Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

PLAYOFFS?!?!?!?!?!: Knicks 123, Cavs 107

Entering Sunday’s fourth and final meeting between the Knicks and Cavs, each teams could count in its disfavor a vexing drought: While the orange and blue had yet to best the lowly ‘Liers in 11 games dating back to 2009, Cleveland entered the game 0-11 on Sundays this season.

Something had to give. As it turns out, the Cavs were in a decidedly giving mood, committing 22 turnovers in helping the Knicks’ coast to a 123-107 victory.

Coupled with Charlotte’s loss to Washington, the win sealed the Knicks’ first playoff berth in 7 years, a drought matched in that stretch only by the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Playing their first game with more than a day’s rest since the All-Star break, the Knicks looked as rejuvenated as they were bent on vengeance early on, going up by as many as 22 in the first half.

Indeed, to anyone who watched, the first 20 minutes must have seemed like a bizarre photo negative; whereas their typical MO has been to spot a sizable early lead, only to claw back with varying degrees of success, this time it was the Knicks who watched their early lights-out shooting fade down the first half stretch.

But the Cavs never quite closed the gap, as the Knicks pulled off another seldom-seen feat in outscoring Cleveland 30-19 in a convincing fourth quarter.

Chauncey Billups seemed particularly invigorated by the three-day sabbatical, pacing the Knicks out of the gate with 17 first quarter points on 6-6 shooting before finishing with 23, seven assists and a sparkling 79% TS%.

With both Stat (28 points with a TS% of 55%) and Melo (25 points and a TS% of 57%) picking up Chauncey’s second half slack, the Knicks’ Big Tree each tallied 20 for the second consecutive game.

Meanwhile, Toney Douglas, Shawne Williams and Bill Walker provided the offensive spark off the bench, combining for 32 points on 7-11 shooting from deep. Overall the Knicks shot 42% from downtown, helping keep at bay a Cavs team that logged an overall eFG% of 59%.

Thankfully, the Cavs seemed equally determined to keep themselves at bay, matching their 22 turnovers with poor free-throw shooting (14-24) and a stagnant fourth quarter in which they shot just 6-18 from the floor.

Save for a few requisite lapses and another Knicks Middling Opponent Hall of Fame (KMOHOF) performance from J.J. Hickson (averaging 23 a game in his last three against New York), the Knicks were at least able to get stops when they needed them – a skill they’ll doubtless need to hone to survive any of their possible first round matchups.

Postseason implications aside, last night’s win may have provided little more than a much-needed sigh of relief for the Knick faithful, for whom the Lebron-less Cavs had provided so many sobering wakeup calls during what was supposed to be a season-long party march to the playoffs.

But as the final seconds ticked down and the league scoreboard showed the Wizards closing in on a win in Charlotte, the moment briefly morphed into something much bigger: the relief of a seven-year itch as painful and as confounding as any in sports over the last decade.

Whatever happens next, one thing’s for sure: In the midst of what’s often felt like a sports marriage mired in misery, a playoff dalliance with this team is one fling Knicks fans needn’t be ashamed about.

64 comments on “PLAYOFFS?!?!?!?!?!: Knicks 123, Cavs 107

  1. Z

    Last time the Knicks were in it, Isiah stood at half-court, mic in hand, and said “welcome back to the playoffs, New York!”

    I wonder if Donnie is going to keep that tradition alive?

  2. BigBlueAL

    Gonna be very interesting to see how the Knicks handle these last 6 games. If they win on Tues and the Sixers lose at Boston then the Knicks could pass them for the 6th seed by beating them on Wed.

    I would just like to see them finish 4-2 or better just so they would have a winning record and some positive momentum heading into the playoffs. Getting the 6th seed would be a bonus I suppose because it would mean playing whichever team between the Celtics and Heat who would finish playing the worst and dropping to the 3rd seed.

    First and foremost though the key obviously is to have Amar’e/Melo/Billups all at 100% healthy (or as close to it as possible) come playoff time.

