SNY.com: Sources: Knicks open to trading for an undesirable contract to acquire an asset

From Ian Begley:

A note on the offseason: several teams said the Knicks are open to using their cap space to take on undesirable contracts via trade, SNY has learned.

The Knicks would presumably acquire another draft pick and young player in this kind of trade. New York has the No. 8, No. 27 and No. 38 picks in the draft.

The idea of taking a bad contract into cap space could be one of several avenues the Knicks are considering this offseason. Depending on what they decide to do with the contract options for Bobby Portis, Wayne Ellington, Taj Gibson and Reggie Bullock, New York could have more than $60 million in cap room in the offseason.

The Knicks, who told teams recently they’d be open to taking on a bad contract, have not made decisions on any players with options yet.

Oh please oh please oh please oh please oh please.

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221 thoughts to “SNY.com: Sources: Knicks open to trading for an undesirable contract to acquire an asset”

  1. The only 2 players with team options I wanna keep are Taj and Bullock. Every other one can go, and bring on the undesirable contract plus assets.

  2. Here’s where we see not only how patient this new administration is going to be, but how financially stressed the league is. Everyone wants in on the 2021 draft, but will teams be willing to give up 2021 picks with light protections — or no protection — to get out from under bad contracts in such dire times?

    Also, the funny thing is that a lot of the players who might be available in such scenarios would still be better than most of what we have.

  3. Also, the funny thing is that a lot of the players who might be available in such scenarios would still be better than most of what we have.

    That’s where you have to hope that the current GM isn’t the guy deciding on which guy to take.

  4. That’s where you have to hope that the current GM isn’t the guy deciding on which guy to take.

    Trades are one of the few areas where Perry seems vaguely competent, and Rose has now surrounded him by a bunch of good pro player personnel guys who can hopefully convince him whose contracts are worth eating and whose aren’t.

  5. I wonder how greedy we can be. Can we really ask for say…Conley and a 1st for Randle? Or do we have to absorb a whole undesirable contract for a player and a pick? If the latter is true, then I’m askin for 2 picks to absorb CP3’s whole deal. One top 10 protected and the other can be late 1st/early 2nd

  6. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats:
    The only 2 players with team options I wanna keep are Taj and Bullock. Every other one can go, and bring on the undesirable contract plus assets.

    I don’t see why you would want either player. Just more random filler?

  7. This is refreshing. We have been waiting 20 years for the Knicks to pick the 20 dollar bill off the sidewalk. Maybe it happens.

    I can let go of Taj. Make him an assistant coach if you want but let’s use the cap space more constructively.

  8. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats:
    I wonder how greedy we can be. Can we really ask for say…Conley and a 1st for Randle? Or do we have to absorb a whole undesirable contract for a player and a pick? If the latter is true, then I’m askin for 2 picks to absorb CP3’s whole deal. One top 10 protected and the other can be late 1st/early 2nd

    WAKE UP!
    This is what the CP3 trade would look like
    OKC expects a 1st back. They aren’t giving one.

  9. I don’t see why you would want either player. Just more random filler?

    Because of the circumstances under which we ultimately signed him, Bullock’s contract is really cheap for a decent 3-and-D guy. He either provides value to the current roster by adding spacing for RJ and Mitch, or he’s someone we can flip for a second rounder or something at the deadline.

    I wouldn’t mind Taj back if it’s on a new, significantly cheaper contract, but not at the cost of his team option.

  10. Alan:
    Here’s where we see not only how patient this new administration is going to be, but how financially stressed the league is.

    This is the thing to me. Trades like this in the offseason almost always come to fruition because teams without (enough) cap space want to get in to the market – the Nets pay assets to get off Alan Crabbe because they want to have two max slots to sign KD and Kyrie. You very rarely see offseason trades that are just ducking the tax (typically happen in season) or just getting off money purely to hoard the cash. This free agent class is so weak that it’s not obvious any team will be looking for that kind of deal. So the question becomes is this going to be an anomalous situation where you have teams looking to dump money just to save the cash? Because otherwise we may find that the Knicks are finally ready to play a game that doesn’t exist right now.

    The second question then becomes whether the Knicks would be willing to enter the season significantly under the cap with the idea being that there may be a lot of teams looking to duck the tax at next season’s deadline that you’d be in position to help out. I’d be pretty stunned if we were open to going that route. Most scenarios where we use the space now wouldn’t necessarily make the team significantly worse – the contracts around the league that might get dumped are pretty similar $ per production as what we got from the PF brigade last year, many of them are better. Most of them have some name equity that we know Jimmy at least values. But to use the space mid-year we’d have to start off the year with a lot of minimum guys and a roster that would likely be ugly even by our standards. I think that would be a tough sell.

  11. I keep thinking there’s a 3-way trade there with Philly and OKC where we facilitate CP3 going to the Sixers.

    Philly is desperate to amend their mistakes and compete, so they might give up a lot to get Paul. And Paul surely wants to be on a winning team.

    We might have to absorb Harris’ contract while sending Randle to OKC. But in return, we would get two Sixer firsts (probably not 2021), and OKC would get Matisse and a second rounder, something like that, depending on who OKC wants.

    Harris is a tough pill to swallow, but at least he’s a stretch 4 and a hometown boy.

  12. Granted. Bullock is a cheap 3&D. Taj isn’t horrible either but his contract isn’t worth it.

    thenamestsamTrades like this in the offseason almost always come to fruition because teams without (enough) cap space want to get in to the market…

    This is correct. There’s nothing to buy, BUT the NBA lost a lot of money this year. I don’t know how the losses impacted each individual owner. There could be owners that are suffering (not like normal people – but suffering for billionaires). There could be opportunity.

  13. Knicks willing to take on bad salary in trades

    Translation:

    We were so poorly managed in recent years that even now more than 5 years after we drafted Porzingis (and lost him for spit) it’s likely no free agent will sign with us unless they are a bad player or we give them a premium salary. Given that our cap space will most likely be useless to us in basketball terms “now”, we might as well try to turn it into an asset that can be used well in the future. So we’ll try to get a mediocre future draft pick we can use to draft some 19 year old that may be a decent role player in 2025 and beyond.

  14. GoNYGoNYGo – Ready for 2020 Knicks 2.0:
    Granted. Bullock is a cheap 3&D. Taj isn’t horrible either but his contract isn’t worth it.

    This is correct. There’s nothing to buy, BUT the NBA lost a lot of money this year. I don’t know how the losses impacted each individual owner.There could be owners that are suffering (not like normal people – but suffering for billionaires).There could be opportunity.

    Don’t get me wrong, I definitely agree. If ever there were a year for unusual things to happen, it’s this one. It’s not far fetched at all to think that the Pistons owner (to take an example since Blake’s name was getting bandied around a bit in the last thread) might look at his non-competitive team and think that it wouldn’t be so bad if that team had a payroll that was $30M or $40M lower. I just wanted to point out that’s a totally different kind of trade than what usually happens with these deals though – there’s no basketball rationale for the Pistons to do something like that, and historically the vast majority of these offseason bad money moves are made for basketball reasons, not pure cost-cutting.

  15. Strat is incensed we’re going to use our cap space for future assets with Courtney Lee just sitting RIGHT THERE

  16. A boy can dream.

    Randle and our second rounder to Detroit for Blake and #7

    Elf and Bullock to Utah for Conley and their #20.

    Use #20 and number #27 to move up to top 15.

    Draft Hali (shooting/passing), Okoro (wing with 2 way potential/defense) and Kira (guard that can penetrate and push the pace).

    Conley/Kira/DSJ
    Hali/Frank
    RJ/Okoro/Iggy
    Blake/Knox
    Mitch/Taj/Wooten

    I would make deals for first rounders THIS draft because I don’t think teams will part with ones next year as easily but as Z-Man has said, this year might have a lot of good role players in the 5 to 20 range.

  17. Can we talk about Randy Arozarena? 10 HR in 77 PA between the ALDS and WS?

    Didn’t the Cards trade him for a sack of potatoes last year?

  18. We were so poorly managed in recent years that even now more than 5 years after we drafted Porzingis (and lost him for spit) it’s likely no free agent will sign with us unless they are a bad player or we give them a premium salary. Given that our cap space will most likely be useless to us in basketball terms “now”, we might as well try to turn it into an asset that can be used well in the future. So we’ll try to get a mediocre future draft pick we can use to draft some 19 year old that may be a decent role player in 2025 and beyond.

    Thanks a lot, Phil!

  19. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Can we talk about Randy Arozarena? 10 HR in 77 PA between the ALDS and WS?

    Didn’t the Cards trade him for a sack of potatoes last year?

    My best friend is a Cards fan so I hear about this all the time. Apparently he mouthed off to someone in the organization that he shouldn’t have, or so the rumor goes.

    Side note: I’d play the percentages 9 times out of 10, but last night in the 6th inning was the 1 out of 10 where you have to go with your eyes. Taking Snell out bc of third-time-through-the-lineup-itis is about as bad a blunder as you can commit as a baseball manager.

    It also strikes me as exactly what Aaron Boone would do, so I can’t wait to be pissed off about that in the future. These managers that adhere to marginal percentages too strictly are fucking death, man.

  20. And at least the prospects the Cards got for Arozarena were a significantly better haul than when St Louis traded Luke Voit to the Yankees for Chasen Shreve and Giovanni Gallegos.

  21. ess-dog: Harris is a tough pill to swallow

    Too tough. The contract is too long, you’d be out of the max free agent market for 4 years.

    Would you guys to Taurean Prince for the 19th pick in this draft? Brooklyn seems to want to move him.

  22. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Can we talk about Randy Arozarena? 10 HR in 77 PA between the ALDS and WS?
    Didn’t the Cards trade him for a sack of potatoes last year?

    Luke Voit too. The Cards used to be a well run organization.

  23. Ryan Smith would be the youngest majority owner in the NBA, no? I think he’s in his early 40s.

  24. Prince looked like he was on a pretty good track to becoming the prototypical 3&D wing that no team can have enough of in Atlanta. The D part has always been more theoretical than actual I think (he’s got the body for it but nothing in his record says that he’s a plus defender) but big wings who can shoot 3s and even hypothetically defend are an extremely valued archetype. His efficiency cratered last year in Brooklyn and his blend of skills (more offense than defense) isn’t exactly what they need so I buy that he’s available.

    But I don’t see any logic in the idea that they’re going to pay for him to go away – they’ve got a new rich owner, they’re in a big market, and they’re a (theoretically) contending team. They’re looking for upgrades, not to just dump their guys into space.

  25. Too tough. The contract is too long, you’d be out of the max free agent market for 4 years.

    On the other hand, the contract is so bad that we’d probably be able to extract a whole lot of excess value from Philly (and maybe OKC) to take it on. And while Tobias is wildly overpaid — a classic Dolan type move of paying a borderline star like a superstar — he’d also instantly be our best or second-best player, and solve a lot of problems with the roster/rotation/offense, etc.

    Now, I would need a lot to take him on, but I wouldn’t automatically dismiss it either.

  26. I should add that being stuck with that contract would also force us to give up on fantasies of Giannis or some other free agent savior. We’d have no choice but to build from within, with Harris as our fake star while we hope Mitch, RJ, and others develop into real ones.

