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Saturday, October 25, 2014

Knicks Morning News (Saturday, Apr 07 2012)

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Grizzlies, With Seven Players in Double Figures, End Heat’s Home Winning Streak at 17 (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 07:31:02 GMT)
    Memphis put seven players in double figures to end Miami’s 17-game home winning streak on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Spurs Go Top in West With 10th Consecutive Win (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 04:48:21 GMT)
    The San Antonio Spurs blew past the New Orleans Hornets 128-103 to claim the Western Conference lead with their 10th consecutive victory on Friday.

  • [New York Times] Afflalo’s 30 Lifts Nuggets Past Suns, 105-99 (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 04:03:16 GMT)
    Arron Afflalo had 30 points, Andre Miller scored 13 of his 15 in the fourth quarter and Denver Nuggets scored the final nine points to beat the Phoenix Suns 105-99 on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Aldridge Leads Blazers to OT Win Over Mavericks (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 03:36:40 GMT)
    LaMarcus Aldridge’s buzzer-beating 17-foot jumper lifted the Portland Trail Blazers to a 99-97 overtime victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Duncan Scores 19 to Lead Spurs Past Hornets (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 05:48:34 GMT)
    The San Antonio Spurs rose to the top of the Western Conference standings by overpowering the weakest team in the conference.

  • [New York Times] Teague, Smith Pace Hawks’ Win Over Detroit (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 02:27:14 GMT)
    Jeff Teague tied a career high with 24 points and had a season-high 11 assists, and Josh Smith added 20 points and 12 rebounds to help the Atlanta Hawks held off the Detroit Pistons for a 101-96 victory on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Grizzlies Snap Miami’s 17-Game Home Streak, 97-82 (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 04:00:24 GMT)
    Dwyane Wade knew during pregame warmups that the Miami Heat were going to have a long night. By the end of the first quarter, the Memphis Grizzlies let everyone else know that Wade was right.

  • [New York Times] Granger Leads Pacers Past Thunder (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 02:09:16 GMT)
    Danny Granger scored 13 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter to help the Indiana Pacers beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-98 on Friday night for their fourth straight win.

  • [New York Times] Connecticut Lawmakers Seek Review After NCAA Bans UConn (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 00:57:30 GMT)
    Two members of Congress said Friday they would seek a review of the National Collegiate Athletic Association after its decision to ban the University of Connecticut from the 2013 “March Madness” post-season basketball tournament due to low academic grades by players.

  • [New York Times] Kings’ Cousins Fined for Criticizing Game Officials (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 00:27:17 GMT)
    Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins has been fined $25,000 for criticizing game officials, the National Basketball Association said on Friday.

  • [New York Times] Spurs Go Top in West With 10th Consecutive Win (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 03:39:15 GMT)
    The San Antonio Spurs blew past the New Orleans Hornets 128-103 to claim the Western Conference lead with their 10th consecutive victory on Friday.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Isiah Thomas Fired By Florida International (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 04:44:20 GMT)
    The former Knicks coach Isiah Thomas was fired as the men’s basketball coach at Florida International University.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Why Signing Chandler Has Been So Important to the Knicks (Sat, 07 Apr 2012 04:41:34 GMT)
    Tyson Chandler, the new defensive anchor, has emerged as a leader, as the team has allowed only 94.7 points per game.

  • 75 comments on “Knicks Morning News (Saturday, Apr 07 2012)

    1. daJudge

      Shump-shump. Happy holidays and all. I read the Times article about Chandler and I can’t agree more. What a stud. I also listened to some mic’ed up portions of Chandler during the Orlando game and his leadership and energy were unbelievable. Also, he directs so well on defense, talking all the time, calling the screens, etc…You can call these traits intangibles or whatever, but the impact is real on defense and carries over to the rest of the game. His personality and game command huge respect on this team. What a signing indeed. Defensive Player of the Year. I’ve often been down on this squad, but I think we have a fine core going forward.

    2. Z-man

      Same from here, Judge. Agree on all Chandler points. Stiff test for him in this back-to-back with Bulls, as he and Noah are a very good match-up.

