Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

New York Knicks 98 – Indiana Pacers 103 – Half a Game Recap

I wonder how workers’ unions do their job in the States. Watching these Knicks games I can’t help but being reminded how sad the unions situation is in Italy.

I have been the CEO of a very small company and a board member of a quite larger one (>140 employees), so from time to time I had to deal with union representatives, and I found a constant in all of my five years holding those positions: unions manifested themselves only when it was time to ward the bad workers. When I say “bad workers”, I’m not talking about people whose output was not up to par because of their own limits or aptitude; I’m talking about the slackers who were safely employed and were exploiting the fact that in Italy it’s pretty much impossibile to fire someone who has a permanent contract. You see, here unions don’t actively seek to help guys who don’t slack. They pretty much always end up finding a job by themselves, and as soon as a good boss happens on their way they’re pretty much set, since that boss will certainly recognize the good value they bring to the company.

The others, though? They’re the butter and bread of the unions. Unions need money to live, and those slackers need to squeeze every last drop from their “worker rights” to enjoy whatever is it that they’re doing that’s not work. (Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not a Solonic tyrant: I always cared for the well-being of my employees just like now I care for the well-being of my clients. I’m a vocal supporter of the original idea of unions. I’m also very much a vocal non-supporter of whomever basically steals money not showing up to do their job). So the unions see in them the best clients they can get: guys who will certainly pay them in order to work the least and being protected while doing nothing.

To give you an idea: once we had a worker who at some point decided he didn’t want to do the job he was doing. We came with two different job profiles we could have offered him, but he refused for undisclosed reasons. Anyway, hell bent on never returning to his titular job, soon after that he faked a soccer-like flop/injury, widening a bit his right leg while passing beside a (not loose) spare tire in our warehouse. He collided lightly with the tire and then proceeded to roll over on the floor as if someone shot him in the leg. Although the security cameras recorded everything and the dynamic of the incident was very clear, he found a complacent physician (whose name was provided by the union) who said he was not able to get to work for at least six months. Under the table, union reps were telling us that he wanted another type of job, and if that job came along maybe his injury would go through a miracle recovery. Suffice to say that I left that company more than a year later and he never got to work until I was there. I guess every workplace has his Kawhi.

That said, that’s how I feel when I see Lance, DeAndre, Mudiay and Vonleh getting significant minutes this late in the season. I would never suggest Lance is a slacker, and probably neither of the other three is, but what’s the point in playing mostly useless expiring guys in mid March for a super tanking team? Especially when all of them, save probably for Lance, are real hindrances to our resident wunderkind? I don’t hold it personally against anyone. But what’s the point in yanking Mitch in the fourth because he picked up his fifth foul? You’re trying to save his energy and his last foul for what? For when you’re going to the restaurant after the game? What’s the point in playing the expiring Mudiay so much, when it’s clear he can’t really steer the wheel for a team? Mud played a quite efficient offensive game (21 points on 14 shots, 4 assists and only a turnover, his best game in a while), but he can’t pass the damn ball to any spot from 16 feet in, rendering whatever rim running center is playing with him muffled. Mudiay rocks an AST% or 23.9. At the moment there are 57 players (having played at least 100 minutes) with a higher number. Some among them: Joe Ingles (ok), the decomposing coil of Jose Calderon (what), noted Knicks-killer TJ McConnell (huh), an ancient Jamal Crawford (gross), Kadeem Allen (ahem), Matthew Dellavedova (come on). In short: why do you keep playing this guy, especially with a budding star in the making that only needs to get the ball lobbed at him. and don’t actually reward the guys that are trying to uhhhh play basketball? I’ll never understand this facet of the Fiz season.

A few quick notes, as good and bad make no sense anymore these days:

– The game was terrible to watch. This was the first non Dominican Republic related time this season where I skipped some parts. It was too much to take in. That said, we almost won. I guess Indiana will make a valiant effort to get into the playoffs as a top-4 seed, then roll around and die in the first round. Poor Dipo.

– DeAndre Jordan is a surprisingly smart passer. With a capable offensive coach, he might have at least two of those Kyle O’Quinn backdoor assists every game. With some more effort from the coaching staff Jordan might have recorded a triple double. Such a shame his rim-protecting effort has totally waned. Anyway, a barely defending DJ is miles and miles better than whatever it was that Kanter was doing.

– As I said, Mudiay had his best game since coming back. He even passed the ball to Mitch inside once (of course Mitch delivered). In his last 10 games, his shooting averages aren’t even that bad: 44.5/43.3/70.7. He also shot just 1.7 free throws per game and had more turnovers (2.9) than assists (2.8). His overall WS/48 is 0.029. Blargh.

