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Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Knicks Morning News (2018.12.05)

  • [Hoops Rumors] Knicks Considering John Wall Trade?
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 7:41:57 PM)

    The Knicks‘ long-term answer at the point guard position may not be in the roster and some within the league believe the team is gearing up to make the Wizards an offer for John Wall, Marc Berman of the New York Post reports. Berman writes that the Knicks are “stocking up” their young talent and […]

  • [NYDN] Knicks guard Trey Burke talks to the News about his approach to free agency
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 9:50:00 AM)

    Trey Burke has been through an NBA catalogue already, from lottery pick to failure to revitalized in New York.

    His next chapter is both exciting and uncertain.

    As the Knicks point guard awaits his first real foray into unrestricted free agency this summer, Burke outlined his approach and pitch…

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ Damyean Dotson garnering interest from Pistons, Nets: Report
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 6:21:39 PM)

    Dotson has flashed his potential of late, averaging a team-high 18 points and shooting 71.4 percent from 3-point range over the Knicks’ last three games.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ Trey Burke on upcoming free agency: ‘I want to be here in New York City’
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 2:56:43 PM)

    Trey Burke has made his free-agent priority clear: re-signing with the Knicks.

  • [NYPost] Grant Hill: It would be a mistake to give up on Ntilikina and Knox
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 10:13:32 PM)

    Grant Hill says he’s already been crushed by Knicks 6-foot-9 rookie forward Kevin Knox. “Duke wanted him badly — he was first on the radar, I heard from coaches,’’ Hill told The Post. “We were all heartbroken. He’s a really good kid, got a great skill set. But it has been a little up and…

  • [NYPost] Noah speaks out: ‘It was a rough couple years in New York’
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 9:21:27 PM)

    The Feb. 3 Garden rematch between the Knicks and Memphis is no longer about David Fizdale versus Marc Gasol. It’s been replaced by Fizdale versus Joakim Noah. Gasol, who seemed to put his Fizdale feud behind him in the first Knicks-Memphis battle, and Noah should receive heavy Garden boos, especially Noah. The ex-Knicks center officially…

  • [NYPost] The 2 teams chasing Damyean Dotson, who’s making Knicks decision harder
    (Tuesday, December 04, 2018 12:42:49 PM)

    It is an almost incredible turn of events that the best Knicks prospect out of the 2017 draft has become second-round swingman Damyean Dotson — not lottery-pick point guard Frank Ntilikina. In the past three games, Dotson is averaging a team-high 18 points on 67.8 percent shooting — 71.4 percent from 3-point range — and…

  • [NYTimes] Sixers Guard Markelle Fultz Out Indefinitely With Nerve Disorder
    (Wednesday, December 05, 2018 2:01:19 AM)

    The No. 1 pick in the 2017 draft will receive physical therapy for neurogenic thoracic outlet syndrome, an issue more associated with baseball players.

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    152 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2018.12.05)

    1. Frank

      Just to finish my own thoughts on the Hezonja/Vonleh/Mudiay acquisitions–

      Hezonja and Vonleh are completely different from the Derrick Williams / Afflalo moves in that we used exceptions to get them — it’s not wasting rent-able cap space.

      Like Zman said in the last thread, players that are willing to sign very team-friendly deals (ie. 2 years with the second year as a team option or otherwise nonguaranteed) may just not be the players that you want. Honestly, who was the last player to sign a deal like that that you would actually want at a price you would want (excepting Trey Burke)? A quick google search for this past summer netted me Jahlil Okafor, Raul Neto, Yogi Ferrell, and Shabazz Napier (if there are others please let me know). There are other guys like Favors and Jabari Parker and even Avery Bradley whose 2nd year was only partially guaranteed, but those were all for high $ (>MLE) contracts where they overpaid for the first year to get a team option on the second – we had no ability to give contracts like that.

      The downside of deals like Vonleh and Hezonja is of course that you dont’ get a lot out of rehabilitating their value. That said, if you do a really good job rehabilitating them, you could possibly trade them for something at the deadline, like the Grizzlies SHOULD have done with Tyreke Evans last year. Now are we going to get something for Vonleh or Hezonja at the deadline? Probably not, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility for Vonleh.

      Aha, here is a kind of listing of these “team-friendly” contracts:
      Team options in 2018-19: https://www.hoopsrumors.com/2018/04/nba-team-option-decisions-for-201819.html

      Nonguaranteed contracts: https://www.hoopsrumors.com/2018/08/201819-non-guaranteed-contracts-by-team.html

      Players and agents just don’t want to sign these deals, and with good reason.

    2. Z-man

      I said, in a conversation with Frank, that he had high physical potential and you interjected to say he was using it to defend chairs.

      Sorry, Z-man. You may be right about Frank in the long run, but you can’t argue that you’re not smug AF about it now.

      Interesting how you left out the part about you being smug after I politely refuted the notion that Frank had the second most physical upside on the team after Mitch. Here’s what I said:

      “This is simply not true. He has very poor fast-twitch explosiveness and is not particularly strong or coordinated for a guard. He has length, and that’s it. And physical upside is position-dependent. If he has to play the 3, his length isn’t all that big a deal, and his lack of speed and natural strength is a liability. Knox also has at least as much physical upside. Trier has short arms but a 40 inch vertical.”

      Anything smug about that?

      Now here’s what you said:

      “I’ve seen the dude stonewall Blake Griffin and Joel Embiid trying to back him down. Please don’t tell me he’s not strong or coordinated for a guard.”

      When you respond like that, what do you expect me to say?

    3. Hubert

      Check the new lottery odds again. The worst record in the league has a 48% chance of picking #5-30. The fifth worst record in the league has a 58% chance of picking #5-30. All those wins would cost us a whopping 10%.

      Ten percentage points have significant value. Not to mention the worst record can pick no lower than 5th while the 5th worst can pick as low as 9th. That has value, too.

      What is the value of winning 28 games instead of 24?

    4. bobneptune

      What is the value of winning 28 games instead of 24?

      Is this a trick question?

      Ummmm…. Zero? Oh wait… it actually has negative value!

    5. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      If you rehabilitate someone like Vonleh or Hezonja, you still get a benefit, even though you don’t have them under contract for the next season and have no Bird rights or anything like that. You then have a choice of using whatever cap space you have signing them or signing someone else. If you want to keep them, there should be some good will on the players part, and there is the practical matter that another team will probably have to pay a little more than you would to induce the player to move and not just stay put. So we havd the edge in bring Able to sign him. If someone we develop turns out to be great and we spend cap space on him, why is that bad? We will have spent cap space on a good player. That is what it is for.

    6. Hubert

      but those were all for high $ (>MLE) contracts where they overpaid for the first year to get a team option on the second – we had no ability to give contracts like that.

      We overpaid for one year of Hezonja. That dude’s next contract, if he even gets one, is going to be for the minimum.

      We could have overpaid for Vonleh by offering him the biannual instead of the vet’s min (that’s more than double what he’s making). Or we could have used our MLE if we hadn’t overpaid for Hezonja.

      We had the ability to offer deals in our favor.

    7. bobneptune

      As to acquiring players like Vonleh and Mario, it just makes zero sense without a second year option.

      All Vonleh is doing is USING the Knicks as his own personal highly paid G-league and in the process giving the Knicks more wins that are totally counterproductive. I don’t see and upside at all.

      Had he signed the same contract with say the Nets or the Celtics, he would be just as available to us after the season.

    8. Hubert

      If someone we develop turns out to be great and we spend cap space on him, why is that bad? We will have spent cap space on a good player.

      Like Lance Thomas? Like Steve Novak? Great deals we got for rehabilitating them. How soon after the ink dried on those deals did we regret them?

      More often than not these guys trick you into making you think you unearthed a gem. That your magic touch brought out the best in them. This flatters the ego and leads to bad decision making. I will bet my life that’s what’s going to happen with Mudiay.

