Knicks Morning News (2019.06.24)

  • [Hoops Rumors] Atlantic Notes: Harris, Green, Nets, Knicks
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 6:31:42 PM)

    With free agency set to open in just one week, star forward Tobias Harris is planning to conduct meetings across the country in his first two days on the open market, according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News (Twitter link). Harris, who’s expected to command a maximum-salary deal, will be one of […]

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks free-agent target Kawhi Leonard opts out, to ‘seriously’ consider Raptors
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 7:43:51 PM)

    Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard has declined his player option to become an unrestricted free agent and is “seriously considering” re-signing with the NBA champions.

  • [SNY Knicks] Former coaches explain what second-rounder Ignas Brazdeikis brings to the Knicks
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 12:47:22 PM)

    In case you missed it on at the NBA Draft on Thursday, the New York Knicks made a splash. They drafted a Canadian sharpshooter with no shortage of confidence and expectations to make an immediate impact to the organization.

  • [SNY Knicks] Previewing the Knicks’ Summer League roster
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 9:38:35 AM)

    Las Vegas Summer League is just two weeks away, and with it comes a chance for Knicks fans to take in their newly-upgraded young core for the first time.

  • [NYPost] RJ Barrett gets chills watching new Knicks reality
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 7:53:42 PM)

    RJ Barrett’s first introduction here was overshadowed. The encore was not. A day after the Knicks selected him in the NBA draft, the club’s Twitter account captured Barrett slowly walking onto the Madison Square Garden floor. Moments later, the lights flickered, bringing the third-overall pick to a halt, and his attention to the jumbotron. “Ladies…

  • [NYPost] Kawhi Leonard opts out, though Raptors are still alive
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 4:12:30 PM)

    This Kawhi Leonard move was expected. His next might not be. The NBA Finals MVP will become an unrestricted free agent after opting out of his 2019-20 player option worth $21.3 million, according to Yahoo Sports. Many viewed his one season in Toronto as a pit stop following his arrival from the Spurs, making a…

  • [NYPost] Ignas Brazdeikis is Knicks’ other one-and-done NBA draft stud
    (Sunday, June 23, 2019 2:57:42 PM)

    RJ Barrett drew all the attention and the headlines, and justifiably so. The Knicks’ first-round pick out of Duke was at one time considered the best prospect in the draft and set the ACC freshman scoring record (860 points). But Barrett wasn’t the only one-and-done prospect the Knicks selected Thursday night. Second-round pick Ignas Brazdeikis…

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

    Mike Kurylo

    Mike Kurylo is the founder and editor of KnickerBlogger.net. His book on the 2012 Knicks, "We’ll Always Have Linsanity," is on sale now. Follow him on twitter (@KnickerBlogger).

    111 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2019.06.24)”

    1. ptmilo alluded to something like this the other day but how about a 3-way trade where we get OKC and Charlotte 1st round picks? Adams goes to Charlotte, Biyombo/Willliams go to Knicks, and Roberson goes to either Charlotte or NYK. If Charlotte is interested in Roberson, they could take him. Biyombo/Williams would both be expiring contracts. Starting lineup of Kemba/Lamb/Batum/PJ Washington/Adams. Zeller/Miles Bridges/Monk/Roberson off the bench. Not bad for Hornets and sweet deal for us though we’d be hurting our Charlotte 2nd round picks.

      So here’s my strategy for the cap:
      (1) Rubio on 2-year deal at about 20m/yr
      (2) That 3-way deal where we absorb those two 32m contracts for just one year
      (3) Keep remaining 15m cap open unless some team makes great offer to dump contract

    2. I heard something interesting when listening to a Mills interview. The question was why did they choose RJ or what they liked about him. The first words out of Mills’ mouth were he’s able to play both guard positions. He never mentioned RJ as SF. Maybe Mills misspoke and meant to say play both wing positions. I hope he didn’t misspeak bc I like RJ more as a 1 or 2 guard than a SF. One of the wild card options is RJ emerges as a 1 guard and we play a switch everything defense.

    3. Interesting discussion from yesterday where djphan wrote:

      the tmac comparison isn’t perfect….

      but who was the last rfa that was as good and as young and as available as russell? i’ll wait…

      .

      and I responded with 5 RFA’s from last season alone who showed better composite advanced stats than d’AR for a fraction of the contract:
      https://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.fcgi?request=1&sum=1&player_id1_hint=D%27Angelo+Russell&player_id1_select=D%27Angelo+Russell&y1=2019&player_id1=russeda01&idx=players&player_id2_hint=Aaron+Gordon&player_id2_select=Aaron+Gordon&y2=2018&player_id2=gordoaa01&idx=players&player_id3_hint=Clint+Capela&player_id3_select=Clint+Capela&y3=2018&player_id3=capelca01&idx=players&player_id4_hint=Montrezl+Harrell&player_id4_select=Montrezl+Harrell&y4=2018&player_id4=harremo01&idx=players&player_id5_hint=Nikola+Jokic&player_id5_select=Nikola+Jokic&y5=2018&player_id5=jokicni01&idx=players&player_id6_hint=Fred+VanVleet&player_id6_select=Fred+VanVleet&y6=2018&player_id6=vanvlfr01&idx=players

      To which djphan retorted:

      lets just say that none of those guys you listed are neither better bor nore available nor younger than russell….

      i mean if you want to argue that youd rather have montrez harrell than dlo… then this discussion is not gonna be all that productive.. the only one you might be able to squint and make a case for is capela… but bigs like capela are not all that valuable…

      I DO want to argue Montrezl Harrell at 12m/2 years is infinitely more desirable than d’AR at 140M for 5 years!

      I do want to argue that Capella at 90M for 5 is infinitely better value than d’AR at 140M for 5 years

      And I DO want to argue that Fred Vanvleet at 18M for 2 years is infinitely better value and use of money than d”AR at 140M…

    4. Looking at that Charlotte/OKC/NYK 3-way, we could also absorb MKG’s 13m contract into our cap if Hornets are interested. That would be 45m of contracts – doubt other cap rich teams could do that. But I’d want another 1st round pick from Hornets. We could send them Jenkins, a 2nd round pick and maybe even Frank in that scenario.

      So to summarize:
      Hornets get Adams (maybe Roberson), Jenkins, 2nd round pick, AND save a net of $20m
      OKC sheds Adams and Roberson
      NYK get 3 1st round picks and take on bad contracts for just 1 year

    5. Food for thought:

      Watching video of Brazdeikis, I couldn’t help but notice that he plays a 2-way style that reminded me of Chris Mullin.

      Now I’m not saying definitively that he’ll turn out like Mullin, just that I’m seeing similarities. That said, Ignas has much work to do to get anywhere near there.

    6. I think we need to prepare for a KD signing. Here’s what they’re thinking (I think)

      It’s the perfect “process” move. We stay bad, get another high pick, rent cap space if an obvious deal presents itself, add to our war chest of draft assets and get a superstar that everyone wants to play with for 20-21. This sets us up for a fun summer of trades and FA hunting next summer.

      There’s also the chance that with KD coming we can cash in some other assets and / or sign another max now. Maybe Kyrie or Russell come over and we can enjoy them trying to get to 40 wins knowing that that isn’t the ceiling.

      I personally don’t know what is the right move but I know the NYK always has to make a big splash somehow. This is a way to do that (satisfying an owner that always needs a shiny toy) while not mortgaging the future. For it to work KD has to come back strong. I know many have their doubts…

    7. I personally wish the Durant rumors ended with his injury, but the front office might feel like that would be going back on a deal of sorts and I guess it’s hard to quantify the damage that could do.

      If we have to sign him, the way to do it would be the way danvt outlined. Use the rest of the cap space to take on assets with the understanding that his rehab year will be lost regardless. The problem is the 2020 free agent crop is a pretty sorry group (assuming AD stays in LA), and if we’re waiting until 2021 that’s asking a lot of a 32 year old, post-achilles tear Durant.

