Knicks Morning News (2017.06.28)

  • [ESPN] Sources: Phil, Knicks to part ways Wednesday
    (Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:06:00 AM)

    Sources: Phil, Knicks to part ways Wednesday

  • [ESPN] Knicks’ interest in Rose ‘legitimate,’ sources say
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 5:14:15 PM)

    Knicks’ interest in Rose ‘legitimate,’ sources say

  • [ESPN] La La: Carmelo prefers to stay close to son
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 1:07:51 PM)

    La La: Carmelo prefers to stay close to son

  • [NYPost] James Dolan, Phil Jackson expected to part ways: reports
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 10:50:43 PM)

    Knicks owner James Dolan is expected to let team president Phil Jackson go, according to multiple reports.

  • [NYPost] Knicks balk at Carmelo Anthony power play to force way to Cavs
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 4:30:54 PM)

    Knicks president Phil Jackson said last week Carmelo Anthony “just as soon” prefers to stay a Knick. Reportedly, he would just as soon be LeBron James’ running mate with the Cavaliers. An ESPN report stated Tuesday that Anthony’s agents have approached the Knicks about getting waived via a buyout in order to sign as a…

  • [NYPost] Carmelo Anthony starts pushing for his ideal Knicks exit
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 10:41:05 AM)

    If Phil Jackson can’t bully Carmelo Anthony into accepting a trade, maybe Carmelo Anthony can bully Phil Jackson into a buyout. While Anthony’s preference remains to stay in New York,

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ top pick soaking up LeBron advice from close source
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 8:31:48 AM)

    Strasbourg veteran Romeo Travis has given a ton of advice to his teammate of two seasons, Frank Ntilikina, even preaching to him the gospel of LeBron James. Travis is James’ childhood friend from Akron, Ohio, and the former power forward on James’ renowned high school juggernaut, St. Vincent-St. Mary. Yes, Ntilikina, who will wear a…

  • [NYDN] Knicks fire team president Phil Jackson
    (Wednesday, June 28, 2017 1:00:34 AM)

    It was reported earlier Dolan was “weighing the future” of Jackson as president of the team.

  • [NYDN] Knicks prez Phil Jackson set against Melo buyout talks: sources
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 9:47:13 PM)

    It’s the game of chicken we all saw coming, between Carmelo Anthony and Phil Jackson.

  • [NYDN] What to watch for in Knicks Summer League
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 9:32:34 PM)

    Here are three storylines to follow as the Knicks assemble Wednesday for their first practice in Orlando.

  • [NYDN] La La Anthony says she’s not divorcing Carmelo ‘right now’
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 10:40:59 AM)

    La La and Carmelo Anthony are not inching any closer to a divorce despite calling it quits nearly three months ago.

  • [SNY Knicks] Report: Dolan considering parting ways with Jackson
    (Wednesday, June 28, 2017 2:01:43 AM)

    Knicks owner James Dolan is contemplating parting ways with team president Phil Jackson.

  • [SNY Knicks] Carmelo Anthony’s camp reportedly engaging Knicks in buyout talks
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 5:00:24 PM)

    Knicks F Carmelo Anthony’s camp has reportedly engaged the Knicks in buyout talks, per ESPN’s Marc Stein.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks interested in re-signing Derrick Rose: report
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 5:31:20 PM)

    The Knicks are showing “legitimate” interested in re-signing soon-to-be free agent Derrick Rose, according to ESPN, but the team’s level of interest is contigent upon his health and asking price.

  • [SNY Knicks] Carmelo Anthony may prefer to stay with Knicks to be close to son
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 10:30:32 AM)

    The Knicks have been trying to trade the 33-year-old Anthony since the middle of last season, with the Celtics and Cavaliers reportedly among the interested teams.

  • [SNY Knicks] JRSportBrief: Is Lavar Ball a genius or distraction
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 12:00:07 PM)

    In the latest installment of JRSportBrief on, JR debates whether Lavar Ball is a genius or a distraction.

  • [SNY Knicks] Loud Mouths: Is Carmelo Anthony a fit for the Cavaliers?
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 9:00:28 AM)

    The Loud Mouths debate if Carmelo Anthony or Dwayne Wade would be better for the Cavs.

