Knicks Morning News (2014.04.01)

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks Insider: No Amar’e no problem vs. Jazz (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 05:51:12 GMT)

    Amar’e Stoudemire was held out of Monday’s game against the Utah Jazz, a decision Stoudemire claims was made before the West Coast trip that concluded with two games over 24 hours. Mike Woodson, though, said the veteran power forward was experiencing knee soreness.    

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks beat Jazz to keep pace, remain one game back (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 05:51:01 GMT)

    The Knicks completed a successful West Coast trip, gained ground on the Atlanta Hawks but in the process they may have lost Tim Hardaway. The rookie limped off the court in the final seconds of Monday’s 92-83 victory over the Utah Jazz with a left ankle leg injury.    

  • [New York Daily News] Brown hopes Woodson doesn’t suffer same Knicks fate (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 05:42:15 GMT)

    Jim Dolan couldn’t get rid of Larry Brown fast enough nearly eight years ago after one disastrous 23-59 season. But the nomadic head coach, unlike the Knicks, has a real chance of winning a championship at Madison Square Garden this season.    

  • [New York Times] Spurs’ Streak Hits 18 With 103-77 Win at Indiana (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 07:40:01 GMT)

    Gregg Popovich may be the only guy who can stop San Antonio right now.    

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Spurs’ 18th Straight Win Helps Heat Pass Pacers (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 04:31:56 GMT)

    Tony Parker scored 22 points against the Indiana Pacers on Monday night, helping the San Antonio Spurs to their 18th straight victory, a franchise-record.    

  • [New York Times] Grizzlies Hold On to Beat Nuggets, 94-92 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:58:01 GMT)

    Zach Randolph had 20 points and 11 rebounds, Mike Conley added 19 points and the Memphis Grizzlies kept pace in the playoff race with a 94-92 win over the Denver Nuggets on Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Knicks 92, Jazz 83: Erratic Knicks Linger Just Outside a Playoff Berth (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:55:38 GMT)

    The Knicks, despite inconsistent play, beat the Jazz on Monday and are in contention for the final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference in part because the Atlanta Hawks have lost 20 of 27 games.    

  • [New York Times] Knicks Beat Jazz 92-83 to Finish 3-2 Road Trip (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:43:00 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony scored 34 points on 11-of-19 shooting, and the New York Knicks pulled away for a 92-83 victory over the Utah Jazz on Monday night that kept them one game back of the final Eastern Conference playoff berth.    

  • [New York Times] Bobcats Battle Back to Top Wizards 100-94 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:40:05 GMT)

    Al Jefferson laughed when told he finished three stitches shy of a triple-double.    

  • [New York Times] Heat Move Atop East, Beat Raptors 93-83 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:09:59 GMT)

    For the first time all season, the Miami Heat are alone atop the Eastern Conference.    

  • [New York Times] Spurs Beat Pacers 103-77 for 18th Straight Win (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 03:06:57 GMT)

    San Antonio is steamrolling its way into the playoffs. Indiana can’t even figure out what’s wrong.    

  • [New York Times] Millsap, Williams Lead Hawks Past 76ers, 103-95 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 02:58:01 GMT)

    Lou Williams is out of the doghouse. Good thing, because the Atlanta Hawks really needed him Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Cousins Leads Kings Past Pelicans, 102-97 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 02:58:00 GMT)

    DeMarcus Cousins had 35 points and 14 rebounds, and the Sacramento Kings snapped a three-game skid with a 102-97 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Dunleavy, Bulls Shake Off Celtics for 94-80 Win (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 02:43:02 GMT)

    Mike Dunleavy had 22 points to lead five Bulls in double figures and Chicago broke open a close game with 13 straight points at the start of the fourth quarter to beat the Boston Celtics 94-80 Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Blake-Less Clippers Beat Timberwolves 114-104 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 02:31:03 GMT)

    Darren Collison had 28 points and seven assists, and the Los Angeles Clippers didn’t miss a beat with Blake Griffin out with a back injury in a 114-104 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Monroe, Pistons Rally Past Bucks 116-111 (Tue, 01 Apr 2014 02:25:08 GMT)

    Greg Monroe had 28 points and 14 rebounds and the Detroit Pistons ended a three-game skid with a 116-111 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night.    

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    Mike Kurylo is the founder and editor of His book on the 2012 Knicks, "We’ll Always Have Linsanity," is on sale now. Follow him on twitter (@KnickerBlogger).

    22 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2014.04.01)”

    1. Another point about yesterday’s conversation re: do you want to make the playoffs…

      I think it’s pretty clear that if Indiana continues their malaise they will not be the 1 seed. So either they straighten themselves out (and a straightened out Indiana beats in 5 games tops) or they don’t and we get humiliated by Miami, which could potentially make Melo want to leave (and I know some of you think that’s a good thing, but I don’t).

