Knicks Morning News (2015.10.10)

  • [New York Post] Knicks’ Seraphin ticked after being denied Wizards revenge (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 00:23:48 -0400)

    WASHINGTON — Kevin Seraphin's first chance to show something to his former Wizards coach, Randy Wittman, was put on hold. Seraphin missed the Knicks' 115-104 win over the Wizards at…

  • [New York Daily News] Melo continues strong preseason form as Knicks top Wizards (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 05:00:57 GMT)

    Lost in the Derek Fisher love triangle and the daily love-fest for Kristaps Porzingis is the most important factor to the Knicks’ season.

  • [New York Daily News] Gilbert Arenas sues Laura Govan on ‘false accusations’ (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 01:54:16 GMT)

    Gilbert Arenas sued former fiancée Laura Govan in L.A. claiming she caused websites to publish ‘false accusations.’

  • [New York Times] Oh Maya! Moore Hits Winner to Lift Lynx Over Fever 80-77 (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 06:36:53 GMT)

    It took Maya Moore less than 2 seconds to make a buzzer-beater for the Minnesota Lynx on Friday night. It took her a little more time to recall her last game-winner, let alone one of this magnitude.

  • [New York Times] Len, Morris Lead Suns to 101-85 Preseason Win Over Jazz (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 04:33:34 GMT)

    Center Alex Len scored 14 of his team-high 21 points in the first half and Markieff Morris added 18 points in 16 minutes, leading the Phoenix Suns to a 101-85 win over the Utah Jazz Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Lynx 80, Fever 77: Lynx’s Moore Hits 3-Pointer at Buzzer, Stunning Fever (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 04:29:42 GMT)

    Maya Moore made a 3-pointer at the buzzer from the top of the key to give the Minnesota Lynx an 80-77 victory over the Indiana Fever.

  • [New York Times] Oh Maya! Moore Hits Winner to Lift Lynx Over Fever 80-77 (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 03:30:33 GMT)

    Maya Moore had plenty of time to make the final shot. The Minnesota Lynx had to wait a whole lot longer to celebrate the winner

  • [New York Times] Hawks Rally Late for 103-93 Win Over Pelicans (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 03:21:35 GMT)

    Dennis Schroder scored 11 points as the Atlanta Hawks overcame a slow first half to beat the New Orleans Pelicans 103-93 Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Durant Scores 13 as Thunder Beat Fenerbahce Ulker 111-81 (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 02:36:47 GMT)

    Kevin Durant scored 13 points in his first home game since February, and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat Fenerbahce Ulker (Turkey) 111-81 in preseason action Friday night.

  • [New York Times] Anthony Strong Again as Knicks Beat Wizards 115-104 (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 01:57:38 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony continued his return from a knee operation with his second straight strong performance, scoring 21 points in 25 minutes as the New York Knicks beat the Washington Wizards 115-104 on Friday night.

  • [ESPN.com – New York Knicks] Melo and his shot look healthy (Sat, 10 Oct 2015 01:20:30 EST)

    Melo and his shot look healthy

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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 (2015.10.10)”

    1. Quite a few things to like out of the guys against NBA comp. Thanasis is VERY active. So helter skelter like on defense. That kid was all over the court when he did get in the game. Fish would do well to get him PT a little more often. He was the only one who seemed like he wasn’t out there thinking on defense. Melo competed on defense- I like that. Offensively, we were surprisingly good. The second unit will have to generate points through the system, but I think the team can score 95-98 ppg easy. The trouble is the defense. Guys looked like they were thinking on defense more than reading and reacting. I don’t know what the deal is with that. O’Quinn looks like a steal. I don’t expect him to be an all star, but as long as he plays within himself, he’s gonna be a really solid rotation piece. He’s so physical and active on both ends. Williams looks like he’s trying to play a style more in line with what he played in college. That can be very good. Of course, he doesn’t have NBA 3 ball range, but he shot well from 20′ in college. So hopefully he rediscovers that touch and uses that to drive and draw fouls like he did last night. He looked bigger than I expected, so did Early. What I did not enjoy is the defense (as I mentioned), and that ugly inaccurate jumper Lopez displayed last night lol. Geez that was ugly. Overall, I think we’ve got a very root-able bunch of guys to watch, and they seem to play well together. The team may lose their fair share of games still, but at least they won’t be completely inept and look horrid and deplorable this season- provided they stay healthy. I want to see what this team looks like with a healthy Afflalo and Seraphin.

