Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Knicks Morning News (2018.08.15)

  • [NYDN] Omarosa pal says a ‘White House Greatest Hits box set’ of tapes will keep coming if Trump keeps tweeting
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 3:00:00 AM)

    The hits keep coming and she’s just getting started.

    TV host and longtime Omarosa Manigault Newman associate Jawn Murray insists the former White House liaison isn’t bluffing when she claims to have more recordings from her year in the Trump administration.

    “There is inflammatory stuff on these…

  • [NYDN] Nokia brings back its ‘banana phone’ – and other phones that rocked our world
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 3:00:00 AM)

    There have been plenty of cell phones that were real lemons, but there’s been only one banana.

    Nokia is set to bring back the Nokia 8110, better known as the “banana phone,” which was first released in March but is getting a second shot at glory.

    The Nokia 8110 drew inspiration from the model used…

  • [NYDN] What job experts say Omarosa got wrong about her White House departure and Trump betrayal
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 3:00:00 AM)

    She’s been fired three times by President Trump on reality television and a fourth time in the White House — but Omarosa Manigault-Newman still hasn’t perfected her graceful exit.

    The former “Apprentice” villainess, who served as communications director for the Office of Public Liaison, has made…

  • [NYDN] Face it: This is risky tech. We need to put strong controls on face-recognition technology
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    As you read this, facial recognition cameras are secretly capturing photos of every driver who crosses key entry points into Manhattan. The technology is part of a pilot program launched by Gov. Cuomo, a test he hopes to expand to every MTA facility and crossing. According to the governor, the…

  • [NYDN] Rein in for-profit colleges: New York must crack down on a sector that the Trump administration is emboldening
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 2:00:00 AM)

    On Friday, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos unveiled a plan to eliminate the federal government’s “gainful employment” rules, which sought to protect students who enroll in career education programs. The Obama-era standards withheld federal financial aid from colleges that routinely left…

  • [NYDN] Hurry up, senators: There’s no time to waste switching speed cams back on
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 1:05:00 AM)

    Thank goodness, police have caught and charged a suspect in a violent hit-and-run in Far Rockaway, caught on video, that on Monday seriously injured an 11-year-old boy on his bike.

    Now imagine if a breakthrough technology could have slowed the car to a properly cautious pace before hurtling metal…

  • [NYDN] Readers sound off on Omarosa, interracial shootings and unemployment
    (Wednesday, August 15, 2018 12:00:00 AM)

    Believe Omarosa: Trump’s a soda jerk

    Brooklyn: Omarosa was not the first to expose Trump’s excessive intake of Diet Coke (“Prez on brink,” Aug. 14).

    However, Omarosa also reported about the Boston University study that found dangers in the soda. What is so dangerous in Diet Coke that can cause…

  • [NYDN] Los Angeles is first in U.S. to install subway body scanners
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 10:30:00 PM)

    LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles’ subway will become the first mass transit system in the U.S. to install body scanners that screen passengers for weapons and explosives, officials said Tuesday.

    The deployment of the portable scanners, which project waves to do full-body screenings of passengers walking…

  • [NYDN] SEE IT: Yasiel Puig shoves catcher Nick Hundley, setting off benches-clearing brawl between Dodgers and Giants
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 10:00:00 PM)

    First Yasiel Puig was mad at himself. Then he took it out on Nick Hundley.

    After fouling back a pitch he thought he should have had in the seventh inning of the Dodgers’ 2-1 loss to the Giants Tuesday night, Puig tossed his bat in the air and grabbed it in frustration. Hundley, who was behind the…

  • [NYDN] Indiana animal shelter accused of freezing kittens to death
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 9:30:00 PM)

    ROCKPORT, Ind. — Authorities in southern Indiana are investigating allegations that an animal shelter has been freezing kittens to death as an alternative to accepted forms of euthanasia.

    Bridget Woodson told the Courier & Press that she quit working at the Spencer County Animal Shelter and spoke…

  • [NYDN] Daily Horoscope — August 15, 2018
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    Via Tarot Astrologers

    General Horoscope for August 15, 2018

    We may need to face familiar fears that inconveniently resurface today. However, reconsidering our priorities doesn’t mean we’re automatically rewriting our game plan. In fact, we’re more likely to defend our conclusions in the face of…

  • [NYDN] Daily News’ Universal resort competition winners arrive in Florida ready for adventure
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 9:00:00 PM)

    Their time has come.

    Nearly two dozen sixth-graders from St. Helena’s School in the Bronx arrived to Universal Studios Florida on Tuesday thanks to the Daily News’ “Win a Universal Orlando Class Trip” competition.

    The trip has come as a dream come true for many of the baby Bronxites — most of whom…

  • [NYDN] Ackert: J.A. Happ gives Yankees just what they needed with seven scoreless in victory over Rays, but they still need to figure out what’s wrong with Luis Severino
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 8:25:00 PM)

    The Yankees had a role in mind for J.A. Happ when they traded for him last month. It was not to be the ace of the staff, but with the rest of the rotation breaking down, the veteran lefty has been the one to step up when the Yankees need it most.

    A night after an embarrassing loss to the scrappy…

  • [NYDN] Homeless man crushed to death after seeking shelter under parked box truck in Brooklyn
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 8:00:00 PM)

    A homeless man who took shelter from a summer storm under a parked box truck was crushed to death when the vehicle’s driver pulled out of a Brooklyn parking lot, police sources said Tuesday.

    The victim crawled under a 25-foot box truck on Flushing Ave. at Varick Ave. in East Williamsburg, near…

  • [NYDN] Vermont’s Christine Hallquist wins Democratic primary to become the first transgender candidate to carry a major party nomination for governor
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 8:00:00 PM)

    Christine Hallquist won the Democratic primary in Vermont Tuesday night, making her the first transgender person nominated for governor by a major political party.

    The former energy company executive beat her challengers handily with more than 48 % of the vote.

    Hallquist, 62, is running on a progressive…

  • [NYDN] Mets waste a rare halfway decent start from Jason Vargas as bullpen blows it against awful Baltimore
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 6:50:00 PM)

    The Mets couldn’t even take advantage of an exceedingly rare solid start by Jason Vargas against an Orioles team that is a mere 48 games below .500.

    Maybe it’s something about playing New York teams that gets Baltimore going, because now nine of the Orioles’ 36 wins (exactly 25 percent) have come…

  • [NYDN] Rudy Giuliani blasts Omarosa, warns Robert Mueller against making Russia probe a ‘bigger joke’ by having her testify
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 6:35:00 PM)

    Rudy Giuliani dared special counsel Robert Mueller on Tuesday to have Omarosa Manigault Newman testify in the Russia investigation, claiming it would become an “even bigger joke” if she does.

    The former mayor’s sardonic response came in the wake of Manigault Newman revealing she has been contacted…

  • [NYDN] Tyrese Gibson claims his ex-wife’s domestic abuse claims left him ‘unable to find work’
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 6:35:00 PM)

    Actor Tyrese Gibson says his income has greatly suffered since his former wife accused him of domestic abuse.

    The “Fate of the Furious” star claims in a new legal filing that he’s “been unable to find work in the entertainment field” since his ex-wife, Norma Gibson, came forward with what he called…

  • [NYDN] The Girl Scouts just revealed a new cookie flavor and it’s pure sweetness
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 6:20:00 PM)

    The Girl Scouts have earned another badge — this time for sweetness.

