Knicks Morning News (2015.12.30)

  • [ESPN.com – New York Knicks] Knicks Daily Links: Wednesday (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 05:45:09 EST)

    Knicks Daily Links: Wednesday

  • [ESPN.com – New York Knicks] How it happened: Derrick Williams' reverse dunk for Knicks (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 01:59:08 EST)

    How it happened: Derrick Williams' reverse dunk for Knicks

  • [New York Times] James Scores 34 as Cavaliers Beat Nuggets 93-87 (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 05:45:32 GMT)

    On nearly 31-year-old legs, LeBron James found a little more elevation for all his emphatic dunks.

  • [New York Times] Westbrook and Durant Lead Thunder Over Bucks 131-123 (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 05:36:31 GMT)

    Thunder coach Billy Donovan has seen his second unit struggle to preserve leads this season, so he decided this week to make a change, making rookie first-rounder Cameron Payne his backup point guard.

  • [New York Times] Knicks 108, Pistons 96: ‘Work in Progress’ Knicks Beat Pistons to End Another Four-Game Skid (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 05:00:34 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony scored 24 points, and Jose Calderon added 15 as the Knicks topped Detroit at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night.

  • [New York Times] N.B.A. Roundup: Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant Lead Thunder Over Bucks (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 04:50:20 GMT)

    Westbrook and Durant both scored more than 20 points, leading the Thunder to a 131-123 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in Oklahoma City on Tuesday night.

  • [New York Times] Gasol’s Overtime Performance Sends Grizzlies Past Heat 99-90 (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 04:18:54 GMT)

    Marc Gasol scored seven of his 23 points in overtime to help the Memphis Grizzlies pull away in the extra period for a 99-90 victory over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night.

  • [New York Times] Horford Leads Hawks to 121-115 Win Over the Rockets (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 03:52:19 GMT)

    Al Horford had 30 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Atlanta Hawks to a 121-115 victory over the Houston Rockets on Tuesday night.

  • [New York Times] Anthony Leads Knicks to 108-96 Win Over Pistons (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 03:15:52 GMT)

    Carmelo Anthony scored 24 points and Derrick Williams added 18 to lead six Knicks in double figures as New York snapped a four-game losing streak with a 108-96 win over the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday night.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks get back on track at home, top Pistons to end skid (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 06:07:57 GMT)

    The Knicks came back home following a disappointing road trip on a bit of a tailspin, in need of a positive result.

  • [New York Daily News] Isola: Answer for Knicks may point to Brandon Jennings (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 05:13:05 GMT)

    Brandon Jennings was famously passed over in the 2009 NBA Draft by the Knicks.

  • [New York Post] Could Knicks be in future for free-agent-to-be Brandon Jennings? (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 03:05:12 -0500)

    The Pistons have a glut of point guards now that Brandon Jennings is healthy. Pistons coach/president Stan Van Gundy is so stacked he didn't get around to playing Jennings until Tuesday night when he made his season debut against the Knicks after tearing his Achilles last season. Jennings, after dressing but not playing for three…

  • [New York Post] The alterations Fisher, Knicks made that led to skid-busting win (Wed, 30 Dec 2015 00:40:12 -0500)

    Derek Fisher needed this win. The Knicks had issues that needed to be addressed as they played their final game of 2015 and thrashed the Pistons 108-96 at the Garden Tuesday night. "We've come a long way, man,'' Carmelo Anthony said of the improvement from last Jan. 1 to where the Knicks are now. It…

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    92 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2015.12.30)”

    1. holy #$^# – Cleanthony Early was shot last night outside a strip club?

      So scary. Hope he’s okay.

    2. This story is unreal and really tragic. According to Isola, he was in an Uber and was boxed in by multiple cars and robbed at gunpoint and shot in the knee. they even took the caps on his teeth!?!?!?

    3. It’s like the opening to a bad action movie. Who sets up such a coordinated attack on the Knicks’ 15th man with his modest contract?

    4. Who sets up such a coordinated attack on the Knicks’ 15th man with his modest contract?

      jimmer’s gonna need an alibi. too soon?

