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NBA Playoff Picture 2023: Updated Standings, Predictions After Knicks vs. Lakers Bleacher Report
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 11:42:35 AM
NBA betting: Knicks a big underdog to Cavaliers, and other 1st-round series odds Yahoo SportsIndiana Pacers vs New York Knicks Apr 9, 2023 Box Scores NBA.comRJ Barrett can deliver loud Knicks affirmation versus Donovan Mitchell, Cavaliers New York Post
[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 11:19:33 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 10:48:37 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 10:34:47 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 10:08:04 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 9:21:30 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 8:26:40 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 8:20:23 AM
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[news.google.com] — Monday, April 10, 2023 8:00:00 AM
3 Reasons Knicks were able to defy regular season expectations Daily Knicks
155 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2023.04.11)”
Raven – I think Hart, as a Knick, has been much better than Bam. He’s been cartoonishly dominant.
So none of those picks.
So if you could swap right now Josh for Bam, you would say no. Is that it?
And although i think Bam is way better than Josh, i thought Raven’s comment helped your point. We traded a 20% chance of a player like Josh or better for the sure thing. People that love the draft don’t ever think on the remaining 80% of the time we’d be getting a player worse than Josh, maybe even a scrub.
Picking up on the Josh Hart vs. 2023 pick situation, while I understand that Hart is a “merc” and that anyone who is “all merc’d out” would be opposed to that sort of move, I don’t think it really fits the archetype of a typical “merc” expenditure.
While there are similarities to the DRose acquisition in mid-2020-21, Hart is a different kind of animal. Rose was a stopgap with extreme physical limitations. Hart is a possible foundational rotation player in his prime. There was a seamlessness in his incorporation into the team that seems pretty rare to me.
What makes Hart so special? My feeling is that he’s the kind of player that opponents can’t really game plan for. The team doesn’t seem to run any plays for him. He just fills in the blanks in whatever is happening out there. You know he will get contested rebounds and loose balls, and that he will find driving seams in both transition and halfcourt, that he will defend virtually anyone situationally….that you can help off of him and leave him open on the 3pt line but he has that Marcus Smart knack for knocking down big ones, again, situationally.
And Marcus Smart is imho the best analog for Hart in terms of playoff impact…a guy that is just indispensible, even though you don’t really know what you are going to get from him statistically on any given night. There’s a physical and mental toughness there that is hard to quantify because it goes beyond the counting stats. They both just blow up possessions, especially in crunch time. They have no fear.
Hate him or love him, Smart is the heart and soul of the Celts. Billups called Hart the heart and soul of the Blazers, although they were a losing team so it doesn’t quite resonate the same well, but we have been able to see what he meant in his 750 minutes with us. We went 16-6 after acquiring him prior to these last 3 meaningless games, including winning many of those games without one of Mitch, Brunson or Julius. He hasn’t played less than 24 minutes in a game since being acquired.
And that’s why I am thrilled with giving up that pick for Hart. He gives us something we needed but didn’t have….a guy who impacts games in positive ways that can’t be predicted and game planned against. He is the main reason we can even dream about a first round series win. You just don’t pass on opportunities to land players like that on the relative cheap.
A little over a year ago I would not have traded Cam for Josh straight up, let alone throwing in a 1RP. Funny how things work out.
Anybody else ever wonder why RJ’s godfather Steve Nash couldn’t teach him a thing or two? I mean, obviously Barrett isn’t a point guard, but I would think Nash could educate him at least on making intelligent decisions with the basketball, in general.
Why is Nash RJ’s godfather, anyway? Meaning: who are RJ’s parents that Nash would even know them at the time RJ was born? I mean, all Canadians don’t know all other Canadians. Serious question.
“Barrett’s father and Nash were teammates and close friends while playing for Canada’s national team. After RJ was born, Nash gave the family a crib for the baby. The Barretts, meanwhile, asked the then-26-year-old Nash to be their son’s godfather.”
Edit: I knew about Team Canada but I wasn’t aware of the crib thing… 🙂
That article’s title made me laugh, and then it made me sad.
Honestly, the last game had 50% Good RJ in it. He passed the ball well, he made good shots, he even played a little D. If he could get rid of the 50% Bad RJ (often 75% Bad in previous games, where I’d wince the moment he touched the ball) he could be a perfectly cromulent player, even a starter on a decent playoff team if no all-star (I know he’s a starter now on a perfectly decent playoff team, but that’s to Tom Thibodeau’s eternal shame).
And yes, we do indeed need a Steve Nash Intervention.
Bam is much better than Hart. But just going off BPM, Hart on the Knicks has been more productive than this year’s Bam.
It might help if more than 2 of Bam’s teammates belonged in the NBA… And Hart wasn’t shooting 50% from 3.
RJ’s the main wildcard in the upcoming series, especially with Julius out.
You never know what you’re going to get, like a huge box full of deliciuos swiss chocolate nuggets mixed with hard rock splinters of dog poop…
He didn’t shoot well from 3 this season but to me the worst regression was in BB-IQ and smart decisions.
I had an higher opinion of his skills in that department before this year.
We need him to have a string of decent to good games, at least from a “mental and focus” standpoint.
Let’ Go RJ!
Macri, who is sort of out on RJ, had a take that sort of summed up my thinking. RJ will get a runway to show out, but if he starts getting stripped, bricking from 3, and getting shots blocked at the rim leading to run-outs, Thibs MUST rein him in and limit his minutes. Unlike last time, he now has the horses to do that. He pointed out that the Cavs have the best stats re: shots defended at the rim and it wil be a test for RJ whether he can be efficient against them in attacking.
On another note, I sure hope that Grimes can carry over his hot shooting from 3 into the playoffs. Macri pointed out that in his last 9 games he’s been shooting nearly 50% on 10 attempts a game. If the Cavs put Okoro on Brunson, that puts Spida and Garland on RJ and Grimes. We have to win those matchups on the offensive end.
Hart’s impact has been All-NBA level in his time on the Knicks. Call it a fluke, it surely has been, but in 25 games as a Knick he is +191. That’s with a -29 in the last game.
