but when we are talking about really young kids, no one knows who the BPA is within a tight range of 3-4 players outside the top couple. So why pretend we do?

    20. Frank

      Pretty good graphic from @knicksfilmschool re: the ~50% hit rate on #9 picks since 1997, which honestly is not that bad a hit rate–

      https://twitter.com/KnickFilmSchool/status/996741961947238400

      for those too lazy to click, 10 out of the 21 #9 picks since 1997 have made at least 1 all-star game. 5 of the 21 he considers “too early to tell” — DSJ, Poeltl, Kaminsky, Trey Burke, Vonleh. 1 = started some games (Przybilla). 5/21 busts/bench/scrub – Sweetney, DJ Augustin, Diogu, Rodney White, Patrick O’Bryant.

      If you ask me, you can call Kaminsky and Vonleh busts/scrubs already, but still — 10/21 have made at least 1 ASG and 4/21 have a real shot at HoF –> Dirk, McGrady, Shawn Marion (IMHO), Iguodala and lots of other really solid players – Hayward, Kemba, Joakim Noah, Drummond, Derozan, Amare.

    21. Hubert

      Say what you will about his weaknesses, but he was a high probability to go #1 or #2 pre-season, and assuming he is healthy, certainly didn’t do anything this season that should have diminished that level of talent.

      My issue with Porter is that literally the only thing he has going for him is that he was projected to be a top pick before the season. He played 51 minutes of NCAA ball. So if you like Porter, it’s not based on production or even a draft workout. It’s based on remembering seeing his name at the top of preseason draft board.

      And those preseason draft boards are worthless! They’re an echo chamber of a distant shout. Harry Giles was a preseason top 3 pick last year. Skal Labissere was allegedly competing with Ben Simmons for the #1 pick before two seasons ago. And would you like to see whose name topped many of the preseason draft boards three seasons ago? You don’t, but you do:

      http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2192263-2015-nba-mock-draft-pre-training-camp-edition

      He might be decent value at 9. I’d rather someone else take the chance so we can draft someone who produced.

    22. mase

      although noah is on ‘all-star ‘ team list he should have a * next to his name in the scrub column

    23. Hubert

      From Zach Lowe:

      The Kings made the jump only because they lost a “coin flip” (actually a separate drawing) in April with the Bulls. Had that coin flip gone the other way, Chicago owns the four-number combination in question and is picking No. 2. Atlanta similarly won Tuesday night by losing a coin flip with Dallas, which fell to No. 5.

      http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/23515949/zach-lowe-2018-nba-draft-lottery-phoenix-suns-sacramento-kings

      The three most disgusting teams in the tank were Dallas, Chicago, and Memphis. Memphis fell the furthest and Chicago and Dallas both lost coin flips that would have netted them a top 3 pick.

      That is fucking delightful.

    24. Hubert

      This is also pretty amazing:

      Brock Aller, the Cavs’ senior director of strategy, reminisced about how a similar coin flip “win” cost Cleveland a chance to draft Anthony Davis in 2012.

      • Aller was under a lot of lottery pressure replacing Jeff Cohen, the former vice chair who represented the Cavaliers in the drawing room during each of their three — three! — lottery wins in 2011, 2013, and 2014.

      Consider that! Cleveland was a coin flip away from winning 4 consecutive lotteries!!!

      Obviously if they had won the Davis lottery in 2012 it likely would have changed their numbers the subsequent years, but still, that’s remarkable.

    25. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      If Wendell Carter is taken the next best move would be to trade down with LAC if LAC is willing. There’s very little marginal difference between the 2018 prospects at 9 and 12/13 beyond Carter, who is a tier above everyone else in that possible range. (I have him at 2 or 3 overall in the draft lol)

      I’d trade down and maybe give them our Chicago second to sweeten the pot if they were balking, and draft 2 of Robert Williams, Jontay Porter, SGA, Zhaire Smith and Troy Brown.

      My preferred pairing would be Robert Williams and Troy Brown or SGA (I’m pretty torn between Brown and SGA as 2nd BPA behind Robert Williams, who I’m very high on–id probably choose Brown though). You could also easily talk me into Jontay and Zhaire, however. I think they’re all at least as good of prospects as the Bridges’ tbh.

