Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Knicks Morning News (2019.03.25)

  • [Hoops Rumors] Knicks Notes: Free Agency, Knox, Ntilikina, Robinson
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 8:31:19 PM)

    Today’s game with the Clippers barely mattered to the Knicks; it’s the summer battle over free agents that’s going to be important, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. There have been whispers around the league that New York is in good position to land Kevin Durant and another elite free agent after clearing tons […]

  • [Newsday] Knicks Notes: Free Agency, Knox, Ntilikina, Robinson
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 8:31:19 PM)

    Today’s game with the Clippers barely mattered to the Knicks; it’s the summer battle over free agents that’s going to be important, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. There have been whispers around the league that New York is in good position to land Kevin Durant and another elite free agent after clearing tons […]

  • [NYTimes] Paul George, at Peace in Oklahoma City, Reels In a Career Year
    (Monday, March 25, 2019 7:00:06 AM)

    George, a star forward for the Thunder, is playing his best basketball in his second season for a team many thought would only be a pit stop in his career.

  • [NYPost] Knicks just saw the many reasons Kevin Durant would pick Clippers
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 12:14:25 PM)

    Two hours before the tipoff of Sunday’s noon matinee, a 124-113 loss to the Clippers, James Dolan entered a near-empty Knicks locker room with one of his young sons. The boy immediately spotted last Sunday’s LeBron James slayer, Mario Hezonja. “The Croatian sensation,” the youngster shouted. Dolan and his son chatted up Hezonja for a…

  • [NYPost] Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox go down in awful few minutes for Knicks
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 9:50:18 AM)

    Can it get any worse? With the Knicks absorbing their 60th loss of the season for only the second time in franchise history, David Fizdale’s tank machine was dealt a double whammy of lousy luck in the first half of Sunday’s Garden matinee against the Clippers. Their 2018 and 2017 lottery picks went down with…

  • [NYPost] Unearthed video shows Kevin Durant is ‘never’ coming to Knicks
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 7:12:49 AM)

    Here to shatter the dreams of a 2019-20 Knicks roster featuring Kevin Durant is … 2017 Kevin Durant. The Warriors superstar and pending free agent, whose offseason whims will captivate the basketball world and have kept Knicks fans guessing, did not entertain the prospect of playing his home games at the Garden in the past….

  • [SNY Knicks] Possible Knicks draft target Zion Williamson goes off for 32 points in Duke’s thrilling victory over UCF
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 7:42:30 PM)

    Duke advanced to the Sweet 16 with a thrilling one-point triumph over 9-seed UCF on Sunday.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks Takeaways from Sunday’s 124-113 defeat against Clippers
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 2:27:16 PM)

    The Clippers defeated the Knicks, 124-113, on Sunday at Madison Square Garden. Lou Williams led all scorers with 28 points.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks lost Kevin Knox, Frank Ntilikina to injury during Sunday’s game
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 1:51:08 PM)

    Already without Dennis Smith Jr., Allonzo Trier, and Noah Vonleh, the Knicks lost two more players to injury during Sunday’s game at Madison Square Garden.

  • [SNY Knicks] Undermanned, reeling Knicks host Clippers on Sunday at 12 p.m.
    (Sunday, March 24, 2019 10:57:03 AM)

    After withstanding a stiff challenge from the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, the Clippers attempt to get their fifth straight win Sunday afternoon when they visit the league-worst New York Knicks.

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    65 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2019.03.25)

    1. Ntilakilla

      So I’m assuming yesterday was Frank’s last game as a Knick. Oh well.

      This is the way the world ends
      This is the way the world ends
      This is the way the world ends
      Not with a bang but a whimper.

    2. Frontportch123

      On a side note, I was happy to see Nassir Little playing well as of late. He may potentially be a reasonable #5 pick if we fall that low.

    3. Hubert

      There’s literally zero chance that Durant scores more points than Harden per possession next year. Not even per-game. Never. It will never happen.

      I will make sure the odds reflect the absolute certainty of my defeat when we make this wager if Durant is a Knick next season. 500-1 sound reasonable for something that can never happen?

