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Monday, January 27, 2020

Knicks Morning News (2019.05.31)

  • [Hoops Rumors] Knicks Notes: Reddish, Draft, Beal
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 6:23:38 PM)

    The Knicks have an in-person visit scheduled with Cam Reddish, Ian Begley of the SNY.tv reports. It was previously reported that some of the team’s evaluators are fond of the Duke product. The franchise holds the No. 3 overall pick and many expect Reddish’s college teammate R.J. Barrett to hear his name called in that spot. […]

  • [Newsday] Knicks Notes: Reddish, Draft, Beal
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 6:23:38 PM)

    The Knicks have an in-person visit scheduled with Cam Reddish, Ian Begley of the SNY.tv reports. It was previously reported that some of the team’s evaluators are fond of the Duke product. The franchise holds the No. 3 overall pick and many expect Reddish’s college teammate R.J. Barrett to hear his name called in that spot. […]

  • [TheRinger] Knicks Notes: Reddish, Draft, Beal
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 6:23:38 PM)

    The Knicks have an in-person visit scheduled with Cam Reddish, Ian Begley of the SNY.tv reports. It was previously reported that some of the team’s evaluators are fond of the Duke product. The franchise holds the No. 3 overall pick and many expect Reddish’s college teammate R.J. Barrett to hear his name called in that spot. […]

  • [NYTimes] Warriors ‘Weren’t Very Familiar’ With Raptors Prior to Game 1 Loss in Finals
    (Friday, May 31, 2019 2:28:15 AM)

    The Warriors and Raptors met twice before the 2019 NBA Finals, but thanks to injuries, Golden State didn’t feel it knew its opponent well.

  • [NYTimes] Pascal Siakam: ‘I’m Just Doing it for My Dad’ After Leading Raptors to Game 1 Victory
    (Friday, May 31, 2019 1:49:15 AM)

    Pascal Siakam went for 32 points to lead the Raptors over the Warriors in Game 1 of the 2019 NBA Finals.

  • [NYTimes] Drake Talks Smack in Draymond Green’s Face After Raptors Top Warriors in Game 1
    (Friday, May 31, 2019 12:16:43 AM)

    Drake is going to annoy everybody on the Warriors as much as he can.

  • [NYTimes] Pascal Siakam Erupts to Lead Raptors Past Warriors in Game 1 of NBA Finals
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 11:40:43 PM)

    The Raptors received a huge boost from Pascal Siakam who, scored 32 points to lead Toronto past Golden State 118-109 in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. 

  • [NYTimes] Raptors Put Together Defensive Masterpiece in Game 1 Victory
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 11:34:57 PM)

    The Raptors’ defense was stifling against Stephen Curry and the Warriors, leading to an impressive Game 1 victory in the NBA Finals. 

  • [NYTimes] Warriors Coach Steve Kerr: ‘Longshot’ Kevin Durant Cleared for Game 2
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 9:25:30 PM)

    Kevin Durant has not appeared in a playoff game since Game 5 of the Warriors’ second-round series due to a calf injury.

  • [NYTimes] Drake Trolls Steph Curry by Wearing Signed Dell Curry Raptors Jersey for Game 1
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 9:11:27 PM)

    Drake is Team Curry … just not Steph Curry.

  • [NYTimes] NBA Finals Game 1 Live Stream: How to Watch Warriors vs. Raptors Online, TV
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 5:00:00 PM)

    Find how to watch the Warriors battle the Raptors in Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday, May 30. 

  • [NYTimes] Report: Mike D’Antoni Ends Contract Extension Talks With Rockets
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 4:36:48 PM)

    Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni has ended talks with Houston management on an extension.

  • [NYTimes] Andre Iguodala Compares Playing for the Warriors to Competing for Team USA
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 4:01:54 PM)

    Iguodala enters Thursday Finals battle against Toronto with three NBA championships and one Olympic gold medal.  

  • [NYTimes] NBA Rumors: Zion Williamson Picks CAA Sports to Represent Him
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 11:14:54 AM)

    Find out the latest news and rumors around the NBA.

  • [NYTimes] The DeMarcus Cousins Complication and the Warriors’ Dilemma
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 11:01:02 AM)

    DeMarcus Cousins has endured so much to reach his first NBA Finals. But in yet another cruel twist, Golden State may be better off without deploying its All-Star center.

  • [NYTimes] Bill Russell to Receive Arthur Ashe Courage Award at 2019 ESPYs
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:51:33 AM)

    Russell received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama in 2011. 