    26. SJK

      Re: Sexton, I haven’t done enough scouting to pass judgement on him, but Burke and Mudiay shouldn’t stop us from drafting him if he is BPA.

      Sexton and Frank could play well together in the backcourt, both strong defenders who’s strengths cover for the other’s weaknesses on offense.

      Again, this is only if you evaluate Sexton to be BPA, but I wouldn’t worry about the other guys. Mudiay can be cut, Burke is a bench guy, Lee can be benched or maybe even traded.

    27. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      In my opinion Sexton is far and away the worst lottery pick in this draft. Bad A/TO, undersized, poor passing numbers, average efficiency volume scoring, anonymous defense, lack of secondary skills like rebounding, boxing out, etc. I love his intangibles but you simply cannot ignore the lack of projectable NBA production because of his propensity to work hard. I’d almost draft him in the 2nd round, that’s how low I am on him. Nevermind the fact that we have 2-3 point guards currently on the roster.

    28. Bruno Almeida

      My issue with Sexton is not entirely in him as a player, but more on why would we draft him specifically when we have Frank and Burke on cheap contracts already.

      It would mean Perry is commited to the rough riders, not statistically great players who have intangibles, athleticism, “will” and stuff like this, and that’s precisely the approach I don’t want to see the FO going for specially after Fizdale’s press conference.

      He has promise as a player, he could even eventually turn out to be a steal, I love how much he gets to the line and just how super aggressive and focused he is, but the statistical profile is certainly underwhelming. There’s a chance he wills himself into becoming a good player just by working incredibly hard, but that’s much less enticing to me than actual tangible statistical production with upside, like Carter Jr. or Mikal have shown.

    29. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      In keeping with my comments in 26, I think if we don’t trade down and Carter isn’t there (or maybe Porter, depending on injury info) that we should probably reach for Robert Williams or SGA all things considered (with an off chance of Zhaire). I’d be fine with the Bridges’ but I think Robert Williams is a top 7 prospect in this draft and would be absolutely monstrous on defense playing PF next to KP. Mikal is older and doesn’t project to do much beyond 3nD unless he develops his passing ability significantly. His shooting numbers will largely translate to above average NBA numbers I think, but he would have to be an elite defender to really give us value because of fairly pedestrian secondary skills and some draft analysts have expressed some skepticism that his defense will fully translate iirc.

      I think Miles is better than KB consensus, but he’s still seriously undersized both in height and wingspan and I don’t think he has the tools to effectively play the 3, which troubles me. I feel much more confident in Robert Williams, SGA, and even Zhaire Smith than I do in the Bridges’

      This isn’t even mentioning Troy Brown, who I think is a top 10 pick material but will never be picked by us, since he’s mocked around #20.

    30. d-mar

      Smart is such a weird player, it’s hard to argue about his defensive impact, but the guy has always been and continues to be putrid offensively. (Career TS% of .480, playoffs thus far .455)

      So if the guy goes 3-11 in a game and wreaks havoc on defense, isn’t it almost a wash? The Celtics can afford to have a guy missing a lot of shots because they have plenty of other options, but I personally hope Frank can at least crack .500 TS next year. We need him to be productive offensively given our other options.

    31. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      @31

      Iirc Smart is better on offense than his box score indicates because of his good rebounding numbers for a guard and because of his screening ability. He’s still not a positive on that end but he doesn’t gum up the works as much as you’d think just by looking at his box score.

    32. ProjectKnicks

      I get the feeling all the comparisons are meant to convince the people making the comparison that Frank is not the mediocre player he projects to be.

      The complete prostitution of cherry-picked statistical data is funny, to be honest.

    33. DRed

      I was very high on Smart coming out because I thought he had a very high floor and it was likely he’d improve in the NBA. I was dead wrong about him getting better.

    34. Bruno Almeida

      I thought he would figure out how to shoot, at least, as he was a pretty good finisher at the rim already in college as a ball dominant guard. I guess some guys never truly learn how to shoot. It is remarkable that he has changed his game so much from a monstrous usage guy to basically Tony Allen with a lot more muscle.