      There’s always the possibility that opportunities we aren’t currently aware of rise, and we’d have a decently solid asset chest. For this reason it wouldn’t be the stupidest risk we’ve ever taken, but that’s a very low bar.

    8. here’s a random thing i was looking at last week. this is a list of randomly chosen “centers.” it consists of guys who played decent minutes over the last three seasons and remain at least somewhat relevant. the list is ordered by 3-year D-RAPM. As a reminder, D-RAPM is a plus-minus metric. it attempts to adjust for the things that you intuitively know are problematic with plus-minus, including quality of teammates, backup and opponents. that doesn’t mean it can do so perfectly. 1-yr is a short RAPM sample, even regularized. 3 years is pretty good, though. D-RAPM is defense-only. it has no boxscore component at all. You can ignore the tiers, they’re arbitrary.

      Tier 1: Gobert 5.14

      Tier 2: AD 3.32
      Nurkic 3.13
      Embiid 2.97

      Tier 3 LMA 1.91
      Vucevic 1.68
      Jokic 1.47
      Rolo 1.29
      Horford 1.24

      Tier 4 Adams 0.99
      Deandre 0.94
      Whiteside 0.91
      Capela 0.69
      M Turner 0.55

      Tier 5 Cauley-Stein 0.29
      M Gasol 0.16
      Cousins 0.03
      B Lopez -0.12

      Tier 6 Towns -0.65
      Drummond -0.82

      Tier 7 Valanciunas -1.55
      Kanter -1.72

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

      I’m just catching up with yesterday.

      The fact that some people are willing to pay Russell a max contract shows you how much people value scoring relative to defense. Russell is a negative defender and he’s not even all that good as an offensive player because his scoring efficiency leaves something to be desired. You could argue he’s still a slightly negative player on a net basis and you might not even be wrong. It would at least be a discussion.

      If we are going to add yet another player doesn’t defend, I’d way rather have Julius Randle. At least he scores very efficiently, rebounds, and is a good playmaker for a forward. I’m not making a case for him either. I’d just rather have him than Russell.

      I’m actually making the case for keeping guys like Vonleh and looking for players just like him. His overall value is probably ball park similar to Randle’s but he’ll be WAY cheaper because he has the opposite profile.

      We should be looking for players that add value in non scoring ways because they tend to be cheaper. It doesn’t necessarily have to be any of the guys on this list. A couple are too old. But this is more or less the profile.

      Aminu
      Rubio
      Brogdon
      Morris twins
      Willie Cauley-Stein
      Rozier
      Ed Davis
      Caldwell Pope

      They don’t pay me millions of dollars to scout games every night looking for young underrated defenders, playmakers, rebounders, 3&d guys etc… but there are probably several out there in their mid 20s that would be bargains. They could be part of the long term solution and/or be used to trade up to star at a later date.

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

      @8

      Jokic 1.47

      I’m still not buying this. I’ve scoured those D-RAPM lists and I still don’t think they weed out the impact of team level defense well enough to get at individual defense. I’d be willing to bet that if you put Jokic on the Knicks his defensive rating would fall noticeably.

    11. DAR with his smoking hot metrics at 29 million a year for the next 4 will need assets added to move unless he miraculously becomes a perennial 2nd team all NBA He’s going to have to improve greatly to be neutral value at 117M for the next 4 years. And that’s factorial!

      I don’t know how many times you need me to acknowledge that I accept this is a risk. It’s just that, though. A risk. What you’re saying above is far from certain. If there are multiple teams willing to max him now with all those advanced metrics red flags, it’s stands to reason that he has value despite them.

      The one thing everyone keeps ignoring in the whole risk management equation is Dolan’s impatience. You can’t sit around and wait for the perfect free agent. He’s not going to allow 2 more seasons of winning 17 games while you trade cap space for assets and accumulate lottery picks. He’ll turn the whole damn management roster upside down and force them to make desperate moves to sell tickets. Too often here we discuss alternatives that are just unrealistic given the ownership that we have.

      At some point we have to pull the trigger on something. I get the risk with Russell and I get the risk with Durant coming off an Achilles tear. But those remain two risks I’m willing to take for the litany of reasons I’ve stated.

      Having spent the last few days attempting to destroy my reasons for being willing to take on Russell, pray tell how would you like to spend the $70mm in cap space this summer? I believe you’re in the same camp as me about Durant, but you could just be enjoying tearing apart the anti-Durant crowd for the sake of swatting down feeble arguments.

    12. They don’t pay me millions of dollars to scout games every night looking for young underrated defenders, playmakers, rebounders, 3&d guys etc… but there are probably several out there in their mid 20s that would be bargains. They could be part of the long term solution and/or be used to trade up to star at a later date.

      There probably aren’t. It’s rare for guys in their mid 20s to hit unrestricted free agency unless their teams don’t care to keep them, in which case they probably aren’t “underrated defenders, playmakers, rebounders, 3&d guys etc.”

      There’s a reason all the guys you listed are either too old and/or expensive (Aminu, Rubio, Morii, Davis), likely to be retained by their teams barring drastic overpays (Brogdon, WCS, Rozier), or just not very impactful (KCP). Non-elite free agency has been a loser’s game for a long time now, and there’s no 2019 exception to that. I mean what exactly would be our path to contention if we emptied our cap on these kinds of players, and then predictably won 30-40 games? It wouldn’t exist–this is the path to becoming the Charlotte Hornets with better attendance as we were under Phil Jackson.

      I appreciate that you finally named some actual targets, but your list is a great example of why people tend to think we should go for elite free agents or bust. You don’t spend big on guys who could be the 7th best player on a championship team before you have 1-6.

    13. If we don’t get Durant, Irving or Kawhi. (and with Durant I’d want some injury protection in the contract), then we take on guys who might improve and who have short contracts and wait for our young guys to improve. If we can’t spend it all, that’s ok. We save it for next year or for deals at the trade deadline, maybe with teams who want to get under the tax.

    14. I’m still not buying this. I’ve scoured those D-RAPM lists and I still don’t think they weed out the impact of team level defense well enough to get at individual defense. I’d be willing to bet that if you put Jokic on the Knicks his defensive rating would fall noticeably.

      I mean they were a good team defense (10th overall), he played the most minutes on the team, they were better on defense when he was in the game then when he was out, and it’s not like he’s surrounded by exceptional defensive talent (Millsap used to be really, really good but has lost half a step I think, Harris is fine). If you think Jokic is a very bad defender I’m curious how you square that circle.

      I can’t say I watched them a ton in the regular season but in the playoffs he sure looked like a pretty good defensive player to me. He’s not the quickest obviously, but he’s huge, tries hard, is mostly in the right place, and has really, really great hands. He’s pretty similiar to current Marc Gasol in terms of attributes in my eyes (not DPOY level Gasol but 34-year old Gasol). There are some matchups that are a huge problem for him because of the lack of quickness but against most teams he’s solid or better.

    15. I’m still not buying this. I’ve scoured those D-RAPM lists and I still don’t think they weed out the impact of team level defense well enough to get at individual defense. I’d be willing to bet that if you put Jokic on the Knicks his defensive rating would fall noticeably.

      Jokic is not a bad defender and both stats and eye test back this up.

      This gets back to the same discussion about Porzingis where people focus too much on one aspect of defense: rim protection.

      Porzingis was an elite rim protector but not an elite defender. He couldn’t rebound his position and he couldn’t guard anyone on the perimeter.

      Jokic is a poor rim protector but not a terrible defender. He’s an elite defensive rebounder. And Denver changed the way they used him last year. Instead of sitting back on pick and rolls he attacks ball handlers and is very good at forcing them to give up the ball. That’s why Denver’s team stats look good with him. He’s not playing defense the way you expect a big man to, but that doesn’t mean he’s a terrible defender.

