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Monday, October 20, 2014

Knicks Morning News (Monday, Apr 16 2012)

  • [New York Times] Heat 93, Knicks 85: Anthony Scores 42, but Heat’s Big Three Are Too Much for Knicks (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 05:46:26 GMT)
    Carmelo Anthony carried his team, scoring 42 points, but LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh led Miami to victory.

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Lakers Beat Mavericks in Overtime, Behind Bynum and Gasol (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 07:20:08 GMT)
    Andrew Bynum had 23 points and 16 rebounds, and Pau Gasol had 20 points and 10 rebounds to help defending N.B.A. champion Dallas in overtime.

  • [New York Times] On Basketball: Letting Anthony Go It Alone May Not Lead Knicks Anywhere (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 05:32:41 GMT)
    While Anthony has been on a scoring binge in the playoffs, the popular narrative around the team has been that the most prudent approach is to keep the ball in his hands.

  • [New York Times] Afflalo Leads Nuggets Past Rockets 101-86 (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 02:28:53 GMT)
    Arron Afflalo scored 20 of his 22 points in the second half, leading the Denver Nuggets to a 101-86 win over the Houston Rockets on Sunday night in the opener of a crucial home-and-home set between playoff hopefuls.

  • [New York Times] Gordon Scores 18 as Hornets Top Grizzlies 88-75 (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 02:04:55 GMT)
    Eric Gordon scored 18 points and the New Orleans Hornets won for the fourth time in five games, upsetting the playoff-contending Memphis Grizzlies 88-75 on Sunday night.

  • [New York Times] Rose Hits Tying 3, Bulls Beat Pistons 100-94 in OT (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 01:28:50 GMT)
    Derrick Rose scored 24 points, including a tying 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation, and the Chicago Bulls beat the Detroit Pistons for the 15th straight time, 100-94 in overtime Sunday night.

  • [New York Times] Thornton’s Late Jumper Lifts Kings Over Blazers (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 01:07:55 GMT)
    Marcus Thornton scored 20 points and made the winning jumper with 3.4 seconds left, lifting the Sacramento Kings to a 104-103 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night.

  • [New York Times] DeRozan Scores 23, Raptors Beat Hawks 102-86 (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 01:25:57 GMT)
    DeMar DeRozan scored 23 points and the injury-riddled Toronto Raptors beat the Atlanta Hawks 102-86 on Sunday night for their second straight win over a playoff-bound team.

  • [New York Times] Magic Defeat Cavs, Clinch Playoff Spot With Win (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 00:37:52 GMT)
    Jameer Nelson scored 21 points and the Orlando Magic clinched a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference with a 100-84 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday night.

  • [New York Times] Celtics Beat Bobcats 94-82 Without 3 Star Players (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 00:29:00 GMT)
    Rajon Rondo had 20 points and 16 assists to help the Boston Celtics beat the Charlotte Bobcats 94-82 Sunday night despite playing without three of their star players.

  • [New York Times] Kobe-Less Lakers Hold Off Mavs in Overtime 112-108 (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 03:10:58 GMT)
    Sure, Pau Gasol and the Los Angeles Lakers are well aware a regular-season sweep means nothing compared to a playoff sweep.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Stoudemire Is Hitting His Stride in Practice (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:03:13 GMT)
    Amar’e Stoudemire, recovering from a back ailment, could rejoin the Knicks on Wednesday against the Nets. Stoudemire will still be a starter, Coach Mike Woodson said.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Pacers Thriving on Court, Not at Gate (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 03:59:24 GMT)
    Playoff-bound Indiana draws only 14,064 fans a game to its home court.

  • [New York Daily News] Melo can’t do it alone in loss to Heat (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 03:10:39 GMT)
    If the Knicks strategy is for Carmelo Anthony to score between 50 and 60 points, this is going to be a short playoff run. Anthony scored 42 points Sunday in a 93-85 loss to the Heat.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks get reality check (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 02:37:43 GMT)
    The Miami Heat sent a message on Sunday, all right. Actually they sent a few â?? and not only to the Knicks.They delivered one to all those Knick fans who think their favorite team misses Jeremy Lin more than it misses Amar’e Stoudemire.

  • [New York Daily News] Knee trouble for Knicks’ Chandler (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 01:57:12 GMT)
    Tyson Chandler’s left knee appeared to buckle and suddenly the Knicks didn’t look so dangerous anymore.

  • [ESPN.com - New York Knicks] Sunday = Bad day for Knicks (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 06:00:38 EDT)
    The Knicks lost to Miami on Sunday, ending a nine-game home winning streak and a two-day stay in seventh place in the Eastern Conference.
    And things only got worse for New York the rest of the day.
    The Celtics beat the Bobcats on Sunday night, on a night when Doc Rivers decided to pull a Gregg Popovich and rested Boston’s Big Three. The Celtics’ win gave them a 4½-game cushion over the Knicks for first place in the Atlantic Division with just six games to go.

  • [ESPN.com - New York Knicks] Garden to pay tribute to classic moments (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 06:00:09 EDT)
    Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier. Knicks and Rangers playoff runs. The Concert for New York City. Political conventions.
    The Garden has hosted them all.
    And the building will play homage to them all after the second phase of Garden reconstruction is complete.
    “Paying tribute to the Arena’s storied history is a priority for us,” Madison Square Garden president and CEO Hank Ratner said.
    The 6th floor of the Garden will feature “Memorable Moments Every Day,” a visual retrospective of 366 classic Garden moments.

  • [New York Post] Anthony’s one-man show falls short of B’way success (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:29:50 -0500)
    Knicks guard J.R. Smith, who was a teammate of Carmelo Anthony’s in Denver, has seen this before â?? this torrid scoring streak Anthony is currently riding. But he has never seen it come in the clutch the way this one has in recent games with the Knicks’ playoff life…

  • [New York Post] Miami’s win helps boost confidence (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:29:50 -0500)
    A powerful dose of confidence awaited the Knicks yesterday at the Garden, where they entered the day having won their last nine games.
    A win over the Heat would have served a critical dual purpose for the Knicks: It would have enhanced their tenuous playoff position with the regular season…

  • [New York Post] Hobbled Tyson OK after collision (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:29:50 -0500)
    The Heat probably have nightmares of Knicks center Tyson Chandler scowling in the fourth quarter after another blocked shot. Chandler became the defensive key to Dallas beating Miami in last June’s NBA Finals.
    But yesterday was a different fourth-quarter vision of Chandler, wincing and limping after banging his left…

  • [New York Post] Stoudemire needed for postseason push (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:28:51 -0500)
    There was something missing. At the end of an adventurous week for the Knicks, at the start of another one, it wasn’t buzz, even though Madison Square Garden never quite sounded the way it had last week, Easter Sunday, an improbable comeback against the Bulls and two remarkable shots…

  • [New York Post] Melo’s 42 not enough to defeat LeBron & Co. (Mon, 16 Apr 2012 04:18:11 -0500)
    It was the Carmelo Anthony Show, but not a Winning Show.
    The Miami Dream Team got the win, got the 3-0 season sweep, and had LeBron James and Dwyane Wade dominate late while closing the door on the Knicks with a smashing final six minutes.
    But Anthony’s Knicks came…

  • 132 comments on “Knicks Morning News (Monday, Apr 16 2012)

    1. yoda4554

      Fun stat of the day–

      Exactly three teams in the East having winning records against the West (Chicago, Miami, Indiana). Every other Eastern team has lost more games than they’ve won against the other conference.

      Utah, which is currently the 10th-ranked of 15 Western teams, is 10-7 against the East.

    2. Brian Cronin

      Yeah, with all the talk about the West/East disparity finally coming to an end this season or next, it sure doesn’t look that way, does it (the big difference, of course, is that the top Eastern Conference teams easily can win the title nowadays, which wasn’t the case ten/twelve years ago when they were more or less sacrificial lambs led to the Western Conference slaughter)?

      You can take your Utah example and go one step further with Denver. They’re barely clinging to a playoff spot in the West and yet they’re a remarkable 15-2 against Eastern Conference opponents.

    3. David Crockett

      Boy, the Harvey Araton piece on Anthony (Letting Anthony go it alone…) is some Grade A trolling. I was never a huge Anthony fan, but these past few weeks–whatever the motivation–he has pretty resoundingly answered his critics.

      Araton didn’t even bother to mention that the non-Anthony Knicks were almost criminally negligent on offense yesterday. They hit 17 FGs on 46 attempts and went 2 of 8 at the free throw line by my quick perusal of the box. Araton also failed to mention that Anthony’s 5 dimes tied for the team lead. He really had to go out of his way to ignore those things. This was a whack job worthy of Berman.

    4. johnlocke

      A little bit of a hatchet job, but it seemed his larger point was an argument against those saying that Stoudemire should come off the bench, so Carmelo can “do his thing”. His point was more about the need for multiple stars to be able to complement each other and that having multiple stars with the ability to score is better than one. He had a bunch of tangential points to get there, but my main takeaway was in sum: “Carmelo going off by himself is not a great strategy for winning, he needs to be able to score in a complementary fashion with Amare, and not lose his rhythm when he is not touching the ball on every possession”

      Owen:
      Someone is not going to be happy with this piece….

