Knicks Morning News (2018.03.24)

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks change guards during loss to Timberwolves
    (Saturday, March 24, 2018 12:46:00 AM)

    There was a changing of the guards at halftime for the Knicks. The move that fans have been clamoring for finally came to fruition.

  • [SNY Knicks] Hardaway’s 39 points not enough in 108-104 loss to T-Wolves
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 10:15:00 PM)

    Tim Hardaway Jr. may have poured in 39 points, but it wasn’t enough to defeat the Timberwolves, as the Knicks lost, 108-104, at home.

  • [SNY Knicks] Tonight’s game: Knicks vs Timberwolves 7:30 p.m.
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 6:05:00 PM)

    The Knicks (26-46) are still looking for someone to rise from the ashes that was Kristaps Porzingis knee injury.

  • [SNY Knicks] Oklahoma PG Young would be ‘blessed’ if Knicks draft him
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 11:36:32 AM)

    Former Oklahoma point guard Trae Young said he would be “blessed” if the Knicks drafted him in June’s NBA Draft.

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ best point guard option may not be on this team
    (Saturday, March 24, 2018 1:15:58 AM)

    Rick Brunson pointed to his Apple Watch when asked how he was going to see his son play in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night. Brunson, an assistant coach for the Timberwolves, was at the Garden, where Minnesota outlasted the Knicks 108-104. His son, Jalen Brunson, is the starting point guard…

  • [NYPost] Meet the man who is rebuilding Kristaps Porzingis
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 11:38:07 PM)

    Dr. Carlon Colker is bubbling with muscles and with optimism regarding his difficult task in resculpting Kristaps Porzingis for next season. “Despite the talk, ‘The sky is falling, he’ll never be the same,’ that’s a bunch of horse s–t,’’ Colker told The Post. “He’ll be better than ever. He’s going to be blow people away….

  • [NYPost] Hornacek benches Emmanuel Mudiay in Knicks’ latest loss
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 6:36:24 PM)

    Jeff Hornacek finally pulled the plug on Emmanuel Mudiay as the Knicks’ starting point guard. Mudiay started Friday’s game, but was benched for the final 43 minutes as Hornacek used a new backcourt to begin the second half of the Knicks’ 108-104 Garden loss to the Timberwolves. After claiming he would roll all the way…

  • [ESPN] Jeff Van Gundy: Jeff Hornacek has done ‘admirable job under very difficult circumstances’
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 4:40:13 PM)

    While the front office might consider a coaching change after the season, Jeff Van Gundy says Jeff Hornacek has handled the Knicks’ adversity well.

  • [NYDN] Mudiay ‘surprised’ he was bench for majority of Knicks’ loss
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 10:08:55 PM)

    Mudiay was more the forgotten man on Friday as opposed to being the so-called point guard of the future.

  • [NYDN] Tim Hardaway’s 39 points go to waste as Knicks lose to Minnesota
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 6:52:08 PM)

    For once, the most stressed out coach on the Minnesota Timberwolves bench wasn’t Tom Thibodeau.

  • [NYDN] Knicks should take notes on how Timberwolves rebuilt franchise
    (Friday, March 23, 2018 5:35:56 PM)

    Porzingis wasn’t in the building on Friday when Karl Anthony Towns was introduced.

  • 79 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2018.03.24)”

    Shout out for Trey Burke, who now is at about 500 minutes played, not such a small sample anymore, averaging 22 and 7.5 per 36 minutes with a 4:1 assist-turnover ratio, TS 57 and WS/48 0.15. he still seems to grade out pretty poorly defensively (one of the worst PG by DRPM and has a -3.2 DBPM) but overall has a positive BPM. As I understand it, he’s been playing for a while with a sore right shooting wrist also.

    Really too bad John Beilein is already 65 and probably too old to start an NBA career. He’s done an amazing job at Michigan with 2nd-3rd tier talent, and would come in with immediate credibility considering THJ and Burke are already on the team.

    Now that we’re pretty much locked into #9 and Hornacek seems to have figured out that Mudiay sucks, let’s see Frank for 30+ min/game, Burke for 25+ min/game, and get Dotson some run. Anyone know why Dotson didn’t play at all last night?

    btw I didn’t see the game at all last night but Knicks Film Room bit on Frank last night is pretty awesome. Dude is just a really good defender. When he hits 22-23 years old and gets stronger, he’s going to be able to credibly guard 4 positions.

