Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Knicks Morning News (2019.01.11)

  • [FOXsports] Pacers hopeful to get Turner (and his much-needed defense) back against Knicks
    (Friday, January 11, 2019 1:48:04 AM)

    Indiana Pacers-New York Knicks preview

  • [Newsday] Pacers hopeful to get Turner (and his much-needed defense) back against Knicks
    (Friday, January 11, 2019 1:48:04 AM)

    Indiana Pacers-New York Knicks preview

  • [NYPost] Frank Ntilikina doesn’t think he’s quite ready to return
    (Thursday, January 10, 2019 9:36:57 PM)

    Frank Ntilikina was one of the last players on the court Thursday at Knicks practice, and appeared to be running and cutting with ease as he moved through drills. But the second-year guard may still need a few more days before he returns to game action after spraining his left ankle last Friday in Los…

  • [NYPost] The perfect storm making Knicks an option for bettors
    (Thursday, January 10, 2019 6:34:21 PM)

    After a brutal road trip that spanned two weeks, and included a West Coast swing, the Knicks return home for the first time since a loss to Milwaukee on Christmas Day. The dreaded first-game-home angle looms for New York. After a long road trip, a team is usually in a play-against spot, but this meeting…

  • [NYPost] Benching behind Mario Hezonja’s sudden breakthrough
    (Thursday, January 10, 2019 12:01:49 PM)

    Mario Hezonja’s most recent stretch glued to the Knicks’ bench has him wishing he had a time machine. Not so the small forward could have signed elsewhere in free agency last offseason, but so he could have entered the NBA with the coaches he has now. “I wish they were my coaching staff in my…

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ Enes Kanter says he’s received ‘hundreds of death threats’
    (Thursday, January 10, 2019 10:45:34 AM)

    Knicks center Enes Kanter told CNN he has received “hundreds of death threats” over his comments regarding the Turkish government and him not traveling to London for fear of his life.

  • [SNY Knicks] WATCH: Knicks’ Mario Hezonja explains how lack of playing time actually helped
    (Friday, January 11, 2019 1:19:46 AM)

    For the past month, Knicks F Mario Hezonja hasn’t seen the hardwood much as head coach David Fizdale moved him out of the rotation. But that was until the team’s surprising win over the Lakers on Jan. 4.

  • [NYTimes] An Adult’s ‘Clerical Error’ Threatens a Girl’s High School Hoop Dreams
    (Friday, January 11, 2019 10:00:10 AM)

    U.S.A. Basketball sent Maori Davenport a check in error after she played for one of its national teams. Alabama officials ruled her ineligible for her senior season in high school.

  • [NYTimes] Group Led by Nets Co-Owner Nears Deal for W.N.B.A.’s Liberty
    (Friday, January 11, 2019 3:27:15 AM)

    Joseph C. Tsai’s investment group owns 49 percent of the Nets, and now may take over one of the three founding W.N.B.A. teams still in existence.

  • [NYTimes] On Pro Basketball: LeBron James Is Hurt. Step Forward, Kyle Kuzma.
    (Thursday, January 10, 2019 10:59:26 PM)

    The Lakers’ lesser lights get a chance to operate on their own.

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

    41 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2019.01.11)

    1. Brian Cronin

      My favorite joke on Twitter about that crazy Spurs/Thunder game was, “Wow, Kawhi Leonard should sign with the Spurs this offseason to play with this LaMarcus Aldridge guy!”

    2. Brian Cronin

      Interesting to see the NY Post have a whole column about why people should bet on the Knicks tonight.

    3. ptmilo

      Interesting to see the NY Post have a whole column about why people should bet on the Knicks tonight.

      this is the deal the NYP signed this summer w/ VSIN, which is the gambling content company brent musberger founded when he quit broadcasting. they are just running the VSIN content (which is horrible).

    4. thenoblefacehumper

      We neeeeeeeeeed to pick above Phoenix, and probably Chicago too. Phoenix would grab Morant in an instant and I don’t think Chicago is all in on Dunn.

      We could probably get away with picking below the Hawks and Cavs because they both just took point guards.

    5. d-mar

      I still don’t know how to evaluate Russell Westbrook. Last night he scores 24 points on 22 shots, his TS% is currently at a career low .478, he’s turning the ball over almost 5 times a game, yet he’s averaging 10.7 assists and 10.8 rebounds a game.

      So is he a top 10 player? Top 20?

    6. wetbandit

      Ja is a great athlete who attacks the rim, passes very well, and gets to the line a lot. Very poor shooter and poor defender. I’d probably still take him at 2, with this shallow as a puddle draft class

    7. Brian Cronin

      Yeah, I couldn’t help but think of how embarrassing that play must have been for the defender.

