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Tuesday, October 15, 2019

NY Daily News: ‘Dog’ Marcus Morris will bring accountability to Knicks

I thought Mills and Perry were fairly embarrassing on Media Day, and I really don’t want to harp on it, so I choose instead to spotlight a Knick who had a really good Media Day, namely Marcus Morris. From Stefan Bondy:

Marcus Morris is a bit of an oddity on the Knicks active roster in that he’s been to the playoffs. There’s only three of them.

Perhaps more so than any other Knick, Morris’ career arc and clock are should be screaming for another winning season. The 30-year-old’s resume, fiery personality and physicality make him the king of accountability on the Knicks.

And it was already felt on Media Day when Morris was asked what it meant to be a “dog.”

“You’ve seen me play? That’s my definition right there,” Morris said. “Guys that are not going to back down, guys that are going to go out there and compete every night. And I can tell you this first and foremost, it’s not going to be like last year.”

He continued:

“My biggest thing was as far as my free agency didn’t go as planned, a lot of it came off unknown sourcing or situations,” he said. “I kind of committed very early, earlier than I really wanted to. New York came involved and I saw the opportunity in the East Coast, and the biggest thing is, I know they embrace guys like myself. That’s a big thing, someone to accept me for the type of player I am, the heart that I have. I’m excited to come. I think it’s going to be a really surprising year for us.”

and then he finished with…

“The biggest thing is there’s a lot of dogs on this team, a lot of guys that are going to go out and try to prove themselves, a lot of young guys that are willing to get better and are willing to listen,” he said. “The biggest thing is I think from last year the guys that are still here have a chip on their shoulder from only winning 17 games and coming in and trying to get better. I think it’s going to be a good year.”

I think we’re all really going to enjoy following Marcus Morris as a Knick.

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203 comments on “NY Daily News: ‘Dog’ Marcus Morris will bring accountability to Knicks

  1. Frank

    Brian – you missed the best part of that whole “dog” conversation with Morris:

    (from Steve Popper’s twitter feed)

    Funny from Marcus Morris today – after saying Knicks have a lot of dogs on the team and defining that, well, him, he was asked if dogs are born or can be raised. “Born a dog. Got to be in you.” …

    When he then was reminded Knicks won 17 games so do those guys left from that team have it: ”
    “I take that back – if you be around a bunch of dogs it’ll rub off on you. I can see that.”

  2. Z-man

    Elfrid Payton is 6’4″ with shoes on, which is how every NBA player is measured. He’s on the big side for a PG.

  3. Brian Cronin Post author

    Morris was also asked, “what’s a definition of a dog?” and he replied “Did you ever see me play? That’s a definition right there. Guy’ll never back down. Guys’ll go out and compete every night. And I can tell you this, it’s not gonna be like last year.”

    That’s in the piece above! :)

    But yeah, Frank, that’s weird that Bondy left out that other line. That’s a really good line.

  4. Hubert

    I think he could play with Smith, in the same way that I think he and Barrett have some complementary skills. But I don’t think you can put out a lineup where he and Payton are on the court together. Neither one can shoot/score enough. But maybe I’m wrong.

    I don’t really know Payton well, so you may be right. Ultimately I just think Frank needs to not be the primary ballhandler. That could work with Barrett, if Barrett is up to the task early in his career.

    I think the last thing you want is to tell him he’s competing for PT with Smith and Payton. Payton has 5 seasons of being a plus PG in the league. And Smith checks all the boxes Fizdale loves. If Smith is scoring 20 ppg with terrible efficiency and the team has a negative rating with him on the court, will he lose a competition to Frank if the units Frank is on have better numbers than the ones Smith is on?

    It seems like a script from page 1 of the Run a Guy Out of Town playbook.

  5. Brian Cronin Post author

    Payton has 5 seasons of being a plus PG in the league.

    What definition of “plus PG” are you using that gets Payton to the point of being one for every season of his NBA career so far?

  6. Z-man

    @5 the only thing that will run Frank out of town is his own poor play. If he shoots well and is reasonably non-passive on offense, he’ll probably stick. If not, who cares if his option isn’t picked up? You can pick up a player with his value on a minimum deal and never look back.

  7. Z-man

    Payton’s stats thus far are those of a solid backup or mediocre starter. The FO is hedging on him making a leap. If not, no worries, just decline his 2nd year. If yes, you have a great 2-year bargain contract that might either be a trade asset or make him consider coming back as a UFA. Not having Bird rights kinda sucks, but at worst he’s a very decent placeholder. Personally, I couldn’t give a hoot how he affects Frank’s status.

  8. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Allow me to jump the gun and say that if Payton, Morris, Randle, and Robinson start a majority of the games this season, I can see the Knicks as a team that pushes for a lower playoff seed (like 8th seed). The big issue with this team is 3 point shooting, but it’s not hard to imagine a couple plus defensive line-ups (provided they shoot well enough to stay on court). Payton, Ntilikina, Barrett, Morris, and Robinson could be switchable and good defensively so long as Frank and RJ can shoot above 30% from 3. Offensively, a unit of Smith Jr, Trier, Ellington, Morris, and Randle could get hot quickly.

    I think once we zero in on an all-merit line up (some combination of Payton, Ellington, Morris, Randle, Robinson, Trier, Smith Jr, Barrett, and Gibson taking a majority of the minutes), we can really stay in the playoff push. I know I’m going out on a limb here, but Barrett’s ability to contribute as a passer and rebounder on the wing should keep him on the floor so long as he’s not going 3/14 from the field on a consistent basis.

    I’m going to go with a 36-46 prediction for these Knicks which should put us around 10th or 11th in the East. I expect our young players to sink us, but I really like the potential we have in Morris, Randle, and Robinson up front. If Robinson fouls less and Randle flourishes a la 2011 Amar’e Stoudemire, we can surprise a lot of people. Randle is going to put up career numbers as a Knick.

  9. TheClashFan

    I predicted 28 wins last year, and that turned out to be overly optimistic. So, I’m going with 28 again this year.
    :-)

  10. swiftandabundant

    Here is a question for you all. Do you think Payton is/can be better than Felton was his first stint here (with Amare before the trade)?

    I think people are sleeping on us. I think we have potential to be a low playoff seed. Randle has always been in the tough West and I think he’s gonna beast out. Payton will be solid for us. We have a slew of youngsters that could take a leap forward. We have a lot of steady vets that will play hard and play the right way. I love the promotion of Mike Miller to the coaching staff. Fiz is also a young coach, people forget that or act like coaches can’t also improve but he’s just a third year coach and he’s gonna have a lot more to work with. I’m very excited to see what we have. I think we could defy expectations. The key for us is to still be in the hunt by January. The schedule lightens up a lot in January/February and if we’re still around 500 and in the playoff hunt after the new year, we have a stretch where we could really put something together. Our depth could be key to long season, too.

  11. Hubert

    As someone who deeply laments the passing of the no layup rule, I find Morris’ quotes encouraging.

    It will be interesting to see what impact the vets have on Fiz. The players Fiz loved last year resembled turnstiles on D more than dogs. Ideally, Knox, Trier, and Smith will cease being terrible on D, but I am curious how it will play out if the vets get fed up with players doing things Fiz let them get away with as long as they were scoring.

  12. Z-man

    Mitch is so fucking good that any smart coach can figure out how to win games on his back. He has gotten far less national fanfare than he deserves. Look at his stats compared to other defensive bigs in their first 1000+ minute seasons. He was significantly better last year than Rudy Gobert was in his 2nd season at age 22, better than Clint Capela in year 2 (he and Gobert hardly played in year 1) and better than Jared Jackson Jr., Anthony Davis, and Giannis were in their rookie years. And that’s without playing a minute of organized ball the year before his rookie season, meaning that he never faced better than HS-level competition. He’s possibly a guy you can build a team around.

    And now he’s surrounded by a decent cast and has a year of experience and summer training under his belt. How exciting is that?

  13. GHenman

    Playoffs? I’m usually pretty optimistic, but I don’t see us even getting out of the Atlantic Dungeon for at least 2 years.

  14. Owen

    I am interested to see what hanging out with legendary dogs Marcus Morris and TajGibson does to Mitch’s foul rate. I love tough defense as much as Hubert but I want Skynet out there as much as possible this year.

  15. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Last year’s Pistons made the playoffs with two good bigs and a bunch of players who didn’t light their minutes on fire. I’m not saying we’re last year’s Pistons (because we have at least four players who are candidates to light their minutes on fire), but I can see Trier, Morris, Robinson, and Randle as players who embrace an underdog mentality and lead us in win production. I think Payton and Barrett can be close to neutral value with Payton more positive and Barrett more negative, and that’s kind of enough to be mildly competitive in the Eastern Conference.

    Of course, if Knox, Smith Jr, Ntilikina, and Barrett play a bunch of minutes and are four of the 10 worst players in the league, this is moot. I’m not sure that will be the case, though, and I’m excited to see what these guys do over the season. I think Fizdale is a better coach than given credit for around here, and I’m hoping he shows that this season.

  16. Frank

    Does anyone know of a site where you can find stats on ballhandler effectiveness passing to the roll man vs the pop man?

    I seem to remember DSJ being pretty bad at finding guys behind his field of vision, and that Frank was good at that. Not sure about Payton. Might have some interesting lineup ramifications, since the two guys who presumably will take the bulk of the center minutes present very different PNR/PNP skills (Mitch = dunkmaster and Portis shot 39% from 3 on moderate volume (191 3s last year, 37.5% on his last 2 years of 3’s = 414 3PA).

    I really really hope Frank finds some playing time this year. Frank + Morris + Mitch makes for a pretty decent defensive backbone.

  17. JK47

    Four Factors-wise, this team figures to be well below average on offense in eFG%, well above average in ORB% and probably fair to middling in the other two factors. It’ll be an improved offensive team but I don’t see them ranking higher than 20th on that side of the balk. Low eFG% isn’t easy to overcome.

    On defense, who knows really. There are some decent defenders on the team and one elite one but there are lots of bad ones too. DRB% should be fine but the other Factors are a question mark. The team will probably not generate a lot of turnovers and will probably struggle to defend the perimeter. Again it’s hard to see this team ranking above 20th in defensive rating unless there’s something I’m just not seeing.

    Bottom third on offense and defense does not a playoff team make.