    5. Has an athlete ever been shot in the knee before and recovered enough to keep playing?

      This isn’t even concern about the team, given how little he’s played for us. I’d just hate for the guy’s career to end this way.

    6. Awful news. At first I was thinking, who did he piss off. But then, after reading the article (who knows how true that is) it looks like he was targeted. And what did they do to his career by shooting him in the knee? What kind of sick F^(&$ would do that? And to pry out the gold caps on his teeth??? How depraved.

      I wish the kid well and hopes he makes a full recovery. The physical recovery might come faster than the emotional recovery.

    7. And what did they do to his career by shooting him in the knee? What kind of sick F^(&$ would do that? And to pry out the gold caps on his teeth??? How depraved.

      +1

      It feels like it happened to someone in my family. What a messed up world. So many guns. IDK what a millionaire kid is doing at a strip club at 4:15 AM. Maybe there’s a lesson learned there. Still no one deserves that.

    8. @11 -100000 please no more comments about how it’s his fault for just being there. He wasn’t hurting his teammates or anyone else or doing anything illegal or making bad life decisions, he was just out for the night after a W with no games the next two days. There is no lesson to be learned about being out late; the only lesson learned is that there are shitty people in this world. Best wishes to Cle, hope the damage isn’t too bad.

    9. There is no lesson to be learned about being out late; the only lesson learned is that there are shitty people in this world. Best wishes to Cle, hope the damage isn’t too bad.

      i would love for this to be true, but the fact of the matter is, nothing good happens at/near a strip club or a even a regular club that late at night. as a young wealthy high-profile person, he (and all professional athletes or other such people) needs to be aware that he will be targeted by these shitty people. Whether is Jahlil Okafor getting into fights because people are taunting him or JR getting into whatever kind of trouble he gets himself into…

      I’ve been to my share of strip clubs and have been out late at night and there is just no doubt there is a much higher chance of bad things happening when you do that, and I’m not even rich and high profile and/or wearing expensive jewelry. yes it’s fun to go out, and no, I’m not saying it’s his fault for going out and having fun — but there IS a lesson here. Whether it’s a lesson athletes and others in this situation want to learn is another question.

      In the sidebar of the Post article about this is another older article about how doctors and Wall Street types were targeted by strippers at Scores – drugged with ecstasy or ketamine, then had their credit cards stolen and charged to the limit.

      it’s just sad. poor kid.

    10. Man I feel terrible for Cle. What an incredibly scary situation to be in. As Frank said I worry as much about his psyche after this as his knee. Hoping that he can bounce back from this as well as possible.

      Also hoping that as much as possible we can refrain from blaming the victim here. Strip clubs aren’t my personal cup of tea, but the guy wasn’t actually doing anything wrong at all.

    11. @14 – Yeah. There is a lesson. +1 on your post. There’s a big difference between asking if there’s a lesson and blaming the kid. He who is without sin….

      When I was his age (many decades ago) I made poor decisions and went to an occasional strip bar. That activity was far from being the worst thing that I did. But visiting a strip bar is about as seedy an activity there is. So I wonder, if I was coaching a team, would I have given speeches about staying away from places like that? Would I strongly discourage my players from such activities? 100% yes.

      These players have bulls-eyes painted on their backs. They are targets because they have money and money is the root of all evil. It draws the attention of every scum-sucker out there. Did Cleanthony do anything wrong? No. Was it a bad decision? Yes. Could it happen at dinner time in a fine restaurant on 3rd avenue? Sure, but the odds increase when you’re in a strip club in the wee hours of the morning.

      I hope the rest of the team learns the lesson (are you reading this KP?) Stay away from snake-oil salesmen, harlots, winos and druggies. There’s nothing good that’ll come out of those associations.

      Once again, my hopes and prayers are with this kid who has endured so much in life. You deserve better Cleanthony.

    12. Also hoping that as much as possible we can refrain from blaming the victim here. Strip clubs aren’t my personal cup of tea, but the guy wasn’t actually doing anything wrong at all.