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/16/sports/basketball/letting-carmelo-anthony-go-it-alone-may-not-help-knicks.html?_r=1&ref=basketball

    5. Juany8

      Letting Lebron, Kobe, or Wade go it alone didn’t exactly have spectacular results either. If he’s trying to point out that the Knicks aren’t going to win if Carmelo is the only decent offensive option on the team (including Chandler), then he’s absolutely right. If he’s trying to argue that Melo shouldn’t be the primary option on any given night, regardless of how Lin and Stoudemire are playing, then he’s trolling, Melo is the clear cut best offensive player on this team and he’s been excellent defensively under Woodson (even before Lin and Stoudemire went out)

    6. Frank O.

      You know, this Melo argument is getting a lot like our political discourse: everything that is said is viewed through a jaundiced “I intend to win this argument” eye, and, respectfully, it’s getting old.
      I mean, both sides, grow up.
      It is entirely possible to say that Melo is playing great and that he needs more help from the likes of Amare and Lin when they return without disparaging anyone.
      Araton goes too far in my opinion alluding to an idea that Melo is only playing well because he’s not being interfered with by Amare and Lin. He is not the classic good-player-only-on-bad-teams-variety guy. And he has been anything but a ball hog.
      But the other side isn’t wrong either: Quite clearly against the best teams in the league, on most nights, Melo can’t be the only guy scoring. He score an efficient 42, but Lebron, Wade and Bosh combine for 70+.
      In this regard, Araton is correct. Melo needs at least another star, and at least a competent guard to beat teams like the Heat, or Dallas, or the Spurs, or the Lakers or even the Celtics.
      Now, on some nights, that guy could be a hot Smith, or an effective Shumpert. But Smith is inconsistent and Shump is a rook, which is to say he is inherently inconsistent offensively.

      I just get sick of listening to the bitching after a while.
      Melo has played pretty efficiently over the past 16 games or so. He shares the ball well, and if his teammates would hit shots, he’d have a hell of a lot more assists than he does. (I’m looking at you, Fields, Baron, Shumpert and Smith)
      But, man, does he need Amare and Lin.
      He shot better than 50% yesterday, had 9 boards, hit 12-14 from the line and collected 5 assists….and lost.
      It isn’t time to find fault with Melo; it’s time we all acknowledge he needs help, and, frankly, soon, or else we’re looking at another early exit if and when they get to the playoffs.
      I’m sure people will continue to argue, but it’s looking a bit strange.

    7. PC

      Does Melo look like he’s in better shape? Or is just when he plays well I see the rib pads as pads and not cheeseburgers?

      When he has a hop in his step, he’s dangerous and so much fun to watch.

      thought – we all are familiar with the first set play we run every game – triple screen (double to the FT line side and one back screen on the baseline. He gets an open jumper every time – why not run it when we need a hoop. I just hate watching him post up on foot away from the passer with his hand out.

    8. d-mar

      I was just imagining what this team would look like if we were 100% healthy for the playoffs.

      Starters: Melo, Stat, Chandler, Lin, Fields (I know he’s been sucky, but would rather have him with this group than the group below)

      Bench: Jeffries, Davis, Shump, JR, Novak

      That is one scary ass deep team with some great defensive intensity and lights out shooting coming off the bench. Plus you could limit Fields and Davis’ minutes to under 15 without a problem.

      Ahh, sweet dreams….

    9. Caleb

      For playoff time, if everyone were healthy I would probably cut Fields and Davis out of the rotation entirely. You might need Fields for a few minutes, but unless he shows a lot more than he has, it’s hard to justify any minutes for Davis when Shump & Smith can easily cover 10-15 while Lin is on the bench. I guess there might be a couple of transition games where Lin is still getting his legs back.

      We’d have to get very lucky to have that option, i.e. playing in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

      I’m assuming our key guys play around 40 per, what with spacing between games, more TV timeouts, not pacing ourselves, etc.

    10. The Infamous Cdiggy

      I nominate Frank O. for Post of the Day.

      I cosign 110% with you. This isn’t the time to take shots at Melo; he’s stepped it up big-time.

      I just have this feeling that there are certain questions to this team – can Melo and Amare coexist, what can this team really do at full strength – that may not be answered in earnest until next season. Not the worst situation in the sports-world by far, but given the context of the team’s failures over the past decade, along with the distrust of Dolan, it makes people more anxious and worrisome.

    11. johnno

      I’m pretty much a glass half full (also known as hopelessly optimistic) Knicks fan, but here is how I look at yesterday’s game — the Knicks were playing without their second and third best offensive players, with their second and third best defensive players slowed by injuries and with their now starting point guard hindered dramatically by a variety of injuries against the Heat at full strength and they were up by 4 in the fourth quarter. Put the shoe on the other foot — if the Knicks were at full strength and the Heat were playing without Bosh and Wade, with Haslem and Battier slowed by injuries, and with Chalmers nursing the poo poo platter of injuries that Davis has, is there much doubt that the Knicks would have won by double digits?

    12. johnno

      And is there any doubt that the Heat’s offense would have been as one-dimensional as the Knicks’ offense yesterday with LeBron playing the role of star trying to carry the team on his back?

      johnno: I’m pretty much a glass half full (also known as hopelessly optimistic) Knicks fan, but here is how I look at yesterday’s game — the Knicks were playing without their second and third best offensive players, with their second and third best defensive players slowed by injuries and with their now starting point guard hindered dramatically by a variety of injuries against the Heat at full strength and they were up by 4 in the fourth quarter. Put the shoe on the other foot — if the Knicks were at full strength and the Heat were playing without Bosh and Wade, with Haslem and Battier slowed by injuries, and with Chalmers nursing the poo poo platter of injuries that Davis has, is there much doubt that the Knicks would have won by double digits?

    13. formido

      Carmelo is not the most efficient super star but he is a winner. His clutch numbers are pretty much the best in the league, much better than Kobe’s. He hasn’t won a championship, but then neither has Lebron and he didn’t have the luxury of having Shaq on his team like Kobe. He was often the only player on the Olympic team doing anything and he won a NCAA championship as a freshman, while headily integrating his game with a high scoring point guard (McNamara) as necessary. Unlike Kobe’s team sabotaging selfishness[1], he tailors his game to the other players on the court, picking his spots around Lin and Amare when they’re in.

      I was disappointed with his sulkiness and petulance under D’Antoni, but whatever.

      [1] I’d love to see Kobe’s career arc replayed swapping Carmelo’s teammates for Shaq et al. Wonder how many championships he would have won then.

    14. Owen

      Frank O – The larger argument about whether Carmelo is genuinely the foundation of a championship winning team isn’t going away. The fact that his recent hot stretch coincided perfectly with Amare going down and Lin being out is hardly going to assuage the skeptic’s doubts. Nor is the fact we are a game under 500 with him in the lineup.

    15. JLam

      Great post Frank O and Knicks fanatics
      Can’t wait till Stats and Lin come back.
      Hopefully sooner than later

    16. briand

      Owen: Frank O – The larger argument about whether Carmelo is genuinely the foundation of a championship winning team isn’t going away. The fact that his recent hot stretch coincided perfectly with Amare going down and Lin being out is hardly going to assuage the skeptic’s doubts. Nor is the fact we are a game under 500 with him in the lineup.

      I mean, until Melo actually wins a title that argument is going to exist. That being said, if he continues to play the way he has played the last 2 weeks, there is no argument IMO…he is good enough. If Melo plays like this over the next few years, and the Knicks don’t win a title, than it is the fault of non-Melo factors (other players, coach, front office).

    17. gjknick

      d-mar: I was just imagining what this team would look like if we were 100% healthy for the playoffs. Starters: Melo, Stat, Chandler, Lin, Fields (I know he’s been sucky, but would rather have him with this group than the group below)Bench: Jeffries, Davis, Shump, JR, NovakThat is one scary ass deep team with some great defensive intensity and lights out shooting coming off the bench. Plus you could limit Fields and Davis’ minutes to under 15 without a problem. Ahh, sweet dreams….

      Hoping we can dream that dream next year all year long. Creative GM’ing to make it happen!

    18. Nick C.

      Owen: Frank O – The larger argument about whether Carmelo is genuinely the foundation of a championship winning team isn’t going away. The fact that his recent hot stretch coincided perfectly with Amare going down and Lin being out is hardly going to assuage the skeptic’s doubts. Nor is the fact we are a game under 500 with him in the lineup.

      Yeah but Owen, does it need to be made any day and conversely do we need to hear Melo’s greatest hits daily. This needs to play out.

    19. JK47

      briand: I mean, until Melo actually wins a title that argument is going to exist.That being said, if he continues to play the way he has played the last 2 weeks, there is no argument IMO…he is good enough.If Melo plays like this over the next few years, and the Knicks don’t win a title, than it is the fault of non-Melo factors (other players, coach, front office).

      That’s the thing with Melo. People watch him at his best and they say “If he can continue to play like this…” when the truth is, he can’t continue to play like this.

      For all of Melo’s struggles this season, his WS/48 is the highest of his career. This is not some sort of outlier poor season for Melo anymore. It’s a pretty typical Melo season actually– some hot streaks where he is otherworldly and a good portion of the season where he is inefficient.

      If he was able to play the way he has played the past two weeks all the time, he’d be LeBron James-level valuable, with a WS/48 well north of .200. He hasn’t been able to do that over a full season any time in his career, not even close.

    20. Owen

      “I mean, until Melo actually wins a title that argument is going to exist.”

      I don’t think so. Look, if we are a top 4 team by efficiency differential 65 games in next year with Melo, Lin, Amare, and Chandler firing on all cylinders, you won’t hear any complaints from me or I suspect anyone else. We don’t actually have to win a championship. Personally, I would be satisfied with the Knicks even being in the conversation. That’s something that hasn’t happened for a decade.

      That’s the goal. Melo playing efficient, dominant ball within the framework of a championship contending team. I hope it happens.

    21. Frank O.

      Owen:
      Frank O – The larger argument about whether Carmelo is genuinely the foundation of a championship winning team isn’t going away. The fact that his recent hot stretch coincided perfectly with Amare going down and Lin being out is hardly going to assuage the skeptic’s doubts. Nor is the fact we are a game under 500 with him in the lineup.

      I know how you feel about this. But don’t ignore who has been out while the Knicks are one game under 500 with melo in the lineup. It seems backwards ignoring the absence of a career TS% .596 and eFG% .534 scorer in Amare, and a 9 assist, 20 points per 36 point guard in Lin, and saying the team can’t win a championship with Melo.
      This team has almost never been at full strength, and when they were, they hadn’t played much at all together.
      It seems a little unfair to hang that only on melo.
      And this hot stretch is beginning to look like a trend given the sample size of about 430 minutes, with a TS% of .578, and an eFG% of .521.
      He’s also getting 7 boards and about 3 assists on average per game.
      And also recall his last 20 games of last season where he turned in a TS% of.598 and eFG% of .532.

