Knicks Morning News (2018.04.01)

  • [SNY Knicks] Beasley scores game-high 32 points, but Knicks fall to Pistons 115-109
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 8:25:02 PM)

    NEW YORK (AP) Blake Griffin sat with his injured ankle wrapped on one side of the locker room while Reggie Jackson dressed on the other.

  • [SNY Knicks] Tonight’s game: Knicks vs. Pistons, 5 p.m.
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 1:20:55 PM)

    The Knicks host the Pistons on Saturday at 5 p.m.

  • [SNY Knicks] Hornacek: Management has no input on who gets minutes
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 11:00:17 AM)

    Jeff Hornacek insists there has been no pressure from the front office to give more minutes to certain players.

  • [NYPost] One Knick is sick and tired of the hideous new depths of losing
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 3:32:44 PM)

    Maybe others don’t, but Knicks co-captain Lance Thomas takes the losing personally. And he’s starting to break. The Greenwich Village resident and Brooklyn product is the longest-tenured Knick. And he’s seen an unbearable amount of defeats since arriving in a Jan. 2015 trade. The Knicks reached another miserable milestone Saturday, logging 50 losses for the…

  • [NYPost] Stan Van Gundy’s message: My brother’s open to coaching again
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 2:57:07 PM)

    The always outspoken Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy took a dig at the Knicks for never giving Patrick Ewing an interview while saying his brother, ahem, could be available this offseason. Stan Van Gundy says his young brother still would be one of the best coaches in the NBA and has mulled returning to the…

  • [NYTimes] Top Private Schools Bring In the Power Elite (and the Power Forwards)
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 6:34:27 PM)

    Sidwell Friends and other exclusive schools want to be great at everything. That includes basketball.

  • [NYDN] Stan Van Gundy: Knicks may not truly appreciate Jeff Van Gundy
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 10:19:51 PM)

    A year after Jeff was invited to a 1999 NBA Finals reunion at MSG, his brother is skeptical that the appreciation is genuine.

  • [NYDN] 4th-quarter benching another sign OKC no paradise for Carmelo
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 1:52:22 PM)

    Carmelo Anthony isn’t exactly sprinting to the finish line in his first — and perhaps only — season in Oklahoma City.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks fall to Pistons for loss No. 50
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 11:56:10 PM)

    The Knicks are consistent, if nothing else. They’re consistently bad.

  • [NY Newsday] Stan Van Gundy doubts Knicks’ sincerity about his brother Jeff, Patrick Ewing
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 8:16:44 PM)

    Stan Van Gundy questioned how sincere the Knicks’ displays of appreciation have been for his brother Jeff Van Gundy and Patrick Ewing.

  • [NY Newsday] Regardless of their roster, Knicks should draft best available player
    (Saturday, March 31, 2018 5:15:55 PM)

    The Knicks have a franchise power forward and three point guards on their roster, but that shouldn’t preclude them from taking a player at either position in the NBA Draft.

  • 45 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2018.04.01)”

    I’m cooling on Mikal Bridges a little. At one point I was excited about the prospect of having KP, Bridges and Frank on the court together, but if Bridges isn’t a dependable scorer at the college level, he’s going to be even less of a threat in the NBA. When Bridges and Frank are on the court together, we’d need some serious scoring power on the court with them. I’m having a tough time finding a lineup that works even when KP is healthy. Maybe I’m worrying about that too soon, but it’s not like we KNOW Bridges is the best player available at 9. I think we’d more or less need for one of them to develop into more of a consistent option.

    @1 Villanova has a starting five that can all score and hit 3’s. They don’t depend on one guy to create offense, maybe Brunson when the shot clock is running down. Yesterday, Bridges played 31 minutes, took 8 shots and made 4. Nothing to write home about. But he also had 2 steals and 2 blocks.

    I’m not concerned about Bridges’ scoring, he’s a slasher and a good shooter and will fit in fine in today’s NBA. I’d be thrilled if we got him.