      I wanted to offer a shout-out to TD. Coming in to the season, I was hopeful he could hold down the fort at PG until Baron got healthy. I wasn’t prepared for such an abject failure this strategy turned out to be, and I was as down on his play as anyone early on. I thought he displayed a complete lack of peripheral vision, which caused problems for him on both ends. I even think that his shoulder injuries resulted from not seeing screens at all, causing him to blindside himself several times every game. On O, he either saw cutters too late or not at all. It was less of an issue when he was hitting his 3’s, floaters and layups. Once his shoulder took that away, he lost confidence. Fans got on his case, and D’Antoni’s rigid system only made matters worse for him.

      Now, it seems like the perfect situation for a rebirth for Toney. He seems healthier. He is coming off the bench. He is running a simpler offense. He has won over fans with the classy way he handled his demotion. It would be great if he could have a “poor man’s Linsanity” kind of stretch in these last critical games. We desperately need him to step up right now, and I couldn’t be happier that he is getting this opportunity.

    3. d-mar

      Chandler’s value to this team is almost immeasurable. He’s been the one constant among all the Linsanity, injuries, coaching changes, etc., and his leadership is off the charts. I also think his enthusiasm and pulling for other players is contagious; it warmed my heart to hear that other Knicks were chanting “TD, TD” during his post game interview.

      He’ll never be in the conversation, but if you want a true MVP, it’s Chandler, in terms of where the team would be without him. I shudder to think about it.

    4. Cousyfan

      I am waiting for comments on two subjects. 1. The news that Lin plans to come back weeks earlier than announced. 2. The talk about Isiah Thomas coming back in some capacity. Anyone?
      Cheers

    5. K-hab25

      Z-man:
      Same from here, Judge.Agree on all Chandler points. Stiff test for him in this back-to-back with Bulls, as he and Noah are a very good match-up.

      I wanted to offer a shout-out to TD. Coming in to the season, I was hopeful he could hold down the fort at PG until Baron got healthy. I wasn’t prepared for such an abject failure this strategy turned out to be, and I was as down on his play as anyone early on.I thought he displayed a complete lack of peripheral vision, which caused problems for him on both ends.I even think that his shoulder injuries resulted from not seeing screens at all, causing him to blindside himself several times every game. On O, he either saw cutters too late or not at all. It was less of an issue when he was hitting his 3?s, floaters and layups.Once his shoulder took that away, he lost confidence. Fans got on his case, and D’Antoni’s rigid system only made matters worse for him.

      Now, it seems like the perfect situation for a rebirth for Toney. He seems healthier. He is coming off the bench. He is running a simpler offense. He has won over fans with the classy way he handled his demotion. It would be great if he could have a “poor man’s Linsanity” kind of stretch in these last critical games. We desperately need him to step up right now, and I couldn’t be happier that he is getting this opportunity.

      I was thinking the exact same thing regarding TD. If he can bring to the table what he did the second half last year, we’ve got a shot at the division and the 4th seed.

    6. Mulligan

      Cousyfan:
      I am waiting for comments on two subjects. 1. The news that Lin plans to come back weeks earlier than announced. 2. The talk about Isiah Thomas coming back in some capacity. Anyone?
      Cheers

      Have not seen any articles mentioning that Lin plans on coming back earlier. Do you have any links?

    7. jon abbey

      Cousyfan:
      I am waiting for comments on two subjects. 1. The news that Lin plans to come back weeks earlier than announced. 2. The talk about Isiah Thomas coming back in some capacity. Anyone?
      Cheers

      if I never see the name Isiah Thomas again in any context, I’d be fine with that. and where is this Lin news you mention?

    8. jon abbey

      Cousyfan:
      Go to:-
      http://probasketballtalk.nbcsports.com/author/kurthelin/
      It is the third article down. I came across it on MSNBC.
      I was never a fan of Thomas, or Koby.
      Cheers

      that’s not news or a story, it’s an offhand one-liner at the end of a NY Post piece:

      “Lin is aiming to return for the first round of the playoffs, but his official diagnosis has him targeted for the second.”

      they say elsewhere in today’s Post that Amare is no longer targeting returning for the Bucks game, but is now aiming for Miami a week for tomorrow.

    9. ruruland

      jon abbey: that’s not news or a story, it’s an offhand one-liner at the end of a NY Post piece:“Lin is aiming to return for the first round of the playoffs, but his official diagnosis has him targeted for the second.”they say elsewhere in today’s Post that Amare is no longer targeting returning for the Bucks game, but is now aiming for Miami a week for tomorrow.