  27. Prince has 2 years, $25mm.

    For Harris, my God, I’d want a boatload, and I’d want Philly and OKC to chip in.

    For starters, I would need the two 2024 first round picks it will require for us to dump the final year of his contract after three seasons.

    And then we have to work out a deal for what it would cost to absorb him for these three seasons. I think I would need 8 picks in total to swallow that deal, and I doubt we could get that.

  28. Also, the contract we need to take on is the John Wall contract. Washington is in a very specific place:

    – They want to keep their star player, but he isn’t good enough to elevate a team to contention.
    – They don’t have the deepest pockets.
    – They probably don’t want to tank.

    I’d offer them Julius Randle, Elfrid Payton, Dennis Smith Jr and the #27 pick for John Wall, #9 overall, and unprotected swap rights on their 2021 1RP with the Dallas pick. You give them two pseudo starters and a ton of cap flexibility starting in 2021 to build around Beal, Troy Brown Jr, and Rui Hachimura. John Wall is a very tough pill to swallow, but he isn’t good or healthy enough to keep us from tanking. He gives you a lead ball handler the same way Westbrook and Paul would, and even though those guys are better players, those teams either don’t have the assets or won’t be willing to part with the assets to make those deals worth it. That trade would bring us to:

    2020 8th overall
    2020 9th overall
    2020 38th overall
    Two top 20 picks in the 2021 Draft
    2021 Charlotte 2RP
    2021 Detroit 2RP

    That, to me, is enough draft capital to change the course of this franchise and by the time these guys are ready to compete, John Wall will be a free agent. Of course, this strategy prioritizes maximizing our draft capital in the next two years and basically gives you one more year to tank before Dolan grows impatient. I’d do it just because I value draft picks more than cap space in this current stage of our roster build out, and I think John Wall May be the only opportunity we have to upgrade that DAL 2021 AND to add a high value pick in this draft.

  29. thenamestsam: But I don’t see any logic in the idea that they’re going to pay for him to go away – they’ve got a new rich owner, they’re in a big market, and they’re a (theoretically) contending team. They’re looking for upgrades, not to just dump their guys into space.

    The Athletic recently said the pick was “a prime candidate to be traded”. The Nets are ok going into the luxury tax, but they’re already $5mm over it before they re-sign Joe Harris or use any of their exceptions. The tax gets very punitive when you’re $20mm over it, which they would be. I think it’s definitely in play.

  30. Wow, it’ll be encouraging if the Knicks actually do intentionally rent some cap space for a pick or more.

    But, John Wall? Yeesh. If I’m reading it right, that’s 3 years and over $130 million. I’m also reading that there’s a 15% trade kicker?

  31. My bad, I read he signed a 2 year deal with the Nets and assumed it was 19-20 and 20–21. I’d make that trade anyhow. Prince is also probably a lucky few months of 3 point shooting from being tradeable

  32. I’d offer them Julius Randle, Elfrid Payton, Dennis Smith Jr and the #27 pick for John Wall, #9 overall, and unprotected swap rights on their 2021 1RP with the Dallas pick.

    You’re treating Wall as if he has value.

    A hypothetical deal that would make sense for us is absorbing Wall into our cap space for the #9 pick, their 2022 pick (protected), and swap rights on their 2021 pick. But that’s a steep price to pay for the Wizards. I think they’re better off just paying him and being a bad team.

  33. Hubert: You’re treating Wall as if he has value.

    My approach to this trade isn’t really getting WAS to pay full price for the Wall dump as much as it is surveying the landscape and taking advantage of an opportunity to increase our draft capital. The price to dump Wall is too high for any franchise to pay, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t value in getting an extra top 10 pick in this draft and an upgrade to the DAL pick next year. It’s all theoretical of course, but I’d be for pulling the trigger on that deal.

    —————

    Morey to Philly is a big one. Imagine taking the Knicks POBO job and before your first full season you have to compete against Morey, Ainge, Marks, and Ujiri in a division with no low level markets.

  34. I hope Morey enjoyed all that time with his family!

    In all seriousness, good for him for just not wanting to deal with Ferttita’s bullshit anymore.

  35. Imagine taking the Knicks POBO job and before your first full season you have to compete against Morey, Ainge, Marks, and Ujiri in a division with no low level markets.

    This was demoralizing to read.

  36. 4 guys with capped out teams trying to win in the short term leaves us perfectly positioned to play the long game.

  37. Wow, I didn’t realize the Harris contract was THAT bad. I must’ve confused his contract with the Horford contract, which is more palatable while still pretty rough.

    Harris would be a tough sell, and it would take at least 3 or 4 decent first-round picks to even consider. Maybe Horford is more realistic? Either way, you know something is going to happen with Morey in town.

    The FO should just be honest and see that Giannis is not on this team’s timeline. I would go all-out to get quality 2021 picks in return for bad contracts now that we have great scouting and assistant coaches. We shouldn’t even be thinking about adding those “put us over the top” free agents for another 4 years.

  38. DRed:
    4 guys with capped out teams trying to win in the short term leaves us perfectly positioned to play the long game.

    The Knicks should definitely be offering to facilitate trades involving those teams.

  39. TheClashFan: But, John Wall? Yeesh. If I’m reading it right, that’s 3 years and over $130 million. I’m also reading that there’s a 15% trade kicker?

    I’d be willing to take on Wall, we just need the Wizards to send us every pick & swap right for the next 10 years

  40. Sixers, salary commitments by season, starting in 2020-21

    $147M
    $147M
    $138M
    $77M
    $38M

    Brooklyn

    $140M
    $137M
    $107M
    $0M

    Boston

    $140M
    $87M
    $76M
    $28M

    Toronto

    $86M
    $46M
    $33M
    $35M

    It’s a good time to rent space, hoard picks, and build a cheap core. Philly is going to struggle to get to a top-3 seed and has absolutely no upside with their cap space being what it is. Elton Brand is going to have a lot of explaining to do for his new boss.

    Toronto is good but will have to extend FVV or let him walk. The cap situation is not as good as it looks on paper.

    Brooklyn is going to be a disappointing team next year. I expect a significant dropoff from the 32-year-old Durant (going from a one-man wrecking crew to a very good but load-managed player, probably >25% reduction in VORP from the jump), and one wrong foot-plant could end their competitive dreams before they even begin. Kyrie is gonna Kyrie.

    Boston just got handed the privilege to pay Jayson Tatum $200-220M over five years . They’ll end up paying him almost $50M during the final year of his eligible extension. Don’t be surprised to see them package a load of picks to move Gordon Hayward for a fourth star, a la Warriors and Wiggins (what they should do, at least).

  41. Hubert: The Athletic recently said the pick was “a prime candidate to be traded”. The Nets are ok going into the luxury tax, but they’re already $5mm over it before they re-sign Joe Harris or use any of their exceptions. The tax gets very punitive when you’re $20mm over it, which they would be. I think it’s definitely in play.

    Maybe you’re right but I would be pretty shocked if they made a pure cost cutting move before even seeing how good their team looks together. Could they try to reduce their tax bill at the deadline next year if KD looks like 75% of his pre-Achilles tear self, and they’re kind of a frustrating #4 seed? Absolutely, I think that would be a pretty normal in season trade. But starting to duck the tax before KD even plays a single game in a Nets uniform would be pretty crazy I think.

  42. Elton Brand is so getting fired.

    So, I get to choose between Tobias Harris, Russell Westbrook, John Wall, Blake Griffin, and Taurean Prince,

    And I am excited about it? 2020 is a strange year.

  43. Nothing makes you feel more confident in an organization’s overall direction than hiring a new head basketball decision maker like a week after hiring a new head coach.

    I will be fascinated to see Morey in Philly though. It’s definitely one of the more complicated roster situations in the league, but there’s also still a lot of talent there – they’ve got 2 all-NBA guys in their early/mid 20s and the rest of the roster is a mess, but not bereft of good/talented players. It’s a serious puzzle, but if he works it out the results could be worth it. They also couldn’t really be further from the Rockets style so seeing how he evolves them from that perspective will also be interesting – that angle is why I think it’s kind of a bummer he didn’t get to pick the coach.

  44. Yeah Morey might be relieved to not have to find any more 6’6” centers.

    A Morey/Doc combo isn’t a shabby haul for Philly after a lost season. They’ll probably perform well next year.

  45. Morey is going into a situation that isn’t all that much better than the one he’s leaving. Philly has two overrated injury-prone stars on max deals and two grossly overpaid role players. I like Doc way more than D’Antoni, but they have some major retooling to do. At least they have draft assets I guess…

  46. Morey is going into a situation that isn’t all that much better than the one he’s leaving. Philly has two overrated injury-prone stars on max deals and two grossly overpaid role players. I like Doc way more than D’Antoni, but they have some major retooling to do. At least they have draft assets I guess…

    I think the desirable thing about the Philly situation is you can reasonably choose to keep trying to compete with the current team, or get a boatload of assets for Simmons and/or Embiid and have a great start to retool/rebuild.

    This is why all the crowing from the anti-tank crowd about Philly was always so dumb. Even if they don’t win a championship with this specific core, it got them great assets they can use to reset and try again.

  47. thenoblefacehumper: I think the desirable thing about the Philly situation is you can reasonably choose to keep trying to compete with the current team, or get a boatload of assets for Simmons and/or Embiid and have a great start to retool/rebuild.

    This is why all the crowing from the anti-tank crowd about Philly was always so dumb. Even if they don’t win a championship with this specific core, it got them great assets they can use to reset and try again.

    And they’d be even further along if they didn’t bail on Hinkie.

  48. ***At least they have draft assets I guess…***

    The only surplus’s picks they have left are a few 2nd rounders, which is crazy cause they used to sit on such a cache of future assets, it was embarrassing. They don’t really have much to pay teams to take Harris and Horford with. I feel like Simmons or Embiid is gonna have to go play somewhere else.

  49. Probably the easiest trade for the Knicks would be to send Randle to the Wolves for James Johnson’s contract and the #17 pick. There should be a lot of good options in that range.

  50. Good to see the Knicks FO are Knickerblogger readers.

    There is hardly anyone that fits into the bad contract category I would actually want but getting further draft assets and getting minutes into the core of Mitch, RJ, pick 8 (and maybe Frank) would make watching a faux max guy lead us to a purgatory 35 win season bearable.

  51. And they’d be even further along if they didn’t bail on Hinkie.

    It’s so hilarious just how much Colangelo and Brand fucked up Hinkie’s work.

  52. Owen:
    Apparently De Blasio is trying to kill the Mets sale. Huck the Feck?

    First, I’m not a De Blasio fan but he’s not my mayor and I’m a Yankee fan.
    However, it’s the NY Post. It’s politics and the story is probably 20-30% true.
    It’s political suicide to have every Met fan in NY want to tar and feather you.

  53. ess-dog:
    Wow, I didn’t realize the Harris contract was THAT bad. I must’ve confused his contract with the Horford contract, which is more palatable while still pretty rough.