  • [NY Newsday] Rumors fly as Knicks seek to move on without Carmelo Anthony
    (Tuesday, June 27, 2017 8:39:44 PM)

    Carmelo Anthony’s estranged wife said the Knicks superstar’s “priority” is to remain close to their son. But ESPN reported that Anthony’s camp has tried to engage Knicks officials in buyout talks, only to be rebuffed.

  • 75 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2017.06.28)”

    Phil needed to go for so many reasons, but the poisoned relationship with Porzingis was the primary one. If we want KP sticking around long-term, Phil not only needed to be gone, but gone long before such decisions were being made.

    In terms of replacements, Dolan has reportedly been fascinated with Masai ever since he fleeced us twice, but is he interested and/or available? David Griffin’s a free agent. At this point, I’d just settle for basic competence, especially since there’s always the potential for Dolan to transfer Zeke back over from the Liberty.

    And Carmelo Anthony remains undefeated in MSG power struggles. It’s amazing.

    So that happened.

    I’m more happy than anything else, because Phil Jackson was an objectively awful GM and now he’s gone.

    With Dolan you really never know though. The Masai rumors might seem reassuring but the reality is Dolan is all about personalities. He doesn’t admire Masai’s work, he admires his reputation. So when he inevitably can’t pry Masai, he won’t hire someone in his tree as would be logical. He’ll hire some other “savior” type.

    For now, though, we have hope, that most pernicious of things–especially for Knicks fans.

    Side note: god damn it if this happened a few weeks ago we’d have Dennis Smith. That hurts.

    Good fucking riddance Phil! Not that I really trust Dolan to hire someone competent…

    It’ll be a new start. Phil was nothing like what I hoped he would be.
    Three years of absolute disaster. At least the next GM will have all of our first round picks going forward.

    It hasn’t quite happened yet, but good riddance.

    Though this was the right move, it’s mind-numbing. I mean, what the actual fuck, Knicks?

    Also, hilarious and sad that Phil Jackson got an extra $24 million for the last three months or so. Ntilikina better be good!

    I have mixed feelings anout the firing. As Accidentank said, Phil brought this on jimself by giving Carmelo a no trade clause and then wanting to move him. The bad part is that we actually had a GM who really wanted Carmelo gone. Per Ramona Shelbourne, that’s a key part of why he and Dolan didn’t see eye to eye. It’s really hard to believe our next GM is going to want him gone.

    And as far as Smith versus Ntilikina, I’m happy with our pick. He’s another two way player.

    1. Our 1’s could be back on the market for over the hill win now types.
    2. Even at 33 selfish a*hole Anthony has absolute power in the organization.
    3. Hornacek is probably gone, so continuity is once again broken.
    4. Dolan has an awful, awful record of hiring & firing people.

    And you guys have hope??? This is the most delusional KnickerBlogger has ever been.

    Re: Carmelo, it sounds more like Phil was adamant about buying him out, which everyone here agreed yesterday was an awful idea. It’s not so much that Carmelo has to stay, but that we are stuck with him, and feel seem determined to get rid of him no matter the collateral damage to the franchise.

    Phil made his bed with the NTC. Then he tried to light the bed on fire.

    As I said last night, it’s quite possible that this will be the worst thing to happen to the Knicks. It very well may be aimed at appeasing Carmelo Anthony, which would suck beyond belief.

    But I can’t get on Dolan’s case for firing a guy who deserved to be fired years ago (I can get on his case for millions of other things). Yesterday we had an awful GM, today we have no GM. Progress!

    I can’t wait to see the newest version of the win-now Knicks in a month…

    So Phil will be moving along. At least he left us with KP Willy and Frank to move forward with, and we have all our draft picks going forward. In my mind we cannot say he was a good GM, but we can say we have had GM’s that have left us in much worse positions. Thanks Phil!??

    PS: When Damyean Dotson becomes a very good player, we can add him to the other 3 as really good gets by the Zen master.

    Of course we have hope – we’re Knicks fans. Hope is all we ever have!

