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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Knicks Morning News (Sunday, Apr 01 2012)

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks struggle, but beat lowly Cavs (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 06:16:14 GMT)
    If ever there was a night the Knicks needed to see the Cleveland Cavaliers, minus Kyrie Irving no less, this was it. With a majority of Mike Woodson’s lineup breaking down physically and Jeremy Lin bound for season-ending surgery, the scheduled just happened to work in the Knicks favor. Cleveland is also without several key players and although Byron’s Scott’s club put up a respectable fight but in the end they didn’t have the firepower to steal a win.

  • [New York Daily News] Lin out 6 weeks with partially torn meniscus (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 06:07:03 GMT)
    Jeremy Lin will be out for the remainder of the season after the Knicks announced that the second year point guard will need surgery to repair a partially torn meniscus in his left knee.

  • [New York Daily News] Lupica: It’s crunch time for Melo, Knicks (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 04:47:31 GMT)
    This was supposed to be one of the shortest NBA seasons in history, a sprint of 66 games after the lockout, the first one on Christmas Day between the Knicks and the Celtics at the Garden. Only now there have been four different Knick seasons already, one more to be played in April before the playoffs, if the Knicks make the playoffs, that is, if they can show us at the fancy new Garden they are something more than the Same Old Knicks.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks face tough road ALL  (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 04:32:17 GMT)
    The news on Jeremy Lin came down hard on Saturday afternoon. Torn meniscus in his left knee, arthroscopic surgery early next week, followed by rehab. Gone for six weeks. Linsanity is over. And on Jeremy Lin Poster Night at the Garden at that. Linsanity is over. And on Jeremy Lin Poster Night at the Garden at that.

  • [New York Times] Knicks 91, Cavaliers 75: Lin to Have Knee Surgery and May Miss 6 Weeks (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 05:24:06 GMT)
    Shortly before the Knicks’ victory over Cleveland, the team announced that Jeremy Lin’s knee injury would require surgery, sidelining him for the rest of the regular season.

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Elton Brand Helps 76ers Get Back on Track (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 05:24:06 GMT)
    Philadelphia beat Atlanta after coming off a 21-point loss to lowly Washington that knocked it out of first place in the Atlantic Division and down to No. 7 in the Eastern Conference.

  • [New York Times] ‘Magic/Bird,’ a Play About Magic Johnson and Larry Bird (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 01:16:22 GMT)
    “Magic/Bird” traces the history of the rivalry and eventual friendship between the basketball superstars Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.

  • [New York Times] Knicks Brush Off Lin Blow to Overcome Cavaliers (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 05:09:49 GMT)
    The New York Knicks overcame the bad news of Jeremy Lin’s knee injury and persevered over the struggling Cleveland Cavaliers with a 91-75 win at Madison Square Garden on Saturday.

  • [New York Times] Clippers Beat Jazz 105-96 for 5th Straight Victory (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 05:18:51 GMT)
    Chris Paul scored 26 points, Blake Griffin added 24 and the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Utah Jazz 105-96 on Saturday night to win their fifth in a row for the first time since 2006.

  • [New York Times] Morrow, Williams Lead Nets Past Kings, 111-99 (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 04:48:59 GMT)
    Anthony Morrow made six 3-pointers and scored 24 points to lead the New Jersey Nets past the Sacramento Kings 111-99 on Saturday night for their season-high third straight win.

  • [New York Times] Kentucky, Kansas to Meet for National Title (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 04:25:03 GMT)
    Top seed Kentucky will face Kansas for the national basketball championship on Monday night after the two storied programs won their NCAA Tournament semi-final games at the Superdome on Saturday.

  • [New York Times] Knicks Brush Off Lin Blow to Overcome Cavaliers (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 03:18:48 GMT)
    The New York Knicks overcame the bad news of Jeremy Lin’s knee injury and persevered over the struggling Cleveland Cavaliers with a 91-75 win at Madison Square Garden on Saturday.

  • [New York Times] Mayo Scores 24 to Lead Grizzlies Over Bucks 99-95 (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 03:29:59 GMT)
    O.J. Mayo scored a season-high 24 points, and Rudy Gay had 17 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Memphis Grizzlies to a 99-95 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Spurs Beat Pacers, Push NBA-Best Win Streak to 7 (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 03:19:34 GMT)
    Tim Duncan had 23 points and 11 rebounds and the San Antonio Spurs remained the hottest team in the NBA, beating the Indiana Pacers 112-103 for their seventh consecutive win Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Pistons Rally to Beat Bobcats 110-107 in OT (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 02:48:50 GMT)
    Will Bynum’s 3-pointer with 15.7 seconds left in regulation sent the game into overtime, and the Detroit Pistons went on to edge the Charlotte Bobcats 110-107 on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Knicks Shake Off Lin Injury News, Beat Cavs (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 03:34:05 GMT)
    A playoff spot is there for the New York Knicks, if they stay healthy enough to get it.

  • [New York Times] Brand Leads Sixers Over Hawks (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 02:17:02 GMT)
    Elton Brand scored 13 of his season-high 25 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Philadelphia 76ers to a 95-90 comeback win over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night.

  • [New York Times] Kentucky Tops Louisville to Reach NCAA Final (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 01:18:59 GMT)
    Kentucky took a bold step toward winning its first national basketball championship since 1998 by defeating bitter intrastate rival Louisville 69-61 in the semi-finals of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday at the Superdome.

  • [New York Times] Knee Injury Brings Likely End to Lin’s Season (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 01:10:20 GMT)
    New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin will miss at least the next six weeks due to a torn meniscus in his knee, the NBA team said on Saturday, signaling a likely end to the season for the Asian-American.

  • [New York Times] Pitino Impressed by Kentucky Super Freshman Davis (Sun, 01 Apr 2012 02:09:50 GMT)
    Despite the bitterness surrounding the Kentucky-Louisville rivalry, Rick Pitino had to confess he was impressed with the Wildcats’ super freshman Anthony Davis after his Cardinals crashed out of the NCAA Final Four on Saturday.

  • 135 comments on “Knicks Morning News (Sunday, Apr 01 2012)

    1. Z-man

      jon abbey and bba had some intriguing back-and-forth in the previous thread about expectations. BBA’s take: at least we can have a nothing to lose attitude since we can blame missing the playoffs or an early exit on the rash of injuries. jon’s take: this is virtually the same team we had all the high expectations for at the beginning of the season (switch JR and Novak for Amare which is a wash for many) so why lower expectations now?

      My take: while preseason expectations are fun, it took some time to find out what this team really was because of so many unknown commodities, especially at PG, and whether Amare and Melo (and D’Antoni) could coexist. It became clear pretty quickly that we had a HUGE problem at PG and weren’t going anywhere until that problem got solved. I think by then, all the pre-season hype was null and void. Then Lin emerged and gave more credence to the PG theory. Then Melo and Amare came back and gave more credence to the “they can’t play together” theory. Then D’Antoni gets fired and the team all of a sudden plays its best 5 games of the year, re-establishing optimism along the lines of the team being so deep that a good player would not make the rotation. Fast-forward to now: two starters are out, two are nursing groin injuries, our suddenly invaluable backup PF is out for 2 critical weeks, expectations for Baron’s ceiling have been revised downward due to his balky back and hamstring, JR has revealed himself as a 10-inch taller version of Nate Robinson, Fields has been a major disappointment, TD is whatever he is, etc.

      So, we are pretty far removed from that great opening day win in terms of optimism, and this is not really anything like that team. However, there is still reason to hope, imo. Melo is coming around on both ends of the court and next week should give his and TC’s groins time to heal. Jeffries should be back shortly. TD at least looked better than Bibby last night. Amare might be back. JR, Shump, Novak….

    2. daJudge

      We’ve got 13 games left over the span of 23 days. Only 5 games are at home. 4 of the 5 are really tough, Chic, Miami, Boston and the Clips. Not only is the schedule tough, there is plenty of traveling, with 8 road games. Of course, this is the same schedule that we all knew about preseason. So Jon’s point is still valid, that is, what changed? However, I don’t think many of us would have predicted the team to go 8-15 through the first third of the year. This is where our losses to crappy teams comes back to bite hard. So even though we did score big with Lin, I am certainly less optimistic than I was preseason for the remainder of the season. One reason is that my expectations for BD were not realistic and JR giveth and taketh away. I do think we will make the playoffs, but unless we continue to really commit to D and start hitting our free throws, that’s even up for grabs.

    3. Jake S.

      Apropos of nothing, do we think the Knicks will be able to retain Novak and Jeffries next year? If Lin is done for the remainder of the season, do the Knicks still offer him the full mid-level exception? Does Novak get the mini-midlevel? Has Smith been so erratic that it might make financial sense for him to use his player option? Would love a few rudimentary stabs at their 2012-2013 roster.

    4. ess-dog

      I think we should give Shump more time at the point. At least this year, when we really need the help. A Shump/Baron/JR/Fields guard rotation might not be so bad. JR handles the ball pretty well too. It’s not like we will need as much p&r with Amare out anyway. I just think TD and Bibs are “break glass in case of emergency” kind of guys at this point.

