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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

NYT: Copeland’s Strides Give Knicks a New, Improved Look

Young man, there’s no need to look down. I said “young man pick yourself off the ground.”

The downside of this transition is that the Knicks lack players who are likely to make major improvements. In pursuit of a championship, the Knicks’ front office acquired a host of veterans on the tail ends of their careers — Jason Kidd, Kurt Thomas, Marcus Camby, Pablo Prigioni, and Rasheed Wallace — and
a third of their roster was born before the Village People released “Y.M.C.A.” That leaves the Knicks with few young players with room to grow. In fact, there really is only one: the 28-year-old rookie Chris Copeland.

And just go there!

152 comments on “NYT: Copeland’s Strides Give Knicks a New, Improved Look

  1. jon abbey

    how quickly they forget the Shump man. :)

    Copeland looked great in the first half yesterday, but I still think he’s about 14th on the depth chart if everyone is healthy.

  2. Frank

    That leaves the Knicks with few young players with room to grow. In fact, there really is only one: the 28-year-old rookie Chris Copeland.

    Poor Shump, already forgotten even here at Knickerblogger.

  3. Z-man

    With his hairdo, Copeland reminds me of Predator, especially when he’s ramming in monstrous follow jams.

  4. d-mar

    Z-man:
    With his hairdo, Copeland reminds me of Predator, especially when he’s ramming in monstrous follow jams.

    Maybe he should guard Bosh when they play Miami – Dinosaur vs. Predator

  5. Frank

    Not that I care about Hollinger’s Power Rankings, but OKC is on top now – sure doesn’t seem like they miss Mr. Harden. Offensive and defensive efficiencies are both better than last year against a pretty average schedule (0.496 opp winning%). And they have more cap flexibility, multiple 1st round picks including Toronto’s lottery pick which would be the 2nd most lottery balls right now, and lots of young talent waiting to step up (Lamb, Perry Jones, etc.).

    Kevin Martin has assumed Harden’s 65+ TS as the 3rd banana on that team, and Harden (in an increasingly large sample size) is starting to look like a slightly above average high-volume shooter with his (still good) TS of 57 on a usg% of 27.

    It’s early yet, but Presti looks like a genius (again). That being said – Houston needed a high-volume scorer like Harden, or else it could be Jeremy Lin with the 27 usage to go with his TS of 47. Probably a win-win for both sides. But when you’re OKC and you’re winning deals on top of still being a legit title contender — scary.

  6. Juany8

    Frank:
    Not that I care about Hollinger’s Power Rankings, but OKC is on top now – sure doesn’t seem like they miss Mr. Harden.Offensive and defensive efficiencies are both better than last year against a pretty average schedule (0.496 opp winning%).And they have more cap flexibility, multiple 1st round picks including Toronto’s lottery pick which would be the 2nd most lottery balls right now, and lots of young talent waiting to step up (Lamb, Perry Jones, etc.).

    Kevin Martin has assumed Harden’s 65+ TS as the 3rd banana on that team, and Harden (in an increasingly large sample size) is starting to look like a slightly above average high-volume shooter with his (still good) TS of 57 on a usg% of 27.

    It’s early yet, but Presti looks like a genius (again). That being said – Houston needed a high-volume scorer like Harden, or else it could be Jeremy Lin with the 27 usage to go with his TS of 47.Probably a win-win for both sides.But when you’re OKC and you’re winning deals on top of still being a legit title contender — scary.

    I said it at the time, but that a clear cut case of both teams making out well in a deal. The Thunder aren’t even playing Lamb yet, he’s the rookie Rockets fans were most excited to see trust me. I think he can be a much better version of Sefalosha down the road, and PJ3 has a lot of talent for a number 28 pick. Toronto sucks so they’re probably getting a top 10 pick this year, especially since there are going to be a lot of solid teams in the west that will miss the playoffs (Rockets are right on pace for their 14th pick….)

    Up to this point, the Howard deal seems to have been a lose-lose-lose-lose. Does everyone realize Philadelphia has the best record of all those teams without Bynum or Iggy? Remember the beatdown the Knicks put on them?

  7. Frank

    Meanwhile I love how Carmelo has a lower WP48 than Jason Maxiell, Josh McRoberts, Andres Biedrins, Sasha Pavlovic, Tyler Hansbrough, and Jared Sullinger.

  8. Juany8

    If Denver and the Lakers keep losing I’d say that Masai Ujiri are easily the most overrated GM’s in the league. The Lakers have had years to acquire some cheap bench talent and somehow ended up with Steve Blake and Cris Duhon running point at the easiest position in the league to fill (I’d take Prigs over both, not that it’s saying much) After their vaunted top 4, their best players are an aging Jamison and Artest, both of which have been atrocious on defense and offense respectively for years. They had to luck into Jordan Hill actually becoming decent to even have enough players to fill a rotation. Sure they keep getting stars because they’re the Lakers, but that has nothing to do with their front office. Orlando ended up getting a few decent role players for Dwight Howard, it’s not like they were negotiating with geniuses.

    As for the Nuggets, they traded Melo and they only thing they got from it was infatuation from all the internet stat geeks that want to prove Melo is overrated while simultaneously singing the praises of great role players like Iguodala and Faried. Unfortunately you can’t build a team entirely out of efficient role players, and so the team that would have proved efficiency stats right is instead the best case study ever for actually understanding basketball before beginning to plug in numbers. The Nuggets might also want to chill with signing all those young players to long term contracts, one thing I’ve learned from being a fan of the Rockets is that efficient young media darlings quickly become mediocre assets if they get stuck on mediocre teams. Kyle Lowry is arguably better than anyone on the Nuggets, and Dragic is a legit starter in the league. The Rockets only got a lottery pick for both of them lol

  9. Frank

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: The nature of basketball is that teams need guards and big men.

    Sorry never got to reply to this. It was this quote from Berri that I like the least. He just got finished telling us that conventional wisdom is all wrong and that his view of the world is superior. But then he says that it’s just “the nature of basketball” that teams have to put losers (guards) on the floor?

    The truth of it is that if Dwight Howard had to bring the ball up, he’d have 10 turnovers a game or more. If Dwight Howard was tasked with spacing the floor so that there aren’t 8 players within 2 feet of the basket all the time, he would never score, or if he did, he would be unbelievably inefficient. The reason Dwight Howard can be as “win-producing” as he is (or at least used to be!) is that he has a system and teammates that allow him to maximize the things he does well. So if grabbing rebounds and avoiding turnovers are the most important measurables that determine wins, the only reason he can “produce” the most wins, is because his teammates take care of all the other stuff.

    How I feel about WP48 is like this – I think it rewards players for playing within their limitations (which is a good thing), but does not properly reward other players (ie. the “shot creators”) for allowing other players to play within their limitations. I agree that “shot creation” is probably overrated as a “we must have that” kind of skill in the sense that no one needs more iso’s — but the ability to cause the defense to do what it doesn’t want to is invaluable.

    And honestly, any system that rated Troy Murphy as a top 10 player has to be rethought. Any player that is a true top 10 player should be in the playoffs every year, not miss them for his entire career (9 years) before making them as a bench scrub in Boston.

  10. Juany8

    Frank:
    Meanwhile I love how Carmelo has a lower WP48 than Jason Maxiell, Josh McRoberts, Andres Biedrins, Sasha Pavlovic, Tyler Hansbrough, and Jared Sullinger.

    Interestingly enough, he’s putting up a career high in Win Shares at .183. In unrelated news, suddenly Dragic became a top 20 player and has apparently been nearly as valuable as Lebron James. So for once me and THCJ will actually agree on the Rockets losing big time in getting Dragic for Lin lol! Unfortunately for him, Sefalosha and Kevin Martin are both putting up better WP numbers than Harden. Makes it harder to argue that playing next to Durant and Westbrook isn’t any different than playing next to Lin and Parsons

  11. lavor postell

    Never understood everybody that thought Iguodala was going to elevate Denver to the upper echelon of the West. Don’t get me wrong, I love Iggy, but if he’s the best player on your team then your upside is limited. He ideally should be the No. 3 option offensively on your team.

    I think the Nuggets’ big problem is that they have way too many good-very good players, but there’s really not one guy in their team you would say is an elite player at their position. Iguodala is great, but you cannot build an offense around his talents or really anybody else’s on that team.

    Also another interesting note is how many contracts they have ranging from 8-12 million a year. These are generally regarded as the worst type of contracts in the NBA. The Spurs in particular have almost always completely avoided these deals (Interestingly it seems that now the Knicks have as well). It will be interesting to see where this commitment to depth over star quality takes them. For me I see their peak as a Western Conference version of the Woodson coached Hawks teams.

  12. jon abbey

    I don’t really disagree with any of that Denver analysis, but also keep in mind they’ve played a ton of road games so far, and they’re a young team and should only get better. I think they probably need a new coach, though, Karl was great in his day but I think that day is now past.

  13. thenamestsam

    Juany8:
    As for the Nuggets, they traded Melo and they only thing they got from it was infatuation from all the internet stat geeks that want to prove Melo is overrated while simultaneously singing the praises of great role players like Iguodala and Faried. Unfortunately you can’t build a team entirely out of efficient role players, and so the team that would have proved efficiency stats right is instead the best case study ever for actually understanding basketball before beginning to plug in numbers. The Nuggets might also want to chill with signing all those young players to long term contracts, one thing I’ve learned from being a fan of the Rockets is that efficient young media darlings quickly become mediocre assets if they get stuck on mediocre teams. Kyle Lowry is arguably better than anyone on the Nuggets, and Dragic is a legit starter in the league. The Rockets only got a lottery pick for both of them lol

    I think you’re being a bit hard on the Nuggets here. While I hope to god the idea that they got the better end of the Melo deal is dead and buried, they had no choice but to trade him, and it’s not like they had a bunch of options about where to send him. I thought they came out about as well as possible in that deal. They’ve given out some questionable deals to mid-tier players but they’re still a very young team, a playoff contender and have some interesting pieces to try to grab a superstar if one becomes available. And they did that after losing a superstar without going through any really painful rebuilding years. They’re not the world-beaters some advanced stats folks predicted, but <2 years after being forced to deal Melo that doesn't seem like a reasonable criteria to judge the front office on.

  14. Juany8

    lavor postell:
    Never understood everybody that thought Iguodala was going to elevate Denver to the upper echelon of the West.Don’t get me wrong, I love Iggy, but if he’s the best player on your team then your upside is limited.He ideally should be the No. 3 option offensively on your team.

    I think the Nuggets’ big problem is that they have way too many good-very good players, but there’s really not one guy in their team you would say is an elite player at their position.Iguodala is great, but you cannot build an offense around his talents or really anybody else’s on that team.

    Also another interesting note is how many contracts they have ranging from 8-12 million a year.These are generally regarded as the worst type of contracts in the NBA.The Spurs in particular have almost always completely avoided these deals (Interestingly it seems that now the Knicks have as well).It will be interesting to see where this commitment to depth over star quality takes them.For me I see their peak as a Western Conference version of the Woodson coached Hawks teams.

    Exactly my thoughts Lavoy, they’re giving full paydays to nice role players who are certainly not going to outproduce their contracts. They’re paying Gallo and Chandler roughly the same amount the Knicks are paying Melo and Brewer, that’s a massive win for the Knicks. In fact, they’re paying close to max money for 4 out of the 5 positions on the floor. Lawson-Miller, Iguodala-Brewer, Gallinari-Chandler, and McGee-Koufos are all pairings making over $10 million a year. That’s not counting Faried, who would probably get near that money.

    In contrast, the Knicks have Melo-Brewer-Novak, Amar’e-Sheed, and Chandler-Camby-Thomas making max money, and barely $10 million combined in their guard rotation. Amar’e and Shump aren’t playing either, and the Knicks have been fine without Kidd

  15. JK47

    The Nuggets just aren’t much of a defensive team, and their defensive problems are not going to be easy to solve.

    For starters, they’re terrible at defending 3-pointers and everybody knows it. They are dead last in 3-pointers allowed and 28th in 3-point percentage allowed. Their point guard is 5’11″ so you can just shoot right over him. Gallo is sluggish and ineffective on closeouts. Sometimes they play the Lawson/Miller backcourt, which means now you have an undersized PG and also an undersized SG.

    Their only competent interior defender is Kosta Koufos. Javale McGee and Kenneth Faried are hopeless on the defensive end. The worst 5-man unit the Nuggs run out there is Lawson-Iguodala-Gallo-Faried-McGee, which gets torched for 1.30 PPP while scoring a mighty .80 PPP. That is an absolutely toxic 5-man unit with 4 terrible defenders.

