Knicks Morning News (2015.07.04)

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Pro Basketball: Becky Hammon Will Coach in N.B.A. Summer League (Sat, 04 Jul 2015 04:02:29 GMT)

    Hammon will be the first woman to be the head coach of an N.B.A. summer league team.

  • [New York Times] On College Basketball: Road to N.B.A. Is Taking Detour Around College (Sat, 04 Jul 2015 01:08:32 GMT)

    While it is still too soon to tell whether Emmanuel Mudiay’s journey through China to the N.B.A. draft marks the beginning of a trend, some young players might be lured by the riches associated with playing overseas as the N.C.A.A. sorts through legal battles.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks agree to deal with Robin Lopez, add Derrick Williams (Sat, 04 Jul 2015 05:29:29 GMT)

    New York basketball is about to get a double dose of giant, comic-book loving centers.

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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).

    155 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2015.07.04)”

    1. I’m kind of happy about Robin Lopez, and I’m looking forward to rooting for Money Zingis (won’t give up on that one), but I think there is way, way too much optimism about this offseason. Just to put a fine point on it:

      The two seemingly small contracts plus options the Knicks gave Afflalo plus Williams are exactly the size of the two contracts that Hinkie took from Sacramento in Landry and Thompson. He not only got a first rounder for that, but he also got two 1st round swap options (which can be hugely valuable) AND Stauskas. What’s amazing about that is that it’s not at all obvious that Afflalo and Derrick Williams are likely to better players than Jason Thompson and Carl Landry over the next two years. And even if they are, it will be meaningless to the Knicks who (1) will be bad this year anyway (2) only have options for year two. These are extremely low benefit moves for a franchise in our position. And the idea that guys like this on one year deals help attract future free agents to the Knicks seems kinda nuts.

      The Knicks might now have $20m of 2016 cap space spoken for by Afflalo, Calderon and Williams. They will have another $42m or so take up by Melo, Lopez, and the two rooks. If the cap is $89 million, that would leave ~$27m across 6 slots. This is just to point out that these options and Calderon’s contract are not trivial in the scheme of things. It seems crazy to have been in intense salary dump mode and yet still run a risk of struggling to even get to a $25 million second-tier max salary for Mike Conley. Small, stupid risks add up.

      Also… Winslow!

    2. In regards to Calderon, I think (maybe erroneously) that trading him now would be a mistake. The Knicks always seem to trade their assets at their lowest value. Trading him now would be another example of trading him at the bottom. I know there are people out there that say he is on the downslide, but last year was an injury riddled year for him while learning a new system. Maybe this is wishful thinking on my part, but a healthy Calderon, with better knowledge of the system can turn it around enough so that he returns to form. At least enough that he can get us something of a greater asset at the next trade deadline.

    3. Williams had a pretty good 2 years in college, but like Beasley, it was predicated on great rebounding.

      He also shot the college three much better.

      It seems like as a 6’8″ guy, the rebounding didn’t translate, and he couldn’t find that extra bit of range to hit the pro 3 ball.

      He defense is unspectacular… it will take a small miracle to coach him up to become a productive bench piece, much less a starter.

      Although this move is sort of getting a poor man’s version of Tobias Harris for much cheaper (if you’re trying to be positive.)

    4. Very little talk about him, but I think Jerian Grant is going to be a very good player.
      Great penetrator and passer with great size. He has pretty huge hops as well, showing his is able to play head above the rim. I recall one dunk where the guy just rose and rose until he had to catch the rim to keep from jamming his neck against it.
      He’s also far more a distributor than a shooter and he likes to run. Having a guy like that makes the other guys play harder, run harder. He’s strong on the pick and roll, great finding open players, passes very well from the post. Very quick.
      He also appears to have really good range on his shot, able to hit the mid jumper and from long range.

      He needs to learn to play on ball defense and he needs more grit to compete in the NBA, but I think that will come.
      For me, this could be the best pick up we’ve seen from the Knicks in some time.

    5. As for Williams, I think playing with Cousins retarded his development.
      As great as Cousins is, he consumes a lot of space and oxygen for a 6’8 240-pound wingman. Cousins was taking 18-19 shots a game and grabbing 13 boards a game. Not a lot left there for a guy like Williams.
      Maybe I’m wrong. Melo isn’t much better to play with. We’ll see.

      IN short, the Knicks managed to pick up three first round picks in Porzingis, Grant and Williams (in essence), and Lopez is a very strong addition. Given the circumstances, the fact that few great players would come to a reclamation project, this is a pretty good outcome.

    6. I wouldn’t get too geeked up about Grant yet. He’s a 5-year senior. He had 4 years on some of his competition last year.

      That being said, I think he’ll at least be a durable back up in the league. Pretty good steals and turnover numbers… he could be a more athletic Darren Collison.

    7. Yeah maybe the biggest reason to take a chance on Williams is that he has been in such awful situations since coming into the league at Minny and Sacto. Not that the Knicks are much better, but maybe that’s changing.

    8. I don’t like the idea of calling Williams a first round pick. He is already a well-known commodity. He costs $5 million per year. Maybe he develops, but right now, based on what we know, he absolutely stinks.

      Agree on Grant. That dunk is misleading, he climbed up on another player to get his head above the rim. But he is very athletic and talented, and should be a very solid NBA pg in short order, with a puncher’s chance of being a star. On day one, he will be better than Tim Hardaway Jr.

    9. @7, I made the same argument in defending the Bargnani gamble, using Blatche as an example. The opposing argument was that it rarely works that way, and in hindsight, Bargnani wasn’t worth the risk. But that was for a lot more money and the loss of valuable assets. Far less downside with this move, but likely a similar result.

    10. I have this pipe dream that J. Grant turns out to be a 6th m.o.y. candidate…BUT…If he turns out to be at least a Charlie Ward, I’ll be happy.

    11. why Derrick Williams is not at least a Tobias Harris level player is beyond me

      Also, is Greg Anthony back on NBA TV? Wow

    12. Any idea of what other productive players are available out there to be signed with the rest of the cap space??? Aside from our former players…

    13. The problem with the Derrick Williams contract isn’t necessarily the contract figures in a vacuum (although looking at his numbers, I’m really not sure what he’s supposed to help us with to earn $5 million). It’s that if we absolutely had to spend this money, there were way better ways to do so. The same thing applies to Afflalo, not necessarily an awful deal but why him? More productive, younger players are signing for less or similar amounts. C- off season.

    14. one thing about Grant is he came in to college at like 17 and he probably would have been a higher draft pick if he would have came out last year but he got injured.