    The 106-year-old youth organization announced Tuesday it has added another brand to its delicious roster of cookie brands. The Caramel Chocolate Chip claims it will satisfy even the most die-hard sugar connoisseurs with its semi-sweet…

  • [NYDN] Alleged New Jersey ‘pooper’ will scoop up $100,000 from school district
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 5:45:00 PM)

    At one New Jersey school district, bowel movements are anything but potty humor.

    Kenilworth school superintendent Thomas Tramaglini, who stands accused of pooping near the Holmdel High School athletic field in Holmdel Twp., N.J., will collect more than $100,000 until his September resignation,…

  • [NYDN] New York attorney general candidates avoid confrontation, blast President Trump during Manhattan debate
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 5:45:00 PM)

    President Trump was on everybody’s mind as the four Democratic candidates running for New York attorney general faced off in Manhattan on Tuesday night.

    City Public Advocate Letitia James, Fordham law school professor Zephyr Teachout, New York Rep. Sean Maloney and ex-Hillary Clinton aide Leecia…

  • [NYDN] Bruno Mars reveals new tour performers after Cardi B drops out
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 5:10:00 PM)

    Cardi B won’t be joining Bruno Mars on his upcoming tour dates, but that doesn’t mean other big names won’t be present.

    Ciara, Boys II Men, Ella Mai and Charlie Wilson were each named performers on the next United States leg of the “24K Magic World Tour” on Tuesday — an announcement that comes…

  • [NYDN] ‘Hellboy’ star Ron Perlman’s brother-in-law says he has 9/11-related kidney disease
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 5:00:00 PM)

    Actor Ron Perlman’s brother-in-law worked just three blocks away from the World Trade Center when the towers came down, and exposure to the poisonous air around Ground Zero left him with kidney disease, he says.

    Now, he’s teaming up with the “Hellboy” and “Sons of Anarchy” star to raise awareness…

  • [NYDN] Rodeo bull escapes, sets off chaos during wild run through Oklahoma City
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 4:55:00 PM)

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Police say a rodeo bull broke free from the Oklahoma City Stockyards and charged through streets and chased people, including one person who jumped into a river to escape the animal’s path.

    Oklahoma City police spokeswoman Megan Morgan says the animal managed to escape a pen at…

  • [NYDN] Gary Sanchez hopes to be in rehab game by end of next week and says he isn’t feeling discomfort in his groin right now
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 4:45:00 PM)

    Gary Sanchez is back in the Bronx, rehabbing from the groin injury that has kept him on the disabled list since July 24, but the Yankees are hoping that he can be back in Florida in a rehab game as soon as the end of next week.

    “He’ll probably head back to Tampa this weekend, with us having the…

  • [SNY Knicks] Boom or Bust: Knicks win 35 games or Melo comes off bench for Rockets?
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 12:05:00 PM)

    Who has the better odds? Carmelo Anthony coming off the bench for the Rockets? Or the Knicks notching at least 35 games?

  • [NYPost] Knicks-Nets Twitter war breaks out over who’s less bad
    (Tuesday, August 14, 2018 10:37:51 AM)

    Basketball in New York City figures to be mediocre again this season, but the two sides are trying to spice it up with some Twitter beef. Spencer Dinwiddie got the ball rolling Monday night, when he quoted a tweet that showed Metta World Peace (formerly Ron Artest) predicting the Eastern Conference Finals would feature the…

  • 93 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2018.08.15)

    1. Z-man

      Side question: Z-man, would you trade KP for Giannis straight up, right now?

      Of course! I’d feel dirty, bc I always favor a homegrown guy, but thats a no-brainer.

      Better questions:
      Would I trade him s/u for Embiid? Or Simmons? Or Towns? Or Jokic?

    2. Z-man

      I’d have a very hard time pulling the trigger on any of those deals. Each one of those guys is flawed and there’a a reasonable chance that KP becomes better than any of them. KP is the only guy that has a chance to become the next in the Willis/Clyde’Patrick lineage. That means more to me than to most here, but hey, I’m not the GM so who cares?

    3. Hubert

      The problem is the Knicks don’t have a choice to pay him less. He’s not taking less than the max or very close to it so trying to get surplus value by signing him to a bargain contract is not happening.

      Why!??????

      How has it gotten to this point?

      A player coming off his rookie contract has zero leverage to get a max. The best leverage he can create is acting like he’d choose to forfeit long term security by signing a one year offer sheet, which we can still match. And then next year, we’d still be the only team able to offer him a full max. That would be idiotic for a player and agent to accept coming off an ACL tear. If we don’t offer him a 5 year max, the best another team can do is offer him a 4 year deal at less than max. That should be our highest offer.

      KP has literally no leverage to get a 5 year 25% max other than to say it will hurt his feelings forever and he’ll never forget it.

      I understand that he will get it. I just don’t understand why. Teams have all the leverage here, and they give it up all the time by defaulting to the max.

    4. Z-man

      KP really is a tantalizing player. Is he a unicorn that is going to take a bit longer to figure it out on his way to superstardom, or is he an optical illusion that will never quite get there? With Embiid, Jokic, Simmons (less so) and Towns, you know what you have for the most part. I doubt that any of those teams even consider trading their guy for KP at this point.

      I think KP figures out how to be a more efficient, more impactful player by getting stronger, smarter and more deferential to good players around him. The ACL thing doesn’t bother me so much. I am deeply concerned about his stamina over a long NBA season. If that is a congenital thing, then that max deal that he is surely signing is going to hurt. The two best (and reasonably possible) outcomes for the Knicks are that a) he signs a max deal and develops into a legit superstar and b) he signs a max deal, doenn’t develop much and is dealt to an unsuspecting team for a king’s ransom.

    5. Hubert

      Golden State didn’t say “we have no choice but to offer Steph Curry the max”. Milwaukee didn’t say “we have no choice but to offer Giannis the max”. And they got deals done.

      Just out of curiosity, I know we all think he’s getting the max. How many think he’s getting the max because:

      A) The Knicks have no choice, they have to offer KP the max if they want to re-sign him, and it’s the right thing to do bc we need to re-sign him.

      B) The Knicks are going to give him the max for the same reason they gave Melo a NTC, and gave Noah 4 years, and Baker a player option, and paid a 250% premium for Tim Hardaway: because they are idiots who don’t know how to negotiate and automatically overpay for everything.

      ?

    6. TheOakmanCometh

      Knick fan not in NJ at this time,

      You make a good point about the median WS/season being different than the average WS/season. Using the median would probably lower the expected WS/season for 2nd round draft picks, which would turn a few of the “bad” Knick picks into “even” picks. I couldn’t find any list online of median expected WS for each draft slot, so I used the best I had. If anyone has a better list, feel free to do another analysis of the last 15 years of Knick drafts.

      Still, even if you only count lottery picks — where the median and the mean are probably closer together — the Knicks have made 2 “even” picks (Gallo and Frye) and two “bad” picks (Sweetney and Hill).

      Note that the draft pick analysis wasn’t meant to be predictive of this particular regime’s ability to draft. Obviously Isiah’s mistakes have almost no connection to Grunwald’s mistakes or Phil’s mistakes or Perry’s mistakes. It was merely an attempt to answer the question “Have the Knicks at least been good at drafting since the franchise went to shit?” The answer appears to be, not really.