    4. bobneptune

      I will make sure the odds reflect the absolute certainty of my defeat when we make this wager if Durant is a Knick next season. 500-1 sound reasonable for something that can never happen?

      A reality TV star becoming the 45th President :-)

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

      Unless Frank is part of larger deal to bring in a star player or move up in the draft, I don’t think he’ll be traded. I’m sure there are patient teams out there that see his intrinsic potential and are interested, but his market value is very low now. The Knicks are unlikely to get offered a 1st round pick for him. Dallas couldn’t even get a 1st round pick for DSJ. I don’t think DSJ’s market value is as low as Frank’s right now. To take a couple of 2nd rounders for Frank at age 20 after spending an entire year trying to revitalize the careers of 1st round busts like Hezonja, Burke, Mudiay, Vonleh and even DSJ to some degree is too Knicksey for even the Knicks. If they take a couple of 2nd rounders for him after the strategy they’ve implemented with struggling young players to date, I’ll assume that incompetency is not the correct term. They are brain damaged.

    6. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Since conference tournaments began, Zion has played 5 games:

      181 minutes
      138 points on 83 FGA
      TS% .714
      44 rebounds
      9 steals
      5 blocks
      9 turnovers

      Incredible that Duke has two 1-point wins in this span.

    7. d-mar

      Us drafting Cam Reddish is going to be hard to stomach

      Which would be harder to stomach, that, or Dallas or the Lakers moving up to #1 and drafting Zion?

    8. Farfa

      Considering that us drafting 5th would require 4 teams to leapfrog us… I think the correct answer is both.

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

      Us drafting Cam Reddish is going to be hard to stomach

      lol

      Seriously, I don’t think they will go for a player like Cam Reddish. He’s not agressive enough creating bad inefficient shots. He takes them, but he doesn’t create his own in high volume.

    10. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Cam Reddish to the Knicks is a very, very real possibility. I’ve seen footage of his workouts and the kid looks extremely impressive in that setting. They’re going to schedule workouts with him and Jarrett Culver and Cam Reddish is going to flat out abuse Culver. If last year’s draft is any indication, that will be enough to put him in a Knicks uniform.

    11. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      He’s not agressive enough creating bad inefficient shots. He takes them, but he doesn’t create his own in high volume.

      see: Frank Ntilikina

    12. Hubert

      I’ve gotten to the point where I’d be ok with Barrett or Culver, but yeah, picking 5th would be devastating and really make me question if anything good will ever happen here.

    13. thenoblefacehumper

      Trading Ntilikina for a couple of seconds wouldn’t be Knicksy at all. He’ll have two years left on his deal, and for the first two years of it there’s a very good argument to be made that he was the single worst player in the NBA. Getting to re-start the RFA clock with multiple second rounders would be damn good value for any player who fits that description, even our Frankie.

      Whatever you think Frank’s peak WS48 will be, add an adjustment for individual defense and you’ll have a better idea what his value is. Intuitively from looking at players I think are plus defenders, looking at their ws48, and then looking at on/off data, I would guess adding somewhere around .05 or a tad more for Frank is about right. Frank is a plus defender but not an elite defender yet. That .05 could easily be wrong, but it’s less wrong than pretending his WS48 is right.

      Obviously, WS48 is like every other box score aggregator in that it it’s not a perfect descriptor of a player’s value. The degree of magnitude it needs to be off, though, to make Frank even relatively close to half-decent is enormous. For example, instead of answering the question you said that whatever the answer is you need to (totally arbitrarily) add 0.5 to it. Well, giving Frank the Strat boost gets him all the way up to a robust .004 this year and .017 for his career.

      That means in order to be league average Frank needs to make a 0.5 leap of his own (Mudiay’s genuinely enormous year 3 to 4 leap was 0.3 for reference) and the rigorously calculated Strat boost needs to be totally accurate.

      So I’ll ask again; what are the chances of all of that happening, and what should we invest in trying to make it happen?

    14. Z-man

      To be fair, out of the Knicks’ 3 rookies this year, Knox has shown flashes and is improving, Mitch is a potential all-time great defender and Trier is a likely NBA rotation player. I know the braintrust here is convinced we butchered the pick here but it’s quite possible that Knox becomes better than anyone drafted below him not named Mitchel Robinson. I mean, are we really all that high on SGA? Who is more than a full year older than Knox? Or either of the Bridges? Or Troy Brown? And would we be feeling good about Michael Porter Jr. right now?

