Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Next Day Reaction: Knicks 104, Mavericks 90

Dallas Mavericks 94 Final
Recap | Box Score
104 New York Knicks
Carmelo Anthony, SF 34 MIN | 10-22 FG | 9-14 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 31 PTS | +10

Melo rebounds and defends with vigor, forcing turnovers and practically guaranteeing the beheading of an opponent in the near future via his windmill/executioner-bringing-down-a-scythe manner of blocking shots…yawn. Melo eschews massaging the ball and killing any hope of offensive flow with an Arthur Murray School series of jab steps…tell me something I don’t know. Melo carries the offense in the second quarter when everyone else is misfiring, nails a clutch trey in the 4th to extend the lead to seven, passes the ball when doubled, drives to the rim at every opportunity and (gulp) makes his teammates better like LeBron/MJ/Bird/Magic did/do…dog bites man. Same ol’, same ol’.

MAYBE it’s time to stop being surprised and just assume that this is what we’ll see moving forward. Honestly, I could just as easily have cut and pasted any of the blurbs from the previous three recaps and none of y’all would have batted an eyelash. How consistently dominant has Melo been? Welp, even noted Knickophile Bill Simmons was moved to exclaim in 140 characters of glee, “Just curious – how many Knicks fans would trade Carmelo for Gallinari, Chandler and Mosgov right now?” Anyone wanna raise their hand?

Didn’t think so.

Me neither.

And I’ve been a fairly vocal critic of the trade from Jump Street. I guess this makes me the basketball Dick Morris and even if I were to develop a proclivity for toe-sucking, I couldn’t be happier.

Three wee, hamate bone’s to pick. First, MAKE YOUR FREE THROWS (more on this later). Second, now that he’s in ball-hawk mode, the next step in his development is to learn how to avoid fouls or even when to take his foot off the gas, especially situations like the middle of the third quarter when Melo’s already racked up three personals, f’rinstance. Third, is it just me, or does Melo get whacked on the aforementioned forays to the hole time and time again and the refs are all like, “Maybe that was a foul. Where’s my whistle? I knew I had it a second ago. Maybe I dropped it on the ground. No…but look, a piece of popcorn! Hey kid in the front row eating popcorn. Did you drop this? S’okay, you can still eat it. Five second rule, dontcha know. Plus, YOLO, amirite? You’re welcome, kid. Now, back to the game. Hey, the team playing the Knicks has a rebound. I wonder how that happened. I thought the Carmelo person was gonna score? Oh well, this is a good game. You watching this, kid?” I’m not sure what can be done about the arbiters’ spyrectopheliophoba w/r/t Mr. Anthony going forward. Melo’s kvetching certainly isn’t doing the trick. Perhaps I shall pen an angry missive to my local governmental representative. That never fails to spur action!

Ronnie Brewer, SF 37 MIN | 4-10 FG | 3-5 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 13 PTS | +19

If Brewer really has absorbed Shawne Williams’ life-force (Shawne doesn’t seem to be using it right now, so it’s totes okay) and/or stolen his superpowers, Rogue-style, then we’ve added a bargain-bin priced, ELITE role player/glue guy. We’re talking Bruce Bowen-esque, people, without the irritatingly evil side effects. If you have a chance, I highly recommend watching Ronnie off the ball for a possession or two. It’s not just the cuts toward the rim where he’s angling for a layup or the fade into the corner, it’s the subtle motion designed to create space for a secondary or even tertiary target in an offensive set. Think of it like a chess master seeing the whole board, thinking three or four moves ahead. Pure bliss.

Tyson Chandler, C 30 MIN | 4-8 FG | 3-5 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 11 PTS | +14

We still haven’t seen 48 minutes of full-on TYSON SMASH mode this season. One has to assume that he’s still recovering from the dinged knee and his bout with Strep throat. Instead, as has been the case in the prior three games, Tyson-y things have come in fits and spurts, like the rebound and putback dunk, punctuated by a yawp of such pure love/rage that it’d make Walt Whitman blush. Then again, it may not just be the various boo-boos. What if, because the ‘Bockers have added a gaggle of plus defenders to the rotation and subtracted a few…er…not plus ones (cough, STAT, cough, Landry, cough, Bibby, cough, Baron, cough, cough, COUGH…hack, sputter, gasp, wheeze, I gotta quit smoking…cough), Chandler’s defensive dominance is both less visible and less necessary, like reducing a mountain’s peak by dumping truckload after truckload of sand into the valley. If so, yay!

Jason Kidd, PG 15 MIN | 2-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 6 PTS | +7

After years of cursing Kidd’s name with the venom normally reserved for scorned, philandering ex-lovers, it’s both slightly jarring and a joy to have him on our collective arm. Ye gods, what a glorious player he must have been when still possessing the 3-4 steps he’s lost to the ravages of time. I mean, when he was vivisecting the early-2000′s Knicks, it was easy to see how good he was, but it’s a different animal when one witnesses it on a daily (game-ly?) basis. There’s never been a ‘Bocker who was I absolutely positively am SURE will make the right decision (on both ends of the court). Last night, on defense in the third quarter, he almost single-handedly turned the game around by swiping two midcourt steals and drawing an 4th foul on OJ Mayo, which resulted in the USC marksman’s forced absence from game. Crucial, critical plays all.

And those hands. Gosh golly, those hands. It’s like a magician confusing/distracting a spectator with some idle patter or by waving hanky while simultaneously palming a card/rabbit. Before you know it, he’s off down the court with the ball, even if, as friend-of-the-blog netw3rk twat, watching him scoot these days is akin to a senior citizen really gunning his/her Segway. That said, he should NOT have been guarding Mayo to start the game. He was late closing a couple of times in the first half and it while it may not have been the sole cause, it certainly didn’t do anything to dissuade OJ from getting nuclear-meltdown hot. Still, so much great-y, great, greatness in a compact 15 mins of PT.

Raymond Felton, PG 38 MIN | 3-11 FG | 2-5 FT | 4 REB | 9 AST | 8 PTS | +17

A series of botched bunnies and aborted open jumpers makes his final 3-11 line look powerful ugly, but Raymond certainly filled in every other box in the point guard checklist. He did a dandy job keeping Collison out of the lane, only coughed up the ball twice, initiated the offense with aplomb and would have had double-digit assists had his ‘mates not aborted more than a few wide open shots off feeds from Ray-Ray. Plus, there’s definitely something to be said about his overall demeanor/feistiness that cannot be dismissed. I pooh-pooed all the “Bulldog Mentality” talk that was bandied about when he was re-acquired, but, not to get all patriarchal/militaristic, when a team like the Mavs have been barking and crowing all day, getting in the grill of Orange Juice Mayonnaise is an important thing, not only for tonight’s tilt, but to create the impression/perception that the Knicks are a team that you can’t push around. Back in the day, people legitimately feared facing the Rileybockers and if you’re thinking on the court, even for a moment, about suffering bodily harm, you’re not thinking about the million other tasks that are necessary to win the game, thus putting yourself at a ginormous disadvantage. Felt would fit in jussssssst fine with that badass crew.

Rasheed Wallace, PF 18 MIN | 2-6 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 6 PTS | -4

We all love kindly Ol’ Uncle ‘Sheed, but tonight wasn’t his best effort. I wish Son of Wood had gone more to Thomas, who would’ve done a better job defending against the Brand/Kaman/Wright troika. Then again, seeing super-cool Kurt matched up against a lost member of the McPoyle clan like Chris Kaman was a joyous collision of polar opposites.

