Knicks Morning News (2014.06.18)

  • [New York Times] San Antonio Spurs Use Language Barriers to Their Advantage (Wed, 18 Jun 2014 01:21:43 GMT)

    With eight players on the current roster born outside the United States, the Spurs have made a complicated game look easy by speaking a common language: top-flight basketball.

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    Mike Kurylo

    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).

    9 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2014.06.18)”

    1. Some Finals thoughts on the Heat:
      Lebron: If there was ever a case for MVP to go the losing team… He was the best player on the court by far, and anytime he went to the bench (few as those min were) there was a noticeable change in tempo on both sides. Add in that no one player on the Spurs particularly stood out.
      He’ll be unfairly maligned for losing, but aside from the nitpicking he did every reasonable thing you could expect from him.

      Bosh: Now here’s a guy who deserved a lot of the criticism that went Lebron’s way. For a supposed member of the Big 3, he had a very quiet series, taking only half the FGA of Lebron. There were times when Lebron was on the bench/fatigued when the Heat really needed Bosh to step up and take charge, but it never happened. In a way I think his high basketball IQ actually hurts him. He actually posted excellent efficiency and FG% numbers, but his usage rate/FGA were a joke. He barely if ever touched the ball on offense. And on an extremely top heavy team like this, that’ll kill you.

      Allen: A lot has been made of SA and the production of its veterans despite there advanced age, yet not nearly the same amount of attention was placed on Allen, the oldest player on the court. His rank of 4th in minutes was actually closer to 1st place Lebron than it was to the next spot down. Arguably no other player was hurt moar by the loss of Mike Miller and the seeming lack of a respectable NBA bench. It’s worth noting that while the Big 3 all saw there minutes go down from last years finals, Allen’s actually went up while playing with a shortened bench.
      In effect, at age 38, Allen was being asked to carry the same brunt of the load as the Big 3. Not surprisingly, Pop took advantage of this, punishing Miami’s tired defense. The loss of Miller and an effective Battier also meant, the Spurs were at times able to focus there entire perimeter defense solely on Allen, neutralizing his greatest (only?) strength.


    2. Wade: Now this is a case of the media narrative taking on a life of its own. Wade had an ok-ish series, equivalent in worth to Boris Diaw. Yet if you only read the media clippings, you’d think one of these players had an excellent series and the other an awful one. There are a couple of reasons for this, some fair some not. For starters, you never look as good as u do on a Championship winning team and never as bad as when your team turns out to be the loser, and that’s not really fair for either player. The other point is Wade is a max player and expected to do more. Certainly a valid point, all I would add is that just becuz a player under-performs his contract doesn’t automatically make his on-court contributions garbage.
      Which brings me to this, because Wade used to be a top 10 All NBA superstar! We view his current performance as disappointing. And yet becuz Diaw used to a 300lb All Fatty underachiever! We end up viewing his similar performance as a feel good story. The point being we should evaluate players on who they are, not on who they were or what we wish they would be. And in that regards Wade can still be an effective contributor, just not a Big 3! one.

      Chalmers/Cole: I always used to laugh off the Chalmers death stare on a cute intrinsic level. Six years in the league later, and it isn’t funny anymore. At least with an offensive black hole like Birdman, he knows his limitations and doesn’t try to do moar than he’s capable of. Not so, with either point guard. Far too often, even for the limited minutes they played, we’d see them hold onto the ball far too long, losing a passing lane, then force a horrible shot/wild drive to the basket on an expiring shot clock.
      These two are the anti-Spurs, marginal role players attempting plays far above their talent level.


    3. Rashard Lewis/ Chris Anderson: Over the course of an 82 game season, each can be a useful role player to a team, playing to their strengths. In a short tight series against one of the most elite coach’s the NBA has ever known, their deficiencies were exploited to the max. In Birdman’s case, Miami was left playing 4 on 5 offense far too often. Perhaps no one was hurt moar than this but Wade, the NBA’s deadliest shooter under the rim, oftentimes found himself swarmed by defenders unafraid to leave their man open knowing retribution would never cum. Conversely, Rashard was a total sieve on the defensive end, too slow to do much of anything but watch Spur player after player make highlight reels off him. He wasn’t the sole reason the Spurs offense steamrolled, but he was certainly a huge part of it.
      The end result being each player forced the Heat to play a 4 on 5 on at least one end of the court.