      In terms of efficiency, closing out each season he’s been kind of a wet dream.
      Again, his career stats have not been that efficient, but looking at the close of this season and last, he was pretty damn good.
      Now, I have to say, making an argument that a certain guy may not be able to get a championship, if you look at the number of hall of famers who never won a championship, Melo would be among a lot of very good players, max contract players, who never won.

    22. ephus

      @21. Unfortunately, there is virtually no way to keep together the ten player rotation. Here is what would have to happen:

      1. Lin takes the MLE – most likely to happen. No one can out bid the Knicks because of the Gilbert Arenas rule.

      2. JR Smith exercises his $2.5 million player option for next year. Smith would be leaving money on the table, because his market value is likely above $2.5 million for next year. Smith would also be leaving behind the security of a longer-term deal.

      3. Novak would take the Knicks’ bi-annual exception for around $2.1 million. Novak would almost certainly be leaving money on the table, because even capped out teams can use their mini-MLE (around $3 million/year) on him.

      4. Davis and Jeffries would each re-sign for 120% of the veteran’s minimum (non-Bird rights to each). The only thing that I am unclear on is whether the Knicks hold Early Bird rights on Jeffries. If so, they could resign Jeffries for up to the MLE without using the MLE.

    23. Owen

      “Yeah but Owen, does it need to be made any day and conversely do we need to hear Melo’s greatest hits daily. This needs to play out.”

      I don’t know. I think whether Melo can succeed playing alongside Lin and Amare is a pretty fundamental topic for a Knicks fan these days.

      And I think an ongoing conversation about the value of volume scoring is pretty healthy, both here, and in the Knicks front office.

    24. Kikuchiyo

      April 29, 2001

      That’s the last time the Knicks won a playoff game.

      Starting five: Houston, Sprewell, Kurt Thomas, Mark Jackson, and Othella Harrington.

      Winning a series against Chicago or Miami looks bleak without Lin. But here’s hoping they at least end this 11-year drought.

    25. JK47

      Common sense tells me it’s easier to play the game when you’re on the floor with better players.

    26. Owen

      JK47: ommon sense tells me it’s easier to play the game when you’re on the floor with better players.
        

      Melo is putting that notion to the test isn’t he?

    27. ruruland

      Owen:
      “Yeah but Owen, does it need to be made any day and conversely do we need to hear Melo’s greatest hits daily. This needs to play out.”

      I don’t know. I think whether Melo can succeed playing alongside Lin and Amare is a pretty fundamental topic for a Knicks fan these days.

      And I think an ongoing conversation about the value of volume scoring is pretty healthy, both here, and in the Knicks front office.

      But you’re not making an argument that he can’t. Some people have made the argument that he can without any rebuttal. It almost seems rhetorical from your side.

    28. Caleb

      JK47:

      For all of Melo’s struggles this season, his WS/48 is the highest of his career.This is not some sort of outlier poor season for Melo anymore.It’s a pretty typical Melo season actually– some hot streaks where he is otherworldly and a good portion of the season where he is inefficient.

      His WS48 is relatively high because his assists are at a career high and he’s on a terrific defensive team, while his rebounding has stayed at its typically (very) high level.

      The interesting thing is that his scoring efficiency is nowhere near his career #s… after 2005 (his second year in the league) he’s never had a TS% lower than .550… he’s at .519 now. If he just gets back to his career norm, he probably WILL have a WS/48 around .200.

      His defense this year, especially lately, is a lot better than you could have expected, but the rest of his game is WORSE than usual – if you’re looking at season-long #s.

      The last 12-15 games, you can’t say he’s done anything but play at superstar level. I know there are naysayers who think he’s only done that because Amare and Lin are out, but that’s just crazy talk. Players just don’t have that kind of impact on each other, good or bad. I do think Melo will regress a bit from the past month, but baseline for him is more like 55, 56 TS%… not 51.

    29. ruruland

      JK47: That’s the thing with Melo.People watch him at his best and they say “If he can continue to play like this…” when the truth is, he can’t continue to play like this.

      For all of Melo’s struggles this season, his WS/48 is the highest of his career.This is not some sort of outlier poor season for Melo anymore.It’s a pretty typical Melo season actually– some hot streaks where he is otherworldly and a good portion of the season where he is inefficient.

      If he was able to play the way he has played the past two weeks all the time, he’d be LeBron James-level valuable, with a WS/48 well north of .200.He hasn’t been able to do that over a full season any time in his career, not even close.

      His true shooting is well below normal. His assist to turnover ratio has improved over his career. He’s smarter than he was. Those are very long trends that seemed to be fixed moving forward. He’ll probably even improve his assist to turnover as his teammates hit a higher percentage of their shots.

      His WS/48 is the highest of his career despite the worst offensive season of his career. Why? Because he’s playing on the best defensive team of his career. Simple.

      Can he soon become a 200 WS player on this team when healthy? I believe so.

    30. hnwingo

      Carmelo’s recent play has changed my mind about the Gallinari trade. It was a good move; secondary pieces can be found. All of a sudden the Knicks can be a very deep team despite being totally gutted a year ago.

      Carmelo has also won me over. He is the best player the Knicks have had since Ewing and the best offensive player since Bernard King. The memory of King lighting up the Garden is among my fondest Knick highlights. I would not use a Bernard King comparison lightly. Carmelo does not have Bernard’s open-floor wizadry but his tough all-around offensive ability is lots of fun to watch.

    31. Caleb

      They are getting muddled, but people are arguing about two different questions:

      1. How valuable is shot creation? (or: relative value of efficiency vs. individual volume scoring)

      2. How important is “fit?” (or: does Carmelo Anthony hurt other players’ games, and vice-versa)

      IMO, #1 is a pretty open question – when we say “advanced stats” aren’t very advanced, this is one of the big ones. It seems obvious the extreme views are wrong. Efficiency DOES go down as volume increases, although not as much – maybe a lot less – than conventional wisdom has it.

      #2, I am pretty extreme in saying, “not much.” Obviously, per-game #s shift depending on who gets the shots, but I’ve never seen anything to show a dramatic effect on efficiency. Maybe a hint of it, in players doing a little better with uber-fantastic PGs, like Nash. In Melo’s case, I think it’s just coincidence that he started to finally get healthy, around the time Lin and Amare went out. it’s not cause and effect. The non-geek evidence would be that Melo was great last year next to Stoudemire and Billups – and their games didn’t suffer, either.

    32. ruruland

      Owen: Melo is putting that notion to the test isn’t he?

      Every team he’s played on there has been an adjustment period followed by dominance. The Andre Miller team was a lot different than the Allen Iverson team which was a lot different than the Chauncey Billups team.

      The Andre Miller team was a lot about Melo’s personal development as it was finding synergy with an eccentric offensive group around him.

      In his final 90 games with Andre Miller Melo had a true shooting percentage of .579. When that team added JR Smith, a real floor spreading guard, Melo’s TS jumped to 595 in the first 23 games of 2006.

      Then Melo got suspended for the brawl. Then Andre Miller was traded for Allen Iverson — Melo’ assisted baskets dropped 10-15 percent.

      Melo struggled scoring efficiently for a lengthy period of time with Iverson.

      Over the final 4 months and 52 games playing with Iverson Melo had a true shooting percentage of .612.

      It follows the same pattern with Chauncey.

      Melo has a unique game, and the primary ballhandlers he played with all had entirely disparate styles of games. They each took time, and thousands of reps, to adjust to each other.

    33. Unreason

      d-mar:
      I was just imagining what this team would look like if we were 100% healthy for the playoffs.

      Starters: Melo, Stat, Chandler, Lin, Fields (I know he’s been sucky, but would rather have him with this group than the group below)

      Bench: Jeffries, Davis, Shump, JR, Novak

      That is one scary ass deep team with some great defensive intensity and lights out shooting coming off the bench. Plus you could limit Fields and Davis’ minutes to under 15 without a problem.

      Ahh, sweet dreams….

      I’m excited about these playoffs but my realistic expectations are for tough entertaining games rather than a deep run. Even if Amare and Lin both get back early, the prospect of them all playing well together right off the bat seems like a stretch.

      My dreams for next season involve Grunwald pulling off a highly unlikely Nash + Lin coup. He’s old but old farts are kicking ass all over the place this year: the Suns, Kobe, Boston. More realistically, I think signing anyone in the vast gulf between Nash and BD to play with Lin as either starter or back-up should be a top priority.

    34. JK47

      Melo’s 27. This is his ninth NBA season. He still hasn’t cracked a .160 WS/48. I’ll be (very pleasantly) surprised if he starts regularly racking up .200 WS/48 seasons.

    35. JC Knickfan

      ephus:
      @21.Unfortunately, there is virtually no way to keep together the ten player rotation.Here is what would have to happen:

      1.Lin takes the MLE – most likely to happen.No one can out bid the Knicks because of the Gilbert Arenas rule.

      2.JR Smith exercises his $2.5 million player option for next year.Smith would be leaving money on the table, because his market value is likely above $2.5 million for next year.Smith would also be leaving behind the security of a longer-term deal.

      3.Novak would take the Knicks’ bi-annual exception for around $2.1 million.Novak would almost certainly be leaving money on the table, because even capped out teams can use their mini-MLE (around $3 million/year) on him.

      4.Davis and Jeffries would each re-sign for 120% of the veteran’s minimum (non-Bird rights to each).The only thing that I am unclear on is whether the Knicks hold Early Bird rights on Jeffries.If so, they could resign Jeffries for up to the MLE without using the MLE.