    35. Hubert

      Re: Sexton, I haven’t done enough scouting to pass judgement on him, but Burke and Mudiay shouldn’t stop us from drafting him if he is BPA.

      True, but he’s clearly not going to be BPA at 9. We’ll almost certainly be able to take either Mikal Bridges, Wendall Carter, Bamba, or Porter. And if one of those guys is available, then Frank+Burke+Baker+Lee+Timmy+Dotson+Mudiay is a very good reason to not draft Sexton.

      Sexton has a great profile for the type of player worth taking a risk on in the 20s or the second round.

    36. Frank

      I get the feeling all the comparisons are meant to convince the people making the comparison that Frank is not the mediocre player he projects to be.

      The complete prostitution of cherry-picked statistical data is funny, to be honest.

      did Z-man get a new handle?

      Literally no one is saying that Frank is good on offense. We know he was bad on offense last year. We’re saying he is an impact player defensively, and unless you are Isiah Thomas, you know that defense is 50% of the game. Part of the reason Ainge has done so well in the draft is that he has somehow figured out how to draft two-way players year after year after year rather than just taking the shiniest offensive object out there.

      Re: his offense – there is some reason to be optimistic. He showed good court vision. His shooting form is good. And having a bad TS as a teenager in the NBA is certainly not good, but it isn’t invariably a sign that you’ll never improve. Among the players with TS <50 at age 19:

      Lebron James
      Tony Parker
      JR Smith
      Dante Exum (looking better and better)
      Brandon Ingram

      Emmanuel Mudiay…

      Overall there have been 8 guards who had a TS <50 during their age-19 season. 2 of them were rookies this year (Monk and Ntilikina).

      Every one of the other 6 improved significantly in TS during their age 20 season:

      Tony Parker – 49.7 -> 54.2
      Ricky Davis – 46.2 -> 54.2
      JR Smith – 47.8 -> 51.5
      Dante Exum – 45.7 -> 52.1 (he missed his age 20 season so 52.1 = age 21 season)
      Rashad Vaughan – 39.8 (blech) –> 44.9
      Mudiay – 43.7 -> 48.3

      There is hope for Frank yet.

    37. Bruno Almeida

      @37

      I mean, you’re replying to the guy that thinks a full statline of similarities between two guys sharing a position is cherry picking, it’s not like adding more statistical evidence will make the troll go away.

    38. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      Okobo will probably jump up to late first, but I wouldn’t mind drafting him if he’s available at 36 with our Chicago pick. Still would prefer Isaac Bonga, though.

    39. hoolahoop

      mase, ess-dog
      Did you catch the article above the comments?
      This is where KD had his Hamptons meetings (189 Further Lane, East Hampton).
      Here’s his Hamptons house:
      https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/16/sports/warriors-hamptons.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=photo-spot-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

      I used to rent a great cottage on the Acabonic Bay, off Springs-Fireplace Rd. One of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been.

    40. hoolahoop

      Frank – 9.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 1.4 steals. FG% 36.4, 3P% 31.8, FT% 72.1
      Smart – 12.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 1.5 steals, FG% 36.7, 3P% 30.1, FT% 72.9

      This is why stat-heads need to watch the games.

    41. djphan

      ts has never been a good fwd looking indicator…. for college or the pros… its a good backward looking indicator but thats it…

      2p fg remains the best fwd looking indicator… and franks was underwater in somenpretty bad company….

    42. Bruno Almeida

      @42

      They do and they’ve always done it. Frank is just pointing out how similar the stats are, and Smart is also a tall guard who is primarily a defender and not much of an offensive player. How can it be so hard to understand his point, my goodness.

    43. hoolahoop

      @ 44
      Despite their stats being almost identical, Frank and Smart’s on court effectiveness is significantly different. Yet, people don’t see past the advanced box score.
      How can it be so hard to understand his point, my goodness.

