Washington Wizards 114 – New York Knicks 96 – Game Recap (sort of)

Nine years ago I was a contestant at the Italian version of “Who wants to be a millionaire?”. I’ll tell you how it all went down.

I applied for consideration as kind of a joke between me and my girlfriend from that time. I got a call three days after applying: fifteen rapid fire questions about a vast array of subjects, ranging from extra easy to quite hard. I think I nailed 13 of them. “We’ll keep in touch, don’t worry”. And they did. After a week, they booked me a train to Milan to go and take their written test. It was something resembling a mid-term exam: 70 minutes to get 20 multiple answer questions and 12 open-ended ones about everything between “Who wrote *semi-obscure Italian song* and why?” to “Who won Serie A in 1985?”. I passed the test and the very same day there was a meeting with the show authors. Another batch of questions, a bit of small talk, and after 30 more minutes another step was taken towards tv stardom and unimaginable riches. But it wasn’t over! The last challenge before becoming a contestant was to endure a two hour and a half (not kidding) telephone conversation where they asked everything about anything until I was almost physically exerted to the point of dehydration – mind you, it wasn’t stressful; it was physically straining. You weren’t even allowed a bathroom break during the phone call.

Anyway, all went well and I got selected. For a month, nothing happened. Then there came a day when they called me and said “hey, are you free next Wednesday?”. Of course I wasn’t – I already had a vexing job, but whatever, chances like that aren’t a dime a dozen, so I made myself free. I went to Milan again to take part in the actual show, but nothing. The first day I didn’t get called to the main stage. This went on for another three days during the subsequent two weeks (once they even paid for accomodation since they needed for me to sleep in Milan as to already be there in the early morning – but again, nothing). Then, finally, on a fateful June 13th in 2011 I got my chance. I knew I would have: the most they can keep you waiting is five days, and I reached the limit right there. So I just had to “play” that day. And I did.

I won’t bore you with the actual questions, just let it be known that along the way there was this one: “Mordillo the dog eats only on odd days. How many times does he eat in March? (14, 15, 16, 17)”. Authors recommend you left and right to take your time in answering because seeing a contestant thinking out loud makes half the show. I’m good at talking sweet nothings, but I honestly didn’t see the point in treading water on such a stupid question, so I literally answered “Ok it’s 16, it’s good, let’s move on to the next question” before the host even had a chance to say anything. It has to be one of the top-10 most smug moments on national tv to this day.

Anyway, I got to the 10k question with the “phone a friend” lifeline still in hand. At the time, it was the 9th out of 15 questions to get to the top.

The question was this one: “During his adventures, which one of the following characters gets to step onto the island of the Busy Bees? (Pippi Longstocking; Alice; Pinocchio; Winnie the Pooh)”. Now, I didn’t know the answer for sure. Keep in mind that (at least in Italy) 30% of what you win in TV shows immediately gets paid in taxes, so I would have won “just” 7k if I answered correctly using the last lifeline (when you’re out of lifelines you’re already cooked – so that would have been my last step for sure). So I thought: will 7k change my life? No. Did I came here after all that (the selection process, the wait, the weariness) just to win 7k? Also, don’t bees make honey? And aren’t bears totally in love with honey? And isn’t Winnie the Pooh a bear?

I basically went for broke because at that time it looked like the only right thing to do: there was too much “work” done before that, I had no business going back home with a small sum. I had to keep my last lifeline at least for the 20k question. So I went in.

Needless to say, I lost. The correct answer (and using the last lifeline would have been extremely useful: it’s literally the first result when you Google “Busy bees”) was Pinocchio. So I went home with nothing apart from the aforementioned smug moment which will probably outlive me. Oh, I also snuck in a kinda dirty joke that pretty much nobody got. Yeah, I’m a riot.

But you know what? I never regretted it. Part of that is geography and family luck: my socioeconomic milieu is such that 7k really don’t change your life, so I could afford to lose them without blinking. But part of that is the nature of the game. You’re on national TV. If you’re lucky (and good) you probably get to participate three times in your life to such games. You can’t squander the chance just to take home small prizes. I feel like I had to shoot for the moon. I still do. I never regretted the choice.

After watching the last few games, and all in all the last few Knicks seasons, I’m pretty confident that Perry (and to a minor extent Miller) would have gone the last lifeline route. There’s value in self-restraint, and I appreciate it. But this doesn’t look like it. It looks like barely respectable mediocrity. Is this what we should get after 17 losing seasons in the last 20?

Case in point, another game in this terrible season.

Our Knicks fought decently in the first half, going into halftime up by four (while both teams were bricking everything in sight). The effort was uneven, and the minutes were even more than that. To compound the below-average minutes allocation, puzzlingly Miller chose to go with DSJ as the backup PG without getting Frank in as a secondary PG as well. DSJ went on to turn over the ball 4 times in 4 minutes. It was one the most pathetic outings at PG I can remember. Anyway, DSJ wasn’t able to do much damage because he played just six minutes total. I mean, he sucked so much that he actually forced Miller’s hand not to play him anymore during the second half. Even more discomforting, in the second half the wheels totally came off and the Knicks went at first down six, then down 15, and then down 20. They didn’t even try to retaliate: they were content sucking, as if it was their natural state of being. And maybe it just is.

When you lose by 20 at home to a bad team, you’d hope that your guys at least showed something in terms of promise and development, right?

TOTALLY WRONG.

RJ Barrett: 29 minutes, 16 points, 5 rebounds, 0 (!) assists, 5/16 from the field. At least he hit all six of his free throws, but it was a total stinker by the shooting impaired rookie. Here at least I have no gripes, he played a lot.

DSJ: retching

Frank Ntilikina: 12 minutes, 0 (!) points, 1 (!) rebound, 3 assists, 1 steal. When Frank posts line like this one, I can’t help but feel like he’s basically a styrofoam placeholder out there who just happens to move laterally well and in sync with his man. Badly discouraging.

Kevin Knox: 10 minutes, 2 points, literally nothing else. If Frank’s a styrofoam placeholder, Kevin’s a cardboard one.

Mitchell Robinson: 18 minutes (foul trouble but honestly who the hell cares, leave him in and go from there, I’m sick of this foul management bullshit in a lost season), 11 points, 8 boards, 1 block. Also, -9 +/-. Mitch is very good in a vacuum, but a truly good coach has to find a way to make his impact felt on the game, night in and night out. Right now it looks like Miller is trying to get to the grocery store with a Lamborghini. Sometimes you’ll have three free miles on main street and everything will look awesome, but as soon as you have to swerve right you’re tempted to ditch the Lambo for a steady Prius. No, Mike! You have to play Mitch! Don’t be such a (respectable) wuss! Show us you have balls!

Sorry. I know. I always say the same things. But that’s the only thing that should matter now. I like winning. I like competing. But there’s no point in that. So there’s no point in watching these games with an open mind or some sort of hope.

As JK47 said, this season is salvageable to a fan only if you watch the team as farcical. Everything else will end up pulling a Cthulhu on your mind.

So stay strong, enjoy the All-Star rest, and be ready to sport a sad smile everytime this team steps on the court from now to April. And hope for the draft.

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Farfa

Just an Italian basketball fan with an insane passion for all things Knicks (and yes, linguine Alfredo is not a real Italian dish).

266 thoughts to “Washington Wizards 114 – New York Knicks 96 – Game Recap (sort of)”

  1. I was going to say something about Mitch’s minutes, but BBREF shows that Mitch has the second highest minutes per game (22.6) behind RJ Barrett (30.5 wtf) out of all our prospects. Not only that but Mitch is 4th in total minutes played (!) behind Randle, Morris and Barrett.

    Sure, we’d like to see him out there more than 22 minutes a game, but he’s getting playing time.

  2. I didn’t wanna comment on the game at all. Been a bad week from having a bad birthday on Tuesday, still dealing with some complications from my shoulder surgery, to not seein eye to eye with my fiance…so I’m a little pissy. LOL. So imma try to say this without cursing..

    Last night was despicable! Why can’t we beat the Wizards? Is Beal REALLY our new #31 from the Pacers (I refuse to say his name to this day lmao)? I’m sorry but there is no way the team should have fallen apart like that in the 4th. Maybe all this Rose/Stoute/Miller/Offseason talk has gotten in everyone’s head. Did anyone else notice how bad Randle’s body language was last night? What is goin on? I think Beal is criminally underrated, but I refuse to believe that even this mangled roster can’t beat Beal and a bunch of JAG’s. This is insane!

    All season I’ve had the “rebuild” excuse. Now I’m officially embarrassed. Can we just start talking about the insane roster the Clips have built- especially on defense with Kawhi/PG/Mook/Bev in the starting lineup? If they can gel quick enough, the Lakers season has been for nothing. Which sucks because LBJ and AD are playing really well.

    Or how about this? If you were Philly, would you trade Embiid for Bam and whatever makes it work? Would Miami do it? I personally would love to see that. I think Bam is a better fit with Simmons, and Embiid is just as good a fit in Miami. Maybe even better if you give him the block and surround he and Butler with shooters

  3. We could use a stretch four. Some guards who can shoot. A point guard who can shoot would be nice. Switchable wing defenders.

    What we don’t need are guys with the “if he learns to shoot he’ll be good” profile.

  4. As someone regularly accused of not wanting to sign any free agents ever, I would absolutely explore the Christian Wood market this summer.

  5. Actually never mind that, what we really need is NY GRIT. Or NY TOUGH, or BLOOD IN THE GROUND or whatever matches the new logo and catchphrase. Gotta be on brand. I’m thinking Cole Anthony, his dad played for the 90’s Knicks who had NY GRIT.

    Add some Mark Jackson and you just get a logarithmic explosion of NY TOUGH and also add some HAND DOWN MAN DOWN to the stew.

    Fret not, Knicks fans. Stoutey’s got this.

  6. They’re not going to keep the picks, they’ll trade them.

    They’re not going to keep the players either, they’ll trade them, or let them expire. That’s what they always do.

    Great story, Farfa. Thankfully KB knows how to keep the best right here. The only real question we should ask is who are we going to select in the twitter draft? We’re already good, but there’s definitely talent there to be had.

  7. It’s easy to overreact to a loss like last nights because the Knicks lost to a bad team by 18 points. But they lost that badly because they missed makeable shots, not because they played that badly. We turned the ball over too much for me to say we should have won, but we played well enough to win that game and just missed all our shots.

  8. Ugh..my last thought has been trapped in moderation purgatory for almost an hour. Gonna copy and paste and see what happens

    I didn’t wanna comment on the game at all. Been a bad week from having a bad birthday on Tuesday, still dealing with some complications from my shoulder surgery, to not seein eye to eye with my fiance…so I’m a little pissy. LOL. So imma try to say this without cursing..

    Last night was despicable! Why can’t we beat the Wizards? Is Beal REALLY our new #31 from the Pacers (I refuse to say his name to this day lmao)? I’m sorry but there is no way the team should have fallen apart like that in the 4th. Maybe all this Rose/Stoute/Miller/Offseason talk has gotten in everyone’s head. Did anyone else notice how bad Randle’s body language was last night? What is goin on? I think Beal is criminally underrated, but I refuse to believe that even this mangled roster can’t beat Beal and a bunch of JAG’s. This is insane!

    All season I’ve had the “rebuild” excuse. Now I’m officially embarrassed. Can we just start talking about the insane roster the Clips have built- especially on defense with Kawhi/PG/Mook/Bev in the starting lineup? If they can gel quick enough, the Lakers season has been for nothing. Which sucks because LBJ and AD are playing really well.

    Or how about this? If you were Philly, would you trade Embiid for Bam and whatever makes it work? Would Miami do it? I personally would love to see that. I think Bam is a better fit with Simmons, and Embiid is just as good a fit in Miami. Maybe even better if you give him the block and surround he and Butler with shooters

  9. i am in on christian wood but i think there’s a big hurdle. detroit has literally nothing going for it and just disappeared andre drummond. they now have cap room and i suspect they will pay him enough to ruin his value unless they get big ideas about overpaying another free agent to actually go there.

  10. Without Morris we are such a lousy three point shooting team there are going to be nights like this. I actually am warming up to Portis, because he can shoot threes and it’s a skill we need and players who can shoot threes are a valued commodity in the NBA and hard to get. He’s also not that old and could still improve.

  11. can you give a few examples of guys who fit this definition AND what you would trade for them if they became available. just saying we should trade for a very good player one level down from lebron and kawhi if available is not even technically considered communication under the geneva convention.

    This ptmilo gem deserved better than bottom-of-past-thread wasteland.

    Co-sign the idea that it’s totally meaningless to say “we should trade picks for good players.” Honestly if you keep banging that drum without ever specifying further, it seems like you’re just trying to rile people up about the value of draft picks.

    Here’s what I said regarding things we actually know exist in the universe:

    Guys I’d be happy with using our first pick (assuming it’s in the 4-6 range): Okongwu, Haliburton, Hayes

    Guys I’d be happy with using our second pick (assuming it’s in the 25-29 range): Jahmi’us Ramsey, Tyler Bey, Tre Jones, Cassius Stanley

    Guys I’d be happy with using our third pick (assuming it’s in the 31-35 range): Aaron Nesmith, Devon Dotson, Trevelin Queen, Tres Tinkle (unfortunate name)

    I haven’t looked too hard yet so this is very preliminary. Any thoughts?

    We’ll probably wind up trading up for Cole Anthony, but we can pretend!

  12. Same Vecenie of the Athletic posted his 3rd mock draft today.

    Had us taking;
    3rd-LeMelo Ball
    25th- Vernon Carey Jr-Duke
    36th-Devon Dotson-Kansas

  13. i am in on christian wood but i think there’s a big hurdle. detroit has literally nothing going for it and just disappeared andre drummond. they now have cap room and i suspect they will pay him enough to ruin his value unless they get big ideas about overpaying another free agent to actually go there.

    Yeah, and I’d be wary of going past low double digit AAV since he’s still just some 3PT% regression away from being nothing special. I wouldn’t apply the full-court press. If we absolutely must pursue free agents, I would just hope he’s one of them.

  14. If VCJ is available anytime after our first pick we should absolutely grab him, but I don’t think he will be. In fact I think he’ll shoot up into the lottery by draft time.

  15. note that stefanski did say this about wood recently (which sounds eerily like it came straight outta the phil files):

    “We like Christian, he’s worked well. As the coaches said, sometimes he has some issues maybe not wearing a watch and knowing what time it is to get to some places,” Stefanski said. “But he’s done a nice job on the floor. I think he’s coming around, and this is his fifth or sixth stop. He’s a good young man. His focus has to be on hoops.

    “We want to take a longer look at him to decide what we want to do going forward, but he has talent.”

  16. Wasserman posted this;
    Point guard prospects, per 40 minutes

    Killian Hayes: 18.6 pts, 8.8 assists, 60% true shooting
    Nico Mannion: 18.0 pts, 7.0 assists, 53% TS
    Cole Anthony: 22.9 pts, 4.2 assists, 47% TS
    Haliburton: 16.6 pts, 7.0 assists, 63% TS
    Kira Lewis: 18.6 pts, 5.6 assists, 54.6 % TS

    We know who Pills would take, hopefully Rose is different

  17. Wasserman posted this;
    Point guard prospects, per 40 minutes

    Killian Hayes: 18.6 pts, 8.8 assists, 60% true shooting
    Nico Mannion: 18.0 pts, 7.0 assists, 53% TS
    Cole Anthony: 22.9 pts, 4.2 assists, 47% TS
    Haliburton: 16.6 pts, 7.0 assists, 63% TS
    Kira Lewis: 18.6 pts, 5.6 assists, 54.6 % TS

    We know who Pills would take, hopefully Rose is different

    See, you’re not drafting Cole Anthony for what he’s done, but what you expect him to do. Thousands of professional scouts with thirty years of horse-betti– I mean, basketball evaluation experience can’t be wrong.

  18. TNFH and Ptmilo,

    You didn’t ask the question of me, but one guy who might fit that definition is Buddy Hield. It was just reported he might request a trade. I kind of like him, and he clearly can shoot, but I’m not sure what I’d give up for him. He makes a lot of money and has a long contract. He’s the sort of guy you might want to get as the last piece to a rebuild, but I don’t see him as a great fit for the Knicks because of his age (27) and contract.

  19. There is often a lot going on with players we don’t know for sure. That can make the difference between a great player and guy who ends up busting.

    Speaking of busting, Eddy Curry published this today in the PT. It’s pretty raw. I was aware of what had happened with his girlfriend and daughter but tough to read still. And a lot of the other stuff is bad too. Who writes their name on someone’s life insurance policy?

    While I will still always giggle at the thought of his assist to turnover ratio I have to say, it was a pretty affecting piece, especially the praise for his wife….

    https://www.theplayerstribune.com/en-us/articles/eddy-curry-nba-the-truth-was-way-worse

  20. 2019-20 $4,861
    2020-21 $24,431,818
    2021-22 $22,477,273
    2202-23 $20,522,727
    2023-24 $18,568,182

    Hield is on a declining contract too which is interesting

  21. You didn’t ask the question of me, but one guy who might fit that definition is Buddy Hield. It was just reported he might request a trade. I kind of like him, and he clearly can shoot, but I’m not sure what I’d give up for him. He makes a lot of money and has a long contract. He’s the sort of guy you might want to get as the last piece to a rebuild, but I don’t see him as a great fit for the Knicks because of his age (27) and contract.