    16. Russell has value now because there’s some chance that his improvement last year was legitimate and there’s also a chance that he’ll get even better because he’s still real young. He’s not going to be very valuable as an asset once he gets paid if he doesn’t get better, and he’s going to have negative value if he gets worse. Russell will be worth max money if he gets better, but I don’t know how certain it is that he improves. If you want a good offense only PG Kyrie is a surer bet (he obviously has his own suite of problems)

    17. Porzingis was an elite rim protector but not an elite defender. He couldn’t rebound his position and he couldn’t guard anyone on the perimeter.

      Statistically Porzingis is below average as a defensive rebounder for a F/C. He rebounds like Chris Bosh. He’s certainly not a good rebounder, but the haters overstate his rebounding deficiencies. I can buy Kristaps not being an elite defender despite being an elite rim protector, but I think he’s a valuable defensive player.

    18. Having spent the last few days attempting to destroy my reasons for being willing to take on Russell, pray tell how would you like to spend the $70mm in cap space this summer? I believe you’re in the same camp as me about Durant, but you could just be enjoying tearing apart the anti-Durant crowd for the sake of swatting down feeble arguments.

      No disrespect Hubert at all intended. I don’t like d’AR at anywhere near the max because he has the profile of my all time most detested player type: poor on defense and very high usage with poor efficiency/ TS%. I just don’t see how these players ever work out at the heaviest contract and they generally don’t.

      I mentioned 5 RFA’s last year that I would far prefer on a dollar for dollar basis that you probably could have shaken loose from their team with a 20% higher offer which would still have been value over d’AR IMO (obviously Jokic not included).

      I think they are going to offer Durant the max and I think it is a reasonable risk. The recovery rate for this injury isn’t as dire as talked about here and Durant should age better than Reggie Miller because he is a better shooter , taller and longer as well as being a major level above Miller at their respective peaks. If Kyrie or Kawhi are interested, great… if not there are other options all of which have been mentioned here that are viable.

      Plus… we have 6 first rounders in the next 4 years to improve further.

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

      @12

      The path forward is always “star players”.

      You can draft them, trade for them, or sign them as free agents.

      When you suck, you can’t attract them as free agents because they want to play on good teams and you can’t trade for them because you don’t have any attractive players as assets.

      There’s a reason teams are considering Barclay’s Center over Madison Square Garden even though the Nets have quite a few players of the profile I am suggesting. It’s because they don’t suck and we do.

      Same pattern every time.

      The correct path forward assumes you are signing players that are both young enough to hang around for the duration of their contract and at a price that allows you to trade them later if a star player becomes available. It also assume you are managing your cap space correctly so you will have more opportunities to sign a star going forward with some small moves. If a players does not meet those conditions you say “no” and move on to next best option.

      The purely draft alternative most likely means continuing to miss the superstar in the lottery, continuing to draft the wrong player on occasion, but slowly getting better and making it less likely we can get a star that way. Then in 6-7 years when Knox and Barrett are starting to peak and whoever else we draft is beginning to develop, maybe we’ll be able to make some moves.

      You have to get on a path to improving the team while managing space well. If that means signing a few players that are 27-28 years old, that’s fine. You are shortening the process.

    20. If you want a good offense only PG Kyrie is a surer bet (he obviously has his own suite of problems)

      He certainly is. While they are both equally disinterested and poor defenders, Kyrie is as elite an offensive player as their is at the point guard position. There is no argument the best d’AR can ever be will never be close to the efficient offensive juggernaut with the ultimate handle that Kyrie possesses.

    21. According to Bondy, we’ve all spent days arguing about something that isn’t happening. That’s a big part of what we do here.

      He also mentions that the backup plan to KD/Kawhi/Kyrie isn’t taking on salary dumps, it’s Plan C. That is so asinine. I bet we could get a few assets just by taking on expiring money, but we’d rather re-up Mario Hezonja for a year?

      It really is quite similar to the time Phil Jackson passed up two first round picks for Afflalo and Williams. It’s starting to look like we’ll never have a front office creative enough to build a contender through any means other than “2-3 really good players decide they want to live in New York.”

    22. Why does anyone believe he isn’t pulling that notion out of his ass to get clicks from exasperated Knicks fans???

      Which is much of what “newspapers” do today…..

    23. There’s a reason teams are considering Barclay’s Center over Madison Square Garden even though the Nets have quite a few players of the profile I am suggesting. It’s because they don’t suck and we do.

      Actually, the Nets don’t have a single player under contract for next season above $10M AAV, and only have two above $7M AAV (Dinwiddie and Harris).

      I agree that they likely have a better foundation of young players than us, but it’d odd that you would cite that as evidence for why it’s good to sign mediocre veterans. They got most of their core via rebuilding, despite not having their own picks. Under Marks, they regularly took on salary dumps for first rounders, gave out flyers to intriguing young players instead of mediocre veterans (this is how they wound up with Dinwiddie, Harris, and to an extent D’Lo), and traded the veterans they did have for picks (e.g. Thad Young for the LeVert pick). As plenty of us pointed out at the time, they were basically executing the exact strategy for which we’ve been clamoring.

      It’s actually good evidence of the potential success of said strategy that they were able to pull it off without their own picks.

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

      I watch a lot Nuggets games. IMO, there’s almost no chance Jokic is a plus defender. If the data says otherwise, you should be questioning the data. He’s not a very negative defender. I’d almost call him neutral because he’s a pretty smart guy, but he’s definitely not positive. He gets beat often and even targeted at times but has a good team of defenders around him. He also offers very little rim protection. Rim protection is the most important component of defense from the C .

      Saying a player is a good rim protector is kind of like saying your PG is a good play maker. He better be!

      Besides, KP is more than just a good rim protector. He’s an excellent help defender and is good enough to actually impact the game on that side. Where he’s weak is on the perimeter against the smaller really quick PFs. That’s why he has to get stronger and develop more of an inside game. Then he can abuse those guys on the other side with his height and length and limit that strategic approach against him. He’s too weak to operate in the post now. Even the small guys get low and push him out. That will be part of his development over time. He can add strength. You can’t add the height, length, timing and athleticism to suddenly become a good rim protector.

    25. According to Bondy, we’ve all spent days arguing about something that isn’t happening. That’s a big part of what we do here. He also mentions that the backup plan to KD/Kawhi/Kyrie isn’t taking on salary dumps, it’s Plan C. That is so asinine. I bet we could get a few assets just by taking on expiring money, but we’d rather re-up Mario Hezonja for a year?

      Yeah it would be gross incompetence if team didn’t do that 3-way for a couple of 1sts if it were available. We know OKC would do it so it’s only a question of Charlotte but I think the odds are they would give up a 1st for Adams and to shed some bad contracts. All of the contracts we’d take on would expire at the end of this season so the cap the following year wouldn’t be affected. It’s a no-brainer.

      That said, I get they don’t want put a sh!t show out there again this year especially if Nets are thriving (TV viewership plummeted last year). The happy compromise to me would be Rubio, the 3-way deal, try to re-sign Vonleh/Kornet on value deals, and either hold any remaining cap or take a flyer on a young player on a 1-and-1 deal (team option). But it appears they’re gonna try to sign a bunch of vets (maybe Rubio, DAJ, Ariza) on 1 or 2-year deals.

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

      Actually, the Nets don’t have a single player under contract for next season above $10M AAV, and only have two above $7M AAV (Dinwiddie and Harris).

      Guys like Ed Davis, DeMarre Carroll, Jared Dudley and other 25+ players were part of the reason they were in the playoffs and changed the perception of the organization around the league enough to be in the hunt for star free agents. Had they sat around and started using their draft picks going forward they would have slowly gotten better over time, but they would not be in the conversation for guys like Irving, Horford, or Durant. The entire image of the organization has been changed by the success they were having on the court due in part to those guys. Whether they stay, move on, or get replaced with similar players, the team got better and will continue trying to get better until they land the stars they need.