I am a process guy, always have been, but in this case you just have to admire the outcome.
I love me some Hart, but let’s not go crazy. Bam is one of the best 2-way players in the NBA. The Heat could probably get 4 unprotected firsts plus young players for Bam.
Obviously Bam is the better player. But Hart has been lightning in a bottle for us and you can’t really discount that when thinking about the value of the pick.
Bam’s way better, but he’s no stretch 4. Shot 8.3% from three this year!
Don’t get me wrong, though. I’m super happy Josh Hart is a Knick.
Oh for sure the value we have gotten for Hart since trading for him is off the charts…he’s been as impactful as a mid-year acquisition possibly could be, including if that guy was Bam.
Looking ahead to the playoffs and beyond, sure, Hart’s NYK stats are skewed by an unsustainable small sample .700+ TS%. But his 2pt%, while at a career high, is only 2% higher than his career-best years, and his per 36 numbers in points, rebounds, assists, and steals don’t seem like massive outiers. It’s really just the 3pt% that sticks out like a sore thumb. Even so, his usage is so low that even if his 3pt% falls down to his career average of 35%, he’s only costing his team around 1.5 pts point per 100 possessions, which wouldn’t drop his ORtg all that much.
I definitely expect the Cavs to go zone for stretches, laying off Julius, RJ and Hart and daring them to beat them from 3 while preventing the drive and focusing on boxing out Mitch and iHart. In other words, I would expect lots of funnelling on their part, especially when both RJ and Hart are in the game.
My favorite think about Josh Hart is when he attacks the rim in a one on three transition opportunity. Only player I know that realizes that if teh rim protector is behind him, neither guards or wings will defend the rim. Always gets either a foul, layup or both.
Macri’s newsletter today points out that giving up corner threes is basically the single Achilles’ Heel for the Cavs’ defense. They gave up the 9th most in the league, and to the extent this matters at all (which has been, um, a point of contention here before) they allowed opponents to shoot the 3rd highest percentage on them.
We’ve been pretty good at generating and hitting those looks all year. We have the 4th highest corner three rate as a percentage of our total shot distribution.
It’ll be incumbent on Brunson to really get into the teeth of the defense and get the ball into the corner. At that point it’s on Grimes et al. to absolutely punish the Cavs from there.
RJ Barrett is theoretically included in that “et al.,” so if he just isn’t doing it early you have to wonder how long we give him before pulling the plug.
I will repeat that there’s an extraordinarily low chance we would’ve been able to get Hart in the offseason if we didn’t trade for him, and an even lower chance that we could’ve done so while giving up less than a lottery protected first in a sign-and-trade.
Portland was definitely trading him, so this scenario requires him to not want to re-sign with his incumbent team, and his incumbent team not using the leverage they’d have over us given the bird rights situation to extract a lottery protected first in the sign-and-trade.
If you want to argue that you prefer the value proposition of the 23rd pick to a re-signed Hart, go ahead. I’m sure there are arguments to make even if I’m skeptical.
But for the love of god we really need to dispense with the “we could’ve had our cake and eaten it too” theory. It’s highly unlikely and reads as a total copout to the real question, which is the one I just raised.
They’re 40-1 to win the East. So how exactly did Josh Hart, even a flukish Josh Hart, move the ball? If they hadn’t traded for him, they’d be 45-1 to win the East?
(This of course is nothing against Josh Hart, who’s done an excellent job in his contract push and helped the Knicks.)
In any event, let’s see how the playoffs go. They’ll be a critical data point.
“If you want to argue that you prefer the value proposition of the 23rd pick to a re-signed Hart, go ahead. I’m sure there are arguments to make even if I’m skeptical.”
I will again point out that if Hart wasn’t traded for, the odds are that we’d be talking about a possible lottery pick, meaning that we’d very likely be in the play-in and wouldn’t be guaranteed to beat any of the Hawks, Bulls or Raptors. So it really isn’t a choice between the 23rd pick and Hart.
“In any event, let’s see how the playoffs go. They’ll be a critical data point.”
As I pointed out in the last thread, not really. The data point has already been established, everything beyond that is hardly relevant.
“If they hadn’t traded for him, they’d be 45-1 to win the East?”
Come on, E. At least use real numbers.
“RJ Barrett is theoretically included in that “et al.,”
Here’s to hoping RJ is spending his entire week practicing threes from whichever corner he made them this year at a not-embarrassing rate, and not practicing ‘driving into the teeth of two very large rim protectors.’
RJ driving to the rim is fine, so long as he keeps his head up and makes good decisions while protecting the ball. Easier said than done…but he pretty much has to do it because that is where he is at his best.
If only the Blazers had traded Hart to the Mavs instead, then the Knicks would have two picks this year instead of none.
“Donnie Walsh says:
April 11, 2023 at 12:07
If only the Blazers had traded Hart to the Mavs instead, then the Knicks would have two picks this year instead of none.”
Yeah but the play-in game would mess up my schedule for this week…
i’m going to continue to argue this because the evidence of ‘highly unlikely’ is really not there and it’s astounding that so many continue to believe this AND SIMULTANEOUSLY dubious of kyrie resigning with the mavs… don’t the mavs have this ironclad thing also about bird rights that magically captures pending free agents? are we really saying that kyrie has no shot at going to LA even though they’re capped out too and the mavs have all the leverage?
it’s Hart who has all the leverage in the world… the players have all the leverage in the world… and for that reason being capped out doesn’t mean all that much… all Hart has to say is that i’m willing to take the MLE for whoever… and Hart’s value isn’t so far gone from the MLE that this is some unrealistic move…. and whoever trades for him risks losing him for absolutely nothing…. miami has pulled this move for butler… for lowry…. they’ve been capped out for almost the entirety of this century and they’ve managed to obtain players just fine….
you really have to ask yourself… what exactly makes this highly unlikely that hart could ever sign here outside of a trade? because of bird rights? well what happens to that argument when there’s tons of examples of players moving despite bird rights? what is highly unlikely is based on then? are we then pretending we know hart’s inner thoughts now to say ‘highly unlikely’?
that’s not to mention the whole value of the deal…. kyrie irving got traded for an unprotected pick 6 years out and a salary dump…. that pick probably has worse value than the current knicks pick.. you also have the derrick white deal which is probably the closest analog but boston had deep playoff aspirations and so are getting much more value for a worse pick that they gave up….
what we traded for.. is still very much in the air.. but most teams generally dont pay the price we paid for early playoff exits…. because they realize they still need to add (cheap) talent…. the point is that you pay these prices for when you’re ready to make deep playoff runs.. and yes if you think that then this is worth it and kind of underpins why everyone loves the deal….
and you’re all entitled to your opinion but to me that’s not worth it… that probably makes me all sorts of frothing at the mouth crazy i bet… but i bet when the dust settles and the euphoria of half a season subsides.. just like a couple seasons ago.. we can all look at the facts and see what was readily apparent….