    Harris would be a tough sell, and it would take at least 3 or 4 decent first-round picks to even consider. Maybe Horford is more realistic? Either way, you know something is going to happen with Morey in town.

    The FO should just be honest and see that Giannis is not on this team’s timeline. I would go all-out to get quality 2021 picks in return for bad contracts now that we have great scouting and assistant coaches. We shouldn’t even be thinking about adding those “put us over the top” free agents for another 4 years.

    Given their age, it seems more reasonable that they live with Harris deal and trade Horford. Besides, one of their problems is that both Harris is best suited to play PF, and Horford has to play PF when Embiid is also on the court (and Simmons is kind of a PF, too). So, just dealing Horford will have Harris looking better in the team.

    How is CP3 and Doc relation nowadays? Horford to NYK, CP3 to PHL and Randle/Portis and Knox to OKC with a couple of 1st going for us (2021 Philly and least favourable of OKC 2021 picks).

  54. Philly is both the fundamental opposite of Morey’s most recent Houston teams and a quintessential Morey type team: good enough to always make the playoffs, seemingly maxed out but with possibilities for a creative guy like him to make improvements around the edges. I expect he’ll try to tinker his way into giving Simmons and Embiid one more year to prove they can co-exist — whether that’s acquiring Paul or a lesser (and cheaper) PG — and if it still doesn’t work, he’ll ship one out next summer.

  55. GoNYGoNYGo – Ready for 2020 Knicks 2.0: WAKE UP!
    This is what the CP3 trade would look like
    OKC expects a 1st back.They aren’t giving one.

    LOL I don’t expect them to take that deal and give us a pick. That’s just what I’m asking for to save a rebuilding team some money. Cleary they aren’t trying to contend this coming season. I look for them to move both CP3 and Adams. Why would any rational team give them a pick for CP3 in a salary dump?

    Then again a reasonable rationale has never been a part of Dolan’s Knicks…

  56. I love Adams. I think he is a contender for most underrated player in the NBA. Would be very interested to see what he nets in a trade.

  57. Meanwhile, this article at The Strickland (a new site formed primarily by some ex Posting and Toasting writers, I believe) throws some cold water on the idea of there being a robust market for acquiring assets from teams looking to dump salary.

  58. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats: LOL I don’t expect them to take that deal and give us a pick.

    You’re allowed to fantasize.

    Owen:
    I love Adams. I think he is a contender for most underrated player in the NBA.Would be very interested to see what he nets in a trade.

    I love Adams too. It brings up another question. I love Mitch and think he’s a unique talent. That being said, his history of foul trouble means the Knicks must find someone to play behind him. That player would likely be sharing equal time. The player needs to be a rim defender. What FA makes sense to back up Mitch?

    I’ve looked at the centers. Players like Whiteside, MGasol and Howard would be OK but they’re not coming here. Who do you all feel is a good FA pairing?

  59. Honestly, I’d just try Kenny Wooten this year. Odds are Howard or another vet would almost certainly be better than Wooten this year, but “shot-blocking pogo stick who doesn’t shoot” is also one of the easier archetypes to find on the cheap, and I’d rather go with a kid and spend money — and figure out a prospect/veteran rotation balance — elsewhere on the roster.

  60. throws some cold water on the idea of there being a robust market for acquiring assets from teams looking to dump salary.

    FWIW, I should have added that the Strickland writer doesn’t acknowledge the financial pain that a lot of teams may be under this year, where someone may be looking to unload a contract not so they have cap space for a free agent, but simply to avoid paying that contract — and/or to avoid paying luxury tax penalties on that contract.

  61. Alan: FWIW, I should have added that the Strickland writer doesn’t acknowledge the financial pain that a lot of teams may be under this year, where someone may be looking to unload a contract not so they have cap space for a free agent, but simply to avoid paying that contract — and/or to avoid paying luxury tax penalties on that contract.

    He does acknowledge that the cap numbers haven’t been established.

  62. I want Wooten playing the 4. His offensive game isn’t there yet, but he’s a defensive stud. Assuming we couldn’t get a 2-way player and are buying low, Wooten would pair well with an offensive minded center on the floor.

  63. ***John Wall? Yeesh. If I’m reading it right, that’s 3 years and over $130 million. I’m also reading that there’s a 15% trade kicker?***

    Just to remind people: Kurt Thomas, coming off of a season in which he put up a +1 VORP while playing in 70 games for the #1 team in the league, had to be packaged with TWO first round picks, even though he only had 1 year and $8mil left on his contract.

    Taking on Wall, who literally does not play basketball anymore, and his 3/$130,000,000 contract should obviously only come with just ONE pick in a weak draft because the Knicks gonna #knicksy, even when they are TRYING to do it right.

  64. I think trading down would be probably be mistake UNLESS we think there is an extraordinary diamond in the rough below us in the draft we could get and still get an extra asset. (unlikely)

    This team does not need role players.

    That goes double for 19 year old role players.

    We need our #1 and #2 scoring options.

    Previous management was stupid enough to trade away a solid #2 option with #1 potential for pipe dreams, spit, and to dump the Hardaway contract they put into the 20 million of cap space they were handed.

    Given where we are now, we should should be trying to move up in the draft (the way the Mavs are trying to do again this year to get their 3rd option) or we should combining picks and players to get a star player that is unhappy elsewhere like they did.

    If there are no obvious targets above us in the draft so be it.

    If there are no unhappy stars available right now so be it. There will be eventually.

    If there are no solid or star free agents dumb enough to come to team that was horribly mismanaged by Mills/Perry even though we have new management and a great coach like Thibs on board, so be it. There will be eventually.

    But we need to both get better to be more attractive and willing to trade some of our mediocre excess picks to get those players here. We don’t need more 19 year old role players.

  65. I want Wooten playing the 4. His offensive game isn’t there yet, but he’s a defensive stud.

    The little I’ve seen of Wooten I like also, but he’s a smaller variation on Robinson and probably not a good fit with him. I see no problem with him being given a chance off the bench to see what he can become and whether he or Robinson can become a more complete basketball player and compliment the other better. To me, he’s a keeper.

  66. Alan:
    Philly is both the fundamental opposite of Morey’s most recent Houston teamsand a quintessential Morey type team: good enough to always make the playoffs, seemingly maxed out but with possibilities for a creative guy like him to make improvements around the edges. I expect he’ll try to tinker his way into giving Simmons and Embiid one more year to prove they can co-exist — whether that’s acquiring Paul or a lesser (and cheaper) PG — and if it still doesn’t work, he’ll ship one out next summer.

    The good thing about the 76ers is that even though they are among the worst constructed teams in the NBA behind the Mills/Perry Knicks and maybe Morey’s Rockets (lol), both Simmons and Embiid still have extraordinary value individually. So if you decided they are not an ideal fit with the unmovable contracts you also have, you could trade one for a set of players that would completely change the dynamic of the team and potentially help some of those other bad contract players at least be more productive. The other good thing is that even though he makes mistakes by the boatloads. Morey is kind of like a poor man’s version of Pat Riley in that he figures out ways to get out of his mistakes really well. So maybe he can undo some of the damage that was done last year.

  67. Embiid is 26. Simmons is 24. If they ride out the bad contracts of Harris and Horford, Embiid will be almost 30 and Simmons 28. While that’s starting to get into “late prime” years it would still leave them with probably 2 or 3 more seasons where those 3 would both be in their primes (barring injuries).

    So if I was Philly, I wouldn’t try to fix the mistakes of Harris and Horford quite yet. I’d try to tinker around the margins with their other players to see if they can make the team work a little better. Simmons could still improve his outside shooting enough to make their star duo work better. There is a lot of we gotta make moves now narrative in today’s NBA that forces teams to panic. But with Morey and Doc in tow, philly should just trust they can build up the culture there. Even with their bad fit, they’re still a 50 plus win playoff team every year for the next 4 or 5 years easy.

  68. My current favorite fake trade is a three team deal between Washington, Utah, and the Knicks. The Wizards get the Utah 2020 and Mike Conley Jr, the Jazz get the Clippers’ 2020 and Julius Randle, and we get the Wizards 2020, swap rights on the Wizards 2021 with our Dallas pick (so WAS gets the least favorable of the NYK/DAL/WAS 1RPs), and John Wall. Washington does it because for the price of moving back 10-12 spots in the next two drafts, they rid themselves of John Wall’s contract, get a significant improvement at point guard for next year, and drop $10M off their cap this year. The Jazz do it because for the price of moving back 7 spots in this year’s draft, they open up cap space and get a valuable bench scorer that they can choose to either keep or dump at the end of the season. We do it because we’re guaranteeing ourselves two top 10 picks in this year’s draft and two top 15 picks in next year’s draft, and we have a short term answer at point guard that doesn’t derail the tank.

    After waiving Payton, Portis, Ellington, and Gibson, we could pull off this trade and still have over $30M in cap space. I think we should be following what GSW did in order to land a high pick in the 2021 draft, and I don’t see any other front office/contract combination that would yield us a pick in the top half of the 2021 draft. I’m sure nobody is trading for the Wall contract, and that’s why I think it’s prime opportunity to grab some great assets.

  69. That Strickland article was pretty flawed, because it only considered ‘salary dumps’ of 10 million or more, and because the writer insists on differentiating between teams looking to dump salary not cut salary. To the Knicks it shouldn’t make a difference why the other team wants to give us an asset. There are only 4 teams in the NBA with real cap space, and teams are not all just going to run it back again next season.

  70. Sorry, Strat’s post exasperated me on an exasperating day, so I’m going to address it. Everyone else can skip to the next post.

    Strat, as always you’ve wrapped some basic sensible points in a maelstrom of pointlessness. “So be it” sums up that post perfectly.

    Of course we want a #1 and #2 scorer. But this is a horrible draft with no clear example of such a player — to me Wiseman is closest, but I’m not sure I’d take him even if he fell to 8 because a) it’s a guess of mine based on virtually no real information, b) injuries, c) possible head case, d) Mitch, e) desperate needs everywhere else in the lineup, f) bigs have become cheap and available.

    This is a draft of role players, and you’re wrong, every team needs role players. Some of them may break out, but damned if anyone knows who (and I stick with anyone who says different is lying). All the others seem to have one huge hole or another, making them all Frank-like choices (“if he only learns to dribble with his right hand, if he only learns to shoot, if only he learns to play defense, etc.). I’m tired of players on five-year trajectories to fix their holes (if they ever do). It’s why I lean Tyrese, who may never be a #2 scorer on a good team but has the fewest obvious holes (if you don’t look at his shooting form, just the results, and I’m okay if people can’t get past that).

    So your post is a bit like “I want a pony for Christmas.” We all want ponies for Christmas, Strat. We’re not going to get them. AD and Giannis aren’t coming here. Getting better, at least for starters, is going to be incremental. So be it.

    But thank you for not doing the “metrics suck” thing. I appreciate the break. Let’s see if you can go a whole week without it.

  71. ***Kurt Thomas trade sounds like an Isaiah move***

    Ironically, the last time a Knick exec used Dolan Dollars to buy a first round draft pick was when Isiah absorbed Jalen Rose’s $30,000,000 cost to acquire the #20th pick in the 2006 draft (Renaldo Balkan).

