Knicks Morning News (2017.12.24)

  • [ESPN]

  • [NYDN] ‘Crazy’ Michael Beasley flourishing with Knicks after bumpy start
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 2:13:44 PM)

    Michael Beasley is either crazy good or plain crazy. It just depends on the day.

  • [NYDN] Knicks host another Christmas showcase but focus remains on road
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 11:23:40 AM)

    The Knicks have posted the most home wins in the NBA, but Friday’s late loss to the Pistons dropped them to just 2-10 outside Manhattan.

  • [SNY Knicks] Stan Van Gundy hints at league helping Knicks with schedule
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 10:37:02 AM)

    Stan Van Gundy is none too pleased with the fact that the Knicks started the season with more home than road games.

  • [NY Newsday] Jarrett Jack, playing in 2nd Christmas Day game, views every game as a gift
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 8:54:00 PM)

    Playing on Christmas Day has meaning for Jarrett Jack, but at this stage of his career, every time he plays, it’s special.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks looking forward to Christmas Day game
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 8:03:00 PM)

    When the Knicks face the 76ers on Christmas Day at Madison Square Garden, it will mark the seventh time in the last eight years that the team has played on the holiday.

  • [NYPost] Tim Hardaway’s dad sounds off on all those who doubted his son
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 7:45:35 PM)

    His father sees Tim Hardaway Jr. as a future All-Star. As such, Tim Hardaway Sr., the former Heat All-Star point guard and now a Pistons assistant, said he was “upset” at the vicious reaction last July after the Knicks inked his son to a four-year, $71 million deal. While Hardaway Jr. is rehabbing from a…

  • [NYPost] Knicks welcome future East beast for Christmas showcase
    (Saturday, December 23, 2017 10:40:19 AM)

    To further Stan Van Gundy’s wild conspiracy theory that the NBA gave the Knicks a break with their early-season schedule, perhaps commissioner Adam Silver wanted to ensure a Merry Kristaps. If Van Gundy is right, the NBA schedulemakers did a fine job in keeping Jeff Hornacek’s young club afloat by Christmas Day. The five-game nationally…

  • 38 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2017.12.24)”

    If you had to compare the most desirable outcome for KP to the all-time greats, it would be a hybrid of Duncan (less) and Dirk (more) (maybe some Kareem mixed in, but he’s too far back to compare.) He’s falling short right now for a few reasons:
    He doesn’t have a fully polished and ‘unstoppable” go-to move that takes full advantage of his height-length
    He’s not relentless, tends to drift when tired
    He dribbles too much
    He’s slow to react to double teams
    He’s not good at situational passing
    He lumbers around, has trouble exploding and making sharp cuts
    He’ has difficulty establishing and holding position in the post
    He’s easy to block out on the boards
    He commits dumb fouls
    His shot flattens out when he’s tired

    Here’s a comparison of their 22yo seasons:

    What jumps out is usage, KP’s is shooting 7-8 times more per game, which is tied in to the lousy passing stats, and maybe rebounding too. He’s so focused on being the #1 guy that he’s taking way too many bad 2-pt shots. Duncan was a much better passer and rebounder, but turned the ball over more, Dirk and Timmy were on much better teams as well. It’s really hard to tell where KP will go from here, but I think he will steadily improve, so long as he stays reasonably healthy. He gets banged up but had been pretty resilient.

    It’s an interesting comparison. Besides shooting less, Dirk and Duncan played more minutes. The usage difference is even bigger between them and KP. The Knicks seem to be to too dependent on KP’s scoring. Maybe his percentages would be better if the Knicks relied on him less for scoring.

    KP is shooting way too much, and on iso-heavy sets that are low efficiency. It always seems to be part of the plan. It seems to be on the coach. But it’s getting ingrained in his game nevertheless so I’m assuming unless we switch plays/coaches/pg’s, were gonna see a lot more of it.

    Back on Ewing- if you had a choice to trade his teammates – whoever- for any of Jordan’s teammates, who would be left?

    Pick and rolls are the staple of every NBA offense, and we do run them, but it seems like it’s Kanter that’s setting most of them. And he’s not a great roll guy. I don’t undertstand why Hornacek doesn’t run more P and R’s for KP, force the defense into a switch or hit him with a pocket pass a la Amare. And yes I know we don’t have Nash, and Amare was a freak athlete, but it just seems like we don’t try very hard to set up mismatches (like other teams seem to constantly do to us)

    Please keep in mind that recently bit only has KP been banged up but our number 2 scoring option has been out for a bit now and our number three guy, Kanter (although maybe him and Lee are tied for three) has also been hurt.