    I actually think Dolan’s last few hirings have for GM have – at the time – been ok. Walsh was a good hire – he followed a clear plan, albeit giving up too many picks in the process and then, ultimately, whiffing on the end-game with LBJ. Grunwald was fine – made some ok moves. Mills was an ok hire. And at the time, Jax seemed like a great one – it’s only subsequently that it’s gone horribly wrong.

    Don’t get me wrong – I hate Dolan and think he’s mostly useless. But look at where we are – a potential franchise young player, plus two others with real potential in Willy and Frank, and bunch of other guys we can still try to develop. We have all our future picks and no path to be good this year so the next one should yield a good player too. IF – and it’s a big IF – we hire someone with a clear plan to rebuild, then that person inherits a pretty decent starting point. We still need to resolve the Melo situation and we have some cap issues with the Noah contract, but I’m going to allow myself to believe this has happened just in sufficient time to remedy the KP situation and send us into a proper, well-managed rebuild… I know I’m setting myself up for disappointment, but hey – I’m an optimist!

    Thhis is amazing news. I’m not sure if this was Phil playing 9 dimensional chess and trying to get himself fired, but you have to figure that the real story was that Phil saw no way of getting Melo out other than buying him out, and Dolan would not allow him to buy out the same player he gave the NTC to — and for once, I completely agree with Dolan. We may all think Melo is on the downside of what has been a good career, but he’s still 50x better at his job than Phil Jackson was at being an executive.

    There’s zero chance now that Melo leaves. He and KP made a power move and they won. Melo didn’t go through this so he could ride off in the sunset afterward. He wants to stay in NY. And honestly, you never know how this season will play out. The Triangle (this iteration of it at least) was the anti-D’Antoni system – it depresses the value of everyone who enters it (except maybe bigs). We could honestly be better than expected.

    Now the huge question is who takes over as POBO. I have no idea what sort of executive Steve Mills is, although it bears remembering that he was the one that negotiated the (Dolan-canceled) trade for Kyle Lowry, which in retrospect would’ve been a good trade. Ujiri has been mentioned, but he’s under contract — I don’t imagine that we would want to give up draft assets to get him. Going rate for that has been a 1st round pick if I remember correctly (Doc Rivers).

    David Griffin is a plausible name, but I honestly haven’t seen anything from him that suggests he’s a good GM. He hasn’t negotiated any good contracts. He hasn’t made any good draft picks. The Korver for 2019 Cleveland 1st feels like it was a bad trade. It’s just really easy to look good when Lebron is on your team.

    I can’t tell whether or not this is a job people would want. Dolan does spend $$ and he was really hands-off with Phil until now.

    I’m hoping for a young analytics-minded exec from a top programme like SA or Boston. But I’ll settle for anyone with some level of GM experience who isn’t obviously a narcissist…

    At least Rambis will probably be gone too.

    lol PROBABLY?!!?

    Will be interesting to see what happens with Hornacek. I feel pretty ok about him in terms of offensive X’s and O’s, but the defense was terrible last year. In addition I’m not sure what sort of guy he is — seems like rolled over pretty hard for Phil, also fired his assistant coaches in PHX to keep his job. But if Dolan fired Phil over not wanting to buy out Melo, I can’t imagine he would want to pay $20MM to buy Hornacek out too. I think Hornacek deserves at least 2 more years unencumbered by Rambis and Phil.

    – as much as I can’t stand Phil Jackson, the organization is not in that bad a place right now. We have all our 1st round picks, we have some # of second round picks, and we have a base of good young talent. It’s not a terrible position to be in for an incoming executive. Melo is Melo and we have Noah on the books too, but Melo is only 2 years at most, and Noah would be a feasible stretch-waive candidate maybe as early as next season (~$37MM over 5 years is not THAT terrible – I wouldn’t do it now for ~55MM over 7 seasons). With the new mini-trend of player agents becoming GM/POBOs, I wonder whether someone like Leon Rose would ever be considered for the job. I would sign up for that – a guy who makes his life running tough negotiations, understanding what his players are worth and what the market will bear. If he hired some good analytics guys and scouts, that would be a good hire.

    Now- if Hornacek is NOT safe…. then I’ll beat the drum for JVG again.