    7. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      phew, Z-man’s not crazy (except Jokic for KP is a no-brainer)

    8. thenoblefacehumper

      Yeah, there’s no reason KP’s contract shouldn’t be the result of an actual negotiation. I wish the economics of the NBA were such that I didn’t have to hope a player doesn’t get every cent he can from James Dolan, but we live in the world as it is I suppose.

      I’d offer something like 4/$80m with reasonable incentives that could bring it to $100m or so and draw the line there. KP would be out of his mind to pass up never having to worry about money again to play for the QO.

    9. DRed

      Embiids injury history is worrying but I’d trade porzingis for those other guys without even thinking about it.

    10. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Oakman, you still don’t get it. The question isn’t whether the player picked turned out to be good; it’s whether they were, in retrospect, the best player available. Much of the time (Thanasis), they were. Some of the time (Jordan Hill), they weren’t.

      If no good players are available, you can’t criticize them for not picking better. It doesn’t matter that Thanasis turned out to suck – he was the best option.

    11. Bruno Almeida

      @6

      It’s surely B, as I have zero trust in this front office to properly negotiate a contract under the pressure of re-signing the “franchise savior”. They gave Tim Hardaway Jr. a goddamned trade kicker.

      On one hand, it is very irritating to me that a 23 year old who is 50% production 50% potential in his 3rd year on the league will be treated as if he was disrespected when he gets offered less than the max; on the other hand, I understand it’s happening anyway because the Knicks have dug themselves into this hole of never properly rebuilding and being a franchise most players do not want to play for, and when Wiggins gets a max contract, Porzingis has the narrative on his side.

      The worst part is that since he’s injured, we won’t be able to see if he’s fully recovered until very close to the trade deadline, as simply losing Porzingis for nothing would be a disaster in asset management.

    12. Bruno Almeida

      I 100% would trade Porzingis for all of those guys because I value productive young players above potentially productive ones, and those guys have shown already how impactful they can be. They’re all flawed players at this stage but so is KP, and the production level they have shown is just superior.

    13. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      It’s probably impossible to find draft pick medians rather than averages. Everyone does averages.

      By the way, I also checked out WS/48 for last year and for that, for some reason, the median is the same as the average (unlike WS or VORP). I’ll and do the BR list of advanced stats for last year and post them later today

    14. Z-man

      Embiid’s injury history is very worrying. He has other flaws too…I see lots of Boogie Cousins in his game. Here’s a comparison of Boogie’s last healthy season to Embiid last season. Both are better than anything KP has done, but combined with the fact that Embiid is a heavy-footed player with a bad foot and sore knees, there’s ample reason for pause.

      It’s not fully captured in counting stats, but Jokic is one of the worst defensive bigs in the league. The difference between his impact on defense and KPs is arguably just as large as it is on offense. And it is far more likely that KP improves on offense than that Jokic improves on D. I get the cold, calculating choice for production over potential, but despite his enormous gifts on offense, Jokic is just not my cup of tea. I’m glad I don’t have to make that decision.

      Simmons is the most freakish player in the discussion. However, he simply can’t shoot from more than 10 feet from the basket, and only shot 41% from 3-10 ft! He’s the most no-brainer out of the bunch for me, even with the foot injury, because of his size advantage at the all-important PG position and the Knicks putrid history of PGs.

      Towns is my least favorite of the bunch, but the healthiest. He’s another guy in the Boogie mold.

      Look, any smart GM makes the trade for any of these guys. But as a Knicks fan, and knowing that these trades will never happen, I’m okay with hoping that KP develops and outshines them all in the long run, and think that it’s a fun thing to hope for, even against the odds.

    15. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      It’s not fully captured in counting stats, but Jokic is one of the worst defensive bigs in the league. The difference between his impact on defense and KPs is arguably just as large as it is on offense. And it is far more likely that KP improves on offense than that Jokic improves on D.

      +1

    16. english_knick

      It’s worth bearing in mind that the Knicks have been an epic shit-show for most of KPs time here. He might really mean it if he says he’s willing to take some risk or less money to walk, unless we pay up. Doesn’t mean we should do it, of course.

      I suspect we end up paying him 25% of the cap. But we should be able to negotiate on years… make it four years, with year four conditional on health in the previous years. Maybe give him an option on year 4 too, which is technically his highest earning path (opt out as a 7 year player then sign for 30% of the cap). We ought to be able to get some sort of risk sharing into the deal given injuries, the Embiid precedent etc.

    17. Bruno Almeida

      How is it far more likely? Because he plays on the Knicks?

      KP is a good defender and a bad offensive player. Jokic is a mega superstar offensive player, and a very bad defender. I’ll take the guy who’s already a mega superstar at something

      You guys took this narrative of KP being a very good rim protector and suddenly all the “complexities” about playing defense in the NBA don’t matter anymore. Rebounding is part of defense (KP is very bad at it, Jokic is very good), guarding pick and rolls is too (KP is not good at all, Jokic is terrible), post defense, help coverage, everything is also part of defense. Jokic also plays with very poor defenders around him on a team where he is the main offensive weapon every possession, yet when the guy is not a Knicks player he doesn’t get this credit, it’s all his fault.

      Embiid is actually an elite defender, KP is an elite rim protector and that’s it.

    18. english_knick

      I already know I’ll get killed for this by Bruno and Jowles (both of whom i generally agree with) but…

      I think it is possible that KP is a – perhaps rare – case where his potential really is higher than his stats suggest. It’s interesting that the Spurs are huge fans – Messina, who seems to be very highly respected as a basketball mind, races about him at the ASB a couple of years back. Stevens and Boston also seem high on him. Is that all eye-test? Maybe but these guys aren’t old-skool stats-deniers.

      Could it be that a combination of him being an unusual skills mix and the Knicks coaches being genuinely clueless mean a big part of the problem really is how he’s been used? I think we can all agree that the well-defended catch-and-shoot mid-ranger we ran for him a lot last year isn’t the most obvious use of a 7-footer whose one near-elite offensive skill is three point shooting.

      I really like KP and I’m sure there’s a load of endowment effect and affect hueristoc at play on this argument. It also highlights the issue with drafting very young guys with lots of development needs as there’s always the risk you hit the contract decision before you know what you have. But still – interested in views on this usage question.

      (Good think we didn’t double or triple down on the ‘young with upside’ strategy in subsequent drafts… Frank (ahem)… Knox (ahem)…)

    19. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Yeah, maybe. But also, maybe not. My draft strategy has been to draft demonstrably good players rather than potentially great ones, so the same goes for young players already in the league.

      Durant is a great case of a guy who was garbage as a rookie, but with “flashes” throughout that season. His stats were bad, but the potential was undeniable. By year 3, he was a star. Giannis was similar — pretty bad as a rookie and 2nd-year player, and then his FO finally said, “He’s a 7′ point guard,” and now he’s an MVP candidate.

    20. english_knick

      Agreed but the Giannis thing is a great example… it took the FO/staff to realise he was a 7 foot pg and change how they were using him.

      I totally buy the ‘but maybe not’ point. I do wish Kp had a healthy season of a good coach and system and a competent pg before we had to decide to ‘back up the truck’ or not…

    21. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      It triggers my PTSD regarding Melo and every other overrated volume scorer we’ve had since the Van Gundy era. Maybe it’s not system. Maybe it’s the players.

