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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Seven Seconds or Mess: Webisode 14

I napped through most of last night’s game against the Hornets and woke up some time late third quarter and had this message from Mike in my inbox:

Are you watching this. Are the Knicks just switching on every pick (esp. with Jeffries)?

I’ve seen the Knicks do this when the opposition tries to establish the post but last night was different. There was a switch on practically every screen. In the video I said it’s possibly because the Knicks are terrible at getting over picks and it burns them often (Jarrett Jack’s layup around Lee to go up by 3 most recently). It’s not how a team would normally play defense but it’s helped the team’s interior D tremendously.

Pay attention to Wilson Chandler, as well. He is really committed to providing weakside help. I thought Jeffries would fill that role but having him clog passing lanes in the high post as Chandler roams has really grown on me.

19 comments on “Seven Seconds or Mess: Webisode 14

  1. Owen

    Gian – Great stuff. Seriously, I love these webisodes. This one was especially good. Its pretty amazing that the Knicks are currently ranked 19th in defense (and climbing I guess) after how utterly horrible they were last year. Love how you breakdown how that is happening…

  2. d-mar

    Second Owen above, this is really good stuff and really demonstrates D’Antoni’s new philosophy on switching on screens. It worked last night, not so sure how it will work against other teams who unlike Scott will make adjustments. Fun to watch though, thanks.

  3. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger)

    What I like about D’Antoni is his ability to switch things up. To many coaches, Isiah was particularly guilty of this, are scared to mix things up. D’Antoni plays without a center, and sticks a 6-8 forward at shooting guard. Then he sticks a 6-8 (Chandler) or 6-11 (Jeffries) forward on the opposing shooting guard. Unable to guard the paint, he gives up the outside and switches on nearly every screen.

    That’s ballsy. You gotta love that kind of free thinking.

  4. Duff Soviet Union

    But

    Gian – Great stuff. Seriously, I love these webisodes. This one was especially good. Its pretty amazing that the Knicks are currently ranked 19th in defense (and climbing I guess) after how utterly horrible they were last year. Love how you breakdown how that is happening…

    But but but….D’Antoni doesn’t coach defense. How is this possible?

  5. jon abbey

    That’s ballsy. You gotta love that kind of free thinking.

    yes and no. to quote Bob Dylan, “when you ain’t got nothin’, you got nothin’ to lose.”

  6. Gian Casimiro (SSoM) Post author

    Gian – Great stuff. Seriously, I love these webisodes. This one was especially good. Its pretty amazing that the Knicks are currently ranked 19th in defense (and climbing I guess) after how utterly horrible they were last year. Love how you breakdown how that is happening…

    Thanks Owen. And that 19th ranking is really surprising. Wasn’t the team like 21-24 a few weeks back? After what we saw against Minnesota and Denver, I would’ve guessed that the team was getting worse.

    What I like about D’Antoni is his ability to switch things up. To many coaches, Isiah was particularly guilty of this, are scared to mix things up. D’Antoni plays without a center, and sticks a 6-8 forward at shooting guard. Then he sticks a 6-8 (Chandler) or 6-11 (Jeffries) forward on the opposing shooting guard. Unable to guard the paint, he gives up the outside and switches on nearly every screen.

    That’s ballsy. You gotta love that kind of free thinking.

    Seems like he’s accepted that there will always be a height disadvantage in the paint/speed mismatch on the perimeter so why not switch rather than give up lanes on a PnR. Since everyone is around 6’9″ there won’t be much of a difference on the switch anyway. And since the plan is to double everyone in the post on the catch, Duhon and Nate getting posted up on a switch is less of a liability.

    I didn’t think it was possible but the staff found a way to protect the paint. Peja was cold last night (as was Ray Allen when we first started seeing this) but let’s see what happens when someone lights it up from deep.

    Who is playing the SSOM theme music?

    It’s part of a generic music bundle. The music on the game film is by a friend though.

  7. jon abbey

    Bobby Knight says that Stephen Curry is as good a passer as has ever played college basketball.

    amazing shooter? check.
    great passer? check.
    already friends with LeBron? check.
    on my short list of guys I want the Knicks to draft? check.

