Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Stay the course

“Don’t panic.”

-Douglas Adams, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

 

Are the Knicks in bad shape right now? The answer is actually a bit more multifaceted than it might seem.

As any philosophy major like myself would suggest, allow yourself to take part in a thought experiment in which you possess a time machine. Now, let’s use that machine to travel back to the end of the 2009, the season in which the Knicks finished the year 23-59.

You happen upon a despondent Knicks fan who’s ready to burn his Antonio McDyess jersey and denounce his Knicks fanhood altogether. You immediately stop him and tell him what’s transpired over the past few seasons (maybe leaving out the whole Jeremy Lin part, because apparently that requires a whole book to explain). You tell him that the Knicks are currently tied for second in the Eastern Conference, but are dealing with a few injuries to crucial players.

However, as soon as these thoughts exit your mouth, you realize you’re talking to a guy who just watched one of the most historically inept seasons in Knicks history. And you’re complaining about being second in the Eastern Conference? First-world problems.

I understand the unbridled anger stemming from Monday night’s poor excuse for a basketball game; one in which the Knicks left their three-point shot in New York and Mike Woodson left any sliver of common sense he had on the plane. What unfolded was surreal in the worst kind of way. I can’t say it any better than Robert Silverman did in his recap/indictment of what was one of the stupidest displays of coaching that many of us had ever witnessed.

But do I think that Woody deserves to be fired for it? Absolutely not.

A firing at this point in the season is essentially waving white flag on the season. How would you explain that to your time machine buddy who’s all pumped that the Knicks are finally above .500? In all honest, it would probably be easier to explain firing Woodson to him than it would be to Carmelo Anthony –lethal scorer; two-time gold medal winner; 2003 NCAA Most Outstanding Player, won’t get his knee drained because he’s afraid of needles

The past few seasons have showed that the Melo-era Knicks are always prone to a regular season of chutes and ladders, and long winning streaks deteriorating into losing streaks as quickly as they came. Unfortunately, another sign of the times has been an unceremonious first round exit from the playoffs.

Talk of a coaching change (Phil Jackson, Phil Jackson, Phil Jackson) should be shelved until after the season, not a month before the postseason. Desipte his latest crimes against humanity, Woodson has done enough to earn his second stab at the playoffs as the Knicks’ head coach.

In short, I’m urging something that doesn’t get preached a lot in the hyperbole-happy New York media market — patience. While the writings on the wall is becoming more evident that this year will not be the one to end the ‘Bockers 40-year title draught (see: The Miami Heat), let’s try and at least keep our heads attached to our necks.

72 comments on “Stay the course

  1. DRed

    If you don’t want panic and knee jerk reactions then I’m afraid you’ve come to the wrong internet.

  2. jon abbey

    who the hell is saying Woodson should be fired? there’s no choice but patience, patience as another season inevitably goes down the toilet.

    also, I wish there was something that gave an electric shock to anyone mentioning a title in conjunction with this team, players, media, fans, anyone. the only title they’re getting this year is Best Basketball Team in Manhattan.

  3. Matt Smith

    Jesus H. Christ – can we stop jumping down the throats of any poster who isn’t Jim, Bob, or Mike? Commenters on this blog have an awful habit of bashing anything that isn’t done perfectly. People don’t hit it out of the park on their first go, and your (unconstructive) criticism sure won’t make them any better. Trust the editors to do their job, and remember you’re on a FREE, fan-driven site. If you’re not a fan of what’s being written, write something yourself, or comment in a way that helps the writers improve.

    Anyway – good stuff G_Rapp, I largely agree.

  4. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    “As any philosophy major like myself would suggest, allow yourself to take part in a thought experiment in which you possess a time machine.”

    A couple constructive tips about this awkward lede:

    1) This sentence’s grammar is incorrect. What you mean to say is, “As any philosophy major such as myself would, allow yourself…” The “you” of your sentence is not suggesting; it’s allowing. You’re suggesting that I imagine. I am not the one doing the suggesting. Does this make sense? It’s a common error, one you see on the internet all the time. I.e. “As a doctor it hurts me to see bad advice given.” (Wrong.) “As a doctor, I am hurt by bad advice given on the internet. (Right.) The prepositional phrase has to relate to the subject of the sentence.

    2) No one cares that you’re a philosophy major unless it’s either relevant to the prospective task (and in this case, one need not be a philosophy major to imagine an alternate reality; Skip Bayless is currently living in one and I’m positive he’s never even touched the simplest of Socratic dialogue) or you’re using it to entertain, a la Bobby Silvermansteinowitz’s self-obsessed self-loathing (which, to most, is hugely entertaining). Some people make a living off of talking about their personal lives as they intersect with sport (Drew Magary, Bill Simmons) but saying, “I’M A PHILOSOPHY MAJOR, GUYS,” will not do much to establish your ethos or pathos.

  5. jon abbey

    Matt Smith:
    Jesus H. Christ – can we stop jumping down the throats of any poster who isn’t Jim, Bob, or Mike? Commenters on this blog have an awful habit of bashing anything that isn’t done perfectly. People don’t hit it out of the park on their first go, and your (unconstructive) criticism sure won’t make them any better. Trust the editors to do their job, and remember you’re on a FREE, fan-driven site. If you’re not a fan of what’s being written, write something yourself, or comment in a way that helps the writers improve.

    this is an answer to me? talk about knee jerk, I wasn’t even criticizing the post.

  6. Aharon

    jon abbey: this is an answer to me? talk about knee jerk, I wasn’t even criticizing the post.

    I’d like to think it was in reaction to another post (sadly deleted) in which an anonymous poster created a new 37-letter expletive to express his displeasure that the season of 2008-9 was ever brought up again.

  7. Owen

    I thought the post was ok.

    I just don’t agree with the central premise –

    we were bad, we are now above average, we ought to be happy with that.

    I think if you told said person in 2009 that we were going to pass on Lawson and build the oldest, second most over the cap team in the NBA, and win 51 games in a historically weak Eastern Conference, i don’t think he would have been all that happy with it.

    We could be just as good, much younger, with more cap flexibility if we had actually stayed the course rather than going all in on Melo and Stat.

  8. lavor postell

    I’m simply not understanding the doom and gloom everybody has surrounding this team. We more or less are tied in to the Melo-STAT-Chandler triumvirate until the summer of 2015. Worst case scenario we lose in the first round all three years and our best case scenario is riding some hot three point shooting into a legitimate run at Miami at some point in those years.

    We have a little bit more trade flexibility next season with Camby’s third year being non-guaranteed. Also as much as some may hate Felton his cheap, multi-year contract makes him a much more attractive trade chip than I think people believe. Shumpert obviously to some teams is worth a first rounder, so clearly there is value out there for him regardless of any of us may think.