    8. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      Valuing Westbrook is a mystery wrapped in an enigma for me. He clearly adds value with his rebounds and assists, but I think some of the rebounds are strategic as opposed to incremental to the team. I’m not going to call it stat stuffing. It’s more like a team strategy to allow Westbrook to get some extra rebounds so he can immediately start the break.

      I can’t see how his scoring adds much value. It may add value on a team without any other scorers, but they have a few people that can put the ball in the hoop now more efficiently than he does. I think they would be way better off if he shot less from outside and became even more of a play maker and scorer off penetration.

    9. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      Also, I think Ja Morant is too good for Fizdale magic to have any effect on him.

      Doghouse for a week!

    10. rama got that Fizdale Magic

      Valuing Westbrook is a mystery wrapped in an enigma for me.

      I don’t think there’s any riddle to it…

    11. Bruno Almeida

      Westbrook has become too enamored with jumpers and it’s really hurting his overall value. He’s still a phenomenal player, the way he can drive and find space on the defense and pass is amazing, but at such a high volume you really need to hit more shots. He’s shooting free throws at a much lower rate than usual (5.5 at 62% from 10.4 at 85% in his MVP year) and it really has destroyed his efficiency.

      I still think he’s a top 25 player because of how much he produces everywhere, and the fact that he can be a good defender when he’s engaged, but it’s a rough spot to be in when he’s already 30 and having nagging injuries. If this is a real decline instead of a bad stretch + injuries, it’s going to look reeeeally ugly very soon.

    12. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      I know one thing for sure about Russell Westbrook. No matter where you rank him, he is far too reckless a basketball player to be a winner in this league. He’s exciting, he’s talented, and he’s great for the business and media coverage of the NBA. He’s also going to consistently shoot his teams out of basketball games and he’s already 30 years old. Rank him where you want to, but I’d categorize him as the most overrated player of the generation. Well probably second most overrated to the Great Wall of John.

    13. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      I know one thing for sure about Russell Westbrook. No matter where you rank him, he is far too reckless a basketball player to be a winner in this league.

      I feel the same way. He may eventually win a championship, but not without making you cringe a half dozen times each game.

    14. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      Random thought

      I really wish Robinson was playing.

    15. Bruno Almeida

      I think 2016-17 Westbrook was definitely a superstar, top 5 player in the game, but his performance this year has been very lackluster. If he can’t get his FTr back to where it was and continues to shoot so badly on 3s, he’s giving you a lot but taking away so much at the same time.

      It’s sad because he’s very enjoyable to watch, but this might be what his decline looks like. I still think I’d rather pay him that much over similar contracts like Blake Griffin or John Wall, but I’d be pretty depressed about the future if I was an OKC fan.

    16. DRed

      Russ, on balance, is probably still good but maybe not all star level. His rebounding total is ‘inflated’ because Adams plays to let Russ get boards, but it’s almost certainly better for the offense to have Russ get rebounds and go. Obviously he’s good at creating opportunities for his teammates, and he can still get to the rim and finish. He just can’t shoot at all anymore. He can’t even shoot free throws this year. I wonder if he has some sort of shoulder problem.

    17. chrisconley

      Westbrook is a mystery wrapped in an enigma for advanced stats too. He effectively broke BBR’s box +/- stat (which did pretty well in Ben Taylor’s study posted here a few days ago) his MVP year. That was one of the trendiest and most legitimate advanced stats at the time and then Westbrook’s season blew Jordan, LeBron, and Curry out of the water and statheads collectively said “wait a minute…” That season, he was supposedly the most valuable player to any team in any season according to BBR BPM by a wide margin. And if you think about it, it might be true in a very weird sense. When Russ was off the court, the team was absolutely terrible. His +/- numbers were great. His on-court net rating was good at +4.7, but the team’s was -7.1 when he was off for a net difference of +11.8. For comparison, Harden’s (most that were outraged at Westbrook’s MVP win thought Harden deserved it instead) on-court net rating was +6.9 but when he was off, the team was still at +2.2 for a diff of +4.7. There was only one OKC 5-man lineup w/o Russ that year that played more than 50 minutes (80 total) and it’s net rating was -17.7. He also filled up the box score demonstrating the ability to “do it all” and “carry the load” while shooting relatively efficiently (and by that I mean efficiently for him). However, it was obvious to everyone that he was not bringing the best out of many of his teammates (see, Dipo & Damontis). So what BBR’s BPM showed us is that he was a historically valuable player to a team that his own style of play greatly diminished. Ultimately, I think the lesson this reiterates is that advanced stats continue to struggle to separate contribution from situation (though Taylor’s study shows BBR BPM is one of the better advanced stats to do this).

    18. Clyde's suit

      Watching that awesome Spurs/OKC game was very revealing in terms of what has gone wrong with the Raptors in previous seasons. Demar really shrank once the game became tight in the 4th qtr and overtime. He was the 3rd option and didn’t look like he wanted the ball at all after missing a couple of opportunities to win it in regulation.