  • [NYTimes] Metta World Peace Is From the Future
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 9:56:26 AM)

    Metta World Peace, the subject of the new Showtime documentary “Quiet Storm: The Ron Artest Story,” is one of the NBA’s most complicated figures. Has he learned from his mistakes, or does everyone else need to?

  • [NYTimes] Storylines That Will Define the 2019 NBA Finals
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 9:12:31 AM)

    Will Stephen Curry win his first NBA Finals MVP? When will Kevin Durant return? The NBA Finals are here and The Crossover wants to consider every storyline in advance of the big game. 

  • [NYTimes] What Are the Rockets Doing With Mike D’Antoni? | Crossover Podcast
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 8:30:00 AM)

    Should the Rockets give head coach Mike D’Antoni a contract extension? The latest Crossover podcast episode explores his future and more.

  • [NYTimes] How Raptors’ Fred VanVleet Found His Shooting Stroke Ahead of NBA Finals
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 7:13:00 AM)

    All it took for Toronto’s Fred VanVleet to find his stroke—and reassert himself as a Finals threat—was becoming a father.

  • [NYPost] Quinn Cook has unique view of Kevin Durant-Kyrie Irving free agency
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:57:55 AM)

    TORONTO — Quinn Cook, the Warriors’ backup point guard out of Duke, can’t confirm where his two buddies, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, will land this summer, but he can confirm the two are tight. Cook, who followed Irving at Duke and is a childhood friend of Durant’s from Seat Pleasant, Md., has socialized with…

  • [NYPost] Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson’s ESPN reign has no end in sight
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 7:13:50 AM)

    If only NBA executives felt as strongly about Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson as the two feel about each other. The two are widely respected for the work they have done on the sidelines, but recent attempts to return there have proven fruitless. Both were considered for the Knicks job last year that went…

  • [SNY Knicks] Latest on Knicks free agent target Kevin Durant: Kerr says KD ‘longshot’ to be cleared for Game 2
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 1:54:59 PM)

    Warriors star Kevin Durant can be a free agent after the season, and the idea that he could team up with fellow free agent Kyrie Irving on the Knicks this summer has picked up steam since the Kristaps Porzingis trade cleared two max slots for New York. Here are the latest rumors…

  • [SNY Knicks] Zion Williamson picks agency ahead of NBA Draft
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:31:31 AM)

    Creative Arts Agency (CAA) will rep Zion Williamson, who picked the agency three weeks before the NBA Draft.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ NBA Draft Tracker: Lagerald Vick schedules workout with team
    (Thursday, May 30, 2019 4:20:49 PM)

    NBA Draft season is upon us, and the Knicks were awarded the No. 3 overall pick following the NBA Draft Lottery. As June 20 approaches to them being on the clock, here is the latest about the top prospects in this year’s Draft class as it pertains to the Knicks…

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    72 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2019.05.31)

    1. Jack Bauer

      It certainly looks that way after game 1. Toronto was running the Warriors off the three point line and making them take tough 2’s. Their defense is legitimate, doubling the ball out of Curry’s hands, forcing turnovers, and definitely gumming up Golden State’s usually fluid offense.

      They better find someone to guard Siakam soon, that guy killed them. With Iguodala re-injured and Durant apparently out for a while still, this will be very interesting. Winning with the likes of Cook, Jerebko, Evans, and other scrubs getting major minutes seems unlikely.

    2. Jack Bauer

      Would love to be Siakam’s agent, that guy is getting paid on his next contract

    3. Farfa

      I expected the Raptors to win Game 1 or 2. If GS wins next one, I still think a gentleman sweep in possible. If the Raps go 2-0, I think we’re seeing a game 7.

    4. alsep73

      Givony:

      Are the Knicks a lock to draft RJ Barrett at No. 3? Not quite. They are definitely exploring a number of alternatives, for example the possibility of sliding back and acquiring the No. 8 and 10 picks from the Hawks.

    5. Farfa

      Are the Knicks a lock to draft RJ Barrett at No. 3? Not quite. They are definitely exploring a number of alternatives, for example the possibility of sliding back and acquiring the No. 8 and 10 picks from the Hawks.

      As long as it doesn’t yield a Cam Reddish and Rui Hachimura result

    6. KnickfaninNJ

      I don’t have faith the Knicks will make the right pick with whatever pick or picks they end up with, but I do have faith they will work hard at evaluating many options. The current Knicks seems diligent at least.