    Again we can sign somebody to a mini mid-level deal, a deal which should actually under the new CBA have some real value as teams try and avoid the multiyear 10-12 mill per deals (sans Denver). I mentioned in another thread that OJ Mayo signed this past summer for such a deal and we essentially got JR to agree to a 2-year deal for that amount, though slightly less. Worth noting that both of those guys have player options for the second year, so if they outperform you’re looking again.

    Either way under the new CBA I’d expect most teams to build in three year cycles as the Knicks are doing with the harsh penalty of the repeater tax looming. Either way I still have no problem with the Melo trade or the STAT signing, because now we know how it all unfolded, but at that time nobody knew how the lockout/CBA talks would turn out.

    Outside of getting Lebron in 2010 there was no definite way of building a championship squad for the Knicks. We rolled the dice and maybe we don’t get the ultimate pay off, but it’s also not Isaiah/Marury era by any stretch of imagination and there might actually be a slight chance we can acquire a player in the next 2 years to take us over the top.

  9. EB

    The guy we sign will probably be Baron Davis who has been hanging around the knicks for the year. Not that enthused really.

  10. stratomatic

    I don’t think the bad loss in Golden State had much to do with the mood of more sophisticated Knicks fans. It’s didn’t for me.

    I think most astute fans knew before the start of the season that the Knicks had maneuvered themselves into a tough spot by building a capped out team with a lot of old players on the downside, injury prone players, and very little upside or ability to improve going forward. You simply do NOT do that unless you are already a clear cut legitimate contender for the title now.

    But if you look at this roster, they look at lot more like a team that can get into the 2nd round and perhaps the conference finals with a little luck, but that’s as far as it goes.

    They clearly aren’t as good as Miami, OKC, SA, or LAC. They may not be as good as MEM, IND, or perhaps even DEN. They probably aren’t as good as a 100% healthy LAL or CHI team either.

    It was comically stupid to give up the future for a team with a 1 year window (2 if we really lucky) that can’t win it all.

    All that said, even though many people understood that long ago, they hoped their analysis was wrong. But as the evidence started piling up that the Knicks are too old, tired, injured, and not good enough to compete with the best teams, the realization they are locked into this team until 2015 became less theoretical and more reality. That’s why everyone is freaking out. The Knicks are more or less doomed to early playoff exists until 2015 and then have to start a rebuild process from scratch then.

    So when can we have hope again? 2016? 2017? 2018?

    Yea, there are some fans out there that freak out every time they lose or go bad for awhile, but that’s not significant. What’s significant is that it’s entirely justified for the most sophisticated fans to be freaking out now because they were right.

  11. BigBlueAL

    So only fans who knew all along this was a horrible plan and therefore are the smart, sophisticated fans are the ones who should be freaking out right now?? Gimme a fucking break. You guys just love being miserable.

  12. Owen

    Lavor – That might be the most optimistic account of the Knicks situation I have ever read on this site, barring the threads discussing whether Eddy Curry was on the verge of becoming the second best center in the Eastern Conference.

    Look, the only player worth his contract is Chandler. And he isn’t a spring chicken. Carmelo just isn’t anything close to an elite player. We are the ninth best team in the NBA and dropping like a stone, looking up helplessly at the Rockets and the Nuggets, who are in the position we should be in.

    We shouldn’t be where we are now. We should be young, talented, with oodles of cap space.

    Maybe we don’t get Lebron. But we don’t even have a punchers chance. And there are no reinforcements riding to the rescue.

  13. stratomatic

    “Outside of getting Lebron in 2010 there was no definite way of building a championship squad for the Knicks.We rolled the dice and maybe we don’t get the ultimate pay off, but it’s also not Isaiah/Marury era by any stretch of imagination”

    There are rarely “lock” scenarios to the championship, but I think a key element to all this is “hope”.

    The Knicks could easily be the Denver Nuggets.

    Who would you rather be today?

    1. The Knicks

    2. A team that is very young, with a lot of players with upside, with almost all reasonable contracts, that is enormously fun to watch, with likable high character individuals, with assets that can traded or packaged if a high level player becomes available, extra draft picks, etc..

    The teams may be similar on measures like point differential, record etc.. now, but there is no comparison in terms of who is better positioned for the long term to at least have a shot at winning a title with a couple of moves or development.

  14. stratomatic

    BigBlueAL:
    So only fans who knew all along this was a horrible plan and therefore are the smart, sophisticated fans are the ones who should be freaking out right now??Gimme a fucking break.You guys just love being miserable.

    That’s not what I meant.

    I meant that very often in sports, the average fan often gets overly excited after a single big win or panics after a single bad defeat. Those wins/losses are just part of the normal every ebb and flow of a season where there are random ups and downs (sometimes stretching for weeks). So that kind of emotion is rarely justified.

    This is a different situation.

    It’s not just average fans that are freaking out prematurely.

    It’s more level headed stats guys that are looking at the team soberly, honestly, and without emotion and realizing that their analysis was right….and that’s not good or fun.

  15. EB

    We are tied for second in the East. We do not play the teams in the West during the playoffs. We got where we are without stat. We still have yet to see much out of Camby or Martin and Shump is still recovering from injury. Kidd has looked half alive again and we have been playing a brutal stretch of games without many off days.

    Things look bad, but they aren’t so bad. The only teams that are clear favorites against us are the Heat and a bunch of teams out west. We could pull that with some hot shooting and the right matchup. No we aren’t the favorites but 31 teams aren’t. Success isn’t a binary of championship and failure. A playoff run is still in the picture, not such a bad outcome.

  16. Douglas

    stratomatic: I don’t think the bad loss in Golden State had much to do with the mood of more sophisticated Knicks fans. It’s didn’t for me.
    I think most astute fans knew before the start of the season that the Knicks had maneuvered themselves into a tough spot by building a capped out team with a lot of old players on the downside, injury prone players, and very little upside or ability to improve going forward.

    “Sophisticated”? “Astute”? What a horrible choice of words. Excuse me while I find the nearest wastebasket and retch in it.

  17. BigBlueAL

    See thats where I differ, I dont look at this team as a stat headed guy trying to predict the future and be right or wrong about my predictions, I look at it as a fan who is enjoying the team’s most successful season in 12 years. The Knicks have a chance to finish with the 2nd best record in the East for the first time since 1995 and should win their first division title since 1994.

    They might not be doing so with a roster and group of players you want them to be doing it with but me personally I dont care, Im just happy to be rooting for a good team again. Im also not dreading the next 2 years since at the least I know I will be watching a playoff team for the next 2 years and quite frankly as a Knicks fan Ive become used to watching crap teams with no hope so I am not offended by having to watch this current group. This is the best group of players Ive been able to root for since Van Gundy was here for crying out loud and he left in 2001.

