Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Knicks Morning News (2018.06.26)

  • [NYDN] Japanese 82-year-old who has lived naked on island for decades forced back to civilization
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:15:00 AM)

    The wish of a Japanese octogenarian to die on the desert island he called home for 29 years has been castaway by authorities who will not let him return.

    Masafumi Nagasaki, 82, had moved to Sotobanari, in the country’s chain of islands near Taiwan, in 1989 and spent his years there living naked…

  • [NYDN] Raising airport worker wages will help NY and NJ
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    In one move, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is set to infuse local communities with millions more in annual earnings, $43.7 million in federal taxes for public services, 2,700 new jobs and a host of other gains for the region’s economy.

    A just-released report by the Economic Roundtable…

  • [NYDN] Save the tip credit for wait staff: A restaurant representative and service worker advocate join voices
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    One of us runs an organization representing restaurant owners, and the other, service workers. On many issues, we’re on opposing sides. But in urging Gov. Cuomo to save the restaurant industry tip credit, our organizations stand in staunch unity.

    The tip credit allows restaurants to pay tipped…

  • [NYDN] Study shows many aging New York City parks have infrastructure problems
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    The city’s green spaces are turning into wastelands because of aging and decades of neglect, a new study finds.

    The report published by the Center for an Urban Future on Tuesday found that 20% of parks across the city haven’t had an infrastructure upgrade in 25 years.

    The city also hasn’t invested…

  • [NYDN] The SHSAT is fair — so keep it, argues a student at a specialized high school
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    The notion of a meritocracy — a system in which individuals are selected for positions based on their ability, not their social class or background — dates back to the Song Dynasty (960-1279 C.E.) of China. It was at this point that a civil service exam testing fundamental ideals of Confucianism…

  • [NYDN] Keep the tip credit, Mr. Governor
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    One of us runs an organization representing restaurant owners, and the other, service workers. On many issues, we’re on opposing sides. But in urging Gov. Cuomo to save the restaurant industry tip credit, our organizations stand in staunch unity.

    The tip credit allows restaurants to pay tipped…

  • [NYDN] End the bail nightmare
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    One tragedy of the recently ended state legislative session is that New York has again failed to take action on a basic penal reform that should have been fixed decades ago: the indefensible practice of jailing people accused of minor crimes simply because they lack a few hundred dollars to make…

  • [NYDN] Happy birthday to us: The Daily News turns 99
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 1:00:00 AM)

    It was 99 years today, June 26, 1919, when the Illustrated Daily News first appeared on the streets of New York. While “Illustrated” was soon dropped, the Daily News would quickly grow to become the biggest newspaper America had ever seen, read by millions daily.

    More than 36,000 editions later,…

  • [NYDN] Former NATO chief Javier Solana not permitted to enter U.S.
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 12:35:00 AM)

    The former head of the U.S.’s military alliance now needs to fight to get into the country.

    Javier Solana, a former Foreign Affairs Minister from Spain, served Secretary General of NATO in the late 1990s and holds various positions in the U.S., but was not allowed a visa waiver because he has been…

  • [NYDN] Readers sound off on Pincus Goods, commercial rent control and PATH trains
    (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 12:00:00 AM)

    Farewell to a Daily News soulmate

    McKinney, Tex.: For many years my dad, Pincus Goods, shared and celebrated his birthday with the Daily News. He was born on the Lower East Side on June 26, 1919 — the same day the first issue of The News was published. Each year he loved to send a current photo…

  • [NYDN] Mets fan starts website calling for Mickey Callaway’s firing… because of course
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 10:10:00 PM)

    Calling for managers’ heads is nothing new. WFAN callers have been doing it for years.

    But one Mets fan took it to another level on the World Wide Web.

    Search “FireMickey.com” and you’ll see why.

    Mickey Callaway’s Mets were still above .500 in early May when long-time suffering fan John Lyons bought…

  • [NYDN] Leaked video from Cayuga Centers in Manhattan shows migrant girl weeping for mother
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 10:05:00 PM)

    A former employee at the Cayuga Centers facility in East Harlem has leaked footage of herself comforting a tearful migrant girl longing for her mother.

    The child — taken from her mother in April — weeps into her arm as an unidentified staffer can be heard coaxing out of her what happened to her…

  • [NYDN] Cops say they’ve caught sicko who groped teen girls outside ‘Anastasia’ theater
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:55:00 PM)

    This mystery was a little easier to solve than the fate of Anastasia.

    Cops say they’ve caught the perv who last week groped several teenage girls waiting outside the Broadway theater showing the musical “Anastasia.”

    Police on Monday arrested Hosny Elsayed, 46, slapping him with four counts each…

  • [NYDN] Tennis bad boy Nick Kyrgios fined after pretending to pleasure a water bottle on sideline
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:35:00 PM)

    Talk about a stiff fine.

    Tennis bad boy Nick Kyrgios was fined €15,000 (the equivalent of $17,500) on Monday after being caught making an obscene gesture during his straight-set loss to Marin Cilic at the Queen’s Club Championships in London on Saturday, according to the U.K. tabloid Metro.

    Kyrgios…

  • [NYDN] City ignored her plea for help before son’s Bronx River Parkway stabbing, mom says
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:15:00 PM)

    A 14-year-old Bronx boy could have avoided a knifing attack last Monday, his worried mom said Monday, if the city had heeded warnings about a vicious street gang bent on retribution.

    Now, the boy, who was chased down on the Bronx River Parkway, faces a tough recovery after losing a kidney from…

  • [NYDN] SEE IT: Dellin Betances does best Gary Sheffield impression in first at-bat since high school, strikes out badly
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:10:00 PM)

    PHILADELPHIA — Dellin Betances got his first chance to hit since high school.

    It didn’t go well, but it was still pretty darn funny.

    Betances took some mighty cuts with Masahiro Tanaka’s Mizuno bat.

    But he ultimately struck out in his first career MLB at-bat, coming to the plate with runners on…

  • [NYDN] Seven New York children’s hospitals ranked among best in U.S.
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    Call them the magnificent seven: That’s how many New York-area hospitals specializing in children’s care landed top spots in a national ranking released Tuesday.

    Most prominent was New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley-Komansky Children’s Hospital in Washington Heights, according to U.S. News &…

  • [NYDN] Diabetic teen treated at NYU Winthrop Hospital wants to dedicate her life to helping others with the disease
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    Until there’s a cure for diabetes, there’s Isabelle Otero.

    The teen from Mountain Top, Pa., has had the disease for 16 of her 17 years, and she owns it.

    “I feel like if someone came to me, I could completely understand them,” Isabelle says. “I could teach them things that maybe they didn’t know…

  • [NYDN] Long Island teen with Crohn’s disease partners with NBA star Larry Nance Jr. to launch charity
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    A Long Island teen diagnosed with Crohn’s disease teamed up with an NBA star with the same condition to create a slam-dunk charity.

    Noah Weber was 11 when he began to feel lethargic during sporting events with classmates.

    “I wasn’t able to do as much as my friends,” Weber, now 14, recalls. “I would…

  • [NYDN] Mother thanks Montefiore hospital for keeping premature daughter alive
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    Silvia Olivera’s premature daughter was the smallest baby she’d ever seen, a whole 1½ pounds of her mother’s unconditional love — and unfathomable fear.

    “She was very, very tiny,” Olivera says. “I’ve never seen a small baby like that.”

    Olivera was taken to White Plains Hospital when she was 25…

  • [NYDN] Caring approach helps little girl get through cancer treatment
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    When little Ava Musial began to complain of back discomfort, her parents didn’t know what to think.

    “As a mother, it doesn’t really make sense for a 3-year-old to complain about back pain,” says mom Lyndsey Musial.

    Doctors struggled to figure out what was causing the child’s distress.

    An MRI focused…

  • [NYDN] L.I. politicians: MercyFirst cares well for migrant children separated from families
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 8:55:00 PM)

    Ten of the 2,300 children separated from their parents under Trump administration immigration policy are well-cared for by a Long Island social service agency, two elected officials said Monday.

    Eight of the children have been in touch with their parents, said Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-Nassau County)…

  • [NYDN] Heather Locklear reportedly hospitalized Monday for possible OD just hours after arrest for kicking cop
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 8:50:00 PM)

    Heather Locklear, who was arrested late Sunday for allegedly kicking a police officer and an EMT, was reportedly hospitalized just hours after being released Monday.