  18. djphan

    i like what morris said but so many people have come through this team preaching about how the old knicks played and getting back to that… a lot of it rings hollow now…

    i do like the makeup of the vets on this team…. it’s a good mixture that should be better than last year because of them… but if we’re sniffing playoffs… it’s gonna be because of a true breakout from one or two of the young guys….

  19. d-mar

    Mitch is so fucking good that any smart coach can figure out how to win games on his back. He has gotten far less national fanfare than he deserves.

    I remember on draft night this year when they posted the “biggest needs” for the Knicks, and underneath it said “everything”

    Uh, maybe I’m being presumptuous, but I think we’re pretty set at the center position for a while.

  20. ess-dog

    It’s surprising that this article has DSJ penciled in as the starter when Payton is clearly superior right now. He even has a decent chance of being our first average point guard since I don’t know when. But since he’s a bad shooter, you need a good shooter starting next to him, maybe Ellington or Trier? An RJ/Payton backcourt would offer some historic bricklaying.

  21. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Payton is better than his stats suggest. Over the last 2 years he has spent a lot of time playing hurt or coming off injuries that hampered his play and hid any development. When he’s been 100%, he’s looked pretty solid in stretches. He’s older than Dennis Smith Jr. So it’s hard to say who will eventually be the better traditional PG, but to me Payton has clearly been the better player so far.

    Management will probably prefer the athletic scorer.

    We’ll see more from both this year.

    Unfortunately, I have no faith that our coach or management has any clue who the better player is, whether either could/should play with Frank, whether Frank should eventually take the PG slot and play with Barrett etc… They have no idea what they are doing. They thought Mudiay deserved to start last year.

    The ideal for me looking several years out is that both Frank and Barrett develop and play together in some capacity with Robinson. But I am thinking past this season. I’m talking 2-3 years out and an organization trying to put together a team that plays both sides of the ball in a team oriented versatile way that could go somewhere if we ever add some star scorers (or Barrett becomes one of the 2-3 we’ll need).

    Even though Payton has less potential as a scorer than DSJ, I like him better. Management will probably prefer the athletic scorer. We’ll see more from both this year.

  22. Frank

    DSJ was the main tangible return in the KP trade, so you have to believe he’s going to be given every chance to succeed.
    I wasn’t super high on the Payton signing, but in retrospect it’s not that bad. He’s making in between the taxpayer and full MLE on a very team-friendly contract. I’d rather have him as a player AND a contract than Ish Smith (2 years 12 MM fully guaranteed) or Cory Joseph (3/37), or Terry Rozier (30y/100000MM). It’s a reasonable backstop in case DSJ makes no progress and Frank continues to suck on offense.

  23. Z-man

    Four Factors-wise, this team figures to be well below average on offense in eFG%, well above average in ORB% and probably fair to middling in the other two factors. It’ll be an improved offensive team but I don’t see them ranking higher than 20th on that side of the balk. Low eFG% isn’t easy to overcome.

    You have two relatively high eFG% guys in the starting lineup (Randle and Mitch, whose usage should uptick a bit) and a potentially above average guy in Morris. Ellington has a decent eFG%. Trier’s wasn’t high but he gets to the line and plans to shoot more 3’s. Who knows with Payton Portis, Knox, DSjr, Frank and Barrett? (meaning if they shoot poorly, will they play?) Will Iggy, a high eFG% guy in college, get a shot? I think it’s way premature to conclude that the team eFG% will be “well below average.”

  24. Hubert

    i like what morris said but so many people have come through this team preaching about how the old knicks played and getting back to that… a lot of it rings hollow now…

    Like who?

    I vaguely recall guys like Kurt Thomas and Rasheed Wallace talking about the good old days, but neither played enough that year to matter. Maybe Kenyon Martin got tough for a few minutes.

    Most of the guys we’ve brought in over the years were scorers. Even Chandler was notoriously passive when it came to protecting the lane.

    This is new and refreshing to me

  25. geo

    i don’t want to sound unreasonably optimistic – but, i think there’s a chance that if things break just right for us, and fiz get’s these dogs barking up a storm – we might just win 82 games during the regular season…

    that’s right – the knicks are fitting to make every other team in the association their bitch this year…

    Stop, drop, shut ’em down, open up shop

  26. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    DSJ was the main tangible return in the KP trade, so you have to believe he’s going to be given every chance to succeed.

    I agree.

    I think that’s probably why the default assumption in the media right now is that it’s his job. Payton or Frank would have to outplay him by enough to make it obvious to everyone that he’s not the best player for him to lose the job.

    Since Frank is primarily still going to be a defender/secondary playmaker, his value won’t be be as obvious to fans and members of the media that focus more attention on the scoring and the boxscore. Frank is going to have to earn his minutes as the 2nd-3rd strong PG that can also play some SG or SF. I’m still a Dotson fan. I mentioned last week that his injury/surgery was a bummer because he lost an entire summer of development. Now it looks like he’s going to miss camp and possibly the start of the season also. That’s bad news for him and Knicks, but it clears out the logjam at the versatile 2-3 position a little. That gives Frank another chance to earn minutes.

  27. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    I like Morris’s attitude and the toughness he’s likely to bring to the team, but I’m in the camp that thinks he’s way overrated. I think the Knicks weakness is still at SF. Even if you assume Morris can play some SF (I think he’s more of a PF that can handle SF against some matchups), I don’t think he’s very good. The alternative is Knox. That’s going to make me cringe unless he makes a big leap on both sides of the ball. Maybe we’ll get lucky and Iggy will be a good enough to earn minutes there, but I doubt that. I think we are going to wind up playing Morris/Knox and then using Frank or Barrett at SF in spots against smaller SFs. Dotson can play there a bit also when he gets back.

  28. alsep73

    Fizdale, despite coming out of Pat Riley’s defense-first Heat system, never established a defensive identity for the Knicks during last season’s 17-65 campaign. They finished 29th in defensive rating, allowing 114.6 points per 100 possessions.

    The Knicks coach admitted he mixed it up – maybe too much – with schemes.

    “We experimented a lot last year,’’ Fizdale said. “We looked at a lot of different stuff, what fits best for our team. We feel like what we’re doing now is the best package for them.”

    From a new Berman article about the the Knicks practicing a full-court press. As with all things Fizdale, it’s a Rorschach test: either a reasonable explanation for why the team had no coherent system last year, or a CYA quote that will not reflect what we actually do when the games count.

  29. d-mar

    From the NY Post: “The summer went about as poorly as possible for the Knicks, but Kristaps Porzingis may have just delivered an even more painful dagger. “I feel great physically. I feel 100 percent,” the Mavericks star told reporters on Monday. “I feel probably better than I ever have in my life.”

    Wow, that really is a painful dagger, a former Knick coming into the season saying he feels great physically. Ouch!

  30. Z-man

    Fiz gets a pass because he was blatantly tanking last year. Any coach, including Fiz, could have won 20+ games with that roster last year. The bad news is that we ended up picking third in a two-player draft. The good news is that we didn’t end up picking 5th or 6th like the teams that didn’t tank as hard as we did (although who knows, they might have gotten the better player!) But it would be really unfair to judge Fiz as a coach based on last year. He did his tanking job well.

    This year, things will be completely different in terms of expectations. If they get off to a terrible start (say, 3-10) then you can bet there will be uneasiness no matter how hard the FO spins things. They clearly believe that this team can be reasonably competitive.

    Fiz has to know this, right? He has to know that to some degree his job is on the line and that he can’t mess around coddling the 23 and under crowd. At the same time, if the young guys are ready to play productive minutes, he has to find a way to play them, right?

  31. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    The full court press is probably just to test their conditioning more than anything else.

    Also, Porzingis isn’t due to feel like shit until December. The Mavs will likely be the #1 team in the league in November.

  32. Z-man

    Sadly, both NYK-DAL games are before KP usually hits the wall. Hopefully Mitch will put a hurtin on his weepy ass.

  33. JK47

    I think it’s way premature to conclude that the team eFG% will be “well below average.”

    Who will likely get the most FGA on the team? I’d guess Randle and Barrett will probably get the most FGA, followed by… maybe Morris, Knox, some combinations of the PGs, Portis, then some of the lower usage guys like Robinson, Gibson, Ellington and Bullock? I know there are some other cats I’m missing but those are the main rotation pieces.

    Most of the guys in those first two tiers are low eFG% type players. I’m just not seeing lots of easy buckets out there. League average eFG% was .524 last year, and we have lots of guys who don’t figure to be above that.

  34. swiftandabundant

    In a 2 player draft. Shit like this is hilarious to me. Cause you have some secret crystal ball that tells you Zion and Morant will be a star but RJ won’t be? Your bias is showing.

    The consensus was that this was a 3 person draft. Zion was the prize. Ja and RJ were the consolation prizes and it wasn’t a consensus at all that JA was way ahead of RJ, just that Memphis needed a PG and that’s why they picked him over RJ.

  35. Z-man

    (not very) swift and abundant (bs),
    First of all, there was absolute consensus that Ja was ahead of Barrett, both in nearly every major mock draft, by nearly every pundit, and here on KB. There was also widespread concern in the analytics community that RJ was greatly overrated and not a good pick at all at #3. The more analytically driven folks here at KB felt that we should trade down. I would have been fine either way. Nobody here would have entertained trading down if we had a chance to draft Zion or Ja. Go back and do some research before you accuse someone of being biased.

    Second, did you read this part of my post?

    The good news is that we didn’t end up picking 5th or 6th like the teams that didn’t tank as hard as we did (although who knows, they might have gotten the better player!)

    This was meant to imply that drafting in general is a crap shoot and that nobody knows for sure who will be the best player. Markelle Fultz was a consensus #1 and Ball was consensus #2, while everyone here thought that Tatum was a horrible pick at #3 and had the greatest chance of being a bust.

  36. Z-man

    Who will likely get the most FGA on the team? I’d guess Randle and Barrett will probably get the most FGA, followed by… maybe Morris, Knox, some combinations of the PGs, Portis, then some of the lower usage guys like Robinson, Gibson, Ellington and Bullock? I know there are some other cats I’m missing but those are the main rotation pieces.

    Randle for sure, but after that, it’s anyone’s guess. I would highly doubt that Barrett is second, unless Fiz is secretly tanking again. My guess is that it’s either Trier, Morris or DSjr. Then the next tier will be Knox/Barrett/Payton/Ellington/Mitch/Portis.