    9. thenoblefacehumper

      The downside of deals like Vonleh and Hezonja is of course that you dont’ get a lot out of rehabilitating their value. That said, if you do a really good job rehabilitating them, you could possibly trade them for something at the deadline, like the Grizzlies SHOULD have done with Tyreke Evans last year. Now are we going to get something for Vonleh or Hezonja at the deadline? Probably not, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility for Vonleh.

      If we get anything of value for our one-and-done guys I’ll take back everything I’ve said on the matter. Suffice to say I’m not holding my breath, because everything we’ve heard from the front office indicates that they think there’s some vague value in “developing” them.

      I will say it again; they operate as if they don’t have a firm grasp on the cap and all of its nuances. The current situation reminds me of last year when people were making excuses left and right for them not trading KOQ before he unceremoniously walked and all we got for one of Phil’s precious few good moves were wins we didn’t want.

      Does anyone think that isn’t the most likely scenario when it comes to Vonleh (and to a lesser extent Mudiay, though to be fair since we can’t make a trade with the New York Knicks I doubt anyone wants him)?

    10. bobneptune

      If someone we develop turns out to be great and we spend cap space on him, why is that bad?

      Because it increases our win total in a season where wins are antithetical to the long term outlook where we could have signed him as an ufa without the extra wins. This isn’t rocket science.

      Now… if the prime directive is to win 30 games and have fewer ping pong balls then go ahead! That strategy has worked out so well in the past….

    11. bobneptune

      This flatters the ego and leads to bad decision making. I will bet my life that’s what’s going to happen with Mudiay.

      Cut your bleepin tongue out :-)

    12. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      I think people are still missing the point on why they are signing players like Vonleh, Burke, Hezonja, Mudiay etc… as reclamation projects.

      We’ve already been down this road multiple times. The best free agents are looking for winning situations. If you suck, you generally have to overpay to get someone even decent. The good players won’t even give you a meeting. You don’t just get to say, “I want to do x, y, z”.

      The idea behind signing these guys is the hope that a couple of them break out. Then you have an asset you can trade or a player you can sign back to a long term deal depending on who else is available in free agency and how much you have to pay.

      Vonleh, Mudiay, and Burke want to come back to NY given that we probably rescued their careers!

      There’s no lock they’d have a career or at least the chance they are getting to play without the opportunity we are giving them.

      Vonleh plays good defense, is shooting 3s well, handles the ball very well for a big man, is a perfect fit alongside KP, and is still very young.

      What would be wrong with giving Vonleh a fair long term contract when Durant/Irving/Leonard say “No”?

    13. Farfa

      Is there any reason why we’re discussing Vonleh (good) and Mario (abjectly bad) in the same sentence?

      Guys, 25 games have passed by (coincidentally it’s the amount of time Fiz said he needed to establish a proper rotation. If that’s true, grade: D). Mario is a terrible basketball player and there’s nothing to salvage.

    14. Bruno Almeida

      It’s funny that you mention Tyreke Evans, because he had a career 50 or so games where he looked really good for Memphis in a contract year, signed with the Pacers and has been absolutely unplayable, terrible in every way. Granted, there was more evidence of Tyreke being bad, but we’ve heard all of the same things that are being said about Mudiay, hey maybe he figured it out! Maybe he’s finally living up to the hype! He’s matured!

      Memphis should have traded him, yes, if there was a market. But I’m gonna take a wild guess here and say that there wasn’t much of a market for him, as Memphis was reportedly looking for a first rounder and didn’t want to add longer contracts and no one offered that.

      So yeah, I guess it’s fair to say I’m not too hopeful about the chances of trading Mudiay or Vonleh or Hezonja for anything, specially Mudiay who costed us a decent 2nd in a good draft already and would have to be worth more than that for the trade to be a net positive.

    15. ProjectKnicks

      I think people are still missing the point on why they are signing players like Vonleh, Burke, Hezonja, Mudiay etc… as reclamation projects.

      The best free agents are looking for winning situations. If you suck, you generally have to overpay to get someone even decent. The good players won’t even give you a meeting. You don’t just get to say, “I want to do x, y, z”.

      The idea behind signing these guys is the hope that a couple of them break out. Then you have an asset you can trade or a player you can sign back to a long term deal depending on who else is available in free agency and how much you have to pay.

      Yeah, I’m sure the difference between signing or not signing Durant is how ‘breakout seasons’ by Vonleh, Burke, Hezonja and Mudiay take us from 20 wins (and a good draft position) to 28 wins!!!!

      That ‘strategy’ worked so well with a ‘developed asset’ named KOQ!!!!

    16. Grocer

      Oh man. So the Knicks fucked up bad by not getting multi-year deals with the ‘trash with potential’ guys they signed this off-season (Vonleh and Hezonja). Maybe we offered, maybe we didn’t, it was a failure either way because Vonleh has turned into a pretty good player so it’s a waste because now we’ve developed a guy who might go somewhere else, other teams are interested (though for now the reported interest seems confined to Dotson and Ntilikina). The Knicks are also fucking up because Mudiay is developing better than expected (league average, which is nicely mediocre!) but because he’s ‘cost controlled’ his cap hold is too high. These are all combining because these improving players, though mostly trash when they were acquired, are leading to more wins which is a major Knicks fuck up. Except for Mario who is still trash but playing him is another Knicks fuckup because his 12-15 minutes should go to one of the rookie contract players who are here long term (none of whom play the 3/4 except Knox who’s getting plenty of minutes). The Knicks are also fucking up because Fizdale doesn’t always give straight answers in press conferences and first Dotson and now Frank have sat a couple of games so he obviously doesn’t know how to develop players. The Knicks are also fucking up badly in the draft, only finding players that are useful within 2 years ~50% of the time. The Knicks are also fucking up by not waiving Kanter (who is so bad on defense he can have no role going forward for any team other than bench energy) and instead playing him where he’s winning us games. This is even worse because the Knicks aren’t conducting a fire sale or outright waiving these surprisingly productive players in order to tank as hard as possible which is the most important goal and hence biggest fuck up.

      What did I miss, I know there’s more.

    17. Bruno Almeida

      @12

      Because there’s literally no evidence to conclude they will give the Knicks any sort of hometown discount, seeing as every player is a different person and they all have their own motivations, agents and interests.

      I like Vonleh and if his improvement is for real I’m happy for him to stay. But there’s literally zero evidence at this point to believe he or the others would show this hopeful loyalty you talk about. What if he hates living in New York? What if a playoff team comes calling and he decides he wants to give it a try? What if they see that they, themselves, rescued their own careers and New York was just the place where it eventually happened?

    18. Z-man

      Like Lance Thomas? Like Steve Novak? Great deals we got for rehabilitating them. How soon after the ink dried on those deals did we regret them?

      But like you said, we could have signed them to those deals if they were rehabilitated by another team. So the fact that they were bad signings had nothing to do with them being here in the first place, by your own logic. We should have just let them walk, or offered another minimum deal 1-year deal, and if they refused it, let them walk. The lack of a team option had nothing to do with the stupidity in resigning them.

    19. Hubert

      Aha, here is a kind of listing of these “team-friendly” contracts:
      Team options in 2018-19: https://www.hoopsrumors.com/2018/04/nba-team-option-decisions-for-201819.html

      Nonguaranteed contracts: https://www.hoopsrumors.com/2018/08/201819-non-guaranteed-contracts-by-team.html

      Players and agents just don’t want to sign these deals, and with good reason.

      Where’s the list of teams who went into the year with no chance at the playoffs but are using players on one year deals to win 5 extra games?

    20. thenoblefacehumper

      We’ve already been down this road multiple times. The best free agents are looking for winning situations. If you suck, you generally have to overpay to get someone even decent. The good players won’t even give you a meeting. You don’t just get to say, “I want to do x, y, z”.

