Knicks Morning News (2015.09.16)

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Basketball: France and Spain Reach European Basketball Semifinals (Wed, 16 Sep 2015 04:14:13 GMT)

    Tony Parker scored 18 points to lead France past Latvia, 84-70, and Pau Gasol scored 27 points to help Spain advance with a 73-71 win over Greece.

  • [New York Daily News] Carmelo Anthony fires back at ‘elite’ Instagram question (Wed, 16 Sep 2015 04:35:30 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony, a noted surveyor of negative social media posts, believes there is such a thing as a dumb question.

  • 35 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2015.09.16)”

    Can we just end this “Is Melo still elite?” nonsense? Emphatically, yes he is! At this point, I prefer for him to shut up and prove it on the court, but this has gotta suck for him. Every other elite player seems to get greater results. Probably because they make better career decisions and are in overall better situations. Let’s be honest, EVERY OTHER elite player in the league would love to play with Melo for a season. I don’t think you would find a player to say no to that. Also, the upper tier talent in the league is so good, it makes you wonder if Melo is still in that class. Bad for Melo, but it doesn’t mean Bad Melo. Because of this ongoing debate, I am rooting for Melo to have a great season. Obviously, the team will benefit greatly from it, but I just wanna see Melo shut some folks up. It sucks that Melo doesn’t get the respect he deserves from fans and some media. The guy is a really really good player- great in his generation. Can we just leave it at that? If someone doesn’t care much for him as a player, that’s fine. It doesn’t make him not elite. For instance, I don’t like Bosh as a player, but is he not elite? When he’s healthy, I think he absolutely is an elite player. I can’t stand Joakim Noah- almost to a Reggie Miller level- but I absolutely believe he is elite when healthy. There are plenty players I’ve seen that I didn’t like, but are truly elite. But at the end of the day, it is on Melo to prove it this season. The situation is ripe for him to do so. I hope he does.

    I think anyone arguing that Melo is elite should be banned.*

    * not really**

    ** but sort of¹

    ¹ nah, I’m just kidding

    It’s just a problem you’re going to have with a word that has different meanings to different people. If you’re using “elite” to mean “very good,” then of course Melo is elite. If you mean it to be, like, the top ten players in the league, then he is not elite. I suppose that is why there is always a debate over whether he is “elite” or not.

    But yeah, Melo’s a very good player. Hopefully he has another strong year this year.

    Players that help their team win don’t claim they are elite. Do you ever see Parker, Manu or Timmy tweet back at their haters?

    Sigh. Everyone must be really bored today. Exactly 3 weeks until the 1st preseason game!

    I think the majority of people believe Melo was a top ten player the last time he was healthy. While any respectable pundit would disagree, my guess is that most fans would put him in the top five: Lebron, KD, Curry, then Paul and Melo in some order. Three months ago, Curry wouldn’t be in most fans’ top five, but a title and MVP changes things.

    There is a near perfect storm that bolsters Melo’s reputation among fans: he scores a lot; he was wildly hyped in college and won a NCAA title, which led to him getting sponsor opportunities (more exposure!) straightaway; he was drafted alongside two of probably the best five post Jordan players and for that reason is always compared to them, and as advertising shows, to be compared to a superior player/product, even unfavorably, will always bolster your rep as the unspoken suggestion is that the player/product is close enough to even deserve comparison.

    Melo’s a very good player. Once you filter out all the noise, what most of the dialog about Melo relates to now is his age relative to the Knicks’ position and potential to improve in the near term. Inevitably, that collapses into a situation where those living inside Melo’s enormous hype bubble get upset about the fact that their hyped up opinion of Melo isn’t being respected by those writing about what the Knicks should do with Melo, which leads to all the “how good is Melo?” articles, but that’s just fallout from the larger issue of the incompatibility of Melo’s window and the Knicks’.

    The real issue, such as it is, is why Melo bothers with this.

    Another issue is why we bother with this

    just fallout from the larger issue of the incompatibility of Melo’s window and the Knicks’.

    Which still kills me. Ugh.

    Colin Cowtroll claims Melo is the most overrated player in NBA history, which means Melo’s overration is probably so overrated that he’s now underrated.

    That’s really probably true at this point. I find myself suddenly defending him outside the blog. It’s weird.

    Yeah, likewise. It’s bizzare-he was so overrated for so long that nobody noticed he got to the Knicks and turned himself into a pretty good player. Shows how much team success drives our perception of players, I think.

    In less elite news:

    @IanBegley Kristaps Porzingis said he’s put on 11 pounds. The goal is to put on another four before training camp. Porzingis says he’s eating at least 5,000 calories per day and lifting weights twice a day on most days.

