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Monday, October 20, 2014

Knicks Morning News (Thursday, Aug 02 2012)

  • [New York Times] Basketball: U.S. Women Wear Down Turkey to Stay Unbeaten (Thu, 02 Aug 2012 01:01:41 GMT)
    The U.S. women’s basketball team “commandos” saved their long Olympic winning streak on Wednesday by turning a close game against Turkey into an 89-58 rout.

  • [New York Times] Australia’s Jackson Sets Scoring Record in Basketball (Thu, 02 Aug 2012 00:46:42 GMT)
    Please be advised that the story on Australia’s women’s basketball captain Lauren Jackson becoming the leading Olympics points scorer is wrong and is withdrawn.

  • [New York Times] Off the Dribble: Knicks Sign J. R. Smith’s Brother (Thu, 02 Aug 2012 03:24:12 GMT)
    Chris Smith, a 6-foot-2 guard, led Louisville to the Final Four and played on the Knicks’ summer league team in Las Vegas.

  • 65 comments on “Knicks Morning News (Thursday, Aug 02 2012)

    1. massive

      Something interesting about Raymond Felton is his WP/48 on playoff teams:

      09-10 CHA: .147
      10-11 NYK: .119
      10-11 DEN: .126

      He also posted TS%’s of .525, .524, and .523 in each of those situations. By no means are these great numbers, but Felton’s lowest TS% on a playoff team beats all of last year’s PG rotation with the exception of #17. Felton’s worst is a lot better than Bibby/Douglas/Davis, so we’re in good shape. If we can get the 2009-2010 Felton (which I’m hoping for), we’d have a better PG than last year’s version of Jeremy Lin. If Felton can get his TS% to league average while keeping everything else from his 2009-2010 CHA season (which shouldn’t be impossible considering that Melo and JR will be taking 97% of the team’s forced shots), then we’d really have a shot at home court in the playoffs.

      Even if Felton plays to his career marks, that’s still a lot better than what we had in Bibby/Douglas/Davis, who combined for 1,808 minutes last season. We’re in okay shape at the PG spot regardless.

    2. johnlocke

      Wow…those guys hate him. Look even if Felton isn’t that great we still have Kidd and Prigs as insurance options. What was crazy was that he put up that crappy performance in his contract year costing himself untold millions of dollars. Lin is getting paid in one season around 25% more than Felton will be over the life of his 3 year contract.

      sidestep:
      It’s nice ppl are hopeful by talking about Felton’s 2009. Here’s a recap of his last season from a Portland blog perspective.
      http://www.portlandroundballsociety.com/home/2012/4/27/on-raymond-feltons-messy-stay-in-portland.html

    3. Juany8

      johnlocke:
      Wow…those guys hate him. Look even if Felton isn’t that great we still have Kidd and Prigs as insurance options. What was crazy was that he put up that crappy performance in his contract year costing himself untold millions of dollars. Lin is getting paid in one season around 25% more than Felton will be over the life of his 3 year contract.

      To be fair, that entire team quit on their coach before the season was over. Nate McMillan also ran a half court heavy, slow down offense that mostly dumped the ball to isolation players and let them do their thing. This is a dramatic difference from George Karl and D’Antoni, who’s offensive systems are fast and free flowing and allowed Felton to run the offense and make plays. When you add in the lockout, there’s a pretty decent chance last year was an anomaly for Felton, especially if he comes back trying to prove the “haters” wrong. If by some miracle, 2011 Jason Kidd also comes around, the Knicks have a pretty damn solid PG rotation.

    4. JK47

      I don’t see a “solid PG rotation at all.” I see a PG rotation that is one of the weakest in the NBA, featuring a 39-year old who has no ability to attack the rim and a journeyman who has been solidly below average for almost his entire career. Oh yeah, and the 35-year old rookie.

      Here’s a list of PGs I’d rather have than the Knicks’ projected starter, Ray Felton:
      Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday, Kyle Lowry, Deron Williams, Jose Calderon, Derrick Rose, Darren Collison, Brandon Jennings, Rodney Stuckey, Kyrie Irving, Mario Chalmers, Jeff Teague, Russell Westbrook, Ty Lawson, Andre Miller, Devin Harris, Ricky Rubio, Steve Nash, Ramon Sessions, Chris Paul, Goran Dragic, Stephen Curry, Isaiah Thomas, Tony Parker, Jeremy Lin.

      That’s 25 guys better than Felton right there, and to be honest I’d probably rather have Mike Conley, Jameer Nelson, CJ Watson, Jarrett Jack and the rookie Damian Lillard than Felton also. I’m having a hard time seeing how the Knicks are supposed to have a “solid” PG rotation. Felton is coming off a terrible year and has never been very good, Kidd is 39 and Prigioni is a 35-year old rookie. I think the Knicks’ PG rotation has major black hole potential.

    5. johnlocke

      Um, but isn’t Woodson’s approach to offense closer to McMillan’s than D’Antoni or George Karl??