    And re: the draft pick – I am totally fine with Ntilikina even considering he was partially drafted because of his “Triangle fit”. He’s a worker, likes playing defense, and has a lot of potential on both sides of the ball. Maybe Dennis Smith would’ve been a better pick now that we know the Triangle is gone, but I’m totally ok with Frank

    Let’s throw our hat in the ring and gm by committee based on our collective knowledge of advanced stats, let us make the personnel moves from here James!

    Another notch in our laughing-stock belt… We are still in the midst of our darkest days… don’t look now but we’re nearing 20 years… we have problems…

    Last thing — it seems plausible to me that the KP drama was the last straw. Or the Melo buyout thing. Or the general circus atmosphere.

    But it also seems TOTALLY plausible to me (considering what kind of person Dolan is) that the last straw was the report of Phil falling asleep during draft workouts. Woj specifically wrote that Dolan was concerned about Phil’s “fitness” for the job — not that this was a decision based on basketball matters.

    I’ve been saying for a couple years now that I think Phil has some level of dementia – just based on the way he talks as compared with his speech patterns when he was with LA and Chicago. I hope that is not the case, but it’s possible that it’s actually part of the reason he’s being fired.

    we should also remember the KP drama, Melo buyout etc. were all AFTER Dolan opted into the last 2 years of the deal. And considering it doesn’t affect our cap, I’m fine with Phil/Gaines running the draft then getting let go afterward. It’s unquestionably what this (now past!) regime was best at.

    He had to go. But it could get worse. Quickly.

    His departure is coupled with the news that we have strong interest in re-signing Derrick Rose.

    This could mean that Phil was pushing for a proper rebuild and Dolan wants to win now.

    I didn’t like Phil, but I may hate his replacement more.

    So, now what? I know 2 things for certain- no more Rambis, and Hornacek can finally coach his way. I am worried what the latter means for the PG spot because I don’t really know how much Hornacek likes Rose. Hopefully Gaines doesn’t follow Phil out the door. I wonder who’s on the radar now to fill Phil’s role? I doubt that Mills will have it permanently. I also wonder how Ntilikina will develop in a presumably much different offense than he ran in Strasbourg. Dolan finally reached down and realized he actually does have balls! I kid, but it’s about time he stepped in and did something about Phil making the organization look worse than it already was.

    I hope the players haven’t fully tuned Hornacek out after the clusterfuck that was last season- this season will make or break him now that the shackles are off.

    My take is that Phil realized he needed to rebuild and Dolan basically said “no”!

    Phil getting removed is fine. Melo winning another power play is a fucking joke. He’s getting an extension after this season and retiring as a Knick.

    First take is gonna be the same old… Blabber mouth Stephen A. Saying how Jax needed to go but not understanding why!

    @22 – I guess that’s possible but Rose had the BJ Armstrong connection with Phil.

    Derrick Rose NOT playing the triangle is also different than forcing Rose to play in the triangle. He can’t defend, always gets injured, and doesn’t have great vision, but at the very least, if you’re going to have Derrick Rose on your team, play a system that fits what he does well. This news actually makes me 2% in favor of resigning Rose at a very team-friendly contract (as opposed to -10000000% before).

    Will be very interesting to see what Mills’s vision is during free agency. Is he going to rebuild, or is he going to try and sign guys to get better now? With Phil and the Triangle gone, and Hornacek being known for a player-friendly system, NYK just might be back in the running for desirable free agents (this is not what I think they should do). But one could imagine, for instance, trading KOQ, Kuz, and letting non-guaranteed guys like NDour and Plumlee go — that would free up about another $8MM more (not counting Justin Holiday’s cap hold). So that’s around $24-25MM. One could imagine Mills trying to go at someone like Jrue Holiday and giving the Holiday family a “wink-wink” offer where we would overpay to keep Justin Holiday at the full early-bird, which seems an overpay for Justin.

    Again – I don’t think we should do this, but it’s a plausible scenario that I’m sure Mills will look into. That’d give us:

    PG Holiday, Ntilikina, maybe Baker
    SG Lee, Holiday, Dotson
    SF Melo, Lance
    PF KP
    C Hernangomez, Noah

    it’s not that bad. it’s not truly competitive at all, but the defense would be way better, and it’d be interesting to watch.

    again – i’m not advocating for this — I DO think we’re too far away still and should probably make small signings and rent out our space otherwise, but this would at least be reasonable if we decide not to do that.