    Yeah, I’m all about giving Frank 30 minutes at the point the rest of the season.

    Frank guarded 1-3 at various points yesterday and even switched onto Gibson a few times and held his own. I want him getting PG reps this year and next but with him continuing to grow — 6’6″ now — and a frame that looks like he can add and retain muscle mass without much trouble I wouldn’t he surprised if he turns into a playmaking 3 in the long run. I always thought what made him such an intriguing prospect is he has several paths to becoming a quality player.

    @BC don’t lie. We know you can’t live without Mudiay running point 🙂

    Yeah, because I said I’m happy we passed on Donovan Mitchell to take Frank. Yep, that’s definitely what I said.

    Burke has played well and even though he’s a weak defender he tries hard as hell. But Burke isn’t going to be a useful NBA player until he figures out that you can’t be a high usage guy who takes more than a third of your shots from 16-23 feet and another 20pct from 10-16 these days. It’s worked out fine for a few hundred minutes because he hitting 57pct of his long twos, but that’s not sustainable.

    When he comes down from the stratosphere to, say, still elite levels in the mid to high 40s like a good JJ Redick year, his TS drops toward the low 50s and he is pretty close to worthless overall. Either someone coaches him into taking more threes and dribbling and kicking lots of those pull up twos or he’s probably not a rotation player. Most players don’t change predictably but this kind of change can and sometimes does happen with the right coaching.

    @7 no need to be so sensitive, my comment was only meant to point out how it is now a lock that we drafted the wrong player. Frank is a project right now, and it’s certainly ok to point out his few bright spots as they happen. But Mitchell will be a 2-way stud in this league for a long time and it sucks that we passed him over, just like it would have sucked if we passed over Steph Curry to draft Ricky Rubio and Jonny Flynn like Minny did. It underscores how stupid most draft projections are, and how we shouldn’t get all that wrapped up in our current draft projections right now. There will be someone like Mitchell (or Kawhi) there when we pick.

    The rookie Mitchell could take 36 shots for my team any time. I’d love to see Frank take 36 shots.

    @7 no need to be so sensitive, my comment was only meant to point out how it is now a lock that we drafted the wrong player.

    Glad this argument is over after their rookie years.

    Yeah, I’m sure in a couple of years, Frank will make us forget that we passed over this guy…

    Frank is playing a little better. That’s giving us hope that those of us that have been optimistic about his shot form, basketball IQ, work ethic, and defense may turn out to be correct.

    In every draft you will find several players that were taken well before or after they should have been. The fact that Mitchell may turn out to be something special says something about the importance of ping pong balls in winding up with the best player available. It says nothing about Frank.

    As long as we keep drafting quality players, sooner or later we are going to LUCK into another real star.

    when you have a 5-10 pick you’re very rarely going to draft the bpa, so that’s probably not a great test. we all know the draft is a shit show. I remember of the guys here who seems to pay most attention to draft, one said that Mitchell was not good and Monk was clearly better, another said he’d be torn between monk and Tatum and another said mitchell was a compete stud. Z-man I seem to remember you saying Mitchell would have the the career arc of shumpert.

    I wanted ds jr even though he’s not the kind of player I normally like. frank has been really bad this year but I’d now rather have frank than DSjr or monk, even though the former has had exactly the sort of rookie year you might expect. Mitchell, of course, goes way higher than frank in a redraft today. But I still think it’s very possible that frank becomes a good enough wing plus type that we look back at the draft and think it was a good pick.

    I’m not sure Burke is as weak defensively as his reputation and some metrics suggest.

    I like to look at NBA Real +/-. That suggests he’s pretty bad on defense with a -2.72. But I think that formula may still be using some minutes from last year (not sure exactly how it works, especially for smaller sample players).

    At the NBA site, it suggests that players are shooting 3.6% worse when covered by Burke.

    So at least there is a conflicting stat that suggests he’s not terrible.