    7. chriskZIPCODE

      I guess the 3 for the 8 and 10 is fair, and Atl can’t possibly have room for all these picks. I just don’t really want to pick lower than Garland at 6.

    8. d-mar

      We all know it’s a big mistake to overreact to a game 1 in the NBA Playoffs (or a game 2 for that matter, see Milwaukee-Toronto)

      Yes, Kawhi was subpar but Siakam played out of his freaking mind and the Raptors hit some ridiculous shots in crunch time (that bank hook shot by Siakam was crazy)

      Kerr will make some adjustments and I still think the Warriors win in 6.

    9. Scorpio Dragon

      Watching the game, at no point did I feel like what Toronto was doing offensively is sustainable for a 7 game series. Defensively yes, but there were a few calls that went their way as well as some shots that 8 times out of 10 don’t drop if they tried that same shot again. I’m not sure about GS double Kahwi strategy yet though, so the door is still pretty open for Toronto to shock me and win this series.

    10. thenoblefacehumper

      Trading 3 for 8 and 10 seems fair. We’d be giving up a good amount of upside, particularly in this draft where things get very role player-y very quickly, but if the plan is to sign two max guys no matter what that might not be a bad thing. You could still come away with something like Hunter/Langford/Alexander-Walker and Clarke, which would be a solid haul.

      Of course, being the Knicks the aforementioned Reddish/Hachimura haul seems far more likely.

    11. ess-dog

      As long as it doesn’t yield a Cam Reddish and Rui Hachimura result

      Meh. I sort of don’t care at this point since it’s not gonna be Zion. And yeah, I agree that in the end, the front office will probably just comically shuffle things around.

      But hey, at least there’s this blog.

    12. KnickerBloggerPowerRankings

      I was impressed with Toronto’s poise and defense. This is the first game in forever that the Warriors didn’t overwhelm an opponent at any point. Draymond didn’t want anything to do with shooting the ball — dude was out there thinking he had KD on the floor. Toronto’s athleticism and length made Iggy and Livingston look old. Why the hell was Steve Kerr giving all those minutes to Cook/McKinnie/Jerebko? McKinnie was out there during critical minutes in the 4th.

      So weird to watch a game where the Warriors looked outplayed the entire game.

      jotd: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZqQT5904_U

    13. Bruno Almeida

      If Iguodala is hobbled and Durant is still out for a while, the Raptors should win game 2. But the Warriors still have that sense of inevitability to me, so I’ll only believe they’ll lose a series when it happens.

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

      Toronto’s defense was so stifling, this was the first time I ever felt the Warriors needed another scoring option. Curry and Thompson are going to get theirs, but they don’t have anyone else that can step up with a big game. Iggy is older now. Draymond will have hot nights but he’s not really a 3rd option. I’m not a Harrison Barnes fan, but back in the pre Durant years he was a guy that could knock down open 3s and score in other ways here or there playing off the other two in situations like this. Unless Iggy finds the fountain of youth or Durant comes back, this is going to be a tough series.

      All that said, Toronto can’t play any better than they did and it was still a tough game in their own gym.

      I love Siakim & think he a budding star, but he’s not going to have another night like that.

      I love Gasol’s defense and overall basketball IQ, but he’s not going to be a consistent threat on offense like that.

      This series is far from over. The Warriors are probably still the favorite to steal 1 game in Toronto and hold home court.

    15. DS

      Does anyone think that Durant is so influenced by his reputation and legacy that he’d decide between leaving or staying with the Warriors based on what happens in the series?

      i.e. If the Warriors take control of the series without him, it strengthens the narrative that they never needed him. And if he comes back from injury and makes a major difference, it strengthens the narrative that he’s a vital member of the team.

      Man, I feel embarrassed even talking about this type of speculation but the vast majority rumors seem to indicate that he really cares about this sort of thing.

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

      I’m not a big fan of trading down unless we are pretty convinced the player’s available at #3 will not become stars. The whole point of tanking is to try to find a star in the draft. It’s easy to add solid role players and #3 options of the type we’ll probably find lower in the lottery. I think we should proceed on the assumption that we are still building via draft and don’t have a single potential star scorer on the team yet (or at least not anymore). If we are fortunate enough to sign players like Durant, Kyrie, or Kemba that’s great. There’s won’t be much downside to having the BPA out of the draft also.