    The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department told the Daily News that officers went to her Thousand Oaks, Calif., home to assist on a…

  • [NYDN] Jimmy Fallon responds to President Trump — ‘Melania, if you’re watching, I don’t think your anti-bullying campaign is working’
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 8:40:00 PM)

    Jimmy Fallon finally found something in common with the NFL: President Trump tweets too much about both of them.

    The “Tonight Show” host, who recently said he didn’t intend to “humanize” Trump with his controversial hair-ruffling interview in September 2016, found himself on the receiving end of…

  • [NYDN] Luis Guillorme’s errors doom Mets while Mickey Callaway turns to humor to cope with team’s woes
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 8:40:00 PM)

    Luis Guillorme has impressed with his glove since being promoted to the Mets roster in May, but on Monday the infielder had two costly errors playing third base.

    The 24-year-old, who was a shortstop in the minors and has played second and third base with the Mets, mishandled a ground ball in the…

  • [ESPN] Kyrie on Cavs’ Sexton wearing No. 2: ‘It’s cool’
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 1:01:35 PM)

    Former Cleveland star Kyrie Irving says he has no problem with rookie Collin Sexton wearing his No. 2 jersey with the Cavaliers.

  • [SNY Knicks] LeBron James doesn’t want elaborate pitch from Knicks or other teams
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 6:00:23 PM)

    LeBron James will almost certainly become a free agent on Friday. But he doesn’t want the Knicks or other teams to make elaborate pitches.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ Kevin Knox has only one goal in mind for his rookie season
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 4:00:14 PM)

    For Knicks first-rounder Kevin Knox, he wants his impact next season to receive the highest recognition possible.

  • [NYPost] Enes Kanter likes David Fizdale but won’t commit to Knicks yet
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 7:53:49 PM)

    Knicks center Enes Kanter swears he has not made a final decision on whether to opt out of his contract by Friday’s deadline, but said the addition of coach David Fizdale has made his desire to stay in New York even stronger. Kanter met with Fizdale for two hours during the Chicago draft combine in…

  • [NYPost] Kyrie Irving knows how he’ll handle Knicks recruitment
    (Monday, June 25, 2018 8:49:07 AM)

    Kyrie Irving’s debut in New York is Tuesday. His movie debut, “Uncle Drew,” that is. The film will premiere Tuesday in Manhattan and hit theaters Friday. Irving, the West Orange, N.J., superstar who becomes a free agent in 2019, when the Knicks are sure to be in hot pursuit, said Knicks fans try to recruit…

  • Liked it? Take a second to support Mike Kurylo on Patreon!

    133 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2018.06.26)

    1. Frank

      Yeah I have high hopes for Robinson also — although it’s not like he was an unknown, so why would a guy with his level of talent fall all the way to us? There was obviously his weird college/no-college situation, then whatever happened at the combine (did he really have an ankle injury? Woj reported that on draft day but at the time no one seemed to know why he left). For a guy who was a mystery already with a bunch of non-basketball red flags, it seemed like a very weird thing to do. Givony tweeted that it was unclear if he had a promise already (he obviously didn’t if he fell to #36) or whether he wanted to avoid the medical exam and team interviews. Watching him at the press conference makes me think maybe his handlers just didn’t want him grilled by teams, but not every draft pick has to be MLK or Frederick Douglass as an orator, right? So something feels weird. I mean, Dallas has Dennis Smith and Luka Doncic as primary ballhandlers and no apparent center, yet they took Jalen Brunson who at best might play 10 minutes a game in his pro career in a best case scenario for Dallas (meaning Smith and Doncic are not complete busts).

      Whatever – that’s why we took him at #36 and not #9 — a flyer on a kid with incredible talent but with some red flags.

      Re: Knox – not to continue making excuses for the kid, but on some podcast someone mentioned that he was constantly being run off screens etc like he was Reggie Miller — and maybe he was, you know, just tired on the other end of the floor. That seems a little plausible. Or maybe he is just a low IQ player that can’t make an impact doing other things. I guess we’ll see. Kinda disappointing that I haven’t seen any of the beat writers ask the simple question as to why he has such poor rebounds/steal/block numbers and what that means for his ability to affect the game in ways other than scoring.

    2. Nick C.

      I remember being very happy about Azubuike and Randolph as well. It turned out that afterthought Ronny Turiaf was the (or at least game thread “The Beard”) favorite here.

    3. GoNyGoNyGo

      I was going to post this link yesterday to show that Knox was tabbed to go 9th by some for over a year but now that the conversation has turned (thankfully) to Robinson, I’m posting it because he was, at the same time, predicted to go 11th by this writer: SB Nation Mock Draft 2018 done a year early Sure, we should be in show-me mode, but Robinson might have been the steal of the draft. If he pans out, and Knox doesn’t bomb (can become a rotation player) this draft might look different to many in a couple of years,

    4. Grocer

      why he has such poor rebounds/steal/block numbers

      Hopefully it’s cause he was a 4 playing at the two and couldn’t keep up.

    5. 2FOR18, understands math

      I’m already reading up (I mean studying film and doing independent research) about next year’s draft, and I’m surprised to hear so little about Zion Williamson as one of the potential lottery studs. He’s the main freshman I can’t wait to see, so what am I missing?

    6. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Robinson seem a bit flaky to me. This is totally out of my a$$, but perhaps he has some kind of mild developmental disorder like Asperger and isn’t comfortable in some situations. Bailing on college and then the combine is not typical behavior when a career and millions of dollars are on the line. But it would be understandable for someone that’s very uncomfortable in some social situations.

      I think I’ve consolidated this whole Mikal vs. Knox issue into a few points.

      1. Mikal has statistically been the clearly superior player so far
      2. Knox is much younger and therefore likely to improve more
      3. Knox plays 3/4 and Mikal plays 2/3.

    7. Hubert

      Caught up on yesterday’s thread…

      I feel like we need to slow the roll on Mikal Bridges being head and shoulders above Kevin Knox. There are more statistics that we should consider than simply a player’s output.

      I wanted to dive into the CARMELO rankings a bit because I know they weight age and competition very strongly. It seems counterintuitive that we would dismiss that here. This is a model that looks for predictors of success and has determined that historically a young player playing against the best competition consistently is more statistically probable to become a good NBA player than an older player who has better efficiency numbers. And yet here we are mocking the idea that we selected someone just because he was young and went to Kentucky, despite a respected model telling us that might be a better predictor of his success than Bridges’ shooting efficiency.

      Knox concerns me because he has paltry numbers in the assist, steals, and blocks column. This is a legitimate red flag and we’re all justified for being disappointed and skeptical about his potential success. But Bridges’ age and weakness of his schedule is a big red flag, too. According to models like CARMELO, Bridges weakness is as big (if not bigger) a red flag than Knox’.

      Bottom line is we had 5 flawed prospects to choose from at 9: Knox, Bridges1, Bridges2, Porter, SGA. I don’t think you can make a conclusive statistical argument that one stood out from that pack. The idea that “he performed this way in college, ergo he will perform this way in the nba” ignores a lot of data, too.

    8. Hubert

      I also found this interview with Ed Weiland on 538 very informative:

      https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/what-to-look-for-in-an-nba-draft-prospect/

      One thing stood out to me in that article:

      NP: What was the most surprising finding?

      EW: To me, it was that scoring frequently is more important than scoring efficiently, especially for wing players.

      Unfortunately, Neil Paine did such a pathetic job in this interview that he didn’t follow up on an answer that was begging for a follow up question , so we don’t have much else to go by. But it’s very interesting to consider that a prominent nba draft analyst has data that indicates a frequent scorer on the wing is more likely to be a good nba player than an efficient one.

    9. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      But it’s very interesting to consider that a prominent nba draft analyst has data that indicates a frequent scorer on the wing is more likely to be a good nba player than an efficient one.

      Efficiency is partly a function of shot selection. I include in that both voluntary shot selection (are you playing intelligently) and your defined role on the team (everything, spot up 3s, lobs etc..). If you are a role player on a college team, that’s saying something about the diversity of your offensive skill set and ability to create your own shot at some satisfactory level of efficiency. If you don’t have that diverse skill set, NBA teams are going to be able to shut you down easier.

      That has been the exact knock on Bridges. He’s scores very efficiently, but he can’t create his own shot off the dribble etc… That sort of caps his upside unless he improves in that area.

    10. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      @10

      I think the point was that he has a higher floor… That seems a reasonable conclusion from the available data. And emotionally, we all have been through some poor decisions justified by dubious arguments (“he wiped the floor with Miles in 3 on 3″), so it’s hard to be optimistic watching those mistakes time after time.

      Whether we should have made the safer choice is debatable.