    15. I like the Afflalo signing for reasons beyond the x’s and o’s. He replaces Shump’s preening and music producing and JR’s idiocy and unprofessionalism with a totally focused approach to the game, no frills, no nonsense. And even on paper, he’s a better player than either of them. He’ll be worth every penny of his contract.

      Robin Lopez will outperform his contract.

      Williams is a total crap shoot (emphasis on crap) but whatever, not a big deal.

    16. If it is indeed true that Luigi Datome is now a Knick, then I am a little more comfortable with the roster. Phil still needs to bring Cole/Shved/Amundson back.

    17. why Derrick Williams is not at least a Tobias Harris level player is beyond me

      I know! It’s almost like he was drafted #2 because of a few strong games deep in the NCAA tournament or something.

    18. The problem with the Derrick Williams contract isn’t necessarily the contract figures in a vacuum (although looking at his numbers, I’m really not sure what he’s supposed to help us with to earn $5 million). It’s that if we absolutely had to spend this money, there were way better ways to do so. The same thing applies to Afflalo, not necessarily an awful deal but why him?

      Word

    19. 1) who the hell is Luigi Dantome?

      2) when the hell did we sign him to a $5,700,000 contract?

      3) if Williams was “retarded” by playing in Sacramento, NY is 100% equalling retarding.

      4) ptmilo has fast become my favorite contributor to this site.

      5) this has been an embarrassing week for Phil Jackson and the NYKnicks. Any way to try to spin it otherwise is just fooling ouselves.

      5b) #freecaptainluke ?

    20. Williams is a total crap shoot (emphasis on crap) but whatever, not a big deal.

      The contract itself is not a big deal, but it is a big deal in as much as it indicates who our front office is targeting. There are still intriguing young players on the board who could’ve been had for the price we paid for Derrick Williams. Hell, there are still some guys who are intriguing who could probably be had with the limited amount we have left, but I now have no faith we’ll wind up with them.

    21. Well, Williams is at least 6 years younger than Barfnani, so it’s a more calculated risk, but it’s not like I’m psyched.

      Where is the Datome rumor? Why didn’t we get him INSTEAD of Williams??

    22. Maybe Phil can back out of the Williams deal now that Datome is allegedly on board.

    23. For however long Derrick Williams is on the Knick’s roster the two words that will probably ring in my head will be “opportunity cost”.

    24. Maybe this means Melo will be playing the 4 a lot?

      I like Datome at 3m per. At least they can finally take down that sad Gallinari jersey in Little Italy.

    25. If Phil Jackson’s name was Mike Woodson or Steve Mills, most fans and all of the media would be calling for his head. This is a classic case of the Emperor wearing no clothes.

      Every move Phil makes is seen as some sort of invisible genius that us mortals will have to wait and see emerge.
      The reality is – facts are stubborn.
      He traded away assets cheap, he signed Melo to a bad contract, he failed to lock down the worst record when it was there for the taking, he took a big gamble in the draft instead of a sure thing (Winslow), he struck out in free agency, and proven himself to be awful negotiator.

      He’s assembled a 30 win team with little direction and no foundation.

    26. I googled it, Luigi Datome is a 6’8″ 215 lb 27 year old small forward with a sweet beard from Italy. He played 21 games for the Celts last year and averaged 5 pts / 1.4 boards in what i’m sure was garbage time. On April 15, while Boston’s starters were doing their taxes, he played 27 minutes vs. Mil and scored 22 pts, 3 rebounds and was 2-7 from deep.

      So, I’m OK w/ this and w/ Williams, but….who is our backup C? what happens if Lopez gets hurt? You know him and Brook are going to take Manhattan like either the Smith brothers or the muppets.

      If you tell me we could have had Kufos of Biyambo, then I’m not OK with these moves. If we still get a body to backup the C, then I’m OK, but I think we still will see a lot of Melo at the 3.

    27. Man we should jump on the Suns disappointment at missing out on a good but not elite aging player for the max by trading them a good but not elite aging player at the max. They were prepared to dump salaries anyway and we can extract a little more like any good opprtunistic rebound hookup. How about Alex Len the good Morris Archie Goodwin and their plus the cavs 2016 #1s?

    28. @hoolahoop
      Okay let’s go one by one.

      He traded away assets cheap.

      This is speculation. We have no idea what offers were available. Neither JR or Shump are that valuable.

      he signed Melo to a bad contract

      We don’t know how bad Melo’s contract will end up being. We could still feasibly trade him. Paul Millsap just signed a $20 million deal. Wait till every team has $20 million in cap space the next 2 years.

      he failed to lock down the worst record when it was there for the taking

      Coach’s fault.

      he took a big gamble in the draft instead of a sure thing (Winslow)

      This is laughable for a number of reasons. No player in the draft is a sure thing, another 5 teams passed Winslow up for some reason, etc.

      he struck out in free agency

      We didn’t get any big names, but we probably shouldn’t have expected to. Greg Monroe may be the lone exception, but if two teams offer you the same deal and one is a much better team then you generally want to play on the better team.

      We did get Robin Lopez. Afflalo is meh, but short term. Williams will probably try FA barring injury. He has yet to deal 1st round pick.

      proven himself to be awful negotiator.

      There’s absolutely no way you could know whether he’s good or bad at negotiating.

    29. “5) this has been an embarrassing week for Phil Jackson and the NYKnicks. Any way to try to spin it otherwise is just fooling ouselves.”

      Donnie Walsh, I think this is off and will be reminding you of this midseason. :)

      You have every chance of being right as I do, given teams are typically more or less than the sum of their parts, which is to say we have no friggin’ idea what will happen until it happens. But where you see poor performance through draft and free agency I see smart players all of whom can pass, move well, are large and athletic. For a team that has played a historically bad season after a draught stretching a coupled decades, this was a pretty decent haul.
      I think the teams were problematic for Williams, but I particularly think a player like Cousins whose ball dominance was pretty epic was very tough for a guy like Williams to play with. Cousins simply sucked all the air away from others. Williams couldn’t fit. A big strong 6’8 240 guy could use some paint time and Cousins was always in the paint. No room to grow. There will be more block space for Williams with the Knicks, particularly now that Melo isn’t always in the paint as he once was.
      But I could be wrong about Melo’s effect.

    30. I think this offseason has proved or will prove what me and a fair number of other people already thought about Phil–that he’s a mediocre gm with significant flaws. He doesn’t deserve to be fired, but he’s a c-level guy which is admittedly better than many previous gems if only because he has the cachet to avoid Dolans meddling and hasn’t managed to empty out the cupboard. He has the right vision in broad strokes (besides signing melo) but is not the greatest talent evaluator and so his execution is flawed.