    17. DS

      @15 –
      I think that fans and the media are remembering the Warriors, before Durant arrived, as better than they actually were. They needed 6 games to beat Cleveland with no Kyrie or Love in 2015 and then went the distance with both OKC and Cleveland (and obviously lost eventually to the latter) in 2016.

      So to the extent that they are without KD 3 years later, they are vulnerable.

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

      @19

      As I said in my prior post, the pre Durant Warriors were younger and deeper than this version without Durant. They were good enough to win 73 games. The team as constructed now without Durant is still awesome, but not as good as that one.

    19. Frank O.

      GSW is now 0-3 against the Raptors this year.
      The Raptors have consistently shown different players stepping up at big moments throughout this playoff.
      I’m actually leaning toward an upset, particularly of KD can’t play or is serious limited in mobility. Calf injuries are a bitch. And they hurt so badly when they happen, it takes a psychological toll whereby even if you are healthy it takes time for the doubt to fall away.

      The defense was swarming. Everything else feeds off it.

    20. DS

      @ 20 – OK, so I think we agree that this current group, without Durant, is not dominant. We might disagree on how dominant the 2015 and 2016 teams were.

    21. swiftandabundant

      The only reason why GSW lost to Cleveland in 2016 is because Draymond Green kept kicking people in the nuts. If he wasn’t suspended, the series would have been over in 5. Also, that was the absolute peak of Lebron and Kyrie was playing an insane series. I think people underestimate how good the supporting cast for Cleveland was that year. But Cleveland got lucky. That’s why it was such an upset and the greatest finals ever. But if Draymond doesn’t get suspended for a game, it would have been lights out for Cleveland.

      Crazy how Lebron got lucky on 2 of his 3 finals victories. He could easily only have one ring.

    22. DS

      @23 – I never felt the 90’s Bulls were just one d*ck punch away from losing a Finals series.

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

      Crazy how Lebron got lucky on 2 of his 3 finals victories. He could easily only have one ring.

      Even if you want to grant him a pass for running into the Warriors, he still lost to the Mavs and Spurs and should have lost to the Spurs twice. I think there’s an explanation for his moderate success in the finals despite being the best player and having a couple of great supporting casts.

    24. JK47

      LeBron was his own de facto GM most of the time. Someday he’ll be a real GM and he’ll suck at it.

    25. Owen

      So true about Lebron. But he is going to have a lot of competition. MJ and Magic have set a very high bar for horrible gm’ing by all time greats. Just imagine if Kobe gets in the game.

      I didn’t watch the game and was shocked by the result. If the Raptors pull this off, this Giannis stan will be able to sleep better at night.

    26. Bruno Almeida

      The Raptors played very good defense but the Warriors still scored pretty well. They made 29 free throws and had a 59.5% ts as a team which is above their season average, scoring 109 points on a slow paced game.

      The Warriors defense was more of an issue, as they got roasted by Siakam every time and Gasol had a throwback game, plus they sent the Raptors to the line 32 times. They have looked dominant this playoffs because Draymond was looking like he was 100% back to his top form, but he was very poor this game. He couldn’t slow Siakam at all, shot poorly and had a ton of costly turnovers and bad fouls. The Raptors made a lot of tough shots that we can’t expect them to keep making, but the Warriors defense has been declining for a while and that becomes a big issue against a versatile team like Toronto, where you double Kawhi but he can pass to Gasol and Siakam and they can make plays on their own. When they smothered Harden or Paul, the other Rockets players couldn’t punish them for it, but Lowry, Siakam and Gasol definitely can.

      Reports are saying Durant is expected back in the midway point of the series, which should probably be game 3 if they lose Sunday. Then it all changes, because they get a long defender to match up with Siakam and a crazy scorer to put even more pressure.

    27. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I think there’s an explanation for his moderate success in the finals despite being the best player and having a couple of great supporting casts.

      And that is?

    28. Jack Bauer

      “Crazy how Lebron got lucky on 2 of his 3 finals victories. He could easily only have one ring.”
      Truth

      Think how that would have changed Lebron’s legacy if he was 1-8 in the finals?? He’s one dick punch and 1 buzzer beating 3 (by Ray Allen I believe) from having that exact record. That would not be GOAT -like.

      We’ll see which coach makes the adjustments that matter for Game 2. Nick Nurse seems like a worthy adversary to Steve Kerr.