    Yeah I don’t think he’s been a bad defender bc of his dbpm drpm or whatever. Defensive stats for a few hundred minutes are almost pure noise. You cite fg% of players you are covering, which for guards has so much variance there is almost zero autocorrelation when chunked into small increments; it’s even less relevant over a small sample. there is too much exogenous volatility in shooting and too many confounding variables. i think he’s a weak defender because he looks like one despite good effort. it’s what billy beane would called bullshitting.

    The rookie Mitchell could take 36 shots for my team any time.

    This is probably the exact point where this blog splits. I’d hate a rookie on my team taking 36 shots to score 35 points.

    Re: Frank. He’s still playing like a child who tries to please his elders. Hopefully next year he’ll grow out of it and play to dominate them just like everyone else in the NBA, regardless of whether they’re good or bad. Once he does that we’ll be able to get a more accurate read on him.


    I initially liked Monk and didn’t like Frank at all. I felt if Frank couldn’t score well in Europe he was going to struggle badly to score in the NBA. After seeing Frank play, I warmed up to him and slowly started cooling towards Monk. I’m glad we took who we took, but I don’t think Monk is done yet. Monk is more of a 1 trick pony. His trick, dynamic efficient scoring, often takes a significant drop first year out of college. There’s still a chance that he’ll start lighting it up (at least off the bench). What he has to do if he wants to be a really good player is expand his bag of tricks to include play making. That’s what cooled me to him last year. I suppose I was right and wrong about both of them at various times. But I admit my opinion on these kids is borderline worthless because there’s so much we don’t know.


    There’s a lot of noise in all defensive stats, especially when the samples are small, but I’ve found those two (and steals) to be fairly consistent with reputations around the league and results on the court when I view the 3 in combination. If I had the time to scout and watch film isolated on each player, I might be able to add more insight, but I don’t and can’t.

    Frank has so much room for growth(literally) that its hard to gauge how good he’ll end up. Its easy to be hypercritical right now since he’s a project and other rookies taken after him are playing better right now.

    Hopefully when he’s Mitchells age in 10 years we’ll have a better idea of what kind of player we have long term.

    I don’t know what you think you found but I can tell you that everyone who has run the numbers knows that the significance of opponent fg% for guards in a few hundred minutes is less predictive of future opponent fg% than almost any other variable you can think of including height. Steals are well known to be a little more predictive even in short samples but that doesn’t work well for Burke who has a low steal rate.

    Cameron Payne is -8.2. Eric Gordon is -5.4. Joe Johnson is -4.1. Isaiah effing Thomas is -2.9. autocorrelations matter and they are anemic. just like mudiay’s 3pt percentage ytd with Denver was irrelevant so is this (but it’s far worse; 3p% is actually more predictive in short samples). if your sample is sub 500 or sub 1000 or sub 1500 minutes it is worthless even if you luck adjust opponent 3pt percentage, let alone if you use the raw numbers. There’s no getting around it.

    Enes Kanter has a higher DBPM than Kristaps Porzingis.

    Trey does not seem to be a good defensive player. It’s crazy to think Chris Paul is about the same height.

    Mitchell has been really good for a rookie PG, probably about average for an NBA PG. That’s great. He’s not the reason the Jazz are winning, and he’s not the rookie of the year, but he’s been very impressive. He’s also two years older than Frank

    It’s pretty much common consensus that DFG% is pretty much useless for non rim protectors because it’s too volatile a stat. It’s pretty much only consistent year to year among 5s and 4s to a lesser extent.

    As far as Frank vs Mitchell goes, while Mitchell has obviously been better so far, it’s laughable to call Mitchell a lock for being a better pick than Frank. Mitchell could tear an ACL and Derrick Rose himself, or he could get a coke habit and Michael Ray Richardson himself, or he never learns how to score efficiently and stays a high usage chucker like Devin Booker. He has a more clear path to being great than Frank, that’s for sure, but there’s a million possibilities that could derail either career. Calling it a lock that one pick is better than another 80% through the first NBA season after the pick is so absurd you clearly have to be saying it in order to win an argument rather than in any kind of good faith.


    No metric is perfect and a few hundred minutes of any stat is not going to cut it, especially a volatile one like opponent shot making. There’s way more to defense than just opponent shot percentage anyway. So it could never stand alone. It has to be part of a bigger picture. However, we could be talking about any of the most respected publicly available comprehensive models and even though they are comprehensive I could drag out examples of players that are laughably wrong. That doesn’t make them useless.