    5. JC Knickfan

      Found this write on meniscus tear.
      http://ajs.sagepub.com/content/early/2011/11/30/0363546511428601.abstract

      “upon returning to competition, there was no statistical change in PER from their preinjury status”

      Some team with high Asian population (Nets, Houston, Toronto, LAL, Golden State) will give him full MLE because they be make back with increase ticket sale and marketing.
      Knicks will not let him walk so their going to be force to use their MLE.

    6. jon abbey

      ess-dog:
      I think we should give Shump more time at the point.At least this year, when we really need the help.A Shump/Baron/JR/Fields guard rotation might not be so bad.JR handles the ball pretty well too.It’s not like we will need as much p&r with Amare out anyway.I just think TD and Bibs are “break glass in case of emergency” kind of guys at this point.

      I think Woodson needs to see if TD can give us 12 minutes at backup PG, because if he can, he can fade the worthless ball of suck that used to be Landry Fields out of the rotation once Jeffries is back. that may happen either way, but it’s easier if TD can give you some backup PG minutes.

    7. JC Knickfan

      JJ with PER 11.12 and very injury prone I think Knick can sign him to Mini-ex.
      JR Smith have career low FG% and 3pt%, unless finish great last 13 games he might not opt out.
      Field we early birds right and hopefully we sign him one deal see if get his shot back.

      Novak which pretty much every team can use 3pt specialist will get deal better then minimum salary. I think there no chance retaining him.

      BD I would not try resign him.

    8. outoftowner

      Jake S.:
      Apropos of nothing, do we think the Knicks will be able to retain Novak and Jeffries next year? If Lin is done for the remainder of the season, do the Knicks still offer him the full mid-level exception? Does Novak get the mini-midlevel? Has Smith been so erratic that it might make financial sense for him to use his player option? Would love a few rudimentary stabs at their 2012-2013 roster.

      My take on Knicks FA’s this year:

      Davis: This year has shown he’s more suited for the backup PG role than playing 30-40 minutes a night, but I’m not sure he realizes that. Could see him bolting if a team offers him a starting role (Miami?).

      Bibby: He’s done, no sense wasting a roster spot on him.

      Jeffries: Would love to have him back for minimum or mini MLE. Don’t know what type of market there would be for him. If D’Antoni is coaching somewhere else could see Jeffries following him.

      Novak: Will be very interesting to see what kind of market there is for Novak. Given that he’s been a journeyman his whole career, wouldn’t blame him for trying to cash in on his success this year. I wouldn’t mind using our mini-mle on him, but will some other team offer him the full MLE? Probably going to be this year’s Shawne Williams.

      Walker: I like his defense and rebounding, and historically he’s been a good 3 pt shooter. Would like to see him back for the minimum.

      Fields: Probably the most interesting and unpredictable FA. Given how he’s played this year I’d hate to see him get the full MLE, as that would put us into luxury tax and interfere with getting other FA’s. Something like 3 yrs / 9 million I think would be fair.

      Lin: Resigning at full MLE is a no-brainer. I think 5 yrs at MLE with player option after 2 would be fair both ways. With his knee injury doubt anyone offers more.

      Harrelson: Not really impressed…

    9. Will the Thrill

      With Lin out and Baron in, we are going to need Melo to bring it each and every night on offense to make it into the playoffs, and if we make the playoffs, even more so. Baron kind of looks like Chauncey of last year, without the ability to shoot and a little worse on defense. He does make more drives and passes into the paint than Billups, but these come with much, much more mistakes and I would really just rather have him bringing it up and letting Melo initiate than him trying to create. Long story short, it is going to be tough, and Melo is going to have to play like he has (or even better) for the remainder of the season.

    10. d-mar

      ess-dog:
      I think we should give Shump more time at the point.At least this year, when we really need the help.A Shump/Baron/JR/Fields guard rotation might not be so bad.JR handles the ball pretty well too.It’s not like we will need as much p&r with Amare out anyway.I just think TD and Bibs are “break glass in case of emergency” kind of guys at this point.

      I don’t know, I think Shump’s biggest weakness is ball handling, and as a passer he’s below average. I think you’re setting him up for failure if you give him significant minutes at the PG. Not to say we have many better alternatives, but I think keeping Shump’s confidence high is important since he’s become so critical to our rotation.

    11. Z-man

      d-mar: I don’t know, I think Shump’s biggest weakness is ball handling, and as a passer he’s below average. I think you’re setting him up for failure if you give him significant minutes at the PG. Not to say we have many better alternatives, but I think keeping Shump’s confidence high is important since he’s become so critical to our rotation.

      Totally agree, would much rather try TD again. Shump has some PG-type skills, but way to many deficits to jerk him around between the 1 and 2.

    12. The Infamous Cdiggy

      d-mar: I don’t know, I think Shump’s biggest weakness is ball handling, and as a passer he’s below average. I think you’re setting him up for failure if you give him significant minutes at the PG. Not to say we have many better alternatives, but I think keeping Shump’s confidence high is important since he’s become so critical to our rotation.

      cosigned. You need your PG to dribble with his head up and be able to find passing seams. BDiddy has his mistakes, but he’s the best guy left among the healthy that can do that. When he sits, have TD or JR bring the ball up, dump it to Melo in the post and run action off that. Keep Shump-Shump off the ball so he can do his driving and J’s on kick-outs.

    13. Juany8

      Guys… No one is offering Fields more than a $1-2 million contract. I know everyone likes him but other teams watch game tape and play against him… They’re not going to want him because he shot 40% from 3 for half a season before any team seriously started to scout the 2nd round rookie on a .500 team.

    14. d-mar

      The next 2 games are going to be really tough, playing 2 teams that we recentlly manhandled in their buildings. Id be happy if we could get one of them, and then somehow split with the Bulls.

      Welcome to April!

    15. Brian Cronin

      The way the Knicks should (and presumably will) play it with Fields is just tender him a qualifying offer. If someone else beats it on an offer sheet, then match it (since no one can offer more than $5 million anyways). If not, they get another year of Fields at a really cheap salary (something like $1 million) and see what they have.

      It is how they played it with Nate Robinson and I’d imagine it will be how they play it with Fields. They’d then have his full Bird rights the following season, so once again he would not be able to be signed away by anyone, since the Knicks could match any offer.

    16. Z

      Juany8:
      Guys… No one is offering Fields more than a $1-2 million contract. I know everyone likes him but other teams watch game tape and play against him… They’re not going to want him because he shot 40% from 3 for half a season before any team seriously started to scout the2nd round rookie on a .500 team.

      Right, because GMs never offer ridiculous contracts to bad players. It’s never happened. Jerome James, Jared Jeffries, Kenny Thomas, Raef LaFrenz, Larry Hughes, Mike James, Speedy Claxton, Brian Cardinal, Darko Milicic, Shandon Anderson, Howard Eisley… These guys never existed. They were just the bad dreams of a prior CBA.

      GMs see: 4th in rookie of the year voting. Top rebounding guard in the league. A lot of press for being a 2nd round pick.

      I’m not saying Fields will get the full MLE, but there is certainly a lot of precedent that makes it possible.

    17. max fisher-cohen

      Some Woodson quotes from last night post-game: “I have to somehow get Landry relaxed and back competing at a high level. I will not take him out of the starting lineup.”

      “I will continue to give Toney minutes. He hasn’t played a lot. He was probably little nervous. I was pleased.”

      I think it’s a 50/50 shot that we make the playoffs. The bucks are playing really well, but A) Monta can shoot a team in or out of any game, and B) On paper, that team is not that good.

      However, I think it’s a lot easier to get up for a game when you know reinforcements are on the way. With Lin done for the season and STAT, even if he plays again, unlikely to be nearly as effective, this team knows its ceiling, and that’s a first round playoff exit.

      By the way, it’s not Philly that we want to catch anymore. Boston is beating Miami right now. If they win that game, they’re a full game ahead of Philly. I know their schedule is almost as hard as ours, but they’ve been playing really well while Philly hasn’t. We’re 1-2 v. Boston and have a worse division record, so getting the tiebreaker is pretty unlikely.

    18. art vandelay

      I am starting to think this D Rose injury is, like Lin’s, maybe a lot worse than the Bulls’ higher-ups are letting on. His quote today sounded a little suspect:

      DRose, on whether he will play again during regular season: “I think so. It’s up to me, so, yeah, I think I am.”

      Maybe we can catch a Bulls team just reincorporating Rose in playoffs or without him and catch a miracle break and knock them off…not likely, of course, but hey….there has to be something to be somewhat optimistic about after all the injuries of late to STAT, Lin and Jeffries.

    19. The Honorable Cock Jowles

      Z: Right, because GMs never offer ridiculous contracts to bad players. It’s never happened. Jerome James, Jared Jeffries, Kenny Thomas, Raef LaFrenz, Larry Hughes, Mike James, Speedy Claxton, Brian Cardinal, Darko Milicic, Shandon Anderson, Howard Eisley… These guys never existed. They were just the bad dreams of a prior CBA.

      GMs see: 4th in rookie of the year voting. Top rebounding guard in the league. A lot of press for being a 2nd round pick.