      Calling for his head is dumb. Praising him is also silly. He’s mediocre. This offseason has proved that, unless all of our fa acquisitions suddenly have career years via some kind of Zen magic.

    31. Biyombo had a reb every 3 minutes last year, btw. I know he has no other skills

    32. I know! It’s almost like he was drafted #2 because of a few strong games deep in the NCAA tournament or something.

      Are you speaking of Derrick Williams or Justice Winslow? :-)

    33. It’s possible to try to grade things independent of one another.

      Melo contract, (knowing that he knew it was a prerequisite for the job) B
      Calderon trade, C-
      Draft 2014, C
      Shump trade, C
      Prigioni trade, B
      Draft 2015, A
      FA 2015, C

    34. @ 28 – that is exactly the type of Melo trade that the Knicks should be working. However, could Melo be convinced to play in Phoenix? They have a great training staff etc and great fans BUT they just signed Chandler and they are not in LA or NY (Lala).

    35. I don’t think this offseason has been embarrassing for the knicks. Its been a much needed wake up call that even though you play in the greatest city world at the most famous arena, the top FAs are not willing to join a team that sucks. We need to get much better and that was always going to be difficult in one offseason.

      The Knicks drafted the guy with arguably the highest upside in the draft, another who may be able to step right into a combo guard role. They also signed a defensive center to pair with Melo. This team is not very good but with a healthy season and a big bounce back year from Melo I could squint really hard and see this team get 42 wins.

    36. My biggest problem with Phil – is simply signing Melo to the mega contract instead of trading him to the Bulls etc. If he signed Melo to the mega with the thought that this offseason he would sign Gasol and another big time FA, he obviously misread the field. But missing out on the top FAs does not surprise me whatsoever.

      My hope for this year is that Melo has a career year and he gets so fed up with the losing that he is willing to waive his NTC.

    37. In a way, I think this is kinda like Phil saying to Melo, “prove you are that guy to lead us”. And Melo has something to prove after an injury riddled season. Time for him to man up. And I think Phil sees that “superstar” player in Melo, and maybe he’s trying to bring the best out of him without stepping on Fisher’s toes. Phil plays mind games like that. Yes, he has missed on the big names- but when he signed Melo to that big deal I think that the plan was to build around Melo all along. In Afflalo/Lopez/Porzingis/Grant you have 4 new guys that complement Melo very well and should be able to play off of him. Not saying the team is gonna be great, but considering Phil’s earlier criticism of Melo, Phil is probably saying “show me what you got before I replace you” to Melo. I mean..Phil could have started the rebuild a year sooner if he wanted to.

    38. Biyombo to the Raptors for 2 years/$6 million. That’s cool. We have Derrick Williams. He costs more and is worse at basketball, but he’s real triangular.

    39. Datome would be a good acquisition, but not at 3m/yr. Still, he’s scrappy, he’s got a wonderful work ethic and he can shoot. Can’t defend quick wings. As a small ball PF for 10mpg a-la Novak he’s perfect. Very rootable guy.

    40. It’s honestly nauseating seeing players like Cory Joseph, aminu, and biyombo getting picked up by other teams while we’re spending our cap space on Derrick Williams and afflalo

    41. oh man we could have had biyombo cheap. that sucks. not that we are good anywhwere, but we have so little depth at center. Maybe we push to get our 2nd rounder here this year?

    42. Let’s say you replaced CLE’s starting five for game five of the finals with our starting five except LBJ and Melo.

      LBJ, Rolo, Calderon, Affalo, (Williams? Porzingis?)

      Shit. I’m not sure LBJ get’s two finals wins with that cast. (And then there’s a question of non starting players.)

      Knicks are still one big piece away unless Porzingis or Grant exceed expectations. If we can add that piece next summer then all hail Phil. But did we just give that money to Rolo and AA?

    43. Can williams play SF? Beacause I don’t find any other reason to sign another PF.
      I’ts pretty clear that melo is more effective at PF, And we got Porzingis…

    44. It’s honestly nauseating seeing players like Cory Joseph, aminu, and biyombo getting picked up by other teams while we’re spending our cap space on Derrick Williams and afflalo

      Someone got Corey Joseph? Didn’t see that. Bummer.

      But are people really that out of sorts about Biyombo?

    45. Idk, if you squint a little, this team has a chance of being not far from last year’s Portland team.
      That team won 50 games.
      Melo is 3 years older but not really too different from Aldridge, and he’ll be next to Lopez.
      If Afflalo can bounce back he’s not so different from Wes Matthews.
      Batum sucked last year, and I’m not happy with the Williams/Datome combo, but again, it’s not far from what the Blazers had…
      Grant will just have to become Lillard lol.
      If everything goes right (and it never does) this team could win 40 games in the east.

    46. No one has picked up Cory Joseph yet but it stands to reason that since we have only 4m in space that someone else is gonna get him. That’s was a typo at the time but there’s my ad hoc rationalization for you lol.

    47. And the idea that guys like this on one year deals help attract future free agents to the Knicks seems kinda nuts.

      PT, you are one of the sharpest posters here, but I think it’s actually clear from this off-season that success does matter to FAs. No, not as much when some of that success comes from some one-year guys, but clearly Aldrich wanted no part of the Knicks or Lakers, and it isn’t likely because New York and LA suck. (Though LA sucks.) In order to sign the top tier, we need a decent team – not the garbage pile last year was. I’m not psyched about Williams or Afflalo, but at least they aren’t long-term overpays, which was our MO before. I am pretty happy about RoLo (though the candy leaves much to be desired).

      All in all, I think it’s clear we needed to field a competent team. I think that’s what Phil is doing. In the East, 35 wins is competent. I can’t give him a high grade, because if he had been excellent, I think he either would have got Monroe, or he would have seen the value of cap space and used it like Hinkie has. BUT, we don’t have our pick next year, which limits the upside of that strategy, particularly when Hinkie and others remain under the cap.

      So, a C from me. And an A or Incomplete on the draft – no way to really know yet, or even forecast. He’s been an OK GM who, per DRed’s fiat, hasn’t done anything stupid.

      My biggest regret isn’t not getting Justice, or WCS (my top pick), but not getting Turner. I just think that guy is going to be a Top 5 center for a decade to come.

    48. Joseph seems like a perfect Jax point guard. Not sure why they haven’t gone after him yet.

      If we could get him for 20 over 4 years, I’d forgive the Williams signing in a heartbeat.

    49. That Portland team got 3000 butt-kicking minutes from Damian Lillard and another 2000 great minutes from Wes Matthews. That is 5000 minutes of really good guard play. Our best guard, Afflalo, was pretty much their worst guard last year. The Knicks will probably be a 30-35 win team.