    That said, sure, if Knox continues to brick away and RJ does what he did in college, then playing them major minutes will drop the team’s eFG%. I just don’t think it’s a given that these guys (and DSjr) will have free rein to chuck away like they did last year, not if the team wants to win.

    Even so, we can put several exceptional rebounding combos out on the floor. Any three of Mitch/Portis/Randle/Morris/Gibson/Payton/Barrett makes it so that eFG% is mitigated somewhat. We should also get to the line a lot.

  37. Hubert

    Who will likely get the most FGA on the team? I’d guess Randle and Barrett will probably get the most FGA

    I’d bet on Smith if I could get decent odds.

  38. Bruno Almeida

    @44

    The last part is why I think this team has some chance of being a 30 win team, it can legitimately be a very good rebounding team on both ends with plus players in every position. If they can play defense and outbound opponents somewhat consistently, Randle having big scoring games with some help from the shooters will win some games. The eFG% is probably going to be bad unless some or many of the veterans have career years and Fizdale relies on them a lot. RJ is a virtual lock for a low percentage, the same should be true for Knox, Payton and DSJ, and those guys will all probably see heavy minutes.

  39. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    A buddy of mine, who is a sports-talk-radio guy, gloated that Porzingis added a bunch of muscle this offseason. I checked Twitter, and yeah, his shoulders look big. Awesome!

    Me: He still hasn’t played basketball in 18 months, his legs and feet are probably screwed even worse from the extra weight, and he’s still an infant on the glass.

    Him: The glass doesn’t matter anymore [to stretch bigs]. It’s all about the three ball.

    Me: So why the fuck am I supposed to care about how big his shoulders got?

  40. swiftandabundant

    Maybe you read the articles pre-draft differently than me. They did mostly have JA above RJ but that was because most people knew Memphis would pick him to eventually replace Conley. There are many concerns about JA just like there are for RJ.

    I guess if I concede that JA was the consensus # 2 it would be with this caveat. The difference between ZION and JA in the eyes of the draft was big. The difference between JA and RJ was not very small.

  41. ptmilo

    kp will probably be good this year and if we didn’t have mitch it would be unbearable. it may still.

  42. Z-man

    The eFG% is probably going to be bad unless some or many of the veterans have career years and Fizdale relies on them a lot. RJ is a virtual lock for a low percentage, the same should be true for Knox, Payton and DSJ, and those guys will all probably see heavy minutes.

    If they all see heavy minutes, then yes, eFG% will be lower than otherwise. DSjr and Payton will likely split the 48 PG minutes and maybe 5 more when one slides over to the 2, and both will probably not shoot well, but Payton is a relatively low-volume shooter and both guys are pretty good facilitators who may raise the eFG% of the other guys on the floor. And what about if RJ and Knox play moderate minutes? like 20-24 each?

  43. Brian Cronin Post author

    First of all, there was absolute consensus that Ja was ahead of Barrett, both in nearly every major mock draft, by nearly every pundit, and here on KB.

    Yeah, I recall posting all the various comments stating that before the lottery, just to emphasize that no one was suddenly changing their position because the Knicks ended up #3. It was definitely all about Zion (plus a bit about Morant) here before the lottery.

  44. dtrickey

    Surely we have seen the “KP in best shape of his life” and “Bulked KP” movies enough to know how they end right? Surely it’s not just Knicks fans that know if (more likely when) Sweet Lady Anemia hits, KP will revert back to pre-serum Captain America?

    I guess as the only “polished” offensive player Randle would have to ultimately end up leading the team in FGA. My one concern would be DSJ leading this stat, as it probably means he has gone Derrick Rose 2.0 on us at the point. Seems unlikely so it might be a bit of Knicks PTSD talking, but not ruling it out entirely.

  45. KnickfaninNJ

    I see ESPN has an article up with a roster breakdown and key questions for every team heading into training camp. I don’t have ESPN plus so I can’t read it. Does anyone know who they think are the Knicks starters this season?

  46. Brian Cronin Post author

    I see ESPN has an article up with a roster breakdown and key questions for every team heading into training camp. I don’t have ESPN plus so I can’t read it. Does anyone know who they think are the Knicks starters this season?

    I assume they’re sticking with the “official” ESPN depth chart for the Knicks, which has Smith, Barrett, Knox, Randle and Robinson as the starters.

  47. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Ja Morant is a 175 pound guard who is already dealing with knee trouble. He had 10 assists a game, which is great, but he also had 5.2 turnovers a game against Division 2 competition. He was definitely the #2 prospect and RJ was the #3, but let’s not pretend there’s a huge gulf between the two guys.

  48. Owen

    Morant had created some separation from the rest of the pack, including Barrett. But Zion was in his own tier, several tiers above everyone else.

    How he adjusts to the NBA is one of the most interesting things about this season.

  49. Z-man

    Ja Morant is a 175 pound guard who is already dealing with knee trouble. He had 10 assists a game, which is great, but he also had 5.2 turnovers a game against Division 2 competition. He was definitely the #2 prospect and RJ was the #3, but let’s not pretend there’s a huge gulf between the two guys.

    Who knows what the actual gap is? But there is no question that the perceived gap at the time was substantial.

    And for the record, Zion has had knee issues too and reported to summer league out of shape.

  50. Z-man

    Also, Zion is short with short arms and god-awful shooting mechanics. I don’t think his transition to the NBA game will be without drama.

  51. Bruno Almeida

    Of course Morant had some red flags and even Zion has his own, if you look hard enough, but honestly, as a Knicks fan, you really don’t want to keep looking too much at RJ’s red flags either. His assist to turnover rate was bad for a guy supposed to be a great secondary ball handler, his shooting percentages were all bad, he got to the line decently but only converted at 66%, which is terrible for a guard, his defensive stats like steals and blocks are all uninspiring and we haven’t even talked about the sky high usage.

    I have said before I’m fine with the pick and there’s a path for RJ to be a very good NBA player. But let’s stop pretending he was drafted this high because of anything other than his combination of age / athleticism / blue chip pedigree.

  52. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Also, Zion is short with short arms and god-awful shooting mechanics. I don’t think his transition to the NBA game will be without drama.

    And Frank is long with long arms and a decent-looking stroke. And yet–

    Do you want me to bookmark this take? Because it feels like a take that should be bookmarked.

  53. dtrickey

    @55 If DSjr can play like 2010-12 Derrick Rose, I’m down with that.

    To clarify, my idea of Derrick Rose 2.0 was the Knicks iteration of him. Probably didn’t draft that well. I wouldn’t hate 2010 Derrick Rose either ha ha

  54. Z-man

    @64 you can if you want, so long as you add context when you refer to it. While Zion was the consensus #1 and deserved to be, and I would have picked him #1 if I was drafting even ignoring the hype, I do have real concerns about his fit “as is” in the modern NBA game. He’s not LeBron and never will be. He’s not going to overpower guys or beat them off the dribble as easily as he did in 990 college minutes, mostly against inferior competition. He doesn’t pass well. That ugly shot of his has to get fixed. He’s a short 6’7″, shot 33% from a short 3-pt line on 71 attempts with ugly mechanics, and shot 64% from the line.

    He’ll be a monster rebounder and adequate perimeter defender right off the bat, but definitely needs to fix some things if he’s ever going to be a future MVP candidate.

    If you disagree with any of this, show some cojones and go on the record right now, big guy.

  55. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    @63 Right, because being an 18 year old consensus All American performer who hit point/rebound/assist benchmarks that only Trae Young, Kevin Durant, and Mike Beasley hit as freshmen is totally all size/athleticism/pedigree.

    I promised myself I wouldn’t get worked up about RJ Barrett. You guys are right, all of them are flawed and Ja Morant’s perceived value was much higher.

  56. Bruno Almeida

    @67

    You’re smart enough to notice that every single relevant stat you mentioned is a volume stat and not an efficiency one. RJ was 3rd in the entire NCAA last season in minutes played, he played more minutes than all the other guys you mentioned. Yes, he produced in high volume, but he played 500 minutes more than Zion, for example.

  57. Brian Cronin Post author

    And Frank is long with long arms and a decent-looking stroke. And yet–

    Do you want me to bookmark this take? Because it feels like a take that should be bookmarked.

    I’m pretty sure he wasn’t seriously knocking Zion there. It was a “you can find fault with anyone if you try it hard enough” commentary.

  58. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    It sounded like he was arguing that the gap between Zion and the #2 slot wasn’t as big as people are saying, which is wrong.

  59. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    @68 scoring efficiency is overrated on wing prospects to date. For example, RJ Barrett and Luka Doncic put up similar efficiency numbers in their pre-NBA careers. The MP speaks to his durability, as Zion physically couldn’t play as many minutes because he exploded through his shoe. The free throw numbers are troubling, but the 3 point shooting is meaningless. He was over 50% from 2pt range, which is a better predictor of future efficiency than his poor shooting from the 3 point line. As far as the free throw shooting goes, I looked up a bunch of guys for JK47 a few months back and saw that you can expect to see about a 10 point increase on free throw shooting from teenagers.

    So yes, there are concerns with RJ Barrett, but selling him as just an age/athlete/pedigree guy is like calling him the next Andrew Wiggins just because he’s Canadian.

  60. Early Bird

    For example, RJ Barrett and Luka Doncic put up similar efficiency numbers in their pre-NBA careers.

    No they didn’t.

    Oh wow, he’s in The Best Shape Of His Life (ITBSOHL)?

    Anagram for BOLSHIT. Coincidence??? I think not.

  61. Early Bird

    An RJ/Payton backcourt would offer some historic bricklaying.

    We had Ntilikina and Knox last year. That was some actual historic bricklaying.

  62. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats

    I am hoping and praying to the holiest of the holies that we can find a way to keep Hinton and Wooten. At some point this season, those 2 need to be on the roster. Problem is, the only player that I’m ok with trading away to create room is Dotson. And to be honest, I really don’t wanna lose him- but Hinton and Wooten have more dynamic upside. Plus with all the wings we have, we shouldn’t miss Dotson too much as he projects to be an end of bench player this season.

  63. bobneptune

    I am hoping and praying to the holiest of the holies that we can find a way to keep Hinton and Wooten. At some point this season, those 2 need to be on the roster. Problem is, the only player that I’m ok with trading away to create room is Dotson. And to be honest, I really don’t wanna lose him- but Hinton and Wooten have more dynamic upside. Plus with all the wings we have, we shouldn’t miss Dotson too much as he projects to be an end of bench player this season.