    @1 & @2
    I kinda agree with both views. I think the problem is we’ve been down long, you kinda wanna forget the fact that when you’re in talent acquisition mode, that you take the BPA regardless of position and the FO should be competent enough to flip players for better fits. On the flipside of that, our FO hasn’t shown that type of competence in ages. The biggest dilemma at 9 is gonna be BPA if both Mikal Bridges and Trae Young are still on the board- if we land there. At this stage, I care less about position overlap than about adding talent. If said talent ends up being really good for us, we still have tradeable guys who we can move to clear up roles- if need be.

    With all that said, I’m now squarely in the “just add talent” side- final answer lol. As long as we don’t land at 9 and pull off a super reach there, I’m fine with whomever we pick. I’m also with a trade-down that nets 2 1sts this year.

    Mikal Bridges is about an average NBA athlete with elite length for a small forward. He’s entirely too wiry to play the four and probably isn’t a good enough ball handler to play the 2 so he’s strictly going to play small forward in the league. He’s a guy a lot like what we have in Troy Williams, except he’s a more instinctive defender so he helps you create turnovers and get out on the fast break.

    A starting five that has Trey Burke, Frank Ntilikina, Mikal Bridges, *insert power forward here*, and Kristaps Porzingis would do a lot of damage. Burke and Porzingis would have so much space to operate in a pick and roll and Frank, Bridges, and KP would be the Show Stoppers (I’m coining that phrase now because of all the high profile scoring talent in our division). All we’d really need would be a power forward who could take guys off the dribble, shoot 3s, and defend guys in space.

    If it were my decision, I’d target Kevin Knox over Bridges just because I like Knox’s shooting off screens and in spot up situations, I like his potential as an isolation scorer (he’s the youngest player in the draft), and he’s built to play either forward spot. Bridges will likely be off the board at pick #9, though. I know most of you are low on Knox because of his uninspiring stat line, but if you dive into his film you’ll see an 18 year old tank who has a smooth jumper, a kid who is going to run power forwards around screens and eat off back cuts and transition opportunities. The steal and block rates aren’t good but I’m willing to live with that if he stays in front of his man and funnels guys into KP.

    I guess I think fans wildly overestimate their ability to project who the best player available is going to be. So while it’s easy to say “just pick the best player available” because we are in talent accumulation mode, the reality is that when we get to #9 and are looking at 2-3 players seriously, we are actually probably throwing darts between those 2-3. When it’s that close, “fit” is still a pretty good tiebreaker. If he fits, you can get the kid on the court playing a position and in a lineup that makes sense and don’t have to worry about trading him or someone else and getting fair value back.

    If you are confident you know who the best player is, then by all means you select that player.

    If you just “think you know” because you have an inflated view of your ability to project, then I’m not going to convince you anyway.


    It gets tricky.

    If you could find a PF that’s a really good scorer and are willing to pay Hardaway a ton of money to play off the bench, that would work.

    If you start Burke and Frank, Hardaway has to go to the bench to get Bridges out there and then you lose your 3rd scorer.

    If you start Frank at PG and keep Hardaway at his natural SG position, then Burke is the backup and again you lose your 3rd scorer.

    As I noted in my first post, this is a very premature conversation, but if Bridges is not the clear cut BPA, it’s probably a conversation worth having. I don’t think he’s going to be much of a scorer at the NBA level. To become a serious team, you typically need 3 really solid scorers in that starting lineup. We’ll have to find one.

    Yeah, I just don’t know if there’s a good enough primary ball handler/creator available at 9. So you go for the best complimentary ball players, which should be Mikal or Carter Jr. Ideally we get a top 3 pick and take Doncic.

    There’s a chance that Trae slips to 9, in which case I think you have to take him. Then you could groom Trae and Frank behind Burke and TH2, and “tank” for a great player in 2019.

    I think there’s a chance that either Sexton or Mikal could go in the top 7, pushing either Bamba or Young to us.