    This isn’t making excuses. Injuries are part of the game. But KP has probably taken a few more shots than he normally would with Timmy out. This team is still a work in progress but I said this after the Boston game. If we can get Hardaway back and up to speed and we can get through this little injury speedily, the team will be stronger bc others have had to step up – Beasley, Ron, etc.

    I think we’re hand ringing a bit too much with KP. He’s still very young and this is his first season being the number one option. For the most part he’s equipped himself well. He’ll keep working on his game and come back next year a bit stronger and will have a few more of his weaknesses improved.

    KP needs to get 5 assists per game. Easy. Just draw the double team and move it to a three point shooter. You don’t even have to make a pocket pass, though that would be great. Better passing would take him to the next level. Yes, he’s 7’3” but that doesn’t mean he’s going to necessarily be like Kareem. If he’s not a traditional C, and I don’t see any evidence of this in his skill set, then he should be expected to create a bit for those around him. Drop 4/5 dimes, take 4/5 fewer shots, problem solved. Even hockey assists probably make us a playoff team. The league has adjusted after KP was looking like Bernard King the first ten games. They started beating the crap out of him and knocking him down. He hasn’t adjusted. The result is forced shots, TO’s and injuries. KP is our best player and it’s his team for the next decade. That’s not debatable. However, that doesn’t mean he’s beyond criticism. He needs to step it up and we need to win some road games.

    My one other note on this fine festivus morning is that Kanter is quickly becoming one of my favorite athletes. Just a great effective, hard working player and an even better human being. Really happy to have him on the team.

    He also has been the roll man more often than AD this year and barely less than Towns. KP has been about a 1ppp roll man over the last two years. A good roll man gets around 1.2 (when the ball handler finishes the PNR the efficiency is lower). Some of this is Probably PG related but not all. The rest of the Knick bigs have all been more efficient than KP as the roll man. I think he isn’t a great roll man now because he doesn’t have the strength or hands to bust to the hole hard, and bc he has never actually set a screen in his life. He literally slips 100 percent. That might change one day.

    I said even hockey assists would help. I just think there’s a disconnect in our perception of KP. He’s a guy that everyone calls a unicorn because he has the skills of a big and a smaller player. Most notably he blocks shots and shoots threes. We’ve also seen that he has the ability to create shots for himself. So, why not create for others? I just don’t see how passing can’t be something he develops. If he’s never had 5 assists in a game that’s a thing he can and should address.

    But sure he’ll never do it. I’ll forget about it. He should be like Tyson Chandler or Dwight Howard.


    Prime Ewing and prime Pippen would have won at least 2 rings, I’m 100% sure. Hell, if he had Rodman he would probably have won one.

    No actually forget that. He’s not strong enough. Maybe he should be like Steve Novak or Ryan Anderson. Just catch and shoot…

    There was a serious argument going on in the mid ’90s about whether Pippen had surpassed Jordan as the best player in the NBA. In that grind-it-out era, he was the ultimate Swiss Army Knife player. If he had a weakness, it was that he never shot particularly well and was not as well suited to being a #1 guy. It’s hard to argue that replacing Mase with Pippen would not have led to a championship. Same with replacing Oak with Rodman (and to a lesser degree, Horace Grant.) I don’t think any other swap moves the needle that much.

    You know, KP did win the NBA skills competition. So he has the tools to pass well. He could improve as he gets better at dealing with double teams


    I’m hyperventilating a bit thinking about the Knicks starting Harper, Starks, Pippen, Oakley and Ewing in the 94 finals against the Rockets. There’s no way in hell the Knicks wouldn’t have won, it would be the most insane defense in history.

    After watching the Cleveland game early in the season during the 24 hours of Knicksmas, I was shocked at how big KP looked. It seems most of the muscle he put on over the offseason is already gone.

    I think just the fact that KP can be compared to those 2 guys is wonderful. And I see things on Z-Man’s list of weaknesses that might be improved by confidence / experience / conditioning.

    I do worry that he’s frail. But, I wonder how many of the 6 games he’s missed are a function of today’s NBA. We only have 3 guys (lee, McDermott, KOQ) that have played all 32 games. We seem to sit him as a precaution 1/2 the time.

    And, on KP’s rebounding…..I’m not that concerned. we have the 3rd best rebounding differential in the league. even with a 7 foot 12 dude who stays outside most of the time, we are 5th in offensive rebounds per game. I think if we needed him to rebound more, he’d get 2 more per game.

    You know, KP did win the NBA skills competition. So he has the tools to pass well.

    Are you making your case for Worst Comment of 2017? I thought reub had that market cornered, but here you are, making a mad dash for the finish line.

    Usually, young athletes’ weaknesses continue to be their weaknesses. KP will have to work on his passing and rebounding game. It’s not as simple as, if we need it, he’ll do it. So, just like my attitude towards his yearly regressions after strong starts, I’ll believe in improvement when I see it. A thin rotation, with the other two of the top three scoring options injured, would also contribute to poor efficiency.