      I’m not saying Fields will get the full MLE, but there is certainly a lot of precedent that makes it possible.

      Hell, even I would pass on Fields for the full MLE. What’s worse is that Miami’s probably going to get Steve Nash for that (making them so obviously the best team in the league that they might win 78 games), which makes Cock Jowles a sad Knickerblogger.

    20. art vandelay

      Does Miami have its full MLE? Didn’t they use it on Battier this past summer, or is it available every single offseason (and to luxury tax teams)?

    21. Will the Thrill

      Boston dominating the Heat. Now I’m just hoping for the 8th seed, and for Derrick Rose to be injured during the series. I think we would have a legitimate chance if that were the case.

    22. jock cowles

      If it were Celtics/Heat in the playoffs again, who would you root for?

      I hate Boston more than anything, but if they won there’s a decent chance they get knocked out in the later rounds. If Miami wins, they could easily take it all the way.

    23. JK47

      The Heat will have their full MLE next year.

      If Nash joins that team for the MLE, I’ll take a plane down to Miami and pull a Gillooly on the guy.

    24. Bruno Almeida

      if Miami gets Nash and he keeps playing like he has this year, they’re the most terrifying team in recent memory and it’s not even close.

    25. Z-man

      Nash, absolutely. He will be better than Lin for most of Melo and Amare’s contracts. Lin is a nice player, but please, he is nowhere near as good as Nash is right now.

    26. JC Knickfan

      Z: Right, because GMs never offer ridiculous contracts to bad players. It’s never happened. Jerome James, Jared Jeffries, Kenny Thomas, Raef LaFrenz, Larry Hughes, Mike James, Speedy Claxton, Brian Cardinal, Darko Milicic, Shandon Anderson, Howard Eisley… These guys never existed. They were just the bad dreams of a prior CBA.

      GMs see: 4th in rookie of the year voting. Top rebounding guard in the league. A lot of press for being a 2nd round pick.

      I’m not saying Fields will get the full MLE, but there is certainly a lot of precedent that makes it possible.

      Knicks have early bird right for Fields so Knicks can match any offer without using their MLE. I agree I doubt team will be interested. I would sign him for 2 year deal with 2nd year team option. If he on work FT and jump shoot, then we have solid role player. He already can drive, run PNR and rebounds. I think his defense is average. With 15 roster spot I would not give up on him.

    27. Z-man

      The Celts have really surprised me (well, not really, I was just hoping I’d be right) with their resilience this season. With the wins today and in Minny they could probably afford to rest guys during this brutal stretch and still make the playoffs.

    28. jon abbey

      if it was Al Qaeda vs the Celtics, I’d be rooting for the men from the Middle East.

      Woodson knows how bad Fields is, he just doesn’t have other options anymore.

    29. Z-man

      I could take of leave Fields. At a low salary he’s OK as roster filler, but unless he improves his shooting a LOT, he is very easy to replace. Whatever, as long as he doesn’t prevent us from signing anyone else.

    30. art vandelay

      jon abbey:
      if it was Al Qaeda vs the Celtics, I’d be rooting for the men from the Middle East.

      Woodson knows how bad Fields is, he just doesn’t have other options anymore.

      I still see Miami as suspect in playoffs….their biggest enemy is Lebron James in playoffs and he continues to astound with very enigmatic play….not that I would want to play them, but I wouldn’t be shocked if a veteran team like Boston knocked them off in a first round series.

    31. limpidgimp

      JK47:
      The Heat will have their full MLE next year.

      If Nash joins that team for the MLE, I’ll take a plane down to Miami and pull a Gillooly on the guy.

      I thought the new CBA was supposed to help limit super teams like the possibility of LBJ+Wade+Nash. Super teams like this, which radically imbalance the distribution of talent, will ruin basketball. I guess Nash having to tolerate the pay cut required to sign with Miami would be considered unusual circumstances, but I still think the league should not allow super teams like this, just like how the government has anti-trust laws to prevent mergers that would stifle competition. Even if super teams like this don’t make it to the Finals, it makes the regular season less interesting to watch. Who wants to watch blowouts all the time.

    32. jon abbey

      limpidgimp: I thought the new CBA was supposed to help limit super teams like the possibility of LBJ+Wade+Nash. Super teams like this, whichradically imbalance the distribution of talent, will ruin basketball. I guess Nash having to tolerate the pay cut required to sign with Miami would be considered unusual circumstances, but I still think the league should not allow super teams like this, just like how the government has anti-trust laws to prevent mergers that would stifle competition. Even if super teams like this don’t make it to the Finals, it makes the regular season less interesting to watch. Who wants to watch blowouts all the time.

      terrible post/idea for so many reasons it boggles my mind to try to answer. maybe you would favor a full-league expansion draft of every player in the game every summer?

    33. Ben R

      Z-man:
      Nash, absolutely. He will be better than Lin for most of Melo and Amare’s contracts. Lin is a nice player, but please, he is nowhere near as good as Nash is right now.

      Nash is amazing but he is going to hit the wall soon and hit it hard. It could be next year, it could be the one after. Lin is an investment in our future, Nash is win now. I don’t want to give up our future for a win-now player that wouldn’t even come close to putting us over the top. Amare has already started/is about to decline and Melo is overrated so moving a young, potentially top 10 PG to surround 2nd rate all-stars with a 38 year old PG to try and win now is a bad move.

      Besides if Nash takes a step back and Lin takes a step forward it is not unreasonable to think that Lin could be better than Nash next year.

    34. Bruno Almeida

      Ben R: Nash is amazing but he is going to hit the wall soon and hit it hard. It could be next year, it could be the one after. Lin is an investment in our future, Nash is win now. I don’t want to give up our future for a win-now player that wouldn’t even come close to putting us over the top. Amare has already started/is about to decline and Melo is overrated so moving a young, potentially top 10 PG to surround 2nd rate all-stars with a 38 year old PG to try and win now is a bad move.

      Besides if Nash takes a step back and Lin takes a step forward it is not unreasonable to think that Lin could be better than Nash next year.

      I dunno about that, he might not be able to infiltrate and break down defenses like he does now, but he’s still an incredible shooter (.605 TS% for his career, .428 from 3 and .627 TS% this year) and that is a skill that ages well.

      besides, Miami already has LeBron and Wade to break down defenses driving to the paint, Nash would be able to spot up, hit open 3′s all night long and be the 3rd creator on the team… also, he’s won 2 mvps and is respected by everyone, so he’d be a great influence for the 3 main guys.

      they would be insanely good with him there.

    35. cgreene

      I thought about the Nash to Miami scenario a bit and although I love Nash (he’s is my favorite non NY athlete) I don’t think that’s a great fit for him. You bring Nash to Miami and you are now adding ANOTHER ball handling/dominating player and sort of adding to their existing issue of not knowing who is the playmaker on the team. Doesn’t it dilute what makes Lebron so great as a point forward? Now he’s standing on the wing or playing post while Nash initiates the plays? Basketball ultimately is a game of roles. That’s what makes Miami still a shaky bet. Look at a team like Boston and what makes them so good for so long even though their athleticism is in steep decline is that there is no role overlap on that team. Look at great teams throughout history and non of the great teammates duplicated. They complemented. Nash to Miami doesn’t complement.

    36. jon abbey

      Dwight Howard sitting today with a back issue. feel free to sit out until next weekend, big man.

    37. d-mar

      I know it’s just one game, but man, did Miami look terrible today. Their half court sets against a good defense are just awful, and if you take care of the ball on offense, they are very beatable.

      That being said, I still want no part of them in the playoffs. Taking care of the ball is not exactly our strong suit; I’d still rather take my chances with da Bulls.

    38. JK47

      John Stockton was still a sick player when he retired at age 40. Nash is 37 and a conditioning freak. I think Nash still probably has 2-3 excellent years in him.

    39. JC Knickfan

      JK47:
      John Stockton was still a sick player when he retired at age 40.Nash is 37 and a conditioning freak.I think Nash still probably has 2-3 excellent years in him.

      Nash is 38

    40. Bruno Almeida

      @37

      Nash isn’t only a ball dominating guy, he’s an incredible shooter and a super smart guy… if anyone would know how to pick his spots and blend in with a lot of talented guys, it would be him.

      he even played some 2-guard when he was with Dallas, and was terrific.

      of course, he’s better when he has the ball on his hands, but it would be a pretty nice luxury to integrate someone like Nash on Miami’s offense… if he’s able to transform any passable forward into a scoring threat on the pick and roll, imagine what he wouldn’t be able to do with LeBron + Bosh?

    41. jon abbey

      d-mar: I’d still rather take my chances with da Bulls.

      I don’t think there’s going to be a choice: I’ll be shocked if CHI isn’t #1, and I’ll be even more shocked if we’re any higher than #8.

      but if given the choice right now, I might pick MIA. Chandler and Melo have proven success against them, and Chicago’s waves of big men scare me, plus I think Rose would likely get Shumpie into foul trouble.