      [citation needed]

      I know it’s nice to just sling vague ideas around because then you can never really be wrong, but if you’re going to say this there should something supporting it.

      The Wizards signed mediocre players for years with the idea of being competitive for KD and then couldn’t get a meeting. The Lakers’ big money signings blew up in their face and the literal GOAT signed with them anyway because he liked the players they got via accidentanking.

      I’m sure there are some examples the other way too, but I’m just not seeing this alleged correlation:
      signing mediocre players to contracts that don’t help you at all –> the free agents you actually want signing with you

    21. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      Yeah, I’m sure the difference between signing or not signing Durant is how ‘breakout seasons’ by Vonleh, Burke, Hezonja and Mudiay take us from 20 wins (and a good draft position) to 28 wins!!!!

      That ‘strategy’ worked so well with a ‘developed asset’ named KOQ!!!!

      The Wizards signed mediocre players for years with the idea of being competitive for KD and then couldn’t get a meeting.”

      I’m not even sure what the point is here.

      The idea is NOT that these guys are going to break out and that will help us sign Durant. It’s that it’s probably delusional to think we are going to sign Durant, Irving, or Leonard in the first place. So we need to keep building the team with draft picks and other young players that might be developed into long term keepers. It looks like Vonleh is a keeper. One of the lotto tickets was a winner.

      I would have kept O’Quinn. If they had perfect foresight and knew they were going to allow him to walk for nothing, they should have at least tried to get a 2nd rounder for him (maybe they did and failed). I think the reason they allowed him to walk is that they preferred to put something else into that space. You don’t always know what will be available in the future.

    22. Grocer

      The current situation reminds me of last year when people were making excuses left and right for them not trading KOQ before he unceremoniously walked

      KOQ is riding the pine on a minimum. Literally no team in the league was going to give up anything for him. This happens regularly with ‘reclamation’ players, it is well within possibility that the Knicks can sign both Vonleh and Mudiay to reasonable, cheap deals this summer (assuming continued good play and improvement).

      If someone we develop turns out to be great and we spend cap space on him, why is that bad?

      Because it increases our win total in a season where wins are antithetical to the long term outlook where we could have signed him as an ufa without the extra wins.

      So the argument here is that we should eschew any development of players until we’re actually good, at which point we’ll magically know which ones will be developable and can then sign only those to long term cheap deals? Asking for a friend.

    23. bobneptune

      Vonleh, Mudiay, and Burke want to come back to NY given that we probably rescued their careers!

      They are going to go to the team that offers them the most money and opportunity like 99% of professional athletes. What George Young said 3 decades ago is still true, “When they say it isn’t about the money…. its always about the money!”

    24. Hubert

      I think people are still missing the point on why they are signing players like Vonleh, Burke, Hezonja, Mudiay etc… as reclamation projects

      We’re definitely not missing the point. We get all your points and we just think it’s a terrible strategy.

    25. Grocer

      Where’s the list of teams who went into the year with no chance at the playoffs but are using players on one year deals to win 5 extra games?

      At time of signing the only expectation anyone could have for Vonleh and Mario based on past performance was that they would make us worse. So you’re pissed off our development coach developed one guy. Honestly, I think Mario is giving back to the other team whatever Vonleh is getting for us, but this is such a strange thing to be pissed about.

      “Damnit, the coach they hired seems to be good at his job!” It’s as if you wanted them to keep Rambis around.

    26. ProjectKnicks

      I’m not even sure what your point is.
      The idea is NOT that these guys are going to break out and that will help us sign Durant.

      Unfortunately, that’s exactly what you implied in your post (@12):

      We’ve already been down this road multiple times. The best free agents are looking for winning situations. If you suck, you generally have to overpay to get someone even decent. The good players won’t even give you a meeting. You don’t just get to say, “I want to do x, y, z”.

      You are parroting a view that has no support in reality: that free agents are looking for “winning situations”.

      First of all, Vonleh, Mudiah, Hezonja and the rest of the misfits will *NOT* turn the Knicks into a “winning situation” because they are *BAD*. And, even if they “break out” as you hope, they will only make our situation worse by taking us from, say, 20 wins and a good draft position to 28 wins territory and a worse draft position. We went through that with KOQ’s “breakout season”.

      Second, there is no basis in reality to think free agents’ main concern is landing in a “winning situation” (whatever that means surely won’t apply to our Knicks!). There is every reason to believe they are driven primarily by how much they can get and how long their contract will be.

      So, my point is ‘let’s stop the delusion’.

    27. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      So the argument here is that we should eschew any development of players until we’re actually good, at which point we’ll magically know which ones will be developable and can then sign only those to long term cheap deals? Asking for a friend.

      No.

      Apparently the argument is we should win 10 games every year until we’ve accumulated the equivalent of the dream team via the lottery. Of course, all the failed picks, all the very good but not great players we allowed to walk because we don’t want to give them extensions, agents we pissed off, fans and beat writers that went crazy, and lost revenue for the team (not to mention that some of us might have died from old age) are meaningless.

    28. bobneptune

      It looks like Vonleh is a keeper. One of the lotto tickets was a winner.

      It is NOT a lotto ticket if the only way you can use it moving forward is to pay market value for it. You have accomplished nothing other than winning a couple of extra games… Whoopie!

    29. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      Unfortunately, that’s exactly what you implied in your post (@12):

      It 100% WAS NOT. You guys took it the wrong way.

      All along I’ve been making the same argument. We may not get any top free agents to come here because we suck and we’ll have that cap space. There’s thing wrong with filling some of it some good young players like Vonleh.

    30. Hubert

      So you’re pissed off our development coach developed one guy.

      1. I don’t believe Fizdale has developed anyone.

      2. I’m pissed off because the organization is still employing the worst strategy in basketball.

    31. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      I’m not sure how anyone could even argue that wining doesn’t matter in free agency and actually be a Knick fan. Virtually every time we’ve had cap space in the last 10+ years we couldn’t even get meetings with the elite free agents because we sucked or they just gave us a courtesy meeting and laughed.

      Winning is not the only thing that matters, but it’s one of the things that does matter. Our chances of landing Durant, Irving, or Leonard are reduced because we suck. So we need an intelligent backup plan for that cap space. One intelligent thing to do would be to keep a good young player from our lotto tickets if any prove to be worthwhile.

    32. bobneptune

      So the argument here is that we should eschew any development of players until we’re actually good, at which point we’ll magically know which ones will be developable and can then sign only those to long term cheap deals?

      Yes…. a development player isn’t a development player if he isn’t contracted to you for more than this season. You are developing him for someone else. (usually)

      You want the Knicks to be the KC Athletics of the 1950-60’s when they were cash poor and developed Bob Cerv and Roger Maris and sold them to the Yankees!

      I’d rather take a flyer on a second round pick who had issues (Dotson, Trier or Robinson) and lock them up for multiple years (with team options) than “develop” Mario!

    33. Hubert

      Apparently the argument is we should win 10 games every year until we’ve accumulated the equivalent of the dream team via the lottery.

      Nope. Just this year.

      Strato, you do know the Knicks have been doing it your way for 18 years and that’s why we’re always shit, right?

    34. bobneptune

      “Damnit, the coach they hired seems to be good at his job!” It’s as if you wanted them to keep Rambis around.

      No…. the coach (and FO’s) job is to install a good system and integrate players into it that will be here for more than the next 4 months. That SHOULD be the priority.

      And the notion that singing Vonleh and Mario was a 3 dimensional chess “stealth signing” is beyond LOL. I’m fairly certain playing Hicks and Kornet those minutes would be a much better tanking strategy.