    As always, I appreciate the whole “naming a real human being who exists” thing. Another possible example is Bradley Beal.

    Personally, I ain’t breaking the bank for either of these guys and with a trade you’re essentially paying for them twice. You really don’t have to look any further than how their current teams are performing with them as the respective best/second-best players. Both the Kings and the Wizards arguably have better players around them than we would, and if the idea is that we’d inevitably attract free agents if we got them, well, I highly doubt that first of all, and second of all you run right back into the “who are you talking about” problem.

    Like you said, they make a lot more sense for teams that already have multiple players better than them.

  22. “can you give a few examples of guys who fit this definition AND what you would trade for them if they became available.”

    I don’t want to speak for him, but given all the stuff he writes, I can take a guess as to the player he has in mind. He’s 7’3”, Latvian, and was drafted by Phil Jackson. (And he’d probably trade a few 1st rounders for him, even if it meant taking on a contract like Tim Hardaway jr)

  23. Portis is a solid 3 point shooter who takes twice as many two point shots as 3s. I was hoping we’d be able to coach him out of that but the results are not encouraging. He’s a pretty decent mid range shooter but those are just not good shots unless you’re elite or you draw fouls and he doesn’t.

  24. Hard pass on Hield. He’s 27, making $94M over the next four years and this is a bottom-of-lottery team. He’s basically a bargain-basement Bradley Beal, aka the #1 option on a 30-win squad. He is the definition of mediocre veteran and will do nothing to move the team forward.

    Point guard, fellas. We need a point guard.

  25. >>Point guard, fellas. We need a point guard.<<

    I'll admit I'm intrigued about the possibility of Rose bringing his #1 guy Chris Paul here.

    As overpaid as he is, I still think he could be worth it for us.

  26. Hard pass on Hield. He’s 27, making $94M over the next four years and this is a bottom-of-lottery team. He’s basically a bargain-basement Bradley Beal, aka the #1 option on a 30-win squad. He is the definition of mediocre veteran and will do nothing to move the team forward.

    They’re a million billion miles away and so it becomes a bit perplexing as to what they should do between now and the time when they get, say, a thousand miles away. Without opining on any particular move, the answer probably can’t be, “just sit around and draft.”

    We really shouldn’t pin much hope on the whole “seven first round draft picks over the next four years.” The ones not their own project to be bench players, at best. The expected value of the Clippers pick and the Pistons second-rounder this year is probably below “Damyean Dotson and Allonzo Trier.” Yeah, it’s better that they have seven over four years rather than have already traded one or two of their own — but, again, the PTSD low bar we all use shouldn’t really be the bar.

  27. Buddy Hield would be like having Tim Hardaway Jr back on the team for another 4 years. Hield is a bit better but it’s not worth it.

  28. I loved Hield back when he was making $4mm and I thought Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving might be coming. Now not so much.

    I like Otto Porter but that assumes his next contract will be rational and not like the max deal Brooklyn offered him.

  29. Given the capped years of players contracts, there likely aren’t more than like three or four contracts out there that would fit with the Knicks’ “win cycle.” You could add KD and Kyrie to this team and it would be a first or second round out. Since AD isn’t signed beyond this year, there might be literally none.

    Given that reality, where does that leave us? No existing veteran contracts at all?

    Honestly, this team and this fanbase is in no position to start sniffing and scoffing at players like Bradley Beal (or Kristaps Porzingis /ducks) or even Buddy Hield. The answer can’t be “we’re too far away” or we wouldn’t acquire anyone. Again, this isn’t advocating any particular move, just pointing out the position in which the franchise and the fanbase finds itself.

  30. Given that reality, where does that leave us? No existing veteran contracts at all?

    This isn’t hard. Get good players on rookie deals before you even think about getting non-elite max players.

  31. I’m not totally against Hield if, and only if, the Kings are literally giving him up in the deadline for marginal assets. No first round picks at all, kinda like a Drummond deal, let’s say they take Julius plus someone else plus a 2nd. But it’s not like they can’t get better offers elsewhere, so that’s not going to happen.

  32. I think we need to feel good about 4 or 5 prospects on rookie deals before we spend any money on non max players, we have maybe 1.5 of those prospects right now. We have 7 picks over the next two drafts, hopefully we use them to make well scouted picks and end up with a few more.

  33. This isn’t hard. Get good players on rookie deals before you even think about getting non-elite max players.

    Yeah, it is hard. Those players are only really available through the draft, and even then there’s no guarantee. See, e.g., Knox, Kevin. That’s the “draft and wait around” option, which isn’t really that appealing given the absolute dreck the team is now putting out on the floor. Plus, there’s the problem of rookies not wanting to come back if the team continues to be dreck. See, e.g. Porzingis, Kristaps.

    Not advocating for any particular option, but Bradley Beal’s salary wouldn’t be crowding out anything. That’s a fiction. Salary cap room is barely even spendable on anything good, as we see with the ever-growing cavalcade of Julius Randle bullshit isos. The object of the sport is not to never have any mediocre contracts on your balance sheet — and Pills didn’t accomplish shit by getting the balance sheet kinda sorta to that position. That really warrants repetition — people seem to think it’s some kind of great accomplishment to line up the balance sheet with three extra low first round picks and no really awful contracts. But it doesn’t really mean anything. This team and roster is complete dreck and it projects to be complete dreck next year and the year after than if all it does is draft.

  34. I think we need to feel good about 4 or 5 prospects on rookie deals before we spend any money on non max players, we have maybe 1.5 of those prospects right now.

    They’re five years from that point and by then, the 1.5 prospects won’t be on rookie contracts and might not even be here. There’s nothing close to a guarantee they’ll ever have 4 or 5 prospects on rookie deals on the roster.

  35. Yeah, it is hard. Those players are only really available through the draft, and even then there’s no guarantee. See, e.g., Knox, Kevin.

    Knox rated very poorly by the pre-draft statistical models. We’re not talking about a bust like Frank Kaminsky here, meaning a guy who played exceptionally well in college and stunk it up in the NBA. We’re talking about a guy who was mediocre at best at Kentucky and has flopped in the NBA.

    You know who was as much a guarantee as anyone? The 6th man on the Grizzlies who scored 27 points on 14 shots last night. But we don’t like to talk about how the Knicks could have had guys like him.

  36. E, that is why Strat wants to trade the picks for a good player. He has a point, but those deals are not easy to come by.

  37. Thats why we need to still be in pick acquisitions mode. Use the cap space to take on bad contracts for picks or young players. you need to hit a few times in a short window before it’s time to really move forward.

  38. been awhile since i’ve heard the word dreck…took me a minute or two to remember from where:
    Ultimate Supreme Executive Chairman Drek

    he’s from the ratchet and clank series…a surprisingly challenging game at times…those games that send an infinite horde against you (button mashers) are getting increasingly more difficult for me with age…

    i’d just also like to add – it’s thursday, february 13, 2020, and, i won’t be having a ham sandwich for lunch…just some chicken noodle soup, a p&j sandwich and some chips…

    next game up is the 21st…i think we should all challenge ourselves to see just how weird we can get til then…

    That’s fucked up, and I’m not blind
    I’m just see through faded, super jaded
    And out of my mind
    Do what you want to do

  39. If you think the Knicks are doomed to draft the Ntilikinas and Knoxes of the world forever, I suppose I can see the argument for saying fuck it and blowing all of our assets and cap space on Beal/Hield, winning 37 games a year, maybe sneaking into a first-round ritual slaughter every once in a while, etc.

    I guess, uh, I have higher hopes. If you actually draft well, this idea that it takes 5+ years to get better is simply false.

  40. Good post Farfa and yeah, I had the same thought re Mitch and establishing early position down low.

    Clarke has been unbelievable. I expected something special from him but this has been a remarkable debut. I feel like anyone who has a 3 handle on their college WS/48 playing for an elite team, well, you have to think about it. But plenty of people passed on him.

    And speaking of that threshold, Vernon Carey is pretty close.

  41. >>E, that is why Strat wants to trade the picks for a good player. He has a point, but those deals are not easy to come by.<<

    Recent history tells us we should do the opposite.

    If you're the Knicks, "if you build it, they will come". All you need is cap space and a good cast and you will get the superstar eventually.

    So shorten your swing and focus on hitting singles with every pick instead of trying to roll them up and hit a 5-run home run.

    With three picks, I'm taking three guys who have a track record of being good at basketball, not three fliers on the best athletes. And in free agency, with no cap space around the league, it's a nice opportunity to get some value signings in like the Clipper did when they signed Harrell and Lou Williams to great deals.

  42. Sounds good Hubert.

    The Athletic has us taking Lamelo Ball btw….

    Okongwu looks like the next Bam to me also. I’d be happy with him.

  43. Not to go off topic but this Astros stuff really is something. The commissioner has really botched this. They’re all hiding behind his report, and he’s forcing the other 29 teams to be quiet. Why is he doing his whole league dirty to protect these scumbags? Everything Manfred does to shield Houston costs his whole league credibility. Get it out in the open and punish them.

    It’s also really disappointing to watch the media handle it. Two questions I can’t believe no one has asked:

    1. Jose Altuve, tell us why you were so protective of your jersey and why you changed shirts before celebrating?

    2. If you’re telling the truth and it stopped, why did you stop using the system despite it being so successful?

  44. 1. Jose Altuve, tell us why you were so protective of your jersey and why you changed shirts before celebrating?

    He answered this question! It’s because he’s shy and wants to be modest. Nevermind the countless photos of him with his shirt off after game-winners. And nevermind the strange bulge on his shoulder during that game.

    If he wore a fucking buzzer during that fucking game, he deserves to be banned for years. Let him come back as a 35-year-old.

  45. I could be mistaken, Jowles, but I’m pretty sure Scott Boras was the one who said it was because he was shy.

    I want to see Altuve asked to his face by a good reporter who can follow up with more questions if his answers stink. That should have happened today.

  46. EDIT: I am mistaken… that did come directly from Altuve…

    >>In an on-field interview, Fox’s Ken Rosenthal asked Altuve why he didn’t want his teammates to tear off his jersey. He said it was because he was “too shy” and then joked that when it happened the last time he had a game-winning hit, “I got in trouble with my wife.”<<

    …but it was after the HR. He hasn't been grilled about it since the scandal broke.

  47. What’s worse about the scandal is that apparently it was an open secret in MLB and some teams schemed to get around it. Ten to twelve teams complained to MLB about over the space of three or four years

    here’s the link

  48. I think it’s an equally open secret that Manfred is helping Houston cover this up, too. Literally no one associated with the game of baseball believes that the Astros stopped cold turkey in 2018, as Manfred’s report asserts. You wouldn’t have had the Yankees and Nationals going to the lengths they did in October 2019 if this stuff had been cleaned up.

    It’s so bad for the game to let them hide behind his bullshit report. And other teams want to comment but Manfred is holding them back with monetary threats. He has it all backwards. Protect the league, not the Astros. Let them all hang.

  49. KnickfaninNJ:
    What’s worse about the scandal is that apparently it was an open secret in MLB and some teams schemed to get around it. Ten to twelve teams complained to MLB about over the space of three or four years

    And yet baseball writers still believe Barry Bonds isn’t Hall-worthy, despite the fact that if Bonds’ career ended in 1998 he’d still be HOF-worthy. Skinny Bonds was already an all-time great player, he just became a comic-book superhero after he enhanced himself.

    A team-wide scandal like the Astros scandal is way worse than any individual “illegally” enhancing themselves.

  50. there was a time in the early 2000’s when bonds, clemens and lance we’re some of my favorite athletes to watch…

    i’m not sure where i put the cool USPS poster with lance armstrong answering the question of “what am i on”, after i took it down off the wall…

    it wasn’t even so much that he cheated…it’s just how much of a dick about he was to others while trying to protect himself…

  51. “there was a time in the early 2000’s when bonds, clemens and lance we’re some of my favorite athletes to watch…”

    I stopped following baseball in 2008. At first I thought “Lance” must refer to Lance Berkman, who always seemed strangely powerful for a nice Jewish boy from Brooklyn. Turns out, not only were you talking about notorious doper Lance Armstrong, but Lance Berkman was a Texan of Scandinavian decent. #nevertoooldtolearn

  52. I am still intrigued by having an athlete like DSJ at the point, but I think he’s fried. A change of scenery will do him good. I’m still all in on Haliburton. The question is, who should we pair him with as a PG tandem out of who’s on the roster now? To me, it’s between DSJ & Payton because Haliburton replaces Ntilikina. I think he has the defensive potential of Ntilikina, but is much better offensively. It would be interesting to see if DSJ can become a downhill attacking point guard who can drive and kick to shooters. That’s something Payton can never be because the threat of scoring isn’t there. Shit..I really need Ntilikina to learn how to shoot lol. This is why I want him playing SG alongside DSJ. Maybe he shoots better in that role rather being asked to create as a PG. I dunno. I just want as much perimeter defense as we can afford to have with the league becoming increasingly guard-centric

  53. Killian Hayes looks like a nice PG prospect. He turns the ball over a lot but that seems fixable— he throws lots of risky, flashy passes but that seems like something you could easily coach out of him. He has great handle, really good feel for the pick and roll and he can really finish at the basket. He’s not a deadly three point shooter yet but he’s not terrible either and he’s shooting 88% from the line which is a nice sign.

    He looks like a better, more polished player than Cole Anthony and LaMelo ball to me. Anybody else got a take on this kid?

  54. Zion is insanely good — looking like a future multiple MVP out there. If the Pelicans fuck up his prime like they did Davis’s, they deserve to be contracted.

  55. what has gotten in to jason tatum…

    is it just me, or, does kawhi leonard remind you a bit of barney the dinosaur…

    it’s not an entirely unpleasant countenance, it just never changes…

  56. I have a question: how come when a player forces a turnover by drawing a charge he’s not credited with a steal?

  57. okc is 11 games over .500 now…did not see that coming…

    to end a game they have paul, schroder, shai, gallo and adams out on the court…if they’re close in the 4th, they got a good chance to win with that group…

  58. Gallo was so good towards the end, everytime the Thundet ran sets to get him a mismatch and he abused it so much.

    Zion is well, already obviously the real deal, the Pelicans just need to figure out how to build around him. I think the smart choice would be to sell on Jrue Holiday while he still has some good perceived value around the league, and try to build around the Lonzo – Ingram – Zion core, I think it’s their best chance for now. They still have a ton of young assets and picks, so the time to get aggressive with trades is now.

  59. Marv Albert in the post today…crapping on Miller:

    “It’s moving in the right direction. I think Mike Miller is doing a really good job in a really difficult situation. But I think they would have to go with a more experienced and successful NBA head coach to get the fans more excited,” Albert said. “They are desperate for any signs of progress, so be it a Jeff Van Gundy or a Tom Thibodeau or Mark Jackson, names that have been mentioned.“Because the Knicks have been so bad, it’s a great job for an elite coach because any success will be celebrated. They could eventually take the next step but they have to find the right person. It’s been such a long drought and it’s not that easy to change the makeup of a franchise, so you have to start with an elite coach.”

    He also says he likes the Rose hire…senility must be settling in..

  60. It’s unfortunate, but I think Ingram has shown enough improvement for it. I don’t know if he’ll be a consistent max guy, but the improvement is very real, at least, it’s not a Wiggins situation fortunately.

  61. I don’t know if David Griffin is smart enough to build a title contender in New Orleans. His Cleveland teams with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving were barely good enough to skate by in 2016, and he’ll never have that again. He’s also competing with what the Denver Nuggets are doing around Porter Jr and Jokic, and they still have to add Bol Bol to the mix.

    The New Orleans basketball franchise had Chris Paul, Anthony Davis, and now Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram. I’ve never seen a team that always had elite talent amount to nothing as frequently as it does in New Orleans.

  62. Thing that unnerves me and makes me happy at the same time: complete and total radio silence from Leon Rose, especially as we get random leaks about William Wesley, and of course Steve Stoute craps all over himself on ESPN.

    Has anyone heard one single thing from Rose yet? I understand he has some conflicts to resolve before he can be officially announced, but literally there hasn’t been a single word actually attributed to him as far as I can tell.

    Meanwhile – I know I’ve said this many times before, but it is just crazy how much luck is involved in the building (or tearing down) of a franchise. By all counts the Knicks did everything pretty much by the book last year – they tanked like crazy in a year where it looks like there were not just 1 but 2 franchise-altering talents in the draft — that’s pretty rare!

    2018 it’s looking like only Luka and possibly Trae are franchise-altering talents (probably just 1 since Trae’s defense will always probably put a cap on his team’s success).

    2017 there are probably zero franchise-altering talents with the best player from that draft probably being Tatum.

    2016 – best players are Simmons (jury still out, I think he is amazing) and maybe Ingram

    2015 – the famous KAT/Russell/KP/Booker draft – I guess we could give this a collective 1.5 players?