    Opponent FG% is NOT a totally random number.

    It’s not random that KP looks good by that metric and Kanter looks terrible. It’s because KP blocks and alters a lot of shots and Kanter is a turnstile.

    So it is in a limited way getting at things that are not available in other public stats. As part of a much more comprehensive analysis I think it’s useful number and adding to the analysis even if there’s a lot of variance.

    When you see one that doesn’t pass the smell test, it’s just like any other stat or model. Take a look at the prior year(s) to increase the sample size and try to find similarities between the players that seem to be wrong based on real results on the court. It works better for some positions than others.

    That’s how I blow apart the models that other people trust. I find the patterns within the obvious errors. That’s how I knew Kanter was so overrated. I knew I should just ignore what the models were saying because he’s in the PERFECT sweet spot where they overrate what he does well and underrate what he does poorly.

    Silky, cut the semantical bs, you know what I mean. Tell me, what would you make the odds of Frank having the better career? I’d put it at 20-1 or higher. Or put another way, around the odds that we wind up with a top-2 pick in this year’s draft.

    What could you get for either player in a trade right now? Could you even get a late first round pick for Frank? Could you get the #1 pick in this draft for Mitchell? Both good questions, right? Or put another way, If both guys entyered this draft right now, where would they go? Good chance Mitchell goes #1 and Frank isn’t in the top 10.

    Enes Kanter has a higher DBPM than Kristaps Porzingis.

    That’s a broken number for sure. lol

    Kanter is a -.71 and KP is +2.06 on NBA Real Plus minus (and I already know about some flaws in that model).

    Porzingis is -4.2% on opponent FG% Diff and Kanter is +3.8%.

    RPM is a trying to be a comprehensive stat that includes aspects of play that go beyond the components we have available. DRPM is that kind of comprehensive stat for just defense.

    Opponent FG% would be one small part of the defensive part of the equation that I personally believe captures things that aren’t available in other component stats (albeit with higher variance).

    Could you even get a late first round pick for Frank

    There’s no question you could get more for Mitchell, but I’d be willing to bet there would be a line with people offering a decent 1st rounder for Frank.

    The draft is part crap shoot. Every year there are lucky, unlucky, good and bad selections. So instead of focusing on who got drafted behind us that will probably be a better player (which will happen just about every year), lets’s focus on whether Frank is going to become a player worthy of the selection we did make.

    Were would Giannis go in a re-draft after his first season? What about Jimmy Butler, Draymond Green and Otto Porter?

    None of your hypotheticals mean anything when talking about who’s going to be the better player in 3-4 years.

    Yeah, strat, I suppose I can say that I wouldn’t trade Frank for Fultz, or Fox, or maybe even Josh Jackson. So there’s that.

    Mitchell at this point is literally Devin Booker. He’s slightly older than Booker, has the same statistical profile, 30+ usage, mediocre bpm and high ppg with mediocre efficiency, not much contribution everywhere else. Booker is a bit better on offense, as he’s a better passer and is more efficient, and Mitchell is probably a slightly better defender who is a part of a defense that’s light years better than Phoenix, and frankly the question is the same for both, is this their ceiling or do they have an extra step to go still?

    It’s funny how most people here wouldn’t trade a first for Booker in any circumstance, and yet Mitchell, being a rookie but older than him, is worth so much more.

    At this point I wouldn’t trade a first for either. When you watch Mitchell and Ntilikina play it’s absolutely obvious that Mitchell is the better player now, and is NBA ready. It’s not obvious at all that he is a guaranteed superstar or will be in the future.

    I would be willing to say even that Dennis Smith Jr, Z-Man’s original pick, has a higher ceiling than Mitchell, as he’s truly incredibly raw and has so much room for improvement.

    @30, the context here is defending the point that at this time is it a foregone conclusion that Mitchell will be the better player going forward. Was there any disputing that about Giannis by this time and has anything changed? And was there any serious debate about whether or not Green or Butler should be taken at #8? We’re not talking about Kyle Kuzma here.

