Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Would Trading Shump with Stoudemire be Worth it?

The Knicks are in basketball purgatory – where the team isn’t bad enough to successfully overhaul the roster but not good enough to have expanded postseason campaigns. With New York’s contractual situation in gridlock, the only means of improving significantly at this point would be trading Amar’e Stoudemire. The ex-superstar brings nothing to to the court that the Knicks don’t already have, when he actually makes it that far. Stoudemire has had to fend off injury after injury recently while burning upwards of $20 million a year doing so.

The concept of trading an aging and injury-riddled player with a max deal seems outlandish – but not impossible. The Knicks could sweeten the pot with their most promising young player, Iman Shumpert, to sway a team into taking on Amar’e and his contract. Shumpert’s excellence on the defensive end and improvement from beyond the arc in his first two seasons is intriguing. With “3-and-D” wings becoming more desired around the league, he and a future pick from the Knicks (like, you know, in 2062 or something) could be enough to persuade a team into trading for Stoudemire.

Stoudemire’s basketball in itself is still at a high level, averaging 21.8 pts/36 on a 63.7% ts% last year. However, his real value to a team might be his expiring contract in two years where a team can unload a high salary that terminates later. The Knicks can’t afford to roll the dice hoping that Stoudemire can suit up for 70 games and be around for the playoffs. New York might be better off getting a lesser player who can stay healthy.

Making a trade happen won’t be easy or simple in any way, but there are possibilities I came up with as an idea of what one could look like.

New York receives: Rudy Gay, Sebastian Telfair

Toronto receives: Amar’e Stoudemire, Iman Shumpert, first-round pick

A nauseating idea, but trading Stoudemire won’t bring in very lucrative offers. I’d probably become a Hawks fan if this trade went down and save myself the agony. Masai Ujiri is on his way to turning this entire Raptors franchise around, and chances are he’ll unload Rudy Gay where possible if it means getting something back. I’d be shocked if the Knicks were interested, but I’m confident they won’t be – it’s not like they traded for any other awful Raptors. Oh wait.

New York receives: Marcin Gortat, Caron Butler, Glen Davis

Orlando receives: Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert, Kendall Marshall

Phoenix receives: Amar’e Stoudemire, Aaron Afflalo, first-round pick (Knicks)

Complex, but it’s one of the best shots the Knicks have at sending out Stoudemire’s contract. Orlando trades away players not a part of their future plans and in return nab not only Shump but also Kendall Marshall. The Suns are looking to shop Gortat and Butler and this trade gives them the perfect medium to do so. Perhaps the Phoenix front office believes that all Amar’e needs is the Arizona sun to return to his former self. The Knicks get a 3-and-D veteran wing in return and serious big man depth.

New York receives: Marcin Gortat, Caron Butler, P.J. Tucker

Sacramento receives: Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert

Phoenix receives: Amar’e Stoudemire, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Jimmer Fredette, first-round pick (Knicks)

Similar to the previous proposal, only with a different third team in play. A Vasquez-McLemore-Shumpert-Frye-Cousins starting five would be very intriguing for Sacramento. Meanwhile the Suns receive two youngsters with upside while accomplishing their goal of trading Gortat and Butler.

Certainly readers here will be able to find their own deals, but they do provide some options to consider.

Hence the question remains, would trading Stoudemire along with Shumpert be worth it for the Knicks? New York is in a “win-now” mentality, with the picks the team has traded away and the lack of a future foundation this is all but evident. That said, having Shumpert around in two years if the whole team gives away won’t save the Knicks from mediocrity. As much as he brings to the team now, if the opportunity arrives for a swap that could bring additions that would push the Knicks into contender territory, I believe the Knicks should take it. Sitting in a gray area hasn’t worked out well, with a first and second round postseason exit. If the Knicks are dealt the right hand, now’s the time to go all-in.

139 comments on “Would Trading Shump with Stoudemire be Worth it?

  1. sekou

    please. god. no.

    this is an idea i have had some arguments with my Knicks friends about this summer. i am just sick and tired of the knicks trading away good young players before their prime, for older players after their prime. plus, none of those trades gets us any closer to a chip. just reading about that rudy gay trade possibility made my stomach queasy.

    we dance with the team we got for another two years, and then blow it all up if it doesn’t work.

  2. Glew

    Agreed. Plus, I don’t think it is a foregone conclusion that we can’t contend. we took the division, won 54 games last year and fizzled out in the playoffs largely because every person on our team was either hurt or recovering and still brought that pacers series to 6. Also, like the author stated Stat is productive when healthy and we should be deep enough at the 4 to make up for his productive when he is not healthy. Iman getting traded would be far greater a travesty than Lin and Cope leaving. Each of those trades btw make us a lot worse.

  3. Brian Cronin

    STAT’s contract is certainly a killer, but the Knicks are so capped out that dumping his contract won’t even give them space to sign a big name in 2014, so I’d prefer that they just stick with what they have rather than trade Shump just to dump STAT. If trading Shump gets you someone better than Shump, sure, go for it, but that doesn’t seem likely. None of those trades suggested, for instance, would improve the Knicks this year. Hell, I think Shump is already a better player than Rudy Gay and Shump still has upside.

  4. Frank

    yeah i’ve been talking this out with David on twitter and I just don’t think he’s thought this through. The best of those trades is probably the Gortat/Butler/PJ Tucker one — but even with those 3 I don’t think we’re much better than we are without the trade being done at all. And then they all expire after the 2013-14 season, at which point we’re left with the choice of letting them all walk (and renting them for one long-shot-contending season at the price of our best young player and a #1 pick), or extending one or more of them at the expense of any sort of a “reload” when we actually might have cap flexibility after the 14-15 season (ie. bye-bye any chance at Kevin Love, Rondo, or even Lebron). This just doesn’t make any sense even in the slightest. Not even Isiah would make a trade like any of these. And the Rudy Gay one? That’s the worst idea ever.

    can’t wait until THCJ wakes up and sees this – for once I’m actually looking forward to a THCJ-branded post.

  5. thenamestsam

    Yeah, these trades are absurd. The problem is that the Knicks are in the bad position of being maybe not quite good enough to seriously contend and not nearly bad enough to get a high pick and improve. I think that’s pretty accurate. But I would argue that Shump and Stat are the two players with the greatest chance of pushing us out of that purgatory. Shump is one of the only guys who is still young enough to make a big step forward, and while Stat is certainly unlikely to be healthy, if he was it might provide the extra jolt to lift the team to true contender status.

    So we’d give up those two to achieve what? To clear Stat’s contract? What this article seems to be missing is that removing the contract is not a desirable outcome in and of itself. It is only a means to a potentially desirable outcome like having cap space to sign someone to make the team better. As Frank points out above clearing that money a year earlier gets us nowhere. Either we resign the mediocre crap we’ve just dealt a promising youngster for or we let them walk and….? Do what? Wait another year to have cap space I guess is the answer, only that’s what we’d be doing anyway.

    “As much as he brings to the team now, if the opportunity arrives for a swap that could bring additions that would push the Knicks into contender territory, I believe the Knicks should take it.” I actually agree with this, but if you think swapping Shump and Stat for Marcin Gortat and Caron Butler is the only thing standing between this team and a chip, I think you need to take things back to the drawing board.

  6. custer

    Yeah, can’t say that any of these trades are too plausible. If Melo is going to be lambasted on this site (by some) on a daily basis, I’d love to see what people would say about garbage Rudy Gay.

    As for the other two, Gortat probably can’t play at the same time as Chandler, so we’d essentially just be adding a nice role player. That’s not the worst thing on earth, but I don’t think it would elevate us above our so-called “purgatory” status.

  7. Brian Cronin

    Shump is really one of the better players out there in the NBA. When it comes to available players better than him, the pickings are slim. I guess I’d trade Shump for, like, Greg Monroe, but players like Monroe are rarely dealt. Better to just keep Shump.

  8. lavor postell

    I didn’t know that “basketball purgatory” was winning 54 games and the Atlantic division for the first time since 1994, going on a memorable 13 game winning streak to close the season and winning a playoff series against a hated rival and ending their era. I thought it was paying for a capped out team being led by the Marburys, Crawfords and Currys of the world. If the entire purpose of the article is to figure out a way to elevate our team into contention alongside Miami at the expense of Shump and STAT then suggesting a trade that actually significantly improves us would help.

  9. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Rudy Gay and Sebastian Telfair? Isiah, is that you?

    Now I think this team is going to be tremendously disappointing this year, but let’s not go and make it any worse. I don’t want to give the Nuggets a lottery pick this year.

  10. er

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:

    Now I think this team is going to be tremendously disappointing this year

    Im confused, if you expect them to win 46 games like you said. Are you saying that you expect them to win less than that and that 46 is the max?? Im confused

  11. Brian Cronin

    My guess is that THCJ figures that winning eight less games than last years would qualify as tremendously disappointing. Which sounds pretty accurate. I know I’ll be very disappointed if this team doesn’t win 50 games, since they’ll almost certainly need 50 to win the Atlantic.

  12. Z-man

    Wow, it’s times like these when I really miss jon abbey. This article is among the most pointless ones I have ever read on this site. Every trade proposed is utter nonsense.

    What’s next: Should the Knicks trade Shump, TH2 and every remaining tradeable #1 pick to get rid of the Bargnani contract?

  13. er

    Z-man:
    Wow, it’s times like these when I really miss jon abbey. This article is among the most pointless ones I have ever read on this site. Every trade proposed is utter nonsense.

    What’s next: Should the Knicks trade Shump, TH2 and every remaining tradeable #1 pick to get rid of the Bargnani contract?

    lol +12

  14. flossy

    Good grief, man. I don’t want to get Jon Abbey’d, but the first paragraph of this post alone is full of so many questionable assumptions and opinions presented as facts that it’s hard to even know where to begin.

    Other commenters have done a fine job dismantling most of this, but I just want to throw in an extra LOL at the fact that of the 3 trades proposed, one of them involves getting back Rudy Gay’s max salary along with Sebastian Telfair (just kill me now) and the other two hinge on the Phoenix Suns deciding that yes, they actually do want to pay Amar’e Stoudemire a max salary after all!

  15. Donnie Walsh

    Not sure how this article got through, but it seems like reverse trolling to me. I am pretty sure you won’t get a single positive comment agreeing with either your premise or your solutions. And that’s not because it’s controversial. It’s because it is fundamentally wrong in every way.

    The Premise: “the only means of improving significantly at this point would be trading Amar’e Stoudemire”.

    The Fact: Trading Amar’e Stoudemire does nothing to significantly improve anything.

    The Evidence: Rudy Gay, Marcin Gortat, Caron Butler, Glen Davis, Sebastian Telfair, PJ Tucker, and, most ridiculously, the departure of Iman Shumpert.

    The Reality: Dumping Stoudemire’s contract does nothing to improve the team. Even if the team could magically amnesty him, at this point it does nothing to help their cap flexibility.

    The Conclusion: The only means of improving significantly at this point would be for Amar’e Stoudemire to contribute more, not less.

    (Maybe jon abbey was right after all?)

  16. Donnie Walsh

    Z-man:
    Wow, it’s times like these when I really miss jon abbey. This article is among the most pointless ones I have ever read on this site. Every trade proposed is utter nonsense.

    Maybe we can package Amar’e Stoudemire and David Vertsberger in a trade for Jon Abbey?