– Over the same span, Smith is shooting a terrible 40.8/30.6/59.1. He shot 2.2 free throws per game (too few) but he dished 6.0 apg to 2.5 turnovers per game. Also a cool 1.2 steals per game. Even while playing badly, he’s a much superior team orchestrator than Mudiay. He’s playing like shit lately, though.

– I like that Knox is capable of hitting more than half his shots every ten games or so. I also like in an ironic way the fact that when he goes after boards on defense he displays an herculean-like effort when there is nobody around. I don’t like anything else. This is a supposedly athletic kid who let Bogdanovic blow by him for a simple layup. Bogdanovic is a good player, but Bojan moves around at the same speed of a dying roomba. Draw your own conclusions.

– Bogdanovic came into the league as a possibly balding 25 year old (his hair looked very thin and spotty). Kudos to him about having mostly kept all of those hair. I am a bit envious (and I guess Evan Fournier and Cody Zeller – and soon Trae Young – share my feelings).

– Of course Thad Young hit a corner three. Thad hitting a corner three from the left side against us is like those strange sounds that Timbaland used to sneak into his productions. Distinctive, underrated, annoying.

– I don’t know how, but Mitch is upping his already otherworldly BLK% in this span. If the season ended today, he’d have the highest BLK% ever in the history of the league for players with at least 900 minutes played. The highest EVER. I don’t know how to emphasize that more.

– Wait I do. THE HIGHEST EVER.

That’s all, another slog absurdly giving birth to 1300+ words. I have to make sure Lady Farfa is not slipping me drugs under the table.

See you on Friday!

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33 comments on “New York Knicks 98 – Indiana Pacers 103 – Half a Game Recap

  1. DS

    Thanks Farfa!

    So KP is almost ready for 5-on-5. I think the only way he fails is if he gets hurt. When he was with us, I used to have my doubts based on not only injuries but also because, in my opinion, he hadn’t actually accomplished much yet. Now, I imagine he will be even more driven to play well.

  2. thenoblefacehumper

    Good ‘cap of a miserable game, not easy to do!

    As a member of a teacher’s union in America (where the employer-employee is bent in favor of the former to an almost comical extent) it’s hard for me to sympathize with the political views, but I understand the situation is very different outside of the States.

    It is truly mind-boggling that in the dregs of a season that was already one long dreg, we’re not giving the young, non-expiring guys every minute they can handle and seeing what happens. I mean the few of us still watching the games have dealt with enough, both this season and in general.

  3. Z-man

    I’m a member of a supervisor’s union who supervises members of a teacher’s union and a non-pedagogical employee’s union. My feelings about unions are pretty complicated.

  4. Hubert

    We either have one thread for three days or two threads in the same day with crazy crossover!

    I wanted follow up on Bob Neptune’s insightful commentary from the Morning News thread. I actually think the Giants logic in this particular move is sound. It’s all about win curve. Thanks to too many years of Jerry Reese and a terrible rookie campaign from Gettelman, the Giants are fucked for at least two seasons. What good is having Beckham in his prime on a team with a 4 win core? I think it was smart to trade him now while he had value.

    However, I think he had a lot more value than what they got. I’m particularly irked that they didn’t even get the Browns best third round pick.

    Also, Re: Collins, I get not wanting to bring him back, but he had value. He should have been franchised and traded rather than let go.

    Overall, I think Gettleman did a fairly decent job course correcting after an awful decision to try to compete last year. I have no problem moving on from Beckham and Collins given how bad we project to be. I just think they should be sitting here today with a slightly better haul of draft picks.

  5. geo

    reflecting back on the dolan interview yesterday – I don’t think he did that bad for himself…

    or, should I say, it went pretty much as expected…I mean we’re all already aware of his limitations and many of his personality and behavior flaws…

    a couple of interesting things for me was his comments about steve mills –
    for myself, his biggest flaw as an owner is his choice in selecting management personnel…

    he ain’t cheap, just skewed in his process for selecting those people he entrusts in running the club…

    also the part where he has no desire to follow the steinbrenner legacy path wherein he’s “beloved” at some point in the future…

    the whole conversation reminded me of the scene in gladiator between richard harris and joaquin phoenix – when harris tells him he is going to cede his power to russell crowe, and, eventually the senate…

    phoenix responds by recalling a letter written to him by his father lauding the virtues of wisdom, fortitude and temperance…

    But I have other virtues, father. Ambition – that can be a virtue when it drives us to excel.

    then he suffocates his father…

    for all his flaws – james lawrence dolan is competitive, ambitious, and lacks any regard for external validation…

    I guess that and inheriting boatloads of assets and money will earn you the most valuable franchise in the nba, and, allow you to call the shots in your own “house”…

    seems it can also lead to perpetual failure for our knicks…

  6. Hubert

    Giants’ fan here.
    I do NOT like that they traded Beckham. However…

    …there is a realm where if the goal is to restock the talent cupboard with youth and picks (sound familiar?), you can defend the trade by saying that trading your best player in his prime allows you to further hit the reset button. I’ll buy that if they do something with Eli this offseason.