    27. The entire image of the organization has been changed by the success they were having on the court due in part to those guys. Whether they stay, move on, or get replaced with similar players, the team got better and will continue trying to get better until they land the stars they need.

      This seems subjective and not yet determined, but regardless, it’s important to remember that because of the Celtics trade they didn’t have to worry about marginal wins. If they did, it’s pretty unlikely they would’ve prioritized this kind of “culture building” or whatever you want to call it. I mean, to the extent that they’re in the conversation for free agents, it’s largely because they have a lot of cap space and play in a big market. Not because of Jared Dudley. There’s no line of free agents going around the block of the Orlando Magic’s front office despite the fact that they had the same record, and same amount of success in the playoffs.

      Also, it seems like the strategy you’re advocating for is entirely based on becoming attractive to free agents. That begs the question, what do you do if you get spurned? What do you have to fall back on? If you keep your books clear and take on salary dumps, the answer is surplus first round picks. If you dawdle along with short-term, market value contracts for veterans, the answer is…not much. This is why Phil Jackson’s reign was so terrible–we had nothing left when his pie-in-the-sky “every elite free agent wants to play in the triangle” delusions predictably flopped.

    28. I watch a lot Nuggets games. IMO, there’s almost no chance Jokic is a plus defender.

      The Strat eye test has spoken. He has not only accurately scouted Jokic, he has also apparently extensively scouted every C in the league and has established a baseline for an average defensive center and Jokic falls below that. On the Strat eye test, which is the best available metric.

    29. Idk, it seems like the Knicks actually want to stay in play for a top ten 2020 free agent and/or leave the door open for a trade, which tbh, is probably a better move than taking on bad money for more years like Adams or Biyombo for a late first round pick, thereby taking yourself out of the running when a surprise trade comes along. That is why they also probably won’t go after Russell, despite his youth.

      I think this is actually the way to go, especially if they are certain that KD is on board. Then you can say to any star, “look, we have a top-5 star, lots of young pieces including RJ and Mitch, and the best city in the world at your fingertips… let’s do this.”

    30. The thing about Kevin Durant is he’ll likely bring Irving with him. I don’t like that scenario because Kevin Durant is short an Achilles, but I do wonder what Kevin Knox can do for his draft stock before the summer of 2020. He’ll have a real point guard to play with this summer and you probably want a more 3&D oriented guy at the four if you have Durant, Irving, Barrett, and Robinson as your other 4 starters.

      Also, if Ignas Brazdeikis wasn’t a white Canadian he probably gets drafted in the late lottery. His defensive and passing stats suck, but his scoring/shooting/rebounding profiles plus his age suggest he’s a better prospect than guys like Romeo Langford and Kevin Knox. I’m surprised a guy with his age/stat profile combination got drafted in the late 40s.

    31. I would conjecture that what makes Jokic a plus defender is his defensive rebounding and his steal rate. We know he doesn’t protect the rim and I would doubt that he would measure up very well in perimeter D/guarding smaller players on switches.

    32. Non-elite free agency has been a loser’s game for a long time now, and there’s no 2019 exception to that.

      I think the thing that’s making this difficult to get across is that Strat doesn’t care. We may have the patience to try and build a good cost-controlled core while keeping our options open and waiting for opportunity but we’re invested in building a contender. I think Strat just wants to stop losing so much. A 40 win team that flirts with the playoffs is perfectly fine with him if the alternative means continuing to be bad for another couple of years. He also prefers a defense first team even though we know that’s suboptimal because he likes that style better. He’s thinks stats don’t really tell us much useful because they reflect the fact that defense first is suboptimal. He generally thinks that the younger you are the dumber you are hence his preference for established free agents even though we know their contracts are an impediment to building a contender. Basically the NBA doesn’t work the way he thinks it should so he ignores all the evidence.

    33. I was poking around and found this draft model: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1P3k8beglT4YL_KAA1IP8-SGcOFEFJhtr8psdUhKIKF4/edit#gid=933387324

      It actually seems to do very well historically (you can sort by year by sorting Z–>A), though I haven’t done a rigorous comparison to actual draft position or anything.

      It’s pretty high on RJ, so that’s good. Here’s the site it comes from: https://hardwoodblues.wordpress.com/2019/06/19/the-hardwood-blues-2019-nba-draft-big-board/

    34. Basically the NBA doesn’t work the way he thinks it should so he ignores all the evidence.

      I think you’re spot on, and what’s ironic is I also think the NBA would be better if it incentivized teams mostly trying to be as good as possible. I just don’t stick my head in the sand and pretend that actually is the case.

    35. Saw a lot of talk about how Brazdeikis fits a “type” that the front office has, and I actually think that’s far from true. He scored at Michigan, but he basically had to because Simpson, Matthews, Poole and Teske couldn’t score for shit for long swaths of the season.

      His scoring is very different than somebody like RJ, DSJ, Zo, or Knox who generate most of their usage with on ball play types. Iggy is somebody who is smart about filling in open space on the perimeter to get C&S triples and he’ll almost certainly be instantly our best cutter. On top of that while he’s no great passer, he’s not a ball-stopper. He’s not going to get the ball, slow things down, and then go. He’ll grab, pop, drive, or keep it moving.

      Finally, his defense isn’t great, but he was solid enough. He’s aware on and off ball and he makes good rotations. He’s not completely clueless like Knox or lack effort entirely like Mudiay.

      I was surprised they traded up for him, because I didn’t think he really fit into the type of guys they’ve brought in previously.

    36. My understanding is that Strat thinks you don’t just draft your way to greatness in the NBA. You have to make a long series of smart decisions and trades and you don’t get better all at once. I think that is true and the NBA does work that way. We always hope for good luck in the draft, but that will only help so much. Perry has to be smart too. As for his taste in players and playing styles, he likes two way players and good defense more than many here. I think the NBA pays more for scoring than it does for defense, but that doesn’t mean successful teams ignore defense. For example, look at the Warriors turning down Love for Thompson.

    37. Lavor, that sounds like a good sign that our management might be better than we think.

    38. @37

      Which just shows how much he keeps beating a random strawman he created. Nobody ever said you become a great team by only drafting high lottery players.

      All people have been insistently saying and being ignored constantly is that you have to figure out a way to maximize the value of your actions while building a team. The most valuable piece for a championship level team is a great player being paid less than what he’s worth. One of the ways to find those guys is through the draft, because it arbitrarily sets a cap on how much these guys will earn for the first 8 years at least of their careers.

      All we have been saying is that good teams find those players, and the draft seems to be the easier way to do it (or moving assets related to the draft, picks or young players). That you have to have a baseline of talent and value on your team before you start signing properly paid players that don’t move the needle too much but fill holes in your lineup. Yet strat and others read that as “these guys want to tank for 20 years while waiting for the next Lebron!!!!!”, which has never been said by anyone ever.

      If you don’t have superstar players that provide surplus value, you can make whatever many good value moves you can and you still won’t win a title. It’s very simple. The Warriors drafted their superstars, the Raptors got theirs by trading guys they drafted for him after many, many years of making good to great drafting decisions and accumulating assets. Cleveland won with two superstars they drafted (one being James, who they only signed because of him wanting to go back to the home team that drafted him) and another guy who they got by trading a first overall pick for him. It’s really not that hard to understand.

    39. Vorkunov elaborating on what the other beat writers have suggested re: Plan B vs Plan C:

      Just as relevant for the Knicks is what they’ll do if they miss out on the players on their max-contract short list. The question then is what they’ll do with all their cap space — some $70 million entering July. It was notable that on draft night the Knicks didn’t use it to take on any bad contracts to acquire more assets — say, how Indiana took on T.J. Warren to also get the No. 32 pick — just as much as it was that Brooklyn traded out of the 27th pick to preserve a little more cap room.