    35. bobneptune

      I’m not sure how anyone could even argue that wining doesn’t matter in free agency and actually be a Knick fan. Virtually every time we’ve had cap space in the last 10+ years we couldn’t even get meetings with the elite free agents because we sucked or they just gave us a courtesy meeting and laughed.

      I think the argument is winning 29 games versus 19 games means nothing to UFA’s. But it certainly improves the chances of getting an elite player through the draft.

    36. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      It is NOT a lotto ticket if the only way you can use it moving forward is to pay market value for it. You have accomplished nothing other than winning a couple of extra games… Whoopie!

      It would be lovely to know exactly which out of 3-4 young reclamation projects (if any) is going to break through beforehand so we could sign them to very long term bargain contracts before everyone else know, but this is the real world.

      It would also be lovely to never make a mistake in the draft, but that happens too.

      When you are rebuilding you are trying to find good young players that fit. You know you will eventually have to pay them fairly. If you drafted them, you may have to extend them before they are even worth it. Sometimes you’ll get a bust and have to overpay him for years (like Fultz, Okafor, Noel). If it’s a reclamation project, you’ll probably have to give them fair value to keep them the next year.

    37. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      I think the argument is winning 29 games versus 19 games means nothing to UFA’s. But it certainly improves the chances of getting an elite player through the draft.

      The problem with the thinking here is that everyone wants to simultaneously add a bunch of good young players on cheap long term contracts and also totally suck so we can keep adding even more of them in the draft. lmao That’s practically delusional.

      If you draft or sign a good young player, the team will get better (that’s the goal) and you’ll quickly have to pay for it. The exception is when injuries make you worse than your talent fro a year (or more) and you get to draft someone better than you deserve. Memphis is an example of that last year and so are we for that matter both last year and this year.

    38. swiftandabundant

      Bob, you’ve accomplished adding a good young player to your team going forward on a fair market contract. Considering how many contracts out there are overpaid, isn’t that a good thing? To find the depressed value, pump it up and then get a fair market value for it? I mean, Vonleh, Mario…these are former lottery picks. If they got their shit together just a little bit earlier they would be looking at big contracts after this season. But they haven’t yet so we’re in the good position of getting to develop them and then have the inside track to keep them. Its up to us to get them to sign a fair market value. And if after the first whiff of success that player wants to leave for the biggest contract he can find…well honestly then I’m not sure I wanted that player long term anyways. I wouldn’t want a player who is willing to quickly leave a good situation where he finally got to prove himself just to get the highest dollar amount possible as quickly as possible.

      Does every single player on your team have to be underpaid to their market value in order for us to be good or in order for you to be happy? If we resign Vonleh to a contract that is market value and he is a good player for us over the course of his next contract, what exactly would you be upset about? Every team will have players on cheap contracts, players on fair market contracts and players that are overpaid. Yes, even the warriors have overpaid players!

    39. swiftandabundant

      I think you’re also taking the Mitch Robs and Trier’s for granted. Its insanely lucky that we found these 2 guys this year in the second round and undrafted. Your plan of just finding more of those guys and locking them up…that sounds great on paper. But we could spend the next 4 years trying to find the next two Trier’s and Mitch Rob’s. Our next 5 or 6 second round draft picks could all turn into nothing. At least with the reclamation projects you’re getting guys who were highly touted at one time.

    40. swiftandabundant

      I don’t know if Lebron goes to LA if they won 19 games vs. the 32 they won last year. Last year, the Lakers were a fun, athletic team full of potential. They weren’t a playoff team, but they were an exciting team to watch if you were a Laker fan bc of their youth and potential and they won a decent amount of games for a team like that. If they only won 19 games, then their young core would be far less promising and Lebron probably thinks a lot harder about going to The Lakers.

    41. Bruno Almeida

      @28

      Yeah cause that’s really what’s being argued. Please. Everyone who has argued against you has understood your point, we just think your plan is garbage and will very likely result in the Atlantic division’s version of the Charlotte Hornets. Yet you keep this presumptuous attitude that nobody understands your master plan. “Just win trades and make good signings lol” is not a master plan.

      The Knicks have tanked exactly once in the last 18 years and it has been 18 years of failed draft picks, garbage signings and good free agents rejecting us. But let’s steady the course boys, this time our totally new-oh-forget-about-Mills-ok front office will do it right!

      People who want to tank want to do so because they think this franchise is so horribly managed from top to bottom that the only chance to be relevant is to luck out on stars in the draft. Is it a good plan? No it’s not. But if you hire Masai Ujiri or Danny Ainge then yes, I will subscribe instantly to the master plan of winning trades and making good signings.

    42. Bruno Almeida

      Nobody wants to tank for the sake of it, nobody likes losing and nobody has ever argued for a 5 year tank plan. This is such a stupid strawman. Is it really that hard to believe some people aren’t exactly excited about this Knicks roster and it’s future after this 25 games?

    43. swiftandabundant

      I think the thing that annoys me with the pro tank crowd on this site is that they constantly make this argument that the Knicks have been doing it one way for 18 years, ie, being mediocre but not shitty enough to get a high draft pick and that is why we haven’t ever been able to get good because we’ve missed out on superstars bc we were too stupid to tank.

      Except that isn’t what we were doing for the last 18 years. The last 18 years we’ve either traded away our first round picks or we traded the players we’ve drafted before we really developed them for aging players or “stars.” I mean we famously traded away first round picks that became Aldridge and Noah. The only time we stockpiled youth and talent was leading up to 2010 and even then we traded away some picks to clear cap space and once Melo was on the table, we traded away more picks and all of the youth we had. We double downed on that a few years later trading another pick for Bargs.

      So no, we have never really built a young team around our draft picks so its not really intellectually honest to claim that we’ve failed building that way because we’ve never tried it.

    44. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      Nope. Just this year.

      Strato, you do know the Knicks have been doing it your way for 18 years and that’s why we’re always shit, right?

      IMO, everyone is diagnosing the problem incorrectly.

      They are looking at the method used and assuming the team’s success or failure was entirely related to the method.

      WRONG!

      The path you take doesn’t matter that much because the overall market is relatively efficient. However, within that relatively efficient market, there is luck and there are also occasional “good values”. The way you succeed is to get lucky (not a good strategy to hang your hat on) or to identify where the value is at any given snapshot in time. In other words, it’s not the method. It’s the skill/intelligence of the management team in identifying where the value is and then also getting some decent luck.

      The problem has been that we’ve had shitty managements that made bad value deals. It wasn’t that we didn’t rebuild via draft.

      You can win via draft, trades, free agency or any combination of the above. But whatever you do, you have to do it intelligently. That means knowing where the value is NOW. So IMHO, excluding any one of those paths out of some idea that it “has to be the draft” is potentially excluding what you should actually be doing in the current snapshot of time.

      Of course, if I was smart enough to know where the value is all the time I probably wouldn’t be posting here. But that’s the idea.

    45. JK47

      1. This team has failed to do a proper rebuild for what is turning into decades. Plural.

      2. The current rebuild is going to be very slow, because we started with a paucity of assets. Thanks, Phil! It’s also slow because the 2017 and 2018 first round picks appear to be kind of terrible.

      3. It’s very, very difficult to get surplus value out of free agents. By nature you are paying for their past production. Most of them decline.

      4. The best places to get surplus value are good players on rookie contracts and true superstar players, who are worth more than their max contracts. These are the two kinds of players that are never on the Knicks’ roster.

      5. This year’s team was awful on paper, but in reality has been merely terrible, and absent a turn for the worse or the kind of dumb luck that never seems to come our way, we’re looking at another season of picking in the low lottery.

      6. Sooner or later this front office will say “fuck this,” blow up this rebuild and sign or trade for some second or third tier “star,” repeating the whole Sisyphean ordeal.