    I think all the outrage about Eli is misguided (not from you, CDiggy, but the stuff I’m reading). Sure, if they were trying to contend, keeping him on board would be a terrible mistake. But they’re going to be terrible next year. So paying him to be the caretaker of a 3-13 team while (hopefully) mentoring Dwayne Haskins doesn’t really bother me.

    With all the dead money on our cap this year, we should be strong favorites for the #1 pick next year, where the Alabama QB projects to be a Zion-like entry.

  7. geo

    anyone think we’ll need to trade up to get haskins?

    doesn’t seem like the cards, 49’rs, jets, or raiders would go after him, but, I’m kind of worried about the bucs selecting him at five…

  8. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I’m struggling to see how Eli is being maligned in all of this. He’s an end-of-career player who led the Giants to two of the best Super Bowls victories in history, crushing Mr. I’ve Never Eaten a Strawberry Because Sugar Is Satan’s Dandruff twice in dramatic fashion.

    Why is everyone mad at him? Just cut the guy, have a press conference calling him the greatest QB in franchise history and a future HOFer, and move on. He’s 38 years old.

  9. Hubert

    I don’t think the giants can afford to trade up. They need to have discipline, sit tight, and take the best player available at 6. If Murray and Haskins go in front of them, that means a premier edge rusher is going to be there at 6. They need both, so just sit there and take whichever falls to you.

    Also, I like Haskins, but not so much that I’d trade up for him.

    They will take a huge PR hit if they don’t draft a QB, but it’s the right move.

  10. bobneptune

    I’m struggling to see how Eli is being maligned in all of this

    More NY press click bait shit and the moron fans are in an uproar.

    Once they acquire a competent RT (either with pick #6, #17,# 37 or #95 in the first 3 rounds) Eli can still function on a plus level given time to make decisions. His brother couldn’t throw outside the numbers his last few years but Eli is still healthy and smart when standing upright.

    Saquan Barkley should be targeted on passes 12 times a game (and Gallman another 4-5) in an effort to get him out in space and minimize the tackle to tackle pounding. Get the ball out of Eli’s hand and use his brain to matriculate the ball down the field.

    Gettleman has 12 picks in this draft to fill holes. He should draft a QB if there is someone attainable that he loves. If they came out with an OT, a pass rusher and a corner with picks 6, 17 and 37 I would be a happy camper and they would be on the correct road back. Putting 190 million into 2 players on a non contending team is foolish.

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

    Reports out of Dallas say KP looked unbelievably good in 3 on 3 practice yesterday. Carlisle was glowing. They’ve decided he’s ready for a no restrictions 5 on 5 practice today. Too bad Mills/Perry/Fizdale didn’t get to see him in 3 on 3 against Knox.

  12. Bruno Almeida

    The same Dallas crew that was so unbelievably joyful when they drafted DSJ that they shipped him 1 year and a half later!

    I’m going to add extra points for Mills and Perry after this report.

  13. Hubert

    Gettleman has 12 picks in this draft to fill holes. He should draft a QB if there is someone attainable that he loves. If they came out with an OT, a pass rusher and a corner with picks 6, 17 and 37 I would be a happy camper and they would be on the correct road back.

    I keep seeing mock drafts today that speculate they will use this newfound draft capital to move up to 2 or 4 and draft Haskins. Look at this suggestion from NJ.com, for instance:

    Giants trade first-round pick (No. 6), Browns first-round pick (No. 17), fourth-round pick (No. 108), and a 2020 second-round pick for 49ers first-round pick (No. 2) and seventh-round pick (No. 243)

    That’s insane! I like Haskins but he’s got one year under his belt and this team has holes all over the roster. I’d be happy to take him at 6 if he’s there. I’d also be happy taking one of the elite pass rushers if he isn’t. I really hope they don’t do something stupid like that just because people are calling for their heads.

  14. bobneptune

    Reports out of Dallas say KP looked unbelievably good in 3 on 3 practice yesterday. Carlisle was glowing.

    Honestly… who cares other than click bait media???

    The new post Phil regime did everything humanly possible to kiss the Porzingis family ring including sending Fizdale the flim flam man to Riga FFS and the man made it clear they wanted out. No fault to the new regime.

    They got quite reasonable value under the gun.