      My point is that, if we weren’t being safe with the more established prospect with better numbers, we should have gone with SGA, whose numbers make me more optimistic he’ll pan out.

    11. djphan

      volume is better in college because usage will almost always go down in the pros… if youre low usage in college youre probably even more limited in the pros in what you can do…

    12. djphan

      age is a big factor with prospects… but mikal was better in areas where it’s very very hard for knox to catch up to… namely the defensive categories….

      CARMELO is a bit of a black blox but I do know it uses similarity scores.. and while it’s pretty good for a game like baseball… it’s outrageously bad for basketball…. that’s generally why he limited the list of comparables to 3 and you don’t even know if they were the highest scores…

      I tried building a model like that.. and it’s bad… and it’s bad because there’s not enough of a sample…

      it’s generally ok once you start comparing active nba players with each other but I don’t find it useful for the draft…

    13. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      I think Kevin Knox has virtually zero chance of being a player the people of KnickerBlogger like. I think he’s a volume scorer who provides little else anywhere who will be more highlight than production. There’s a chance he becomes a player as good as a two way Danilo Gallinari without the health concerns, and I think everybody would sign up for that. There’s also a chance he’s Michael Beasley, and maybe the “upside” on this kid is overstated but I think he’s more a function of picking 9th overall than a function of the Knicks’ ineptitude in the draft.

      This time next year when we have a healthy Porzingis, RJ Barrett, and Kyrie Irving dying to join the Knicks and all of this will be water under the Bridges.

    14. DRed

      I think 3 point shot frequency was a better predictor of NBA 3 point accuracy than NCAA 3pt accuracy. Something along those lines. I imagine if you can’t create off the dribble or get yourself open in college it’s not easy to do in the NBA either. We think of shot creation as a a guy with the ball getting himself a shot, but it’s a function of intelligent movement without the ball and things like height as well. Steve Novak obviously was about as unathletic and uncreative as an NBA player can be, but he knew where to go and he was 6’10”. Both those attributes let you get off shots.

    15. Hubert

      We think of shot creation as a a guy with the ball getting himself a shot, but it’s a function of intelligent movement without the ball and things like height as well.

      Knox appeared good at this in the limited tape I saw of him. I’m not trying to make a definitive point based on that small sample. I’m just, as a fan, looking for things to keep an eye on next year.

    16. Frank

      I think Kevin Knox has virtually zero chance of being a player the people of KnickerBlogger like. I think he’s a volume scorer who provides little else anywhere who will be more highlight than production.

      To be at least a little bit more hopeful, he was a pretty good rebounder at EYBL (top-25 in the combined standings if I remember reading correctly). It’s at least plausible that his rebounding was hurt by his role in college – ie. basically playing the 2/3 as opposed to the 3/4, guarding perimeter guys away from the basket, and always being on the floor with 2 bigs. For instance, if you compare his rebounding to 2/3s, he grades out ok, basically the same as other 2/3-draftees like Mikal Bridges, Jacob Evans, Melvin Frazier. Once he gets stronger and plays more 4, maybe his rebounding will improve.

    17. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      There’s also a chance he’s Michael Beasley, and maybe the “upside” on this kid is overstated but I think he’s more a function of picking 9th overall than a function of the Knicks’ ineptitude in the draft.

      If Knox had the pre-draft profile of Michael Beasley, this board would be elated, myself included. If you’re looking for someone who performs like post-draft Beasley, you can find that player in the NBDL for the cost of a few hundred bucks and a handshake. You definitely don’t need to draft a player #9 for that pleasure.

    18. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Steve Novak obviously was about as unathletic and uncreative as an NBA player can be, but he knew where to go and he was 6’10”. Both those attributes let you get off shots.

      Over the long haul there were plenty of games where Novak could get his shot off, but if the other team was determined to take him out of the game, it wasn’t that difficult to do so and they could effectively shut him down.

      I think you need guys that CAN create decent efficiency shots for themselves off the dribble for all the times the designed play breaks down and someone has to create something. Novak could never do that. That’s why even at his best he was never a threat to put up a lot of points even if he was having a good night or had a good match up. He was incapable of doing so effectively.

      That whole usage/efficiency debate is probably still one of the biggest debates in basketball and a primary reason people often disagree about some players. It’s complex to value.

    19. Nick C.

      @ 21, Rashard Lewis is a pretty good call. He came our of HS, was 6’10” and primarily was a shooter that shifted between SF and PF and had reasonable (but nothing great) rebounds/assists

    20. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Knox looks like a college version of Tobias Harris to me. He’s going to score effectively and efficiently enough to be a net positive on offense, but he’s not going to do much else well enough to consider him a star player. We are going to have to hope there’s more there that we haven’t seen yet.

    21. Bruno Almeida

      The thing is, if Rashard Lewis could not shoot 3s at a 40% level he would have had little to no value. He wasn’t really a defender, was a mediocre rebounder and had no playmaking skills.

      We have yet to see if Knox can even approach that level in terms of shooting, and if he can’t drive or slash to the rim it will be rough. I think the Tobias Harris comparison probably fits better.

    22. Ntilakilla

      @3

      Re: Williams. Word was that he defected from Western Kentucky because his high school coach/godfather who was hired to be an assistant there in order to recruit him had left so he followed. Instead of choosing to go overseas and play he decided to work out in preparation for the draft.

    23. thenoblefacehumper

      What annoys me about this discussion is it seems like people defending the Knox pick operate under the confident assumption that his “ceiling” is higher than Mikal’s or anyone else’s. To me, this seems entirely based on the fact that Knox was a much worse player.

      Needless to say I don’t think that means he has the potential to be a better player. I think it means he’s much worse right now (and is much worse than Mikal was as a freshman) and doesn’t tell us much more than that.

      I think you could make a good ceiling based argument for, say, Zhaire Smith over Mikal. Smith is younger and demonstrated multiple advanced skills, albeit ones that are somewhat atypical for a guard. I’d much rather bet on a player who is highly skilled to begin with learning new skills than a player in Knox who quite frankly demonstrated none learning, well, all of them.

      To sum up what I’m saying, a ceiling based argument should be based on things we’ve actually seen. Not some alternate universe where Knox learns how to rebound, defend, and pass.

    24. Bruno Almeida

      @29

      It really does remind me of the pro Mudiay arguments. If he learns to pass, shoot and finish at the rim he will be great!

    25. Frank

      I think you could make a good ceiling based argument for, say, Zhaire Smith over Mikal. Smith is younger and demonstrated multiple advanced skills, albeit ones that are somewhat atypical for a guard. I’d much rather bet on a player who is highly skilled to begin with learning new skills than a player in Knox who quite frankly demonstrated none learning, well, all of them.

      To sum up what I’m saying, a ceiling based argument should be based on things we’ve actually seen. Not some alternate universe where Knox learns how to rebound, defend, and pass.

      I think an important point is that we are operating with very little knowledge as to what Knox (or Zhaire Smith or whoever) can improve on. I agree that a “Ceiling based argument” shoudl be based on things we’ve already seen — but it’s not like we are with Kevin Knox all the time and know what he’s improved on.

      It’s possible (and widely reported) that teams were impressed with how much Knox’s ballhandling (including as PNR initiator) improved since the end of the season, at least in a workout setting.

      It’s possible that Mikal Bridges has been working on shot creation skills nonstop since his freshman year, but we haven’t seen it because he wasn’t able to improve (not that he didn’t try).

      It’s possible that Zhaire Smith can block shots and rebound in the NCAA as a 6’2.75″ PF, and that he’s tried to improve his guard skills, but hasn’t been able to. I think it’s highly unlikely he has NBA success unless he CAN improve his guard skills.

      It’s fine to want evidence of x y and z, but we should at least accept that we don’t have access to all the evidence, whereas presumably Fizdale/Perry/Mills do.

      now whether you trust them to understand and correctly interpret what the non-public evidence shows is another story of course. I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt for now, because that’s what I do as a charter member of Team Optimism.

    26. Frank

      btw re: Rashard Lewis – he was a 0.150ish WS/48 guy for a long time in the league. That’s nothing to sneeze at.

      As I remember Lewis, he had basically zero post game, so in today’s league he would be a good floor spacer but teams could just hide a PG on him if necessary. (I don’t remember Rashard Lewis that well, so if he was Hakeem Olajuwon-lite, I apologize).

      Knox already has some semblance of a post game, so theoretically could punish mismatches if such a strategy was tried on him.

