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77 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2022.11.08)”
Didn’t catch the game live (too late for me), but watched the “all possessions” feature on League Pass this morning, and I read the boxscore and Macri’s newsletter.
We’ve been very lucky with Gobert’s absence (and what a difference Embiid’s presence does, uh?) but it was a nice win, to me we’re now plus-1 versus expected outcomes and that’s good.
I can only imagine the PTSD-driven reactions when the Wolves cut the lead to “only” 13… 🙂
Randle did blist nets all night long, RJ was going great and then began to do stupid things again, Brunson has a really nice stats line.
I have some questions for the people who watched the full game:
– Thibs pattern with minutes and substitutions has steadily improved after the Hawks’ disaster (be it by by awareness or force), is it an impression or the KB Hive agree?
– Randle had a great night because his shots were falling.
But Macri’s blasted his defense, he had more TOs than ASTs and took 13 3FG (some were not good choices) and just 2 shots inside the arc. Was this game a “recipe” of how we like him to play or we were just lucky because he had a good shooting night?
– Most of Rose’s shots were short, did his legs looks heavy or was just one of those night?
The Wolves looked as a team with a lot of “internal” problems, KAT’s soft as usual, Ant-Man out of shape, Gobert assimilation isn’t going great and they have lost 3 meaningful rotation pieces. They’d have been better trading for Dejounte Murray…
Last night was..weird. Maybe it was the 8 threes by Randle. It just felt off..like the defense was bad but Minny bailed us out by missing shots. I do think it was brilliant to start Sims while Mitch is out. Hartenstein is just seamless with that 2nd unit.
This year’s team now has 3 players basically averaging 20ppg. When is the last time we’ve had that? Ewing, Houston, and Spree?
The Jazz are 9-3
They definitely need to have a team meeting
I couldn’t watch the game, but I think Sims may have started because Thibs thought he is a better matchup for KAT than Hart is. Who knows if it will continue while Mitch is still out.
. The NBA is definitely a league of GMs who follow trends. Now maybe some teams will trade all their stars in the hope of getting better 😉
“Was this game a “recipe” of how we like him to play or we were just lucky because he had a good shooting night?”
Randle is not a good 3 point shooter. We are way better off when he’s operating inside in space and hopefully if the double comes he pass out of it to a good 3 point shooter instead of forcing a trash shot or getting a TO.
He was open a lot last night from 3. They were giving him some easy looks. So he had to take them. Fortunately they were going in, but we don’t need any 1-10 or 2-14 nights. That’s basically an auto loss.
Yeah, like Max this games against west teams are a little too late for me. Reading the game thread was fun. About the game and the comments on the game thread, i have only one question to add: Reading the thread i thought Quick was still off with his shot, but the statline looks good. Did he get better as the game went on? And i totally agree with the comments saying he’s now our best defender, he is really improved on that side of the court and that can be a huge plus for us.
They are #1 in the west. It’s hilarious!
Here were my impressions of the game:
-The main reasons we won were that a) Randle was unconscious from 3 and b) KAT is, as Kobe would have put it, softer than Charmin.
On the latter point, KAT had both NYK C’s in foul trouble all night and should have been demanding the ball and going to the hole until he fouled them out, then feasted on Randle and Obi. Instead, he took 12 fucking shots. TWELVE!!
On the former point, obviously the game plan wasn’t specifically for Randle to take 13 of his 15 shots from 3. But he came out firing and was feeling it, so like any “star” he just rode that wave. The main takeaway is that he only took 15 shots, which was part of a balanced shot distribution. The turnovers and defensive lapses were annoying, but the Randle we’ve seen thus far this year is a mentally healthier version than what we saw last year. He’s still annoying in many ways but at least the fog seems to be lifted.
I thought RJ had a nice game overall, he hit some backbreaking shots and minimized the TOs.
Brunson…man, what more could you ask for at that price?
Obi really used his length well on D, maybe the best defensive showing I’ve seen from him thus far. He’s making Thibs reconsider “the numbers” that he scoffed at going into the season.
Hart is very good in so many ways, but he commits some ridiculously dumb fouls that could have made the difference in the game if it weren’t for a) and b) above.