      7. As an end result, we’ll be bad for the rest of eternity.

    46. Bruno Almeida

      @44

      Dude, I’m the biggest fan of Gallinari and David Lee you’ll ever find, maybe second only to Owen, but are you really claiming the results would be much different if we kept the players we drafted? Because Ariza, Frye, Nene, Gallo, Chandler, Lee, Sweetney, Balkman, Shumpert and Mardy Collins doesn’t really look like a contender to me you know?

      The Knicks never built around their draft picks because they never drafted a star, so they felt the need to chase one elsewhere. Do you think if we drafted Chris Paul and not Channing Frye in 2005 he would have been traded before his rookie contract ended? Not even I think the Knicks management is this stupid.

    47. DRed

      One intelligent thing to do would be to keep a good young player from our lotto tickets if any prove to be worthwhile.

      Didn’t you make essentially this argument about not trading Kyle O’Quinn.

    48. ProjectKnicks

      I guess all sides have a point and the best possible approach is to try our best with players we can keep on team-friendly contracts, reclamation or not. We have little talent, so, we are tanking naturally – we just don’t need to jeopardize the tank by ‘developing’ (and winning ‘more’ when we should be losing more!) players we can’t keep *on team-friendly contracts* . Paying market-value for guys like Mudiay, Burke, Vonleh or Hezonja is bound to backfire. So, why ‘develop’ them if the team won’t get a good return on them, regardless of outcome?

      Needless to say, my reasoning assumes those guys’ ceilings are KOQ-level. Decent bench players.

    49. ProjectKnicks

      Wait, guys!

      What if we had drafted and played 5 Chandlers? Or 5 Hernangomezes? Or 5 Cole Aldriches? Or 5 KOQs?

      Those were ‘statistical gems’, remember?

    50. Grocer

      It is NOT a lotto ticket if the only way you can use it moving forward is to pay market value for it. You have accomplished nothing other than winning a couple of extra games… Whoopie!

      I don’t think it’s a given that market value for a Vonleh is going to be all that much. Market value for Mudiay’s next contract is certainly going to be less than his cap hold, probably similar to the rookie scale contract for an 8th pick. That still impacts your cap space but it’s not the end of the world as you need players like that on a successful team and they really aren’t just lying around waiting for teams to snatch them up. Consider the abundance of overpaid guys of that stature. Considering that team options aren’t super common to be able to get, a 2 year deal with a team option isn’t all that useful in terms of our timeline, and that it’s unlikely guys like that will pan out the Knicks didn’t really fuck this up. I don’t agree with Strato very often but he’s right about this one. It’s not ideal but it’s about as close as you can get.

      1. I don’t believe Fizdale has developed anyone.

      Fair enough, it is too soon to tell. But if you’re saying that coaches don’t have any impact in developing people at all I don’t know what to say. Everyone who’s ever had a good teacher or mentor is going to disagree with you.

      2. I’m pissed off because the organization is still employing the worst strategy in basketball.

      Trying to develop reclamation projects is a far cry from the win now moves you’re painting them as.

      a development player isn’t a development player if he isn’t contracted to you for more than this season. You are developing him for someone else.

      Again, not necessarily. We turned around KOQ and he got nothing, had we wanted him back (too old) we could have gotten him at the minimum.

    51. Farfa

      Until they stop playing Mario instead of [insert young player not in the dungeon here] I’m just going to assume they have no clue at all at executing a proper plan.

    52. Z-man

      @46 JK,

      1. This team has failed to do a proper rebuild for what is turning into decades. Plural.

      True beyond doubt.

      2. The current rebuild is going to be very slow, because we started with a paucity of assets. Thanks, Phil! It’s also slow because the 2017 and 2018 first round picks appear to be kind of terrible.
      Mostly true, depending on what you think of KP, having all of our firsts and a few seconds, and no contracts past 2021 except for Noah’s cap hold.

      3. It’s very, very difficult to get surplus value out of free agents. By nature you are paying for their past production. Most of them decline.

      Generally true, but good GMs find a way.

      4. The best places to get surplus value are good players on rookie contracts and true superstar players, who are worth more than their max contracts. These are the two kinds of players that are never on the Knicks’ roster.

      Not exactly true right now. KP is worth more than his current deal. So are Mitch and Dotson, and most likely, Trier. For now, Knox might be, my guess is that you could get equal value for him in a trade.

      5. This year’s team was awful on paper, but in reality has been merely terrible, and absent a turn for the worse or the kind of dumb luck that never seems to come our way, we’re looking at another season of picking in the low lottery.

      Possibly, but this hasn’t been the problem in and of itself, we just haven’t been good at valuing players among those available in the last two years. There were plenty of “high floor” no-brainer guys available in both years.

      6. Sooner or later this front office will say “fuck this,” blow up this rebuild and sign or trade for some second or third tier “star,” repeating the whole Sisyphean ordeal.

      TBD but this is the closest we’ve been to a proper rebuild in a long time.

      7. As an end result, we’ll be bad for the rest of eternity

      Maybe, but generally all good (and bad) things…

    53. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      I wouldn’t want a player who is willing to quickly leave a good situation where he finally got to prove himself just to get the highest dollar amount possible as quickly as possible.

      Yeah, that’s exactly how the real world works. I know if I worked my ass off to improve I’d leave millions of dollars on the table to stay with the place where I did that work. Because my appreciation is worth taking less than I am offered elsewhere. It’s just money, amirite? A couple million here, a couple million there, it all comes out in the wash.

    54. rama, king of superfluous poppycock

      Strat, for someone who’s all about value moves, you sure spend a lot of time defending moves that have no value.

    55. abk

      Ten percentage points have significant value. Not to mention the worst record can pick no lower than 5th while the 5th worst can pick as low as 9th. That has value, too.

      What is the value of winning 28 games instead of 24?

      You read my whole post right? I actually mentioned all of those points. It doesn’t change my conclusion: winning 28 or even 30 instead of 22 doesn’t not make a huge difference.

    56. thenoblefacehumper

      I wouldn’t want a player who is willing to quickly leave a good situation where he finally got to prove himself just to get the highest dollar amount possible as quickly as possible.

      Instead of dunking all over you for this terrible opinion, all I will say is that I know you have some good opinions on matters not related to basketball and this directly contradicts those.

    57. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I don’t even know what we’re arguing about right now. I bet there are front offices that don’t even know that Vonleh and Hezonja are still in the league, though.

      Here’s a litmus test for how grounded in reality our posters are: Is there a single player on the Knicks that you wouldn’t trade for Doncic right now?

    58. abk

      You read my whole post right? I actually mentioned all of those points. It doesn’t change my conclusion: winning 28 or even 30 instead of 22 doesn’t not make a huge difference.

      Oy. Would be nice if I could write clearly. Updated:

      “Winning 28 or even 30 instead of 22 doesn’t make a huge difference with the flattened lottery odds.”

      Brian said it well. Finishing in the top 4 is ideal, but if we stay at #5 the odds are quite nice too.

    59. Z-man

      Is there a single player on the Knicks that you wouldn’t trade for Doncic right now?

      Is KP married yet?

    60. ProjectKnicks

      Is there a single player on the Knicks that you wouldn’t trade for Doncic right now?

      Too farfetched.

      Is there a single player on the Knicks that wouldn’t trade for Peanuts right now?

    61. Grocer

      Obviously you trade anyone you have for Doncic.

      I bet there are front offices that don’t even know that Vonleh and Hezonja are still in the league, though.

      This. Just because you ‘rehabilitate’ a guy doesn’t mean that anyone else actually notices/think he’d do as well with them/are willing to pay to acquire him. If we had Vonleh on a two year deal and he improved next year as well then he’d probably be pretty expensive. After one decent year on the shitty Knicks a three or four year deal for Vonleh is in no way guaranteed to be pricey.

    62. Bruno Almeida

      I would trade the entire roster for Doncic and have a squad of him plus 14 g-leaguers, but I guess just trading like 5 guys for him would already have the same effect.