  17. lavor postell

    Donnie Walsh: Maybe we can package Amar’e Stoudemire and David Vertsberger in a trade for Jon Abbey?

    I think under the new CBA you have to wait a full calendar year to reacquire somebody who’s been waived by the team.

  18. Jim Cavan

    This is the most August comment thread I’ve ever read.

    A very high number of the STAT-centric comments / posts on this site are negative — right or wrong — and often to the effect of “we should try and trade him.” So David posited a few scenarios — however unlikely — not because he thinks we should pursue them, necessarily, but to spark a conversation of what trades might actually be palatable to us, if any. However flawed the arguments or outlandish the trades (they’re not THAT outlandish), genuine discursive kernals exists: 1) what is STAT’s function on this team going forward, and 2) should he have a function at all?

    Yay, lots of things to talk about!

    Nah, let’s gang up on the young writer instead. That sounds more fun.

    Two more months.

  19. Hubert

    I can’t tell if David underrates Shumpert or overrates Caron Butler. But he seems to think they are relatively similar based on both being “3 and D” guys. That, I think, is the basis for the gap between how these trades appear in his mind vs how they appear to us. And frankly I think one of his editors could have helped him a bit by pointing that out before throwing him to the wolves here.

    There is really just one good reason to trade Shump with Amar’e:

    If it’s the summer of 2014 and LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony have both opted out and they say they want to sign with the Knicks for less money and we need to unload Amare’s contract to enable that.

    Barring that extremely unlikely scenario, we just don’t gain enough by dumping Amar’e to offset the loss of Shumpert. Shumpert’s skill set is very unique *on this team* and that makes his value to us extremely high. He doesn’t have as much value to a rebuilding team because he’s a nice piece but not a centerpiece. I’m sure a contending team would love to add him but those teams are unlikely to be able to take Amar’e back or give us something we really want in return.

    Getting rid of Amar’e by itself won’t do anything other than maybe giving us the flexibility to use the full mid level next year.

  20. Jim Cavan

    Hubert: And frankly I think one of his editors could have helped him a bit by pointing that out before throwing him to the wolves here.

    We’re all about a good “trial by fire”, and making writers appreciate the weight of their arguments in the context of a very well-informed community thread.

    But there’s a difference between a fire and a nuclear meltdown. Or a pack of “wolves”, for that matter. I’m not suggesting that any of this crosses any kind of line. It’s the motivation behind some of the snark and pointed comments that fascinates me.

  21. er

    Jim Cavan:
    David posited a few scenarios — however unlikely — not because he thinks we should pursue them, necessarily, but to spark a conversation of what trades might actually be palatable to us, if any. However flawed the arguments or outlandish the trades (they’re not THAT outlandish), genuine discursive kernals exists: 1) what is STAT’s function on this team going forward, and 2) should he have a function at all?

    I think if he said it like that, the comments would be so harsh

  22. KnickfaninNJ

    Jim Cavan: We’re all about a good “trial by fire”, and making writers appreciate the weight of their arguments in the context of a very well-informed community thread.

    But there’s a difference between a fire and a nuclear meltdown. Or a pack of “wolves”, for that matter. I’m not suggesting that any of this crosses any kind of line. It’s the motivation behind some of the snark and pointed comments that fascinates me.

    No one here has insulted David. Everybody just expressed their opinion politely. The opinions happened to be all the same, so it probably feels to David that people are ganging up on him. But the posters here are all known for expressing independent opinions from each other in the past, so David should know he is not being ganged up on.

  23. Jim Cavan

    KnickfaninNJ: No one here has insulted David.Everybody just expressed their opinion politely.The opinions happened to be all the same, so it probably feels to David that people are ganging up on him.But the posters here are all known for expressing independent opinions from each other in the past, so David should know he is not being ganged up on.

    lavor postell: Donnie Walsh: Maybe we can package Amar’e Stoudemire and David Vertsberger in a trade for Jon Abbey?

    I think under the new CBA you have to wait a full calendar year to reacquire somebody who’s been waived by the team.

    I’d be insulted by that.

    But yes, for the most part, the criticisms have been fine and polite.

  24. Robert Silverman

    KnickfaninNJ: No one here has insulted David.Everybody just expressed their opinion politely.The opinions happened to be all the same, so it probably feels to David that people are ganging up on him.But the posters here are all known for expressing independent opinions from each other in the past, so David should know he is not being ganged up on.

    “Can we trade Amar’e and Verts for abbey” IMHO, is just snark/intended to insult.

  25. flossy

    Jim Cavan:
    This is the most August comment thread I’ve ever read.

    A very high number of the STAT-centric comments / posts on this site are negative — right or wrong — and often to the effect of “we should try and trade him.” So David posited a few scenarios — however unlikely — not because he thinks we should pursue them, necessarily, but to spark a conversation of what trades might actually be palatable to us, if any. However flawed the arguments or outlandish the trades (they’re not THAT outlandish), genuine discursive kernals exists: 1) what is STAT’s function on this team going forward, and 2) should he have a function at all?

    Yay, lots of things to talk about!

    Nah, let’s gang up on the young writer instead. That sounds more fun.

    Two more months.

    Come on. An article this bad would get a poor response any day, week, or month of the year. A better way to get at those two “discursive kernels” would be to just post them as discussion prompts, not bury them in under 1,000 words that begin by taking it as a given that the Knicks have no chance at advancing past the second round (highly debatable), that Amar’e “brings nothing to the court that the Knicks don’t already have” (again, what?), that dumping his salary would have some salutary effect on our cap situation (not really true at all) and that getting rid of him is not only an undisputed good, but one worth pursuing at the price of our only good player under 27 as well. That’s before you even get to the trade ideas, which range from “horrible for the Knicks” to “laughably implausible.”

    Nobody’s “ganging up on a young writer” out of some boredom-induced malice. People are rightfully criticizing this piece of writing, which is really, truly, not good. That is maybe the one thing that everyone who comments here can agree on.

  26. lavor postell

    Jim Cavan:
    I’d be insulted by that.

    But yes, for the most part, the criticisms have been fine and polite.

    That’s what we like to call a joke. The criticism I did post was that acting as if a team that won 54 games last year and succumbed to the Pacers under the weight of injuries to our most important players and a collective shooting slump in 6 games is not basketball purgatory. I understand that the ultimate goal is to win a championship and that this team as currently constructed is not the favorite to do so, but it certainly has the ability to beat anybody in a 7 game series.

    I have a problem with fans who feel that anything short of a championship is a complete and utter failure. I actually enjoyed watch our team last year open up like gangbusters, falter from January until mid-March and then finish the season on fire while wresting the division away from the Celtics and clinching the 2 seed, which none of the “experts” predicted us to do. I was as disappointed and pissed when we fell to Indiana in the playoffs, but I’m not going to sit here and act like the Knicks have no hope.

  27. Mike Kurylo

    I’m fine with the flogging of this article…

    BUT

    I do think the commenters are overvaluing their own team. Does anyone really think this team isn’t in that middle ground between making it to the ECF and making the playoffs? Does anyone here think this team has a legitimate chance at 60 games or a championship? This Knicks team is a good team, but not near the cream of the top. Let’s not mistake that.

    Second, are we overvaluing our own players a tiny bit? Amar’e is about as likely to play 60 games as any of us here. Throw in a coin flip to see if he’ll be ready for the playoffs. And Shumpert is the finest NBA player with a career TS% under 50%. Granted he was at 51.3% last year, but that was with a 40% from three. Imagine if he’s at a more temperate 36% this year (or worse). Also he’s had a major knee injury, so there’s that.

    I’d agree that the offers here aren’t awesome, but I don’t think it’s outrageous to say we should consider packing the two if the right offer came around. What I was hoping was that someone(s) would come up with a better offer for STAT/Shump.

    Finally I’m pretty sure that Jon Abbey would probably take the time to take a shot at Robert, the lack of a forum, THJC, and flouride in the water before he even noticed David’s work.

  28. Donnie Walsh

    Jim Cavan:

    A very high number of the STAT-centric comments / posts on this site are negative — right or wrong — and often to the effect of “we should try and trade him.” So David posited a few scenarios…to spark a conversation

    First of all, all of the “we should try and trade him” posts came BEFORE the Bargnani trade. Anybody who follows the Knicks knows that that trade made dumping Amar’e pointless to even discuss.

    Jim Cavan:

    Nah, let’s gang up on the young writer instead. That sounds more fun.

    I get it, David is young and needs time to develop. He’s playing garbage time minutes in August to build up his game. But either let him do it or not– don’t turn all of his threads into criticism of your own loyal readership. Come on.

    And if constructive criticism is what you want, here is some: don’t preface every piece you write with the statement that the Knicks are not good. It is a personal opinion that isn’t supported by fact (yet), and since you haven’t built up a body of credibility amongst your readers, you probably shouldn’t alienate them in your opening paragraph every time. (But, then again, we don’t all long for the days of Nate Robinson and Larry Hughes, so maybe it’s a generational thing).

  29. Robert Silverman

    lavor postell: That’s what we like to call a joke.

    Yes, it was a joke. Like Don Rickles calling someone a hockey puck is a joke. It was a joke w/the intent of insulting someone, which can be funny but doesn’t change the intent.

  30. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Mike Kurylo: I’d agree that the offers here aren’t awesome, but I don’t think it’s outrageous to say we should consider packing the two if the right offer came around. What I was hoping was that someone(s) would come up with a better offer for STAT/Shump.

    Sure, but Rudy Gay?

    I think the reality is that Amar’e's going nowhere, and no team in the league loves Shumpert (and his putrid shooting) more than Knickerblogger fanboys do.

    Maybe it’s fun to discuss in a talk-radio sort of way, but it also reeks of Bleacher Report. I think we’re just spoiled by the quality of the other writing on this site.

    E.g. “A Vasquez-McLemore-Shumpert-Frye-Cousins starting five would be very intriguing for Sacramento.”

    What does this say? “Very intriguing.” Now, firstly, intensifiers like “very” have no business in most writing because they accomplish nothing in communicating an idea. And vague adjectives like “intriguing” are industry shorthand for “I am not required to substantiate my claims because the quality/veracity of my work is too subjective to be criteria for my termination.”

    This is sub-par stuff for this website, that’s all. I’d love to see a statistical analysis of a Shumpert/Amar’e for Gay/Telfair trade, but instead we get filler like “very intriguing” and “I’d be shocked … but I’m confident” and “[his] improvement … is intriguing.”

    I hope this comes off as constructive.

  31. Donnie Walsh

    Robert Silverman: “Can we trade Amar’e and Verts for abbey” IMHO, is just snark/intended to insult.

    Robert Silverman: “Can we trade Amar’e and Verts for abbey” IMHO, is just snark/intended to insult.

    Sigh.

    That hardy-har-har comment came after a 500 word dissection of the thesis and supporting evidence presented in the article. It wasn’t an off the cuff comment throwing gas on a smoldering fire of discontent. It was a joke, by a blog reader for fellow blog readers. Even a 19 year old should be able to understand that.

  32. Mike Kurylo

    lavor postell: I have a problem with fans who feel that anything short of a championship is a complete and utter failure.

    There’s a difference between that and settling for just being OK.