      Not sure about the Knicks trading back to 8 and 10, I guess it depends who’s available. If they do it the outcome could very well be another Knox and Frank based on recent results – that would truly suck.

    29. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      I know I’m just a Clarke stan at this point, but I’m watching Siakam’s offensive highlights and this is what I see:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ugrYiEl9gg

      1) Siakam exploits the Curry mismatch with a short turnaround floater after a quasi-post move.

      2) Open 3 which he sinks despite the slow release.

      3) Another open 3. Hitched shot, goes in.

      4) Starts near the corner and drives into the paint for a layup finishing on the other side of the rim.

      5) Another paint move with a slight hesitation, spin and up to the rim. Clarke does this.

      6) Baseline jumper.

      7) Contested shot off the glass. Amazing defense, amazing finish. This is a superstar move.

      8) Pippen-like finish with his left at the glass.

      9) Eurosteppy layup with his right hand. Again, superstar move.

      10) Transition layup, nice finish over Cook.

      11) Circus hook shot off the glass. Actually a terrible look but it goes in.

      I have no fucking idea how a person can look at this guy getting quality looks at the rim and thinking that Clarke, all 1″ shorter, can’t do the same. They’re the same age and they have the same incredible instincts in the paint. Will he be a good outside shooter? Eh, no idea. But fuck, I want my own Siakam, and that is definitely Clarke in this draft.

    30. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Think how that would have changed Lebron’s legacy if he was 1-8 in the finals?? He’s one dick punch and 1 buzzer beating 3 (by Ray Allen I believe) from having that exact record. That would not be GOAT -like.

      We don’t really have to have that conversation because none of that actually happened. Does Jordan win in ’97 if Kerr misses that shot in Game 6? What about when B.J. Armstrong scored 18 points on 11 tSA in the 1-point victory over the suns in ’93? What if he goes 4-10 instead of 6-10? What if the Bulls lose that hypothetical Game 7? What if Pippen doesn’t have a ridiculous 2nd half of Game 6 in ’92, putting up 26 points on 17 shots by the game’s end and helping to hold Drexler to 8-24 shooting? What if interior defense doesn’t lock shit down and reverse the +18 points-in-paint disparity that the Blazers were holding over the Bulls at halftime?

      I do think that for all the #1a and #2b talk, Jordan was the more consistent playoff performer and LeBron had the higher peaks in his performance (2009 and 2018 are better than any single postseason Jordan ever had, which is an enormous feat). But let’s not start trying to re-write narratives about how LeBron shrunk from the spotlight in the Finals. He was the main reason that all of his 9 Finals teams made it in the first place.

      On LeBron: the 50-win, 3.33 SRS ’07 Cavs had absolutely no business in the NBA Finals. None. Of the 8 non-LeBron players who played >200 minutes in that playoffs, only Daniel Gibson (3.2 BPM on excellent shooting), Andy Varejao (1.9 BPM) and Z (0.6) had positive BPMs. And we’re talking about a 21-year-old LeBron. 21! Jordan didn’t even make the Finals until he was 27 — and that delay wasn’t even his fault, as he was a dominant playoff performer as early as his rookie season!

    31. Frank O.

      So true about Lebron. But he is going to have a lot of competition. MJ and Magic have set a very high bar for horrible gm’ing by all time greats. Just imagine if Kobe gets in the game.

      I didn’t watch the game and was shocked by the result. If the Raptors pull this off, this Giannis stan will be able to sleep better at night.

      Owen,
      don’t forget Isiah

    32. Bruno Almeida

      Yeah, and as much as Wade was a great player in his prime, Pippen is a better player than anyone LeBron ever had as a 2nd option. LeBron faced some pretty incredible teams too, that Spurs 2013-14 team was really really good and the Warriors are the Warriors. It’s not like he lost many upset finals, I’d say his team was the favorite to win it all only on 4 of his 9 finals appearances, the ones with the Heat, and even that is somewhat questionable against the Spurs. I’d argue the only finals where his team should have clearly been favorites and they lost is the Dallas one, but it also was their first finals together.

    33. Owen

      Yeah, Lebron has dragged a few really crap teams to the Finals. He’s never played with a Pippen. He’s done pretty well for himself just to lose as many Finals as he has.

      Owen, don’t forget Isiah

      I take great satisfaction in not considering him an all-time great.

    34. JK47

      Wade was not really an ideal sidekick to LeBron. They both needed the ball in their hands a lot. They won some ringzz anyway, but it was not an ideal pairing. Jordan and Pippen were perfectly complementary as Pippen was a great off-ball player.