    27. lavor postell

      It’s really convenient to say Mikal had better numbers as a freshman than Knox did and also disingenuous because he redshirted as he was too scrawny to play according to Jay Wright. It’s very possible if he had played for Nova in a major minutes role as an 18 year old true freshman he’d have looked like complete garbage as he got muscled around.

      If you want to argue that Mikal is a better player there are so many better arguments to make that resorting to comparisons of their 1st year of play in college ball isn’t even necessary.

    28. Hubert

      Let’s not overlook the gems that are still being posted on the news feed….

      •[NYDN] Japanese 82-year-old who has lived naked on island for decades forced back to civilization
      (Tuesday, June 26, 2018 2:15:00 AM)

      The wish of a Japanese octogenarian to die on the desert island he called home for 29 years has been castaway by authorities who will not let him return.

      Masafumi Nagasaki, 82, had moved to Sotobanari, in the country’s chain of islands near Taiwan, in 1989 and spent his years there living naked…

    29. thenoblefacehumper

      It’s fine to want evidence of x y and z, but we should at least accept that we don’t have access to all the evidence, whereas presumably Fizdale/Perry/Mills do.

      C’mon dude.

      They didn’t have this esoteric evidence when they signed Amar’e, traded for Melo, traded for Bargnani, made Melo the highest paid player in basketball with a full NTC, signed Afflalo and Williams instead of getting picks, traded for Derrick Rose, traded for Joakim Noah, signed Tim Hardaway Jr. to an enormous contract, signed Ron Baker to a pointlessly expensive contract, and traded Willy Hernangomez for nothing.

      We absolutely should not accept that they are operating with more, or better, information.

    30. DRed

      Player A is Novak in college, Player B is Knox

      They’re different offensively, but it does highlight how entirely one dimensional Knox was at Kentucky and how well he’s going to have to score in the NBA to be valuable. I liked Novak a lot, and a more playable Novak would be really nice, but Knox is going to have to get a lot more efficient on offense or demonstrate parts of his game he didn’t have in college.

    31. 2FOR18, understands math

      “It really does remind me of the pro Mudiay arguments. If he learns to pass, shoot and finish at the rim he will be great!”

      Oh shit, that was hoolahoop! Mudiay also had “the look” of a player, and only groupthinking, Fox News watching haters didn’t see it.

    32. 2FOR18, understands math

      RB A Stl Blk
      6.7 1.8 1.0 .3

      I was just trying to move past the whole thing and hope for the best, and you remind me of this.

    33. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      “Low steals and blocks just mean he’s a positional defender, not prone to gambling. It means he’s better.” – ruruland

    34. ethsurken

      I don’t know if this has been posted already, but this is the best article I’ve found about Robinson, from Mike Gribanov at the Stepien. It goes over some high school tape and contextualizes her performance well. He was really right up there with the other top bigs going into the college season.

      I watched some Knox and MitchRob workouts, and I had a few takeaways:
      – Knox’s team had him focusing on his supposed weaknesses (finishing, ball handling/passing, rebounding)—they know what they’re doing and how to present him.
      – His handle looks bad, especially the left hand. Like really bad. Slow. Simple dribbles aren’t clean.
      – Knox is a perfect workout player: his weaknesses are feel/decision-making, motor/consistency, team defense. Humans can be easily fooled (especially ones that didn’t watch much college tape).
      – MitchRob’s workouts focused a lot on dribbling and shooting, things he probably won’t be doing much of in the NBA.
      – His handle actually looks better than Knox in some ways. Quicker.
      – Shot doesn’t look horrible, might have some potential down the line.
      – Generally, makes me a little more confident in his overall skill level/coordination.
      – Much, much faster, more explosive than Knox.

      MitchRob bailed on college because his godfather and assistant coach left the team (for some unknown reason). It’s entirely possible he got a promise from the Knicks and decided not to workout, or his team decided it wasn’t in his best interest. I don’t see any red flags, just unfortunate circumstances and a young, shy kid getting bad advice. Maybe teams know more about the circumstances surrounding his departure at WKU. I feel like the strange circumstances plus his personal strangeness/lack of communication made teams uncomfortable with him—they couldn’t “trust” him. If you do strange things and don’t explain why, teams will assume the worst.

    35. Jack Bauer

      @35 “They didn’t have this esoteric evidence when they signed Amar’e, traded for Melo, traded for Bargnani, made Melo the highest paid player in basketball with a full NTC, signed Afflalo and Williams instead of getting picks, traded for Derrick Rose, traded for Joakim Noah, signed Tim Hardaway Jr. to an enormous contract, signed Ron Baker to a pointlessly expensive contract, and traded Willy Hernangomez for nothing.”

      Now that’s a list of Dumpster Fire moves that would be hard to top by any team. And it’s not even a complete list! – Bleech

      Yeah, if they have access to some secret information source they are doing a hell of a job of disguising it.

    36. thenoblefacehumper

      Now that’s a list of Dumpster Fire moves that would be hard to top by any team. And it’s not even a complete list! – Bleech

      Yeah, I decided to keep it recent and yet it still manages to be quite depressing.

    37. thenoblefacehumper

      Player A is Novak in college, Player B is Knox

      Hell of a find, and it’s worth noting that Novak was a certifiably elite shooter from day 1 in college. So I might actually be more comfortable with the Knox pick if his numbers were more like Steve Novak’s.

    38. Bruno Almeida

      There has been some talk of Robinson feeling harassed while at WKU and not feeling like he had a support system in place. I don’t think it’s too much of a problem for the Knicks, just bring the kid in and see where he goes, it’s 100% a good gamble to take. It doesn’t seem like there’s something fundamentally wrong about him or anything, just a very young guy in an uncomfortable situation.

      What scared me the most about watching Knox was how many times he had to resort to floaters to finish inside. Even on handpicked highlights that are supposed to show his absolute best plays, at least half of his attempts after driving are awkward floaters that will get swattted into the 5th row in the NBA. I really don’t see the high level athleticism that a guy with his statistical profile needs to be able to succeed. It’s one thing when we’re talking about a guy like Ntilikina or even a Novak type who have distinct skill sets that are obvious then everything else is a work in progress (defense, 3 pt shooting), but for a guy with Knox’s profile it scares me.

    39. ethsurken

      With Knox, it comes down to how much you think is correctable vs. how much you think is innate. It’s easy to sell the narrative of a young, raw player who hasn’t been coached very much and is rapidly learning/improving—look, he already improved on all of his weaknesses! But it’s also possible some more innate qualities—vision, spatial awareness, creativity, in-moment decision making/data processing, mental focus, general intelligence, lateral quickness—are what’s really holding him back. In reality, it’s likely some combination of the two.

      His defense is uninspiring. He gets beat of the dribble more than he should. He doesn’t rotate or help well. He lacks awareness and loses his man off the ball. He doesn’t have his hands up/out (part of the reason his steal numbers are so low). When he is in the right position, he doesn’t effect shots well—his reaction time seems slow. Generally, he doesn’t seem to know what he’s doing. Given how far Knox has to go in these areas, it’s unlikely he’s every good at them—the best realistic outcome is that he’s passable/average. I worry that he’s simply not good at processing large amounts of information in real time and reacting quickly. This also ties into his offensive decision making (shot selection, passing).

    40. 2FOR18, understands math

      I’m way more excited about Mitch and Trier, 2 talented and skilled players who were dinged for off the court stuff that really wasn’t bad, than I am about Knox. Come on Summer League.

    41. nicos

      – Knox’s team had him focusing on his supposed weaknesses (finishing, ball handling/passing, rebounding)—they know what they’re doing and how to present him.
      – His handle looks bad, especially the left hand. Like really bad. Slow. Simple dribbles aren’t clean.
      – Knox is a perfect workout player: his weaknesses are feel/decision-making, motor/consistency, team defense. Humans can be easily fooled (especially ones that didn’t watch much college tape).

      I do think Knox should be commended for doing group workouts-and apparently playing very well in them- wherever possible. You’re taking a risk playing three on three against other potential top picks- a lot of guys won’t do it. My guess is that those situations are much more in his comfort zone than playing off of the ball and running off of screens like he did at Kentucky. And remember when he was starting the workout process he was just reaching the age that most guys were when they started college. At that age 6 months can make a big difference physically. Look at Frank- he’s grown an inch and put on a ton of muscle since he was drafted. I wouldn’t have picked Knox but I’m not going to knock the pick until I see him in summer league and camp. If he does look like a different player than he was at Kentucky (certainly possible) then perhaps he was the right guy at that spot.