  16. thenamestsam

    Juany8: Exactly my thoughts Lavoy, they’re giving full paydays to nice role players who are certainly not going to outproduce their contracts. They’re paying Gallo and Chandler roughly the same amount the Knicks are paying Melo and Brewer, that’s a massive win for the Knicks. In fact, they’re paying close to max money for 4 out of the 5 positions on the floor. Lawson-Miller, Iguodala-Brewer, Gallinari-Chandler, and McGee-Koufos are all pairings making over $10 million a year. That’s not counting Faried, who would probably get near that money.

    In contrast, the Knicks have Melo-Brewer-Novak, Amar’e-Sheed, and Chandler-Camby-Thomas making max money, and barely $10 million combined in their guard rotation. Amar’e and Shump aren’t playing either, and the Knicks have been fine without Kidd

    It seems like the most common critique of NBA front offices is about failure to land a superstar. Yes, you basically need a superstar to contend for a title (with few exceptions), but they’re also basically impossible to get. I’m sure if you offer Ujiri the choice between Gallo-Chandler and Melo-Brewer he takes Melo-Brewer. But the Melo-Brewer choice wasn’t available to him. Melo was leaving, one way or another. The two roads open were take the players being offered and build the best team possible (which they’ve done) or bottom out. It seems to me that the team they have now isn’t far from a best case scenario for year 4 or 5 if you choose to bottom out. Outside of lucking into a Durant or a Dwight, having a young playoff team with intriguing assets is the next best thing. I think people tend to be a little too infatuated with the bottoming out option.

  17. d-mar

    I don’t think anyone is arguing that Ujiri didn’t get as much value as possible for Melo under the circumstances, but there was a massive love affair on this site with the Nuggets roster after the Melo trade, and it continued after the more recent Iggy deal.

    And remember how folks were howling that we had to throw in the great Timofey Mozgov to make the Melo deal happen, and that Ujiri had made fools of the Knicks front office by fleecing them for Chandler (where is he now anyway?) Felton, Gallo and Moz? (Oh and we had to give up Anthony Randolph as well, that should have been a deal breaker as well)

    Don’t see the term Knuggets used much anymore, probably because only one ex-Knick, Gallo, gets any minutes for them.

  18. Juany8

    thenamestsam, actually I’m not a huge fan of bottoming out but do prefer that option over being first round fodder. The problem is that the choice wasn’t just Gallo-Chandler, they could have picked up cheaper players that maybe aren’t as good overall but get more bang for their buck. Since you can’t have the Melo-Brewer option, you try to find a combination that gives you the same ratio of productivity to money spent, even if you end up constantly recycling rookie contracts. Look at the Rockets, if they had payed guys like Aaron Brooks and Carl Landry what they deserved, they probably don’t open up the flexibility to get a player like Harden while still having room to build around him.

    Right now, the only player on that Nuggets team who is an intriguing asset is Faried, mostly because he’s still on his rookie contract and still has a widely recognized potential to improve. Guys like Lawson, Gallinari, Iguodala, and McGee have been around long enough for GMs to get a pretty good idea of what they’re worth, and none of those guys are on a good contract for the team, they’re all getting payed at best what they’re actually worth. Who can Gallinari be traded for that would give the Nuggets a substantial improvement? None of those guys are “proven winners” (which front offices love, and I think this Knicks team shows why) and none of them are role players on nice contracts that you can trade a contender for picks. Andre Miller probably has more trade value than Lawson right now, and he’s the only real veteran on the team.

    There’s also the fact that unless the Nuggets do make the WCF and look like possible contenders, I’d be willing to bet major money that they don’t keep Iguodala after the season. Why pay near the luxury tax for a team with a very firm 1st round ceiling? The Nuggets have already become the new Joe Johnson Hawks, not only are they going nowhere but all their assets are quickly losing value

  19. Frank

    d-mar:
    And remember how folks were howling that we had to throw in the great Timofey Mozgov to make the Melo deal happen, and that Ujiri had made fools of the Knicks front office by fleecing them for Chandler (where is he now anyway?) Felton, Gallo and Moz? (Oh and we had to give up Anthony Randolph as well, that should have been a deal breaker as well)

    I remember that whole debate very well. It’s sort of feeling like Dolan isn’t as dumb as we thought he was. Sure, he could have given up less, but he saw his mark and went for it. And to be very honest, as much as I root for him personally, I am feeling very good about letting Jeremy Lin go right now, about 1/5th of the way into the season.

    Re: all the guys we gave up — they are all sort of feeling like replacement level players right now – like guys you might be able to pick up for mini-MLE or less. I’d rather have Rasheed Wallace, Marcus Camby, or Reggie Evans than Mozgov. I’d rather have Ronnie Brewer than Wilson Chandler. I’d rather have an empty roster spot than Anthony Randolph. We already got Felton back at 1/2 the price. And Gallo – well, you probably can’t get Gallo level of performance for mini-MLE, but you probably could for the full MLE.

    And with no trade pieces of note, we’ve somehow replaced Mozgov with Camby and Wallace, replaced Chandler/Gallo with Brewer, JR, and Novak, and replaced Felton with himself at 1/2 the price. I would say those replacements are all wins for us – and so it really comes down to getting Carmelo Anthony for our 2014 draft pick and possible swappage of 2016 picks.

    Really amazing GM’ing by Grunwald and company.

  20. Juany8

    On an interesting note, the Wages of Wins agrees with my dark horse bet of the year for Melo as MVP. Obviously neither I nor WoW actually thinks Melo will be the best player in the league, but if he’s top 5 in the league in scoring and the Knicks can win over 55 games and get the 2 seed? That’s not much different than what Derrick Rose did a few years ago to win it, the story and basic stats matter far more than who’s the actual best player. Add in the fact that Lebron is less focused now that he’s waiting for the playoffs and that voter fatigue has been an obvious factor in the past, Melo has a serious shot at the thing.

    Unfortunately Durant is ruining everything by getting more assists per game while Melo is getting less, even though Melo is a clear cut better playmaker at this point. I think he ends up with it once the media factors in that OKC lost a star and kept the same record, even though Kevin Martin is just as efficient a scorer as Harden and is a better overall defender (Harden might be better one on one but he is a fucking terrible team defender, while Martin makes a point of always being in the right place and puts in the effort to stay with his man, he is underrated on that end)

  21. lavor postell

    It also doesn’t help that they lost a lot of their perimeter shooting over the past 2 seasons in Afflalo and J.R. especially with Gallo and Wilson’s simultaneous decline in prowess from the perimeter. Lawson also has not been nearly as effective from that distance.

    They have Jordan Hamilton who can hit the three ball at a good clip, but him and Karl got into it after he was subbed out for Brewer so I imagine he’ll be in the doghouse. I still think Denver will finish right around 50 wins given the difficulty of their schedule thus far, but this team is not equipped to seriously challenge teams like OKC, SAS or Memphis.

    The Lakers obviously with their star quality have a chance, but to me I think they need to move Gasol for some more D’Antoni oriented pieces before they will realistically be in that conversation. A trade between ATL-Denver-LAL works on ESPN trade machine. Gasol to ATL, Josh Smith and Anthony Morrow to Denver with Iguodala and Chandler heading to the Lakers.

    Atlanta isn’t bottoming out and actually should at worst be the No. 6 seed in the East this year. Even if they lose Josh Smith for nothing in the summer they aren’t going to bottom out with Teague, Sweet Lou and Horford on the roster. Getting Gasol yes adds salary but they project to still be under the tax threshold next year and stay at roughly the same level they are now except better offensively and worse defensively.

    Denver would be playing the same game with Smith bolting as Iguodala who only has a player option for next year. Also they add a shooter in Morrow which they need.

    The Lakers get two players born to run up and down the floor and gives the Lakers much needed athleticism to match up against the OKC’s and Miami’s of the world. Chandler has played for D’Antoni and Iguodala’s game I think would fit as well.

    Just a thought. I’m sure there are better deals out there.

  22. jon abbey

    Frank:

    Really amazing GM’ing by Grunwald and company.

    “company” in this case being CAA, I really hope someday we get the full story behind how this team was assembled behind the scenes.

  23. JK47

    For the Nuggets to win 50 games, Ty Lawson and Danilo Gallinari are going to have to turn it around in a major way, and soon. They’ll need to be a top 5 offense to win 50+ games, because that defense is clearly well below average.

  24. Juany8

    JK47:
    For the Nuggets to win 50 games, Ty Lawson and Danilo Gallinari are going to have to turn it around in a major way, and soon.They’ll need to be a top 5 offense to win 50+ games, because that defense is clearly well below average.

    It’s amazing that they might not even win 50 games, I was extremely down on the Nuggets coming into the season and yet I still took it for granted that they’d win 50 and make the playoffs. What’s worse for them is that Houston is still young and improving (Lin really should be better than he has been), and they have an incredible amount of flexibility to add quality players. Dallas is getting Dirk back, and as long as he comes back early enough I have to believe that he pushes them into the playoffs. The Wolves have been dealing with very serious injury issues, they should be a lot better going forward. The Lakers have Nash coming back and the Warriors might get Bogut, both of which would be welcome additions if healthy. Even a team like Utah has several young players that could make notable strides, and they could trade either Jefferson and Millsap to even out the roster.

    Right now there’s a clear top 4 in the west with the Spurs, Thunder, Grizzlies, and Clippers all looking like legit contenders. The Lakers have the talent to put themselves in this group if they ever figure it out (and keep in mind that the Heat started 9-8 their first season, it’s not like Lebron and Wade were good fits either). Assuming those 5 teams make the playoffs, that leaves 3 spots for Golden State, Dallas, Houston, Minnesota, Denver, and Utah, with Portland not that far behind considering they have some intriguing players. Out of the 6 teams, Denver has the worst record and the least room for either internal or external improvement.

    All 3 of WS, WP, and PER picked the Nuggets to be contenders. LOL

  25. cgreene

    Frank: Sorry never got to reply to this.It was this quote from Berri that I like the least.He just got finished telling us that conventional wisdom is all wrong and that his view of the world is superior.But then he says that it’s just “the nature of basketball” that teams have to put losers (guards) on the floor?

    The truth of it is that if Dwight Howard had to bring the ball up, he’d have 10 turnovers a game or more.If Dwight Howard was tasked with spacing the floor so that there aren’t 8 players within 2 feet of the basket all the time, he would never score, or if he did, he would be unbelievably inefficient.The reason Dwight Howard can be as “win-producing” as he is (or at least used to be!) is that he has a system and teammates that allow him to maximize the things he does well.So if grabbing rebounds and avoiding turnovers are the most important measurables that determine wins, the only reason he can “produce” the most wins, is because his teammates take care of all the other stuff.

    How I feel about WP48 is like this – I think it rewards players for playing within their limitations (which is a good thing), but does not properly reward other players (ie. the “shot creators”) for allowing other players to play within their limitations.I agree that “shot creation” is probably overrated as a “we must have that” kind of skill in the sense that no one needs more iso’s — but the ability to cause the defense to do what it doesn’t want to is invaluable.

    And honestly, any system that rated Troy Murphy as a top 10 player has to be rethought.Any player that is a true top 10 player should be in the playoffs every year, not miss them for his entire career (9 years) before making them as a bench scrub in Boston.

    Great post, Frank

  26. jon abbey

    Juany8:

    Right now there’s a clear top 4 in the west with the Spurs, Thunder, Grizzlies, and Clippers all looking like legit contenders. The Lakers have the talent to put themselves in this group if they ever figure it out (and keep in mind that the Heat started 9-8 their first season, it’s not like Lebron and Wade were good fits either). Assuming those 5 teams make the playoffs, that leaves 3 spots for Golden State, Dallas, Houston, Minnesota, Denver, and Utah, with Portland not that far behind considering they have some intriguing players. Out of the 6 teams, Denver has the worst record and the least room for either internal or external improvement.

    All 3 of WS, WP, and PER picked the Nuggets to be contenders. LOL

    again, this is all really really premature. if Denver had just played as many home games as road games, they’d probably easily be a top 6 team right now, and they really should only get better as the season goes on. I agree they’re not a genuine Finals contender and I’ll be somewhat surprised if they even win a round in the playoffs, but they’ve played 12 of their 17 games on the road so far, and they’re always a tough home team because of the altitude. Hollinger has them ranked 8th in the league right now, 5th in the West.

    http://espn.go.com/nba/hollinger/powerrankings

  27. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Denver has no room for improvement?

    Lawson’s played terrible basketball so far. McGee is inexplicably being given 18 MPG despite playing well (and it’s not because of foul trouble). Oh, and Iguodala’s posting a career low in WS/48.

    There’s no way that this could change, right?

  28. JK47

    McGee is playing well?