    Few people remember the losers of the Finals, nevertheless the teams that got knocked out of the first or second round. “Hey remember that 2005 Wizards team that got swept out of the second round?” — said no one ever. Sure making the playoffs is fun, but teams should do that every so often anyway. Being the laughing stock of the league for a decade is the rare case. Half the teams make the playoffs, so it shouldn’t be a cause for celebration when they do. Making a team that decimates opponents & goes to a playoff series with the words “Finals” in it — that’s what the goal should be.

  33. KnickfaninNJ

    Mike Kurylo:

    I do think the commenters are overvaluing their own team. Does anyone really think this team isn’t in that middle ground between making it to the ECF and making the playoffs? Does anyone here think this team has a legitimate chance at 60 games or a championship? This Knicks team is a good team, but not near the cream of the top. Let’s not mistake that.

    Commentators on places like ESPN seem to think the Knicks will be fifth or so in their division. The fifth place team last year, Chicago, won 45 games, but in what commentators claim was a weaker division than it will be this year. Fifth place will probably take more wins this coming year than it did last year. So I would say that external commenters are expecting the Knicks to win between 45 and 50 wins. THCJ, an example of a current pessimist, expects 46 wins. The optimists on this board think we will more than THCJ does, so I would think that means they expect at least 50 wins. Only seven teams won more than fifty games last year. To me, that means winning more than 50 games makes you a real contender. So I would say the pessimists on the board agree with you, but there is a substantial fraction of posters who do sincerely believe the Knicks are contenders as currently constructed. So yes there are people who really believe this team is above the middle ground.

  34. Hubert

    Jim Cavan: We’re all about a good “trial by fire”, and making writers appreciate the weight of their arguments in the context of a very well-informed community thread.

    But there’s a difference between a fire and a nuclear meltdown. Or a pack of “wolves”, for that matter. I’m not suggesting that any of this crosses any kind of line. It’s the motivation behind some of the snark and pointed comments that fascinates me.

    Is it like an initiation thing? If not it should be. Mock trade ideas are typically hated no matter who writes them. Bill Simmons can’t post one on his twitter timeline without getting one million replies from people on both sides of the trade saying how terrible it is. I could see it being like:

    NEW WRITER: I’d like to write a mock trade article.

    EDITOR: That’s a great idea. I’ll approve it.

    (NEW WRITER leaves room)

    EDITOR (to OTHER EDITOR): so NEW WRITER is about to learn what happens when you write a mock trade article.

    (EDITOR and OTHER EDITOR giggle.)

  35. Frank

    I usually try to stay out of these, but here are my thoughts:

    1) David is 18 or whatever it is, and I applaud him for putting himself out there with these articles. It is FAR easier to criticize than to create, and David has chosen the harder path.

    2) This is the Truehoop site for one of the most popular teams in one of the most popular sports in the world, so while it might not be the ESPN or SI homepage, this is the big leagues. IMHO he needs to sink or swim on his own merits without playing with a +15 handicap.

    Alex Kennedy on Hoopsworld is a good example – he’s 21 or something and while I don’t necessarily like his writing that much, I don’t think he’d ever hide behind his age if his work was criticized (btw David has never hidden behind his age — it’s mostly Jim who has stuck up for him with age as a crutch).

    3) This article is not very good. At the very least, if you’re going to make a case for what appears to be a bad trade for the Knicks, on this site you need to back it up with something. Give us a statistical analysis on why it’s a good idea to add an admittedly good backup center (Gortat), a fading/declining/not very good Caron Butler, and a Luc Mbah a Moute clone in PJ Tucker at the cost Shump – who is clearly our best/cheapest young player and who was the best player on the floor at times in the playoffs – who is probably a top 5 defender against 1′s/2′s/small 3′s, shot 40+% from 3 point range, and by all accounts is just a great, talented, hardworking guy.

    As it is – this article just isn’t finished. It’s an incomplete thought.

  36. Mike Kurylo

    KnickfaninNJ: Commentators on places like ESPN seem to think the Knicks will be fifth or so in their division. The fifth place team last year, Chicago, won 45 games, but in what commentators claim was a weaker division than it will be this year. Fifth place will probably take more wins this coming year than it did last year. So I would say that external commenters are expecting the Knicks to win between 45 and 50 wins. THCJ, an example of a current pessimist, expects 46 wins. The optimists on this board think we will more than THCJ does, so I would think that means they expect at least 50 wins. Only seven teams won more than fifty games last year. To me, that means winning more than 50 games makes you a real contender. So I would say the pessimists on the board agree with you, but there is a substantial fraction of posters who do sincerely believe the Knicks are contenders as currently constructed. So yes there are people who really believe this team is above the middle ground.

    That’s some of the slipperiest sloppiest argument I’ve ever read.

    Again to clarify:

    Above middle ground? – yes absolutely.
    Championship material? – nope.

  37. thenamestsam

    Hubert:

    If it’s the summer of 2014 and LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony have both opted out and they say they want to sign with the Knicks for less money and we need to unload Amare’s contract to enable that.

    Barring that extremely unlikely scenario, we just don’t gain enough by dumping Amar’e to offset the loss of Shumpert.

    This. Hell, I’m not sure we gain anything by unloading Amare. The article certainly hasn’t convinced me of it. Having a healthy player in the playoffs is not going to notably raise this teams ceiling if that player is Gortat (especially factoring in the huge step down from Shump to Butler). It’s not going to have a notable impact on the cap situation in the long run since we’re clean in two years. Unless we have a good reason to want to clear that cap space a year sooner there probably isn’t any benefit to dumping him.

  38. Frank

    Re: Shump’s TS — and this is a real question:

    Do people here think it’s more likely that he shoots 40+% again from 3 point range or that he shoots <50% at the rim? Because you can't say that you expect his 3P% to come down without acknowledging that he had what is likely a true outlier in his at-rim FG%. Now it may be that he'll never be a good finisher – but he did shoot 62% at the rim on almost 2x the attempts in his rookie year.

  39. Hubert

    Robert Silverman: “Can we trade Amar’e and Verts for abbey” IMHO, is just snark/intended to insult.

    I find it interesting that you would use the slash between “snark” and “intended to insult”, as if they are the same thing.

    Snark, as I understand it, has no intent to insult or injure it’s subject. It’s just supposed to be a harmless joke among a group of people sharing an experience collectively. Donnie Walsh didn’t mean to insult David he was just trying to make a joke that the commenters would get and find funny. It’s no different than when twitter explodes after Miley Cyrus. No one really wants to insult Miley. we’re all just trying to make the best joke.

    I only mention this because, given the banning recently, I hope that comment isn’t considered the baseline for what goes for an insult. It will get a lot duller around here if it is.

  40. KnickfaninNJ

    To continue my post and make a case for the optimists about the Knicks, let me say this. Overall, just in terms of personnel to me the Knicks got younger this summer without giving up quality. Teams that play together for more than a year tend to get better the second year and Woodson’s Atlanta teams had a better record every successive year that he coached them. That should be worth at least two or three more games. The East is probably tougher, but the total games against these tougher opponents, Chicago, Indiana, Brooklyn are probably ten or less. So maybe we will win 2 or 3 fewer games against these three opponents overall. On balance these two factors probably cancel each other out.

    Injury wise, last year wasn’t very good for the Knicks, with Amare contributing very little and Chandler hurting a lot, and an assortment of other injuries like Felton’s hand injury. Fewer injuries would be a plus for our record and the same number no effect. So I would say that it’s reasonable for the Knicks to win the same number of games as last year, and there is upside if they stay uninjured. That’s 54 games or more and possible contention for the title. I’ve been a Knick fan long enough to appreciate that. It doesn’t happen very many seasons for the Knicks.

  41. Z-man

    Jim Cavan:
    “Maybe we can package Amar’e Stoudemire and David Vertsberger in a trade for Jon Abbey?”

    “I think under the new CBA you have to wait a full calendar year to reacquire somebody who’s been waived by the team.”

    “I’d be insulted by that.”

    Robert Silverman: “Can we trade Amar’e and Verts for abbey” IMHO, is just snark/intended to insult.

    To me, both comments were funny as hell (particularly the “waived” line, great job, lp!) and consistent with the level of decorum to be expected on any sports blog. Anyone who would be in the least bit offended or injured by this has a skin thickness of single digit angstrom units.

  42. thenamestsam

    Mike Kurylo: That’s some of the slipperiest sloppiest argument I’ve ever read.

    Again to clarify:

    Above middle ground? – yes absolutely.
    Championship material? – nope.

    I’ll never understand why supposedly statistically minded people would give a “Yes” or “No” answer to a question like “Championshiip material?”. Does your unequivocal no mean that you would be willing to give me a 1,000-1 on the Knicks winning a title next year? What about 1,000,000-1? The Knicks made it to the 2nd round of the playoffs last year. They have a realistic chance of doing so again.

    Here’s a quote from Portland GM Neil Olshey in yesterday’s Zach Lowe piece about what it means to be a successful team: “I don’t talk as much about trying to win a title, but more about being a factor in the playoffs. And I define that as being a team that’s going to advance to the second round. Once you’re there, a bounce of the ball, health, chemistry, matchups — all those little things come into play once you’re in the final eight.”

    The Knicks have a chance to be in the mix next year and they have a chance to win a title. They’re going to need some breaks just like every other team that has ever won a title, but they’re one of the teams with a chance. Is it likely? No, it’s not. It’s also not some vanishingly small possibility. It’s probably about a 2 or 3 percent chance.

  43. Hubert

    Frank:
    Re: Shump’s TS — and this is a real question:

    Do people here think it’s more likely that he shoots 40+% again from 3 point range or that he shoots <50% at the rim? Because you can’t say that you expect his 3P% to come down without acknowledging that he had what is likely a true outlier in his at-rim FG%. Now it may be that he’ll never be a good finisher – but he did shoot 62% at the rim on almost 2x the attempts in his rookie year.

    Great question.

    When I see his poor TS% near the rim, the first thing that springs to mind is his ridiculous boldness in that area. This is a guy who jumps four feet away from the basket and winds up his tomahawk when Marcin Gortat is in position to give such an attempt a 0% chance of success.

    I’m not saying it’s all down to that, but he is really aggressive down there and I’m hopeful experience can tame that aggression. But until we see signs of a more mature player, I think it’s more likely he remains poor around the rim. I’m all in on his shooting. It looked damn good last year.

  44. er

    Robert Silverman: Yes, it was a joke. Like Don Rickles calling someone a hockey puck is a joke. It was a joke w/the intent of insulting someone, which can be funny but doesn’t change the intent.

    Who is Don Rickels? sounds familiar…..off to the google machine

  45. David Vertsberger Post author

    I don’t feel like I’m being ganged up on. Let me explain why I wrote this: It was to make you guys do what you guys are doing. Somewhat. I wanted to see debate on this topic – whether Knicks nation believes we should continue this “win-now” mentality and try to strike a deal such as one I’ve listed, or to sit put on Shump. Whether my opinion is right or wrong, whatever – I tried to accomplish this. This is why I didn’t analyze any of the trades I listed, but simple gave a brief “yeah, this would be cool.” or “YUCK, NO.” after each proposal. It was just to give you guys an idea of what a trade could look like, just no one (like I’ve seen on Twtter) thinks we’re getting Rondo for this package or something. And yeah blah blah I’m a Knick pessimist. I’m done responding to these comments already. I’m still young and improving and I write crap at times – I don’t think this is one of those times but since Mike said it is, and he’s FAR better than me – I’ll take his word for it. But it’s no excuse that I’m young or I’m new at this. I’m going to try and get better. Thanks for reading/commenting – and thanks for those who understand (after reading this comment) why I wrote this article and it’s intentions. Go Knicks.