      Juany8: To be fair, that entire team quit on their coach before the season was over. Nate McMillan also ran a half court heavy, slow down offense that mostly dumped the ball to isolation players and let them do their thing. This is a dramatic difference from George Karl and D’Antoni, who’s offensive systems are fast and free flowing and allowed Felton to run the offense and make plays. When you add in the lockout, there’s a pretty decent chance last year was an anomaly for Felton, especially if he comes back trying to prove the “haters” wrong. If by some miracle, 2011 Jason Kidd also comes around, the Knicks have a pretty damn solid PG rotation.

    6. johnlocke

      Of all those guys you’d rather have, the only realistic option the Knicks could have had, was Lin, so to sum it up, you’re saying we should have kept Lin. I agree with you, but that horse has been beaten to a bloody pulp, the ship has sailed and already reached its destination, the fat lady is in the back, changing out of her opera clothes, etc, etc.

      Anyway, we’ll ask the PGs to minimize mistakes and take advantage of Melo, Amare, JR, Chandler and Novak on offense…they don’t have to dominate, just have to get rid of boneheaded turnovers and be able to run a pick and roll and make a good entry pass.

      JK47:
      I don’t see a “solid PG rotation at all.”I see a PG rotation that is one of the weakest in the NBA, featuring a 39-year old who has no ability to attack the rim and a journeyman who has been solidly below average for almost his entire career.Oh yeah, and the 35-year old rookie.

      Here’s a list of PGs I’d rather have than the Knicks’ projected starter, Ray Felton:
      Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday, Kyle Lowry, Deron Williams, Jose Calderon, Derrick Rose, Darren Collison, Brandon Jennings, Rodney Stuckey, Kyrie Irving, Mario Chalmers, Jeff Teague, Russell Westbrook, Ty Lawson, Andre Miller, Devin Harris, Ricky Rubio, Steve Nash, Ramon Sessions, Chris Paul, Goran Dragic, Stephen Curry, Isaiah Thomas, Tony Parker, Jeremy Lin.

      That’s 25 guys better than Felton right there, and to be honest I’d probably rather have Mike Conley, Jameer Nelson, CJ Watson, Jarrett Jack and the rookie Damian Lillard than Felton also.I’m having a hard time seeing how the Knicks are supposed to have a “solid” PG rotation.Felton is coming off a terrible year and has never been very good, Kidd is 39 and Prigioni is a 35-year old rookie.I think the Knicks’ PG rotation has major black hole potential.

    7. knicknyk

      JK47:
      I don’t see a “solid PG rotation at all.”I see a PG rotation that is one of the weakest in the NBA, featuring a 39-year old who has no ability to attack the rim and a journeyman who has been solidly below average for almost his entire career.Oh yeah, and the 35-year old rookie.

      Here’s a list of PGs I’d rather have than the Knicks’ projected starter, Ray Felton:
      Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday, Kyle Lowry, Deron Williams, Jose Calderon, Derrick Rose, Darren Collison, Brandon Jennings, Rodney Stuckey, Kyrie Irving, Mario Chalmers, Jeff Teague, Russell Westbrook, Ty Lawson, Andre Miller, Devin Harris, Ricky Rubio, Steve Nash, Ramon Sessions, Chris Paul, Goran Dragic, Stephen Curry, Isaiah Thomas, Tony Parker, Jeremy Lin.

      That’s 25 guys better than Felton right there, and to be honest I’d probably rather have Mike Conley, Jameer Nelson, CJ Watson, Jarrett Jack and the rookie Damian Lillard than Felton also.I’m having a hard time seeing how the Knicks are supposed to have a “solid” PG rotation.Felton is coming off a terrible year and has never been very good, Kidd is 39 and Prigioni is a 35-year old rookie.I think the Knicks’ PG rotation has major black hole potential.

      This is a bit of an over exaggeration.Felton is better than some of these guys. Yes I never wanted him from the get go but it is what it is. Our pg rotation is definitely not the worst in the NBA.

    8. rkulish

      @JK47 Your list of PG’s better than Felton is a bit over the top. Felton isn’t perfect and is coming off a bad year but he was a fringe all-star as a Knick and doesn’t have to be great – he needs to get the ball to Carmelo and Amar’e in spots they can score – something he did flawlessly in 10-11 with STAT. Felton is a college champion and a bulldog with a chip on his shoulder. I could not be more certain that he comes in and is in great shape. He is not a great defender but let’s be real, Jeremy Lin and Mike Bibby were AWFUL. Felton’s aggressiveness and “prove me wrong” attitude on D will be so much better than anything the fragile and small Lin could provide.

      I mean, Rodney Stuckey? Mario Chalmers (Chalmers is below average and he gets to play with Lebron, DWade and Bosh! Ramon Sessions sucked on a team with Kobe, Pau, Bynum and others. Isaiah Thomas? Really? Stuckey and Calderon are career long losers. Jeremy Lin played 25 games and got hurt. Is Stephen Curry really even a PG. And then to say you may want Jaret Jack and CJ Watson seems even more crazy.