    GUYS – we also forgot– this is probably the end of Sasha’s NBA career. RIP Sasha’s NBA…

    So in effect what probably was a move that was a prerequisite to getting the job, the re-signing of Melo at any cost including a NTC, is behind his firing. His own personality quirks certainly sped matters along.

    On thing, I sure wish Reub wasn’t banned. It would be entertaining from an internet board pov to see what he would have to type, assuming he was not a parody poster.

    I don’t know how to feel. The NTC was a fireball offense. But now Melo will never leave. Another 5 to 6 years of this shit

    The Knicks are a tragedy with no protagonists. It’s supposed to feel good when a GM you don’t like leaves. But when the man pushing the eject button is worse, it’s hard to know what to think. But I’ll call it a win anyway. I think the 2022 O/U for Knick wins probably rose last night.

    Wow I’m excited. This free agency path will let us know all we need to. I wonder if Cp3 will put his money where his mouth is and consider NY?

    I wonder if Cp3 will put his money where his mouth is and consider NY?


    Just saying….I don’t really expect it. Lol. I’m more hoping for pat beverly

    Woj says Dolan is targeting Masai. Wouldn’t we have to give up draft pick compensation? That’s assuming he’s interested at all.

    I mean…shit, I wouldn’t love giving up picks for Masai but I wouldn’t complain about it either. That’s probably a good investment if he has real autonomy.

    Wow. What dumb Dolan is. He should have opted out Phil 2 months ago.
    The good news is the Knicks is targeting raptors Masaj Ujiri. Please Dolan, for once omake it happen.

    PG Holiday, Ntilikina, maybe Baker
    SG Lee, Holiday, Dotson
    SF Melo, Lance
    PF KP
    C Hernangomez, Noah

    I actually like that guard rotation, Frank. However- I do think that if we were to sign Jrue Holiday, that makes Ntilikina a full-time SG, therefore making Justin expendable because Jrue is still young and expected *knocks on wood* to stay healthy with the salary he’s gonna command. If Jrue would take a 2 year deal, that would be perfect- then we could also bring Justin back. The other option would be dumping Lee’s salary and bringing back Justin. I trust Mills more than I trust Phil in free agency, but not much more

    Woj says Dolan is targeting Masai. Wouldn’t we have to give up draft pick compensation

    Is he still in Toronto?

    The funny thing about Masai is that Dolan himself is a non-trivial part of his reputation. Not just the Melo trade. If we don’t back out of the Lowry deal that was supposedly all but done the entire Raptors story is completely different and it goes down as an all-time terrible trade. Not to say he hasn’t done other good things but those are two big fulcrums. I also think the DeRozan contract was a mistake, though I have some sympathy for the argument that when you have a good team in a city like Toronto you can’t just let him walk when he was willing to stay. But even given that I wouldn’t have given him that contract.

    GM Applicant: “Will I have full autonomy to run the team as I see fit?”
    Dolan: “Absolutely! You’ll have great autonomy! The best autonomy! You’ll have so much autonomy you’ll get sick of all the autonomy! As long as you keep melo on this team, and run any moves by me and him.”

    Melo has never made a move for the Knicks. Lin was because Dolan felt slighted.

    I think th Frank pick will go well Sith the team especially if they can get Beverly

    Be careful what you wish for. You may get it.

    I’m kind of excited, but also kind of scared. If this means 2+ more years of Iso-Melo, this will suck hard. I’m crossing my fingers and hoping for the best, but Dolan still owns the team…

    lavor postell
    June 28, 2017 at 7:48 am
    Melo winning another power play is a fucking joke. He’s getting an extension after this season and retiring as a Knick.

    AGREED. I feel similar now to the sense of sadness and defeat I felt five years ago in July 2012. The Knicks chose the wrong path again. Carmelo is a cancer to this organization and keeps growing.

    He’s the guy at the gym who is great as the fourth best player on your winning squad but thinks he’s the Man. When he chooses teams, he’s the high scorer on losing teams and complains no one rebounds his misses.