  46. Jim Cavan

    Frank: (btw David has never hidden behind his age — it’s mostly Jim who has stuck up for him with age as a crutch).

    Fair point. If David’s not going to use it as an excuse, then neither should I.

    To the extent that none of this crosses any clear line, I’m not here to try and tell everyone what to say and how to say it. But I DO think there’s an art to criticism that sometimes gets lost in baser instincts. My perspective isn’t “stop criticizing him” so much as “try being a little kinder.”

    That’s all. I love this site and I love you all, and furthermore believe this is going to help us all — including David — get better at what we do. I just think there’s a more artful, more community-minded way for us to get there.

  47. cgreene

    The defense of the writer based on age or experience should be insulting to the writer. Why doesn’t David get in here and further work his point of view in the comments? That would show a bit more moxie than hiding behind the defense of the more senior writers to me. He is doing himself a disservice with that. These comments have been tame, analytical and impersonal.

  48. Robert Silverman

    er: Who is Don Rickels? sounds familiar…..off to the google machine

    Don Rickles is a an undersized 5’3″ SF/PF tweener out of Queens. Sources say the Knicks will be bringing him to training camp to compete for the 156th spot on the roster. Yeah, he’s 88 years old, but is said to still have serious upside potential, again according to sources, who in fact, say.

  49. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Hubert: I’m not saying it’s all down to that, but he is really aggressive down there and I’m hopeful experience can tame that aggression. But until we see signs of a more mature player, I think it’s more likely he remains poor around the rim. I’m all in on his shooting. It looked damn good last year.

    Call me crazy, but I’d rather see that tomahawk play than an Andre Miller-esque butt-protruding, perfectly-timed layup. And I love Andre Miller.

  50. Robert Silverman

    cgreene:
    The defense of the writer based on age or experience should be insulting to the writer.Why doesn’t David get in here and further work his point of view in the comments?That would show a bit more moxie than hiding behind the defense of the more senior writers to me.He is doing himself a disservice with that.These comments have been tame, analytical and impersonal.

    He did. See above.

  51. Frank

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Call me crazy, but I’d rather see that tomahawk play than an Andre Miller-esque butt-protruding, perfectly-timed layup. And I love Andre Miller.

    Me too – and my feeling is that Shump’s hops will be back 100% this season (I seem to remember reading something about how vertical is the last thing to come back after ACL? maybe?) and he should be able to finish some of those next year.

    btw my kid loves to watch Youtube videos of dunks, and we were watching old Jordan in-game dunks — there might be other guys who can jump as high as MJ did, but no one before or since has his combination of hops, body control in traffic, and determination to destroy anyone who challenged him. Just awesome.

  52. David Vertsberger Post author

    cgreene:
    The defense of the writer based on age or experience should be insulting to the writer.Why doesn’t David get in here and further work his point of view in the comments?That would show a bit more moxie than hiding behind the defense of the more senior writers to me.He is doing himself a disservice with that.These comments have been tame, analytical and impersonal.

    I didn’t browse the thread until much later when Mike directed me towards accurate criticism I should consider in an e-mail.

  53. cgreene

    David Vertsberger: I didn’t browse the thread until much later when Mike directed me towards accurate criticism I should consider in an e-mail.

    I appreciate you getting into the thread at this point. I find it curious that after writing the article you wouldn’t be consistently checking the thread to see if it yielded the desired conversation. All in all I’m less interested in you responding to the writing criticism and more interested in you responding to the basketball criticism. You asserted the Knicks aren’t contenders almost as fact. How do you refute the people like me who disagree? You suggested trade scenarios. How do the ones you came up with get us closer to a title? The Knicks are capped out even without Amare next season. Why do you think getting rid of him rather than testing his durability one last time is the better route if so?

  54. Hubert

    thenamestsam:

    I’ll never understand why supposedly statistically minded people would give a “Yes” or “No” answer to a question like “Championshiip material?”. Does your unequivocal no mean that you would be willing to give me a 1,000-1 on the Knicks winning a title next year? What about 1,000,000-1? The Knicks made it to the 2nd round of the playoffs last year. They have a realistic chance of doing so again.

    Here’s a quote from Portland GM Neil Olshey in yesterday’s Zach Lowe piece about what it means to be a successful team: “I don’t talk as much about trying to win a title, but more about being a factor in the playoffs. And I define that as being a team that’s going to advance to the second round. Once you’re there, a bounce of the ball, health, chemistry, matchups — all those little things come into play once you’re in the final eight.”

    I agree with this so much.

    This year Indiana was the team that got a few things to go their way and now everyone thinks it’s down to them being superior. As I’ve said before, if the 2nd round of the playoffs wasn’t dedicated to the sanctity of jumping straight up, a lot of things would be different today. If, instead of Chandler and JR being injured, Hibbert and Hill were hurt, a lot of things would be different today. There are so many little factors, and the Heat are no runaway favorites, either.

    It boggles my mind that people are willing to categorically write off a team’s chances. We are a long-shot/improbable championship contender. That’s not basketball purgatory.

  55. Douglas

    Robert Silverman: He did. See above.

    I’m done responding to these comments already.

    If David wants to spark a discussion on Amare’s role on the team, why is he not sticking around to contribute to that discussion? I think that’s a lost opportunity for all of us. I think we’d really like it if he engaged commenters instead of typing a one-and-done reply. He doesn’t need to defend his position as a writer on this site. Many of us are sympathetic to the greater demands of writing a post. But I think his contribution to the daily basketball discussion could be even greater.

    Knickerblogger has always given me a higher standard of basketball discussion and has pushed me to not only to learn about advanced stats but to think critically of their exact role in evaluating basketball. It’s a testament to the hard work of the community here that I now expect more intellectual vigor here than on P&T or /r/nba.

    If David is up for considering advice, I would say the best way for a newer writer to get over with the Knickerblogger commentariat is to take the stats-based approach. It’s dry work crunching the numbers, but at least we’ll all able to immediately see that he put in the work and making an effort to seriously grow. It’s a lot better than taking an opinion-based approach.

    I think I speak for the vast majority of readers when I say that we don’t want our writers to be gadflies. We can wind ourselves just fine in an offseason daily news thread where the only links are to WNBA game reports. We want our writers to be equal partners in making great basketball discussion every day, and we want to challenge each other to grow in our knowledge and appreciation of the sport.

  56. Hubert

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Call me crazy, but I’d rather see that tomahawk play than an Andre Miller-esque butt-protruding, perfectly-timed layup. And I love Andre Miller.

    I wonder if we’re referring to the same type of play. I meant the kind – and we’ve all seen this – where he starts his jump so far away from the basket that he would have to throw it into the hoop from a good distance to succeed! Honestly sometimes it’s like he thinks you get points for jumping over someone instead of actually scoring the bucket.

  57. Jim Cavan

    Douglas: I think I speak for the vast majority of readers when I say that we don’t want our writers to be gadflies. We can wind ourselves just fine in an offseason daily news thread where the only links are to WNBA game reports. We want our writers to be equal partners in making great basketball discussion every day, and we want to challenge each other to grow in our knowledge and appreciation of the sport.

    While a fair point, I’d posit that having three jobs precludes being as involved as maybe I’d like to. And I’m pretty sure I’m not alone on that front (writers and commenters included). I get that it’s better if the writers aren’t here to just post their pieces and leave, but I think it’s also important to understand that not everyone has professional commitments that afford them the opportunity to contribute their two cents on a moment’s notice. And the only reason I seem to come on to defend other writers is simply because the anger it induces (I’m Irish) is enough to trump any instinct I have to not slack off from work.

    I speak for myself when I say I will certainly try and do better about being a more regular contributor to the comments section. That said, I’d recommend not jumping to conclusions in assuming our lack of presence means we don’t want to be here. In fact, it’s usually the case that we literally can’t.

  58. David Vertsberger Post author

    cgreene: ll i

    We haven’t gotten out of the second round and had the 17th best defense last year.
    Well I hated the Gay one, but nabbing Gortat, Butler and Davis/Tucker makes me believe this team is better. Butler takes Shump’s role as a 3-and-D wing, 38% three-point shooter and probably a bit worse than Shump on D. Gortat on our bench would give us likely the best bench big in the league, it’ll allow us to limit Tyson’s minutes and keep him fresh. Per-36: 13, 10, 2 blocks, 52% shooting. Davis is another quality big, certainly better than Bargs or Tyler and cheaper than STAT. Suddenly injuries, foul trouble – those issues are alleviated with increased depth. 15 & 7 last year, PER of 15. And PJ Tucker is a wing who can play/defend multiple positions, rebound and score decently enough. So all that for Shump and SOMEONE TAKING STAT’S RIDICULOUS CONTRACT? I think we get the better end or it’s a fair deal.
    Even if STAT stays healthy, he’s not worth 20 mil, and that & can be used on players that bring more to the team. Keeping Shump and hitting the reset button in 2015… Well NY won’t be that appealing to FAs at that point with Melo aging and Shump won’t change that by much.

  59. David Vertsberger Post author

    Douglas:

    If David is up for considering advice, I would say the best way for a newer writer to get over with the Knickerblogger commentariat is to take the stats-based approach. It’s dry work crunching the numbers, but at least we’ll all able to immediately see that he put in the work and making an effort to seriously grow. It’s a lot better than taking an opinion-based approach.

    I think I speak for the vast majority of readers when I say that we don’t want our writers to be gadflies. We can wind ourselves just fine in an offseason daily news thread where the only links are to WNBA game reports. We want our writers to be equal partners in making great basketball discussion every day, and we want to challenge each other to grow in our knowledge and appreciation of the sport.

    My writing isn’t limited to one style. Some are all stats, some all narrative, some just pose a question, some are a combination. I’m not trying to win over the community. No matter what I write or where I write it, someone somewhere will hate it. I don’t have time to respond to every comment, I just moved into college and just writing this article period had to be done during class and finished in the middle of the night. I get you want to discuss and that’s great but please try to understand that if I’m not here – it’s because I can’t be.

  60. Mike Kurylo

    One other thing regarding the criticism…

    Seems like there are a lot of smart minds here that are able to critique an article. Many of you can find grammatical errors, flaws in logic, parts that should have been included, etc. Sounds like there are a bunch of people that have what it takes to actually write an article on KnickerBlogger.Net. :-D

    Jim and Robert (and Kevin and Dr. Crockett) were all commenters before writers. However in recent years, I don’t have many people that are willing to cross that line. If you’re able to provide a quality article once a week or once a month, I’ll take you on. Quite honestly it takes one click to turn a person into a contributor, and I’m a “the more the merrier” kinda guy.

    Hit me up on the contact page, if you don’t already have my email.

  61. flossy

    David Vertsberger: So all that for Shump and SOMEONE TAKING STAT’S RIDICULOUS CONTRACT? I think we get the better end or it’s a fair deal.
    Even if STAT stays healthy, he’s not worth 20 mil, and that & can be used on players that bring more to the team.