Steve Novak, SF 16 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 5 PTS | -1

Steve Novak is throwing up bricks. Steve Novak took (and made) a shot from fewer than 15 feet from the hoop. I do not understand or like this brave, new world. It got so bad, I unleashed the telekinetic powers I possess to aid certain individuals of lesser ability during moments of great import — think Undead Mike’s corner three in game four of last year’s playoffs. P.S. You’re welcome. It’s not something I unleash every game, but things had gotten so bad, I felt it was necessary to give a psychic boost to Steve’s final three-point heave at the end of the third quarter. (Again, you’re welcome, Knick fans). In all seriousness, you can tell that he’s speeded up his release this year, and it’s not helping. Slow down, Steve. You missing shots makes me feel all kids of sad. And I don’t really have psychic powers, so you’re on your own. Or do I….

Marcus Camby, C 8 MIN | 0-0 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -8

Ten years, Marcus. Wow. It feels like yesterday. How’ve you been? Good to hear. Still rebounding, I see, though you’re not really much of a jumping bean anymore. S’okay. I get that. Like my Polish-born cousin (who can’t ditch his accent/has gravitas up the wazoo so he can get away with statements like the following:) says, “Time is the fire that burns us all.

Pablo Prigioni, PG 10 MIN | 0-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | -7

You know, I’m as partial to Prig’s pass-first mentality as much as the next guy, but it’s starting to become a liability. He can’t pass up wide open threes and layups just because. Take the shot, Prigs. When Woodson tells J.R. to shoot more, pretend he’s talking to you. We also got to see him burned on more than one occasion on D by Beaubois n’ Collison.

J.R. Smith, SG 33 MIN | 8-16 FG | 3-3 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 22 PTS | +3

As always, the J.R. Smith experience is going to vacillate (See, Clyde.THAT’s the proper usage of the word “vacillate”) between of dizzying highs and guffaw-able lows. It’s just that the latter are occurring at an ever-decreasing rate. After Melo picked up his 4th foul, Smith absolutely carried the Knicks offense, going 3-5 in the 3rd quarter, shutting down Carter/Mayo in the 2nd half and swishing a bomb at the end of the half that was vital to the team’s 2nd half surge. I’m a big believer in points that carry as much emotional weight as they adjust the scoreboard and that was definitely a huge boost to their collective self-esteem. There’s a different feeling being down two after struggling for 24 minutes. You think, “Hey, we had our problems but look, it’s a one-possession game.” Smith may be endlessly frustrating, but he gets the whole “time to seize the moment” thing. And in a big way.

Five Things We Saw

  1. I was curious what would happen when the Knicks stopped hitting 45% from downtown (though banging home 36% of their treys is hardly what one would deem “ice-cold”). Would they panic, get stagnant, and revert to ISO-Melo? Would the defense suffer? Well, if tonight’s any indication, they’re wholly prepared to weather a wobbly quarter or two. They came out like you’d expect a team that hasn’t played in five games to come out. They were a step slow rotating to shooters and picking up rotations, leading to a flurry of open shots for the Texans, the second unit looked thoroughly discombobulated in the 2nd quarter and Dallas was controlling the tempo of the game. Luckily, they managed to stay within single digits and, in the 2nd half, they clamped down, held the Mavs to 37 total points and slowly, if surely, built up an insurmountable lead. At no point, watching this game, would one be really tempted to think, “Whoa, this is a DOMINANT team.” They just ground the Mavs down to the nubbin like a vise that’s slowly tightening around one’s testes, took care of the ball, forced bad shots and turnovers and in general, proved themselves to be a maddeningly frustrating team to play against because they don’t beat themselves/make unforced errors. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I never saw this coming, but boy, is it a delight to behold.
  2. I was just as petrified when Melo picked up his fourth foul, considering how utterly wonky the offense had looked without him. But instead of panicking and individuals trying to rectify the situation on their own, they moved the ball to the open man and trusted that the system would work, even if the most important cog in the machine was tied to the pine. I’m sure we all expected a letdown game and that stretch would have been the perfect opportunity for everything to go to pot. But it didn’t and that has made all the difference.
  3. There is one final step in the transformation of this team into a true powerhouse. You have to learn when to step on the throat of the guy who’s down (I know, I’m a liberal and I shouldn’t be talking such violent potty-talk. That may be true, but eff that noise. I wanna put a hurt on somebody and screw the bozos who can’t handle my swag. Where were we? Oh yes…). When the Knicks had extended the lead to twelve, they proceeded to gort five consecutive free throws and overall, shot a ghastly 26-38 (68.4%) from the charity stripe. That’s a moment where you can end the game. Just plain break the other team’s spirit/spine, and they chucked it away. Dallas could very easily have come back and that wood have shredded all this feel-goodery right quick. Botching the freebies in general is a bad idea, but when you’ve got a man down, you don’t let him off the canvas like that. I’m sure that everyone will get to spend a little extra time with Dave Hopla to work out the kinks, but honestly it’s a matter of concentration as the duck snorts came at a moment when the game was getting particularly chippy. It’s plumb foreign-feeling to be writing this, but I have no doubt that they’ll figure this out, too.
  4. If you haven’t seen it already on the Twitter, there’s a comic-book metaphor for our boys and their big, slow, lumbering, unceasing, unflappable, planet-smashing creature that the Knickerbockers have become. It’s GALAKNICKTUS, DEVOURER OF WORLDS.

    Enjoy. (And yes, the SIlver Shumper is our herald. Though here he is incorrectly depicted as Nova [for all you fellow silver-age comix geeks out there]).

  5. To end this overly-long recap, I’m going to discuss uniforms for a sec, and not in an aesthetic way. It’s gonna get a tad political, so if that’s not your bag o’ tea, feel free to skip ahead to the comments.

    It’s apparently Military Appreciation month (how Veterans’ Day has morphed into a month-long event is whole other kettle of fish) so we were treated to stars n’ stripes festooned headbands on Vince Carter, J.R. Smith and numerous other players throughout the league. It’s dumb. Really dumb. Offensively dumb. And not only because it made Vince et al. look like they were about to appear in a shoddy remake of the movie Easy Rider.

    A flag isn’t just a piece of cloth. It means something. It represents a set of ideals; whether or not our nation always lives up to them. Just as I think burning the flag is a godawfully stupid form of protest (though I will always defend one’s right to do so). I think it’s just as unseemly to fling the flag on sporting uniforms (like Major League Baseball’s caps that are worn on Memorial Day, etc.) just so Modell’s can go about hawking them at absurdly high prices. Both the selling and the burning of the flag are cheap ploys that only degrade everyone involved and doesn’t (at least for me) make me question or further understand important things like war, or the use of the military, or liberty or the ongoing American experiment. And that’s what the flag/Veteran’s Day should do.

    I think people are smart enough to understand that the invocation of our national symbol(s) doesn’t bequeath patriotism or an adherence to the ideals and ideas that our country was founded upon to the wearer. The selling of the flag in this matter assumes that it we are dumb enough to think that. Or worse, that it stands for nothing and therefore it’s okay to slap them on a Happy Meal. That’s what’s dumb/offensive about it. I don’t think it should be illegal or in any way legislated against, but for me, stuff like this is just nauseating. End of rant.

89 comments on “Next Day Reaction: Knicks 104, Mavericks 90

  1. Frank O.

    Robert, you are the man.

    Couldn’t agree more on the draping everything in the fucking flag. It’s a friggin’ marketing ploy. I too think it’s a silly form of protest, and also argue for people’s right to do it.

    And I can’t stand Vince Carter anyway…

    Hard to find fault with this team. Continue, please

  2. knicknyk

    I actually really haven’t been that impressed with Felton thus far. I actually think Kidd has been outplaying him. Feltons FG% steadily drops from quarter to quarter. 50% in the first quarter then 33% in the 2nd 36% in the 3rd & 29% in the fourth quarter. But I take back every terrible thing I said about Kidd. He has been huge for us thus far.