Josh Hart and Kyrie Irving aren’t exactly apple-to-apple for obvious reasons. And even if Kyrie represented baseline behavior for an nba player, it still wouldn’t be a useful comp. Irving has made $200,000,000 playing basketball. Josh Hart has earned 1/10 of that, and has been traded 4 times in the process. The assumption that he would want some security is more than reasonable.
I wonder what a shrewd GM’s reaction (say, Masai, or Ainge) would have been if Leon called in early February and said, “Hey, I have a great deal for you…would you trade me an unprotected 2029 1st for our 2023 first?”
I think it’s pretty likely Kyrie re-signs with the Mavs but also think the two situations are hardly comparable. Hart hasn’t had much of a payday, you really think his threats to take less than the Bird Rights owning team can offer are credible?
There is also every reason to believe Hart would be happy to re-sign with the team that traded for him. They would almost certainly do due diligence on this question before making the trade, and Hart was not going to risk a payday by muddying the waters as to whether he’d re-sign with the Heat or whoever else.
The Heat got Butler this way because the Sixers very stupidly didn’t want him, and they got Lowry for the price of Achiuwa, who was one season removed from being…the 20th pick! Doesn’t exactly speak to the idea that we’d inevitably get Hart for less in a sign-and-trade.
Lowry also didn’t switch teams in the middle of the prior season, he went from Team A to Team B. There just aren’t many examples of Team A –> Team B –> Team C because, again, Team B tends to take care to make sure this does not happen.
Nobody is sure one way or another whether Kyrie will leave. However, Kyrie does have a history of jumping ship frequently. He also just skipped his exit interview.
I’m not sure why you assume Josh Hart would want to force his way to the Knicks or why a team that acquired him a few months ago would suddenly want to move him. It seems like your position takes a pretty huge assumption about his mental state, that he wants to play for the Knicks at all costs.
oh so we’re now going with ‘highly unlikely’ based on knowing hart’s inner thoughts and financial motivations for a guy who’s already made 50 million in his life?
you don’t think those assumptions pulling a lot of weight on that? or that seems a-ok to you on closer inspection?
Honestly, I don’t even know what you are talking about, so I’m going to withdraw from this discussion.
what makes you think i’m making an assumption? if he wants to come to the knicks… we pitch him like any free agent.. if he wants to come here there’s any number of avenues that gets him here…. including i’ll just take the mle and sign here… which might cost him maaaybe 10mm altogether… but miami or whoever would absolutely love to recoup some value on a rental so they’re incentivized…. and hart would love more money so they work out a sign and trade and everyone’s happy…
that’s not some pie in the sky scenario.l. and i’m not ASSUMING that happens either… i am saying that is absolutely POSSIBLE…. to the point where all this ‘highly unlikely’ talk is rather silly…. especially when we’re yukking it up on the mavs misfortune when they did the same thing as us… only there’s didn’t work out and ours did…. but it absolutely could’ve been the reverse scenario….
I think it’s highly unlikely the Heat or another team trade for Hart without assurances he’d re-sign with them, and think it’s highly unlikely Josh Hart, who has had two seasons of non-30th-pick-rookie-scale money, risks a lot of money by not giving said team such assurances.
Seems like you’re pretty certain Hart was “Knicks or bust” for some reason?
He skipped his exit interview with the media. By all accounts, he did the exit interview with the Dallas coaches and FO, which is the only one that matters as far as the team is concerned.
There’s a big difference between having him on the team and saying it’s possible he joins the team.
Didn’t realize that’s what they meant. Yeah, skipping the media interview is completely meaningless.
The euphoria over Josh Hart is puzzling indeed; most of it likely comes from the fact that the board ethos is to shit on RJ Barrett and at bare minimum Josh isn’t RJ. So if that’s your thing, great — but it doesn’t really have much to do with the bigger picture and there’s probably more than a little talking at cross purposes going on. My purpose is the Knicks build themselves a real contending team. Always has been.
They’re 40-1 to win the East. There’s really no basis for any euphoria. And one has to squint real, real hard to see what exactly it is that Josh Hart moved the ball *to*. (Again, beyond simply existing as a human entity that isn’t the RJ Barrett human entity, which is worth pretty much zero fucks on the serious meter.)
But as I’ve repeated, maybe they’ll outperform those odds in the playoffs and things will look different at season’s end.
My guess is that Hart will sign an Evan Fournier-level deal, something like 4years/$72M. I don’t know whether he could have gotten that elsewhere, and I don’t really care. The fact that he singlehandedly turned this team from an almost certain play-in team to a 5th seed already has justified the loss of lottery-protected first rounder in a shallow draft. You make that bet every day of the week and twice on Sundays. Nearly every analyst gave the Knicks at least a B on the trade when it occurred, and that was before he played like an ALL-NBA 2-way player for two months and carried them to the 5 seed.
It was the quintessential “hybrid approach to teambuilding” move. Sure, there was a risk that you might have overpaid for a sugar-high when he bolts for another team, or that you could have just rolled with what you had and kept the pick and STILL have signed Josh Hart. But I don’t think that the “curb appeal” factor in acquiring a player like Hart at a modest price can be overstated, and gambling that you will ultimately keep him in the fold at a reasonable price is more than worth the risk.