    This really should not be a long term problem if they show they can actually play in the G-league. One of the 14 power forwards will get traded or other vets on one year contracts will get released after the trade deadline. And if they have to spend an entire season in the g-league that probably isn’t a terrible thing getting 34 minutes a game.

    Hinton showed he can score and slash against inferior athletes but he didn’t shoot well from distance if I remember so seasoning would be good for him. Wooten has 2 good skills but needs an awful lot of development.

    Watching Mitch swish 5 of six from the corner gave me great Onanistic pleasure :-) Players can acquire skills at the age of 20 interestingly enough.

  64. Brian Cronin Post author

    It’s striking to me just how little the NBA thinks of the traditional big man nowadays that Wooten can’t get a spot on an actual NBA roster.

  65. bobneptune

    It’s striking to me just how little the NBA thinks of the traditional big man nowadays that Wooten can’t get a spot on an actual NBA roster.

    Brian his stats at Oregon were completely unremarkable (sans blocks) and he actually regressed from his first to his second year amazingly enough. I’m not sure what he brings to the NBA table besides being able to jump over the Moon. He needs to develop a real skill set to play in the NBA.

    It would have been fun watching him play all year with Bol Bol.

  66. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats

    If Looney and Jordan Bell can play the 5 in the NBA, then Wooten should definitely be able to make a mark. Can you imagine having to athletic shot blocking freaks at the 5? It’ll be like having 2 young Joakim Noahs who block shots at a high rate. And if Mitch’s J is real, that makes it infinitely better

  67. Frank

    I think Zion will be great with two caveats —

    from the 5 seconds he played in the preseason that I saw, one thing really stuck out — he is SHORT. I believe he was officially measured in the junior USA team camp in 2017 at 6’5″ in bare feet (granted that was 2 years ago and he may have grown some since). That’s shorter than Draymond, who happens to have crazy long arms which Zion doesn’t have. Granted, Zion has 2x the athleticism of Draymond.

    The second thing is whether he can stay injury free.

    But yeah, he easily was the #1 prospect in the draft (no sarcasm).

  68. alsep73

    From Begley’s report on yesterday’s practice:

    “When you start talking about Kevin Knox and Marcus Morris at the small forward, right there that makes you pretty big. You can see the pecking order down the line,” he said. “I can put a lot of different guys on the floor. I can play Bobby (Portis) and Mitchell (Robinson) together with Marcus Morris, that’s a really big lineup. And RJ Barrett is no small guy at the two or three either. Frank and Elfrid are big guards. Dennis may not be as big as them, but he can touch higher on the backboard than the rest of them. I really like the fact we have that size and length and now it’s just making sure that we use it appropriately.”

    Fizdale said he’d also be open to using Julius Randle at center.

    “Absolutely …. You guys like to put (positional) numbers on these guys. I just like to put them out there. Now this year I feel like we’ve got so much versatility I can mix in different lineups,” he said. “But if you want to say position-wise he’s a five, I can put him out there with Marcus Morris at the four and put a lot of pressure on a defense that way.”

  69. Hubert

    When you start talking about Kevin Knox and Marcus Morris at the small forward, right there that makes you pretty big.

    Where he sees big, I see slow.

    Most lineups that have Barrett as a 2 are not going to have enough shooters on the floor, either.

  70. alsep73

    Yes, it’s like Fizdale misunderstands the ideas behind positionless basketball. Or is just saying stuff in training camp that doesn’t reflect what he’ll actually do. I hope it’s the latter.

  71. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    I’m all in on Wooten as a G-league project. He profiles as a top defender at the 4 but useless on offense. He needs to develops a couple of post-up moves and become proficient in the pick-and-roll. Right now he’s a zero at that end of the floor. Still, you don’t find rim protectors like him growing on trees. All he needs to do is become adequate on offense to earn real NBA minutes.

    And who wouldn’t dream of seeing Amir Hinton put up his DII offensive numbers in the NBA? 29.4 PPG 4.9 REB, 4 AST, 2.3 ST, 49%, FG%, 34%, 3pt%. His rep is as a player that can break down defenses driving the lane. He’s big for a PG at 6’5″. Another player that needs seasoning in the G-league.

  72. bobneptune

    If Looney and Jordan Bell can play the 5 in the NBA, then Wooten should definitely be able to make a mark.

    First of all Both Looney and Bell with their limited offensive games were far better players in college than Wooten statistically. Secondly, they had the benefit of playing on the floor with 4 HOF’ers who carry them offensively.

    With all that being said, Bell wasn’t deemed worth the league minimum by the Warriors and signed with the Wolves for the minimum, Looney on a team completely devoid of big men found a league-wide market value of 5M/year. which values him as a well below average NBA player. So you are correct…. they are both NBA players but Bell just barely and Looney a niche player on a specific team that is loaded with offense.

    Wooten’s college career argues he will not be as good a player as either of those. He belongs in the G league, especially on a team as shooting challenged as the Knicks. I’m hoping he develops in all areas and gets called up at some point after the Knicks clear the decks after the trade deadline.

    I see him being on the opening night roster hopelessly premature. I hope to be proven wrong.

  73. bobneptune

    Now Fiz finally tells us what he sees as important in basketball:

    Dennis may not be as big as them, but he can touch higher on the backboard than the rest of them.

    Whooopieeeeeee…….

  74. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    from the 5 seconds he played in the preseason that I saw, one thing really stuck out — he is SHORT. I believe he was officially measured in the junior USA team camp in 2017 at 6’5? in bare feet (granted that was 2 years ago and he may have grown some since). That’s shorter than Draymond, who happens to have crazy long arms which Zion doesn’t have. Granted, Zion has 2x the athleticism of Draymond.

    I’m not arguing against you specifically here, but those who identify with the “short guy, short arms” nonsense. This does not bode well for his longevity, but it will not matter a bit while he is young and explosive. Draymond is 6’5.75″ according to the pre-draft measurements and Zion is probably 6’5″ at minimum. It won’t matter! The proof is in the numbers. All that matters is his ability to move, slash, grind and put the ball in the hole. And he is a 99th percentile player at those things. Eyetest, baby.

    Jokic is unbelievably slow and can barely jump — doesn’t matter. Kevin Durant couldn’t bench 165 lbs. — doesn’t matter. Steph Curry had the body of a teenage kid doing pull-ups in his living room — doesn’t matter.

    Zion’s height (and low center of gravity) could be a blessing for his brand of smash-mouth, big-ass-as-a-battering-ram basketball. It could be the very reason that he put up the most dominant NCAA season in at least a decade. I think we should be looking to explain the on-court dominance in light of his measurements, and maybe not fixate on the idea that his measurements are the reason he won’t succeed.

  75. Owen

    I don’t doubt Zion will be a star. I won’t be surprised if he is considered the top player in the NBA in three years either, or very close. His athleticism is unique and he has the software also to be an all time great. It’s just a lot harder to picture how his game will mature to get to that point than it was with, say, Giannis or Anthony Davis.

    I can understand why people have their doubts though. I also worry about injuries for Zion a lot.

  76. Early Bird

    I have us right around 30 wins if the best players take the floor consistently.

    (1) Reggie Bullock’s injury changes this team. He would easily start at SF or SG.

    (2) Morris will play out of position in our best lineup. A shame because he fits well next to Randle/Mitch/Portis as the 4.

    (3) I’m not sure who scores besides Randle and who defends besides Mitch.

  77. Frank

    Re: Fizdale’s comments about the size of the lineup – Morris at the 3, Mitch/Randle/Portis at the 4/5 is not a terrible idea depending on the matchups. Morris has played a ton of 3 in his career, and Mitch/Randle can pretty easily shuttle between the 4/5 defensively. Portis has been a bad defender no matter what position he’s playing. On offense, you still have a reasonable amount of shooting and secondary ballhandling with Morris/Randle, excellent shooting from Portis — this isn’t the Kenyon Martin/Tyson Chandler frontcourt from 2012-13.

    Re: Zion – I do think he’ll be great. It was just striking to me how small he looked on the court (vertically) in Summer league.

  78. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    If Zion Williamson never develops a shot he will never be the best player in the NBA.

    If you’re worried about whether or not his ceiling is League MVP or simply top 7 basketball player, chances are you have a really good basketball player.

  79. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Also, I think Zion’s best bet is to get down to 260-265 pounds of pure muscle and move to the wing full time. I’m no doctor, but I think he’d be better off taking some pressure off of his knees when you consider what happened to Derrick Rose, who was at the time the best athlete to ever play point guard.

  80. Hubert

    Morris has played a ton of 3 in his career, and Mitch/Randle can pretty easily shuttle between the 4/5 defensively.

    These big lineups would be fine with a stretch 5 and a lights out backcourt. The number of shooters on one end and players who can close out on shooters on the other end is significantly more important than size. Some of these big lineups have no shooters at all. If Fiz runs out Smith or Payton with Barrett-Morris-Randle-Robinson, god help them. They’re going to see packed defenses daring them to shoot from the outside.

    And FWIW, that’s probably the lineup that we’re going to start the season with. So I wouldn’t rush to take the over yet.

  81. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Derrick Rose had some of the skinniest legs out.

    In all seriousness, let’s not compare the two.

    http://unlocked-wordpress.s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/2012/01/derrickrose.jpg

    https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/v8dAH4oAKKUzqxRHzOdIerii58o=/1400×1400/filters:format(jpeg)/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_asset/file/11658101/usa_today_10739528.jpg

    Zion’s legs are enormous compared to most NBA players’. I’m not saying he can’t be injured; I just don’t think we should be comparing him to skinny guys who jump high. I would be shocked if his leg ever bends like Livington’s did. He simply has too much meat on the bone.

  82. Early Bird

    Zions injury was a freak accident. Obviously some injuries linger, but there’s no reason to think he’s especially injury prone.

  83. swiftandabundant

    Oh man, Z-man! You really got me with that typo!

    The difference btwn JA and RJ was miniscule in the mock ups compared to the difference between Zion and JA/RJ. JA has just as many question marks as RJ. Murray State plays in a MUCH weaker conference.