  3. massive

    I think Mike Woodson and Glen Grunwald should be in the (really) early running for Coach and GM of the year. The job Grunwald has done under Dolan and what Woodson has been able to do with Melo and JR Smith is really encouraging. In my days as a Knicks fan (I was born in the early 90s), I have never seen a team this dominant wear blue and orange. This team is finally beating teams they should, and that is a sign of great leadership. These two guys should be rewarded for this.

    Something interesting? I was watching the Knicks Now interviews, and it appears that everyone in the locker room has a picture of the championship trophy on their locker. You gotta love that level of focus from the team.

  4. Frank

    Sounds like Phil Jackson might take that Laker job. If he does, you have to hand it to him- he only takes the job when he knows he has the most talent and highest chance for success. When he doesn’t have the talent, he leaves.

  5. Unreason

    RE: Kidd. I feel the same way you do about him; not easy to cotton to but really impressed. I’d be OK if Woodson granted his druthers of handling the point for most of the final 5 min. I’d prefer that he, Melo and Chandler always be on the floor then unless it’s garbage time.

    I’d give Chandler an A. Though the whole team did play great D, his maniacal determination not to let Dallas back in it down the stretch had as much to do with the W as anything, IMO. Plus, there was about 6 min in the 4th when the offense went from ugly to frankly offensive and he was the only Knick not to limply twiddle his layups off the rim or try closing his eyes at the stripe and see which photographer he could nail with his free throws.

    Beyond being unbeaten, other small-sample delights (petits fours?) to savor before they melt in our mouths include the curiously tasty truth that having dined thus far exclusively on teams currently over 500, NY is now 3rd in the league in ppg and 1st in points allowed.

  6. jon abbey

    Unreason:
    NY is now 3rd in the league in ppg and 1st in points allowed.

    and they’ve beaten the only two teams who are scoring more than them (MIA/DAL).

  7. Unreason

    Frank:
    Sounds like Phil Jackson might take that Laker job. If he does, you have to hand it to him- he only takes the job when he knows he has the most talent and highest chance for success. When he doesn’t have the talent, he leaves.

    If he climbed on and they continued to go down in flames, that’d be alright. He’s an irritant. Canning Brown was the right move though. I can’t remember a more obviously misguided decision about an NBA offense to install. What was that guy thinkin’?

  8. njasdjdh

    Re: Melo getting fouled on drives

    I mentioned this a couple threads back, but it seemed to me that refs are calling fouls less this year. Well, Hollinger confirmed it in an article for ESPN yesterday.

  9. ruruland

    Frank: Can’t tell if your serious or not. I thought coaches didn’t make any difference.

    He’s being serious, unfortunately.

  10. ruruland

    njasdjdh:
    Re: Melo getting fouled on drives

    I mentioned this a couple threads back, but it seemed to me that refs are calling fouls less this year. Well, Hollinger confirmed it in an article for ESPN yesterday.

    Melo, historically, doesn’t get the superstar whistle. part of it is that he doesn’t show contact well, part of it is that he plays in a ton of contact.

  11. cgreene

    Did anyone else also notice the end of game strategy with the lead? That’s when Woody went specifically to ISO Melo and figured that he’d either get fouled, double teamed or get a good shot. Reminds me of the ground and pound in football in the 4th quarter. If that’s truly the game plan then I like it.

  12. ruruland

    cgreene:
    Did anyone else also notice the end of game strategy with the lead?That’s when Woody went specifically to ISO Melo and figured that he’d either get fouled, double teamed or get a good shot.Reminds me of the ground and pound in football in the 4th quarter.If that’s truly the game plan then I like it.

    He had a great isolation match-up. That was part of it.

  13. Bruno Almeida

    ruruland: Melo, historically, doesn’t get the superstar whistle. part of it is that he doesn’t show contact well, part of it is that he plays in a ton of contact.

    I strongly disagree.

    who gets the “superstar whistle” in your opinion then?

    looking at some top players in the NBA, in terms of free throws attempted per 36 in their career:

    LeBron James: 7.9
    Dwyane Wade: 8.6
    Kevin Durant: 7.4
    Derrick Rose: 4.8 (with about 6.3 in the last 2 years)
    Paul Pierce: 7.2
    Dirk Nowitzki: 6.4
    Carmelo Anthony: 7.7

    look, I get that this is a simplistic approach, but I simply can’t see what you’re saying… all those guys play in a ton of contact, and only Wade gets the whistle consistently more than Melo.

    by the way, he’s averaging 9.1 per 36 so far in these 4 games.

    I do believe many fouls aren’t called on Anthony, but some not-quite-so fouls are also called, and the same happens to every superstar out there.

  14. yellowboy90

    Bruno Almeida: I strongly disagree.

    who gets the “superstar whistle” in your opinion then?

    looking at some top players in the NBA, in terms of free throws attempted per 36 in their career:

    LeBron James: 7.9
    Dwyane Wade: 8.6
    Kevin Durant: 7.4
    Derrick Rose: 4.8 (with about 6.3 in the last 2 years)
    Paul Pierce: 7.2
    Dirk Nowitzki: 6.4
    Carmelo Anthony: 7.7

    look, I get that this is a simplistic approach, but I simply can’t see what you’re saying… all those guys play in a ton of contact, and only Wade gets the whistle consistently more than Melo.

    by the way, he’s averaging 9.1 per 36 so far in these 4 games.

    I do believe many fouls aren’t called on Anthony, but some not-quite-so fouls are also called, and the same happens to every superstar out there.

    Melo stats are padded by technical foul calls? lol.

    Anyone watching the A&M vs Bama game or am I the only cat from down south?

  15. daJudge

    Robert, just loved this piece. You are a really fine writer dude. Don’t really agree on the flag thing though. My own politics are probably much different than your own, but that’s not the issue I hope. V day is for Veterans, not guys like me who never served. I don’t know about you. Anyway, I think my son and others, who did serve, would surely appreciate the symbolism, even if contrived. Hey, it’s just a nice gesture that just brings our guys/girls home a bit more. Our recognition of the Vietnam Vets was IMO so disgraceful. This–over the top maybe, but isn’t symbolism always contrived anyway by definition? Go Knicks.

  16. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Frank: Can’t tell if your serious or not. I thought coaches didn’t make any difference.

    Like or WP48 or not, Phil Jackson is, according to WP48, the best coach ever. Not many coaches appear to make a difference on per-minute production (meaning that coaching talent is largely irrelevant, provided your coach is an NBA-quality coach), but Jackson is THE outlier.

  17. Unreason

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Well, looks like the Lakers just locked up homecourt…

    The potential for greatness is there, obviously, but I think it could go sideways pretty easily too. Gasol’s and Howard’s performance suffers when they’re disappointed or frustrated. Jackson and Kobe both use the media to vent frustration and shift blame. I’ll be impressed if they keep their worst tendencies in check and get things straightened out quickly amid all the expectations and scrutiny.

  18. ruruland

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Like or WP48 or not, Phil Jackson is, according to WP48, the best coach ever. Not many coaches appear to make a difference on per-minute production (meaning that coaching talent is largely irrelevant, provided your coach is an NBA-quality coach), but Jackson is THE outlier.

    How does WP48 determine that? There are a ton of outliers you dismiss on a daily basis on this board.

    I agree that Jackson is a great coach, but he also coached the greatest players of all-time in their primes. How can you measure that relative to anything else?

  19. Thomas B.

    So let’s honor the sacrifices made to preserve the freedom to express yourself by telling people how they should express themselves. That really makes no sense at all. But hey, you enjoy the freedom to say what you will about it and so do I.