    Mikal can’t create for himself much but you can absolutely run plays for him coming off screens and pin downs. His high release gives him the opportunity to shoot almost any defender thats chasing him around the court.

    Imagine a Korver-esque player who’s elite finishing at the rim with his defense.

    I don’t think you can worry about the money TH2 is paid. He has to be a pro and come off the bench if he wants to play on a winning team, or he has to outplay our starting small forward. I could see Burke, Ntilikina, and TH2 with KP at the 5 and a power forward to be named in between. I think the Knicks can go a lot of different ways in the draft because we have decent players in a lot of places. Burke, TH2, KP could all start on a playoff team. What becomes of our other two starters is what would determine if we’re a 45 win team or a 55-60 win team.

    The draft probably falls with these guys going in the top 8:

    Jackson Jr (this is going to be a big mistake)
    Porter Jr
    Mikal Bridges
    Carter Jr

    That leaves Sexton (who the Knicks won’t pick), Young, Miles Bridges, Shai Gilgeous Alexander, and Kevin Knox on the board at pick #9. That’s way more talent than should be available at that spot, so I’d support a trade down if the Knicks were confident in Trey Burke and a team like the Clippers wanted Trae Young.

    Well, if one of the two other starters is Lebron than this is a 55-60 win team.

    I just think the Knicks shouldn’t make many plans based on Hardaway. In 55 games this year he has shown literally zero improvement from his performance last year and he’s 26 already, he’ll be 29 when his contract is over. Considering everything he does on the court is shoot, and he does it at a .530 ts%, he is not a core piece and should not be considered one, even though he gets paid like one.

    A team that has THJ as their 3rd core piece will struggle, he’s more suited to be the 4th or 5th guy preferably off the bench, so I really wouldn’t mind drafting anyone in his position. If he wants to be featured as a star he could start by shooting better than 31% on 3s.

    I wonder how well Jalen Brunson will pan out at the NBA level, he’s probably going late first, early 2nd round. The guy is an absolute killer as a college PG, but is a little under sized for the NBA.

    Maybe a Jameer Nelson type?

    Idk how Orlando doesn’t take Trae Young, unless they somehow get Doncic. They need a playmaker so badly. And there are a lot of question marks about Bamba. I’m not sold on taking him at 9 over a guy like Carter Jr.

    It does seem like we get screwed if we drop to 10, though.

    I think Young probably moves back up on boards as long as he shoots well during workouts. If we stay at 9 I’m hoping for Carter Jr.. Bridges (Mikal) would be okay but I’m not in love with him- he’s older than everybody else and lacks the ball skills to an elite wing. I think he tops out at Trevor Ariza which is fine for a 9th pick but Carter tops out at Al Horford and Horford>>>Ariza.

    We won’t, of course, but i’d love to see us play TH and Burke off the bench next year. That’s the role both are suited to – and perversely, at an average of 9m per, they’re not terrible value as 6th men!!

    Meanwhile if we’re going to waive Noah eventually, there may be an argument for doing it this summer. If we can also move Lee we’d have some money to spend in a year when a couple of guys on our timeline – Randle, Noel – could be had and almost no one has cap space so there could be some good deals to be had…

    Dolan needs a female GM.

    Talent wise, Timmy and Beezman are perfect for an instant offence of the bench on a contender (disparity in salary is irrelevant).

    Brad Stevens turned Isiah Thomas into an MVP and won 53 games by surrounding him solid defenders, rebounders and shooters. Trey Burke can and must be our Isaiah Thomas. Surround him with Frank and Courtney, run pop, pnr with KP, play the two man game in the 1st and 4th quarters and have Kanter hit the boards like every 26 year old free agent to be does. Off the bench, unleash THjr and Beezman an let these two play with the #9 pick, Lance and Noah. This is how you identify everyone’s role, minutes and play to people’s strengths. KP and Burke could be special in the right environment. Frank at best is a modern version of Bruce Bowen and Courtney has always been the 5th best starter on a contender.