  84. DRed

    Wooten and Bell are not that statistically dissimilar in college. Wooten should be a useful NBA player if he can develop his offensive game at all. What else would you want from an UDFA

  85. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    If Mitch can shoot 3s at a reliable clip then he is 100% Kristaps Porzingis without the need to post up and shoot mid range jumpers or the anemia. Top 15 NBA player confirmed.

    I really don’t think November KP is ready for a front court pairing of Mitch and Julius.

  86. Bruno Almeida

    Have we already forgotten that Barkley was like 6’4″ and was a mega superstar at the golden age for elite Centers? I think Zion’s size is really not relevant.

    If he gets injured a lot then well, he won’t be great, but we can say that about every great player in the league. It’s up to him and New Orleans to find a way to get his body ready and adjust his playstyle so he’ll be able to produce. You guys are conveniently ignoring that Zion hasn’t had a single season yet under a real NBA conditioning program, which we know is hugely impactful for players with raw athleticism. He’s not Greg Oden, who came into the league already broken beyond repair.

  87. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    Morris has played a ton of 3 in his career,

    Morris is not good at the 3 or 4.

    The reason people think he’s good is that he plays really hard while being bad.

  88. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    If Mitch can shoot 3s at a reliable clip then he is 100% Kristaps Porzingis without the need to post up and shoot mid range jumpers or the anemia. Top 15 NBA player confirmed.

    I really don’t think November KP is ready for a front court pairing of Mitch and Julius.

    IMO KP won’t be 100% for 2-3 months. He’s going to have mental issues banging, going to the basket hard, and jumping in general for awhile.

    Durant was on twitter the other day saying he feels sorry for people that think the mid range game is dead and unimportant. Apparently, he doesn’t have much respect for modern stats guys that don’t understand all the Xs, Os, and strategies of the game that lead to the numbers they are analyzing.

    To me, if Mitch adds a reliable 3, that’s unquestionably a significant leap forward for his value on offense. But the gap between him and KP as an overall scorer is still larger than that. KP suffers from lack of strength inside, basketball IQ (or learning from Melo lol), and playing for a brain dead organization. All those are addressable long term if he doesn’t get hurt again. I don’t think we’ll ever see Mitch creating off the dribble and doing other things a #1 or #2 option needs to be able to do that KP can already do. But Mitch is so good defensively and around the basket because of his athleticism, if he adds a 3 pointer, that’s one hell of an all around player and fine #2 or #3 option.

  89. Stratomatic: Sometimes referred to as Satan

    I’m still hoping Wooten stays with the organization. Granted I only saw a little of him, but what I did see I loved. I can’t believe someone won’t pick him up and at least give him a chance to develop given what he can already do well.

  90. Dink

    If Mitch can shoot >70% FT and >36% 3PT (@ 3-4 attempts a game) he will absolutely be a better ‘overall scorer’ than KP. Reason: DUNKS. KP has never cracked 80 dunks (career avg. 64 a season). Mitch had 128 dunks last year, playing less minutes than KP did as a rookie. Mitch gets way more easy/efficient shots than KP. Add a reliable 3 and slightly better foul shooting and it’s game over.

    KP’s bad shot selection might be mitigated a bit by better coaching or being fed by Doncic, but I don’t ever see him being a force around the basket that Mitch can be/already is. If anything, it’s more likely KP will be dunking even less post-ACL injury. Also don’t want to hear about KP needing to ‘add strength’ or whatever. Mitch was just as skinny as a rook and at least 2in. shorter. And he did fine around the hoop.

    Being a 7’3″ unicorn means jack if you can’t leverage that enormous size advantage into easy buckets. I’ll take the 3pt shooting Mitch all day.

  91. JK47

    Durant was on twitter the other day saying he feels sorry for people that think the mid range game is dead and unimportant. Apparently, he doesn’t have much respect for modern stats guys that don’t understand all the Xs, Os, and strategies of the game that lead to the numbers they are analyzing.

    This is so Joe Morgan.

    Durant has optimized his game in a way that allows him to rack up great efficiency stats, and to score very well in just about all advanced metrics. He doesn’t take bad shots, doesn’t force offense, doesn’t do dumb things that make you lose basketball games. He is a darling of advanced stats, yet doesn’t pooh-poohs advanced stats.

    Joe Morgan, in his day, was the ultimate Moneyball player. He drew tons of walks, stole loads of bases at a high percentage and got plenty of extra base hits. He had a freakin’ 11 WAR season once. As respected as he was, he was actually underrated because conventional stats didn’t capture his massive value. Yet he hates advanced stats and thinks Billy Beane wrote “Moneyball.”

  92. wetbandit

    If Mitch gets to 36% from 3, while playing as well as any DPOY and 70% from 2, he’s in the running for top 10 player of all time.

    I don’t know why he’s focusing so much on his 3’s, but hey, if he can do it, great. I’m happy he isn’t ‘working on his post game’ like other bigs have done. He’s got the rebounding, dunking/lobbing, and defense down, if he’s got a solid jumper, awesome. If it’s not solid, I hope they’re not breaking our beloved Mitch.

  93. swiftandabundant

    I keep reading people say “I don’t know why mitch is focusing so much on 3s”…but isn’t it apparent?

    Him and Randle are hopefully the foundation of our front court. If Randle can maintain or even up his 3 point percentage just a tad and Mitch can be a viable threat from outside, game over. This is the modern NBA. Stretch bigs are the way of the future. And while it would be sick if Mitch also had an array of post moves on the inside…if he can be a brutally efficient pick and roll option and shoot well from beyond the arc while providing plus defense and rim protection..he’s gonna be special.

    So bomb away Mitch!

  94. cgreene

    The one thing that concerns me about having Mitch bomb from 3 is taking away his OReb prowess. I understand ORebs are less valuable in today’s NBA. I guess having the defense guess whether he will roll or pop off the pick will make him extremely dangerous in PnR.

  95. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Have we already forgotten that Barkley was like 6’4? and was a mega superstar at the golden age for elite Centers?

    But his wingspan

  96. djphan

    having a 3pt shot is not a requisite to be a good or even great player….. mitchell robinson just needs to be mitchell robinson except stay on the floor a lot more than he did his rookie year….

    the things he needs to add to his game are the small things but those are inside the paint related on both sides of the ball… a 3pt shot is a complementary skill for a big man… it’s not foundational….

  97. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @104 – Didn’t Moses Malone, Mike Gminski, Shawn Bradley and Manute Bol play next to Barkley? Also, if you look at power forwards back then, there were very few 7-footers. There were no KD’s or KP’s. And wasn’t the game “thuggier”? I think the game is quite different today so comparisons are unfair and less convincing.
    OTOH, I think Zion will be fine. He’s a freak of nature – a man carved out of granite. But the mental part of the game is huge. Will he be a hard worker? Will fame go to his head? But that’s a useless argument because we can’t read into that.

    The knock on Wooten is his lack of offense, he gets into foul trouble and he has trouble at the FT line. These are all pretty fixable things, to some extent. Here are some scouting reports on the kid:

    NBA Draft Room scouting report
    NBADraft.com
    Basketball Society online

  98. swiftandabundant

    I guess my point is that its probably easier and maybe more efficient for Mitch to become a decent 3 point shooter than it is for him to learn a bunch of Olajowon post moves. That shit is not easy. Hopefully he can learn that too but being a good 3 point shooter from the corners, that’s just straight repetition of shooting.

  99. JK47

    Zion is fast, strong and explosive and he has skills with the ball. He’s an easy bucket machine. There is no “if he learns to shoot” caveat with Zion.

  100. djphan

    mrob doesn’t need to be olajuwon…. he won’t ever be that but there aren’t any centers in the game that was like that… shaq didn’t need a dream shake either….

    gobert doesn’t have a 3pt shot and a fairly rudimentary offensive game….. and he’s immensely valuable… mrob is a fair bit away from that but that’s not unattainable…. he simply just needs to smooth over the rough edges to his game….

  101. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    MRob is a kid. Shooting 3’s helps him stretch the floor. Is he ready to start emulating Hakeem? I think that’s something for the future but let’s not say he can’t.

  102. alsep73

    One of the few things I’ve heard from Fiz so far that feels like more than just training camp lip service, from Vorkunov’s Twitter:

    Fizdale says he watched 90 percent of Ntilikina’s games for France. Liked some of France’s sets and the motions they ran so he says stole a couple for his playbook. He also invited French coach Vincent Collet to visit the Knicks. Collet also coached Ntilikina at Strasbourg.

  103. Knew Your Nicks

    Mastering & Expanding your game are signs of evolution and desire to succeed.
    Stagnation smells…’death’.
    Id love to see improvement in ALL young Knicks game this season to be convinced about their commitment to Fight for Success.
    Better handling, smartest D, love for team ball, higher efficiency, wider shooting range, professional composure, tenacity for 48min.
    And I’d also love to see Fiz Coaching.
    He was great on tanking. Let’s now see if he can also coach.

  104. Bruno Almeida

    @117

    It wasn’t so much as a comparison, but more of a reminder that incredibly talented and productive players find a way to be very productive no matter the era or state of the game they’re in. Barkley managed to outrebound people and work around much bigger guys in the paint to score even though he didn’t have the size to do so, in an era where size was so important. I’m pretty sure Zion will find a way to impact the game, it might take a while longer than people expect, but I’d bet on it happening.

  105. thenamestsam

    I think Zion is almost certain to be really good (outside of some probably real but hard to estimate injury risk) because of just the size / athleticism / plays incredibly hard combination. Even if he never developed at all, I think he’d be like a turbo-charged Kenneth Faried; a guy who already had a nice NBA career. So the floor is extremely high in my opinion.

    I’m a little more skeptical of the top, top end upside (meaning like 1st or 2nd team all-nba level) because I’m not sure what the bread and butter of his offensive game is. Even putting up one of the all-time great college seasons at Duke he was used less than Barrett, and only slightly more than Reddish. That may be because Coach K is an idiot, but I think it’s at least in part because he’s a little bit of a jack of all trades on offense. He scores on some post-ups, he can do some rim running stuff (although Duke didn’t do much of this), he can be a ball handler out on the floor some, he’s great in transition, impactful on the offensive boards. I think he will score a good amount and do it efficiently, but I’m not sure what an offense where Zion is the #1 option looks like on a posession by posession basis if that makes sense. And that’s kind of the criteria for getting to that very top level unless you’re having a huge defensive impact as well.