    I agree this recap was overly long. The pop culture references are nice, but they should compliment the basketball analysis. Of late the ratio of basketball to jokes has leaned to far to the joke end. Every comment about the game does not have to be paired with a joke. Hell point 4 of the “5 things we noticed” was only a pop culture reference. Not to say you can’t ever do that but whoa this was too much for me. I’d much rather see something meaningful on the team. Maybe something about the team rankings. The Knicks are first in Def Rating, first in SRS, and 2nd in offensive rating. The team is playing way slower than last year (25th in pace). To score that well at such a slow pace deserves some discussion. Is this a result of the complete overhaul of the point guards? A full training camp under Woodson? Was Woodson mentioned at all other than in that Novak part about shooting more? Seems unfair given the way he is managing minutes and rotations. Kidd getting only 15 minutes was probably a good idea given the youth and quickness in the Dallas backcourt.

    Maybe the quick reaction isn’t the place for this sort of in-depth discussion, but it should be addressed on some level.

    meh. Maybe the flag stuff just has me annoyed.

  20. Donnie Walsh

    ruruland: How does WP48 determine that? There are a ton of outliers you dismiss on a daily basis on this board.

    I agree that Jackson is a great coach, but he also coached the greatest players of all-time in their primes. How can you measure that relative to anything else?

    Good point. (you seem to have some really good points, but they always come when you are talking about something other than Carmelo Anthony– you could be a really good analyst, I think, if you would just get a little distance from His Holiness Carmelo Anthony).

  21. jon abbey

    there are no shortage of amazing stats regarding what NY has done in these first four games, but here’s one I haven’t seen yet:

    points allowed in the second half by game: 40, 40, 40, 37

    WOW.

  22. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    ruruland: How does WP48 determine that? There are a ton of outliers you dismiss on a daily basis on this board.

    I agree that Jackson is a great coach, but he also coached the greatest players of all-time in their primes. How can you measure that relative to anything else?

    Just because I don’t make huge assumptions based on small samples doesn’t mean I disregard “outliers.” It just means I don’t look at someone missing, say, a late free throw and label him as “unclutch.” And I don’t take five games of Harden’s play and label him as “needing Westbrook.” That’s your job on this site: to interpret every shot as fitting or not fitting your agendas re: Carmelo Anthony, etc.

    Also, the flag thing was on-point to me. Slap a flag on a hat; charge $35 and call it a patriotic purpose. Maybe it’s because I also think that the soullessness of the corporate bottom line makes me wary of any kind of marketing strategy, and the flag thing most certainly is one, but like Bob said: if you don’t like, skip it.

    I think that this site has the best sportswriting on the net right now. And given how much the posters on this site like to shit on box score metrics, having Mike K.-style analysis would only make ruruland and Juany8 shit a brick.

  23. Bruno Almeida

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Just because I don’t make huge assumptions based on small samples doesn’t mean I disregard “outliers.” It just means I don’t look at someone missing, say, a late free throw and label him as “unclutch.” And I don’t take five games of Harden’s play and label him as “needing Westbrook.” That’s your job on this site: to interpret every shot as fitting or not fitting your agendas re: Carmelo Anthony, etc.

    Also, the flag thing was on-point to me. Slap a flag on a hat; charge $35 and call it a patriotic purpose. Maybe it’s because I also think that the soullessness of the corporate bottom line makes me wary of any kind of marketing strategy, and the flag thing most certainly is one, but like Bob said: if you don’t like, skip it.

    I think that this site has the best sportswriting on the net right now. And given how much the posters on this site like to shit on box score metrics, having Mike K.-style analysis would only make ruruland and Juany8 shit a brick.

    so much that my argument on how Carmelo Anthony is fairly treated by the referees was obviously ignored.

  24. Juany8

    jon abbey:
    there are no shortage of amazing stats regarding what NY has done in these first four games, but here’s one I haven’t seen yet:

    points allowed in the second half by game: 40, 40, 40, 37

    WOW.

    I think the more amazing stat is that the teams we’ve beat have lost a grand total of 1 game so far this season, and that doesn’t look to be changing tonight. The Knicks are destroying teams that are blowing out the rest of the league. Even yesterday’s Dallas game shouldn’t have been that close, when OJ Mayo is draining 3′s 2 feet behind the line with a hand in his face and Novak is missing wide open 3′s, that’s supposed to be a bad sign, not a 10 point win

  25. Juany8

    I think that this site has the best sportswriting on the net right now. And given how much the posters on this site like to shit on box score metrics, having Mike K.-style analysis would only make ruruland and Juany8 shit a brick.

    I’ve never seen a Mike K piece that showed a number, claimed the number was all the information needed to make every decision about basketball, and insulted everyone who disagreed as idiotic number haters (even when they’re better at statistics than him)

    But by all means, keep throwing up red herrings and personal attacks, I’m sure if you insult everyone enough they’ll see that Landry Fields is a stud

  26. Bruno Almeida

    and who has said that one number is all the information needed to make every decision about basketball?

    what the people who use advanced stats say is that it is far better than the eye-test stuff you guys put up, and not that it is perfect.

    by the way, you guys use the Landry Fields example all the time… haven’t you ever been wrong on a player?

    Berri’s analysis, and every other also, is subject to bad mistakes, but I do remember a couple of people on this website saying that Toney Douglas would be a starting caliber guard last year, for example, and people seemingly ‘forgot’ about it.

  27. Bruno Almeida

    and I still want to see ruruland on poor Carmelo and how the refs have treated him like a bum this season, even though he has 36 free throws already this season in 4 games while LeBron, the league’s biggest superstar, has 25 in 6 games.

  28. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Bruno Almeida:

    what the people who use advanced stats say is that it is far better than the eye-test stuff you guys put up, and not that it is perfect.

    This.

  29. Juany8

    Bruno Almeida:
    and who has said that one number is all the information needed to make every decision about basketball?

    what the people who use advanced stats say is that it is far better than the eye-test stuff you guys put up, and not that it is perfect.

    by the way, you guys use the Landry Fields example all the time… haven’t you ever been wrong on a player?

    Berri’s analysis, and every other also, is subject to bad mistakes, but I do remember a couple of people on this website saying that Toney Douglas would be a starting caliber guard last year, for example, and people seemingly ‘forgot’ about it.

    Berri does, he simply throws out a player’s WP and says he’s better than a player with a lower WP. And simply put, I think the box score is crap, if you don’t have the time to keep track of your own stats that do a better job of keeping track of what happens on a basketball court, you shouldn’t get pissed when people don’t take you that seriously. The same general managers we all like to insult have access to VAST amounts more statistical data and analysis than everything publicly available on the internet. I don’t have a problem with objective, statistical analysis, I have a problem with the statistical analysis presented on boards like this across the internet. It’s just not good work, and I’m not going to take it seriously just because people tell me too.

    And on a side note, I’m wrong about players and teams all the time, I just don’t say it was because of “outliers”. Oh and I bring up Landry Fields because I read more than one article on WoW his rookie year that it was insulting that Derrick Rose was getting the MVP over even someone like Fields. If you’re going to bring up Fields as a shining example of how good your stat is, it’s quite funny that he’s become utter shit just 2 years later.

  30. Bruno Almeida

    but I’m not Dave Berri, and neither is THCJ.

    actually, I’m a philosophy student who generally loathes statistical approaches to real world problems…

    but the fact is, some advanced stats are really, really useful for basketball analysis, and they have been proven to be fairly consistent in many cases, aside some clear outliers (like Fields, for example).

    that said, they are a useful tool and are still, imo, more adequate than eye-test stuff based on biases and personal preferences and only that.

    it is impossible to remove all personal preferences, true objectivity is nothing but an ideological concept… but there are levels of analysis, it’s not black or white, either Berri or Stephen A.Smith.