    22. Z-man

      @21 all of your points are valid, and yes, my feelings about KP are steeped in my desire to have a homegrown superstar lead the team rather than a bunch of mercenaries. There are exceptions… I loved Bernard King like I would have had we drafted him. But we didn’t trade a guy like Porzingis to get Bernard either. And at least he was a NY guy.

      Jokic is a phenomenal player, and the move would indeed be a no-brainer based on performance and probably on potential as well. I just find myself attached to KP to the point that I really want to see it through, come hell or high water. He’s the closest thing to a potential superstar we’ve drafted since Ewing, and that’s worth a lot to me as a fan. Those first 20 games or so last year were pretty intoxicating. If he were traded for any of the guys mentioned, I’d come around to it, especially if the new guy far outshined KP, or if KP never improved or stayed healthy, but at first I would definitely feel a great sense of loss. I suppose it’s a weird loyalty thing, probably from being indelibly stamped by watching/listening to nearly every minute of Knicks basketball in the late ’60’s-early ’70’s.

    23. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      How is it far more likely? Because he plays on the Knicks?

      KP is a good defender and a bad offensive player. Jokic is a mega superstar offensive player, and a very bad defender. I’ll take the guy who’s already a mega superstar at something

      KP already has the length and skill to shoot 3s, make FTs, dunk on putbacks, finish on ally oops, and create his own shot off the dribble at an adequate enough efficiency level to think he could become a serious threat at do all those things at a very high level eventually. He mostly just has to get stronger and improve his shot selection. The probability of him getting stronger over time is 100%. We just don’t know how much stronger he can get. The probability of him improving his shot selection is a little tougher to estimate, but most players learn that over time. There were signs he was starting to understand how to deal with double teams just before he got injured.

      The probability that Jokic ever becomes a high level defender is very low. He’s too slow of foot, not athletic enough, and not long enough. He doesn’t have the physical attributes. He can learn and get better in the same way KP can learn shot selection, but he won’t ever be really good defensively.

      There is some probability that KP fails to get stronger and use that strength against shorter players to get better shots inside instead of fading away and taking tough shots.

      There is some probability that KP turns into Melo 2 and never learns a damn thing about shot selection.

      However, the probability that KP becomes an impact player at both ends of the court is higher than for Jokic.

    24. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      KP already has the length and skill to shoot 3s, make FTs, dunk on putbacks, finish on ally oops, and create his own shot off the dribble at an adequate enough efficiency level to think he could become a serious threat at do all those things at a very high level eventually.

      But isn’t your whole argument about spacing? So if he stops taking those “contested” 20-footers (because really, who’s going to block his attempt when he’s releasing at 10′ in the air), won’t he lose out on the “hidden” benefits of his “length” and “skill?”

      However, the probability that KP becomes an impact player at both ends of the court is higher than for Jokic.

      There’s about a 0.1% chance that Porzingis is ever as valuable on offense as Jokic is right now. Jokic has touch, vision and control in ways that you can only refine, not teach.

      Jokic was 7th in OWS, 8th in WS, 5th in BPM (2nd year in a row) and 5th in VORP. He is already a superstar.

    25. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      Yeah, maybe. But also, maybe not. My draft strategy has been to draft demonstrably good players rather than potentially great ones, so the same goes for young players already in the league.

      In the investment world there many schools of thought, but 2 stick out.

      Some guys look at the current balance sheet, earnings, interest rates, cash flow, free cash flow etc.. and try to buy businesses at bargain prices based on their current value.

      Some guys look at all those things, but also try to project the next 5 or more years based on other insights and information they have available now. If they see greater than average growth ahead for that individual business, they are willing to pay a premium. They are willing to accept less earnings per share now if they can get much greater earnings per share later.

      Both are valid approaches and can work, but if you take the latter approach, you have to insist that you have some reasonable insights into what the future is likely to be and the reward has to be large enough to more than offset the times you turn out to be wrong.

      That’s exactly what we are debating here.

      You are in camp #1.

      Most of the league is in camp #2.

      Teams know they will make more mistakes when they make projections, but they are willing to accept the greater risk and volatility if they think the potential reward for success compensates them for the failures.

      A guy like Knox is an example of growth stock (or player).

      The Knicks believed they had insights into the probability of him improving that made overpaying for him in the draft relative to Mikal Bridges (who has higher current earnings, a better balance sheet, and better cash flow now) sensible because in 4-5 years Knox will pass him and they will more than make up the difference. In basketball, just like in Wall St, you place your bet, wait 5 years, and see if you were right.

    26. bidiong

      We should offer a little below max 2 year contract for KP. Then give him the 5 year max after if he proves he’s worth it. Then at the end of the 4th or 5th year we can trade him for assets before he loses his prime.

    27. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      The Knicks believed they had insights into the probability of him improving that made overpaying for him in the draft relative to Mikal Bridges (who has higher current earnings, a better balance sheet, and better cash flow now) sensible because in 4-5 years Knox will pass him and they will more than make up the difference. In basketball, just like in Wall St, you place your bet, wait 5 years, and see if you were right.

      And that’s worked out pretty well for the Knicks, historically.

    28. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      But isn’t your whole argument about spacing? So if he stops taking those “contested” 20-footers (because really, who’s going to block his attempt when he’s releasing at 10? in the air), won’t he lose out on the “hidden” benefits of his “length” and “skill?”

      You are over complicating.

      If you are a big man that can shoot 3s at a deadly rate like Porzingis (close to 40% last year despite taking more than his share of atrocious ones that need to be weeded out), you cannot leave him open on the perimeter. You have to least make it tough on him. That means it’s tougher for the defender (usually big man) to sag, help teammates, rebound. When that scenario occurs, he’s adding value that is not accruing to him. It’s adding to Kanter who will get extra offensive rebounds and score. It’s adding to someone that drives or cuts to the basket and isn’t met by whoever is guarding KP etc..

      What the defense can try to do is put a smaller quicker guy on KP so at least they get to him quicker and he will have trouble on the defensive end. It’s tougher for KP to stay with those smaller quicker guys. That’s in fact what many teams try to do. They know his range will create a problem for them defensively, so they try to create a mismatch on the other end.

      Now comes the next skill. When you are 7’3″ and long, you should be able take those smaller defenders down inside and punish them because you are bigger, stronger, longer, and can shoot over them. That makes going small problematical for other team. The thing is, KP is too weak to use his advantage well. The smaller guys are actually stronger than him. They hold their position, push him out of the paint, and he winds up taking an off balance fade away or turnaround against a guy he should be dominating. When/if he gets stronger and can take advantage, they’ll stop doing that because he’ll be killing them inside.

      But either way, when he’s dragging bigs out, he’s helping his teammates.

    29. johnno

      @17 and 28 — before you tout defensive BPM as some kind of proof that Jokic is a good defender, you might want to consider the fact that Enes Kanter had a positive (very slightly positive, but positive nonetheless) DBPM last year. I could be wrong, but my guess is that most Knick fans won’t think that a stat that says that Kanter was a net positive on the defensive end is particularly credible.