      My take if these can get more money they will sign with another team, but will there be market for them?
      I think JR resign because though played good defense, but his offense still has be very bad. That might big red flag for alot GM.
      Novak is so one dimension with very limited rebounding/defense maybe 2.1 million might be good enough offer. Look at Dunleavy who much more versatile then Novak and only got 3.75 million.
      Stat will have back issue and possible miss many games for next 3 years. If sign JJ who got knee problems, we definitely need look for healthy PF that can rebound and play defense.
      BD – too many bonehead play for me. I like get another backup that is healthy enough to play extend minutes in case Lin get injury or regresses. Raymond Felton come to mind, but not sure we get for veteran min.

    36. ruruland

      Caleb:
      They are getting muddled, but people are arguing about two different questions:

      1. How valuable is shot creation? (or: relative value of efficiency vs. individual volume scoring)

      2. How important is “fit?” (or: does Carmelo Anthony hurt other players’ games, and vice-versa)

      IMO, #1 is a pretty open question – when we say “advanced stats” aren’t very advanced, this is one of the big ones. It seems obvious the extreme views are wrong. Efficiency DOES go down as volume increases, although not as much – maybe a lot less – than conventional wisdom has it.

      #2, I am pretty extreme in saying, “not much.” Obviously, per-game #s shift depending on who gets the shots, but I’ve never seen anything to show a dramatic effect on efficiency.Maybe a hint of it, in players doing a little better with uber-fantastic PGs, like Nash. In Melo’s case, I think it’s just coincidence that he started to finally get healthy, around the time Lin and Amare went out. it’s not cause and effect. The non-geek evidence would be that Melo was great last year next to Stoudemire and Billups – and their games didn’t suffer, either.

      1) It’s very valuable. Great shot-creators like Melo typically could be much more efficient if teams elected to defend them like they defended other players. But great shot creators occupy the opponent’s best defender and attract the entire team’s attention. Both of those things have tremendous value. A great shot creator decreases the volume of usage needed from teammates — increasing their efficiency by default. That’s why Hollinger values shot creation.

      2)The vast majority of Melo’s teammates have had either career high years playing with Melo, or have played well above career averages. That’s because Melo’s presence creates easier shots and because his volume creates lower usage/higher efficiency.

    37. Nick C.

      Owen: “Yeah but Owen, does it need to be made any day and conversely do we need to hear Melo’s greatest hits daily. This needs to play out.”I don’t know. I think whether Melo can succeed playing alongside Lin and Amare is a pretty fundamental topic for a Knicks fan these days. And I think an ongoing conversation about the value of volume scoring is pretty healthy, both here, and in the Knicks front office.

      I definitely think the conversation on the value of volume scoring(ers) is useful. I wish it were made more forcefully when Isiah was in charge. Certainly there are lots of newer people, but the general points are pretty well entrenched and barring anything new get repetitive on both sides.

      As for whehter amare, Melo and Lin cna co-exist it is valid but until they take the floor toegether again which may be next pre-season completely hypothetical and conjecture. Some people love that sort of stuff others not so much.

    38. ruruland

      JK47:
      Melo’s 27.This is his ninth NBA season.He still hasn’t cracked a .160 WS/48.I’ll be (very pleasantly) surprised if he starts regularly racking up .200 WS/48 seasons.

      ws/48 is largely a product of teammates, too, and it shouldn’t be looked at as an end-all be-all by any stretch. Rondo has a .133 WS/48 this year but I’d argue he’s the best player on that team. Countless examples like that.

      Why should Melo be able to put up 200 ws seasons with this group?

      1)The Knicks are going to defend at a very high level in all likelihood. It’s point differential will increase (meaning everything Melo does will look better). 2)Melo’s assist/to should continue to improve as guys like Amar’e shoot the ball better (and Shump), and guys like Fields and Douglas are permanently taken out of the lineup 3) Melo’s true shooting percentage rises to at least career norms. I have little doubt he’ll set his career highs in true shooting percentage playing with Lin and Amar’e. The best years for him in that department came before he really shot many 3’s.

      I don’t think 200 ws/48 will be that much of a problem barring health from the team next year.

    39. Caleb

      ruruland: 1) It’s very valuable. Great shot-creators like Melo typically could be much more efficient if teams elected to defend them like they defended other players. But great shot creators occupy the opponent’s best defender and attract the entire team’s attention. Both of those things have tremendous value. A great shot creator decreases the volume of usage needed from teammates — increasing their efficiency by default. That’s why Hollinger values shot creation.

      That’s also why some people think Hollinger is full of crap!

      “…decreases the volume of usage needed from teammates — increasing their efficiency by default” is circular logic. The point of asking question #1 in the first place is that we don’t know if it increases their efficiency – at least, we don’t know if it increases their efficiency by more than the efficiency of the shot creator goes down.

      IMO, it does, at least a little bit. Everyone except a true Berri-ite would agree. But “tremendous?” Based on what?

      ruruland:

      2)The vast majority of Melo’s teammates have had either career high years playing with Melo, or have played well above career averages. That’s because Melo’s presence creates easier shots and because his volume creates lower usage/higher efficiency.

      I don’t think this is true, but fire away.

    40. Caleb

      One constant in all our comment threads is saying player A or Player B would have better assist #s or a better assist ratio if other players would make their shots. While this is technically true, it’s not going to be a meaningful difference over a full season. If the whole team improved its FG% by 5 points (a gargantuan shift), a 2:1 assist ratio would become 2.1:1. it doesn’t change the picture.

      What does change the picture is a player’s role. Melo has always been a pretty good passer, but he didn’t magically improve this year – he has more assists because he filled a point forward’s role for big chunks of the first 25 games.

    41. JK47

      Why aren’t Melo’s teammates more efficient THIS YEAR? Because it seems like most of the players on the team are having miserable seasons in terms of efficiency with the exceptions of Chandler and Novak.

    42. ruruland

      Caleb:
      One constant in all our comment threads is saying player A or Player B would have better assist #s or a better assist ratio if other players would make their shots. While this is technically true, it’s not going to be a meaningful difference over a full season. If the whole team improved its FG% by 5 points (a gargantuan shift), a 2:1 assist ratio would become 2.1:1. it doesn’t change the picture.

      What does change the picture is a player’s role. Melo has always been a pretty good passer, but he didn’t magically improve this year – he has more assists because he filled a point forward’s role for big chunks of the first 25 games.

      Maybe that’s true. He was handling the ball a lot more, but he also wasn’t posting up and kicking as much. He should have turned the ball over more as a primary ballhandler, which to me is a signal that his assist/to ratio will continue to trend upward.

    43. ruruland

      Caleb: That’s also why some people think Hollinger is full of crap!

      “…decreases the volume of usage needed from teammates — increasing their efficiency by default” is circular logic. The point of asking question #1 in the first place is that we don’t know if it increases their efficiency – at least, we don’t know if it increases their efficiency by more than the efficiency of the shot creator goes down.

      IMO, it does, at least a little bit. Everyone except a true Berri-ite would agree. But “tremendous?” Based on what?

      I don’t think this is true, but fire away.

      Go check for yourself. Look at Melo’s teammates efficiency changes in Denver. 70-80 percent either had career highs or above career average efficiency over the entirety of their tenure in Denver/with Melo.

      I posted all of the players increases a month or so ago.

    44. ruruland

      Caleb: That’s also why some people think Hollinger is full of crap!

      “…decreases the volume of usage needed from teammates — increasing their efficiency by default” is circular logic. The point of asking question #1 in the first place is that we don’t know if it increases their efficiency – at least, we don’t know if it increases their efficiency by more than the efficiency of the shot creator goes down.

      IMO, it does, at least a little bit. Everyone except a true Berri-ite would agree. But “tremendous?” Based on what?

      I don’t think this is true, but fire away.

      Just common sense. If you don’t think that a player who garners a lot of defensive attention and the best opposing defender isn’t valuable, then I don’t know how you can argue that defense is important.

    45. ruruland

      JK47:
      Why aren’t Melo’s teammates more efficient THIS YEAR? Because it seems like most of the players on the team are having miserable seasons in terms of efficiency with the exceptions of Chandler and Novak.

      Well, it is odd. Throughout the year these guys have been fed wide-open shots. The primary ways Melo helps his teammates is by open perimeter shots, drives against rotations, and shots near the basket on cuts. The third category was severely lacking with MDA.

      These guys haven’t been able to make wide-open shots this year. It hasn’t mattered who was playing. It’s an anomaly in Melo’s career.

    46. Caleb

      ruruland: Of course it is.

      I suppose it is, if we take for granted that players have a tremendous effect on each other’s performance.

      technically, team defense is factored in, in proportion to how much a player is on the floor. Right?

    47. ruruland

      Caleb: I suppose it is, if we take for granted that players have a tremendous effect on each other’s performance.

      technically, team defense is factored in, in proportion to how much a player is on the floor. Right?

      exactly

    48. Robtachi

      Can we stop referring to Miami as having a “big three”? The only thing that makes Chris Bosh “big” is his vertical measurables.

      Player A 31.4 MPG 18.3 Pts 9.6 Reb Per 36-minutes 24.68 USG 55.4 TS% 18.22 Assist Rate 15.7 Rebound Rate 20.60 PER

      Player B 26.2 MPG 18.8 Pts 8.8 Reb Per 36-minutes 25.61 USG 51.6 TS% 16.8 Assist Rate 13.6 Rebound Rate 18.94 PER

      Player C 35.1 MPG 18.3 Pts 8.0 Reb Per 36-minutes 24.13 USG 55.0 TS% 9.84 Assist Rate 13.2 Rebound Rate 18.89 PER

      Player A is Kevin Garnett, who most perceive as the most notable PF of a “Big Three”. His minutes and usage rates are not sky-high, obviously, but his averages, TS%, assist and rebound rates, as well as PER, are clearly a cut above the other two.

      Player C is Chris Bosh. Who is player B? I’m almost tempted to have people guess, but I just can’t contain myself. It’s the illustrious Drew Gooden. Drew freakin’ Gooden has a higher rebound rate and almost twice the assist rate Chris Bosh has, and Gooden was a bench player at the start of the season. Granted, Gooden has exceeded expectations with his play this season now that Bogut is down and out, but Bosh is being outperformed or equaled by Gooden and a handful of other injured, journeymen or once-great PFs like Elton Brand, Anderson Varejao, Ersan Ilyasova, and even Carlos Boozer.