    50. You think Pop can convince Aldridge that an 18 foot jumper is not a good shot?

    51. Maurice ndour seems like a not-bad player. I think he might be able to play his way into a backup power forward spot on our team maybe. Here’s to hoping.

    52. I haven’t been thrilled with Phil’s work, but maybe we convince a player to join a mediocre-bad team instead of joining an awful one. Or maybe Melo demands a deal. The only long term deal we gave out went to a good player on a very nice contract. And that, at least, is an improvement

    53. I don’t think anyone has signed Cory Joseph yet. He’s restricted and the Spurs are likely to match any reasonable offer for him. Teams know this and have stayed away. Note that pretty much no restricted guys have signed offer sheets from new teams; there’s a reason for that, so why gripe about Phil not offering him? Besides, Grant needs to play a lot. Now, if Calderon can be moved, then sure, make a play for Joseph.

      Are people really lamenting not getting Biyombo? If he’s so awesome, then why did the Raptors get him for a mere $3m per? Perhaps because no other NBA team wanted him for more $?

      Like it or not, Phil’s probably just gonna get a cheap 1 year backup C, maybe just try to bring back Cole or Smith. Amundson can be the 3rd center. Next year Hernangomez comes over from Europe to be the main backup to Lopez. So, why go 2 years on ANY cheapo center?

      Why get mancrushes on certain free agents, anyways? You’re just setting yourself up for disappointment (and in some cases here, borderline rage) when the player(s) you view with rose-colored glasses aren’t viewed the same as Phil Jackson and his rose-colored glasses. Where was it ever rumored that the Knicks might go after him?

      Let’s see what guys like Williams do next year before condemning them. Why not be cautiously optimistic in the meantime? Yeah, the Knicks have generally sucked for years now; I’ve been a fan since 1968. But, this has been a GOOD offseason (not great, but probably not bad, either). There’ll be plenty of time to be frustrated or angry later if they suck! :-)

    54. Last I looked, Spurs lost a critical last game vs. the 8-seed to lose home court advantage in the playoffs and got bounced in the first round. Duncan and Ginobili are a year older. They just added a guy who has a career WS48 of .145 and never posted above a .100 WS48 in 5 playoff appearances. I’m wondering why anyone would be anointing them the big winners in free agency.

    55. @61. Because Spurs. Aldridge is a BIG NAME.

      And, yes, the Spurs are great franchise with a long track record, so they get deserve a bit of media bias.

    56. So as of now–if we bring a couple people back and move Calderon–we’re looking at:

      pg: Galloway/Grant
      sg: Afflalo/Shved
      sf: Williams/Datome?
      pf: Melo/Porzingis
      c: Lopez/Aldrich

      …and by the end of the year, hopefully the starting lineup will be:

      Grant/Afflalo/Porzingis/Melo/Lopez

      I could live with that.

    57. @63. ess-dog, we pretty much HAVE to live with that, or something close.
      :-)

      I think we’ll see C Lopez/Smith for one year, then probably Lopez/Hernangomez in 2016.

      Is the Datome deal confirmed anywhere?

    58. this offseason so far gets a C from me… lopez was a B, afflalo C, williams was a D… we are 30-35 wins as it stands as mentioned before…

      this wasn’t an amare offseason but still pretty lackluster… we are about as good as the magic without the quality of their youth… i can easily see a repeat of last year happening and that’s assuming everyone stays healthy…

    59. Donnie Walsh, I think this is off and will be reminding you of this midseason. :)

      You have every chance of being right as I do, given teams are typically more or less than the sum of their parts, which is to say we have no friggin’ idea what will happen until it happens. But where you see poor performance through draft and free agency I see smart players all of whom can pass, move well, are large and athletic

      Oh, I agree it may work out okay for the Knicks– probably even better than if they had gotten any of the players that they actually wanted. And Phil had a good draft night (I said this week was an embarrassment). And it has been. Striking out on all the players you want (and doing it the way he did, where he basically made offers to everybody contingent on the guy he wanted more being unavailable) is flat out embarrassing for the franchise. NY has no allure, which is fine and good to know, but Jackson was quoted as recently as this winter saying that he believed that it did.

    60. Favorite moves so far: Grant and Hernangomez
      Least favorite by far: Williams
      The FAs I wanted most – Jordan and Green – were probably never realistic options. I’m glad that they were primary targets. The make-do guys that got acquired after failing to get them aren’t very exciting but neither were the alternatives. A lot of decent guys got way overpaid in the last few days IMO. I’d rather they held onto cap space than betting on Williams. In general I wish they’d held onto more cap space to better position themselves for the future. If they compete hard every night and the new kids show some promise and overall there are signs of slow steady progress, the leadership of the new Knicks will have my support.

    61. Of all the players the knicks likely had on their wish list, a bunch of them actually changed teams: Aldridge, Monroe, Jordan, and Carroll. The fact that none of them showed interest in joining the Knicks, electing small-market cities like Toronto, Milwaukee, and San Antonio instead, is embarrassing to the Knicks. I’m not sure how anybody can argue otherwise. I am certain that Jackson is embarrassed by it, just as he was when he issued his mea culpa for putting the worst team in franchise history together.

      Milwaukee, Toronto, and San Antonio? In the history of their respective franchises, have any of them signed a coveted free agent? Ever?

    62. The only guy Phil really whiffed on was Monroe- LA was never coming here and DJ was very doubtful. Carroll got a huge offer from Toronto- if we’d signed him to that deal everyone would be complaining about Phil overpaying him. Lopez at 13.5 is a much better signing than Carroll at 15 IMO. The Afflalo signing was basically treading water (which when you’re as bad as the Knicks is pretty useless) and I think it’d be generous to call Derrick Williams a shot in the dark so giving those guys 13m of this year’s cap space seems pretty pointless. What’s really scary is that given the lack of bigs on the roster (there isn’t a single true PF on the roster) and the fact that now the Knicks are up against the cap you have to think that bringing back Bargs is a real possibility since they can go over the cap to sign him.

    63. The next major shoe to drop will be this one: what will happen after this team gets out to like a 12-22 start? If Melo is healthy and the team starts sinking to the bottom of the standings it is going to be obvious to all parties that a trade is the best case scenario. If Melo is playing relatively well he could be a valuable trade chip.

    64. My biggest problem is our fallback options were Afflalo and Williams. We needed to target better fallbacks and target them sooner.

      If we had targeted them sooner and harder we could have possibly had Ed Davis (that Portland contract will be a steal in two years) and Ajinca.

      Portland quietly got Aminu and Davis on long contracts, for similar money we got Afflalo and Williams on one year with player option for the second year contracts.