    42. Bruno Almeida

      jon abbey: I don’t think there’s going to be a choice: I’ll be shocked if CHI isn’t #1, and I’ll be even more shocked if we’re any higher than #8.

      but if given the choice right now, I might pick MIA. Chandler and Melo have proven success against them, and Chicago’s waves of big men scare me, plus I think Rose would likely get Shumpie into foul trouble.

      Melo has proven success against Miami?

      he played twice against them, one time he was really good and we won, the other one he was terrible and we lost.

      how is that proven success? how can we assume he’s proven success just because he was good while in Denver against LeBron’s Cavs teams?

    43. daJudge

      cgreene, as much as I’d like (love) to agree with you, Nash would pretty much make Miami…I don’t know…scary, crazy good, awfully fun to watch, whatever. Nash will hone his game to make these guys even better. Even with Nash though, Miami can be beat with a dominating Center, a nasty defense and a team that can shoot a bit. I know this sounds simplistic to many of you, but I’ve seen it happen. The thing that’s really interesting is that we have been talking so much about offense for the last three years. We are now morphing into a defensive team. Look what we have. The best defensive center in the league, a budding defensive monster in Shump, a fine defensive player in JJ. Keep the faith, maybe not this year, but next year looks good too. Tough defensive teams may not look so pretty, but they don’t play with fear or the fleeting hope that their offense is clicking.

    44. jon abbey

      Bruno Almeida: how can we assume he’s proven success just because he was good while in Denver against LeBron’s Cavs teams?

      Melo generally plays well against LeBron, and yes, of course, the same way that Chandler’s play against Miami in the Finals last year is relevant.

    45. Bruno Almeida

      jon abbey: Melo generally plays well against LeBron, and yes, of course, the same way that Chandler’s play against Miami in the Finals last year is relevant.

      it is relevant in Chandler’s case, I agree, but the sample size is too different in Melo’s case…

      Melo being great against Cleveland teams with Zydrunas Ilgauskas as their second best teams doesn’t necessarily prove that Melo will be great against a much, much better Miami team with another superstar and a pretty good player.

      Chandler was awesome last year against pretty much the same Miami team we’re facing, but Melo’s sample size against this particular Miami team is much smaller to say he has proven success against them.

    46. hoolahoop

      By a little wisdom and a lot of luck, management stumbled into assembling one of the most talented teams in the league. At their best, the knicks can beat almost everybody else’s best. . . Probably, third best in the east – and a good fight with number one and two.

      BUT,

      Once again, another disappointing season.

      They used to just suck. Now, they break your heart.

    47. Z-man

      I guess I’m just not sold on Lin being our PG of the future yet. He very well may be, but Steve Nash is still really, really good. I would be happy to wager right now that he will be significantly better for the next 2 years than Lin.

    48. JLam

      I think Nash can play till he’s 40. I say he will still be good but not like his MVP years.
      Dudes like Nash and Stockton have a game that relys mostly on running the floor and making outside shots. There’s no high intensity jumping, twisting and dunking like cats, which IMO wears out the body way more and shortens careers.

    49. JLam

      I look to the future and would rather have Lin as he’s only 23 and can only get better. Nash best years are behind him.

    50. jon abbey

      Lin is not a 30+ minute starter in this league. if we try that again next year, it will end the same way if not worse.

    51. ess-dog

      I think you guys are being way too hard on Fields. Is he an ideal starting 2 guard? No. But he’s not a terrible player. He’s an out of position 3, and with Melo, he’s not an ideal fit for us except as a back up. If we could keep JR somehow, I would start him and move Fields to utility back up swing man.
      And I’m pretty sure that Nash isn’t going to give up extra $ and years just to play in Miami. He likes Phoenix. He’ll either stay there or if he takes the MLE (I’m sure he can get more from someone) he’d go to NYC where he lives in the summer, but that’s doubtful w/o D’Antoni.
      We best lock up Lin and match Fields, unless we’re somehow able to lock up JR before Fields. If we lose JR and Baron, we’re going to have to go bargain hunting (unless you like the idea of giving big minutes to _____.)
      I would go over the vet min for Jeffries if we can, and draft BPA. Maybe if Baron stinks it up we can get him for the vet min and work him into shape for a few back up minutes? I think he likes nyc.
      But yeah, between Jeffries, JR, Lin, Shump, Fields and maybe Baron, I can see how Field is the most dispensable of the group based on our needs. I mean, Shump can back up the 3 if need be.

    52. ess-dog

      Compressed schedule!

      jon abbey:
      Lin is not a 30+ minute starter in this league. if we try that again next year, it will end the same way if not worse.

    53. Z

      jon abbey: terrible post/idea for so many reasons it boggles my mind to try to answer.

      I’m afraid I have the exact same words for this:

      jon abbey:
      Lin is not a 30+ minute starter in this league. if we try that again next year, it will end the same way if not worse.

      If you really need me to, I can pull a list of good players who were hurt a lot while young, only to turn durable later on. (or maybe we should just trade Lin and a draft pick now for Antonio McDyess? :)

    54. danvt

      Here’s what I wrote the morning after the pacer home game:
      “danvt
      March 17, 2012 at 9:08 am
      I love NYK but I’m officially off the bandwagon. I expect them to go in tonight overconfident and lose. Over the last ten years I’ve never seen this team be able to handle any success. Maybe with Chandler it’ll be different, but, there’s no margin for error.

      No one on this team or in this city should be happy unless we win the next five.

      I’m still thinking no playoffs this year and it sucks. Too little too late. FU Melo.”

      Well, I’m happy to be wrong about Melo. He’s a multidimensional player. He’s been passing, rebounding, and scoring. His FG % has been much better. He’s been going to the hole, rebounding and passing. The team has been winning and he’s been the best player under Woodson. He’s been playing hurt. He has heart. He may not be the best player in the NBA but he’s an elite presence.

    55. jon abbey

      Z:
      If you really need me to, I can pull a list of good players who were hurt a lot while young, only to turn durable later on.

      I hope you’re right, but to me it’s because of the way he plays, and I don’t think he’ll be able to successfully play any other way. I mean, maybe if he modeled his game after Tony Parker, but that would require some massive changes.

    56. jon abbey

      danvt:

      Well, I’m happy to be wrong about Melo.He’s a multidimensional player.He’s been passing, rebounding, and scoring.His FG % has been much better.He’s been going to the hole, rebounding and passing.The team has been winning and he’s been the best player under Woodson.He’s been playing hurt.He has heart.He may not be the best player in the NBA but he’s an elite presence.

      he’s been defending too, taking on challenges like Granger and Josh Smith. it’s been a nice little stretch for him, hopefully he keeps it up.

    57. art vandelay

      jon abbey: he’s been defending too, taking on challenges like Granger and Josh Smith. it’s been a nice little stretch for him, hopefully he keeps it up.

      Did granger say tuesday’s game was very “winnable” yet? I sure hope so!!!

    58. art vandelay

      Ryan Anderson went down with an ankle sprain at end of magic game, perhaps he will be out of thursday’s game.

    59. ruruland

      danvt:

      Well, I’m happy to be wrong about Melo.He’s a multidimensional player.He’s been passing, rebounding, and scoring.His FG % has been much better.He’s been going to the hole, rebounding and passing.The team has been winning and he’s been the best player under Woodson.He’s been playing hurt.He has heart.He may not be the best player in the NBA but he’s an elite presence.

      Good for you man.

      And before Lin and Amar’e went out he was defending at an elite level, too. He’s dropped off some because of the offensive burden, but he’s still making okay rotations and playing excellent on-ball defense…

      People like to talk a lot about Melo’s teams only making it out of the first round once, but that was the only year his team was healthy.

      It’s amazing how much bad luck Melo’s teams have had with injuries.
      Excluding his rookie year (when he the primary option against the Wolves as a 19-year-old)

      His team was a an injury disadvantage every year (outside of ’09)

      In ’04 Martin was maybe 60 % while dealing with tendinitis (which led to microfracture surgeries) he was probably Denver’s second best player when healthy. That year Denver lost to the healthy Spurs, the eventual world champs.

      In ’05, Nene, Martin, and Boykins were injured against a healthy, surging Clippers team. (The Nuggets fielded one of the worst playoff teams in history that year, up until the Knicks sans Amar’e and Billups last year)

      In ’06 Nuggets lost to eventual champion Spurs. Martin was out with microfracture surgery.

      In ’07, Nene was out recovering from testicular cancer. Nuggets lost to eventual champion Lakers.

      In ’09, Nene, Martin, and Andersen all missed time and played injured against the Jazz, a series in which Utah’s big man averaged over 45 points and 20 rebounds.

      Let’s not forget last year without Chauncey and Amar’e.

    60. Z-man

      danvt, I think only those who have never watched him play much would believe that he is not capable of being truly multi-dimensional. The only questions for Melo are consistency, motivation, and B-ball IQ. He clearly has elite talent and can do it all on any given night. He may or may not be worth max money or what we gave up, but he’s certainly not the one-trick pony that some here have called him.

    61. art vandelay

      ruruland: Good for you man.

      And before Lin and Amar’e went out he was defending at an elite level, too. He’s dropped off some because of the offensive burden, but he’s still making okay rotations and playing excellent on-ball defense…

      People like to talk a lot about Melo’s teams only making it out of the first round once, but that was the only year his team was healthy.