    Five years ago, I thought I was finished with the Knicks (and for years, I was). Phil made mistakes (NTC, Noah getting hurt) but he had a better plan than Appease Carmelo, and I am through ~ again ~ with the Knicks.

    I will still lurk on this site. The writing is too good to miss.

    The Melo buyout, kp strife, and the media side show were the impetus. Melo didn’t really make a power play Dolan just realized Phil was off the rails. Dolan was fine with Jackson shifting on melo all year, but now kp And MeMO was too much for Dolan

    Timing was curious but good. The only think I trusted Phil with was drafting. He did pick some good players when he had a chance. Getting Hernangomez was inspired and Kuzminskis was value where he was grabbed. I have no idea how this latest class will work out. I’m skeptical about Ntilikina’s ceiling but he should be a good defender, at least. So getting through the draft was fine.
    Now free agency is looming. I’m sure that the behind the scenes message from agents directly to Dolan was that none of their clients wanted to come near Phil. Getting rid of him now opens that door again.
    Also, get rid of Rambis.
    Also, is Hornacek the guy?
    It seems clear to me that the correct approach to running this team now is:
    1) Don’t give up any picks. Acquire 1st rounders if we can.
    2) Melo will be here for 2 more years. Don’t sign more than 1 veteran for more than 2 years.
    3) KP needs to play center and use his height.
    4) I wish we would tank.

    We’ve been hearing for over a decade now about how much of a team player Melo will be when he gets X, Y, and Z on his team. It’s never going to happen. Maybe he’d defer to someone like LeBron or CP3, but we can’t get any of those guys here partially due to Melo’s ridiculous salary.

    If this move was made to appease Melo it’ll probably turn out horribly. No self-respecting, smart GM is taking this job on the condition that they’re both married to decline phase Melo and trying to win for the next two years (at least). Those two things are contradictory with each other and independently stupid.

    Dolan has to know Masai wouldn’t be a lackey, so while I think there’s a <1% chance he winds up here I guess it's good that there is someone Dolan is willing to defer to besides Phil Jackson. What happens is anyone’s guess, but I’m slightly more optimistic about the future than I was yesterday. Until further notice, no GM is better than a terrible GM.

    No doubt Phil did a crappy job (aside from the draft and euro assessment) but how many coaches/execs has Melo driven to near breakdown at this point?

    I guess 2017 coach of the year Mike D’Antoni was just another dummy that didn’t see Melo’s brilliance, huh?

    I’d give up a pick to have Masai as my GM especially after this shit show

    @53 good point – who is taking this hexed job? Masai won’t if he’s smart.

    Would Cock Jowles take the job?

    No doubt Phil did a crappy job (aside from the draft and euro assessment) but how many coaches/execs has Melo driven to near breakdown at this point?

    Phil did a crappy job….including the NTC. But Melo drove him out? Logic.

    Dantonis ego is as big if not bigger than Melos….

    No doubt Phil did a crappy job (aside from the draft and euro assessment) but how many coaches/execs has Melo driven to near breakdown at this point?

    I guess 2017 coach of the year Mike D’Antoni was just another dummy that didn’t see Melo’s brilliance, huh?

    D’antoni didn’t sign Melo to a Mega Max Melo contract with a full no trade clause, and didn’t want to trade for him midseason. He made this pretty clear. Phil Jackson can’t complain about being done in by the guy he personally signed.

    Nothing that has happened with Melo’s play is remotely surprising since he signed that deal. He was an above average player when he signed it, and is now pretty bad because he aged. Stop me if you’ve heard that one before. Phil Jackson has no excuses, there’s a reason(s) that deal was panned here when it was signed.


    June 27, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    Day one: The Knicks trade Lance Thomas to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Channing Frye and a future #1 pick.

    Day two: The Knicks announce a buyout with Carmelo Anthony.

    A few days later: The Cavs sign Carmelo Anthony to a vet minimum deal for one year.

    Everyone’s happy. Wink wink. Nudge nudge.

    This is actually an incredible idea. Have you applied for the open position?

    The Knicks POBO job should be the most desirable job in all of basketball; you have cap room, a franchise player, all of your 1st round picks going forward, your owner has proven time and time again he will spend money, and you’re in the largest market in the world. The only problem is we have James Dolan as our owner. So there.