    65. I wouldn’t call it embarrassing. After all they are Free Agents. But I find it extremely hard to believe that in particular Carroll chose the Raptors because they are closer to contention. Him, Kyle and Derozan??? Melo, Lopez and Carroll are already a better core than that.

      His camp is probably the one who put out the info that the Knicks were asking free agents to take a paycut.

      Btw, if Danny Green is worth 12 million nowadays, and recent finals MVPs are any indication, Carroll is worth 15.

    66. Carroll got overpaid and Toronto is a MUCH better team than the Knicks. If they don’ t win the Atlantic, something will have gone terribly wrong.

      Hey, at least we didn’t gamble on Rondo for 10 mil. I was ok with things until the Williams signing, but yes, an Aminu/Davis combo seems to have a lot more upside than Afflalo/Lopez.

      Maybe Jax is just that confident that Zinger will be a killer PF sooner rather than later?

    67. if zinger’s gonna be a star then he’ll be ok next year… but that still doesn’t excuse the williams signing…

    68. The fact that none of them showed interest in joining the Knicks, electing small-market cities like Toronto, Milwaukee, and San Antonio instead, is embarrassing to the Knicks. I’m not sure how anybody can argue otherwise

      San Antonio is probably the best franchise in the NBA. Toronto and Milwaukee are much better teams than the Knicks. We won 17 games last year. You need to be realistic

    69. Thank you DRED people need to stop with the notion of the Knicks being some marquee franchise. They did a fine job of adding role players this offseason. If the team plays well next year then they will be in contention for top tier FA. Phil did fine.

    70. Yeah anyone who thinks free agents were coming here for the privilege of paying higher income taxes while playing on a non playoff team in the eastern conference is a mite too optimistic.

      That being said I don’t agree with “sign mediocre players to improve our win total to persuade 2016 free agents to come here” as an organizational strategy. There’s no way we’re winning a chip unless we get durant who’s the longest of long shots and we need more assets in the event where we aren’t contenders (we won’t be). Trying to attract free agents is same old Knicks behavior sans trading first round picks–that strategy doesn’t win championships.

      I hope a melo trade or contract dump will happen soon in the Knicks future but I have no reason to think it will happen barring an abysmal start to next season (exactly the thing we were trying to avoid by “upgrading” to afflalo and Williams)

    71. Trying to attract free agents is same old Knicks behavior sans trading first round picks–that strategy doesn’t win championships.

      Miami and LA would beg to differ.

      Though, I do understand your point. We’re in no position to be enticing anyone with a chance of winning anything beyond “not the worst team in franchise history.”

    72. Thank you er for saying what I’ve been thinking. Personally, I think Phil’s goal is to land Toronto’s pick at #15 (cuz right now we’re better than Denver). He MIGHT get there…10-14 seems reasonable. The big nightmare scenario is both Denver and NY winning the lottery and watching our #2 pick go to Toronto. It’d be LMA/Curry all over again.

    73. Did u see the Knicks last year? We only had one mediocre player on the whole team. These are steps forward

    74. Yeah that strategy works when you can acquire 2 of Lebron/shaq/Kobe/durant/wade. We can only get one of them (durant who’s a long shot) and it’s harder to win a chip with a big three model than it used to be.

    75. But yeah I’d really prefer just burning this team down or at minimum sign good young players to long deals rather than waste money on afflalo and Williams for two year contracts

    76. In Phil we trust…I’m sure he’s got contingency plans if this team goes up in smoke again…I’m sure he learned from last year.

    77. Also remember…when Riley’s Heat won only 15 games, they still stunk until they lucked into the Big 3. Not sayin’ we’re gonna get a big 3, but if Riley struggled with Wade, what do you expect Jax to do with Melo?

    78. Toronto and Milwaukee are much better teams than the Knicks. We won 17 games last year. You need to be realistic

      Yes, and winning 17 games is part of the embarrassment.

      I feel like I am being realistic. Phil Jackson came here with the goal of making a splash in 2015 free agency. This is difficult to dispute, and I can offer a lot of direct evidence in support of this if it’s truly necessary. His goal was to win about the same number of games this year as they team one in 2013-2014, “competing” for the playoffs, while “changing the culture” to make NY an attractive place for free agents to consider.

      When he became president, and set his plan in motion, he envisioned a much better haul than Robin Lopez, Arron Afflalo, and Reggie Williams. And need I remind people that almost everybody on this board did too: if you look back through the archives, in January it was “I’ll be satisfied as long as we land Gasol”; in April it was “I’ll be satisfied as we land Monroe and either Green or Carroll”; on Tuesday it was “I’ll be happy as long as we get Monroe”. At no time before yesterday did anybody try to argue that they’d be fine as long as we landed Robin Lopez, Arron Afflalo, and Reggie Williams.

      Again, don’t get me wrong: I think that signing Lopez as a last resort is better for the team than Some of their preferred options. But that isn’t something to credit management with. If you asked Phil Jackson, and he gave an honest answer, I think he’d say this has been an embarrassing week.

    79. Donnie forever the pessimist. Never change. Though let me ask what would have been a good week? Lebron for 15 and Deandre for 12?

      Why would anyone sign with the Knicks?

      To me the week was far more embarrassing for the lakers. They drafted the pg of the future and expected to land the big man of the future in FA but whiffed badly

    80. Donnie forever the pessimist… Why would anyone sign with the Knicks?

      I’m the pessimist?

    81. Delusional people thought we had any shot at Gasol, Aldridge or Jordan… Get a fucking grip. Why even discuss that??? Now Monroe we seemed to have a shot at, but got beaten out by a team with much better UPSIDE. That’s hardly an embarrassing moment.
      Don’t get me wrong this team has been an embarrassment for over 15 years now…but not because of whats been done this offseason.

    82. yeah this offseason was solidly a C in my book im just worried that phil is not that good at evaluating where the team is and where it needs to go as evidenced by signing afflalo. we’ll see though–im sure next year’s team will be 40x more bearable to watch than the season we just suffered through so that in itself is a blessing i guess.