    42. ClashFan

      Knox will end up being a good pick if he develops his offense nicely as he has already shown some talent for, but also adds either good D or rebounding to the mix. He could be a good outside shooter, and he’s shown flashes of a decent floater that suggest he could take smaller guys to the lane, etc.

      Assuming KP and Frank can get/stay healthy and be good defenders, the Knicks can live with so-so D from him, but they will need some rebounding. Lots of assumptions, I know.

      It really is going to come down to how much his struggles at Kentucky are an innate passive/low motor/low BBIQ in him vs. how much was due to being very young, confused and not being used properly. Who knows? To me, the guy could be anywhere from a home run pick to a compete whiff.

      And I’ll say it again, the quality of this pick also depends a lot upon whether the FO really is committing to a 3-4 year (at least) build. If they sign a big, expensive FA in 2019, then they are making Phil Jackson’s mistake all over again of not committing to a coherent plan. The Knox pick makes more sense to me if they are planning to go forward with real young guys like Frank and Knox, and giving them time to grow before “going for it” with expensive veterans again. Get a legitimate good young 3-4 guys, then look to make a big more or two.

    43. lavor postell

      They didn’t have this esoteric evidence when they signed Amar’e, traded for Melo, traded for Bargnani, made Melo the highest paid player in basketball with a full NTC, signed Afflalo and Williams instead of getting picks, traded for Derrick Rose, traded for Joakim Noah, signed Tim Hardaway Jr. to an enormous contract, signed Baker to a pointlessly expensive contract, and traded Willy Hernangomez for nothing.

      Literally the only one that should be on Perry’s ledger is the Willy deal. The rest of it is irrelevant to the current front office.

      So far under Perry the main moves are:

      -Signing Burke to a team friendly deal
      -Signing Troy Williams to a team friendly deal
      -Signing Beasley and Jack to vet mins
      -Trading Willy for two 2nds from the Hornets
      -Trading Melo for Kanter, McDermott and the 36th pick in the 2018 NBA Draft
      -Trading McDermott + a 2018 mid 2nd (idk which pick so feel free to add that in) for Mudiay
      -Drafting Knox 9th overall and Mitch Robinson with the 36th pick
      -Signing Allonzo Trier to a 2 way deal
      -Not buying back into the 2nd round for an additional pick

      I don’t really see this as god awful work. It’s incomplete and will be determined over the next few years. I’m not going to pin past errors the Knicks have made on Perry who, I’m guessing, wouldn’t have signed THJr or Baker to the contracts they got based on the emphasis he’s placed on being flexible for the 2019+2020 FA periods.

    44. alsep73

      @35: Appeal to authority really doesn’t work with this team, does it? We have to hope that the combination of Fizdale (who just got here, and spent a while learning team building under Riley and Spoe) and Perry (who has an admittedly mixed track record, both here and in his previous stops) will change things, but this front office is guilty until proven innocent.

      The Robinson situation (which includes a falling out with his stepfather, or something like that) suggests a kid who was overwhelmed with a couple of situations and either got bad advice or ignored good advice. He’s the kind of player where you’d most expect to see Fiz work his alleged mentor magic, but it could be years before Robinson has grown up enough emotionally/mentally to be ready. Still, the absolute kind of gamble you take in round 2, given the talent?

      Knox? I would like to be Team Optimism, but, well… we root for the Knicks. And where KP and Frank both had clear things you could point to with their resums and skillsets, with Knox it’s entirely about believing Fiz and Perry are right that Knox is much more/different than he got to show at Kentucky. Which… see the bit about guilty until proven innocent.

    45. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      I agree with everyone today, including Hubert’s post of the story about the naked Japanese octogenarian.

    46. Hubert

      I think Mitchell Robinson is going to struggle with adulthood in general, and I say that with the utmost compassion for him as a human. Let’s not have high expectations.

    47. djphan

      it’s entirely apt to compare mikal and knox’s first years… it doesn’t mean it’s an apples to apples to comparison but it’s definitely informative….

      also mikal’s track through villanova is basically the same as every other player through jay wright’s program… they’ve had a real good run of four-year players and every one of them progressed very similarly… played sparingly as underclassmen then exploded as upperclassmen…

      it hasn’t materialized in good pro’s just yet… altho i’m pretty sure josh hart will breakthrough at some point… so with mikal it isn’t really a situation that mikal just clearly sucked.. it was a clear case that he didn’t have the opportunity… villanova is not run like kentucky’s one-and-done program where you have clear paths to playing time as a freshmen..

      and for a junior.. .and yes he’s about the same age as most true juniors in the draft…. he put up a line that’s pretty tough to beat for anyone.. let alone knox…

    48. thenoblefacehumper

      Literally the only one that should be on Perry’s ledger is the Willy deal. The rest of it is irrelevant to the current front office.

      I wasn’t talking about Perry. I was talking generally about the idea that we should assume this front office has evidence and/or knowledge that explains otherwise inexplicable decisions. The only teams I’d even think of extending that kind of deference to are the Spurs, Rockets, Warriors, and maybe the Celtics. Even with them every move should be scrutinized, and that’s doubly true for the New York Knicks.

    49. djphan

      and i don’t exactly give credit to knox for ‘taking a risk’ with doing group workouts… he was sliding probably out of the lottery up until that point which i believe was due to mediocre private workouts… and then all of a sudden he was a lock after it…

      that’s also another thing… i’m pretty sure perry had a good relationship with woj and was a source on numerous leaks in the past… and with all the buzz with knox.. givony and the knicks… it seems to me that relationship has continued… something to keep an eye on in the future….

    50. Frank

      yeah listing off a bunch of moves that Phil Jackson and Donnie Walsh made doesn’t really move the needle for me. When the Knicks play a bad game in February 2019 are you going to complain about how we played the Triangle 3 years ago? It’s like when football announcers say that the Team X hasn’t beaten the Team Y in October since 1996. Seriously who cares? has nothing to do with today.

      Like lavor wrote above, the Knicks FO under Perry has been shockingly competent, with the only potential black mark being the Willy trade. Of course this is his first draft, and so he has two more potential successes or failures on the books now.

    51. nicos

      it’s entirely apt to compare mikal and knox’s first years… it doesn’t mean it’s an apples to apples to comparison but it’s definitely informative….

      You really think comparing the season of a young for his class 18 year old to a guy who was a full year older and had spent a year practicing with a team with a great coach before he played a game are really that comparable? Mikal knew his role and the guys he was going to be playing with and the staff knew exactly how to use him. That’s a huge difference from Knox’s situation.

    52. Frank

      I wasn’t talking about Perry. I was talking generally about the idea that we should assume this front office has evidence and/or knowledge that explains otherwise inexplicable decisions. The only teams I’d even think of extending that kind of deference to are the Spurs, Rockets, Warriors, and maybe the Celtics. Even with them every move should be scrutinized, and that’s doubly true for the New York Knicks.

      “This front office” IS Perry and his staff at this point, not the decision makers of the last 17 years. It’s as if Danny Ainge decided to retire and they hired some random dude off the street, and you decided to trust random dude because Danny Ainge used to be a good GM.

      btw if we’re going to carry the sins of the previous regimes forward, we should also then probably carry the successes also – as in the Knicks have generally been really good at drafting in spite of overall poor draft position/assets.

    53. thenoblefacehumper

      Re: Robinson, I gave credit to the front office the second that pick was made and will always think it was a good pick regardless of how he pans out. I’m not very well informed on how EYBL numbers translate to the NBA but my understanding is there’s at least some correlation, and Robinson’s are up there with any other big from this class.

      Just looking at tape, there looks to be a ton of defensive upside (though this is all coming against teenagers so we can only hope he’s been honing his skills). The offense will likely take a while but the athleticism sure looks like it can be a strength. It’s not unreasonable to wishcast Capela for whichever team trades two second rounders for him.

    54. thenoblefacehumper

      “This front office” IS Perry and his staff at this point, not the decision makers of the last 17 years. It’s as if Danny Ainge decided to retire and they hired some random dude off the street, and you decided to trust random dude because Danny Ainge used to be a good GM.

      btw if we’re going to carry the sins of the previous regimes forward, we should also then probably carry the successes also – as in the Knicks have generally been really good at drafting in spite of overall poor draft position/assets.

      You said explicitly that we should assume Perry/Mills are more informed than we are. My point was that with a few possible exceptions, that’s a historically poor assumption with the Knicks and just about everyone else. This is true regardless of who the decision makers are, and mind you we heard this same exact argument ad nauseam when it came to the moves I listed.

    55. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Like lavor wrote above, the Knicks FO under Perry has been shockingly competent, with the only potential black mark being the Willy trade.