  72. I would love to see us give Wooten some minutes but I really don’t know if he is an answer to anything. He is still quite raw offensively and is almost 23. The player that I would love us to sign to back up Mitch is Noel. Noel is another player in contention for most underrated. If we could march out Robinson and Noel for all 48 minutes we would be set at the 5 for the next 5+ years with truly elite defense. They could even possibly play together in short spurts and Noel could probably be had at a bargain.

    Wall is not worth taking unless we want to get something close to what OKC received for George. Wall’s contract is beyond bad. I’d need so many picks it would be unrealistic.

  73. The Glass Half Rebuilt: we get the Wizards 2020, swap rights on the Wizards 2021 with our Dallas pick (so WAS gets the least favorable of the NYK/DAL/WAS 1RPs), and John Wall.

    Again, this is nowhere near enough value for the albatross that is John Wall.

    We should get at least 2 picks straight up, if not 3 in light of giving up Randle. Wall ties up our money for a long time in an asset that’s likely to be worthless.

  74. It doesn’t even make sense for the Wiz to trade picks for Wall. It’s not like Anthony Davis is on line 2 asking to play for them if they free up cap space. They need their picks more than they need to dump him.

  75. FWIW, I should have added that the Strickland writer doesn’t acknowledge the financial pain that a lot of teams may be under this year, where someone may be looking to unload a contract not so they have cap space for a free agent, but simply to avoid paying that contract — and/or to avoid paying luxury tax penalties on that contract.

    Nerlens Noel really cannot catch a break. This would have been the final year of his 4-year deal with the Mavs, which would have paid him around $20M, just shy of his career earnings through seven seasons. And now he’s facing a cap situation in which he’ll be lucky to get the MLE.

    Knicks should be going for him if they don’t end up with Okongwu. Noel isn’t a star player, but he could be gotten cheap with a starter’s role, and could platoon at C with Mitch for one of the best interior defenses in the league.

  76. Yeah but Wall’s contract is so huge and has so many years left on it, I can see why they would want to get out from under it. They may not have AD on the line right now but the next off season or the off season after that the can hope to entice someone but could in no way do that if they still have Wall. Dude is an ALBATROSS.

    I just don’t think I could do it. They’d have to give us this year’s pick, swap rights to next year’s and 2022 for me to even consider it. That’s a super tough pill to swallow. John Wall has 3 seasons left on his contract! OUCH!

  77. What’s funniest to me about a lot of the fake trades in this thread is that it’s usually Julius Randle going the other way in exchange for the player on a bad deal and some assets. Only there’s a 100% chance that there’s a message board somewhere else on the internet where fans of some other team are speculating about whether we’d give up an asset to get off Randle’s dead money. Everyone knows his contract is also a negative value right? We’ve got a deal in this thread where the Jazz give up draft equity and Mike Conley for Julius Randle. Julius Randle is worse than Conley and has close to the same amount of money left on his deal (over two years rather than one).

  78. thenamestsam:
    What’s funniest to me about a lot of the fake trades in this thread is that it’s usually Julius Randle going the other way in exchange for the player on a bad deal and some assets. Only there’s a 100% chance that there’s a message board somewhere else on the internet where fans of some other team are speculating about whether we’d give up an asset to get off Randle’s dead money. Everyone knows his contract is also a negative value right? We’ve got a deal in this thread where the Jazz give up draft equity and Mike Conley for Julius Randle. Julius Randle is worse than Conley and has close to the same amount of money left on his deal (over two years rather than one).

    Randle’s only has 4 million guaranteed in the last year, and 2021 free agency might be huge.

    It’s true that I dont get why Jazz would pay someone to take on Conley.

  79. While Noel has some good traits, I think he’s lazy and he’s not a good offensive player. The diametric opposite is Frank Kaminsky, is a good perimeter shooter and post up player with poor defensive skills. Having him and Wooten on the floor at the same time provides the inside-outside offense-defense pairing that I would want out of a big man pairing. Maybe Thibs could get him to at least play some team defense? I think Miles Leonard can also be gotten on the cheap. And I never hated Kanter but not as a starter. Are there better options like that?

    BTW, having thought about this some, I would like the Knicks to draft a PG, a wing and a big. Theoretically, a center rotation like Robinson, Kaminsky/Leonard/Kanter and Zeke Nnaji or Daniel Oturu with 38 would make me feel better about the center position.

  80. Donnie Walsh
    “October 29, 2020 at 2:57 pm

    ***Kurt Thomas trade sounds like an Isaiah move***

    Ironically, the last time a Knick exec used Dolan Dollars to buy a first round draft pick was when Isiah absorbed Jalen Rose’s $30,000,000 cost to acquire the #20th pick in the 2006 draft (Renaldo Balkan).”

    That was $30,000,000 for 23 games of 7-17 basketball from Jalen Rose for the #20th pick. That makes Wall #9 look pretty good!

  81. It’s true that I dont get why Jazz would pay someone to take on Conley.

    Before I looked into this I agreed, but it turns out swapping Conley for Randle opens up a $17-$18M AAV slot for Utah (and they can free up a little more with other easy moves like dumping Ed Davis). It’s Utah’s last chance to make a significant addition before they have to pay Mitchell and Gobert, so they might want to try to sign Gallo, FVV, etc.

    How much would they be willing to pay for it? I have no idea, but moving from 21 to 27 doesn’t sound crazy.

  82. I just checked again and got some small details wrong in my last post. They could open $16.7M by swapping Conley for Randle and giving us the 23rd pick in the process. A pick swap would open up less for them because they’d still owe the #27 scale. I think they could also dump Davis on us in the same trade and get around $20M in space.

    So the question is would they be willing to part with #23 (and Conley/Davis) for that much space (and Randle)? Doesn’t sound crazy to me if they think they can make good use of the $20M somehow.

  83. Nice to see some classic posters pop in…Z, Ben R, iserp…must mean that things are getting interesting.

    I’m not sure a scenario exists where taking on Wall makes any sense. It’s just too much money for too long for a player who isn’t going to help you in any way.

    I’d rather take on smaller/shorter deals for smaller assets. Guys like Hayward, or maybe Kevin Love. Paul is at least only a 2-year commitment.

  84. They’d have to give us this year’s pick, swap rights to next year’s and 2022 for me to even consider it. That’s a super tough pill to swallow. John Wall has 3 seasons left on his contract! OUCH!

    My dude, Wall has a 15% trade kicker. That means the Knicks would have to pay him — drum roll — $53.8M in 2022-23. Two firsts and a swap isn’t close to enough for three years and $152M in committed salary. I sure as hell wouldn’t pay $152M for three picks that are likely to fall between #5 and #10.

  85. My reasoning for trading for John Wall is that I wouldn’t give a damn about his $52M year in 2023 if you told me I could turn my four lottery picks in the 2020-2021 drafts into Tyrell Terry, Tyrese Halliburton, Evan Mobley, and BJ Boston. It’s an opportunity to expedite the rebuild that I’d take seriously if I were in the front office.

  86. It’s going to be soooooooooooooooo perfect when, after all this, we take Cole Anthony with the 8th pick.

  87. ***I wouldn’t give a damn about his $52M year in 2023 if you told me I could turn my four lottery picks in the 2020-2021 drafts into Tyrell Terry, Tyrese Halliburton, Evan Mobley, and BJ Boston.***

    Unfortunately, nobody can tell you this.

    And as the old mixed metaphor goes: a wall in the hand isn’t worth a bird in the bush, and even if it was, fuck Boston, blow job or not.

  88. TGHR, I understand but the complete loss of nearly half your cap space just isn’t worth it. There’s no guarantee that any of the players you mention are legit NBA starters. We have 5 first rounders in the next 3 years and might be able to pick up one or two more with the cap space we have without tying up money for 3 years. You never know when a golden opportunity will come up and it’s a lot easier to maneuver out from under smaller/shorter deals.

  89. The more I examine Kira Lewis Jr, the more I like. He’s smallish but he already does everything a PG needs to do. And even though he’s a plus athlete (one of the fastest players in the draft for sure) he plays below the rim and just gets to his spots. I know it’s just eye-test stuff, but look at this video and watch how he just carves people up inside and out.

    I’d be totally fine with picking him at #8.

  90. I’m with you on Kira. He’s a guard that will break down defenses and facilitate. He’s small, a defensive liability, but he’s got quick hands, court vision and an attack mentality.

  91. Kira isn’t terrible but if you take him 8th you’re probably taking him over guys who were much better than him in college because he’s fast

  92. Kira seems like a lock for NBA backup PG. I don’t think he’s worth the #8 pick.

    The Glass Half Rebuilt: Tyrell Terry, Tyrese Halliburton, Evan Mobley, and BJ Boston.

    Idk anything about Boston or Mobley, but Terry & Halliburton don’t strike me as locks for perennial all-star appearances. Not only is $50M per year ridiculous, we give up the opportunity to sign $50M worth of good players each year.

  93. DRed:
    Kira isn’t terrible but if you take him 8th you’re probably taking him over guys who were much better than him in college because he’s fast

    Maybe, but you are also looking at specific things and whether they will translate to the NBA. Kira’s speed, good percentages at all 3 scoring levels, ball handling and finishing with both hands, court vision, age (younger than some freshmen) and size (he’s not tiny) all seem to translate. He’s clearly a 1-position player, but other than Haliburton, maybe the best NCAA player at that position.

  94. There’s a nice article on Iggy B in the Post today, it would be awesome if he could develop into a bonafide rotation player. OTOH, sounds like some in the organization have a thing for Maxey, who seems like a Raymond Felton-level prospect to me. I’d way rather have Kira or Terry.

  95. Here’s that Iggy feature. I had hoped that Berman alluded to the new management/staff’s feelings about Iggy the way he so often acts as an organizational mouthpiece. But the story’s told entirely from Iggy’s POV. I definitely would like to see the kid play. I’m way more optimistic about him than I am about Knox, for instance.

  96. Woj:

    Mike D’Antoni and Ime Udoka are finalizing deals to become assistant coaches under Steve Nash with the Brooklyn Nets, sources tell ESPN. Together, D’Antoni and Nash were the architects of the Seven Seconds or Less Offense with the Phoenix Suns in the mid-2000’s.

    Udoka was the guy I was most intrigued by in our coaching search, even though we were clearly hiring Thibs. Nash is putting together a strong staff, but we’ll see how much Kyrie and KD actually want to be coached.

  97. More than anything else, I just feel starved for Knicks basketball. Even though we would have sucked had we played in the bubble, I wanted to see the young guys play. Now that feeling is 100X more intense. The lip service seems to suggest that Rose is not going to lurch at the quick fix (willingness to trade down, absorb bad contracts for picks, etc.) That would likely mean that they are going to focus on building a Thibs-friendly team of young players, and that they won’t tank per se but guys like Frank, Knox, DSjr, Wooten, Iggy, Pinson, Harper and the incoming draft picks will have to earn opportunities but will be given the structure to know what they have to do and the support to maximize their potential. No freebies, maybe not even for RJ, although he will obviously have a longer leash than the others.