      HOWEVER, the best reason for making the playoffs was presented to me by a friend this morning via email:

      To enhance the value of our players. What if (somehow) JR or Felton have a really good series?? They can be traded on draft night for picks, young players and one-year expiring contracts. Look what Jerome James did for his market value in one playoff series (which his team lost). What if Chandler mans up and takes care of business against Hibbert, or controls the paint against Miami like he did in the Finals? The package a contender will give you for him this summer gets a whole lot better

      Now, he’s a little nuts thinking we could get a pick or a young player for Felton. If we could get rid of him I would be thrilled. And it’s a long shot that Felton has a good series and an equally long shot that Tyson mans up for a playoff series, but it is a shot. And JR is playing well. If he has a great series against Miami or Indiana, maybe JR at 2 years, $12mm (with a player out after 1) looks attractive to someone and we can get out of a bad contract and maybe even restore some of our 2nd round picks.

    2. To enhance the value of our players.

      Honestly, I don’t see it. Not because our players can’t have a great series (JR in particular, his high-variance game might prelude to a great series, something around 20ppg, 3apg, 3rpg, 50%fg, 38%3pts), but because front offices that make such bad moves are increasingly less in the league. Jerome James and Jim McIlvaine and so many others got overpaid because of old-school GMs, who tried to sell names and numbers to their fans when the fans could only look at basic stats.

      Right now I could see only Hammond (Bucks), Dumars (Pistons, he’s gone in a few weeks), Griffin/Gilbert (Cavs, only because of Gilbert, it seems Griffin has some respect around the league), Demps (Pelicans), Sanders (Wolves) and King (Nets!) as guys who could roll the dice on high risk/low reward moves like those, and only because their ownership has no patience/competence to wait for a proper rebuild. Anyway, I think that nobody in that group would be willing to deal us young players for JR or Felton. I can see something like this: Jr and Felton to the Wolves for Barea and Shved. Do you really want to make this trade? (Actually, maybe I do. Shved is a good player if put in the right system and Shved and Barea have 1 year less in their contracts). Or maybe Felton/Smith for Mayo. Meh.

      Chandler, on the other side, could be traded, but only because his contract is expiring in 2015. Sadly there’s no contender with cap space and assets to give us what we want. Only second rounders and bad players.

      Anyway, none of this would be because a great series, even if we had one. We’re in New York, folks. Who gets marked as a fool here carries that mark around the league. You can’t sell anyone on the prospect of getting a knucklehead and a penguin who might or might not be convicted for armed assault.

    3. Evaluate this suggestion (assuming Garnett retires): Chandler, Bargnani and Stoudemire and THJ to Brooklyn for Johnson, Lopez and Thornton. I can’t think of something more Knicksy.

    4. Re: why the Pacers are slumping since the All-Star break — look no further than Paul George, who has shot 37% over the last 25 games, and Roy Hibbert, who has averaged 9.9 points on 43% shooting and a Bargnani-esque 5.1 rebounds a game over the same time period. For the season, Hibbert is averaging only 6.7 rebounds in over 30 minutes a game, which is pretty brutal.

    5. Did you read about Hibbert calling his teammates selfish (hint: he was very possibly pointing at Paul George)? Interesting locker room drama in Indiana. I have to say that at this point I wouldn’t be surprised if they did self-combust. When teams start doing dirty laundry in public, it’s a sign the coach is slightly losing his grip. Maybe the presence of Danny Granger meant way more than his pedestrian basketball contributions?

    6. Hibbert is a clown. He’s averaging 6.9 rebounds per game this season as a 7’2 center and is putting up a robust 51.4 TS% and a 45.5 eFG%. For his career he is now at 51.5 TS% and 47.1 eFG%. His defense has slipped noticeably which maybe is just the grind of the season and a general malaise setting in, but at this point it’s safe to say Hibbert is a terrible offensive player and that last year’s playoffs were probably a prolonged Jerome James-like aberration. In March (a brutal 18 game month for the Pacers), Hibbert put up a 42.2 FG% and 49.2 TS%. Why he is demanding more shots and touches is beyond me.

      I think a lot of the Pacers struggles are from fatigue from this season and the heavy minutes load finally taking a toll on the starting 5 from the past 2 seasons. This has been apparent when watching them, particularly on the offensive end where there is little to no movement off the ball. George is a really good two-way player, but he is not an elite scorer at this point and the fact that he has to generate a majority of his looks off of vanilla PNR’s, PNP’s and isolations which a lot of the league is now accustomed too is not helping him at all over the past couple of months.

      Lance has become a sort of scapegoat, but he’s the one guy on their team who has shown an ability to get to the rack, score efficiently and get other guys involved (I just vomited in my own mouth for complimenting Born Ready). Hill and West are good at shooting and solid defensively, but they do not have the ability to lift the scoring burden and generate their own looks consistently. They are still a tough matchup for Miami because they nobody who can body Hibbert, but any team with a couple of bigs that can make life difficult for him offensively and can pull him out of the paint defensively (like the Spurs) they will have a very tough time beating. Toronto or Brooklyn in the second round I think would give them a very tough time.

    7. Did you read about Hibbert calling his teammates selfish (hint: he was very possibly pointing at Paul George)? Interesting locker room drama in Indiana. I have to say that at this point I wouldn’t be surprised if they did self-combust. When teams start doing dirty laundry in public, it’s a sign the coach is slightly losing his grip. Maybe the presence of Danny Granger meant way more than his pedestrian basketball contributions?