I have an irrational love for Sims. Maybe when I squint he reminds me of one of my faves from the ’70’s, Wes Unseld…the way he goes for rebounds and power-snatches them with two hands, the way his facial expression never changes…
IQ’s D is really good…I described him as a live wire, he is very pesky on the ball, in passing lanes, helping…and 9 points on 6 shots is encouraging.
Cam’s stats don’t paint a great picture, but he was very active defensively.
Rose looked like he was shooting one of those weighted training balls.
I watched the game in the background while I zoomed with some people. Randle’s defense was bad but he was otherwise dominant. Nice to see from him.
The major takeaway for me was that the ship be sinking in Minnesota. Ant looks like he may be considering heading back to football. Towns gives zero F’s on defense. The whole thing just reeks.
You have to give it to Leon. We don’t lead the league in dysfunction. We aren’t even top five!
RIP E4 indeed… Rose looked like he might never hit a jump shot ever again…
Yes, reading through the game thread and watching the “condensed game” Fournier looks totally lost (but kudos to him for being unselfish and let Jericho dunk, not many player in the same “state of mind” would’ve done it).
The news about Obi’s defense are very encouraging!
IQ usually is a pest on D, but we need his shot to start falling again.
The Nets’ game will be a little more meaningful than your standard 11th game of the season…
Reading this piece in the Wolves’ blog sounds like what you hear right before a coach is fired.
I mentioned Obi’s improved D, but what is really jumping off the page with him is his 3pt shooting. Still a small sample size this year, but if you expand it out to last year’s all-star break (28 games) he is now 49 for his last 119 for 41% on over 4 attempts a game. He MUST play more with those kinds of numbers.
My other major takeaway from the start to the season. Jalen Brunson has a .177 WS/48, which is a pretty nice number for a guy people seem to be complaining a lot about.
Here is something from Knicks Analytics, a nice follow while twitter lasts, for all you IQ lovers….
Immanuel Quickley’s 2nd of 252 players in defense per
He leads Knicks in deflections, steals, & D-reb (!) per poss; top-3 in distance traveled & contested shots per min. He’s 3rd in the entire NBA in defensive on/off.
IQ presents an interesting dilemma. He’s beyond an underrated defender and actually extremely good. Is he a bit undersized to pair with Brunson in the starting lineup?
More generally, now that Fournier has lost his starting spot, who is the best guy to slot in there…Cam, Grimes (someday) or IQ?
Looks like Thibs is erring on the side of length and sticking with Cam, suggesting that he will keep IQ in his current bench role, but expand it in 4th quarters depending on IQ’s shooting. Seems like a sound strategy if that’s the case.
It doesn’t matter if Quickley is short, he has long arms and plays good defense and the alternatives either suck on defense or have a weird foot injury.
Cam is getting a lot better on defense too, so it can be one or the other. I don’t think IQ is undersized, he’s 6’3 but he has a 6’8.25” wingspan. For comparison, Grimes is taller (6’5) but has almost the same wingspan (6’7.75”).
Cam is an empty boxscore guy. To be fair he does get some steals, but that’s it. If he can keep shooting 40% from 3 he’s probably not useless, and while Grimes is hobbled/ineffective it’s okay to play him, Quickley has a much better track record.
whoa…BC was in rare form for the game…
Fuck every other team in the NBA. I like when they fail.
holy shit, are the Wolves playing like a bunch of guys who barely know each, but what they do know about each other is that they hate each other.
truth be told – i too rejoice in the failings of the other sports teams in relation to the ones i root for…
the wolves looked like us on a bad night…that was a really bad game for them, plus – julius was crushing it from three…
agree with the quik talk, nice to see the stats confirming what it looks like out on the court…
you gotta give it to the young man, he sure does seem to be busting his ass to get better…hopefully his shot falls soon…
thibs likes rose and quik together, so, looks like cam is starting for a while…he looks okay there…
i’m very much digging thibs’ rotations lately…that’s a surprise this season…
Last night was indeed odd. From the Department of Anecdotal:
Randle — The Wolves are missing their best paint defender, so Randle chooses to shoot only … threes? In the post game said he was ~inspired by the Celtics, and I don’t mind him shooting/hitting, but it seemed to happen in exactly the opposite situation you want.
