Knicks Morning News (2018.09.22)

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ rebuilding plan not hurting ticket sales
    (Saturday, September 22, 2018 1:59:58 AM)

    There is evidence some are buying hard into the Knicks’ patient rebuilding plan, despite five straight seasons of missing the playoffs. According to a Garden official, the season-ticket renewal rate hit 95 percent with training camp set to get underway Monday. That’s up from an 89 percent renewal rate last season and one of the…

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ dream pairing take their first small steps together
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 7:05:00 AM)

    The first meeting between Kevin Knox and Kristaps Porzingis came Wednesday at the Tarrytown facility. The franchise’s bedrocks haven’t sat for a meaningful talk yet, but Knox was impressed. “He’s taller than I expected,’’ the 6-9 Knox told The Post. “He’s 7-3. I thought when they someone’s 7-3, he’s really a little more than 7…

  • [ESPN] Lowe: Every realistic trade scenario for Jimmy Butler
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 11:31:56 AM)

    What deals — and which teams — would make the most sense if Minnesota decides to grant Jimmy Butler’s wish to be traded?

  • [SNY Knicks] With free-agent plans, Knicks’ Kristaps Porzingis won’t see extension
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 7:44:45 PM)

    Knicks F Kristaps Porzingis may be the face of the franchise, but he won’t be getting paid like one anytime soon.

  • [SNY Knicks] Timberwolves reportedly shutting down trade inquiries on Jimmy Butler
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 12:09:16 PM)

    The Timberwolves are telling teams that inquire on the availability of Jimmy Butler that they intend to keep him.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks sign former Columbia F Coby
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 9:57:26 AM)

    The Knicks signed former Columbia forward Jeff Coby, who is a member of the Haitian national team.

  • [NYTimes] N.B.A. Roundup: Adam Silver Urges N.B.A. Teams to Hire More Women
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 11:21:57 PM)

    Silver, the N.B.A. Commissioner, asked teams to review the report about the incidents of sexual harassment and improper workplace conduct in the Mavericks’ organization.

  • [NYTimes] On Pro Basketball: Can LeBron Bring Back Showtime in Year 1? Don’t Bet Against Him
    (Friday, September 21, 2018 4:33:17 PM)

    With an unproven Lakers lineup around him, James faces a tough uphill climb to the playoffs in Los Angeles.

  • 20 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2018.09.22)”

    I agree that in a perfect world, offering KP the max at this point would be foolish. The problem is, he is the only reasonable chance of the team having a franchise player getting paid less than $30 mill per for the next few years. I suppose you can hope that we tank and get lucky with Williamson, but that is a <20% chance no matter what we do. KP played like a HOF superstar for a stretch of games last year and is 23 years old. Wiggins never, ever had a stretch like that. He is 7'3" and his ACL injury is not as catastrophic as it seems based on the most likely recovery trajectory. Rolling the dice on the max is something that I think 100% of GMs would do at this point.It is highly likely that he will have at least $20 mill worth of trade value for the life of his contract, something that can't be said about Wiggins. So long as they don't add anything stupid like a NTC or trade kicker, it is unlikely to cripple the franchise.

    Look, I was on board with trading him to the Celts if they made a stupid offer (what was the offer, Brown, Rozier, and 2 lottery picks?) and would still consider a lopsided offer for him. But aside from that, you can't risk losing him by lowballing him on this contract unless he really struggles when he comes back.

    Z-man and I agreeing on the Zion hype will be the Khrushchev Thaw of Knickerblogger history, should this team be lucky to land him. Let us pray.

    I’m sorry, but I’m pretty sure I read the same argument when the Melo trade was made. Then it was how many more years of Melo has shit teammates, Melo is not being used properly, the Knicks can’t surround him with talent, he does so much more than the stats tell us, etc

    But you’re describing exactly what garbage franchises do, they pay players based on hypotheticals and assumptions instead of actual production.

    I’m no Melo fan. I think he’s an example of a player that the sports media, fans, and other players generally overrated. However, one main difference between Melo and KP is that to be efficient Melo had to go inside and draw fouls. That was really his only option. He was never a very good 3 point shooter, didn’t run the court or score athletically etc… Once he couldn’t go inside he was good at creating bad shots and making them more often than most other players, but they weren’t “good shots”.

    KP is already a very good 3P and FT shooter that also has the length and athleticism to score inside off lobs and put backs. The tools are already there for him to become a relatively high usage efficient scorer. If anything, he’s going to add to them. The shot distribution has to change. For that we are depending on better coaching, better PG play, and better decisions, but those are not outrageous hopes.

    Disagree with your 2nd point.

    IMO, competent managements in the NBA are always making projections & will pay up/down for what they see as that player’s future. You are describing teams that make bad projections. They project too aggressively or don’t have a firm grasp on the probability of their projection range being accurate.

    We probably have a different view on the probabilities associated with KP. I’m only concerned about injury.

    There are GMs who could sign KP to less than the max. But they would be the ones with a history of good management and success. A franchise cannot give THJ the contract he got, and 2 years later ask a KP for a discount. That would be akin to a slap in his face. If Perry can pull it off he’s a magician.

    I wonder how much where you fall on how important this is depends on whether you think he’s a 4 or a 5. I think it’s relatively minor all things considered, but I also think he’s likely to play most of his minutes at the 4 for his entire career. I’m much more concerned about his lackluster perimeter defense.

    I think you need him to be a 5 to really unlock his potential, similar to how AD took off when Mirotic replaced Cousins.