      Draft night would’ve been too early for any kind of such deal — the Knicks still have high hopes for free agency, of course — but if no max player comes in July, don’t expect the Knicks to rent out their cap space. The team isn’t expected to be in the market to trade for other teams’ problematic deals just to add more draft picks or other kinds of future assets. Instead, New York wants to add players that can help it win in 2019-20 and be more competitive than this year’s 17-win team. That closes down one avenue to asset accumulation for the Knicks. They were interested in buying a second-round pick Thursday night during the draft, looking into acquiring No. 37, but saw a surfeit of teams willing to sell off their selections.

    40. Stein:

      The Nets are exploring the feasibility of signing Kevin Durant’s close friend DeAndre Jordan in free agency, league sources say, in hopes that would make the prospect of teaming up in Brooklyn with Kyrie Irving even more enticing to Durant

      The Knicks, of course, hung onto DeAndre Jordan after acquiring him from Dallas in the Porzingis blockbuster in February and have shown interest in re-signing Jordan depending on how the roster shakes out — interest that naturally rises if Durant chooses Madison Square Garden

    41. what’s his methodology? i don’t see it anywhere..

      I’m currently trying to find out via Twitter, because I have no idea. He’s responding, but being rather vague. What I’ve gleaned so far:

      -All major per-40 stats with varying weights, with some kind of modifier for age, height, SOS, and playing time
      -He factors in overall TS%, but not anything more specific on the scoring efficiency front. Seems like a departure from other models.

    42. @41

      don’t think they to take on long term money to bring in a guy who they don’t see helping them. I don’t know specifically what they think of Marvin, but imagine they would be fine taking on shorter-term money— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) June 21, 2019

      Begley seems to think the issue is taking on money past one season, not they’re absolutely against salary dumps of all kinds.

    43. Begley seems to think the issue is taking on money past one season, not they’re absolutely against salary dumps of all kinds.

      I hope that’s the case. But the fact that none of the beat writers have suggested those kinds of trades in their stories implies that no one in the front office is talking — or thinking — about them.

    44. My understanding is that Strat thinks you don’t just draft your way to greatness in the NBA

      No one disagrees.

      You have to make a long series of smart decisions and trades and you don’t get better all at once. I think that is true and the NBA does work that way.

      No one disagrees.

      As for his taste in players and playing styles, he likes two way players and good defense more than many here.

      No one here doesn’t like two way players.

      This is all a bunch of straw man nonsense. None of it explains why someone would want to sign a bunch of mid-tier free agents such as Markieff Morris and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. We all want to have the maximum number of good players stuffed under the salary cap as possible. Until Strat can explain how to get there via Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, he’s going to get challenged.

    45. If there’s no influx of decent FAs this summer I am worried about Barrett’s growth.
      Telling him to carry the scoring will set him up to become THJ redux. He may have those tendencies now, but he’s still developing. Just doing as he’s told, he’ll be reviled as the latest in a long line of chuckers. Whereas if he’s a 2nd or 3rd option, can save energy for defense, etc., he’ll have a better chance of growing into a well rounded player we’ll want to keep.

      The contrast between the Knicks and other teams that ranked low on assists per FGM last year suggests how coaching-to-tank might affect our young guys. Successful teams with low assists per FGM (e.g. Houston rnk = 28, Portland = 27, SAS = 24) were highly efficient (Houston rnk = 2, Portland = 3, SAS = 5). All had multiple good vet shot creators and coaches who gave them appropriate leeway to stop the ball. That paid off for everyone.

      The Knicks, on the other hand, ranked last in both offensive efficiency and assists per FGM. Our guys habitually stopped the ball in ways that failed. They lacked good vet shot creators but no one made them pass the ball. We were bound to score few points, but more should have been assisted. Why harden bad habits instead of building good ones? Was the tanking mandate used to justify neglect of our guys’ development?

      I suspect so. It’s one reason I despise tanking. If our goal is to suck again next year, I think that brings foreseeable damage to the “assets” we acquire, along with possible ping pong balls. Too actuarial an approach may miss hard to quantify factors that drive success. Regarding players as assets with fixed trajectories rather than as people who need good guidance to succeed seems wrong, a bit gross, and logically perverse. Perverse if it seduces us into a cycle of sacrificing present development to boost the chances of future prospects who themselves fail from lack of development.

      Is that a process we trust?

    46. I hope that’s the case. But the fact that none of the beat writers have suggested those kinds of trades in their stories implies that no one in the front office is talking — or thinking — about them.

      The beat didn’t seem clued in on the FO’s attempts at canvassing the league for KP offers, so I don’t know if the takeaway is that absolute. Also seems like Begley is the most plugged in of the beat guys.

    47. My hope for Iggy is that he becomes better than the player we all hoped Landry Fields would be (remember the Hondo comparisons his rookie year?) He’s smart, hard-working, fearless, hard-nosed, hungry, ambidextrous, and an excellent shooter from all levels. Get me more of those, please!

      At the same time, let’s pump the brakes on the crazy comparisons to HOFers like Chris Mullen. At least until he plays a couple of NBA games.

    48. what’s his methodology? i don’t see it anywhere..

      I’m currently trying to find out via Twitter, because I have no idea. He’s responding, but being rather vague. What I’ve gleaned so far:

      -All major per-40 stats with varying weights, with some kind of modifier for age, height, SOS, and playing time
      -He factors in overall TS%, but not anything more specific on the scoring efficiency front. Seems like a departure from other models.

      Found this explainer post on the draft model that likes RJ above, commented before without quoting

      https://hardwoodblues.wordpress.com/2017/04/12/re-introducing-dmx-2017-rankings/

    49. All the other beat writers had the same story, that the Knicks aren’t interested in renting their cap space out for assets. It seems like the most likely scenario is that they’re not interested in renting their cap space out for assets. Begley’s tweet did not sound as though it was based on anyone telling him anything specific, while his specific reporting on the topic was the same as the others (he’s the first guy to note their disinterest in trading cap space for picks).

      That said, I’d sure love it if they were willing to trade cap space for picks!

    50. i had to go pretty deep but this is what he has:

      While I think the DMX results are interesting, the process behind it isn’t overly scientific. To grade each player’s Per 40 minute stats I used Kevin Ferrigan’s DRE Daily RAPM formula and catered it to draft prospects (greater emphasis on steal rate, for example). To give context to those stats, I adjusted each player’s statistical grade (their “DMX Per 40”) for age, height, playing time, and NCAA strength of schedule (via KenPom). I kept the international model the exact same, only I assigned SOS values for international leagues by using FIBA stats to estimate their level of competition relative to the NCAA. I then tinkered with the weight of each adjustment based on previous drafts, which produced the current version of the model. Save for a handful of outliers, each prospect is assigned a grade between 0-10, with the average for drafted players being just over 4.

      in my work… height wasn’t really all that indicative of anything…. we all know wingspan plays an important role in ‘effective’ height and i think most draft prognosticators eventually dropped it as well… SOS kind of sort of matters…. but the talent level on most college teams is very close together aside from a few players….. i’m also not very high on plus minus or rapm either….

      all that being said.. his results do lineup with mine somewhat but i’m a bit dubious on his methodology so i’m questioning how he got there if he’s using something completely different….

    51. All the other beat writers had the same story, that the Knicks aren’t interested in renting their cap space out for assets. It seems like the most likely scenario is that they’re not interested in renting their cap space out for assets. Begley’s tweet did not sound as though it was based on anyone telling him anything specific, while his specific reporting on the topic was the same as the others (he’s the first guy to note their disinterest in trading cap space for picks).