    2. Yes, very fun to watch the game last night, even with the weak defense. I wonder what happens to Vujacic when Afflalo returns? I’d guess his playing time evaporates.

      I wonder if a better guard pairing would be Calderon/Galloway and Grant/Afflalo? Seems like a better balance of shooting and defense. Galloway could guard the quicker opponent guard to help Calderon out.

      Also would like to see more of KP and Grant on the floor together. They show a nice 2 man game at times.

    3. Chris Herring said he thinks Sasha is in there precisely because Afflalo is out and Fisher wants Grant and Galloway to be a unit off the bench for now. Could change later, but that means Sasha’s probably on the outskirts of the rotation once Afflalo is healthy.

      I’d like more speed in the starting backcourt, but I can at least see the thinking behind wanting different looks for the two units. Any group with Melo is going to play more halfcourt, and then you can get out and run a bit while he’s sitting.

    4. I don’t get the notion of benching Vuj when Afflalo comes back. He’s played very well thus far. Let’s not get too crazy with Galloway and Grant. Neither has proven that they can compete vs. NBA rotation players for a winning team. Vuj was a solid rotation player for two championship teams and seems to be healthy, in shape and ready to go. Yesterday he had 9 points on 5 shots and 5 rebounds vs. the wiz starting backcourt. Wednesday he had 9 points on 8 shots, 5 rebounds and 3 assists in 20 minutes.

      I predict that Vuj gets 15-20 mpg, just like he did in LA, unless Grant plays WAY better than he has, and Galloway does the same vs. starters as he has vs. scrubs thus far. The key is how many minutes will Afflalo get at SG (he will probably play some 3) and how well Calderon plays (I thought he played pretty well last night.) I think Grant will not play much early on (10-15 MPG at best), especially if he doesn’t start shooting better.

      That said, it’s pretty likely that either Afflalo, Calderon or Vujacic tweaks something, and that will create opportunities. But if this team is committed to winning now (and I think they will be, as Fisher is now on the “warm” seat) then the backcourt vets are gonna play. Zinger will earn his frontcourt minutes if he plays like he did last night. I’m pretty confident that he will develop into a plus player very quickly, but if he plateaus or regresses, I expect his minutes will be cut back.

    5. Small sample size and all, but I’m pretty sure the “Porzingis won’t be ready to contribute for a couple years” scouting reports were off base. He needs to get stronger, learn the offense better, keep better track of his man, etc., etc., but, at the very least, he looks like he will be a positive contributor this year. Two things I liked– every time he got a defensive rebound, he immediately looked to get the ball moving up court, either by finding someone to get the ball to or dribbling it up himself. Also, on one play, he ended up covering a guard (Gary Neal I think) in the corner. Neal tried about four fakes to get KP off his feet but our guy stayed low and maintained his position. Neal ended up forcing up a three over him and missing pretty badly. One more thing I like — Clyde still calling Humphreys “the Kardashian guy.”

    6. I’ll admit..Sasha’s been pretty good thus far. But he’s clearly a bench swingman. If he plays 15-20 mpg consistently, then either Grant isn’t playing well or Afflalo is hurt. I’ve said all along that I like him in his role. But if he’s handling the ball a lot and trying to make plays for others, then the offense suffers. So let’s not get carried away about him. He knows the system and can shoot. Let him play his role and not try to do too much. We should also keep in mind that this is the second preseason game..everybody looks engaged and what not. I’m more anxious to see how they look come December. If they are still playing with zest and together as a unit, then I think we may be looking at a good team.

    7. Yeah, Vujacic is fine as the 5th guard behind Calderon/Afflalo/Gallo/Grant. I’m optimistic about this team and think it will be a fun team to watch and root for but I still doubt they win more than 35 games or so. I dont think they make the playoffs but they should be competitive and again fun to watch.

      The problem is it sure would be nice if they had their 2016 1st rd pick. Its nice if this team wins 35 games and shows alot of improvement but not having a 1st rd pick to bolster the team this off-season is a real bummer. But for now Im not going to worry about next summer, Im really looking forward to watching this team play this season. It helps too that there are a few young players worth watching their development throughout the course of the season so even when the team struggles and goes thru a bad stretch (and there will definitely be some bad stretches) there will be a reason to continue to watch them play unlike last season where there was no reason whatsoever to watch this team after the All-Star break except to root for them to lose which was not fun at all.

