Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

147 comments on “Playoff Game Thread: Knicks @ Celtics Game 3

  1. mokers

    The Knicks need to keep Boston from believing they can win. So far the celtics aren’t playing like they are down 2-0 and the offense still looks terrible.

  2. Nick C.

    Knicks look like they are being outplayed but thanks to knocking down their threes they are up seven.

  3. yellowboy90

    Melo needs to slow down and recognize they have changed strategies. Now he needs to take his time and pass out the double.

  4. jon abbey

    best Shump has looked all year early on, seems like SHUMP SHUMP is actually the noise of cleanly swiping Pierce twice, abusive. Woodson better not bury him in the second half tonight, looks like they will need him to keep that up…

  5. yellowboy90

    If the Cs keep playing Melo like this he should never rush his shot to beat the double. His games 1 and 2 forced the Cs hand. Since he came back he only rushed it one time which is good. The Knicks are getting what they want and when Felton returns look out.

  6. Unreason

    3s fallin’ when they double Melo, and he’s starting to drill em when they don’t. Unless the C’s do something come up with a way to protect eh ball and score soon this could be over early.

  7. AnonymousODG

    Unreason:
    3s fallin’ when they double Melo, and he’s starting to drill em when they don’t. Unless the C’s do something come up with a way to protect eh ball and score soon this could be over early.

    Like clockwork.

    They have to deny Melo an entry pass.

  8. AnonymousODG

    Nick C.:
    Other than giving up a few offensive rebounds it’s almost perfection.

    Celtics have barely made their baskets on them though, lol.

  9. AnonymousODG

    Prigs and Kidd playing lights out. Felton playing aggressive — the reason for the 3 TOs — but it’s paying dividends for the most part with a lot of assists and layups. Melo having a good game. JR having a quietly average game. Tyson/KMart keeping Garnett from having a breakout game.

    Can’t ask for much more.

  10. mcliff05

    Couldn’t ask for a better birthday present than this demoralizing beat down. It’s a beautiful thing when your best basketball is currently on display…. In the playoffs…. At the Boston garden…… While Paul pierce’s career is ending before our eyes

  11. yellowboy90

    er:
    Green is killin Melo lmao

    I think the key is to stop him from gaining more momentum. So you have to crowd him.

  12. er

    yellowboy90: I think the key is to stop him from gaining more momentum. So you have to crowd him.

    The funny is that it doesn’t even matter, we are smoking these fuckers , and Melo gets to spectate for the rest of the evening

  13. BigBlueAL

    20 years ago in Game 3 of the 1st round Starks headbutts Miller and gets ejected. JR just following suit.

  14. AnonymousODG

    Kahnzy:
    Why…just why J.R.? That was just…well, thank God we’re up 17 still.

    Welp… couldn’t have happened to a more deserving punk like Terry. Hopefully this doesn’t lead to a suspension and a possible Game 4 loss.

  15. mcliff05

    AnonymousODG: Welp… couldn’t have happened to a more deserving punk like Terry.Hopefully this doesn’t lead to a suspension and a possible Game 4 loss.

    That better get rescinded to a flagrant 1. They don’t eject jr unless terry goes after him

  16. Kahnzy

    AnonymousODG: Welp… couldn’t have happened to a more deserving punk like Terry.Hopefully this doesn’t lead to a suspension and a possible Game 4 loss.

    Given the deliberate looking nature of it, a suspension wouldn’t surprise me. Thing was, it was just so unnecessary. Oh well, even if he does get suspended it’s not like that’s gonna cost us the series or anything. At worst it’ll cost us a few extra days of rest before round 2.

  17. mr.JayP

    elikint:
    Love how it was good jr then bad jr then gooooood jr the BAD jr

    he reminds me of those sweet and sour gummie commercials….LOL

  18. elikint

    Somewhere around the middle of the second you realized “We are just better”. Skill wise, passion, teamwork, grit, guile, poise. Been a while since we’ve been on that side of the equation.

  19. AnonymousODG

    mcliff05: That better get rescinded to a flagrant 1. They don’t eject jr unless terry goes after him

    In all honesty, I think the refs wanted to make sure things didn’t escalate and throwing out JR insured that. Keep him in the game (even on the bench), and Terry would probably do his best to retaliate once the game was clearly out of hand. So in principle, I’ve got no problem with the call.