    30. Bruno Almeida

      @26

      I really relate to that Z-Man as I can honestly say nothing would satisfy me more than seeing KP become the guy for us. An euro guy with crazy measurements that has a very peculiar skill set and can seemingly do everything on the court, he’s the type of guy I love watching, and when he’s on it’s such a joy to watch. I haven’t been this excited in a long time about the Knicks then when he went off to start last season.

      But I think specially strato is painting a picture that’s way too optimistic, specially since we have no idea how the injury will affect him. Like I said before I’m a pragmatic at heart, and I think I would grow to love a guy like Jokic or Embiid equally if they played for the Knicks, perhaps even more.

      There’s just too many ifs still and if we’re treating Jokic or Embiid as question marks, KP is a bigger one even. Maybe it is easier for KP to become a better player than for Jokic to improve on his issues, but I know I’m getting a superstar passer, scorer and rebounder in Jokic and I can imagine building a team around him that minimizes his flaws. I can’t see that yet with Porzingis as elite rim protection is simply not something you can build a team around, and that’s the only elite talent Porzingis has shown consistently so far.

      Jokic deserves the benefit of the doubt of being surrounded by a heavily flawed team with no defenders and a bunch of one-way wing scorers. My argument in the end comes down to my belief that the Denver team that came one overtime game short of the playoffs last year wouldn’t be in that position if you swapped a healthy KP for Jokic.

    31. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Since Porzingis allegedly has hidden value from floor spacing, can we say the same about Jokic?

    32. Owen

      Jokic is really fun to watch. Something to be said for that. His skills should age well too. His offense more than makes up for it but his defense isn’t so hot, I agree there.

      Embiid is awesome and great on defense. The health risk is huge but I think when he cleans it up he’ll be a superstar two way player.

    33. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      @35

      I don’t anyone is arguing the contrary. The argument is whether KP can provide more on offense than Jokic ever will on defense.

      Based on small samples when Porzingis has been healthy and not prematurely worn down (first 20 games of most of his seasons so far), I believe it is possible we could see KP become 80% of Jokic on offense while Jokic would never be more than 50% of KP on defense – making KP a more complete and valuable player.

      Possible, yes. Likely? I hate to say No, but….I don’t think so. Even if he comes back healthy and as mobile, the stamina thing is some other kind of issue that simply hasn’t gone away. It may be that, no matter what conditioning/diet he does, he will never be able to perform at a high level for more than 25 minutes a night over a season.

      I do believe he has the brains and the drive. I just don’t think he has the body.

    34. Donnie Walsh

      The question isn’t whether the player picked turned out to be good; it’s whether they were, in retrospect, the best player available

      Yeah, this “debate” over the past few days started with Jowles saying the Knicks should “stop drafting players based on ‘upside,’ stockpile picks, and draft BPA”; To which Z-Man said that that is easier said than done because the BPA doesn’t have a sticker on them (snideness redacted); To which Jowles said the franchise would be in a better position if it had randomly selected from the players with the best advanced stats still available.

      Upon further study, it appeared the players with the best advanced stats on the board when the Knicks were selecting over the past ten years were Speights, Dejuan Blair, Reggie Bullock, and Willy Cayley-Stein.

      So, yeah, the “debate” is silly because nobody said the Knicks were good at drafting, just that they hadn’t made any huge errors on draft day that an advanced stats bot would have fixed.

      I’m not really sure why it’s lasted four days. There’s really nothing to debate about it.

    35. JK47

      Now comes the next skill. When you are 7’3? and long, you should be able take those smaller defenders down inside and punish them because you are bigger, stronger, longer, and can shoot over them. That makes going small problematical for other team. The thing is, KP is too weak to use his advantage well. The smaller guys are actually stronger than him. They hold their position, push him out of the paint, and he winds up taking an off balance fade away or turnaround against a guy he should be dominating. When/if he gets stronger and can take advantage, they’ll stop doing that because he’ll be killing them inside.

      Porzingis seems to have a wonky center of gravity, obviously his body is not shaped like Moses Malone and he can’t use his ass to back guys like Marcus Smart down. I don’t know how much of that is “strength” and how much is just KP’s peculiar body shape. I’m trying to imagine what a thick, swole Porzingis would look like and I’m having a hard time envisioning it. He’s been in the league a while now, and every year supposedly he comes to camp “stronger” but then he’s always the same stringbean with dubious core strength.

    36. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      Since Porzingis allegedly has hidden value from floor spacing, can we say the same about Jokic?

      Yes.

      I think any player that has good enough 3 point range to impact how the defense plays is adding some value. Since he plays C, he’s typically guarding on the inside. So his defensive rebounding stats are probably not being impacted as much as someone that often defends stretch PFs. Also, I suspect that even though Jokic takes quite a few 3s, he spends less time out there.

      My point primarily has been that PFs traditionally played inside. As they shifted outside, many started rebounding a little less than they used to. So they lost boxcore value relative to the past, but they are just as good as they were before and perhaps better.

      If we created a metric that used some combination of 3 point attempts per 36 and 3 point percentage it would give us a rough estimate of space generating ability. I’m sure many stats heads have already come up with good metrics and an analysis like that. I just don’t recall ever reading one I liked.

    37. Bruno Almeida

      That’s the thing, KP has been constantly destroyed by defenders like Marcus Smart who theoretically he should have no issues shooting over. For all of this theoretical complexities to matter he has to improve on stuff that we’re not really sure it’s possible for him to improve much on. Dirk did it but he was not 7’3”, and he had every possible trick in his arsenal and was extremely durable in his physical prime . It’s really not going to be easy.

    38. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      Embiid is awesome and great on defense. The health risk is huge but I think when he cleans it up he’ll be a superstar two way player.

      I agree 100%. I think Embiid has a chance to become one of the truly all time super greats. He’s almost unstoppable inside, he has range, and he’s a defensive beast. I love watching him play, but I’m going to hate trying to beat him.

    39. wetbandit

      Last year, KP took the most long-2s and the least 3s in his career, the least assisted 3’s, committed less turnovers, committed (adjusted per minute) half the fouls, and drew 32% more fouls, The system was shit, and he took worse shots, but his game was more in control. If you don’t think adjusted the system wouldn’t make things better, then you don’t understand that adjusting the weight of different variables (increasing 3PA, decreasing long 2PA, etc) WILL influence the end score.

    40. TheOakmanCometh

      Oakman, you still don’t get it. The question isn’t whether the player picked turned out to be good; it’s whether they were, in retrospect, the best player available. Much of the time (Thanasis), they were. Some of the time (Jordan Hill), they weren’t.

      Actually rama, you don’t get it. You can’t cherry pick individual players and go, “Shoulda drafted him, shouldna drafted him,” like Mike Francesa going through the Giants’ schedule and saying “that’s a win, that’s a loss, that’s a win.” It’s too arbitrary.

      Rudy Gobert was still on the board when the Knicks picked THJ at #24. Does that make THJ a bad pick? No. He’s outperformed his expected WS so he was a good pick. When the Knicks drafted Cleanthony Early at #34, the following guys were still on the board: Jokic, Dinwiddie, Jerami Grant, Jordan Clarkson, Dwight Powell. Also still on the board were a bunch of bums. Does that make the Early pick a bad one or a terrible one? Your method makes it completely subjective.

      The system I outlined, while just a back-of-the-napkin calculation, standardizes the evaluation process. For any one individual draft it’s not that meaningful, because as you point out, sometimes there were no better players on the board so it’s not fair to call a pick “bad.” But over time, each draft slot does come with an expected value that you can measure against. So the anomalies that you mentioned should even out.

