Knicks Morning News (2015.06.13)

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks prez Phil Jackson rolls into Vegas to scout Porzingis (Sat, 13 Jun 2015 04:46:40 GMT)

    With less than 2 weeks before the June 25 draft, Phil Jackson headed for Las Vegas on Friday to scout European prospect Kristaps Porzingis.

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    Mike Kurylo

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

    39 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2015.06.13)”

    1. OK..I’m gonna take 1 more stab at it. Monroe seems to be a lock..hopefully Phil won’t have to give him the max. So that makes a forward tandem of Monroe and Melo. I have no doubts about them meshing on offense, defensively they worry me. So my guess is Phil trades down for Cauley-Stein. How about drafting Porzingis for Sacramento and making the trade to gain assets? Wait..that won’t work because the only player I can see Phil interested in is Cousins. I’m not sure if I’d be happy with swapping picks and taking their 1st rounder in ’16 either. They have a great coach in George Karl- who is most likely gonna lead them to the playoffs so we won’t be getting a high pick. Then again, we don’t have any at all next season so it’s probably worth it. Then Phil can add role players on the cheap. I’d love to see Shved, Ledo, Cole, Lance Thomas, and Amundson all return. Cole, Thomas, and Admunson will add some grit while Ledo adds the unknown potential in the backcourt that a Mudiay would have offered. Shved will probably make TH2 expendable and maybe Phil can buy his way back into the 1st with TH2 and cash. I think I’d be ok with moves like that..or similar. Either way, I believe the Knicks absolutely should give a healthy Calderon a second chance and trade him at the deadline if he’s not fitting like the team would like. Regardless, we need another PG..so what PG’s are available late in the 1st?

    2. Pardon my French, but F##k Melo’s window. You should always pick the most talented player available. Period.
      Any way you slice it, this team isn’t winning anything until Lebron retires in 5 plus years, so just load up on young talent.

    3. DraftExpress put “swagger” under Strengths for D’Angelo Russell. Why are we doing this

    4. If Melo isn’t happy about the speed with which the team is progressing, he’s always welcome to force a trade :)

    5. the pick is going to theoretically be here long after melo so it’d be a mistake to go for fit as it usually is the case in the draft… i’ve followed the draft for a long time and i don’t remember a need pick ever panning out unless you count the penny for webber trade which you could argue penny was the better player for the first half of their careers…

    6. the pick is going to theoretically be here long after melo

      This is the Knicks. The draft selection will be traded for Brandon Jennings by 2017.

    7. Things are never neat. I think you have to weigh long term upside, the probability of achieving it, vs. Melo’s window.

      Suppose you have two players.

      “A” has a lot of upside and is 80% to achieve it, but he won’t be able to contribute for a couple of years.
      “B” has some upside and is about 70% to achieve it but he can contribute right away.

      I think you go with A.

      “A” has a lot of upside and is 50% to achieve it, but he won’t be able to contribute for a couple of years.
      “B” has some upside and is about 80% to achieve it, but he can contribute right away.

      This is closer.

      “A” has a lot of upside and is 20% to achieve it, but he won’t be able to contribute for a couple of years.
      “B” has some upside and is about 90% to achieve it, but he can contribute right away.

      I think you go with B

    8. “A” has a lot of upside and is 80% to achieve it, but he won’t be able to contribute for a couple of years.
      “B” has some upside and is about 70% to achieve it but he can contribute right away.

      Fuck building around Carmelo. If the next LeBron James were in this year’s draft and available at #4, you take him and ask Carmelo where he wants to end up, and let that team set the price for his overrated services.

    9. I agree. I love Melo..he can be a devastating scorer, and when the right players are around him- he can win. But if there were a player better than Melo available in this draft- even if he’s not projected to be there at 4- u do everything u can to get him. And Melo? He gone. LOL. Melo is the one superstar talent that HAS to be the guy at all times. Even when other players are in better positions to succeed..he HAS to have the ball. That’s what separates him from the Durants, the LeBrons and even the Michael Jordans. They recognize when other players are in better position and defer when necessary to win. Sure Melo can outscore most players easy, but he has a skewed idea of greatness. It doesn’t mean take every shot. It means making the best play possible at the moment. Unfortunately, our star is not wired that way. He’s wired to score, and score very well. Melo needs a LeBron, a Chris Paul, a Tim Duncan. If u can’t get that then u build around Melo the way Philly built around AI. Hell, at least AI gave the ball up..he just had no one to make plays. And AI was the consummate chucker. I’m not sure that Phil and company realize this. They keep trying to make Melo something he’s not. I hate to say it..but D’Antoni and Woodson had the best idea for Melo. Play him at the 4 and flood the floor with shooters and defenders. Hell, the team could have won a lot more last season with a starting 5 of Dalembert-Melo-Shump-TH2-Calderon. They never chose the route that worked for Melo, so it’s clear the team was thinking ‘tank’ the whole time. So, the question is for what? Are you gonna move Melo or build around him properly and go for it these next few years? Either way..we need to keep as many draft picks as possible because you hafta have one eye on the future. Honestly, there’s no one in the draft that will make that significant an impact with or w/o Melo, so this draft is more about the future. The real question/issue is who Phil spends $ on in free agency