    63. swiftandabundant

      Rama…so you’re telling me if you were at a bad job/company where they misused you, didn’t treat you well…then fired you. And you went to a new company. You love your position…its a great fit for you. You love your boss. He’s the best boss you’ve had and you believe in him. The company is willing to help you grow and learn as an employee and they’re willing to commit to you long term after a year trial. You’re telling me you would throw all of that away the second another company offers you a bit more money? And saying “millions” isn’t really fair. They all make millions no matter where they play. Getting an extra million is like you or I getting an extra thousand a year.

      You’re going to just jump ship to a new company for a slight pay raise when you don’t know the boss, what kind of coworkers you’ll have, where your office will be, what your ultimate role will be…you would trade all of that knowledge of the good things you have for the chance to make a few dollars more? Oh, and this new company where you love the boss, your role, your commute, your coworkers, etc….its trending in the right direction, making good profits, seems to be on the upswing…you trade that to make a little bit more after having your experience at the first place that you hated?

    64. Grocer

      Too many people here seriously underestimate the value of ten percentage points.

      It’s only a 2.5% increase at getting Zion, so maybe some folks are overestimating how important it is.

      EDIT: My mistake, it’s a 2% increase.

    65. JK47

      You’re going to just jump ship to a new company for a slight pay raise when you don’t know the boss, what kind of coworkers you’ll have, where your office will be, what your ultimate role will be…you would trade all of that knowledge of the good things you have for the chance to make a few dollars more?

      Except it’s not going to be a “few” dollars. What if somebody offers Vonleh 3/10 and the Knicks offer him 3/9. Pretend that’s you. In that situation, are you going to walk away from a million bucks because you “know where your office will be”?

      Those numbers look like chump change when you have a fantasy basketball mindset, but these are real people. This might be the last NBA contract Noah Vonleh gets, and yeah, I’d expect him to really want to maximize it.

    66. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      Strat, for someone who’s all about value moves, you sure spend a lot of time defending moves that have no value.

      IMO, it would be foolish to not sign a player like Vonleh back if he continues to play this well and it becomes clear that Durant, Irving, and Leonard are not coming (the most likely scenario). I’m not the least bit concerned that we might win a few extra games because we were smart or lucky enough to sign him and he turned his game around. I’m not the least bit upset that we don’t have greater control over him for cheap because there’s no way you can know which of your lottery tickets are going to be winners. You can’t lock them all up.

      If he keeps playing well, I’d love to have him on the team long term.

      If we can get a really good offer him, I’d be happy with that too.

    67. ptmilo

      If he keeps playing well, I’d love to have him on the team long term.

      what is the max contract you would offer him before letting him walk if the season ended today

    68. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      Except it’s not going to be a “few” dollars. What if somebody offers Vonleh 3/10 and the Knicks offer him 3/9. Pretend that’s you. In that situation, are you going to walk away from a million bucks because you “know where your office will be”?

      If you like him and want him on your team long term you pay him the 10m and figure out how to clear the extra few hundred thousand in cap space another way.

    69. Brian Cronin

      Finishing in the top 4 is ideal, but if we stay at #5 the odds are quite nice too.

      Yeah, if they stick with where they are now, it’s all good. It’s just whether they actually will stick here.

    70. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      what is the max contract you would offer him before letting him walk if the season ended today

      It’s a very difficult question because the sample size is still much too small to know what he’s actually worth. It’s 25 very productive games at age 23 vs. 4 seasons at ages 19-22 of being less than mediocre. I would assume some of the improvement is real, but some may be aberrational. You wait and watch. But if someone makes an offer that assumes it’s 100% certain that this is his new sustainable level, you take the deal.

    71. Bruno Almeida

      @72

      But then he’s not giving you a discount, he’s going to be paid by the Knicks exactly his market value, which defeats the purpose of the entire conversation.

      Mind you, I agree that if Vonleh keeps up and agrees to a reasonable contract the Knicks should sign him. I just disagree with the perception that marginal players are going to give the Knicks discounts for some sort of loyalty.

      It might happen, it’s just not something we should rationally count on.

    72. Grocer

      So according to tankathon, the odds of picking in the top four drop 6.1% from 4th worst record to 5th, and 4.9% from 5th to 6th. The difference between 1-3 and 6th is a drop of 15.1% for a top 4 pick. Thats not a huge punishment for winning a few more games. It’s not nearly as stark this year.

    73. thenoblefacehumper

      The problem with the “lottery ticket” idea is if you win the lottery you actually get to keep the money.

    74. nicos

      The Knicks wanted as few salaries on the books as possible so they could have max space this summer- they weren’t looking to sign guys for multiple years. There’s no way Vonleh was going to accept a team option on his minimum contract and the Knicks didn’t want to give him guaranteed money beyond this year. Mudiay is still on his rookie deal so no renegotiation there. You can argue that trying to sign a max guy now is a bad strategy or that moving Hardaway would have been (and still is) the best way to clear cap space. I’m sure they’d move Lee but he’s not going anywhere without a sweetener and maybe one of Vonleh or Mudiay turns out to be that. But you have to field a team and my guess is that they thought that even if Vonleh,Hezonja and Mudiay showed some improvement the team would still be bad enough to get a high lottery pick and if one of them did look like he’s worth resigning you could do so if no max guy is coming.

    75. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      But then he’s not giving you a discount, he’s going to be paid by the Knicks exactly his market value, which defeats the purpose of the entire conversation.

      Most contracts are not going to be a bargain (at least not for long). Part of it also fit. He should work well with KP because he rebounds and defends.

      The killers are the BAD long term contracts.

      The Hardaway and to a lesser extent Baker deals were problematical. Given that they were multi year deals and both too rich, they delayed and hurt our ability to rebuild a bit. That’s the more common problem because you have less space than you should and you can’t get out from under it. You can always move a fair contract for a good player.

    76. Brian Cronin

      So according to tankathon, the odds of picking in the top four drop 6.1% from 4th worst record to 5th, and 4.9% from 5th to 6th. The difference between 1-3 and 6th is a drop of 15.1% for a top 4 pick. Thats not a huge punishment for winning a few more games. It’s not nearly as stark this year.

      I do agree with that, but when I say “stay here,” I mean roughly 5-6. It’s so easy to fall from there to 8-9, which is when you’re down 10 points or more. But yes, falling from 5 to 6 isn’t really a cause for alarm.

    77. Grocer

      Right now we have no idea so I’d offer Vonleh 4/12 and see if he bites. If he keeps playing well we’re probably looking at something like the Thomas contract. 6ish per, back end not fully guaranteed.

    78. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      I’m sure they’d move Lee but he’s not going anywhere without a sweetener and maybe one of Vonleh or Mudiay turns out to be that.

      What about Burke?

      Mudiay was so bad before this very short term run I don’t think anyone is going to want him unless he continues playing well for awhile longer. Burke is probably more attractive to the market. If we find a team that needs a PG (the Suns?) and attach him to Lee, that might do the trick. It also accomplishes something for us. Frank can go back to playing more PG.

    79. Grocer

      I do agree with that, but when I say “stay here,” I mean roughly 5-6. It’s so easy to fall from there to 8-9, which is when you’re down 10 points or more. But yes, falling from 5 to 6 isn’t really a cause for alarm.

      I guess we could beat out Miami? We probably outplay Brooklyn depending on when Levert comes back but unless somebody doing better than us does blow it up* relatively soon I don’t see us falling farther than 7. Depends on KPs return obvi.

      *Wiz, Spurs, Hornets all might, maybe. Rockets? Pellies?

    80. Stratomatic "In economic terms, the Knicks are in a double dip recession"

      I think when KP returns and shakes off some of the rust he’s going to improve the team more than people think. One of our problems right now is lineup construction. We always seem to have 3 players on the court that are weak on the same side of the ball. I think weak players have a compound impact.