    2014 – Embiid

    2013 – easily one of the worst drafts in the last 20 years

    2012 – Anthony Davis, maybe Beal

    So not only did the Knicks tank correctly, but they happened to tank in a year that they actually had TWO chances to get a franchise-altering talent. And of course we “won” the #3 pick.

    Just unreal.

  63. Marv Albert thinks we should pick a coach based on how much it would excite the fans? What kind of crap is that? That thinking is the kind of thinking that makes us horrible year after year.

  64. Frank that lottery sucked but Giannis and Gobert were taken in the 1st round of that draft.

  65. Steve Stoute revealed in his interview the things the franchise values in a coach:

    “Having a coach like that who has the magnitude and gravitas so that the media would love to talk to him and believe him, I think that’s super important.”

    It’s all lipstick on a pig here.

  66. Wow. $4.6B. How is this not the Main story surrounding the Knicks?? I just read it inForbes, the story is a few days old, yet I see no comments on it?? How is this not the main topic here?????

    Eight fking years ago the team was worth less than 1B. Yet a terrible product with terrible strategy was foisted on us (image-Leon from Curb your Enthusiasm yelling) and the fker up top more than quadrupled the value of his company??? What are we, idiotic chumps???

    We’re like some 1985 Soviet sleeper cell in the US, taking hits literally and intellectually, clinging to a regime that honestly doesn’t give a f.

    We should be screaming in al the social media sites. The Knicks have the resources, the profit margins, the location, for us to demand Masai, whoever the best is, to lead this team.

    Does no one else see Rose and stout as Phil part 2?? Isn’t that the main story here?????

  67. Sadly, what Stoute advocates as a new de facto boss, brand development, must be more important than winning. The irony is the growth in value has happened in spite of the LOLKnicks brand. Why in the world would Jimmy D sell under this dynamic? The Knicks are Grey Gardens on the waterfront.

  68. Barely good enough to skate by and beat the team that had just completed the best season in NBA history is pretty good. And Lebron puts certain constraints on a GM that I doubt Zion will do at this point. Griffin seems to have done pretty good so far in New Orleans-the AD trade was good, their FA moves were solid and they drafted will outside of the obvious Zion pick.

  69. “Recent history tells us we should do the opposite.

    If you’re the Knicks, “if you build it, they will come”. All you need is cap space and a good cast and you will get the superstar eventually.

    So shorten your swing and focus on hitting singles with every pick instead of trying to roll them up and hit a 5-run home run.

    With three picks, I’m taking three guys who have a track record of being good at basketball, not three fliers on the best athletes. And in free agency, with no cap space around the league, it’s a nice opportunity to get some value signings in like the Clipper did when they signed Harrell and Lou Williams to great deals.”

    I think we should be open to anything and everything. That’s what I’ve been saying all along. You never know where the best values will be or what opportunities will open up that we can’t see right now,

    What I am against is limiting ourselves to the “tank and draft” strategy just because trading picks, free agency, and trades haven’t worked in the past. The reason they didn’t work in the past is because we didn’t have competent people evaluating the deals. It wasn’t because those strategies are inherently flawed.

    Cap space is tough to use for a star when you are terrible. So if that’s your plan there’s a good chance it’s going to fail. That doesn’t mean having cap space is bad. It means we keep shooting for stars we never get and then put garbage into the space instead of using it more effectively. So we get bad results.

    Trading picks has worked terribly for us in the past, but that’s because we didn’t protect them properly, overrated the players we were getting etc,, But a smart team can use picks to get a star.

  70. Mr. Dolan, I’ve been thinking really hard, and I just came up with this new marketing strategy. It’s going to sound crazy, but bear with me.

    First, we hire a GM that is good at evaluating players and player value. Then we bring in a coach who understands how to put those players in position to succeed. Then we get young players through the draft and free agency and develop them.

    I know, I know, sounds nuts right? Where are the big names, you ask. Do these players have Blood in the Ground? Why didn’t I mention smooth-talking hucksters, or guys who are really good at other, tangentially-related jobs? And what about the BIG STARS who will help us win now now now now now now?

    Those are all great questions. Here’s what I’m thinking, though. If we follow my plan, the team is more likely to win basketball games. Also, we are more likely to win year after year. And — try to follow my logic — if we win games, fans will be excited about the team. Yes Mr. Dolan, they may even be more excited about a perennial winner than about a 31-win team with a celebrity coach. I know this is a theory you’ve never tested before. But maybe, just maybe, it’s worth a shot.

  71. I think we should be open to anything and everything. That’s what I’ve been saying all along. You never know where the best values will be or what opportunities will open up that we can’t see right now,

    So tell us what you’re “open to” when it comes to trading picks for players. Which picks? Which players? Not a single poster holds the position “there is not a single pick I would trade for any player.”

    Many posters do hold the position that a team in the Knicks’ position on the win curve should be racking up as many young players on favorable contracts as possible and avoiding marginal wins. The best way to achieve those goals tends to be through the draft, and you’re not going to convince anybody otherwise until you actually put forward an alternative proposal.

  72. Does Marv Albert now work for Stoute? Why is Stoute still employed by the Knicks?

    The 2019 draft is so sad now. It’s one thing to whiff with Frank and Knox with picks around 8 or 9. But to barely miss on Ja or Zion is really depressing. Maybe RJB will blossom in the next year or two to take some of the sting out of it.

  73. I don’t think anything will be as depressing as missing on Doncic for me, we could have had him potentially if we ended up in 5th place in the lottery, which was perfectly possible before the lottery odds changed. Last year the team did what it was supposed to do, securing the best possible odds, we were just victims of the knicksiest possible outcome which is drafting 3rd in a 2 player draft.

  74. RJ is looking bad, but they aren’t making him the primary ball-handler that often, which negates one of his best skills: passing. I know he’s young, but they should really do this a lot more so they can at least see what they have in him.

    As for the draft, Toppin just seems like a really nice fit next to Mitch. I guess he could play behind Julius in year one and Randle can walk after that. I know we need guards and Haliburton looks good, but maybe Dotson is a better fit with RJ? And you can probably get him with the Clippers pick.

  75. Z-man, is it because of injuries? Because Zion is currently, at age 19, putting up a .620 TS% on 32% USG.

    Here’s the list of players who have topped 30 USG% at >500 MP for the Knicks since the 3PT line was invented:

    http://bkref.com/tiny/EiHka

    King (.585)
    Melo
    Amar’e
    Melo
    Ewing
    Melo
    Ewing
    Ewing
    Porzingis
    Melo
    Melo
    Ewing (.516)

    So as it stands, over the course of a whole season, Zion would, at age 19, be producing the best scoring season in Knicks history. At age 19.

    Here’s another list, of players who played >270 MP with a USG% over 30.

    http://bkref.com/tiny/l0gzK

    Don’t worry so much about the names that precede Zion’s — Curry, LeBron, Giannis, Durant, Malone, Isaiah Thomas (what a weird season), Lillard, and Harden. And don’t worry about the names that come after — MJ, Kyrie, Bird, Kawhi and Shaq. Just look at the ages on that list.

  76. i was surprised to see zion is only shooting 65 percent from the free throw line…i see now though that he only shot 64% in college…his form looks good…

    i hope we can get at least five healthy years out of watching him play ball…not to be too pessimistic, but, it just seems like it’s going to be tough for him to stay healthy…he’s just so big and explosive…

  77. ‘I don’t think anything will be as depressing as missing on Doncic for me, we could have had him potentially if we ended up in 5th place in the lottery, which was perfectly possible before the lottery odds changed. Last year the team did what it was supposed to do, securing the best possible odds, we were just victims of the knicksiest possible outcome which is drafting 3rd in a 2 player draft.”

    Knicks management has been awful for decades (with a few bright spots here and there) but a little luck would have made up for a multitude of sins.

    In 2008, the Bulls had a 1.8% of getting the #1 pick. They got it and drafted Derrick Rose and it completely changed the trajectory of their franchise.

    In 2011, the Clippers moved up from 8th to 1st

    In 2013, the Wiz moved up from 8th to 3rd

    In 2014, the Cavs moved up from 9th to 1st

    In 2017, the Kings moved up from 8th to 3rd

    In 2018, the Kings moved up from 7th to 2nd

    Think about this, since the Ewing draft in 1985 the Knicks have not moved up in a single lottery! Now of course, that’s not to say that we wouldn’t have blown the higher pick (see Bagley, Marvin) but that’s just plain awful lotto luck. I can’t imagine any other team has that bad a history.

  78. >>>RJ is looking bad, but they aren’t making him the primary ball-handler that often<<<

    Man, I already forgot David Fizdale was using Barrett at PG with no other ball handlers. And playing him 40+ minutes. It's nice to be at least one level removed from that insanity.

  79. Think about this, since the Ewing draft in 1985 the Knicks have not moved up in a single lottery! Now of course, that’s not to say that we wouldn’t have blown the higher pick (see Bagley, Marvin) but that’s just plain awful lotto luck. I can’t imagine any other team has that bad a history.

    Oh don’t worry, in the Knickiest of moves we’re about to move up to #1 in a draft without a clear best pick. And we’ll proceed to pick the hot prospect / project of the month, rather than the upperclassmen with lower upside but a really high floor. I get that you have to swing for the fences sometimes, but can we pick people with really high floors for a change, especially when we have 3 picks? Get two guys likely to contribute, even if they won’t be all-NBA players down the line. Take a swing with the other pick.

  80. This is absolutely the kind of draft in which I could see the Knicks winning the lottery. It’s totally unclear if the consensus 1-3 picks are any better than the 4-6 picks, and there’s no way we’ll do what a smart team would do in that situation and trade down with a team in love with Wiseman/Edwards.

  81. If they win the lottery this year…they will go outside the box as per Stoutte and repick Anthony Bennett…

  82. “So tell us what you’re “open to” when it comes to trading picks for players. Which picks? Which players? ””

    It’s pointless to keep going around in circles.

    We never know what’s available until it’s actually presented. Then you make a decision. Sometimes there are deals on the table we don’t know about and sometimes what we see in the news is total bullshit.

    What is real is saying “I think we should tank to try get a better pick” and/or focusing too much attention on the win curve.

    The win curve matters, but imo it should NOT be an overriding dictating factor.

    I am in favor of tanking in the very specific circumstance that you are an old team, clearly not good enough to compete for a title, and without the flexibility to improve and get over the top. At that point, you should clean house and try to get as many assets as possible while some of the older players still have value.

    But my definition of old is not “the players must be on exact same win curve as RJ. Mitch, Frank, Knox etc…” My definition of old is clearly declining. I would have no problem adding some 28 year old player on a solid contract for 4 years if I think he’ll be productive for 4 more years. Those are the kinds of players that help improve your team and open the door to free agency and certain trades that are CLOSED while you are tanking. Naturally, 24 years old is better than 26 and 26 is better than 28, but everything has to be on the table. Even a guy like Morris at 30 could be on the table for 2-3 years at the right price. We just happened to get offered for a player I like almost as much as Morris plus an attractive pick. So I was very happy with the deal.

    You cannot look at the Knicks history and say “this doesn’t work or that doesn’t work”.

    Lots of things didn’t work because we had idiots in charge not the because the strategy itself was flawed. If Pat Rile was executing the same strategy it would work fine.

  83. Yeah, what’s really staggering about the Knicks is the string of unlucky breaks that have come together with the abhorrent incompetence. The Wizards have been pretty incompetent for decades now and even they ended up having a good core with top 3 picks, even though Wall’s injury destroyed that plan. The Pelicans were so incompetent that Anthony Davis forced himself out of the team, only for Zion to fall on their laps. It’s a special brand of sports fandom hell, really.

  84. If they win the lottery this year…they will go outside the box as per Stoutte and repick Anthony Bennett…

    we definitely do seem to zig when everyone else zags…

    It’s pointless to keep going around in circles.

    I’ve got a story ain’t got no moral
    Let the bad guy win every once in a while

    Will it go round in circles?
    Will it fly high like a bird up in the sky?

    isn’t it great that our happiness and joy is in some part tied to jimmy D’s success…yeah, couldn’t have planned that little life joke any better than that myself…

  85. As for the draft, Toppin just seems like a really nice fit next to Mitch.

    Toppin is primed to win the 2020 Brandon Clarke award – dude who puts up insane numbers but is drafted late because he’s 22.

    Re: Zion – he is just ridiculous. It honestly looks like he’s playing at a different speed than everyone else, and has springs in his shoes.

  86. Drafting the older high floor guy should be the new market inefficiency. You have control from ages 22-30 and can either trade them at the end of that second contract or just let them walk before they fall off a cliff physically.

    Knicks are never going to do that.

  87. >>>But my definition of old is not “the players must be on exact same win curve as RJ. Mitch, Frank, Knox etc…” <<<

    This part of your team-building philosophy I agree with, especially now that the lottery odds have flattened and it's clear you can attract a star free agent if you're in a big market and are an 8 seed.

    I don't even care if the guy is old. The important part is contract flexibility. You want a placeholder, not an albatross. I'd be more inclined, for example, to have Kyle Lowry (north of 30, one year left on his deal) here than a younger player with a long deal that isn't good value.

  88. “Think about this, since the Ewing draft in 1985 the Knicks have not moved up in a single lottery! Now of course, that’s not to say that we wouldn’t have blown the higher pick (see Bagley, Marvin) but that’s just plain awful lotto luck. I can’t imagine any other team has that bad a history.”

    Yeah, that’s a terrible 35 years run.

    And, making matters worse, the one season we were able to secure the #2 pick we had already traded it for Eddy Curry.

  89. If you sort every NBA player w/ 274+ MIN at the All-Star break by the AVERAGE OF THEIR RANKS in 10 catch-alls (Real +/-, RAPTOR Rating, Box +/-, Player Impact +/- & Game Score per MIN, as well as the cumulative versions of each),

    Where Knicks rank (out of 362 players)…

    67-Mitchell Robinson
    104-Julius Randle
    117-Elfrid Payton
    209-Maurice Harkless
    236-Damyean Dotson
    245-Reggie Bullock
    260-Wayne Ellington
    265-Frank Ntilikina
    279-Taj Gibson
    291-Bobby Portis
    346-RJ Barrett
    355-Kevin Knox
    361-Dennis Smith

  90. just noticed the new pic hubie…i like it…

    i may have to do some googling for a good “blood in the ground” avatar…although to be honest – i’m not even sure what that phrase means…

    i’m guessing it’s not quite the same thing as “blood on the ground”…

    hmmm, maybe a pic of blood in the ground wouldn’t be so interesting…i mean, wouldn’t it just simply be a pic of – the ground…

  91. geo:

    i may have to do some googling for a good “blood in the ground” avatar…although to be honest – i’m not even sure what that phrase means…

    I just picture someone being a bit too careless in flipping the burgers on a grill at an outdoor picnic. You know, similar to how the Knicks used to carelessly flip picks for veterans on the wrong side of the win curve. Our juicy picks get lost, seeping into the ground and we’re left with burnt meat.

  92. i may have to do some googling for a good “blood in the ground” avatar…although to be honest – i’m not even sure what that phrase means…

    I’m pretty sure it comes from Hitler. Not even kidding. This is literally the first time I heard anyone talk about blood and soil in any context outside of lebensraum.

  93. speaking of burnt meat…maybe a good weekend for some grilling…not sure though what i may be in the mood for…carne asada, sausages, burgers, hot dogs, kabobs, steaks, chicken…mmmmm, must be getting close to dinner time…

    it’s funny, didn’t know i had monday off til someone reminded me yesterday…

    perfect timing…the last week or so it’s been taking me 2 to 2 and half hours in the morning to finally get up the motivation to leave my house and head off to work…i smoke two joints in the morning – literally…

    spent some of this week watching a bit of lawrence of arabia each morning before heading off to work…toss up between auda abu tayi and general allenby for my favorite characters…

    i love how each of the major characters get such a great introduction in the film…

  94. oh shit – lebensraum = blood and soil = blood in the ground…

    that’s pretty fucking crazy…why would it not be surprising that ‘ol stoute would totally miss that connection…

    thanks hubie…yeah, guess i’ll be skipping the whole blood in the ground avatar…

    there was a bit of controversy during the army-navy game this year…a bunch of the midshipmen started doing that circle thing gesture with their index finger and thumb during photo ops…they thought it was just some photo bomb type millennial thing…turns out it’s got roots with the white supremacist douchebags…

    new york knickerbockers – the more you know – the worse it gets :)

  95. BAM, As I thought about all the metrics you used to average and get rankings I realized a lot of them are based on plus minus data or data related to that. Since the Knicks have lost a lot of games they have overall a very negative plus minus. This will bias the ratings downward. I agree that some Knick players are very bad, but those players’ very badness affects the plus minus of the players on the court with them and so pushes down the other players plus minus. If I had to guess how that affects your numbers, I think the people at the top of the list probably look worse than they are while the ones at the bottom deserve to be there.

  96. Also , big congrats to Mike Breen, who got admitted to the HOF today. Total legend and 25% of why i am still a Knicks fan, I remember listening ito him on the Fan in the 80s and thinking then he was going somewhere.