IQ — agree he was/is playing our toughest D at the moment. Love the stats, Owen. Often IQ is our guy who is most locked in, and, as for his overall game, IQ seems to be working on everything *except* his shot. Maybe that’s endearing him to Thibs, but I’d love to see him get some easy threes off assists. Not really happening.
Obi — Best minutes total of the season. I hope it keeps up when Mitch is back. The true threshold to cross is when/if Thibs keeps Randle on the bench bc Obi is really cooking. I want to see that game.
Sims — I think he got the start to use up his fouls and b/c he’s from Minn. I like the guy and want to see him play more, especially when the opposition has a bruiser. Gobert was out obvs, so no real data on such a matchup, but I’m all for Sims getting more reps. Glad to see Bizarro-Thibs continuing to control our rotations.
Rose — no lift. no shot. no D. nice teammate.
E4 — no D. no shots. nice teammate. empty island.
Thread — not as energized without cyber and Max. We really needed those guys down the stretch 😉
Any road win is a good win.
Minny looked real bad out there, but credit to the Knicks for finishing them off. Randle may not shoot threes like that again this year, though.
I hope Grimes can overcome his foot woes and get into the rotation. I had plantar fasciitis from mid-2021 until the early spring this year. It just lingered and lingered. Hopefully whatever his problem it doesn’t linger much longer.
I think you need Randle to shoot. He wont always go apeshit like he did last night, but some starter needs to up their 3pt volume.
I’ve been upgraded from “questionable” to “probable” for tomorrow’s game… 😉
EVERYONE GO VOTE!!!
(Except maybe Hubert IV who I think might be a Republican 😉)
I want to note that, despite minutes complaints, IQ, Reddish, & Obi look much improved.
Also, while I’m taking victory laps… Randle with the .572 TS% over league average baby!!! Regression!!!
The main thing for me is that all of our players seem to be increasing their market value. Having 11 rotation-level players…12 if you count Sims…is not healthy. Fournier is the obvious guy. But beyond that, has Cam made himself valuable enough to keep? You could probably get at least something for him….but as a situational cog, we don’t really have anything duplicative there (long, switchable defensive wing.)
A short-sighted move would be something like Fournier and Cam for Crowder…
Another wondering…is the Obi-Randle success and Sims potential making Mitch expendable? I know folks were bent out of shape at the prospect of losing him for nothing, but if we could get something good back for him, say a protected first, an expiring contract, and a young 3-and-D wing…would anyone be interested in that? I love Mitch but he does come with some constraints…
One thing that is looking better is that it seems the Knicks’ early defensive rebounding woes were a bit of an anomaly. Only 4 offensive rebounds for Minny last night, and the Knicks have risen from 30th in DRB% to 23rd in a short amount of time. Remember, this team with mostly the same personnel was the #1 defensive rebounding team in the NBA last year. I would think we’ll end up as an above average rebounding team at minimum when all is said and done.
Last night Cam played 29 minutes and shot 2-8, and had 0 rebounds, 0 assists, 0 steals, and 0 blocks. He made two trips to the free throw line. I’m still not seeing a good player in there.
This thread is full of notes about how Cam is improving, Obi is improving, Quick is improving, RJ is playing better lately….
Too bad Thibs is such a horrible development coach or they’d all be superstars. 🙂
You guys are the best! 🙂
And i’m ON for tomorrow’s game, i don’t miss games at home! 😀
Yeah, really slow last night… maybe we could also conspire to get TNFH out of his job and back to the board more often which is clearly more important
Cam’s line is misleading. I think his length really bothered the Wolves. And even if you call it a “bad” night for him, it’s one you could live with. He’s been a valuable player thus far.
It’s kind of shocking that he was a -2 and Fournier was +15…
Cam always seem to have tumbleweeds in his statline. It’s pretty amazing how much of an eye test guy he is.
Not an eyetest guy – Luka Doncic. His numbers so far this year are absolutely unreal.
If Cam plays strong defense & shoots 40% you can live with the empty boxscore… may have something to do with our bad defensive rebounding though 🤔
Fwiw, he had some gorgeous moves to the basket before missing the layup… but I don’t think that’s new.