    Which he might do – the short arms are a concern on D in my opinion, but he can do some stuff not many guys can do. Figuring out defensive translations to the NBA, particularly for bigs is just really hard, I was sure Towns was going to be an absolute stud defensively.

    Anyway I’m fascinated to watch him start to evolve this season, guys without clear comps are always the most interesting and he’s so far outside the box and so talented.

  106. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    but I’m not sure what an offense where Zion is the #1 option looks like on a posession by posession basis if that makes sense.

    Giannis just won MVP without a jump shot. Russ won one without a reliable jumper, too.

    The Pelicans need to surround him with shooters to punish teams that collapse on him. He is going to be a 6’6″ Russell Westbrook, mark my words. He has an extremely low dribble and rarely if ever looks lost during dribble penetration.

    Watch Zion’s highlights. I feel like you’ve all forgotten how much touch and positional awareness he has in addition to the relentless motor and crushing athleticism.

  107. JK47

    Zion should be an incredible pick and roll player, a deadly roll man. Unfortunately he is paired right now with Lonzo Ball, not a very good pick and roll point guard.

  108. Bruno Almeida

    The Pelicans can run some pretty interesting lineups this season, like Holiday, Redick, Ingram or Hart, Zion and Favors, for example. It’s a lineup that has decent shooting and should be strong defensively. I don’t think Ball will play too much, he’ll probably get 20-25 minutes a game as the backup PG and playing together with Holiday sometimes.

  109. DRed

    This is from Zach Lowe’s most intriguing players column

    There are maybe two living humans who can do some of the things Robinson does on defense.

    I wonder who he thinks the other one is. Giannis?

  110. alsep73

    Here’s a link to Zach’s column. As always, his command of Xs and Os is great. It’s a fair assessment of what Mitch is great at now and the many aspects of his game that still need work.

  111. DRed

    He wasn’t wrong about mitch but I thought he was a bit too negative. He barely brushed on the good things Mitch does. We know them, but most people aren’t idiots who watch a lot of Knicks games and I wonder if they’re confused why Zach finds Mitch so intriguing

  112. Owen

    I totally agree DRed. A “potential second round steal?” Mitch is absolutely outstanding as a rim runner, not raw as Zach describes him. Especially considering how shitty his service was last year. I think his athleticism, body control, and coordination are pretty off the charts for someone his height and length. I can’t think of many guys in the NBA who compare. Lowe seems to hint at this here and there but the piece mostly reads like he thinks Mitch is closer to an identikit pogo stick type. I think Mitch’s basketball instincts on offense are really solid. You can’t say that on defense yet because he fouls so much but a lot of the stuff he does on defense outside of that are pretty amazing. His defensive ceiling is unlimited.

    I don’t know, I could easily be in my David Lee delusional mode but I haven’t seen many guys in the NBA who can do what Mitch does out there physically. I don’t want to overstate that, there are so many physical tools that matter. Stamina, for instance, which Mitch didn’t show as a rookie. But in terms of the basic building blocks he’s a pretty rare bird in my book.

  113. DRed

    The best way I can think to put it in a non-statistical way is that Mitchell Robinson makes the NBA look easy in a way you don’t see very often.

  114. Bruno Almeida

    Zach Lowe has never been very complimentary of Mitch in all I’ve seen, and this article is definitely another instance. He’s been very negative about the Knicks lately, which I won’t really blame him for

  115. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    Yeah. That’s what I was saying about Mitch. He’s a kid. He was about as unpolished a talent as there could be for the NBA. He came in with a couple of plus natural talents but was raw. I was worried that he wouldn’t even get a fair chance but he did. Let’s see him become more polished: many fewer fouls, a more effective post-up move, smarter play like knowing kicking the ball out more when defended and taking the occasional 3-pointer to make the defense play him more honestly will be just fine with me. But with no other rim protectors on the team, his most important stat might end up being MPG.

    @125 – I can see the Barkley-Zion comp but eventually the better comp may end up being with LeBron.

  116. Bruno Almeida

    I think people are just wary of comparing anyone to LeBron simply out of respect for LeBron’s sustained excellence. I don’t think it’s likely we’ll see the next LeBron in the next 15-20 years simply because of how long he’s been able to sustain an unbelievable level of production. In that sense, I could see Zion’s best case scenario being to LeBron what Kobe is to Jordan, still an excellent player on his own right, but several steps below in any sort of comparison. That would be a pretty great best case scenario, or he could develop into something else entirely, but I’m certainly very excited to watch how it goes.

  117. Z-man

    I don’t think the Zion-LeBron comparisons are valid at all, beyond the shape-size-athleticism realm, and even there, the comparison is not very good. LeBron’s ball skills coming in to the NBA were many levels above Zion’s, and he was a full year younger with no NCAA experience. At Zion’s age he led the NBA in minutes and was an MVP candidate.

    Barkley is a much better comparison, although the NBA is quite different now and Zion might take a bit more time to adapt. I could see him being the best player on a contending team if his offensive game develops and he has what it takes between the ears and in the chest. At worst, I see a pre-back injury LJ-type, only more ferocious. But I would put the odds of Zion ever being discussed widely as a GOAT candidate 10 years down the road at .0000000001%. (That’s no slight to Zion, it’s true about everyone but LeBron, Wilt, Jordan, Kareem and Russell.)

  118. bobneptune

    At worst, I see a pre-back injury LJ-type, only more ferocious.

    Pretty fair comp…. LJ was a great player at UNLV. He averaged 21.6/11.2 with 35% 3 ball shooting and 79% FT shooting with a career TS% .691 good for 3rd all-time (since 1985) . He was also a great defender….

  119. Frank

    Yeah, you put Mitch with an actual point guard and you’d probably have a Chris Paul / Tyson Chandler sort of leap.

    He was a 20 year old rookie who led the league in blocks per min, 3 pointers blocked, basically shut down Joel Embiid 1-on-1, and as some writers have noticed, is actually an asset when switched onto smaller players. Oh, and numbers-wise, had basically a better season than 30 year old Tyson Chandler when Tyson won DPOY.

    Mitch doesn’t need to do anything else this year other than cut his foul rate by 20% (which btw he already did post-ASB last year) and play 2400 minutes (rather than 1400 like he did last year), and he’ll be one of the most valuable players in the league.

    btw – semi-notable is that of the 7 worst players on last year’s team in terms of net on/off +/-, 6 are no longer on the team –> Mudiay, Lance, THJ, Jordan, Hezonja, Kanter. Only Knox is left from that sorry bunch.

    Semi-notable also – except for Knox, every player left over from last year’s roster had a positive net on/off +/-
    Kadeem Allen +7.4
    Mitch +3.6
    DSJ +3.3
    Trier +2.7
    Dotson +2.1
    Ntilikina +0.6

    https://stats.nba.com/team/1610612752/onoffcourt-summary/?Season=2018-19&SeasonType=Regular%20Season&sort=DIFF_NET_RATING&dir=1

    I don’t know what that means, but that seems like a good thing.

  120. thenamestsam

    Giannis just won MVP without a jump shot. Russ won one without a reliable jumper, too.

    The Pelicans need to surround him with shooters to punish teams that collapse on him. He is going to be a 6’6? Russell Westbrook, mark my words. He has an extremely low dribble and rarely if ever looks lost during dribble penetration.

    I feel like the fact that you compared him to two primary pick and roll ball handlers (which he did very little of at Duke) and then JK47 immediately said he’s going to be a deadly roll man kind of makes my point about it not being clear what a Zion-centric offense looks like. That’s not a knock on his skills – if anything it’s partially because he can do so many things that it’s not clear what his “main” thing is – but it does leave it as a lingering question in my opinion.

  121. bobneptune

    That’s not a knock on his skills – if anything it’s partially because he can do so many things that it’s not clear what his “main” thing is – but it does leave it as a lingering question in my opinion.

    Maybe be we could wait until he plays a single minute in the NBA to figure out what his “main thing” is :-) If this guy isn’t great it will be a complete upset.

    Interestingly floor spacing was on NO’s mind when the went after 6,000 year old JJ Reddick…… Interesting factoid on Reddick…. I was listening to him on some podcast where he said he was one of the two players in the NBA with a negative wingspan.

  122. Donnie Walsh

    Question: If I refer to him as DogMorris this season, will my comments be subject to moderation because of its similarity to DogRufus?

  123. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I feel like the fact that you compared him to two primary pick and roll ball handlers (which he did very little of at Duke) and then JK47 immediately said he’s going to be a deadly roll man kind of makes my point about it not being clear what a Zion-centric offense looks like. That’s not a knock on his skills – if anything it’s partially because he can do so many things that it’s not clear what his “main” thing is – but it does leave it as a lingering question in my opinion.

    Can we agree that he is not only a post or rim-running player? There are so many videos of him starting possessions from beyond the arc, slicing through traffic and finishing at the rim. He can dribble with both hands and looks very comfortable in transition. His body is nothing like Giannis’s, but he gets to the rim very quickly and under control. I think he will be a “point forward” by the end of his 2nd year.

  124. TheClashFan

    Isn’t Morris more of a dawg than a dog? Aren’t dogs lazy and meekly obedient while dawgs are tough?

    Just wondering.

  125. thenamestsam

    Can we agree that he is not only a post or rim-running player? There are so many videos of him starting possessions from beyond the arc, slicing through traffic and finishing at the rim. He can dribble with both hands and looks very comfortable in transition. His body is nothing like Giannis’s, but he gets to the rim very quickly and under control. I think he will be a “point forward” by the end of his 2nd year.

    Oh I 100% agree that he’s not just a rim runner; I started this by saying he’s a jack of all trades on offense. I think Giannis is definitely a potential comp for a scenario where Zion does become the best guy in the league.

    I’m just looking at it and, as I said, even in the midst of a historic college season, Zion wasn’t being used anything like that. Coach K either didn’t think he was capable of being that kind of central playmaker/facillitator; or maybe it was because Duke really didn’t have enough shooting off ball to make it work; or maybe it was because Zion was capable of dominating even without getting the ball that much and Barrett/Reddish would’ve been even worse off the ball. I’m just saying that I find it difficult to have that level of certainty about how he looks as the central offensive player when, as great as he was, he didn’t do it in college.