    On a slightly different note, Stephen A was on PTI today which I saw for some reason. He was promoting the celebrity game he was coaching in against Wilbon, who also got inducted into the HOF. I have to say, Stephen A was amazing in the segment, probably the only time in my life I haven’t found him insufferably annoying. So, I guess what I am saying is, if it possible for SAS to have a good bit maybe there is hope for the Knicks.

    And it also should be said SAS >>>>>> Mark Jackson

  97. it would be pretty incredible if Dolan hired a PR guru who unwittingly applied nazi propoganda to next season’s marketing campaign.

  98. Looking at your data in light of my previous post, it says Robinson, Randle and Payton are then good players, Dotson, Bullock, Ellington, Ntilikina, Gibson and maybe Portis are probably functioning as ok role players, and Barrett, Knox and Smith are dragging down the team. That conforms to my eye test and also to many opinions posted in this forum. Only having three genuinely good players is clearly not a situation leading to a winning team. I left Harkless our because his stats come from playing with the Clippers, but he’s probably in the middle too.

    In terms of drafting, Peyton was drafted 10th, Randle 7th and Robinson something like 36th. To be even decent we probably need at least five plus players and probably six. I not that hopeful about the year’s draft, so maybe we will get one good player out of it and he’ll probably take a year to get decent. That’s not promising for next years record, unfortunately.

  99. I don’t really care about this stuff, but have we talked about how weird it is that Mitch was snubbed from the Rising Stars game? Just downright bizarre.

  100. Do you any of you cooking gurus have any tips for making Mexican alambre? Like, I know how to make it passably well for a gringo, but you guys are leagues ahead of me on the cooking front so I was wondering if anyone had the secret sauce.

  101. RJ Barrett with good teammates was a lot of fun to watch. I obviously really, really hated that the Knicks missed out on the top two, but I seriously am still very happy with Barrett overall. It’ll always be “What if we had Zion or Ja?” and that’s honestly fair, but I am appreciative that they at least have Barrett.

  102. RJ Barrett with good teammates was a lot of fun to watch.

    You misspelled “when the opponents play no defense”

  103. But my definition of old is not “the players must be on exact same win curve as RJ. Mitch, Frank, Knox etc…” My definition of old is clearly declining. I would have no problem adding some 28 year old player on a solid contract for 4 years if I think he’ll be productive for 4 more years. Those are the kinds of players that help improve your team and open the door to free agency and certain trades that are CLOSED while you are tanking. Naturally, 24 years old is better than 26 and 26 is better than 28, but everything has to be on the table. Even a guy like Morris at 30 could be on the table for 2-3 years at the right price. We just happened to get offered for a player I like almost as much as Morris plus an attractive pick. So I was very happy with the deal.

    You’re just gonna keep running head first into the “who are you talking about” question and you’ll never be able to answer it.

    It sounds like you want to use free agents to attract more, better free agents than the original ones. That means the initial class of free agents has to check of a multitude of boxes:

    1) Young enough to still be good when the better reinforcements arrive

    2) Good enough to actually attract the reinforcements

    3) Despite 1-2, cheap enough that they don’t prevent us from signing the reinforcements under the NBA salary cap rules that are somehow always neglected when we have this conversation

    4) Signed for long enough that they’re still here when the reinforcements arrive

    I’m not saying there is literally no one who can check off all of these boxes. I am saying they are so rare (like, you’ll often see entire free agent classes without any of them) that it’s actually quite important to address the minor question “who are you talking about?” Especially considering I’m assuming this strategy requires getting more than one of these dudes.

    The Nets attracted free agents with productive players on rookie deals. Still seems to be…

  104. Other than the superduperstars, there are no free agents or veteran contracts that match the Knicks’ “win cycle.” The default assumption given that reality is that no free agents or veteran contracts should be acquired and that’s not true. Better, more appealing basketball is a worthy end in itself and a far better path than sitting around and just drafting. I’m not talking about guys like Noah, Rose, Lopez or Phil’s other dreck; or Pills’s ridiculous band of mediocre mercenaries; I’m talking about people like Kemba, Beal, Schroeder, etc.

    A path of sitting around and just drafting projects to … what? … a slow and steady creep-up to 35 wins in 2022-23, RJ’s walk year? That’s actually probably high. Thanks, but no thanks. That’s far too passive an approach.

  105. That means the initial class of free agents has to check of a multitude of boxes:

    1) Young enough to still be good when the better reinforcements arrive

    2) Good enough to actually attract the reinforcements

    3) Despite 1-2, cheap enough that they don’t prevent us from signing the reinforcements under the NBA salary cap rules that are somehow always neglected when we have this conversation

    4) Signed for long enough that they’re still here when the reinforcements arrive

    See I think we should not care if the guy is still around.

    We should have a job specific for our team: placeholder star. A guy who comes here for 1-2 years, is good enough to make us respectable, slots everyone else into their correct position, and then is gone to make way for his replacement.

    I think Chris Paul is perfect for that. I’d also take Kyle Lowry in that role, and possibility even Mike Conley.

    I’m tired of hearing “Chris Paul makes $40mm, no thanks.” We blow $40mm every year. For $40mm that guy will do everything Dolan thinks Leon Rose and Steve Stoute can do: he will change our image and make free agents consider us.

    Surround him with 1-2 decent vets who we acquired by renting our cap space for picks, fill out the rest of the roster with kids. Reset in 2022 after two respectable seasons.

  106. The default assumption given that reality is that no free agents or veteran contracts should be acquired and that’s not true. Better, more appealing basketball is a worthy end in itself and a far better path than sitting around and just drafting.

    If what you’re saying is you want to surrender on the idea of building a team that can contend for a title and just get as good as possible as quickly as possible, I guess we just have a fundamental disagreement. I personally didn’t love rooting for the playoff teams we had that had a 0% chance of winning it all, even if they admittedly produced some fun moments here and there.

    I’m talking about people like Kemba, Beal, Schroeder, etc.

    Not really sure where to start with this. None of these guys are free agents this year, one of these guys is very much not like the others, and the other two are max players that place a very hard cap on your flexibility without making you anything close to a contender (see the Kemba-lead Hornets or the Beal-lead Wizards). These guys wouldn’t even get us to the first round ritual slaughter you seem to want.

    A path of sitting around and just drafting projects to … what? … a slow and steady creep-up to 35 wins in 2022-23, RJ’s walk year? That’s actually probably high. Thanks, but no thanks. That’s far too passive an approach.

    If by “sitting around and just drafting” you mean acquiring surplus picks whenever possible, taking on intriguing flyers whenever possible, and drafting guys who project well instead of the Ntilikinas and Knoxes of the world, there’s really no reason it has to take as long as you and Strat always pretend it does.

    Two years ago the Grizzlies’ were a 22 win team whose best player was Tyreke Evans. Then they “sat around and drafted” for two years and now have one of the more exciting rosters in the league.

  107. I think Chris Paul is perfect for that. I’d also take Kyle Lowry in that role, and possibility even Mike Conley.

    What assets would you trade for these guys, the latter two of whom are by all accounts not available?

  108. >>You’re just gonna keep running head first into the “who are you talking about” question and you’ll never be able to answer it.<<

    It's an idiotic question.

    As I keep saying, it's impossible for us to know who will be available in the future, whether they would be wiling to come to a horrible NY team as a free agent (the answer is NO if they are a star player), whether they would make it clear they won't re-sign in NY to avoid a trade etc.. Plus, we get a lot of BS in the press.

    What we can do is discuss individual deals and discuss what I think of them. There are also multiple factors to be considered.

    KP apparently denies he actually asked for a trade from NY (as reported by ESPN). He expressed concern about the direction of the team and plans for him (which anyone with an IQ over 80 would have done given where the team was at the time) and when he later found out management was talking to Dallas about a trade, he gave them a list of preferred destinations. It was media spin that he asked out.

    I would have called KP into that meeting and offered him a max salary extension to be signed right after the free agency period so they could add another big piece to the team.

    That's one case where I differ with the consensus here. I think if he stays healthy he's clearly a max player even if he's not a franchise elite superstar. I would have taken the gamble like Cuban did.

    With KP, I might have considered Randle as a major addition, but without him I would not have because of the bad fit.

    As a general principle I am more open to signing guys in their late 20s as long as I think the contract is attractive and it's a good basketball fit. I'm not blind to win curve, but to me it's a secondary issue, not the driving criteria. You have to get better to attract free agents and star players in trades.

    I also value the players differently than the purely boxscore metrics. So naturally there will other differences of opinion.

  109. Two years ago the Grizzlies’ were a 22 win team whose best player was Tyreke Evans. Then they “sat around and drafted” for two years and now have one of the more exciting rosters in the league.

    The Grizzlies got lucky in the draft lottery. We can’t count on that and so our results just sitting around getting picks could take a lot longer than it did for them. We also can’t count on getting good all at once. The only team that managed that was the Heat by getting three good free agents all at once. So we have to get good players on reasonable contracts wherever we can. It seems like we actually did that with Morris and Robinson and probably with Payton and maybe Bullock too. It’s fine to acquire picks when we can, like by trading Morris, but we can’t aim to be awful enough to be high in the lottery each year either.

  110. I hope that stupid youngsters game at least gives RJ some added confidence. I kinda wish he was more of a backup to Elfrid so he could run the offense when Elf is off the floor. I think we’d see a much more useful player if that were the case.

  111. I think there is a clear and well-documented path to rebuilding through: not trading draft picks, using those picks to draft players based on data, and maintaining salary flexibility. I don’t think teams need to lose games on purpose, or necessarily “go into tank mode”. There’s no model by which to build a championship team — it requires uncontrollable factors. But there is a model by which to build a franchise that, over time, consistently wins more games than it loses. Win curve matters, having draft picks matter, having a diverse portfolio of players and contracts matters. Free agents, trades, tanking, branding, and crowd chants matter a lot less.

  112. ESPN gave Barrett an F for his rising stars performance even though he led all scorers and explained it this way:

    Barrett led all scorers with 27 points on 11-of-17 shooting and delivered a handful of highlights, including a steal that resulted in a pick-six finish on the other end. He even finished with his right hand, something of a work in progress for the southpaw. Yet Barrett earns an automatic failing grade for fouling Williamson to prevent his former Duke roommate from dunking. There’s no place for that in an All-Star setting.

    Playing defense in an All-Star game must be un-American. All I can say is there is hope for Barrett yet.

  113. >>>What assets would you trade for these guys, the latter two of whom are by all accounts not available?<<<

    This is where I sympathize with Strat not wanting to give examples. You give an example and the argument gets sidetracked and misses the whole point. I cannot predict which teams will want to move a player who makes too much money, but I know they get moved every single year. Kyle Lowry is not available today but it's entirely possible that Toronto might come up with a new plan this summer and want to shed his salary. If you're going to so strictly analyze every example, there's no point in giving one.

    We have literally no idea which teams will want to shed salary this summer or which star will become disgruntled, but we do know it will happen. You're essentially asking me to predict the weather on May 15, and I can't. But I can tell you there will be nice days in May because there always are.

    I can't imagine Chris Paul has a high price tag, especially if he angles for the move. Now here's the part where we get sidetracked by how much Chris Paul would hypothetically cost and miss the point again.

    The point is…. imagine Chris Paul is available simply by absorbing his salary. In that case, would you be willing to forego the benefits of tanking to acquire him. That's the crux of the argument.

    Strat wants to execute his plan (which is essentially to compete for the 8 seed instead of tank) with young almost-stars like Porzingis. I wouldn't do that because there's nowhwere to go when he gets your capped out team to the 8 seed and you have him and, say, D Russell on max contracts for the next 4 years.

    But if you tweak it a little bit and go with some of these older guys who have boxed themselves in with their golden parachutes and only have 1-2 years left, I think you have a plan worth eschewing the highest probability of winning the lottery for.

  114. I understand, Hubert, but if we don’t discuss individual cases the discussion can also be pointless, because the guys that eventually become available are going to define the strategy, not the other way around. If KAT becomes available it’s one thing, if DeRozan becomes available its 100% different.

    Like we’ve said many times, nobody is against strat’s plans in principle, it’s just that that plan is only worth it if the players who become available are worth it, and that’s something we can’t control. Like yes by all means go hard on acquiring Damian Lillard if he becomes available, you know, but don’t do the same for CJ McCollum. It’s easy in a way. I agree with tnfh here still because all that matters is the actual players who become available. I’m pretty sure Strat’s plan can work, but it can only work in a very unlikely situation where the right guy becomes available for the right price… then is it really that much more “certain” then the uncertainty of the lottery route?

  115. We’re really discussing getting a washed up veteran to make us respectable? Like, E, do you think the Wizards are giving away Beal? Fuck no. The price for Beal, who is still just 26, is probably similar to the price we paid for Carmelo. I’m sure they’d trade John Wall though. Does that interest you? It could be just like when we traded for Antonio McDyess.

    Yes, Chris Paul some decent vets could make us a decent team next year. This proposal basically translates though into the idea of “let’s take on late career, overpaid veterans who are cheap to acquire.” Why are these players cheap to acquire? Because they end up burdening your team if not right away than before their deals are up, and their best case of “continuing at their current level another year” is still not a value, so you’re talking about a capped out team built on age 30 players that wins maybe 45 games. The Pistons model is very much like this. They took Blake Griffin in what many called a bargain trade a couple years ago and along with several other overpaid, 2nd rate vets like Drummond, Jackson and our own Reggie Bullock. These are the gettable veterans.

    Chris Paul is better than Blake, but he’s also 4 years older and owed about $20m more over the remainder of his contract (through 21/22).

    Here’s the thing, people. One of the many tactics we all use to try to avoid frustrating ideas is to focus on the micro before the macro. The macro here is that the NBA works like other markets. You get more of a return by sacrificing the present because everyone would rather be good now just like you’d rather have $100 now than $100 in 3 years. That is the major market force. So everything else we’re talking about has the prerequisite of either ripping off other teams or seeing some market inefficiency before anyone else. Hubristic IMO to think you have that kind of insight.

  116. We have literally no idea which teams will want to shed salary this summer or which star will become disgruntled, but we do know it will happen. You’re essentially asking me to predict the weather on May 15, and I can’t. But I can tell you there will be nice days in May because there always are.

    Okay, but I didn’t ask when you would make this theoretical trade. Hell, I didn’t even ask who you’d target. All I asked is how much are you willing to invest in this strategy?

    As I understand it, you want to acquire older, productive players whose age is what is making them available and not terribly costly. The supposed benefits of this strategy are the team gets better and then younger free agents want to replace them later. Without arguing about the wisdom of that, I’m asking about the costs.

    We know the costs of the kind of strategy I prefer; it’s fairly likely that you’ll lose a lot of games in the short-term, meaning you likely won’t be a hot free agency destination until that changes (i.e. you draft multiple good players). The benefits are you get more draft picks, you get more looks at intriguing UDFAs/G-League types, you actually have a better chance at being a player in the trade market when someone good is unexpectedly on it because you have more assets, and you have more cap flexibility in general when other unexpected things happen (salary dumps, FA market collapsing, etc.).

    If the kinds of players you’re describing were available for a late first, you have to think actual contenders would be scooping them up using their own firsts. So we’re probably looking at trading our own picks, no?

    Like Bruno said, it’s impossible to have this conversation without getting into any specifics because the wisdom of this, or any other, strategy is entirely dependent on them.

  117. >>>If KAT becomes available it’s one thing, if DeRozan becomes available its 100% different.<<<

    See, what I'm saying is flip the script.

    If KAT becomes available, don't do it, because he'll cost a fortune and you'll find yourself rimrocked like we were when we traded for Melo. But if DeRozan becomes available (not as a free agent – I mean if he opts into his final year and San Antonio decides they want to move him because he costs too much), do it, because he won't cost much by way of assets and you'll be out of his deal in one year. The value is in what he brings that year.

    We keep hiring flashy coaches and dipshit marketing gurus to "turn our image around." Get some vets with credibility in here instead to change the product on the court. Just make sure they're old, legit, and on deals less than 2 years.

  118. >>>All I asked is how much are you willing to invest in this strategy?<<<

    I would give up value for Chris Paul. I'd give OKC everything we got in the Morris deal and take on that contract. I think that's fair value for them. Let's not get sidetracked by that valuation if you think they'd ask for more.

    Then I would take a page out of the KB playbook and rent the cap space out to find him a partner. Do the next Iguadola deal. I don't know who that will be but let's pretend that deal just came available this summer and use him as an example.

    So I've traded picks for Pauls, gotten a pick for Iggy. In 2020-21 my team is:

    Paul
    Barrett
    Iggy (again, hypothetical, I know he signed an extension)
    Randle
    Mitch

    Bench: Frank, Knox, our lotto pick, and a whole bunch of G-league fliers.

    For one thing, I bet our kids look a lot better with Paul. And I bet that team is respectable. Might even make the playoffs. That's how you change your image, not through branding (we all agree on that).

    And now I take another page out of the KB playbook and take advantage of all the teams who want to clear out cap space for 2021 free agency. I pick up a couple more overpaid vets with picks attached.