    It also sounds more and more like they are likely to move on from all the 1+1 guys except Taj and Reggie. Payton’s contract is fine but he is not a long-term piece and will get in the way of our PG prospects. Portis, and Ellington have to be gone, right?

    That leaves Randle and Dotson. I think Dot is gone and Randle will likely be part of a trade of some kind, but it’s anybody’s guess.

  98. I have no interest in Maxey anywhere near #8. Nothing really stands out about him. I don’t see him as a rotation player on a good team.

    Kira is more interesting, but I’m more bearish than a lot of people. I don’t think he has the vision to be a full-time point guard, so you’re looking at an undersized combo guard type. He might be a good enough scorer and secondary playmaker to be valuable in that role, but with his limited defensive upside I can’t say I’m wildly intrigued unless we trade down.

  99. MDA signing on in Brooklyn caught me wayyyyyy off guard. Wowsers. So I guess the question can that particular staff play their roles under Nash? Udoka is an aspiring HC. Jacque Vaughn has been a HC and it would be understandable if he feels some kind of way about being overlooked for Nash. And, not only did MDA coach Nash- he still has some high level coaching in him. Or maybe he’s just just tired of being the post-game face. I dunno, but I totally did not expect that move. Not in my wildest dreams

  100. thenoblefacehumper: I don’t think he has the vision to be a full-time point guard

    This is a legit concern, but if it wasn’t he’d be a lock for a top-8 spot. But he did have a 28% ast% and averaged 5.6 per 40 on a team without much depth. He turned it over too much but he was clearly the team’s go-to guy and probably drew lots of defensive attention.

    thenoblefacehumper: with his limited defensive upside

    All of the lead guards in the top 20 have major defensive concerns. With his speed and with some improved strength (he apparently put on 15lbs of muscle since March) I would trust that if the scouts and Thibs picked him, they were not concerned about his lack of defensive potential. Besides, many top NBA PGs in that smallish size range are not great defenders…Lillard, Kyrie, Kemba, Trae, etc. To me, in today’s game, it’s really about offensive potential, and I think Kira has more than LaMelo, Hayes, Hali, Maxey and the rest (except maybe for Terry.) This guy can get in the lane against anyone and finishes without needing to outjump defenders.

  101. I doubt Iggy ever becomes a starter, but if he could be a solid rotation player (the Dotson role maybe?), that would be great.

    Apparently Maxey and Edwards looked great in an empty gym. I really hope they aren’t just starting sone stupid UK pipeline now. What.. were they like, “Since Knox worked out so well, we should definitely get more UK players in here”??

    I still think Okongwu is the best player if he’s there at 8. Otherwise, I’m back around to liking Vassell best, followed by Hayes and Hali, who each scare me more.

    Don’t take a pg just because it’s a need — everything is a need, and long, sweet-shooting wings are crucial (also, I could still maybe be talked into Nesmith.)

  102. With Nash, D’Antoni, and Amare back together in Brooklyn, it’s kind of like a “7 second or less” Beatles reunion .

  103. How could we even be seriously discussing John Wall?

    They may give us something decent to take him, but they aren’t going to just hand over a pile of great picks to take him. He’s a very good two way player.

    People were crying about adding KP at the max (at a much lower salary) given his injury history when he’s probably still 2-3 years away from his peak if they can hold him together. KP will be the much better player if they can hold him together. Wall is almost certainly on his way down.

  104. The problem with Kira isn’t that his defense (which is solid but one-position) or passing, though the latter is a real concern–his actual passing ability is good but his vision and decision-making are mediocre at best (1.47 A/TO). The problem is that he sucks at finishing and drawing contact when his game is predicated on getting to the rim (something he’s good at). He has a lower FTR than Hayes, who is already pretty low, and he’s super ground-bound when he gets to the rim, and so gets blocked a ton on attempts. In general, when he tries to put a shot up in close quarters, he’s pretty terrible, scoring in the 34th percentile on PPP at the rim; and he doesn’t have a well-developed floater or runner game, where he scores in the 47th percentile of PPP. I doubt he’ll develop the ability to be a terror near the rim, because his touch is lacking and he seems to struggle with putting weight on. I don’t think there’s strong reason to project him becoming good around and the rim, so he would really have to focus on shooting from 3 to open his offensive game up, and even then I’m not sure if he can really play PG super effectively with his issues at the rim. That’s going to limit his offensive upside when combined with his merely adequate passing, and you’re getting slight positive play from him at best on defense.

    That said, I like him well enough–much more than Maxey. But if you want a PG in this draft, do not trade back. Just take Hayes or Hali at 8 and be done with it.

  105. I know almost everyone here is anxious to trade Randle, but Randle is a good player whose market value is depressed because he played for a team put together by people that don’t understand basketball. He was also used incorrectly on that poorly constructed team. I’d way rather give him a chance to play under Thibs after I see what the new management brings in and what a competent coach can do with them. If he still doesn’t fit (even getting minutes off the bench), then I’d be more anxious to move him. His value could even be higher then with good coaching and a better constructed team. The only reason to rush trading him would be a deal that’s too good to pass on. imo there’s little doubt he’s a better player than he showed on the Knicks team the previous management put together last year.

  106. Apparently Maxey and Edwards looked great in an empty gym.

    In the Post article titled “Potential Knicks draft target Tyrese Maxey dazzles in workout” Berman mentioned that “at one juncture, he made five straight 3 pointers”.

    I’d be surprised if he doesn’t move up to #1.

  107. Was John Wall good at defense?

    I’m not being sarcastic. I’m honestly asking. I never heard anyone really saying he was or wasn’t.

    He was a good player. He isn’t now. Or at least he hasn’t shown that he is still good after a major injury. Best case scenario Wall would eventually bounce back to being decently good again but that might take all of next season.

    I seriously wouldn’t entertain it. Just saying if they were going to give us this year’s pick, a swap next year AND 2022, then maybe I hear them out. I’d probably still want more and at that point you gotta wonder why they would do it.

    But I mean…there is this SMALL part of me that thinks if we did that kind of a deal and bit that bullet, that’s such a foward thinking move (forgoing cap space) that maybe we’d be rewarded with it karmically with Wall returning to form and those picks turning into real stars that we draft.

    I do believe the draft is mostly luck so the more high picks we gave ourselves, the more luck we might create for ourselves by giving us those extra chances.

  108. ***Randle is a good player whose market value is depressed because he played for a team put together by people that don’t understand basketball.***

    How do you know that the basketball geniuses that run the perennially successful New Orleans Pelicans didn’t masterfully inflate his value by so much that he was doomed to fail under any other system?

  109. Wall had good rebound/steal numbers and I think he was one of the best shot blocking guards in league history. He was a terrific athlete, the Wizards were generally pretty good on defense when he was in his prime, so I’d lean towards him being at least an average/average+ defender in his day. And that’s unusual from high usage PGs

  110. Just take Hayes or Hali at 8 and be done with it.

    This is my preferred outcome from the draft unless we get a really nice trade down offer. I suppose I personally lean Hali just because he’s the more interesting prospect, but that’s not what the Knicks should be drafting for. They seem like flawed but reasonably good prospects, and at 8 in a draft without obvious elite prospects that seems like a good result to me.

  111. Hell, maybe they should keep Elfrid for another year? If he could just bring his ft and 3pt shooting up to a measly RJ level, it would make him a good enough stopgap point guard… He is just SUCH a bad shooter, though.

    Then you could 1. draft a few good shooter-defenders (Vassell?) 2. trade Randle 3. go hard after Christian Wood 4. find a pg project and keep coaching up Frank/DSJ (maybe trade one of them).

  112. it’s going to be a little boring heading into this draft with nothing but the shrug emoji, as zman’s great grandkids would say. sort of reminds me of the frank draft in that way. mostly just hoping they don’t trade up to take obi, or trade mitch to move up to the tippy top. wait, did someone say frank?

  113. Its ironic that someone with the name Deefense would DEFEND a horrible DEFENDER like Randle.

    I kid, I kid.

    I think the problem with Randle is that even if he is better than what he showed last year, he’s probably not a great fit with Mitch and RJ unless you have great outside shooting at the other 2 positions. I’m not saying we should completely build around RJ and Mitch but I think we should at least put a starting 5 out there that fits with them better. RJ will hopefully improve the shooting but it’s probably not happening in one season.

    If we had a better shooting PG Randle wouldn’t be as big of an issue for next season. I’m fine with him staying but if he can be moved in a deal for a pick this year, we should jump on it.

  114. Also:

    Get rid of Elfrid Payton, Julius Randle, and Bobby Portis as soon as you can. They don’t play to win games, they play to secure their next contract and that’s not what you need from your veterans. Julius Randle would be an excellent fit in Houston, Utah, Milwaukee, or Miami but not here. Get rid of him.

  115. I mean the construction of last year’s roster sucked but Julius Randle is just as much the cause of that as he is the victim of it. He’s an extremely limited player because he can only play C on offense because he can’t shoot but he can’t guard Cs or provide even cursory rim protection. Guys who can only play one role on offense but can’t guard the guys who play that role for the other team are what start to cause your fit issues. It’s not a coincidence that the one year Randle put up good box score #s in his career was the one year he shot over 34% from 3 when he’s at 27% for the rest of his career. Obviously it would help him if we had more shooting around him, but that’s true of basically every player and if you can’t be effective unless you’re paired with a shooting center it’s you who’s causing the roster issues – most Cs can’t shoot, that’s just the reality.

    The evidence that Randle is good is two years of high efficiency scoring in secondary roles on bad teams and…nothing else. There really isn’t a single other good thing you could say about him as a basketball player. It’s weird to me that Strat goes to bat for him, doesn’t seem like his profile of player at all.

  116. Steve Cohen y’all.

    I love the Mets’ core of young position players: Alonso, Conforto, Nimmo, Smith, McNeil, and Gimenez. JD Davis and Rosario less so, but those guys still have trade value.

    A good GM armed with a higher payroll should be able to put together a good Mets team quickly. The Mets led MLB in OPS+ last year, they have lots of guys who can hit.

  117. Its ironic that someone with the name Deefense would DEFEND a horrible DEFENDER like Randle.

    See, he knows how to play the game the right way. Correctly. What does that mean? It means not playing the game the wrong way. Your analytics will never understand what that means, because they play the game the wrong way, which is the opposite of the right way. You’ll understand someday when you’re older, which is not when you’re younger, which I was once, before I learned to be older, and correct, and not incorrect on these matters, which are not other matters, which I am also correctly assessing, which means to look at things and know that you are right about them because you see things the right way.

  118. Strat knows that Randle is not really a super useful player in the modern game, being an old-school big booty power forward who can’t stretch the floor or protect the rim. It’s an opportunity for Strat to take a shot at Steve Mills and Scott Perry because he thinks somehow that makes Phil Jackson look less like a bumbling incompetent boob.

    That said, there is some truth to Strat’s point: the Knicks also used Randle in a ridiculous fashion. He’s not as bad as he appeared to be as a Knick. I’m just not sure what’s a good role for Randle on a good team: bench scorer who can exploit mismatches against smallball 4’s? I’m not sure if that even really works because Randle struggles so badly with perimeter defense.