      I know that some people believe that the lack of news on this subject is evidence that there was severe athrititis in the meniscus area, but 6 weeks was the ultra-conservative timeline from everything I’ve read, heard (surgeons on ESPN) and past injuries.

      I’ve read that 4-5 weeks is more likely even with the athritis.

    10. JLam

      Turkoglu out 3 weeks with facial fracture as a result of a involuntary hit by Melo’s elbow.
      Tyson clearly outplayed Howard in the series with the Magic.
      Some of the chat on this board last month prior to trade deadline about packaging a Melo-Tyson for Turkuglu-Howard trade would have turned awful.
      The Magic are sinking fast.

    11. Z

      JLam:

      Some of the chat on this board last month prior to trade deadline about packaging a Melo-Tyson for Turkuglu-Howard trade would have turned awful.

      You mean awfully good, right? (Or are you really saying that Chandler is better than Howard because he outplayed him in 2 games this year? (Or that Melo is a better person than Howard because Howard tried to get a coach fired?))

      For all the people saying that they wouldn’t want Howard because he’s “a baby”, or “a cancer”, or because he’s “never won a championship”, or because he’s “a bad GM” need to remember that none of that really means anything when building a basketball team.

      Michael Jordan had Doug Collins fired because Collins wanted him to pass the ball more. A year later the Bulls won the championship.

      Kobe Bryant demanded a trade because Mitch Kupchack didn’t trade Andrew Bynum for Jason Kidd. A year later the Lakers won the championship.

      Because Dwight Howard acts like a baby when he’s 26 doesn’t mean he won’t be the centerpiece of a perennial champion. He is an elite talent with an impossible to replicate skill-set. That’s the kind of player you build around, personality issues and all.

      (And it really is funny that Howard trying to get a coach he doesn’t like fired somehow makes a Melo for Howard trade unpalatable… how quickly we forgive and forget, no?)

    12. hoolahoop

      I’d rather have a super efficient, defense focused, team-first, proven winner that makes most of his foul shots rather than an overrated, immature, indecisive, me-first prima. TC over DH.

    13. ruruland

      Z: You mean awfully good, right? (Or are you really saying that Chandler is better than Howard because he outplayed him in 2 games this year? (Or that Melo is a better person than Howard because Howard tried to get a coach fired?))For all the people saying that they wouldn’t want Howard because he’s “a baby”, or “a cancer”, or because he’s “never won a championship”, or because he’s “a bad GM” need to remember that none of that really means anything when building a basketball team. Michael Jordan had Doug Collins fired because Collins wanted him to pass the ball more. A year later the Bulls won the championship.Kobe Bryant demanded a trade because Mitch Kupchack didn’t trade Andrew Bynum for Jason Kidd. A year later the Lakers won the championship.That’s the kind of player you build around, personality issues and all.(And it really is funny that Howard trying to get a coach he doesn’t like fired somehow makes a Melo for Howard trade unpalatable… how quickly we forgive and forget, no?)

      Interesting you didn’t bring this up when MDA quit ( though in your defense a few of us did).

      There’s an argument to be made that you’d trade anyone in the league straight up for Howard. Wouldn’t the Heat make a lot more sense with Wade/Howard than Lebron/Wade? Wouldn’t the Thunder make a lot more sense by moving Harden into the starting lineup and starting an absolutely absurd frontcourt of Ibaka and Howard???

      But Melo/Chandler seem to really complement one another in a way I’m not sure Hedo/Howard do.

      I agree with the intangibles and I think that adds to Chandler’s value in this equation. Though I don’t think it excludes Howard from being a championship centerpiece. He’s not a leader of that kind of team, but then again, neither was Dirk or Pierce, or Shaq etc al

    14. Z

      ruruland: Interesting you didn’t bring this up when MDA quit…

      I know you don’t like to hear it, but Melo really doesn’t qualify as “an elite player with an impossible to replicate skill set”. (that’s the part of my post that you deleted from your quote :) … So, there’s really no reason why I would have brought it up when MDA quit.