      It’s amazing how much bad luck Melo’s teams have had with injuries.
      Excluding his rookie year (when he the primary option against the Wolves as a 19-year-old)

      His team was a an injury disadvantage every year (outside of ’09)

      In ’04 Martin was maybe 60 % while dealing with tendinitis (which led to microfracture surgeries) he was probably Denver’s second best player when healthy. That year Denver lost to the healthy Spurs, the eventual world champs.

      In ’05, Nene, Martin, and Boykins were injured against a healthy, surging Clippers team.(The Nuggets fielded one of the worst playoff teams in history that year, up until the Knicks sans Amar’e and Billups last year)

      In ’06 Nuggets lost to eventual champion Spurs. Martin was out with microfracture surgery.

      In ’07, Nene was out recovering from testicular cancer. Nuggets lost to eventual champion Lakers.

      In ’09, Nene, Martin, and Andersen all missed time and played injured against the Jazz, a series in which Utah’s big man averaged over 45 points and 20 rebounds.

      Let’s not forget last year without Chauncey and Amar’e.

      Unfortunately, the Knicks come playoff time have always been at a disadvantage healthwise by the end of the season…pretty much every year around playoff time Ewing broke down post- ’94 or so…and the story just continued last season.

    62. art vandelay

      That being said, if we can get one of these next two on the road and then split against chicago, I think we will be in good position having gone 2-2….let’s see if they can make it happen, though. I am worried Rose will come back just in time to play 2 games against Knicks next week.

    63. danvt

      ruruland: Let’s not forget last year without Chauncey and Amar’e.

      Looks like it’s happening again. JR signing looking better and better. We may have enough this year to still compete a little. I hope so. If not then I think next year we have a nice starting five with Lin and Shump joining the big three.

      Who do you think will be back from among Davis, JR, Novak, Jeffries?

    64. art vandelay

      Luis Scola is a very underrated player…I live in argentina and watched him play in the world championships two years ago….guy can ball…he doesn’t get a lot of press because he is mild-mannered and doesn’t do anything flashy…and he isn’t the youngest guy in the world, but man, as a solid power forward in this league he is very solid.

    65. art vandelay

      art vandelay:
      Luis Scola is a very underrated player…I live in argentina and watched him play in the world championships two years ago….guy can ball…he doesn’t get a lot of press because he is mild-mannered and doesn’t do anything flashy…and he isn’t the youngest guy in the world, but man, as a solid power forward in this league he is very solid.

      P.S. I know this is completely off topic…I happen to be watching the Rockets/Pacers game now.

    66. art vandelay

      art vandelay:
      Luis Scola is a very underrated player…I live in argentina and watched him play in the world championships two years ago….guy can ball…he doesn’t get a lot of press because he is mild-mannered and doesn’t do anything flashy…and he isn’t the youngest guy in the world, but man, as a solid power forward in this league he is very solid.

      I don’t know what his defense numbers are, though….I imagine they are probably quite mediocre.

    67. art vandelay

      danvt: Looks like it’s happening again.JR signing looking better and better.We may have enough this year to still compete a little.I hope so.If not then I think next year we have a nice starting five with Lin and Shump joining the big three.

      Who do you think will be back from among Davis, JR, Novak, Jeffries?

      My guess is Jeffries returns on vets min, maybe Davis does the same…but I have a sinking feeling JR will opt out and Spurs or Bulls will offer Novak a contract the Knicks can’t match.

    68. danvt

      Z-man: He may or may not be worth max money or what we gave up, but he’s certainly not the one-trick pony that some here have called him.

      I think so. This year has, perhaps, been a great learning experience for him. He probably never had to do this amount of soul searching in Denver. He can run but he can’t hide in NYC. He knows if he doesn’t play right there’s gonna be misery.

    69. ruruland

      jon abbey: he’s been defending too, taking on challenges like Granger and Josh Smith. it’s been a nice little stretch for him, hopefully he keeps it up.

      Melo’s always upped his game during the stretch run. (for the myriad reasons his teams have often had to fight to make the playoffs in March and April)

      His rookie year the Nuggets won five of their last 7 games to make it in, with Melo scoring 41 on 19/29 to fend off surging Seattle, 36pts on 12/20 in a win against the Suns, and 30pts on 12/24 against the Blazers — a game in which he made clutch shot after clutch shot in 4th quarter and overtime. with a loss, Denver would have likely ceded the 8th spot to Portland.

      ’05 he played far and away his best ball from mid-March on, a year where he was overweight coming into camp (the 32-8 George Karl team)

      http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/anthoca01/gamelog/2005/

      The start of his 95 game stretch where he had a 575 TS began the middle of ’05 as Melo led a injury depleted team to the 6th seed:

      http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/anthoca01/gamelog/2006/

      Averaged over 30 pts in the final stretch as the (Iverson) Nuggets won 9 of their last 10 to make it in.

      http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/anthoca01/gamelog/2007/

      Had his best march/april ever shooting over 55% and well over 30 pts per as the 50-win Nuggets fought for the 8th seed.

      Again, ’08, best ball was March forward. Huge games down the stretch against Dallas (foreshadowing the playoff series) and a few other teams in big road games.

      That team won 17 of its final 19 games to get the 2 seed.

      http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/anthoca01/gamelog/2009/

      Some huge games but very average shooting percentage down the stretch in ’09 as the team was dealing with injuries and Karl cancer.

      http://www.basketball-reference

    70. art vandelay

      ruruland:
      And of course last year he was awesome during that 7 game winning streak to push the Knicks in……

      He loves these kinds of situations late in the year.

      http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/anthoca01/gamelog/2011/

      They will definitely need him to win a tough game on the road one of these days, like end of last year (e.g. @ Philly and @ Indiana)…I hope he is up to it. The number of close games the Knicks have played this year is remarkably low….basically only when they have played boston this year, save for a few other outliers earlier in the season.

    71. ruruland

      danvt: Looks like it’s happening again.JR signing looking better and better.We may have enough this year to still compete a little.I hope so.If not then I think next year we have a nice starting five with Lin and Shump joining the big three.

      Who do you think will be back from among Davis, JR, Novak, Jeffries?

      JJ has to come back. I have no idea on the other guys. It will be interesting to see what the market is for Novak. A guy who never previously made it off the bench because he was so one-dimensional, and I think now he’s kind of getting exposed. He’s truly a detriment on the floor if teams make it a priority to deny his looks.

      I know for a fact junior wants back…. And I think Brian has laid a out a scenario where it would be prudent to consider taking a little less next year, considering the advantages of playing on a great team in the best basketball market in the world…. We can give him full MLE in two years.

      His struggles and tainted history might keep a lot of teams away next year, but savvy GM’s who do their homework will be able to see through that stuff. The idea of watching Shump and Smith the next few years is really exciting.

      I can’t see their being a market for Davis unless he gets healthy and does what he’s capable of down these last few games and postseason.

    72. art vandelay

      ruruland: JJ has to come back. I have no idea on the other guys. It will be interesting to see what the market is for Novak. A guy who never previously made it off the bench because he was so one-dimensional, and I think now he’s kind of getting exposed. He’s truly a detriment on the floor if teams make it a priority to deny his looks.

      I know for a fact junior wants back…. And I think Brian has laid a out a scenario where it would be prudent to consider taking a little less next year, considering the advantages of playing on a great team in the best basketball market in the world…. We can give him full MLE in two years.

      His struggles and tainted history might keep a lot of teams away next year, but savvy GM’s who do their homework willbe able to see through that stuff.The idea of watching Shump and Smith the next few years is really exciting.

      I can’t see their being a market for Davis unless he gets healthy and does what he’s capable of down these last few games and postseason.

      Ruru, do you think JR will be back next year as a Knick? Of course not holding you to it…just gut feeling?

    73. ruruland

      art vandelay: They will definitely need him to win a tough game on the road one of these days, like end of last year (e.g. @ Philly and @ Indiana)…I hope he is up to it. The number of close games the Knicks have played this year is remarkably low….basically only when they have played boston this year, save for a few other outliers earlier in the season.

      I’ll just say I’ll be really surprised, now that he’s finding himself again, if he doesn’t deliver at least 3-4 huge games in these last 13 or so… something along the lines of 35+ on around 600 TS, with the rebounds, passing and defense……

      I still believe the key to winning these road games however is for 3 of the following 5 to play well offensively: Shump, Smith, Fields, Davis, Douglas.

      Don’t have to be huge numbers just low turnovers and good shooting percentages.

      Lately the Knicks have been winning with just one, occasionally two of their support players playing well at the same time.

    74. art vandelay

      art vandelay: Ruru, do you think JR will be back next year as a Knick? Of course not holding you to it…just gut feeling?

      I guess you pretty much answered it there, actually…I think his market value is around mid-level, mainly for his ability and not his actual play, though I must admit his defense is better than I expected/thought…he is very John Starks-like.

    75. ruruland

      art vandelay: Ruru, do you think JR will be back next year as a Knick? Of course not holding you to it…just gut feeling?