    44. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      For anybody doubting the greatness of Michael Porter Jr because of his limited college minutes, here’s a rundown on who he is:

      MPJr is a 6’10” combo forward with a 7’0” wingspan. In high school he averaged 37 points and 14 boards a game. He took his team in Missouri to a state championship, and then his father got a job as an assistant at the University of Washington, so they moved to Washington. He then, in his senior year, won a state championship at that school, which was the worst school in that division.

      In 2016 he dominated the U18 FIBA championships with Markelle Fultz. He was the only forward invited to Steph Curry’s basketball camp, and that camp is reserved for the best guard prospects in the country. At that camp, he won the annual 1v1 tournament and he famously played against Dennis Smith Jr.

      At the Nike Hoop Summit? He dominated that week. McDonald’s All American game? Once again dominated that week.

      Long story short, you’re talking about the closest thing to Kevin Durant you can find. He’s a three level scorer and a plus rebounder, and I have no doubt in my mind he would have been the #1 pick in the draft if he didn’t have the back injury. He’s a great athlete with a smooth jumper and the ability to create off the ball. Ayton and Doncic are excellent prospects. Ayton is a lot like KAT, Doncic is a lot like Harden, and MPJr is a lot like Durant. If he falls to #9 and we take him, provided his health checks out, that kid is going to be a force of nature. I’ve never heard of a prospect so good that he got his father two coaching jobs just so they could recruit him. Don’t let the limited minutes fool you; MPJr is going to dominate in the NBA.

    45. Jack Bauer

      @46, great write up thanks for the info.

      It sounds like the hype is justified, I’m really excited……..except for the part where he will not be available at #9

    46. Bruno Almeida

      @45

      They see, you’re just making a huge strawman of Ntilikina = Smart when all Frank said was they were similar type players (and Smart is obviously more impactful at this point) to try to engage on a bizarre anti-stats crusade. Similar type of player means they produce in similar ways, which is literally what the stats suggest. Devin Booker and Kobe Bryant are similar type of players at the same point in their careers and yet saying that still doesn’t mean and won’t ever mean they’re the same player or their impact is the same.

      Reading comments instead of blindly following an agenda is a good idea.

    47. Frank

      @48 – thanks for coming to my defense Bruno —
      I always try and put disclaimers on any comparisons, which is (as you mentioned) why I wrote specifically that:

      Obviously Smart is much more impactful right now but he’s also 4 years older than Frank.

      My guess is that people are skimming through these comments, not really reading them, then giving hot takes. That’s fine, it’s not like this is journalism or something – it’s the comment section at the best basketball blog out there. But I def appreciate the backup.

    48. Bruno Almeida

      The stats are definitely similar enough for the comparison to stand as something interesting on its own, and that’s good discussion in my opinion. Simply dismissing interesting stats like that when they don’t fit a particular narrative heavily lowers the level of discussion here for me, as does the whole tired ass “do you even watch games bro?” retort that inevitably comes with it. Yeah, we all have TVs.

    49. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Massive, you have to stop talking about Porter Jr, because you’re gonna fill our heads with unreasonable hopes…

      I mean, it’s not crazy he’s available, especially if he doesn’t supply medical tests to teams. And yes, sitting him so he can build core strength and get his body ready to endure the rigors of the NBA would dovetail nicely with keeping KP out for most of the year, ensuring one last high draft pick. It all makes sense! It would be a perfect outcome!

      But we know it is not to be, so please stop torturing us…

    50. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and one of the Bridges will take us to the promised land"

      blah blah blah

      When KP comes back and is on the court with Frank and Mikal we are going to have a plus defense. If the latter 2 are on the court with him because they’ve earned the starting job with adequate offense people are going to be screaming that we shouldn’t be winning all those late season games.

      Charlie Rosen used Frank and Pippen in the same sentence. Isn’t that enough for you guys. ;-)

    51. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and one of the Bridges will take us to the promised land"

      After reading that post by “The Glass Half Rebuilt” I may have to change my thinking. Even if he’s only half right that was good.

    52. ClashFan

      The thing about MPJ is, if he does fall all the way to 9, why would that be? It would seem that there’s a serious health red flag there if that happens.

      If his health checks out, why would he last to 9?

      As for Frank, I have no idea how good (or not) he might end up being. But the Knicks need to do all they can to develop him. By all means he should get minutes ahead of Mudiay and Burke next season. And Courtney Lee needs to be moved, somehow, someway.