      The guy is 6’11”, for crying out loud, and he’s got the arms of a Cretaceous flyer. Yet he’s probably the 4th best rebounder on his own team, and can barely pull down 8 rebounds a game. Not only that, but he doesn’t help his team in other ways like facilitating offense in other guys nearly as much as someone like Garnett or even Drew Gooden does. So can we officially dispense with the “Big Three” title for the Heat? Otherwise, we’re going to get into a really hazy gray area where we might have to call Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer the Bulls’ “Big Three”, and I’m just not in that…

    49. johnlocke

      Bosh is the big three when he plays the Knicks…he kills us. That’s all that matters to me…

      Robtachi:
      Can we stop referring to Miami as having a “big three”? The only thing that makes Chris Bosh “big” is his vertical measurables.

      So can we officially dispense with the “Big Three” title for the Heat? Otherwise, we’re going to get into a really hazy gray area where we might have to call Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer the Bulls’ “Big Three”, and I’m just not in

    50. ruruland

      Owen:
      So Ruruland, you think player’s have a tremendous effect on each other’s performance.

      I know where you’re going with this. I think it often depends on what kind of player we’re talking about. Because 70-80 percent of a players performance can be explained statistically by past seasons doesn’t, to me, mean there aren’t a lot of exceptions. For a lot of teams and players, their isn’t huge turnover on the roster from year-year, at least not in the core pieces.

      I wonder how explanatory past seasons are for guys who switch to significantly different teams? Countless examples of guys who thrive in one situation and aren’t as good in another.

      With Melo, for example, I think we can probably count on some baseline for his past 6-7 years as the 70 percent mark. I think the other 30 percent, whether it’s up or down can largely be explained by who his teammates are. Maybe the percentage is lower than that because there are long-term trends that show Melo improving in facets of his game that are outside of that baseline when taken with career averages.

      His assist/to ratio is much better than it was early in his career. His 5 year trend with the 3 is much better than it was earlier. Rebound rate, etc.

      As one example, earlier in the year you were talking about how you wished the Knicks would have Ryan Anderson over Melo (by ws/48 he is of course one of the great players in this league and more valuable per minute than Dwight Howard)

      In games Howard has missed this year Anderson’s shooting from 3:
      7/34

      SSS sure, but without a strong focal point to the offense that creates open shots then I think Anderson would either develop his game or shoot much less efficiently. Sometimes I think not playing with a shot-creator or guy who draws defensive attention can allow a player to develop, but there seems to be an adjustment period.

    51. ruruland

      Nice post, Tachi. I don’t know why the Heat don’t go through Bosh more often in the half-court. It’s really odd that his rebound rate has dropped 3-5 percent from his Toronto days.

    52. Owen

      “With Melo, for example, I think we can probably count on some baseline for his past 6-7 years as the 70 percent mark. I think the other 30 percent, whether it’s up or down can largely be explained by who his teammates are.”

      So, when you say that WS/48 is “largely a product of teammates” what you mean is, at the most 30% and possibly less of it is driven by teammates?

      I guess I have a different definition of “largely” than you do….

    53. d-mar

      ruruland:
      Nice post, Tachi. I don’t know why the Heat don’t go through Bosh more often in the half-court. It’s really odd that his rebound rate has dropped 3-5 percent from his Toronto days.

      I know some people here have soured on STAT (forgetting the MVP chants only about 15 months ago and how he brought respectability back to this franchise) but think about if we had grabbed Bosh instead of Amare. I really don’t think he could have handled the pressure of playing in NY and it would have gotten ugly real fast. Better for him and us that he ended up the 3rd wheel on another team.

    54. ruruland

      http://mobile.postingandtoasting.com/2012/4/16/2952847/video-heres-carmelo-anthony-on-nurse-jackie

      Owen:
      “With Melo, for example, I think we can probably count on some baseline for his past 6-7 years as the 70 percent mark. I think the other 30 percent, whether it’s up or down can largely be explained by who his teammates are.”

      So, when you say that WS/48 is “largely a product of teammates” what you mean is, at the most 30% and possibly less of it is driven by teammates?

      I guess I have a different definition of “largely” than you do….

      I think there are exceptions that fall well outside that range. A 30 percent increase in per/36 or efficiency is huge.

      I can see Melo, with Lin, with his 3pt shot, on a great defensive team, as a 200 WS/48 player with a TS in the 570-590+ range. That would be well within the 30 percent range if we look at 6-7 year trends.

    55. Caleb

      I think Melo has a decent shot at hitting .200 but that doesn’t say much about whether it’s dependent on his teammates.

      I am more optimistic about him than Owen. If you looked at Melo’s 3rd or 4th year in the league, age 21 or 22, he was on an arc to become a great player. But for whatever reason he plateaued or even regressed a bit. It’s less surprising to see someone like that make a jump in mid-career, than for someone who never showed the potential.

      27 is old to make a big leap – most players are on the downslope by then – but it’s not like he’s 30.

    56. Frank O.

      Owen:
      “I mean, until Melo actually wins a title that argument is going to exist.”

      I don’t think so. Look, if we are a top 4 team by efficiency differential 65 games in next year with Melo, Lin, Amare, and Chandler firing on all cylinders, you won’t hear any complaints from me or I suspect anyone else. We don’t actually have to win a championship. Personally, I would be satisfied with the Knicks even being in the conversation. That’s something that hasn’t happened for a decade.

      That’s the goal. Melo playing efficient, dominant ball within the framework of a championship contending team. I hope it happens.

      That’s my man! :)

    57. Caleb

      I also think there is one particular type of player who is dependent on having great teammates – or at least, another offensive player who commands a lot of attention. I’m talking about 3-point specialists. Not sure Paxson, B.J. Armstrong, Craig Hodges did much when they weren’t on the court with Jordan & Pippen.

      You could make a long, long list…. beware, anyone who wants to give $30 million to Steve Novak.

      Ryan Anderson semi-falls into that category, although he does do other things pretty well.

      At the same time, I don’t think this idea generalizes to other types of players. Standing out by the 3-point line waiting for someone to kick it out, is pretty specialized.

    58. Frank O.

      ruruland: I know where you’re going with this. I think it often depends on what kind of player we’re talking about. Because 70-80 percent of a players performance can be explained statistically by past seasons doesn’t, to me, mean there aren’t a lot of exceptions. For a lot of teams and players, their isn’t huge turnover on the roster from year-year, at least not in the core pieces.

      I wonder how explanatory past seasons are for guys who switch to significantly different teams? Countless examples of guys who thrive in one situation and aren’t as good in another.

      With Melo, for example, I think we can probably count on some baseline for his past 6-7 years as the 70 percent mark. I think the other 30 percent, whether it’s up or down can largely be explained by who his teammates are. Maybe the percentage is lower than that because there are long-term trends that show Melo improving in facets of his game that are outside of that baseline when taken with career averages.

      His assist/to ratio is much better than it was early in his career. His 5 year trend with the 3 is much better than it was earlier. Rebound rate, etc.

      As one example, earlier in the year you were talking about how you wished the Knicks would have Ryan Anderson over Melo (by ws/48 he is of course one of the great players in this league and more valuable per minute than Dwight Howard)

      In games Howard has missed this year Anderson’s shooting from 3:
      7/34

      SSS sure, but without a strong focal point to the offense that creates open shots then I think Anderson would either develop his game or shoot much less efficiently. Sometimes I think not playing with a shot-creator or guy who draws defensive attention can allow a player to develop, but there seems to be an adjustment period.

      Odom’s performance was clearly affected by his situation.
      He went from being one of the…

    59. Owen

      Ruruland
      “ws/48 is largely a product of teammates, too,”

      Owen
      No, it isn’t.

      Ruruland:
      Of course it is.”

      Ruruland:

      “With Melo, for example, I think we can probably count on some baseline for his past 6-7 years as the 70 percent mark. I think the other 30 percent, whether it’s up or down can largely be explained by who his teammates are.”

      Sorry, just a little confused by the above, especially by the

      “of course it is.”

      Enlighten me: Do you think teammates “largely” drive WS/48 and player performance or not?

      It seems your above answer is Yes, for most players WS/48 is mostly a product of who their teammates are. However, in Melo’s case, it’s a smaller fraction, say 30%.

      Am I getting that right?

    60. hoolahoop

      David Crockett: Boy, the Harvey Araton piece on Anthony (Letting Anthony go it alone…) is some Grade A trolling. I was never a huge Anthony fan, but these past few weeks–whatever the motivation–he has pretty resoundingly answered his critics.

      Yes, Melo has played well in the Woodson era. But, obviously, scoring 40 doesn’t translate into a win. So, most fans conclude that everyone else on the team sucks. Seems logical, but it’s wrong.

      One guy dominating the ball too much is not good for the team. It takes the other players out of their game. Watch BD and Smith force the ball to Melo. They cannot see anyone else on the court. The rest of the team falls out of their rhythm and everyone says they suck. No one in the NBA sucks. Everyone in the NBA can score.
      Melo is playing well, but the knicks need more ball movement and Melo needs to not stand around when he doesn’t have the ball. Miami, Boston, Indiana all move the ball well. Watch LeBron. Watch Wade. They move the ball and move without the ball.
      The knicks have talent – obvious when everyone’s involved and gets into a good rhythm.

    61. hoolahoop

      ruruland: 1) It’s very valuable. Great shot-creators like Melo typically could be much more efficient if teams elected to defend them like they defended other players. But great shot creators occupy the opponent’s best defender and attract the entire team’s attention. Both of those things have tremendous value.

      Attracting defenders has value if you pass off the double team. If you shoot contested two’s with defenders draping on, you score 30 and lose the game. Of course, it’s the other players’ that get blamed for not scoring.

    62. hoolahoop

      Brian Cronin:
      So who are we rooting for tonight? Orlando or Philly?