  126. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Out of Zion/Barrett/Reddish, Zion and Reddish spent time off the ball because Reddish was the best shooter, Zion the best cutter/finisher, and RJ the best passer. Reddish greatly fell short of expectations and that hurt Duke (as well as the complete lack of talent outside of Tre, Cam, Zion, and RJ). Zion will spend a lot of time doing the same things he did at Duke with Holiday and Ball in New Orleans, and over the years we will see them phased out with a Zion-centric offense as the focus. Zion, from what I’ve seen, is a willing passer but he’s not an accurate passer (basically he doesn’t hit guys in their shooting stance). He’ll work on that and be a walking triple double for as long as he stays healthy and in peak condition.

  127. thenamestsam

    He may very well be, but when we’re talking about a guy who averaged 2.1 assists and had one game with more than 5 becoming a triple-double machine I feel like it’s fair to say we’re no longer in the world of locks. That’s a lot of growth you’re projecting onto that area and whether it’s the passing or the jumper, I do feel like some part of his offensive game will have to grow very significantly for him to become a #1 option. That’s my only point.

    And again, because I know people are categorizing me as a Zion-hater as we speak, I think he’s going to be very, very good.

  128. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    Apparently Kevin Knox singled out Frank Ntilikina as one of the best players so far in training camp. That was one of the most predictable things that could have happened, and I won’t be surprised if he has the starting 2 guard position locked down by opening day.

    If we’re taking bets on Day 1 starters, I’d say Smith Jr, Ntilikina, Barrett, Randle, and Robinson with Morris and Trier as the first guys off the bench.

  129. Z-man

    Apparently Kevin Knox singled out Frank Ntilikina as one of the best players so far in training camp.

    Well, that must make it true.

  130. thenoblefacehumper

    Strat’s opinion on Knox just went through the roof. He probably thinks Phil was still shadow GM for that pick now!

  131. The Glass Half Rebuilt

    @153 being a training camp superstar simply means you play good defense, showed up in better shape than everybody, and you’re hitting shots more than people remembered you hitting. A couple weeks ago I remember saying despite how bad Frank was last year, we shouldn’t count him out because he’s head and shoulders above every guard we have as a defender. From training camp, here’s what’s been said about Frank:

    1) The injuries last year affected his game and his confidence.
    2) He’s 100% healthy and shooting better.
    3) He’s still the same defender, and Fizdale refuses to pigeonhole him into a specific position because he provides a lot of versatility on defense.

    He’s my bet to start at the two to open up the season. Ellington’s old, Dotson’s hurt, RJ’s going to struggle with his shot, and Trier plays one side of the ball.

  132. Hubert

    At worst, I see a pre-back injury LJ-type, only more ferocious.

    The player you’re describing is Shawn Kemp, and he seems like the most apt comp for Zion. I don’t see much Barkley in him aside from the size.

  133. d-mar

    Apparently Kevin Knox singled out Frank Ntilikina as one of the best players so far in training camp.

    And he’s ITBSOHL!

  134. bobneptune

    The player you’re describing is Shawn Kemp, and he seems like the most apt comp for Zion. I don’t see much Barkley in him aside from the size.

    Kemp… 6′ 11″ and 230
    Zion … 6’7″ and 284
    LJ ……..6’6″ and 250
    Barkley..6’6″ and 252

    Barkley is one of the greatest players of all time : 11th in ws/48 career, Kemp 125th, 5th in VORP, Kemp 125th, and 3rd in BPM , Kemp 161st!!!!

    Barkley is the exact inside-outside immensely physical power player most of us expect Zion to become….imagine Karl Malone with a better handle and better lift…..

    Hmmmm…. Which doesn’t belong and why?

  135. GoNYGoNYGo - Dolan must sell

    @155 – I think Frank will be given the chance but he’s on thin ice. I agree with your assessment of his competition but although Ellington’s old, he’s also experienced and is the only known 3 pt shooter among the guards. Dotson’s hurt but when healthy he’s an all-around player. RJ’s may to struggle with his shot but he’s the #3 pick and will get a long, long leash. Trier plays one side of the ball and he’s ball dominant but he provides offense when there’s none and many are eyeing him as a breakout candidate. You can also toss in Bullock, who probably won’t play until 2021 but is more competition for playing time down the road.

    Ntilikina may also a tradeable asset.

  136. KnickfaninNJ

    I have to ask, why is it predictable that Knox would say Ntilikina is the best player in camp?

  137. Donnie Walsh

    I have to ask, why is it predictable that Knox would say Ntilikina is the best player in camp?

    Because everybody knows that Kevin Knox has been posting here under the name Stratomatic since he was 10.

  138. swiftandabundant

    As skeptical as I am of Frank at this point I do think with dot not being ready he has a shot to stick. And that DSJ, Frank, RJ, Randle, Robinson lineup is the one that could be really special if everyone hit their potential. Outside shooting would be suspect but who knows. Maybe frank and DSJ have found that outside shot and it would be ok.

  139. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Any chance we could get a dedicated political thread tomorrow? I have a few questions for our resident Trump-loving conservatives.

  140. bobneptune

    Any chance we could get a dedicated political thread tomorrow? I have a few questions for our resident Trump-loving conservatives.

    Oh boy…. I can’t wait……I’m guessing they will be rhetorical because we all already know you have the answers for everything……

  141. Donnie Walsh

    Honestly, only a dedicated Knicks fan, artful in self delusion, and one who knows no bottom, could still support the president after today.

  142. bobneptune

    I feel so much pity for the sniveling coward you choose to be…And in advance, I’m sorry that you’re offended

    I’m not offended at all…. more curious than anything at what it could possibly be that Mr. Expert on Everything/Mr Internet Tough Guy needs answered….

  143. slovene knick

    The case is laid out so clear you don’t even need Linda Lovelace this time.Maybe to clear to comprehend.
    But with the bar set so low and the entrenched so deep it won’t be seen over the sacks.
    The divide will only deepen. No winners here.
    Dick in similar circumstances was not willing to tear it all down and he let go.
    About this One I’m not so sure. This one seems like all the way down candidate.

  144. bobneptune

    Dick in similar circumstances was not willing to tear it all down and he let go.
    About this One I’m not so sure. This one seems like all the way down candidate.

    The circumstances aren’t remotely similar…..

  145. slovene knick

    Maybe….but pressure made Dick step down.
    This one will not willingly step down under any circumstances.

  146. bobneptune

    Maybe….but pressure made Dick step down.
    This one will not willingly step down under any circumstances.

    Nixon stepped down because he was guilty of a felony, namely subjoining the payment of a bribe to buy the silence of accused felons who broke into the Mc Govern campaign and stole documents. Once he lost the support of Senator Howard Baker a moderate from Tennessee the 67 senator minimum for conviction in the Senate was assured.

    In this case there isn’t an underlying “high crime”. There isn’t a chance in the world that 20 Republican Senators will vote for conviction with the current level of facts so he will never be convicted by the US Senate, It is all a dog and pony show and every clear thinking person knows this.

  147. slovene knick

    So, how would You as a clear thinkig mind vote were you on senate.
    Nothing wrong with modus operandi of the prz?

  148. bobneptune

    So, how would You as a clear thinkig mind vote were you on senate.
    Nothing wrong with modus operandi of the prz?

    The precedent for an impeachment proceeding in the House has ALWAYS (every one of the 62 previous Impeachment inquiries) has always begun with a vote to authorize an Impeachment inquiry of a federal official. Comrade Pelosi has already shattered this precedent, so we are now in uncharted waters.

    After the vote to authorize, the House gathers information and formally presents “Articles of Impeachment” for an up or down majority vote. I the articles pass the House, they are presented to the Senate where the House managers present the case to the “jury” who are the 100 members of the Senate with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court serving as judge.

    So when actual articles of impeachment pass the house then I can give an intelligent answer as to how I would vote. What is the High Crime? Tell me and I’ll be happy to give my opinion…. but no matter what my opinion with the current state of the facts, I have a better chance of walking on the Sun than 20 Republican Senators will vote for Impeachment.

  149. Hubert

    Kemp… 6? 11? and 230
    Zion … 6’7? and 284
    LJ ……..6’6? and 250
    Barkley..6’6? and 252

    Barkley is one of the greatest players of all time : 11th in ws/48 career, Kemp 125th, 5th in VORP, Kemp 125th, and 3rd in BPM , Kemp 161st!!!!

    Why is a player limited to being similar to players the same height and weight? Peak Shawn Kemp was an incredible player and the exact kind of physical phenom many of us expect Zion to be.

    imagine Karl Malone with a better handle and better lift…..

    Yeah, that was Shawn Kemp.

  150. Frank

    Honestly, only a dedicated Knicks fan, artful in self delusion, and one who knows no bottom, could still support the president after today.

    +10000

    bob must be the biggest, most dedicated Knicks fan in the world.

  151. slovene knick

    O yes, yes the procedure, the comrades and the lords…..
    But what I’m asking is You Bob and Your opinion on his doings. Is his the right way?

  152. Hubert

    Any chance we could get a dedicated political thread tomorrow?

    Credit for decorum. If we’re going to talk politics, the dedicated thread is the way to go. Easy to avoid if no one wants to get into it.

  153. slovene knick

    But the worldwide politics is puting on a show for the last three years no sport can match:)

  154. bobneptune

    Why is a player limited to being similar to players the same height and weight? Peak Shawn Kemp was an incredible player and the exact kind of physical phenom many of us expect Zion to be.

    imagine Karl Malone with a better handle and better lift…..

    Yeah, that was Shawn Kemp.

    You must not have seen Shawn Kemp if you think he is anything like Karl Malone.

  155. bobneptune

    O yes, yes the procedure, the comrades and the lords…..
    But what I’m asking is You Bob and Your opinion on his doings. Is his the right way?

    Process is everything here. If you want an answer from me you have to be a little more specific than my opinions on his “doings” whatever that might mean. If you want to impeach a sitting President here you need to vote on Articles of Impeachment (actually specific charges) and the congress critters have to go down on public record with a majority. Then they have to convince 20 Republican senators to commit political suicide which ain’t happening to get to 67 (a 2/3 majority or more.)

    But if you are asking another question as to what I think of his overall policies I’d be happy to discuss those too.

  156. JK47

    Fuckin guy blatantly extorted a foreign country into digging up dirt on his political rival, got caught red handed with a giant pile of receipts, a gross and cartoonish abuse of his office if there ever was one. He has his AG and SOS flying all over the world trying to “prove” some cuckoo bananas conspiracy theory that Ukraine framed Russia for 2016 election interference. Nothing to see here though! All totallly legit! Own the libs!