    I retired last month from teaching to work on some writing projects and other stuff. So, yeah, I’m available!

    I’m surprised the mood on this site isn’t much better. Now that Kupchack and Phil are gone, there might actually be no more anti-analytics GMs left (maybe Magic?). KP wants to stay in NYC so bad. The only thing that could have driven (traded) him away was Phil. Huge win. Rambis gone and replaced by literally any other human as the defensive coach. Huge win. The hiring of a GM that probably understands there’s some value in 3 pters and may even have heard of true shooting. Huge win.

    I know Dolan is a jackass and there’s a possibility that he screws this up, but I think it would actually be hard to find a GM more out of touch with where the league is and knows less about analytics. I know Melo won the battle which totally sucks and means we’re stuck with him, but I think most we’re delusional about a trade and I was not a fan of the buyout.

    I really can’t see how this isn’t a big win for Knicks fans. Unless Isiah.

    For me, one of the biggest upside on all of this is no more triangle BS.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m aware that it isn’t a worthless system as some here claim, but the obsession was way out of hand.

    Now we can concentrate on getting good players instead of trying to fit a square peg into a triangle hole,

    I wasn’t even aware that D’Antoni won the Coach of the Year award. What a garbage move. D’Antoni ran the exact same offense he’s been running for 15+ years and just happened to have the right personnel this time (also everyone compares this year’s 55-win Rockets team to last year’s 41-win Rockets team, but the team won 56 games two years ago — maybe last year was the one that was the outlier??). The Rockets collapsed in the second round because D’Antoni overworked their players – where have I heard that one before? It’s honestly kind of shocking to me that people bought into this instead of giving the award to someone who can actually coach like Stevens or Pop or Spoelstra.

    D’Antoni also used his speech to take a crack at New York – which, fuck you! You knew what the stakes were coming in here and you got paid handsomely to do so. D’Antoni’s has the same obnoxious commitment to his system as Phil and much like Phil will publicly deride anyone who questions their belief in said system. At least Phil has a legacy to coast on – D’Antoni just has what’s left of Steve Nash and a few burned bridges across the league. (Also I love that the Knicks successfully pulled off a D’Antoni offense the year after D’Antoni left)

    I hate Phil and am happy to see him go but the timing of this smells like classic Knicks to me. Three days before July 1st…right after you extend him…right after he questions the star players. It’s a good move but it’s also a good reminder that nobody ever really has full autonomy in the Knicks front office. Something to keep in mind for whoever’s next (it also makes me wonder if it was Dolan who insisted on a No-Trade Clause)

    Isiah can never be ruled out, given Dolan. But he also happens to work in NYC, and at MSG, running the Liberty. So just seeing him around town is a harbinger of nothing.

    Phil firing, pro/con:

    1. No more obsessing over an antiquated offensive system that the players hated, and that the team was destined to abandon in two years had Phil’s contract just run out.
    2. The constant fear of Kristaps being traded because Phil’s ego was bruised over the exit interview thing is now gone. It’s hard to imagine any replacement being dumb enough to try to get rid of KP.
    3. Related: His replacement will almost certainly be able to multi-task in a way Phil never could. We wasted all that time at the draft deadline haggling over the Rubio/Rose trade (a deal we should’ve made, but whatever) and thus missed chances to flip Lee or KOQ or Kuz for anything, and we apparently did the same on draft day with making calls about KP.
    4. While the odds of a Melo trade are still tiny (due to the NTC that Phil stupidly gave him), we can at least remove “staying just to spite Phil” as one of Melo’s motivators.
    5. While team is surely still not a FA destination, given all the other problems, we at least no longer have to worry about players saying they don’t want to come here to play for the stubborn old man who won’t stop insulting people.
    6. Rambis almost certainly goes immediately, and if he doesn’t, he’s also not protected by anybody. And we get to see if Hornacek is actually the coach of the future now that he’s not being forced to run a system he never played in or coached before.


    1. Gaines might leave with Phil, and his draft picks were one of the few positives of the Phil era.
    2. Dolan could always hire someone worse (i.e., Zeke).