    15. massive

      Dwight Howard won’t win a championship without a legit perimeter scorer to take the last shots. So trading Melo and Chandler for Hedo (who sucks) and Howard wouldn’t be a slam dunk the way some people would suggest. At least not right away, and I would suggest that this team, when healthy, would be better than a team with Dwight Howard. Also, consider how little 3 point shooting we have and how important that is to Dwight Howard’s success. I think this team is better off without that trade.

    16. Doug

      The consequences of the Magic’s high-variance offensive strategy (if they don’t hit their threes, they lose; if they hit their threes, they can beat anybody) are basically the same as the pre-Melo trade Knicks.

    17. LMNYKFAN4LIFE

      massive:
      Dwight Howard won’t win a championship without a legit perimeter scorer to take the last shots. So trading Melo and Chandler for Hedo (who sucks) and Howard wouldn’t be a slam dunk the way some people would suggest. At least not right away, and I would suggest that this team, when healthy, would be better than a team with Dwight Howard. Also, consider how little 3 point shooting we have and how important that is to Dwight Howard’s success. I think this team is better off without that trade.

      totally agreed Melo/Chandler>Howard/Hedo for sure this team is much better of with melo and chandler. Chandler made Dallas Dallas did not make chandler. if it wasn’t for chandler, do you really think (as a true Knicks fan and person that actually watches the game) would be as good defensively to be in the top 5 like they are now (you might make the arguement with howard yes but what would you do when it comes to crunch time in a close game). Imo i don’t think Woodson could have rallied the knicks like chandler has, as evident in the defense in Dallas now, compared to last year. While Woodson has made some significant changes, chandler is like Ray Lewis on defense (Baltimore ravens defense would never have been so good without his presence over the years). As for melo he is a certified 4th quarter finisher compared to Lebron and Howard who cannot hit free throws. The knicks did good by not trading them.

    18. Doug

      Here’s what I’ve wondered for a long time: Can you win a championship with Dwight if he can’t make free throws in the 4th quarter?

    19. Z

      massive:
      Dwight Howard won’t win a championship without a legit perimeter scorer to take the last shots. So trading Melo and Chandler for Hedo (who sucks) and Howard wouldn’t be a slam dunk the way some people would suggest. At least not right away, and I would suggest that this team, when healthy, would be better than a team with Dwight Howard. Also, consider how little 3 point shooting we have and how important that is to Dwight Howard’s success. I think this team is better off without that trade.

      LMNYKFAN4LIFE: totally agreed Melo/Chandler>Howard/Hedo for sure…

      I suppose that, given the injuries to Amar’e and Lin, that, IF we only care about the short term and making the playoffs as the #8 seed this year, then fine, yes, thank god we didn’t trade Melo and Chandler for Howard. But building around a 26 year old who is the only dominant player at his position in the entire league (and has never gotten hurt!) cannot hurt a franchise.

      (And, keep in mind that the Melo/Chandler Knicks have struggled to a barely .500 record and may not make the playoffs. The Magic have won 50+ games going back 5 years now, all because they had Howard at the 5.)

      The Magic have had a hard time putting the right pieces in place around him and they’ve STILL fielded a title contender every year. Finding the Steve Novaks, Jason Kaponos, Ryan Andersons, and Steve Kerrs of the league is relatively easy and relatively cheap.

    20. Z

      Doug:
      Here’s what I’ve wondered for a long time: Can you win a championship with Dwight if he can’t make free throws in the 4th quarter?

      Are you old enough to have asked the same question of Shaq back in 1996?

      Besides, Howard made the finals. If you can make the finals, you can, theoretically, win the finals. (What got you there doesn’t just disappear).

    21. BigBlueAL

      The real question is, can you win a championship with Landry Fields if he cant make free throws in quarters 1, 2, 3 and 4??

    22. Doug

      BigBlueAL: Are you old enough to have asked the same question of Shaq back in 1996?

      I was eight, so probably not. I do remember Hakeem eating his lunch in those Finals.

    23. Doug

      BigBlueAL:
      The real question is, can you win a championship with Landry Fields if he cant make free throws in quarters 1, 2, 3 and 4??

      Wasn’t that an issue with Bruce Bowen? That’s only poor foul shooting wing player I can think of.