    There is this thing in the NBA, it is called “defense.” When Javale McGee is on the court, Denver tends to be extremely bad at it. How bad? The Nuggets allow 111.8 points per 100 possessions when he is on the floor, that’s how bad. That’s worse than the worst team in the NBA. It’s not “inexplicable” why McGee gets limited playing time, it actually makes perfect sense. When he plays, the Nuggets get their butts kicked.

  29. ruruland

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Denver has no room for improvement?

    Lawson’s played terrible basketball so far. McGee is inexplicably being given 18 MPG despite playing well (and it’s not because of foul trouble). Oh, and Iguodala’s posting a career low in WS/48.

    There’s no way that this could change, right?

    Why are you using WS/48?

    Also, we both know Koufus is a top 30 player, would be the second best Knicks player, but why doesn’t he get 30 + minutes?

  30. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    ruruland:
    A lot of thoughts on Nuggets, but I’m curios, is Jowles the only staunchly anti-trade poster remaining. If so, Jowles, how do explain what’s happened with each franchise?

    Also, this: http://m.espn.go.com/general/blogs/blogpost?blogname=truehoop&id=51996

    Well, I don’t exactly think that anyone thought that any of those vets could be had, and if you thought that it could happen, you’re a liar. I mean, seriously: Brewer for pennies? J.R. Smith for what, $1.3M? Kidd? Camby? That’s a WP48 dream team. But when the trade went down, was that the plan all along?

    (And the Amar’e contract is and has been the worst of it all.)

  31. lavor postell

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Well, I don’t exactly think that anyone thought that any of those vets could be had, and if you thought that it could happen, you’re a liar. I mean, seriously: Brewer for pennies? J.R. Smith for what, $1.3M? Kidd? Camby? That’s a WP48 dream team. But when the trade went down, was that the plan all along?

    (And the Amar’e contract is and has been the worst of it all.)

    This misses the entire point of the trade. The idea behind getting a player like Carmelo versus all the nice pieces we gave up like Gallo, Wilson and Felton is that if you use your resources correctly you will always be able to put pieces around your star players.

    The Knicks didn’t know what the conditions of the market would be under the new CBA and Melo’s desire to get his extension done before that and willingness to sign with the Nets forced our hand and created leverage for Denver where in virtually any other year they would have none. Remember we had room for a max player the following summer if we renounced our rights to Wilson Chandler which would have been a no brainer.

    Whether it was Walsh, Grunwald, CAA or Dolan who made the call it was the one to make. I would have liked to keep Gallo or Chandler, but when you get the best player in a deal generally you come out the winner.

    Any competent front office can find bargains to fit around their star pieces, just look at the Spurs who constantly are masters of hoarding the bargain bin. The Knicks assuming their health stays ok for the current time being have not just done a great job in acquiring complimentary players, but creating an atmosphere in which Carmelo feels accountable and is playing his best ball.

  32. ruruland

    Nice, Lavor.

    There are good role players all over the place. WP/48 is a role players metric, how many of the top 100 Wp/48 players are mle or under?

    What if we expanded it to the top 150?

    I’d say it’s least 40-50 percent.

    The trick is finding the most synergetic role players around your best players, and then NOT overpaying them when you win (or in the Nuggets situation, overvaluing really good role players in place of great players).

    The fact that the Knicks aren’t getting any production out of a $20 million salary portends extremely well for this team and the next rebuild around Chandler/Melo.

    Do Brewer/Jr get resigned? Next year is the first year Melo and Amar’e's contracts can be restructured. I’d be surprised if something doesn’t get done with both of them that eventually allows the really good role players, that, this is the key — fit perfectly with the Knicks best players—re-signed.

    Because I have little doubt that when Chandler is 32-33 and Melo is 30-31, with Amar’e either on a much smaller contract or gone, that the Knicks will find a way to get a great playmaker alongside them.

    Not that Felton isn’t a great fit, but I’m talking a premier playmaker. You think Rajon Rondo is going to wait around patiently as the Celtics rebuild?

    Rondo’s deal expires at the perfect time, and I have a feeling that losing to the Knicks in the playoffs will make an impression.

    The point of that is that total rebuilds never take a year. The Knicks cannot afford to risk consecutive totall rebuilds and lose franchise value?

    So, you give it a shot with the Amar’e mistake, and when it’s over, you still have Melo/Chandler and the ability to get the playmaker.

    The Knicks didn’t won’t need to totally deconstruct the team to get into the next phase of contention, which would cost years.

  33. ruruland

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Well, I don’t exactly think that anyone thought that any of those vets could be had, and if you thought that it could happen, you’re a liar. I mean, seriously: Brewer for pennies? J.R. Smith for what, $1.3M? Kidd? Camby? That’s a WP48 dream team. But when the trade went down, was that the plan all along?(And the Amar’e contract is and has been the worst of it all.)

    Camby isn’t playing, a guy by the name of Copeland is outproducing him, which is the entire point.
    How is JR Smith a WP/48 all-star?

    How many of the top 150 WP/48 players are signed to the mle or below?

    Brewer was a lucky get, to be sure. But there are more Brewers out there than there are Fields and Billy Walkers.

    And it should be no surprise that a guy like Jason Kidd signed in New York. You think really good veteran players on cheap deal want to go to young, building clubs with a lot of draft picks?

    LMAO, again, that was articulated a billion times prior to the deal.

    role players and veterans recognize star players and teams that can contend, they almost always sign on teams with star players that give them a chance to win in the playoffs.

  34. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Denver has no room for improvement?

    Lawson’s played terrible basketball so far. McGee is inexplicably being given 18 MPG despite playing well (and it’s not because of foul trouble). Oh, and Iguodala’s posting a career low in WS/48.

    There’s no way that this could change, right?

    McGee has the most empty stats in the league, if there were efficiency stats for blocks vs. block attempts and missed rotations, he’d lead the league by a mile. Lawson needs spacing for his drives, and the Nuggets gave away two of their best floor spacers for a guy that needs a gulf of room to get off a 3 point look. Iguodala is being asked to be a creator in an offense with no coherent game plan besides attack the very packed paint and shoot 3′s with crappy 3 point shooters. It’s not unlike when Melo would consistently draw double teams last year only to kick it out to Landry Fields.

    The Nuggets have nice players but they make no sense together, and players are going to start complaining about shots or playing time any day now. Iguodala doesn’t do shit for that defense unless the opponent’s main offensive player happens to be a shooting guard (so Kobe, Harden…. that’s it) I still think the Nuggets make the playoffs as maybe the 6th or 7th seed, but they have no hope against any of the top 4. Griffin, Randolph, and Duncan will destroy Faried inside. And I have zero hope that Lawson and Gallinari are up to the challenge of guarding Durant and Westbrook, while Kevin Martin is a nightmare for a defense as undisciplined as the Nuggets.

    As of now, it looks like it’s going to be difficult for the Rockets, Nuggets, and Timberwolves to get 4 playoff wins combined. In fact, I think at least 2 of those teams miss the playoffs. Can’t wait to hear how Harden Lawson and Iguodala all had outlier seasons

  35. massive

    There’s an article written over on TheNBAGeek.com that talks about the value of creating good scoring opportunities. They stated; “It doesn’t matter if a player can be extremely efficient; it only matters if he actually is.” This is probably the hugest point of disagreement I have with WP/48, and I support WP/48 as a statistic. Defenses aren’t going to look at Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani and say “this guy has a below average scoring efficiency, so we should sag off of him.” Because those players are extremely capable of lighting you up, defenses give them more attention than a less talented player with a better TS%. For example, if Brook Lopez and Reggie Evans are both open and there is one defender back, the defender is going to play Brook Lopez and leave Reggie Evans wide open. Defenses game-plan to shut down a team’s most talented player, not necessarily the most efficient.

    I believe Carmelo Anthony creates easy scoring opportunities for other players just by existing on a basketball court. Defenses have game-planned to shut him down, which creates opportunities for the uber-efficient Ronnie Brewers and and Tyson Chandlers of the world. The game against San Antonio proves my point, as the Spurs openly admitted to their game-plan being “Stop Carmelo Anthony and make the other players beat you.” SA’s hard-trapping scheme allowed for other players to get open, which allowed those players to have much better statistics than Carmelo Anthony. So WP/48′s (and WS/48) neglect of this concept is probably what leads it to undervaluing of certain players and consequent over-valuing of other players.

  36. Gideon Zaga

    +1

    massive:
    There’s an article written over on TheNBAGeek.com that talks about the value of creating good scoring opportunities. They stated; “It doesn’t matter if a player can be extremely efficient; it only matters if he actually is.” This is probably the hugest point of disagreement I have with WP/48, and I support WP/48 as a statistic. Defenses aren’t going to look at Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani and say “this guy has a below average scoring efficiency, so we should sag off of him.” Because those players are extremely capable of lighting you up, defenses give them more attention than a less talented player with a better TS%. For example, if Brook Lopez and Reggie Evans are both open and there is one defender back, the defender is going to play Brook Lopez and leave Reggie Evans wide open. Defenses game-plan to shut down a team’s most talented player, not necessarily the most efficient.

    I believe Carmelo Anthony creates easy scoring opportunities for other players just by existing on a basketball court. Defenses have game-planned to shut him down, which creates opportunities for the uber-efficient Ronnie Brewers and and Tyson Chandlers of the world. The game against San Antonio proves my point, as the Spurs openly admitted to their game-plan being “Stop Carmelo Anthony and make the other players beat you.” SA’s hard-trapping scheme allowed for other players to get open, which allowed those players to have much better statistics than Carmelo Anthony. So WP/48?s (and WS/48) neglect of this concept is probably what leads it to undervaluing of certain players and consequent over-valuing of other players.

  37. Gideon Zaga

    +1

    massive:
    There’s an article written over on TheNBAGeek.com that talks about the value of creating good scoring opportunities. They stated; “It doesn’t matter if a player can be extremely efficient; it only matters if he actually is.” This is probably the hugest point of disagreement I have with WP/48, and I support WP/48 as a statistic. Defenses aren’t going to look at Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani and say “this guy has a below average scoring efficiency, so we should sag off of him.” Because those players are extremely capable of lighting you up, defenses give them more attention than a less talented player with a better TS%. For example, if Brook Lopez and Reggie Evans are both open and there is one defender back, the defender is going to play Brook Lopez and leave Reggie Evans wide open. Defenses game-plan to shut down a team’s most talented player, not necessarily the most efficient.

    I believe Carmelo Anthony creates easy scoring opportunities for other players just by existing on a basketball court. Defenses have game-planned to shut him down, which creates opportunities for the uber-efficient Ronnie Brewers and and Tyson Chandlers of the world. The game against San Antonio proves my point, as the Spurs openly admitted to their game-plan being “Stop Carmelo Anthony and make the other players beat you.” SA’s hard-trapping scheme allowed for other players to get open, which allowed those players to have much better statistics than Carmelo Anthony. So WP/48?s (and WS/48) neglect of this concept is probably what leads it to undervaluing of certain players and consequent over-valuing of other players.

  38. Thomas B.

    With apologies to the Village People…..

    Kurylo, things are not as they seem.
    I said Kurylo, take a look at your team.
    I said Kurylo, please don’t make us all scream.
    You’ll make us all unhappy.

    Kurylo, just take a look over there.
    I said Kurylo, see that high top fade hair?
    He plays defense, and I’m sure you find.
    He has room to grow in your mind.

    So don’t forget about I-M-A-N.
    No don’t forget about I-M-A-N.

    He can play lock down D
    And he’s not yet 23

    So don’t forget about I-M-A-N.
    No don’t forget about I-M-A-N.

    He has much room to grow, his eFG is too low
    that is something that we all knooooooow.

  39. sidestep

    @ Frank, post #11

    “It was this quote from Berri that I like the least.He just got finished telling us that conventional wisdom is all wrong and that his view of the world is superior.But then he says that it’s just “the nature of basketball” that teams have to put losers (guards) on the floor?”

    –I don’t understand the argument you are making here. So Berri’s position has to be 100% unconventional, and ‘cleansed’ of all conventional wisdom, to satisfy you? It seems that you are taking issue with Berri’s tone of being able to explain more than other models but to come at him by saying he doesn’t go far enough is not addressing the argument. Indeed, if he totally bucked the accepted view that you need guards on the floor, then you would criticize him even more heavily.

    “The truth of it is that if Dwight Howard had to bring the ball up, he’d have 10 turnovers a game or more.”

    — Indeed. I don’t see how this is a critique of the Berry in particular or WoW geeks in general. The whole point of WoW’s adjustment to WP according to position played is precisely that you cannot field players of the same skill set on the floor at the same time and remain effective. I don’t see how you are engaging the WoW position; on the contrary, you are agreeing with it.