    There’s only a year left on Randle’s guaranteed contract, so whatevs. Let him play out the string then dump him. Wasn’t the worst signing ever, but wasn’t really very good either.

  119. They will give Randle, just like the other Kentucky boys, a shot to turn thing around with his old position coach. I’m sure it will go quite well.

  120. ***They will give Randle, just like the other Kentucky boys, a shot to turn thing around***

    “The Kentucky Boys” need Daniel Boone, Jack Daniels, Colonel Sanders, and Mitch McConnell on board if the Knicks are really gonna turn this shit around.

  121. Strat knows that Randle is not really a super useful player in the modern game, being an old-school big booty power forward who can’t stretch the floor or protect the rim. It’s an opportunity for Strat to take a shot at Steve Mills and Scott Perry because he thinks somehow that makes Phil Jackson look less like a bumbling incompetent boob.

    Isn’t the straighter line to talking about how Perry and Mills suck just acknowledging that Randle is just not a very good player and we most likely only signed him because he averaged 20 points a game?

  122. i liked randle with the lakers, thought he did even better with the pels, comes to the knicks, and well – knick kind of stuff ensues…

    hopefully we have a front office and coaching staff we can trust a bit more…that’ll definitely make evaluating players in our laundry a whole lot clearer…

  123. Randle was coming off of two promising years, and with the Pels he dramatically increased both his 3PAr and 3pt%. Most were lukewarm on the signing once it was clear that the 3rd year was a team option, and the deal marginally less than originally thought. It was not a terrible signing at all in a vacuum, just bad in the context of so many other bad deals. The 3pt% just wasn’t real, I guess.

  124. someone better start talking basketball – or, i’m going off the rails on a crazy train…

    fuck it, why wait…

    i forgot who mentioned it, but – really looking forward to checking out The Last Kingdom…you all generally kill it on tv and movie recs…

    it was funny, even knowing garth ennis was behind The Boys, it still took me until the second season to really match up some of the similarities to the Preacher series…something happened that totally reminded me of the absurdity of “the Tom Brady” episode, which i loved…

    recency bias being what it is: the boys, preacher and legion are some of my favorite shows ever…actually going back through some of the preacher and legion episodes now…

    i tried reading both the preacher and walking dead graphic novels – but, the art just really turned me off…the art in the boys is a little cartoonish for me also, but, it’s not a deal breaker…was gonna buy and read the boys graphic novels until i realized there’s dozens of them and they’re like $20 something dollars a piece…yikes…

    in other life stuff – finally finished my ballot today…wtf is up with the wording on all the different propositions and measures – that is some of the most ambiguous writing i’ve ever come across…

  125. Randle was coming off of two promising years, and with the Pels he dramatically increased both his 3PAr and 3pt%. Most were lukewarm on the signing once it was clear that the 3rd year was a team option, and the deal marginally less than originally thought. It was not a terrible signing at all in a vacuum, just bad in the context of so many other bad deals. The 3pt% just wasn’t real, I guess.

    It’s funny how much credit I gave them at the time for just getting a third year team option (not technically a team option, I know, but it’s basically a team option). I didn’t even want Randle (for the main reasons we all know – he is best suited to be a small center and doesn’t play good enough defense to play center and the Knicks already had Mitch), but I was just so impressed at a little bit of competency involving the team option that I probably gave them more credit than they deserved for a player I didn’t want them to sign for big money (I think Randle is the type of guy who can’t hurt if he’s a bench guy, but once you pay him big money, that means he’s going to be a big player for you and that is no bueno).

  126. Even though Christian Wood is a different animal, I have some of the same concerns about him. Dude had 500 minutes of NBA action before last year, and you’re probably going to have to pay somewhere around $40-60 million to find out if his 1325 minutes this year are for real.

  127. Which is why Christian Wood is a bad bet for a team like ours. He’d probably be a good fit in Washington or Dallas but not New York where defenses would key in on him nightly and take away what he wants to do. If there’s any player we should be looking to add, it’s RFA Malik Beasley. If Minnesota takes Anthony Edwards, they won’t need Malik Beasley and probably shouldn’t commit huge money to Beasley when they already have Russell and Towns on big money deals. Beasley takes and makes a ton of threes and would fit well with the young group we’re putting together.

  128. And I just looked up Malik Beasley and see he’s actually facing a legal case because he pointed a rifle at a family and had two pounds of weed in his home. Great.

  129. ***Even though Christian Wood is a different animal, I have some of the same concerns about him. Dude had 500 minutes of NBA action before last year, and you’re probably going to have to pay somewhere around $40-60 million to find out if his 1325 minutes this year are for real.***

    Yeah. This guy makes Jerome James’ pre-Knicks resume look robust.

  130. Udoka Azubuike just registered the highest standing vert jump for a center in combine history (37 inches). He’s also 7’ tall with a 7’7” wingspan.

  131. christian wood is a bit different than randle…. he has a much more stable skillset… he leverages his size and athleticism and doesn’t depend on his dribble which is both a strength and weakness for randle….

    i’m still pretty high on randle…. i do think it was a worthy gamble except giving him the green light and free reign on the offense was a big mistake…. he does need a pg and a functional offense to get him in more efficient opportunities instead of trying to create them for himself…. if we get that then he can be something…..

  132. The main question with Randle is: is the 3pt shooting for real? If he can’t defend the rim, defend in space OR shoot 3’s, he’s a dime-a-dozen player.

  133. i think that’s a bit too simplistic…. there aren’t many frontcourt players that can create shots period and score efficiently…. ben simmons doesn’t do any of that and he’s a pretty valuable guy….

    the thing with randle is that he’s definitely not that…. but some approximation of that player is a worthy starter in this league… he wasn’t that guy last year but he’s young enough with foundational skills that he could figure it out…. he’s kind of in that zach randolph career track but there aren’t guarantees he figures it out…

    but the point is that out of the available choices out there it wasn’t all that bad a gamble to take… and it still isn’t…. what are we doing with the cap this year that prevents us to do anything?

  134. c’mon now, I know we all tend to see the knicks through poop colored glasses, because they’re the knicks and all, but it wasn’t all bad with julius…

    most nights he was the most physical guy out there on the court, mostly on one side of the court…he has some nice power drives to the rim…

    he actually was second on the team in assists, led the team in turnovers of course, still – I blame fiz for a lot of that…the front office for putting together such a shitty fitting roster…

    it seems clearer and clearer, thibs and the team really need a veteran NBA starting type point guard this year…

  135. Kanter is plenty physical too,. Neither guy is worth 8 figures in today’s game, unless Randle hits 3’s at 35%.

  136. ess-dog: Udoka Azubuike just registered the highest standing vert jump for a center in combine history (37 inches). He’s also 7’ tall with a 7’7” wingspan

    But does he have a 15 footer?

    Those seem like good measurable to me

  137. On Macri’s podcast, Jonathan Wasserman said based on everything he’s heard his best guess is the Knicks wind up with Okoro. He tends to be pretty dialed in when it comes to the draft.

    I’ve already said my piece on Okoro, it’s highly doubtful he’d be my choice unless 1-7 goes absolutely disastrously for us. The strengths are real but I’m just not sure how tenable complete non-shooters are in the current NBA, especially wings.

    It’a interesting that he’s pretty polarizing as far as statistical models go. I’ve seen one that loves him and one that hates him. Most guys either have a statistical profile that models like or don’t like so he’s unique in this way. It makes some sense given that, again, his statistical strengths are pretty eye popping (2PT%, FTr) but his weaknesses, well, are too (just about everything else).

    I suppose there’s something to be said about how it’d be a relief of sorts that we, um, definitely did not draft based on fit. So there’s that.

  138. Okoro is very interesting. It doesn’t look like his shot is totally broken, but it’s a long way from inspiring confidence. The ledger is so tilted towards offense these days that it seems like an unnecessary gamble. What I really like about Okoro beyond the obvious is his ability to finish equally well on both sides of the basket.

    Knowing Thibs, he’s obsessed with the defensive approach to modern basketball. In a way, the Lakers were largely a defensive team that crushed smallball/7SoL opponents with size. Doesn’t hurt to have two all-time great 2-way players, but there was something to the defensive approach. If you can defend the 3 and the rim, and bully smaller teams into foul trouble, maybe you can grind out wins without great shooting. Okoro sort of fits that model.

  139. In the high PnR-heavy NBA, being a multi-positional defender that can switch, hedge, recover, body up…think Marcus Smart, Jaylen Brown, Andre Iguodala, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, etc…is extremely valuable. None of those guys were known as shooters coming out of college. Only Kawhi has really developed into a plus 3pt shooter. Yet all are extremely valuable in today’s NBA. You can squint and imagine Okoro in that mold. Sure, he could be the next Stanley Johnson, but that could be true about anyone in the top 10 in this draft.

  140. All that said, I don’t think there is any inside info worth taking seriously at this point. So much seems to depend on what the top 7 do…

  141. They are all so “blah” to me that I’m fine with pretty much whoever they choose. Provided it is not Cole Anthony.

  142. I’m not big on Vassell, Hayes, Williams or Anthony (who seems to be safely out of the picture) but would be okay with pretty much everyone else. Even if we wind up with one of those four I’d hope that the scouts saw something that I didn’t.

  143. Donnie Walsh:
    ***Even though Christian Wood is a different animal, I have some of the same concerns about him. Dude had 500 minutes of NBA action before last year, and you’re probably going to have to pay somewhere around $40-60 million to find out if his 1325 minutes this year are for real.***

    Yeah. This guy makes Jerome James’ pre-Knicks resume look robust.

    And then there’s the very real risk that, once he gets PAID, he ceases to work hard and give a crap. That’s gotta be one of the hardest issues to evaluate when giving a young guy a big contract.

  144. I’m not big on Vassell, Hayes, Williams or Anthony (who seems to be safely out of the picture) but would be okay with pretty much everyone else. Even if we wind up with one of those four I’d hope that the scouts saw something that I didn’t.

    Oh yeah, Williams would annoy me, too. So him and Anthony.

  145. I’m not going to deny that there are very legitimate concerns about Wood, but a few things to consider:

    -If Bobby Marks is to be believed, his contract might not be as big as I thought.

    -He had an impressive college profile that had some of us wanting to give him a UDFA contract back then.

    -The sample size is small, but as djphan alluded to earlier a lot of the things he was doing can’t really be the product of luck. Sure his 3PT shooting could regress, but he shot over 79% at the rim while taking 41% of his shots there (I’d be cautiously optimistic about the fit with Mitch, who takes 92% of his shots from there).

    There would be a good amount of risk, but you don’t get the opportunity to sign a 25 year old who just put up numbers like he did for less than the max (or at all, really) very often.

    I’m on board with straight up not signing anyone until we’re confident in a drafted core, but if you assume that’s not going to happen Wood seems like one of the better targets (depending on the contract of course).

    Even if you want to adhere to that kind of asset maximization strategy, you could make an argument for signing Wood. If he plays at, say, 75% of what he showed this past season I think he’ll be *extremely Strat talking about Courtney Lee voice* moveable for a pick anytime we want.