    Listen, dude. Please learn how the salary cap works before posting stuff like this. We are so far over the salary cap now that we could shoot Amar’e Stoudemire into space and still be over the cap. His contract does absolutely nothing to limit our flexibility whatsoever. We can’t actually spend the money we pay him on other players who bring more to the team, because the only way we can spend that money is on players we get in return for trading him, players who are not going to be any good at playing basketball. Certainly there is no way on earth that a team like Phoenix would trade Marcin Gortat for the $45 million owed to Amar’e Stoudemire over the next two years. We actually have a better chance of shooting Amar’e into space than that trade happening.

  62. thenoblefacehumper

    I personally think David’s age is irrelevant. If something gets posted on Knickerblogger, it can and should be scrutinized by the viewers no matter who writes it. If the editors (Mike K, Cavan, whoever else) deem it good enough for KB, then it should be held to the same standards as all other pieces.

    I think it’s more insulting to David that we’re supposed to expect less from him than it is that we’re pointing out the many flaws in his piece. Constant reminders of his age from Cavan serve no purpose other than implying that we shouldn’t expect much from him. If the head honchos at KB think that’s the case, they should kindly tell him his work won’t be posted until it gets better.

    Lastly, I seriously wish Jon Abbey was around for this one. It’s not a good piece AND it suggests trading Shump. He’d have a field day, and he’d be right to do so.

  63. Jack Bauer

    I would puke if any of those proposed trades were actually made. I would rather take our chances with Amare having a miracle comeback (unlikely) than taking back any of that dreck, not to mention throwing Shump in too ?!?! No (*&^%$#@)+ way

  64. Chase Thomas

    I honestly don’t think Grunwald could justify moving Shumpert and Stoudemire this season.

    I’m not in the camp that believes Shumpert is a cornerstone piece, but he’s still a guy the Knicks really need on the wing for 2013. I think things would have to go really bad for team as a whole this season for the team to actually pull the trigger on moving him because of how the current roster is built. Whether we believe the Knicks can contend or not in 2013 and 2014 moving Shumpert would only make sense if they were able to bring in a player(s) who could contribute right away for the team.

    Moving Amare next season seems a lot more plausible because of the huge expiring contract he’ll possess, but I think there is a reason we really haven’t heard “Amare Trade Rumors” really at all. He’s a guy who will probably only be able to play on a limited basis going forward with a huge contract. Trying to throw Shumpert in with Amare seems like it would be more enticing for teams to possibly bite at, but I really don’t think there is anyway anybody touches Amare’s contract this season.

    Good stuff though, David.

  65. cgreene

    David Vertsberger: We haven’t gotten out of the second round and had the 17th best defense last year.
    Well I hated the Gay one, but nabbing Gortat, Butler and Davis/Tucker makes me believe this team is better. Butler takes Shump’s role as a 3-and-D wing, 38% three-point shooter and probably a bit worse than Shump on D. Gortat on our bench would give us likely the best bench big in the league, it’ll allow us to limit Tyson’s minutes and keep him fresh. Per-36: 13, 10, 2 blocks, 52% shooting. Davis is another quality big, certainly better than Bargs or Tyler and cheaper than STAT. Suddenly injuries, foul trouble – those issues are alleviated with increased depth. 15 & 7 last year, PER of 15. And PJ Tucker is a wing who can play/defend multiple positions, rebound and score decently enough. So all that for Shump and SOMEONE TAKING STAT’S RIDICULOUS CONTRACT? I think we get the better end or it’s a fair deal.
    Even if STAT stays healthy, he’s not worth 20 mil, and that & can be used on players that bring more to the team. Keeping Shump and hitting the reset button in 2015… Well NY won’t be that appealing to FAs at that point with Melo aging and Shump won’t change that by much.

    See now that’s good stuff. You ALMOST have me convinced that’s not a bad idea. (:

  66. cgreene

    Z: Well, I will say this: the jon abbey ban seems to have scared The Honorable Cock Jowles straight.

    Addition by subtraction as they say?

  67. Jim Cavan

    Here’s the thing: Brian Cronin put up a piece about Dean Meminger yesterday that was well-researched, well-conceived, timely, and wonderfully written.

    Three comments. Granted, all of them complimentary, and sincerely so. But still. Three comments.

    This post goes up, and suddenly the page is filled with critical responses — some legitimate and well-worded, others petty and not constructive in any way (more the former for sure.)

    A few weeks back, a popular refrain was: No one comes here for the posts anyway. Now? We’re 70 posts and counting into an argument about what kind of standard Knickerblogger ought to have for its posts.

    I mean… which one is it?

    I posit all this not to somehow suggest that there’s an appropriate “ratio” that needs to be struck between “complimentary” and “critical” comments, but rather to have people recognize that, even on a site as top-to-bottom intelligent and insightful as this one, the internet’s baseline instincts swing heavily in favor of the latter.

    So if you’re still someone who claims only to come here for the comments and threads, and not the posts, carry on. Just do it without bashing the posts. Because doing so makes you look like a hypocrite.

    If, however, you come here for the posts as well as the discussions, what would you, the reader, like to see more of at Knickerblogger?

    Voicing criticism of a piece — any piece — is necessary to assure that we’re staying on our toes (particularly as the regular season starts back up). Just try and do it in a way that’s artful and sincere, rather than knee-jerk and full of snark.

    And if you somehow think the content here is failing to meet your expectations, tell us why, and in what ways.

    cgreene: See now that’s good stuff. You ALMOST have me convinced that’s not a bad idea. (:

    There we go! Constructive!

  68. Z-man

    I can’t speak for Jowles, but I doubt that fear of being banned had much to do with his more tempered approach. Whatever the reason, I’m impressed and appreciate the change.

  69. Z-man

    Jim Cavan: Here’s the thing: Brian Cronin put up a piece about Dean Meminger yesterday that was well-researched, well-conceived, timely, and wonderfully written. Three comments. Granted, all of them complimentary, and sincerely so. But still. Three comments. This post goes up, and suddenly the page is filled with critical responses — some legitimate and well-worded, others petty and not constructive in any way (more the former for sure.)A few weeks back, a popular refrain was: No one comes here for the posts anyway. Now? We’re 70 posts and counting into an argument about what kind of standard Knickerblogger ought to have for its posts. I mean… which one is it? I posit all this not to somehow suggest that there’s an appropriate “ratio” that needs to be struck between “complimentary” and “critical” comments, but rather to have people recognize that, even on a site as top-to-bottom intelligent and insightful as this one, the internet’s baseline instincts swing heavily in favor of the latter. So if you’re still someone who claims only to come here for the comments and threads, and not the posts, carry on. Just do it without bashing the posts. Because doing so makes you look like a hypocrite. If, however, you come here for the posts as well as the discussions, what would you, the reader, like to see more of at Knickerblogger? Voicing criticism of a piece — any piece — is necessary to assure that we’re staying on our toes (particularly as the regular season starts back up). Just try and do it in a way that’s artful and sincere, rather than knee-jerk and full of snark. And if you somehow think the content here is failing to meet your expectations, tell us why, and in what ways. P>

    Well, I was one of the 3 comments. Does that vindicate me somewhat?

  70. David Vertsberger Post author

    flossy: Listen, dude.Please learn how the salary cap works before posting stuff like this.We are so far over the salary cap now that we could shoot Amar’e Stoudemire into space and still be over the cap.His contract does absolutely nothing to limit our flexibility whatsoever.We can’t actually spend the money we pay him on other players who bring more to the team, because the only way we can spend that money is on players we get in return for trading him, players who are not going to be any good at playing basketball.Certainly there is no way on earth that a team like Phoenix would trade Marcin Gortat for the $45 million owed to Amar’e Stoudemire over the next two years.We actually have a better chance of shooting Amar’e into space than that trade happening.

    I never said it makes us more flexible – it gives us more value for the money we’re already spending.

  71. David Vertsberger Post author

    cgreene: See now that’s good stuff.You ALMOST have me convinced that’s not a bad idea.(:

    Appreciate it – but again I didn’t write all this because the piece wasn’t about my opinion at all. Notice the title being a question. I wanted to spark a debate – but apparently there isn’t one, so… welp.

  72. cgreene

    Jim Cavan:
    Here’s the thing: Brian Cronin put up a piece about Dean Meminger yesterday that was well-researched, well-conceived, timely, and wonderfully written.

    Three comments. Granted, all of them complimentary, and sincerely so. But still. Three comments.

    This post goes up, and suddenly the page is filled with critical responses — some legitimate and well-worded, others petty and not constructive in any way (more the former for sure.)

    I think the topic is what separates the amount of comments. Well that and the inflammatory nature of the hypothesis that the Knicks are mediocre. But what I mean is that I think less people are as passionate about Knicks history than they are about the current state of the team and, therefore, that article elicits less comments. I bet a lot of people here didn’t even know who Dean Meminger was before that. I’m older so I did (although not nearly as much as I do about the legends from that time).

  73. flossy

    David Vertsberger: I never said it makes us more flexible – it gives us more value for the money we’re already spending.

    But you said nothing to actually back up that assertion. A trade for Marcin Gortat is not happening. Who are we realistically going to get in return for Amar’e and Shumpert who will give us more value than those two? The key word being “realistic.” Any trade that features a team’s starting center coming to the Knicks or Amar’e Stoudemire playing for Phoenix again doesn’t pass the laugh test.

  74. AvonBarksdale

    This is the Ben Affleck is Batman type outrage, stop criticizing the fuck out these posts it’s friggin august and he was addressing a hypothetical scenario..some of youse peoples needs to chill..

  75. Unreason

    Watching ideas advance, humor, and shared emotion make KB fun. Snark detracts by sowing the seeds of flame wars and driving threads toward mindless repetition of exaggerated entrenched positions. The questions that drive good conversation here don’t have knowable answers. Most writer’s are aware of this and distance themselves from too hard a line. Many regular contributors and readers could argue several sides even though they lean toward one. Our internal arguments get externalized and played out by those willing to pick a position and see where it leads. Our uncertainty anxiety and hope make the whole thing compelling. The personal abuse that shuts down progress or makes things unbearably dull is almost always preceded by snark; cheap shots that distort or exaggerate a claim or tweak the person rather than the position. It can be amusing, but unless the intent is to make people more vengeful than thoughtful why not make the more charitable intent clear?

  76. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Z: Well, I will say this: the jon abbey ban seems to have scared The Honorable Cock Jowles straight.

    Valid reasoning, but I just realized I was getting all worked up over nothing. Ultimately it comes down to an argument like:

    Does ruruland actually know more than you do about productive basketball, or is his presumption of knowledge misguided, errant, biased, etc.?

    I’m never going to convince him that his methodology is (usually) laden with bias, and he’s never going to convince me that my skepticism/risk-analysis is worth what I deem it worth.

    That’s okay. We’re on two sides of the epistemological fence, and I doubt either of us are going to cross it anytime soon.