      I agree with your entire post, but Mudiay is a bit of a question mark also.

    56. TheOakmanCometh

      If you’re giving the front office a clean slate because Perry just came on, then you also have to take Perry’s individual history into account. His short stint as Kings VPBO was not a good one. His win-now signings of Z-Bo, Vince, and George Hill were a disaster. His three draft picks — Fox, Justin Jackson, and Harry Giles — did not have good rookie years. Their grades are still TBD, of course, but of Perry’s six moves, he’s 0-3 at best.

    57. JK47

      Knox is just a pretty underwhelming haul for an entire year of 29-win basketball. We’re still paying for the ridiculous and pointless “win now” philosophy of the Phil years. He didn’t think he needed to stockpile assets or acquire draft picks, so we’re stuck in this quagmire of being bad but not awful, and adding one underwhelming player per year in the lower end of the lottery. It’s just this glacial, Sisyphean way to try to build a winner.

      You spend a whole year winning 29 games and then the main reward for that is that you get to draft a guy who seems awfully similar to Al Harrington and who best case, if he really pans out, might be the next Tobias Harris. That is really just not moving the needle. I just don’t really see this FO as having the creativity to get the Knicks out of this rut.

    58. Frank

      @64 hey if you’re going to make Perry responsible for his boss’s job record, then you should say he built the Detroit Pistons’ championship club and drafted Kevin Durant! He also drafted Oladipo and Aaron Gordon. he should win exec of the year i think.

      We can go on and on with this. Let’s give the guy a chance. The players are already drafted. It’s not like we can change it. Can we at least wait until Summer League before we say Kevin Knox is Steve Novak and has no chance of even being Rashard Lewis?

    59. Frank

      Knox is just a pretty underwhelming haul for an entire year of 29-win basketball. We’re still paying for the ridiculous and pointless “win now” philosophy of the Phil years. He didn’t think he needed to stockpile assets or acquire draft picks, so we’re stuck in this quagmire of being bad but not awful, and adding one underwhelming player per year in the lower end of the lottery. It’s just this glacial, Sisyphean way to try to build a winner.

      You spend a whole year winning 29 games and then the main reward for that is that you get to draft a guy who seems awfully similar to Al Harrington and who best case, if he really pans out, might be the next Tobias Harris. That is really just not moving the needle. I just don’t really see this FO as having the creativity to get the Knicks out of this rut.

      Now this post I agree with wholeheartedly.
      Under Phil this team basically had zero vision beyond trying to make the 8th seed and trying to prove the Triangle is the end all and be all.

      last year I sort of give them a pass — I mean, the team was really playing well. KP looked like an MVP candidate. It’s hard to tank when your team is 3rd or 4th in the eastern conference standings like they were at one point. Then when KP got hurt, we basically lost every game for the next 2 months. Maybe they should have aimed lower in trading away Lee and KOQ at the deadline, but we have no idea what offers they actually got, so it’s hard to blame them for the lack of a move.

    60. JK47

      Next year’s second round pick, which will probably be high because we will almost certainly suck, was traded away by Phil Jackson so he could create a roster space for Travis Wear.

    61. Frank

      btw before we blame Perry for the Kings’ moves from last year, remember that Vlade drafted Marvin Bagley to be a SF while passing up Doncic, all to build what he is calling a young superteam in Sacramento. He also drafted Papagiannis and like 6 other centers in the last 5 drafts.

      Vlade didn’t need any help at all in making terrible decisions. If anything, my guess is that Perry was instrumental in getting actual legitimate vets to even consider Sacramento, and the decision to actually pursue them in the first place was Vlade’s. All the limited FA moves Perry made last year were quite good (Burke, Troy Williams, Beasley, Jack, etc.) – though of course he was limited to giving them the vet’s minimum.

    62. djphan

      yes you can compare freshmen years to an extent… i mean mikal’s defensive stats were fairly static even in his low minute first year… and defensive numbers tend to be sticky…

      different situations of course… and yes you have to account for that… but you do gain some valuable information… mikal was a solid guy to bet on improving as a freshmen even… while guy’s like knox.. well they don’t… but we’ll see how it turns out in reality…

    63. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Trey Burke confirmed on his Instagram live feed that he will be playing in the Summer League. We’re going to win the championship this year. Burke, Ntilikina, Dotson, Knox, Robinson, Trier, and Troy Williams are gonna look like Golden State out there.

    64. lavor postell

      I’m not an “insider” at all, but I’ve heard a few things that suggest Perry was hired by Sacramento for the express purpose of getting them in the room with bigger name free agents and giving them some credibility with agents. If that’s true he did his job.

      We’ll see how he handles FA in his first summer in New York, but I don’t expect any major splash, good or bad, until next summer at the earliest. I would guess his primary focus this summer would be trying to move Lee.

    65. d-mar

      We’re going to win the championship this year. Burke, Ntilikina, Dotson, Knox, Robinson, Trier, and Troy Williams are gonna look like Golden State out there.

      Can hang a banner from the rafters of Cox Pavilion?

    66. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Like lavor wrote above, the Knicks FO under Perry has been shockingly competent, with the only potential black mark being the Willy trade.

      Um, no. First, it isn’t a POTENTIAL black mark; it IS a black mark. A bad trade of a productive player for two second-round picks. Willy is who you hope you get with a second round pick, knowing that the odds are against you, and Perry traded him away.

      And the Mudiay pick is pretty much indefensible. If he magically turns out to be a great player, I will eat crow every day on this site for the next five years. But we had THREE YEARS of data showing that he is actually just about the worst player in the whole league. And we gave up assets for that? Terrible trade. Wouldn’t we all have liked to have another second-round pick this year, with so many intriguing talents available?

    67. ptmilo

      Trey Burke confirmed on his Instagram live feed that he will be playing in the Summer League. We’re going to win the championship this year. Burke, Ntilikina, Dotson, Knox, Robinson, Trier, and Troy Williams are gonna look like Golden State out there.

      our saddest post

    68. SJK

      We’re going to win the championship this year. Burke, Ntilikina, Dotson, Knox, Robinson, Trier, and Troy Williams are gonna look like Golden State out there.

      On the plus (minus?) side, that’s basically our actual team. Better get those wins in summer league b/c they ain’t coming in the regular season.

    69. nicos

      different situations of course… and yes you have to account for that… but you do gain some valuable information… mikal was a solid guy to bet on improving as a freshmen even… while guy’s like knox.. well they don’t… but we’ll see how it turns out in reality…

      This I disagree with. Bridges didn’t play a minute as a freshman. He had a full year to acclimate to the system under a great coach- what makes you think he was good bet to improve on his sophomore season? Contrast that with Knox who was asked to be the primary scorer from the get-go and used in style (primarily off of the ball as a shooter) he was unfamiliar with and under a coach who’s a great recruiter but not necessarily the greatest x’s and o’s guy. To me one guy was set up for success and the other, while not in an awful situation, probably wasn’t in the best position to succeed. I’m not saying Knox would have been a completely different player as a sophomore (coming back for a second season didn’t do a whole lot for Miles Bridges or Robert Williams) but if you’re asking me who would be more likely to improve on their first year stats it’s Knox all the way.

    70. djphan

      staying in college is not necessarily a good thing… most programs… don’t actually care about development…. kentucky is one of the few places that actually do prepare their players to get to the nba… so i don’t buy the argument that knox wasn’t put in a good situation… he’s no different than all the other lotto picks that have gone through calipari….

      and x’s and o’s primarily should only affect shot distribution… how does that really affect his rebounding and defensive numbers? ppl who excel in those categories find ways to distinguish themselves….

      that’s what good players do… they find ways to distinguish themselves in less than ideal environments…. the worse of a player you are…. the more things need to happen around for you to succeed… and being in less than ideal situations is what most lotto prospects face.. i mean trae young had atrocious teammates…. kevin durant had a famously bad college coach…. and KAT had to split significant time amongst one of the most stacked frontcourts college ball has seen in a long time…

      and kentucky this year was far from stacked… they had the worst collection of bigs that the school has seen this century and the guards… outside of SGA…. weren’t that much better…. on top of that the only other SF on the entire roster played 200 minutes….

      so i don’t buy the argument that his situation explains away all his deficiencies or even that it was less than ideal…. it actually is in reality… as typical it gets…

    71. english_knick

      Burke choosing to play summer league speaks well of him, but I do hope it doesn’t stop frank getting at least a decent block of minutes at pg…

    72. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      djphan, any chance we could get some punctuation and capitalization out of you?