      I guess Philly, right? Keep the dream alive for #6.

      At this point, I’m rooting for Orlando. I’m not nearly as confident as most people here that the knicks are a lock for the playoffs. They got some tough teams to play and they’re battered. Even the Nets play the knicks tough.
      But, if philly wins the dream of 6 seed is alive.
      No lose situation.

    63. Z-man

      hoolahoop: At this point, I’m rooting for Orlando. I’m not nearly as confident as most people here that the knicks are a lock for the playoffs. They got some tough teams to play and they’re battered. Even the Nets play the knicks tough.But, if philly wins the dream of 6 seed is alive.No lose situation.

      Agree, I am more concerned with making the playoffs than the 6 seed right now. If Philly wins, which they almost certainly will, it’s not a terrible thing per se, but to root for Orlando to basically lose all of their remaining games while we win all of ours is asking for a lot. I know they are decimated but even if they lose out, we still have to win some very tough games with no PG. We are just as likely to go 3-3 as 4-2, and 5-1 is, again, asking for a lot. If it happens, I’ll be thrilled, but it would be a surprise.

      If we beat Boston on Wednesday, I’ll be able to relax a bit. If Philly wins tonight and we lose that game, things are gonna get tight. Remember, Boston will have nothing to play for vs. Milwaukee.

      For now, I’m hoping for the 8 seed, getting Amare back and other guys (Jeffries, Chandler, Baron, Shump) some rest, and taking our chances with Chicago. Even with Amare and Lin, we are NOT beating the Heat in the first round. We have a puncher’s chance vs. the Bulls.

    64. jon abbey

      hoolahoop:

      Everyone in the NBA can score.

      not to jump on you specifically, but this is another statement I hear way too frequently in recent years with the advent of Berri and crew, and I think it’s ludicrous. your examples of Miami, Boston, Indiana all have a slew of talented scorers, and with Amare and Lin out, NY most certainly does not.

      Melo needs to try to get other people involved, and he has been in recent weeks (and he wasn’t for big chunks of the first part of the season), but NY has very few actual scoring options right now against defenses like Miami or Chicago or Boston.

    65. ruruland

      Caleb:
      I think Melo has a decent shot at hitting .200 but that doesn’t say much about whether it’s dependent on his teammates.

      I am more optimistic about him than Owen. If you looked at Melo’s 3rd or 4th year in the league, age 21 or 22, he was on an arc to become a great player. But for whatever reason he plateaued or even regressed a bit. It’s less surprising to see someone like that make a jump in mid-career, than for someone who never showed the potential.

      27 is old to make a big leap – most players are on the downslope by then – but it’s not like he’s 30.

      I have a pretty good idea of why it looks like he regressed statistically in ’08 and ’09.

    66. ruruland

      hoolahoop: Attracting defenders has value if you pass off the double team. If you shoot contested two’s with defenders draping on, you score 30 and lose the game. Of course, it’s the other players’ that get blamed for not scoring.

      Same argument we had early in the year.

      I can post the most recent games on youtube if you want to look at them play-by-play instead of making blanket statements not grounded in reality. That way everyone could see.

      Your argument is that Melo’s teammates (sans Chandler) are shooting in the mid 30s because Melo is shooting too much, correct? He needs to play more like a penetrating Steve Nash point guard, right?

      Well, here are the Knicks support players shooting during the 8 games of Linsanity (excluding Chandler and Lin). Let’s remember that Melo did not play with Novak during the first stretch of the year (he was the only guy who made shots with Lin)

      21-55 (7-25 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202080WAS.html
      16-44 (3-17 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202100NYK.html
      24-50 (7-16 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202110MIN.html
      19-65 (4-15 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202140TOR.html
      31-64 (7-23 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202150NYK.html
      20-53 (2-19 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202170NYK.html
      24-59 (9-22 from 3)
      http://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/201202190NYK.html

      Total shooting percentage (excluding Lin and Chandler) during Linsanity: 39.7 % (155/390)
      Total shooting percentage from 3: (39/137) 28.4

      Now where do you go with this argument?

    67. hoolahoop

      jon abbey: not to jump on you specifically, but this is another statement I hear way too frequently in recent years with the advent of Berri and crew, and I think it’s ludicrous. your examples of Miami, Boston, Indiana all have a slew of talented scorers, and with Amare and Lin out, NY most certainly does not.

      Melo needs to try to get other people involved, and he has been in recent weeks (and he wasn’t for big chunks of the first part of the season), but NY has very few actual scoring options right now against defenses like Miami or Chicago or Boston.

      I know what you’re saying. Sometimes, the offense looks anemic and when Melo’s off the floor I look at the guys on the court and wonder who is supposed to score.
      But, in the right spots, with open looks, for the most part, most NBA players can knock it down.
      For example, when Melo is driving hard to the hoop and the defense collapses on him with weak side help there’s a man standing in the corner wide open for a three. Novak, of course, but also I’d rather take my chance with BD, Shump Fields JR taking those shots, at least sometimes, rather than Melo going up for a contested two and double teamed.
      If you have such little faith in your teammates you just can’t even think of winning in the playoffs. The collective is stronger than the individual. That’s the point Araton is trying to make.
      Here’s how Wade puts it:
      “Doing it by yourself is for when you’re young, when you’re 22, 23, 24,” Wade said. “That’s for then. But when you get older, you appreciate it more when you’ve got other guys who can really get the job done, and you don’t have to do it every possession, or you don’t have to have the ball 90% of the game. It’s an adjustment, but it’s a good adjustment to make. If you can get it right, it makes it easier for you. It makes it easier for the team. It saves you.”

    68. ruruland

      But Hoola, who is going to make those shots???!?!?! That’s the whole point. Wade has Lebron, Bosh, and some of the best 3pt shooters in the NBA.

      How is that even close to an apples to apples comparison? If anything, Wade is talking about the difference between his situation and the plight Carmelo is in with the current healthy roster.

      You’re acting as though Melo took all of the team’s shots. Outside of CHandler, the Knicks shot 13-41 — that’s 14 more shots than Melo took. Many of those misses, in fact, came off Melo passes.

      The Knicks, outside of Novak, are shooting the ball as poorly as any team in basketball regardless of how open they are or how Melo/Lin creates shots for them.

    69. hoolahoop

      Ruru, I understand your point. However, if you are going to remain optimistic about the knicks moving forward, I think the scoring needs to be a more balanced.
      You can’t have it both ways, saying that Melo is the only guy who can score on this team, and rah rah, we’re going to beat Chicago, Miami, then OKC.
      The reason Melo gets so much shit from everyone is not because he’s not good. It’s because, in the big picture, he can be better.

    70. hoolahoop

      Clyde says it over and over and over again. Scoring is about rhythm. Rotation players cannot be throw the ball once in a while when the offense is stagnant and expect to shoot at a high percentage.

    71. ruruland

      hoolahoop:
      Ruru, I understand your point. However, if you are going to remain optimistic about the knicks moving forward, I think the scoring needs to be a more balanced.
      You can’t have it both ways, saying that Melo is the only guy who can score on this team, and rah rah, we’re going to beat Chicago, Miami, then OKC.
      The reason Melo gets so much shit from everyone is not because he’s not good. It’s because, in the big picture, he can be better.

      Have I ever said that the Knicks are going to run the table to the championship? I was always optimistic about the support players eventually hitting shots. that hasn’t happened yet, which really surprises me. But it’s not Melo’s fault that Fields, Davis, Shumpert, Smith can’t make open shots or beat their defender to the basket.

      Melo got Novak the ball about as many times as he possibly could given Novak’s inability to move.

      Please be honest, are you arguing that Melo is the reason the Knicks perimeter players shoot so poorly?

    72. hoolahoop

      Let me put it this way. When I was young I was the fastest guy on the court. I made a lot of stupid plays, but I was a good player because I was young and strong. Now, I’m an old fuck, and the only way I can stay on the court is by playing smart – High percentage shots, minimal turnovers, good passing.
      The key is to play IQ of an old man when you’re young and strong. That’s why there are coaches. That’s why coaches have ulcers.

    73. ruruland

      hoolahoop:
      Clyde says it over and over and over again. Scoring is about rhythm. Rotation players cannot be throw the ball once in a while when the offense is stagnant and expect to shoot at a high percentage.

      Well,was the offense stagnant when Lin was playing???????

      If not, how do you explain the atrocious shooting numbers.

      The Knicks were the most efficient offense in the NBA last year post-trade — Douglas, Walker, Williams, Amar’e, Billups all shot the ball very well.

      Melo’s been the focal point of very efficient offenses most of his career — guys typically become better shooters when they play with him.

      I think it’s tough to deal with the fact that these guys simply can’t make shots — but that’s exactly what it is. It wouldn’t make a difference if they were touching the ball five seconds every possession. What you don’t seem to understand is that given the limitations of penetration and offense initiation around Melo, there really aren’t many ways to get guys involved further than they are now.

      The team needs every bit of Melo’s scoring.

    74. ruruland

      hoolahoop:
      Let me put it this way. When I was young I was the fastest guy on the court. I made a lot of stupid plays, but I was a good player because I was young and strong. Now, I’m an old fuck, and the only way I can stay on the court is by playing smart – High percentage shots, minimal turnovers, good passing.
      The key is to play IQ of an old man when you’re young and strong. That’s why there are coaches. That’s why coaches have ulcers.

      No offense, but I don’t get it.

    75. hoolahoop

      ruruland: But it’s not Melo’s fault that Fields, Davis, Shumpert, Smith can’t make open shots or beat their defender to the basket.

      That’s where I disagree. As a leader, as a winner, it’s your responsibilty to make your teammates better. Make them look good by setting the table for them. I know Melo is not Nash, but a little of that mentality would go a long way.
      I’m not trying to beat up on Melo or you or anyone else. This is how I see the knicks getting to play at a higher level as a team.

    76. ruruland

      And Hoola, everyone wants the offense to be more balanced, the question is without Lin and Amar’e, without a point guard and shooting guard who get into the lane or make open jump shots, how exactly you accomplish that.