    Kahnzy: Given the deliberate looking nature of it, a suspension wouldn’t surprise me. Thing was, it was just so unnecessary. Oh well, even if he does get suspended it’s not like that’s gonna cost us the series or anything. At worst it’ll cost us a few extra days of rest before round 2.

    I’d like to think that JR’s forthcoming apology and decision to just quickly walk away without engaging in backtalk or excuses will stave away a suspension. But you also have to figure that the NBA wants to milk at least one more BOS/NY playoff game, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they do suspend him.

    In fact, given how the NBA fixed it so LA managed to get in the playoffs, my guess is David Stern suspends Melo for 2 games and accuses him of telepathically controlling JR’s actions. Sounds about right.

  20. mokers

    mcliff05:
    Couldn’t ask for a better birthday present than this demoralizing beat down. It’s a beautiful thing when your best basketball is currently on display…. In the playoffs…. At the Boston garden…… While Paul pierce’s career is ending before our eyes

    hear Hear!

  21. Kahnzy

    elikint:
    Somewhere around the middle of the second you realized “We are just better”. Skill wise, passion, teamwork, grit, guile, poise. Been a while since we’ve been on that side of the equation.

    I agree completely. After more than a decade of suck, it’s so weird to simply expect an appearance in the ECF. Weird, but awesome.

  22. Kahnzy

    AnonymousODG:
    I’d like to think that JR’s forthcoming apology and decision to just quickly walk away without engaging in backtalk or excuses will stave away a suspension.But you also have to figure that the NBA wants to milk at least one more BOS/NY playoff game, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they do suspend him.

    In fact, given how the NBA fixed it so LA managed to get in the playoffs, my guess is David Stern suspends Melo for 2 games and accuses him of telepathically controlling JR’s actions.Sounds about right.

    I agree, the way he quickly walked away from the situation might be his saving grace, but this isn’t the 90′s anymore so who knows.

    Also, everything is Melo’s fault, or hadn’t you heard?

  23. AnonymousODG

    mr.JayP: It looked like a pretty solid hit to me lol…

    There certainly was contact, but it was not flush. Terry had a delayed reaction to it and basically flopped to make sure the refs caught it. But if this were boxing or some backyard scuffle, Terry could certainly have shrugged off the contact and act like nothing happened. Anyway…

    LET’S GET THIS 4-0 SWEEP GUYS!

  24. Frank O.

    Shump looked as good as we have seen him.
    Melo is showing a champion’s poise.
    Kmart is the X factor.
    And how about Prigioni’s effort.

  25. mr.JayP

    AnonymousODG: There certainly was contact, but it was not flush.Terry had a delayed reaction to it and basically flopped to make sure the refs caught it.But if this were boxing or some backyard scuffle, Terry could certainly have shrugged off the contact and act like nothing happened.Anyway…

    LET’S GET THIS 4-0 SWEEP GUYS!

    For sure, it wasnt thaaat hard. im just saying, it was a solid hit.

    4-0 sweep baby!!!!!

  26. mr.JayP

    Duncan just had a beautiful alley-op on Pau, which had me thinking, now that westbrick is out.

    Knicks Vs Spurs final!?!?!?!?

  27. BigBlueAL

    To think there were plenty of people here and in the media who thought this was going to be a 6 or 7 game series. Ive been saying this was a 5 game series since early April, looks like I mightve been wrong too lol.

  28. Kahnzy

    mr.JayP:
    Duncan just had a beautiful alley-op on Pau, which had me thinking, now that westbrick is out.

    Knicks Vs Spurs final!?!?!?!?

    Boy, talk about exercising your demons if that comes to pass. I’m personally hoping for a Knicks vs Denver Finals. Juicy.

  29. Kahnzy

    Even though that would be a very difficult matchup for us, would still be rife with drama and excitement.

  30. cgreene

    Kahnzy: I agree completely. After more than a decade of suck, it’s so weird to simply expect an appearance in the ECF. Weird, but awesome.

    It’s very all of a sudden

  31. mr.JayP

    BigBlueAL:
    To think there were plenty of people here and in the media who thought this was going to be a 6 or 7 game series.Ive been saying this was a 5 game series since early April, looks like I mightve been wrong too lol.

    LOL i remember saying “What has boston shown that it will be a 6-7 game series??” Response: “Its boston!”