      I’m not blaming the victim – like you said, he did nothing illegal or even uncommon — but still, being at a strip club at 4am just isn’t that great an idea for someone like him. Not wrong, not hard to understand — just not smart.

    13. The lesson is that if you go to a strip club at 4:30 it might be written about in the news and discussed on Internet chat boards, and afterwards it’ll be all that anyone remembers about you, so if you want to maintain your integrity, act like people are watching all the time, because they are, and that’s not just your integrity’s paranoia talking– people ARE watching, and they’re getting ready to rob you… So: don’t go anyplace you wouldn’t want the world to know you were robbed at.

      Stay away from snake-oil salesmen, harlots, winos and druggies.

      Well, that takes pretty much ALL the fun out of things. (All you’ve left him to do is play parcheesi with his church group.)

    14. reub said:
      “Wroten seems to want to play for the Knicks. Does he know just how big Fisher’s doghouse is?”

      “He has shortened his rotation considerably and some guys almost never play. That’s a fact.”

      But his rotation is still 10-11 deep, and player like Sasha and Seraphin have been in and out of it. The only consistent DNP-CD’s are Cle and Lou, and neither guy could be said to be in the “doghouse.” Fisher has been very liberal with playing time compared to just about every coach in the league, so I still don’t get your comment about Wroten. The expression “doghouse” is generally used for a player that a coach doesn’t play to “teach them a lesson” rather than for being not as good as players getting time. For example, you could argue that O’Quinn was in the doghouse when he had several DNP-CD’s despite being much better on paper than Seraphin. Even then, though, Seraphin had a good game after the attacks in Paris, and Fish may have wanted to give him a long look before deciding on a rotation. So there would be no reason to have concern on Wroten’s part for that reason.

    15. I hope Early’s injury turns out to be minor and he makes a full recovery! It’ll be interesting to see the details of this, but I’d guess that he was recognized in the club and targeted, due to the multiple vehicles involved.

      The shot to the knee is scary. Did he resist at all? An attempt to ruin his career? Just a hateful jealous assailant?

      I’ll save the moralizing for later, once more details emerge about what actually happened.

    16. sounds like he’s already been discharged. can’t have been too significant a wound. and he’s already on twitter: @Clearly_BallLyf: Thank God for today

      phew.

    17. I really wonder about people. “Hey, you were shot and robbed – you shouldn’t have been so stupid as to be in the wrong place at the wrong time! Because Lord knows I’ve never been. OK, sure, I have been, but I’m not a millionaire athlete, so I have an excuse. You, millionaire 20-year-old, you should know better, because as a professional athlete the chances are that you come from a comfortable middle-class home where you learn all the important life lessons you need as a teenager. I mean, I didn’t, even though I’m from a comfortable middle class background, but you should, even though you have been catered to since you were a kid, and even though college was just a formality where you probably didn’t learn much because you were just waiting to go pro.”

      Congratulations on never having made a mistake. Oh – I mean, never having been so lucky as not to have been shot when you did. F*ck you.

    18. The man was doing the right thing by bringing his girlfriend to the titty joint. No one deserves to be shot in the knee for trying to give a lady a good Tuesday night.

      Rama is absolutely right, btw. Dude probably got set up by his Uber driver. Have you ever taken an Uber late at night? I sure have, and I certainly wouldn’t have deserved it if someone tried to rob me during our business transaction. But yeah, the young, black rich guy definitely deserved it. /s

      Moralizers: stop talking. Let the man get back to basketball, where he can express his body fluidly and artistically in its truest state

    19. Let’s hope its just a flesh wound

      Thank you for making me laugh!

      “I hope he learned a lesson.” Jesus.

    20. I just read this story and all the comments. I think it’s plausible to give credence to both sides of the argument that he increased the likelihood of having trouble by being where he was when he was and that it’s nonsense to blame a young man for simply trying to enjoy a night out on the town as every red-blooded person will do from time to time, especially in their youth.

      The way it reads, with the car being boxed in, makes me think of mafia movies where cars were boxed in by gunmen who had targeted someone, which is downright terrifying. What a traumatic experience that must have been to go through, I mean, can you even imagine that happening to you? He was certainly targeted given the precision of the attack, and the gunshot to his knee seems petty (but not as petty as a shot to his torso or head, thank god that horrifying possibility didn’t happen).

