Knicks Morning News (2016.04.09)

  • [New York Times] Popovich Set to Field Full Strength Spurs for Warriors (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 06:51:27 GMT)

    The San Antonio Spurs chose to rest their standouts on Friday night but plan to return to full strength when they face the record-challenging Golden State Warriors in two days.

  • [New York Times] Crawford Three-Pointer Lifts Clippers to Win Over Jazz (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 04:54:28 GMT)

    Jamal Crawford scored 30 points and hit a game-winning 3-pointer with less than a second remaining to lift the short-handed Los Angeles Clippers to a shocking 102-99 overtime victory against the Utah Jazz on Friday.

  • [New York Times] Tim Duncan, Depleted Spurs Fall to Nuggets 102-98 (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 04:45:52 GMT)

    Tim Duncan had to go to work while the rest of his starting cast took the night off.

  • [New York Times] Mavs Beat Grizzlies, Close In on Playoffs After Barea Injury (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 04:45:49 GMT)

    Dirk Nowitzki ended a shooting slump and returned to his rightful place as the leading scorer for Dallas.

  • [New York Times] Raptors Keep Pacers Waiting for Playoffs With 111-98 Win (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 04:07:30 GMT)

    One win from clinching a playoff berth, the Indiana Pacers should have been boosted by the news that Toronto Raptors coach Dwane Casey had decided to rest All-Stars DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry, along with starting forward Luis Scola.

  • [New York Times] Magic Play Spoiler vs. Heat (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 04:00:27 GMT)

    Home court advantage in the first round of the playoffs may be slipping away from the Miami Heat. With three regular-season games remaining, there is no more room for error.

  • [New York Times] Pelicans Beat Lakers, Kobe Bryant 110-102 (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 03:49:14 GMT)

    Byron Scott stood near the Lakers bench Friday night, listening as fans in New Orleans heartily chanted for the Los Angeles coach to put Kobe Bryant back in with nearly eight minutes left in the fourth quarter.

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Pro Basketball: Knicks Beat 76ers, Again (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 03:45:58 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony scored 20 points and Robin Lopez had 24 points and 15 rebounds on Friday to lead the Knicks past the host Philadelphia 76ers, 109-102.

  • [New York Times] Magic Come Up Big Down Stretch to Stun Heat (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 03:43:05 GMT)

    The Orlando Magic sure are making it tough on teams in the playoff hunt or are trying to improve their postseason standing.

  • [New York Times] Jackson Scores 39 Points, Pistons Clinch Playoff Spot (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 03:22:01 GMT)

    Reggie Jackson and Aron Baynes pushed the Detroit Pistons into the playoffs.

  • [New York Times] Zeller Scores 26, Celtics Down Bucks 124-109 (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 02:33:50 GMT)

    Tyler Zeller tied a career high with 26 points and the Boston Celtics continued their playoff push with a 124-109 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Anthony, Lopez Lead Knicks Past Struggling 76ers, 109-102 (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 01:55:02 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony scored 20 points and Robin Lopez had 24 points and 15 rebounds to lead the New York Knicks past the Philadelphia 76ers 109-102 on Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Walker, Daniels Lift Hornets to Season Sweep of Nets 113-99 (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 01:21:58 GMT)

    Kemba Walker scored 22 points, Troy Daniels made his first five 3-point attempts and finished with 17 points, and the Charlotte Hornets completed a four-game season sweep of the Brooklyn Nets with a 113-99 win on Friday night.

  • [New York Daily News] Carmelo Anthony sympathizes for Pelicans usher who lost job (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 03:25:11 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony expressed his sympathy for the usher who was fired from her gig at the Smoothie King Center.

  • [New York Daily News] Kurt Rambis: Derek Fisher gave up on triangle too quickly (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 01:33:28 GMT)

    According to Rambis, Fisher was lax on teaching Phil Jackson’s system and the interim coach is picking up the pieces of a broken triangle.