It should also be kept in mind that at the time of the trade, the DAL pick seemed pretty likely to convey. That might have muddled the decision a bit, but it’s still a no-brainer even with the cost of not having a draft pick this year (and the DAL pick still has significant value as it will likely convey next year as DAL does everything it can to keep Luka in the fold.)
How much of the 40-1 odds reflects Randle being injured?
Otherwise, the Knicks don’t seem that far off from where the Mavs championship team was in 2011.
Knicks are 7th in SRS & Net Rating. Mavs were 8th in both. And those Mavs didn’t make any deadline deals to improve.
And most fans are euphoric when a player puts up all-star BPM numbers.
“They’re 40-1 to win the East. So how exactly did Josh Hart, even a flukish Josh Hart, move the ball? If they hadn’t traded for him, they’d be 45-1 to win the East?”
You are thinking about this the wrong way.
Adding Wilt Chamberlain to a bunch of boy scouts isn’t going to win the east either, but you do it because it’s a step to building a team that can win the east.
I’m obviously not comparing Hart to Wilt, but the questions you have to ask are whether he can be an important piece to a championship contender in the future (imo that’s a clear yes), will he be around long enough to match our potential window (yes), is he better than the player we likely would have gotten out of the draft given long term draft stats (imo yes). This was an easy yes before he far outperformed our expectations.
Also, let’s give them enough credit to have at least asked his agent whether he’d be willing to stay in NY long term before they pulled the trigger. It was probably better than 90% he was going to sign back, especially with Brunson here. And they already knew that.
what makes you think i am assuming or being certain of that?… IF he wants to come here there’s nothing stopping him from doing so…. he’s a free agent… his agent will take calls…. we dont need to trade every first rd pick under the sun to woo a free agent… it seems like everyone’s forgotten what happens during free agency where teams talk to players and make offers….
if we want to offer him 23 mm or something crazy… we could’ve done that! just because he’s on Miami doens’t mean his agent is going to hang up on every call.. oh we love it in miami… thanks but no thanks on any offers! is that really what you guys think was going to happen?
nobody is saying all of this WOULD HAVE happened… just that it was VERY POSSIBLE…. just like his agent could take calls and maybe detroit goes gaga over hart and goes crazy and offers 25mm…
it just seems like there’s a lot of simultaneous handwaving and assumptions to back this ‘highly unlikely’ scenario… even going so far as assuming hart’s inner motivations of which we know nothing about… the guy has made 50 million in his life and what exactly is he risking if he wants to go elsewhere to play with his buddy and ‘sacrifice’ 10-12m to do so? and win? and that he may not even need to sacrifice any money at all?
i know folks are probably fearful of the butterfly effect and that not trading for hart means none of this great stuff happens… but there is absolutely a world where we make the playoffs lose in teh first round and get hart anyway and we get to keep our pick… you simply have to handwave too many things and make a number of large assumptions in order to believe that can’t happen…
“the board ethos is to shit on RJ Barrett”
No, individuals on the board have independently concluded that RJ deserves to be shit on because he has played like a shitty player by every board-worthy analytical measure. There’s no board ethos involved, and evoking one comes across as self-serving.
But I’ll tell you what….why don’t you find some actual statistical evidence that RJ is worthy of not being shit on? I’d be happy to consider it, speaking for myself of course as always.
“The euphoria over Josh Hart is puzzling indeed”
The “euphoria” is about the Knicks making the playoffs and winning 47 games, including going 17-8 since he was acquired. It’s really just excitement about the return to playoff basketball. No one is planning for a tickertape parade because we have Hart in the fold. He’s a fun player to root for, and I’m glad we got him when we did at the price we paid.
And part of that euphoria is that if RJ continues to play like dogshit on both ends, there’s someone who knows what he’s doing to replace literally everything that he does at a higher level. Meaning that if you jacked Hart’s usage up to 26.2, I doubt that he couldn’t figure out a way to put up a higher than .531 TS% with more rebounds, more assists, more steals, more blocks, fewer turnovers, better on-off numbers, higher BPM, higher WS48, higher RAPTOR, etc. than RJ.
A bird in the hand is worth two in a bush, especially if that bird fits like a glove, plays like an eagle, and makes you better now.
In RAPTOR Hart is 31st — tied with LeBron James and De’Aaron Fox; while RJ is 237th — tied with Eric Gordon and David Roddy — out of 250 NBA players.
While many have already said what he’s done this year is undoubtedly not sustainable at that level, and I don’t really give RAPTOR much credit, it does make E’s comments rather, um, questionable. As Strat said, Hart is a great piece to the puzzle. Of COURSE he’s not going to single-handedly move us into chip position. There are about three individual guys that could.
But are there damn good reasons people here like Hart more than RJ? For reasons more than lockstep sheepdom?
Damn right there are.
Hart’s +/- has been through the roof since he arrived. He doesn’t chuck, plays good D, and is doing all the “glue guy” stuff you demand on a team that already has two volume scorers (and another guy who thinks he should be a volume scorer).
Reminds me of prime Jae Crowder, Nic Batum, that kind of guy.
I didn’t say there weren’t reasons that could be pointed to that would make someone prefer Josh Hart to RJ Barrett; I said that being euphoric over the acquisition of Josh Hart was contextually silly.
Honest question, what’s the point of being a fan of a team if the only thing that is acceptable is winning a championship? I’m an even bigger Yankees fan than Knicks fan and I enjoy rooting for them cause every year I know they’ll be good and worth watching and rooting for. Having a Knicks team win 47 games and be as fun and as competitive as they were with a pretty young team that should get better is something worth getting exciting about.
I feel like I am in the upside down world, arguing trading for a merc is ok.
“Honest question, what’s the point of being a fan of a team if the only thing that is acceptable is winning a championship?”
Remains a fair question, and the fair answer is that it’s not accurate that the only acceptable thing is winning a championship. The only acceptable thing is progressing toward winning a championship, and more tangibly, not doing asset-dissipating things that give you only short-term marginal wins while not appreciably increasing your championship odds.