  40. sidestep

    @ Frank, post #11

    “How I feel about WP48 is like this – I think it rewards players for playing within their limitations (which is a good thing), but does not properly reward other players (ie. the “shot creators”) for allowing other players to play within their limitations.I agree that “shot creation” is probably overrated as a “we must have that” kind of skill in the sense that no one needs more iso’s — but the ability to cause the defense to do what it doesn’t want to is invaluable. ”

    – It seems to me you are dismissing the perspective of WoW because it fails to live up to an impossible standard that you have set for it: to totally supplant a human assessment of interaction effects. Okay, this is a problem but did you really expect ANY model to achieve this? The conventional boxscores have the very same weakness, but you have not thrown out conventional stats as reference, have you? I still see you taking issue with Berri’s tone (overreaching about explanatory power) instead of his actual argument, which you have framed in the weakest way possible instead of giving it the most generous reading. I think the value of WP is to counterbalance the over-estimation of scoring by weighing more heavily control-of-possession stats. This is indeed why PER is problematic, but I hardly hear you coming down on PER as vehemently as you have about WP. Many here use PER merely as a reference of reference to consult, one of many, instead of the be-all, end-all, yet somehow the failure of WP to explain everything is a deal breaker. I don’t get it.

  41. sidestep

    typo: “use PER merely as a reference of reference to consult” should read as “use PER merely as one point of reference to consult.”

    Berri has overtly said that WP was put forth to address weaknesses of stats like PER. That is one of the issues that he is engaging in, and to not address that rather misses the thrust of his argument I think.

  42. Z-man

    Thomas B.:
    With apologies to the Village People…..

    Kurylo, things are not as they seem.
    I said Kurylo, take a look at your team.
    I said Kurylo, please don’t make us all scream.
    You’ll make us all unhappy.

    Kurylo, just take a look over there.
    I said Kurylo, see that high top fade hair?
    He plays defense, and I’m sure you find.
    He has room to grow in your mind.

    So don’t forget about I-M-A-N.
    No don’t forget about I-M-A-N.

    He can play lock down D
    And he’s not yet 23

    So don’t forget about I-M-A-N.
    No don’t forget about I-M-A-N.

    He has much room to grow, his eFG is too low
    that is something that we all knooooooow.

    Quite right, TB!

  43. Z-man

    I would like to see more arguments backed up by film clips, Gian used to do some excellent stuff…the issue with WP48 is that it often clashes so violently with the eye test that it makes it difficult to accept at face value. Synergy backs everything up with observable data (film). My guess is that WP/48 is primarily (or even solely) meaningful when comparing players with the same role in the context of a team’s need to have that role filled. For example, Faried is best on a team that does not have another low-usage, hi-energy rebounder with very limited offensive range/skills. Put him next to Dwight Howard and they start competing for the same niche, much like Melo and STAT might. The difference is that a player with a more diversified game can better adapt to changing conditions, and Melo and Stat have many ways to be effective players IF they choose to do so. Chandler and Faried could never, ever, ever be efficient high-usage players. However, Amare and Melo are both capable of being effective low-usage players IF they wanted to be.

    Kevin Garnett is a good example of a guy who became much more efficient (TS%) after coming to Boston and lowering his usage. Amare could probably lower his usage, raise his efficiency and up his rebounding and defensive numbers if he set his mind to it.

  44. ruruland

    .Kevin Garnett is a good example of a guy who became much more efficient (TS%) after coming to Boston and lowering his usage. Amare could probably lower his usage, raise his efficiency and up his rebounding and defensive numbers if he set his mind to it.
    Yeah, and that’s part of what is so exciting about Amar’e's return.

    I’ve broken down his usage splits, and his efficiency absolutely plummets above 30 over the last two years.

    His goldilocks zone seems to be between about 22-27.

    I interpet that to simply mean that that’s the area where he isn’t forcing unecessary shots and isolation situations, which also lead to turnovers (i’ve only calculated ts%, not ORTG, that would be impossible work)

    There is no way Amar’e comes back to being a 30 usage player, not as long as he’s sharing 15-20 minutes with Carmelo Anthony.

    We’ve all seen how playmaking and spacing in the high pnr is giving Melo the kinds of looks that’s led to increased efficiency.

    I frankly don’t think the Knicks half-court spacing changes much when Amar’e takes Brewer’s spot in the starting line-up.

    My contention after looking at all off these different career lineup splits with Amar’e is that penetration and pnr playmaking are extremely correlated with his efficiency. Far more so than his time at center vs power forward/

    For example, using NBA.com data, I could identify quite a few lineups where Amar’e was paired with a non-spacing center where his efficiency increased.

    I’ve always found lineups where he was the center but that lacked pick and roll pgs (Billups, Bibby et al) where his efficiency plummeted.

    That does not mean I think Amar’e needs to be the priamry roller to be effective, I think it means that roll action and penetration provide the rhythm shots and seams in the defense where Amar’e is truly an incredible offensive force (among the best ever at his usage range)

  45. ruruland

    I also think that Amar’e's prescence in the offense, given the congruency with a passing and penetrating back-court, will also improve Melo’s efficiency to new highs.

    I think for those who really looked into things, the Knicks success this year was actually quite predictable. I think the far bigger surprise will be how well Amar’e fits into the current starting offense with Kidd and Felton, and how dynamic the offense will be.

    I used to be in the camp that Amar’e/Chandler could not work together because they’re both primary role players, but if you look at the kind of space Brewer gets on that play even when he sneaks up from the corner for a cut as the roll is occuring, there are going to be a lot of secondary paint shots built into the offense for Amar’e.

    because Chandler is such a great screener, I think you’ll see action where Amar’e makes a delayed cut to the basket against the backpeddling help defender after his man helps to cut off the guard penetration, leaving him open.

    Because the Knicks have two shooters to spread the floor, they’ll always have the option to run the pnr with chandler and Amar’e at the elbows, depending on which side the defense is weaker (felton works better to his right but runs screen roll both ways)

    Out of sets like this that the Knicks already run: http://www.coachesclipboard.net/14Stack.html

  46. ruruland

    this post talks about how teams run the second big man in the high pnr to the elbow, which is a place Amar’e is really effective when the defense is moving as it is in high pnr.

    It’s also shows how the Knicks will run a side pnr with either Kidd or Melo on the wing with Amar’e after the initial high screen and roll.

    Amar’e would be O5 in these diagrams: http://www.coachesclipboard.net/PickandRoll.html

    we’ve already seen glimpses of what that looks like last year quite a bit.

  47. bobneptune

    Frank: I remember that whole debate very well.It’s sort of feeling like Dolan isn’t as dumb as we thought he was.

    I would actually say dolan is looking dumber.

    the knicks dumped 2 seasons and gave away a number of future picks to get the flexibility to rebuild with top players. What did they accomplish by giving into melo’s demands? a team with one star player (with warts) and a 30 year old defensive specialist who is 30+ with in injury history. this team has a 1-2 year window.

    does anyone think melo is going to look at this roster at the end of next year and NOT opt out of his contract?

    the alternative to NOT giving in to melo’s trade extortion was to have the assets/cap space for chris paul or dwill or dwight or whomever or whatever combination walsh had in mind. namely to create a top team for the long haul.

  48. ruruland

    lmao.

    So, you’re under the impression that the Knicks would have been able to sign and trade for Paul/Williams (or sign him next year lmao) and Howard while keeping Amar’e on the books?

    You’re joking, right? Before we even talk about the assets and how it’s actually impossible for the Knicks to have signed and traded for two star players with Amar’e being unmoveable, let’s say the Knicks pull the trigger on the Williams trade. Has Williams proven to be a better player than Melo outside the flex?

    How do you get the third star? The Melo trade didn’t change the Amar’e contract which is what hinders the Knicks from forming a star trio in the short term.

    If you are actually saying that the reason the Knicks lost the Melo trade is because they gave up the opportunity to trade for or sign two other star players, you’re a fucking putz.

    That’s before we even consider opportunity costs.

    You said that the Knicks window is 1-2 years. Most of these contracts expire in two years, and as the picks begin to return, all of a sudden you’re in basically the same position you were a few years back except you have some loyalty built up with Chandler and Melo (I would expect extensions coming earlier for both of them)

    Rondo,Parker expire at the same time Amar’e expires. Irving, Rubio, Gordon become expirings when Amar’e expires.

  49. jon abbey

    D-Will and Howard both have more ‘warts’ than Melo at this point, FWIW.

    “does anyone think melo is going to look at this roster at the end of next year and NOT opt out of his contract?”

    yes, me. he’s on a team with a one year salary that’s more than he could get by opting out (for the single season obv) and that’s been built to his specifications by CAA and Grunwald. I’d be pretty stunned if he went elsewhere, which I guess doesn’t preclude opting out and resigning with NY.

  50. Juany8

    One note on the positional adjustment that Berri advocates seem to be missing… PG’s on average don’t get more turnovers and shoot a lower percentage because it’s “built into the position”, they get worse scoring numbers because on average PG’s tend to be a team’s primary ball handler more often than the other positions. Berri is making a case for the interaction effects he keeps dismissing! Guys like Reggie Evans don’t get a lot of turnovers because they barely touch the ball, and they aren’t being asked to space the floor or actually handle the ball under pressure, so their shot and turnover distribution skew towards “efficient” even though they are often the least responsible for that efficiency.

    The problem is, WP has an incredibly stupid model in place to account for these interaction effects. Here’s 2 list of players:

    Steve Novak, Matt Bonner, Kyle Korver, Steve Kerr, Anthony Morrow

    Ryan Anderson, Kevin Garnett, Reggie Evans, Josh Smith, Antwan Jamison

    Which list of players seems to make more sense together? Is it the list that has players by role, in this case elite 3 point specialist that do nothing else. The second list is by position, in this case PF. Should we really be comparing Anderson’s numbers to Garnett’s like they tell us anything? if you’re going to have an adjustment, don’t do it for archaic positions that often don’t mean anything. Lebron shouldn’t be complimented for getting more assists than Shawn Marion, for instance

  51. Brian Cronin

    Here’s an interesting question that I don’t think we’ll ever really know for sure either way – was Amar’e even a draw for Melo to come to New York? Sure seems like Melo wanted to come to New York because of the big market, not Amar’e. Hopefully he did, though, because that was the only reason Amar’e made sense, so I sure hope Melo did want to come play with him. Because even before Amar’e's knee injury, David Lee sure looks like he would have been a better fit here (and for, what, 60% of the cost?). So I will try to convince myself that Melo would not have come here without Amar’e.

  52. BigBlueAL

    Brian Cronin:
    Here’s an interesting question that I don’t think we’ll ever really know for sure either way – was Amar’e even a draw for Melo to come to New York? Sure seems like Melo wanted to come to New York because of the big market, not Amar’e. Hopefully he did, though, because that was the only reason Amar’e made sense, so I sure hope Melo did want to come play with him. Because even before Amar’e’s knee injury, David Lee sure looks like he would have been a better fit here (and for, what, 60% of the cost?). So I will try to convince myself that Melo would not have come here without Amar’e.

    If the Knicks had kept David Lee and not signed Amar’e would that team have been 28-26 and at least looked respectable enough for Melo to look at it as a playoff team worth going to?? I dunno.

    Also for people still complaining about the trade and talking about how this team only has a 2-3 year window, that is fine because the Knicks can start completely over at the end of this window with a ton of cap space. Even if they do re-sign Melo after next season if he opts out early they will only have I believe him, Shump and Novak (on his final year) under contract plus whoever they draft in the 1st round in 2014 and 2016 going into that summer.

    Even still I dont care about how this team will look in 2-3 years, I know that right now they are pretty damn freaking good and are looking like a team destined to reach the Conference Finals and at that point it will be possible to dream about the NBA Finals. If that happens the trade was more than worth it especially after losing out on LeBron the previous summer.

    Forget what couldve been and enjoy what is right now which is a team that will most likely have the best regular season record for a Knicks team since the 1996-97 season and is also pretty damn fun to watch.

  53. Mr.RIGHT

    You fella’s are all on tranquilizers! Copeland is slow can’t play defense too big and slow to play John Havlicek and too small and not strong enough to be Elvin Hayes …Want to talk about and up coming player with alot of Potential Lets talk about Prigioni then!

  54. iserp

    sidestep: Many here use PER merely as a reference of reference to consult, one of many, instead of the be-all, end-all, yet somehow the failure of WP to explain everything is a deal breaker. I don’t get it.

    Well, this is actually the point of the argument. Most people here would be OK with using WP48 as a reference to compare similar players. Look at Lebron’s WP48 and Melo’s WP48 and conclude we would be better with Lebron James. But there are many people here that compare players with very different roles with WP48 (Tyson and Melo), and try to elaborate an argument from that. You can’t do that and you have to point at WP48 inability to differentiate roles. Berri’s manual adjustment for position is just a crude try to improve on that; but requires more refining.