  146. Like any signing, it depends on the price. Anything in 7 figures is a no-brainer (not gonna happen) and anything over Randle money is a no-brainer the other way. $15mill AAV is probably a fair starting point. If he gets significantly more than that in this market, god be with him.

  147. The lead-up to the election is killing me. It gives all indications of a Biden blowout…especially since 2/3 of the 2016 total have already voted. Heavy turnout would seem to favor Biden. Still, it’s nerve-racking as hell.

  148. The lead-up to the election is killing me. It gives all indications of a Biden blowout…especially since 2/3 of the 2016 total have already voted. Heavy turnout would seem to favor Biden. Still, it’s nerve-racking as hell.

    Don’t worry. In 1937 some really smart guys on Wall St invented “short selling”. I haven’t heard anyone on the far left threaten to disallow capital flight out of the US (yet). So no matter what side you are on you can still bet against the country or take your chips and cash out. Once the pandemic is over you can even find a new home where the people are on the same page as you. If you are really lucky, they won’t televise Knicks games in your new home. :-)

    Seriously, imo not much is going to change either way. Both parties are made up of corrupt incompetent immoral idiots. It’s just a matter of who is doing the lying, stealing, and dumb things in which sectors of the economy.

  149. Besides contract size, years left and how good a player is….is there a type of player that seems to be more moveable at the deadline for a pick? Like is a stretch 4 more moveable than an SG? Obviously very player is different but just curious if anyone has looked at the trade deadline deals of the last four or five years to see what type of players tend to go.

  150. Provided it is not Cole Anthony.

    You say this like you don’t know you’re the only Knicks fan for whom (negative) magical thinking actual works.

  151. in case anyone is still jonesin’ for pro baseball…the Korean Baseball wildcard game is on EPSN tomorrow…..can’t wait!

  152. Trump still refuses to accept how efficient the corner 3 is. And other things.

    Somebody sent me a text a few days ago, “I am so tired of next week.” Sums it up.

    Time to get this over with. I can’t take any more weirdo extended family types sending me Biden pedophile memes.

  153. ptmilo:
    Both parties are made up of corrupt incompetent immoral idiots.

    i guess someone had to pickup the baton from bobby neptune…kind of miss some of his rhetoric…had more bite than strat’s spread the peanut butter…everyone is inherently a dirt bag shtick…

  154. also…all 6 halloween movies were on fx or syfy last night…not sure …had consumed a whole bottle of some sangiovese…but I think now…the Rob Zombie remake might be my favorite…he uses a lot of the same actors from his other movies…Devils Rejects is my favorite…

  155. no doubt there’s a strong argument for nihilism…

    the first president i was really jazzed about was reagan, i had a roommate at school with his poster on the back of our door…the military was coming out of a dark period and he was a shining light…

    clinton had me excited again…i thought that was so cool when he played the sax on arsenio…plus, he had like a genius brain and the ability to still communicate with anyone…

    i didn’t hate the bush’s, but, i didn’t agree with their politics…barrack obama though – i’m like a fanboy…

    it’s so revealing that our country’s reaction to the first african-american president was to deny a woman the office and select a white nationalist game show host…

    i was pretty devastated when hillary loss…honestly though – i really didn’t think he could do all that much damage…ha, joke’s on me and my ignorance of the powers of the president and the depravity of people…

    good chance the republican party could be buried for about a decade as a result of trump waking up the “whole” electorate…i don’t know if that’s a good thing, or a recipe for future chaos…

    too much to hope for, but – getting the white house and congress pointed in the same direction with a sense of fdr kind of purpose – could do a lot of good for the country…still have to address future voting rules and the judicial system…man, who knows – maybe we’ll even get our roads and rails fixed…

    i don’t know how they’ll do it: eliminating cannabis as a schedule 1 drug, or, just decriminalizing its use and possession at the federal level – but, weed stocks could get a very nice bump in the next year or so if joe gets in…

  156. it’s a smorgasbord of bad horror films on tonight…just finished up “Seed of Chucky”…a personal favorite..

  157. I’m sort of ok with a John Wall trade if it nets is at least two top-ten 1sts and a good youngish player.

    It’s a 3-yr contract, right? Honestly, the Knicks won’t be anywhere close to competing for at least another 3 years, and having Wall eat up that money will keep the Knicks from making some other stupid, pointless signings like Portis, Randle, etc.

    This would give us something like 15 picks through 2023, mostly 1sts — a real rebuild!

    Yeah, it’s a lot of new bodies, but that’s what the g-league is for. Plus, if he’s healthy, you at least have a competent pg for a few years so you don’t have to reach on a Kira Lewis type instead of just going bpa.

  158. Now that horror film season is over, check out The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix. Outstanding 7 show mini-series.

    And RIP to Sean Connery. I caught all his James Bond movies in the theater back in the day. If you want to see a quirky film, try John Boorman’s Zardoz with Connery as Zed. It’s both great and awful in a special way.

    17 days until the draft!

  159. ess-dog: It’s a 3-yr contract, right? Honestly, the Knicks won’t be anywhere close to competing for at least another 3 years, and having Wall eat up that money will keep the Knicks from making some other stupid, pointless signings like Portis, Randle, etc.

    RJ’s contract is up at that time. If he turns into a player worth keeping, we’ve effectively waived our chance to sign multiple superstars to pair with him.

    3 years from now is a long time. By that point we should know if our multiple picks strategy has worked out and should be looking to add a superstar or 2 through FA.

    I don’t expect a superstar to come to NY in that time frame, but it only takes 1 player to drag along his friend and immediately transform the Knicks into a contender. Giving up the opportunity to sign multiple superstars for 3 years is giving up one of the few avenues to contending.

  160. Yeah, that Wall contract is more than a “tough pill to swallow.” It’s more like a handful of pills to swallow…

    I’d be surprised if the Knicks are willing to rent cap space for more than one year at this time. They may be hoping to be major players in free agency after this next season, for better or worse.

  161. Brian, as distraction from the shitshow that’s coming over the next few days, can you do a poll about which prospects we like best, or whether we’d prefer to stand pat at 8, trade up, or trade down? I mean, we’ve hashed this stuff out a ton already, but I really need something to dwell on that is not… [gestures at world around him].

  162. ess-dog: the Knicks won’t be anywhere close to competing for at least another 3 years, and having Wall eat up that money will keep the Knicks from making some other stupid, pointless signings

    Ugh. I’m not sure which is lengthier – dog years, Trump years, or Wall years. Whatever the perceived long-term benefits of taking on Wall’s contract, Knicks fans would age an awful lot over that 3-year time span.

    JK47: Strat’s a nihilist

    Is this really a Thing? The other day I asked a guy at work if he’d voted yet. His response: “I don’t vote. Both sides suck, the system is broken and needs to be completely torn down. Voting only perpetuates it. I like to think of myself as a positive nihilist who wants to see this broken system destroyed to make way for positive change.”

    This was the first time I’d ever heard any mention of “Positive Nihilism.” I just figured it was something he’d come up with on his own. Now I see it suggested that Strat may also be an adherent of the same movement. Is it possible that this “Positive Nihilism” is, in fact, the QAnon of the bothsidesuck crowd?

  163. Is this really a Thing? The other day I asked a guy at work if he’d voted yet. His response: “I don’t vote. Both sides suck, the system is broken and needs to be completely torn down. Voting only perpetuates it. I like to think of myself as a positive nihilist who wants to see this broken system destroyed to make way for positive change.”

    I see this line of thinking a lot among some of my more radical left friends, who assume that whatever rises from the ashes of the “destroyed” system is going to be some wonderful utopia where all of their progressive dreams come true. This is, of course, moronic.

  164. I just watched “What the Constitution Means to Me” on Netflix. I hadn’t even realized that abolishing the Constitution was a thing people discussed.

    It’s been a long four years. I don’t know I can blame anyone for thinking whatever they think but they sure as shit should vote.

  165. Z-man, here’s what’s new in Portland:

    https://imgur.com/a/KMpRP1h

    We still have suburban folks (who suckle at the Fox News teet) who think that the city is a warzone, which, haha, it’s not. We still have protests going on, and the far-right is showing up to make their rural, minority voices heard. The President of the United States is still calling this city a rogue antifa state, which is hilarious, and stupid, and most importantly, evil. Fuck Donald Trump and William Barr to hell.

    Oh, and I got a new guitar, which sounds awesome, and have been perfecting my sourdough crust, and made gyoza and shallow fried them, and bought a bottle of Lagavulin 16Y for my wife, who has been nursing thumbs in the bathtub while reading Cloud Atlas and Gilead. I’m about 250 pages into a massive, authoritative Beatles biography and am continually shocked at some of the details of their early personal and professional lives. John Lennon, for instance, was either going to be a huge rock and roll star or an aimless, go-nowhere loser, but nothing in between. The man had talent and drive, but man, he caught some lucky breaks early on.

  166. Oh, and I got a new guitar, which sounds awesome

    What kind of guitar? We just put a down payment on a house so it’s gonna be a while until I can buy some gear, so let me live vicariously through you.

    My guitar arsenal:
    American Fender Strat, 2006 (the Ariel Pink guitar)
    American Gibson Les Paul Traditional, 2016
    Rickenbacker 4005 Bass, 1968 (my one super valuable vintage piece, played this on the Yves Tumor record)
    Acoustic Black Widow, no serial number, 1970’s (weird rare Japanese guitar, designed by Semie Moseley)
    Gibson Firebird, 2016, modded with upgraded tuners and bridge
    Epiphone Sheraton, 2019 (decent cheap Chinese hollowbody, would love to upgrade to an ES335 someday)
    Martin D28, 2018
    Martin DXK2, strung in Nashville tuning
    Fender P-Bass, Japanese, 2017 (Japanese Fenders rule)
    Kay cheapie pawnshop guitar, circa 1960’s

    Wish list:
    American-made Telecaster
    Jazzmaster, Japanese made would suffice
    Gibson ES335
    80’s-style shred guitar with Floyd Rose tremolo so I can play along with Van Halen records

  167. JK, please allow me to ask a naive two-part question as someone who enjoys music but has no gift for playing it:

    1)About how many guitars does a professional need? I understand that you need different ones for different kinds of music (as you allude to above, the shred guitar would be ideal for Van Halen), but is your collection large, small, or about average relative to your peers? My brother-in-law plays bass and rhythm guitar in a few bands in his spare time, and has, I think, 4 guitars total.

    2)Do you ever consider selling off one of the current ones in your inventory to pay for a kind you don’t have yet, or would robbing Frampton to pay McCartney, so to speak, be defeating the whole purpose of the endeavor?

  168. I think I have a pretty average collection.

    In general you want a single-coil Strat/Tele style guitar, a humbucker guitar (Les Paul/SG), a good acoustic guitar, and a hollowbody, that would be kind of the minimum to cover most of the bases. Then if you also need to play bass guitar, that’s one or two more you’d need. On my TV show gig, the palette of sounds is almost all guitars, so I bought the Japanese P-Bass and the hollowbody because I just needed those sounds for this particular show.