  31. jon abbey

    Mark Cuban is I think the guy who has best figured out basketball mathematically (or more precisely, he knows which analysts to trust). I’m very impressed with the reboot in Dallas with young players, Mayo, Collison, Crowder all look like keepers and all could have been had this past offseason by pretty much anyone relatively inexpensively.

  32. Juany8

    Bruno I’d actually be willing to agree with that, again my problem is with people like Berri (and trust me, THCJ behaves exactly like Berri) is that they present their ideas as objective, scientific analysis. THCJ used to insult people who didn’t like Fields, now he’s suddenly an outlier even though he’s been crappy for years to everyone watching.

    Also, I’m starting to consider it pretty insulting that my opinions are somehow not as valid because I don’t attach a meaningless number to it. I don’t have time to watch every basketball game and reconstruct the box score with valid data, and even if I did I wouldn’t do it because I get payed more to do the same with oil fields lol. I realize that means I will often be wrong and that I can’t totally back up my assertions, but this is a message board on basketball, not a scientific forum. I’m trying to simply discuss what I think about basketball, not trying to convince everyone here that Carmelo Anthony seriously is a superstar (can’t speak for ruru there lol) But seriously, adding a number to your opinion doesn’t change the fact that it’s an opinion, none of us are making money off this or proving anything fundamental about basketball, and I personally think my basketball views are a lot more reasonable than any model that says players can be boiled down to a single number

  33. Bruno Almeida

    well, Juany, you are right, in the end this is a forum and everyone here is giving opinions, and not scientific analysis.

    but while I agree that simply attaching a number to an opinion doesn’t make it any better than any other analysis, there are, like I said before, levels of analysis… I respect more analysis that can actually present some level of knowledge about the point, including stats or no, it’s just that advanced stats are a very useful tool to do it.

    this forum is what it is precisely because people here try to give opinions that are based on something more than simply “I like this player, I don’t like that one”.

    your opinions are obviously valid; that doesn’t mean I have to AGREE with them, just respect your right to write them.

    in the same way, it is pretty insulting to be called stupid whenever one says that Carmelo Anthony is not a top 10 player in this league, or to have to read that Anthony gets treated unfairly HISTORICALLY when he has roughly the same per 36 free throw numbers as Lebron does.

  34. jon abbey

    Bruno Almeida:
    it’s just that advanced stats are a very useful tool to do it.

    this is where we disagree. there’s just so much noise in the root numbers (assists, rebounds, turnovers, steals) that it’s hard (for me) to take the alleged “advanced stats” seriously. and people point to “consistency”, but consistency doesn’t matter much if they’re measuring the wrong things.

    as a side note, it’s funny that you’re a philosophy student and I piss you off so much, as a sizable part of my customer base is philosophy students or have background in studying philosophy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erstwhile_Records).

  35. jon abbey

    (parenthetical to above: rebounds may seem pretty clear-cut, but they have wildly differing values to the team. rebounds off one’s own missed shots, rebounds when you have two teammates next to you and no opponents anywhere in sight, these are way less valuable than contested rebounds off someone else’s missed shot).

  36. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: so much that my argument on how Carmelo Anthony is fairly treated by the referees was obviously ignored.

    I didn’t say he was unfairly treated. It makes sense that Carmelo, in all likelihood, has a lower contact-foul ratio than other superstars. He plays in more contact than most stars.

  37. Bruno Almeida

    jon abbey: this is where we disagree. there’s just so much noise in the root numbers (assists, rebounds, turnovers, steals) that it’s hard (for me) to take the alleged “advanced stats” seriously. and people point to “consistency”, but consistency doesn’t matter much if they’re measuring the wrong things.

    as a side note, it’s funny that you’re a philosophy student and I piss you off so much, as a sizable part of my customer base is philosophy students or have background in studying philosophy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erstwhile_Records).

    that’s a fair argument, but I still think that stats + observation is better than just observation.

    and nice man, is there a place where I can hear some of the music from your label? I’m always curious about different music.

    also, I haven’t ever talkes to you, so I have no clear opinion about you… it’s just that your comments on this board many times are very arrogant and it seems that you’re looking down on people all the time, and there’s nothing I hate more than people belittling others.

    but I don’t know you personally to gauge if you’re really arrogant, so I’m fine with that.

  38. Juany8

    Lol again, I’m not ruru, I thought the Knicks were gonna do well but wasn’t writing ominous posts about how much he was gonna laugh if the Knicks did incredible. I feel like I’m the second most optimistic regular on the board, but I’ve been pretty clear that even with this start I don’t think the Knicks are winning 60. Hell, I love Melo but would not call him a top 10 player, not unless he continues to play EXACTLY like this the rest of the season. I don’t care about the TS%, Melo has been a fantastic defender and is consistently making the right decisions when attacking of when to shoot, drive, or pass.

    I still want to see more games obviously, but as of now I think the Lakers, Thunder, and Knicks are the only teams with a chance to beat Miami. The Knicks have a unique matchup advantage against Miami in that they have athletic, elite defenders 1-5 (yes I’m including Melo, he’s always been great in the playoffs) and they can go “small” with Melo at the 4 to keep up with Lebron while playing freaking Tyson Chandler in the middle. That gives them a rebounding advantage and helps them keep an elite defense while going small in a way that only Miami has been able to replicate. Jason Kidd is also the perfect point guard against Miami, their defense is vulnerable to quick cuts and passes because they help so much, and Kidd is actually still a good defender.

  39. Bruno Almeida

    ruruland: I didn’t say he was unfairly treated. It makes sense that Carmelo, in all likelihood, has a lower contact-foul ratio than other superstars. He plays in more contact than most stars.

    what you did say was: “Melo, historically, doesn’t get the superstar whistle. part of it is that he doesn’t show contact well, part of it is that he plays in a ton of contact.”

    all I’m saying is that, looking at the numbers, he gets the whistle just about the same as Lebron James, the most famous player in the NBA, someone who gets the supposed “superstar treatment” all the time and plays in A LOT of contact all the time.

    do you really believe Carmelo Anthony plays in more contact than LeBron James or Derrick Rose, who are driving to the basket all the time instead of taking 18-foot jumpers?

  40. jon abbey

    nicos: I’m missing C Spencer Yeh play here in Chicago right now.

    ha, nice, at Lampo! he is a semi-friend, although I’m not a huge fan of his music. he did a really nice set not too long ago here with one of my label mainstays, though, Graham Lambkin.

    Bruno, there are short samples of everything on my label site on the individual pages, and of course much is floating around illegally for free in different places. it’s music that generally works better at length, though, not in small doses (I only have clips up because people have asked for them, I don’t really like them).

  41. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: what you did say was: “Melo, historically, doesn’t get the superstar whistle. part of it is that he doesn’t show contact well, part of it is that he plays in a ton of contact.”

    all I’m saying is that, looking at the numbers, he gets the whistle just about the same as Lebron James, the most famous player in the NBA, someone who gets the supposed “superstar treatment” all the time and plays in A LOT of contact all the time.

    do you really believe Carmelo Anthony plays in more contact than LeBron James or Derrick Rose, who are driving to the basket all the time instead of taking 18-foot jumpers?

    Yes, particularly because Melo starts more of his drives in isolation/post-up, not against screens and gets far fewer breakaway inside attempts.

  42. Bruno Almeida

    ruruland: Yes, particularly because Melo starts more of his drives in isolation/post-up, not against screens and gets far fewer breakaway inside attempts.

    ok man, I get that you’ll defend Carmelo against everything and everyone on all issues.

    forget it, this discussion will head nowhere, you’ll just invent something else that is obviously entirely impossible to prove or even gauge minimally and will continue to ignore anything I present.