      Haslem: Just a reminder that while Mike Miller for reasons having nothing to do with basketball was waived. And that 4th man Ray Allen will essentially have to accept near league minimum to return. Udonis Haslem will be making $4.6 million to effectively sit his ass on the bench next year.

    4. Araton has a nice little piece in the NYT times about how Phil & Co. are ready to move on with or without Melo. Everything about the article made me smile (a little). Without Melo, we lose out in the short term, but we still stand to win in the long run. This feels tangibly different than Donnie Walsh’s regime – which was all about selling any and every player to get cap space for LeBron + another star and see how it works. Phil is already looking to build an entire team that can be successful with whatever star we get in 2015.

      I have finally gotten around to reading Araton’s book “When the Garden was Eden” and it’s been informative because now I know what Phil means when he says he is bringing back the glory of the “Old Knicks”. It means building a team around strong defense and an offensive system where stars share the ball with role players and role players make the game easier for the stars (And Phil has to see Cazzie Russel everytime he looks at JR Smith).

      For the first time this millennium, I am genuinely hopeful about our future.

    5. I don’t know about yal…but…
      We have Fish and hopefully some combination of Cartwright-Walton-Cleamons-Dunleavy as top assistants..oh and we got Lamar too (if he has anything left). I am ready to start a “Bring back World Peace” campaign as his skills and knowledge of the system works with this team. If Fish “decides” to implement the Triangle, the rumored Patty Mills targeting is a perfect fit. I believe PG’s like Mills-Hill-Chalmers (finals performance aside)- Vasquez-Jimmer would be GREAT triangle PG’s. I also thing Rivers can be converted to a really good triangle PG. All of them can be had except Hill. The only one out of the bunch I hope we don’t have a shot landing is Chalmers..Finals notwithstanding he is way out of our price range. I think Avery Bradley can be a nice triangle PG too. I’m starting to get anxious to see what moves Phil and Fish make on the roster and coaching staff over the next couple of months. Oh.. and I hope we keep Murry and let him run point in the triangle and see how he develops.

    6. “It means building a team around strong defense and an offensive system where stars share the ball with role players and role players make the game easier for the stars”

      That’s a nice way of putting things….

    7. With regard to the finals, I feel like LeBron was clearly the best player and he did all he could to help the HEAT win, but I wouldn’t say that he deserved to be the Finals MVP considering the margin of victory by the spurs is the highest in NBA Finals history.

      Back to the Knicks, I know many of you would feel that it’s fine if Melo leaves or that the team might be better off without him in the long run and that might be true, but I have a little bit of hope with Melo and LeBron teaming up together after next season. I know it is a long shot but I feel like New York can provide an opportunity for LeBron that no other city can.
      1. He can stay on the East Coast where it is less competitive and therefore increases the chances of him of winning every year
      2. He would receive a lot of money especially if he wins a championship with new york. Jersey sales, media, and can establish himself in a good financial position after he retires
      3. Phil Jackson
      4. LeBron would really benefit from playing in the Triangle, as well as Melo. Both guys can play all the positions offensively in the triangle.
      5. Melo is probably the second best player in LeBron’s age group and I feel like he would be a better compliment to LeBron than Bosh and Wade.
      6. Knicks will have the cap space to sign a 3rd above average starter/below average star. If Marc Gasol can somehow be had then the Knicks would be extremely dangerous
      7. Knicks got solid pieces with potential as role players. Potentially a lottery pick from 2015 and if not it should be in the late teens/early 20s. Along with pieces like Hardaway Jr., Shumpert (still have some hope for the guy), JR’s contract is extremely affordable as a 6th man and LeBron can only help him get more scoring opportunites.

      I know it is a long shot, but I think this is a better option for LeBron, as I think he still has 1 more shot for the championship with the HEAT, and that the Knicks don’t really have enough draft picks in the near futue

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