      @ Farfa

      I believe it was referred to both Paul and Lance to a lesser extent. PG can get a little selfish when his shot is not falling and forces the issue. Lance although unselfish with the ball can get too fancy with his dribble and hoists bad mid-range shots when he thinks hes feeling it, which can be frustrating for any teammate.

      Yesterday there was an instance where PG and West were arguing over a pass. It seemed rather petty and PG kept going on while West dejectedly walked off to the FT line since he was fouled on the play after the George pass. PG also argued with Scola after a play and Scola walked away in a manner similar to West.

      I think their is a power struggle in the locker room. PG wanting to be ‘The’ guy and veterans like West are trying to steer the team to the collective mentality that they seemingly had when they were winning.

    8. Also losing Granger definitely has had an effect on this team. Turner is a shitty version of Stephenson and while Granger wasn’t very efficient anymore he played within himself and got other guys involved. He also had the ability to bang with 4’s when required and understood and adhered to the defensive scheme. Turner brings none of that to the table and is an extremely low IQ player, plus he’s a Buckeye so fuck him.

    9. @ lavor

      The game v the Spurs was atrocious from Indiana’s pov. Their spacing was nothing short of putrid. Half-hearted cuts and soft screen setting was prevalent yesterday. Nothing like the team from the seasons dawn, and I agree with you. Fatigue seems to be a big part of it, the defensive intensity they showed early on is not there and rightfully so. It’s very difficult in any sport to play that way over the course of the season.

      Lol Turner is shitty, I used to like his game in college when he didn’t have the body type of San Antonio women according to Barkley. His demeanor on the court is of one who doesn’t give two shits if his team loses and it shows defensively.

    10. The upside to the Pacers’ nosedive is that they are now positioned to play the winner of a Raptors/Wizards series rather than the winner of a Nets/Bulls series.

    11. It’s funny. All summer long my primary cause of optimism for the Knicks was that people were vastly overstating how improved the rest of the East was. I railed all summer against that stupid argument.

      Pierce and Garnett were going to remake the Nets.

      Derrick Rose was going to be healthy.

      Paul George & Roy Hibbert were going to become stars and sustain it all year.

      All bunk. Like we thought. Unfortunately, it’s kind of impossible to enjoy all them being wrong because we cast our lot with Woodson, Bargnani, Felton, and JR.

    12. @Hubert, yeah just imagine if last years Knicks were playing the competition in the east this year! We’d all be pretty excited about the playoffs….

    13. Damn, just realized that we can’t tie Atlanta because only conference games are left. So the most realistic scenarios for hope is for them to go 3-6 and us to go 4-3, or them to go 4-5 and us 5-2. Both seem pretty unlikely. Seems like we’re doomed to go 4-3 and them 4-5 and for us to lose on the tiebreaker. That would be a fitting end to this Greek tragedy of a season.

    14. I think the 2 biggest games for the Knicks are the next 2. If they win those they will finish at least 5-2. Remember 3 of the final 4 games are vs Raptors and Nets who will probably be resting guys especially in those final 2 games (Knicks also have 4 days off in between games at Miami and Toronto). Kyle Lowry might be out for a bit after injuring his knee last night.

      I know I shouldnt be but Im pretty confident the Knicks can and will finish at worst 5-2. It would be nice if 4-3 would be enough but asking the Hawks to have to finish 3-6 might be too much.

    15. Damn, just realized that we can’t tie Atlanta because only conference games are left. So the most realistic scenarios for hope is for them to go 3-6 and us to go 4-3, or them to go 4-5 and us 5-2. Both seem pretty unlikely. Seems like we’re doomed to go 4-3 and them 4-5 and for us to lose on the tiebreaker. That would be a fitting end to this Greek tragedy of a season.

      Yeah, that was a great point by the poster David last night. That is definitely rough news, but I think the Knicks can win 5 of their next 7 but more importantly, I think the Hawks can definitely go 3-6 or worse.

    16. I really like that Brooklyn won last night. Gives them less to play for Wednesday night.

    17. Do the Knicks seriously get a freakin’ week off between the Heat game and the first Toronto game? Sunday to Friday? Are you kidding me? Who designed this schedule?

    18. Will be very interesting to see what lineup Woodson throws out there tonight with Timmy maybe out and the Nets playing small. I think you need to play the lineup that’s been working (Amare at the 4) and force the Nets to double Amare in the post. It might mean Pierce goes off on the offensive end but when the offense turns I to Pierce isos that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

    19. The key for tonight’s game is to not give up a lot of easy transition points. The Nets will run, especially when Pierce is at the 4 and Plumlee is at the 5. Additionally I’d be worried about somebody like Teletovic going off from three versus Pierce, Johnson or Williams since I think the Knicks will end up over helping. Livingston is a nightmare matchup for us. This might be a game where Murry should get some burn since Felton is going to be getting rocked.

    20. The Nets have become a pretty damn good team. Hopefully they really celebrated clinching a playoff spot

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