  43. ruruland

    Juany8:
    Lol again, I’m not ruru, I thought the Knicks were gonna do well but wasn’t writing ominous posts about how much he was gonna laugh if the Knicks did incredible. I feel like I’m the second most optimistic regular on the board, but I’ve been pretty clear that even with this start I don’t think the Knicks are winning 60. Hell, I love Melo but would not call him a top 10 player, not unless he continues to play EXACTLY like this the rest of the season. I don’t care about the TS%, Melo has been a fantastic defender and is consistently making the right decisions when attacking of when to shoot, drive, or pass.

    I still want to see more games obviously, but as of now I think the Lakers, Thunder, and Knicks are the only teams with a chance to beat Miami. The Knicks have a unique matchup advantage against Miami in that they have athletic, elite defenders 1-5 (yes I’m including Melo, he’s always been great in the playoffs) and they can go “small” with Melo at the 4 to keep up with Lebron while playing freaking Tyson Chandler in the middle. That gives them a rebounding advantage and helps them keep an elite defense while going small in a way that only Miami has been able to replicate. Jason Kidd is also the perfect point guard against Miami, their defense is vulnerable to quick cuts and passes because they help so much, and Kidd is actually still a good defender.

    A month ago you said we’d have no chance at beating the Heat.

    Of course I’m going to rub it in people faces given the way I was treated the first 6 months posting here.

    So far, everything I’ve said has come true.

  44. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: ok man, I get that you’ll defend Carmelo against everything and everyone on all issues.

    forget it, this discussion will head nowhere, you’ll just invent something else that is obviously entirely impossible to prove or even gauge minimally and will continue to ignore anything I present.

    I don’t understand your problem here. I’m not saying Melo gets treated unfairly. I’m saying that because he plays in more contact than other stars and doesnt show contact like other stars, he doesn’t have the same foul-contact ratio.

    Rose avoids contact. half the time he’s athletic enough to pull it off.

  45. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: ok man, I get that you’ll defend Carmelo against everything and everyone on all issues.

    forget it, this discussion will head nowhere, you’ll just invent something else that is obviously entirely impossible to prove or even gauge minimally and will continue to ignore anything I present.

    I’m always open to stuff people present. What have you presented? The career fta numbers?

    How many more transition attempts does Lebron or Wade get in comparison?

  46. Juany8

    Bruno Almeida: ok man, I get that you’ll defend Carmelo against everything and everyone on all issues.

    forget it, this discussion will head nowhere, you’ll just invent something else that is obviously entirely impossible to prove or even gauge minimally and will continue to ignore anything I present.

    I will say that Lebron is a flopper and Melo is not for what that’s worth, but yea I don’t think you can make a credible case that Melo deserves more foul shots than Lebron. On the other hand, I think Derrick Rose is someone that DOES suffer from a lack of calls, partly because he’s not willing to flop around and jump into players recklessly like certain other players (good play or not, it’s fucking stupid to watch, and my favorite team has 2 of the worst in the league about it with Lin and Harden lol) I think if the league stopped rewarding blatant attempts to draw free throws instead of punishing a player who illegally stops another from scoring, Lebron and Wade would suffer more than Melo and Rose, but that doesn’t really mean anything right now lol

  47. nicos

    jon abbey: ha, nice, at Lampo! he is a semi-friend, although I’m not a huge fan of his music. he did a really nice set not too long ago here with one of my label mainstays, though, Graham Lambkin.

    Bruno, there are short samples of everything on my label site on the individual pages, and of course much is floating around illegally for free in different places. it’s music that generally works better at length, though, not in small doses (I only have clips up because people have asked for them, I don’t really like them).

    Yes at Lampo (another erstwhile mainstay, Keith Rowe did a typically great set for Lampo last month).For the record, you do a great job with erstwhile- I have a bunch of your releases (Schnee/ Stangl, Rowe, etc…) and they’re uniformly excellent. Now back to Basketball!

  48. Bruno Almeida

    ruruland: I’m always open to stuff people present. What have you presented? The career fta numbers?

    How many more transition attempts does Lebron or Wade get in comparison?

    well, that’s awesome, and what have you presented? Carmelo plays in more contact than other stars… how exactly?

    how can you possibly present meaningful evidence of this, other than your eye-test view?

    and that’s great, a non-Knicks fan will rub it in our faces if the Knicks actually win something?

    that’s laughable, really.

  49. Juany8

    ruruland: A month ago you said we’d have no chance at beating the Heat.

    Of course I’m going to rub it in people faces given the way I was treated the first 6 months posting here.

    So far, everything I’ve said has come true.

    Actually a month ago I said the same thing, that we’d win 52, possibly make the ECF, and have matchup advantages over Miami that no one else in the East had. Now I’m leaning closer to 54 and a great chance of making the ECF, but the matchup with Miami hasn’t changed in my eyes, other than I wasn’t sure Kidd would be as good as he’s been.

  50. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida:

    that’s laughable, really.

    That’s what I used to think for the longest time. Knicks “fans” who openly despise Knicks players and only show up to boast after the Knicks perform poorly.

    Why do you think I spend so much time here?

  51. ruruland

    Juany8: Actually a month ago I said the same thing, that we’d win 52, possibly make the ECF, and have matchup advantages over Miami that no one else in the East had. Now I’m leaning closer to 54 and a great chance of making the ECF, but the matchup with Miami hasn’t changed in my eyes, other than I wasn’t sure Kidd would be as good as he’s been.

    ok

  52. Bruno Almeida

    ruruland: That’s what I used to think for the longest time. Knicks “fans” who openly despise Knicks players and only show up to boast after the Knicks perform poorly.

    Why do you think I spend so much time here?

    I’m posting here and the Knicks are on a pretty nice 4-win game streak… do I only show up when the Knicks perform poorly? I don’t think so.

    and do I openly despise Anthony? no, I don’t, what I despise is the rose-colored glasses vision that he’s a perfect player.

    also, your argument just does not make sense. I root for a team that has employed Eddy Curry, Stephon Marbury, Steve Francis and so on… should I love them and see them with rose-colored glasses just because they play for my team?

    no, I openly despised these players and they thoroughly deserved it.

  53. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: I’m posting here and the Knicks are on a pretty nice 4-win game streak… do I only show up when the Knicks perform poorly? I don’t think so.

    and do I openly despise Anthony? no, I don’t, what I despise is the rose-colored glasses vision that he’s a perfect player.

    also, your argument just does not make sense. I root for a team that has employed Eddy Curry, Stephon Marbury, Steve Francis and so on… should I love them and see them with rose-colored glasses just because they play for my team?

    no, I openly despised these players and they thoroughly deserved it.

    That’s obviously not what I’m talking about.

    The posts you make speak for themselves. I can’t imagine you taking any pleasure in a team winning with Melo.

    I’m specifically talking about the post-trade discussions and the maliciousness directed at Carmelo Anthony. It goes hand in hand with the poor arguments made in the last 12 months that have been roundly refuted to this point.

    The fact that I defend Carmelo Anthony against specious arguments does not mean I think he’s a perfect player. Please.

  54. Bruno Almeida

    you defend him against ANY argument, that’s the problem.

    how is speculating that Carmelo takes more contact than LeBron, which is entirely impossible to prove with data, “refuting” arguments?

    and my friend, you don’t know me… if I took pleasure in seeing a team with Patrick Ewing as its superstar getting to the finals, Ewing, a superstar with about as many flaws as Carmelo, if not more… you can bet I’m going to be ecstatic if this team wins a title.

    it’s just that, trying to analyze it, I just can’t see it happening.

  55. ruruland

    I also really like the fact that now that people are waking up to the things I talked about months ago, you have to strawman me to make it seem as though I’m still somehow a delusional Polyanna.