    35. alsep73

      Think how that would have changed Lebron’s legacy if he was 1-8 in the finals?

      Maybe he would have wound up as the NBA’s new logo, replacing the last guy to go 1-8 in the Finals?

    36. Owen

      That’s fair. But maybe we are giving Wade short thrift. The title he won and the title Dirk won really stand out in the last 40 years, along with the one Lebron won against the Warriors.

    37. Frank O.

      Wade was not really an ideal sidekick to LeBron. They both needed the ball in their hands a lot. They won some ringzz anyway, but it was not an ideal pairing. Jordan and Pippen were perfectly complementary as Pippen was a great off-ball player.

      Wade needed the ball, but he also could be a plus plus defender in the playoffs. In 2009 he averaged 1.67 blocks/48 and finished third that year for best defender behind Lebron and Howard. He had his flaws, but he would pick it up quite a bit in the playoffs…I’m just suggesting he was more than a ball dominant guard. The dude could play all aspects of the game at an elite level.

    38. DRed

      Wade was at the tail end of his peak Lebron’s first two years on the Heat. The Dallas loss is the only finals loss where Lebron’s team was clearly better.

      I guess it was somewhat lucky dray got suspended for a game but they beat a team that went 73-9 3 games in a row.

    39. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      If LeBron had had 2006-2010 Wade, he would have won some rings. 2011 Wade was good! 2014 Wade was… less good.

      I have no idea why people think that 25-year-old and 32-year-old Wade would be remotely close to the same player or teammate.

    40. DS

      We don’t really have to have that conversation because none of that actually happened. Does Jordan win in ’97 if Kerr misses that shot in Game 6? What about when B.J. Armstrong scored 18 points on 11 tSA in the 1-point victory over the suns in ’93? What if he goes 4-10 instead of 6-10? What if the Bulls lose that hypothetical Game 7? What if Pippen doesn’t have a ridiculous 2nd half of Game 6 in ’92, putting up 26 points on 17 shots by the game’s end and helping to hold Drexler to 8-24 shooting? What if interior defense doesn’t lock shit down and reverse the +18 points-in-paint disparity that the Blazers were holding over the Bulls at halftime?

      Well for one thing, Jordan’s Bulls won all their titles in 6 games or fewer. So I guess the answer to most of these questions is that they would’ve played another game in which the Bulls were heavily favored to win.

    41. Bruno Almeida

      Wade often gets underrated because he didn’t really play a modern game and didn’t adjust so well when he lost a few steps, but he was a massively impactful player in his prime. But he was still no Pippen, and I agree he didn’t fit LeBron as perfectly as Pippen fit alongside MJ. LeBron also never had a player who was as impactful as Rodman was during the second three peat, a guy who could guard literally anyone and grab every rebound on the court.

      It’s crazy to think about it, and some of it is LeBron-as-GM fault, but through his entire 16 year career we can say LeBron was on the best team in the league for a maximum of 4 seasons, depending on how you feel about the Spurs team that beat them.

    42. Mike Honcho

      @35 I think he’s saying that Isiah is an all-time shitty former-player GM, not that he’s an all-time great player.

    43. nicos

      To me, Green getting suspended had nothing to do with luck. Green’s inability to control himself was no different than being unable to hit a jumper- it was a legitimate flaw in his game and it cost them.

    44. DRed

      The Warriors without KD have one great player, then Draymond, who is terrific but is past his prime, Iggy, who is even more fragile and that’s pretty much it. Klay has moments of incandecence, but I’m not even sure he’s more than a league average player and he hasn’t had a good post season since 2015. They have some goodish young bigs who aren’t real difference makers.

    45. wetbandit

      Klay Thompson is objectively: a very good defender, a 40% shooter from 3 this season on over 7 per game, a .571 TS%, and the clear #2 scorer on an all time great team before Durant came. Yes, his BPM/WS/VORP may not show this as much as the rest, but damn are you wrong when you think he’s a league average player.

      This is totally off the cuff, but I’m sure I’d rather have him than 80% of the players out there, maybe 90%.

    46. JK47

      I think Klay does have some “not in the boxscore” value, because he plays stout defense without fouling, and doesn’t rack up lots of steals. That kind of player is underrated by “all-in-one” kind of metrics IMO. He’s a smart defender that doesn’t make a lot of mistakes.