    83. I’m pretty sure Phil wanted to make a bigger splash. And I’m not completely happy with all of the money being spent on Lopez/Afflalo/Williams. At the same time, we’ve gotta give Phil credit for his basketball knowledge, and trust his process. Another GM would have jumped on the flashiest thing available as soon as guys started signing elsewhere. I think Phil has added talent (remember last year the team was comprised of mostly D League talent), and added high character guys who should have a great impact on the culture/chemistry. And Melo. But yea, I believe he is at the very least a little embarrassed. The biggest non player personality in the league in the biggest market with the most cap space couldn’t reel in a big fish. But when you look at it, there were really no franchise changers either in the draft or free agency to be had. Really, are Monroe/Gasol/Jordan/Aldridge worth a 30-40 game improvement? Or are they great complimentary pieces? Even with one of those guys we would probably be around a 6-7 seed if we made it to the playoffs. I think Phil knew that so he got a buncha guys who are gonna bust their ass to prove something without the ginormous egos, and leave the impression that NY is a growing franchise with direction and young building blocks who will play hard every night. Really none of us should be expecting a whole lot. But we definitely should be expecting improvement from last season and future flexibility. Phil gets a low B from me this offseason considering the strong draft he had.

    84. He got hit in the mouth in free agency. No doubt about it. We were waiting on LMA? Seriously? Thankfully he put us down easy. Waiting on Jordan? Yeah sure do your due dilligence… but they were actually waiting for the phone call… Yo, they’re out your league Phil! How is Afflalo the first signing? Isn’t the big fish the first one??? They were expecting something else, and they weren’t quick enough to shift to plan B, if they had one. Luckily Lopez wanted to come play in the same city as his brother.

      Supposedly he told Lopez that he was first impressed with him in 2010 when he was coaching against him. Could be all horse crap. But it makes sense that that’s where he got his free agency list. Afflalo and Derrick Williams would’ve been great pickups in 2011.

      Look all is not lost. But this Free Agency period was mediocre. Hard to paint it another way. Just trying to be objective. Good draft, bad free agency period.

    85. To me the week was far more embarrassing for the lakers. They drafted the pg of the future and expected to land the big man of the future in FA but whiffed badly

      They just traded for Hibbert.

    86. last offseason was an incomplete based on what his grand plan was for this offseason…

      i can safely say now that we are in a lot of trouble… he pulled off one great trade for hardaway… but alot of the moves and draft picks were of the low upside high downside variety… i would argue even the porzingis pick was of that same ilk also..

      i’ve tried to be fair in my criticisms on phil but taking everything together now i think it’s pretty clear that we have someone who is just an average pres/gm at best.. he brings as much to the table as flip saunders…

    87. Player for player, at the very least:
      Lopez > Sammy
      Afflalo > THJ
      Porzingis, Grant > Early, Thanasis
      Healthy Calderon > Perpetually Injured Calderon
      2nd Year Galloway > 1st Year Galloway
      Healthy Melo > Injured, Pressing Melo
      2nd Year Fish > 1st Year Fish

      See? Improvement.

    88. Three big things we hoped Phil was going to bring to the table were:
      1 – improve organizational culture and instill a winning system
      2 – lure big name FA’s with his cache and jewelry
      3 – have an eye for talent and be able to spend less for more production.

      My criticism of Phil doesn’t come from a predisposed position. I’ve read his books and believe in his philosophy (on and off the court).

      His initial expectations of getting more out of the roster he inherited was nothing short of a flop. Winning 17 games including 2 big ones that the knicks would have been better off losing – not good.
      But takes time to build a winning culture. At some point we need to see some signs.

      Apparently, his cache had no attraction for the young talent in the NBA. Right now, young talented FA’s have little reason to believe he’s anything more than an old man with a new position tinkering around an awful organization that has absolutely zero cache . . . even if it is NYC.

      Phil has taken a couple of flyers on Zingis and D. Williams. If these guys come up big, that will be a leap in the right direction. That’s a big “if”.

      I see this as a 30-33 win team. If the knicks win 42, that may be considered a success. Still, with short, player option contracts, there’s no real foundation to build on.

      And then there’s Melo. He’s everything NOT that Phil preaches: ball movement, player movement, teamwork and defense.

    89. I applaud Jackson for the draft. He took the guy he thought was the best available (and most importantly didn’t trade it). And getting two other players from it was smart and prudent.

      So, sure, with the A from the draft factored in, the off season has been a C. But this week has been a D, bolstered only because Robin Lopez is actually better value than the guys Jackson was being spurned by.

    90. I don’t know for sure what was really PJ’s plan, but this team needs steady improvement every year, not a jump from worst team ever to contender.

      Zinger, Grant and Lopez can be part of the future and Melo is going nowhere.

      That’s four core players. Add two or three more next season and you are ready for trading for someone meaningful or the beginning of a good young team.

      I don’t care about Afflalo or Williams. Those are short term deals that if surpass the expectations you can always resign or trade. If they suck, 13 million will not make a big impact after next years cap raise.

    91. Though it’s a little pessimistic, that was one of your better posts Hoola.

      It’s true, we did think that Phil’s rings would lure more than they have.

      Two things you can hang your hat on though: I do think he’s changing the culture (out with JR Pipe types) and I think he has a knack for saving money.

      Even the Williams signing, which was a little pricier than we would’ve liked, is not that detrimental. If he even does an average job, he can easily be moved as a piece that will make a trade work. It’s only 2 years at worst. He’s a young guy.

      90-year-old, brittle-boned Calderon is a bigger worry to me.

    92. it’s pretty clear that we have someone who is just an average pres/gm at best.. he brings as much to the table as flip saunders…

      He can get better. It takes time to feel these sharks out here. (That’s what free agency is, animals fighting for 3 pieces of meat). But will he? Is he ready to hear out some 30yr old tell him Ajinca would be a better value signing? Will Dolan pull the plug? Things are moving fast for him. IMO. I will be cheering that I’m wrong.

    93. @99
      They’re not maximizing assets. I won’t bitch this much to my knick friends face to face. But here, if people like to praise Presti and Morey, Hinkie, etc for small moves that put their teams in good positions, it’s fair to criticize when Phil, as much as we like him, doesn’t.

    94. Ok if we’re handing out free agent grades, how about these:

      Ainge-F. Signed Amir Johnson
      Olshey-F. Lost Aldridge, Matthews, Lopez signed Aminu
      Morey-D. Re-signed Beverley
      Rivers-D. Lost Jordan, signed Pierce.
      Kupchak-F. Signed no one
      Bower-F. Signed Aron Baynes

      But wait, you say, all those guys tried to sign (or re-sign) players and they just didn’t want to come (or stay) And that’s the point with Phil. Yes, we were all hoping ringz and NY would be a free agent draw, but they were not. So how much control did he really have over who we signed? Which player is it that he could have gotten but just blew it? You can criticize the Williams signing, that’s fine, but to throw out grades like C- and phrases like “embarrassed the franchise” is just ludicrous.