      The thing is, you can’t blame a guy for going out on the town. He didn’t drive drunk, he took a cab. He had his girlfriend with him, he wasn’t going behind her back to a strip club looking for some “strange.” Yes, the cliche goes that “nothing good happens after midnight,” but in my experience, a ton of the BEST THINGS THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME happened after midnight. You only get one chance to be young, and to expect a guy to sit in his apartment watching movies while he is making 6 or 7 figures a year in his early 20s is ludicrous.

      Let’s just call this what it is. Another act of cowardice by people looking for a quick score in a world where this has happened throughout the entirety of human history and will continue to happen as long as there are people on this planet. When a caveman saw another caveman with something he wanted, he would sneak up behind him and club him over the head. We are all in danger of this at any time and in any place, because that’s the world we live in.

      Nothing has changed.

    21. Now that I think about it, I finished my recap of the Knicks-Pistons game by saying you could always tell who got tipsy on New Year’s Eve and needed to take an Uber home in a New Year’s Day game. And even though Cleanthony doesn’t get playing time, he actually decided to do his New Year’s celebrations a couple days in advance so he would be ready to play against Chicago on Friday, which was the responsible thing to do. What rotten luck.

      Hope he makes a full recovery.

    22. please no more comments about how it’s his fault for just being there.

      I didn’t say it was his fault. No one deserves to get shot. I feel awful for the kid.

      I wonder about his judgement. Just being as famous as he is and leaving himself so vulnerable, but it’s clearly to soon to question that. Right now I’m just glad he’s not dead and hoping he can get back on a basketball court.

    23. The thing is, you can’t blame a guy for going out on the town. He didn’t drive drunk, he took a cab. He had his girlfriend with him, he wasn’t going behind her back to a strip club looking for some “strange.” Yes, the cliche goes that “nothing good happens after midnight,” but in my experience, a ton of the BEST THINGS THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME happened after midnight. You only get one chance to be young, and to expect a guy to sit in his apartment watching movies while he is making 6 or 7 figures a year in his early 20s is ludicrous.

      Let’s just call this what it is. Another act of cowardice by people looking for a quick score in a world where this has happened throughout the entirety of human history and will continue to happen as long as there are people on this planet. When a caveman saw another caveman with something he wanted, he would sneak up behind him and club him over the head. We are all in danger of this at any time and in any place, because that’s the world we live in.

      +10000

      but you kinda think perhaps after this incident + DWill + JR’s history that maybe the Knicks should step up and provide security services to their players, as well as some counseling as to easy/smart things to do to protect yourself, like “Hey Derrick, buy yourself a safe!”. I mean there are only 14 players on the roster right now — it wouldn’t even cost that much. The idea that one of the 450 best basketball players in the world has to take an Uber at night is kinda nuts, don’t you think?

      I’m pretty sure many of the NFL teams have something like this — basically a privately contracted company that can give rides or other security without any disclosure to the front office what service are being used. In fact, here it is.

    24. I grew up a neighborhood over from maspeth-the area where that club is isnt a “bad” neighborhood-its an industrial area. Probably creepy at 4am, but it’s not a high crime area

    25. @32 I completely agree. One of my first thoughts was, “why doesn’t the team have security assigned to players when they go out at night?”

      I suppose the reason is young men probably don’t like the idea of being “chaperoned” and resist the team’s efforts to provide a service like this. I can’t imagine the Knicks haven’t tried to offer bodyguards to players who want to go out to the clubs at night, but probably players feel like their private lives are being invaded by their employer in that regard and prefer not to have team-appointed bodyguards.

      In that instance, providing your own protection becomes your own responsibility, and Cleanthony isn’t making a ton of money in the terms of most NBA players, i.e. $5-6 mil plus a year, and doesn’t want to spend a sizable chunk of his income on personal protection like Carmelo could afford to do without thinking twice.