    77. ruruland

      hoolahoop: That’s where I disagree. As a leader, as a winner, it’s your responsibilty to make your teammates better. Make them look good by setting the table for them. I know Melo is not Nash, but a little of that mentality would go a long way.
      I’m not trying to beat up on Melo or you or anyone else. This is how I see the knicks getting to play at a higher level as a team.

      He is “setting the table for them”. The problem is they’re quadriplegics who need to be spoonfed shots at the basket. Good defenses don’t give up shots at the basket unless they play probing point guards with great spacing. the Knicks have neither. In order to get layups, you have to be able to hit open jumpers. The Knicks haven’t been able to do that.

    78. TelegraphedPass

      I feel like the situation the Knicks are in is breeding more problems. I don’t think it’s necessarily Melo’s fault that the offense is so stagnant.

      Like, I’m sure Baron and Landry and the FSU guy and others are aware of how poorly their perimeter game is this year. Who’s to say that isn’t adding to the issue. Instead of moving well to get open for shots, the Knicks often stand around idle while Melo goes to work on his defender. That isn’t directly Melo’s fault.

      How many times has Melo been working in isolation or gearing up at the top of the key and missed the opportunity to hit a cutting Fields or JR? I’m honestly asking, because I could just be missing it. I remember at least every game seeing Melo hit Landry on the backdoor cut and thinking, “Holy hell, Melo saw that?”

      I haven’t seen many egregious examples of Melo missing the open man. I think his teammates need to be more confident and put themselves in a position to score efficiently. Melo is the leader and part of the blame should fall on him, but I’m not sure the others don’t share that.

    79. ruruland

      TelegraphedPass:
      I feel like the situation the Knicks are in is breeding more problems. I don’t think it’s necessarily Melo’s fault that the offense is so stagnant.

      Like, I’m sure Baron and Landry and the FSU guy and others are aware of how poorly their perimeter game is this year. Who’s to say that isn’t adding to the issue. Instead of moving well to get open for shots, the Knicks often stand around idle while Melo goes to work on his defender. That isn’t directly Melo’s fault.

      How many times has Melo been working in isolation or gearing up at the top of the key and missed the opportunity to hit a cutting Fields or JR? I’m honestly asking, because I could just be missing it. I remember at least every game seeing Melo hit Landry on the backdoor cut and thinking, “Holy hell, Melo saw that?”

      I haven’t seen many egregious examples of Melo missing the open man. I think his teammates need to be more confident and put themselves in a position to score efficiently. Melo is the leader and part of the blame should fall on him, but I’m not sure the others don’t share that.

      This idea that cutting to the basket is going to generate a ton of easy shots every game is a little misguided. If teams don’t respect your ability to shoot, they’re not going to overplay you on the perimeter — that makes it extremely difficult to cut to the basket for easy shots.

    80. Shad0wF0x

      hoolahoop: That’s where I disagree. As a leader, as a winner, it’s your responsibilty to make your teammates better. Make them look good by setting the table for them. I know Melo is not Nash, but a little of that mentality would go a long way.
      I’m not trying to beat up on Melo or you or anyone else. This is how I see the knicks getting to play at a higher level as a team.

      I’m pretty sure if I run a route with no one defending me and drop the ball, it’s gotta be the fault of Eli, Peyton, Tom, Drew, Aaron, whichever elite QB there was on the field.

      Right now all I see if Landry open for a runner. Miss
      Open at the corner. Miss
      Open for a mid-range elbow. Miss

      The same thing applies to a lot of the other guards on the team.

    81. TelegraphedPass

      God that Landry floater down the center lane from the Heat game was atrocious. I love the kid and want the very best for him, but that hurt my heart.

    82. Shad0wF0x

      ruruland: This idea that cutting to the basket is going to generate a ton of easy shots every game is a little misguided. If teams don’t respect your ability to shoot, they’re not going to overplay you on the perimeter — that makes it extremely difficult to cut to the basket for easy shots.

      This is very apparent when you play in the playground. If your team in general cannot consistently hit a shot outside of 15ft, the defense just tends to pack it in near the basket. That way, every cut is met by at least 2 defenders because they don’t want to bother guarding anyone near the 3pt line.

    83. TelegraphedPass

      ruruland: This idea that cutting to the basket is going to generate a ton of easy shots every game is a little misguided. If teams don’t respect your ability to shoot, they’re not going to overplay you on the perimeter — that makes it extremely difficult to cut to the basket for easy shots.

      Oh yeah I’m not insinuating that our offense could be fixed by guys just cutting more. I’m saying they aren’t being aggressive in general. They aren’t hitting outside shots consistently. I think that might be getting into their heads at this point. I can almost see them put their heads down on offense because there aren’t very many productive shots available to them.

      Even JR, often seen as a trigger-happy gunner, seems at times to get down on himself for missing shots and lose that unnatural confidence he exudes.

    84. MKinLA

      For what it’s worth, I’ve been incredibly impressed with Melo’s tolerance for his teammates awful shooting.

      If I were carrying the entire scoring load, drawing double-teams, and kicking it to open shooters who kept bricking their shots, I’m not sure I’d be able to refrain from getting really negative with my teammates.

    85. Nick C.

      I heard Shumpert interviewed on 1050 this afternoon and he said about the 4th quarter when they list the lead that they stood around and watched Melo rather than moving and cutting or something very close to that. I was home by then so I didn’t hear the follow up. I don’t think that’s on Melo and that wasn’t how Shumpert made it sound either. In fact I seem to recall last years Gallo team had game threads loaded with comments about them (often Gallo) standing around.

    86. hoolahoop

      TelegraphedPass:

      Oh yeah I’m not insinuating that our offense could be fixed by guys just cutting more.

      I think that would be enormously positive. Guys moving and the ball finding the energy. That’s winning basketball.

    87. TelegraphedPass

      hoolahoop: I think that would be enormously positive. Guys moving and the ball finding the energy. That’s winning basketball.

      Agreed, but like ruru says it isn’t a panacea by any means.

      I mean, remember LeBron’s halftime interview? He was basically saying the Heat planned on locking up the paint and letting Melo try to beat them. He knew Melo was unlikely to hit those tough shots all game.

      Melo was gassed by the end, but nobody was willing to pick up the strain. JR did JR things, and was about as good as I can reasonably expect from him, but there wasn’t much else.

      I miss Jeremy Lin. I miss STAT. I hope we draft Marcus Denmon in the second round.

    88. hoolahoop

      TelegraphedPass: Agreed, but like ruru says it isn’t a panacea by any means.

      I mean, remember LeBron’s halftime interview? He was basically saying the Heat planned on locking up the paint and letting Melo try to beat them. He knew Melo was unlikely to hit those tough shots all game.

      Melo was gassed by the end, but nobody was willing to pick up the strain. JR did JR things, and was about as good as I can reasonably expect from him, but there wasn’t much else.

      I miss Jeremy Lin. I miss STAT. I hope we draft Marcus Denmon in the second round.

      You don’t have to cut to the hoop to move without the ball. You need to lose your man in the web of bodies to spot open for an easy open look.
      Lebron said No open three’s or layups and they would be fine if the knicks kept shooting contested two’s. And that’s what they did.

    89. ruruland

      hoolahoop: You don’t have to cut to the hoop to move without the ball. You need to lose your man in the web of bodies to spot open for an easy open look.
      Lebron said No open three’s or layups and they would be fine if the knicks kept shooting contested two’s.And that’s what they did.

      No, actually, they shot 30 threes. The only guy getting to the rim all game was Melo.

    90. Juany8

      MKinLA:
      For what it’s worth, I’ve been incredibly impressed with Melo’s tolerance for his teammates awful shooting.

      If I were carrying the entire scoring load, drawing double-teams, and kicking it to open shooters who kept bricking their shots, I’m not sure I’d be able to refrain from getting really negative with my teammates.

      Yea the only time Melo has really showed bad attitude with the Knicks was when D’Antoni basically sold him out in favor of Lin and totally neutered his scoring ability by standing him in the wing and making him watch a rookie point guard set turnover records. It’s incredible that some people got so upset when such a bad coach left, but then it wasn’t that long ago that some people were saying Fields was better than Shumpert.

    91. ruruland

      Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins. Now you’re stuck between the small chance of Atlanta, Orlando or Boston somehow losing four more games, or trying to lose enough games to make the 8th spot and still make the playoffs.

      The worst scenario of all of course. Philly has tanked. Right now the Knicks could be in a situation where beating the Celtics is a bad thing. Truly unbelievable and there is no real way to root for any of the scenarios.

    92. hoolahoop

      Juany8: but then it wasn’t that long ago that some people were saying Fields was better than Shumpert.

      Were you around last year when someone said that Field’s ceiling was Grant Hill, and a rush of people came to his defense when it was refuted?
      It’s hard not to laugh out loud just typing it.

    93. Doug

      Don’t know if y’alls read Sebastian Pruiti’s analysis of the Heat’s 4th quarter defense on Grantland, but it deserves a good look: http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/24162/the-difference-in-miamis-4th-quarter-melo-defense

      Basically, their game plan was to use help defense to funnel him to the baseline, but Melo either pulled up and hit jumpers or plain beat the help to the rim

      In the 4th quarter, they put Lebron on Melo,-on-one. This stopped a tired Melo from driving to the basket.

    94. hoolahoop

      ruruland:
      Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins. Now you’re stuck between the small chance of Atlanta, Orlando or Boston somehow losing four more games, or trying to lose enough games to make the 8th spot and still make the playoffs.

      The worst scenario of all of course. Philly has tanked. Right now the Knicks could be in a situation where beating the Celtics is a bad thing. Truly unbelievable and there is no real way to root for any of the scenarios.

      Welcome to knicks world. I knew this was going to happen. It’s the knicks.
      I still don’t know why we’re cursed.

    95. ROUGH

      ruruland:
      Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins. Now you’re stuck between the small chance of Atlanta, Orlando or Boston somehow losing four more games, or trying to lose enough games to make the 8th spot and still make the playoffs.