      Again, Felton is not perfect but let’s be real here…

    9. Z-man

      Felton is only 28, so it’s not like he is past the point where statistical improvement is not possible. Seems like this situation is tailor-made for him. He has 2 high-efficiency p&r players in Chandler and Amare, he has Melo and JR to take end-of-shot-clock shots, he has solid defensive 2-guards and rim protectors to take pressure off of him defensively, the best spot-up 3-pt shooter in the league, and 2 quality back-ups to limit his minutes (and push him to keep his minutes.)

      I see no reason why Felton can’t have a career year next year. Obviously there are legit concerns abot his shoting and conditioning, but if he doesn’t rise to the occasion now, he’s pretty much done as a starter (and making starter’s $) on a good team. Lots of motivation!

    10. JK47

      @9

      TS%
      Chalmers .578
      Thomas .574
      Sessions .570
      Stuckey .550
      Calderon .547
      Jack .540
      Watson .491
      Felton .491

      WS/48
      Calderon .136
      Stuckey .131
      Thomas .124
      Jack .119
      Chalmers .112
      Watson .109
      Sessions .104
      Felton .042

      Every one of those guys had a higher WS/48 last year than Felton’s career WS/48. Felton’s career best year in WS/48 would rank below Calderon, Stuckey, Thomas and Jack’s number last year.

      Tell me why I want Felton instead of all of those guys?

    11. BigBlueAL

      Back-to-back amazing games in the Olympics today. Now time for USA to end the dramatic string of afternoon games lol

    12. knicknyk

      rkulish:
      @JK47 Your list of PG’s better than Felton is a bit over the top. Felton isn’t perfect and is coming off a bad year but he was a fringe all-star as a Knick and doesn’t have to be great – he needs to get the ball to Carmelo and Amar’e in spots they can score – something he did flawlessly in 10-11 with STAT. Felton is a college champion and a bulldog with a chip on his shoulder. I could not be more certain that he comes in and is in great shape. He is not a great defender but let’s be real, Jeremy Lin and Mike Bibby were AWFUL. Felton’s aggressiveness and “prove me wrong” attitude on D will be so much better than anything the fragile and small Lin could provide.

      I mean, Rodney Stuckey? Mario Chalmers (Chalmers is below average and he gets to play with Lebron, DWade and Bosh! Ramon Sessions sucked ona team with Kobe, Pau, Bynum and others. Isaiah Thomas? Really? Stuckey and Calderon are career long losers. Jeremy Lin played 25 games and got hurt. Is Stephen Curry really even a PG. And then to say you may want Jaret Jack and CJ Watson seems even more crazy.

      Again, Felton is not perfect but let’s be real here…

      Am I the only one that is worried about the teams ability to score the basketball. I think that is going to be the biggest thing that holds us back next year in the playoffs. Everyone is praising our defense but even last year we were still a top 5 defensive team with the likes of Bibby and Baron etc and there was still significant areas to improve. In the playoffs you can never have enough guys who can score the ball and I feel like the knicks have overloaded on defensive minded (one dimensional players). Everyone loves Felton’s defense but what about his offense. And yes you want the pg that can get the ball to Melo and Amare in his spots but you also want players that can score the ball in there own right.

    13. Jafa

      JK47:
      I don’t see a “solid PG rotation at all.”I see a PG rotation that is one of the weakest in the NBA, featuring a 39-year old who has no ability to attack the rim and a journeyman who has been solidly below average for almost his entire career.Oh yeah, and the 35-year old rookie.

      Here’s a list of PGs I’d rather have than the Knicks’ projected starter, Ray Felton:
      Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday, Kyle Lowry, Deron Williams, Jose Calderon, Derrick Rose, Darren Collison, Brandon Jennings, Rodney Stuckey, Kyrie Irving, Mario Chalmers, Jeff Teague, Russell Westbrook, Ty Lawson, Andre Miller, Devin Harris, Ricky Rubio, Steve Nash, Ramon Sessions, Chris Paul, Goran Dragic, Stephen Curry, Isaiah Thomas, Tony Parker, Jeremy Lin.

      That’s 25 guys better than Felton right there, and to be honest I’d probably rather have Mike Conley, Jameer Nelson, CJ Watson, Jarrett Jack and the rookie Damian Lillard than Felton also.I’m having a hard time seeing how the Knicks are supposed to have a “solid” PG rotation.Felton is coming off a terrible year and has never been very good, Kidd is 39 and Prigioni is a 35-year old rookie.I think the Knicks’ PG rotation has major black hole potential.

      It’s good to see that we still have honest posters on this board – fans that aren’t blinded by the orange and blue and are objective.

      I may object on Rodney Stuckey, Mario Chalmers, Devin Harris and Ramon Sessions being better than Felton (I think they are equally as bad as Felton), but I take issue with disrespecting rookie Damian Lillard. He may not be an all-star yet but he is at least better than the low hanging fruit that is Felton.

      And yes I think our PG rotation will be in the bottom 10 in the league this year.