  • [New York Post] Mike D’Antoni can’t say enough good things about Porzingis (Sat, 09 Apr 2016 00:56:03 -0400)

    PHILADELPHIA — Mike D'Antoni, associate coach of the 76ers, didn't get a chance to watch Kristaps Porzingis play Friday as he sat out again with a shoulder strain, and it's looking as if his season is over. But the former Knicks head coach, who helped revolutionize the stretch-4, sees greatness in the rookie. The Sixers,…

  • 25 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2016.04.09)”

    On 10/27/15 I posted this:

    “I don’t think anyone here is “expecting” the Knicks to make the playoffs or win 40+ games. Expecting a 30-win season is not pessimistic, given the Vegas line, etc.

    I think anything in the 27-39 range wouldn’t surprise me (median=33.)

    Now, I’m “hoping” that the team does surprise me and most everyone else (except Barkley, Jackson and Van Gundy) and sneaks into the 8th seed. But even the most fervent optimist (e.g. Z-man) knows that it’s an outside chance at best.

    The first hurdle will be the first 18 games. This is the toughest part of the schedule, and in a 30-win season, they would be no better than 5-13 or so. Right now I’d sign up for 7-11.

    If they go 5-13, things could start to get ugly for Fisher and Jackson. At that point, if the team doesn’t start winning some games, it will be a long season. But by then, maybe the team gels, the rookies start playing better, and they go on a little run to get back to, say, 15-26 at the halfway mark. Barring injury, they could go 18-23 in the second half and end up around 33-49. ”

    So while I was pretty much on the number, I was way off on the route. We started off great and tailed off in the second half, I thought it would be the other way around.

    The Good: Melo’s knee has held up, Porzingis looks like a potential all-star, Grant is playing better lately, RoLo is worth every penny of his contract. Lance played out of his mind for the entire first half of the season. Not signing Greg Monroe. DWill played aaaight.

    The Bad: Afflalo is not a starting caliber player and is a much poorer defender than I expected; Galloway did not improve much, if at all; O’Quinn is a big disappointment;

    The Ugly: Fisher’s descent from potential COTY material to party joke in a midseason stretch of a dozen games, Seraphin, Vujacic, Last-second shot failures, Porzingis missed dunks, Calderon’s D, Jackson’s weirdness, Rambis’ rotations. DWill’s hair.

    I think a lot of us would have been okay with 32/33 wins on the year, but the way they were distributed really makes the season disappointing.

    I know one injury should not make or break a season, but after Melo stepped on that ref’s foot during the Boston game on 1/12, we proceeded to go 5-15 over the next 20 games (including 2 losses to Brooklyn) and our record stood at 25-35, season basically over.

    Who knows how it would have gone otherwise, but this season spiraled downward incredibly fast after that game.

    KP has to develop into a co #1 scorer with Melo, but on much higher efficiency than this year. We also need to add another scorer given that Afflalo will most likely be gone. If we do that, then Melo’s scoring will be less significant and we’ll do better in games when he is out also. Our teams have been too constructed around Melo and that has made his scoring critical. To begin with, that makes no sense. Melo is only around an average efficiency scorer.

    Does anyone have a link to the post from the beginning of the year, where we all answered 4 questions Mike asked? I think they were

    1. Would the Knicks win more than (34? 35?) games?
    2. Would Porzingis TS be over %50?
    3. Would the defense or offence have a higher efficiency?
    4. I don’t remember…

    It’d be interesting to see what each of us thought back then.

    Looks like I said 31 not 33. Porzingis is the reason I wasn’t right and therefore overjoyed to be wrong. And he hit the over on the TS% question.

    And I own Trevor Story in a fantasy league. Life is good.

    @3 I was convinced it was going to be a fun as hell season. Dad Melo was picking apart offenses with his passing. KP was showing signs of getting his legs under his three point shot. I think that was also when DWill channeled his inner Rodman, fighting off three guys for a crucial 4Q putback bucket. All I was waiting for was Melo’s shot to come back.