  32. mr.JayP

    Kahnzy: Boy, talk about exercising your demons if that comes to pass. I’m personally hoping for a Knicks vs Denver Finals. Juicy.

    idk if denver is even making it out of the first round… :-/

  33. johnno

    On another note, when asked about being fined for criticizing the refs, he said something along the lines of, “I didn’t get fined for being wrong. I got fined for saying it.” Does he get fined again, or worse, for essentially saying that his criticism of the refs was correct?
    What in the world has happened to Paul Pierce? He seems like he has aged about 10 years since the middle of the season.

  34. AnonymousODG

    mr.JayP: idk if denver is even making it out of the first round… :-/

    Lee out, Curry possibly out (probably gimpy), Denver has a real chance.

  35. Kahnzy

    mr.JayP: idk if denver is even making it out of the first round… :-/

    Well, no Lee and Curry’s playing on a busted ankle. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not about to head to Atlantic City and place my bet on them, but I wouldn’t count them out just yet.

  36. Kahnzy

    mr.JayP: Oh noes. i know about Lee, but what happened to Glass Ankles? lol

    Sprained it last game. It’s really too bad he’s so injury prone, he’s just so much fun to watch when he gets rolling. Well, except when he’s dropping 54 in the Garden anyway…

  37. Z-man

    WOO HOO!!! F the Celts, SWEEP please!

    My animosity for the Celts goes back to the Bill Russell days, so F them. Please sweep them, grind them into dust. Please.

  38. Kahnzy

    cgreene:
    The Knicks are 19-2 in the last 21. 19-1 when melo plays.

    It’s a good thing Miami is 40-2 in their last 42 otherwise people might be paying more attention to us. I’m personally enjoying how all of the “experts” were calling a 6 or 7 game series (with some fools like Bowen giving the series to the Celtics), now suddenly jump on the bandwagon and explain how obvious it is that the Knicks will win the series in 4 or 5.

  39. naztorious

    Looks like Doc want’s a piece o’ Earl.

    “Doc was upset about JR Smith incident: “I wish I was playing,” he said. Declined further comment at the risk of a fine.”

  40. Z-man

    Melo sucks. Never mind that he makes shots that slice the scrotums of opposing teams. He must suck because WP says he does.

  41. mr.JayP

    Kahnzy: Sprained it last game. It’s really too bad he’s so injury prone, he’s just so much fun to watch when he gets rolling. Well, except when he’s dropping 54 in the Garden anyway…

    LOL for real. dude has a nice shot and a great overall game. really is a shame.

  42. Kahnzy

    naztorious:
    Looks like Doc want’s a piece o’ Earl.

    “Doc was upset about JR Smith incident: “I wish I was playing,” he said. Declined further comment at the risk of a fine.”

    I really liked what he said when a reported asked him if he’d change his starting five. “We’ve lost three straight. I might start you.” Ahhh, to be a fly on the wall of the Celtic’s locker room. A giddy, cackling fly.

  43. mcliff05

    Z-man:
    Damn, I hate those bastards, especially that logo with the shamrock and the fat winking drunk.

    Haha it’s looking more like a black eye if you look closely;)

  44. Z-man

    naztorious:
    Looks like Doc want’s a piece o’ Earl.

    “Doc was upset about JR Smith incident: “I wish I was playing,” he said. Declined further comment at the risk of a fine.”

    Fuck Doc. His very own KG has been doing the dirtiest shit in the league forever. Phony bitch!

  45. Kahnzy

    Man, I think Denver and/or Golden State might score more points in the first half than Boston did all game.

  46. Unreason

    Next round will be harder. But they’re still on a roll; still not playing their best; still have key guys getting back to full strength and best of all they’re getting back to early season D. Hard to know how much to attribute to the Knicks D in this series so far. It’s definitely good. The number of open shots the C’s missed is just nuts too though. They’ve really coughed up 3 consecutive hairballs. If I were Doc I’d be lookin for someone to pound too.

  47. Kahnzy

    Unreason:
    Next round will be harder. But they’re still on a roll; still not playing their best;still have key guys getting back to full strength and best of all they’regetting back to early season D. Hard to know how much to attribute to the Knicks D in this series so far. It’s definitely good. The number of open shots the C’s missed is just nuts too though. They’ve really coughed up 3 consecutive hairballs. If I were Doc I’d be lookin for someone to pound too.