    10. I agree that you don’t build around melo per se. But it’s not that easy. If player A and B are equally mysterious, but one is likely to play the same position you already have $100 million invested in, while B is at a different position, you go with B. But if A is clearly the most sure fire winner, you go with A, even if he is a clone of the guy you have. The Spurs didn’t hesitate to take Hakeem even though they had Samson, and the Spurs didn’t hesitate to take Duncan even though they had Robinson.

      There are numerous ways to rate players, and each has significant margin of error. So if two or moe different players rate similarly, and there is no way to compare them b/c they come from different leagues, conferences, etc,. why not factor in what you already have?

      In other words, we should take Zinger at all costs.

    11. I disagree that Melo always has to be the man. He just has a very specific idea of who he will allow to be the man over him. The list is very, very short, but it exists. Melo isn’t Kobe. Hell, I think he’d even defer to Kyrie Irving (“Oh?” you might say, “He’d defer to an All-Star point guard? How gracious of him!”). The issue is there aren’t any free agents out there that he’d defer to and Russell and Okafor are the only draft guys I think would have a chance of impressing Melo enough for him to slightly defer to them (he has already spoken about how much he’d love to play with Okafor). Towns, of course, would be awesome even with Melo remaining “the man,” just noting that I think he’d possibly defer to Okafor or Russell.

    12. i think brian’s right.. melo deferred in the olympics and that’s when he was at his best.. or most aesthetically pleasing…

      you can build around melo and win… if you’re anything less than a transcendant talent like lebron, duncan, kobe/shaq, jordan, hakeem et al… the window is extremely small for things to come together and flourish for a sustainable period of time… some of the lesser stars of our era have always had that same problem…

    13. On twitter is saw ws/48 numbers from the Eurocup. Zinger was like 35th. Some guys didn’t play much, so they’re better than that, but that still doesn’t excite me-and that was his best stretch of pro ball.

    14. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fjzdm1pSqjk

      Porzingis’ workout vid — I’ve been seeing some articles saying that LA and Philly are considering taking him. I really hope one of them does, not just because it means we’d be getting one of Towns/Okafor/Russell, but just so that if he DOES pan out, he wouldn’t be another one of those people New York stupidly passed on.

      But damn does he make the basket look low in that video.

    15. Fuck building around Carmelo. If the next LeBron James were in this year’s draft and available at #4, you take him and ask Carmelo where he wants to end up, and let that team set the price for his overrated services.

      I think the scenario you are upset about I said it would make sense to go with the player with more upside.

    16. @ 1 – If you can get Sacramento’s 1st round pick next year to swap 4 for 6, I think the Knicks must do it. However, I doubt the Kings would be so dumb to make that trade unless they covet Mudiay or WCS. I also disagree that the Kings will make the playoffs next year. They have to climb over the Thunder & Suns both who did not make the playoffs so if that trade was made, the NYK will be getting a lottery pick in 16.

    17. @ 13 & 14-
      That’s exactly what I mean. You hafta be the right type of player at the right position for Melo to defer. I don’t even think that he’d defer to Durant. But I could be wrong. But it speaks to how you should build around Melo. It can be done, but realistically the Knicks have no shot at getting a player Melo would defer to, so u trade him or make him THE MAN flat out. Even if that means moving him to the 4 full time and letting him take 25-30 shots a night. Ironically, the last time the Knicks did that, they won 50+ games.

      @18-
      I was kinda thinkin Sacto might actually covet Porzingis to play the 4 alongside Cousins. Which could be a pretty frickin awesome if Porzingis is really that good. And that would presumably allow Phil to have a frontcourt of WCS-Monroe-Melo, which doesn’t sound too bad, and saves money for a run at next year’s free agents. Maybe a sort of passing of the torch thing from Melo to Durant. As much as Durant loves Westbrook and playing for OKC, I believe OKC is definitely Westbrook’s team. And With Serge Ibaka there, I see it being much easier for Presti to build around Westbrook than getting the most out of a Durant/Westbrook tandem. But that’s my opinion. Either way, Westbrook is that good. So what I’m saying is Presti may be more willing to let Durant leave than he is on Westbrook. No chance in hell Westbrook leaves OKC

    18. Also, @18 again..
      Don’t underestimate what Karl can turn that team into. I think he has the weapons to “shock the world” for lack of a better phrase. The Pelicans are likely taking a step back this season, even if it’s a half one. They still have Gordon and Tyreke Evans to sort out. Not to mention a spot for Ryan Anderson to play. They may hafta move him to get a better fit in that lineup. I don’t think they should sacrifice Asik to make room for Anderson. Also, Dallas is likely taking a step back with possibly losing their starting backcourt even though they may steal DeAndre Jordan. Between those 2 possibilities, that gives a coach like George Karl plenty of opportunity to work his magic. I wouldn’t count the Kings out..yet

    19. Getting WCS and a likely (we’ll agree to disagree) lottery pick in ’16 is best case scenario in my opinion.

      Presti may build around Westbrook if Durant refuses to resign in OKC but they will move heaven and hell to try to resign KD.