    PER at least rewards usage… so it accounts for a wider range of roles in basketball (For example, in the Kevin Martin/James Harden swap, their PER has remained stable, meanwhile Kevin Martin’s WP48 has skyrocketed but James Harden has plummeted)

    No single metric is perfect. They have a range of validity -they’re better the most similar are the players you compare-, and you have to account for it.

  55. Thomas B.

    And honestly, any system that rated Troy Murphy as a top 10 player has to be rethought.Any player that is a true top 10 player should be in the playoffs every year, not miss them for his entire career (9 years) before making them as a bench scrub in Boston.

    So you are saying a top ten player can get his team to the playoffs no matter how the rest of the team performs? I think Kevin Love is a top 10–at least he was last year. Top 10 in WS/48 and PER.

    Few players are good enough to get a team to playoffs alone. It is still a team game. Also, a player can have a really productive year. Maybe Troy Murphy was a top ten that year. You can hardly set aside the productivity because the team wasn’t successful in making the post season. There are too many other variables such as quality of teammates, health of team, coaching, front office, quality of opponents. How can one player overcome all that?

  56. Juany8

    Thomas B.: So you are saying a top ten player can get his team to the playoffs no matter how the rest of the team performs?I think Kevin Love is a top 10–at least he was last year. Top 10 in WS/48 and PER.

    Few players are good enough to get a team to playoffs alone.It is still a team game. Also, a player can have a really productive year.Maybe Troy Murphy was a top ten that year.You can hardly set aside the productivity because the team wasn’t successful in making the post season. There are too many other variables such as quality of teammates, health of team, coaching, front office, quality of opponents. How can one player overcome all that?

    I’d say a top 10 player is at least capable of dragging his team to the playoffs once in a while. Wade did it on some truly horrendous Miami teams, Murphy has at least played with guys like Danny Granger who aren’t scrubs. Kevin Love is a bad example because his teams have dealt with a lot of injuries (including to him) even this year it looked like they would make the playoffs if everyone had started healthy (of course THCJ will come here and argue that they would contend because he hasn’t learned his lesson with the Nuggets the past 2 years)

  57. johnno

    ruruland: A lot of thoughts on Nuggets, but I’m curios, is Jowles the only staunchly anti-trade poster remaining.

    Bill Simmons had a great line about the St. Louis Rams’ decision to trade the rights to RGIII so they could build around Sam Bradford — “Rams fans are starting to realize that they traded RGIII for Danilo Galinari, Wilson Chandler, Timofey Mozgov and a late first round draft pick.” Bottom line in retrospect — you give up a lot of good pieces if you have the opportunity to get a potential franchise player because it makes a lot of sense, especially in a sport in which only 5 guys play at a time.

  58. JC Knickfan

    Juany8:
    On an interesting note, the Wages of Wins agrees with my dark horse bet of the year for Melo as MVP. Obviously neither I nor WoW actually thinks Melo will be the best player in the league, but if he’s top 5 in the league in scoring and the Knicks can win over 55 games and get the 2 seed? That’s not much different than what Derrick Rose did a few years ago to win it, the story and basic stats matter far more than who’s the actual best player. Add in the fact that Lebron is less focused now that he’s waiting for the playoffs and that voter fatigue has been an obvious factor in the past, Melo has a serious shot at the thing.

    23 of last 30 MVPs winners, their teams where either tied or had best record in their conference. For Melo to have a chance Knicks need to finish first and probably have best record in NBA. If Miami finish first, it would hard pressed for voters to give the nood to Melo over 3-time winner LBJ and history show it.

    BTW Rose’s team had best record in NBA that year.

  59. Juany8

    JC Knickfan: 23 of last 30 MVPs winners, their teams where either tied or had best record in their conference. For Melo to have a chance Knicks need to finish first and probably have best record in NBA.If Miami finish first, it would hard pressed for voters to give the nood to Melo over 3-time winner LBJ and history show it.

    BTW Rose’s team had best record in NBA that year.

    I think even if he finished a close second he’ll get some love, but I agree that for him to realistically win it they have to get the top record in the East (but not the league) There’s also the fact that people don’t really win this many MVP’s in such a small number of years because voters alsmost want to vote for someone else. I think the race is between Lebron, Durant, and Melo at this point, and I think whichever team winds up with the best record wins it. Should be very interesting at the very least

  60. JC Knickfan

    Juany8: I think even if he finished a close second he’ll get some love, but I agree that for him to realistically win it they have to get the top record in the East (but not the league) There’s also the fact that people don’t really win this many MVP’s in such a small number of years because voters alsmost want to vote for someone else. I think the race is between Lebron, Durant, and Melo at this point, and I think whichever team winds up with the best record wins it. Should be very interesting at the very least

    MVP definitely seems tied team success, but that team still needs to have alpha male.

    Six top team right now are:
    Miami – LBJ
    NY – Melo
    Brooklyn – none?
    Memphis – none?
    OKC – Durant
    Spurs – Duncan, but I feel he not going play enough minutes to be considered even though he has 27.2 PER right now. Plus he won one already.

    Brooklyn, Memphis or Spurs have the top record it would be kind hard choose top player out those squads. I definitely agree with you, I think battles between Durant and LBJ with Melo as a dark horse.

  61. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Juany8: Berri is making a case for the interaction effects he keeps dismissing! Guys like Reggie Evans don’t get a lot of turnovers because they barely touch the ball, and they aren’t being asked to space the floor or actually handle the ball under pressure, so their shot and turnover distribution skew towards “efficient” even though they are often the least responsible for that efficiency.

    Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has? Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48? What interaction effects cause him to average 3.8 FTA/36 despite a USG% of 8.6 this season?

    You may think that Evans is an “unskilled” player who is the beneficiary of others’ hard work, but that sounds like some confirmation bias bullshit to me.

  62. iserp

    “Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has?”

    Because nobody defends him.

    “Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48?”

    Because he cares much less about getting open to recieve a pass, or space the floor, and tries to be in the best position to get the rebound.

    “What interaction effects cause him to average 3.8 FTA/36 despite a USG% of 8.6 this season?”

    He is such a bad FT shooter, that if he ever goes for an uncontested dunk (or whatever), the opponent team will rather commit a foul. It is quite appropiate, because even if you don’t defend him, you might recover fast enough to foul him (even if you are late to contest his shot)

    BTW, i made up all this answers, i don’t actually watch much NBA except for some knicks games; but i guess that from his stats. THCJ, am i too wrong with my guess?

  63. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    iserp:
    “Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has?”

    Because nobody defends him.

    “Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48?”

    Because he cares much less about getting open to recieve a pass, or space the floor, and tries to be in the best position to get the rebound.

    “What interaction effects cause him to average 3.8 FTA/36 despite a USG% of 8.6 this season?”

    He is such a bad FT shooter, that if he ever goes for an uncontested dunk (or whatever), the opponent team will rather commit a foul. It is quite appropiate, because even if you don’t defend him, you might recover fast enough to foul him (even if you are late to contest his shot)

    BTW, i made up all this answers, i don’t actually watch much NBA except for some knicks games; but i guess that from his stats. THCJ, am i too wrong with my guess?

    1) No one defends an NBA player? Their coaches should be fired.

    2) So fouling him is a good strategy? Foul the guy who makes 60% of his shots (making him an efficient enough player), put your big men in foul trouble. Sounds like a great way to win games, except that he’s still averaging 1.88 PPS this season.

  64. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    iserp: Because he cares much less about getting open to recieve a pass, or space the floor, and tries to be in the best position to get the rebound.

    This assumption is based on what evidence? Here’s a video of Reggie Evans receiving a pass, spacing the floor, and making an excellent pass to a cutting teammate. You make assumptions based on the eyetest, and it’s TOTALLY FUCKING WRONG. What gives?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqkmIfZvGUY

  65. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    And notice what he does after he passes — he cuts to the hoop himself. Does that make him a rebounding-or-bust hawk? Or does it make him a player who hustles instead of watching a teammate finish a possession?

    I make a lot of assumptions based on stats, but it blows my mind that some of the people on this board think that because they know how a player is characterized by the conventional narratives, they know the player’s value.

  66. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Or how about this highlight, in which Evans demonstrates an ability to make a strong offensive move, dribble-drive, and score on his own. Why doesn’t Garnett close on him? Because there’s an NBA-quality player standing in the far corner, and he can’t. It doesn’t matter much who’s there — he’s going to close late because there is a human body waiting for a potential pass.

  67. thenamestsam

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has? Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48? What interaction effects cause him to average 3.8 FTA/36 despite a USG% of 8.6 this season?

    You may think that Evans is an “unskilled” player who is the beneficiary of others’ hard work, but that sounds like some confirmation bias bullshit to me.

    I think you’re misunderstanding Juany and others’ points (not surprisingly). Nobody is saying that Evans isn’t good at having a higher PPS. As you point out, the fact that nobody else does it is compelling evidence that he’s darn good at it. What people are saying is that having a high PPS doesn’t tell you all that much about whether he’s a “good” offensive player in the very general sense. I could be the best person in the world at a through-the-legs, facing away from the basket 3-pointer while barking like a dog. Doesn’t make me a good offensive NBA player.

    Evans is a good basketball player. It’s why he’s in the NBA. He has unique skills that make him better suited to the role he plays than many, many other people would be. Most people in fact. Most elite basketball players even (elite meaning one of the several hundred best in the world). That doesn’t mean he can’t ALSO be mainly the beneficiary of others’ hard work and actually much, much less valuable on offense than many people who average a lower PPS than him.

  68. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Sure, it’s possible. But am I going to waste my time trying to disprove something that no one on this site has proved in any way, shape, or form? Nah.

  69. thenamestsam

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Sure, it’s possible. But am I going to waste my time trying to disprove something that no one on this site has proved in any way, shape, or form? Nah.

    It seems like you already waste a lot of time doing exactly that…

  70. lavor postell

    You don’t think Garnett might close in on him if Landry Fields and his 2.3 ppg a game are in the corner? Not to mention thats Mickael Pietrus in the far corner who isn’t known for his defensive acumen. Garnett is guarding Martin on the near side wing.

    Evans is a very effective role player, but there is a reason he has bounced around the league for so many teams. One because he’s a huge douche, but more importantly because he has a limited skill set. Can Evans operate from the right or left elbow like Melo? Can he pick and pop effectively like Garnett? Anchor a defense like Tyson?

    I love that your picking individual highlights. Are you seriously using two youtube clips to disprove what NBA fans, coaches and front offices have observed in Evans’ game over the course of his career?

    Nobody is saying he’s an unintelligent or ineffective offensive player, just one with specific limitations. If you’re featuring Evans in the post you have problems. He scores in that specific situation because nobody is expecting him to drive the ball from the free throw line and to his credit he takes complete advantage of that. In fact he’s one of the best in the league in catching a defense off guard when he has the ball.

    At the same time you simply cannot run plays consistently through Evans. If the Nets did that I can guarantee you that we would have beat them by 30.

    Hell Melo was terrible last year when his role became that of a primary facilitator and his offensive output was down across the board. Now we have players that fit in around him and make his role on the team clearer. All players benefit when their skills are blended in effectively with their teammates, regardless of whether they are a future HOF’er or a one dimensional scorer.

  71. iserp

    THCJ, you are such a funny guy… XD

    Did you miss the part when i said that “i haven’t watch Reggie Evans”? I have 0 eyetest to confirm what i say, i was hoping you provided some insight…

    However, you went all “eyetest” and provide the magnificent number of 2!!! highlight clips of youtube. I am pretty sure you don’t have any confirmation bias, and that this clips prove everything i want to know of the backdoor assister and pump-faker Reggie Evans.

    Tell me, THCJ, why does Reggie Evans refuse to have a higher usage than 8,7%, who’s responsible for that. Does all their teammates ignore him? Does the coach hates him? Or he just gives the ball back most of the time?

    Please, tell me (if possible, with another highlight youtube clip), because i don’t watch the NBA. BTW, Blake Griffin is an amazing player, have you seen his dunks in Youtube?

    PS: BTW, i am totally serious that i don’t watch enough NBA to say anything consistent about Reggie Evans.

  72. iserp

    I’ve reread myself and i look like a troll. I want to apologize to THCJ.

    However, i think he misses the part having a low usage because he does not want to be a chucker is equally bad than having a low usage because he can’t. Either way, he isn’t contributing enough to the team.

  73. johnno

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has? Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48?