    I agree with you, and I think you can say the same thing about Indiana’s newfound offense vs Atlanta’s “lay down and just die” defense. It’ll be interesting to see whether the Knicks and their defense this series is closer to reality or if Indian’s offense against Atlanta is. My money is on the Knicks though, they’ve shown their capable of playing solid D; they’re just maddeningly inconsistent with their effort on that end.

  48. mcliff05

    Kahnzy: I agree with you, and I think you can say the same thing about Indiana’s newfound offense vs Atlanta’s “lay down and just die” defense. It’ll be interesting to see whether the Knicks and their defense this series is closer to reality or if Indian’s offense against Atlanta is. My money is on the Knicks though, they’ve shown their capable of playing solid D; they’re just maddeningly inconsistent with their effort on that end.

    For the Knicks it seems like the opposing teams missed shots galvanizes our D. If they play good d but the other team hits frustratingly difficult shots they get disheartened and foul. The Indiana series will be much much tougher.

  49. ruruland

    mcliff05: For the Knicks it seems like the opposing teams missed shots galvanizes our D. If they play good d but the other team hits frustratingly difficult shots they get disheartened and foul.The Indiana series will be much much tougher.

    The Knicks can and will play much better on both ends. If a team comes out and throws some punches on them, like we saw Boston do in the first two games, the Knicks are capable of turning it up another few notches.

    They’re simply better at making shots than Indiana, throw in some Amar’e………

    Just playing smart, efficient and poised in this series. Indiana will be more difficult to be sure, but they don’t have enough to beat NY 4 games. No way.

  50. ruruland

    Carmelo Anthony is the NBA’s 2nd most efficient scorer on the pick and roll as the ball handler and the 3rd most efficient roll man to this point, per Synergy.

  51. Kahnzy

    GS/Denver game>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>LA/San Antonio game.

  52. ruruland

    Don’t think the scorekeeper, Boston guy, wouldn’t want to help feed the Melo ballhog narrative a bit?

  53. ruruland

    From the Deadspin piece: “Everyone cooked the books, and the tendency, by and large, was to overcount — with a few notable exceptions. “Why would you underrerport? The only reason is to make your players look bad,” Alex says. “Normally, you wouldn’t want to do that. If the players look good, they’re more likely to be All-Stars and generate trade value. You don’t want to undervalue your own assets. But if you’re a stupid franchise, and you don’t intend to make deals, and you want to depress your own players’ signability — well, which franchise is stupid enough to do that?”

  54. ruruland

    Not that it’s really an important topic, but I’ve noticed that Melo is almost always credited for shot attempts when he gets the ball knocked out of bounds and keeps possession. Very rarely do guys get the shot attempt.

    There have been three occasions this year where Melo was credited with a missed shot that Tyson Chandler took.

    There were two offensive rebounds that Melo grabbed tonight as well and not credited for.

    And to me, the assist numbers have been deflated throughout the season, especially in road games.

    Durant gets credited with assists when guys take two and three dribble. Wouldn’t it be in the league’s best interest to inflate player’s like Durant’s numbers?

    And wouldn’t in be in the league’s best interest to keep the Melo polarization topic at the fore.

    How many ESPN radio shows lead with Melo’s lack of assists these days?

    Seems like drumming up conflict works really well nationally for the NY market, unlike any other. You don’t have that if Melo is putting more even numbers.

  55. er

    Kudos those guys who said Harry Barnes would be a better pro than college player. He has gotten better every month and has all star potential

  56. DRed

    If it wasn’t for the leaguewide conspiracy against Melo would he have had maybe 2 assists to go along with his rebound tonight? (WOW) I missed the game.

    I thought we’d win in 5, so I’m happy that we’re playing even better than I thought we would. Boston isn’t anywhere close to our level. I still don’t understand why people were afraid of this crap team. Priggy Felts had 11 assists, 7 steals, and only 4 turnovers-that’s freaking awesome. Woodson hasn’t been perfect this year, but he deserves a ton of credit for finding some wildly successful unconventional lineups.

  57. er

    ruruland:
    Not that it’s really an important topic, but I’ve noticed that Melo is almost always credited for shot attempts when he gets the ball knocked out of bounds and keeps possession. Very rarely do guys get the shot attempt.

    There have been three occasions this year where Melo was credited with a missed shot that Tyson Chandler took.

    There were two offensive rebounds that Melo grabbed tonight as well and not credited for.