  3. ww007

    While I’m happy the Knicks are making the playoffs, every time I hear about or see the Knuggets play I always think about what we had / could have had.

    While it’s OK to add a star like Melo to your team, the right way to do it is to keep most of your good players and adding the star, a la the Lakers and Gasol. If that’s not possible, then don’t do the trade. A lot of us on this blog thought that we gave up too much in this trade, and I think we have been proven right. This team is only marginally better than it was prior to the trade (if at all), and we gave up all of our youth and flexibility to do it. The mainstream media was saying, “Well, they were barely a .500 team prior to the trade, so they can’t be giving up much.” Well, that is flawed thinking; what we had were a bunch of developing young players that were already pretty good as they were. In 1 or 2 years, some of them may even be outstanding. I feel like we just threw away all our potential for mediocrity. And for those who say that Melo and Stat will attract more stars here, well how did that work out for signing released players? Who did we pick up? Jared Jeffries? Give me a break. Meanwhile so called “prized free agents” like Troy Murphy were deciding between Boston and Miami. D Will and CP3 would be crazy to sign here; not like we’d have the salary space to do it anyway.

    The problem is I think the Knicks management (actually Dolan) saw what the Heat did and thought, “Hey, we can do that too. And it will be much easier to jack up ticket prices next year if we have two stars here rather than one star and a bunch of no-names.” If you think about it, it’s actually much riskier to NOT make that trade than to make it. As we’re seeing now, people are still saying, “Well we had to do it to get another star” or “It must be the coach’s fault they’re not doing well.” If you don’t make the trade, people will go, “How could you pass on a star like that?”

    Sorry if most of this has…

  4. ww007

    been mentioned already but I’ve been away for a while. I know there was an articles in ESPN or something stating the part about being only marginally better.

    I will definitely be rooting for the Knuggets in the playoffs.

  5. jon abbey

    Troy Murphy has 9 total made FGs for Boston in more than a month since he’s signed there, really not a good example of a potential impact player.

  6. ww007

    jon abbey: Troy Murphy has 9 total made FGs for Boston in more than a month since he’s signed there, really not a good example of a potential impact player.  

    That’s not the point. The point is that he was someone that teams wanted, including the Knicks, yet he went elsewhere and wasn’t even considering the Knicks. That means the Knicks aren’t the supposed hot spot that they think they are. He’s just an example. Again, Jared Jeffries was the best available free agent at the time??? No.

  7. Nick C.

    Clean slate. Let’s hope that the recently attentive and energized team is for real and not just a mirage. Other than defense they need Amare to be MVP Amare and not an 18 foot jump shooter, Billups to contribute more than pull up threes, Melo to be the most recent version, TD and Carter to apply ball pressure when they are in and someone from E, Walker of TD to be on every game.

  8. Spree8nyk8

    ww007:
    While it’s OK to add a star like Melo to your team, the right way to do it is to keep most of your good players and adding the star, a la the Lakers and Gasol. If that’s not possible, then don’t do the trade. A lot of us on this blog thought that we gave up too much in this trade, and I think we have been proven right. This team is only marginally better than it was prior to the trade (if at all), and we gave up all of our youth and flexibility to do it. No.  

    This argument is so played out. 1) We didn’t make this trade for the now, we made it for the future. The players that we had are very replaceable. We can find other things to do the things that they did much easier than finding a player to do the things that Melo does. 2) For the last time we did not trade away all of our flexibility. We can still add a max guy either next season or in the free agency period after next season. We could also not resign billups and make a move this season but they aren’t going to do that when the 3 big max guys are right around the corner. This trade only looks bad to you right now because your field of vision is too narrow. Anyone could have predicted that Denver would benefit faster from the trade because it gave them huge depth and we knew those players were solid even if the media didn’t. But a year or 2 down the road denver is not going to be a team that is ahead of us. This was the FIRST year of a rebuilding year. And if you’re going to be a fan then you are going to have to accept that. But hey if you wanna be a Knuggets fan instead i’m pretty sure they got a forum too. Good luck take care, nice knowing you….