    If the Knicks sign Durant and Kyrie, even if KP turns into a Jabbar with a Curry three ball it will still be a great trade. If they whiff and still rent the space out for more picks…. terrific. When he plays 50 top end games it will be the first time in his life. Honestly Good Luck to everyone, but paraphrasing Michael Corleone to Fredo , and Paul Sorvino says to Henry Hill after handing him a few hundred….”Now you are dead to me….” Let it go……

  15. bobneptune

    Giants trade first-round pick (No. 6), Browns first-round pick (No. 17), fourth-round pick (No. 108), and a 2020 second-round pick for 49ers first-round pick (No. 2) and seventh-round pick (No. 243)

    The only way this moronic trade is good is if the believe Haskins = Brady. If they only think Haskins = Montana it is questionable :-)

  16. Farfa Post author

    I totally subscribe to @17.

    I found myself quickly not caring at all about KP’s situation or future outcomes. It’s like when you know you did everything humanly possible in a relationship and your partner ditches you anyway. It’s clear he didn’t have the high character needed to thrive as a Knick. Even if he becomes a perennial 25/8 guy, say a borderline MVP candidate season in and season out, we did our best and shouldn’t ever regret moving away.

    The fact that our new partner (Mitch) looks and behaves even better is just icing on the cake. We dodged the toxic relationship bullet. It’s always a huge win.

  17. Bruno Almeida

    Yeah, I’m only half paying attention because I want to see what happens if Dallas starts badly next season and Porzingis still hasn’t re-signed. Then Janis will show up and start bitching again that Porzingis wants to win and wants to be in Dallas for a long long time, but they have to keep him happy or he’ll sign the QO because it isn’t about the money blah blah blah.

    I am very glad that he’s someone else’s problem to figure out. If he becomes a star who cares, he left of his own accord and we all know who started this shit in the first place.

  18. thenoblefacehumper

    Also, now that we know KP didn’t want to play with Durant, the whole “he requested a trade because he didn’t think management was making smart moves” idea sure looks silly huh?

  19. Ntilakilla

    This is absolutely crazy. Every time I see a Mitchell Robinson stat – I’m like damn. Every time I see a Mitchell Robinson stat and then I remind myself he didn’t play organized basketball a year prior – I’m like DAMNNN. pic.twitter.com/T8nF7UoQzo— New Era Knicks (@NewEraKnicks) March 13, 2019

  20. wetbandit

    How do you know he didn’t want to play with Durant? Thought his issue was the tanking, coach not playing guys like Kanter, and the constant chaos of Phil’s tenure. Which, like, sure- tanking because you’re injured man, and Kanter sucks, and Phil is gone so there’s minimal chaos.

  21. bidiong

    I’m sure whatever the real reason KP wanted to request a trade was never told to anyone that would leak it.

    You have to give kudos to Perry for reading the tea leaves and having an “In Case of Emergency, Break Glass” trade lined up with Dallas so Janas the asshole couldn’t weaken his trade stock.

    *And the fact that the planned trade never leaked was pretty sweet too.

  22. geo

    om yeah, one other interesting thing from the dolan interview – he knew exactly who mitchell robinson was, and, how good is he…

    there’s absolutely no doubt that every gm in the league is going to be coming for mitch this off season..

  23. geo

    really good point concerning the difference between ownership and stewardship…

    yeah, jimmy d wanted to make it very clear he is not a public servant, but a businessman that provides entertainment services to the public…

    and, if you don’t like it – fuck you…what a charmer our owner is…

  24. Knick fan not in NJ who thinks our rookies will lead us to a lousy lottery pick in 2019

    It may be bad public relations to admit that, but I think almost every owner feels that way. Think of the number of times sports franchises have moved because the owner wanted a more valuable franchise or more revenue. Those owners were ‘t being public stewards then. They aren’t being public stewards when they set ticket prices or when they decide whether to emphasize franchise profitability or to make less money in the pursuit of a ring. I think if you spend maybe $2billion mostly of your own money on something, you would feel ownership too.

  25. Bruno Almeida

    Well, he is the owner of the franchise, he should be entitled to ownership. He’s just an owner that provides a terrible entertainment service, but one that’s lucky enough to have die hard fans and be located in a gigantic tourism capital.

    In the end it’s a business and he keeps making money, so he’s not per se a bad owner for the intents and purposes of the New York Knicks franchise, but well, that doesn’t buy even an inch of respect from me.

  26. ptmilo

    Well, he is the owner of the franchise, he should be entitled to ownership.

    actually he’s just a tiny little fractional owner, one member of the dolan group which itself is a just a cute little minority owner with around 21% percent economic interest in the knicks (and JD’s current share is around 3%). unfortunately the nba got around to banning flipping off fans before super voting stock so that little share gets him all the way to the tyrant’s seat which as we know from spotify is really just a terrible cross he must bravely bear.

  27. Nick C.

    State Senator Suggests Shifting MSG Tax Breaks After James …
    bleacherreport.com/articles/2825034-state…

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