    20. Pelicans won 45 games last year to grab the 8th seed. The Kings won 29 so they would have to improve by 16 wins to get into the conversation. I agree about Dallas and think they, rather than NO, is more likely to drop like a stone. They have a lot of work to do in the off-season and are without their 1st round pick in ’16 to use as trade fodder. OKC will grab their spot in the top 8. The Kings are chasing the Hornets and I guess the Blazers if they lose Aldridge and Matthews.

      Karl is a nice coach but the Kings don’t have that much talent beyond Cousins. Gay is a nice player and they will be bringing in a top 6 guy but they don’t have much else.

    21. Smart guy like Presti..with Westbrook, and young assets and depth, probably should talk S&T with Durant once his deal is up. Or move Durant to San Antonio right now in a S&T move involving Leonard and a 1st rounder. Win-Win.

    22. Then SAS is in the exact position that OKC would be. Based on all I’ve heard (admittedly not much), Durant wants to test FA. He has not ruled out resigning in OKC but wants to be wooed by a number of teams. Trading for KD without assurances that he will resign may be difficult to swallow especially if you are trading a talent like Kawhi.

    23. With a full offseason, I think Karl can do it in Sacramento. I think he’ll get the most out of Cousins and Gay, and McLemore and Stauskas will develop under him. I also think he will find the best way to use a guy like Derrick Williams. I probably believe in Karl’s coaching skills than a lot more people, but that doesn’t negate the fact that he’s a really good coach. Speaking of coaches..I wonder where Thibs is gonna end up. Any chance he’ll choose a lead assistant’s role for a year or 2 over sitting out? If so, wouldn’t it be awesome to see Rambis or Cleamons moved out for Thibs? Or even saying “sorry Fish, you’ll be a fine coach but you’re just not the right guy to get the most out of Melo’s time here”, and hiring Thibs- but keeping the triangle assistants so that some semblance of an offensive system would still be taught? NO should have paused on Gentry and gone after Thibs.

    24. If you can get Sacramento’s 1st round pick next year to swap 4 for 6, I think the Knicks must do it. However, I doubt the Kings would be so dumb to make that trade unless they covet Mudiay or WCS. I also disagree that the Kings will make the playoffs next year. They have to climb over the Thunder & Suns both who did not make the playoffs so if that trade was made, the NYK will be getting a lottery pick in 16.

      Sacramento ownership does give off an impatient vibe. They seem to want to see immediate results. They may go for a swap up if that’s their best route (ie, not confident that they can compete in FA market).

      I think the west could shift a lot next year. Memphis is an old team and if Gasol goes, so goes their system, no? Also, Portland is kind of at a cross roads, as are Dallas and San Antonio. I think the Kings can compete for a playoff spot (at least I think it’s possible management can convince themselves that it can).

      But, that said, unfortunately the Kings can’t do a #4 for #6 + 2016 1st rounder because they already owe next year’s pick to Chicago. (The earliest pick they can trade is, I believe, their 2019 pick)

    25. Thanks, Z. Debate over. The Kings are NY West.

      What roster would you rather have? Basically, which team is in better position to put together a “contending” team? At this point, I would choose the Kings because I’d rather have Cousins over the next 3-5 years than Melo.

    26. kings aren’t in the greatest position and mostly because they are in the west… gonna be a wild offseason for most of those teams but some combination of the mavs, hornets, blazers, grizzlies and spurs could conceivably drop out but probably not all at once .. they have a puncher’s chance at it…

      the roster is filled with bad team all stars.. mclemore.. williams..gay.. and what they really need is another player to take shots away from gay and move everyone down a notch… that could come in a trade or the draft but outside of that happening.. it’s not likely…

    27. Thanks, Z. Debate over. The Kings are NY West.

      What roster would you rather have? Basically, which team is in better position to put together a “contending” team? At this point, I would choose the Kings because I’d rather have Cousins over the next 3-5 years than Melo.