    Am I happy with all the moves made in the past few years?? HELL NO. But Im not going to constantly whine about them and think about what if scenarios. Like Melo likes to say “it is what it is” and that is the best team I have been able to root for in over a decade. Since my expectations for the Knicks have been shot to crap during the past decade its not championship or bust for me as a Knicks fan, I get that from the Yankees. Maybe Im wrong or naive or whatever but Im more than happy being able to root for a good Knick team again. Sure I wish they were better and no Im not expecting a championship from this group but thats fine with me. It probably shouldnt be but Im tired of being miserable as a Knicks fan so Im not going to complain much about this team who is having a pretty good season so far.

    End of rant :-)

  18. EB

    The Knicks versus the Nuggets comparison is not objective. The Knicks never had an opportunity to be the Nuggets so why compare the Knicks to only the Nuggets? There are 32 teams in the league and ninth best or whatever we are isn’t bad.

    Yes we could have drafted Lawson and Farieed but so could a lot of other teams who now wish they had. We could of still had Gallo but Gallo alone hardly makes us a good team. Wilson Chandler is not that good, Mozgov is useless and we got Felton back anyway. Why compare us to the Nuggets?

  19. Frank

    stratomatic: They clearly aren’t as good as Miami, OKC, SA, or LAC. They may not be as good as MEM, IND, or perhaps even DEN.

    Seriously -for all the doom and gloom, do you know what our record is against these teams?

    MIA –> 2-1
    OKC–> 0-1 on last second shot that didn’t go, playing without Melo.
    SA –> 2-0
    LAC –> 0-1
    MEM –> 0-1
    IND –> 1-2

    That’s 5-6. It’s not 1-10. Even in this injury-riddled year with 40 year old guys playing, we can play with any team in the league.

    Are we going to win a championship? Probably not, almost certainly not. Teams that are actual contenders probably never lose to a team like Golden State by 30. But neither are Memphis, Indiana, or Denver unless either they make a huge trade or something horrible happens to OKC/SA/MIA/LAC, like a major injury or plane crash.

    Like Lavor said, it’s not like we’re stuck with this exact team forevermore. We’ve got mini-MLEs to use each year. We’ve got our draft pick this year (but not next year). We’ve got some trade pieces like James White’s nonguaranteed 2nd year, Camby, etc. At the risk of sounding like a hopeless optimist, this team is not that far away from actually being considered a real contender.

  20. BigBlueAL

    Also I would like to add I really have no problem with what stratomatic or owen believe. Its what makes this site great the different opinions and view points Knick fans have. I just dont like the tone of how fans like myself who just basically root for the team and are enjoying this current group are somehow not sophisticated/astute and are blinded by fluke results or whatever.

  21. BigBlueAL

    Frank: Seriously -for all the doom and gloom, do you know what our record is against these teams?

    MIA –> 2-1
    OKC–> 0-1 on last second shot that didn’t go, playing without Melo.
    SA –> 2-0
    LAC –> 0-1
    MEM –> 0-1
    IND –> 1-2

    That’s 5-6. It’s not 1-10. Even in this injury-riddled year with 40 year old guys playing, we can play with any team in the league.

    Are we going to win a championship? Probably not, almost certainly not. Teams that are actual contenders probably never lose to a team like Golden State by 30.But neither are Memphis, Indiana, or Denver unless either they make a huge trade or something horrible happens to OKC/SA/MIA/LAC, like a major injury or plane crash.

    Like Lavor said, it’s not like we’re stuck with this exact team forevermore. We’ve got mini-MLEs to use each year. We’ve got our draft pick this year (but not next year).We’ve got some trade pieces like James White’s nonguaranteed 2nd year, Camby, etc.At the risk of sounding like a hopeless optimist, this team is not that far away from actually being considered a real contender.

    You forgot to mention 1-0 vs Denver so thats 6-6 vs the teams mentioned.

  22. Douglas

    BigBlueAL:
    See thats where I differ, I dont look at this team as a stat headed guy trying to predict the future and be right or wrong about my predictions, I look at it as a fan who is enjoying the team’s most successful season in 12 years.The Knicks have a chance to finish with the 2nd best record in the East for the first time since 1995 and should win their first division title since 1994.

    They might not be doing so with a roster and group of players you want them to be doing it with but me personally I dont care, Im just happy to be rooting for a good team again.Im also not dreading the next 2 years since at the least I know I will be watching a playoff team for the next 2 years and quite frankly as a Knicks fan Ive become used to watching crap teams with no hope so I am not offended by having to watch this current group.This is the best group of players Ive been able to root for since Van Gundy was here for crying out loud and he left in 2001.

    Am I happy with all the moves made in the past few years??HELL NO.But Im not going to constantly whine about them and think about what if scenarios.Like Melo likes to say “it is what it is” and that is the best team I have been able to root for in over a decade.Since my expectations for the Knicks have been shot to crap during the past decade its not championship or bust for me as a Knicks fan, I get that from the Yankees.Maybe Im wrong or naive or whatever but Im more than happy being able to root for a good Knick team again.Sure I wish they were better and no Im not expecting a championship from this group but thats fine with me.It probably shouldnt be but Im tired of being miserable as a Knicks fan so Im not going to complain much about this team who is having a pretty good season so far.

    End of rant :-)

    Blue, those are my exact feelings more or less lol.

  23. stratomatic

    BigBlueAl,

    I don’t have any problem with fans that are enjoying the season and the success the team is having this year. I just require a different set of circumstances to remain happy even if we lose.

    My goal is to win a championship and anything less than that is a FAIL. I am probably older than most people here. I was around for Reed, Frazier, Monroe, Bradley etc… I want that experience again, but this time as an adult instead of a young teenager that thought it would happen every few years.

    It doesn’t have to be this year or even next year, but I have to see a path to that possibility. Since I do not see that path with this team, I don’t see my goal to winning a championship being fulfilled any time soon. So that really puts a damper on my spirits. I’d rather be the Rockets struggling for the 8th seed than the Knicks right now. It’s not so much the players (though that’s part of it for me), but you can see the “path” for the Rockets.

  24. jon abbey

    sorry, December 9.

    also, we’re not playing any of those teams in the first round of the playoffs, those are the teams that matter.

  25. d-mar

    stratomatic:
    BigBlueAl,

    It doesn’t have to be this year or even next year, but I have to see a path to that possibility. Since I do not see that path with this team, I don’t see my goal to winning a championship being fulfilled any time soon. So that really puts a damper on my spirits.I’d rather be the Rockets struggling for the 8th seed than the Knicks right now. It’s not so much the players (though that’s part of it for me), but you can see the “path” for the Rockets.