    73. swiftandabundant

      @ 80 – its not about Kentucky being a bad situation. Its not. Coach Cal isn’t a great X and Os guy but you are right, he’s a good development/recruiting coach. The point is that bc UK had no outside shooting or decent guards they put Knox in the role of SG. So like a 6’8″ player who in college is more suited to play the 4 was playing the 2.

      I’m pretty sure most 3s and 4s in the NBA would not look good on defense and would not rebound as well if they were put in the 2 slot. Its common sense but apparently trying to explain stuff like that on this site is heresy bc it isn’t backed by numbers.

    74. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      personally…i love djphan’s punctuation and capitalization habits…it’s refreshing…

    75. swiftandabundant

      And Knox did distinguish himself. He was able to play a role he wasn’t suited for naturally well enough that they stuck him in that role all season and UK went to the sweet 16 which was kind of an overperformance for them this year as they were not slated to do that well at all. Knox definitely improved as the year went on (as did that whole team). I know this cause I’m a huge UK fan and at the beginning of the year we were all thinking they would be lucky to get into the tournament at all.

    76. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      the lack of capitalization… makes me think… he’s typing on a keyboard… which means that he… can easily type… within the guidelines… of standard written… english…

      I’m not… saying… that it’s an indication of a lack of intelligence… or disrupts the lucidity of his ideas… it’s just… easier… to re… ad… imho

    77. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      @85 bro I like Kevin Knox a lot but the game logs do not bear out that he improved over the year.

    78. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      I just read that Burke will attend the summer league games (to root) but he won’t be playing. I think that’s a much better idea. We need to find out what our youngest guys can do and give them a chance to develop further. Burke may be out best PG right now, but I still think I’d rather see more of Frank at that position.

    79. nicos

      Djphan- what I disagreed with was your statement that Bridges was a more likely candidate for improving his numbers in his second year of play than Knox. Bridges was a redshirt- by the time he got his first game minutes he had already been playing in that system and with most of those teammates for a year- you’d expect him to be far more of a finished product than a guy in Knox’s position. Mikal was in the ideal situation to have a great first year, Knox wasn’t. I’m not saying I think Knox would put up a 60+ TS% if he came back for a sophomore season I just think Bridges’ situation was not the norm and so comparing his first season of game action to Knox’s doesn’t tell you a whole lot.

    80. 2FOR18, understands math

      The “Knox had to play sg” thing is getting tiresome.

      1) it’s not true. In addition to SGA, Kentucky had 2 other guards average 25+ minutes.
      2) even if it was true, so what. Ayton had to play PF because AZ had another big man. Carter and Bagley got in each other’s way. Trae had no competent teammates. JJJ might have lost rebounds playing next to Miles.

      Playing the what if game vs going by actual production is what dumb teams do.

    81. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      I meant to post this the other day.

      Did anyone see the Berman article where he hinted that Hardaway might eventually become a 6th man of the year candidate?

      I have no idea if he got that from a source, but that’s what I think he would be best role for him unless he really steps up this year. If Frank is not going to be a PG or we get someone like Kyrie Irving and move Frank to SG, that would move Hardaway to the bench.

    82. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Playing the what if game vs going by actual production is what dumb teams do.

      This is too extreme.

      I would say looking at things that may have influenced the stats is reasonable. Over-weighing those things or making them the backbone of your analysis would be dumb. I think it’s kind of like looking at player workouts. If you were on the fence between Knox and Miles Bridges and you went with Knox because he pummeled Miles in a workout, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. If you went in liking Miles a lot off the rest of the data and changed your mind because of one 3 on 3 workout, you are probably nuts.

    83. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      That Rivers trade is straight up shocking.

      Sounds like Deandre Jordan could be gone too given they took Gortat.

    84. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      I have to say that all the discussion of Bridges versus Knox has convinced me of one thing. Bridges is very unlikely to be an impact player in the NBA and may have little role at all. He was drafted relatively old from a program that has players underperform when they get to the NBA and has no spectacular athleticism or other attribute that suggests he will excel at something in the NBA.

    85. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      I think the Wizards would now love to have Kanter, and truthfully, he would probably be a big help for them. Their offense would improve enough to make up for his lack of Defense.

    86. 2FOR18, understands math

      So what position did the other 2 guards with 25+ minutes play?

      Let’s do some math.

      SGA 34 mins
      Diallo 25 mins
      Green 26 minutes

      That’s 85 minutes of guard play. So how many minutes did Knox play at guard?

    87. ptmilo

      so if we assume Jordan is about to get signed and traded to the Mavs, are they a playoff team?

    88. djphan

      its a really old habit and it takes me forever to type on mobile as it is so itll probably never change… ive actually seen other ppl type like this elsewhere… thought i was special…

      i do tend to type huge wall of texts on this site so ill attempt to be less annoying when i do….

    89. Brian Cronin

      so if we assume Jordan is about to get signed and traded to the Mavs, are they a playoff team?

      The West is tough, so I think still probably no, but that Doncic trade was huge for them.

    90. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      I did some statistics on Lavor’s Perry track record. There are actually ten moves, which is not so little. Of the ten moves, counting Beasley and Jack as two moves and not buying a second round pick as not a move,

      One move was great (Melo trade), four were good (Williams, Beasley, Jack and Burke), three are unknown ( the three draftees), and two were poor (the Mudiay and Willy trades).

      As GMs go, this is a competent track record. Even the two poor moves at least were done at market value for the players in question, which is something prior GMs, especially Phil, seemed incapable of a lot of the time.

    91. Brian Cronin

      I don’t think the Beasley and Jack moves were good when the team shouldn’t have been playing veterans last year period. They weren’t awful signings, of course, but I also wouldn’t deem them good. Maybe split the baby and call them “okay” moves. :) Burke and Williams were definitely good ones, though (although, even there, the decision to not just claim Williams on waivers was a minor error).

    92. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Kevin Knox spent a lot of time on the court at the 3 next to Nick Richards and PJ Washington so there’s an argument that his rebounding numbers were a little worse than they should be, especially since it seemed like Calipari wanted him to stand around the perimeter and get back instead of crashing the glass.

    93. lavor postell

      Knox played the 3, but how he was used offensively was identical to how Monk was used the year before as an off screen shooter running around off the ball. This was to space the floor and to force the defense to have to stay somewhat alert off the ball to make penetrating into an already crowded paint easier.

      There’s a reason why despite Knox’s most efficient shot type being post ups, he rarely got post opportunities. It just wasn’t part of the offense. Sure, he wasn’t the best at using his body either, but largely there were zero designed post ups for him within the confines of the offense.

      The rebounding isn’t a major concern to me. A 14.2 DRB% for a 3 playing next to two bigs isn’t absolute garbage and while massive leaps are hard to predict on the glass, a bump up to 15-16% would be fairly solid and not unrealistic in the least.

      The major concerns about Knox, IMO, are his defensive awareness and ability to make impact on rotations and in help defense situations, whether or not he can up his 3P%, reduce his reliance on midrange shots and up his playmaking more than he showed at Kentucky.

    94. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      I don’t think the Beasley and Jack moves were good when the team shouldn’t have been playing veterans last year period.

      Not that we could have done better, but having Jack (and then Mudiay) as our starting PG was a pretty good tank move. :-) That’s one reason I think we almost can’t help but be better than people expect this year. I suspect we are going to be quite a bit better at PG regardless of whether Frank or Trey starts and when KP gets back we might actually be decent if Knox is giving us anything worthwhile.

    95. 2FOR18, understands math

      Agreed that he played more on the perimeter than is ideal for him, but I’m just annoyed at the “dude he played at sg at 6 ft 9″ false narrative.

    96. ptmilo

      The thing about DeAndre Jordan is that he’s probably going to go through the aging curve like it’s manhole, and probably sooner than later. Even at 29, he only blocked 1.1/36 last year, same as Wade. Not saying he’s there yet bc he’s not, but anytime after 30 is possible and when it hits he won’t have any Kurt Thomas tricks to fall back on at either end.

    97. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Djphan, any chance we could get some punctuation and capitalization out of you?

      Jowles, thought you if anyone would be appreciative of idiosyncracy and freedom of expression. Guess you’re just a right wing ideologue. ;)

    98. swiftandabundant

      Semantics. The role Knox played on UK’s offense was often that of a SG, not a Forward and in college Knox could easily be a PF. But yes, lets dismiss the argument bc of semantics.

    99. thenoblefacehumper

      I’m a huge fan of how djphan types because the cognitive dissonance of reading very intelligent posts in that style is an interesting experience. Never change!