  9. Spree8nyk8

    ww007: been mentioned already but I’ve been away for a while. I know there was an articles in ESPN or something stating the part about being only marginally better.
    I will definitely be rooting for the Knuggets in the playoffs.  

    I’ll be rooting for the Knicks….

    http://www.roundballminingcompany.com/ Adios my friend :) good luck to you guys….

  10. latke

    I’ll be rooting for everyone to have an enjoyable time watching the playoffs or not watching the playoffs.

  11. jon abbey

    ww007:
    That’s not the point. The point is that he was someone that teams wanted, including the Knicks, yet he went elsewhere and wasn’t even considering the Knicks. That means the Knicks aren’t the supposed hot spot that they think they are. He’s just an example. Again, Jared Jeffries was the best available free agent at the time??? No.  

    both players are close to worthless, this is a terrible argument by you.

  12. Frank

    I love how there are 13 whole comments on this thread – Balkman’s lack of playing time has spawned 200 post threads, but we make the playoffs and only 13 posts get written!

    Anyway – congrats to the Knicks and to us, their long-suffering fans. Here’s to hoping we get the Heat in Round 1 and put them out of their misery, then put at least a scare into the Bulls, Celts, or Orlando in Round 2, then buy a late 1st round pick, 3 2nd round picks, and spend ALL of them on defensive-oriented guys 6’10″+. We send a few of them off to Europe Jerome Jordan style, and suddenly our big man weakness is cured.

  13. dubisaweapon

    Frank: I love how there are 13 whole comments on this thread – Balkman’s lack of playing time has spawned 200 post threads, but we make the playoffs and only 13 posts get written!

    Indeed, today is a day we should be proud Knick fans instead of Debbie Downers. Let’s Go Knicks!

  14. ess-dog

    Eh, blogging is all about nit-picking. I could care less if someone has a beef with a player or coach and wants to voice it. Just try to make a good argument.

    What are people supposed to do? Sign on and say “Way to go Knicks! You da greatest! Playoffs!”

    I’m not going to log in to read that.

    Anyway, it’s nice to see Billups going full tilt. I think if he’s healthy, he’s definitely a better weapon in the playoffs than Felton.

    The kNuggets have a nice squad and they beat a great team the other night, but at the end of the first half, they had the ball with about 12 seconds and cleared out for… Chandler. Who promptly threw up a brick. That team is crazy deep, but they don’t really have a guy that can end quarters any more. All I’m saying is that we’re missing that depth, but they’ve lost something in the deal too which will be evident come playoff time.

    Speaking of Balkman… I still think it’s weird that he gets NO court time. Maybe we’ll see him and Brown now that we’ve clinched a playoff spot?

    And while I’m jumping around today, re: draft, if we keep the pick I say Faried or bust. I just don’t see any other valid options since Jimmer will be gone. His win shares are excellent and have been for a while.

  15. Brian Cronin

    While I am pleased they made the playoffs (and said as much last night), them making the playoffs has been about a 97% chance for the last two weeks, so it is not surprising that there’s not much to discuss about it.

    “Man, they made the playoffs…like we knew they would and have already been discussing which playoff match-up would be best for the Knicks for over a month now”

  16. dsulz

    Playoffs, yayyy!!! While I’m tempted to jump into the argument between Spree and ww007, I’m just going to enjoy this today and hope that we finish strong down the stretch. I really hope we finish strong down the stretch. I want to believe we are quite different from the 2003-04 team, which took us on the cheapest playoff date possibly imaginable. Finishing strong would go a long way towards a feel-good playoff experience.

    In other news: I give a lot of credit to Billups being more healthy for us winning the last three games, but the emergence of Shelden Williams can’t be overlooked. The guy isn’t Charles Oakley, but he’s big, tough and surprisingly graceful. Shelden! ya motha would be so prooud!