      Yes, Cleanthony makes a lot of money relative to the average person, but even if you made $1 million a year, would you spend $1000 for a bodyguard every night you wanted to go out? Probably not.

    26. the fact of the matter is, nothing good happens at/near a strip club or a even a regular club that late at night

      Bollocks.

      I once got a Brazilian stripper to go home with me that late at night. Turned out to be a decent fling for a few months.

      I think it’s unfair to even say the kid was showing poor judgement. I am, however, curious what he might have gotten himself into, seeing as this a) seems targeted, b) seems vengeful, and c) he seems like a modest target.

    27. @11 -100000 please no more comments about how it’s his fault for just being there. He wasn’t hurting his teammates or anyone else or doing anything illegal or making bad life decisions, he was just out for the night after a W with no games the next two days. There is no lesson to be learned about being out late; the only lesson learned is that there are shitty people in this world. Best wishes to Cle, hope the damage isn’t too bad.

      I couldn’t possibly disagree more and then I disagree even more on top of that.

      First, it’s never your fault when you are a victim of a crime.

      That said, we have to stop living in this idealistically delusional world that says just because you didn’t do anything wrong and you were the victim of a crime it makes perfect sense to put yourself in a position where you are more likely to be a victim. That’s just plain DUMB. I avoid certain neighborhoods, make sure I walk my girlfriend to her car at night, and do all sorts of defensive things to avoid being a victim because I know the way the world is and don’t want to be a victim. I am minimizing the probability of becoming a victim by using my brain.

      The fact of the matter it is stupid for anyone to go to certain clubs or locations at certain times of the day if you are trying to minimize your chances of being mugged, shot or worse. It’s twice as bad if you are flashing money or have gold chains etc.. Then you are increasing the probability even more.

      The idea here is not to trash Early. He did nothing wrong. He seems like a great kid! The idea is to teach these kids that they shouldn’t be going to certain clubs at all hours of the night, picking up strange women, flashing money or gold etc.. unless perhaps they are accompanied by security. They are prime time targets for all sorts of things because of their fame and wealth. It’s just plain stupid and no amount of brainwashing is ever going to change my view on that.

    28. I spent my youth planning to be a federal prosecutor. I probably led a more circumscribed life than anyone on this thread who was not planning for seminary. I certainly turned my back on many exploits by my friends who were aspiring actors/musicians.

      If I had a $845k salary, two days off and a girlfriend who was willing to go with me when I was 25, damn straight I would have headed to a “dancing establishment”. I would have hired a car (we were pre-Uber) and kept my refreshments limited.

      And as someone who regularly works past midnight, I have no problem with someone being out at 3 am if they have no responsibilities the next morning.

      I hope that Cleanthony Early makes a quick and complete recovery. I hope that the people who robbed and shot him are quickly arrested, tried and jailed.

    29. Maspeth is not such a great area, to my recollection.

      I grew up in Maspeth/Elmhurst. Maspeth is one of the safest neighborhoods in Queens. Let’s just say there are certain social clubs in the area that help keep it that way. But there are more isolated sections of the neighborhood and that’s probably where that strip club is located.

    30. There seems to be a lot of chatter on Twitter and elsewhere about imposing curfews and getting security for players. What has this world come to? There’s a sad reality and maybe it is time for extra measures to be taken. From ESPN:

      Williams has declined to comment on the theft, but the case raised questions about whether NBA players should have a curfew like other professional sports. In April, Indiana Pacers forward Chris Copeland, his girlfriend and another woman were stabbed following a late-night argument on the street near a Manhattan nightclub.

      Knicks coach Derek Fisher was asked about the policy at a news conference after Williams was robbed.

      “I don’t really have to get into our policies of what you can and can’t do,” he told reporters last week. “We don’t have a curfew like in the NFL or other sports do on certain nights. It’s an unfortunate incident.”

    31. That said, we have to stop living in this idealistically delusional world that says just because you didn’t do anything wrong and you were the victim of a crime it makes perfect sense to put yourself in a position where you are more likely to be a victim. That’s just plain DUMB. I avoid certain neighborhoods, make sure I walk my girlfriend to her car at night, and do all sorts of defensive things to avoid being a victim because I know the way the world is and don’t want to be a victim. I am minimizing the probability of becoming a victim by using my brain.