    95. to be fair… these FA moves even if we got monroe wasn’t going to move the needle too much… monroe +others could’ve pushed us into the playoffs… but aside from that we were going to be in 32-38 win territory anyway… he was always going to be judged based on this draft and not handing out ridiculous overpriced FA deals… which to his credit he hasn’t done…

      but the execution leaves a lot to be desired… last year the return on the chandler and jr/shump deals seemed lacklaster but i was withholding judgment and i see a pattern of someone who doesn’t have a handle on the landscape of the nba…

      portland to their credit reacted fast once they realized aldridge wasn’t coming back and have done pretty well considering the circumstances…

    96. What the Knicks officially need to do is rebuild without Carmelo Anthony. I’m convinced that is the best course of action. Try to swing a deal that nets you some young assets. The Lakers struck out in Free Agency, so the D’Angelo Russell dream is dead unless Melo thinks playing with Kobe is his best shot at contention in a big market. This summer sucks so far

    97. I would say you can’t grade gms off fa acquisitions as FA acquisitions are a product of where you are in the rebuild process, not your skill as a gm. Smart gms RECOGNIZE this reality and plan around it by maintaining cap flexibility and using cap space creatively.

    98. can the knicks drop off 3m to Willy anonymously to get him over here now. ; )

    99. Kyle o Quinn on a 4/16 for cash and a second round pick swap in 2019 is a good trade I think. Solid move. Still would’ve preferred biyombo or others but I dig it. We still have the room exception for one more player I think.

    100. Everything Ive read from national writers (basically everyone not named Isola and Berman) are praising the Knicks off-season. Thats probably because they had realistic expectations unlike some here who expected the Knicks to go from 17 wins to 50 immediately and if not Phil Jackson is an idiot. Going from 17 to 30-35 wins next season is what the goal should be then make the jump into serious contention after next off-season, thats the logical/realistic plan which is what most normal franchises do. The Knicks are finally acting like a normal franchise yet for the most part everyone here is still complaining.

    101. Won’t pretend like I know much about him. But the deal looks good. If we did more of these type of deals I wouldn’t be crying at all.

    102. From a cursory glance at r/nba:

      Tough, big bodied rim protector. Passes well. Midrange jumper.

    103. Here’s more: Zach Lowe named KOQ as an underrated asset back in April:

      http://grantland.com/the-triangle/the-nba-groupon-games-which-players-are-the-next-free-agent-steals/

      Takeaways: Can facilitate from high post/elbows, good defense, but no post game and not much of a roller/cutter. Could he learn a thing or two backing up Lopez? (No idea if that’s a thing.) Orlando was trying to develop his good midrange stroke into a 3 point shot. I don’t think that’s happened yet.

      Very cromulent backup big. Also, a Queens native.

    104. Looking good. Seems 20 times more a Triangle big than Williams or Lopez. Light on his feet, nice
      positioning, nice soft hands with the ball. Seems like a high IQ dude. Like this a lot.

    105. So does everyone agree?
      PJax got this deal done via wizardry and Jedi mind tricks?

    106. You might say things are goink well.

      Interesting that the Lowe column I linked also has a bit about Williams: a recommendation to embrace a role as a “late career Al Harrington” stretch 4 – spot up, shoot 3s, drive occasionally, and defend. Not especially thrilling given his ~33% 3pt shooting last year, but perhaps cause for some guarded optimism if he accepts a place as a role player.

    107. Okay, so assuming Thanassis is brought into the fold, we have 11 roster spots filled up

      C: Lopez / O’Quinn
      PF: Melo / Porzingis
      SF Williams / Early
      SG: Afflalo / Galloway / Thanassis
      PG: Calderon / Grant

      Definitely could use more scoring, especially on the wings. Who should we target for the room exception?

    108. I don’t know. But it seems to me that you are more likely to advance forward trying to find
      undervalued pieces rather than hoping guys will re-discover, or make-up, skills.

    109. The narrative keeps changing.
      FA’s were going to come because of Phil. Now, the story is that the knicks never really had a chance at them.
      Let’s be honest. Phil looks old and tired.

      The truth is that FA’s see this organization, as much as ever, for what it is – a clusterfuck. They see a team that’s won 17 games and shot themselves in the foot the last week of the season, with little evidence that Phil has this team heading in the right direction, let alone on it’s way to being a serious contender.

    110. I don’t think anyone ever thought the big name FAs were gonna come because of Phil, or at all…

      There was a lot of optimism on this board pre-free agency because that’s human nature– we all want to talk about ideal free agent signings not settling.

      In fact, Howard Beck did a piece in January where he predicted the Knicks would get RoLo, Afflalo, and Thad young. That’s almost exactly what happened!

      So yeah it wasn’t a phenomenal offseason. Our team didn’t become good. But disregarding that 1-2 week period of optimism pre-free agency I don’t know who actually thought we were gonna be able to get all these guys. Monroe was the only miss.

    111. I don’t understand why everyone’s bitching about 32-38 wins. 38 just might get us in the playoffs. 32 is still a 15 game turnaround…not too shabby at all.

    112. Definitely could use more scoring, especially on the wings. Who should we target for the room exception?

      NATE ROBINSON!!!

      N8 tha GR8!

      Bucketz!

    113. KOQ Should give the Knicks what they thought they were going to get from Jason Smith last year- decent defense and a solid mid-range game. That he’s a decent facilitator from the high post is a plus but the high turnovers probably negate that. If he can stretch his jumper out to the three point line it’s a great pick-up. As is he’s still a solid guy at a good number- the trouble is we could have had two if not three more of those guys with the money that went to Afflalo and DW.

    114. I would rather play Thanassty over Early to back up Melo.

      I think I’d rather play a wire coat hanger over Early.

    115. i think you use the room exception on john jenkins, shved (if he needs that much), jeremy evans, hansbrough, or cj watson

    116. Looking at all the moves knicks have made so far, I think they did quite well. NONE of these signings point to outside meddling in the form of dolan. Whether these players succeed as knicks or not, they are all solid moves from both a basketball standpoint and financial one. I understand the media narrative of what phil was brought here to do(turn this thing around overnight and sign the best free agents) but it was all BS, a pipe dream, the same kind of dream that we fans have been living in for decades. If failure is signing young players with upside to reasonable contracts, and having solid drafts, than this has been my favorite failure so far.

    117. The Knicks are finally acting like a normal franchise yet for the most part everyone here is still complaining.

      Look, the product is going to be somewhat decent. But the process? How can y’all look your computer in the screen and type that is has been good with a straight face?

    118. Based on some light internet reading, Celtic fans seem to consider Gigi Datome a God of some sort.

    119. Absolutely love the O’Quinn trade. On that contract he could be a major trade asset in two years if they think Hernangomez is ready to back up RoLo

    120. the process? What does that even mean?

      You really don’t understand what I’m saying?