      1 = -1
      2 = -3
      3 = -6

      KP plays both sides. I think he’ll help more than the value of his own stats.

    81. Bruno Almeida

      I honestly just hope we get lucky for once in our godforsaken existence as fans and get a top 3 pick. I’ll endure a thousand more arguments about how tanking never works and about anything Ntilikina if we have a real prospect that we don’t have to jump through ten hoops to be excited about.

    82. Jack Bauer

      @85 – “I honestly just hope we get lucky for once in our godforsaken existence as fans and get a top 3 pick. I’ll endure a thousand more arguments about how tanking never works and about anything Ntilikina if we have a real prospect that we don’t have to jump through ten hoops to be excited about.”

      We can reduce all our pontificating to this comment.

      Vonleh is worth keeping and they should be able to at a reasonable cost. As unpopular as it is around here I am warming up to the idea of giving Mudiay a chance to see if he can sustain his recent relative improvement for the rest f the year. If so even he might be worth considering re-signing at a reasonable cost.

    83. JK47

      Vonleh should be cheap because nobody seems to want players like Vonleh. Me, I dunno, I think power forward types who can score efficiently and rebound are kind of a market inefficiency, but whatta I know

    84. JK47

      Anybody feeling Ja Morant as a PG prospect for our Knicks? The guy can attack a closeout like nobody’s business and he’s a boxscore stuffer extraordinaire. Doesn’t shoot the 3 great but he did make 80% of his free throws last year so he’s not hopeless.

    85. kevin5318

      Frank Ntilikina, usually chill, was as demonstrative with the media today as I’ve seen him. He was antagonistic when questioned about how he’s holding up after 2 DNPs. Don’t know if it was questioning or frustration or the situation. Don’t think it’s a bad thing either.

      — Mike Vorkunov (@MikeVorkunov) December 5, 2018

    86. Hubert

      So according to tankathon, the odds of picking in the top four drop 6.1% from 4th worst record to 5th, and 4.9% from 5th to 6th. The difference between 1-3 and 6th is a drop of 15.1% for a top 4 pick. Thats not a huge punishment for winning a few more games. It’s not nearly as stark this year.

      It’s all downside.

      And I can’t wait til porzingis is back and you’re doing the math on dropping from 8 to 10.

    87. Bruno Almeida

      @88

      Liking him a lot, seems to have a very good handle and driving skills, can pass, rebounds very well for his size, good hands on defense, there’s a lot to like. With the lack of PGs in the draft he should go around where Lillard was drafted, between 5-8, tankathon has us picking him at 6th. If we can’t get Zion or Reddish he’s my choice so far.

    88. rama, mayor of Realitytown

      You’re going to just jump ship to a new company for a slight pay raise when you don’t know the boss, what kind of coworkers you’ll have, where your office will be, what your ultimate role will be…you would trade all of that knowledge of the good things you have for the chance to make a few dollars more?

      A few dollars more? While you may not believe it, a million dollars is not a few. Nor is two million, or three. Especially when your earning window is so, so narrow! After agent fees, taxes, etc, a marginal player who can’t be sure he’ll still be in the NBA in five years is in no position to shrug off a net of an extra $500k, never mind $1m or more. Amortize that over 35 years and it doesn’t seem so …immoral, or whatever you’re implying.

      Also, the players aren’t employees. The owner isn’t their owner. The coach isn’t their boss. They are independent contractors, free agents. It is a reciprocal relationship. It isn’t truly analogous: they are their own bosses, with no need to feel “grateful” for having chosen a good situation for themselves.

    89. rama, mayor of Realitytown

      On the flip side, Melo giving a discount of $500k in the context of the $200mm or more he’s made over his career – that’s just laughable.

    90. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      But David West signed with Golden State for league minimum when he could have kept his old contract for fourteen million.. The heatles took less to play together. I’m not saying that Vonleh will take an insulting offer, but he’s likely to be reasonable if he wants to stay.

    91. Brian Cronin

      On the flip side, Melo giving a discount of $500k in the context of the $200mm or more he’s made over his career – that’s just laughable.

      The craziest thing about the Melo deal is that Phil clearly didn’t believe that the NBA cap was about to go up all at once (NBA execs, at the time, believed they could get the players to agree to a gradual increase, which frankly probably would have been better for the players union as a whole, as everyone would still get paid, they would just share in the wealth instead of it all going to the guys who happened to be free agents that season), which is why him taking a sliiiight cut was meant to be a big deal, as the cap was going to be so tight that it would have had some impact…and then the cap exploded and it was meaningless, but at the same time, it made Melo’s awful contract look less annoying compared to, say, Mozgov, Deng, etc. But those deals were not anyone’s mind when Melo signed his deal.

    92. Bruno Almeida

      Come on. David West wanted a title no matter what and had made over 90 million in his career. LeBron, Bosh and Wade got together for titles and because they were friends. How does that have anything to do with a guy who finished his rookie contract last year after making about 11 million, was traded twice and let go by his last team and then signed for the minimum.

    93. Brian Cronin

      Karl Malone once signed for the bi-annual exception (after turning down $20 million a year from the Jazz), so the Knicks should be in luck with Kevin Durant next season, as they still have the bi-annual available!

    94. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      No one is saying he’s going to give you a David West type deal, I’m just saying he’s likely to give a reasonable deal, and it will be much easier go resign him than if was playing for another team and we wanted to sign him as a free agent.

    95. nicos

      I think both Vonleh and Mudiay would likely give the Knicks the opportunity to match any offer they get from another team (we’d only have to worry about Mudiay in the fairly likely event we renounce his bird rights) but I doubt there’d be any serious discount available. One thing to consider with Vonleh is whether we would guarantee him a starting job- he’s a better fit with KP right now but if Mitch progresses it might be clear that he’s going to be a starter next year. Vonleh might take a little less to be a starter on a relatively short deal (say 3 years with the last a player option) but if he’s going to be coming off of the bench he’ll probably want as much as he can get on the open market.

    96. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      I’m doubting Vonleh will get an offer for starter quality money from some other team, but it could be. Otherwise I agree with you (Nicos). But either way we can keep him if we want to. We just have to decide what he is worth to us. That’s the advantage to already having him on our roster. If he was on another team, we couldn’t necessarily get him if we wanted to, or we might have to overpay a lot to get him.

    97. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      I think if/when KP comes back this season and ruins our draft positioning (the November Man will become the April Man) and we see what Vonleh and KP can do together, we’ll know whether or not we should be re-signing Vonleh. I think the same goes for Mudiay and whether he has the passing chops to consistently set KP up for success in P&P/R situations.

      I’m about ready to see what Mudiay, Dotson, Hardaway, Vonleh, and Porzingis look like on the floor together.

    98. geo

      most days i spend at work i’m either fantasizing about sex, wondering about different gear sets for my fantasy mmorpg that i’m hooked on, or, thinking when the heck will timmy ever get a little consistency in his game…yeah, not consistently bad…

      today, i spent pretty much the whole day thinking of hogtieing someone and dragging them behind my horse (rdr2 online just came out)…betcha can’t do that in millie bor(ing)nes…

      don’t judge…

    99. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Also guys, tonight we’re going to fall down to 6th in the lottery order. Brooklyn is tied with us and they play the 15-7 OKC Thunder. We’re going to blink and Miami will be beneath us as well.

    100. ptmilo

      I know people got excited for Jonathon Simkons for a week in SA, but he sucks and Isaac should be starting.

      Also, for the couple of posts claiming KP will boost are win total, I doubt it. Both LaVine and Jabari were practice with the team by now. Usually guys don’t come back until two months or more after their first practice. KP doesn’t sound close to practicing. And he will have a tighter leash than non unicorns when he does return. Even if does come back, I don’t think he’ll play enough minutes to matter. I’d be surprised if we saw him before March at this point.