      Even if you don’t like Knox, I still think there’s reason to have as much trust in the FO on this pick as any other FO. Everyone would draft Zion #1 and then either Ja or RJ at 2/3. There’s really no consensus pick at 4 or 5 so every one of the available players will be a huge gamble. I’m not a Reddish fan, but if he winds up being the pick, I’m not gonna sledgehammer my cable box.

    15. Z-man

      Getting 2 second rounders for Frank at this point would be a world-class heist. He has absolutely zero market value and will be making almost $5 mill next year. No team would be dumb enough to offer anything more than single 2nd rounder for him. You could easily replace his production at a minimum salary out of the G-league or off the waiver wire at any point.

    16. Owen

      KB going to KB.

      I have to say, I was definitely intrigued by Brandon Clarke. I hadn’t seen him play and probably picked the wrong game because he was so otherworldly but damn, that guy can really get off the floor. I mean he jumps quick, jumps high, and his second jump is outstanding. He literally just jumped over a bunch of guys. And his timing on blocks was outstanding.

      I can see why no one wants to draft him. He’s like four years older than Zion and has a skillset that immediately drops in value at the next level. He gives off a bit of an Aaron Gordon vibe. But he could easily end up the mortal lock stat guy who actually turns out well in the NBA, like a Montrezl Harrell maybe.

      Nassir Little seems pretty risky….

    17. ess-dog

      If Clarke could add a three-ball to his repertoire, he’d be a hell of a pick. Kind of a springier Shane Battier.

      I’m intrigued by Little, but he’s just a bad fit with a team that has terrible 3-pt shooting already. I hope there will be better options at #5.

    18. nicos

      My hope is that Coby White plays well enough through the rest of the tournament to give the Knicks a non-Reddish option at 5. If there’s a good deal out there I’d rather trade down if the Knicks draft anywhere outside of the top two (or three if Barrett goes before Ja) but I’m not sure there’s going to be much of value being offered for the 4 or 5 pick unless White or Culver really go nuts over the rest of the tournament.

    19. Jack Bauer

      “Cam Reddish to the Knicks is a very, very real possibility. I’ve seen footage of his workouts and the kid looks extremely impressive in that setting. ”

      The Knicks will be picking at 4 or 5 whoever shines the brightest in the all important 3 on 3 workouts, because for some reason that seems to matter to them.

    20. thenoblefacehumper

      I know the braintrust here is convinced we butchered the pick here but it’s quite possible that Knox becomes better than anyone drafted below him not named Mitchel Robinson.

      Strat : Frank :: Z-Man : Knox

    21. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I can see why someone would see Aaron Gordon in Clarke (body type, athleticism), but Gordon was a .504 TS% shooter in college at the same usage that Clarke has been, only Clarke is a .708 TS% shooter this year. Interestingly, Gordon in 2014 and Clarke in 2019 have the exact same FGA/100 rate at 20.1 Difference is that Gordon scores 24.7 points and Clarke a whopping 34.2 per 100, with roughly the same FTr.

      Clarke’s improvement is exactly what you’d want from a guy in the NBA between 20 and 22. Clarke has improved his shooting efficiency while adding more touches. Apparently, despite his undersized body, he’s a dominant inside offensive player. I don’t care that he’s a 6’8″ center if he’s scoring at will and doing literally everything you want from a rim protector on D.

      Gordon’s TS% & USG% by year in the NBA:

      .517 @ 15.5
      .541 @ 17.3
      .530 @ 20.1
      .530 @ 24.7
      .532 @ 22.1

      He’s plateaued, and there’s not much cause to expect that he’ll make some kind of leap at 24 or 25, despite the historical expectation that a player will hit his peak then,

      Clarke may never be a superstar, but he will at least be better than Gordon’s weird BPM trajectory would suggest (a perfect 0.0 last year, and currently 0.7 for the year, having peaked at 1.8 in his sophomore season).