    WOW!! As usual, you are right! He is a fantastic player! What is really sad for him is that he has been in the league for 12 years and has played for very stupid and incompetent coaches every single year. Not one of them has recognized his brilliance. Why do I say that? Because, for his career, he has averaged 2.9 shots and 19 minutes of playing time a game. Any semi-competent coach would make sure such a magnificent player would play 38 minutes a game and would see to it that such a wonderfully efficient offensive player would get 20 shots a game. Obviously, if he only had the chance, he would average about 38 points a game. He must be really bitter about the tens of millions of dollars he has missed out on because of terrible coaching…

  74. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    The point of using the highlight clips are to show that he can, in fact, do those things that posters on this board would say he is unable to do. And given that he can do them, I might say that he should be given more opportunities to do those things. But I have no idea whether it’s a surfeit of opportunity or coaching philosophy or whether this is some kind of weird case where he took some potent PEDs and is playing like a fatter LeBron James whereas he usually dribbles the ball with his palm at shoulder height or passes to a cutting 2-guard by tossing the ball lightly into the air and slapping at it like an effeminate sophomore playing volleyball for the first time in his life. I have no idea.

  75. iserp

    By the way, THCJ, have you read what i said a bit earlier about range of validity, and how PER has been constant for both Kevin Martin and James Harden after the trade, meanwhile WP48 has skyrocketed for KM and has plummeted for JH?

    I would like you to comment on that.

  76. johnno

    P.S. I REALLY like Reggie Evans as a role player and would love to have him on the Knicks, but to pretend that he is anything but a role player is madness.

  77. iserp

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    The point of using the highlight clips are to show that he can, in fact, do those things that posters on this board would say he is unable to do. And given that he can do them, I might say that he should be given more opportunities to do those things. But I have no idea whether it’s a surfeit of opportunity or coaching philosophy or whether this is some kind of weird case where he took some potent PEDs and is playing like a fatter LeBron James whereas he usually dribbles the ball with his palm at shoulder height or passes to a cutting 2-guard by tossing the ball lightly into the air and slapping at it like an effeminate sophomore playing volleyball for the first time in his life. I have no idea.

    But the problem with highlight clips is that is a very small sample size. And we are talking about do that kind of things consistently, game to game, during 30 minutes or so. Melo can play like a PG for stretches, and do it reasonably well, but you can’t expect him to do it consistently.

  78. iserp

    (And we had the proof when D’Antoni put him at Point Forward full time, however, he was OK when doing some P&R with Tyson Chandler from time to time)

  79. Juany8

    I love how THCJ shits on the eye test and yet every time he provides evidence it’s from one game or specific play (OMG CHANDLER WENT 12-13!!! BEST OFFENSIVE PLAYER EVAR!)

    Let’s break it down more simply then. You say we shouldn’t make assumptions about basketball players and I’m going to completely agree with you. Now, since you always point out that stats are good evaluators of individual skill in partly because they stay consistent from season to season, I’m going to look at a stat that you mostly ignore that also happens to stay remarkably consistent for most players, Usage Rate. Now Evans has a career Usage of around 12%, and has 8% this year, and it has been consistently low throughout his career. Therefore, I’m going to say that Evans’ usage is in some way heavily tied to his skill, especially since USG% is very heavily tied to teammates and his is consistently low despite being on a large number of teams.

    What that means is that any claim that Evans should increase his usage are the equivalent of demands for Melo to turn into Lebron with is passing, defense, and scoring. You are making the BASELESS ASSUMPTION (see what I did there) that Evans is capable of raising his usage despite any proof of his ability to do so. I should also point out that Evans has never put up a PPS over 1.6, and that there are 16 games in the season, but THCJ has long since proven that he doesn’t actually care about proper statistical methodology, so who cares about sample size.

    So, instead of making the stupid assumption that Reggie Evans doesn’t shoot more because his coaches hate him, his teammates are assholes, etc. we’re going to assume his consistent USG is due to his skill. It doesn’t help that his career season in terms of usage he had an efficiency below his career average. Now, offensively I’d rather have a player who can put up 30 USG with at least average efficiency over someone who can put up 15 USG with any efficiency

  80. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    The point of using the highlight clips are to show that he can, in fact, do those things that posters on this board would say he is unable to do. And given that he can do them, I might say that he should be given more opportunities to do those things. But I have no idea whether it’s a surfeit of opportunity or coaching philosophy or whether this is some kind of weird case where he took some potent PEDs and is playing like a fatter LeBron James whereas he usually dribbles the ball with his palm at shoulder height or passes to a cutting 2-guard by tossing the ball lightly into the air and slapping at it like an effeminate sophomore playing volleyball for the first time in his life. I have no idea.

    If you look hard enough through youtube, you can see an entire game where Brandon Jennings scored 55 points on a monster efficiency. But hey I guess because Reggie Evans has some basketball skill when no one is within 10 feet of him, he must be good.

    By the way, no one is arguing that Evans is a worthless player. He’s a nice bench player and definitely provides solid value. He just sucks at offense, if he didn’t he teams would keep him instead of shying away from his onerous vet min contract…

  81. AHouston20

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Why is it, then, that more players don’t post a 1.88 PPS like Evans has? Or why is it, then, that Evans DOUBLES the average PF in ORB/48? What interaction effects cause him to average 3.8 FTA/36 despite a USG% of 8.6 this season?

    You may think that Evans is an “unskilled” player who is the beneficiary of others’ hard work, but that sounds like some confirmation bias bullshit to me.

    You should YouTube Reggie Evans air balls free throws Jowles to see his capabilities in that department as well. Players foul him because for his career he’s a 52% free throw shooter, this fouling him is a better proposition than letting him have a wide open dunk

  82. Z-man

    A good starting point for balancing these views is by making a list of all the typical primary roles a one-dimensional NBA role player might play. Here are some examples:

    High-usage scorer (JCraw, JR Smith)
    Offensive rebounder (Evans, Faried)
    Low-post shot blockers: (Milicic, McGee)
    Pass-first PG: (Prigioni, Rondo)
    3-pt specialist: (Novak, R Anderson)
    Perimeter defender: (R Brewer, T Allen)

    In all of these cases, the first guy might be better at the specific role, but I would argue that the second guy is more valuable because he can do more than just his primary role. On the other hand, if a team has no other guys doing that role, the specialist is more valuable. This is a very rough model, but hopefully makes the point I’m trying to make.

  83. Brian Cronin

    I think even if he finished a close second he’ll get some love, but I agree that for him to realistically win it they have to get the top record in the East (but not the league) There’s also the fact that people don’t really win this many MVP’s in such a small number of years because voters alsmost want to vote for someone else. I think the race is between Lebron, Durant, and Melo at this point, and I think whichever team winds up with the best record wins it. Should be very interesting at the very least

    You’re absolutely right, which is so stupid. The voters will clearly be trying to fight the urge to give the MVP to Lebron dramatically this season and that’s just so silly. “Can’t…give…award…to…clearly…best…player…must…reward…others….just…because…variety…is…good”

  84. JK47

    Reggie Evans has played over 12,000 NBA minutes and he has a .503 TS% on 12.1 USG%.

    And we’re having an argument about how awesome this guy is as an offensive player? This is one of the dumber arguments I’ve ever seen here.

  85. Juany8

    Brian Cronin: You’re absolutely right, which is so stupid. The voters will clearly be trying to fight the urge to give the MVP to Lebron dramatically this season and that’s just so silly. “Can’t…give…award…to…clearly…best…player…must…reward…others….just…because…variety…is…good”

    Yea not saying that I agree with the process, just that I thought Melo’s MVP odds at the beginning of the season (20-1) hugely underrated his actual chances of winning it. There was the MVP love Amar’e got a few years ago, even though he was scoring far less efficiently than with Phoenix and was terrible at defense and rebounding. I think if the Knicks finish out the season as a clear contender, everyone in the media who used to shit on Melo will suddenly love his game.

    For what it’s worth, Melo, Durant, and Lebron were the clear cut 3 best players on team USA last summer. Kind of fitting that they’re the 3 best candidates for the MVP at this point, especially since they represent the entirety of the “small ball revolution”, all the other contenders are using 2 traditional big men as their main lineup. Turns out Boris Diaw and Brandon Bass aren’t as hard to match up with as Zach Randolph, Blake Griffin, and Pau Gasol

  86. jon abbey

    Melo’s not going to come close to winning MVP, he’s not even going to be first-team All-NBA (LeBron and Durant have the forward positions locked up for the foreseeable future barring injury).

  87. Juany8

    jon abbey:
    Melo’s not going to come close to winning MVP, he’s not even going to be first-team All-NBA (LeBron and Durant have the forward positions locked up for the foreseeable future barring injury).

    It’s not about logic, Derrick Rose won MVP a few years ago when there were serious questions about whether he was even the best point guard in the league. MVP is based on being the lead player on a top team, preferably one that no one expected to be a top team. It really helps Melo’s case that the second leading scorer on the team right now is JR Smith, he’s going to look like he had little help since Chandler isn’t considered a star in the way Westbrook and Wade are.

    That being said, the only way it might happen is if the Knicks beat out the Heat and Thunder in record, which does not seem likely despite the good start

  88. Brian Cronin

    Yeah, exactly. They don’t like to vote for the most valuable player, they like the most valuable narrative. These guys are writers, ya know? I think Melo is also likely a dark horse candidate behind Durant, but the race is wide open because of the idiocy of the voters, which will make it very difficult for the most deserving candidate (Lebron) to win.

    Durant likely will be the choice, but Melo has a real chance. Remember, for awhile a couple of years ago, Amar’e was a legit MVP candidate for basically not even doing anything particularly special. The Knicks just improved, so he got the credit. The same thing will happen here (except Melo is much more deserving than Amar’e was then). His problem will be that Durant has never won an MVP, so that will help Durant a lot.

    I think it is Durant’s to lose, with Lebron having an outside chance of just being so incredible that not even the dumb voters can go against him. But if the Knicks really do get the top seed in the East, Melo has a decent chance of sneaking in there, a la Allen Iverson in 2001 and Derrick Rose in 2011. The problem was that both of those players were up against prior winners (Shaq in 2001 and Lebron in 2011), making it easier for them to sneak in. Durant being a non-former winner will make him a tough guy to beat.

  89. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    iserp: But the problem with highlight clips is that is a very small sample size. And we are talking about do that kind of things consistently, game to game, during 30 minutes or so. Melo can play like a PG for stretches, and do it reasonably well, but you can’t expect him to do it consistently.

    Melo would beat Evans at one-on-one 97% of the time. Berri tells me so.

    You know, I’m not sure why, but I think I’ve turned the corner on this whole epistemological crisis I’ve been having on this site for the last three years. I really don’t know if Berri’s methodology has brought me closer to Truth. And I’m not sure that I case. I do think that all this subjective chatter is bullshitty conjecture, but I’m not really doing anything by keeping it up. So I’m going to change my tune, just as this site has, and tolerate the multi-post ruruland paeans that subtly mimic the gesticulations of a back-alley trick-turner and the Juany8 ethos-happy dismissals of an entire academic discipline.

    ; (

  90. lavor postell

    I think the difference between Rose and Melo has to do with perception. Rose has been heralded constantly as a savior, is humble, great teammate, hometown hero blah blah blah. The perception of Melo is a selfish gunner who is only concerned with getting his and everything else is secondary. Clearly if his level of play this season continues that perception will change, but it’s evident the media has a love affair with Rose that will never be the case with Melo.

    Also if Melo got treatment from the refs like Rose and Wade do he would average about 15 fts a game. Those 2 players along with Durant are the beneficiaries of more ridiculous calls than any other players I’ve seen including Jordan, Kobe and Lebron.

  91. jon abbey

    lavor postell:

    Also if Melo got treatment from the refs like Rose and Wade do he would average about 15 fts a game.Those 2 players along with Durant are the beneficiaries of more ridiculous calls than any other players I’ve seen including Jordan, Kobe and Lebron.

    I think you can add Harden to that list now also, I couldn’t believe the calls he was getting against NY.

  92. flossy

    MVP or not, we’re all in agreement that you’d have to be certifiably insane to think that Carmelo Anthony is having a better season/is more valuable than Kevin Durant. Right? Right?!

  93. flossy

    flossy:
    MVP or not, we’re all in agreement that you’d have to be certifiably insane to think that Carmelo Anthony is having a better season/is more valuable than Kevin Durant.Right?Right?!

    Which is sort of crazy. I mean, we’ve all watched Carmelo play some of the best ball of his career (which is borne out by the numbers) and yet he still gets destroyed by Durant and LeBron across virtually every statistical category.

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=anthoca01&y1=2013&p2=jamesle01&y2=2013&p3=duranke01&y3=2013

    Just goes to show how far in the stratosphere those two are…

  94. Brian Cronin

    Oh yeah, Lebron is the clear #1 and Durant is looking to be the clear #2 in the NBA this season. Luckily, you don’t have to be one of the top two players to win an MVP. ;)

  95. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Melo would beat Evans at one-on-one 97% of the time. Berri tells me so.