    101. Bruno Almeida

      Yeah, and even after returning KP is probably going to be in a minutes restriction regime as he gets used to playing again. Also, he’ll replace the minutes that the most productive guys on the team are playing, the positions of Vonleh, Kanter and Robinson, so unless he hits the ground running and is very good when he comes back, which would be very surprising, it shouldn’t make a huge difference.

    102. geo

      I know people got excited for Jonathon Simkons for a week in SA, but he sucks and Isaac should be starting.

      ugh, i was guilty of being on the jonathon simimimons hype train when he was in san antonio…i just looked at his stats…he didn’t seem so awful last year for the magic…

      not so great stats this year though…but, he’s only 29…still lots of potential…

    103. ptmilo

      they use Diallo like a 6’ 5” Nerlens Noel, when was the last time you remember a 6’ 5” off guard taking over 60pct of their shots at the rim

    104. Brian Cronin

      they use Diallo like a 6’ 5” Nerlens Noel, when was the last time you remember a 6’ 5” off guard taking over 60pct of their shots at the rim

      Aha, so that explains that! Thanks! That’s an interesting approach.

    105. ptmilo

      Steph has 6 threes at the half yet they’re trailing the Cavs. I feel like that’s a great set up for him to try to retake the record from Klay.

    106. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      From ESPN: “Derek Fisher joins L.A. Sparks as head coach”

      I wonder what kind of offense he will run.

    107. Brian Cronin

      At least now it will be a little more interesting when Fisher starts trying to date one of his player’s wives.

    108. cgreene

      I just chatted up James Jones who is now in the Suns FO in an elevator at my hotel in Portland. Asked him what stats he pays most attention to. Nada. All eye test. Nice guy though.

    109. Brian Cronin

      I just chatted up James Jones who is now in the Suns FO in an elevator at my hotel in Portland. Asked him what stats he pays most attention to. Nada. All eye test. Nice guy though.

      They almost made him the GM, right?

    110. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I just chatted up James Jones who is now in the Suns FO in an elevator at my hotel in Portland.

      Meet me in the Sentinel lobby, we’ll get drinks at the whiskey library.

    111. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Also I had been a fan of Whiteside for a long time (wanted the Knicks to draft him in the 2nd round in ’10), but I don’t think I’d take him at the vet’s minimum. Dude is going to pout his way out of the league, but not before he picks up his $27M option AND demands a trade in the same breath

    112. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Hah, I live on the other side of town and am firmly planted in my armchair, gonna have to raincheck. But you should go to the Whiskey Library. And for god’s sake, don’t go to Voodoo Donuts. Go to Blue Star and get one of the old fashioneds.

    113. bidiong

      The mistakes that will haunt Mills and Perry occured when Phil was GM. Had we been using our cap space to rent for bad contracts and first round picks we would have a lot more potential talent on the team. Since that’s not the case and we have KP they are going to be forced into signing somebody for max money this year to make KPs camp happy. If KP can’t be something near a 30-10-5 a night guy we’re going to be in purgatory until he retires or we deal him. Sorry guys, but that’s where it’s at.

    114. DRed

      Assuming we miss out on Zion what do you college basketball watchers think about this kid Hunter at Virginia? His per minute numbers are preposterous

    115. swiftandabundant

      So unless KP averages what MJ and Wilt averaged a game for their careers, we’re doomed? That’s it? Oh and unless he averages the same number of rebounds a game as shaq and dishes out assists like he’s a PG we’re doomed? So basically you won’t be happy unless KP is literally the all time greatest basketball player ever?

    116. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Assuming we miss out on Zion what do you college basketball watchers think about this kid Hunter at Virginia? His per minute numbers are preposterous

      would

      man did anyone else see that Giannis dunk on Blake?

      https://streamable.com/jsxzn

      that’s a point guard

    117. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      So unless KP averages what MJ and Wilt averaged a game for their careers, we’re doomed? That’s it? Oh and unless he averages the same number of rebounds a game as shaq and dishes out assists like he’s a PG we’re doomed? So basically you won’t be happy unless KP is literally the all time greatest basketball player ever?

      I’d settle for “shoots league-average TS%” but I know that I ask a lot of my max-contract players

    118. Bruno Almeida

      I made a bet with some friends that Kawhi would be league MVP this year, but damn, Giannis is scaring me. I still stand by my bet, as I think the Raptors will win 60+ and run away with the east, but Giannis has a very good chance of going for it.

    119. bidiong

      We could also luck into drafting Zion. I would also be happy with this path. Zion, Unicorn, and KD would be fun as well.

    120. bidiong

      I’m also not writing like I believe KP would do that. I just think that would have to be the reality of what he would have to do with what we have moving forward if we didn’t magically get Kevin Durant to come here. If we somehow lucked into the #1 pick and could draft Zion I think we’d have a much better chance and he wouldn’t have to be Godly. KP is the Unicorn though. He was billed as having the tools to be an unstoppable force…. If. I doubt it at this point. Probably will have injury issues for the rest of his career. I hope not. I’d love him to be one of the greatest ever.

    121. ptmilo

      What is JJ Redick thinking when Butler calls him over just to earnestly advise “we’ve got to get stops, but more importantly, we’ve got to get shots up”

    122. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      Toronto is the best team in the NBA unless Mario Hezonja’s step-over unlocked Super Giannis

      Hunter is in my top 5 for this draft so far.

    123. Bruno Almeida

      With the way Leonard is playing, even super Giannis might not be enough. He had 5 steals today, he really is the best two-way player in the league right now. It’s kinda unbelievable when you think about it, that Ujiri managed to unload the DeRozan contract and get Kawhi for it, even if he doesn’t re-sign it’s gotta be a win right?

    124. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada

      @143

      I mean the whole NBA, full stop. Of course, if Curry comes back healthy and Green and Klay remember how to play basketball again, they’ll be the best team in the NBA. But this current iteration of the Warriors is the weakest contender yet, and I think Draymond really has lost a step and Klay is out of his depth. And, of course, Iggy isn’t getting any younger. They’re quite vulnerable even if Curry and KD play to the level we’re accustomed to.

      I think Giannis has been the best player in the NBA this year (followed by Jokic and AD), but if this is Kawhi shaking the rust off, he’ll be right in the mix for MVP.

    125. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

      I agree the Warriors currently aren’t as good as the Raptors. But they are getting Cousins back after Christmas. He is about to start practicing. That could help a lot, or, maybe not.

    126. Brian Cronin

      I read that as “they are getting Cousins for Christmas,” and it still works as a statement. :) It’s a hell of a present!

    127. Brian Cronin

      Kawhi has to resign to make it a good deal. I think he will if they make the finals.

      I like it even if he doesn’t resign. When the offseason began, some of us were talking about whether the Raptors wouldn’t be better off just dumping DeRozan to clear his salary to use on players who could fit the future of the team better, and they did that and got one of the best players in the NBA for a year! Even if that’s all they get, I think it was a reasonable price to pay. But of course, they need him to re-sign for it to be amazing.

    128. Brian Cronin

      The Nets passed the Knicks in the tankathon with an epic collapse against the Thunder. It’s funny, they’ve lost a lot of close games during their long losing streak. Their expected win/loss is a shocking 11-14! That’s a whole lot of bad luck! On top of the bad luck to lose LeVert, of course.

    129. Brian Cronin

      It’s early in the season still, of course, but holy shit, the first 14 teams in the Western Conference are separated by just 5.5 games!! That’s nuts!

    130. Brian Cronin

      I still bet that they’ll end up on the outside of the West’s playoff picture by the season’s end, but how hilarious would it be if the Hawks don’t even end up with a lottery pick from the Mavericks? What a ridiculously dumb trade.

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