  8. Nick C.

    yes and no. to quote Bob Dylan, “when you ain’t got nothin’, you got nothin’ to lose.”
    Actually isn’t that Kris Kristofferson and Janis Joplin?

  9. david

    This is really neat. Everyone’s been talking this season about the innovation the lakers made in the off-season (always playing three guys ball side, leaving one athletic guy on the weakside and just daring people to try a skip pass when kobe’s there to steal it.) But for a team that plays 4 or 5 nearly identical players, this is a great idea. If it works, I can see it being the focus of acquisitions — get more 6’7” guys who can handle the rock on offense and can play at least okay on defense at a lot of positions. Also makes Lee more valuable, as he is quick enough to look credible when he switches onto a guard.

    The team in this game reminded me a bit of my favorite St. Johns team (at least favorite after the 80s) when Artest, Lavor Postell, Bootsy Thorton, and someone else 6’6 played together with a point guard. Everyone was about the same, they switched and trapped like crazy and shot a bunch of threes. They also specialized in losing very exciting games, like one in the garden against duke, as I recall.

  10. Brian Cronin

    Actually isn’t that Kris Kristofferson and Janis Joplin?

    I don’t quite understand – the lyric is definitely Dylan’s, but are you saying something other than that you think Kristofferson and Joplin wrote it instead?

  11. Nick C.

    P>
    I don’t quite understand – the lyric is definitely Dylan’s, but are you saying something other than that you think Kristofferson and Joplin wrote it instead? My bad.

  12. Caleb

    David,

    Weird you should mention that Duke game – I was there, too. And that was a fun team to watch. (the Duke team, too – I think that was Corey maggette breaking out).

    What is Bootsy doing these days?

  13. Z
    Actually isn’t that Kris Kristofferson and Janis Joplin?

    I don’t quite understand – the lyric is definitely Dylan’s, but are you saying something other than that you think Kristofferson and Joplin wrote it instead?

    Lyric is from Like a Rolling Stone.

    You’re thinking of the Kristofferson lyric: “Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose” from Me and Bobby McGee. Similar theme, different song…

    And yes, Dylan and Kristofferson were both singing about the 2009 Knicks. As was Meatloaf when he sang:

    “Now I’m praying for the end of time
    To hurry up and arrive
    Cause if I gotta spend another minute with you
    I don’t think that I can really survive
    I’ll never break my promise or forget my vow
    But God only knows what I can do right now
    I’m praying for the end of time
    Its all that I can do…”

  14. jon abbey

    hehe, that last lyric goes right into some reminiscing about the Clyde/Willis Reed etc. title teams:

    “it was long ago and it was far away and it was so much better than it is today”

  15. Thomas B.

    Off subject please don’t ban me. Von Wafer started in place of T-mac and scored 23 points on 10-14 from the floor (3-4 3p). Has Roberson scored 23 points total for the season yet?!

    Gian I trust this is top shelf work, I just cant watch video at work. But after I am able to watch it, I promise to sing the praises.

  16. david

    Thomas B.

    From today’s Times, “Bryant scored 13 points of his 33 points in the fourth quarter, finally getting the better of Houston’s Von Wafer, who scored a career-high 23 points in place of the injured Tracy McGrady.”

    When do you think you’ll read a sentence that goes “Kobe Bryant scored ….finally getting the better of New York’s Anthony Roberson”? I think we all agree that keeping Roberson over Wafer was a mistake….

  17. Gian Casimiro (7SoM) Post author

    Von Wafer started in place of T-mac and scored 23 points on 10-14 from the floor (3-4 3p). Has Roberson scored 23 points total for the season yet?!

    And he’s had some really athletic dunks too! Why does this team always miss out …

  18. david

    Caleb –

    According to Wikipedia, “Marvis Linwood Thornton III, better known as Bootsy Thornton (born July 30, 1977 in Baltimore, Maryland), is an American professional basketball player, currently playing for Turkish giant Efes Pilsen. A highly versatile shooting guard, he earned an All Euroleague Second Team selection in 2008.” He’s also played for Barcelona, and did really well in Italy.

    That was a great, great game.

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