    41. Hubert

      I could be wrong, but my guess is that most Knick fans won’t think that a stat that says that Kanter was a net positive on the defensive end is particularly credible.

      Enes was 7th in defensive rebounding percentage. He had a respectable DRtg of 108. I don’t think DBPM of 0.1 indicates the stat is untrustworthy. It basically says his terrible rim protection and team defense negated his elite output on the boards.

    42. johnno

      So, are you saying that you agree with DBPM that, all things considered, Kanter was neutral or a slight net positive on defense? If so, then I guess that you think that DBPM is a good indicator of defensive impact. However, since most people on this site have been screaming that the Knicks should get rid of him despite his elite rebounding and elite offensive efficiency, I thing that most people think that he is a huge net negative on defense and, therefore, most people don’t agree that DBPM (or defensive rating for that matter) accurately measures his defensive impact.

    43. JK47

      Thing is, defensive rebounds have to count for SOMETHING, right? Kanter is an elite defensive rebounder, he was 7th in the NBA in DRB%. Surely that must offset at least some of his ridiculously shitty pick and roll defense and nonexistent rim protection. He’s a crummy defender any way you slice it, but the dude does go up and get defensive rebounds.

    44. Z-man

      Enes is surely a very good defensive rebounder, and an even better offensive rebounder. Defensive rebounding is a weird stat, though, in that it’s super hard to tell how many rebounds would have been snared by teammates, how many guys pursue rebounds over boxing out or finishing a defensive play, etc. (we had lots of discussion re: Robin Lopez, who on the surface was a mediocre rebounder, but he had a very significant effect on his team’s rebound rate by effectively boxing out his man.

      OTOH, KP blocks and intimidates shots, but if he allows more offensive rebounds, then his rim protection is negated by increased shooting opportunities.

      So conflating defensive rebounding with defensive effectiveness is a tricky proposition, and an area where box-score-based advanced stats all seem to fall short.

    45. Bruno Almeida

      His ability to track the ball on those rebounds and the way he moves is so fluid… I promised myself I wouldn’t get too excited about potential top 5 picks after the Knicks botched their chances at Lonzo and Doncic, but it’s stronger than me. Coming out of next year’s draft with him or Barrett would be so great.

    46. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      He looks SO much like Barkley. Even his 3PT shot looks like Barkley’s.

    47. JK47

      I love watching players who can rebound in traffic. That’s probably my personal favorite basketball skill. Zion definitely excels at it.

    48. Bruno Almeida

      Watching the Barkley video Z-Man posted and then his highlights is mindblowing. He really looks so much like him. I can’t wait to see him against top college competition, if his 3 pointer is legit there’s no question he’ll be the guy I’ll want in the next draft.

    49. Z-man

      I thought my contract idea for KP was good… :-( No discussion though…

      It’s hard to discuss something that has an extremely low probability of happening. KP is going to either get a max for at least 4 years or is going to test the market. It is highly likely that he will get what he wants. He wanted Phil and Horny out, and he and his brother very cleverly greased the skids for that to happen.

      As to his next contract, how can that possibly be discussed at this time?

    50. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      Bidiong, I think KP would never accept that. And even if he did, then he’d be a free agent in two years. If he’s very good then the Knicks might not be able to re-sign him.

    51. Hubert

      A combination of watching Zion Williamson highlights and me being on vacation in Montauk has made today a day for dreaming.

      The 2019-20 Knicks?

      Guards: Kyrie, Hardaway, Ntilikina
      Forwards: Porzingis, Williamson, Knox
      Center: Robinson

      How dreamy is that? I’d be pretty happy having that young core without Kyrie, too.

    52. Bruno Almeida

      If we do draft a guy on the level of Williamson going for Kyrie becomes a much better idea.

      We would have him and Porzingis on big contracts and then Knox, Williamson, Ntilikina and Robinson all on cheap long term contracts with a lot of upside for them to outplay those deals. Adding a blue chip prospect would bring us closer to a situation like Boston, where it makes sense to have Kyrie, Hayward and Horford in big contracts because the other main contributors are young and cheap like Tatum and Brown. There’s a more than fair chance that at least one from Williamson, Knox, Robinson or Ntilikina develops into a core player.

      That’s why tanking properly this year is the most important thing, then we can move on to trying to compete while finally having legit young guys on team friendly deals.

    53. Hubert

      The beauty of tanking this year, too, is that the guy we want the most isn’t projected to be the top pick. Of course, so much can change. But NBA teams typically drool over the wing prospects like Barrett, Little, and Reddish. We’d likely be able to select Zion at 2, 3 maybe even 4.

    54. Hubert

      It would also make stretching Noah a no-brainer (next summer, if Kyrie wanted to play here). If we can move Lee, stretch Noah, waive Dotson, and buy out Lance for $1mm, we’re looking at:

      1. Porzingis Cap Hold: $17.1mm
      2. Hardaway’s stupid contract: $18.15mm
      3. Joakim Noah’s stretched salary: $6.5mm
      4. Frank: $4.85mm
      5. Knox: $4.38mm
      6. Mitch Rob: $1.5mm
      7. Lance’s buyout: $1mm
      8. 6 incomplete roster cap holds: $3mm

      Total: $56.5mm
      Projected cap: $101mm

      That gives $44.5mm in space. Kyrie would take up around $35mm of it. You could use $9.5 to sign a solid support player, and the mid-level to sign more. It’s not terrible. And if the upside of KP, Frank, Knox, Zion actually materialized, it’s a legit contender.

      Or maybe I’ve had too much sunshine.

    55. english_knick

      Think you missed the cap hold for our 1rp (which we should hope is about $7m as that means we’re picking first). Kyrie would be 30% of the cap I think, so about $32.5m. But ends up pretty close to your number.

      The issue is, can we simultaneously show enough growth this year to believe Kyrie and another 1rp moves us into a serious playoff team, while also being bad enough to snare a high enough pick for it to be true? Basically the t-wolves model – we have to hope we’re conpetitve in lots of games but lose due to lack of experience and poor late game execution…

    56. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      I’m going to give a set of conditions here:

      IF

      (1) The Knicks tank hard and get a guaranteed top-4 pick
      (2) Zion Williamson has a great season at Duke, which looks like a lock
      (3) He is still on the board when they pick
      (4) The Knicks select someone else and use the words “upside,” “potential,” or “spacing”

      THEN

      I will burn Madison Square Garden to the ground with James Dolan inside

    57. swiftandabundant

      Here we go. Jowles assuming the worst for something that is a year away from theoretically happening, throwing shade at The Knox pick bc picking Knox with the 9th pick when the alternative is a red shirted 23 year old senior is TOTALLY the same as passing on a “can’t miss” prospect with a top 5 pick.

    58. swiftandabundant

      @ 64 – that’s the catch 22 of building a team. Everyone wants this theoretical young and improving team with cheap, cost controlled players where the team only wins 20 games but loses all the other games by one point in OT, showing the league that with another draft pick and big free agent they can compete for a title. But it rarely works that way. Usually a team sucks. Then they only kind of suck. Then they’re sorta good. Then they’re good. Then they compete for a title. But people want to skip the kind of suck phase bc that means you don’t get a high lottery pick.