    And to me, the assist numbers have been deflated throughout the season, especially in road games.

    Durant gets credited with assists when guys take two and three dribble. Wouldn’t it be in the league’s best interest to inflate player’s like Durant’s numbers?

    And wouldn’t in be in the league’s best interest to keep the Melo polarization topic at the fore.

    How many ESPN radio shows lead with Melo’s lack of assists these days?

    Seems like drumming up conflict works really well nationally for the NY market, unlike any other. You don’t have that if Melo is putting more even numbers.

    I agree Melo gets shitted on a lot,but that’s a heck of a conspiracy theory

  58. llcoolbp

    Unreason:
    That vacant stare on Pierce’s face was nice. The abyss is rushing toward him now.

    re
    I’m late to the party. I’m visiting queens, it’s my parents 50th wedding anniversary today. Than you for the awesome game thread that makes me feel like I was there. This quote in particular brought a smile to my face.

  59. ruruland

    DRed:
    If it wasn’t for the leaguewide conspiracy against Melo would he have had maybe 2 assists to go along with his rebound tonight? (WOW)I missed the game.

    Melo could have 10 rebounds tonight if he wanted to play for numbers like KD.

    He doesn’t care if teammates take uncontested boards or are credited with assists when he creates them. But yeah, fuck off anyway.

    Prigs was excellent. Best perimeter defender on the team.

  60. ruruland

    er: I agree Melo gets shitted on a lot,but that’s a heck of a conspiracy theory

    Read the god damned Deadspin story for fuck’s sake. Spells it all out.
    Certainly unlikely, but possible. More likely that road scorekeepers do stuff like that, not a conspiracy among multiple scorekeepers, but you never know.

  61. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    George Karl should be fired immediately. Like between playoff games. I can’t believe how incompetent he is.

  62. yellowboy90

    ruruland: Read the god damned Deadspin story for fuck’s sake. Spells it all out.
    Certainly unlikely, but possible. More likely that road scorekeepers do stuff like that, not a conspiracy among multiple scorekeepers, but you never know.

    relax guy. I need a Why so serious gif. lol.

  63. ruruland

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    George Karl should be fired immediately. Like between playoff games. I can’t believe how incompetent he is.

    hahaha. Yeah, I know that you are probably talking more about Faried and McGee’s pt, but yeah, I mean, anyone who’s followed his teams knows what to expect.

  64. DRed

    ruruland: Read the god damned Deadspin story for fuck’s sake. Spells it all out.
    Certainly unlikely, but possible. More likely that road scorekeepers do stuff like that, not a conspiracy among multiple scorekeepers, but you never know.

    ruru, it’s one thing thing to think scorekeepers are biased in favor of the home team. That makes perfect sense. Believing that the majority of scorers are specifically biased against Carmelo Anthony is pants on head retarded.

  65. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    That was a hell of a game for a minute there, but when Curry started doing the Dr. J shit in the Denver paint, I knew that George Karl had posted a WP48 of -1.000 for his team.

  66. ruruland

    DRed: ruru, it’s one thing thing to think scorekeepers are biased in favor of the home team.That makes perfect sense.Believing that the majority of scorers are specifically biased against Carmelo Anthony is pants on head retarded.

    Not really that stupid. Pretty unlikely, but not retarded stupid. We come move on for now. It’s really not that big of a deal until there’s four stories on the morning news aggregator about Melo being a ballhog highlighted by the no assist game, which will then be tied back to the Knicks not being able to beat whomever because of it.

    I’m just sick of reading and talking about it. I brought it up, so it’s my bad.

    But it should have you thinking about boxscore data. I’m guessing someone will eventually show there are biases for certain players.

  67. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    ruruland: I’m guessing someone will eventually show there are biases for certain players.

    Jesus, the irony is just… I can’t… I can’t do this.

  68. BigBlueAL

    That Golden St-Denver game was a blast (as has been the entire series) but all we are watching are 2 teams who are playing for the right to get slaughtered by the Spurs in the next round.

  69. Juany8

    Oh man it is hilarious that Denver might lose in the first round to arguably the weakest team in the western conference playoffs. It’s like this season is going out of it’s way to prove how stupid WP is. When the only argument it’s proponents have is that the coach isn’t playing their terrible definition stars, . If David lee hadn’t played in the first game (he was already injured and sucked) this series would already be over.