Apparently Doogie Hawser is 5th in RAPTOR… probably has a lot to do with us though
Kevin Love is 2nd, guess I under sold him when I said he’s the 2nd best player on that team
The real question is, should it be surprising at all that Kevin Love is this good? He’s healthy, just turned 34, is a 5-time all-star, and in a perfect role for who he is right now…the ultimate stretch big. He was really good last year in the same exact role, and his per game stats were very similar except he’s shooting slightly better from 3 (he’s also shooting better from 2 but on only 2.3 attempts a game.
I wonder what his next contract will look like.
It’s a good question re Love. He always was such a big defensive liability. I wonder how they are scheming around that these days.
I am happy for him though. Followed him forever. Seems like a good dude too.
Thing about Love is, he a HUGE reason why the trade for Spida made sense for CLE. They gave up Markkanen and Sexton and their bench is still outstanding and could get even better if Rubio comes back strong.
Minny, on the other hand, seems to have fucked up royally.
About one-third of the Wolves’ FGA have been taken by guys with a <.490 TS%. Gobert's fault for sure.
DLo needs his Julius Randle game
Love has really aged gracefully into this bench role and it fits him perfectly, he just has to shoot and grab rebounds, which he always did very well.
I’m legitimately curious about Markannen and whether the production he’s showing is sustainable. He’s been shooting incredibly from the 2 point range, which is probably not gonna keep up, but he’s also hitting under 30% of his 3s which will likely go up towards his career average. I don’t think he’ll ever be a star you build around but if he keeps this up he’ll either be a very good piece going forward for Utah or fetch a high value on a trade.
By the way, I’m going to be in the area for both Thanksgiving and Christmastime (the 21-28 of November, and a couple weeks in December). Would KB want to do a holiday meetup, either at a game or a bar on a game night? I would love to meet some of the regulars in person!
Tough to know what to say about Randle after a night like that. Hell of a process vs results Rohrscach test. There seems to be a raging Knicks Twitter debate on the matter. Personally, I won’t rag on him. Taking a lot of threes is better than long-twos and at least some of them were reasonably good shots.
Brunson up to 20/7/4 with a .586 TS% and nothing seems particularly unsustainable. Unbelievable he was relatively painlessly poached in unrestricted free agency.
RJ Barrett having strong finishing numbers this year is the biggest eye-test/stats differential surprise to me. It feels like he’s chucking and praying every time he’s near the rim. But hey, if he can keep hitting 63% of those who am I to judge? His TS% is .551 if you arbitrarily, stupidly decide he’s shooting 35% from 3 this year. Still think his best chance of becoming a good player is taking a step back usage wise and aiming for 16-18 PPG with a TS+ above 100.
“Would KB want to do a holiday meetup, either at a game or a bar on a game night? I would love to meet some of the regulars in person!”
Count me in!
Not exactly a regular poster here but count me in.
Depending on the day and location I would be in.
The unsustainable part is playing 3 straight games against opponents missing a combined 4 all-defense centers/Timelords
I’m also in town and would also like to meet some fellow KBers
As long as it’s a place where the senior discount applies (i.e. the young guys buy my drinks) I’m in.
Think the team has met most of our expectations with a 5:5 record in first 10 games. We were fortunate to catch 76ers without Embiid but dropped a winnable game against Atlanta. Ran into weird hot streaky shooting of Boston and Cleveland and couldn’t catch lady luck in Memphis. However, we did beat up all the teams we were suposed to. What is a resonable expectation for the next 10?
If you look at Brunson’s highlights from the Dallas-Utah series, he didn’t seem all that bothered by Gobert.
“ This thread is full of notes about how Cam is improving, Obi is improving, Quick is improving, RJ is playing better lately….
Too bad Thibs is such a horrible development coach or they’d all be superstars. 🙂”
– Barrett’s numbers are the same.
– Cam’s advanced numbers are the same, he’s just shooting slightly better than usual.
– Quick is playing better defense this year but is shooting worse than he ever has.
– Obi, the guy Thibs trusts the least of all these, has made a real improvement, mostly do to his improved outside shot and probably because he’s finally getting more minutes.
So sure, go ahead and enjoy your fantasy, Thibs-related victory lap.