    14. Jafa

      knicknyk: Am I the only one that is worried about the teams ability to score the basketball. I think that is going to be the biggest thing that holds us back next year in the playoffs. Everyone is praising our defense but even last year we were still a top 5 defensive team with the likes of Bibby and Baron etc and there was still significant areas to improve. In the playoffs you can never have enough guys who can score the balland I feel like the knicks have overloaded on defensive minded (one dimensional players). Everyone loves Felton’s defense but what about his offense. And yes you want the pg that can get the ball to Melo and Amare in his spots but you also want players that can score the ball in there own right.

      +1. This was my biggest concern with letting Lin go. In doing so, we took away another source of offense. What is going to stop teams from loading up on Melo with two defenders and forcing him to give up the ball? Sure he can swing the ball around, but the only proven guy that will consistently knock down the open 3s is Novak, and he comes off the bench. STAT can score but needs a good PG to get him the ball. If you force him to try to create, its a 50/50 proposition that he scores or turns the ball over. Everybody else is either streaky or below average offensively.

      When Melo, STAT, Chandler, Felton and Brewer are on the floor and Melo gets the ball at the elbow, what is stopping an opposing team from sending 2 his way? The ball swings around to no real shooters and no real penetrators and may end up in a bricked shot or a turnover. After a few possessions like that, who can blame Melo if he starts forcing shots?

    15. BigBlueAL

      Everyone who is worried about the offense (rightfully so) dont forget the other teams are gonna have a pretty hard time scoring too. This team has the potential, especially once Shump returns, too play some serious defense.

    16. TelegraphedPass

      @JK47

      I agree that there are an assortment of guards “better” than Ray Felton, but your list doesn’t take into account the situation this team is in.

      How could you prefer Rio when he has never in his NBA career commanded an offense and is a 3-and-D PG? How is that supposed to fit this team?

      There were 30 PGs better than Kidd 2 years ago, and that didn’t stop the Mavs from winning a title. Their PG rotation was Kidd/Barea/Beaubois and they were a great team. You’re focusing far more on talent than fit, in my opinion.

      Side note: I’m highly upset that someone questioned whether Isaiah Thomas was better than Felton. Isaiah by rights would have been runner-up for ROY voting if the voters weren’t moronic.

    17. massive

      Melo has 34 points in less than 3 quarters. He holds the record for a US Olympic Basketball player.

    18. BigBlueAL

      massive:
      Melo has 34 points in less than 3 quarters. He holds the record for a US Olympic Basketball player.

      37 points now. 10 for 12 from the 3pt line.

    19. TelegraphedPass

      rkulish: I mean, Rodney Stuckey? Mario Chalmers (Chalmers is below average and he gets to play with Lebron, DWade and Bosh! Ramon Sessions sucked on a team with Kobe, Pau, Bynum and others. Isaiah Thomas? Really? Stuckey and Calderon are career long losers. Jeremy Lin played 25 games and got hurt. Is Stephen Curry really even a PG. And then to say you may want Jaret Jack and CJ Watson seems even more crazy.Again, Felton is not perfect but let’s be real here…

      Had to respond directly after re-reading this. Wow. Steph Curry is absolutely a PG. We answered that question his rookie season. He’s also on track to become one of the best shooters in NBA history. So yeah.

      Stuckey is disrespected constantly. He’s a very good player. He’s efficient offensively and tough defensively. He’s about as close to the perfect combo-guard as currently exists in the NBA.

      Calderon is very possibly the second-best pure PG in the NBA, and probably one of the top 20 shooters the league has ever seen. Only he and Chris Paul can rack up fat assist totals while rarely turning the ball over.

      I guarantee you didn’t watch Jarrett Jack play last year. He’s a solid player. Not spectacular, but gets it done. He had a great season, and Felton just had a terrible one.

      C’mon, bro. There are reasons people don’t like Felton.

    20. EB

      Well if your going to build a team around Stat and Melo, two high volume scorers who are bad at defense, then the best policy is to surround them with good defenders. Which is what we’ve done.

      Plus JR will probably get most of the two guard minutes which will help our offense a lot.

    21. ruruland

      Jafa: +1.This was my biggest concern with letting Lin go.In doing so, we took away another source of offense.What is going to stop teams from loading up on Melo with two defenders and forcing him to give up the ball?Sure he can swing the ball around, but the only proven guy that will consistently knock down the open 3s is Novak, and he comes off the bench.STAT can score but needs a good PG to get him the ball.If you force him to try to create, its a 50/50 proposition that he scores or turns the ball over.Everybody else is either streaky or below average offensively.

      When Melo, STAT, Chandler, Felton and Brewer are on the floor and Melo gets the ball at the elbow, what is stopping an opposing team from sending 2 his way?The ball swings around to no real shooters and no real penetrators and may end up in a bricked shot or a turnover.After a few possessions like that, who can blame Melo if he starts forcing shots?

      Remember when I posted the Knicks 3 year spot-up numbers two weeks ago?

      Novak is not just “reliable”, he’s the best spot-up shooter in the NBA.

      Jr Smith is elite or close to it, having finished in the top 60 in spot-ups the last 3 years. His overall efficiency is hampered by off-dribble 3s.