    Um, as long as LeBron James is living and breathing, who exactly in the NBA is “on the path to a championship” other than Miami over the next 3-5 years? The Rockets? The Nuggets? C’mon dude.

  26. stratomatic

    Douglas: “Sophisticated”? “Astute”? What a horrible choice of words. Excuse me while I find the nearest wastebasket and retch in it.

    Perhaps that was poor choice of terms or the intent was not communicated well.

    I watch baseball, football, and hockey, but I don’t have dozens of spreadsheets for those sports where I calculate player values so I can adjust point spreads, calculate point differentials for each team adjusted for home/away, strength of opponent and rest. I don’t keep track of injuries in each game for every team, and piles of other stats.

    I’m not a particularly astute fan of those other sports and my opinions are not based on a lot of hard data and analysis even though I watch a lot of games.

  27. nicos

    Do people really want to be the Nuggets? They’ve got two really good contracts- Faried and Koufos- everybody else is at best market value or overpaid. Lawson’s TS (.544 this year) has gone down every year and he still hasn’t shown he can run a half-court offense consistently- he’s a steal this year and maybe he’s worth what they’re paying him going forward based on his ability to push the ball but he’s hardly a bargain. Gallo a decent efficiency, medium volume scorer who’s a poor rebounder and at best a wash on defense- he’s overpaid but maybe he improves and earns his salary. Javale McGee at 10m is a joke. Chandler is overpaid, Iggy is overpaid and there’s no guarantee that he’ll resign at a reasonable number. They’re capped out if they resign Iggy and more importantly in a league where superstar free agents have been able to choose their destinations, Denver is hardly a market where players really want to go. They have the makings of a second round team for years to come- solid but unspectacular. Maybe everyone improves and they get to the WCF as some of the older teams step aside but I’d say the Knicks are as likely to see a conference final (if by some miracle everyone gets healthy this year it’s still a real possibility) as Denver. Now Houston? Yeah I’d rather be Houston…

  28. stratomatic

    d-mar: Um, as long as LeBron James is living and breathing, who exactly in the NBA is “on the path to a championship” other than Miami over the next 3-5 years? The Rockets? The Nuggets? C’mon dude.

    It will be tough for anyone, but there are paths inside a maze and there are dead ends. Besides, I don’t see Miami as a lock against either OKC, SAS, or LAC this year and Wade is getting older and is injury prone. Next year is another year for the younger teams with upside and flexibility to fill out weaknesses and hope Miami stakes a step back.

  29. BigBlueAL

    stratomatic:
    BigBlueAl,

    I don’t have any problem with fans that are enjoying the season and the success the team is having this year.I just require a different set of circumstances to remain happy even if we lose.

    My goal is to win a championship and anything less than that is a FAIL.I am probably older than most people here. I was around for Reed, Frazier, Monroe, Bradley etc… I want that experience again, but this time as an adult instead of a young teenager that thought it would happen every few years.

    It doesn’t have to be this year or even next year, but I have to see a path to that possibility. Since I do not see that path with this team, I don’t see my goal to winning a championship being fulfilled any time soon. So that really puts a damper on my spirits.I’d rather be the Rockets struggling for the 8th seed than the Knicks right now. It’s not so much the players (though that’s part of it for me), but you can see the “path” for the Rockets.

    I actually have no problems with this point of view and since you are old enough to have seen the Knicks win it all I can understand the frustration alot more. The glory years for me are 1992-2000 lol.

  30. Owen

    Yeah, again, what Stratomatic said.

    I have no problem with anyone who is enjoying our spell of success. I probably should live in the moment rather than be looking two years out. But I don’t really care about being the second best team in the East. I want a team that can honestly contend for a title. And there is no way this team can.

    We could be the Nuggets so easily. We could have Lee, Lawson, Gallo, and Faried on this team and a crapload of cap space and draft picks.

    We could be the Clippers. They were in position to make the trade for Chris Paul that turned their franchise around.

    The thing is, what happens in 2015? Who exactly are we going to throw all that cap space at? My fear is that Dolan is still in love with Melo and rolls his contract over then. Or gives him an extension. And this crap basically never ends…..

  31. BigBlueAL

    Also the NBA is not a sport where many teams have a realistic chance of winning it all. I mean 2 franchises have won almost half the NBA titles ever plus Jordan has 6 of the other ones. Thats why to me its hard to have a championship or bust mentality in the NBA because realistically only a handful of teams (if not less) truly can have championship aspirations.

    The NFL and MLB is alot different because the playoffs in those sports are much more of a crapshoot. In that sport just being a playoff team is enough of a reason to believe in possibly winning a championship, not so in the NBA.

  32. thenamestsam

    I think the paragraphs about whether Woody should be fired or not are a bit of a straw man, but overall I agree with the premise. While I understand the frustration with the fact that we’re really not that close to winning a championship, it’s enough for me right now that the Knicks have taken a step in the right direction.

    For a team that spent more than a decade trying to win a single playoff game to win a series would be a pretty significant accomplishment. And if our current standard for stupid moves is trading for Carmelo Anthony I think that it’s a hell of an improvement over Steve Francis or Jerome James.

    Yes, the owner is going to continue to be an issue but the Knicks have made more competent and quality decisions in the last 2 years than in the 10 that preceded them. Grunwald seems to be a very talented GM and we’ll take our shots in a weak conference the next couple years and then see what choices he makes when given the chance to fashion a team completely in his image. I don’t see a championship on the horizon, but the skies are much, much brighter than they were a few years ago.

  33. daJudge

    Agree with thenamestam, BBA and the tenor of the article in general. Also, while perhaps not relevant to the piece itself, I enjoyed the reference to the author’s college major. I just think it’s cool for a college student writing on this site and putting himself out there. Particularly with this audience. Keep up the good work kid!

  34. ruruland

    Owen:
    Yeah, again, what Stratomatic said.

    I have no problem with anyone who is enjoying our spell of success. I probably should live in the moment rather than be looking two years out. But I don’t really care about being the second best team in the East. I want a team that can honestly contend for a title. And there is no way this team can.

    We could be the Nuggets so easily. We could have Lee, Lawson, Gallo, and Faried on this team and a crapload of cap space and draft picks.

    We could be the Clippers. They were in position to make the trade for Chris Paul that turned their franchise around.

    The thing is, what happens in 2015? Who exactly are we going to throw all that cap space at? My fear is that Dolan is still in love with Melo and rolls his contract over then. Or gives him an extension. And this crap basically never ends…..