    24. ruruland

      Z:
      I suppose that, given the injuries to Amar’e and Lin, that, IF we only care about the short term and making the playoffs

      (And, keep in mind that the Melo/Chandler Knicks have struggled to a barely .500 record and may not make the playoffs. The Magic have won 50+ games going back 5 years now, all because they had Howard at the 5.)

      The Magic have had a hard time putting the right pieces in place around him and they’ve STILL fielded a title contender every year. Finding the Steve Novaks, Jason Kaponos, Ryan Andersons, and Steve Kerrs of the league is relatively easy and relatively cheap.

      I don’t think anyone necessarily disagree with the idea of building around Howard in a vacuum. Why didn’t you talk about the Heat and Thunder examples?

      But, Jason Kapono and Steve Novak are horrible examples.

      Again, you need guys who can shoot and do other things. Anderson can rebound a little bit and is certainly a better defender than Novak. He’ll likely get a big contract as well.

      Secondly, Melo was 2 games from facing Orlando in the Finals, and his team played the Lakers better than Dwight’s did.

      So that argument really doesn’t work.

      You don’t think the Knicks have exceptional promise moving forward?

      I think a really strong case can be made that Chandler/Melo is better than Howard moving forward. We can get into the reasons why if you’d like.

      Chandler brings everything Howard does on defense IMO.

      The Knicks have dealt with far more injuries this year, and have had what appears to be anomalous drop-offs from what were 4 of its top rotation players heading into the season (Amar’e, Melo, Douglas, Walker)

      Despite the injuries, allotting 1400 minutes to 3 of the worst players in the NBA this year (Davis, Douglas, Bibby) they have an outside chance of catching the Howard led-Magic, who may be in free-fall mode.

    25. johnlocke

      Yes, true. But Bruce was an excellent corner spot up three point shooter, Landry is a slasher, so Bruce was hitting clutch threes, not driving to the basket and getting fouled in 4th quarter crunch time. Not to mention his stifling / annoying defense, depending on your perspective.

      Doug: Wasn’t that an issue with Bruce Bowen? That’s only poor foul shooting wing player I can think of.

    26. Gideon Zaga

      haha this is funny as if the knicks season has been void of turmoil. Dude in a perfect world where both teams are sound and with no trade rumours or free agency hanging over their heads and coaching changes, our Knicks are by far better than the Magic. And I believe Melo is an elite player, thought the same of dirk but after he won others got on the bandwagon.

      Z:
      I suppose that, given the injuries to Amar’e and Lin, that, IF we only care about the short term and making the playoffs as the #8 seed this year, then fine, yes, thank god we didn’t trade Melo and Chandler for Howard. But building around a 26 year old who is the only dominant player at his position in the entire league (and has never gotten hurt!) cannot hurt a franchise.

      (And, keep in mind that the Melo/Chandler Knicks have struggled to a barely .500 record and may not make the playoffs. The Magic have won 50+ games going back 5 years now, all because they had Howard at the 5.)

      The Magic have had a hard time putting the right pieces in place around him and they’ve STILL fielded a title contender every year. Finding the Steve Novaks, Jason Kaponos, Ryan Andersons, and Steve Kerrs of the league is relatively easy and relatively cheap.

    27. Kikuchiyo

      KnicksFanInVA:
      Who are we rooting for tonight? Orlando or Philly?

      Well, there’s no use rooting for the Blazers, now belly up in Milwaukee.

      These announcers make me appreciate Walt so much more.

      Boring and snoring.

    28. ruruland

      Philly has two home games left after tonight, Indiana and Jersey. Also need them to lose @ Orlando in a week.

    29. art vandelay

      KnicksFanInVA:
      Who are we rooting for tonight? Orlando or Philly?

      Since 6th seed pretty much appears to be a longshot, we are rooting for Orlando….philly is free falling and would just be one game up on Knicks for 7th after tonight’s (probably pending) loss….we want as many chances to just make the playoffs as possible….

      and looks like philly may actually if they keep this up just fall right out of playoff picture at this rate…not inconceivable at all.

    30. BigBlueAL

      Portland lead by 9 at the half vs the Bucks. Bucks now killing them in the 4th quarter.

      At least if the 76ers lose to Boston tomorrow and the Knicks win they are tied which means the Knicks will be the 7th seed. Unfortunately I just dont see any way the Knicks win the division from Boston but at least now they have a 2nd team in Philly who can make things easier for the Knicks since the Bucks sure dont look like they plan on doing so.