  77. Frank O.

    Since everyone else is chiming in, so will I:
    Listen, I’m a full time reporter. I cover Congress (thanks for the sympathetic shrug). I’m very busy, but I also started out in journalism stringing for three different newspapers covering local sports: high school, college and some pro basketball, hockey and football in the New Haven area.
    Aside from the fact that I sucked at first, I was overwhelmingly busy and poor, poor, poor. It’s miserably hard making it in journalism, and back in those days we didn’t have blogs to sharpen us. You either got published and paid, or not.
    But it’s fucking hard. I can see why Jim, Bob and Mike try to temper the beat downs. And there’s nothing so harsh as a critic with the relative anonymity of a screen and a keyboard. You all may think it’s no big, but unless you’re starving and trying to build a career and have truly been so naked to criticism as you are when you write for a public audience, you really do’t know shit about whether you’re being too harsh or not.
    I don’t think the guys are trying to muzzle legit criticism, but sometimes the killer line, is just that: killer.
    Now, I’ve been doing what I do for 25 years, so my skin is pretty calloused. But I do wince with the feeding frenzy that sometimes occurs.
    I was against blocking jon abbey, who is one of the more caustic dudes I’ve read here. But one of the things that attracted me to this site four years or so ago, aside from the fact the commentary was informed and stats-based, was that, generally, it was civil. There wasn’t any bullying, like some of the crap I’ve seen elsewhere. Generally, it’s still that way.
    I’ve written a couple articles for Mike in the past; I wish I could write more, but time is a costly bitch, and good work takes time I lack.

    But for what it’s worth, there is a human being on the other side of that screen. We’re all better when we recognize that.

    And I wouldn’t make any of those trades, period. Amare will be great this…

  78. Frank O.

    The Honorable Cock Jowles: Valid reasoning, but I just realized I was getting all worked up over nothing. Ultimately it comes down to an argument like:

    Does ruruland actually know more than you do about productive basketball, or is his presumption of knowledge misguided, errant, biased, etc.?

    I’m never going to convince him that his methodology is (usually) laden with bias, and he’s never going to convince me that my skepticism/risk-analysis is worth what I deem it worth.

    That’s okay. We’re on two sides of the epistemological fence, and I doubt either of us are going to cross it anytime soon.

    I applaud this reasoning Jowles.
    I also think it would be very hard for ruru to say he isn’t biased toward Melo. He’s said he’s a friend and perhaps has other entanglements.
    I will say that ruru does back up his arguments, they are well formed and have a clear point of view backed with information of his choosing. You too build strong arguments and support them with information of your choosing. You both bring emotion to your comments as well.
    But you’re both oil and water, Islamist and Christian evangelical. He thinks your reasoning is largely bullshit, and I sense you read him with a similar view.

  79. Frank O.

    FWIW, I like reading both ruru, Jowles, and a few others here.
    The rest of the commenters generally are terrible and I wish they’d do more than just grunt disapproval and urinate where they sleep…lol

  80. Z

    Frank O.:
    commenters generally are terrible and I wish they’d do more than just grunt disapproval and urinate where they sleep…lol

    Too be fair to the commenters in this thread, every one of them has offered legitimate and constructive criticism today. Perhaps there was an attempt by some to “fill the j.a. void”, which, helpful or not, is bound to happen when a community contextualizes what is presented to them. But I don’t think it helps the dialogue at all when the editors of the sight come in and criticize the readers that are actively participating in the discussion.

  81. Z-man

    David Vertsberger: No matter what I write or where I write it, someone somewhere will hate it. I don’t have time to respond to every comment, I just moved into college and just writing this article period had to be done during class and finished in the middle of the night.

    To Frank O and David, I understand that being pressed for time does not make for memorable writing. But first, it is not true that no matter what you write, someone, somewhere will hate it. There’s a difference between thought-provoking but otherwise flawed writing (e.g. not suited to the audience, the time, etc. or technical issues like ppg structure, syntax, grammar, or even minor factual errors) and rushed, lazy work that is a step below most of the posts here. Vapid, meaningless trade-trolling would suck even if Shakespeare himself wrote it.

    Put another way, I think that instead of this article, David could have just written a couple of posts with essentially the same subject matter/questions. The responses would likely have been the same, without the criticism.

  82. d-mar

    Wow, 91 posts on a Wednesday in August, you’d think someone had proposed an awful trade or something. Go figure.

  83. Z

    Mike Kurylo:

    Nobody is freaking out, are they? It seems like everybody disagrees with elements of this piece, yourself included.

    I do have an idea that might help. Perhaps you can get rid of the “morning news” feature and instead post an original piece every few days. That way people use the threads to talk about various current issues surrounding the league, and intense focus on particular elements get dilluded a bit. For example, there was ample activity on the site yesterday even though Brian’s piece received scant commentary. Because there was a general conversation thread going already, people probably felt compelled to leave comment on BC’s piece to either praise it or take issue with it (and since there was nothing to take issue with, it received well deserved appreciation). I believe the robo-posted morning news threads were put in act because the main writers were, deservedly, off writing for the NYTimes and the like, and time didn’t allow for consisted original content. But it seems you guys are more active here again, so maybe the feature can be dismantled? Just a thought.

  84. Jim Cavan

    Z: Too be fair to the commenters in this thread, every one of them has offered legitimate and constructive criticism today.

    Sorry, that’s just not true. If you want me to crib the specific examples, I will. But they’re pretty easy to pick out.

    Z: But I don’t think it helps the dialogue at all when the editors of the sight come in and criticize the readers that are actively participating in the discussion.

    None of this helps the dialogue. Not the initial cheap shots, not the calling out of said cheap shots, not the defense of the initial comments, nor the defense of the calling out of the comments — none of it.

    So, in the interest of the community dialogue, I propose the following guidepost:

    If you’re going to criticize a post — and the person who wrote it — do it in a way that doesn’t include a) proposing that we “trade” them off the site; or b) calling the post “useless”

    d-mar:
    Wow, 91 posts on a Wednesday in August, you’d think someone had proposed an awful trade or something. Go figure.

    This is my favorite comment so far.

  85. Z

    Also, since you and Jim and Robert have done so well expanding your work, and because the site seems to have a broad following, perhaps you guys can gain access and report exclusives? I know Bob was in Vegas writing about the periphery of the summer league, but what else do he and Jim need to do to gain access to the players? You interviewed Donnie Walsh once I remember. I think maybe D’Antoni too, right? Any chance you or your team can get that kind of access again? I think the readers would appreciate that more than pseudo-trade articles like this.

  86. Z-man

    Mike Kurylo:
    One other thing regarding the criticism…

    Seems like there are a lot of smart minds here that are able to critique an article. Many of you can find grammatical errors, flaws in logic, parts that should have been included, etc. Sounds like there are a bunch of people that have what it takes to actually write an article on KnickerBlogger.Net. :-D

    Jim and Robert (and Kevin and Dr. Crockett) were all commenters before writers. However in recent years, I don’t have many people that are willing to cross that line. If you’re able to provide a quality article once a week or once a month, I’ll take you on. Quite honestly it takes one click to turn a person into a contributor, and I’m a “the more the merrier” kinda guy.

    Hit me up on the contact page, if you don’t already have my email.

    Would love to Mike, but a man’s gotta know his limitations.

  87. Mike Kurylo

    Honestly I use the morning news so I can get the overnight news in the morning in one spot. If something newsworthy happened that I missed, or there is something of interest I can just pop open a few tabs and sit back and read the sports. Unfortunately it doesn’t work for every site, but I can at least get the post, times and daily news in one spot. It’s like my own Knicks rss reader.

    I don’t think it disrupts the comments much. People either post on it, or the last article where there is an ongoing discussion. If the comments get big, then people tend to migrate over.

    At times, there’s some news there that people comment on as well.

    Regarding the morning news, if it ain’t broke…

  88. Z-man

    Jim Cavan: So, in the interest of the community dialogue, I propose the following guidepost:

    If you’re going to criticize a post — and the person who wrote it — do it in a way that doesn’t include a) proposing that we “trade” them off the site; or b) calling the post “useless”

    Sorry, I have to disagree. If the moderators are going to allow sub-Bleacher Report quality drivel to be posted, they shouldn’t bitch about the reactions unless they are extreme in nature.

    And there’s nothing personal about what was said, in the sense that had a close friend posed the same question during a round of golf, he would have gotten an earful that would never have gotten through moderation here. And we both would have laughed and gone on insulting each other’s golf games. The “trade” barbs were pretty tame.

    PS, in @65, David admitted that he threw the article together during his classes and in the middle of the night. Maybe he should hold off until he has more time on his hands, or should run his stuff by the moderators before putting it out there.

  89. ruruland

    When Jowles tries, he presents a good argument. I’ve praised many of his posts on non-basketball topics here, where oddly enough, I both admire his writing/use of logic and agree with him.

    My problem with Jowles isn’t as much the reasoning he uses in regards to basketball topics, it’s that he isn’t using his own reasoning when presented with arguments that defeat his use of WOW tautologies.

    We all have biases, unfortunately, I guess. I’ve not hidden from mine. What I try (at least) is to present things in (hopefully) somewhat fresh and interesting ways, tilt topics on their proverbial ears. I’ve always been open to valid criticisms to my approach. I don’t think I’ve ever shied away from a smart attack, but I think much of the time we end up grinding the gears and not being able to acknowledge the validity of aspects/premises of the opponents argument.

    There are a lot of really smart and informed posters here (not to mention funny), so it’s a challenge to try to challenge them, but that’s what I enjoy.

    Smart Knicks fans are some of the best to debate and converse with that I’ve been around, I only wish some of the people I debate with would avoid reducing themselves to trolling.

    I’ve been guilty of that in the past, too.

    While I greatly respect Mike, his writing and his blog, as well as the incredibly, truly incredibly talented writers he deploys, it’s almost impossible to maintain a good blog when it’s not set up to be monetized and you’re therefore unable to pay a staff, which ends up in inconsistent content.

    The potential of this blog is incredible, in my opinion.

    Maybe there is some elegance to its simplicity, but I think if it was developed into something more modern that was able to generate more revenue, we would have the consistent level of content. I like to post because I don’t have to be overly concerned about my writing.

    if I were to write, it would take more time. Time is money. Hard to ask people to do…

  90. Jim Cavan

    Z-man: And there’s nothing personal about what was said, in the sense that had a close friend posed the same question during a round of golf, he would have gotten an earful that would never have gotten through moderation here.

    You’re “close friends” with the contributors?

    Z-man: PS, in @65, David admitted that he threw the article together during his classes and in the middle of the night. Maybe he should hold off until he has more time on his hands, or should run his stuff by the moderators before putting it out there.

    That’s not how he put it, and nor is it how the process went.

  91. ruruland

    Z:
    Also, since you and Jim and Robert have done so well expanding your work, and because the site seems to have a broad following, perhaps you guys can gain access and report exclusives? I know Bob was in Vegas writing about the periphery of the summer league, but what else do he and Jim need to do to gain access to the players? You interviewed Donnie Walsh once I remember. I think maybe D’Antoni too, right? Any chance you or your team can get that kind of access again? I think the readers would appreciate that more than pseudo-trade articles like this.

    They have tried and it is basically impossible to get any access whatsoever. You have to have back-channel sources to do anything. Before Copeland signed in Indy I had an interview tentatively set up through one of the national basketball camps he does. That person was also going to help set up a Melo/JR interview. Melo has handlers for all that stuff, which means none of the little guys will ever get an interview through his people. What you have to find/know people who are around him and basically get him on the phone for an impromptu, friendly kind of conversation.

    If you try to make it an interview I don’t think you’re going to get much.

    Ambush journalism is worth a try, but you would need to break into the circles that know where these guys are….