    Yes, the Nuggets are contenders for an NBA championship. You are a one-track mind, Owen, and there’s absolutely no depth to your understanding on any topic we try to bring up.

    Let’s look at it from a conceptual framework that Owen may understand, win shares.

    The Knicks are getting a combined 16.8 win shares from Chandler and Melo’s contracts, 33 million combined.

    Chandler is performing, from a win shares perspective, above max salary. Melo, from a win shares/48 perspective, is performing better than a player earning 13 million, at 6.7/.167.

    Let’s take the Nuggets highest paid players. Iguodola, at 13.5 million, has contributed 4.2 win shares at .092 ws.48. Gallinari, 10 million, has contributed 6.2 win shares at .153/48. McGee, 10 million, has contributed 3.9 win shares.

    The Nuggets top salaries: $33 million

    The Nuggets top salaries win shares: 14.3

    The Knicks top salaries: $33 million

    The Knicks top salaries win shares: 25.5

  35. ruruland

    The Knicks top salaries should be 16.8.

    From a win shares perspective, it doesn’t really matter who makes the max salary and who makes $13 million.

    The Knicks have a very good win shares/salary ratio with Chandler and Melo.

    Obviously, Owen, as dim-witted as he may be, would agree that it would be fair to give Chandler a max deal.

    From a ws perspective, it would make more sense for Melo to be making $13 million than it would for Chandler, and vice-versa. But it really doesn’t matter.

    The Nuggets are getting more surplus value from the rest of their roster than the Knicks in large part because Amar’e Stoudemire has been injured.

    Let’s look at 2015, when those on this board are arguing by implication that the Nuggets will start to soar ahead of the Knicks, because they aren’t doing it now, and yes, variables like conference and sos matter.

    The Nuggets, a team that will not go into luxury tax which played a role in Melo’s decision to demand a trade, are on the books for the following salaries for 2015:

    McGee $12 million
    Gallinari $12 million
    Wilson chandler, $7 million
    Ty Lawson, $12 million
    The Nuggets will be one year away from either letting Faried go, or signing him to a big deal. If they re-sign Iguodola, there’s a good chance they won’t even be able to keep the team they have right now!

  36. ruruland

    stratomatic: Perhaps that was poor choice of terms or the intent was not communicated well.

    I watch baseball, football, and hockey, but I don’t have dozens of spreadsheets for those sports where Icalculate player values so I can adjust point spreads, calculate point differentials for each team adjusted for home/away, strength of opponent and rest. I don’t keep track of injuries in each game for every team, and piles of other stats.

    I’m not a particularly astute fan of those other sports and my opinions are not based on a lot of hard data and analysis even though I watch a lot of games.

    So, provide some of the numbers you have for the Knicks.

  37. Owen

    “From a win shares perspective, it doesn’t really matter who makes the max salary and who makes $13 million.”

    Um, what?

    This is so tortured. Chandler is underpaid so it doesn’t matter we are overpaying Melo? Agreed on the former.

    The Nuggets traded Carmelo and are a better, younger, deeper, cheaper team with a ton of flexibility. And I wish we were in their situation.

  38. Darrell H.

    stratomatic: BigBlueAl, I don’t have any problem with fans that are enjoying the season and the success the team is having this year. I just require a different set of circumstances to remain happy even if we lose. My goal is to win a championship and anything less than that is a FAIL. I am probably older than most people here. I was around for Reed, Frazier, Monroe, Bradley etc… I want that experience again, but this time as an adult instead of a young teenager that thought it would happen every few years. It doesn’t have to be this year or even next year, but I have to see a path to that possibility. Since I do not see that path with this team, I don’t see my goal to winning a championship being fulfilled any time soon. So that really puts a damper on my spirits. I’d rather be the Rockets struggling for the 8th seed than the Knicks right now. It’s not so much the players (though that’s part of it for me), but you can see the “path” for the Rockets.

    Come on. The NBA was completely different back then. I enjoyed those years as well but for a totally different reason. It was much more of a team game than what we have now. The current NBA is a prima donna league where a few great players dominate. Compounding that is the new clique mentatility the stars have. Lebron James is a pussie. He was afraid he wasn’t good enough to ever win a championship without joining up with fellow prima donnas. Bleh. If the Knicks win a championship over that team, it will 100000000 times more satisfying. Do the Knicks have a shot at a championship this year. Absolutely. Is it probable? Nope. So be it. What more can you ask for when the NBA has teams/players that play with a stacked deck? I refuse to let all the negativism swallow me up. Do as you please, I guess!

  39. ruruland

    Owen:

    The Nuggets traded Carmelo and are a better, younger, deeper, cheaper team with a ton of flexibility. And I wish we were in their situation.

    They don’t have all that much more flexibility now, and they have much less flexibility in two years. Have you actually looked at their salary table?

    The point is quite simple from a win share perspective, the combination of Chandler and Melo is over-performing relative to the league and their combined salaries. Chandler made it quite clear part of the reason he came to New York was because of Melo and Amar’e.

    There are ways win share does not pick up value which makes it a fundamentally flawed metric, but if that’s what you’re basing assessments on, then it’s not the top-heaviness of the Knicks roster that is problem. And, again, we’re talking about the second best team in the Eastern conference. The top of the roster is the Knicks strength.

    It’s the lack of production given injury from another max salary slot, and a little bit of under-performance elsewhere..

    What would the Nuggets look like if $20 million of their team was out for 50 games?

    From a WS perspective, Amar’e was giving the Knicks. 200 ws/48 prior to injury, giving the Knicks the top 3 players an average over .200 ws.

    Those top three players on court production is only trumped by the Spurs, Heat and Thunder for highest three paid players.

  40. Owen

    To you, any metric that tells the truth about Melo is flawed. Honestly, I am not sure B-ref is even rating him as a power forward right now, which gives him a significant bump.

    And the answer to your question about the Nuggets is they can lose any player on their team and have a good backup ready and probably not miss a beat.

    Of course, I guess the same thing can be said about the Knicks and Melo. They haven’t missed a beat without him.

    Anyway, I have said enough. Everything I have written today virtually guarantees a historic, blow off the doors night from Melo that makes me look insanely stupid.

    So you can thank me for that.

    As I always say, I can’t wait for Melo to turn into the player you keep telling us he is. Hopefully he starts becoming that guy tonight…..

  41. ruruland

    Owen:
    To you, any metric that tells the truth about Melo is flawed. Honestly, I am not sure B-ref is even rating him as a power forward right now, which gives him a significant bump.

    And the answer to your question about the Nuggets is they can lose any player on their team and have a good backup ready and probably not miss a beat.

    Of course, I guess the same thing can be said about the Knicks and Melo. They haven’t missed a beat without him.

