|Carmelo Anthony, SF 37 MIN | 6-16 FG | 8-11 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 21 PTS | -16
The chief reason why many of us took a three-point halftime deficit as god-sent manna was this: Melo was coming off an impressively efficient first half (13 points on six shots), and, really, there was no way we were going to slog through another 24 minutes of shit like that again, right?
Brick, brick, rim-graze, charge, foul trouble, brick, miss, MAKE, miss, foul, brick, miss – Melo never found anything remotely resembling a rhythm in the second half. Chalk it up to a stagnant offense bereft of options, bad play-calling, bum shoulder, whatever you will. Fact is, Melo in this offense is about as difficult a puzzle to figure out as one of those Fisher Price block things that I can’t remember the name of because I’m also stupid and uncreative.
|Iman Shumpert, SF 37 MIN | 3-10 FG | 2-2 FT | 10 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -5
Like his fast floundering backcourt mates, Shumpert looked painfully indecisive at points throughout – passing when he should shoot, shooting when he should pass, and netting a pair of clumsy travels that killed a couple runs in their infancy. He was predictably outstanding on defense, save for a few shoddy switches and late closeouts. Oh, and he out-rebounded the next closest guy by three. Which is awesome / skull-fuckingly depressing.
|Tyson Chandler, C 30 MIN | 3-4 FG | 3-5 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | -14
I don’t want to belabor this, in the same way I wouldn’t want to belabor nursing home visits or the clap. Tyson was as useful as a sack of spent hops tonight – no two ways around it. He refused to jump for rebounds, refused to box out, refused to position himself for tap-outs. He might be hurt – that’s eminently possible. Likely, even. And if that’s the case, I’m genuinely sorry. No I’m not.
|Raymond Felton, PG 34 MIN | 1-8 FG | 4-5 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 6 PTS | -9
Huh. Alright. That’s… unfortunate. Felton’s been our bellwether for so long now, it’s hard to process him turning in a legitimately terrible wire-to-wire performance like this. The pathways to the paint that existed in games one and two were completely shut off; there were no transition opportunities to speak of; and the few shots he did take floated away like crop dust. TOLD YOU WE SHOULDN’T HAVE GOTTEN RID OF LIN!
|Pablo Prigioni, PG 24 MIN | 0-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -6
Exhibit 1-A why plus-minus fetishism can get out of hand. Game two’s inspired second half performance seemed a distant memory in the face of constant indecision and forced irrelevance. It’s quite simple, really: Prigioni can make defenses pay if provided enough air space on the perimeter. But all it takes is his man to decide that’s not going to be the case, and…. well, this is what you get.
|Amar’e Stoudemire, PF 9 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 7 PTS | 0
Did you know Amar’e Stoudemire had the highest plus-minus of any Knick to play more than 2 minutes tonight? True story and I just swallowed vomit.
The rust was flaking into piles, but there were a few nice moments – the one handed flush, the pull-up three at the end of the first half, the couple of nice defensive sequences. He’s still got a ways to go, and in a context that shouldn’t allow for learning on the fly, but…. The Knicks, y’all.
|Kenyon Martin, PF 20 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | +3
Was no worse than Tyson Chandler. Who wants to organize the parade?
Let’s face it: Checking Hibbert – he of the six extra inches – is no small task, and he probably shouldn’t have been put in that position that much to begin with.
|Chris Copeland, SF 1 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 3 PTS | +3
|Jason Kidd, PG 20 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 0 PTS | -16
One-hundred and eighty minutes, still no points. He last scored on April 23rd, one day before my birthday. I don’t remember wishing for Jason Kidd to disappear when I blew out my… twelve candles. But it’s eminently possible. Six boards and a few quick-handed swipes — that’s it. That’s all we got. Not like we can score in transition anymore, anyway.
|J.R. Smith, SG 25 MIN | 4-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 9 PTS | -5
Oh man, this guy. His first few hoists missed wider than Scott Norwood, and the look of death warmed over made most everyone feel like the cries of sick were probably legit. When he wasn’t throwing in impossible bullshit jumpers that clearly took every ounce of strength he had, he was blowing rotations, refusing to move his feet, and generally looking like someone with some kind of illness. Whatever.
PFFFFFFFFFT. I’ll let you guys handle this one.
Five Things We Saw
- The Pacers shot 8-31 from three, while the Knicks were 3-11 (including one by Copeland in garbage time). There’s not much more you can say about this.
- The Pacers outrebounded the Knicks 53-40, including 18-10 in OREBS. There’s not much more you can say about this, either.
- The Knicks had more turnovers (14) than assists (11). There’s not much more you can say about this.
- Roy Hibbert thrashed us like a row of stricken corn stalks. There’s plenty more to say about this, and it’s all incredibly depressing.
- We played right into the teeth of Indy’s D and scored 71 points. We lose Tuesday, we’re toast. Simple as that.