      The worst scenario of all of course. Philly has tanked. Right now the Knicks could be in a situation where beating the Celtics is a bad thing. Truly unbelievable and there is no real way to root for any of the scenarios.

      The Knicks can beat Miami, not only Chicago, if they find a way to control the rebounds. Could have won yesterday, yet were outrebounded by seventeen (!!!), I think. I.e., 17 more plays for the Heat. Wow! That’s not a strong homecourt, is it?

    96. TelegraphedPass

      hoolahoop: Welcome to knicks world. I knew this was going to happen. It’s the knicks.
      I still don’t know why we’re cursed.

      Dolan, man. Dolan.

    97. TelegraphedPass

      ROUGH: The Knicks can beat Miami, not only Chicago, if they find a way to control the rebounds. Could have won yesterday, yet were outrebounded by seventeen (!!!), I think. I.e., 17 more plays for the Heat. Wow! That’s not a strong homecourt, is it?

      #analysis

    98. ruruland

      Doug:
      Don’t know if y’alls read Sebastian Pruiti’s analysis of the Heat’s 4th quarter defense on Grantland, but it deserves a good look: http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/24162/the-difference-in-miamis-4th-quarter-melo-defense

      Basically, their game plan was to use help defense to funnel him to the baseline, but Melo either pulled up and hit jumpers or plain beat the help to the rim

      In the 4th quarter, they put Lebron on Melo,-on-one. This stopped a tired Melo from driving to the basket.

      I’d love to see Lebron or Battier try to guard Melo straight up all game.

      But the Knicks aren’t isolation only because that’s Woodson’s preference. In Atlanta, Woodson didn’t have a penetrating/pnr point guard. With Lin we saw a lot of pick and roll.

    99. hoolahoop

      Doug:
      Don’t know if y’alls read Sebastian Pruiti’s analysis of the Heat’s 4th quarter defense on Grantland, but it deserves a good look:

      Great link. According to Pruiti’s analysis:
      In the 4th Qtr
      -So what changed in the fourth? Miami started playing Anthony straight up, and Anthony started settling for jump shots.
      – Anthony ends up forcing a contested 3-pointer. Now, part of this is great defense by LeBron, but look at the shot clock. After his initial attempt to drive, Anthony doesn’t explore any other options. He just shoots a 3. On this possession, not only did James’s defense slow down Anthony, but Anthony also settled for a tough shot with 17 seconds left to find a better opportunity.
      -Eventually, Smith lobs the ball over James. … Anthony shoots a contested 3 and misses.
      -Another factor in Anthony’s less-productive fourth quarter was the change in play calling. In the first three quarters, Anthony isolation plays started with other movement…. These simple actions like working off screens make it easier for Anthony to isolate. In the fourth quarter, that movement vanished. Instead, Anthony brought the ball up and just looked to score. That, or he just stood at the elbow and waited for a pass.

      – If they just let Anthony stand at the elbow and wait for the basketball to go one-on-five, they won’t stand a chance against Miami or any of their other likely first-round playoff opponents.

    100. jon abbey

      ruruland:

      Right now the Knicks could be in a situation where beating the Celtics is a bad thing.

      that can’t be true, I’ve been told repeatedly that the Boston game will be more important than the Milwaukee game just was.

    101. ruruland

      jon abbey: that can’t be true, I’ve been told repeatedly that the Boston game will be more important than the Milwaukee game just was.

      i don’t know anymore man. The Heat have an outside chance of getting HCA after tonight….. There’s no way to know anything anymore.

    102. jon abbey

      I thought that Pruiti piece was fine for what it was, but it didn’t explain why they lost. they lost because Melo was exhausted after singlehandedly carrying NY to a lead after 40 minutes (with a little help from JR), and no one else stepped up. if Chandler plays his normal game, we probably win.

    103. johnlocke

      Assuming you are being sarcastic. As much as I hate the celtics wouldn’t be worse thing in the world if we lost. I just hate the thought of losing 2 in a row given how fragile we have been all season

      jon abbey: that can’t be true, I’ve been told repeatedly that the Boston game will be more important than the Milwaukee game just was.

    104. BigBlueAL

      Any chance Heat pass Bulls to finish 1st?? They play on Thursday and Heat currently 2 back in loss column.

    105. johnlocke

      a little late but LOL at this….fields shooting open jumpers? As Van Gundy said I’d rather have melo shooting double teamed than Jeffries (or Fields) shooting wide open that is sad. We don’t have makers on the team right now just shooters…outside of Novak no one else on the team is a dependable jump shooter

      hoolahoop: I know what you’re saying. Sometimes, the offense looks anemic and when Melo’s off the floor I look at the guys on the court and wonder who is supposed to score.
      But, in the right spots, with open looks, for the most part, most NBA players can knock it down.
      For example, when Melo is driving hard to the hoop and the defense collapses on him with weak side help there’s a man standing in the corner wide open for a three. Novak, of course, but also I’d rather take my chance with BD, Shump Fields JR taking those shots, at least sometimes, rather than Melo going up for a contested two and double teamed.
      If you have such little faith in your teammates you just can’t even think of winning in the playoffs. The collective is stronger than the individual. That’s the point Araton is trying to make.
      Here’s how Wade puts it:
      “Doing it by yourself is for when you’re young, when you’re 22, 23, 24,” Wade said. “That’s for then. But when you get older, you appreciate it more when you’ve got other guys who can really get the job done, and you don’t have to do it every possession, or you don’t have to have the ball 90% of the game. It’s an adjustment, but it’s a good adjustment to make. If you can get it right, it makes it easier for you. It makes it easier for the team.It saves you.”

    106. Brian Cronin

      Big game in Dallas. Utah tied it up with 2 second left. They’re going to overtime. If Utah wins, they pull to within a half game of the playoffs. However, Phoenix is also winning and if they win, they pull into a tie for the #8 spot (I have no idea what the tie-breakers are).

    107. Owen

      “Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins.”\

      Ryan Anderson’s 26 points on 17 shots, with 16 boards, was helpful. Somehow he managed to produced with Daniel Orton and Earl Clark playing center.

      Ruruland, still waiting for your answer on my question.

      Basically, to what extent is player performance driven by who your teammates are.

      If you can’t find it in the thread you can just do ctrl-f “of course it is.”

    108. ruruland

      BigBlueAL:
      Any chance Heat pass Bulls to finish 1st??They play on Thursday and Heat currently 2 back in loss column.

      That’s what I was referring to.

      If Miami wins they’d tie head to head and would be one back.

    109. jon abbey

      Owen:
      “Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins.”\

      Ryan Anderson’s 26 points on 17 shots, with 16 boards, was helpful. Somehow he managed to produced with Daniel Orton and Earl Clark playing center.

      heh, against the same Sixers team that somehow managed to lose at home to the Nets the other night, the same Sixers team that seems to not care at all whether they free fall out of the playoffs or not because they’re just that sick of listening to Doug Collins.

    110. ruruland

      Owen:
      “Well, Orlando somehow scores 110 on a b2b against Philly and wins.”\

      Basically, to what extent is player performance driven by who your teammates are.

      If you can’t find it in the thread you can just do ctrl-f “of course it is.”

      I didn’t respond previously because I felt that our conversation had “largely” devolved into semantics. I don’t argue with the idea that 70-80 percent of past performance explains current performance. But 30 percent of a player’s output is quite significant. Obviously that’s just an average. A lot of guys play within 5-10 percent of their norms on a year-year basis with similar teammates and role.

      Other guys fall outside of that 20-30 percent when they find themselves in a new role or with new teammates — if they are utilized differently and defended differently based upon myriad factors. Some guys drop off because of injury, some guys dramatically improve after getting healthy.

      So, yes, situation and teammates play a “large” role in many players success. But, no, I concede that Glen Davis is never going to turn into Dwight Howard. Danilo Gallinari is never going to turn into Lebron James. That’s essentially what that means.

      It largely depends on the player and the circumstances. Sometimes you don’t know if a player in one situation can develop into a larger role in a new one with similar results.

      Anderson may be developing. He may benefit from the fact that the floor is wide open for him…. But it is common sense that he gets a lot of open shots out of double teams. That doesn’t mean that he can’t play well in another situation that affords him those looks in another way, but that does not decrease the value of creating double-teams for the shooter. It’s really quite complex. It means you have to evaluate a players abilities and how they fit into the mutliple dynamics of the…

    111. ruruland

      Players abilities change,so too does their utilization. You get the sense that some of you stat guys believe all players production will essentially stay constant regardless of role or teammates. That’s just incredibly naive. It really diminishes what the game is about — how players get in situations or put themselves into situations to be successful.

    112. ruruland

      Owen:
      Alright, cool, I am glad we can agree on something at the end of the day….

      See, if we agree with that, then we should be able to have a healthy dialogue about this team and what it can be……..

      OKC absolutely shut down in the second half tonight in a possible playoff preview. Their big 3 attempted a total of 2 shots at the basket in the second half. if they didn’t get such an amazing whistle they’d have scored 65.

    113. Z-man

      ruruland: See, if we agree with that, then we should be able to have a healthy dialogue about this team and what it can be……..OKC absolutely shut down in the second half tonight in a possible playoff preview. Their big 3 attempted a total of 2 shots at the basket in the second half. if they didn’t get such an amazing whistle they’d have scored 65.

      Can’t read anything into these games unless teams are fighting for something super-important. The compressed schedule has surely taken a toll on most teams, mentally as much as physically. Come the playoffs, the Thunder and Heat will be kicking ass, just as expected.

    114. Frank O.

      Juany8: Yea the only time Melo has really showed bad attitude with the Knicks was when D’Antoni basically sold him out in favor of Lin and totally neutered his scoring ability by standing him in the wing and making him watch a rookie point guard set turnover records. It’s incredible that some people got so upset when such a bad coach left, but then it wasn’t that long ago that some people were saying Fields was better than Shumpert.

      Juany

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