    The problem is, I’m not seeing any plays designed to get him open. Which is weird because we run plenty of plays for everyone else. So either defenses have adjusted and he’s not able to get the ball in the right spots, or plays end up with someone else on the team taking the shot, or he’s somehow managing to manipulate plays to get him the ISO ball.

    @16, would have loved to have seen that line up. The Knicks also would have won that series if Starks and Ewing would have shot jut awful instead of historically chokingly awful in games 6 and 7.

    It’s a little bit disconcerting that this is KP’s third year in the league and that his basketball IQ does not seem to be improving. It seems like the easiest thing in the world to fix– just stop chucking terrible off-balance low-efficiency mid-range jumpers.

    The Knicks take more long-range twos than any team in the NBA, and this is the polar opposite of the way the modern game should be played. I don’t know if it’s leftover from the years of triangulation or what, but that needs to be job #1 for the offense going forward: stop taking the worst shot in the NBA.


    The fact that a team that has Porzingis, Lee, McDermott, Hardaway and even Ntilikina and Dotson shoot the least 3 pointers in the entire league is a disaster to be honest. Even Lance can shoot 3s kinda decently. It’s just handicapping yourself in today’s NBA.

    “It seems most of the muscle he put on over the offseason is already gone. ”

    Eh maybe his metabolism is too fast right now

    Kanter is trying to pass more recently, and his current per game avg. (1.4) is his highest ever and double that of his career average. So, maybe he’s seeing the light, but he’s got a ways to go.

    KP (1.3) is very close to his career avg. (1.4), which he’s been consistent with for 3 years. It would definitely be nice to see him double that, at least.

    To understand how little KP passes, Melo had similar career usage to what KP has this year and avg 2x the assists lol.

    Eh maybe his metabolism is too fast right now

    That’s probably not going to change. Maintaining muscle at 240 lbs. means eating in excess of 200g of protein a day. That is a huge number, even for a guy that big. Add the intense cardiovascular exercise and you have a recipe for a skinny guy who can’t keep muscle on his body. That’s probably a good thing, since big, tall heavy guys like Yao, Muresan, Smits and Shaq seem to deal with career-threatening foot injuries. If anything, as his metabolism “slows down,” he’ll probably just put on fat easier.

    He’s a finesse player. Just play to his strengths instead of trying to turn him into Dwight Howard.

    Very good point, Jowlesey. That’s something that I never considered- the metabolism thing. It may take a long time for him to be able to maintain the weight/strength combo to play the 5. He can certainly build and maintain the strength. Camby was an effective Center, and Tyson Chandler wasn’t that big until he became a Knick. Hell..Ewing, Kareem, Dream, Admiral, and Duncan were all between 225 and 250- so KP can certainly do it. He just has to want to because it’s gonna be alot of work. He has to realize himself how much of a game changer he’ll be at the 5- especially in today’s NBA. He can be a game changer at the 4, but not as much as he would be at the 5.

    I don’t worry about KP’s rebounding. I have no evidence to prove this out, but when he’s at the 5 he grabs more boards. Hornacek is starting to close games with KP at the 5 and that’s the way it should be. We just have to draft the next Kyle Kuzma or Draymond Green and we’ll be on our way.

    Kanter and Porzingis don’t pass and our PGs can’t penetrate-i think that holds us back

    our 3 point woes in a nutshell right there…

    that cold or whatever he got around the time his ankle got hurt took kp’s weight off real quick…he does look lighter right now than at the beginning of the season…them guns are shrinking by the month…

    “He’s a finesse player” is as simplistic of an assessment as was ever made about a potentially great player.

    He is more of a finesse player than a power player, but no great player is purely one or the other.

    I actually am worried about KP’s rebounding, to the point that I think it will always be a weakness. He doesn’t seem to have either the tenacity or the spatial awareness to be a plus rebounder. Good rebounders just seem to have a certain spidey sense about where the ball is going to go, they can judge the carom well and get there a split second before everybody else. KP gets the rebounds that he does get because he’s tall and because he’s often near the rim, but he is not an “out of zone” rebounder. This was in his scouting report coming out of the draft and it has proven to be true.

    @35 but that’s not a big deal in and of itself. Dirk and Durant are not great rebounders. If he plays well offensively efficiency-wise and blocks shots without fouling, rebounding is a bonus.

    “It seems most of the muscle he put on over the offseason is already gone. ”

    Eh maybe his metabolism is too fast right now

    Girlfriend? lol


    I agree with your point, but Durant is more of a SF. He’s expected to get fewer rebounds than a PF.

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