With that said, there is some play in the joint of these odds, which is why I want to see the playoffs. They could come out of them looking much more like a championship-type team than they do right now. The right players would have to step up and the games would have to be won the “right” way, but it is within the realm of possibility. (*) That would change the analysis.
(*) And conversely, they could go 2021 Hawks series. But that’s why they play the games.
What Big Blue said. My son’s not a failure if he doesn’t become president of the United States (plus that’s got to be one of the worst jobs out there, but you get my point). If he decides to become a luthier, which he’s apprenticing to this summer, and is happy with it, more power to him.
If a team is rootable (not entirely filled with assholes, tries hard, plays ‘the right way,’ etc.); wins more than it loses; and has a pathway to even greater success, I’m happy as a clam. 96.7% of teams fail to win a chip every year. Being chip-only focused just seems like a sad, bitter way to be.
Being euphoric over Josh Hart is different from being euphoric over the acquisition of Josh Hart.
Owen, that depends on whether you classify Hart as a “merc” in the derogarory sense.
My feeling is that when you get beyond the point of rebuilding solely through the draft, acquiring “core components” of a contending team trumps sticking with rookie-scale players and renting out cap space. Once we invested long-term in Randle, Brunson, RJ and Mitch, and had IQ and Grimes establish themselves as key rotation pieces, filling in around them is not the same as acquiring mercs *instead* of those guys.
What Hart can do if re-signed is add flexibility in terms of acquiring stars. Now if you have to give up an IQ, or a Grimes, or a Mitch (or best-case scenario, an RJ) in a blockbuster trade for a star, in Hart you have a guy who fills in the blanks between star skillsets. Most contending teams seem to have some version of that player, if not more than one. Sometimes that guy actually is the star, like Jimmy Butler or today’s Kawhi Leonard (he was considered a complementary player with SAS early on) or Jrue Holiday.
In any case, I don’t think you can put him in the same “merc” category with Fournier or Bullock or Burks or Taj or DRose or Nerlens, neither in terms of fit nor timing.
This was such a loopsided trade that debating it is sort of funny.
Hart has played with offensive efficiency of Jokiq and defensive grit of Tony Allen which helped us get to a 5 seed and a legit shot at a 1st round series win.
He’s 28 yrs old and going into peak prime of his career with all the extra’s one can wish for. He plays the game the right way, sacrifices his body, is a good dude and wants to make NY his home. Kid is both genuine and sooo easy to root for.
I can’t think of a better bench rotation wing NBA player that I would replace him with. Extending Hart, Grimes and IQ this summer with 4 year deals is a no brainer, if you believe that Julius Randle and Jalen Brunson are the real deal. Money doesn’t matter. Let MSG investors have a couple of down years too. Way over the cap anyway so who cares.
Only thing this team needs is a championship caliber coach and to swap Obi & RJ + all the draft picks it takes to get a legit two way star wing player.
So I guess no matter how many times the difference between “chip only” and “sensibly progressing toward a chip and not doing things that actively get in the way of achieving a chip” is explained, people will still insist it’s “chip only” in order to score internet points and ascribe utterly non-existent “bitterness” to other people.
Through all of this, it still hasn’t been said any better than djphan said it on the day of the trade — didn’t think the day would ever come that KB would be celebrating trading first rounders to chase the 5 seed. (That they wouldn’t have even achieved but for the Nets’ meltdown.)
Josh Hart should age well I reckon. We’re getting his age 29-32 seasons if (when) we re-sign him. He plays great defense, isn’t a zero on offense at all, rebounds well and has the size and positional versatility you want from a modern wing. He’s an ideal fit for the current roster, and I’d start him next year and just roll with the Brunson-Quickley-Hart-Randle-Mitch lineup and call that the team for a while. If you can find a better wing to start over him, great, he’s a kickass bench player.
E, in an earlier life (a few months ago?) you were pretty adamant about chip or die. But even if you’re now a very “sensibly progressing toward a chip and not doing things that actively get in the way of achieving a chip” kind of guy, how is Hart not a part of exactly that?
“E, in an earlier life (a few months ago?) you were pretty adamant about chip or die.”
No, I never was that. I’m sure that was ascribed, but it was never true. Which is why I (and others) talked about things like Orlando being in better shape than the Knicks. Those rankings we did of teams “better off than the Knicks” weren’t remotely a list of “who was literally closest to a chip.”
Things like “chip or die” and “bitterness if they don’t win a chip” are nothing more than strawmen, typically thrown out there to avoid the issues raised.
Putting aside rootability and the fun of this year’s playoffs, in strictly analytical basketball terms, there are plenty of guys other than Josh Hart who fit the bill of “helpful bench guys to a championship-caliber team.” Believe it or not, it’s actually possible to — gasp — draft one.
I don’t think you qualify as a merc before 30. Hart is at Julius and Branson’s timeline, so he’s here to win while the two of them are in their prime. He’s a core piece.
Hey, maybe if we didn’t trade for Josh Hart we could hope to maybe end up with a guy who produces like Josh Hart in the draft!
Look, I promise I understand the value of getting cheaper players for surplus production, and I promise I understand that this team as currently constructed is not a contender and trading picks is in theory bad for non contender teams, but this discussion is getting very, very stale very fast.
Even the staunchest defenders of building through a value based approach that considers the contracts / assets and the marginal value they bring can watch the games and see the numbers and understand what Hart brings to a team.
I’ve long said I don’t give a damn if we overpay for players as long as they are good players, productive players. That’s what Josh Hart is. That is what Cam Reddish wasn’t. I think it’s as simples as that. Building a team that doesn’t have a mega star needs to be creatively and incrementally done, and this was a move that both impacted winning positively, and didn’t hinder at all any chance of trading or acquiring through other means the star we still need to make this a real contender. I just can’t hate the move.
Dude, you’re doing so much handwaving you might as well join mummenschanz
“I promise I understand that this team as currently constructed is not a contender and trading picks is in theory bad for non contender teams, but this discussion is getting very, very stale very fast.”
The two clauses in this sentence are at best logically inconsistent and at worst self-negating.
“and didn’t hinder at all any chance of trading or acquiring through other means the star we still need to make this a real contender.”