    But hey, lets pretend the guy who had 1 rebound and 3 personal fouls in 14 minutes (McGee) would have saved this team. Then we can go trade Melo for Landry fields so we can get out top 10 rookie back. Seriously though, Denver might still get out of the first round, but it looks like I was absolutely right about their road record being more indicative of their actual quality than their home record. Don’t know why people thought that would be irrelevant, they’re supposed to have a home court regular season advantage and we’re just going to go ahead and pretend it doesn’t exist? But yea lets blame George Karl, Vinny del negro somehow doesn’t screw his players over but George Karl does.

  70. Juany8

    As far as the deadspin article, I think it just highlights something I’ve been pointing out for a while, that if all of us started taking our own box scores we’d all get different results, especially when it comes to things like assists? The result of that little discovery is that the box score goes from mostly useless to laughably useless when it comes to making objective analysis. You’re not using objective data! Even John hollinger came out and said Chris Paul used to get favorable assist numbers when he was at home in New Orleans, this would not be that hard to test if you were willing to put in some time into it.

    I don’t know that Melo is specifically hurt by this, but I do know most people will force reality to fit with their preconceived notions rather than the other way around. Chris Paul is supposed to get a lot of assists, look at him pass and be awesome! But that Melo guy, he’s a ball hog, I’m sure he only passed to that open cutter by accident. In fact I’m gonna say that alley oop attempt was actually a terrible shot, because he does that shit all the time….

    Bias exists everywhere, why on earth would it suddenly go away when you’re charged with keeping a box score most NBA teams aren’t taking very seriously? Melo’s passing clearly deserves a ton of credit for the way the offense runs, and the silly little assist stat would be a terrible way to measure that even if it was being measured accurately.

  71. jon abbey

    DRed:
    If it wasn’t for the leaguewide conspiracy against Melo would he have had maybe 2 assists to go along with his rebound tonight?

    dumbest thing I’ve read tonight, who cares?

    I kind of love that even while it’s become obvious to virtually everyone that Melo is ten times more essential to NY’s success than Chandler is, there are still a few people looking for deficiencies in Melo’s game. he’s been killing it for a long time now in a stretch where NY has won virtually every game, just enjoy it and be happy he’s given Chandler this much time to recover/get back into game shape.

  72. johnno

    Re: Assists — Has the definition of assists always been so flexible? I might be “mis-remembering” but I seem to remember a long time ago (like 30 years ago) hearing that there was a more objective definition — i.e., that the passer only got an assist if the shooter took one or no dribbles before shooting. A few years ago, there was a game in which a guy had about 20 assists and they showed every one on Sportscenter. Some were absolutely absurd — the point guard would dribble across halfcourt and hand the ball to someone else. That guy would then go into isolation mode, take about 8 dribbles and then drive to the basket for a layup.
    Re: the Melo “non-assist” in the highlights — the ironic thing is that I turned the TV on at halftime just as they were showing that highlight and the commentator said something like, “And Felton gives Melo his first assist of the night.” I guess not…

  73. johnno

    Juany8: Don’t know why people thought that would be irrelevant, they’re supposed to have a home court regular season advantage and we’re just going to go ahead and pretend it doesn’t exist?

    I never really gave much thought to the Nuggets’ homecourt advantage but, the other day, I checked out their home/away splits for the last 8 years or so and, almost every year (including this year), they had a losing record on the road, and an amazing record at home. When you think about it, that makes a lot of sense — a young run and gun team that is used to high altitude would have a HUGE advantage over a team (especially an older team) that plays there once or twice a year. I was in El Paso, Texas a number of years ago and I went out for a jog. After about half a mile or so, I was huffing and puffing and feeling lightheaded. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong until a couple of weeks later when I learned that El Paso is about 4,000 feet above sea level. I can’t imagine what it would be like sprinting up and down a basketball court, especially at the end of an exhausting road trip.

  74. david

    In re: Melo assists. He’s probably the player in the league who would be most aided by collecting “hockey assists.” With the video technology available, this should become pretty standard in a few years.

    The series against the Pacers will be a war…

  75. jon abbey

    even hockey assists are flawed, sometimes it’s three or four or more passes that eventually leads to the open shot. the real skill is drawing the defense’s attention and creating the open space for your teammates, sometimes that’s the guy who gets the assist and sometimes not.

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