    31. KnicksFanInVA

      Orlando wins and Bucks going to win tonight. Game vs. Bucks will probably decide our season.

    32. Gideon Zaga

      Damn it but do we really want the 7th seed though, Miami I believe we can beat but the pressure for the series would be just above Linsanity, oh no.

    33. art vandelay

      BigBlueAL:
      Portland lead by 9 at the half vs the Bucks.Bucks now killing them in the 4th quarter.

      At least if the 76ers lose to Boston tomorrow and the Knicks win they are tied which means the Knicks will be the 7th seed.Unfortunately I just dont see any way the Knicks win the division from Boston but at least now they have a 2nd team in Philly who can make things easier for the Knicks since the Bucks sure dont look like they plan on doing so.

      I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Knicks and Bucks BOTH make playoffs and Philly does not.

    34. KnicksFanInVA

      I actually think we match up better with Chicago. Miami would run over us.

      Gideon Zaga:
      Damn it but do we really want the 7th seed though, Miami I believe we can beat but the pressure for the series would be just above Linsanity, oh no.

    35. BigBlueAL

      art vandelay: I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Knicks and Bucks BOTH make playoffs and Philly does not.

      Yup. Actually right now thats what I would predict will happen.

    36. Shad0wF0x

      I’d much rather have the Knicks take on the Bulls than the Heat. Everything would have to go almost perfect (which it won’t) for the Knicks to win 4 games against Miami.

    37. Brian Cronin

      Here’s what I’ve wondered for a long time: Can you win a championship with Dwight if he can’t make free throws in the 4th quarter?

      Shaq won four titles while shooting poorly from the line his whole career. So, yes.

    38. BigBlueAL

      Lets face it Knicks dont matchup well with either the Bulls or the Heat and have no chance in hell if beating either of them in a playoff series, especially w/o Lin and even Amar’e.

      I would rather play the Heat because at least the games will be alot funner I assume. Although since I live in Miami and have a bunch of fake Heat fans as friends not sure I would want to live with that so I change my mind Id rather play the Bulls where losing will be easier to take lol

    39. Brian Cronin

      Lets face it Knicks dont matchup well with either the Bulls or the Heat and have no chance in hell if beating either of them in a playoff series, especially w/o Lin and even Amar’e.

      I would rather play the Heat because at least the games will be alot funner I assume. Although since I live in Miami and have a bunch of fake Heat fans as friends not sure I would want to live with that so I change my mind Id rather play the Bulls where losing will be easier to take lol

      I want the Knicks to face the Heat because of the whole 1999 thing.

    40. Brian Cronin

      Hah! I like that. Historical accuracy in our superstitious fever dreams. :) But fair enough, I will go with 2/7 with an injured #7 seed, as well. That works for me! Will Woody have to grab on to Chandler’s leg during a fight with Joel Anthony?

    41. LMNYKFAN4LIFE

      Brian Cronin: Shaq won four titles while shooting poorly from the line his whole career. So, yes.

      yeah but Shaq did it with Kobe and Wade, who are proven fourth quarter closer, who hit their free-throws. who would the knicks have amare? we would have a better chance to win our first round with this team (especially this year). when Amare was getting into form he was good enough to ride him in the 4th, but now he will not be in good enough shape to do anything except be a liability in the 4th because of his porous defense.

    42. LMNYKFAN4LIFE

      IMHO what we have created in ny is great. if we can keep this team we will have a championship contender next year. the reason we did not play to the best of our ability is obvious, and here are my factual points:

      1)brand new team all year round. (we did not have the same starting five for a consistent two month span).

      2)shortened season. (injuries, less practice time for a brand new team playing together, no practice time to have our assistant coach at the time to implement his defensive schemes)

      3)coaching change after the mid-season mark because of the players not mixing well with eachother or the coach.

      4)trade rumors looming over the players heads and players losing their confidence.

      so if you take a look at all this we are lucky we are where at. im optimistic about us going to the playoffs, but barring some really crazy coaching change, and us losing our players we are championship bound. if you take a look at these facts, and give them one more year to play together as a team how can you not be optimistic.