This is not accurate. Bare minimum, it definitionally vitiated the chance of drafting the star we still need with the draft pick traded away.
If you draft a Josh Hart, you gotta wait at least a few seasons for him to start Josh Hart-ing. Then there’s the non-zero chance that the Josh Hart-esque guy you drafted doesn’t pan out and instead plays more like a Cam Reddish. Then you’re kinda just out of luck.
I’m a big “draft good players with your draft picks and don’t trade the picks for magic beans” kind of guy, but what exactly are we debating here? We actually managed to find a good player at a reasonable cost. Josh Hart is probably the best argument in favor of the hybrid approach that I’ve seen in the 20 years we’ve been trying and failing to implement it.
“If you draft a Josh Hart, you gotta wait at least a few seasons for him to start Josh Hart-ing.”
The idea isn’t to draft Josh Hart; it’s to draft someone significantly better than Josh Hart.
“but what exactly are we debating here? ”
The euphoria over the Josh Hart acquisition and the marginal wins it allegedly generated.
My three questions to define this season are:
1) Are we better than in the previous season?
2) Do we still have assets to keep getting better (to contender or borderline contender status)?
3) Am i enjoying the season?
Josh Hart helped question #1 while he didn’t change question #2, so i liked the trade. The answer is yes on all three, and i’m happy for that. Of course i’ll need the team to not be humiliated in the 1st round like two seasons ago, to still feel this way. But i think they’ll win at least 2 games against the Cavs and from there whatever comes is a plus to me.
Yeah, I don’t know that I’d be real thrilled with a 4-2 first round loss given no first round pick and a team heading toward luxury tax territory once Hart is given his 18 and Quickley and Toppin are re-signed (or rolled over for more draft picks they’ll probably give away anyway.)
Not to mention that the loss would be to the team that beat them out for Spida.
So let’s hope that’s not the result!!
This is such a bizarre conversation.
Josh Hart very obviously made a team in the position the Knicks found themselves in at the 2023 trade deadline *more* likely to win a championship within the next, say, five years, than their 2023 first round pick did.
You can have a beef with the fact that the Knicks found themselves in that position (i.e. pot committed to trying to win as many games as possible), but it would’ve been incredibly bizarre to do so much to get to 45+ wins and then all of the sudden refuse to pay a relatively small price to get substantially better in the present. That’s what incoherence looks like.
Using the trade as an opportunity to re-litigate the larger strategy is bizarre because 1) we still have no idea how the larger strategy will pan out and 2) it’s not like refusing to trade for Hart would somehow put the Knicks on a vastly different larger path. We’d still have all of the other players who make us a pretty good team.
“Yeah, I don’t know that I’d be real thrilled with a 4-2 first round loss given no first round pick and a team heading toward luxury tax territory once Hart is given his 18 and Quickley and Toppin are re-signed (or rolled over for more draft picks they’ll probably give away anyway.)”
This front office group has basically screamed from the rooftops that their intention is to trade for a star. Even if all of this comes to pass, they’re well-positioned to do so.
Of course, I’m not going to credit them with trading for a star until they’ve traded for a star, but the idea that this team can’t get better because it’s capped out ignores a recent but long history of NBA star trades. It happens alllllllll the time.
the problem isn’t getting a guy like josh hart…. it’s that you still need a guy BETTER than josh hart…. i dunno where people think that we’ve reached the end of the road and that josh hart is that third banana piece…. but he’s not and won’t ever be and that’s the problem… trading picks for guys like that is only done when every other part of your team is figured out.. and the problem is that everyone is acting like it has been….
and yes we have picks and we have ammo for a star… but that window is not open forever and it’s unclear whether or not we can even land that guy (kawhi.. george) or that guy we even want (e.g lillard… lavine)… the only unanimous candidate to trade for is kawhi leonard… good luck with that!
and so yes.. hart is nice… but let’s not get too carried away on what he is.. he still comes off the bench… and he should have SOME impact… he’s basically your 7th man.. and last i checked nobody looked at their 7th guy as some crucial piece…
somebody like og anunoby could be… who everyone also universally loves but he was picked 23rd… and yes you probably wont draft og anunoby 23rd all the time… but you never get guys like those if you never try…. if we drafted reasonably well… we could rewind every rose move… and be left with two out of the three of haliburton.. bane and jalen williams… and these aren’t some miracle picks either.. these were all kb draft follower picks…. and we would be in a much better situation than we are today….
there’s been building for good years and building sustainably good teams… good years are 2021… but ask yourself how often you think about some of those miraculously good moments vs how badly it all ended? if it’s any reflection on how much we talk about it.. it’s mostly the latter right?
and yes we’re more sustainably good than past years… but we’ve been at this point before and if assets keep getting squandered then that outlook can quickly change… it even changes for teams that make all the right moves if you’re unlucky….
that’s why i’m so hard on this trade despite the results… that’s why i go hard on the incineration.. this stuff might not matter immediately but it has and will eventually….
“but what exactly are we debating here?”
Said the Grinch.
“This front office group has basically screamed from the rooftops that their intention is to trade for a star. Even if all of this comes to pass, they’re well-positioned to do so.”
Every team in the league could similarly “trade for a star.” I think I remember you saying this multiple times in the analytical era that seems to have ended.
“Of course, I’m not going to credit them with trading for a star until they’ve traded for a star, ”
The road to recovery often begins with a single step ….
“Josh Hart very obviously made a team in the position the Knicks found themselves in at the 2023 trade deadline *more* likely to win a championship within the next, say, five years, than their 2023 first round pick did.”
He “very obviously” did no such thing. Come on, man.
and another thing… nobody is raining on anyone’s parade just because they don’t like the hart trade… it’s a lot like the sabonis for haliburton deal scaled down…. the sabonis deal worked out wonderfully for the kings.. ecstatic that they have sabonis but still lamenting having to give up haliburton…. it hurts..
and no i dont expect anyone to lament giving up a late first seeing as how nobody really bat an eyelash about incinerating picks for absolutely nothing because we had roster spots taken up by alec burks and nerlens noel…. or forgoing more picks because you were a kemba walker away from the play-in…. but eventually that stuff hurts you….
that doesn’t mean you didn’t get ANYTHING… josh hart is obvioiusly something… but just like how most kings fan probably wish they gave up just about anything else for sabonis…. there’s definitely ways to get hart on this team than giving up a pick to pitch him for 3 months…..