  17. hoolahoop

    ww007:
    That’s not the point. The point is that he was someone that teams wanted, including the Knicks, yet he went elsewhere and wasn’t even considering the Knicks. That means the Knicks aren’t the supposed hot spot that they think they are. He’s just an example. Again, Jared Jeffries was the best available free agent at the time??? No.  

    You’re in the wrong bar. This site has mostly fanboys and knicks apologists for management ineptness.

  18. Frank

    hoolahoop:
    You’re in the wrong bar. This site has mostly fanboys and knicks apologists for management ineptness.  

    Well look. This is no surprise at all. Boston has been to the playoffs every year, was in the finals last year, and won a championship a few years ago. Miami has LBJ and Wade. It’s not a surprise that players would rather play as a rental for them. As exciting as it may be for us to have Melo and Amare, we don’t have the “sure to go deep in the postseason” look yet. BUT — if we go and knock off MIA or BOS this year in the first round, and it looks like all we need to take the next step to true contention is one or two prominent role players, I think we WILL see the players come.

  19. hoolahoop

    Frank: As exciting as it may be for us to have Melo and Amare, we don’t have the “sure to go deep in the postseason” look yet. BUT — if we go and knock off MIA or BOS this year in the first round, and it looks like all we need to take the next step to true contention is one or two prominent role players, I think we WILL see the players come.

    For me, having melo is not exciting. We had “exciting” before he came – for the first time in a decade.
    Do you really think we’re going to knock off Boston or Miami? Anything is possible, but c’mon. I give the knuggets more of a chance to beat the Lakers.
    That’s the sad part. Out knugget players with Amare and a couple of missing pieces/role players and we’re there, contenders for the ring. Instead we took three steps back. I think hat’s the point of poster ww007.

  20. Frank

    I think we just need to accept that this trade has happened, stop looking at the Knuggets success as “what would happen if they were still here” and use our collective passion to debate the current team and what we need going forward. First of all, the Nuggets success has just as much to do with their pre-existing players like Nene, Lawson, Kenyon Martin, JR Smith, etc. as it does with the guys we sent them. And again, Nene needs to be signed. Chandler needs to be signed. Affalo needs to be signed. Kenyon Martin is expiring. Felton only has one more year on his deal. There is a lot of work to be done over there — this year may actually be their best chance at going deep in the playoffs.

    Meanwhile, speaking of looking forward — what team do you think Draftexpress was thinking about when they wrote this about Jimmer Fredette?

    “With all this in mind, one of the biggest factors in determining the type of success Fredette will have in the NBA is the team he ends up on. In a fast-paced offense predicated on getting shots early in the shot-clock and a coach willing to live with defensive lapses, Fredette will be an incredible weapon.”

    I really hope we don’t take Fredette – I seriously would spend the next 5 draft picks (bought or earned) on large men upwards of 7′ tall with the insatiable desire to rebound and defend.

  21. flossy

    Frank: Meanwhile, speaking of looking forward — what team do you think Draftexpress was thinking about when they wrote this about Jimmer Fredette?“With all this in mind, one of the biggest factors in determining the type of success Fredette will have in the NBA is the team he ends up on. In a fast-paced offense predicated on getting shots early in the shot-clock and a coach willing to live with defensive lapses, Fredette will be an incredible weapon.”  

    So… basically he’ll be a 35 year-old Chauncey Billups without the oodles of experience and veteran saavy? Where do we sign? I’ve been saying for weeks that if there’s one thing this squad lacks, it’s defensively-questionable players who aren’t afraid to hoist ‘em up early in the clock.

  22. knickterp

    @21-
    I think it’s fine to disagree about the trade, but could you please reveal the “missing pieces/role players”–including their salaries–that would make us championship contenders with Amar’e and the Knuggets? And could you reveal the salaries of a re-signed Wilson Chandler, Gallo (after next year), and your idea of Felton’s replacement? Because we need to sign all those “missing pieces/role players” AND hope and pray Gallo takes the next step to superstardom.