    If we can play him at 4 next to an elite Capela-like offensive 5, I’m sure he would be fine, too. But like you said, him playing perimeter D is suboptimal.

    This is why a unique player like Zion is so appealing. You give me a frontcourt with him, Knox, Porzingis and it doesn’t really matter who’s technically center.

    This is sort of the problem with KP. Too slow to effectively guard fast/stretch fours plus his rim protection is wasted on the perimeter. But lacks strength to play in the paint and is a poor rebounder for a 5.

    I would love to get Williamson or a player like him so KP could be a five but I don’t think that is the only way he can be successful. Duncan and Dirk and Garnett played their whole careers at the four and no one was lamenting their ability to not be able to play the five full time. KP isn’t too slow to guard stretch fours he has done it effectively his whole career. He played the four the vast majority of last season and still led the league in blocked shots and was hugely beneficial to our defense. On top of that at the four, he has been a positive force rebounding the ball as shown by his on/off rebounding numbers.

    One day KP might be strong enough to play the five full time and be very effective, that time is not now so why force it. Other than eye test observations I don’t know where this myth that KP can’t guard fours came from. Statistically, he does very well guarding fours.

    Zion Williamson in New York City would be so box office that kid might be a billionaire at 30. Considering the front office’s plans in terms of their view of our win curve, I would be in favor of an aggressive trade up to get him here the way Dallas did for Luka Doncic. My favorite player in this draft is RJ Barrett. I think he has the potential to be an elite wing on both ends, but Zion is the perfect player to put next to KP, and being 6’6” instead of 6’9” means he has a shot to fall to us. Nasir Little at UNC also would fit in nicely with the Knicks, but I’ve already envisioned telling my grandkids about how Zion Williamson saved New York City basketball.

    KP isn’t too slow to guard stretch fours he has done it effectively his whole career. He played the four the vast majority of last season and still led the league in blocked shots and was hugely beneficial to our defense.

    These are super different things. KP’s defense is very valuable, but it’s not his man defense that makes that true. I’d like to see a breakdown of whose shots he’s been blocking. A lot of those blocks are of penetrators that he’s not guarding, he plays really great help defense at the rim. Quick 4’s tend to get past him on the perimeter pretty often, he’s just not got the foot speed to stay in front of them, even if he is okay at closeouts.

    His defense has one aspect where he’s legit been great and is otherwise kinda meh. Not awful, but a little below average. That’s still a good defender! The issue is his mediocre offense.

    KP’s defense on the perimeter against smaller quicker PFs is always going to be a bit of an issue.

    The way you counter that is by developing his skill set. He has to punish smaller players on the inside or by shooting over them a lot more than they punish him by being quicker. If he can do that, then the other team has to take the smaller guy off the court.

    The other thing that would help is playing with Robinson.

    If KP gets beat on the perimeter and Robinson is waiting there to swat away the shot, then KP’s defense at PF becomes a non issue and his offense against smaller guys becomes a huge advantage.

    I really like the KP/Robinson combo (at least in theory). There will be hell to pay if you come inside against those two and they should fit together on offense too. KP will spread the floor and Robinson will clean up the offense boards and score inside better with more space.

    Adrian Wojnarowski
    Verified account


    In a deal that cements him as the franchise’s long-term cornerstone, Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star center Karl-Anthony Towns has agreed to a 5-year, $190M super-maximum extension, league sources tell ESPN.

    I’m getting more optimistic about Hardaway. He had a terrible season shooting last year, but I heard he’s working his ass off this summer. He’s also coming into his peak years. I think he may have the best season of his career. It would help if he doesn’t have too much pressure on him. Perhaps playing with Burke, Knox, and Hezonja will take some pressure off him relative to last year when KP went down. If that’s the case I think we’ll be pleasantly surprised. He may actually make himself marketable.

    The Towns extension is expected, Butler is really gone then. He’s a fantastic offensive player and rebounder and is probably worthy of the max, but this is why I’m scared about KP getting a similar contract. Even though Towns has shown elite production in some aspects he’s still a meh defender and has some stretches in which he can’t seem to score or affect the game at all. Even then I would give him a max before I give Porzingis one, but I’m much more scared in KP’s case.

    I think he’s a net negative, but I don’t think he’s a huge liability.

    Most of his value comes from his offense of course, which last year was mega superstar caliber, and opponents had a 1.5 better ORTG with him on the court, but he still had positive DBPM and DWS despite of that, which could probably be partly attributed to his very very good defensive rebounding numbers (4th overall in DRB%) and good block numbers (11th in blocks per game and around top 25-30 in block%).

    He was heavily abused during the Rockets series but I’m willing to cut him some slack since most defenders would also struggle against them. I don’t like his effort much and I think he doesn’t care much about defense, but he’s not a terrible defender, he’s just below average. Meanwhile he was 13th in OBPM, 6th in VORP and had a crazy .646 ts% while shooting 3.5 threes per game at a 42% clip. I don’t mind paying a max for that alone.

    I think it’s kind of crazy to give Towns that sort of contract. He’s not top-10 in the NBA and those are the player that should be in that stratosphere. Paying that now is speculation that he’ll become super-elite. Right now he’s at a tier below.

    He had a terrible season shooting last year, but I heard he’s working his ass off this summer.

    It would be kind of sad if he only now started “working his ass off” during the offseason.

    Noah apparently stretched. He played fewer minutes for us than Lou Amundson and Brian Quinnett.

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