    In order to do above, these things must happen first:
    1) fire Horney and find a coach with IQ level above room temperature. 2) Have Frank spend the entire summer shooting threes. Start with corner pockets, first. 3) Get KP and Burke in the gym together to discuss and work the detailed nuances of the two man game. 4) try to get Kanter’s pick and roll defense to be league average.
    Bonus: see if we can sign guys like Douggie, Bradley and/or Crowder to one year deals. Their stocks are way down and they know how to play with ball hogging PG on offense.
    Win a ton of games playing like this and then we can lure top 2019 free agents , when coincidentally we’ll have a boatload of cap space at the same time.

    Don’t look now, but the Bulls and the Nets are only 1 1/2 games behind us.

    Games remaining:

    Knicks – Orlando, Miami, Milwaukee, Cleveland twice (we gotta hope those games matter to the Cavs)
    Bulls – Wiz, Charlotte, Boston, Brooklyn twice, Detroit
    Nets – Detroit, Philly, Milwaukee, Chicago twice, Boston

    So we somehow have to lose the rest of our games and our best hope is the Nets going 2-4 or 3-3 (forget the Bulls, they might win only one more game) We might also end up with a coin flip for the 8th spot, which I would bet my house the Knicks lose.

    Also, Walter McCarty, our 1996 1st round pick, deserves a head coaching interview. Evansville U. AD performed a heist greater than “China Hustle”pulling him form Danny Ainge.

    @ 4
    I really like Knox as well. He can pretty much score from anywhere and can play 3 or 4.

    I know it was a Sixers blowout win, but our ex-useless center who’s not even young anymore and only has irrelevant skills for the modern league had a 15/10 with 5 offensive rebounds and two steals in 22 minutes against them. Got to the line 14 times and made 11 of them.

    Looking at mocks there are 7 consensus players at the top of the draft (Doncic, Ayton, Bagley, Bomba, Porter, Jackson, and Young) and three that could move into the top 7 (Sexton, Bridges and Carter). The most likely to fall seems to be Young but I’m now seeing some drafts with Jackson falling as well.

    It seems like a long shot but if Jackson fell he would be an awesome pick. In fact, Doncic is the only person that I would pick over Jackson. He is the perfect big man to pair with KP. He has the best defensive upside in the entire draft, can guard 3-5, is an elite 3 point shooter and is the 3rd youngest person in the draft. He also scored 18 points per 36 despite often being the 4th or 5th option on a loaded team.

    Chicago and Brooklyn are breathing some life into our tank, and they have a home-and-home coming up against each other. If we lose out, there’s a very good chance we’ll be at least tied for the 8th best odds with the possibility of having sole possession of the 7th.

    It is absolutely imperative that we take care of business against Orlando. I don’t care what embarrassing shit needs to be done, make it happen.

    The Wiz paid us back for that terrible game by being equally atrocious against the Bulls! The dream is real.

    Chicago is about to win tonight, and the nets are marginally favoured at home to Detroit later.

    If we can lose out it’s on – but losing at home to Orlando is a huge ask. As I recall, beating the magic a couple of times late last year cost us too – and in both we came back from big deficits. This time if we’re down in the game we really need to fine a way to finish off the L…

    Anyone see the game from that scrub Willy Hernangomez today?

    22 MP, 15 points on .817 TS%, 11 rebounds (6 off.) and 2 steals. No TO, 1 foul.

    Willy is the living demonstration that Hornacek is terrible at managing people.

    Every time I think I’m out (of the tank race), they pull me back in.

    We HAVE to lay down against the Magic now. I don’t care if Hicks gets 47 minutes or Dolan suits up to play center. This game needs to be lost by any means necessary.

    I have really mixed feelings about WHG. I think he was traded not because he was bad, but because he asked to be traded. That might be a sign that the Knicks organization is getting better, but it might not. He is putting up good numbers lately on offense, but they may be empty calories, given his defense, and he did have a negative plus minus despite the great stats from last game. On the other hand, Korner has been getting minutes recently and not looking very good, so I worry. At the moment, draft picks are good trade chips, so I hope we can do something useful with the two we got for him.