    Anyway, I have said enough. Everything I have written today virtually guarantees a historic, blow off the doors night from Melo that makes me look insanely stupid.

    So you can thank me for that.

    As I always say, I can’t wait for Melo to turn into the player you keep telling us he is. Hopefully he starts becoming that guy tonight…..

    This is it, eh? Nothing about the Nuggets supposed cap flexibility?

    Remember what happened in the playoffs last year?

  42. nicos

    Owen:

    The Nuggets traded Carmelo and are a better, younger, deeper, cheaper team with a ton of flexibility. And I wish we were in their situation.

    I still don’t see the Nuggets having a ton of flexibility- They’re capped out next year and have an owner isn’t willing to pay the luxury tax- lest we forget one of the reasons Melo wanted out of Denver was that it was clear ownership wasn’t willing go over the cap. They have a couple pieces with real trade value- Lawson (whose trade value isn’t nearly as high with the new contract) and Faried (who at the end of the day is still a 6’7″ power forward with real defensive issues). I like Koufos a lot too and I’m sure he has some value. As for Gallo- Redick is basically a better Gallo and Orlando couldn’t even get a first round pick for him because no one wanted to pay the 9-11 million he’s going to want next year. You can find guys like Chandler easily at a lower price. Maybe Iggy’s attractive if you he signs for 12m per but that isn’t likely to happen. Do you have the pieces to make a big trade for a marquee free agent? Sure, considering what Orlando and NO got for Howard and Paul but the reason none of the many teams that could have offered more did so was because they knew they couldn’t re-sign them. And there’s the real sticking point with Denver- They’re a small market team that players know is unwilling to spend and while I’m sure it’s a great place to live, most players experience of it is sucking wind in the third quarter because it’s so hard to breathe. I’m not sure Karl is any kind of draw at this point either. How many elite free agents have signed to a small market team who didn’t draft him? I’m not sure why a team that looks like it’ll be very lucky to make a WCF in the next three years is constantly being used as the best comparison for what might have been.

  43. Thomas B.

    Matt Smith:
    Jesus H. Christ – can we stop jumping down the throats of any poster who isn’t Jim, Bob, or Mike?

    What about me? My posts are universally loved. I’m witty, insightful, funny, and above all else humble.

  44. Owen

    Who cares what happened in the playoffs last year?

    The nuggets are flexible. There is no contract on their team that is untradeable or anything close. They were getting heavy trade interest for months from people trying to pry some of their pieces away.

    I don’t love WChan but 7 million is nothing crazy. And paying Lawson market rate seems pretty smart for a point guard of his caliber.

    You can’t seriously be argue that they aren’t in a much better position than us?

    You really sound like a disgruntled ex Nuggets fan who had no idea he’d be trading down when he made the switch and now just can’t face the truth.

    Plus, they are infinitely more fun to watch.

  45. ruruland

    To remind everyone, the Nuggets lost in the playoffs to a team with the lower srs the last two seasons, in large part because their transition offense was slowed and they lacked the ability to generate offense in the half-court.

    By default, Gallinari, Brewer and Miller were asked to produce more, which resulted in some pretty horrific offense, including Gallo’s .450 ts on single coverage

  46. Glew

    Why are people so quick to claim that the most obviously talented player in Melo is the problem right now? He was an MVP candidate for a large portion of the season. Chandler is great at what he does and is probably a top 3 center. However, he is very offensively challenged and centers are just are not as important as they used to be. Top Wing players are way more important in the current NBA.

    The knicks are really flawed by a mediocre coach who wanted to build the oldest team in the league. It’s no surprise a good majority of our team is either injured or seem to be permanently gassed. Many people predicted before the season this team would be good when healthy but that over an 82 game season it would be most improbable.

    The nuggets have tremendous upside and Lawson is a potential star but are they still going to get worked by the top dogs in the west? absolutely. It definitely sucks that we threw in that 2014 1st round in the melo trade. But the nuggets before and after the Melo trade have been and probably will remain in playoff purgatory. Not good enough to contend and not bad enough to blow it up. Melo is a bonified superstar and with the right roster and can surely be a major asset on a championship team.

  47. ruruland

    Thomas B.:
    If we had only matched the offer to Lin. That would have fixed everything.

    I actually think it would have been a positive difference. Lin doesn’t run pnr as cleanly as Felton, but his ability to push the ball in transition would have made the Knicks less reliant in the half-court.

    Naturally, Melo’s blamed for that as well.

  48. ruruland

    Owen:
    Who cares what happened in the playoffs last year?

    The nuggets are flexible. There is no contract on their team that is untradeable or anything close. They were getting heavy trade interest for months from people trying to pry some of their pieces away.

    I don’t love WChan but 7 million is nothing crazy. And paying Lawson market rate seems pretty smart for a point guard of his caliber.

    You can’t seriously be argue that they aren’t in a much better position than us?

    You really sound like a disgruntled ex Nuggets fan who had no idea he’d be trading down when he made the switch and now just can’t face the truth.

    I’m still a Nuggets fan. I predicted they’d win 55 games this year, for fuck’s sake. They’re a super entertaining team. But they aren’t built for the playoffs, and I don’t see how they make the jump to championship contender.

  49. Owen

    Nicos – I think you are wrong to discount the Nuggets chances of winning a title this year or in the next two. They have a lot of room to improve their defense. Everyone on their team is going to get better. And they are really good right now Not as good as the Spurs or Thunder. But good enough to seriously challenge the in a series.

    There is no reason that a +5 differnential team with everyone under 30 can’t tighten things up ang go to +7 next year. And there are a lot of ways the Spurs can get worse.

    It’s far from impossible. The Nuggets actually have the talent. And they have a general manager who seems to know what he is doing.

    Frankly, if they could shoot foul shots they would be there already.

    As for the other stuff, Reddick is not a better Gallo imo. He is actually pretty good, much better than I thought he would in his first year. i would far rather have either of them than Melo at the price. But I think he went from underrated to overrated pretty fast at the deadline.

    Gallo is almost as good as Melo this year. Like fractionally short. And he is what, five years younger and 9 million cheaper? And this has been Melo’s best year. To say that another way, the WS/48 Gallo has posted this year is better than any other year in Melo’s career. And that was after the most brutal first month to the season imaginable.

  50. Glew

    Aside from the coach and age of the players, Amare being owed 45 mill over the next 2 years is a major problem since the guy literally can not stay healthy and is very much a liability on defense even when he is healthy. He’s a great dude and all but his health is so frustrating. Chandler and Melo are awesome pieces to work around. Who do the nuggets have that are irreplaceable? Not sure of the rules but if we could buy out his contract or he does the knicks a favor and retires. Being able scoop up one or more young, healthy players with an upside that are worth more than the vet min in the off season that would be amazing.