      He’s not a “star” like he’s perceived by some, but he’s better than a league average player.

    47. abk

      Klay is way better than average. He’s a deserving All-Star.

      Pretty encouraged that the FO is looking at trading back. Regardless of the merits of RJ vs Clarke/Hunter/Rui/NAW/etc, trading down is almost always a sign of a patient front office. Aka the opposite of every previous Knicks FO. Not falling in love with pointzzz and brand names is pretty key to success. If they don’t see RJ as a star they should trade back.

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

      And that is?

      Well, for one, I think players like Jordan, Magic, Bird, Kareem, Duncan and others were mentally tougher players. But setting that aside, Lebron’s teams were built around him to such a strong degree, if he was on the bench resting, less than 100%, or just having a rough night his team was kind of screwed.

      He was the dominant scorer, dominant playmaker, and also critical in other ways.

      You could say that makes him a great player (and it does), but some of those other guys could easily have done more too. But their teams weren’t built to maximize them. They were built to maximize the TEAM output. Lebron’s teams were built to maximize his output and that left them in deep doodoo at times.

    49. DRed

      Klay’s 29. Where’s the evidence he’s still an objectively stout defender? He seems to be very much just a great shooter now.

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

      I’d call Klay a great #2 option because he really good on both sides, but you can’t build a team around Klay and expect to win a championship. You can’t just give him the ball and expect him to get 25 a night at high efficiency on his own. He can create for himself, but he’s also playing off others. He’s a great Robin.

    51. swiftandabundant

      Jowles, I wasn’t disparaging Lebron’s legacy. I think people who think he’s not one of the best players ever because he’s lost in the finals are idiots. 9 straight finals is a ridiculous achievement. And its weird to ding a player for making the finals so many times and losing. He had to win all of those playoff games to even get there. Its incredible. Just think its interesting that 2 of his finals victories were so close and he could easily only have one ring to his name.

      But yeah, Jordan’s teams all won in 6 games so if they hadn’t won those games…do you really doubt Jordan would have lost those game 7’s? Cause I sure as hell don’t! I think that is one reason why I would still put Jordan and the Bulls above Lebron or Golden State. He was 6 for 6 in the Finals and it wasn’t even really that close cause he never even went to game 7. And there were good teams he played against, the Bulls were just better than everyone else. God it was annoying.

    52. swiftandabundant

      Also, I’m curious as to why people still say Miami should have beaten Dallas in 2010. Cause they were up 2-1?

      Sure, Dallas only had one superstar with Dirk. But that supporting cast was full of VERY good players and very seasoned and savvy veterans. Prime Tyson Chandler, Jason Kidd, Shawn Marion, Jason Terry. That’s 4 very good players. Hell they had Peja coming off the bench, Berrea as a back up. They were a loaded team that was deep as hell. We saw with the 2012 Knicks what even old man Kidd can do for a team as far as raising the intelligence and team play. They were a great team and Cuban was an idiot for not resigning Tyson Chandler and making another run at it the next year. I bet they would have repeated in the strike shortened season.

    53. JK47

      It’t not just “eye test” with Klay’s defense. He’s played a lot of minutes for some very good defensive teams, he has a good reputation as a defender (2nd team all-defense this year) and (eye test alert) when you watch him play, he plays pretty much like what his reputation says. He stays with his man, has good core strength so he’s difficult to dominate physically, and he makes good decisions.

      If you asked me “how is Bradley Beal’s position defense” I’d probably have to throw the shrug emoticon because I don’t watch a lot of Wizards basketball. But we have all watched a shit ton of Warriors basketball over the years. It’s not too hard to see that Klay is a pretty good defender. Just like when you watch Tim Hardaway Jr., it’s rather obvious that he sucks. Klay’s defense is like the inverse of that. Now, he is getting a bit older, that’s a fair point, and the Dubs were not as good a defensive team this year, but I kind of feel like they mostly ranked only 13th in DRating because Draymond was phoning it in for most of the year.

      I’m not a big “eye test” guy at all but Klay does seem to me to be one of those players who doesn’t get his defensive value captured in a box score. It seems to me like that kind of player does exist. I mean, what do I know. I’m just a guy on the internet.

    54. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      If you’re running things down in New Orleans, do you value any asset that New York, Boston, or either LA team more than Pascal Siakim? Shai Gilgeous Alexander might be a close second (taking age and upside into account I might take him), but if Masai Ujiri calls and offers Ibaka’s expiring, Pascal Siakim, and two 1RPs (with mild protection on the 2nd pick), do you say no?