    You know, I’m not sure why, but I think I’ve turned the corner on this whole epistemological crisis I’ve been having on this site for the last three years. I really don’t know if Berri’s methodology has brought me closer to Truth. And I’m not sure that I case. I do think that all this subjective chatter is bullshitty conjecture, but I’m not really doing anything by keeping it up. So I’m going to change my tune, just as this site has, and tolerate the multi-post ruruland paeans that subtly mimic the gesticulations of a back-alley trick-turner and the Juany8 ethos-happy dismissals of an entire academic discipline.

    ; (

    Literature is also an academic discipline. Doesn’t make it science. Besides I really don’t get why my views on micro-economics have anything to do with basketball. I know it’s really hard to intellectually respond to people’s posts, but the constant ad-hominem attacks and stupid straw man arguments are literally only going to convince the “idiot casual fans” you so despise. I simply can’t dumb myself down enough to believe that a basketball player can be neatly defined by a single number. Fortunately neither can most of this board, you don’t hear anyone else arguing that Tyson Chandler is an all time great on the offensive end.

    Your assumption that efficiency isn’t tied to shot distribution, role, and teammates is killing you. Get over that little fact, if every single smart basketball mind ever thinks Melo is better than Reggie Evans, you need some fucking INDISPUTABLE proof that they’re wrong before insulting people. The fact that you don’t see that, more than anything else, shows how little you understand about actually finding the truth

  96. Juany8

    flossy: Which is sort of crazy.I mean, we’ve all watched Carmelo play some of the best ball of his career (which is borne out by the numbers) and yet he still gets destroyed by Durant and LeBron across virtually every statistical category.

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=anthoca01&y1=2013&p2=jamesle01&y2=2013&p3=duranke01&y3=2013

    Just goes to show how far in the stratosphere those two are…

    I don’t think it’s as far off as the numbers make it seem, especially between Melo and Durant, but yea Lebron is the clear cut best player in the league, mostly because he’s the only player that can play offense like a point guard and play defense like a power forward.

    Usually guards have more impact on offense and big men have more impact on defense and rebounding. Lebron freaking does both at an elite level, even if I think the individual parts of his game get overrated a bit. There are better scorers, passers (watch videos of Larry Bird passing and then try to tell me that Lebron is the best passing forward ever), defenders, and rebounders, but nobody else that gives you all that in a package capable of playing 40+ minutes a night in the playoffs.

    Furthermore, I think that while Melo will continue to be worse than those guys overall, he is the only guy in the league capable of matching up with them in every way. In fact, I think Melo, Chandler, and Kidd form the best possible defensive core you can have against both OKC and Miami not a coincidence that Dallas beat both teams with the even better, but very similar, Marion-Kidd-Chandler combo

  97. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Juany8: Get over that little fact, if every single smart basketball mind ever thinks Melo is better than Reggie Evans, you need some fucking INDISPUTABLE proof that they’re wrong before insulting people. The fact that you don’t see that, more than anything else, shows how little you understand about actually finding the truth

    Yes, yes, the appeal to authority. Well then, I must be wrong if everyone says I am.

  98. Juany8

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Yes, yes, the appeal to authority. Well then, I must be wrong if everyone says I am.

    I guess peer-reviewing doesn’t exist then. Every researcher just goes out and does his own thing, while insulting all the idiots that simply aren’t capable of understanding their work. You’re not going against authority, you’re going against logic.

  99. nicos

    Juany8:

    (watch videos of Larry Bird passing and then try to tell me that Lebron is the best passing forward ever),

    Bird was a better passer but because of LBJ’s ballhandling skill he can initiate the offense in a way Bird never could- LBJ might not be the best passing forward ever but he’s the best playmaking forward ever.

  100. thenamestsam

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Yes, yes, the appeal to authority. Well then, I must be wrong if everyone says I am.

    You make it seem like appeal to authority is a worthless argumentation tactic. This is 100% incorrect. As any logic book will tell you, or helpfully also Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_authority) will tell you an argument from authority depends on the authority being a legitimate expert on the subject matter, and also having a consensus of experts in the subject who agree with the argument.

    In such a case argument from authority can actually be an extremely strong and valid argument. For example if I asked you to make an argument in favor of evolution you would almost certainly start by telling me that something approaching 100% of scientists studying the topic are in agreement about how evolution works. True expertise backed by consensus. A strong argument in favor of evolution.

    Similarly, something approaching 100% of people who have devoted their lives and livelihoods to basketball (coaches, GMS, writers etc.) are in agreement about the fact that Carmelo is a better offensive player than Reggie Evans. Expertise and consensus. A strong argument in favor of Carmelo.

  101. daJudge

    To THCJ, sometimes epistemological theories are myopic. Sometimes they are abstract to the point of being….well, abstracted from experience and somewhat useless. I’m sure you know what I mean. What I don’t get is why folks can’t reconcile the view that when an intelligent human being who watches, perhaps plays and thinks about basketball without so-called advanced statistics, that person can not make a judgment that has inherent value. I really find it absurd (and somewhat distasteful/elitist) that the viewpoint of an experienced fan is not at least a valued part of the equation. This is not to say that stats don’t help and often clarify issues, but stats also obfuscate. Of course this is no real dilemma without a Draconian adherence to a system that negates direct perception.

  102. Juany8

    thenamestsam: You make it seem like appeal to authority is a worthless argumentation tactic. This is 100% incorrect. As any logic book will tell you, or helpfully also Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_authority) will tell you an argument from authority depends on the authority being a legitimate expert on the subject matter, and also having a consensus of experts in the subject who agree with the argument.

    In such a case argument from authority can actually be an extremely strong and valid argument. For example if I asked you to make an argument in favor of evolution you would almost certainly start by telling me that something approaching 100% of scientists studying the topic are in agreement about how evolution works. True expertise backed by consensus. A strong argument in favor of evolution.

    Similarly, something approaching 100% of people who have devoted their lives and livelihoods to basketball (coaches, GMS, writers etc.) are in agreement about the fact that Carmelo is a better offensive player than Reggie Evans. Expertise and consensus. A strong argument in favor of Carmelo.

    Thank you! It’s baffling to think that an economics professor thinks he’s the world’s foremost expert on basketball, and that he manages to do so despite the fact that his findings fly in the face of every other analysis ever done on the game. Being different from most people isn’t a bad thing, the casual consensus does often end up being wrong. When everyone disagrees with your conclusions, it’s time to face reality and accept that you’re most likely not intellectually superior to the entire world

  103. Juany8

    daJudge:
    To THCJ, sometimes epistemological theories are myopic.Sometimes they are abstract to the point of being….well, abstracted from experience and somewhat useless.I’m sure you know what I mean. What I don’t get is why folks can’t reconcile the view that when an intelligent human being who watches, perhaps plays and thinks about basketball without so-called advanced statistics, that person can not make a judgment that has inherent value. I really find it absurd (and somewhat distasteful/elitist) that the viewpoint of an experienced fan is not at least a valued part of the equation.This is not to say that stats don’t help and often clarify issues, but stats also obfuscate.Of course this is no real dilemma without a Draconian adherence to a system that negates direct perception.

    Forget an experienced fan, THCJ lives in a dream world where there is no such thing as a basketball expert. He ignores what freaking Greg Poppovich thinks about players. If one of the greatest basketball minds of all time says Carmelo is a star and then backs that up by designing a defense that specifically targets Melo much more than guys like Novak and Chandler, you need to be honest with yourself and realize he simply knows what he’s doing better than you. There is no cute combination of numbers that is going to make up for the years of very hard work Poppovich has put into developing his basketball acumen.

    I actually think people would be better off creating models that have large adjustments based on what the top basketball minds think, including Vegas lines. No matter how awesome you think your model is, chances are you don’t have millions at stake and that therefore you haven’t spent millions becoming even a tiny bit better at evaluation than everyone else

  104. lavor postell

    I’m interested to see how the Nets fare against OKC tonight without Lopez and Evans. It might be a long night for them.

  105. daJudge

    Juany8, sometimes people in the biz do not base their assessments on pure player acumen, since they are in the biz and other considerations are present such as star power, marketing and the like. J Lin comes to mind. It’s not that the statistical models are worthless at all, but they are not perfect, and neither are the experts. I don’t care who they are and I don’t care how much money they have on the line. Their credentials and what they have at risk of course goes to the weight or the relative voracity of their particular proposition, but I would not rest my case on an argument simply from authority. It is a weak basis with no pure logical footing whatsoever, because the logic of the argument is replaced by the simple weight of the authority. Of course it may be correct, but it’s accuracy is not based on logic. In court (not hardwood), I must admit that the admissibility of expert opinion is however based (in NYS) on general expert consensus on the given issue. This is called the Frye test, which has been critiqued. Nevertheless, expert opinion should be given weight, but the expert needs to be qualified and the opinion is certainly subject to debate. I don’t think THCJ is wrong in being skeptical of experts. Many or most experts at one time would opine that there are racial distinctions relative to intelligence. While of course none of us would concur, it was a widely held belief. I am also not trying to defend THCJ, but he is not all wet either. His ideas that the NBA elevates certain players over others because they are stars (and pays them accordingly) is clearly demonstrated by the current Knick Team IMO. What is really interesting to me is that I find Jon is also highly skeptical of authority and certain experts. Fascinating.

  106. Owen

    “You don’t hear anyone else arguing that Tyson Chandler is an all time great on the offensive end.”

    I’ll argue it. The guys is averaging 15 per 36 on a ts% of 75%. He has an offensive rating of 150. Those are historically great numbers. Due to normalize, sure, but this guy catches lobs and moves without the ball as well as any big in the NBA, maybe ever.

    It’s laughable to me that anyone would give Melo credit for what is happening with the Knicks. And while I agree with the notion he will be a serious MVP candidate, that is also laughable. Apply a power forward adjustment to his Win Share numbers and he is basically the same Melo as we have always seen. Still not scoring efficiently, still mediocre defensively, still doing incredibly boneheaded things like not hustling back so he can complain to the refs (pretty much every game.)

    I have gotten to watch all the games but I basically see nothing different about Melo this year. Just more wins for his team.

    To me, the difference in the Knicks this year is that we actually have, for the first time in years, a bunch of highly effective low usage guys who are playing great. And the results show on the court.

    I know the ongoing referendum on the WOW and advanced analysis in general on this site will never end, nor should it. But the idea that our current success is an indictment of statistical analysis of basketball is deeply deeply wrong. To me, it’s actually been a validation.

    Re expert opinion, it’s basically a joke, if sportswriters and the media are our experts. Mike Trout just had one of the of the best seasons in MLB history and got trounced in the voting on the premise, presumably, that baserunning and defense don’t matter. It’s not basketball, i know, but profound skepticism is the only appropriate attitude.

  107. Z-man

    I’m with you, Judge. THCJ is correct enough times that I, for one, take him seriously…up to the point where he starts trolling and cursing and engaging in character assassination (unless it’s particularly witty and/or deserved!) He does point out some great subtleties that enhance my perspective. He does lay it out there…imagine if Faried was a flop?

    I also don’t like when best-fit tendencies in a scatter plot are used to classify all those who don’t conform to the norm as outliers.

    I also think that when any player is producing off-the charts numbers in any category (such as Chandler’s TS% or Evans’ OReb%) that player is incredibly valuable AT THE RIGHT PRICE, IN THE RIGHT ROLE. Comparing Evans to Melo is just dumb, as is comparing Chandler to, say, Ewing. Low-usage and high-usage players simply can’t be compared. But I do agree with Jowles insofar as Evans can be a high-impact player, just as Rodman was. I think his efficient scoring is nearly irrelevant, since he hardly scores. Evans should be compared to guys like Faried, Verajao, Joel Anthony, Humphries, Samuels, etc., not Melo, Love, Durant, LeBron, etc.

  108. d-mar

    @112 Hey Owen, where you been? I guess when a team is 12-4 and hasn’t lost a home game, it’s kind of hard to come up with anything negative to say. But, yes, you managed to anyway. Melo the same player he’s always been? And you swear you’ve watched all of the games? I don’t even know what to say, except watch a little closer and tell me where this team would be without Melo. And be honest.

  109. Z-man

    OWEN! Nice to have you back.