  51. Owen

    “I’m still a Nuggets fan. I predicted they’d win 55 games this year, for fuck’s sake. They’re a super entertaining team. But they aren’t built for the playoffs, and I don’t see how they make the jump to championship contender.”

    So who are you rooting for tonight? The Knicks because we have Melo?

  52. ruruland

    Owen:
    “I’m still a Nuggets fan. I predicted they’d win 55 games this year, for fuck’s sake. They’re a super entertaining team. But they aren’t built for the playoffs, and I don’t see how they make the jump to championship contender.”

    So who are you rooting for tonight? The Knicks because we have Melo?

    I’m rooting for the Knicks because I’m more of a fan of Melo (which has allowed me to become a fervent Knicks fan) than I am of the Nuggets. I’m a lifelong Nuggets fan, however.

    But I’m a fan of players on both teams.

  53. ruruland

    Owen:
    Nicos – I think you are wrong to discount the Nuggets chances of winning a title this year or in the next two. They have a lot of room to improve their defense. Everyone on their team is going to get better. And they are really good right now Not as good as the Spurs or Thunder. But good enough to seriously challenge the in a series.

    There is no reason that a +5 differnential team with everyone under 30 can’t tighten things up ang go to +7 next year. And there are a lot of ways the Spurs can get worse.

    It’s far from impossible. The Nuggets actually have the talent. And they have a general manager who seems to know what he is doing.

    Frankly, if they could shoot foul shots they would be there already.

    As for the other stuff, Reddick is not a better Gallo imo. He is actually pretty good, much better than I thought he would in his first year. i would far rather have either of them than Melo at the price. But I think he went from underrated to overrated pretty fast at the deadline.

    Gallo is almost as good as Melo this year. Like fractionally short. And he is what, five years younger and 9 million cheaper?And this has been Melo’s best year. To say that another way, the WS/48 Gallo has posted this year is better than any other year in Melo’s career. And that was after the most brutal first month to the season imaginable.

    Again, these are statements of fact when you are actually speaking from a faulty conceptual framework.

    Again, you can continue to ignore the Nuggets playoff under-performance relative to regular season performance when speaking about ceiling.

    The Nuggets would be best served to leverage their depth to bring a player that can add more value in a half-court game.

  54. ruruland

    Owen:
    Nicos – I think you are wrong to discount the Nuggets chances of winning a title this year or in the next two. They have a lot of room to improve their defense. Everyone on their team is going to get better. And they are really good right now Not as good as the Spurs or Thunder. But good enough to seriously challenge the in a series.

    There is no reason that a +5 differnential team with everyone under 30 can’t tighten things up ang go to +7 next year. And there are a lot of ways the Spurs can get worse.

    It’s far from impossible. The Nuggets actually have the talent. And they have a general manager who seems to know what he is doing.

    Frankly, if they could shoot foul shots they would be there already.

    As for the other stuff, Reddick is not a better Gallo imo. He is actually pretty good, much better than I thought he would in his first year. i would far rather have either of them than Melo at the price. But I think he went from underrated to overrated pretty fast at the deadline.

    Gallo is almost as good as Melo this year. Like fractionally short. And he is what, five years younger and 9 million cheaper?And this has been Melo’s best year. To say that another way, the WS/48 Gallo has posted this year is better than any other year in Melo’s career. And that was after the most brutal first month to the season imaginable.

    Would you deny that Melo’s efficiency would increase (as it has in the past) if his usage decreased, and that his usage would decrease, if his teammates were more capable of creating offense?

    If so, why?

  55. Owen

    When has it increased? Are we really going to go back and data-mine to find a sample where things “worked” for Melo? That’s like the ultimate no-no of statistics you know…..

    He has been in the league for 11 years now. That’s a good enough sample for me. There is no player in history who has played that long, with such mediocre efficiency, then suddenly made the leap to being an efficient superstar. We are talking an entire career without even posting a 57+ ts%.

    He won’t be eilte-efficient because he never has been. It’s as simple as that. Those who can, do. Those who can’t?

    How many offensive superstars in NBA history have never posted above a 110 offensive rating?

    And as i said, it wouldn’t matter even if he suddenly started scoring at even that level. Because his track record of doing everything else on a basketball court – rebounding, defending, passing, screening, running the break, moving without the ball etc – is average at best.

    The last straw for me was last year, during the Jeremy Lin Experience. I realized Melo literally can’t play off the ball. He is that limited as a basketball player. Unless he keeps getting spoon fed 18 feet out or in the post like he has since AAU he is pretty much useless.

    The problem is, Melo is a lot closer to Joe Johnson than being anything like a star in this league. And we don’t have Al Horford and Josh Smith on this team. .

  56. nicos

    Owen:
    Nicos – I think you are wrong to discount the Nuggets chances of winning a title this year or in the next two. They have a lot of room to improve their defense. Everyone on their team is going to get better. And they are really good right now Not as good as the Spurs or Thunder. But good enough to seriously challenge the in a series.

    Come on- they’re 4 games under .500 on the road. I know they had a brutal early schedule but still. They’re clearly a big notch below OKC and SA and it’s going to take a lot more than an incremental improvement on defense to close that gap. You can put them in the same category as Memphis and the Clippers but both of those teams look much better able to play the slower pace you often have to play in the playoffs. If they stay in the 5th spot they’ll be underdogs in the first round. If everything broke right- say home court against a slow Memphis team and maybe San Antonio has an injury or two- just maybe they can make the WCFs.
    If the Knicks are fully healthy (and that means Amar’e too) then they’re probably even money to make the ECFs with or without luck. If Rose is back at 100% then that changes things but I’d say if the Knicks were fully healthy Indiana might be favored but not by much. I’d say the odds of the Nuggets having everything break right are maybe slightly more likely than the odds the Knicks are healthy but only slightly. And if the Knicks are healthy and lucky (LBJ sidelined with an injury) the Knicks would have a shot at getting to the finals. As I said, I’d love to be in the Rockets shoes- a playoff team already having a franchise player in place with the space to add another- but I think you’re overestimating Denver’s potential as a franchise.

  57. ruruland

    Owen:
    When has it increased? Are we really going to go back and data-mine to find a sample where things “worked” for Melo? That’s like the ultimate no-no of statistics you know…..

    The only time his usage decreased below 31.5, his efficiency increased to .568 (it went all the way down to 30.2). That, not coincidentally, was the same season he started alongside another above average usage guard/wing.

    That same year, Allen Iverson set a career high in efficiency on a career low in usage.