  23. Shad0wF0x

    Frank: I really hope we don’t take Fredette – I seriously would spend the next 5 draft picks (bought or earned) on large men upwards of 7? tall with the insatiable desire to rebound and defend.

    I would take anyone that closely resembles the Tyson Chandler mold of player. A tall center that can defend, rebound, block shots, and dunk the ball when he needs to. Everything else is an afterthought.

  24. ess-dog

    Shad0wF0x:
    I would take anyone that closely resembles the Tyson Chandler mold of player. A tall center that can defend, rebound, block shots, and dunk the ball when he needs to. Everything else is an afterthought.  

    You mean Jerome Jordan?

  25. dsulz

    BigBlueAL: Getting the 6th seed would be a bonus I suppose because it would mean playing whichever team between the Celtics and Heat who would finish playing the worst and dropping to the 3rd seed.

    Great point BBA. For all those who say the seeding doesn’t matter. This is actually key. I didn’t even think about this ’til you mentioned it.

  26. Frank

    You know what would be a ballsy move that could pay off hugely (and will almost certainly not happen)? Renounce Billups, use the resulting cap money to sign Greg Oden. Or have Portland sign-and-trade Oden to us for Billups. If/when healthy, Oden would be absolutely perfect for this team. But would be very risky.

  27. Owen

    Signing Oden would be ridiculously risky. I like the thought though…

    I am going to suspend my doubts and enjoy rooting for the Knicks losing in five. They will have my support all the way.

    But I will have the Knuggets on split screen…

  28. flossy

    Frank: You know what would be a ballsy move that could pay off hugely (and will almost certainly not happen)?Renounce Billups, use the resulting cap money to sign Greg Oden.Or have Portland sign-and-trade Oden to us for Billups.If/when healthy, Oden would be absolutely perfect for this team.But would be very risky.  

    Ballsy, indeed. I’d be more inclined to go for something a bit more conservative, maybe try to get Cleveland to give us Varejao and Sessions for Billups. Fills two needs and we’re not staking our future on *two* big men with knee issues.

  29. Shad0wF0x

    ess-dog: You mean Jerome Jordan?

    I’m hoping so. It’d be nice if Jerome is more like TC and less like the other JJs that have been in Knicks uniforms recently.

  30. Frank

    flossy:
    Ballsy, indeed.I’d be more inclined to go for something a bit more conservative, maybe try to get Cleveland to give us Varejao and Sessions for Billups.Fills two needs and we’re not staking our future on *two* big men with knee issues.  

    I like that too but I can’t imagine why Cleveland would do that. They’re already paying Baron Davis huge money. My feeling is we’d have to a bad contract and give up one or both of our remaining young assets – TD and/or Landry to make that happen. Probably worth it.

    The other possibility is a three-way trade but trying to find a trade partner that would rather have Billups than Varejao and Sessions is tough.

  31. Shad0wF0x

    Owen: Signing Oden would be ridiculously risky. I like the thought though…I am going to suspend my doubts and enjoy rooting for the Knicks losing in five. They will have my support all the way.But I will have the Knuggets on split screen…  

    How much could Oden potentially command on the FA market?

    Yeah I’ll be rooting for the Knicks and Knuggets too. I just hope not to get swept or blown out in individual games. A loss from a fadeaway game winning 3pt shot from Pierce/LeBron isn’t so bad IMO.

  32. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I’d give Oden a year-long deal. I wonder if his agent is going to roll the dice and sign a one-year offer in the hope that he puts up 15 and 10 over 70+ games and gets a 5-yr/$60M deal from Donald Sterling.

  33. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    I also see Kyrie Irving going to Minnesota in a number of mock drafts. I guess the T-wolves are to point guards as the Lions are to wide receivers.

    To be fair, Irving might be the best pure PG prospect since Chris Paul, though.

  34. flossy

    Frank:
    I like that too but I can’t imagine why Cleveland would do that. They’re already paying Baron Davis huge money.My feeling is we’d have to a bad contract and give up one or both of our remaining young assets – TD and/or Landry to make that happen.Probably worth it.The other possibility is a three-way trade but trying to find a trade partner that would rather have Billups than Varejao and Sessions is tough.  