    43. JLam

      Funny in 1999, the Spurs won the NBA title against us. Right now the Spurs are peaking, #1 seed in ghe West after ten wins in a row.
      I like to see Heat-Knicks first round rather than Bulls just to build up the historic story comparison to 1999

    44. Brian Cronin

      Exactly, JLam.

      Currently this is the East playoff standings:

      1. Chicago
      2. Miami
      3. Indiana
      4. Boston
      5. Atlanta
      6. Orlando
      7. Philadelphia
      8. New York

      Atlanta is just a half game behind Indy and the Knicks are a game behind Philly. Let’s say it ends up like:

      1. Chicago
      2. Miami
      3. Atlanta
      4. Boston
      5. Indiana
      6. Orlando
      7. New York
      8. Philadelphia

      Then it could go: Chicago over Philly, New York over MIami, Atlanta over Orlando, Indiana over Boston.
      Then: Indiana over Chicago, New York over Atlanta
      Then: New York over Indiana.

      Then New York versus San Antonio.

      It very well could happen exactly like 1999.

    45. JLam

      Well the Heat can still overtake Bulls to be #1 and Knicks might be #8 by the end of the season. The Spurs was #1 in the West 1999 and Pop was still coach and Duncan was the MVP The Spurs look unbeatable right now.

    46. jon abbey

      Milwaukee is 13-4 in the last month.

      the Spurs looked unbeatable last regular season too, then went out in the first round. they’re deeper now, but could easily not make the Conference Finals.

    47. Z

      ruruland: Why didn’t you talk about the Heat and Thunder examples?

      Do you mean this?:

      ruruland:
      There’s an argument to be made that you’d trade anyone in the league straight up for Howard. Wouldn’t the Heat make a lot more sense with Wade/Howard than Lebron/Wade? Wouldn’t the Thunder make a lot more sense by moving Harden into the starting lineup and starting an absolutely absurd frontcourt of Ibaka and Howard???

      Yes, I would make that argument. LeBron for Howard is, on paper, a good trade, especially when you have Wade on your team already. Durant, perhaps, but Durant is younger, so perhaps not. But my point, more so, was that Howard’s immature behavior doesn’t make him less worthy of gutting a team to build around, because plenty of champions were once ringless brats… at least they were until they won, and then, overnight, their perception turned from brat to champ.

      (More relevant than “should the Knicks have traded Melo/Chandler for Howard/Turkoglu/Duhon” question, is, would the Magic have preferred that trade to the Bynum/Blake/Eubanks they had on the table? I think they’d rather have Bynum, making this conversation pretty much moot :)

    48. JLam

      I think what makes the Howard trade conversation moot and just speculative is that Howard was interested in the Nets, Lakers or Mavs only. While Dolan was not willing to part with his Melo and Chandler investments.

    49. Brian Cronin

      the Spurs looked unbeatable last regular season too, then went out in the first round. they’re deeper now, but could easily not make the Conference Finals.

      Yeah, the matchups are going to be key in the West. There are, like, five different teams that can be #6-8, and each different team matches up differently with the Spurs and the Thunder. I imagine that everyone wants that #6 seed, as the Lakers seem to be a significantly easier matchup than either the Spurs or the Thunder.

    50. Spree8nyk8

      If we win tomorrow. Philly and Boston play and Philly has owned them this year, if Philly wins we are two losses back of Boston with one game left against them. Seems doable given bostons schedule. idk, I’m a dreamer still.

    51. jon abbey

      Brian Cronin: Yeah, the matchups are going to be key in the West. There are, like, five different teams that can be #6-8, and each different team matches up differently with the Spurs and the Thunder. I imagine that everyone wants that #6 seed, as the Lakers seem to be a significantly easier matchup than either the Spurs or the Thunder.

      well, it still could be the Clippers at #3, but I think it’s the same as the East, everyone wants to avoid the top two teams in the first round if possible.

      Spree, we play the Bulls twice in a row, let’s see where we stand after that. we need to get at least one, and tomorrow should be decidedly easier as it’s a home game and Rose should presumably be at least a bit rusty and his minutes somewhat limited.