    You’d be an imbecile to consider both of those things to be coincidences.

  58. Owen

    I agree they are a notch below. Don’t think I suggested otherwise. And they would have to beat two great teams most likely, which makes it tougher.

    But there have been plenty of upsets in the playoffs that have been more surprising then the Nuggets beating either of those teams. The Warriors over the Mavericks? The Griz beat the Spurs two years ago right?

    And next year things can change more. They can definitely improve on defense. That’s the upside. Guys that age generally just get better. That’s how it works. It’s happening as we speak. Their last two months have been spectacular.

    But yeah, I don’t think the Nuggets will breakthrough this year. They just have the punchers shot we were hoping to have….

  59. ruruland

    Owen:
    When has it increased? Are we really going to go back and data-mine to find a sample where things “worked” for Melo? That’s like the ultimate no-no of statistics you know…..

    He has been in the league for 11 years now. That’s a good enough sample for me. There is no player in history who has played that long, with such mediocre efficiency, then suddenly made the leap to being an efficient superstar. We are talking an entire career without even posting a 57+ ts%.

    He won’t be eilte-efficient because he never has been. It’s as simple as that. Those who can, do. Those who can’t?

    There are but a handful of players in league history who’ve ever had usage as high as Melo’s. When Berri folks frame the usage and efficiency debate, they look at the entire league and its history and mix all the results instead of considering certain thresholds of usage, culling out predominately off-ball players instead of examining where the the proportion and distribution of shots starts to change.

    In other words, there is unlikely to be very much difference between a player who increases his usage from 17-21, or the other way around, because those kinds of shots aren’t going to fundamentally change.

    But from 21-28, or from 27-34? You are naturally inducing a higher percentage of inefficient shots in those large jumps, because, on the whole, the higher one’s usage becomes, the higher the percentage of self-created shots, the lower the shooting efficiency.

    Melo does most of his scoring at an extremely efficient rate, it’s the distribution and volume of shots he’s asked to shoot in inefficient areas.

    For example, Melo could simply cut out 3-4 isolation shots a game, still have a usage rate around 26-27, and his efficiency would skyrocket.

    This is the shot profile of an elite, apex offensive player:

  60. ruruland

    This is certain to be a post Owen will not respond to coherently:

    Melo is 4th in the NBA pick and roll ball-handling with 156 plays.

    Melo is 15th in the entire league in post scoring efficiency with 252 plays.

    Melo is No.1 in the league in pick and roll scoring as the roll man, albeit it at just 28 plays.

    Melo is 24th in scoring off screens.

    He is 28th in offensive rebound efficiency.

    He’s 47th in isolation scoring, which still puts him in the 12th percentile .

    He’s 72 in spot-up scoring, which puts him in the 18th percentile.

  61. flossy

    Glew:
    Aside from the coach and age of the players, Amare being owed 45 mill over the next 2 years is a major problem since the guy literally can not stay healthy and is very much a liability on defense even when he is healthy. He’s a great dude and all but his health is so frustrating. Chandler and Melo are awesome pieces to work around. Who do the nuggets have that are irreplaceable? Not sure of the rules but if we could buy out his contract or he does the knicks a favor and retires. Being able scoop up one or more young, healthy players with an upside that are worth more than the vet min in the off season that would be amazing.

    Even if his contract magically disappeared we’d be a whole $3m under the cap next year, so you’d better hope like hell he gets healthy.

  62. jon abbey

    Chandler is not just offensively challenged (and a total non-factor on that end more often than not), he is defensively inconsistent, a non-factor on that end for entire games as has been pointed out numerous times here this year. if Melo had the same effort level this season as Chandler has had, he’d be pilloried on the back pages of the tabloids a few times per week.

  63. Owen

    Well, i may be an imbecile.

    But even at that “peak” efficiency, Melo wasn’t that great. As i said, he doesn’t pass, doesn’t board, doesn’t defend, doesn’t run the break, doesn’t move well without the ball, doesn’t give 100%, and according to you doesn’t get a good whistle.

    He isn’t a complete basketball player. And it’s impossible to be elite by dominating just one facet of the game, something which, 11 years into his career, Melo hasn’t demonstrated his ability to do. (i know, the record is skipping)

    The problem with Melo is that his ceiling is 10 WS. His best season is 9.4. He has topped 8 once. But he looks like a 6-8 guy the rest of the way. And that is not worth anything like a max contract.

    Also, re Tyson Chandler, it’s total crap he came here for Melo. He came here because his wife wanted to be in Vogue and because he loves everything about New York. That I have on a good authority.

    You see, I have my nba sources too, not as good as yours I am sure though….

  64. ruruland

    Owen:
    Well, i may be an imbecile.

    But even at that “peak” efficiency, Melo wasn’t that great. As i said, he doesn’t pass, doesn’t board, doesn’t defend, doesn’t run the break, doesn’t move well without the ball, doesn’t give 100%, and according to you doesn’t get a good whistle.

    He isn’t a complete basketball player. And it’s impossible to be elite by dominating just one facet of the game, something which,11 years into his career, Melo hasn’t demonstrated his ability to do. (i know, the record is skipping)

    The problem with Melo is that his ceiling is 10 WS. His best season is 9.4. He has topped 8 once. But he looks like a 6-8 guy the rest of the way. And that is not worth anything like a max contract.

    Also, re Tyson Chandler, it’s total crap he came here for Melo. He came here because his wife wanted to be in Vogue and because he loves everything about New York. That I have on a good authority.

    You see, I have my nba sources too, not as good as yours I am sure though….

    Melo has the highest efg % on his passes the last three years, which is a testament to his ability to draw-double teams and create open 3-point shots. He is annually among the league leaders in hockey assists from non-point guards in hockey assists, due to his ability to tilt the floor.

    Over the course of his career he has rebounded above average for a small forward. this year’s he’s done a fantastic job blocking out larger opponents (face-guarding at times) allowing teammates to swoop for rebounds, somehow the Knicks are the top defensive rebounding team in the NBA and are a better rebounding team with Melo on the floor.

    He’s an inconsistent defender, but pretty good at times. He’s among the league leaders in defending post-ups, which is the most common play-type against him.

    You’re more childish by the post.

  65. Owen

    Your data mining gets more intense.

    Honestly, when Melo has a .200 on his B-Ref page, or anything substantially higher than Gallo, you will have something to stand on. Right now, you are just doing some pretty weak cherry picking on a ladder made out of bullshit.

    Again, there is more to being a good basketball player than how you rate on offensive set pieces. That’s what 11 years of data on Melo tells us.

    If you want to ride Melo all the way down to the bottom, that’s fine. I just hope the Knicks don’t. We can do much better.

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