    In 2021-22, the last season under Paul, we've got him on his last legs and a pair of Iggy types that got dumped on us for picks, plus the kids who are hopefully looking better. By the time it's done, we've spent the last two years not being a joke and we've picked up assets without tanking. We've forgone the ability to win the lottery, but I think we're in much better shape in the summer of 2022 than we've ever been. Our young players have either developed or been cast aside, and we're attractive to free agents bc we focused on basketball instead of branding.

  119. the discussion can also be pointless

    dang, I thought coming here to have pointless discussions – was the point…

    wait, what, we’re actually supposed to be having meaningful discussions…oh man, I’m gonna have to re-think my whole posting practices…

    okay then, let’s sign good players like anthony davis and draft young guys like luka, ja and zion…also, maybe we could also look at hiring some skilled and experienced front office types…

    hmmmmm, that wasn’t so hard…I think I may have just solved all of our problems…

  120. >>>If the kinds of players you’re describing were available for a late first, you have to think actual contenders would be scooping them up using their own firsts. So we’re probably looking at trading our own picks, no?<<<

    I think if you explore this a little more you'll find this is incorrect. With Paul, for example, it's nearly impossible for any contender you can think of to come up with matching salary without decimating their team or leave OKC holding undesirable assets.

    Same would hold true if the Raptors traded Lowry. The acquiring team would probably end up having to give up a better player.

    Those overpaid vets on the last years of their deal have unique value to us that they wouldn't have to other teams, and we're in better position to bear their cost.

  121. >>>The Pistons model is very much like this.<<<

    1. The Pistons took on Griffin with 5 years on his deal. It's completely the opposite of what I'm saying.

    2. If we were as good as the Pistons were last year, we would have signed Kyrie and Durant (not that we should have wanted to, but still).

    3. Are people on desktops ever going to be able to use the quote function?

  122. I hope you can understand why it’s a little hard for me to take a “plan” with this many built-in assumptions seriously.

    Chris Paul, specifically, needs to be available at that price. Some Iggy-level player needs to be salary dumped this summer, and we need to maintain the cap space necessary to take them on despite having just traded for a $41M AAV contract and having Randle on the books. Some similar players need to be salary dumped in 2021, and their salaries have to be even smaller than the first guy because now we have the highest AAV contract in the game, plus another decent sized contract, already on the books (plus everyone else). Chris Paul needs to not decline and/or get injured much. The kids need to look better. All of this needs to culminate in us looking good to unspecified 2022 free agents.

    I dunno man. I’m gonna stick with just acquiring as many assets as possible and seeing what we can do.

    I think if you explore this a little more you’ll find this is incorrect. With Paul, for example, it’s nearly impossible for any contender you can think of to come up with matching salary without decimating their team or leave OKC holding undesirable assets.

    The Chris Paul situation is unique and unprecedented. He’s highly productive, but has such an enormous contract contenders are still wary of him. That’s why this whole plan really hinges on him specifically–everyone else who could fit the description (old, productive, expensive) will be bid on by contenders.

  123. >>>I hope you can understand why it’s a little hard for me to take a “plan” with this many built-in assumptions seriously.<<<

    May I ask how come your plan doesn't require this level of specificity? When you say "we should get more draft picks", I don't tell you to name the 16 year old AAU player you currently covet in the 2021 draft and act like the whole argument falls apart if you can't come up with a surefire prospect that is guaranteed to be available with our selection. There are just as many assumptions in your strategy, too.

  124. I mean this whole thing hinges on getting Chris Paul for his age 35 and 36 seasons and hoping that changes everything.

    I love the guy, one of my favorite players ever, but…sure seems like there’s a clearer path to success that doesn’t require any of this.

    I think the Ntilikina and Knox picks have really warped people’s perceptions about the wisdom of building through the draft. Obviously, it doesn’t work well if you insist on making picks that looked stupid at the time and look even stupider in hindsight. If the Knicks had just stolen the big board of a random internet poster, we’d have Zach Collins instead of Ntilikina and either Robert Williams or Mikal Bridges instead of Knox (I probably would’ve went with the latter due to positional scarcity and its effect on the market for centers). As you can see, I get a helluva lot wrong in those big boards and still somehow do exponentially better than the Knicks. It’s hard to consistently draft well, but it’s really not that hard to avoid consistently drafting terrible players.

  125. Hubert, there’s no way we would have been able to afford to sign Durant and Kyrie Irving had we gone the Pistons route. The nets were able to sign them while keeping most of the talent they already had because the talent they already had was on budget contracts. The only meaningful player they had to give up was D’Angelo Russell.

    You also have to consider the flexibility of the nets model. Let’s say the nets had failed to woo Durant and Irving. They’d still be in a great place moving forward. Our hypothetical Pistons team would be in a horrible place, having given up picks to add players who are now unmovable and cluttering the cap.

    In any case, I feel like if people want to be intellectually honest here and argue for some short-term strategy, you have to respond to my point about macro vs. Micro thinking.

  126. >>>I think the Ntilikina and Knox picks have really warped people’s perceptions about the wisdom of building through the draft.<<<

    I still believe in the draft.

    I think you might have missed the massive paradigm shift, though. 6 of the 10 best players in the league joined 3 of the 4 teams in LA and NY. We missed the boat bc we're a joke. I think it's pretty clear that there's a new path that's available to us that isn't available to Memphis, and the odds are greater for us than counting on the draft.

  127. Latke, I appreciate your response but we didn’t connect.

    My point was that if we had made the playoffs last year, we probably would have done well in free agency.

    But my plan is not the Pistons plan. The Pistons took on long term deals to make the playoffs. I’m saying take on short term deals for top players while simultaneously developing a cost-efficient supporting cast so you can swap the aging guys out when their deals expire for the guys we really want.

  128. I’m saying take on short term deals for top players while simultaneously developing a cost-efficient supporting cast so you can swap the aging guys out when their deals expire for the guys we really want.

    Again, this all boils down to Chris Paul specifically. There are no other “short term deals for top players” that wouldn’t trigger a bidding war the second they hit the market. The draft comes with all kinds of uncertainty and I’m still picking it 10 times out of 10 over “trade assets for Chris Paul’s age 35 and 36 seasons and hope everything else kind of falls into place.”

    May I ask how come your plan doesn’t require this level of specificity? When you say “we should get more draft picks”, I don’t tell you to name the 16 year old AAU player you currently covet in the 2021 draft and act like the whole argument falls apart if you can’t come up with a surefire prospect that is guaranteed to be available with our selection. There are just as many assumptions in your strategy, too.

    Because we know there will, in fact, be prospects available with the draft picks. We don’t know worth a damn whether or not there will be “short term deals for top players” available at a relatively low cost.

  129. Yep. Overloading on cheap assets (young players you get with picks) makes the most sense for a rebuild. Capping out on 3 above-average players rarely amounts to much.

    Look at OKC now, for instance. They have a nice product on the floor but won’t go far on the playoffs. But… they got a ton of picks by trading their stars, so they will rebuild correctly.

    Since we don’t have stars to trade, we have to rent cap space (but we don’t do that). Yet we did fairly well with KP and got lucky with Morris, so I’d be optimistic if I thought we could ever draft well. Maybe Rose’s new guy will? I’m having a hard time imagining that, though.

  130. Apparently Rose is interested in hiring Rich Cho, which I would welcome. His record with the Hornets kind of sucks, but it’s hard to know how much of that comes from MJ and he currently is “Vice President of Basketball Strategy,” whatever the hell that is, for the Grizzlies.

  131. @Hubert

    Look at the Marcus Morris trade market. Good players on fair expiring contracts are not cheap to acquire. Say we have that team of Marcus Morris players though… even then, we’d have had to dump like 4 or 5 of our 6 Marcus Morris level players to create room for Durant and Kyrie. So basically you’re gambling on the idea that superstar free agents are too stupid to realize that we’d have to downgrade our 42 win team into a 25 win team in order to create room for them.

    It’s sorta the equivalent of renting a luxury car on a date. You’re wasting resources to try to trick a person into liking you, knowing full well that for the relationship to work in any long term way, she’ll find out that you’re not rich and tried to deceive her.

  132. >>>Good players on fair expiring contracts are not cheap to acquire.<<<

    Still not connecting.

    I'm saying top players on bad contracts that are too expensive for contenders to acquire make sense here.

    We brought in Marcus Morris and he changed nothing. He's not the kind of guy I'm talking about.

  133. >>>Again, this all boils down to Chris Paul specifically.<<<

    So let's say it does.

    Over the next two years, you can have Chris Paul and our picks are in the 12-16 range or no Chris Paul and we're one of the three worst teams in the NBA both years.

    I would eschew tanking and take the Paul scenario.

    The crux of the argument is that if we do what the Lakers, Clippers, and Nets did and become respectable, we'll reap the same reward because players want to play in these markets. If you don't believe that's possible, so be it, we disagree. But I believe the minute we become half decent and make the playoffs, if we have cap space and a solid young supporting cast, we'll attract talent. So I would invest in guys who can get us there as long as they are on short deals.

  134. Hubert, I actually like your Chris Paul plan, although I would not give up the draft and stash we got in the Morris trade. Apparently the Wizards really didn’t want to part with him and the little bit I looked up about him made me want to keep him. I don’t think our management will do it though, because want to keep the fantasy that they will get a great free agent in the summer of ‘21.

  135. If what you’re saying is you want to surrender on the idea of building a team that can contend for a title and just get as good as possible as quickly as possible, I guess we just have a fundamental disagreement.

    I’m not saying anything close to that.

    I personally didn’t love rooting for the playoff teams we had that had a 0% chance of winning it all, even if they admittedly produced some fun moments here and there.

    I’m not sure what “playoff teams” you’re talking about, but if you enjoy rooting for utter garbage teams like the 2020 version more than the 2013 version because of some misguided notion that the 2020 front office is somehow “doing things right,” then yeah, we have a fundamental disagreement. I prefer good basketball to pretend GMing. Going to the Garden to watch good playoff basketball is far preferable to mental masturbation over three “extra” low first round picks over the next four years.

    Two years ago the Grizzlies’ were a 22 win team whose best player was Tyreke Evans. Then they “sat around and drafted” for two years and now have one of the more exciting rosters in the league.

    You can’t even play this one straight. The Grizzlies’ best players have been Gasol and Conley and they had them all the way through nearly the end, and the end, of last season. They didn’t sell, they didn’t tank. Then they got lucky in the lottery. They didn’t “plan” anything; indeed, the Knicks “outplanned” them by leaps and bounds. We can see how that wound up, and now the suggestion is the Knicks just keep on doing that? Thanks but no thanks.

  136. Apparently Rose is interested in hiring Rich Cho, which I would welcome. His record with the Hornets kind of sucks, but it’s hard to know how much of that comes from MJ and he currently is “Vice President of Basketball Strategy,” whatever the hell that is, for the Grizzlies.

    Cho would be a fine, normal hire. Sign me up for that!

  137. You could acquire Chris Paul and still have enough space to make a max offer to Giannis.

    I am not saying Chris Paul will bring you Giannis. I don’t think this gets turned around that quickly. But if your plan is to go after Giannis in 2021, I think your chances are nonzero if Chris Paul just led your team of kids to a 42 win season, and zero if you bottomed out and ended up with the 4th pick in the draft.

    I would rather take advantage of the frenzy to create cap space that summer and pick up assets galore, but that’s never been our way.

  138. If by “sitting around and just drafting” you mean acquiring surplus picks whenever possible, taking on intriguing flyers whenever possible, and drafting guys who project well instead of the Ntilikinas and Knoxes of the world, there’s really no reason it has to take as long as you and Strat always pretend it does.

    The expected value of the eighth and ninth pick isn’t really that much higher than those two guys. You can’t just cherry pick looking back; you have to look forward. The odds of picking a bust or a reserve at 9 are pretty high. This is why sitting around and drafting based on some notion of the “win curve” is misguided. And the expected value of the three “extra” first rounders is “far below front-end starter.” It’s below “starter.”

    A “sit around and draft” strategy projects to win 30-35 games in RJ’s walk year. He very well might not even stick around after that — Porzingis didn’t under similar circumstances — and so there goes one of the “sit around and draft” assets.

  139. The Knicks far “outplanned” the Pelicans, too — but look who wound up with Zion. Favorable bounces of the ping-pong balls are worth more than “planning” by a factor of like 50.

    In fact, you aren’t going to see many offseasons better “planned” than the Knicks in 2019. Didn’t really work out now, did it?

  140. They planned well for a single season. Just one. Then they went to their moronic “Sign a bunch of veteran players” plan. If they had planned well for multiple seasons (like, say 2016-2018), they’d have a much better team than they have now. So if they plan well for a couple more seasons, they will be much better going forward than this awful current team. Even if other teams get lucky and jump them in the lottery. Judging their current terrible setup that is based on multiple poorly-planned seasons surrounding their one well-planned season and knocking the whole thing as “they tried and failed” is unreasonable. Especially since their one well-planned season got them RJ Barrett, who looks as if he’ll eventually be a standout player.

  141. Since the Knicks are always going to be run by complete idiots, there’s no hope of ever doing asset collecting/proper rebuilding to begin with, so sure, whatever, Chris Paul, Bradley Beal, none of it matters much.

    I mean the one decent season we had in the last two decades was a fugazy contending team built around Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, and it stayed afloat briefly because we got the last fumes of Jason Kidd for about 3/4 of a season and some stellar play from Tyson Chandler, and we had a coach who by sheer accident figured out a style of play that was slightly ahead of its time. At least until he had the revelation that the East was big, man.

    Since that’s the best we’ll ever be able to hope for, sure, let’s go ahead and do that.

  142. Chris Paul is maybe fairly paid this year? Every year of your mid 30s is like playing a game of hopscotch in a minefield. He could easily be a disaster next season due to persistent health issues that plague nearly all players who are in their mid 30s.

    And who are these role players that you’re adding to complement Paul who simultaneously are decently productive and on expiring contracts? Chris Paul’s Thunder are a pretty good team this year thanks to players like Gallo, Gilgeous-Alexander and Steven Adams. The only player they got in a dump who is productive is Schroder. This was a matter of good fortune — of Schroder improving in his mid-20s. Not something reproducible. The other guys always had real trade value. Replace them with salary dumped players or FA signings, and that’s a 35 win team, not a 49 win team.

  143. One thing that never seems to gain traction with the “rebuilding sux” crowd is that you can also use your stockpile of assets to trade for stars. So you don’t really HAVE to wait around for each one to hit his prime. Disgruntled stars do become available from time to time.

  144. Here are the non-Knox/Ntilikina 8th and 9th picks since 2016:

    Marquise Chriss, Jacob Poltl, Dennis Smith, Jr, Collin Sexton, Rui Hachimura, Jaxson Hayes. That’s a blended average of “below starter.” There’s nothing close to a 1 or 2 option in the group, The three “extras” are going to be another 14-20 spots below that.

  145. No disgruntled star is going to want to come here and play with this dreck. They had plenty of assets to get stars last summer and they didn’t.

    I’m not remotely against “rebuilding.” I am against sitting around and drafting because young, prime excellent players supposedly don’t match the “win curve.”

    What disgruntled star is going to become available higher on the depth chart than Beal?

  146. No disgruntled star is going to want to come here and play with this dreck. They had plenty of assets to get stars last summer and they didn’t.

    What the fuck assets did they have? I guess they had the two Porzingis picks, Mitch Robinson who you’d really rather not trade and RJ. The rest of the young players are garbage.

    How does that compare to the package, say, that the Lakers gave to the Pelicans for AD? Hold on, don’t answer, I’ll tell you: it compares like shit.

  147. Even with our stupid “sign a bunch of vets” idea we could land the top pick in the draft this year and it wouldn’t be great.

    The odds aren’t in our favor compared to the other route. Over the last ten years there have been three franchise talents: Luka, Zion, AD. Say that’s a fair representation, there’s a 30% chance a franchise talent is available and a 14% chance you win the right to select him. That’s 4.2%.

    Conversely, over the last 3 years, if you won 35 games in NY or LA and had cap space, you signed a franchise player in free agency 100% of an admittedly insignificant sample of 3 times.

    If you don’t believe NBA players want to go to destination cities, we can respectfully disagree.

    But if you do… here are no destinations left! LA is locked in times 2. Miami is committed. San Francisco is committed. Brooklyn is committed. All we have to do is not suck so bad and leave space available. It’s the easiest plan to execute right now.

    And I don’t think we should give up building through the draft. I’m just ok drafting in the middle and late parts of the round like the Clippers and Nets did.

  148. They had $70 million plus in cap room. Nobody wanted to come here. Did you not here what they said and watch what they do? No one wanted to come here and play.

    Anthony Davis had one year left on his contract. If he’d come here, there’s an extremely good chance he’d be on his way to leaving after this summer.

  149. Free agents DID want to go to the Nets. Why is that? Was it because the Nets had a bunch of Bradley Beal-caliber veterans goosing up their win total?