    @30, the context here is defending the point that at this time is it a foregone conclusion that Mitchell will be the better player going forward.

    The answer would still be no lol. Mitchell could stagnate and Frank could have monumental leaps in his game in his next few seasons.

    Its fine if you think Mitchell is gonna be better but calling it a lock at this point is extremely silly.

    That’s how I blow apart the models that other people trust. I find the patterns within the obvious errors. That’s how I knew Kanter was so overrated. I knew I should just ignore what the models were saying because he’s in the PERFECT sweet spot where they overrate what he does well and underrate what he does poorly.

    yeah nassim you really upended the quant cult when you figured out kanter sucks on D and can’t pass. now you may cite complete noise as evidence thanks to your known blow-apart bona fides.

    kanter’s contract with okc was excoriated by the vast majority of people who generally like to use (cf. “worship”) models you believe you’ve unraveled. almost everyone knows the emperor necessarily walks around half naked, but somehow you think you’re the only who can see the truth about his enes.

    incidentally kanter’s defensive fg% differential was negative for his last two years in okc and at least three separate times he has gone 400+ minutes better than -5.0. i know, you recognize the flaw there but it doesn’t apply to 482 minutes of trey burke garbage time.

    The answer would still be no lol. Mitchell could stagnate and Frank could have monumental leaps in his game in his next few seasons.

    Its fine if you think Mitchell is gonna be better but calling it a lock at this point is extremely silly.

    And we could have a nuclear war with North Korea or Russia, so it’s silly to even talk about who will be a better player because you never know. Got it.

    btw Frank Ntilikina (19 years 239 days) is almost TWO full years younger than Donovan Mitchell (21 years 198 days).

    I appreciate that Donovan has had a nice year, and that Quin Snyder has basically given him a historic amount of leash for a rookie guard (literally only two 21-year olds 6’4″ and under in NBA history have had a usage as high as he has – Iverson and Ben Gordon). But I sorta feel like 2 full years at this age maybe means they should be graded slightly differently.

    re: Frank – I think he is already an above average defender at the 1/2 positions. I think he projects as at least an average 3 point shooter. That means his floor is a pretty good 3/D player. That’s not a bad floor.

    Z-man, I’m starting to become concerned. Your eagerness to make absurd assertions in order to discuss Frank is deeply strange.

    For the record, I liked Mitchell and said I’d be OK with him, but preferred Frank. I hated DSjr and thought Monk might not even stick in the league. While I can certainly concede Mitchell has had a great year and Frank has not, I’ve seen nothing to change my mind that Frank can’t, in 2 or 3 years time, be a more winning player. Exceptional D, good form on his shot, decent passing…. He lacks good penetration moves, but even there has shown some flashes, finishing with his left. Mitchell is a ball-dominant player who is much more advanced on offense, but 2 years older, and a scoring guard more than a playmaking guard, and OK on D at best.

    In short, stating anything definitive about where these players will be in 2 or 3 years, when each clearly has many talents and much potential, speaks to a level of irrationality that, well, you need help, man.

    Yeah, I’m not super high on Frank but it doesn’t seem fair to compare his age 19 season to Mitchell’s age 21 season. I don’t think Frank is gonna stick at PG but I think there’s a pretty good chance he’ll end up as a plus player, and as a pretty unique player. He’s a quality point of attack defender in a league where those are fairly scarce.


    I have over 40 years of experience working with horse racing statistics. I have a database with the past performances of every horse and every result at every major racetrack in the United states going back years. I’ve used that database and pen and paper to create my own racing stats and models. In my studies, I went down every blind alley imaginable multiple times. But after 20 years of mixed results, I finally started beating a game that very few people beat. That includes a lot of people with much higher IQs and way better training in statistics than I have.

    The thing that helped me was being good at is seeing what other people were doing wrong (probably because I did them all a dozen times) and using intuition, common sense, and observation to get me through all the flawed numbers and models to a better place.

    My knowledge of basketball isn’t even a small fraction of what it is in horse racing, but I can tell you with a high degree of certainty that virtually all the basketball models out there are overrating players that score efficiently off offensive rebounds like Kanter. It’s true, you didn’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that Kanter was also a poor defensive player, but a lot of people thought we were getting a very good player because of bad models and incorrect commonly held views. Some still think he’s better than KP. I disagree there too.