      Yes. Loves the city. Loves the fans and playing at the Garden Loves being close to friends and family. And I think he’s a great fit with this staff and these guys. Plus, I think it’s important to him that he plays with someone who’s had his back before, Melo of course.

      Is not a money guy like most of these guys, which will probably be a problem for him later in his life, and which might help explain his dad.

    76. ruruland

      art vandelay: I guess you pretty much answered it there, actually…I think his market value is around mid-level, mainly for his ability and not his actual play, though I must admit his defense is better than I expected/thought…he is very John Starks-like.

      I agree that his market is mid-level but there are a lot of risk-averse teams out there who don’t want the potential for coach-player problems. Also, I’m not sure the good teams would want to invest in him for his upside…. And I don’t think he’d want to play at one of the dumps… Now that he’s experienced New York, if you know what I mean, I think it will be really hard for him to go to, say, Minnesota or Orlando, whatever….

    77. JK47

      @78

      I also get the feeling that JR will be back. Even though conventional wisdom says he can get more money somewhere else, you have to throw conventional wisdom out the window with JR. The guy seems to march to his own drum.

      If he comes back he’ll play a huge role on next year’s team. He really hasn’t gotten it going yet with NYK but if he puts up a season like he’s easily capable of (.550+ TS%, .380+ 3P%) he’ll be an awesome value at $2.5M.

    78. Brian Cronin

      I also get the feeling that JR will be back. Even though conventional wisdom says he can get more money somewhere else, you have to throw conventional wisdom out the window with JR. The guy seems to march to his own drum.

      While yes, no matter what, JR will be leaving money on the table to come back to New York, he likely would not be giving up too much money. He is likely a MLE guy in the current NBA economy, and if that is the case, he’d only be giving up $2.5 million next season. After next year, the Knicks can then give him the MLE, the same as he would get from other teams. So over five years (1 year at $2.5 million and then four years at $5 million versus 5 years at $5 million), he’d be giving up roughly $500,000 per year. That’s not a ton of money. The problem is if a team will offer him more than the MLE. If that happens, he’d be hard pressed to turn it down.

      As for Nash and Miami, the Heat do not have the MLE this offseason as they are already over the luxury tax for next season (and the following season, as well). They only have the mini-MLE ($3 million). If Nash wants to go to them, though, then it won’t be for the money, it will be because he likes the idea of playing for a great team that doesn’t need him to play a lot of minutes. I’d be disappointed if he went that route (it seems kind of wimpy, honestly – although I acknowledge that is almost certainly unfair on my part).

    79. danvt

      I’m not sure what’s gonna happen from here on. Maybe we have enough left in the tank, maybe we don’t, but, right now, if you gave me the opportunity to have the exact same roster next year, I’d take it. That’s a pretty good feeling for a Knick fan.

    80. Bruno Almeida

      ruruland: Yes. Loves the city. Loves the fans and playing at the Garden Loves being close to friends and family. And I think he’s a great fit with this staff and these guys. Plus, I think it’s important to him that he plays with someone who’s had his back before, Melo of course.

      Is not a money guy like most of these guys, which will probably be a problem for him later in his life, and which might help explain his dad.

      he marches to his own drums, I agree, but why did he go to China if not for the money?

      he could get much better life / basketball conditions anywhere in Europe, and yet he went to China, even though he knew he wouldn’t be able to come back to the NBA until the CBA let him go…

      he wants money, like all other players. I agree that he might view staying in New York as a better situation for him, but to say he’s “not a money guy” when he went to China to get larger pay checks is pretty much nonsense imo.

    81. ruruland

      Bruno Almeida: he marches to his own drums, I agree, but why did he go to China if not for the money?

      he could get much better life / basketball conditions anywhere in Europe, and yet he went to China, even though he knew he wouldn’t be able to come back to the NBA until the CBA let him go…

      he wants money, like all other players. I agree that he might view staying in New York as a better situation for him, but to say he’s “not a money guy” when he went to China to get larger pay checks is pretty much nonsense imo.

      Fair points. of course. I just don’t see JR making his final decision based on which team gives him and extra half mil to million, that’s what I mean by him not being a money guy. I guess we will see.

    82. Bruno Almeida

      ruruland: Fair points. of course. I just don’t see JR making his final decision based on which team gives him and extra half mil to million, that’s what I mean by him not being a money guy. I guess we will see.

      I agree with that, if the money difference isn’t too large, he might want to stay… but the SG position is very, very thin these days on the NBA, there are very few good ones around.

      I can see a scenario where a bunch of teams in need of a reliable scoring 2-guard would drive Smith’s price up, much higher than the MLE.

    83. Z

      ruruland: JJ has to come back.

      JJ came here on the vets minimum because he and D’Antoni had a great relationship. (I think he said earlier this year during Linsanity that he would die for D’Antoni!).

      Not sure if Dolan was too worried about whether Jeffries would be back next year when forcing D’Antoni to retire, but I think Jeffries will probably be a Clipper come next fall.

    84. ruruland

      Bruno Almeida: I agree with that, if the money difference isn’t too large, he might want to stay… but the SG position is very, very thin these days on the NBA, there are very few good ones around.

      I can see a scenario where a bunch of teams in need of a reliable scoring 2-guard would drive Smith’s price up, much higher than the MLE.

      We talking like 10 million? It will be nice to read Brian’s primer on which teams have that kind of space.

    85. Brian Cronin

      Oh, don’t get me wrong, Bruno, JR wants to make money, same as everyone. But would he really turn down the Knicks for another team when the totals would be $22.5 million over five years versus $25 million over five years?

      I can’t say it is not a possibility, as of course it is, but it is not such a major difference that other things couldn’t influence him, like wanting to play for a good team in New York.

      Again, though, if he gets an offer for more than $5 million this offseason? Then yeah, he’s almost certainly gone. Even if it is a one-year deal.

    86. ruruland

      Z: JJ came here on the vets minimum because he and D’Antoni had a great relationship. (I think he said earlier this year during Linsanity that he would die for D’Antoni!).

      Not sure if Dolan was too worried about whether Jeffries would be back next year when forcing D’Antoni to retire, but I think Jeffries will probably be a Clipper come next fall.

      SSOl and Chris Paul don’t seem like a good mix to me. Paul has NEVER liked playing fast, and doesn’t need MDA” systems of reads to control the game…

    87. Bruno Almeida

      the only teams who are really set for next year in the SG position are Philadelphia (Turner), Detroit (they pay too much for Gordon + Stuckey already), Indiana (George), Milwaukee (Ellis), Atlanta (Johnson), Miami (Wade), Houston (Martin), New Orleans (Gordon, if he stays), San Antonio (Ginobili), Denver (Afflalo), Oklahoma City (Harden), Lakers (Kobe) and Sacramento (Thornton + Salmons).

      that’s 13 teams, and some on that list could potentially be interested in Smith as a bench scorer…

      all other teams either could use an improvement in the position, or their current starter will be a free agent (Boston, Clippers for example).

      J.R will be in very high demand, imo.

    88. Brian Cronin

      Right, Bruno, but who is in the market to pay him more than the MLE? Looking at the free agent market, the only possibilities that i can see are Indiana, Minnesota and Cleveland (I am not counting teams that have space and need a 2 that are not going to spend their money on JR Smith – teams like Charlotte and Washington don’t go for players like Smith – generally only good teams are going to target him, as Smith is a guy who helps a good team more than a bad team). Those are the only three teams that have the cap room to beat the MLE and have a need at the 2 (I think Indiana sees George as a 3 and Granger as trade bait). Do you really see any of those three giving Smith more than $5 million a year?

    89. Bruno Almeida

      Brian Cronin:
      Oh, don’t get me wrong, Bruno, JR wants to make money, same as everyone. But would he really turn down the Knicks for another team when the totals would be $22.5 million over five years versus $25 million over five years?

      I can’t say it is not a possibility, as of course it is, but it is not such a major difference that other things couldn’t influence him, like wanting to play for a good team in New York.

      Again, though, if he gets an offer for more than $5 million this offseason? Then yeah, he’s almost certainly gone. Even if it is a one-year deal.

      I agree, he’ll stay if the difference is that low.

      but considering that potentially 17 teams could be looking for a good SG next year, and some of them will have a lot of cap space (think Washington, Phoenix, Charlotte or Toronto) all teams with a dire need at the position.

    90. Bruno Almeida

      Brian Cronin:
      Right, Bruno, but who is in the market to pay him more than the MLE? Looking at the free agent market, the only possibilities that i can see are Indiana, Minnesota and Cleveland (I am not counting teams that have space and need a 2 that are not going to spend their money on JR Smith – teams like Charlotte and Washington don’t go for players like Smith – generally only good teams are going to target him, as Smith is a guy who helps a good team more than a bad team). Those are the only three teams that have the cap room to beat the MLE and have a need at the 2 (I think Indiana sees George as a 3 and Granger as trade bait). Do you really see any of those three giving Smith more than $5 million a year?

      I don’t know about that, why wouldn’t Washington or Charlotte target Smith? I agree that he helps much more a better team than a rebuilding one, but I don’t think they would pass the chance to get an incredibly talented, 26-year old SG for a very reasonable price on a league where he might be a top 10 talent in the position even if he never progresses past his current level.