Sure, but the Mavs are already in the luxury cap ($16M over) and Brunson wanted to be the #1 ball handler for a team — considering he was the #2 after what looks like a soon-to-be-top-10 all-time offensive player who’s years younger than him, it makes a lot of sense.
I still can’t believe Bagley over Doncic. I can’t even believe Young and Reddish over Doncic. It’s crazy.
What’s surprising is that no one else made a bid for Brunson. The money wasn’t crazy- it’s like the whole league just accepted that he was either coming here or staying in Dallas and ignored him. Was there anybody else even rumored to be interested?
Passing on Doncic was unbelievable at the time. I don’t think there has ever been a clearer error.
Yeah, and that’s why we will lose a pick in process. I just hope it’s only a 2nd round pick.
“So sure, go ahead and enjoy your fantasy, Thibs-related victory lap.”
Virtually all our young players are way better defensively now than when they came into the league or joined the Knicks (Quick, Obi, RJ, and Mitch are all better and still improving). Even Cam (who was a defensive joke when he joined NY) is now being played in spots specifically for defensive purposes because of his length and activity.
Obi is hitting 3s better as well as defending better.
Even RJ is hitting FTs better and doing better with his 2p%. If it wasn’t for that one horrid 3/18 mental breakdown in the opening game, he’d be looking pretty good. His TS% would be close to 56%. It’s not like you get to selectively eliminate games, but that’s ONE game and on an opening night. It’s at least reasonable to look at what he’s done since.
All these players have a long way to go, but they are all trending up. My guess is that Hart and Brunson will improve too.
i was amazed when klye korver learned to play defense while in chicago…
Uhh young players tend to get better at things after being in the league for a while
*He’s putting up his best 2p% season * His best ft% season after 43 attempts
* Career best Offensive RAPTOR
* 3PT regression. See Randle, Julius.
* Career best Offensive RAPTOR
* Career best Defensive RAPTOR
* Best 2p% of career
* Best 3p% of career
* Career FT% suggests it’s sustainable
Miami kicked the tires and learned that he was definitely coming here. As noted, this is why the Knicks are likely going to lose a pick, because it was a done deal before anyone could even technically negotiate with free agents.
JK, yes, young players do tend to improve, but the knock on Thibs was they didn’t improve under him. I remember how many here wanted Atkinson specifically so young players could improve. It was also said Thibs wouldn’t give them playing time. He’s proving those doubters wrong.
And some credit has to go to Knicks management for not actually trading away all their picks and for keeping young players around too. That’s also something we are not used to as Knicks fans.
Now we have Keels and Sims to make into useful players.
Losing a pick would not be a point in Rose’s favor.
How often has that happened?
The Scottie Barnes dunk from last night was great. He’s bigger than I realized.
EB, are you stating that the young players’ positive gains AREN’T subject to regression but their lower-than-usual numbers are?
Look, I like our young guys in a “Knicks” context. But to even suggest RJ has made significant gains since his rookie year is, um, not true. Even his vaunted “bubble” year still places him squarely below average at his position.
Sure, I guess Cam in his limited minutes has been playing better than usual. But do you even remember preseason?
I’m not trying to be a downer, but just take Mathurin, for example. He’s already a much better prospect than RJ and frankly, most every Knick, at least offensively. And most teams have a Mathurin-or-better-level guy.
Im sure Thibs and his staff have done a fine enough job, but I think it’s pretty hard to demonstrate that they’ve done better or worse than any other pro staff. Is Rivers a genius because of Tyrese Maxey? Is Alvin Gentry because of Haliburton? It’s just the kind of silly—and smug—blanket statement that Strat has become famous for making (and wanting credit for!)
Ok, so good job, man. You KNEW Thibs would teach effective basketball. Good job. How did the rest of us not know that would happen (eyeroll eyeroll)? Are you some kind of wizard???
So Nov 21 – 28 schedule:
Mon, Nov 21 @ OKC
Fri, Nov 25 vs POR
Sun, Nov 27 vs MEM
Any of those days work for people? Probably not the ideal days.
They very well could be, but most of those stats (except RAPTOR, I assume) are quick to stabalize. On the other hand, 3pt shooting is not. The 2p% should already be a good indicator of talent while I’d wager the 3p% will regress to the career average.