    Efforting something like that is probably beyond the pale. But, if you do it as a ghostwriter and can produce the sound, it’s pretty clever approach.

  92. ephus

    On the salary cap portion of these proposed trades, color me unimpressed. None of the proposed trades get the Knicks salary cap room during next off-season (when LBJ might opt out). I do not see any of these moves changing the Knicks ceiling – they are likely to be a 48 – 52 win team that COULD get hot in the playoffs, but also COULD get bounced in the first round in a 4/5 or 3/6 series.

    ASFAIK, STAT has not caused trouble in the locker room (unlike Starbury). There is no reason to try to ship him out in a trade like this.

    I admit to an irrational love for Shumpert. I look at him and I see an upside of Sane Sprewell. The numbers do not back this up, it’s all in my head. But I feel it, nonetheless.

  93. dtrickey

    It’s funny to read articles all over the internet about potential Shump trades. It’s as if we all just expect (with good reason) that the FO will just move him because he’s our only really tradable asset.

    I’m not so hot on the idea on trading both STAT and Shump yet. I appreciate the financial benefits of moving STAT, but I think at this stage you probably need to see how this first half of the season pans out. Also, if we were to move Shump now I definitely think we would be selling low given he hasn’t really fully tapped into that “potential” we all talk about.

    ephus:

    I admit to an irrational love for Shumpert.I look at him and I see an upside of Sane Sprewell.The numbers do not back this up, it’s all in my head.But I feel it, nonetheless.

    I share the same irrational love. What’s not to love though about an athletic and agressive defensive guard who can throw down huge dunks. Get a some improvement across his offensive numbers and he can have me.

  94. nicos

    Um, Sprewell’s career TS% was .516 (same as Shump shot last year) and his WS was .77 while Shump’s is .78. Shumpert’s a sane Sprewell now and he’s only played about a season’s worth of healthy games. If Shumpert can sustain his shooting from the last 25 games or so last year (yeah, small sample size) then Sprewell is his floor andhe has the potential to be a whole lot better.

  95. Z

    Mike Kurylo:

    Regarding the morning news, if it ain’t broke…

    Okay, that’s cool. Just offering a suggestion. Maybe it’s not broken. But when Jim writes this:

    Jim Cavan:
    Here’s the thing: Brian Cronin put up a piece about Dean Meminger yesterday that was well-researched, well-conceived, timely, and wonderfully written.
    Three comments. Granted, all of them complimentary, and sincerely so. But still. Three comments.
    This post goes up, and suddenly the page is filled with critical responses…what would you, the reader, like to see more of at Knickerblogger?
    And if you somehow think the content here is failing to meet your expectations, tell us why, and in what ways.

    It kind of seems like something is, so I thought I’d offer possible fix. I personally think it would give more continuity here to have one thread for a day or two, and would maybe help answer some of the issues/questions Jim is asking.

  96. Z

    ruruland: They have tried and it is basically impossible to get any access whatsoever.

    Ruru, Mike posted a fascinating interview he did with Donnie Walsh and Mike D’Antoni here a few years ago. He asked Walsh about advanced stats and Walsh gave a interesting answer. It was great because Mike asked questions that were of interest to the readers here, and we got an insight that we never would have gotten from main-stream news sources. I wish he had done more of it, and was just hoping maybe he or Jim and Robert (and David too!) could look to do more of it.

    ( http://knickerblogger.net/interview-with-donnie-walsh/ )

  97. Z-man

    Jim Cavan: You’re “close friends” with the contributors?

    That’s not how he put it, and nor is it how the process went.

    I truly don’t know how to respond to this jibberish.

  98. Z-man

    ephus: On the salary cap portion of these proposed trades, color me unimpressed. None of the proposed trades get the Knicks salary cap room during next off-season (when LBJ might opt out). I do not see any of these moves changing the Knicks ceiling – they are likely to be a 48 – 52 win team that COULD get hot in the playoffs, but also COULD get bounced in the first round in a 4/5 or 3/6 series.

    ephus, I appreciate that you are the go-to guy on cap issues, but never was your expertise less needed than in refuting these trade scenarios. None of them pass even the crudest smell test.

  99. drocknj

    These trades are stupid. Some of the guys mentioned ( like Telfair and Butler) are free agents. I’m not sure where this guy was going, this article is nonsensical.

  100. iserp

    There is a certain consensus that we are one of the top 5 teams in the conference. We were 2nd last year, but most people consider that other teams have improved more than the Knicks have improved (for all his faults, i don’t consider Bargnani instead of Novak/Copeland a regression). The situation might not be ideal, but we have a puncher’s chance against anyone; and i would say we favor certain matchups. Last season the knicks fared better against Miami/Brooklyn, than against Pacers/Chicago. So even if we finish 5th after Miami Chicago Pacers Brooklyn, you have to give our team a chance at the finals.

    However, as i said, we are not in an ideal situation… but after all the years with Isiah as GM, it is not strange that most of the knickerbloggers have bought in the idea of making the most of this team, and if it doesn’t work out, reboot in 2015. It is a sensible plan that somehow has fallen in competitive disadvantage when the new CBA made it easier for the rest of the teams not to be in cap hell (Not that the knicks didn’t take advantage amnestying Chauncey Billups). However, It is our plan. A plan very different from the Isiah years. It is not the San Antonio way, or the Oklahoma way or the Lakers way… but it makes sense. In 2015 we will keep Melo and Felton, sign a bunch of FAs and then sign Shumpert as a RFA. Shumpert’s qualifying offer allows us to cheat on the cap limit, and provides a complimentary piece on the team. Good defenders at the wing aren’t easy to come by, and it is good to have 1 or 2 in your team. The ball can’t be in everyone’s hands, so players that know to do something else are valuable (and if Shumpert sustains that 40 %3P, he will not be disregarded in offense). Shumpert may not be as good as we make him to be, but he is a valuable piece for the knicks.

    The trades David posted, either give up Shumpert for little benefit in the short run (STAT for Gay). Or mess up the 2015 reboot (Gortat has to be extended or renounced in 2014). So it is not strange that people are against them.

    But as Hubert said, it is really difficult to make a mock trade both reallistic and good for your team. No matter what trade it is, people of both sides will complain.

    I applaud David for trying to explore trade scenarios. 100 posts, wow! haha. I think the FO has tried hard, and the most they could get is Bargnani. It is not easy to make trades in the Knicks situation.

    BTW, i feel people are really paranoid these days. I wish the season starts so people chill out a bit.

  101. flossy

    Jim Cavan: Here’s the thing: Brian Cronin put up a piece about Dean Meminger yesterday that was well-researched, well-conceived, timely, and wonderfully written.
    Three comments. Granted, all of them complimentary, and sincerely so. But still. Three comments.
    This post goes up, and suddenly the page is filled with critical responses — some legitimate and well-worded, others petty and not constructive in any way (more the former for sure.)

    Could that have something to do with the fact that Dean Meminger last played pro ball 36 years ago? Whereas Amar’e Stoudemire and Iman Shumpert both play for the Knicks (for the time being) right now?

    I think the number of comments in this case has nothing to do with the quality of writing, but rather the topical nature of each post and their relative timeliness. Brian’s post was very well written and appreciated but Dean Meminger is just not a hot topic in 2013. We’re all fans of the current-day Knicks and have strong opinions about whether or not to trade core players.

    I think a well-researched, well-written article that advocated trading the STAT/Shump package–a post that attempted some serious statistical analysis, or delved deep into the benefits we’d gain vis a vis the salary cap, or proposed some trades that actually pass the laugh test (which I’ve seen before–Hubert has posted some in the comments which, while I don’t agree with them, are at least realistic and can be supported by argument) would have also produced some real discussion and a lot of comments, none of which would have been of the “WTF is this?!” variety.

    But that’s not what we got. And I have to believe you know it. This is one of the smartest, most articulate groups of commenters around. It’s a little insulting to our collective intelligence to be presented with dashed-off dreck like this.

  102. Hubert

    This is what I was referring to back in post 20:

    David Vertsberger: Butler takes Shump’s role as a 3-and-D wing, 38% three-point shooter and probably a bit worse than Shump on D.

    David, Butler and Shumpert aren’t comparable players. Butler just can’t defend the variety of positions and types of players that Shumpert can. Butler can’t take Shump’s role, he gives us a redundant player for MWP’s role.

  103. Z-man

    flossy: This is one of the smartest, most articulate groups of commenters around.

    Speak for yourself, pal.

    Seriously, great comment.

  104. Jim Cavan

    Z-man: drivel

    C’mon, man. You HAVE to know the difference between “joking” with “good friends”, and giving shit to some writer you’ve never met, nor are likely ever to meet.

    Furthermore, he never said he “threw it together in the middle of the night.” He said he finished it in the middle of the night. After how much work, you have no idea.

    flossy: It’s a little insulting to our collective intelligence to be presented with dashed-off dreck like this.

    If you or anyone else is truly “insulted” by a post whose attendant work you don’t have the faintest idea about, I suggest either:

    1) Trying your hand at a post or two

    2) Dialing it back to the free site subscription

  105. Jim Cavan

    Z: Ruru, Mike posted a fascinating interview he did with Donnie Walsh and Mike D’Antoni here a few years ago. He asked Walsh about advanced stats and Walsh gave a interesting answer. It was great because Mike asked questions that were of interest to the readers here, and we got an insight that we never would have gotten from main-stream news sources. I wish he had done more of it, and was just hoping maybe he or Jim and Robert (and David too!) could look to do more of it.

    Hey, I’m with you. But getting credentialed is just a lot more touch-and-go than people think. I won’t go into the details, but suffice it to say it’s gotten a bit harder in the last two years. We’re still able to garner them, but it’s rarely if ever a shoe-in.

    Believe me, I would LOVE to have unfettered access and endless credentials. That alone might compel me to move down to the city (I’m currently in New England). And you’re absolutely right that the resulting access would likely yield some really good content.

    But it can be a tricky thing, not merely in terms of what we’re granted access to, but whether we have the time to go cover it. Doing a solid 8 hours of work (including travel) for a good piece is something I’m sure we’d all consider doing on occasion. But all the time? For free? The math gets a little messy at that point.

  106. Jonathan Topaz

    One other angle that hasn’t been addressed — Amar’e's contract in just a year will become a pretty big asset as an expiring contract. The Knicks are in win-now mode for the next two years, but the front office (as most commenters have already noted) has done it in a clever way, with very few contracts extending into 2015-2016. The team has a lot of flexibility going into that year, and can go a lot of interesting ways, and one of those ways will be to mull offers for a $23.4 million expiring contract.

    Believe it or not, in the bizarre world of NBA economics, Amar’e's contract is an appreciating asset, one that will gain considerable value in a year. And trading him now, as others noted, will do very little by way of the salary cap, given how over the cap the team is.

    It’s unclear just how much the Knicks can get for Amar’e's expiring, but it will certainly garner interest.

  107. Nick C.

    flossy: Could that have something to do with the fact that Dean Meminger last played pro ball 36 years ago?Whereas Amar’e Stoudemire and Iman Shumpert both play for the Knicks (for the time being) right now?

    I think the number of comments in this case has nothing to do with the quality of writing, but rather the topical nature of each post and their relative timeliness.Brian’s post was very well written and appreciated but Dean Meminger is just not a hot topic in 2013.We’re all fans of the current-day Knicks and have strong opinions about whether or not to trade core players.