    22. JK47

      Frank lost a whole year of development time this season. He came into the season totally unimproved on offense and then got hurt a lot. You really can’t blame Fiz or anybody else for how terrible and gimpy Frank has been this year.

    23. wetbandit

      i’m not saying frank is destined to be the goat or anything, but his discussion:value ratings are off the charts

    24. lavor postell

      They’re going to schedule workouts with him and Jarrett Culver and Cam Reddish is going to flat out abuse Culver.

      I don’t think players at the top of the draft do workouts like that, but if they did Culver would fucking destroy Reddish. The only reason Cam is even being discussed as a lottery pick is because of HS hype. Without it he’d be lucky to get drafted in the first round at all.

      Everyone would draft Zion #1 and then either Ja or RJ at 2/3.

      I’d take Culver over both and feel good about it. I think he’s definitely a superior wing prospect to RJ.

    25. nicos

      I can live with Brandon Clarke being 6’8″ but the fact that he’s listed at 215 scares me. He’s basically the same size as Kevin Knox. He’s really going to have to bulk up to play the four let alone the five. Harrell is a muscle-bound 240 so I’m not sure he’s a good comp. He’s more in the Faried, Kidd-Gilchrist, Gordon camp size/skill-wise and probably the least athletic of that bunch. He is better around the rim than any of them but other than Faried the other guys were one and done so tough to compare. This draft is so crappy that I might consider taking him at five because his floor is better than most of the other options but unless he learns to shoot you’re probably looking at a solid role player and not much more.

    26. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      you’re probably looking at a solid role player and not much more.

      Maybe that’s true, but:

      http://cbbref.com/tiny/uXRmv

      >500 MP forwards and centers since BPM data is available, 2010-2019 (asterisk for player currently in NCAA)

      1) Zion*
      2) Clarke*
      3) Davis
      4) Towns
      5) Ethan Happ*
      6) Gary Clark
      7) Jaren Jackson
      8) Kaminsky
      9) Tillman*
      10) Dieng
      11) Cauley-Stein
      12) Embiid
      13) WCS
      14) Crowder
      15) Noel
      16) Tariq Owens*
      17) Anas Mahmoud
      18) Onuaku
      19) Denaiel Ochefu
      20) Jeff Withey

      I don’t know about you, but I would gladly throw a dart at that board to pick at #5, especially if the guy put up the 2nd-best BPM in 9 seasons of tracking the stat. I’d gladly give Clarke a chance to prove you right.

    27. Grocer

      I’d be happy with Clarke at 3 or below. Our PG situation is too horrible to not take Morant if he’s available. Clarke might be BPA between them but he’s probably an NBA 4 and his lack of a 3 point shot could really hurt.

    28. chrisconley

      Someone on the Ringer called Cam the “empty gym superstar” so the Knicks will almost certainly take him at 4.

      Durant has to go to the Clippers right? They already have a solid team with no Steph-like cult figure to steal his spotlight, and now with the Lebron-Lakers project floundering he can outshine Lebron in the same city? The potential legacy generating narrative seems like good value compared to bringing a title to NY given the relative risks.

    29. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Morant is clearly the pick if available, and probably has higher ceiling (being a PG rather than a no-range 5). Clarke is IMO, after Zion, the safest bet to be a competent NBA starter on a playoff team. Knicks need point players and wings, not to mention the relatively cheapness of getting a good inside PF/C in free agency. O’Quinn, Noel, Dwight Howard, Randle, DAJ and the incredible underpay for Clint Capela all show the market for traditional bigs coming way, way down.

    30. nicos

      The other issue with Clarke is that the Knicks have a guy who’s already Clarke’s best possible outcome and two years younger in Mitch. I certainly would take both Culver and Barrett over him given how bare the Knicks cupboard is on the wing but they’ll probably go 3-4 so if the Knicks are at 5 and you’re choosing between Clarke, White, Hunter, Hachimura, etc… he might be the best pick.

    31. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Durant has to go to the Clippers right? They already have a solid team with no Steph-like cult figure to steal his spotlight, and now with the Lebron-Lakers project floundering he can outshine Lebron in the same city? The potential legacy generating narrative seems like good value compared to bringing a title to NY given the relative risks.