    We know that individual components of offense and defense do not tell us the whole story.

    We know that some stats have a higher variance and standard deviation than others.

    We know that player performance also has some variance.

    We know that player role, teammates and systems matter.

    I agree that Opponent FG% will be variable, require large samples, and only tell us a small fraction of what we need to know about D. But as part of an analysis that includes other information and observation, IMO it’s telling us something you won’t get from any other public stat. IMO, it’s not useless.

    To be clear, I never said that Burke was a good defender. I said he may not be quite a bad as people think. In the same way his offense seems to have improved based on the limited time we’ve seen him with the Knicks, it’s possible he’s also doing a couple of things better on defense. However, his reputation from prior years as a poor defender could be causing people to dismiss any data that suggests he may have gotten a little better at defense as simple variance to be ignored. I have other reasons to think he may have gotten a little better on D. He’s no plus defender, but it may not be Mudiay bad either.

    Here’s the thing, Mitchell is a plus defender as well, or will be. Frank has way more ground to make up on O than he is ahead on D, if he’s ahead at all.

    Very few defenders are Mudiay bad. Remarkably, we may have two of them in Kanter and Beasley.

    I still can’t believe they traded for him thinking he might actually turn out to be good. But…that has to be it, right? They didn’t pull a brilliant stealth tank move, did they? Because now they are not playing him, when it’s clear we can’t really move up or down in the draft…

    I still can’t believe they traded for him thinking he might actually turn out to be good. But…that has to be it, right? They didn’t pull a brilliant stealth tank move, did they? Because now they are not playing him, when it’s clear we can’t really move up or down in the draft…

    He may have been hurt last night (ankle?)

    I would estimate the chances it was a tank move at close to 0%. There are easier ways to tank than giving up assets.

    IMO, they aren’t entirely sold on Burke or Frank being the starting PG of the future. I doubt they specifically targeted Mudiay. They were probably looking to expand the portfolio of prospects and give themselves another chance of hitting pay dirt in case Frank/Burke don’t work out. The report was that they wanted Elfrid Payton. When they struck out there for whatever reason, Mudiay was probably the only young PG prospect available. So they took a flyer.

    I think we universally think the probability of this working out isn’t very high. The cost was more than I would have given up, but not disastrous.

    I kind of like the Burke/Frank combination. If Frank breaks out and becomes more of a true productive PG, then Burke off the bench will make me pretty happy.

    Mitchell is having an excellent rookie year, despite being a mediocre NBA player at best. I would pick him in a heartbeat if I could trade him for Ntilikina right now — there’s virtually no defensive production that could outweigh Ntilikina’s total ineptness at shooting.

    That doesn’t mean Frank won’t be a good player in a few years. Impossible to predict where his TS% and scoring volume will end over time. Giannis (who’s not a great comparison, but also was a 19-year-old with long arms entering the league) started his career as a low-volume wing who couldn’t shoot to save his life — he put up these splits in his rookie year:

    3-10 ft. .171
    10-16 ft. .105 (which would get you benched in DIII ball)
    16+ ft. .220

    He was inexplicably good from 3PT land, and of course he was okay at the rim (and has since become unstoppable when he gets to the hole).

    I’m not saying that Frank is Giannis, a top-10 talent who can seemingly do it all. It’s just impossible to know what happens to his shot next year. Too young to tell. (And that’s why I take Mitchell — he’s already almost league-average in efficiency and has a very high usage for a young player.)

    It might make sense to compare Giannis and Frank as shooters at the same age against European competition. Frank looks a little better based on the data I’ve seen. My guess would be that Frank was playing against slightly better competition, but I don’t know the teams, players, or schedules.

    Frank shot 3s fairly well in Europe, has good form, and I know he tested very well in some NBA shooting drills before the season. I’ve been predicting he’s going to shoot a lot better since the beginning of the season, but I’ve been wrong. Some of it has to be better defense and slightly longer distance (and should have been expected), but some of it may just be the pressure of being so young and in the limelight in NY. He’s not an alpha kind of guy. I still think he’s going to break out and get much better eventually (at least spot up opportunities).