    So, when I said the Knicks could win 60 games if things go right, and all of a sudden that seems somewhat conceivable, now I apparently said the Knicks were locks to win 60+ games and win the championshi

    Also, Juany’s attempts to separate himself from me in all of these posts to appear more credible is really the kicker considering my accuracy.

  56. Bruno Almeida

    and also, I think it’s just a little bit too early to start talking about your own incredibly fantastic predictive abilities, we’ve got 78 games left.

  57. jon abbey

    nicos: Yes at Lampo (another erstwhile mainstay, Keith Rowe did a typically great set for Lampo last month).For the record, you do a great job with erstwhile- I have a bunch of your releases (Schnee/ Stangl, Rowe, etc…) and they’re uniformly excellent. Now back to Basketball!

    heh, I was going to ask that. that is probably the best answer to Bruno’s question, that set was filmed and recorded and is up for free:

    http://vimeo.com/51944882#

    warning to Yankee fans, the clips in there from game 1 of DET/NY are incredibly painful to relive, no more fun than the first time…

    sorry, now back to hoops, go Bucks!

  58. jon abbey

    Bruno Almeida:
    and also, I think it’s just a little bit too early to start talking about your own incredibly fantastic predictive abilities, we’ve got 78 games left.

    he can talk a little, the Woodson era is up to 22-6 now, which is in the seemingly ridiculous range he was talking about (a 64-18 pace).

  59. Bruno Almeida

    jon abbey: he can talk a little, the Woodson era is up to 22-6 now, which is in the seemingly ridiculous range he was talking about (a 64-18 pace).

    he never talks “a little”.

  60. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida:
    and also, I think it’s just a little bit too early to start talking about your own incredibly fantastic predictive abilities, we’ve got 78 games left.

    It’s not the record. Jason Kidd, anyone who took the time to watch him last year should have known what he would bring….

    Ball movement. Why penetration from Felton in the pnr was so important to the overal health and diversity of the offense.

    Melo taking off-ball shots and playing within continuity sets because of the penetration.

    Why the defense wouldn’t suffer without Shumpert. Why it wasn’t a fluke last year. The fact that this isn’t the first time Melo has played this level of defense (contrary to meda charlatans).

    Why lower turnovers would result in much more efficient offense and better defense.

    I could go on. But I guess it’s all just talk, right?

  61. ruruland

    And Bruno, I don’t defend Carmelo Anthony in every argument. I defend him in every bad argument, especially those that lack historical context. It just happens that those are most arguments.

    Thomas’ piece earlier in the preview was fantastic, with just a few exceptions.

  62. ruruland

    How about the people who whined about Wallace in a 12th man role?

    Or that Woodson was an “isolation” coach?

    Now that’s laughable.

  63. ruruland

    jon abbey: he can talk a little, the Woodson era is up to 22-6 now, which is in the seemingly ridiculous range he was talking about (a 64-18 pace).

    it’s not the record.

    Only 6 opponents have scored over 100 points. Think about all the different lineups that have been used in that timespan.

    The Knicks are a +10 team in the Woodson era. You don’t get better than that.

  64. Bruno Almeida

    BigBlueAL:
    Cant we all just get along :-)

    I’m trying too :p

    ok ruruland, it’s fine, I get it.

    you truly are right so far in what your saying… let’s hope it continues this way, because this means that the Knicks are true contenders and that’s what matters.

    but it would be great if you were less arrogant, it makes your arguments easier to handle.

  65. ruruland

    Bruno Almeida: I’m trying too :p

    ok ruruland, it’s fine, I get it.

    you truly are right so far in what your saying… let’s hope it continues this way, because this means that the Knicks are true contenders and that’s what matters.

    but it would be great if you were less arrogant, it makes your arguments easier to handle.

    My patience was worn out awhile ago. I don’t normally come off as arrogant as I have lately. I’ll do my best to refrain from indulging myself at others expense.

  66. Nick C.

    Um. Ruru you did say Melo was going to have a great game last night going for 30+ (I think but can’t recall if you referenced a high TSP) and were 85% right even you called this sort of game. He did get 31 but @10-22 9-14. I recall this because well it seemed odd to longstroke like that.

  67. jon abbey

    Bruno Almeida: but it would be great if you were less arrogant, it makes your arguments easier to handle.

    that’s two people you’ve called arrogant, which I think maybe you’re mistaking for confidence in one’s own opinions on certain topics.

    FWIW, I don’t remember a single other Knicks observer, pro or amateur, talking about how individual turnover percentage of the new players was going to result in such a marked improvement for the team from year to year. ruru nailed that one so far, from 29th last year to 1st currently…

  68. jon abbey

    the next 15 games look like maybe the toughest stretch of the season, 11 on the road and almost every one seemingly tough. we will know a lot more about the non-Amare/Shumpert incarnation of our boys after that. ruru, what’s your current call for the record after 19 games?

    and I don’t think it’s small sample size in any way to point out that I’m pretty sure that primary option Carmelo Anthony never had as bad a four game shooting stretch all of last year as primary option James Harden has had the last four games combined (23-71). Harden’s assist/turnovers have been brutal since the MVP level opener also, 3.0/5.2 the last 5 games.

  69. BigBlueAL

    Now every team in the East has at least 2 losses except for the Knicks and Heat. 76ers are now 4-2 btw.

  70. ruruland

    Nick C.:
    Um. Ruru you did say Melo was going to have a great game last night going for 30+ (I think but can’t recall if you referenced a high TSP) and were 85% right even you called this sort of game. He did get 31 but @10-22 9-14. I recall this because well it seemed odd to longstroke like that.

    Yeah, I said 55 ts but probably should have said 57.5 because that’s my season prediction, though ts will go down when usage is very high and 55 for 30+ pts is typically prett good for offense dpending on context.

    But I think you could tell there was some extra curricular stuff that you don’t always see. If Melo was in last year’s offense I think his numbers would be considerably worse to this point because he really isn’t going yet. He’s getting great looks and is one game away from taking off.

  71. jon abbey

    has someone put together a montage of Melo’s new blocked shot technique, where he somehow swats it before the other guy gets it above his shoulders? there have been at least a handful of memorable, abusive ones.

  72. Juany8

    ruruland:
    I also really like the fact that now that people are waking up to the things I talked about months ago, you have to strawman me to make it seem as though I’m still somehow a delusional Polyanna.

    So, when I said the Knicks could win 60 games if things go right, and all of a sudden that seems somewhat conceivable, now I apparently said the Knicks were locks to win 60+ games and win the championshi

    Also, Juany’s attempts to separate himself from me in all of these posts to appear more credible is really the kicker considering my accuracy.

    Ruru, you seem like a smart guy and I agree with a lot of your perspectives on basketball (for instance, I thought the Jason Kidd that played for Dallas 2 years ago when they won the ring was the perfect PG for this team) However, it’s become blatantly obvious that you’re not simply discussing your opinions on a forum but instead making a very clear case for one perspective. You write freaking pages about assisted attempts and have very clear and direct research for all your points, research I’m sure you didn’t just happen to do as you were typing our a post.

    Since it’s become pretty clear to everyone that you have SOME kind of agenda, even if it’s not something shady (I think you’re trying to display your ability to construct and argue a point in a journalistic and professional fashion, but what the fuck do I know) I feel compelled to make it clear that while I like Anthony and this Knicks team, I don’t think Anthony has been a consistent superstar in this league, and has certainly shown many legitimate causes for criticism throughout his career. I also thought that even floating a 60 win possibility was a little ridiculous, especially since you thought Amar’es injury would actually hurt the team instead of help it like it has. You can’t be in favor of EVERYTHING the Knicks do

  73. Juany8

    jon abbey:
    the next 15 games look like maybe the toughest stretch of the season, 11 on the road and almost every one seemingly tough. we will know a lot more about the non-Amare/Shumpert incarnation of our boys after that. ruru, what’s your current call for the record after 19 games?

    and I don’t think it’s small sample size in any way to point out that I’m pretty sure that primary option Carmelo Anthony never had as bad a four game shooting stretch all of last year as primary option James Harden has had the last four games combined (23-71). Harden’s assist/turnovers have been brutal since the MVP level opener also, 3.0/5.2 the last 5 games.