“Bare minimum, it definitionally vitiated the chance of drafting the star we still need with the draft pick traded away.”
You mean the 100-1 long shot of that happening was vitiated away?
And remember, we’re not only talking about a superstar being drafted between 15-20, we’re talking about one who would be good immediately enough to give surplus value during his rookie contract.
There is a far, far greater chance that we will find that superstar that gets us over the top in a trade or free agency with the assets we have in picks and players on the roster….including Josh Hart….than drafting one at the spot we would have drafted in this particular draft.
***This is such a bizarre conversation.***
I’m glad I’m not the only one struggling through this thread.
I’d really like to see a poll about the Josh Hart trade, just to see how many people didn’t like the trade. So far i count 2.
At least dj is an actual (ph)an. I am not convinced E is anything but a troll. He’s really good at destroying a thread. He says he’s been to Knicks games, but … rooting for the Knicks?
And we’re reaching the point where everybody made their position clear about the Josh Hart trade, but hey, we have to talk about something, so carry on. I thought we’d be talking about Cavs’ weaknesses that we should exploit, about what our strategy should be and stuff like that.
E, are you worried about paying him ~18M or you think the the 23rd pick would have netted us the star wing player we seek before the draft? – We all know that the value of the pick goes down once you make the selecton of draft night.
If making and developing the pick into a championship level starting lineup during this Randle/Brunson window is your goal/strategy here than I’m not sure how that is realistic.
“I thought we’d be talking about Cavs’ weaknesses that we should exploit, about what our strategy should be and stuff like that.”
Yes, please. Where are ptmilo’s astute recommendations for Thibs, so coach doesn’t fuck up this series. You know Tom is reading us.
Here we are with the 7th best net rating in the NBA on the backs of not a single player getting paid anywhere close to the max, 5 out of 9 rotation players coming from the draft, no player in the rotation over 30, and all of our first round picks after this year plus 4 surplus protected first rounders reasonably likely to convey.
But we could have had Josh Hart AND Jalen Brunson AND those picks.
Well I guess we also could have blown one of those picks dumping Randle’s salary like some folks wanted to do before the season started, so I’ll have to take solace in that.
I appreciate that even if E is a troll, deep down, he’s KB-level articulate and much more tolerable to bobneptune et al.
Just stop numbering your posts, E. You can post as much as you want. No martyrdom here.
Last game, Breen (I think) casually mentioned our entire lineup on the floor at that moment came from our own draft picks. I wanted that trivia question: When was the last time we could say that?
As for jHart, I’ll concede that his glue seems *exactly* what we need especially bc IQ and Grimes have elevated their games. If their improvement is a mirage, though, our feelings may change.
“And remember, we’re not only talking about a superstar being drafted between 15-20, we’re talking about one who would be good immediately enough to give surplus value during his rookie contract.”
Giannis and Kawhi were drafted 15.
But in any event, Z-man doesn’t even understand his own argument. By his own account, Josh Hart was the difference between a play-in team and the 5 seed. Sans Josh, in Z-Man’s reading, they could have lost the play-in, been in the lottery, had a ping pong ball hit, and drafted Victor Wenbanyama.
(Now watch Z-Man retreat and say “Well, Josh Hart wasn’t the *only* reason they made the 5 seed.” Have to pick one, Z-Man.)
I’ve never thought the hybrid method was the best way of building a team, and I still don’t. But at least this iteration of this sub-optimal strategy is working out okay at the moment. We’re not watching Joakim Noah try to pinch-post-pass our way to glory with broken Derrick Rose and decline phase Carmelo Anthony taking all the shots.
I’ve enjoyed this season but I realize that this all could go to shit rather quickly. We may have just witnessed Brunson and Randle’s career years, and we really need those guys to be playing at their ceilings to even pose as fake contenders. Our big treasure chest of assets and first round picks isn’t really all THAT impressive. We’ll probably still need some sort of lucky break, like a star forcing his way here, if we really want to contend.
But in general, this isn’t a bad team. There’s some youth and some flexibility. We were 3rd in the league in offensive rating. Not having a draft pick this year is a bummer, and in general I don’t like Leon Rose’s approach to the draft at all. But hey, I’m entertained. Let’s see if we can make a bit of a run in the playoffs.
Dude this whole thread is just E getting in his shit talking before the playoffs so he can say I told you so unless we make the ECF.
Nah, I feel pretty comfortable saying that Josh Hart was probably worth at least 3 wins since he arrived. Are you seriously disputing that? That’s the difference between the 5th and 7th seeds. After getting him, we went on a 9-game winning streak which included beating both the Nets and Celts twice and the Heat. Hart was instrumental in nearly every win during that streak…is that even debatable?
The collapse of the Nets probably gifted us the 5th seed, but we finished in front of Miami fair and square. They had every opportunity to stay in front of us and couldn’t do it. Hart had something to do with that, no?
And I feel pretty comfortable in saying that without Josh Hart, a win in the play-in was far from a certainty. Would you feel confident that this team, with your personal fave Randle but without Hart ,would beat the Hawks at home? And if they lost that game, that they would then beat Toronto at home? We had lost to the Raptors twice and the Bulls *almost* twice before Hart.
And I never suggested that winding up in the lottery after losing in the play-in would be a favorable outcome….in fact, I think just the opposite…that it would have been hugely disappointing
It’s morning here and I’m just catching up on the thread. Is this such an analytical blog that no one read any of the puff pieces in the press about Josh Hart? The ones when he was just traded talked about how he has a wife pregnant with twins who was worried about the move, but happy it was to NY. The recent ones talk about how Hart is happy to be on a team that matters in the playoffs and how he’s never been on such a team before in his five NBA years. With this background does anyone really think he’d be easy to hire away from another team this summer if he’d been traded to someone else? And, given that Portland couldn’t afford to re-sign him, don’t you think they would have found someone to trade him to at the deadline rather than lose him for nothing?