    I think a well-researched, well-written article that advocated trading the STAT/Shump package–a post that attempted some serious statistical analysis, or delved deep into the benefits we’d gain vis a vis the salary cap, or proposed some trades that actually pass the laugh test (which I’ve seen before–Hubert has posted some in the comments which, while I don’t agree with them, are at least realistic and can be supported by argument) would have also produced some real discussion and a lot of comments, none of which would have been of the “WTF is this?!” variety.

    But that’s not what we got.And I have to believe you know it.This is one of the smartest, most articulate groups of commenters around.It’s a little insulting to our collective intelligence to be presented with dashed-off dreck like this.

    This seems weird that the group is collectively intelligent but can’t be expected to care anything beyond the present or near immediate past.

  108. Z-man

    Jim Cavan: C’mon, man. You HAVE to know the difference between “joking” with “good friends”, and giving shit to some writer you’ve never met, nor are likely ever to meet.

    I would say that on a sports blog, you should expect the same treatment. IMO, you take the “we’re too lofty for that” stuff way too far.

    Jim Cavan: Furthermore, he never said he “threw it together in the middle of the night.” He said he finished it in the middle of the night. After how much work, you have no idea.

    No matter, the fact remains that it was a woefully substandard piece. And if he put his entire heart and soul into it and that was the best he could come up with, well….

  109. Jim Cavan

    Z-man: I would say that on a sports blog, you should expect the same treatment. IMO, you take the “we’re too lofty for that” stuff way too far.

    Look, if you’re that desperate to be allowed to talk shit about someone from behind a computer screen, that’s up to you. To the extent that it never got too personal, there’s nothing I or anyone else can really do about it. I just think it’s weak sauce. That’s all.

  110. Brian Cronin

    Honestly I use the morning news so I can get the overnight news in the morning in one spot. If something newsworthy happened that I missed, or there is something of interest I can just pop open a few tabs and sit back and read the sports. Unfortunately it doesn’t work for every site, but I can at least get the post, times and daily news in one spot. It’s like my own Knicks rss reader.

    I don’t think it disrupts the comments much. People either post on it, or the last article where there is an ongoing discussion. If the comments get big, then people tend to migrate over.

    At times, there’s some news there that people comment on as well.

    Regarding the morning news, if it ain’t broke…

    Whatever the other debate, I agree that morning news is definitely a valuable piece of the site.

  111. Hubert

    Btw, since no one else offered a better way to offload Amar’e, allow me to offer up my intrepid idea from June (that was also universally bashed by commenters):

    The Wizards are stupid. The Wizards are also desperate to make a splash and make the playoffs. Take advantage of this and offer Amar’e for Ariza and Okafor’s expiring contracts.

    Hopefully between Okafor and Martin we get a full season of capable backups for Chandler. And hopefully Ariza never sees the court.

    Then all you have to do is find someone stupid enough to take AB’s final year (or come up with a high enough bribe) and you could really start opening up some real flexibility in 2014. (Amazingly, we wouldn’t be able to offer a draft pick to bribe someone into taking AB because we gave one up to get him.)

  112. Jim Cavan

    Frank O.: Now, I’ve been doing what I do for 25 years, so my skin is pretty calloused. But I do wince with the feeding frenzy that sometimes occurs.
    I was against blocking jon abbey, who is one of the more caustic dudes I’ve read here. But one of the things that attracted me to this site four years or so ago, aside from the fact the commentary was informed and stats-based, was that, generally, it was civil. There wasn’t any bullying, like some of the crap I’ve seen elsewhere. Generally, it’s still that way.
    I’ve written a couple articles for Mike in the past; I wish I could write more, but time is a costly bitch, and good work takes time I lack.

    But for what it’s worth, there is a human being on the other side of that screen. We’re all better when we recognize that.

    Thanks for this, Frank.

  113. Z-man

    Jim Cavan: Look, if you’re that desperate to be allowed to talk shit about someone from behind a computer screen, that’s up to you. To the extent that it never got too personal, there’s nothing I or anyone else can really do about it. I just think it’s weak sauce. That’s all.

    Listen to yourself. You use words like “desperate” and then imply that I’m a coward by talking shit from behind a computer screen. That is a personal attack. IMO, that makes your entire defense of David’s work weak and hypocritical, especially since you just said that what I said never got too personal.

    I said nothing to attack David’s character at all. I definitely insinuated that his approach to writing this piece was poor. I don’t know David, he could be the nicest guy in the world and might develop into the sportswriter of the century. But for now, his writing is woefully substandard in the context of I have come to expect from this blog.

    If you really want to help the kid, rather than personally attacking a long-time frequent commenter who reads virtually every post on this site and rarely has anything negative to say about individual posts or KB writers, have him run his articles through the senior posters before throwing this kind of half-baked BS out there.

  114. Jim Cavan

    Z-man: Listen to yourself. You use words like “desperate” and then imply that I’m a coward by talking shit from behind a computer screen. That is a personal attack.

    OK.

  115. Frank

    Z-man: If you really want to help the kid, rather than personally attacking a long-time frequent commenter who reads virtually every post on this site and rarely has anything negative to say about individual posts or KB writers, have him run his articles through the senior posters before throwing this kind of half-baked BS out there.

    Again – I hesitate to get involved with this — but this isn’t a bad idea at all. “Senior” writers like Jim, Robert, Brian, etc. should have carte blanche to publish whatever they want of course– but (and this isn’t my blog so I have really no standing to say this) my guess is that it is in the site’s best interest NOT to have a huge discussion with >100 posts about how badly a specific post was written or thought out. And maybe this happens already, but like Z-man suggested, maybe the posts from the more junior people should have some modicum of editing/review before they are posted for everyone. Probably would be better for everyone.

    And again David — I wasn’t a huge fan of this piece but I still commend you for putting yourself out there, which is more than most of us can say. Always harder to create than to criticize.

  116. Z

    Z-man: If you really want to help the kid, rather than personally attacking a long-time frequent commenter who reads virtually every post on this site and rarely has anything negative to say about individual posts or KB writers, have him run his articles through the senior posters before throwing this kind of half-baked BS out there.

    This is a good point. Any foresight at all should have alerted the editors that this article wouldn’t be well received by the community of readers here. I find the regular posters here to be extremely fair (even when jon was doing what jon abbey do), especially compared to other sites. And this thread is no exception. Jim points to a few choice words and a mild joke made within a very precise context and starts lecturing and scolding his own readers. (And those choice words and jokes came after a whole lot of pertinent analysis and criticism of the article by the same perpetrators). So I really don’t get the whole hubbub here. To me it seems driven by the writers, not the readers.

    Personally, I don’t care whether the site produces good articles or not, as what I have enjoyed over the (many) years is interactive basketball talk with people who’s opinions I have grown to admire and trust, both writers and posters. I hope these kind of interactions can continue, but in the past few weeks the general mood has seemed to shift. If we can’t make jokes about the knicks and the things people write about them anymore that would be too bad. (Especially since Jim himself wrote a very funny piece a few weeks ago about James Dolan obsessing over boobs during the Carmelo Anthony trade negotiations– an act of writing that I don’t think would pass muster under his new “don’t insult people you’ve never met before” mindset:)

  117. Jim Cavan

    Yes, we should — and will — do a better job of vetting pieces.

    Yes, I feel overly protective of young writers, because I remember being in their shoes.

    No, I don’t think you should feel “insulted” by something posted to a free site.

    Yes, I admire you all greatly, and think we legit have the best basketball blog community anywhere.

    No, I will not hold any grudges.

    What’s done is done. Let’s move on.

  118. KnickfaninNJ

    Nick C.: This seems weird that the group is collectively intelligent but can’t be expected to care anything beyond the present or near immediate past.

    This line of reasoning seems to assume that because there are few comments on the post about Dean Meminger, that mostly it wasn’t read or appreciated. I read it and thought it was a great story, and right up there with past Unsung Knick History posts. I bet lots of readers also read it, enjoyed it, cared about the past history it described and were glad it was there.

  119. Nick C.

    KnickfaninNJ: This line of reasoning seems to assume that because there are few comments on the post about Dean Meminger, that mostly it wasn’t read or appreciated.I read it and thought it was a great story, and right up there with past Unsung Knick History posts.I bet lots of readers also read it, enjoyed it, cared about the past history it described and were glad it was there.

    Actually the original post started off along the lines of Meminger retired 36 years ago…feel strongly about the current Knicks. Whatever, it probably is just human nature to be quicker to criticize than to thank or praise.

  120. Z

    Nick C.: Whatever, it probably is just human nature to be quicker to criticize than to thank or praise.

    Again, this is all very silly to me, considering the guy who has been most critical of this article was one of the few people to praise Brian’s article when it was first posted!

    The criticism of this article is from people who disagree with it. There was nothing to disagree with in Brian’s piece. So comparing the two and drawing conclusions about human nature is like comparing Ronnie Brewer to Carmelo Anthony and drawing conclusions about where to eat lunch.

    For me, if I post something and it goes unresponded to, I interpret that silence as agreement because the participants in this forum are very good at refuting bogus claims and/or asking for supporting evidence when needed. (So in that regard it really is a great place for young writers to cut their teeth).

    Jim Cavan:
    Yes, we should — and will — do a better job of vetting pieces.
    Yes, I feel overly protective of young writers, because I remember being in their shoes.
    No, I don’t think you should feel “insulted” by something posted to a free site.
    Yes, I admire you all greatly, and think we legit have the best basketball blog community anywhere.
    No, I will not hold any grudges.
    What’s done is done. Let’s move on.

    Does that mean jon can come back now?

    (kidding:)

  121. Nick C.

    Z: Again, this is all very silly to me, considering the guy who has been most critical of this article was one of the few people to praise Brian’s article when it was first posted!

    The criticism of this article is from people who disagree with it. There was nothing to disagree with in Brian’s piece. So comparing the two and drawing conclusions about human nature is like comparing Ronnie Brewer to Carmelo Anthony and drawing conclusions about where to eat lunch.

    For me, if I post something and it goes unresponded to, I interpret that silence as agreement because the participants in this forum are very good at refuting bogus claims and/or asking for supporting evidence when needed. (So in that regard it really is a great place for young writers to cut their teeth).

    well I guess I am backasswards. I thought the trades sucked, fantasy trade ESPN wheel talk to be tedious and win-now/clear cap stuff old and as such couldn’t be bothered to comment. But as you infer, but will then deny, most people only comment to disagree.

  122. flossy

    Nick C.: Actually the original post started off along the lines of Meminger retired 36 years ago…feel strongly about the current Knicks. Whatever, it probably is just human nature to be quicker to criticize than to thank or praise.

    I just think it stands to reason that articles about players who were active during the Carter administration are not going to provoke the kind of intense debate and long comment threads that tend to follow articles (good or bad) about current players.

  123. Frank O.

    flossy: I just think it stands to reason that articles about players who were active during the Carter administration are not going to provoke the kind of intense debate and long comment threads that tend to follow articles (good or bad) about current players.

    now, god forbid, Clyde or Willis or Earl or Bradley kicks, I suspect there will be a lot of commentary. There are reasons Memminger wasn’t on par with those guys; a super sub is still a sub.
    And Jackson is huge of entirely different reasons.
    Those history pieces, or obits, will garner great interest and comments.

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