    55. Jack Bauer

      Think how that would have changed Lebron’s legacy if he was 1-8 in the finals?

      @37 “Maybe he would have wound up as the NBA’s new logo, replacing the last guy to go 1-8 in the Finals?”

      Touche’ – well by that logic if Lebron really wanted to be the new logo he should have lost those 2 Finals and then it could have been so.

      I get all the Clarke love here but if the Knicks trade back to 8 and 10 there’s no guarantee he will still be there when they pick. Hunter will almost certainly be gone before 8. I like the idea, not sure I trust the management to make the right call.

      I will say this about Klay Thompson – when he gets hot no one shoots better than him, it’s insane.

    56. The Glass Half Rebuilt

      Yeah a hot Klay Thompson in that offense is a death sentence. You can’t really defend a guy who doesn’t need the ball in his hands for more than a second.

    57. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      if Masai Ujiri calls and offers Ibaka’s expiring, Pascal Siakim, and two 1RPs (with mild protection on the 2nd pick)

      …I hang up the phone and call the league office to let them know that someone is out there impersonating Masai Ujiri.

      Siakam is going to be a Raptor until the next meteor touches down. He’s 25 and makes $2.3M next year.

    58. DRed

      Sure, I agree box score doesn’t capture all (or even a lot) of individual defense, but we don’t have any stats that suggest Klay is a good defensive player. It’s just ‘he seems like he stays in front of his man a lot’. I have to think if he was as good as people think he is it would have some sort of measurable effect. He’s a great shooter who is playing in the perfect system. He’s Kyle Korver who smokes a ton of weed.

    59. Bruno Almeida

      There’s simply no way Toronto offers Siakam plus picks for a guy the Pelicans want to trade. If it comes down to “Kawhi leaves unless we get Davis”, which doesn’t seem to be the way Kawhi operates at all, they would offer Siakam straight up with filler or only the picks and guys like VanVleet and Anunoby. Siakam is a lot more productive than the other guys rumored to be part of packages for Davis, and his salary is so small.

      My only issue with trading down is, if Clarke gets picked 7th, what do we even do then? If the draft goes Zion, Ja, RJ, Culvert, Garland, Reddish and Clarke, does that leave us with what? Coby White and Hunter or Doumbouya? Maybe Reddish? I’d much much rather just pick Barrett.

    60. chrisconley

      I don’t trust this front office to trade down for one second. I would much rather have RJ than the two bums these geniuses pick at 8 and 10.

    61. chrisconley

      Hah! Didn’t even read Bruno’s post first. Only way I would want them to trade down is if they otherwise plan on going Cam at 3. Then please please trade down.

    62. DRed

      Guys don’t you see Reddish just had core surgery that’s why he shot 39% from inside the arc last season.

    63. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      My only issue with trading down is, if Clarke gets picked 7th, what do we even do then? If the draft goes Zion, Ja, RJ, Culvert, Garland, Reddish and Clarke, does that leave us with what? Coby White and Hunter or Doumbouya? Maybe Reddish? I’d much much rather just pick Barrett.

      Barrett for Clarke at 7 plus a future unprotected first. Or a good young player or a protected first and multiple seconds. Clarke will likely be a better player than Barrett and far less potential to Wiggins him (i.e. sign him to a max deal despite absolutely no growth as a player).

      If other FO people want to pin their hopes on Barrett being a superstar in six-ish years, fine! Exploit that shit and get the better player today and decide to max him or not when he’s 26.

    64. JK47

      Trade down to 8 and 10

      Take Clarke at 8, take a flyer on Bol Bol at 10

      Boom

      Not Knicksy enough doe

    65. Bruno Almeida

      I totally agree that if Clarke is available at that range, we should definitely trade down. I’m just not confident they even have Clarke in their radar.

    66. Early Bird

      I’d be happy with 2 of Hunter, Clarke, White, and Bol Bol.

      Unlike most people, I think this will be a talented draft. The problem is we don’t know where the talent will come from. That’s why I’d trade back and draft 2 players.

    67. Brian Cronin

      I don’t get the idea of trading back because this is going to be a win now team with Durant, so what’s the point of trading down when you could get a really good win now player for the #3 pick? I mean, if you could guarantee me that Clarke is there at #8, I guess it makes sense, but that seems far from a likely thing.

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