      Felton has been about average the last three years. Kidd has been elite to good, Amare is typically excellent for a big-man who doesn’t shoot 3s… The only truly horrible spot-up shooter is Brewer, and he’s typically not going to take shots he can’t make.

      Consider last year that Fields, Douglas, Bibby, Davis, Lin, Walker were all among the worst spot-up shooters in basketball.

      The Knicks upgraded their ability to hit spot-up shots off double teams and ball rotation, and yes, Camby is going to help there as well.

    22. ruruland

      TelegraphedPass:
      @JK47

      I agree that there are an assortment of guards “better” than Ray Felton, but your list doesn’t take into account the situation this team is in.

      How could you prefer Rio when he has never in his NBA career commanded an offense and is a 3-and-D PG? How is that supposed to fit this team?

      There were 30 PGs better than Kidd 2 years ago, and that didn’t stop the Mavs from winning a title. Their PG rotation was Kidd/Barea/Beaubois and they were a great team. You’re focusing far more on talent than fit, in my opinion.

      Side note: I’m highly upset that someone questioned whether Isaiah Thomas was better than Felton. Isaiah by rights would have been runner-up for ROY voting if the voters weren’t moronic.

      nice post.

      If Felton improves Amar’e efficiency by 15-20 points, and averages close to the 9 ap 36 he did in his last stint, he probably isn’t going to have an amazing WS48, but he’ll be a really good player on the team.

      That being said, if his shot distribution changes to reflect the fact that he plays with a double team creating scoring machine in Melo, then I can see his TS getting into the 540-550 range.

      5-10% more spot-ups and he’ll be there. But his pnr passing and ability to penetrate is what will make him most valuable on offense.

    23. ruruland

      BigBlueAL: 37 points now.10 for 12 from the 3pt line.

      Looking forward to Strauss’ next piece. I wonder if Melo has been working on catch-and-shoot this off-season. He definitely doesn’t look primed for a big season.

    24. massive

      BigBlueAL:
      Melo’s 37 pts came in 14 minutes played.

      I see how good this guy plays in the Olympics, and then I realize he’ll never get the same open opportunities in an NBA game. Kevin Durant is really lucky to have initiators on his team the caliber of Westbrook and Harden. I don’t Carmelo will ever be half as lucky.

    25. formido

      Anthony always plays well in the Olympics, but he looks really good. Damn. He’s going to have a career year. Makes me all the more frustrated Lin’s gone, but whatever.

    26. knicknyk

      Hopefully it transfers to the Knicks next year. He is surrounded by the best players in the NBA. It isn’t like that in New York.

    27. nicos

      Rodney Stuckey, CJ Watson? I’d prefer a point guard who can actually run a set. Hell, Jrue Holiday’s shooting numbers are almost exactly the same as Felton’s three years running but with poorer playmaking. If you get the Felton of 2009/10 or 2010/11 (or even the second half of 2012) he’s better than a lot of the guys listed. He’s actually a pretty good passer- something kind of nice to have in a point guard, you know?

    28. ruruland

      massive: I see how good this guy plays in the Olympics, and then I realize he’ll never get the same open opportunities in an NBA game. Kevin Durant is really lucky to have initiators on his team the caliber of Westbrook and Harden. I don’t Carmelo will ever be half as lucky.

      Felton should help. Kidd is going to be fantastic for him in transition and semi-transition.

      A 10% reduction in post-ups and isos (even though he’s great at those relative to league average) and an increase in spot-ups and transition shots will have a pretty large effect on his efficiency.

      Let’s remember that his efficiency in most areas is pretty much right in line with a guy like Lebron, it’s the distrubution that’s off (though Melo will never have as many shots or be as efficient as Lebron in transition, he’s similar or superior in pretty much every area in the half-court).

      Durant is a good iso player but that accounts for about 20-25% of his plays, not the 35% it does for Melo.

      I think you’ll see more passing opportunities for Melo, less tough shots against the clock, and a higher percentage of assisted attempt shots.

      It’s been such a focus for him this off-season I would be shocked if there wasn’t.

    29. JK47

      Felton has to play at his absolute ceiling if he’s going to be even a passable point guard. If he plays more in line with his career averages rather than at his utmost ceiling you’re looking at a poor player.

    30. ruruland

      formido:
      Anthony always plays well in the Olympics, but he looks really good. Damn. He’s going to have a career year. Makes me all the more frustrated Lin’s gone, but whatever.

      knicknyk:
      Hopefully it transfers to the Knicks next year. He is surrounded by the best players in the NBA. It isn’t like that in New York.

      It’s assisted attempts. It’s his role in the offense.

      Having some open looks helps, too.

    31. ruruland

      JK47:
      Felton has to play at his absolute ceiling if he’s going to be even a passable point guard.If he plays more in line with his career averages rather than at his utmost ceiling you’re looking at a poor player.

      No. FWIW (very little) WP48 has him as a top 100 player. WS48 doesn’t like him much, in large part because he’s played on poor defensive teams.

      A lot of coaches like him defensively as he’s able to pressure the ball pretty well, even though he lacks length.