    I guess it depends on the exact timing of the trade, but I imagine Cleveland would just do the $3mill buy-out option on Billups right away. Sessions is redundant now that they have Baron Davis (and nobody is taking Baron off their hands), and Varejao has a pretty long and expensive contract for someone best suited to be a role player on a good team.

    I see it as Cleveland saying “we’re gunning for high lottery picks now anyway, might as well shed a bunch of salary.” I do agree it’s not that likely though.

  35. cgreene

    It’s so incredibly odd to me that the people on this blog are so rooted in players that lost so many games in a Knicks uniform. Comparing losing Gallo and Chandler to losing Oakley and Sprewell is a joke of mammoth proportions. I, for one, hope the Nuggets lose and even get swept so all this crap can stop. Wilson Chandler is a mediocre player who it would have been a mistake to resign at anything other than a home town discount. He has a low bball IQ and made a ton of dumb plays in most games. Felton was actually the toughest to lose for me just because of his effort. But the guy was a Knick for 50 games and was a rental who is middling at his position. Gallo was a true asset and likeable player who seems to have winning potential.

    I have been a Knicks fan for 35 years and I none of the fans with whom I spend time and talk with about the Knicks have the feeling of the people on this blog who are all of a sudden Denver Nuggets fans bc of some players got traded who will be a footnote in the history of the club.

    Weird.

    And, hoolahoop, we aren’t apologists. We are fans that think it’s fun to keep optimism about our team and root for them to do well. That’s all.

  36. nicos

    Oden’s qualifying offer is 8.8 million- you have to think Portland will at least do that in order to make him restricted and not lose him for nothing. My guess is someone will at least make a 2 yr, 20 million offer- healthy he’s probably a top five center and potentially better than anyone but Howard. I doubt the Knicks would renounce Billups in order to take that risk as it’d probably also mean no Paul or Williams in 2012.

  37. Robert Silverman

    hoolahoop:
    You’re in the wrong bar. This site has mostly fanboys and knicks apologists for management ineptness.  

    Really? You really think that?

  38. dsulz

    nicos: I doubt the Knicks would renounce Billups

    Right, me too, which means we’ll be paying $13mil next year for an aging 35-year old superstar who is several steps too slow on defense. Anyone seriously want to make the argument we’re getting a good bang for our buck there? In a league with a salary cap, this shit really matters. I’m not trying to piss on Billups, but he’s just not worth that much. I’m trying to be optimistic too. But we have an owner who likes to throw money around and can’t be bothered with the cap limit. It just occurred to me that Steinbrenner and Dolan (who has taken advice from Steinbrenner previously about being a more active owner) actually are very similar. The difference is the salary cap. If Steinbrenner were an NBA owner, he’d be James Dolan.

  39. Shad0wF0x

    cgreene: Melo would be a great player in the triangle in the mold of MJ, Kobe etc because he handles the ball so well. Then you could waive Billups, use TD as your Derek Fisher/Brian Shaw/John Paxson and sign a big man.

    By next year I hope that Melo and Amar’e are able to perform the PnR effectively. I know he’s not LeBron, but Melo has shown us that he can be a fairly decent passer.

  40. ww007

    Spree8nyk8:
    I’ll be rooting for the Knicks….http://www.roundballminingcompany.com/Adios my friend :)good luck to you guys….  

    I will be rooting for the Knicks as well. I’ll be rooting for them both, as will others apparently. I moved to LA a few years ago and got the League Pass for this season, so obviously I won’t be giving up on this the Knicks that easily. Nothing wrong with rooting for both teams.

    No need for the hostility. It remains to be seen if they can build on this trade, but given recent losing years and the fact that this team is still owned by Dolan and DW’s uncertain status, perhaps you can forgive me for my skepticism about the “wait till the next couple of years” approach, especially if we are relying on obtaining another superstar. Yes the argument is played out, but it is only reinforced every time the Knuggets do well.