      The Clippers have as good a 2019-20 outlook as any team — around $60-70M (!) in cap space while losing none of their core except Beverley (who should be an easy re-sign) since they have his Bird rights. It really depends on who they get. Kawhi + Durant + their core = possible Western Conference champions. Kemba + Klay + their core = 2nd round bounce.

    32. chrisconley

      Yeah so say he gets to play with Kawhi (who definitely won’t steal his Thunder) and they’re an instant contender. He owns a house in Malibu (I know they all have LA homes but it doesn’t hurt). And most importantly, his biggest goal is to overtake Lebron as consensus best player in the world. Overshadowing him in the second biggest market is the cherry. In Feb, Mybookie had Clippers odds at 9-1. Wish I got in on that. Though just because it makes the most sense doesn’t mean anything given how fickle he seems to be.

    33. geo

      words I’ve never said together: my bookie :)

      no doubt though – I’ve probably put much worse two word combos together…like: knicks fan…

    34. thenoblefacehumper

      Clarke seems destined to outproduce plenty of players picked ahead of him, but there is no way in hell I’m considering him at 3. His statistical profile has always been intriguing, but much less so when he was Morant/Culver/Langford/White/Barrett’s age.

      That’s not to say I’d definitely pick all of those players in front of him (Barrett in particular would be tough for me because I, like most of you, am somewhat scarred by his archetype), but it matters. How much? I dunno.

      There’s also the fact that high efficiency, high TRB% bigs are pretty much available on demand these days. To be sure, Clarke has higher upside than Ed Davis, Faried, etc. (particularly on defense) but it wouldn’t be surprising to see him settle in to being that kind of player.

      I’ll decide where all of this leaves him on my big board later on (it will definitely be higher than the consensus unless things on that front change radically), but there are good reasons to not make an immediate great NCAA numbers = great NBA player connection here.

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

      For those of you who, like me, had troubles with MSG OT being recorded by your DVR instead of MSG, I found a fix for it. I had the Knicks set as a “favorite” in my Comcast account. Apparently, this meant they would choose MSG OT to record the games with. I deleted them as a favorite and then set a series recording for the Knicks starting with the clippers game entry in the guide for MSGHD and setting it to record the series, not the episode. Now it is recording MSG regular broadcast.

    36. djphan

      clarke has a shot…. but what’s worrisome is his freshman year numbers.. and the large gap between that and his.. effectively.. senior year numbers.. freshmen year stats tend to be a lot stickier for nba success because you’re going to be younger than 90+% of the opponents you face for the first few years of your nba career.. if you’re not dominant as a freshman you’re likely going to have a tough time in the nba…

      that’s not to say that seniors don’t matter… there obviously has been a lot of good nba players who came in as upperclassmen… but they usually showed a lot of ability as freshmen as well.. someone who all of a sudden became a college superstar once they become older than all of their competition is not all that special… there’s a long list of those guys … and the only ones who have made it have generally been point guards…

      on top of that.. he’s doing all of this as a center… and i know positionless ball is en vogue but he’s definitely not going to be in the same situations on either side of the ball in the pro’s…. and he struggles a lot vs any kind of good size to boot…

      he does have a shot.. but it’s a fairly large risk anyone would be taking despite the ability that he’s showing… in this draft anything in the top 10 would be a bit crazy….

    37. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Becoming older than competition doesn’t mean a thing on its own, though. You can point to thousands of NBAers (or NCAAers) who never made the leap from average to great, despite (the former) being the perfect age (24-28ish) to play against the league’s precocious neophytes and the elderly alike. The real question is whether that age, along with the accompanying experience, coaching and body development produce a better basketball player. For Clarke, the answer is overwhelmingly yes.

      So yes djphan, I do agree that he is advantaged, having had more time to develop his skills. But the guy has leveraged that extra time to improve like a mother fucker, from a good player to one of the best we’ve seen in the NCAA on a per-possession basis. And as the BPM shortlist shows, very few players — even those players who stay in the unpaid farm league for four or five years — become around as good (or productive) as Clarke is right now.