      Blah blah blah when we put this bad player in a different role he’ll definitely shine. We’re 0-for-infinity in that actually happening but eventually we’ll find our guy.

    100. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Like I said, I’m not ascribing value judgements to the way he writes. It’s just easier to read when long analytical posts follow at least the rules about periods and capitalization.

      I’m not saying he’s dumb or uneducated or of low birth for writing the way he does.

    101. thenoblefacehumper

      The rebounding isn’t a major concern to me. A 14.2 DRB% for a 3 playing next to two bigs isn’t absolute garbage and while massive leaps are hard to predict on the glass, a bump up to 15-16% would be fairly solid and not unrealistic in the least.

      The problem for me is if he’s a 3, he’s going to get eaten alive on defense and his complete and utter lack of playmaking will hurt. If he’s a 4, the rebounding is a huge issue and especially so next to Porzingis.

      I think the word “tweener” is thrown around and isn’t useful when describing players who have proven they can be productive despite physical limitations, but I’m afraid it fits Knox pretty well.

      Developing as a shooter will obviously help a lot regardless of his position but his upside seems very limited by the lack of secondary skills, which is ironic given that he’s being billed as the “swing for the fences” pick.

    102. lavor postell

      The problem for me is if he’s a 3, he’s going to get eaten alive on defense and his complete and utter lack of playmaking will hurt. If he’s a 4, the rebounding is a huge issue and especially so next to Porzingis.

      I think the word “tweener” is thrown around and isn’t useful when describing players who have proven they can be productive despite physical limitations, but I’m afraid it fits Knox pretty well.

      Developing as a shooter will obviously help a lot regardless of his position but his upside seems very limited by the lack of secondary skills, which is ironic given that he’s being billed as the “swing for the fences” pick.

      I disagree with the idea he’s going to get eaten alive at the 3. He’s not a statue and his ISO numbers defensively bear this out. What he struggles with is recognition and execution of defensive concepts which results in his lack of statistical output in steals and blocks. Those CAN improve, but there’s no guarantee they will. However the characterization of him as some helpless sieve on the wing isn’t really what I’ve seen of him in the games I’ve watched. He wasn’t getting burnt alive off the dribble constantly.

      He’s not going to be a full time 4 in the immediate future. He needs time to grow into his body like any 19 year old would.

      I’m not an expert on player development, but I’m not going to cap the growth of a player at age 19. If all he does is become a 58 TS guy on his usage with competent team defense without any other skill development that’d be great hit at 9 and I don’t see that as a pie in the sky outcome for him. And at his age I do think it’s possible he grows in other statistical areas of his game.

    103. Brian Cronin

      My issue with Knox is that if he is going to be a good player, it’s gotta be as a small ball four, right? So I really hope we see him play a lot of minutes at the 4 this season, especially with KP out. I fear we might see him getting more minutes at the 3 than the 4.

    104. lavor postell

      Tatum mostly played 3 this year and did so very well. This was after many of these type of concerns were raised regarding his ability to defend the 3 at the next level without getting roasted. It was also suggested that if he was going to be good it would have to be as a 4 like he played at Duke.

      I think Knox can be good as a 3 and a 4. I don’t know if he will or not.

    105. GoNyGoNyGo

      The DraftExpress/ESPN scouting report on Knox pointed to his scoring efficiency as a question mark.

      Then it went on to explain that he settles for difficult floaters and likes to settle for long 2’s. He settles for a jumper when he could drive the lane. He needs to work on his handle and has to work on using his left hand more.

      To me, those sound like things that coaching should impact. I would love the perfect player, but the perfect player is a player that can be coached. This is a challenge for both Knox and Fizdale. Knox was drafted to become a scorer. Can he toughen up? Will he replace his floaters with strong drives and his long 2’s with 3’s? I don’t know.

      What I do know is that he’s 18 years old. He seems mature. He played for a good coach in college. If he learned one thing from Calipari, I hope it’s how to become a good pro. That’s one thing Calipari’s done a great job of.

      And I think he’s more of a 3 than a 4. He doesn’t have the toughness to be a 4. At least not yet. Maybe when he’s 24.

    106. djphan

      just to point out… having good/bad defensive numbers is generally not that indicative of defensive prowess…. dennis rodman had really low stls/blks and was probably one of the best defenders of all time….

      but steals/blks does tell you a lot about a player… cleverness… anticipation.. awareness… reaction to a live ball… all sort of get lumped into the ‘quickness’ category when they don’t really have anything to do with athletic ability…. it’s the reason why cp3 and curry are usually among the league leaders in steals and i wouldn’t say they are the quickest players in the nba but they are probably amongst the most clever…. and that helps you in all sorts of ways on the court unrelated to defense….

      and stl/blks are the most predictive of pro success for those reasons…. it would not surprise me at all that knox turned into a passable or good defender… it’s the other things that those number signify that is the most worrying….

    107. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      I fear we might see him getting more minutes at the 3 than the 4.

      I think his main position is going to be the 3 for now. That’s what we need and that’s what Fisdale said when asked about him starting. He’ll get minutes at the 4 in small ball lineups. For all we know he’s still growing like Frank. Maybe he’ll add another inch or so. He’ll certainly fill out over time and become more of a 4. They drafted him to be a 3 now.

    108. Brian Cronin

      Tatum mostly played 3 this year and did so very well. This was after many of these type of concerns were raised regarding his ability to defend the 3 at the next level without getting roasted. It was also suggested that if he was going to be good it would have to be as a 4 like he played at Duke.

      I think Knox can be good as a 3 and a 4. I don’t know if he will or not.

      He also played a lot of 4 and he would have played even more if the guy they spent gazillions of dollars on to be a 3 didn’t get hurt right away, right? I imagine Tatum’s future will be at the 4 still.

    109. JK47

      A KP/Knox frontcourt isn’t exactly going to overwhelm you with physical strength. KP is a nice shotblocker but he doesn’t rebound or box out well, and he doesn’t set screens with any kind of conviction, and Knox isn’t going to help in any of those areas. Those two together looks like a pretty soft frontcourt to me.

    110. JK47

      I guess we’re in the age of “switch everything” so the idea is that Knox would be a good switchable defender but I don’t really know. If you’re drafting Kevin Knox for defensive reasons something has gone horribly wrong.

    111. ess-dog

      Djphan never met an ellipsis he didn’t like…

      I think this regime has a lot of hubris (like most) thinking they can just “coach up” kids that have big holes in their games. It’s certainly not out of the question, but it’s a bad bet.

      That being said, no one should be expecting an 18-year-old LeBron James with the #9 pick.

    112. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      @125

      I agree.

      I’m not sure what Fisdale’s plans are for KP, but if the plans are to make him a full time 5 in 2-3 years, we are going to need a strong rebounder in the front line somewhere. Right now Knox does not look like the answer to that. Maybe Fisdale is going to keep KP at the 4 long term and only use him at the 5 in small ball lineups like Hornacek did. That would keep someone like Kanter, O’Quinn or Robinson at the 5 most of the time. We’ll have to see what happens as they fill out.

      One small ball possibility is KP, Knox, and Dotson. Dotson is a good rebounder for a 2/3. So maybe he can make up some of the gap if those other guys don’t get better. I still think Frank is going to get better on the boards for a 1/2 also. He’s so damn long and he’s getting stronger.

    113. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      This team will be built around Mitchell Robinson in 5 years. Wake up and smell the shot blocking.

    114. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, and Knox are going to lead us to the promised land"

      Yeah so arrogant of the front office to hire a coach we’ll known for developing players and then draft players that need to be developed! The hubris!

      I understand why people are frustrated. We could have done a better job tanking down the stretch and selected higher. Then with the 9th pick we didn’t even select the BPA. But I think we have every reason to be comfortable with the coaching staff. Fisdale is highly respected around the league and by top players, he comes from a winning organization, and it appears he has assembled a very good staff (at least according to opinions I respect). I’d feel more certain of what to expect if we took Mikal, but I’m not convinced selecting Knox was a mistake just because Mikal is better now.

    115. ess-dog

      @129 I also need to be “developed” but guess what? It ain’t happening, even if Fiz comes and lives with me for a year.

      Anyway, if we get a new Tobias Harris with this year’s #9 pick, that’s still pretty good.

    116. Nick C.

      Yeah so arrogant of the front office to hire a coach we’ll known for developing players and then draft players that need to be developed! The hubris!

      All I could find on Fizdale and development was “Bosh and Gasol shot more 3 pointers.” I did not see anything about young players. Maybe I need him to develop my internet search skills.

    Comments are closed.