    I hope you positive thinkers are right…

  41. ww007

    jon abbey:
    both players are close to worthless, this is a terrible argument by you.  

    Again, you’re missing the point. How many free agents actually wanted to come to NY after the trading deadline? Only Jared Jeffries, and probably cuz no other team wanted him. Extrapolate this to the superstar future free agents…

  42. Robert Silverman

    ww007:
    Again, you’re missing the point. How many free agents actually wanted to come to NY after the trading deadline? Only Jared Jeffries, and probably cuz no other team wanted him. Extrapolate this to the superstar future free agents…  

    The number of FA signees post-deadline has nothing to do with what “superstar” free agents may or may not sign here. It’s apples and oranges. You can’t just say “extrapolate” and make it so.

  43. jon abbey

    ww007:
    Again, you’re missing the point. How many free agents actually wanted to come to NY after the trading deadline? Only Jared Jeffries, and probably cuz no other team wanted him. Extrapolate this to the superstar future free agents…  

    I’m not missing the point, I understand perfectly what you’re saying and I think it’s ridiculous. the guys available at the trading deadline are fringe rotation players at best, zero extrapolation is possible. did NY even want Murphy? (whether or not they should have is a different discussion)

  44. Brian Cronin

    Waiver-wire pick-ups go to the team that they feel have the best chance at winning a title this year (that might have playing time for them). It has nothing to do with what team players “want” to play for.

  45. art vandelay

    Again, the major point to be made is that those free agents like Bibby and Murphy signed with teams who are likely to contend for a championship NOW…meaning this season…no one on this board in his right mind things the knicks are winning it all this season, most don´t even expect the knicks to get out of the first round. The most attractive free agents were thinking the same. The assumption to be made is that we will be closer to being a contender in 2012-2013 than we are now when those superstars are available…so it really is not fair to state that because a few also-ran yet desireable role players didn´t want to sign on for a first round exit then NY is not a highly sought destination among major FAs. I bet there will be some solid FAs this offseason (maybe dalembert) willing to sign a one-year contract to play in NY and hopefully win here…and a major superstar will see himself as that missing link to put us over the top..those guys have huge egos….troy murphy doesn´t come to the Knicks and think to himself, now that they have me I will take them all the way to the finals…those guys are late-stage veterans looking for a chance to ride someone else´s coattails to a ring.

  46. Kurt

    By next year I hope that Melo and Amar’e are able to perform the PnR effectively. I know he’s not LeBron, but Melo has shown us that he can be a fairly decent passer.

    Whenever I’ve seen Melo run the pick and role with Amar’e, it’s always worked well (at least to my memory). In fact, I could be wrong, but on a number of plays I thought Melo passed to Amar’e on the pick and roll better than Billups. I was actually wondering why they don’t run it more often. If they run it a lot next year well and it is a lineup in which the other three are shooters, it could be unguardable.

  47. Shad0wF0x

    Kurt: Whenever I’ve seen Melo run the pick and role with Amar’e, it’s always worked well (at least to my memory). In fact, I could be wrong, but on a number of plays I thought Melo passed to Amar’e on the pick and roll better than Billups. I was actually wondering why they don’t run it more often. If they run it a lot next year well and it is a lineup in which the other three are shooters, it could be unguardable.

    It could potentially work now if we decide to play the small line up of

    Amar’e
    Melo
    Billups
    Douglas
    Fields/Walker/Williams

    Once the PnR is underway it’s really up to Melo and Stat to either get their shot or if neither is available to make the pass that eventually leads to one of the other 3 shooting.

    Maybe sometime in the future I’ll figure out how to upload NBA 2k11 videos for some simulation plays.

  48. Shad0wF0x

    I forgot to mention that even now, the team tends to live and die by how many 3s they make and if the rebounding differential is -5 < x.
    The -5 is just an arbitrary number saying that if the Knicks are at least close to the rebounding numbers of the other team.