    I simply can’t imagine Harden playing as well as Melo has these past few games, even his first 2 games were offensive masterpieces only, he wasn’t defending worth shit. I’m going to defend Harden here though, right now the main offensive weapons on this team are easily Lin and Harden, and both of them rely almost entirely on pick and roll and good spacing to be effective primary options. The sad truth has been that Patterson and Asik have been pretty poor pick and roll partners. Patterson just can’t really do anything well other than pick and pop, and Asik can’t catch the ball lol.

    The Rockets really need a big man who can set a pick and roll hard to the rim to draw attention. It’s too easy for teams to simply trap Harden or double him when he makes a move, and he really hasn’t responded well to that kind of pressure. I’m sure it doesn’t help that he’s never played near this many minutes per game in his career, or endured this level of physicality and contact. It’s going to be an adjustment for him, especially after everyone took notice with his first 2 MVP level performances

  74. ruruland

    Juany8: I don’t think Anthony has been a consistent superstar in this league, and has certainly shown many legitimate causes for criticism throughout his career. I also thought that even floating a 60 win possibility was a little ridiculous, especially since you thought Amar’es injury would actually hurt the team instead of help it like it has. You can’t be in favor of EVERYTHING the Knicks do

    1) You are absolutely correct that Melo has deserved criticism at times in his career. Given all of the times I’ve both acknowledged those issues and helped provide some context for them, I find it odd that people try to pigeon hole me to this caricature as an absolute Melo apologist. That’s simpl never been the case.

    2) I haven’t supported everything the Knicks have done, namely not re-signing Lin!!! I was also one of the people talking about trading Amar’e for a possible Okafor/Ariza package or perhaps Wallace and filler.

    Now, that was back when I thought the Knicks were keeping Lin nd woulld therefore have what we all thought would be a second high-usage consistent scoring threat (which it turns out Lin probably isn’t).

    My point was that the risks with Amar’e defensive tendencies override the offensive potential in a new situation because of diminsihing returns.

    Now, even when I was talking about trading Amar’e (however unlikely I don’t need an explanation for this) I also said that you could be missing out some great upside because of what Amar’e displayed when Woodson became coach.

    All of the things people didn’t think Amar’e was capable of defensively he did. It was the first time in his basketball career he had played with a real defensive coach.

    That’s an incredibly important point as we move forward this season. His offense will be essential in the playoffs.

  75. ruruland

    Juany8: I simply can’t imagine Harden playing as well as Melo has these past few games, even his first 2 games were offensive masterpieces only, he wasn’t defending worth shit. I’m going to defend Harden here though, right now the main offensive weapons on this team are easily Lin and Harden, and both of them rely almost entirely on pick and roll and good spacing to be effective primary options. The sad truth has been that Patterson and Asik have been pretty poor pick and roll partners. Patterson just can’t really do anything well other than pick and pop, and Asik can’t catch the ball lol.

    The Rockets really need a big man who can set a pick and roll hard to the rim to draw attention. It’s too easy for teams to simply trap Harden or double him when he makes a move, and he really hasn’t responded well to that kind of pressure. I’m sure it doesn’t help that he’s never played near this many minutes per game in his career, or endured this level of physicality and contact. It’s going to be an adjustment for him, especially after everyone took notice with his first 2 MVP level performances

    Your Harden analysis is spot on. I’ve watched every minute he’s played, and the Rockets roster is not built around Harden’s talents, similar to the Knicks poor construction with Melo under MDA.

    Asik is really a horrible finisher who has the irrational confidence bug. The Rockets supporting case is void of above-average shooting sans Delfino, who should be starting instead of Parsons.

    Harden is an amazing transition, very good pnr player and lethal off-ball. But all the great scorers in this league have the versatility to get theirs in other ways when defenses take away say, pnr.

    Harden has a limited tool set in isolation to make things easier at times.

  76. Brian Cronin

    Sounds like Phil Jackson might take that Laker job. If he does, you have to hand it to him- he only takes the job when he knows he has the most talent and highest chance for success. When he doesn’t have the talent, he leaves

    It really is hilarious, especially since his possible new deal seems to suggest that he can take off games and let his assistants coach some games so Phil doesn’t have to travel so much. It is good to be Phil Jackson!

  77. PD

    ruruland: Your Harden analysis is spot on. I’ve watched every minute he’s played, and the Rockets roster is not built around Harden’s talents, similar to the Knicks poor construction with Melo under MDA.

    Asik is really a horrible finisher who has the irrational confidence bug. The Rockets supporting case is void of above-average shooting sans Delfino, who should be starting instead of Parsons.

    Harden is an amazing transition, very good pnr player and lethal off-ball. But all the great scorers in this league have the versatility to get theirs in other ways when defenses take away say, pnr.

    Harden has a limited tool set in isolation to make things easier at times.

    i agree with this for the most part. though i feel houston’s roster is far from a finished product (at least in context to a “core”)as after the melo trade and then last year. its not like you have 3 supposed great players (melo, amare, chandler) then its on the coach to make it work regardless whether it make sense. lin and asik are upside type players who need to develop. then harden who needs to adjust to being a number 1 option (who i assume wasn’t expecting going into the season). houston’s roster will change quite a bit in the next couple years. the knicks are who they are far the most part. 2 different type of scenarios.

    houston does need a good dive man on the pick and roll. i have stated my affection for asik but he does have serious problems catching the ball. his finishing has been a slight bit better the last couple of games and his TS is creeping up. though he seems surprised sometimes when the ball is passed to him. not a good sign. he is so fun to watch on defense though and has a 21% total RB percentage playing high minutes. and he has cut his fouls down. i see improvement. we will see

  78. iserp

    jon abbey:
    has someone put together a montage of Melo’s new blocked shot technique, where he somehow swats it before the other guy gets it above his shoulders? there have been at least a handful of memorable, abusive ones.

    I was surprised he didn’t foul the other players. It should be easy to protect the ball while you are getting it up there, i thought they were careless.

  79. matte sideburns

    I imagine it’s already available somewhere and a noob like me just hasn’t seen it yet, but Contested Rebounds seems like it would be a pretty useful stat.

  80. Bruno Almeida

    jon abbey: that’s two people you’ve called arrogant, which I think maybe you’re mistaking for confidence in one’s own opinions on certain topics.

    FWIW, I don’t remember a single other Knicks observer, pro or amateur, talking about how individual turnover percentage of the new players was going to result in such a marked improvement for the team from year to year. ruru nailed that one so far, from 29th last year to 1st currently…

    ruruland himself said this: “I don’t normally come off as arrogant as I have lately. I’ll do my best to refrain from indulging myself at others expense.”

    which is perfectly understandable, he’s been banging the drums alone for a good six months here.

    having unwavering confidence in your opinions is cool; expressing it in an arrogant manner is not.

  81. mokers

    Houston has a lot of good pieces, but they are just not very good now. I watched some of their game against Memphis. Fun to watch in transition, but they basically hand it off to Lin or Harden in the halfcourt and let them try to do their thing. It leads to them forcing things and a lot of turnovers. They have a lot of room to improve that roster though. The biggest problem is that McHale playing like he is trying for an 8th seed in the west. This means overworking Lin and Harden and not giving a lot of minutes to any of their young guys. They shouldn’t tank, it would be much better for them to get a high draft pick than running his two best players into the ground in order to get swept by the spurs in the first round.

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