      He was the 89th best defender in the NBA in Charlotte in 2009, rating about as high or higher than most of the “elite” defenders that season. Not coincidentally, it was really the one year he played on a good defensive team (Chandler).

      Offensively, he’s a plus pnr passer, which is probably a good thing when you have the best big men roll combination in the NBA. Don’t you think?

      His pick and roll scoring is actually pretty solid. He doesn’t get to the line much, however, and he’s not a good enough finisher to make up for it.

      But he gets the ball to the basket area on penetration, and given what should be a new strength next season (offensive rebounding) with Camby, Brewer, Kidd (Amare, Melo and Chandler are all good offensive rebounders) there should be some hidden benefit there.

      And he should be involved in more spot-up plays, which could get his shooting efficiency into slightly-above league average area.

      His passing is above average and he’s solid in transition.

      let’s remember that a lot of his numbers are driven by being the primary and often lone shot-creator in Charlotte on an awful team.

      When you look at how he played and fit in NY and Denver, where he had more talent and was put into better situations and a faster tempo, he was pretty clearly a good player.

    32. JK47

      @34

      Every excuse in the book for why Ray Felton has been a complete mediocrity in the NBA.

      Absurdly optimistic explanations of why Felton is not going to suck quite as much next season.

      Mush-mouth generalities like “passing is above average” and “solid in transition.”

      I’m not convinced. I probably watched Ray Felton’s entire Knick career, when he was supposed to have been good, and all I really recall is an endless string of 6-15 shooting nights. He was probably the worst offensive player that got major minutes on the D’Antoni Knicks, yet had the second highest usage and FGA.

    33. TelegraphedPass

      Btw I promised that if JR Smith re-signs in NY I’d buy a Who Shot? JR tee. Guess I’ll have to make good on that.

    34. ruruland

      JK47:
      @34

      Every excuse in the book for why Ray Felton has been a complete mediocrity in the NBA.

      Well, you just said it: mediocre

      He’s a mediocre NBA point guard who happens to have a couple skills–pnr passing and ball-hounding defense vs pgs– that should fit in pretty well with the Knicks roster.

      He’s certainly not a player you build a team around, he certainly isn’t a guy who’s going to develop new abilities, but he’s good enough in most aspects of the game that if he isn’t asked to do much he can play a role quite well.

      He generally pushes the ball when he’s fit, which makes him a transition-oriented point guard.

      ++

    35. bobneptune

      BigBlueAL:
      Everyone who is worried about the offense (rightfully so) dont forget the other teams are gonna have a pretty hard time scoring too.This team has the potential, especially once Shump returns, too play some serious defense.

      Baloney. There is one plus defender in the starting 5, namely chandler. JR has the talent to play D , but what are the chances of him keeping his head in the game for 36 minutes a night. Amar’e is an awful defender and melo can defend, but generally feels it is beneath his exulted stature to waste his precious energy in such mundane pursuits. Felton…. well good luck.

      Overall the D might be fine in the regular season, but when the game slows down and the scouting gets stronger in the playoffs our on the ball defense is not strong enough and guys like melo and Amar’e don’t have defense in their DNA to give the requisite effort to play good enough D to go deep.

      Our bench players are strictly one dimensional. Novak can score, but is awful defensively. Kidd can still shoot a decent 3, but can’t stay in front of any point in the league.

      Camby, Brewer and Shumpert are plus defenders but the offensive will come to a complete halt if 2 of them are on the floor at the same time, especially with Chandler.

    36. Z-man

      I have to admit that my optimism re: Felton is not substantiated by his career stats. However, for the reasons I stated above in @10, I am “hopeful” that this situation is the perfect storm for Felton to have a career year. His situation might be compared to Derek Fisher, who had mediocre career stats but was quite good on several Lakers teams, and obviously had some iconic moments.

    37. Z-man

      Fisher played particularly poorly on lousy teams, but on a 5 championships team he was a solid, and sometimes great complementary player.

    38. knicknyk

      FWIW Lin apparently skyped with the little kid whose parents filmed that video of him crying because the Knicks didn’t match Lin’s offer sheet. Anyway, the point is that Lin told the kid to keep supporting the Knicks that we had a really great team. He is right we do have a great team. I have my doubts as to how far we can get in the post-season but we do have a great team. A team that can contend, yes, a championship team, that is where I have my doubts.

    39. Z-man

      flossy: We gave up Jeremy Lin to start a PG we hope will develop into someone like Derek Fisher?!

      Yeah, like signing Lin would not have involved any “hope”.

    40. johnlocke

      Holy crap, just caught up on the US v Nigeria game on DVR. Melo was absolutely on fire on catch and shoots! Ridiculous. Only person that could stop Melo today was Coach K. If only we had Chris Paul as our PG.

    41. knicknyk

      Z-man: Yeah, like signing Lin would not have involved any “hope”.

      The Fisher part is the objection, not the hope part. Hoping for a player to develop into D. Fish is an embarrassment.