    53. Z-man

      Seriously, the logic of comparing first-year box score stats is highly flawed. Some players develop, some don’t.

      Smart seems like exactly the kind of player that the box score does not fully appreciate, so he will be undervalued by any advanced stat that is derived from traditional box score stats. Much of his value occurs when his team doesn’t have possession…either on loose balls or on defensive impact both on and off the ball. He seems to come up with critical hustle/toughness/high-IQ plays when the game is in the balance.

    54. kevin5318

      Only way we get MPJ is if he only works out for us and refuses medical information to any other team.

    55. Henry George

      Life is about making difficult choices where all you can do is choose the best possible guess. If MPJr is there at 9, I hope they’ve done their homework because he’ll either turn out like Joel Embiid or like Greg Oden. And they’re going to have to live with that choice.

      Given how they’ve approached the coaching search, I’m confident Perry and Mills will put in the same due diligence into the health of each of their possible draftees.

    56. mase

      Hoolahoop

      Accobonac harbor is beautiful, my fishing spot!

      I live across from three mile harbor and am a real estate broker In East hampton. Renee who rented KD the house is my neighbor.. small word.
      But dam I would’ve loved to be his broker for that rental, I can assure you he would be a Knick right now! Probably not but it would be a really hard for him to get rid of me!

    57. Henry George

      Going back to Mudiay, Fizdale promises to be the first coach that will actually out in the time to develop him and his game. Let’s see how Fizdale approaches it, as well as how Mudiay responds. Until then, I refuse to write the kid off.

      Hornachek did work on Mudiay’s skills to some extent, although he used games to build up his lackluster conditioning, which is NOT how I would have done it. I would have put him through a personal mini training camp where I would have had him working with one of the trainers or coaches on skills and then having him run sprints seemingly ad infinitum before even considering putting him into games.

      There’s something to the conditioning thing as, upon returning to the bench after starting those 14 games, his game suddenly improved such that he started posting positive +/- games consistently. Then there were the 2nd half dropoffs and a strong 1st half. So I’m looking for a noticeable improvement in skills, conditioning and overall play because, at this point, Mudiay is playing for his career.

    58. hoolahoop

      Going back to Mudiay, Fizdale promises to be the first coach that will actually out in the time to develop him and his game. Let’s see how Fizdale approaches it, as well as how Mudiay responds. Until then, I refuse to write the kid off.

      Same here. I’d give Mudiay one more chance to turn it around. He checks so many boxes on the plus side of the ledger, and he’s still so young.
      From my perspective, it’s within reach. If he cuts down his unforced errors, learns to finish at the rim, improves his shot, and commits to defense, he can be an outstanding PG. That sounds like a lot, but it’s doable. And his ceiling is high.
      He’s got the physical tools. It’s going to come down to heart and smarts.

    59. Brian Cronin

      He checks so many boxes on the plus side of the ledger

      What are the many boxes that he checks on the plus side of the ledger?

      I’ve got “he’s fast” and “he’s pretty tall for a point guard.”

    60. Brian Cronin

      Budz is, in fact, taking the Milwaukee job. I think the odds are that he probably made some sort of under the table agreement before this point, because he walked away from some money in Atlanta and he didn’t bother to try to pursue the Toronto gig, which is likely even better than the Milwaukee one.

    61. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Same here. I’d give Mudiay one more chance to turn it around. He checks so many boxes on the plus side of the ledger, and he’s still so young.

      Pros:

      -pretty tall for a guy who’s allegedly a guard
      -has muscles, functional joints (allegedly)
      -can run with moderate speed, jump (wherein his feet leave the ground), dribble with both hands

      Cons:

      -really, really bad at shooting from outside
      -really, really bad at shooting from inside
      -cannot dunk (3 dunks in 493 MP last year) which is hilarious for a 6’5″ PG in today’s NBA
      -turns the ball over (a lot)
      -is bad at defense

      So many boxes checked!

    62. JK47

      If he cuts down his unforced errors, learns to finish at the rim, improves his shot, and commits to defense, he can be an outstanding PG.