  49. hoolahoop

    hoolahoop:
    You’re in the wrong bar. This site has mostly fanboys and knicks apologists for management ineptness.  

    Robert Silverman:
    Really? You really think that?  

    C’mon RS.
    RS, I’ve seen it happen again and again, to myself and others – post a critical comment about the knicks, only to be attacked, sometimes personally. I’m sure it scares away a lot of posters.
    Where I grew up we would argue about teams endlessly, and readily speak about mismanagement, bad trades, bad players, etc. In this forum it’s sacrileges to some people. Spree is out of control immature and rude – a complete turn-off. Frank called me a rascist for saying melo has a low basketball IQ, and so it goes. That’s what I call fanboy, knick apologists.

    Sure, there is plenty of good back-and-forth, too, and it’s good to hear other opinions. If I miss a game, this is the best recap I can find on the internet.

  50. hoolahoop

    . . . and to be fair, there are knowledge knicks fans here, too, that seem to be genuinely nice guys.

  51. Kurt

    Shad0wF0x:
    It could potentially work now if we decide to play the small line up of
    Amar’e
    Melo
    Billups
    Douglas
    Fields/Walker/WilliamsOnce the PnR is underway it’s really up to Melo and Stat to either get their shot or if neither is available to make the pass that eventually leads to one of the other 3 shooting.
    Maybe sometime in the future I’ll figure out how to upload NBA 2k11 videos for some simulation plays.  

    Actually, if Mike is a subscriber to Synergy, he could also pull up a few clips so we can get more of a sample.

    I realize that there’s not as much of a size gap as with the 1-5 or the 1-4 pick and roll, but, since Melo can hit the J when open, can has the dribbling skills, he must be hedged or trapped, and we’ve seen that, when he wants, he has the court vision to make the right pass.

    An interesting parallel case with the (disparaging reference to the Heat):
    http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop/miamiheat/post/_/id/5364/the-rare-wade-james-pick-and-roll-sighting

  52. massive

    @51,

    Well Frank didn’t call you racist, he said the statement came off racist, and you said Melo was dumb and lazy. Spree can be a bit much sometimes though.

  53. Shad0wF0x

    massive: @51,Well Frank didn’t call you racist, he said the statement came off racist, and you said Melo was dumb and lazy. Spree can be a bit much sometimes though.  

    When did Frank call me racist?

  54. Shad0wF0x

    @54

    Yeah I wonder about LeBron and Wade also. Granted, Wade in my eyes is still a fairly streaky shooter. He’s very dangerous when he does get into a shooting streak but primarily his best weapon is to drive to the basketball and get the predictable foul.

    It just seems that the Heat offense tends to devolve into Wade and LeBron just Rhino charging into the basket and hope that they get fouled. I don’t know what the trend is recently (I haven’t watched a recent Heat game) but in close games, the Heat can get very ugly.

  55. Shad0wF0x

    @57

    No probs. Is there an edit button that I’m not aware of? I don’t want to seem like I’m spamming the board.

  56. Frank

    @52- like Massive said– you said Melo was selfish, dumb, and lazy. Not “he has a low basketball IQ”. At least not until I called you out for making a grossly stereotypical statement that really had no basis in anything other than some predisposition you have against Melo.

    I think sometimes people on this board are a little overcritical, or at least too quick to prejudge a move, a player, or whatever. But that doesn’t make me or anyone who thinks like me a noncritical thinker or fanboy. It just means that I’m wiling to see how things play out before I make any bold negative or positive predictions. We are 20-odd games into this Melo experiment and you’re already ready to give up the next 3-4 seasons. I’d like to give it until mid 2011-12 or maybe the summer of 2012 before I call this trade for or against us. I’m not saying- Melo is the greatest, I love how sweet it looks when he shoots long twos. I’m just saying let’s give it a little more time.

  57. Mulligan

    Also, do folks here read Bandwagon Knick? Dude should put his recaps on Knickerblogger.. they’re great and I think he’d get much more of an audience…

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