    8. I disagree, Sasha will play more than Grant, bet on it!

      And we actually do have the equivalent of a #1 pick next year in Willy H. Look at it this way, if he were draft eligible this year, where would he be likely to be picked? Certainly in the lottery, no? If yes, then we have a virtual lottery pick even if we make the playoffs!

    9. I doubt the rookie gets more playing time than Sasha to start out. If Grant gets playing time it’ll be as the backup point because Galloway can’t start the offense.

    10. @5 That was actually Beal

      The narrative that it would take some inordinate amount of time for him to get accustomed to NBA ball never passed the smell test. The guy’s been playing pro ball since his balls dropped while Towns, Okafor and Russell were matching up against their peers who were at a massive talent disadvantage. Not saying he’s going to be way ahead of those guys, but the idea he was some huge project was asinine.

    11. You know what I love about this team? Lopez, O’Quinn, Seraphin, and even Williams play what today’s generation would call dirty. Meaning, they get physical. I’ve always hated the saturation of finesse ball in the league. It’s nice to look at, but it has gone too far. No way should a guy LeBron’s size be driving the lane at will and then crying about the contact. If he was a little guy being constantly shoved and thrown, then maybe a few complaints are fine. But in today’s NBA we have giants complaining about contact and a host of other players hesitant to get physical because of the rules and officiating. I grinned from ear to ear every time I saw Lopez, O’Quinn, or Williams bump someone and keep playing on with no hesitation or remorse. This team will be enjoyable to watch. Someone needs to have Melo’s back like Oak had Ewing’s and Lopez-O’Quinn-Seraphin-Williams give me great hope that this team will fight- in a good way.

    12. I also think there was a moment when both Lopez and Kristaps went up for a rebound and I realized just how huge our frontcourt was. When was the last time we had 2 legit 7 footers on our team that could actually play. We’re a really damn big team.

    13. We’re a really damn big team.

      Yeah, really imposing. Better than WAS last night 1-12. How about Kristaps getting 8 rebounds, haters? Comparisons to last years team are odious. Totally different with two effective units. Maybe Dwill isn’t good but he sure looked good last night. Sasha as well. No evidence so far that any of Phil’s moves are not panning out.

      I know I shouldn’t get too up on one preseason win but there was nothing not to like last night. Calderon looked healthy. Melo was in full on beast mode.

    14. The East is big, man.

      Feels great to FINALLY bring that line up and laugh without havin a violent flashback

    15. I was higher on KP before the draft than everyone here, and it’s nice to not feel stupid yet. I truly that the only guy that was a no-brainer pick over him was Towns, and right now, I am thrilled that we have him and would definitely not trade him for either Okafor or Russell straight up. The only question left for me is: would I still trade ‘Taps for Towns right now? I have to say it: the answer is a tentative no. I truly believe that when all is said and done, KP will have the better career.

      Now that we have gotten a good look at Porzingis, I’d be interested in who from this year’s draft my fellow KBers would trade him for straight up right now, including your preferred pick at #4. My guess is that most of you would still do it for Towns but not for the others. Thoughts?

    16. I’m happy with the way the team is playing so far. I must admit I didn’t want KP as our pick, but I would welcome with open arms being wrong about him. Watching him shoot the 3 with so much ease and playing with no fear in his 2nd game gives me hope. I think in some way he could grow to be “Melo’s Pippen”. I’m loving that O’Quinn deal, if he knows about NY Knicks tradition, I think he could easily adopt that “Charles Oakley role”.

    17. Porzingis ability to rim protect and spread the floor on offense is like the ultimate weapon in today’s league. There is almost unlimited potential lineup construction.

      Dirk needed an elite rim protector, and for all of Gasol’s greatness, he can only operate 15 feet and in.

      That’s why I compared him to AD. Not because it’s likely KP is ever that great and contributes and an elite level in all areas, but because of how you can build around him.

      It gives a team a lot more leverage in FA.