      Pretty sure all the beat guys got it from Begley’s piece, since all this reporting came after that, and he specified his thoughts as well. I have a hard time believing Perry would say “nah, we’re not gonna take Marvin Williams’ contract into our space for a pick”. If the purpose is we want to spend to get some functional vets in here to address some holes and give the young guys a better platform to develop Marvin actually seems ideal as he can play some 4, stretch the floor, and expires after the season so you’re staying flexible.

      Just my hunch. I think it may be more like they wouldn’t be interested in pure salary dumps where the player they have to take on can’t even play any role on the floor.

    52. This all seems like a long winded way of us agreeing that it sounds like they’re going to sign who they deem to be the best players who will accept a one year deal.

      That sucks!

    53. I was poking around and found this draft model: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1P3k8beglT4YL_KAA1IP8-SGcOFEFJhtr8psdUhKIKF4/edit#gid=933387324

      It actually seems to do very well historically (you can sort by year by sorting Z–>A), though I haven’t done a rigorous comparison to actual draft position or anything.

      It’s pretty high on RJ, so that’s good. Here’s the site it comes from: https://hardwoodblues.wordpress.com/2019/06/19/the-hardwood-blues-2019-nba-draft-big-board/

      Looking again, that model actually has RJ behind
      1) Zion (obvious)
      2) Jaxson Hayes
      3) Bol Bol (what a steal if his injury is recoverable)
      4) Jontay
      5) RJ Barrett which is not bad but not ideal for the 3rd pick if you believe in the model. Of course that website’s big board seems to take the model’s rank into account but that clearly isn’t the main input so take that to mean what you will…

      From the google doc here are to 10 spots above and below RJ based on that model:

      2014 2 5 Jabari Parker SF/PF NCAA 9.6
      2015 3 3 Jahlil Okafor C NCAA 9.6
      2013 3 2 Otto Porter SF NCAA 9.5
      2017 9 6 Dennis Smith Jr. PG NCAA 9.5
      2018 11 8 Shai Gilgeus-Alexander PG/SG NCAA 9.3
      2017 3 7 Jayson Tatum SF NCAA 9.3
      2008 6 4 Danilo Gallinari SF INTL 9.3
      2018 16 9 Zhaire Smith SG/SF NCAA 9.2
      2015 10 4 Justise Winslow SF NCAA 9.0
      2013 4 3 Cody Zeller C NCAA 9.0
      2019 3 4 R.J. Barrett SG/SF NCAA 9.0
      2009 7 5 Stephen Curry PG NCAA 9.0
      2009 4 6 Tyreke Evans PG/SG NCAA 9.0
      2009 7 Nick Calathes PG NCAA 9.0
      2015 21 5 Delon Wright PG NCAA 8.9
      2017 5 8 De’Aaron Fox PG NCAA 8.9
      2017 10 9 Zach Collins C NCAA 8.8
      2006 21 2 Rajon Rondo PG NCAA 8.8
      2015 4 6 Kristaps Porzingis PF/C INTL 8.8
      2014 30 6 Kyle Anderson SF/PF NCAA 8.7
      2012 3 3 Bradley Beal SG NCAA 8.7

    54. Looking again, that model actually has RJ behind
      1) Zion (obvious)
      2) Jaxson Hayes
      3) Bol Bol (what a steal if his injury is recoverable)
      4) Jontay
      5) RJ Barrett

      The guy who made it told me on Twitter that he thinks it gives bigs a bit of an unfair boost, due to TS% being one of the inputs. Regardless, even if you take the 5th ranking as gospel (and as you note, the model’s inventor doesn’t), it still looks like we made the right pick. Zion wasn’t available to us, Bol Bol wouldn’t have been a rational choice with his injury situation, Jontay is still available to us (and yeah, we should absolutely scoop him up but we won’t), and Hayes’ ideal outcome is…Mitchell Robinson.

    55. If the FO is serious about making an effort to sign anyone even if it the unlikely best case scenario of Kawhi and Kyrie, shouldnt they be putting out this narrative that renting cap space is off the table? Why would a superstar be sold to come here if the media is reporting that we are open to doing things with the cap space that do not go towards that player’s max contract or bringing in other people he is excited about playing with. Isn’t everything we’re hearing now part of the sales pitch, as it should be?

    56. Until Strat can explain how to get there via Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, he’s going to get challenged.

      Garbage teams have to massively overpay to attract free agents. Yes, even in New York which wants to give a max deal to a guy who won’t play for year and will then be 32 coming off an Achilles injury.

      Garbage teams also have trouble trading for anyone because they don’t have much to offer in return, either in terms of talent or salary.

      One of the ways to stop being a garbage team is to sign legit NBA players on reasonable contracts, thereby improving your talent level and adding assets for potential deals in the future. This becomes almost essential when you’ve already accumulated enough young talent that future tanking becomes difficult if not impossible.

      How many people thought Boston was making a foolish move when they gave Al Horford a max deal three years ago? I certainly don’t recall a bunch of other teams offering that to him. Boston got the first and second best record in the conference and two trips to the conference finals out of it.

      Now, the Knicks have so little overall talent that they’re probably better off “stealth tanking” at least one more year.

      Mike

    57. My understanding is that Strat thinks you don’t just draft your way to greatness in the NBA. You have to make a long series of smart decisions and trades and you don’t get better all at once.

      Except what he advocates are win now moves for mid-tier vets and development of defense minded but sub par rookies. None of that actually fits what he claims to think is good strategy. There’s also the other side where he invents scenarios that didn’t happen so he can trash Perry, blames Fiz for a tanking team with little talent doing poorly, ect. He says “this is the best way to do things” and then says we need vets ect. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that was Phil’s strategy.

    58. Now, the Knicks have so little overall talent that they’re probably better off “stealth tanking” at least one more year.

      This is what people are saying, and this is what Strat thinks is stupid.

    59. If you don’t commit to a true rebuild, and you don’t have the horses to contend, and you do some half-assed neither-fish-not-fowl approach to roster construction you’re gonna be real mediocre. This is the story of Knick basketball for like 20 years now. Let’s keep punching ourselves in the dick though, I heard Ricky Rubio and Julius Randle are available, they might get us to 30 wins.

    60. The Knicks need to be taking advantage of OKC and Charlotte right now. Can you imagine if they’d give up 1st round draft capital just to avoid the tax bill? If the Knicks grabbed Roberson, Biyombo, and Marvin Williams for the price of a 1RP from both teams? The NYK, OKC, and CHA 2020 1RPs would be worth so much. Way more than what Julius Randle and Kentavious Caldwell Pope will give you for a season. I don’t know if I want to sit through another 20 win season, but I know for sure we need to be collecting assets if/when we get burnt by the top free agents. Sign D’Angelo Russell and rent out the other $43M in cap space. Go into the season with 3 1RPs in 2020 and 2 1RPs in 2021 and you will be at the front of the line for any disgruntled superstar. The 2012 and 2013 drafts were pretty weak so there are very few 2nd contract superstars available, but collect the assets and wait. Opportunity will arise and our assets/market size combination should make us a top destination.

    61. @ 57 – VERY GOOD POINT.

      We can’t believe anything that is reported about The Knicks from the media. Not because they make stuff up, which I think they do, but also because Perry is super sneaky and stealth about shit. No one saw The KP trade coming. The Melo trade was put together very quickly with no one reporting it.

      He may not value players properly (jury is out) but Perry is the best GM we’ve had in awhile when it comes to making deals, misdirecting the media, etc.

      So any report about what The Knicks are going or not going to do…don’t believe it!

    62. You can feasibly offer D’Angelo Russell the max, add $26M in salary via Roberson and Marvin Williams for assets, and still have $17M to split between whatever two win now guys you want. D’Angelo Russell, Andre Roberson, Marvin Williams, Julius Randle, and Seth Curry plus what we have now puts us in contention for the playoffs, and then we’d be adding some more draft capital in the process. It’s a no brainer if you ask me.