    The problem with projecting Frank’s improvement over the next 2-3 years is that the team he is on has a miserable history of developing young players for at least the past 20 years or so. I am hopeful because he seems to have a great attitude and certainly some ability, but cautious because Knicks.

    I was anti Monk, threatening to riot if we drafted him. I recall a poster on here who’s name rhymes with he-man loving Monk.

    The thing about Frank’s shot is that while his mechanics look fine and he’s pretty consistent with them (unlike say, Mudiay who never seems to shoot the same way twice) the results are all over the place. He misses every which way- long, short, left and right- so it doesn’t seem like there’s an easy tweak to correct it. Still, he’s looked a bit better at the two offensively which I think is probably mental as much as anything- not overthinking everything and reacting a bit quicker. I’d like to see him getting 35 minutes a night from here on out- 10-15 at the point (more if they’re pulling the plug on Mudiay which is doubtful) and the balance on the wing.

    I was anti Monk, threatening to riot if we drafted him. I recall a poster on here who’s name rhymes with he-man loving Monk.

    I was very anti-drafting Monk, feel free to go back and check. But to be fair, he’s been way worse than I (or most people) thought he would be.

    The main reason that Frank vs. Giannis is a bad comp is because Giannis is one of the best physical specimens ever to play in the NBA, while Frank is an average-at-best athlete. If Frank doesn’t improve his shooting, he’s simply not an NBA player. Giannis would still be an impact player, just not a perennial all-NBA regular he’s projected to be.

    Mitchell is also a top athlete and has decent size for a combo guard. You don’t convert yourself into an elite athlete, you are born with it. Frank is big enough that it matters less, but it makes shooting that much more important.

    But to be fair, he’s been way worse than I (or most people) thought he would be.

    And whiffing on a single draft pick should be expected, not shamed. Whiffing on every single move the Knicks have made (not saying you’ve done it) shows a total lack of respect for available metrics, however flawed they may be.

    E.g. Monk was a bad prospect and has been a bad NBA player. Beasley was an outstanding prospect and has been a below-average NBA player.

    One thing that cannot be ignored is that while Mitchell does look passable at least on defense, he plays wirh Rubio and Gobert on a team with a superb system. Rubio is a top defender amd Gobert is the best defender on the NBA bar none.

    It’s a bit different when you insert Kanter, Beasley, Mudiay, Jack into the mix.

    The thing I am disappointed about Frank’s development is the shooting, I expected him to be better at least frlm 3, but everything else is pretty much what we expected… good to great defense, strong IQ and court vision but very inconsistent and prone to rookie mistakes, very bad handle.

    Frank Ntilikina has slow mechanics and long arms. That, and nerves, are why he’s been struggling to shoot at this level. I don’t think that will be a problem for too long.

    Also, damn the statistics, Frank is a game changing defender. When a 19 year old guard can front Taj Gibson in the post, have the smarts to deny a backdoor cut to Andrew Wiggins, fight over screens, and make the right switches, you’re talking about a future game wrecker and DPOY candidate. You’ll see in time.

    Z-Man should honestly be ignored while talking about Ntilikina and I say this as someone who was against drafting him.

    I’m not at a computer but I’m willing to bet that something like 80%+ of teenagers are objectively bad in the NBA. Off the top of my head I know Giannis, LeBron, and KD were. Look at their age 21 seasons—that’s the difference we’re talking about between Ntilikina and Mitchell. Z-Man knows all of this and continues to make what I can’t help but think are bad faith posts.

    I posted this the other day:

    Take it for what it is, the sample size is small and I’m unsure of what statistic is being referred to specifically. Still, all of those guys have good defensive reputations and the account is reputable. It’s not easy to show positive signs at 19 and Frank has definitely done that.

    Tl;dr: I like Z-Man but his weird Frank thing is best left ignored.

    @54 Also Crowder has suddenly become a good defender again.

    I saw that him, Mitchell, Ingles, Gobert and Rubio had a 79 defensive rating in their recent winning streak. That lineup is killing other teams.

    Gobert is just so good, it pisses me off tremendously how underrated he still is. As soon as he comes back a sub .500 team goes on a 22/3 or something like that run, and the guy still gets overshadowed.

    There’s no doubt to me he’s the DPOY and if the league didn’t dismiss his type of production right away he’d be on the first team all nba.