    18. He’s not here to get minutes I don’t think. He’s helping KP off the court and knows the triangle.

    19. I disagree, ruru. I think he’s here b/c he’s the perfect triangle bench player…smart, very good shooter, opportunistic.

      max, why should we look at his euro stats when he has thousands of productive NBA minutes? He’s 31 years old, healthy, motivated and in shape. Who knows what went on in Europe? Why should we assume that he is washed up? He certainly looked like circa 2007 Vujacic last night.

    20. Z-man, his last decent NBA season was 09/10. Even then, he was a bench player. Most players decline north of 30, and if you can’t shoot, that decline comes faster and harder. If the starting point was “good starter” and the Europe numbers weren’t so dismal, I’d have some hope for him to be productive…

      I agree with ruru that he’s here for his triangle experience primarily — to be a practice player. Which is fine as long as that’s really the case.

    21. 31 is not really old for an NBA player. When the Celts won their last chip, Pierce, Garnett and Allen were 30, 31 and 32. At that age, it’s about health, being in shape and minutes. There is zero reason to believe that Vuj can’t be reasonably productive if his role is limited to 15-20 minutes. Put another way, if I put the over-under at 16.5 minutes average until New Year’s day, what would you bet right now?

    22. Re: Porzingis

      Were people really saying he would be useless? I think the idea is even if Porzingis has a superstar destiny, the odds that he’s anything more than an average NBA player this season is a long shot. Lebron in his rookie year was exciting, and we knew he was headed for amazing things, but on the whole, he was nowhere near All Star caliber his rookie year. He made a huge jump his second year.

      Anthony Davis had a similar first year to Lebron.

      And these are the positive examples.

      KD was atrocious his rookie year. Dwight lost out in the ROY race to both Emeka Okafor and Ben Gordon.

      Of younger players carrying lots of hype, both Antetokounmpo and Wiggins have still failed to consistently dominate even though they’ve been anointed by many as the next generation of NBA superstars.

      Some guys who came in older like Duncan and killed it, but the odds of you coming in at 20 years old and being anything more than just solid your first year are pretty low. I don’t think Porzingis is as NBA ready as Davis or Lebron. Optimistically, he’s closer to Durant, who really didn’t break out till year three, and like Lebron, had another big jump several years later.

      So yeah, maybe Porzingis comes in and gives you the same productivity as O’Quinn this year and adds a few extra wins… I’m sure you’ll see games where he’s dominant and really looks like an all-star, but you’ll also have off games.

    23. I tend to agree with Max about KP’s rookie year- with the caveat hat he brings some NBA ready high value skills right off the bat- namely elite 3 point shooting especially from the PF/C position and the fact that he’s 7’3″ with quick feet and a 7’6″ wingspan. He can immediately play off the ball on offense which decreases his workload greatly (unlike LBJ/Durant/Wiggins who were expected to have the highest usage on day 1).

      That said- I’m sure he’ll have plenty of growing pains.

    24. Really want to see whether KP has any post skills- to punish the other team if they try and guard him with a SF or with someone like Draymond.

    25. Being drafted to a team that, although imperfect, does not need him to come in and be a big part of the offense right away should allow him to have a better rookie year than those guys. All he needs to do this season is hit open shots and play good recovery defense. I can see Krispy being a positive impact from Day 1 as a role player and then eventually developing into the franchise player we all want him to be.

      Porzingis has the most potential I’ve seen in my years of watching basketball (admittedly I’m very young so I haven’t seen much). If he’s the rebounder we saw on Friday, then it’s almost unfair to the league how good he can be. No team ever has had a pure 3 point shooter who can grab double digit rebounds, anchor a defense, and carry the load on offense. I hope he has the truly special type of mind that allows him to reach his potential as a player.

    26. NBA ready high value skills right off the bat- namely elite 3 point shooting especially from the PF/C position and

      How do we know that he has even average NBA three point shooting? He’s played one preseason game against an NBA team in which he was 1-2 from downtown. He wasn’t an elite three point shooter in the ACB.