    59. Bruno Almeida

      Look, Kyrie Irving was on a team last season that won 55 games and is projected to win close to 60 this season. If he wants to come to the Knicks it’s because he’s a lunatic, and I’m 100% sure winning 24 games and getting a top 4 pick or winning 32 and getting the 12th changes absolutely nothing on his decision. In fact he might be more inclined to join the Knicks if they are terrible and get a top 2 pick because of the added talent than if they win 32 and add another guy who’s all upside with a lot of question marks.

      This progression from being terrible to bad to decent then good is about as unrealistic as expecting the Knicks to tank properly. Very rarely contending teams actually follow that scenario because most are influenced by heavy spikes in production from either acquiring superstars or having young players make massive leaps. Even the Warriors, who have built their contending team on a slow pace from within have had jumps of 10+ wins in key moments for the franchise.

      Philly jumped from 28 to 52, the Celtics from 25 to 40 and then upwards, the Cavs from 33 to 53 when lebron came back. The Rockets are probably the closest to what you’re describing because even with Harden it took a while for them to actually become contenders.

    60. swiftandabundant

      What about the Warriors?

      Edit – sorry you included them but to me a 10 win jump isn’t going from shitty to good its going from shitty to kinda good and then good to really good.

      Would you say a team that won 25 games and then 35 games is now a good team? Or that going from 35 to 45 means they’re now a great team? 10 wins seems like a natural progression of a team improving.

    61. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      10 wins seems like a natural progression of a team improving.

      “Seems like” is the operative phrase. Reality, however, is different the majority of the time, which Bruno underscored with a few examples, but would be easy to add to….with very few examples supporting your assertion of “got a little better each year.”

    62. english_knick

      Bruno – I agree, my point is if we win 24 and have the 4th pick, arguably we shouldn’t want Kyrie because we’re still too far from contending for him to be the difference…

    63. Hubert

      If I’ve got Zion, KP, Knox, and Frank… I’ll take a 27 year old Kyrie for 4 years. He’s probably ahead of our win curve, but he’s likely to still be extremely good when/if the young core comes into it’s own.

    64. Bruno Almeida

      @71

      Oh, I was more replying to swift’s post, I can totally see the reasoning behind not wanting Kyrie in this situation. I probably think more highly about him than most too.

      That’s not the point, Swift, my point is that it happens differently for every team. The Warriors did it in a similar way to what you call normal progression, but they also happened to have drafted a hall of famer mega star that had one of the most unique paths to superstardom, with all the injuries he had, then drafted two more all-stars and added a mvp candidate. If one small thing, let’s say Curry is 100% healthy in the 2012-13 season when they sucked and drafted Barnes, everything looks different in their progression. It’s safe to assume they don’t tank to keep their own pick, then they might have had a much earlier jump with Steph reaching is potential earlier, etc.

      My point is that there’s no formula for contender progression. Actually the teams that follow the progression you’re describing generally fall under the almost contender description, like the Raptors did, and never get good enough to reach the finals.

    65. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      The Dubs made a lot of smart decisions, but I would be shocked if they knew that Steph Curry would have a few of the greatest offensive seasons of all-time. I would call them a franchise that was good at getting out of its own way — dumping Monte Ellis; recognizing that Barnes, Ezeli, Lee, Speights, et al. were overrated via their team success; and firing Mark Jackson before his idiocy torpedoed their rise.

      They minimized bad decisions, got lucky (no cap smoothing) and hit some home runs on personnel choices. You can look at their patterns of decision making and draw some usefulness from them, but trying to duplicate a Steph Curry draft decision or Durant signing is total foolishness.

      The Spurs are a much better example of long-term strategy, especially since they’ve only had one high draft pick in 20 years.

    66. swiftandabundant

      That’s fair enough. I just have to laugh a little at this idea that we can be a shitty team that only wins 20 games yet still has a core that is enticing to a superstar to join us. Like there is some magical world where they lose 60 plus games but all of them are close games where they lose in the final minute of the game cause they just aren’t experienced enough. I don’t think it works like that. Bad teams get blown out. Average teams lose a lot of close games. Good teams blow out the bad teams more often than not.

      And when you are a bad team, young or not, once the losses and blowouts start piling up, even the most rational of fans who want a high draft pick start to look for someone to blame for all the losses. The coach, the GM, the top players on the team.

      If we’re good enough to attract a big time free agent next year, it probably means we’ve won at least 30 games and we won’t get a super high pick. If we suck enough to get a top 5 pick, then we probably won’t attract a big name. Its hard to have it both ways.

    67. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      @75

      We could suck and still be able to sign a star player with a bum knee. Hey, we’ve done it before!

    68. Z-man

      Just about every contending team (including the Spurs) has had an unconscious stroke of luck at some point in the process. It’s virtually impossible to build a perennial contender without luck. Heck, our entire 90’s playoff run was based on winning the lottery with Ewing! (conspiracy theories aside). But the key is: shrewd GMs compound lucky breaks with smart moves (Celts, Dubs, Spurs) and mediocre GMs squander lucky breaks with bad moves (OKC, Minny).

      The basic premise of “Buy Low, Sell High” applies here. Our problem is that we have endured two decades of “Buy High, Sell Low” management (actually longer, but Ewing bailed us out of jail for a decade.) Let’s see if that changes moving forward as we address all of our BH,SL artifacts (Noah, Lee, Timmy, Lance, and -cough,cough- Baker -cough,cough-.) I truly feel that Knox and Robinson might be lucky breaks for us. At the very least, they both will likely have higher “perceived” value than “actual” value for several years. But if we are to contend any time soon, a couple of our young guys (most notably KP, Frank, Knox, Robinson and WILLIAMSON?!?!?) have to become all-stars or need to be dealt at the right time for the right price for either more lottery tickets or a budding transcendent player.

    69. dtrickey

      Also been seeing a few Mudiay workout videos lately. I don’t give a lot of stock to the way a player looks against practice dummies, but upside is it looks like he is working on his range a bit. Looks good on the drive as well and facilitating off penetration. Colour me skeptical that he will improve at all, but at least he is working on some flaws.

    70. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      Just about every contending team (including the Spurs) has had an unconscious stroke of luck at some point in the process. It’s virtually impossible to build a perennial contender without luck.

      Starting in 1991:

      Bulls #1: not so lucky as they were good
      Rockets: lucky that Jordan “retired” or they don’t win a thing
      Bulls #2: lucky that no one realized how good Rodman was, but otherwise good
      Spurs #1: lucked into Duncan, but mostly good
      Lakers: Kobe was a 17-year-old that they bet right on. They lucked into Shaq since Orlando was too dumb to pay him
      Spurs ’03-’13: mostly good, although I wonder if they really knew that Kawhi would become a star
      Pistons: mostly good, sort of a Moneyball championship team “without a superstar”
      Heat: smart drafting and lucky to get Shaq before he was washed
      Celtics: fleeced Minnesota, so I would call this lucky AND opportunistic
      Lakers: fleeced Memphis, lucky AND opportunistic
      Mavs: I wonder how smart they actually were, since they lost their franchise center to FA (and he didn’t even get that much money from the Knicks)
      Miami: lucky to have 2.5 superstars take discounts to win
      Golden State: lucky and good
      Cavs: luckiest franchise in modern era

      Yeah, very few can win it all without being lucky. No one wins for an extended period of time without being good.