    I just wish management realized it’s the end of the road and no veterans should be playing at all. It’s time to really damn tank for once.

    The Sixers vs Hornets game today was exhibit A of why you do this shit instead of chasing perpetual mediocrity. The Hornets had no incentive at all to lose, are at home facing a team that is lacking their best player and got blown out in 3 quarters.

    Brooklyn is laying an egg, unfortunately.

    Kornet is an intriguing prospect if/when his 3 ball starts falling. Decent rim protector/passer so far and hasn’t embarrassed himself when switching out on the perimeter.

    I have seen a lot of garbage officiating in my life but the no call just now by the refs (ND fouling Miss State on the fast break) at the end of the WNCAA final is up there.

    But major credit to ND for an amazing win

    I think he was traded not because he was bad, but because he asked to be traded.

    He was traded because he asked to be traded because he wasn’t playing because he was bad.

    And then you realize that he’s not bad, especially on his contract, and the whole house of cards falls. Fire Hornacek.

    He wasn’t playing because he couldn’t beat out Kanter or O’Quinn, which isn’t the same as being bad. and value contracts are great but only if the person contributes to the team. If your five starters were all paid rookie scale, say, and were as good as most NBA players who had regular minutes but weren’t starters, you’d have a great value for the money but lose every game.

    Basically this sort of argument is about potential, because players like Hernangomez are usually kept for potential and potential is like beauty, it’s in the eye of the beholder.


    What’s amazing is that every single thing you said is wrong.

    Without getting into too much detail, his per 36 is 17 points, 13 rebounds on a 58%TS and 21% rebound rate. He is putting up similar numbers to Kanter, but at 1/10 the cost. If he were playing 36 minutes, you’d see his value, but he’s not, so instead people talk about how he wasn’t worth much. His D is better than Kanter’s – not saying much, but still. He is a valuable player, but we treated him like shit because of… Practice or something. Terrible, terrible trade. Bad cap management. Just plain fucking bad.

    Point is, he’s a rotation player on an amazing contract, and we traded him for bupkis.

    While trading whatever is the value of half a bupki for Mudiay right after, to play in a position where the Knicks had 3 players already, at the same time Noah was exiled and KP injured.

    I’m honestly tired of the apologism for trading Hernangomez, it was a stupid deal period. If we draft the next Draymond Green in 2021 and Hernangomez never plays another minute in the NBA it was still a stupid trade.


    You didn’t even bother to read my post correctly. I said “He wasn’t playing because he couldn’t beat out Kanter or O’Quinn, which isn’t the same as being bad.” Unless you are saying he is bad, which I think you aren’t, then you agree with me that he was good (at least on offense). You insulted me for no reason, which is annoying…

    But we don’t win with Kanter in the line up, and I don’t think we would win with Hernangomez either, because the defense of both is bad. So I am not losing sleep over trading him. O’Quinn on the other, hand, can defend and score. We were beating Detroit yesterday when he was in the lineup (but our subs couldn’t hold the lead) and Detroit isn’t a horrible team now that what’s his name is back from injury. O’Quinn is the center to keep.

    Who mediocre to bad coaches choose to play is never going to be a good argument on the quality of any given player. “This terrible organization that doesn’t know how to value players well didn’t play him, so he must not be that great!”

    I’m not a fan of “appeals to authority” period, but especially not with this organization as the “authority” in question.

    More importantly, how the hell did Willy shoot 14 free throws in 22 minutes in that game?!

    It’s true, I am in a way appealing to authority when I point out Hernangomez couldn’t get minutes, but even from just seeing the three of them play, I would put O’Quinn ahead of Kanter ahead of Hernangomez.

    I do think Hernangomez may improve a lot, perhaps especially with the motivation provided by a change of scenery; but, even if he does, I still think his game may turn out to be empty calories, so to speak.

    Comments are closed.