    91. Brian Cronin

      I doubt he’ll get it, but sure, if Smith gets more than the MLE from any team, then he will most likely leave. Heck, as I’ve mentioned before, there’s a chance he’ll leave even if he just gets the MLE from a good team (as playing on a one-year $2.5 million contract does carry with it a goodly amount of injury risk). I think the Knicks have a really good shot at keeping him if the offers stay at the MLE level, though.

    92. Bruno Almeida

      yeah, I do hope so…

      the only SGs who are better than Smith right now are, in my opinion, Kobe, Wade, Ray Allen, Harden, Kevin Martin, Eric Gordon, Manu, Joe Johnson and Ellis… you could make a case with potential about Paul George and Evan Turner, but right now Smith is more talented than those guys.

      I just hope people look at him as a problematic player, so nobody will commit to a big contract with him.

    93. JK47

      Bruno Almeida: he marches to his own drums, I agree, but why did he go to China if not for the money?

      he could get much better life / basketball conditions anywhere in Europe, and yet he went to China, even though he knew he wouldn’t be able to come back to the NBA until the CBA let him go…

      he wants money, like all other players. I agree that he might view staying in New York as a better situation for him, but to say he’s “not a money guy” when he went to China to get larger pay checks is pretty much nonsense imo.

      He also forfeited over $1M of that China contract by not showing up for practices, and his reaction to the fines was something along the lines of “Whatever.”

    94. jon abbey

      yeah, I am a big JR supporter, but let’s not forget he pretty much singlehandedly lost Friday night’s game, and his play so far this year has been sporadic at best. I think he negotiated the option for next year because he wants to stay, and I expect him to do so.

    95. Bruno Almeida

      JK47: He also forfeited over $1M of that China contract by not showing up for practices, and his reaction to the fines was something along the lines of “Whatever.”

      which only proves that he’s highly unreliable and prone to doing incredibly dumb things…

      however, he’s so talented that team might think it’s worth a shot.

      I hate him sometimes, but I’d rather have a guy like him on our side than watching him mature somewhere else and become on of the best SGs in the game.

    96. JK47

      which only proves that he’s highly unreliable and prone to doing incredibly dumb things…

      Incredibly dumb things like picking up an option when he can probably make twice the money elsewhere. Hopefully, at least.

    97. jon abbey

      James for Bibby would be fantastic, and if we end up playing Chicago in the playoffs, having a guy who was on Chicago this year couldn’t hurt.

    98. Bison

      jon abbey: I hope you’re right, but to me it’s because of the way he plays, and I don’t think he’ll be able to successfully play any other way. I mean, maybe if he modeled his game after Tony Parker, but that would require some massive changes.

      True, Tony Parker’s game is not what Lin should aim for. Parker weighs something like 170 lbs; Lin is 200 lbs. That alone implies a major difference in potential agility. A healthy Lin is probably as fast as Parker at running down the court, but Lin can’t hope to copy Parker’s acrobatic moves.

      Lin should probably pattern his game after Jason Kidd (but hopefully with better shooting). Much of Lin’s repertoire already resembles Kidd’s: rebounding and defense are almost there, and I believe the passing and floor generalship will come. Lin has very good court vision; he just needs better timing. If he ever masters that, he could be a triple-double threat every game, just as Kidd was in his prime.

    99. jon abbey

      Bison:

      Lin should probably pattern his game after Jason Kidd (but hopefully with better shooting).Much of Lin’s repertoire already resembles Kidd’s: rebounding and defense are almost there, and I believe the passing and floor generalship will come.Lin has very good court vision; he just needs better timing.If he ever masters that, he could be a triple-double threat every game, just as Kidd was in his prime.

      whoa, I do not see that. Kidd was a once-a-decade passer, like Rubio seems to be. Lin’s very good at downcourt outlet passing, but I’m not sure anyone can develop halfcourt passing instincts like Kidd/Rubio (or anywhere close).

    100. Bison

      jon abbey: whoa, I do not see that. Kidd was a once-a-decade passer, like Rubio seems to be.

      Have you noticed that it’s been more than a decade since Kidd’s rookie year? :)

      Lin’s very good at downcourt outlet passing, but I’m not sure anyone can develop halfcourt passing instincts like Kidd/Rubio (or anywhere close).

      Lin does not need to “develop” his passing instincts; he already has them. If Melo hadn’t done so much bricking, Lin would already have a long run of 10-assist games.

      Kidd averaged 8.19 assists per 36 minutes in his rookie year; Lin is averaging 8.23 per 36 in what is also essentially a rookie year. Almost identical.

      Turnovers in their rookie years: Kidd 3.4; Lin 4.8. Here Kidd is better, but remember, Lin did not have a normal training camp with the Knicks, and almost no practice time. Chemistry is very important for passers, but in this distorted season there has been no time to form any.

      Rebounding: Kidd 5.8 per 36; Lin 4.1.

      Steals: 2.0 per 36; Lin 2.1.

      As you can see, Lin is having as good a season as the rookie Kidd, in spite of having no training camp and almost no practice time. Perhaps your memories of a mature Kidd are influencing your judgement. But if you look at the numbers, the two guards are almost identical.

    101. JK47

      Lin’s a slightly different beast than Kidd. Lin is more of a scorer/passer PG hybrid a la Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook. Kidd is a pure passer who never was a very efficient scorer. Lin had a .552 TS% before he went down with the injury. Kidd’s career mark is .506, and he has only bested Lin’s .552 once in his 87-year career. Kidd is of course the superior passer, especially in the half court as Jon points out.

      Hopefully Lin will continue to play the way he has played, but with fewer turnovers. If he could stay healthy and get his turnover rate under control he’d be a fairly similar player to Westbrook.

      Lin
      TS% .552
      AST% 41.6
      TOV% 21.4
      USG% 27.8
      WS/48 .144

      Westbrook
      TS% .553
      AST% 29.3
      TOV% 14.4
      USG% 32.7
      WS/48 .176

      Westbrook had an AST% of 42.7 last season, very close to Lin’s number this year.

    102. Brian Cronin

      Yeah, I think Lin is a fine player, but I don’t see the Kidd comparison at all. Lin is much more of a score-first player (while of course still passing a lot). Westbrook is a good comparison. Rubio, now he is definitely a Kidd-like point guard.

      By the way, like Nash, Kidd was a bit of a slow-starter to get to the dominant level he eventually got to after a couple of years, so I dunno if looking at his or Nash’s rookie seasons is all that helpful. Just like you wouldn’t compare a player to Jose Bautista’s rookie season and say, “See, their seasons are similar! So this guy will someday hit 50 home runs, too!”

    103. JK47

      @107

      In fairness, Lin’s assist numbers (and turnover numbers) were probably inflated a little bit playing in Mike D’Antoni’s offense. In a more conventional offense I’d expect his assist rate to come down a little bit.

    104. max fisher-cohen

      Kidd was younger and is a much better defender. He was never a scorer. With some growth, Lin could average 22 a game under the right circumstances (i.e. as the offensive focal point on a bad team). What about Kevin Johnson? Quick, decent size, good passer, bad shooter. KJ had turnover issues as well — 3.3/game or more throughout his prime. He got to the rim well and was a strong passer. Definitely a better leaper than Lin and a bit smaller, but they both seem to do much better on teams with fast paces.

      I don’t think Lin could ever be the player that KJ was, but maybe a lesser version.

    105. JK47

      Kevin Johnson was a very fine player. If Lin ends up being anywhere in KJ’s ballpark we are psyched.

    106. Bison

      JK47:
      Lin’s a slightly different beast than Kidd.Lin is more of a scorer/passer PG hybrid a la Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook.Kidd is a pure passer who never was a very efficient scorer.

      I want Lin to be more of a pure passer in the Jason Kidd mold. I agree with Jon Abbey’s observation that Lin’s career will be short if he continues on his current path. Judging from how he passes, I think he can change.

      Lin
      TS% .552
      AST% 41.6
      TOV% 21.4
      USG% 27.8
      WS/48 .144

      Westbrook
      TS% .553
      AST% 29.3
      TOV% 14.4
      USG% 32.7
      WS/48 .176

      Westbrook had an AST% of 42.7 last season, very close to Lin’s number this year.

      The fact that Westbrook’s AST% has regressed so much this year tells me that he is not like Lin. Jeremy is a very willing passer.

    107. Bison

      JK47:
      @107

      In fairness, Lin’s assist numbers (and turnover numbers) were probably inflated a little bit playing in Mike D’Antoni’s offense.In a more conventional offense I’d expect his assist rate to come down a little bit.

      On the other hand, Lin did not have a training camp with the Knicks, and has had almost no practice time. I think his TOs are a reflection of his unfamiliarity with his teammates. And remember, Jason Kidd was almost as bad in his rookie year (3.4 TOs per 36 versus’s Lin’s 4.8).

    108. Bison

      max fisher-cohen:
      Kidd was younger and is a much better defender.

      Are you comparing a mature Kidd to a green Lin? I think that is the problem most people here are having: they are letting their memories of Kidd’s successful years cloud their judgement of Lin, who is basically a rookie.