    63. One of the ways to stop being a garbage team is to sign legit NBA players on reasonable contracts, thereby improving your talent level and adding assets for potential deals in the future.

      I’m seeing this a lot, so let’s take a look at all the recent trade packages for star players. Admittedly I’m defining “star” somewhat arbitrarily here, but you can let me know if I’m leaving anyone out.

      Anthony Davis
      -Ingram (draft pick)
      -Ball (draft pick)
      -Hart (draft pick)
      -a bunch of future draft picks

      Kawhi Leonard
      -DeRozan (draft pick)
      -Poeltl (draft pick)
      -a future draft pick

      Tobias Harris
      -Wilson Chandler (salary filler)
      -Mike Muscala (salary filler
      -Landry Shamet (draft pick)
      -a bunch of future draft picks

      Jimmy Butler (to PHI)
      -Robert Covington (flyer signing, then extended)
      -Dario Saric (draft pick)
      -Jerryd Bayless (salary filler)
      -a future second round draft pick

      Paul George
      -Victor Oladipo (draft pick)
      -Domantas Sabonis (draft pick)

      Chris Paul (to HOU)
      -Patrick Beverly (flyer signing, then extended)
      -Sam Dekker (draft pick)
      -Montrezl Harrell (draft pick)
      -Kyle Wiltjer (UDFA signing)
      -Darrun Hillard and DeAndre Liggins (salary filler)
      -Lou Williams ($7M AAV veteran the Rockets used a draft pick to acquire in the first place)
      -a future first round draft pick

      Kyrie Irving (to BOS)
      -Isaiah Thomas ($6.5M AAV vet the Celtics acquired using a draft pick)
      -Jae Crowder (flyer signing, then extended)
      -Ante Zizic (draft pick)
      -two future draft picks

      Jimmy Butler (to MIN)
      -Zach LaVine (draft pick)
      -Kris Dunn (draft pick)
      -a first round draft pick swap that turned into Lauri Markkanen

      I could go on but I’m running out of characters. Do you see the extremely clear pattern? It turns out the best asset when it comes to trading for disgruntled stars isn’t market value veterans, it’s quite obviously draft picks. So if your argument is we should put ourselves in the best possible position for such trades, you should want as many draft picks as possible.

    64. The great thing about the idea that the Knicks are actually totally willing to take on salary dumps and the Fake News is just wrong is we’ll find out definitively whether or not it’s true.

    65. The great thing about the idea that the Knicks are actually totally willing to take on salary dumps and the Fake News is just wrong is we’ll find out definitively whether or not it’s true.

      Not necessarily. I think even those who think the front office is posturing about not being interested at all or that it’s bad reporting or whatever aren’t arguing that it’s high up on the Knicks list of options. It’s more a question of whether in reality this is Plan C or Plan F or Plan No Fucking Way. So assuming they don’t end up taking a salary dump the only thing we’ll know definitively is that whatever salary dump moves were available, the FO liked them less than whatever they end up doing.

    66. @66 tnfh with the research. Its like some folks still think Courtney Lee is a tradeable asset. Shit does not work that way. Folks see 2nd contract guys getting traded and think oh boy, if only we had some vets we could trade like that.

    67. So assuming they don’t end up taking a salary dump the only thing we’ll know definitively is that whatever salary dump moves were available, the FO liked them less than whatever they end up doing

      well, if we give someone a first to take frank’s salary so we can sign terrence ross to 1 and 1, we’ll know

    68. Looking again, that model actually has RJ behind
      1) Zion (obvious)
      2) Jaxson Hayes
      3) Bol Bol (what a steal if his injury is recoverable)
      4) Jontay
      5) RJ Barrett

      Looks similar to 538″s CARMELO Rankings. It should be noted that RJ’s comparables as the 5th best player are Brandon Ingram, Andrew Wiggins, and the man himself, Carmelo Anthony. These comps range from bad to Wiggins in likelihood to be overpaid.

    69. I call BS on Perry’s ninja approach to GMing. We heard the same stuff about Phil and other GMs. Every GM has moves that the reporters don’t know about, but they also have plenty of moves that reporters do know about. The reporters were all over Knox being the pick before he was the pick (I won’t mention Barrett, as, well, come on, he was the consensus #3 pick). Reporters knew the Knicks were going to stretch waive Noah well before it happened. Melo to OKC was reported before it happened (heck, there were reports of OKC’s interest a full two months before they acquired him). The KP trade happened after the media reported that KP had asked for a trade. Sometimes moves are hidden, of course, like the Knicks quietly shopping KP to NO and Sacramento, but more often moves are reported before they happen, which just plain makes sense with so many people involved and thus so many opportunities for leaks. This is not even a knock on Perry, just a knock on the idea that he’s somehow distinctly discreet.

    70. I agree with the overall thrust of your point entirely, tnfh (more draft picks = more better), but on one of the trades…

      Paul George
      -Victor Oladipo (draft pick)
      -Domantas Sabonis (draft pick)

      it should be noted that they were acquired by OKC via trade (for a player OKC drafted, though).

    71. Part of the problem with the ‘sign vets on reasonable deal and you can trade them later’ narrative is that vets don’t really sign ‘reasonable’ deals for shitty teams. The ones people want sign deals that usually end up looking bad and the ones that no-one wants – well, no-one wants them. Occasionally you’re going to get a guy who outperforms and becomes a good asset – but then you probably want to keep that guy.

      Mid-tier free agency is a bad market. There’s really not much predictable value there

    72. Part of the problem with the ‘sign vets on reasonable deal and you can trade them later’ narrative is that vets don’t really sign ‘reasonable’ deals for shitty teams. The ones people want sign deals that usually end up looking bad and the ones that no-one wants – well, no-one wants them. Occasionally you’re going to get a guy who outperforms and becomes a good asset – but then you probably want to keep that guy.

      Yeah, rule of thumb is almost always add an extra $10 million to whatever you think would be a good value to sign a guy for. That’s why the true max players are so valuable, because you can look at Kawhi and say, “That dude is probably worth $50 million” but is capped out at much less, so they are major exceptions to the rule of thumb.

    73. Good catch, BC. I believe OKC did draft Sabonis because the Ibaka trade was done on draft night, but Oladipo was drafted by Orlando. He was, however, still on his rookie deal at the time, so he was pretty similar to draft pick in terms of value.

      And yeah, as you mention, they acquired both players for…a previous draft pick!

    74. Mid-tier free agency is a bad market. There’s really not much predictable value there

      The problem is that applies almost equally to the draft. First round picks turn into busts. 2nd round and undrafted guys you pass over turn into really good players. Players are drafted so young now that teams commonly have to sign them to their second deals, and huge amounts of money, without knowing if they’ll ever live up to it.

      But for some reason, nobody seems to care about the endless examples of mistakes, disasters, and futility associated with the draft. It’s always presented like this golden ticket which always works if you’re just smart enough to use it.

      Mike

    75. But for some reason, nobody seems to care about the endless examples of mistakes, disasters, and futility associated with the draft.

      Yep, that sounds like what everybody is saying! Every player ever drafted is good. Nobody ever made a mistake in the draft. Draft picks are a 100% certainty. Silly Knickerbloggers.

      Nailed it!

    76. I’m fine with standing pat. We get to watch RJ PnRs with Mitch. We’ll all get excited for that 1 month Knox hits 40% of his 3’s before regressing back to 35%. Frank will play stellar defense on some top tier offensive players before getting hurt for half the season and/or benched. Some end of the bench former high draft pick will wow us with how terrible he still plays. In short, the Knicks will do what they’ve always done, but they’ll be younger and can finally be that up and coming team.

    77. As was said above, why would Perry signal his intention to take albatross contracts in exchange for future assets? Clearly and rightly plan A is to lure all pro talent. What’s Kawhi going to think? “Awesome they just got Gallinari and a top twenty protected pick. They can’t get Kyrie now but they’re thinking long term. I like it.”