    42. Z-man

      Regarding Fisher, I am referring to his rising to the occasion on good teams, playing within himself, being a leader and stabilizing influencce, etc. Despite his many weaknesses, Fish was the starting PG on several championship teams, and to my knowledge, was considered a major asset to those teams for reasons that go beyond his stats. Re: the comparison with Felton, I am more referring to how Fisher’s career year came in 2001-02, when he put up a .134 at age 27 on a championship team, with a .550 TS% and a .520 eFG% and a 17.6 usg%. What I’m saying is that this is a promising situation for Felton to put up his best shooting numbers if he plays within himself. Felton is a somewhat better rebounder and MUCH better passer than Fisher, while Fisher had the edge in 3 pt shooting. Defensively, they are similar (at the same age, of course.) Don’t know whether Felton has the intangibles that Fisher had, but again, this is as good of a situation as there is to find out.

    43. max fisher-cohen

      Fisher was an ideal role player for a team that only needed spot ups and defense from its point guard (i.e. a team that had Shaq). He played a role similar to the one Kidd played for Dallas. If our goal is to get Amar’e going, that’s not a solution, especially given we only have one above-average shooter with a diverse enough game to play significant minutes (J.R. Smith). But I think Felton can be more in a lot of ways than Fisher. Yeah, he’ll take dumb shots to show he’s a manly man, but he’s a decent penetrator and passer off the dribble, which could help make Amar’e relevant again. It’s scary to think though that what J.R. brings to the table could swing the Knicks’ record by 10-15 games.

    44. ruruland

      bobneptune:

      Overall the D might be fine in the regular season, but when the game slows down and the scouting gets stronger in the playoffs our on the ball defense is not strong enough and guys like melo and Amar’e don’t have defense in their DNA to give the requisite effort to play good enough D to go deep.

      I think the argument you, abbey and others make about one way players makes sense on the surface.

      Let’s get this out of the way though:
      Somehow the Knicks were the 5th best defensive team in the NBA with MDA coaching 66% of the games!!

      Is Brewer an upgrade over Landry Fields (and even Shumpert)? Was JR not a plus defender on the Nuggets WCF team, and did he not provide defensive energy off the bench last season? Shouldn’t a full season of JR, incomaprison to say, Bill Walker/ Douglas, be an upgrade?

      Should Felton and Kidd be better defensively than Bibby and Davis?

      Simply by roster additions and subtractions, have the Knicks not improved defensively, and improved at each position on the floor (imagine if they sign Martin?)

      The answer to all those questions is, of course, yes.

      Now, what is the difference between Woodson and MDA?
      The Knicks were the best defensive team in the NBA under Woodson, and Amar’e Stoudemire, for really the first time in his NBA career, looked like he had a clue.

      Second, Melo’s already proven that he can be a commited defender on a deep playoff run and for a full season.

      Third, this non-sense about Felton. Perhaps his defense slipped under MDA, and when he was fat last year, but he was very good in Charlotte in 2009 and had a defensive reputation early in his career.

      Kidd is widely considered a great team defender who, will not able to guard point guards, can handle most 2s. Kidd and Chandler anchored an NBA championship-caliber defense.

      Shumpert can guard basically any pg in the game…

    45. ruruland

      So, I find it very hard to believe that the defense is going to slip much. In fact, I think it’s more likely to improve. The question is, at what cost to the offense. That’s not relative to last year, as I think we can all agreee that it would be virtually impossible to be as bad as the Knicks were on offense last season given everything we’ve gone over ad nasuem.

      While it would be tempting to throw out a Camby, Chandler, Shumpert, Brewer, Felton/Kidd lineup just to see if the opponent could score, I think that basketball is a game that allows truly deep teams the ability to mix and match their lineups based on the opponent. And therefore I think you can maximize the strengths of the roster depending on how opposing teams are constructed.

      Dallas championship team was a lesser talented version of this years Knicks team — the blueprint exists.

      And, once again, Kidd and Felton both have strengths as passers or in Felton’s case, playmakers, and they’re both at least competent in spot-up situation.

      if you’re asking them to be the second best offensive player in the game on a consistent basis, they will struggle. But that shouldn’t often be the case.

      Brewer can be an effective low-usage offensive weapon. Carmelo Anthony is a very good passer to baseline cutters, and Brewer is a great baseline and middle cutter from his days in the flex.

      Brewer is also a solid offensive rebounder for a 3, and a really good one for a 2.

      While Camby is an awful finisher for a big man, he makes jumps shots at a 40-44% clip, and is a very skilled passer. He should complement any power forward on the Knicks roster.

      And who knows what we’ll see from Shumpert. He has the tools to be an all-star caliber offensive player. The guy we saw under Woodson was pretty good for a rookie.

      So, I don’t think the one-dimensional situation is as dire as some claim, as each of the so-called one-dimensional defensive players have an offensive skill that complements the…

    46. ruruland

      bobneptune: Baloney. There is one plus defender in the starting 5, namely chandler. JR has the talent to play D , but what are the chances of him keeping his head in the game for 36 minutes a night. Amar’e is an awful defender and melo can defend, but generally feels it is beneath his exulted stature to waste his precious energy in such mundane pursuits. Felton…. well good luck.