    No. It was because the Nets had a reasonably decent young core, one that was assembled with precisely the kind of moves that people like myself and TNFH suggest all the time. The Nets got good production from D’Angelo Russell (acquired at a discount), Jarrett Allen (22nd overall pick), Spencer Dinwiddie (picked off the scrap heap), Caris LeVert (scrap heap), Joe Harris (scrap heap), and some decent play from perennial bargain bin vets like Ed Davis and Jared Dudley.

    How’d they manage to attract KD and Kyrie without Bradley Beal on the roster?

  150. >>>One thing that never seems to gain traction with the “rebuilding sux” crowd is that you can also use your stockpile of assets to trade for stars. So you don’t really HAVE to wait around for each one to hit his prime. Disgruntled stars do become available from time to time.<<<

    But that only gets you a star. I don't want a star on a team with no assets left. I referred to that above as being rimrocked. Perhaps here we can call that Carmelo'd.

  151. Strat wants to execute his plan (which is essentially to compete for the 8 seed instead of tank) with young almost-stars like Porzingis. I wouldn’t do that because there’s nowhwere to go when he gets your capped out team to the 8 seed and you have him and, say, D Russell on max contracts for the next 4 years.

    I’m not going to advocate for any particular player or strategy here, but KP and DLo combine for barely over half the 2019-20 salary cap. There’s still plenty of room for flexibility even if both of them were on the roster.

  152. >>>No. It was because the Nets had a reasonably decent young core, one that was assembled with precisely the kind of moves that people like myself and TNFH suggest all the time.<<<

    I'm not suggesting you don't make those moves, JK. In fact I said the opposite. I said make all those moves and supplement the kids with a placeholder, precisely like the Nets and Clippers did with Russell and Gallinari.

    Do you think Durant and Kyrie wouldn't have joined the Nets if they won 42 games with a 35 year old PG? It only worked because Russell was 23?

  153. No. It was because the Nets had a reasonably decent young core, one that was assembled with precisely the kind of moves that people like myself and TNFH suggest all the time.

    No, actually it isn’t. They would have gone to Brooklyn with a decent core assembled in any number of ways. The methods of its assembly had nothing to do with it. And if you’re somehow suggesting that KD/Kyrie wouldn’t have gone to the Nets if Bradley Beal was on the roster … wow.

    And you’ve misunderstood me. I’m not advocating getting better players so as to draw free agents. They would, but that’s not the ultimate purpose. Better basketball with excellent players is a worthy end in itself.

  154. And I don’t think we should give up building through the draft. I’m just ok drafting in the middle and late parts of the round like the Clippers and Nets did.

    Exactly.

  155. But that only gets you a star. I don’t want a star on a team with no assets left. I referred to that above as being rimrocked. Perhaps here we can call that Carmelo’d.

    That’s why you need…. drum roll….. wait for it….

    SURPLUS ASSETS. So you don’t trade every single asset you have for whatever star you want.

  156. >>>That’s why you need…. drum roll….. wait for it….

    SURPLUS ASSETS. So you don’t trade every single asset you have for whatever star you want. <<<

    Who said we shouldn't acquire surplus assets?

    Here are the things I agree with you & TNFH on:

    – we should build through the draft
    – we should seize every opportunity to acquire draft picks
    – we should take fliers on G league players
    – we should make as many value signings (like the Clips Harrell deal) as possible
    – we should stockpile assets

    Here is where I disagree with you:

    – I think the best chance we have of finding a franchise player is through free agency, not the draft.

    That's it.

    In order to attract the franchise player in free agency, we have to do things that detract from our ability to land the next Zion. I'm ok doing that because I don't think the odds are good that we get him even if we do everything right.

  157. The Knicks had a better young core than the current Nets in 2010 and that year’s free agents didn’t want to come here, either. There’s no sense in having any planning revolve around retaining “flexibility” for free agency two and three years away, when there’s no evidence any of the FAs will want to come here, and plenty of evidence — 2010 and 2019 — that they don’t. Nor is it really even necessary to plan in advance; you can just throw guys overboard last minute to make the cap room or do a sign-and-trade if a miracle finally comes and an FA wants to come here. The Nets didn’t even have the cap room for two last summer until the last minute. The Heat didn’t have cap room for Butler until the last minute.

  158. Here are the things I agree with you & TNFH on:

    – we should build through the draft
    – we should seize every opportunity to acquire draft picks
    – we should take fliers on G league players
    – we should make as many value signings (like the Clips Harrell deal) as possible
    – we should stockpile assets

    Everyone agrees with that; the only gray area is in things like, “Should they trade something like one of the Dallas picks for someone like Dennis Schroeder.” Literally no one here is against collecting assets. Some of us are against overvaluing those assets, to be sure. And some of us are against watching abject dreck just for some extra ping pong balls. Given the coach’s and apparently FO’s choice of who should be playing and how much, this year’s Knick team is one of the most unappealing basketball teams that’s ever been trotted out.

  159. >>>the only gray area is in things like, “Should they trade something like one of the Dallas picks for someone like Dennis Schroeder.”<<<

    And my answer is definitively no. This is where I think I disagree with you and strat. Those guys don't move the needle and you're stuck with them. I don't want Bradley Beal, either. He's clearly not enough to make a team respectable.

    The grey area I'm discussing is would you rather be the 8 seed or have a 14% chance at the top pick. In a market like NY, I think the reward is better if you're the 8 seed and you maintain the cap space to make a max offer.

  160. I agree with E that we probably got typical value for our eighth and ninth picks. I don’t agree that our sign a bunch of vets plan was totally moronic because, unlike most sign a bunch of vets attempts, we didn’t commit much for next year. You can sort of see that if Payton had been mostly healthy and Mike Miller was coach from the beginning of the season that we would be a twenty eight to thirty win team. Doubling our win number from one season to the next and maintaining flexibility is not a horrible result. Admittedly, that result would have been liked more by the front office than by fans who wanted tanking, but it still was a reasonable compromise plan given we lost out on Durant.

  161. And my answer is definitively no. This is where I think I disagree with you and strat. Those guys don’t move the needle and you’re stuck with them.

    I suppose, but OTOH, the expected value of the Dallas picks are something like “10th man.” I’d prefer more respectable basketball to daydreaming and fantasizing about what the Dallas picks will bring when all the evidence is to the contrary. Eventually, we are going to be “stuck with” the results of those picks and the odds are extremely high they will be worse than someone like Schroeder.

  162. What I don’t get about this conversation is that I think you guys are ignoring our very own recent history.

    If we trade for Paul and end up being respectable, winning some games and going to the playoffs etc etc, this all might still mean absolutely nothing. We traded for Melo, signed Amare and became a respectable team, at least on these terms, even made the playoffs a couple of times and won a series and… it literally did not matter. Phil just came in, made a bunch of terrible moves, no real FA wanted to come to the Knicks anyway outside of Joakim Noah, and like 2 years after we won 54 games we were back to square one, but now with an unproductive Melo on a megamax and all the idiots Phil put around him clogging the cap space.

    Yeah that all might have been Phil’s fault, I can give you that. But becoming respectable by adding veterans and higher quality players does not mean the next steps will be equally successful specially for a franchise that is still owned by one of the 3 worst owners in professional sports. Melo didn’t change our image enough to have a lasting impact, and we all know how beloved he still is by his fellow players. Why should I trust Paul or DeRozan to be able to do it?

  163. >>>I suppose, but OTOH, the expected value of the Dallas picks are something like “10th man.” <<<

    I think we're arguing with the same people but not on the same side. This is more like a mexican standoff with JK & TNFH as Blondie, you and Strat as Angel Eyes, and I guess I'll be The Ugly :)

    I value those Dallas picks very highly, and guys like Dennis Schroeder very little.

  164. We traded for Melo, signed Amare and became a respectable team, at least on these terms, even made the playoffs a couple of times and won a series and… it literally did not matter.

    It did matter. The playoff games at the Garden were awesome. They had some excellent players on the team. The fact that the team was badly mismanaged after that doesn’t change the memories of them.

  165. That’s a great point, Bruno.

    Here’s the difference, though, and why I think Paul is such a unique opportunity:

    1. We’re not mega maxing him after 2 years. (I hope!)

    2. We’re not going all in. Paul plus all our guys on rookie deals is barely more than half the salary cap. So you can still keep making the kinds of moves that rebuilding teams should make.

  166. This is more like a mexican standoff with JK & TNFH as Blondie, you and Strat as Angel Eyes, and I guess I’ll be The Ugly :)

    That works lol.

    I value those Dallas picks very highly

    Why? They’re not worth that much. They have more value as trade chips than as actually drafting in those slots, but even in trade, the teams know how to distinguish them from lottery picks. They have their most value as trade chips in the “disgruntled star” scenario where against all odds, the “star” says he wants to go to NY, a la Carmelo BITD. That scenario isn’t inconceivable, I guess, but the question is whether to hoard them for that unlikely outcome. Once they just become draft picks you use, their worth is very low.

  167. The dreamers among us believe somewhere in our shriveled little hearts that there’s a Siakam, a Jokic, a Draymond, a Gobert or shit at least a Brogdon out there to be had with one of those late picks. A longshot, I know, but maybe not as much of a longshot as “bring in Bradley Beal and the Knicks will have some respectability and then someday ringzz.”

    I have to keep reminding myself this is not a normal franchise and we will never do things in a normal way, so maybe the B-level Melo/Stat/Marbury “star” we invest in next time will pan out to something great.

  168. And does anyone believe that in a disgruntled star scenario like Carmelo, where there’s a few months of haggling over price, and the Knick GM is trying to hold firm with the Dallas pick rather than the Knicks, and the other team is insisting on the Knicks’, that Dolan won’t just step in and say “Just give them our pick and get the deal done”?

    Way too many ifs and buts for my taste.

  169. The dreamers among us believe somewhere in our shriveled little hearts that there’s a Siakam, a Jokic, a Draymond, a Gobert or shit at least a Brogdon out there to be had with one of those late picks. A longshot, I know, but maybe not as much of a longshot as “bring in Bradley Beal and the Knicks will have some respectability and then someday ringzz.”

    I thought the board’s thing was dispassionate empirical analysis, not dreams. There’s no basketball success in dreaming that the 23rd pick will turn into 20 or 30 times its expected value. When you get down to levels like the 40s, like Jokic, you’re talking about pure luck — or the functional equivalent of pure luck. Hell, Giannis and Kawhi were pure luck. Even the people who drafted them never dreamed they’d turn into what they turned into, and they were taken mid-teens, not 23.

  170. “ No, actually it isn’t. They would have gone to Brooklyn with a decent core assembled in any number of ways. The methods of its assembly had nothing to do with it. And if you’re somehow suggesting that KD/Kyrie wouldn’t have gone to the Nets if Bradley Beal was on the roster … wow.”

    It’s very difficult to have this conversation if the other side is going to pretend there are not stringent rules that govern the way teams can spend money in the NBA. No, KD and Kyrie would not have gone to the Nets it they had Bradley Beal because the Nets would not have been able to afford them.

    The reason the Nets were able to put together an attractive core that they were able to *add* KD and Kyrie to (as opposed to having to get rid of the core a la the weird bait-and-switch scheme latke correctly panned) is because the core consisted entirely of guys on rookie scale or otherwise reasonable contracts. The one time they did something like you’re suggesting, it was adding Allen Crabbe and it completely blew up in their face. Every other one of their moves came straight straight out of the JK47/TNFH playbook. They are a god awful example for whatever it is you’re suggesting. I know the cap is complicated but this is very basic stuff.

    I should add that the “get Chris Paul and then hope for a bunch of other stuff” plan is almost certainly DOA for the same “none of that shit is allowed” reason.

  171. I have to keep reminding myself this is not a normal franchise and we will never do things in a normal way, so maybe the B-level Melo/Stat/Marbury “star” we invest in next time will pan out to something great.

    They’ve already done the “tank and clear cap space for a great free agent summer.” That was not only normal, it was hyper, totally normal. The quintessence of normal. Distilled, black hole normalcy.

    It failed. Plus they’ve drafted 3, 4, 8, and 9 in the lottery in the last five years. They’re still godawful. So the plan is …. more of the same? That way lies the Sacramento Kings and Orlando Magic, who have been sitting around and drafting for like 10 years and are still boring, unaccomplished crap. Thanks, but no thanks.

  172. They’ve already done the “tank and clear cap space for a great free agent summer.” That was not only normal, it was hyper, totally normal. The quintessence of normal.

    Now do it for more than one season! And instead of all the Taj Gibson/Bobby Portis bullshit, take on bad contrats to get assets! Like a normal team!

    This is the same thing Brian mentioned above. Don’t act like the Knicks are a normal team because they did something normal for a very short period of time. Because once that ended they went right back to doing weirdo Steve Mills “save my job” shit.

  173. Knox and Ntilikina are a few of the worst players in the NBA, so I guarantee you they are far below the expected value of the 8/9 picks via all the studies conducted on this exact subject.

    I refuse to believe the Dallas picks are worthless when every god damn year the doctors, lawyers, musicians, students, etc. who populate this board are able to identify productive players picked in thy range prior to the draft.

  174. I just want to know….

    If Leon Rose can come here and work out a fair deal (i.e. at most we give up the Clippers first or the 2023 Dallas pick) to bring his top client Chris Paul to NY for the next two seasons, who would be against it and why?

    He’s one year younger than LeBron James and every bit the physical outlier capable of performing well at age 35. He’d be the greatest player who ever played for this team. He would bring respectability on day 1. We’d probably make more progress as a franchise in his first year than we’ve made in the last 20.

    We’re going to say no to this guy because he’s too old? Because we need the ping pong balls ?Because he’s “overpaid” (I would pay someone $80mm to turn this team around)?

    Even if I’m wrong and he’s broken down and can’t play for two years, that just helps the tank. What’s the counter?

  175. So the plan is …. more of the same?

    The plan, as the plan always is around here, is:

    1. Try to sign a marquee free agent, and fail
    2. When that happens, sign a non-marquee free agent but pay him marquee free agent money
    3. Go all-in on this fake win-now team
    4. Wonder why it didn’t work

    Let’s keep doing that! Back up the Bradley Beal truck I guess.

  176. Knox and Ntilikina are a few of the worst players in the NBA, so I guarantee you they are far below the expected value of the 8/9 picks via all the studies conducted on this exact subject.

    Dude, I posted the last four years of 8s/9s. You can go back further and you’ll find something very similar.

    I refuse to believe the Dallas picks are worthless when every god damn year the doctors, lawyers, musicians, students, etc. who populate this board are able to identify productive players picked in thy range prior to the draft.

    Oh, brother. Sigh.

  177. A lot of teams are planning to have cap space in the summer of ‘21, and most of all of them won’t get much for it. It’s one reason why I wouldn’t mind having One year of Chris Pail on our books then if he is still playing reasonably well.

  178. When you get down to levels like the 40s, like Jokic, you’re talking about pure luck — or the functional equivalent of pure luck.

    You know who wanted Jokic with that pick?

    I’ll give you a hint, he’s dashingly handsome, lives in Pasadena and has really good indie rock touring stories.

  179. I guess Tuco is out of this argument now. You guys wrestle, I’ll go get the gold. (The gold is Chris Paul.)

  180. Actually I went back and looked at the 2014 draft night thread and I didn’t mention Jokic, the guys I liked were Spencer Dinwiddie and Jerami Grant.

    I had mentioned Jokic as a possible Knicks pick a few days before that draft but I couldn’t find that post. Jokic was still on the board when the Knicks picked.

  181. We’ve all heard of sign and trades here, right. If we’re going to dream about Giannis saying, “I insist on playing in the Mecca and will play nowhere else” (*) the Bucks would s and t him to get assets rather than lose him for nothing. You don’t really need to even have the requisite cap room in advance.

    (*) Hockey players say that a lot — Rick Nash, Artemi Panarin, etc. Basketball players never do, even though Knicks fans have thought they would for like 25 years now. Go figure.

  182. I think you all are ignoring the elephant here, which is that it is hard to become a good team. VERY hard. The NBA has created a system with two categories of players:

    A) Superstar, top 5 level talents who spend like a dozen years underpaid and can be underpaid by hundreds of millions of dollars in the duration of their career, essentially giving the team they are under contract with hundreds of millions of free cap money.

    B) Everyone else — a group that is on average badly overpaid as all the savings from A) get funneled into B)

    Yes, non superstars on rookie contracts or late bloomers can be underpaid for a period. It doesn’t last long, and even a team full of the most underpaid role players will still be nowhere near as good as a not entirely incompetent team with one superstar. So the game is “get one of the 3-8 players who actually matter at any cost”, and that is a ridculously hard thing to do! Even if you operate perfectly based on the information available to you.

    So all this obsessing over “look how bad our draft picks have been,” and, “look how we struck out in free agency,” and “look how we tried this other thing and it got us nowhere as well,” all SHOULD BE TRUE and will ALWAYS BE TRUE no matter what path the team takes. In other words, pointing out that a strategy has failed is next to meaningless since even the best straetegies should fail the vast majority of the time.

    But if we all agree that it is possible to stockpile assets — that if your team focuses strictly on adding players with upside and developing them, it will become richer and richer in terms of its trade assets, then that to me seems like the most viable strategy to eventually become a good team.