***I wanted that trivia question: When was the last time we could say that?***
Did Gallinari, Chandler, Fields, TDDWTDD, and Rautins get to play on the court together in 2010?
Before that there was the Ewing, Gregg Anthony, Charlie’s Ward, Monty Williams, and Hubert Davis. I don’t think they kept lineup data back then though.
“Our big treasure chest of assets and first round picks isn’t really all THAT impressive.”
I don’t get what you mean by this. I don’t think our asset chest is any less favorable than that of the Suns or Cavs before they traded for Durant and Mitchell, respectively.
@Donnie, thx. It’s been a while 😉
Nice minutes there by Jalen (The Incineration) Johnson, who also guarded 1 through 5 on the defensive end.
We’ve been at a 56 win pace since we acquired Hart, 2 games off the best record in the league.
If you only want to count up to the last Miami game, perhaps the last game we played without a tanker or indifferent party, we’re on a 57 win pace.
The Knicks are good. I don’t buy this Ricky Bobby philosophy.
Aside from whichever Zeller that is who is giving out the Hannibal Lechter vibes, I actually rather like to watch both the Heat and the Hawks. And I like the Raptors too. The east-play in could be more interesting that the east first round.
Miami has no bench.
Lowry getting it done…
Z-Man, just wanted to let you know I’ll be rooting for Toronto to get the 8th seed! 😂
Heat would’ve been better off with Mitch and iHart tonight instead of Bam, what an awful game he’s having.
ATL has 19 ORebs…
“Z-Man, just wanted to let you know I’ll be rooting for Toronto to get the 8th seed! 😂”
lol although I would say that of the play-in teams, ATL and TOR are the most worthy playoff teams on paper.
Jimmy has missed a bunch of bunnies…
Another deadly OReb for the Hawks. This is over!
I haven’t watched a whole lot of the Hawks this year, so I don’t know what’s gone wrong for them during the regular season, but they are certainly looking formidable tonight. It would be cool if Quinn Snyder can fully realize this team just in time for the playoffs.
Jimmy Buckets needs a change of scenery
Fittingly, the absolute dagger is an OReb putback and 1.
“Jimmy Buckets needs a change of scenery”
Yeah, seems like their championship window just slammed shut.
Meanwhile, ATL-BOS becomes an interesting series. ATL has the size and the depth to be competitive with BOS. While rooting for Trae would be tough, I would root for pretty much anyone over the Celts.
Miami could really use a vet shooter, a young player like a top-3 pick, and quite a few picks.
Good for Trae Young. This Miami team is ass but must be nice for him
Minnesota playing some pretty good defense
I don’t want to jinx the Timberwolves, but I will say the following. If you compare lineups, the Timberwolves have KAT versus the Lakers having AD and they have Edward’s for scoring compared to LeBron on the Lakers. I’m really not sure the rest of the Laker’s lineup is any better than Minnesota’s. So even though the pundits seem to think the Lakers should win this one I think it’s a lot closer than that.
Certainly feels that way. Watching the Lakers lose wouldn’t kill me.
Austin Reeves is kind of an amazing story
I know that KAT’s rep here is that he doesn’t play D, put he’s looking like Gobert out there right now.
AD has been really sloppy
Edwards is underwhelming
Lebron was too. Looks a bit cooked
Father time.. but.. I would guess the king has some juice left for the 4th qtr…
KAT is dominating this game
Now Towns is in foul trouble and the Lakers are catching up.
I’m glad the games started so we can end this stale ass discussion, and instead laugh at the Heat for being ass and hope the Lakers choke against the Wolves without Gobert.
Mike Conley badly wants this win.
Kyle Anderson refuses to shoot under the basket…it’s embarrassing…
Even Cheryl Miller called him on it…
Lakers just have nothing on offense
Ok the Wolves have forgotten how to play basketball, what the hell is going on.
There have been some terrible plays on both sides honestly
Jesus this is some downright terrible basketball, it’s hard to watch.
Edwards looks awful
>>>>Miami could really use a vet shooter, a young player like a top-3 pick, and quite a few picks.
If only Riley would deal with us…Jimmy reunited with Thibs, a couple years to go for it, enough young players to retool after…
*** Jesus this is some downright terrible basketball, it’s hard to watch.***
Leon Rose has spoiled you.
Bring back the NCAA!!
Will Cheryl Miller please shut up…
It’s lunch time here so I gave in and am watching the last few minutes in my office. I was afraid I’d watch the Lakers catch up and they did. Wolves just went cold Now you can see LeBron knocking Prince over and Reggie Miller is trying to claim it isn’t a foul.
This is a fever dream, what the fuck!!!!
Andersen should be punched by Gobert again for that.
Say what you want about the Knicks, they never look this bad passing, probably because they never pass, but still.
I’m gonna call it right here and say that both teams in this game will win at max 1 game in the first round series unless the Nuggets and Grizzlies monumentally screw up.
Can’t believe I have to watch 5 more minutes of this garbage
Another 5 minutes! Just what Bruno was begging for!
In theory OT in single game elimination is exciting
Larry Moe & Curly starting OT for the Lakers
Lloyd & Harry in for Minnesota
Look, I can’t stop watching this train wreck, so I only have myself to blame lol. At least this has been entertaining.
I agree, both teams look terrible.
RJ Edwards having a rough game
Edwards has got to be injured, he’s 2-15 for the game now… absolutely awful
Is this a tragedy or a comedy? Both? This game is the gift that keeps on giving.
Reggie : is this what all the playoff games are gonna be like?
NBA fans: please god no.
Thibs consulting on inbound plays
Why are they praising Pelinka for getting MO BAMBA when the dude hasn’t played a single minute tonight?
Ugly…Lakers will be lucky to survive Memphis…
I forgot D’Angelo Russell was even on the Lakers. He must have played in the 24 minutes that I didn’t watch tonight.
Well, I wasn’t ever staying up for that but I am glad I didn’t