    By the time the season starts, he’s gonna be built like Ivan Drago, no?

    I could get 4 lbs on Bazingus real easy-like between now and training camp with my proprietary malt liquor and ice cream diet plan.

    Zinger just has to eat what I eat and he’ll pack it on . He should be eating dinner at Peter Lugers daily.

    I posted a rant about the casual use of “great” and “elite” a while back. Listening to our hyperbole-bound sports-talk talking heads, one would think that there are 200 “Great” players. Here’s what I think are the clearer definitions:

    Elite=Allstar starter

    Bargnani has an entire category for himself: “Disaster”. Yes, until Bargnani retires (or gets ousted from the NBA) he’ll be the target of my ruthless ire.

    An even better Zinger quote:

    @SBondyNYDN Kristaps Porzingis on Shawn Bradley comment: “That’s what Phil does to get guys to work hard. That fired me up. I’m not Shawn Bradley.”

    (My favorite part of the Shawn Bradley story, by the way, is that, as I recall, the Sixers, picking second that year, could have had either of Weber or Hardaway, since Don Nelson, picking third, was obsessed with Bradley. The original plan was for Orlando to take Bradley first, the Warriors to take Hardaway third, and do the same swap as the Weber/Penny one. And it was very publicly out there. And the Sixers basically told both teams, “Screw you, we want Bradley and we’ll take Penny second if you do that, even though we don’t want him, just to torpedo your deal.” And thus… the Bradley era in Philly was born.)

    And then eventually he played for Don Nelson in Dallas and was a pretty damn good pro for about 6 years. Sixers, man. They gonna Sixer.

    Elite=Allstar starter

    How about All-NBA first team, instead? Because All Star Games are voted on by fans, so they’re really not a great measure of talent.

    How about this quote?

    This would be the universally-respected Hal Wissel, who over his 40-year NBA career has served in many capacities ranging from assistant coach to director of player personnel for several teams. “Back in 2001,” said Wissel, “I was with the Memphis organization and was tasked with working with a blue-chip rookie they had obtained in a trade — Pau Gasol, who weighed only five pounds more than Kristaps. Moreover, Kristaps is taller, longer and a much better athlete than Gasol was. Plus, where Pau couldn’t shoot himself in the foot, Kristaps is an outstanding shooter. For me, he was the best player in the draft and Phil was fortunate to drop to the fourth pick.”

    Every time Porzingis opens his mouth, I’m more convinced that the Knicks made the right pick. (Which is saying a lot because I’ve been on the Zinger bandwagon since about January.). I love that response to the Bradley question. He just seems to be mature and media savvy well beyond his years. He also seems to know a lot about NBA history. I’m actually looking forward to the first time he gets posterized by Blake Griffin. He’ll probably laugh about it and say something like, “Maybe I’ll end up with a Beer Garden commercial like Mozgov.” (Which, if you’ve never seen it, is one of the best small market pro athlete commercials of all time. Google Mozgov beer garden.)

    @20 – Brian, I basically meant the top 2 players at the position. You could also say “top-10”. It’s a matter of semantics that is easily understood but it’s the same. So: “elite=top 10” and “great=top 25” mean essentially the same thing to me.

    @23 – Yep. Me too. I like the fact that he’s keeping us in the loop 😉 BTW, according to Ian Begley, he seems to not like being called “Zinger”. He prefers KP

    KP also is an AARP term:

    KP duty is “kitchen police” or “kitchen patrol” work under the kitchen staff assigned to junior U.S. enlisted military personnel. “KP” can be either the work or the personnel assigned to perform such work. In the latter sense it can be used for either military or civilian personnel assigned or hired for duties in the military dining facility excluding cooking.

    The image of enlisted soldiers peeling potatoes in an installation’s kitchen was once associated with the popular culture image of KP duty due to its frequent appearance in mid-twentieth century movies and comic strips about life in the armed services for Americans.

    Who cares what nicknames are given to players and what they think about them? Unless you are addressing them in person, dumb nicknames are part of the price tag of garnering fame and riches. Zinger is pretty tame as they go. And besides, I actually am an AARP member. (Well, not really but they keep sending me their shit.)

    With that, every time Zinger throws one down at MSG, I hope they play this:

    I think Z-Man has won me over. It should be KP “officially” (like the Knicks should refer to him as such), but the “Zinger” sobriquet has been with him for years at this point, so I guess we might as well stick with it!

    The question should not be “Is Melo STILL elite?”

    The appropriate question should be “Was Melo EVER elite?”

    I thought that elite players make their teams into contenders.

    I’m hopeful that this season might allow me to start calling Anthony elite…for the first time.

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