  183. There’s pretty widespread consensus in basketball circles that the 1984 and 2003 are the two best of all-time and if they aren’t, they’re very close. Here are the 8s and 9s in those two loaded drafts:

    Lancaster Gordon
    Otis Thorpe
    TJ Ford
    Michael Sweetney

    Otis Thorpe was a decent player; old-enough Knicks fans should remember him from the 1994 Finals, nice fourth wheel power forward, made one all-star team. Two are abject dreck busts. TJ Ford was marginally kinda sorta ok for a year or two before fading badly. Blended expected value — 8th man-ish reserve.

  184. >>>I think you all are ignoring the elephant here, which is that it is hard to become a good team.<<<

    I think if your team is in NY or LA it's hard NOT to become a good team.

    All those elite players you're talking about want to be in NY, LA, or Miami. Durant just left a dynasty and Kyrie left the greatest basketball franchise east of LA. Kawhi left a champion. Just give these guys the opportunity to come without sinking their careers. That's all you gotta do. Guys like Dolan, Prokorov, and that racist in LA couldn't figure that out. The Lakers know, Ballmer knows, Riley knows, Marks figured it out.

    Just lay the fucking tracks.

  185. Yeah, 8th and 9th is a pretty shitty place to draft, which is why it’s so fucking irritating to always be drafting 8th and 9th. Which is what happens when you sign shitty free agents and chase an 8th seed and fail.

  186. “I just want to know…. If Leon Rose can come here and work out a fair deal (i.e. at most we give up the Clippers first or the 2023 Dallas pick) to bring his top client Chris Paul to NY for the next two seasons, who would be against it and why?”

    Flipping the clippers stuff for Paul doesn’t match up salary wise. Plus, Harkless is expiring, right, so he can’t be traded.

    But if we are talking about dumping a bunch of our trash and the clippers pick for Paul, I’d say the Knicks could do a lot worse with their $40,000,000 over the next two years. It’s not a great move, and there is opportunity cost, but it makes them more watchable, and less pathetic, and more likable, and less horrible, so it checks a few boxes.

  187. @Hubert

    The only superstar to switch teams as a free agent onto a bad or even mediocre team is Lebron. Every other superstar FA who switched teams as a free agent either went to a young team that won 40+ or to a great team:

    * Durant > GSW: great team
    * Kyrie & Durant > Brooklyn: rising young team
    * Dwight > Houston: rising young team
    * Paul > Houston: great team

    Of course, market matters. If the Nets were in Minnesota, they’d have zero chance of getting Kyrie or Durant, but my point is they’re still a very different team from any team that the Knicks are capable of building right now with their current assets and cap room.

    There are no examples of superstar FAs going to teams with forgettable young players riding the bench behind aging veterans who manage to win 42 games but will mostly have to leave to create room for the superstar FA.

    You might argue that Kawhi > LAC was a counterexample, but while Kawhi technically signed as an FA, the Clips gave up a ton to add George, which was a prerequisite of Kawhi’s.

  188. >>>Flipping the clippers stuff for Paul doesn’t match up salary wise. Plus, Harkless is expiring, right, so he can’t be traded.<<<

    I said the Clippers first round pick. I'd bring Harkless back.

    We don't need to match salary, we'd have enough cap space to absorb him once we waive all the second year deals.

  189. >>>>Every other superstar FA who switched teams as a free agent either went to a young team that won 40+ or to a great team:<<<<

    Dude I don't know why our wires are getting crossed this bad. I think I've been pretty clear: my objective is to build a 40+ win team around Chris Paul. That's the whole plan. It's pretty simple.

    If you acquire Chris Paul and he breaks down, no harm no foul. We still got our ping pong balls.

  190. Here’s what the Knicks could *easily* be next year if Rose can work out a Paul deal:

    PG Paul (35), Halliburton (20)
    SG Bullock (29), Barrett (20)
    SF Harkless (27), Frank (22), Brazdeikis (21)
    PF Randle (25), Knox (21)
    C Robinson (22), Gibson (34), Wooten (21)

    And at the end of the year: two first round picks, two second round picks, and enough cap space to sign a max free agent simply by moving Randle’s nonguaranteed contract.

    Donnie Walsh, you think this is merely a minor upgrade over the last 6 years?

    JK & TNFH, this team is too old for you?

    Latke, no free agent would be interested in joining this team?

  191. Here’s what no one has been saying: we may have dodged a major bullet by Kyrie and Durant NOT coming here. It hurt like hell when it happened, but Kyrie is constantly injured and a douchebag of a teammate, and no one really knows what Durant is gonna be for the next 5 years, let alone next season.

    Years from now when the Nets haven’t won anything Dolan can say (somehow with a straight face) he never wanted them anyway.

  192. And at the end of the year: two first round picks, two second round picks, and enough cap space to sign a max free agent simply by moving Randle’s nonguaranteed contract.

    They wouldn’t even have to move Randle’s K; they could just waive him and pay the $4M cap hit.

    I’m not against the Paul idea; I’d just rather do it with someone way younger and still in their prime.

  193. If the Thunder want to give us a ton of picks to take on Paul, I’d consider it

    But getting lucky in the draft is the dominant strategy.

  194. “Donnie Walsh, you think this is merely a minor upgrade over the last 6 years?”

    Hey, I’m on board. The clipper pick for Paul? Sure.

    I don’t think it will lead directly or even indirectly to a championship, but it makes for an improved product which the franchise desperately needs. It won’t hurt the long run chances of building something sustainable. Do it.

  195. Yeah, I’d have to get picks back to take Paul, maybe a future swap could convince me. It would be cool to watch a guy who would essentially be one of the best 5 players the Knicks ever had, even for a while, but you’re also forgetting, Hubert, that this has been Chris Paul’s first fully healthy season in 4 years. He’s played 54 games already this season, against 58, 58 and 61 in the last 3 years. I just don’t expect this to last.

    If you’re paying assets to get Paul on board, assuming he’ll miss 25 games throughout the season, I need his impact to be massive everywhere else, meaning he either has a huge impact on the youngsters, which is arguable but debatable, or have a huge influence in changing the team’s perception around the league, which I have said before I don’t really believe in as long as Dolan is in charge.

    So yeah, I’m still not doing it. I don’t think it’s an outrageously bad plan by any means, I just don’t trust the people involved to make either the impact they would need to make, or the correct subsequent decisions.

  196. Dude, I posted the last four years of 8s/9s. You can go back further and you’ll find something very similar.

    That’s fine for Frank, but everyone on this board knew Knox was a bust before the draft. Lots of us were screaming for Mikal Bridges who can actually play basketball.

    PG Paul (35), Halliburton (20)
    SG Bullock (29), Barrett (20)
    SF Harkless (27), Frank (22), Brazdeikis (21)
    PF Randle (25), Knox (21)
    C Robinson (22), Gibson (34), Wooten (21)

    Harkless isn’t on the team next year. I’m not sure why we’d keep Gibson either. He can’t play center. Paul has another 2 yrs @ 40 mill. He’ll be 37. No thank you.

    Smart money says we max at least one of Drummond/DeRozan/Hayward this offseason. Maybe Morris comes back.

  197. Hubert: PG Paul (35), Halliburton (20)
    SG Bullock (29), Barrett (20)
    SF Harkless (27), Frank (22), Brazdeikis (21)
    PF Randle (25), Knox (21)
    C Robinson (22), Gibson (34), Wooten (21)

    And at the end of the year: two first round picks, two second round picks, and enough cap space to sign a max free agent simply by moving Randle’s nonguaranteed contract.

    Latke, no free agent would be interested in joining this team?

    I highly doubt an FA comes to this 40 win team because the two best players on the .500 team you’d be joining are either in rapid decline or being moved to create room to add you. So really you’re joining the current New York Knicks minus Gibson and Randle + whomever we draft. What’s that…? Maybe a 20 win team? It depends on how much the young players develop over the next year. And so we’ve come full circle right back to the question of “how good is our young core?”

    Even if a player is naive enough to be taken by this con move (and it is a con move — you’re trying to make the team our FA would be joining *seem* good), his agent is not gonna be conned. The only meaningful person who might be conned in this scenario is our buddy James Dolan.

    Your point before seems to be “what are you risking?” and the answer is…

    * worse lotto pick
    * fewer minutes to develop young players
    * fewer roster spots to develop young players

    Like all the bad qualities of the Phil Jackson era minus Noah’s contract… young players alienated and cut out of development opportunities and exposed to all the drama that comes about when a team makes moves to suggest its goal is to win now and then badly underperforms.

  198. Jowles, there are 13 players who have won multiple MVPs. Only 2 are still playing (Curry and LeBron.) It is an incredibly rare feat. I don’t see Zion ever being in that category of greatness. Curry is possibly the greatest shooter in NBA history. LBJ is the greatest combination of skill, B-ball IQ and physical attributes ever. Zion just doesn’t have that level of ability, in my opinion.

  199. Here are the non-Knox/Ntilikina 8th and 9th picks since 2016:

    Marquise Chriss, Jacob Poltl, Dennis Smith, Jr, Collin Sexton, Rui Hachimura, Jaxson Hayes. That’s a blended average of “below starter.” There’s nothing close to a 1 or 2 option in the group, The three “extras” are going to be another 14-20 spots below that.

    Tiny, arbitrary samples are fun but it took me about 30 seconds to find a decent study on the matter and, surprise, you’re badly wrong. Not only is it completely arbitrary to only include the specific players picked at 8/9 (anything to avoid being forced to include Donovan Mitchell and Bam Adebayo in the exact same cherry-picked sample), but even when you arbitrarily narrow it to those picks, you’re still horrendously wrong.

    From 1985-2019 the average WS48 of the 8th pick is 0.0664 (compare to Ntilikina’s -0.017), and the average career WS48 of the 9th pick is 0.0954 (compare to Knox’s -0.015).

    So even by your completely narrow, arbitrary standards (comparing them only to player’s picked at their exact slots as opposed their slots and below) we completely blew those picks.

    Now, it’s true we shouldn’t have been picking in that range. Our young core sucked ass and the picks were reflective of Phil Jackson’s furious desire to be .500 on the back of guys who would be out of the league soon. That…cuts directly against your larger point.

  200. The reason the Nets were able to put together an attractive core that they were able to *add* KD and Kyrie to (as opposed to having to get rid of the core a la the weird bait-and-switch scheme latke correctly panned) is because the core consisted entirely of guys on rookie scale or otherwise reasonable contracts.

    I don’t think you’re correct, TNFH. The “weird bait and switch routine” is precisely what Brooklyn and LA executed.

    You’re overlooking the impact of Russell. Without him, the Nets are not in the playoffs. Without the Nets being in the playoffs, that impacts the way Irving and Durant view those young players. If the Nets win 28 games, LeVert and Allen don’t stand out as great potential teammates. But when a guy like Russell comes along and carries the scoring load, he enables all those players to slot into their correct roles. And now those players look appealing. But the guy who did that doesn’t need to be on the team for the stars to join. He’s a placeholder for the real star. It renders all your arguments about how the team needs to be 100% young and cheap moot. The placeholder can make as much money as he wants. His job is to carry a load so the younger cheaper kids can slot into their roles.

    Gallinari played the same role with LA. Without those two, the Clippers and Nets are not playoff teams last year and their appeal is drastically lower. No free agent wants to join a team of young players who look like garbage bc they’re all being asked to do too much.

  201. People citing the Nets as an example of why we need to throw maximal asset collection by the wayside and trade for Chris Paul or whatever is truly bizarro world stuff. I guess a little reminder is in order, here’s how the Nets got their relevant players (the ones KD/Kyrie actually agreed to join):

    Jarrett Allen–draft pick from Andrew Nicholson’s salary dump

    Rodions Kurucs—draft pick from DeMarre Carroll’s salary dump

    Caris LeVert–draft pick from trading away a useless veteran in Thaddeus Young

    Spencer Dinwiddie—flyer on a young player who was good in college

    Joe Harris–flyer on a young player who was good in college

    The closest thing they did to signing for a decent veteran was trading nothing for Allen Crabbe which, again, turned out to be their lone mistake in this entire process. He did nothing for them and was unceremoniously salary dumped with three picks, including two first rounders, that they now can’t use to upgrade their win-now team.

    I guess if you want to make a very bad argument, you can say they did some version of this bait-and-switch thing with D’angelo Russell. This of course crumbles under the slightest bit of scrutiny because KD/Kyrie still were joining all of the above young, productive players and were able to make the very simple determination that the core minus Russell was still strong.

    Last thing on this: how crazy is it that E is saying we should emulate the Nets while also saying late picks are worthless?! Allen was picked 22nd. LeVert was picked 20th. Joe Harris was picked 33rd. Dinwiddie was picked 38th. For reference, if we had the Mavs pick this year it would be 19th.

    Yeah, we should emulate the hell out of the Nets, and by that I mean we should take on every god damn salary dump we can, completely avoid useless veteran contracts, use extra roster spots for interesting flyers, and make great use of late picks. Sound like an approach anyone has been calling for for a while?

  202. I guess if you want to make a very bad argument, you can say they did some version of this bait-and-switch thing with D’angelo Russell. This of course crumbles under the slightest bit of scrutiny because KD/Kyrie still were joining all of the above young, productive players and were able to make the very simple determination that the core minus Russell was still strong.

    Yeah I don’t think it crumbles just because you say so.

    Winning is a big reason those role players seemed appealing.

    You’re saying the nets being in the playoffs didn’t matter. KD/Kyrie would have still scrutinized the nets roster and determined that a 30 win team had enough quality role players for them to ditch their situations for. I don’t buy it.

  203. TNFH, since the article you referred to excluded players with less than four seasons, I’m not sure it’s fair to compare Frank’s and Knox’s numbers to the numbers in the table. The article also points out that being on a bad team depresses your WS numbers. Frank and Knox certainly suffer from that. The article actually ranks the Knicks as slightly above average in WS of their picks despite their lousy record depressing their draftees WS numbers. This hasn’t helped the Knicks as much as it should because they traded away so many picks in the past. Do I think that Frank could reach a career WS of 0.06? Yes, I do, especially if he played on a better team. Knox I am not so sure about. But I consider the case open for both.

  204. Yeah I don’t think it crumbles just because you say so.

    Winning is a big reason those role players seemed appealing.

    You’re saying the nets being in the playoffs didn’t matter. KD/Kyrie would have still scrutinized the nets roster and determined that a 30 win team had enough quality role players for them to ditch their situations for. I don’t buy it.

    If you can find a “placeholder” like Russell for the Knicks, who was 21-22 years old with the Nets, made $5.5M and $7M AAV for the Nets, would’ve represented a fine option to simply keep if the Nets got snubbed in free agency, and was acquired via…a Timofey Mozgov salary dump, please name that player.

    Because the one you’re suggesting is 35 and makes over $40M a year.

  205. TNFH, since the article you referred to excluded players with less than four seasons, I’m not sure it’s fair to compare Frank’s and Knox’s numbers to the numbers in the table. The article also points out that being on a bad team depresses your WS numbers. Frank and Knox certainly suffer from that. The article actually ranks the Knicks as slightly above average in WS of their picks despite their lousy record depressing their draftees WS numbers. This hasn’t helped the Knicks as much as it should because they traded away so many picks in the past. Do I think that Frank could reach a career WS of 0.06? Yes, I do, especially if he played on a better team. Knox I am not so sure about. But I consider the case open for both.

    I don’t think either player will reach those benchmarks, but I was simply responding to the notion that we haven’t gotten less-than-expected value from those picks. As of now we definitely have and it was easy to tell we would at the time.

  206. If you can find a better, cheaper one, do it. But it’s nigh impossible.

    But you’ve been dismissing the value of it. Acting like all the Nets needed to do was make a couple good trades and voila! free agents came.

    If you admit the importance of it – and I think it’s damn near self evident that free agents don’t join teams with good role players that win 30 games – then we can argue about how much you’re willing to pay for it.

  207. I think what most are missing in this discussion is there are many ways to skin a cat. You can tank, you can open cap space , you can horde draft choices, you can trade draft choices,you can even do what the Knicks did this off season. Some strategies are better than others, but the real problem with this team is poor EXECUTION of any strategy chosen.

    That is completely a function of incompetent upper management. Poor strategy PLUS poor execution gets us what we have today.

    The real problem with the mercenary strategy was they grossly overpaid for Randle, Bullock. Portis , Gibson and Ellington and they were often redundant. Payton is the only one close to worth his salary and they backed into Morris.

    Randle got a 10M raise coming off a worse statistical season than 2018 after playing with the gravity effect of AD. Portis’ production could have been 95% replaced by resigning Vonleh. Ellington and Gibson were old and superfluous as well as being overpaid. Bullock is/was a journeyman for a reason.

    I’d like to see them dump every mercenary at the end of the year and have 53M on the books for next year with an expected cap of 116M.

    We have one and a half actual assets (certainly MR and maybe Barrett) and a boat load of draft assets moving forward. Developing those 2 should be the prime directive.