    27. max, you make great points, and to “expect” anything above league-average play from Porzingis in year 1 is unfair. But there are a couple of things working in his favor. First, he is actually more of a physical freak than Durant, not just for his position, but for the entire NBA. There may never have been a 20yo with his size/length and skillset…maybe Ralph Sampson? Second, he seems to be both super-smart (and not just b-ball IQ smart) and super-determined (all indications are that he is a total gym rat.) Third, as Frank pointed out, he landed in a perfect situation in many regards. Yes, NY is a pressure-filled environment, but he seems to have the demeanor and maturity to handle it. But mor eimportantly, he doesn’t have to be “the man” right off the bat. He can ease into a role while Melo plays the alpha dog and RoLo and O’Quinn do the dirty work. This was not true for LeBron, Durant, Davis, or even Gasol. Fourth, he has played against much better competition in Europe than LeBron (out of HS!) or Durant, Davis or Wiggins (1 year of college.)

      Many have harped on his need to put on weight, but I think that is overblown. He certainly didn’t look overmatched vs. Gortat, who is among the most physical players in the league. It seemed that once he got the bug in his ear re: “too tall for the game” he owned the criticism and responded by mixing it up and not backing down.

      My point is, even if he puts up typical rookie stats, he might be a bigger positive force than his stats would indicate. It’s pretty obvious that he can’t be left open anywhere, and that his length creates issues for opposing teams on both ends. He has the potential to shoot close to 40% on open 3’s, which was not the case for any of the rookies you mentioned or that he’s typically compared to. He’s already blocking and altering shots, even when out of position. That’s not gonna change, not with this “supporting cast.”

    28. Finally got around to watching the Wash game. Man, that was fun! I wasn’t hoping for KP on draft day, but he’s looking pretty enticing at the starting gate. Still really excited about the O’Quinn pickup, too. I love shot blockers who can’t jump six inches. Will be tough to make the playoffs, but this team should be interesting all year.

    29. @30

      +1

      he doesn’t have to be “the man” right off the bat.

      Having now seen more of KP in action, and almost as importantly, having heard him speak about his game and his goals, I think the only thing that might derail him from being a star is injury. He’s at the extreme end of size, and those kinds of guys tend to break down in different ways. So playing only 20 mpg this year will be blessing in disguise – time enough to learn and grow, but not so much that his young knees and body will be pushed past limits. (I hope.)

      I mean, he’s so fierce, so focused on improving himself, so smart, and … so freaking tall. This kid could be special.

    30. Why the preoccupation with Vujacic?

      He was never really more than a solid backup during his first NBA career and he won’t be asked for more than that now. His minutes will be dependent on the development of the younger players, but I don’t see having him as a backup as some kind of disaster. His per 36 minutes stats in Europe were not that terrible for the role he’ll be asked to fill here and the samples are much smaller than an NBA season over and above that. He’s fine.

    31. Really want to see whether KP has any post skills- to punish the other team if they try and guard him with a SF or with someone like Draymond.

      I’ve been thinking along the same lines,

      The good news is that he posted up on one play against Washington and finished with a nice move and basket.

      This guy could become an match up NIGHTMARE if he can take the bigger players out to the 3 point line and post up just about anyone else.

    32. The matchup with KP is also going to be hard because Melo has to be guarded too. Opposing teams will have to put one of their best defenders on him.

    33. 1st ream all NBA 2015-16

      C: Kristaps Porzingis
      PF: Carmelo Anthony
      SF: Derrick Williams
      SG: James Harden
      PG: Jerrian Grant

      I suppose you could flip Melo and Williams

    34. 1st ream all NBA 2015-16

      C: Kristaps Porzingis
      PF: Carmelo Anthony
      SF: Derrick Williams
      SG: James Harden
      PG: Jerrian Grant

      I suppose you could flip Melo and Williams

      C’mon DRed, Harden is a bit of a stretch, dontcha think?

    35. I might be Galloway’s biggest supporter here, but with the taco bell adds and the kardashian bump I don’t see him outdoing Harden. Maybe Curry gets the nod instead of Langston

    36. I’m not sure whether KP will be “elite” from 3, but it should be a “plus” part of his game, moreso than, say, Towns. At worst, he should be able to knock down 40% of “open” 3’s. He’s not Steve Novak, but if he can establish that you can’t leave him open out there (and being “open” is affected by his crazy-high release point, defenders have to play that much closer to him) then that is a pretty big deal. And unlike some other 3-pt specialists like Korver and Novak, shutting down his 3-game doesn’t render him a liability, which is what happens in the playoffs. Even without the 3, KP has enough game on both ends to be a huge factor, as opposed to, say, Kaminsky, who without the 3 will be a below-average NBA player.

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