    It’s pretty funny watching people like old Neptune over here trying to defend all of this rank corruption. I am enjoying this to no end.

  157. Donnie Walsh

    It’s pretty funny watching people like old Neptune over here trying to defend all of this rank corruption. I am enjoying this to no end.

    Turns out “Drain the Swamp!” and “Lock Her Up!” weren’t really about taking a stand against political corruption and protecting the country from incompetent leaders, I guess…

  158. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Then they have to convince 20 Republican senators to commit political suicide which ain’t happening to get to 67 (a 2/3 majority or more.)

    Congrats! You’re a quisling.

    The question I have is whether you understand the facts and choose to ignore them, or you’ve been so thoroughly brainwashed by Breitbart and Fox News that you actually believe the bullshit the GOP is peddling. Either way, it’s time for you to de-program.

    “I would like you do me a favor, though.”

    “See, you added a word, there!”

    spoiler:

    he didn’t

  159. JK47

    Of course this is all because Donald Trump is very concerned about the scourge of nepotism. Boy does Donald Trump hate nepotism. He’s on a worldwide crusade to ferret out nepotism everywhere, because it’s just that important to him.

  160. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Reporter: Mr President, what exactly did you hope Zelensky would do about the Bidens after the phone call?

    President: Well, I would think if they were honest about it, they would start an investigation into the Biden’s. It’s a very simple answer. They should investigate the Bidens, because how does a company that is newly formed, and all these companies, did you look at, and by the way, likewise China should start an investigation, into the Bidens, because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with, uh, with Ukraine. So I would say that President Zelensky, if it were me, I would recommend that they start and investigation into the Bidens, because nobody has any doubt that they weren’t crooked.That was a crooked deal 100%. He had no knowledge of energy. Didn’t know the first thing about it. All of a sudden he’s getting $50,000, plus a lot of other things, nobody has any doubt. They got rid of a prosecutor, who was a very tough prosecutor, they got rid of him. Now they’re trying to make it the opposite way but they got ri… so if I were President, I would certainly recommend that of Ukraine.

    I don’t know what’s more shocking: that a person could read this and not see Trump openly asking an adversarial foreign government for an investigation into his political rival, or that someone reads this and sees any semblance of functional intelligence in the person from whose mouth it came.

  161. Hubert

    You must not have seen Shawn Kemp

    Saw him plenty. Mid 90s Kemp was one of the most explosive athletes I’ve ever seen in the NBA.

    You’re hung up on height and weight. I’m focusing on style, quick-twitch athleticism, and what the players do on the court. Zion is going to look a lot more like Kemp than Barkley.

    Barkley was a master post player with the footwork of a ballerina and a low center of gravity that he used to estabablish position. He was a bull in the open court, but he wasn’t running through lanes dunking like kemp did or Zion will.

    Obviously Barkley > Kemp but that’s not the point at all.

  162. ptmilo

    Barkley was a master post player with the footwork of a ballerina and a low center of gravity that he used to estabablish position. He was a bull in the open court, but he wasn’t running through lanes dunking like kemp did or Zion will.

    Barkley was the most prolific dunker in the game for most of his young prime. He wasn’t running through lanes and mashing it down? yeah right

  163. alsep73

    Hey, remember the Knicks?

    Here’s an interesting passage from Begley’s notes on Thursday’s practice (don’t forget to give him the click, even if you read the excerpt below), regarding how the offense will change:

    Fizdale has said that the Knicks offense is going to look different this year. He says he didn’t want to overload the young Knicks last year with too many complexities, but it will be different this season with a more veteran group.

    Fizdale isn’t diagramming plays for reporters when he’s asked about the offense. Coaches rarely want to reveal too much about their game plan.

    But here’s some of what Fizdale said about the offense on Thursday: “I know I want to get the ball over half court quickly. I want to get the ball moving. I want a lot of guys involved in the game with the understanding of whoever’s got it going that night we’ve got to keep that guy going. We’re going to be an attacking team, a team that gets into the paint. We want to be a team that gets to the foul line.”

    He added: “I still feel like at the end of the day, putting pressure on the rim is the No. 1 priority. I think that’s what creates everything else. We got more three-point shooting so I expect for us to maybe shoot a few more threes and make a few more threes. But at the end of the day if guys are good pull-up jump shooters, I want them shooting that (mid-range) shot with confidence if they’re open.”

  164. Hubert

    Barkley was the most prolific dunker in the game for most of his young prime.

    So was Kemp, and beyond his “young” prime, as well. Until he got traded to Cleveland and got fat.

    He wasn’t running through lanes and mashing it down? yeah right

    Yeah, right!

    You know there is more than one way to dunk, right? Jordan dunked a lot. Shaq dunked a lot. Are Shaq and Jordan similar?

    Barkley was predominantly a post player. Are you trying to tell me he wasn’t?

  165. Hubert

    alsep, here’s Knox:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=46TjO3_3s6M

    Around the 2:11 – “he hasn’t put no plays in”. And again at the 2:40 mark: “Coach Fiz hasn’t put no plays in” and “he just wants us to work on our flow”. That would explain why he isn’t diagramming plays for reporters!

    I saw that vid yesterday. Was going to post it but I figured it was no big deal, it’s early in camp, maybe it’s normal for a coach to not have any plays yet. It seems like in the Begley article Fiz is trying to make it sound like he’s done more than he has, though.

    We’ll see eventually.

  166. ptmilo

    you could accidentally call yourself qbert one morning and you’d spend the next ten years arguing that your parents were huge fans of isometric graphics. barkley was a fucking thunderous dunker when young and a fantastic fast twitch athlete. he had over 500 dunks between 1988-1990 which was best in the entire league. he was also a great post player, the most powerful transition dunker, and the best offensive rebounder in the league. you wanna spend some more time trying to sell a book about charles barkley as anything but an explosive fast twitch mash machine you should stick it on the never coming political thread.

  167. Hubert

    you could accidentally call yourself qbert one morning and you’d accidentally spend the next ten years arguing that your parents were huge fans of isometric graphics. barkley was a fucking thunderous dunker when young and a fantastic fast twitch athlete. he had over 500 dunks between 1988-1990 which was best in the entire league. he was also a great post player, the most powerful transition dunker, and the best offensive rebounder in the league. you wanna spend some more time trying to sell a book about charles barkley as anything but an explosive fast twitch mash machine you should stick it on the never coming political thread.

    Straw man beaten to death. With some style, too. No one pontificates on something no one said better than you.

    Now tell me about the part where Zion is likely to play a style similar to Barkley. He will probably not post up in his career as many times as Barkley did in his rookie season.

  168. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    The precedent for an impeachment proceeding in the House has ALWAYS (every one of the 62 previous Impeachment inquiries) has always begun with a vote to authorize an Impeachment inquiry of a federal official. Comrade Pelosi has already shattered this precedent, so we are now in uncharted waters.

    After the vote to authorize, the House gathers information and formally presents “Articles of Impeachment” for an up or down majority vote. I the articles pass the House, they are presented to the Senate where the House managers present the case to the “jury” who are the 100 members of the Senate with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court serving as judge.

    So when actual articles of impeachment pass the house then I can give an intelligent answer as to how I would vote. What is the High Crime? Tell me and I’ll be happy to give my opinion…. but no matter what my opinion with the current state of the facts, I have a better chance of walking on the Sun than 20 Republican Senators will vote for Impeachment.

    “Honey, I know you walked in on me blowing your boss, but the ethical thing to do would have been to knock and ask if you could enter, first. So can we really say that you caught me cheating?”

  169. d-mar

    If you want a true indication of the Trump alternate universe, he planned to call his health care speech yesterday “Protecting Medicare From Socialist Destruction”

    And yes, there are a fair number of people out there who will actually buy into this bizarro world crap. Hopefully, not enough to get this maniac re-elected.

  170. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    “Protecting Medicare From Socialist Destruction”

    There are some of those people right here on the board. And I would bet that they find that speech title informative, truthful and without undue bias.

  171. Name is Bron - James Bron

    Exact Words from the US Constitution:

    The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

    Definition of Bribery from Black’s Law Dictionary:
    the offering, giving, receiving, or soliciting of any item of value to influence the actions of an official or other person in charge of a public or legal duty.

    It may be time to just split up the nation because the following scenario is not that far-fetched: In a surreal development, a beleagured Trump strode out of Trump Tower onto 5th Avenue and encountered a protester shouting RESIGN. President Trump whipped out a revolver and shot the Latino man dead.

    Senator Neptune, how do you vote on Articles of Impeachment?

    I vote nay. This is clearly not a high crime. Just a single individual was killed. One person. That’s it. Now had it been a mass shooting, why then I would in a stentorian voice vote to remove the President from office. But to remove our President over the death of one guy – a Latino who provoked our dear leader? Sheesh what kind of nation have we turned into?

  172. DRed

    Congress can pretty much impeach the President for whatever reason they want. Maybe in a particularly egregious case the supreme court would try to intervene.

  173. bobneptune

    Congress can pretty much impeach the President for whatever reason they want. Maybe in a particularly egregious case the supreme court would try to intervene.

    True… the House can impeach the President for whatever reason they please by majority vote. But that doesn’t count for squat if they can’t muster 67 senators.

    Pelosi shunned the 62 for 62 convention of having the house vote to open an impeachment inquiry for obvious reasons… she doesn’t want the 15 or so new house members that won in Trump districts getting slaughtered in 2020. I’m not sure a bill of impeachment will ever come out of the house.

  174. bobneptune

    It may be time to just split up the nation because the following scenario is not that far-fetched: In a surreal development, a beleagured Trump strode out of Trump Tower onto 5th Avenue and encountered a protester shouting RESIGN. President Trump whipped out a revolver and shot the Latino man dead.

    Senator Neptune, how do you vote on Articles of Impeachment?

    I vote nay. This is clearly not a high crime. Just a single individual was killed. One person. That’s it. Now had it been a mass shooting, why then I would in a stentorian voice vote to remove the President from office. But to remove our President over the death of one guy – a Latino who provoked our dear leader? Sheesh what kind of nation have we turned into?

    Is James Bron a burner account for Adam Schiff…. same sort of fantasy although you original thought may be a good idea.

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