    52. Brian Cronin

      True, but unlike the East, where really, whoever is #7 or #8 is likely going to be a sacrificial lamb, a few of the possible #7 and #8s in the West could legitimately contend with the Thunder and the Spurs. The Jazz, for instance, have the size that gives the Spurs problems. The Mavericks are, well, you know, the freakin’ Mavericks. They could easily beat either the Spurs or the Thunder. The Rockets have had a smidge of success against the Thunder but have done poorly against the Spurs. A healthy Nuggets team might have a chance with the Spurs but they’d have no chance with the Thunder. It’ll be very interesting to see which two teams end up #7 and #8 in the West.

    53. Spree8nyk8

      Brian Cronin:
      It’s all still in play, Spree, not a weird time to be dreaming at all.

      idk, I mean I see everyone on earth talking about how rough the Knicks schedule is but Boston’s seems worse to me. I can easily see us catching them, although we’d at a minimum need to go 2-1 during these next 3 games, might even need a 3-0.

    54. Brian Cronin

      idk, I mean I see everyone on earth talking about how rough the Knicks schedule is but Boston’s seems worse to me. I can easily see us catching them, although we’d at a minimum need to go 2-1 during these next 3 games, might even need a 3-0.

      I’m not disagreeing with ya. ;)

    55. Z

      Spree8nyk8: idk, I mean I see everyone on earth talking about how rough the Knicks schedule is but Boston’s seems worse to me.I can easily see us catching them, although we’d at a minimum need to go 2-1 during these next 3 games, might even need a 3-0.

      Careful, Spree– we all remember your last prediction regarding the knicks and celtics :)

    56. JLam

      Brian
      Some other eerie similarities to 1999.
      1)It was the last time NBA had a lockout with a shorten season schedule
      2)Knicks picked up a player from Golden State midseason who played really well for us starting in Febuary He was released by the Warriors, for that “choking incident”

    57. Spree8nyk8

      Z: Careful, Spree– we all remember your last prediction regarding the knicks and celtics :)

      dude I never said sweep, I said they could win the series and they definitely could have won that series if they weren’t destroyed by injuries.

    58. BigBlueAL

      You guys can keep comparing this team to the 1999 Knicks all you want, Im sticking with the 1998 Knicks instead :-)

      Checkout the point differential too. The 1998 Knicks won only 43 games despite having the point differential of a 49 win team just like this team should have a few more wins than they do when you take into consideration their point differential. That team was 20th in offensive efficiency (103.0) and 4th in defense (100.2), the current team is 21st (103.2) and 4th (100.3)!! Its freaking scary!! lol

      P.S. Im using the basketball-reference numbers obviously.

    59. JLam

      I’m convinced by the end of April the Sixers will be out of the playoff race. They have no “go to guy” at the end of the game. They lost many close games this year. 0-8 in games less than 4 point differential Watched last few minutes of the Magic-Sixer match tonight and the Phily fans were booing Iggy when he missed his FT

    60. Brian Cronin

      You guys can keep comparing this team to the 1999 Knicks all you want, Im sticking with the 1998 Knicks instead :-)

      Hey, I said I’d accept the 1998 comparison!

      I just like that the 1999 comparison has them end up in the NBA Finals.

      Either scenario, though, results in Woody keeping his job next year. I don’t think he comes back next year for anything less than Game 6 of the first round. And even Game 6 in the first round might not be enough. He might need to make it to Game 4 of the second round.

    61. Frank

      Brian Cronin:
      Either scenario, though, results in Woody keeping his job next year. I don’t think he comes back next year for anything less than Game 6 of the first round. And even Game 6 in the first round might not be enough. He might need to make it to Game 4 of the second round.

      I’d be perfectly happy with Woodson coming back at this point. Seriously – this team has had enough turnover the last 10 years. One thing about Woodson is that he seems to have a calm/steady hand, and he definitely has the respect of the players. And it doesn’t hurt that we have the #1 freaking defense in the league by a long ways since he became the coach- you cannot ask for more than that. The way JR talks about him almost makes me hope against hope that he might stay for the option year on his contract just to play for him.

      I think you’re right though – we need to 1) make the playoffs and 2) put up a very strong showing against MIA or CHI in order for him to come back, assuming guys like JVG might want the job. (I’d be perfectly happy with JVG’s return also)

    62. Mulligan

      As long as we make the playoffs and win a game I’m good with it. Milwaukee is stressing me out!

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