    121. No DW, I think he’s satirizing the Knicks’ definition of “process” since the Ewing trade.

    122. I’d be ok with Bargs….as the 15th player, always in street clothes, at the end of the bench. Least we’d get a more fashionable sideline.

    123. I’d be ok with Bargs….as the 15th player, always in street clothes, at the end of the bench. Least we’d get a more fashionable sideline.

      All of that, but on the visitor’s bench once or twice a year.

    124. Nah…we need someone to show Zinger how to dress….unless that’s suddenly Beverly Hills Phil’s job.

    125. Nah…we need someone to show Zinger how to dress….unless that’s suddenly Beverly Hills Phil’s job.

      How can you forget Clyde? I want to see Zinger in a cow suit.

    126. Lopez – He’s a good fit with Melo and a good overall player. I’d have preferred Monroe because he’s a better scorer/playmaker and I think we need more of that. Monroe also may have some upside, but I’m not upset about Lopez. This is the one move that moves the chain. He could be our long term C.

      Afflalo – is a stop gap. Good enough deal, but long term we have to upgrade this position.

      Derick Willams – Temporary insanity? I think Fisher had something to do with this. They share an agent.

      O’Quinn – I like it. He has upside

      Overall I’d give them a C+. There were no blatant disasters, but none of these signings moved the chain towards a championship in a meaningful way.

      IMO, any chance we have of a season that will excite us about our prospects is dependent on Zinger, Grant, Galloway, and to a lesser extent Early (who was hurt all last year). Thanasis can’t shoot a lick.

    127. I guess people can bitch if they want about how things happened, but how you pivot when things don’t go your way is the mark of great leadership. We have our starting and backup centers for the next 4 years for a cap hit of 17.5 a year. The cap goes to 80 mil next year and that won’t even be 20% of our cap for what looks to be solid rim protection. That’s great. The other two signings are short term and won’t really damage us financially moving forward. If they work out we will do better than expected and make decisions then. We also still have one more to add to the roster here before we’re looking at vet mins. Pat Riley couldn’t have convinced any of these guys to come play here so it’s no surprise Phil couldn’t either. Hopefully this team will play like a team and we’ll outperform our expectations this season.

    128. My favorite thing about Kyle O’Quinn: his comparisons on B-R include NBA immortals Luther Rackley Jack Toomay, Harvey Catchings, Mel Counts and Howie Schultz. I’m in!

    129. @134 how can you say with a straight face that you don’t have an agenda? If Phil wiped his ass with his left hand, you’d be bitching that he didn’t use his left.

    130. @145

      +1
      Agree on all. Would have preferred Monroe, especially after all of the talk it was a done deal, but R Lopez is good enough. A good fit with Melo.

      Hopefully Grant can play PG as well as advertised, they desperately need at least league average play from that position (triangle or no triangle).

    131. @134 how can you say with a straight face that you don’t have an agenda? If Phil wiped his ass with his [right] hand, you’d be bitching that he didn’t use his left.

      I mean, people shake hands with the right. It’s kind of common decency to wipe with the left, no?

      And gimme a little credit. I did give Jackson an A for his draft performance! (Comment #98:)

      But, lol, point taken. I am definitely a knick pessimist (hard earned over the past 15 years). I’ve been right a lot betting the under with them this century. (And like I said, I like Lopez, and I like Zinger. I just think the optimists on the board are amusing today, spinning this like Jackson’s at home chomping on a cigar saying “I love it when a plan comes together”. To me, he hit it in the rough, the sand, waded into the lagoon, then two putted to save bogey. Not exactly championship caliber stuff, but not a disaster either. I guess that’s the bar we’ve set for satisfaction:)

    132. Connin

      estimations around the net about the knicks cap is that they have $2.5m left assuming the FAs took the lowest base salary and 4.5% raise each yr. I think this number is based on a 68.5m cap since the projected cap might be higher than thought. These figures are also based on the assumption that 2 vet min will be signed. So is this about correct? If so it essentially gives the knicks two room exceptions.

      Also, does a Thanasis min rookie deal count against the cap?

    133. I’m gonna go ahead and admit that I did not know a whole lot about Kyle O’Quinn until a couple of hours ago. I’ll tell you this: Magic fans are sad to see him go, and the consensus among them is that O’Quinn is a good rebounder and solid defender who got squeezed out of a role after spraining his ankle last year. The Magic have a pretty similar player in Dewayne Dedmon and Dedmon played well last year, making O’Quinn kind of redundant.

      O’Quinn’s rebounding dropped off a bit last year, but that was probably a blip– in his two previous seasons he was a very good defensive rebounder, and his career DRB% of 24.1 should be a welcome addition. He offers a bit of rim protection as well and he will be heading into only his age 25 season, so there is a lot to like about this signing. He fouls a lot, but that’s not too much of a worry since you’re only looking for like 20 MPG out of the guy. Way, way, way better player than Jah Smith’s sorry ass.

    134. I’m curious about LMA. The spurs signed him to a max through age 30-34 as we signed melo to a max through seasons 30-35. Does Pop really imporove players? We have seen him working magic with unmotivated players before, but LMA was in a good situation in Portland, will he improve or stay the same?

      About this offseason, I’m OKish with it. I think Robin Lopez is a good fit with Melo. I’m disappointed we didnt get Matthews or Danny Green. I don’t like Afflalo, but if he is a good professional, at least i wont puke inside when i watch him play. Derrick Williams is a longshot. KoQ seems like a nice move.

      Last year, the knicks who played most minutes were Larkin, Jah, and THJr (and then Galloway, Melo and Acy). I think it is fair to say that this team has nothing to do with the one last year, and you can’t take the 17 wins as a reference. Our wins will depend on health and the rookies, if not, the team is not deep and we will suffer. But if we are healthy, i dont think playoffs are out of reach, not that it matters to be crushed by cleveland in the first round.

    135. estimations around the net about the knicks cap is that they have $2.5m left assuming the FAs took the lowest base salary and 4.5% raise each yr. I think this number is based on a 68.5m cap since the projected cap might be higher than thought. These figures are also based on the assumption that 2 vet min will be signed. So is this about correct? If so it essentially gives the knicks two room exceptions.

      The issue is that I don’t think we do know what these people signed. For instance, the odds are high that Afflalo and Williams’ deals are for a straight even $8 million and $5 million, respectively, since they might very well not take the second year, ya know? So they’re unlikely to take less because of a raise on a second year that they’re possibly not going to take. So I doubt that they actually have more than the room exception left to spend.

      Also, does a Thanasis min rookie deal count against the cap?

      No, second rounders don’t count against your cap until you actually sign them.

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