    19. Bruno Almeida

      Yeah, the Spurs are really working because DeRozan took a step back and is allowing Aldridge to dominate more. He’s passing the ball a lot better and contributing elsewhere tho, so I’d say he’s playing better overall, but it is Aldridge’s team.

    20. ptmilo

      the obvious lesson to learn from voluntarily paying $150 million for 30 year old Jacoby Ellsbury is to a avoid Bryce Harper at all costs

    21. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      @24

      IMO, most advanced stats metrics fail to understand that “value” is not some fixed number that translates equally from team to team or lineup to lineup. It’s a team sport. The idea is to maximize defense, shooting, inside and outside scoring, play making, rebounding etc.. from 5 players in a balanced way.

      If you have too much of any one skill at the expense of others, you start running into diminishing returns in the areas of excess and exploitable weaknesses in other areas.

      This reality does not scream at you in some studies because organizations and coaches are aware of this and are always trying to build teams and lineups that maximize the balance and output within the players available. They aren’t running tests cases to prove the point.

      A player’s on/off and value to each TEAM can vary dramatically depending his own skill set, who he’s playing with, and what that team needs.

      I believe that what we need to do is look at the players’s skill set in a kind of checkbox, look at boxscore stats, look at the team and teammates, and try to decipher how good that player really is. A lot of it IS in the boxscore (excluding defense), but you have to at least try to take it to the next level.

    22. ProjectKnicks

      Westbrook is a bad team player, in the mold of Iverson, Melo, Derrick Rose, etc.

      Me-first players. Flawed players. Talented and dedicated to their specialty: posting numbers. Not very smart.

    23. ptmilo

      There’s so much hatred here for purveyors of specialty plumbing products

      you’re really gonna walk into the world’s fair of commercial tank installations and claim plumbing bigotry

    24. JK47

      NBAdraft.net has De’Aaron Fox as a comp for Ja Morant and I actually think that makes a lot of sense.

      Morant is like the anti-Ntilikina. Great handle, looks to beat everybody off the dribble, will tenaciously fight for rebounds, plays with supreme confidence.

    25. wetbandit

      … poor defender, turnover prone, subpar shooting mechanics…

      I’d still start him over frank today

    26. ClashFan

      Frank’s not the comp guys. Mudiay is. That’s who the braintrust seems to like. Besides, Frank’s a wing, but they just haven’t figured that out yet.

    27. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them!

      Just what we need, another guy that can create is own shot, it not shy about it, but can’t defend a lick.

    28. Zippy Le Pin

      Strat, Mudiay can’t even create his own shot. Not well, at least. Going from “missing every lay-up and falling face-first out of bounds” to “occasionally hitting lay-ups and not always falling on his face” may be progress of a sort, but it ain’t creating his own shot, not in NBA parlance anyway. I’d start wetbandit over Mudiay any day.

      The part that makes me throw my shoe at the screen is just how not-basketball he plays. I was watching, what was it, the Portland game maybe, and he kept missing the fact that Kornet was rolling unimpeded to the basket (I know, it’s Kornet, but still), or missing wide open guys in the corner(I know, it’s the Knicks, but still), and just putting his head down and flailing his way toward the basket.

      I really don’t know why, but I’d rather watch Frank see the open guy, be unable to pull the trigger, and resignedly pass the ball to his right. It’s probably just the more relatable human tragedy angle – a young wisp of a man, self-aware but trapped by his own twisted demons, compared to the utterly un-self-aware young brute who actually thinks he’s doing the right thing when he’s not.

    29. JK47

      Just what we need, another guy that can create is own shot, it not shy about it, but can’t defend a lick.

      First of all, “can’t defend a lick” isn’t a fair criticism of Morant. He’s probably not a plus defender but he has upped his steal rate quite a bit this year, and has averaged 2 steals per 40. Steals are a pretty decent predictor of future defensive success for guards. He’s young and skinny but he has long arms and he competes hard so I’m not writing him off as “can’t defend a lick.”

      Also, point of attack defenders at the PG position in the NBA are really rare. You can make the “can’t defend a lick” argument to most of the top PGs in the league today. Defense today is all about switchable wings and rim protecting bigs. It’s not super crucial to have a PG who is a great defender.

      Second, he doesn’t just “create his own shot,” he creates shots for others because he is an incredibly prolific passer even on his podunk Murray State team. He shoots a lot, which he should on that team, but he also dishes out 10+ assists per game to his pedestrian teammates. He has a 55.5 AST%. He has been turning it over too much, but that 55.5 AST% is pretty sparkling. He’s not at all like Trier, Knox, THJ and the other jabronis on this team who never pass the freaking ball.

    Comments are closed.