      It’s not that bad in Sacramento. The reason they are precluded from trading their 2016, and 2017 1st rounder is because of lottery protections on the pick they owe Chicago (they’ve owed it since 2011 when they acquired JJ Hickson from Cleveland). It’s protected 1-10 in 2016 and 1-10 in 2017. Then it turns into a 2nd rounder if still unpaid. So it handcuffs their leverage because they’ve managed to stay within the protection range since 2011 (which is either a good thing or a bad thing, depending on how you look at it:)

    28. I don’t even think that he’d defer to Durant.

      Melo deferred to Chauncey billups and people are here saying he wouldn’t let KD shine? Huh? You guys know Melo is 31 right and he knows this. You guys kill me with this. Melo hit fatty Felton for a game winner before so he’d defer smh. He went out of his way to force feed stat anytime he was healthy for god sakes

    29. Melo deferred to Chauncey billups…Melo hit fatty Felton for a game winner…He went out of his way to force feed stat anytime he was healthy

      By “defer” I think people mean “stand in the corner and shoot three pointers”.

    30. By defer, I mean let someone else be option #1..pass the ball for a few shots. When did Melo EVER defer to Chauncey Billups or Felton???? LOL I don’t recall those guys bein the first option on any teams with Melo..or any NBA team for that matter. The only time Melo has played off of someone was in the Olympics!!! Why? BETTER WEAPONS AROUND HIM. Don’t get me wrong, er..I’m not sayin Melo isn’t a team guy and I’m just not bashing him. I’m just stating the facts about Melo. He has to be that guy for this Knicks team, because LBJ or CP3 or a dominant big man is not walking through that door. Hell..NBA players pass all the time, so I guess the whole league is “deferring”. Please don’t confuse a few passes as deferring.

    31. pass the ball for a few shots

      Guess I should’ve proofread..that was supposed to say “not simply pass the ball for a few shots”

    32. This can’t be helpful:

      Embiid May Have Another Issue with Injured Foot
      Saturday, June 13
      Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski reported Embiid has another issue with his right foot, which initially kept him out of action for his rookie year:

      After weeks of rigorous workouts, Embiid had not felt pain in the foot, but a recent CT scan revealed an issue in the healing process, sources said. Philadelphia is consulting with doctors on how to best proceed, and it’s still premature to speculate on the possibility of another surgical procedure that could sideline Embiid, sources said.

      Wojnarowski added that Embiid may not be healthy enough to participate in the 76ers’ summer league games as was planned.

      Sixers general manager Sam Hinkie released a statement on the situation (via Michael Preston, the team’s director of public relations):

      It’s still way too early to say how serious this development is regarding Embiid’s potential return to the court. How Philadelphia approaches the 2015 draft might, however, be a barometer for how confident the organization is in his recovery.

      If Philly goes with big man Kristaps Porzingis or trades down for Willie Cauley-Stein, Myles Turner or Trey Lyles instead of a guard like D’Angelo Russell or Emmanuel Mudiay, then that could signify the internal concern surrounding Embiid is very real.

    33. I think the Zinger is the perfect guy to replace Embiid, Philly! Go get ’em!

    34. Man, that’s bad news for Philly. Not sure how it will affect things for us, but definitely juices up the rumor mill.

    35. I just re-watched Schmitz’s Russell “weaknesses” video. Don’t these present some really serious red flags? I mean, he’s not gonna become much more athletic, so the finishing at the rim issues might not be solvable. That’s a pretty big deal, no?

    36. Yeah Russell is not the sure thing everybody is making him out to be. He might as well play one-armed because he’s unable to dribble or go right. That might fly in college but not in the NBA. And he didn’t get to the line nearly as often as one would have hoped. Not to mention defensive question marks.

      That said Z-Man, our boy Zinger’s got a couple of major red flags. When I looked at photo of 19yo Noah, he appeared, though thin, to be the type to fill out. Zinger strikes me as maybe the type who could go on the Eddie Curry or Michael Sweetney diet and never gain a pound. We need Popeye not Olive Oyl. And I warned everyone to stay away from Embiid so my medical credentials are unimpeachable :). The second concern is his overall awareness/vision which might manifest itself in his abysmal passing rate. Almost every great player’s got this. What really concerns me here is that he played at the 1 for awhile in his early years – wouldn’t you expect a higher passing rate?

      My guess is Phil will select WCS unless he is blown away by some trade down offer or existing NBA player offer. Having camped out at Kentucky practices, NYK should have a good read on his intangibles like work ethic and personality. Equally important, he’ll have to be able to knock down mid-range shots so as not to smother Monroe’s post game (like Drummond did). In a private workout, I’d try to simulate real-time shooting to ensure this. Though I still prefer Zinger, I would be fine with this selection paired with Monroe if the intangibles and outside shooting are OK:

      > rim protection
      > two offensive rebounders (Phil mentioned he likes to send 2 or 3 to the offensive boards)
      > Monroe will cover any defensive rebounding issues
      > two mobile bigs able to handle most small ball lineups
      > able to get out on fast break
      > more NBA-ready than anybody except Kaminsky

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