      If Geno Smith becomes more accurate with his throws, learns to read defenses better and stops turning the ball over, he can be an outstanding QB.

      If Tim Tebow learns better strike zone discipline, gets better at making contact and improves his defensive range, he can become an outstanding major league baseball player.

      If Chris Smith improves his shot, works on his handle, gets better at defense and really commits to playing a team game, he can become an outstanding basketball player.

      If Carrot Top works on his delivery, sets up his punchlines better and stops relying so much on props for his comedy, he can become an outstanding comedian.

      If Kanye West learns about fabrics, gets better taste, learns about proportions and develops a better eye, he can become an outstanding fashion designer.

      If Tommy Wiseau gets better at writing, develops a sense of mise en scene, masters camera angles and works on his accent, he can become an outstanding actor and director.

      If Creed gets better at chord changes, writes better lyrics and Scott Stapp learns to sing better, they can become an outstanding rock band.

    63. djphan

      guys like porter fall all the time… there’s enough gm’s who don’t have enough job security… or uncomfortable enough to pick a guy who might not be completely healthy….

      he was a major major prospect…. but probably well short of the durant comparisons…. i felt like he was probably more in the beasley/keith van horn territory… which is still very good but not entirely like embiid or even the nerlens noel situation…. it actually probably has a lot more in common with harry giles….

      the only thing we do know is that he wasn’t exactly all that healthy or on his game during his college stint… which is a bit scary with back injuries…. if that explosion is gone then he’s really not all that much better than his brother who’s basically just a bad stretch 4…

      he could be ‘healthy’ but not as good as he once was…. which is why the workouts will be key…. and if he’s not working out then that could be a sign of bad things…. if he is working out then it’s likely he’s long gone before our pick….

    64. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      If Tommy Wiseau gets better at writing, develops a sense of mise en scene, masters camera angles and works on his accent, he can become an outstanding actor and director.

      you know, I used to like you, JK47

    65. Grocer

      You’ve gotta adjust your metric values for position. Carrot Top is an above average prop comedian.

    66. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Have you seen his biceps, though? Anyone with that kind of dedication and work ethic can become a top-level comedian with the right system and coaching. Frankly, I’ve always found guys like Patton Oswalt’s and Louis C.K.’s bodies a little troubling — a bit of a tweener (betwixt fat and obese) and I feel like if you’re going to slot yourself in as a fat-guy comic, you need to go full Patrice O’Neal and commit to the role.

    67. Owen

      Carrot Top has sold out his show for 12 consecutive years.

      He’s the guy with the super high PER in the comedy world.

    68. ClashFan

      Here’s the thing about Mudiay. Let’s say, in the unlikely event, that Fiz does get him to play better this year, say a lot better. Then what?

      He’s going to want to get PAID. And the better he plays, the more he’s going to want.

      Do you then risk giving him a big deal when his first good year is when he’s playing for his next contract? I guess you’d have to just in case he’s finally “arrived” as a player. But for the guy to be so out of shape and unwilling to play D last year, that’d be a huge risk.

    69. nicos

      Carrot Top is actually the high WP guy- the one who’s really getting the most laughs while being ignored by the taste makers who pay big bucks to flashy auteurs like Louis C.K. when they could have been getting far more bang for their buck by hiring a grinder like Carrot Top.

    70. Grocer

      Damnit, I had a joke all lined up about how Pauli Shore is not an All-Star and Carrot Top just needs better teammates in his lineup to really breakthrough, but you’ve all ruined it with your stats. Watch the sets, nerds!

    71. JK47

      Carrot Top is a high volume joke creator. Sure, a lot of them miss, but that just creates more opportunities for other comics.

    72. Bruno Almeida

      The number of Carrot assists all his missed jokes create makes his teammates stats better, so there’s really no questioning his production.

    73. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Go ahead and joke about Carrot Top, but when he is part of a comedy line up, the gravity he creates for his fellow comics is real. With all the attention on him, it’s much easier for the other comics to get laughs.

    74. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Has anyone seen Carrot Top live? Need to know if he looks like he has a Friar’s Club-ready body.

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