      This is more a philosophical argument about production as a function of age than an attack on your assessment of his skills today. The athleticism and ball-skills in the NBA are so, so, so much better than in the NCAA. Watching Chris Paul is like watching Lang Lang perform Liszt; watching Tre Jones is like a SUNY Purchase piano minor play the Fantaisie for the first time. There’s a possibility that whatever athletic edge he has evaporates against the league’s bigs. It’s possible that his incredible inside scoring goes away and he becomes another low-volume, decent-efficiency glue-guy a la Jordan Bell, which would be a terrible reach with a top-10 pick. (I love Bell, but as a value contract, not a franchise cornerstone.) But when a guy is this good, I think you have a much better chance at hitting it big than you would taking some freshman who has yet to show productive play out there.

    38. djphan

      this is who i have in my top 10:

      1. zion – nothing interesting here but here’s an interesting hypothetical… if he tears his acl do you still take him #1?
      2. morant – him and culver are essentially tied… i give him a slight edge in that he was able to show some ability against decent comp…
      3. culver – out of the non-zion choices… he’s my favorite… a literal do it all wing… and does all those things at a high level including defense..
      4. coby white – the best player on a #1 seeded team normally would get a lot more attention but it’s pretty crazy that he’s getting zero buzz as a lotto pick..
      5. barrett – i would say this is about where things start getting risky… the stl rates pop up as a red flag and seeing him more i realize why… he’s really not all that quick.. but his ball handling and ability to fill it up in multiple ways could translate in a kevin love type of way.. love also had poor defensive stats and has had a pretty fabulous career despite those shortcomings…
      6. langford – not sexy but i wouldn’t be too unhappy with this pick.. esp if the alternative was reddish…
      7. alexander -walker – he’s probably only got super role player upside which puts him a notch below langford but there’s a level of safety in that nickeil is a surer bet for a longer nba career because of his wider skillset but inferior scoring ability….
      8. ponds – sleeper #2
      9. little – this is the shrug tier…. a lot of major red flags for anyone after this… for little.. the lack of ball handling is a huge concern… he’s basically a one dribble shoot guy at this point and for a sf that’s bad.. on top of that he’s undersized.. but out of the rest of the options it’s not a bad gamble to take…
      10. kevin porter – he was originally #3 on my list at the start of the season.. but injury and conduct issues and more importantly performance made him slip… talent’s absolutely there.. but risk lies in other things…

    39. rama got that Fizdale Magic

      Lang Lang is not that good. More style then substance. Fluid but without impact. Maybe…Peja Stojakovic? A plus player for sure, but nowhere near true greatness.

    40. djphan

      age absolutely can be a thing on it’s own.. it’s the same reason why ppl thought frank was some sort of major prospect when he ‘dominated’ u18s…. dominating when you’re older than the rest of the competition is not special… dominating when you’re younger than the rest of the comp is where you differentiate real talent…. how you perform relative to the age of your comp is probably THE most predictive factor to nba success….

      and yea clarke has shown a lot of ability… but how much of that is real organic improvement and not a function of his competition getting progressively younger than him? i mean i pay attention to a lot of college ball but i certainly cannot tell if someone actually improved year to year… and i’m certain nobody on this planet was paying attention to clarke as a freshman to say that he’s actually gained actual skill…

      most college players remain static but there are a ton of seniors every year that make this giant leap into relevance and it has nothing to do with any improving ability…. if you want to see an extreme example look at rakeem christmas… or cliff rozier… or hasheem thabeet… or thomas robinson…. or frank kaminsky…. or shelden williams… this century the only big who bucked this trend… was roy hibbert but he had other mitigating factors(weight/conditioning).. that was likely holding him back given his immense size….

      and yes… the numbers are hard to ignore….. clarke has some quick twitch ability to him… and i’m not saying that he has no chance… but given what we know about clarke and guys of his ilk… it very likely is a mirage…

    41. djphan

      and for the record… clarke vs reddish… ok i buy the clarke argument… but i don’t think it’s particularly close with clarke vs nickeil alexander… and it’s a pretty tough sell vs even his teammate hachimura who actually has been performing at this level since his freshman year… at that point you’re talking mid-first then…

    42. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      dominating when you’re older than the rest of the competition is not special… dominating when you’re younger than the rest of the comp is where you differentiate real talent…. how you perform relative to the age of your comp is probably THE most predictive factor to nba success….