    109. Bison

      Brian Cronin:
      Yeah, I think Lin is a fine player, but I don’t see the Kidd comparison at all. Lin is much more of a score-first player (while of course still passing a lot). Westbrook is a good comparison.Rubio, now he is definitely a Kidd-like point guard.

      By the way, like Nash, Kidd was a bit of a slow-starter to get to the dominant level he eventually got to after a couple of years, so I dunno if looking at his or Nash’s rookie seasons is all that helpful. Just like you wouldn’t compare a player to Jose Bautista’s rookie season and say, “See, their seasons are similar! So this guy will someday hit 50 home runs, too!”

      I’m nost sure what you are trying to say. Lin’s playmaking is already pretty close to Kidd’s. If Jeremy can take a Bautista-like leap one of these years, he will be a Hall of Famer.

    110. jon abbey

      he is saying that Kidd’s playmaking took a huge leap after the numbers you’re citing early in his career.

      I’ve thought of Kevin Johnson as a Lin comparison, but Johnson didn’t look for contact like Lin does so often, he just got hit a lot (and injured a lot) because he drove so often and jumped so high (as opposed to Tony Parker who manages to avoid it by not jumping especially high and just beating everyone to the rim).

      to his credit, Lin has figured out a way to excel in the NBA with his unusual skill set (very fast, not a great jumper, not a great halfcourt passer, a fantastic ability to absorb contact and still hit the shot), but my point is I don’t think he’ll be able to stay healthy unless he drastically changes his approach, and I have big doubts that he can drastically change his approach and still be successful.

    111. jon abbey

      also, Kidd has been an iron man for most of his career, ten seasons of 80+ games played and two others of 79 and 77 (plus all 50 in the shortened ’99 season). I don’t see any way short of a pact with the devil that Lin will be anywhere near that sturdy.

    112. jon abbey

      oh, one last thing: the “per 36″ numbers shortchange Kidd, who played massive minutes during his prime. there’s a big difference between 5 assists in 20 minutes and 10 assists in 40 minutes.

    113. JK47

      The funny thing about that Oklahoma team is that they barely get any assists. They play at the 5th fastest pace in the NBA and they rank #1 in offensive rating, but they rank 28th in the NBA in assists. They’re hero-balling their way to glory.

    114. jon abbey

      JK47:
      The funny thing about that Oklahoma team is that they barely get any assists.They play at the 5th fastest pace in the NBA and they rank #1 in offensive rating, but they rank 28th in the NBA in assists.They’re hero-balling their way to glory.

      and their top four players are all still under 24, Harden and Ibaka are still both 22!

    115. Brian Cronin

      and their top four players are all still under 24, Harden and Ibaka are still both 22!

      It’s really insane. Any chance maybe they can’t re-sign both Ibaka and Harden? That’d be good (for the rest of the league).

    116. jon abbey

      they can amnesty Perkins if they have to, they’re in really good shape (to say the least).

    117. Brian Cronin

      I guess the question comes down to, is there any team out there that would make Harden a MAX (or close enough) offer? He has amazed me with how much he has grown as a player. He is probably a bit of a stretch as a MAX player, though (especially when OKC is paying two other players MAX deals), so I wonder if OKC would match if, say, the WIzards offered him a MAX deal (what is amazing is that OKC won’t even have to deal with that until the offseason after next season, as Harden and Ibaka are both signed until then).

    118. Spree8

      Bison: Are you comparing a mature Kidd to a green Lin?I think that is the problem most people here are having: they are letting their memories of Kidd’s successful years cloud their judgement of Lin, who is basically a rookie.

      I think people just aren’t ready to accept an Asian kid having a successful NBA career yet, but who can blame them? Lin is one of a kind. The first Asian PG in the NBA, but certainly won’t be the last. We’re witnessing history in the making here so enjoy..only time will tell.

    119. Juany8

      Spree8: I think people just aren’t ready to accept an Asian kid having a successful NBA career yet, but who can blame them? Lin is one of a kind. The first Asian PG in the NBA, but certainly won’t be the last. We’re witnessing history in the making here so enjoy..only time will tell.

      As one of Yao Ming’s biggest fans during his time, I find this statement totally ridiculous. I think Lin is capable of being a starter in this league, but to act like he’s anything more than an average point guard right now is absurd. Plenty of people had mediocre first seasons before seriously ramping it up as stars, that’s true, but the elite skills they’re coveted for aren’t putting up a high TS% and low turnovers, it’s the ridiculous passing skill and floor vision. Lin plays much closer to Russell Westbrook and Tony Parker than Kidd or Nash. He really isn’t a very good passer right now although I’m sure he’ll become one as he goes on in his career. The problem is always going to be that he doesn’t have the one elite skill that will ever separate him from PG’s like Lawson and Lowry, good starters that will never really make all star games.

    120. Z-man

      Please stop comparing Lin to present or future HOF guards. You need to throw out the Linsanity games, they are outliers. He’s a competent PG but he’s not Kidd, Nash, Rose or Stockton. Not by a long shot. He is also nowhere near guys like KJ or Mark Price. He just isn’t.

    121. Spree8

      Z-man:
      Please stop comparing Lin to present or future HOF guards. You need to throw out the Linsanity games, they are outliers.He’s a competent PG but he’s not Kidd, Nash, Rose or Stockton. Not by a long shot. He is also nowhere near guys like KJ or Mark Price.He just isn’t.

      yep… Lin is Lin. You don’t hear people comparing young PG like Irving or Rubio to HOF all the time. They are young and they have all shown they have the potential to become great. Who knows how they will develop years from now right.

    122. jon abbey

      Spree8: I think people just aren’t ready to accept an Asian kid having a successful NBA career yet, but who can blame them? Lin is one of a kind. The first Asian PG in the NBA, but certainly won’t be the last. We’re witnessing history in the making here so enjoy..only time will tell.

      absolutely ridiculous.

    123. Bison

      jon abbey:
      he is saying that Kidd’s playmaking took a huge leap after the numbers you’re citing early in his career.

      Kidd’s playmaking improved, of course, but did not take a “huge leap” (check his record). Likewise, Lin is likely to improve his passing incrementally.

      to his credit, Lin has figured out a way to excel in the NBA with his unusual skill set (very fast, not a great jumper, not a great halfcourt passer, a fantastic ability to absorb contact and still hit the shot), but my point is I don’t think he’ll be able to stay healthy unless he drastically changes his approach, and I have big doubts that he can drastically change his approach and still be successful.

      I disagree that Lin is a poor halfcourt passer. If you are focusing on his turnovers, remember that the rookie Kidd was almost as bad (3.4 TOs per 36 minutes versus Lin’s 4.8) despite having the benefit of a full training camp and plenty of practice time to learn about his teammates. People keep forgetting that Lin went in cold, which may explain his extra TO.

      But I agree with you that if Lin’s slashing style continues to dominate his play, he will have a short career. Which is why I want him to become a Jason Kidd, and I think he can. The rookie numbers certainly suggest that he and Kidd are similar.

    124. Bison

      Spree8: I think people just aren’t ready to accept an Asian kid having a successful NBA career yet, but who can blame them? Lin is one of a kind. The first Asian PG in the NBA, but certainly won’t be the last. We’re witnessing history in the making here so enjoy..only time will tell.

      Yes, acceptance is slow. Lin was the only player-of-the-year in California NOT to get an athletic scholarship. You would think some division II or III school would take a chance on a player of the year, but none did. Not one, anywhere in the country. If that wasn’t an example of bias, I don’t know what is.

    125. Bison

      Juany8: … but to act like [Lin is] anything more than an average point guard right now is absurd.

      Lin’s 8.2 assists per 36 minutes is “average”? You must think Magic Johnson was worse than average, because he did less (7.2) in his rookie year. I’m not saying Lin is Magic, but he could be Kidd.

      Plenty of people had mediocre first seasons before seriously ramping it up as stars, that’s true, but the elite skills they’re coveted for aren’t putting up a high TS% and low turnovers, it’s the ridiculous passing skill and floor vision.

      8.2 assists per 36 says to me that Lin’s passing skill is excellent.

      Lin plays much closer to Russell Westbrook and Tony Parker than Kidd or Nash.

      Lin doesn’t have to do Linsanity anymore, especially if he knows what’s good for him in the long run. His passing numbers tell me that he can grow beyond that. And anyway, you just have to watch him play — without the hater glasses on — to see his vision is outstanding.

    126. Bison

      Z-man:
      Please stop comparing Lin to present or future HOF guards.

      Why? Lin is producing at their rookie rates, or better.

      You need to throw out the Linsanity games, they are outliers.

      Lin’s scoring numbers for Linsanity are probably outliers, which is why I omitted the scoring stats in my comparison between him and the rookie Kidd. If I had included them, Kidd would look worse.

      But passing tends to be steady. This is why I think Lin has a chance of being a second Kidd.

      He’s a competent PG but he’s not Kidd, Nash, Rose or Stockton. Not by a long shot. He is also nowhere near guys like KJ or Mark Price.He just isn’t.

      You would have said something similar of Kidd in his rookie year.

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