At the same time I feel good about Obi’s 3p% because of the high volume of 3s he takes. This is part of the formula for predicting NBA 3P% out of small college samples.
For Reddish’s 3P% I’m optimistic because he’s always been a stellar FT shooter—84% on his career.
The high-level numbers are the same, but the underlying numbers that serve as the inputs to those metrics aren’t. If we understand how the basic numbers are likely to change, we can predict how the advanced metrics will change. And I like a lot of the underlying indicators I’m seeing.
I’m not too concerned with this. One of the criticisms of the team was that playing the vets & mercs would stunt the growth of the younger players. I’m just trying to refute that claim.
I don’t care if thibs is better or worse at developing young players compared to other current nba coaches. He’s better than what we’ve had. None of our young players got better under Fizdale or Hornaceck or Fisher. And we hardly had any during Woodson. We had young players who go better under Dantoni but then we traded them all.
So the fact that all of them under thibs have gotten better is a very positive step in the right direction. At some point one of them is going to take a big leap forward.
who researches judicial appointments before filling out their ballot – how do you even research these folks on the ballot? – google them one at a time?
used to be more selective in my voting habits when it came to elected officials…our system should have given us an option c…who knows though, maybe political parity would have led to our downfall decades ago…too many choices, like all those boxes of cereal up on the grocery store shelves…
“At some point one of them is going to take a big leap forward.”
There are zero assurances that this will happen, but you never know…
See, I think the key is having young players who actually are capable of getting better.
That said, Thibs is marginalizing Fournier and Rose. So Mitch, RJ, Cam, IQ, Obi, and Hart are all mainstays in the rotation, and Grimes will likely join them. He’s both developing and playing the kids. That characterization of Thibs simply does not apply.
I’m down for a gathering, EB. I’d like to meet who it is I agree with 90% of the time…
Note that I’ll probably be masking; I’m one of those lunatics who’d prefer not to get COVID. So I don’t go out much, but I’d go out for this!
Two things can be true, Z-man:
1)As that great Fred Katz piece from last spring attests, Thibs likes working with young players in practice, and quite possibly is good at helping to develop their games; but
2)On average, Thibs’ circle of trust will default to vets over kids.
He is playing the kids a lot more this season because there are barely any vets on the roster. Even Brunson is a relatively young vet, from the same draft class as Mitch. He is marginalizing Fournier because Evan just stinks right now; perhaps the same is true of Rose, though it also feels as if Rose is playing through some injury that nobody wants to talk about.
True, he played IQ right away, and Grimes would have played a lot last season if he hadn’t gotten injured. (RJ was already a featured member of the roster before Thibs arrived, so he doesn’t count.) The Obi thing is impossible to separate from the Randle thing, which may be a case of Thibs forgiving a vet’s mistakes but not a kid’s, or it may be that Randle’s success in Thibs’ first season has convinced him that the team’s only chance of reaching its ceiling is to play Randle as much as possible. (Plus, there’s Thibs’ whole rim protector fetish, which he has let go of slightly since Mitch’s injury.)
All of which is to say that it is more complicated than the Thibs Hates Kids faction (not just here, but among Knicks fandom at large) would suggest, but also that this current rotation may be less about Thibs changing his stripes as Leon taking away nearly all of his security blankets.
Alan, I think the argument is pretty strained at this point (and frankly always was.) Even if you go back to the Bulls, he played young players over vets. The key has always been how much he *trusts* a particular player. There were certainly plenty of vets to play over RJ during the last 2 years. He could have played Nerlens over Mitch in 2020-21, but he started Mitch until he got hurt. Quickley played 19 mpg as a rookie, basically taking Austin Rivers’ minutes. And he certainly isn’t defaulting to Fournier right now.
Thibs may be wrong on who he thinks gives him the best chance to win from time to time and reluctant to correct his mistakes, but I simply don’t believe that it’s ever much of a vets vs. young player thing. He has archetypes that he prefers, and is stubborn about those things, particularly on the defensive end.
EB – those dates around Thanksgiving don’t work for me. Another time would but Mondays are generally bad.
Thibs is neither the solution nor the main problem.