    78. But for some reason, nobody seems to care about the endless examples of mistakes, disasters, and futility associated with the draft. It’s always presented like this golden ticket which always works if you’re just smart enough to use it.

      If you completely blow it on the #1 overall pick, the cap hit is significantly lighter than if you falsely believe Courtney Lee is a two-way dynamo

    79. The entire point of acquiring as many draft picks as possible is that none of them are incredibly likely to pan out the way you hope they do. Getting as many bites at the apple as you can helps mitigate the inherent risks of draft picks busting/not developing into players worth extending.

    80. Getting draft picks in deals signals that you’re kicking the can down the road as an organization. It might be the right thing to do but it’s not a signal you want to send. I’m pretty sure Perry will know a good deal when he sees it but it may be later in July that he’s in the mood to take Marvin Williams. I don’t blame him for shutting that down at this time.

    81. Building with kids is great but it’s a double-edged sword.

      Sure, building a team through the draft and having them pan out is really the only way to get fundamentally good. Having a lot of draft picks is a good thing. But the kids have to become stars. The problem is that before we can draw free agents, we have to have a core of at least 3 young stars. If you are a free agent and you know that the Knicks are rebuilding, wouldn’t you look at the playing time that DeAndre Jordan and Enes Kanter got last season and wonder, ‘Do I want to go through that?’

    82. Bazemore has really fallen off since that 1 good year he put up

      It’s truly amazing how lucky he got. He’s like the anti-Noel:

      1) signed as an undrafted FA in 2012, struggled to find the floor at Golden State. Traded for Steve Blake to LAL, but ends up in Atlanta for a $4M, 2-year deal.

      2) Atlanta has him backing up Korver and Carroll. He plays poorly on limited minutes.

      3) Carroll happens to be in a contract year in 2014-15 on that weird fluky 60-win Hawks team. Toronto throws all the money at him.

      4) Atlanta is capped out and rides their $2 million dollar man at SF. He plays surprisingly well, but not THAT well.

      5) No cap smoothing and unrestricted free agency happens in the summer of 2016 and everyone, including Timofey Mosgov, gets fuckin’ paaaaaiiiiiiiiid

    83. One of my biggest disappointments in the league is Evan Turner being bad. I thought he would be such a star when he came into the league, I loved watching him.

    84. If you are a free agent and you know that the Knicks are rebuilding, wouldn’t you look at the playing time that DeAndre Jordan and Enes Kanter got last season and wonder, ‘Do I want to go through that?’

      Not if they are a star, no.

      If they’re not, yes, they’d have to get paid more to come here…unless the stars have already come. ;)

    85. Getting draft picks in deals signals that you’re kicking the can down the road as an organization. It might be the right thing to do but it’s not a signal you want to send. I’m pretty sure Perry will know a good deal when he sees it but it may be later in July that he’s in the mood to take Marvin Williams. I don’t blame him for shutting that down at this time.

      Most of our reactions, though, are about the reports that they will have no interest in acquiring draft picks for cap space even if they strike out on free agents, but rather choose to acquire free agents on one year deals.

    86. Getting draft picks in deals signals that you’re kicking the can down the road as an organization. It might be the right thing to do but it’s not a signal you want to send.

      We’re worried about optics? Any player or agent who has the short-term memory loss that would allow them to see this no-renting-space strategy as a sign of “winning culture” has a short enough memory to forget that they’d be renting out space for picks.

      We’re worried about optics?

    87. Getting draft picks in deals signals that you’re kicking the can down the road as an organization. It might be the right thing to do but it’s not a signal you want to send.

      I would be more concerned about how the last 20 years have looked to FA’s over what renting cap space looks like tbh.

    88. Yeah, after being the literal joke of the league for 20 years, you guys are worried about Enes Kanter sitting on the bench and then talking shit? I really believe JD and the Straight Shot’s existence is more of a deterrent to free agents than Enes Kanter being phased out of a bad team.

    89. Any available player coming here for a win-now experience is going to be in for a real surprise come November.

      If you meet with players, you tell them, “We are taking unwanted contracts for assets so we can field a competitive basketball team in the near future.” Anyone who fails to understand this has no place on the roster.

    90. I know the numbers aren’t with me, but I can’t shake the feeling that Harden got robbed

    91. The MVP is more about how the story is told and not about who the best player in the NBA actually is. Giannis plays both ends of the court and played on the best team in the league. Harden very clearly took his team from the lottery to the 2nd round of the playoffs, but he’s the poster boy for everything most people hate about basketball. Harden plays 1v5, he slows the game down, and his success is predicated on gaming the foul calling system. He is also the king of traveling and freezes out his teammates on the regular. D’Antoni’s a fraud and so is James Harden, or at least that’s how history will remember the two.

    92. If history remembers James Harden as a fraud, I want out, because something truly fucked up has happened along the way and absolute stupidity is reigning supreme. The guy had the first 35 ppg season since Jordan, led his team to the closest anyone got against the full strength KD Warriors, his legacy doesn’t change just because people don’t enjoy watching him. If he shot literally zero free throws in this entire season he still would have averaged 25 points on pretty good efficiency, plus all the assists, steals and rebounds.
      I also hated watching Kobe play basketball, but that doesn’t make him a fraud.

    93. Sub-max free agency is a gamble – you win sometimes but the clearly expected value of playing is <0.

      The draft is investing in a risky asset class. Sometimes you’ll lose and sometimes you’ll win, and some people will be better at it than others. But overall – especially if you can hold on and be a long-term investor, the expected value of playing is probably +

      In my view.

    94. Mike D’Antoni may never win the big one, but he ain’t no fraud either. The league plays the Mike D’Antoni way now, he is basically the Bill Walsh of basketball, minus all the championships.

      The league ain’t playing “how’s it goink” ball anymore, that’s for damn sure.

    95. My father texts me tonight. A wobbly baby skunk followed me the porch to the house tonight.

      Completely not basketball related I understand, but that poor little thing is going to die because it’s mother got killed somewhere. Makes me sad.

      I’m now over at my father’s house trying to find this little guy so I can get it to my vet friend.

      Trying to make this basketball related: Maybe we could take care of our draft picks like this and they’ll blossom.

      You should try living in the country guys, it’s fun in different way!

    96. D’Antoni’s a fraud and so is James Harden, or at least that’s how history will remember the two.

      History will remember D’Antoni the way that JK47 just explained, as the guy who revolutionized offense in the NBA, not as a fraud. There might also be people who knock him for the defenses he has coached over the years, but that’s a far cry from “fraud.” Who the hell has ever called D’Antoni a fraud? Fuck the heck?

    97. D’Antoni’s problem was that the contender teams he coached were in the West and ran in to the 00’s dynasty Lakers and the Warriors this decade. Given the number of teams these days that run substantial elements of seven seconds, it’s hard to say he is a fraud.

    98. D’Antoni’s problem was that the contender teams he coached were in the West and ran in to the 00’s dynasty Lakers and the Warriors this decade.

      I believe D’Antoni was already in New York by the time the Lakers won their late 2000s titles and he wasn’t yet the Suns coach by the time the Lakers won their early 2000s titles. It was mostly the Spurs who beat D’Antoni’s Suns teams.

    99. @104…best of luck bidiong with the little skunk…

      it feels good to do good things…that’s a challenging one though, trying to find a surrogate for a skunk…

    100. Maybe we could take care of our draft picks like this and they’ll blossom.

      I agree that we should treat our draft picks as if they stink and need a new home.

    101. Harden or Giannis…age aside, who would you rather have on your team? I’d prefer the real MVP.

    102. Well, their age makes it obvious to me, there’s no way you choose 29 year old Harden over 24 year old Giannis for a team. Without considering age and possible improvement / decline, I think it’s very close and maybe I’d choose Giannis because of the defense.

    Comments are closed.