      (1) The average age and ability of his opponents shouldn’t be all that different year to year. His improvement should be much more dependent on him getting better than the competition getting worse. He is not a constant.

      (2) BPM, for one, says that Clarke is one of the best college players in the past ten years, namely the 2nd most productive F/C during that time — just behind Zion and ahead of Towns and Davis. If countless older players with no NBA future are dominating their younger opponents, what do you call what Clarke is doing to them? Why aren’t there more 22-year-old players on that list that I’ve never heard of?

      (3) Clarke didn’t just get older, relative to the average age of his opponents — he took a redshirt year and then joined a much-harder conference with a significantly higher strength of schedule. Yet he’s putting up career-best numbers in virtually every category.

    43. Grocer

      (1) The average age and ability of his opponents shouldn’t be all that different year to year. His improvement should be much more dependent on him getting better than the competition getting worse. He is not a constant.

      This. His opponents didn’t change, average age in college stays constant. If the dude is putting up big numbers it is because he got better. And frankly, it is far cheaper to pick up guys who have already improved than guys you have to invest years in at significantly higher than vet min rates.

      I like talking this shit out though. It’ll help soften the blow when the lottery actually happens.

    44. djphan

      the reason more 22 yos arent on that list is probably because the best players generally leave early… esp big men… thats not to mention bpm is a poor fwd looking metric…

      unless you can actual demonstrate actual improvement… theres much more evidence to suggest his statistical improvement is a function of his age than any other factor… esp when you have across the board improvement absent a huge growth spurt…

    45. djphan

      avg age doesnt change… but yes players get older…

      picture yourself in high school playing ball… did you find it easier playing ppl as a senior than as a freshmen?

      some players are more exploitive of this… they play in a way that dominates younger weaker comp… and then when the athleticism and difficulty gets dialed up they fold… thats generally what happens to super seniors…. with big men in particular its very much about physical dominance which is why the vast majority of nba bigs were also crushing as freshmen and subsequently leave early…. if youre physically dominant its not gonna take long for it to translate to the court….

      which is why you have to be very suscipious when it does… esp when it comes from a relative dimunitive and not very athletic guy… he does it by having quick reflexes and with a series of dinks and ducks and hooks from 3 to 10 ft out…

      is that gonna keep happening in the pros? maybe but i kinda doubt it… with someone like davis or towns or duncan… was there ever a doubt?

      and therein lies the reason y u should be skeptical….

    46. Brian Cronin

      The Nets might actually miss the playoffs. They have a brutal schedule to close out the season.

    47. Brian Cronin

      While the Nurkic injury is terrible, it really does help the Blazers a ton that they at least picked up Kanter. They’re a lot better prepared than other teams in a similar situation.

    48. Bruno Almeida

      Yeah, Enes will get his chance to shine, I doubt Portland will be very happy with it tho. It’s one of those injuries you just hate to see, hopefully he is lucky and it’s just a bone breaking, no further damage.

    49. Brian Cronin

      Oh sure, it’s a big blow and Kanter is a big downgrade, but he’s at least a decent fill-in. It’s not like they’re throwing Greg Monroe out there, ya know?

    50. Z-man

      I wonder what Clarke’s peers like Ben Simmons, Brandon Ingram, Jaylen Brown, Kris Dunn, Domantas Sabonis, Jamal Murray, and Henry Ellenson be putting up in the NCAA right now…not a rebuttal, just another perspective.

    51. slovene knick

      Clarke could be a John Collins type player. Two way efficiency. Only has to add 3ball and flesh.
      Have no idea how blocks translate to NBA but Clarke and Mitch would ideally make the paint area a no go zone.
      Offensively his bread and butter makes near the rim would probably be taken away by NBA defenses. But a frontcourt of Mich, Clarke, Knox(is all over the place/stupid pick process/but let’s give him time) would be a good start.
      If Z’n’Ja are gone Clarke be ok.
      Where the real important decisions await our brain trust is the backcourt. All nice prospects and I like them all. But nice aint gona bring you Ws.
      Still sad that Z-man and JK were right about Nty…really sad. Another guy I could really get behind is down and out.

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