    71. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      Here, for your reference, are some details of which advanced stats are skewed. I did all the ones in the advanced table of basketball reference. I did the analysis on a table of every player in the 2017-2018 season. Some players are listed twice in the table because they played for two different teams. I did not consolidate them, but just used the data as is. I tried highlighting the stats in bold italic that are the ones that seem like the median is significantly different than the median but this didn’t come through in the cutting and pasting. The ones that would have been highlighted are FTr, TRB%, AST%, BLK%, OWS, DWS, WS, OBPM, BPM and VORP. Note that I didn’t look at the individual distributions, so I didn’t check if any distribution looked skewed. I just compared the mean to the median. The 25th and 75th percentiles of the actual data are also shown.

      PER TS% 3PAr FTr ORB% DRB% TRB% AST% STL% BLK%
      Mean 12.7 0.529 0.342 0.249 4.7 14.9 9.8 12.6 1.6 1.6
      75th Percentile 16.2 0.582 0.487 0.313 6.8 19.0 13.0 16.8 1.9 2.1
      Median 12.7 0.540 0.356 0.221 3.2 13.9 8.6 10.0 1.4 1.1
      25th Percentile 9.2 0.494 0.161 0.143 1.7 10.0 6.1 6.7 0.9 0.5

      TOV% USG% OWS DWS WS WS/48 OBPM DBPM BPM VORP
      12.9 18.6 1.0 1.0 2.0 0.071 -1.7 -0.7 -2.4 0.5 Mean
      15.7 22.3 1.6 1.5 3.1 0.120 0.2 0.7 0.3 0.7 75th Percentile
      12.2 17.6 0.4 0.6 1.1 0.079 -1.3 -0.6 -1.8 0.0 Median
      9.4 14.7 0 0.1 0.1 0.028 -3.3 -1.9 -4.3 -0.1 25th Percentile

    72. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      I will add that even though I evened out the spacing so that the headings were above the appropriate data, it didn’t take. I don’t know how to do better than the above, so you will have to count entries to know which number goes with which heading.

    73. swiftandabundant

      @ 81 – yes to this.

      I’m an actor/comedian. I had a really great teacher/mentor who used to say that luck happens to people who work hard and are well prepared for success to happen to them. If you aren’t ready to go to the next level, then a big break won’t really do you any good cause you haven’t put in the necessary work to take advantage of that lucky break.

      I think this applies to NBA teams. The good teams get “lucky” because they did the hard work of setting themselves up to take advantage of that lucky break. Teams that are poorly run have less good luck. Its not that they don’t have any good things happen to them but when those lucky breaks happen, it doesn’t really propel them the way it would propel a team ready to take advantage of a lucky break.

    74. Stratomatic "Porzingis, Ntilikina, Knox & Robinson are going to lead us to the promised land

      Just a few thoughts on Kyrie.

      1. He did not choose to go to Boston. He chose to leave the Cavs. He accepted a trade to Boston without fuss. That does not mean he wanted to go there. Notice who was not on this list.

      ” CLEVELAND, Ohio — Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving doesn’t have a no-trade clause, but that hasn’t stopped him from reportedly creating a preferred-destination list, one that includes four logical options.

      Minnesota Timberwolves. San Antonio Spurs. New York Knicks. Miami Heat. Each team has an appeal that the Cavs don’t.

      2. He already has a ring and may not feel pressured to compete for another one immediately.

      3. NY is on his preferred list because he grew up near NY and played a lot of ball here.

      We are thinking in terms of winning being the most important thing because for many players that is the priority. We have no idea what his priorities are. He may hate Boston and love NY and doesn’t need another reason given he will make piles of money either way and has already won.

    75. Z-man

      @80 drafting 3rd was pretty unbelievably lucky for the Bulls. If they drafted #1 they most certainly would have taken Hakeem, an all-time great but not a GOAT candidate. Do they win 6 championships with Hakeem? At #2 do they take Bowie? And did they really think that Jordan would be arguably the GOAT? And as was made clear from his hiatus, they were not anywhere near a championship team w/o him (for comparison, see: GSW pre-Durant.)

      Similarly, it was a stupid stroke of luck that Robinson went down just before a sure-fire once-in-a-generation player like Duncan was drafted, and that they lucked out enormously to move up to #1. They win nothing w/o Duncan. So I would replace “lucky but mostly good” with “very good after being ridiculously lucky.”

      But that’s what I’m talking about with the Knicks. Maybe now that they actually have draft picks and seem to be committed to young player, they will set themselves up better for when that lucky break comes along, if it hasn’t already.

    76. GoNyGoNyGo

      @84 – Thanks. It’s all about increasing your odds. First, keep your picks and/or add as many as you can. Second, do your homework and now the players. Third, know all the players in the league and in Europe. If you do all well, and build a solid organization that draws free agents, you’ll become lucky.

    77. Bruno Almeida

      The Cavs are really the only recent championship team I would atribute everything to luck. They lucked out on LeBron, on Kyrie and then on the pick that eventually became Love. It was an insane stretch of lucky breaks that they mostly managed to squander and even then LeBron eventually brought one home.

      The others have all obviously had good decisions made, but they all had to rely on lucky breaks to some extent. It’s clear that good management helps a lot and that luck plays a big factor, but there’s different equations for different cases.

      The Knicks are a rare case in which management has been overall pretty terrible AND we haven’t had lucky breaks in quite a while. It really kind of sucks to be us.

    78. Cock Jowles, #1 Purveyor of Wanton Chuckery

      NJ,

      Can you post it as a screenshot of the table? Hard to read as is.

    79. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      There’s no way to paste a picture. This site only takes text. here’s another try with spacing adjusted after pasting. Let me know if it’s better once posted.

      PER TS% 3PAr FTr ORB% DRB% TRB% AST% STL%
      Mean 12.7 0.529 0.342 0.249 4.7 14.9 9.8 12.6 1.6
      75th Perc. 16.2 0.582 0.487 0.313 6.8 19.0 13.0 16.8 1.9
      Median 12.7 0.540 0.356 0.221 3.2 13.9 8.6 10.0 1.4
      25th Perc. 9.2 0.494 0.161 0.143 1.7 10.0 6.1 6.7 0.9

    80. Knick fan not in NJ at this time

      It still didn’t work. The spacing was fine before I hit the “post comment” button. Does anyone have any suggestions how to keep the spacing when I post stuff? Otherwise I have to do one reformat spreadsheet, cut and paste for each individual stat.

    81. Hubert

      If you draft a SG with modest statistics at UNC 3rd after the team in front of you selects Sam Bowie, and that SG becomes arguably the GOAT, your success is attributable to luck.

      Same if you trade Vlade Divac to take a chance on a 17 year old high school kid after 12 teams passed on him, and he goes on to be the closest facsimile to the SG above.

      And if the scrawny kid you took at 7 who didn’t look like he could survive in the league becomes a multiple MVP after a series of rules changes fundamentally alters the game to make it more shooter friendly AND the undersized forward you took a your 2nd round pick turns out to be the best defensive player in basketball after the guy you drafted with the 6th pick to be that player completely flames out, you are also completely lucky AF.

      There is probably not a single champion who wasn’t more lucky than smart. Which is totally fine. I’d rather be lucky.

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