    If Frank gets better at initiating an offense this season and gets a bit stronger/faster on defense him and a healthy Ron Baker could be the best defensive back court in the NBA.

    I still can’t believe they traded for him thinking he might actually turn out to be good. But…that has to be it, right? They didn’t pull a brilliant stealth tank move, did they? Because now they are not playing him, when it’s clear we can’t really move up or down in the draft…

    Yeah, as Strat noted, they were looking for a young point guard to give a look. They tried to get Payton, but the Suns offered a much better second round pick than the Knicks had available (basically #32 vs. #45).

    Z-Man should honestly be ignored while talking about Ntilikina and I say this as someone who was against drafting him.

    This is so ridiculous. You didn’t like the pick at the time, and not a single thing that has happened should make you feel that you were wrong then.

    Your points about Giannis, KD and LeBron are just plain ridiculous. They were the talk of the NBA their rookie years, whether they were statistically meh or not. They generated buzz (I’ll assame you are smart enough to know what I mean bt that) and soon went on to more than justify the buzz. Nobody is talking about Frank because he has absolutely sucked and there is no indication that he’s just a few tweaks from getting better.

    You can certainly choose to feign to ignore my posts about Frank. Deep down, I’m sure you agree with them.

    the value of defense at the guard spot is highly overrated…. there’s some level of competence that’s needed at the position but there’s so many ways to mitigate against good on-ball defenders…..

    that’s why frank and ron’s defense is nice but they’re not gonna do much unless their offense comes around and it’s not going to come around until they start being efficient in 2p range….

    someone like bruce bowen and tony snell can sometimes hang around but they werne’t more than 10th man types until they found their 3p shots….

    frank’s done better since the asb in 2p range…. so there’s some hope…. but he can’t be sub .400 next year… yes he’ll only be 20…. but mudiay went through the same thing….. after a certain point you just don’t have it in you and this happens at a much earlier age than everyone thinks….. if he’s bad in other areas but his inside scoring is above water then he should maintain some nba value ….

    if you’re a guard and can’t make a layup when called upon you don’t belong…. it’s what separates the great players from the good players and the good players from the bad players…. and it’s been a very consistent and reliable marker throughout the nba….

    Ali vs. Frazier, Yankees vs. Red Sox, Lakers vs. Celtics, Z-man vs. Frank Ntilikina

    You can certainly choose to feign to ignore my posts about Frank.

    I’m sorry that a Frenchman kicked your dog.

    Can someone reach out to ruruland and see if he can write 2,000 words on how Carmelo dropped his usage, increased his spot-up attempts and became one of the worst players in the league?

    I’m going to start the crowdfunding at $10. That’s right — I will pay $10 for ruruland to contribute to this site again, just once.

    Thanks for sharing the link, Bob. The Admiral sounds like a great dude. And he’s totally right about Timmy… That WAS the luckiest thing to happen to him. Without him the Spurs are just another second round out. The Admiral was an amazing player in good prime, but Timmy was better. Has to be Top Ten ever….well, probably. Hard to rank with so many changes in the game every decade.

    In other news, looking at the box score of the Minny game, I’m reminded again that Thinks needs to be sent to a re-education camp out something. Playing 8 guys big minutes all regular season long is a recipe for… Well, exactly what we’ve seen over and over: broken down players who are out of the league by their early 30s. Rose, Noah, Deng, now (on his way) Butler… Someone stop this dude.

    I’m also curious to see the development of the argument “Melo will be more impactful for the Thunder than Chris Paul for the Rockets”, as the Rockets finish with their best record ever and clinch the 1st seed 5 games ahead of the Warriors, and the Thunder on pace to finish one whole win ahead of their record last year.

    All this talk on twitter about the almost-universal injury-laden careers for players at KP’s height is really depressing. Hope he figures it out. This doc he’s been working with is either a leaching rich quack, or a Phil-level intuitive genius.

    Mudiay benched. Frank and Burke starting. Good on the merits, but hopefully the Wizards outclass us anyway.

    Seems like one problem is that Mr. Mudiay is not particularly good at basketball.

    Wendell tanking his value hopefully

    Although as I wrote that he converted an and-one

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