    In that Boston game, before Melo stepped on the ref’s foot, the Knicks were surgically picking apart the Celtics. I thought for sure we were at Peak Triangle.

    Then, Knicks things happened.

    It goes to show how tenuous that level of play was, I guess. If things went down in flames without Melo, it wasn’t sustainable.

    Can we talk more about RoLo’s improvement? This season he set career highs in rebounding, assists, and TS%. He’s evolving from dirty work guy/garbageman to a more versatile offensive player. It’s great.

    We all hope Afflalo opts out and assuming he does am I crazy to want DWill to opt in?? To me its a win-win situation with him, if he opts out great thats extra cap space but if he opts in I think he is a fine bench player for his salary.

    Williams will probably go wherever he has the best chance to play and look for another contract like the one he has now. Considering he’s more of a 4 than a 3, I don’t think that’s here. But yeah, $4.5m is nothing, not really an overpay if he sticks around.

    I just think big picture, there’s no point to these one year deals.

    I hope DWill opts in. I think he’s fine as a scorer off the bench at that price. He’s still young. If he can develop his 3 point shot a bit and gets a little better defensively, he’ll be a solid stretch 4 in a small ball lineup. His TS% has been rising every year anyway. If he opts out, it’s not a disaster because he hasn’t done those things yet, but IMO we are better off with him.

    DW does two things so well that he occasionally look like Lebron, but he is such a shitty defender and passer and shooter that he’s just not even a decent bench player in today’s game. I’d just as soon save the money and take on flyer on random player X with the roster spot. But seeing him opt-in is no biggie (doubt he will). It’s such a small contract and it’s not like he’s a roster grenade like Seraphin. My biggest fear when I hear Rambis say what he said today about the importance of continuity because triangle is that he opt-outs and the Knicks immediately pay him 2 yrs $15m.

    No idea why he’d opt in-you have to figure someone will give him a raise, but it would be nice if he did. Fun guy to watch, and if he can hit 3s a bit better he’d be a solid offensive threat off the bench

    Ah yes, continuity is so important, so let’s use free agency (older players decline and/or become UFAs) and let’s make sure most of the money we spend is on one year contracts. Everything makes sense now.

    “He played good basketball here for a while,’’ Brown said. “He was our leading scorer. We were always trying to grow his perimeter game, but he had a downhill mentality that really at times was jaws-dropping. With his size and athleticism, there was a wow factor. He was a little mini LeBron [James], playing downhill, attacking the basket. That’s an elite type of skill.”

    The quote above is from Brett Brown about Tong Wroten. If they felt that way about him I don’t know why they released him. After all, they drafted Embiid, so they are willing to wait for injuries to recover.

    He’s like a smaller Lebron James if Lebron couldn’t shoot even a little bit and turned the ball over all the fucking time

    I don’t really care for the Cavs all that much, but Kevin Love crossing over Mirotic before hammering it down over Gasol is a pretty sweet final nail in the coffin of the Bulls.

    Man, the Warriors are not making it easy on themselves in the quest for 73, are they?

    I need to remember that with great jinx power comes great jinx responsibility

    Man, the Warriors are not making it easy on themselves in the quest for 73, are they?

    Well, they just beat the two teams they’ll need to beat to get to 73, so they definitely have a real shot.

    They might win 73 but their recent play has dropped them well below the 1996 Bulls point differential and SRS so even if they win 73 the 1996 Bulls will still have the most dominant regular season in NBA history IMO.

    Crazy part is the last 3 losses for the 1996 Bulls were all by 1 pt which included both home losses. So they were incredibly close to going 75-7 while going 41-0 at home. From what I could tell skimming thru their schedule they had 0 wins by 1 pt and just 1 win by 2 pts and 4 by 3 pts. Hence the reason their point differential was so amazing, they lost to the Knicks by 32 and had another loss by 10 pts but their other 8 losses were all by single digits.

    I’m not sure who I’d rather shut up first, the people running for president or Frank Isola.

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