      Overall the D might be fine in the regular season, but when the game slows down and the scouting gets stronger in the playoffs our on the ball defense is not strong enough and guys like melo and Amar’e don’t have defense in their DNA to give the requisite effort to play good enough D to go deep.

      Our bench players are strictly one dimensional. Novak can score, but is awful defensively. Kidd can still shoot a decent 3, but can’t stay in front of any point in the league.

      Camby, Brewer and Shumpert are plus defenders but the offensive will come to a complete halt if 2 of them are on the floor at the same time, especially with Chandler.

      The half-court defense was pretty good against Miami– and they were at full health with Chandler ailing.

    47. JK47

      The Knicks should be a good defensive team again. But keep in mind that the Knicks’ strength of schedule last year was the weakest in the NBA. When you factor in strength of schedule the Knicks were probably not truly a top 5 defense last year. The Knicks had a lot of games against the worst offensive teams in the NBA last year. They played Charlotte 4 times, Toronto 4 times, Detroit 3 times, Washington 3 times, Boston 4 times, Cleveland 4 times and New Jersey 3 times.

      The worst offensive teams in the NBA were:
      23. New Jersey
      24. Cleveland
      25. Boston
      26. Washington
      27. Detroit
      28. New Orleans
      29. Toronto
      30. Charlotte

      The Knicks played 23 of their 66 games against this group– over a third of their schedule. Now granted, the Knicks’ schedule will probably be pretty easy again this year, because the Eastern Conference is by far the weaker conference, but the Knicks defensive numbers last year were certainly helped by the schedule maker.

    48. knicknyk

      JK47:
      The Knicks should be a good defensive team again.But keep in mind that the Knicks’ strength of schedule last year was the weakest in the NBA.When you factor in strength of schedule the Knicks were probably not truly a top 5 defense last year.The Knicks had a lot of games against the worst offensive teams in the NBA last year.They played Charlotte 4 times, Toronto 4 times, Detroit 3 times, Washington 3 times, Boston 4 times, Cleveland 4 times and New Jersey 3 times.

      The worst offensive teams in the NBA were:
      23. New Jersey
      24. Cleveland
      25. Boston
      26. Washington
      27. Detroit
      28. New Orleans
      29. Toronto
      30. Charlotte

      The Knicks played 23 of their 66 games against this group– over a third of their schedule.Now granted, the Knicks’ schedule will probably be pretty easy again this year, because the Eastern Conference is by far the weaker conference, but the Knicks defensive numbers last year were certainly helped by the schedule maker.

      Actually the Knicks have one of the toughest schedules in the NBA this season. Chicago has one of the easiest schedules and Boston Miami and Indy have easier schedules than we do.

    49. Z-man

      We lost twice to Boston, Toronto and Cleveland and once to the Nets, Hornets and Bobcats.

      Do we seriously think that the strength of schedule thing made a huge difference? They really struggled during the easisst part of their schedule, and played pretty well during some of the toughest stretches. There is no questioning whether they played well defensively under Woodson, and that the defensive effort was far more consistent than it was under D’Antoni, especially toward the end of his tenure.

      I agree that we will have issues scoring the basketball, and could use another perimeter threat. There is little doubt that we will be a top-10 defensive team, and maybe top-3 if all goes well (Kidd and amby are not washed up, Brewer is not a total zero on O, Novak uses the off-season to improve, Felton comes back in shape, Amare and Melo are consistently held (or better yet, hold themselves) accountable on D, Shump returns at 90% or better.) It all starts in the middle, though, and having current and former DPOYs as a 1-2 punch is very promising.

    50. Z-man

      knicknyk: Actually the Knicks have one of the toughest schedules in the NBA this season. Chicago has one of the easiest schedules and Boston Miami and Indy have easier schedules than we do.

      Your chart is based on average days rest between games. I doubt that this is anything that makes much difference in an 82-game season; strentgh of opponents is probably much more of an issue, and the EC is definitely weaker than the WC, meaning that the Knicks will play weaker teams more often than any team in the WC. They also never play themselves, so their schedule will be weaker than the weaker teams in the EC. My guess is that they have somewhere in the top-10 easiest schedules.

    51. johnno

      JR, Amare and Melo all played major minutes last year — as did Fields, Bibby, Davis and Lin, who also routinely get trashed here as lousy defenders — and the Knicks were 5th in defensive efficiency. They also had a coach who didn’t stress defense for 2/3 of the season. Maybe, just maybe, it’s possible that Amare, Melo and JR aren’t the worst three defenders in the NBA? The only other possible explanation is that Tyson Chandler is by far the best defender in the history of the NBA because he covers up the shortcomings of a team full of horrible defenders. He’s good, but he’s not THAT good.

      bobneptune: JR has the talent to play D , but what are the chances of him keeping his head in the game for 36 minutes a night. Amar’e is an awful defender and melo can defend, but generally feels it is beneath his exulted stature to waste his precious energy in such mundane pursuits.

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