    Offer Gallo 55m for 2 years to play the 4 next to MR. Trade for CPIII and play CP, Frank, RJ ,MR and Gallo. Randle can get 30 minutes a game in a 3 man rotation with Gallo and MR. That would be a balanced and interesting team to watch and develop MR and RJ and hopefully one or two of Frank, Iggy, Wooten, Knox and DSJr improve with competence on the floor.

    Draft better and pray, If CP3 and Gallo break down, we aren’t in a worse position than we are today.

  208. Maybe if Ntilikina wanted to be on a squad that didn’t “deflate” his WS, he would be better at basketball so his team didn’t lose so much.

    Ntilikina sucks and contributes to his team sucking. If he joined the Lakers he would make them lose more games than the average NBA player would.

  209. I’m fine with taking CP3 if we’re doing it to relieve them of his cap hit and we’re getting an asset of some sort to do it. I wouldn’t give up any pick for him.

    Let’s just rent our cap space for picks one God damn time. One time!!! So annoying that we can’t just take on some salary dumps for a change.

  210. If you can find a better, cheaper one, do it. But it’s nigh impossible.

    But you’ve been dismissing the value of it. Acting like all the Nets needed to do was make a couple good trades and voila! free agents came.

    If you admit the importance of it – and I think it’s damn near self evident that free agents don’t join teams with good role players that win 30 games – then we can argue about how much you’re willing to pay for it.

    It’s just an absurd comparison. Again, Russell was 22, made no money, and cost the 27th pick to acquire. The idea was not for him to be a “placeholder” so that two years down the line Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant would sign with the Nets. The idea was to…take yet another flyer on an intriguing young player. If someone in the Nets front office suggested they acquire a 35 year old with one of the largest contracts in the history of professional sports instead they would’ve been fired on the spot.

    I guess we’re just going to have to agree to disagree on the extent to which Durant and Kyrie were fooled into joining the Nets. Between their own analysis, agents, managers, etc. it’s just very hard for me to believe they didn’t know exactly which players they would, and would not, be joining. I think they were able to determine the Nets core minus Russell was maybe a 30 win core, whereas our core minus CP3 and Randle in the scenario you suggest would pretty much be the dreck we’re running out there right now + a single draft pick in a bad draft.

    I don’t disagree that we need to put a respectable product out there before free agents want to come. I just don’t see the rush to do so immediately, and think we’re more likely to attract free agents if the respectable product is sustainable.

    I’ll also add that Chris Paul is at an age where a complete and total collapse could be coming literally any year, and that would nuke this entire idea.

  211. I forgot about Gallo. Yes, please add him to that team and swap Randle out for whatever package of 2nd rounders you can get.

    I’d keep Bullock around and re-sign Harkless to a two year mid-level deal, too. I like the idea of not asking 20-22 year olds do too much before they’re ready. And I think they could be useful trade chips.

    (Speaking of age… Anthony Edwards is going to be 18 on draft night… Kid is raw AF and would probably be a 8/9 pick most years… I’m really hoping we come out of this draft with Halliburton.)

  212. Again Mikal Bridges, who is on a crap-tastic Suns team:

    Career: WS/48: .077 & TS% .575
    Season: ws/48: . 109 & TS% .608

    We chose Knox over this guy. He was available at 9, we all knew he was the right pick at 9.

  213. I don’t think either player will reach those benchmarks, but I was simply responding to the notion that we haven’t gotten less-than-expected value from those picks. As of now we definitely have and it was easy to tell we would at the time.

    I disagree with you on Frank. The Median WS48 value in the NBA a year ago was 0.08, a little bit above the vale of the draft pick from the study you cited. Median means the seventh or eighth man on the team, i.e. a role player who doesn’t start. He has the potential to be a such an NBA player and I think he will get there. When E says people overestimate the value of the typical player picked ninth, he is referring to exactly this sort of outcome for a ninth pick. Your statistics actually support his statement instead of contradicting it.

    I would also add that many people thought Frank was a reasonable pick at number nine and he’s better than Smith, who people also argued for. Knox is a different case. His pick was widely panned here and he has done nothing to change people’s minds.

    Jowles, of course you chose to misinterpret my post and be insulting in your attitude as well. No one said Frank was good, but that’s what you replied to. E and I believe he is a typical outcome for a ninth pick. That is a different statement.

  214. Who cares what the idea was, TNFH? Milton’s idea was “to explain the ways of God to man.” Epic fail. Epic poem.

    What they ended up doing was finding a high end usage soaker who propelled them to a playoff spot, slotted all their role players into the right positions, and changed the way the franchise was viewed by free agents.

    The effect matters more than the idea.

    If you can get that from a guy making $7mm, by all means, do that instead of signing Chris Paul. Chris Paul is one way to skin the cat.

  215. If you think the Nets did well by picking up Russell cheaply, and it seems that way to me, then you should be happy with the Knick’s acquisition of Smith. He actually is shooting better than Russell did at 21 (the age of Russell’s first season with the Nets). If he improves like Russell did he will turn into an actual asset. And I say this as someone who hates watching him make all the mistakes he does.

  216. The Median WS48 value in the NBA a year ago was 0.08, a little bit above the vale of the draft pick from the study you cited. Median means the seventh or eighth man on the team, i.e. a role player who doesn’t start. He has the potential to be a such an NBA player and I think he will get there. When E says people overestimate the value of the typical player picked ninth, he is referring to exactly this sort of outcome for a ninth pick. Your statistics actually support his statement instead of contradicting it.

    I’m wrong because you subjectively think Frank will make an absolutely enormous jump after three years of stagnant sucktitude.

    Okay then!

  217. I’d like to see them dump every mercenary at the end of the year and have 53M on the books for next year with an expected cap of 116M.

    Cap number has been dropping because China has an embargo on NBA games. “hundreds of millions of views” I think the newest number is $115 million, but I could see it dropping lower.

    There aren’t many teams with space this summer, we could get some bargain deals. But likely spend it on Hayward & Drummond/DeRozan at ~$25 mill each for 5 yrs.

    If people really want to go the placeholder route, which I don’t advocate for (we did that this year and people hated it) we could have this team:

    Drummond $23 mill
    FVV $8mill
    Dotson $5 mill

    FVV/Elf
    Bullock/Frank
    RJ/Dotson
    Randle/Knox
    Drummond/Mitch

    Again, I do not like that team, but I could see us doing it. Maybe we move Randle to bring in Gallinari or DeRozan/Hayward.

  218. Who cares what the idea was, TNFH? Milton’s idea was “to explain the ways of God to man.” Epic fail. Epic poem.

    It matters a lot. If the Nets “failed” to attract free agents in the summer of 2019, they still would’ve had all the surplus assets they collected and would’ve re-signed Russell to the contract that we now know represented value (it was just traded for a great pick). This is why him being young and cheap just destroys the whole comparison–he could have been a part of their young core.

    If we fail to attract free agents via this Rube Goldberg bait-and-switch scheme, we’ll be out the assets we traded for Paul and have worse draft picks of our own as a result of Paul.

  219. If people really want to go the placeholder route, which I don’t advocate for (we did that this year and people hated it)

    Wait you’re saying Portis + Ellington + Randle is the same as adding Chris Paul?

    It’s the same idea, much different execution, don’t you think?

  220. This is why him being young and cheap just destroys the whole comparison–he could have been a part of their young core.

    And then they would be treading water in NBA no man’s land and no one would be saying “let’s try the Nets method.”

    You don’t aim to be mediocre to stay there. You’re only doing it bc it’s clear that free agents aren’t joining a team that doesn’t have a baseline of respectability.

  221. You’re overlooking the impact of Russell. Without him, the Nets are not in the playoffs. Without the Nets being in the playoffs, that impacts the way Irving and Durant view those young players.

    the nets have played 1918 of their 2576 minutes this year without Kyrie and Durant, and have roughly the same net rating in the other 655 minutes. They appear to be a playoff team without Kyrie and Durant. Incidentally, last year they also produced the same on-off with and without D’Lo. That is now 3500 minutes over the last two years that a fairly similar Nets no-D’Lo and no-Kyrie/KD core has played like a .500ish playoff team. So if Kyrie and Durant thought “even without D’Lo we are joining a near .500 playoff team in the East,” they’d be justified. In contrast, the Knicks are horrible despite the fact that our non-Kyrie and Durant core would actually be much worse if we’d signed them, since we wouldn’t likely have our less shitty mercenaries. So we don’t have to think they were fooled by D’Lo, they might have just accurately pegged the much better team. And future free agents are similarly a pretty good bet to not be fooled by a veteran who contributed to wins but is leaving.

  222. Tiny, arbitrary samples are fun but it took me about 30 seconds to find a decent study on the matter and, surprise, you’re badly wrong.

    Huh? Even assuming we should use WS/48, the value is “reserve.” Frank’s a reserve and his WS this year isn’t much below that and his career isn’t even over yet.

    The expected value of the 8th pick is a mediocre player. That’s exactly what I said.

  223. Wait you’re saying Portis + Ellington + Randle is the same as adding Chris Paul?

    It’s the same idea, much different execution, don’t you think?

    I’d rather have Randle at 25 than Paul at 35. And the goal is still to be a 8th seed in that case, so yes the same thing. Unless we’re getting two 1sts, pass.

  224. I don’t think either player will reach those benchmarks, but I was simply responding to the notion that we haven’t gotten less-than-expected value from those picks.

    Their careers aren’t close to over and you’re comparing them to numbers that include some guys who have played into their primes. Don’t be silly.

  225. I’m wrong because you subjectively think Frank will make an absolutely enormous jump after three years of stagnant sucktitude.

    No I think you’re wrong because you compared career averages to the average of the first three years of a players career.

  226. I’m wrong because you subjectively think Frank will make an absolutely enormous jump after three years of stagnant sucktitude.

    Frank’s WS/48 haven’t been anything like “stagnant.” You’re not playing it straight. You can’t just expect to scream this kind of stuff insistently and have everyone just line up lockstep.

    Kemba was the 9th pick. If you cut the reading off after his age 21 season he had a WS/48 of .009 — well below Frank’s age 21 WS/48. That makes zero sense.

  227. That’s fine for Frank, but everyone on this board knew Knox was a bust before the draft. Lots of us were screaming for Mikal Bridges who can actually play basketball.

    Guys who can do their narrow niche well will always be overrated by WS/48. Those are typically the guys who are very limited offensively, who don’t get docked by WS/48 for those limitations. Since they can’t really create anything, they tend to have higher TS%’s, and WS/48 doesn’t whack them for their inability to create anything. Not sure why people continue to fall for the illusion there, but it is what it is, I guess.

  228. Huh? Even assuming we should use WS/48, the value is “reserve.” Frank’s a reserve and his WS this year isn’t much below that and his career isn’t even over yet.

    The expected value of the 8th pick is a mediocre player. That’s exactly what I said.

    You know, I could respond by pointing out how arbitrary it is to only use his WS48 from this year, or by pointing out how you characterized Frank’s current WS48 (which is currently 34.6% of the listed figure) as “not much below that,” or by pointing out that it’s hilarious to say Frank is a “reserve” because that is technically he role on the 2019-2020 New York Knicks, but I think I want to take a more meta approach.

    Do you seriously, in your heart of hearts, believe that Frank Ntilikina, who is no guarantee to receive a second NBA contract when his rookie deal expires, was not a poor use of a lottery pick?

  229. And then they would be treading water in NBA no man’s land and no one would be saying “let’s try the Nets method.”

    You don’t aim to be mediocre to stay there. You’re only doing it bc it’s clear that free agents aren’t joining a team that doesn’t have a baseline of respectability.

    …they would have a team chock full of young players that just made the playoffs and would have Russell signed to a contract that was just traded for one of the better picks moved in a long time. Where can I sign up for this dreaded fate?

  230. When the Knickerblogger Definitive History is written, the amount of virtual ink spilled on Frank Ntilikina will be one of the funniest anecdotes after he spends most of his professional basketball career as a solid 7/8th man for a European team.

  231. Guys who can do their narrow niche well will always be overrated by WS/48. Those are typically the guys who are very limited offensively, who don’t get docked by WS/48 for those limitations. Since they can’t really create anything, they tend to have higher TS%’s, and WS/48 doesn’t whack them for their inability to create anything. Not sure why people continue to fall for the illusion there, but it is what it is, I guess.

    Mikal Bridges is a competent if limited player who can do a few useful things on a basketball court.
    Kevin Knox can’t do shit on a basketball court except help you lose.

    Most people here could see this before either of them stepped on an NBA court. You don’t have to squint at the numbers or parse them in any way. Bridges is useful, Knox is useless.

  232. Do you seriously, in your heart of hearts, believe that Frank Ntilikina, who is no guarantee to receive a second NBA contract when his rookie deal expires, was not a poor use of a lottery pick?

    Yes, I believe he was not a poor use of the pick. I think this board hasn’t come to grips with how bad young point guards look. As already noted in this thread, Kemba Walker and D’Angelo Russell weren’t good at age 21.

  233. Do you seriously, in your heart of hearts, believe that Frank Ntilikina, who is no guarantee to receive a second NBA contract when his rookie deal expires, was not a poor use of a lottery pick?

    As the 8th pick, no, in my heart of hearts I don’t think it was a poor use of a lottery pick. WS/48 underrates him, he’s been poorly developed, and the expectation for the 8th pick — again — isn’t really that high. Getting an elite defensive point/wing is higher than the expected value in and of itself.

    I think it was a perfectly fine use of the 8th pick. The guy taken one pick after him — the guy the Mavs celebrated falling to them — is laughably, abominably bad.

  234. Most people here could see this before either of them stepped on an NBA court. You don’t have to squint at the numbers or parse them in any way. Bridges is useful, Knox is useless.

    That’s not the calculus going into the draft, though. The calculus going into the draft is “do I take the low ceiling limited niche guy, or do I take a swing for the guy who doesn’t have the same limitations?” They took a shot and sometimes when you take a shot, you miss. It’s still not even clear they’ve missed, though things aren’t looking particularly promising.

  235. Kevin Knox’s limitations are that he is bad at basketball. He was bad at it in college, and surprise surprise, he did not get good at it in the NBA.

    Most of the brain cell-having people who post here generally think you should stick to drafting guys who are good at basketball, and who have proven this in actual basketball games.

  236. Mikal Bridges isn’t that “good at basketball.” He’s decent at a very limited niche.

    The Knicks’ biggest need is a top grade superstar type. Given that reality, I’m not going to sit around bemoaning the “loss” of potential role players that could be on the team. Others may wish to do that. In the grand scheme of things, it’s rather boring actually. When they get a superstar, the “loss” or the “absence” of MIkal Bridges will be meaningless; and the presence of Mikal Bridges would bring them no closer to getting a superstar. They have the center version of Mikal Bridges on the team already. He’s moving no real needles. His league reputation is such that he didn’t even get picked for the Rising Stars game. The WS/48 and high TS% stuff doesn’t translate in anywhere near the way its adherents think. If it did, Julius Randle would be doing his bullshit isos elsewhere.

  237. Mikal Bridges plays defense and can knock down threes.

    You really do not know what the fuck you are talking about.

  238. E:
    His league reputation is such that he didn’t even get picked for the Rising Stars game. The WS/48 and high TS% stuff doesn’t translate in anywhere near the way its adherents think..

    Imagine posting this on a stats-based blog thinking it’s a good point. Dude is really trying to make an argument against the utility of advanced stats due to Mitch not being chosen for the ‘Rising Stars’ game. Clown shoes.

  239. Imagine posting this on a stat-based blog thinking it’s a good point. Dude is really trying to make an argument against the utility of advanced stats due to Mitch not being chosen for the ‘Rising Stars’ game. Clown shoes.

    Imagine posting over and over on a stat-based blog that the value of the 23rd pick in the first round is high — in the face of literally all the actual evidence.

    And Mitch’s not getting picked is perfect evidence for what it was proffered for — his reputation around the league. He doesn’t have the same reputation around the league he has here, and he doesn’t have the same reputation around the league because the league is smart enough not to fall for the illusion of a high TS% and WS/48. He’s a nice player. I like him. He’s a limited player and WS/48 doesn’t whack him for those limitations. Simple as that.

    Mikal Bridges plays defense and can knock down threes.

    Right — a limited niche. Exactly what I said. And he doesn’t really knock down threes that well. He’s below league average at it. His defense isn’t as good as Frank Ntilikina’s. He’s really not that great, certainly nothing to lose sleep over not having.

  240. Anyway, instead of talking about whether or not we should trade first round picks for a 35 year old making $40M, or about whether or not a guy who may be in Europe in two years was a good use of the 8th overall pick, or about whether or not the 17-38 Knicks should have a dismissive attitude towards “limited role players” (the kind the Nets assembled a team of before signing KD and Kyrie), maybe we can move on to some draft talk?

    If we don’t get a point guard with our first pick, Kira Lewis looks kind of interesting to me with one of our next two. He’s only 18 despite being a Sophomore and projects to be a pretty decent shooter. The statistical profile wasn’t all there as a Freshman but that was somehow his age 17 season and it still wasn’t all that bad. Also you ain’t gonna find the perfect prospect in this range.

    Looking at some tape, he seems pretty damn athletic for his size, and he’s plenty quick. Seems to give a damn on defense too. Any thoughts?

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