    I’m pro all the way, even if the timing this close to start of FA stinks.

    We’ve seen over the years that Dolan always sides with Carmelo, so this isn’t shocking news. That buyout talk was insane. The entire MMM saga has been a fireable blight for Jackson since day 1, and it’s gotten worse and worse each year.

    But, ultimately, Dolan is firing Phil Jackson for the wrong reasons (in true Dolan fashion). He’s firing Phil because Phil doesn’t want Anthony on the Knicks anymore, and that is his hubris.

    Like he was with Isiah, Dolan is dilussionally loyal to Anthony. The Anthony era will never end.

    So instead of limiting his role, or building up his value for a February trade, the next GM will have his hands tied with regard to “fixing the Knicks”. Dolan will say he’s hands-off, but the new GM will know the truth.

    Of course the mood of this site isn’t great even though this is a move everyone wanted. I’ve been a lot more pro phil than most though the last few months it was getting much harder to defend him. But when I woke up today and heard this news, I felt so much relief. And I’m so glad this happened now.

    I know people will say but Melo is still here but you know, as long as he’s here, we should want him to want to be here. He will definitely play better this year without Phil hanging over him. I suspect him and KP are gonna go after it HARD now. And whoever takes over for Phil is gonna have something decent to work with. A decent young trio of players, some tradeable assets with Lee/KQ and all of our draft picks going forward. And I also don’t think this means the return of meddling Dolan. I think he’s moved past that and will pick someone competent and let them do their job.

    A reinvigorated Melo means he plays better means he’s tradeable at the trade deadline to a contender. Think about it!

    So don’t obsess over whether keeping Melo means our draft pick is a few spots lower than it could be. Just look at the big picture. This is a GOOD THING. A weight has been lifted. Phil made some decent moves but ultimately his EGO got in the way and it was about him and his system, not the Knicks. That’s never good.

    I don’t think the move was made to “appease” Melo. I think Dolan had a choice. fire Phil or buyout Melo and let him play for the Cavs while the media continues to roast Phil and the Knicks. I argued the pros of a buy out but I can see how it would be very hard to stomach. Paying Melo north of 25 million while he plays for Cleveland in the Finals and we continue to suck? It would have been a bloodbath in the media every day and that kind of negative press is not a good look. Knowing Phil he’d say a bunch of bad stuff about Melo too, which even if true, would look stupid while Melo is winning games with Cleveland.

    And because of the NTC and because of all the stuff Phil said about Melo, trading him was impossible too. And even if Melo leaves, you still have an unhappy Zinger, maybe unhappy other players and a GM who no one wants to play for. So he fired Phil. It doesn’t mean he “chose” Melo over Phil.

    I’m happy regardless, because on it’s own Phil getting canned was a good move. But, the following have to happen for the future to look good:

    – Gaines must stay. Give him $$. I still feel like Frank was a good pick, partly because I like his game, and mostly because Gaines.

    – No more Sasha/Rambis/Triangle nonsense.

    – The replacement must be good- Masai may be the target just because he’s a ‘big name’ that fits Dolan’s MO. If we get him, good. The problem is if we don’t- the next ‘big name’ is who- Griffin? Uch. I hope we would get Jeff Weltman, Masai’s #2 for a while now. Or anybody from San Antonio.

    – By the way- I don’t like Griffin. What he’s done in Cleveland is exactly what we don’t want here. Lucking into LeBron aside, he traded picks for Spencer Hawes, traded more picks and young (yet not good) talent like Wiggins and Bennett- he ended up with the NBA’s oldest team. He also gave Seth Curry away.

    – Melo’s probably gonna stay, can’t rock the boat too much after that power struggle. I don’t see much happening this off-season, except for maybe trading Lee. FA’s won’t sign here, and players won’t want to be traded here.

    The only consolation I can find is waiting for Rosen’s book about what really happened in the in the Phil years. I am sure Phil has a non disclosure agreement with Dolan, but he can’t stop Rosen.

    When Doc Rivers decided not to trade for Carmelo Anthony in a trade that would have included Austin Rivers, Paul’s position on the matter solidified as he viewed the Rivers as putting family over team.

    From Realgm. Seems like Phil trued trading Anyhony before this time

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