    I’ve almost always regretted it when I have sold gear in the past… I sold a couple of vintage synths that have appreciated a lot in value and I really wish I had them instead of the $800 I got for them at the time. I also sold a Roland Space Echo that haunts me to this day. If you buy the right stuff, music gear is actually not a bad investment. The good stuff holds its value and then some. I still have my Roland Juno 6 synth that my parents got me for Christmas in 1984 and it’s worth like $2K now. I almost sold it for a few hundred bucks several times.

  169. What kind of guitar? We just put a down payment on a house so it’s gonna be a while until I can buy some gear, so let me live vicariously through you.

    Click above link for me butchering the solo in “Just What I Needed.”

    Eastman SB55/V, which is a ’55 Les Paul Jr. copy made by a company that does really solid ES-335 copies, but is primarily a violin builder. Have wanted a LPJr. for a long time since I’m a big Paul Westerberg guy. Found a like-new Eastman on Craigslist for $1k, so I went and played a couple $1500 Gibson versions at a Guitar Center and was disgusted by the action and flatness of the old-school fretboard radius. Showed up to the CL meet and played one lick and handed over the cash. It is an incredible value at $1200 MSRP. They were so popular in a limited run that Eastman’s bringing them back at $1500. Still worth it. One of the fastest playing guitars I’ve owned, and I usually gravitate toward modern necks with a vintage look.

    My current collection:

    2003 Martin D-15 (steel acoustic)
    Cordoba C5 (cheapo nylon acoustic)
    Rickenbacker 360-12 in Jetglo
    Fender Jeff Beck signature 2004 in Olympic White
    Eastman SB55/V
    Fender P-Bass 2004 American

    I need a 12-string acoustic and a guitar with humbuckers to round things out.

    Vox AC15 with Alnico Blue
    Orange AD30HTC with an Avatar cab with a pair of Weber Blue Dogs (American-made Alnico Blue copies)

    I added a photo of my pedalboard too. I’m five years ahead on the housepoorness, so I’m back to splurging on toys.

    Alan, the biggest effect on guitar sound is in the pickup, and there are three main types:

    1) single-coil (single magnet), so think the classic “hot” Clapton or Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughn tone
    2) humbuckers (double magnet, which cancels noise out), like Jimmy Page and Slash
    3) P-90s, which are just between the two — popular in punk and rock

  170. I’m about 250 pages into a massive, authoritative Beatles biography

    Jowles,is that the one by Spitz? I’ve read pretty much every book about the Beatles, and that is the definitive one.

    Although Shout by Philip Norman is pretty good too.

  171. jinx

    Yup, Spitz. He’s a fantastic stylist, too. It’s quite flowery prose at times, but I do want to get a better sense of the setting, so his florid descriptions of Liverpool and Hamburg have been welcome.

    And yeah, JK47 is right that a semi-hollow guitar (like the BB King-famous ES-335/345/339) is also necessary for a complete collection. They are incredibly expensive though, so it’s either pro’s pros or collectors. The rest of us buy cheaper (sometimes better) copies like Eastmans, or actually-cheap copies like Epiphone Dot or Casino (the famous John Lennon guitar) and throw expensive humbuckers or P-90s into them. I’ve owned an Epiphone Sheraton and a Gretsch G5120 with upgraded pickups, and they go a long way for the money.

    I bought a Juno 60 for $500 in CT, hadn’t been touched in its ATA flight case for twenty-five years. Sold it for $2000 a couple years later, regret it every day.

  172. where are most guitars made?

    here in the US?

    i see you mentioned some japanese models a few times, are they noted for instrument manufacturing in general? any countries that really excel in making musical instruments?

    i gotta be honest: acoustic black widow sounds like a pretty cool name for a guitar…

  173. 2)Do you ever consider selling off one of the current ones in your inventory to pay for a kind you don’t have yet, or would robbing Frampton to pay McCartney, so to speak, be defeating the whole purpose of the endeavor?

    For me, it’s all about use. I play my $2000 MSRP Jeff Beck Strat all the time because it’s just a well-made, playable instrument, and makes me sound like a god. I had a $800 Gibson SG with P-90s that looked awesome, and sounded great, but the flat neck and higher action made it hard for me to want to pick it up over the Strat. So I sold it.

    I don’t regret many gear sales, because I usually have an eye for what’s worth keeping. Contrast that with the guitarist in my old band, who had not one but TWO Klon Centaurs, which are the holy grail of guitar overdrive/boost pedals. Bought ’em for a few hundred bucks and found himself cash-strapped, sold them for a pittance. Now they go for $2500-3500 on eBay. For a long time, people couldn’t clone them (make their own copies) because the circuit board had a black goop on it to prevent IP theft. Some industrious folks figured out how to reverse engineer it, and now everyone and their mother makes a “Klone.” I bought a similar pedal for $80. There’s about a couple dozen pairs of ears on earth that could honestly put a $200 Klone and a $3000 Klon side-by-side and pick them out. I sure as hell wouldn’t want to be one of them.

    As with most things, talent/ability/hard work > gear. A lot of bedroom-player dudes blow money in pursuit of tone, when they really should be spending time practicing. Your gear just has to be “good enough” to not be an issue, like if your guitar saddle is sharp and your strings break mid-song, or you can’t intonate the guitar so it is in tune whether you’re playing low chords or high leads. Once you reach that threshold, it’s all up to your fingers.

  174. where are most guitars made?

    here in the US?

    All over the place. And quality varies. The Gibson Les Paul Juniors that I played were made in the USA and sounded and played like shit. My Eastman is made in China and sounds like the rasp of the god of pure rock and roll tone.

    Fender’s quality took such a nosedrive in recent decades that some companies like G&L popped up and blew them out of the water for the same price range. As my impossibly-talented cousin-in-law Jim says, “If it sounds good, it is good.”

  175. Gibson Firebird, 2016

    I found one on sale in a Guitar Center, sunburst Firebird V. I’ve wanted one for 15+ years. Can’t believe I walked away from it. I don’t think there’s a cooler looking guitar (or bass, re: Thunderbird). I believe I could grow a few inches just having that thing in my hands on stage.

  176. how much time practicing/playing did you guys do growing up…is playing more like a monthly, weekly or daily activity…

    that’s pretty cool, most of us are seriously jonesing for live music, and you just go grabbed some gear and have at it :)

  177. Hey, not bad on that “Just What I Needed” solo! For a while when I used to have spare time I learned some Steely Dan solos… I learned “Kid Charlemagne” and the intro to “Don’t Take Me Alive” and then we had a baby and that was the end of that particular hobby.

    I have that Shallow Water pedal too, there’s really nothing quite like that. I do a lot of remote recording at home for various producers these days and whenever I submit tracks with the Shallow Water it gets the “what the fuck is that sound” comment. In a good way. It’s great for when you want something *like* a chorus pedal but you don’t want to go all Pat Metheny.

    I also have the Strymon Big Sky but that gets used mostly on my synths. Great pedal, totally worth the $500.

  178. That’s my thought. I got it open box for $380 and it will do just about any guitar or synth (or vocal send) I can think of. Of course they just released the Night Sky, so maybe I’ll drop another $500 on a toy no one will hear but me…

  179. Spent a couple of grand on a mid-life crisis ’79 ES-175 a few years ago. Probably haven’t played it enough to justify the expense but it’s a thing of beauty. And add just a touch of chorus and it’s pure Pat Metheny.

  180. Do you know what chorus he used? CE-2 or Dimension C is my guess. Weren’t a lot of options when he was being a weird mainstream jazz fusion star.

  181. Pat Metheny is such a chorus snob that he actually does not even use chorus pedals. He uses two amps, and two digital delay pedals that are offset by a few milliseconds from each other. That produces his chorus effect.

    Seems like a lot of work but you gotta admit that’s a pretty nice chorus sound

  182. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Do you know what chorus he used? CE-2 or Dimension C is my guess. Weren’t a lot of options when he was being a weird mainstream jazz fusion star.

    I seem to recall he actually used multiple delays rather than a straight chorus pedal. I remember because teenage me was always bummed that my even with the front pickup tone rolled all the way down and running thru a CE-2 my Strat sounded nothing like Metheny.

    oops- JK beat me to it.

  183. The Boss CE-2 is the Mac DeMarco chorus pedal. I really want one of those, you can get the original ones for a couple hundred bucks. I love Boss pedals, my trusty HM-2 Heavy Metal pedal is one of my all time favorites. The Super Overdrive is great, the compression sustainer thing is great, the old red analog delay is great.

    Prince used Boss pedals extensively.

  184. Z-man:
    I’m not big on Vassell, Hayes, Williams or Anthony (who seems to be safely out of the picture) but would be okay with pretty much everyone else. Even if we wind up with one of those four I’d hope that the scouts saw something that I didn’t.

    I’m OK with Vassell and Hayes but I’m OK with a lot of the choices at 8. I’m not OK with Williams and Anthony. I’m more interested in moving up from 27 or 33. There’ll be some quality players in the 2nd half of the first round.

    TheClashFan: Yeah, that Wall contract is more than a “tough pill to swallow.” It’s more like a handful of pills to swallow…

    It is. I don’t want any contracts more than 2 years long. And I don’t want a player, known for his speed, who last played in 2018 and ruptured his Achilles. Speaking of a fist-full of pills…

    Addicted To The Knicks: check out The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix

    Saw it (very good) and signed up to play on Chess.com today. I won my first game :)

  185. I have a Martin D-35 circa 1998…3-piece back, a little bass-centric. I’m just a soft-rock/folk standards-level musician, mostly strumming and simple finger-picking.

  186. I just bought a DS-2 Turbo Distortion and BD-2 Blues Driver to go with my Strat.

    Don’t ask me why. I have no use for pedals because I don’t perform publicly at all, but my neighbors just figured out I play guitar and have a Strat to go along with my acoustic. lol

    I’m improving. I’d say I’m squarely in the intermediate range now. I occasionally actually play a really nice lead to an 8 bar or 12 bar blues to go along with all the times I land on a bad note and remember I still suck.

    It’s the one positive that’s come out of the lockdown and pandemic. I play every day now for at least 15-30 minutes. I tries to add something new to my playing almost every week. As the weeks and months passed, I slowly became less bad. I still struggle with some aspects of picking technique. I try to alternate pick as much as possible, but some fast patterns feel more natural in other ways. It’s a struggle between what I think may be better long term and what works better now, Next year it’s on to slide and some Robert Johnson and hopefully improved fingerstyle using alternate base better.

  187. In the 70s in my early teens I saved every penny I could come by to buy a Fender Telecaster. It took a long time, but I finally got the $200 together. Eventually I lost interest and sold it to a friend to finance my desire to make a large bet on a horse (that lost). He eventually sold the guitar for well over 1K. God only know what it’s worth now. Even if the horse won I lost.

  188. I have one guitar that I can barely play, but I’m very happy to have it, and I enjoy practicing with it. it’s an odd brand that I bought because I really like the way it played. It’s a Burns. The guitar store owner was quite enthusiastic about it. Apparently, Burns is a good British brand that was made in Britain After WWII. Some company bought the brand and tried to revive it by making good quality modern guitars. I have one of the modern ones that is recently made. It has three pickups and an extra selector switch so you can use any combination of pickups.

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