    Seems like Melo has so far been having an historic season as well…I searched for players that have has a TS% of .577 or above and a usage of 34% or above. Not bas company to be in:

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/psl_finder.cgi?request=1&match=single&type=totals&per_minute_base=36&lg_id=NBA&is_playoffs=N&year_min=&year_max=&franch_id=&season_start=1&season_end=-1&age_min=0&age_max=99&height_min=0&height_max=99&birth_country_is=Y&birth_country=&is_active=&is_hof=&is_as=&as_comp=gt&as_val=0&pos_is_g=Y&pos_is_gf=Y&pos_is_f=Y&pos_is_fg=Y&pos_is_fc=Y&pos_is_c=Y&pos_is_cf=Y&qual=&c1stat=usg_pct&c1comp=gt&c1val=34&c2stat=ts_pct&c2comp=gt&c2val=.576&c3stat=mp_per_g&c3comp=gt&c3val=20&c4stat=&c4comp=gt&c4val=&c5stat=&c5comp=gt&c6mult=1.0&c6stat=&order_by=ws_per_48

  110. JK47

    Without Melo, Ray Felton would lead this team in FGA and all of these wonderful low-usage players wouldn’t be low-usage players anymore– some of them would have to shoot more. And this offense would not be the #1 offense in the NBA, and the team would not be 12-4, not matter what the thick-skulled Dave Berri-ites say.

  111. SJK

    Owen, I’m interested as to what you mean when you say: “Apply a power forward adjustment to his Win Share numbers and he is basically the same Melo as we have always seen.”

    It seems to me your implication here is that for a power forward, Melo is not playing any better than he has been in previous years. To me, that implies that Melo has assumed the role of a traditional power forward but that is over simplification considering the unconventional nature of the Felton-Kidd-Brewer-Melo-Chandler line up. Could you elaborate?

  112. Owen

    D-Mar – Haven’t had as much time to post. And as I noted, haven’t watched all the games.

    But, from what I have seen, it’s the same Melo as ever. We have seen this before. Once, Melo’s three point percentage normalizes from his current 43.5% clip, the numbers will look pretty familiar.

    I don’t know. You think Melo is going to end the season closer to his current three point percentage 43.5% or his career rate 32.8%?

  113. Z-man

    In fact, if he keeps up this pace, he will have a top-10 scoring efficiency season for players at a usage above 33% (MJ, Wade, LeBron, Yao, and one Kobe season would be above him.

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/psl_finder.cgi?request=1&match=single&type=totals&per_minute_base=36&lg_id=NBA&is_playoffs=N&year_min=&year_max=&franch_id=&season_start=1&season_end=-1&age_min=0&age_max=99&height_min=0&height_max=99&birth_country_is=Y&birth_country=&is_active=&is_hof=&is_as=&as_comp=gt&as_val=0&pos_is_g=Y&pos_is_gf=Y&pos_is_f=Y&pos_is_fg=Y&pos_is_fc=Y&pos_is_c=Y&pos_is_cf=Y&qual=&c1stat=usg_pct&c1comp=gt&c1val=33&c2stat=ts_pct&c2comp=gt&c2val=.450&c3stat=mp_per_g&c3comp=gt&c3val=20&c4stat=&c4comp=gt&c4val=&c5stat=&c5comp=gt&c6mult=1.0&c6stat=&order_by=ws_per_48

  114. JK47

    The Knicks are +13.3 points per game when Carmelo Anthony is on the floor, and -6.1 points when he is off, for a whopping +19.4 net, easily the highest number on the Knicks.

    The Knicks’ top 10 5-man units in terms of +/- all have Carmelo Anthony in them.

    When Melo has played PF, he has racked up a 24.2 PER. Opposing PFs managed 14.6.

    He ranks 3rd in the NBA behind Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant in “Simple Rating.”

    Yeah, he’s really sucked.

  115. Owen

    Not saying he’s sucked. He’ll certainly prove me wrong when he keeps his three point shooting up all season long.

    But to me the story this year is about a lot more than Carmelo Anthony.

  116. d-mar

    The Heat gave up 60 points to the Wiz in the 1st half. Can they really go through a whole season of waiting until the 4th quarter to play hard? I guess if they keep winning it doesn’t matter, but I think it’s a bit of a dangerous game to play.

  117. Z-man

    So, please, stop the BS about Melo, he is shooting at an enormously high efficiency for a high usage player. He has lapses on D, but they are few and far between. He has hot-headed moments (but to be fair, he had been getting dicked on calls up until 2 games ago), but I honestly can’t believe you are suggesting that he has not improved in his approach and his intensity overall.

    I really don’t know what more you could expect from him so far. He’s not LeBron, or MJ, or even Durant. However, he is without a doubt a top-5 player in the league so far this year, and probably #3. You really have to be looking at the world through shit-colored glasses to see it differently.

    Now, his 42% from 3 is probably unsustainable, so I understand skepticism as to whether he finishes the year at .577. But what he has done so far is flat-out spectacular.

  118. JK47

    I do agree with you, Owen, that Melo’s play is not the main reason for the team’s turnaround. He has been very good, but the main reason this team has improved is that the guard play last year was unbelievably bad and this year it has been very solid. I mean, Landry Fields’ useless ass was second on the team in minutes last year and Toney Douglas, Baron Davis and Mike Bibby were all rotation regulars at one time or another. That is a whole lotta suck right there.

  119. Owen

    “So, please, stop the BS about Melo, he is shooting at an enormously high efficiency for a high usage player.”

    It’s just not true. His current, incredibly high level is still well below the numbers Lebron and Durant have put up over the last few years. What’s shocking about his current 57.7% ts% is how low it is not how high it is, given how hot he is running from three.

    He isn’t a top 5 player in the league. He is exactly the same guy he was last year, just with better teammates and lucky from behind the arc…..

  120. Z-man

    Owen:
    Not saying he’s sucked. He’ll certainly prove me wrong when he keeps his three point shooting up all season long.

    But to me the story this year is about a lot more than Carmelo Anthony.

    True, this is a very solid, deep team and Melo is only part of the story. But Melo has been on the attack on both ends all year and a lot of his misses have come after he has wrecked the opposition in the first quarter. He is in amazing shape, and despite the high usage, has been moving the ball better than in the past.

    I think Kidd will ultimately determine how far we go, if only for his stabilizing influence, but Melo is playing like a true superstar right now.

  121. Z-man

    Owen: It’s just not true. His current, incredibly high level is still well below the numbers Lebron and Durant have put up over the last few years. What’s shocking about his current 57.7% ts% is how low it is not how high it is, given how hot he is running from three.

    His usage is higher than theirs. I conceded that Durant and LeBron are better, but LeBron’s usage has not been as high since coming to Miami, and Durant should probably shoot more and sacrifice some TS% to get the ball out of Westbrook’s hands. It’s not just Melo’s TS%, it’s the combo of TS% and ultra-high usage that is exceedingly rare.

  122. Z-man

    And to quote THCJ, if doing what Melo does is so easy, why doesn’t anyone else shoot .577 TS% at a usage% of 34? Let’s bump Chandler (or Faried, or Evans, or really, anyone but Durant, Wade or LeBron) to that usage and see what he shoots.

  123. Owen

    We are what 16 games into the season. Durant’s career ts% average is above what Melo has posted so far this season. And his usage isn’t that far behind. Honestly, no way Melo keeps that up either.

    Again, for the third time, Melo is not going to keep up this kind of three point shooting. When it normalizes, Melo will fall back to the 54-5% ts% range he has been in his whole career.

  124. jon abbey

    Owen, nice to see you although I mostly disagree with you as has always been often the case…

    on one hand, you argue that Chandler is an alltime great on the offensive end, yet you don’t consider that if that really is the case, maybe Melo and everyone else are and will continue to keep getting easier looks on average from three point range, and maybe his percentage won’t “normalize”, at least as much as you might think. and guys can get better at shooting the 3 later in their careers: if you were waiting for Kidd’s 3 point percentage to “normalize” in recent years from his earlier trendlines, you’d still be waiting.

    of course, one could also argue that it’s because of the fantastic team spacing (the three PGs but also Melo’s constant drawing of multiple defenders) that Chandler is putting up historic offensive numbers. I’m not sure if they still are, but at least until recently, NY had the most 3s made through their number of games played in league history, by a lot. when you have one team with two historic extremes, it’s pretty likely that they’re somehow connected, whether or not we can fully explain how with publicly available metrics as of yet.

  125. Z-man

    That’s a typically pessimistic projection based on the “players almost always revert to their career norms” theory. Of course, Pierce (one of Melo’s offensive comparisons) upped his TS% significantly after age 28, coincidentally when KG arrived on the scene. Oh, and KG also improved and lowered his usage. Maybe the better supporting cast and maturity combined make Melo’s numbers more sustainable. Maybe Amare, Shump and Kidd coming back lowers Melo’s usage.

    PS Durant is taking 4-5 less shots a game, that’s a 25% difference, pretty significant to me.

  126. jon abbey

    on a different note, do you guys remember when just a few months ago, one of those idiot GMs that THCJ likes to mock so much called Andray Blatche the single worst player in the NBA?

    oh wait, that wasn’t a GM, that was actually THCJ himself… :)

  127. Z-man

    PS I don’t think Melo keep up 42% but 38%bis totally possible, he’s developed into a very good spot-up 3-pt shooter, and is not only shooting better than at any point of his career, he’s taking more than ever.

  128. jon abbey

    there’s a definite symbiosis with Melo and Chandler, the upside blueprint there has always been Pierce/Garnett, who complemented each other instantly and perfectly (Pierce liked to take stretches off mid-game, Garnett didn’t like shooting down the stretch). we don’t have 3rd and 4th players like Ray Allen and that year’s version of Rondo (Smith/Felton), but I think decidedly more depth plus basketball genius Jason Kidd.

  129. Owen

    It never changes. Posters saying this time is different. Killjoys like me saying it isn’t.

    We shall see.

    Pretty great game going on in Brooklyn.

  130. BigBlueAL

    Heat lost in Washington. Knicks win tomorrow and they will have same record as Heat when they play Thursday in Miami. Cant freaking wait.

  131. BigBlueAL

    Holy crap I take that back, they are currently tied right now (12-4). Knicks win tomorrow and they will have a better record than the Heat heading into their game on Thursday.

  132. daJudge

    Owen, I don’t know you from a hole in the wall. I seem to recall that you were a serious player at one time, and you probably still are. I respect that a lot. It is really hard for me to understand though how you could be so down on Melo right now. If you are a stat freak, maybe some numbers are unbecoming. I don’t see that, but I don’t focus on the issue. Really, dudes played great for this team IMO. Articulate how this statement is incorrect….or don’t and don’t. Sorry to be obnoxious, but this is the best season in a long time for me.

  133. daJudge

    Thanks Z-man for setting out my argument in a reasonable and concrete fashion. Sorry for double post.

  134. Z-man

    No problem, Judge, us veteran fans of the ’69 -’73 teams have to stick together!

    Good for Washington, hate seeing teams lose nearly every game (unless it’s the Celts or Heat, they could never lose enough)

  135. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    jon abbey:
    on a different note, do you guys remember when just a few months ago, one of those idiot GMs that THCJ likes to mock so much called Andray Blatche the single worst player in the NBA?

    oh wait, that wasn’t a GM, that was actually THCJ himself… :)

    Before this year, he was one of the worst players in the NBA. That’s basically irrefutable. This year? He’s a borderline all-star. Look at his box score tonight.

  136. jon abbey

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Before this year, he was one of the worst players in the NBA. That’s basically irrefutable. This year? He’s a borderline all-star. Look at his box score tonight.

    right, and if you were a GM, you wouldn’t have picked him up this summer if he were the last man on earth. idiot GM 1, you 0.

  137. lavor postell

    Lin sitting on brench in crunch time against the Lakers who have been getting lit up by point guards this season. Meanwhile the Rockets make up a 10 point 4th quarter lead and Hack-a-Howard is working like a charm.

  138. cgreene

    i’d be lying if i said that i wasn’t enjoying watching dantoni screw up the lakers with his dogmatic my way or highway approach and not coaching the players he has. systems dont win. players do. and AND he’s forcing the lakers to trade gasol for $.50 on the $1.00. god bless jimmy buss.

  139. Owen

    “Really, dudes played great for this team IMO. Articulate how this statement is incorrect….or don’t and don’t. Sorry to be obnoxious, but this is the best season in a long time for me.”

    It’s just not all about Melo. That’s my point.

    What I see is what I saw last year. Tyson Chandler is far and away the best, most important player on this team. And it isn’t close. Not only the heart and soul of the team but the most talented.

    Our success is about him and about the talented collection of role players and specialists we have collected in the last few years – and Melo…..

  140. jon abbey

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: You were right the first time, guy.

    heh, I changed that twice.

    Owen, the problem is it’s just not so easy to extricate individual performance from team performance, at least not with the stats available to the public. is it Chandler’s presence in the middle that’s leading to so many open 3s, or is it all of the made 3s that’s giving Chandler more room to operate in the middle?

  141. jon abbey

    or is it all the defensive attention Melo commands that’s opening up both of them? (I think this is the closest to the truth of the three)

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