      By your logic, we are all stupid for living in New York City. We should all move to Nebraska and live on a farm.

      Of course, even then, we shouldn’t actually farm the farm, because it is much more likely that something terrible will happen around all those animals and that machinery.

    32. There seems to be a lot of chatter on Twitter and elsewhere about imposing curfews and getting security for players. What has this world come to

      People who have money or who otherwise might be a target (political figures, for instance) have extra security because that’s how you decrease risk, just like stratomatic wrote in #36.

      The problem, like Erik wrote in #34 is that some players will not want to pay for that. I’m sure guys like Lebron, Melo, etc. have private security, but other players who make/are worth less don’t want to bother with it. The problem with team-sponsored security is that the players will always feel like someone is big-brother-ing them.

      IMHO this is where the union should step in. Everyone pays a certain percentage into a “security pot” and union members can have private security, disconnected from teams/front offices / league offices. If the superstars want to have other security, that’s fine, but every union member should be able to get this kind of protection.

    33. Well, it’s not just some of us who think the players should be smarter about the situations they’re put in:
      @BruceBeck4NY: .@carmeloanthony -“we need to do a better job of putting ourselves in a safer environment!”

    34. By your logic, we are all stupid for living in New York City. We should all move to Nebraska and live on a farm.

      Of course, even then, we shouldn’t actually farm the farm, because it is much more likely that something terrible will happen around all those animals and that machinery.

      It’s a risk reward calculation. There are reasonable risks and dumb ones.

      You may choose to live in NY because of greater income opportunities, better entertainment etc… If you do, you are willing to accept some other smaller downsides for that much greater upside. But you don’t have to go to an isolated strip club at 4:15 in the morning wearing gold chains when you could just as easily entertain yourself and your girlfriend where the risk would be closer to 0.

      How many incidents of fights, robberies, shootings, etc.. have we had in just the last 12 months?

      These guys are targets. The risk reward is screaming that this behavior is dumber than a rock. Again, I don’t blame the kid. He’s the victim. But these kids have to learn how to reduce the chances of getting into trouble or they have to be accompanied by security when they do certain things.

    35. @41 –

      IMHO this is where the union should step in. Everyone pays a certain percentage into a “security pot” and union members can have private security, disconnected from teams/front offices / league offices. If the superstars want to have other security, that’s fine, but every union member should be able to get this kind of protection.

      I see where you’re going with that but I feel it’s a knee-jerk reaction. JR no longer needs this because DUH, he’s in friggin Cleveland and, as JR said:

      “I think this is the best situation for me, ’cause there’s nothing but basketball,” Smith said. “There’s nothing you expect but basketball. There’s nothing, there’s no going out, there’s no late nights. There’s video games, basketball and basketball.

      No. It’s not just a NY problem but there have been too many recent incidents here.

      I don’t know what needs to be done, but Melo said it best (see @42).

    36. These guys are targets. The risk reward is screaming that this behavior is dumber than a rock. Again, I don’t blame the kid. He’s the victim. But these kids have to learn how to reduce the chances of getting into trouble or they have to be accompanied by security when they do certain things.

      Even more why I think the organization that is supposed to protect these kids — the union — should be the ones to step up and provide counseling (I think they do this during the rookie symposium) but also actual security personnel for NBA players. I’m sure the teams would be happy to do it too, but I imagine that players don’t want even the remote possibility of management watching their nighttime activities.

      Again, the players wouldn’t HAVE to use the security, but it would be available, so you don’t have to trust Joe Schmo Uber guy (who may have been the one to set him up) to take your drunk ass home.

    37. By your logic, we are all stupid for living in New York City. We should all move to Nebraska and live on a farm.

      Of course, even then, we shouldn’t actually farm the farm, because it is much more likely that something terrible will happen around all those animals and that machinery.

      Exactly lol.

      Nobody actually literally tries to “minimize the probability of becoming a victim” as stratomatic put it. We all try to minimize the risks we face within certain bounds. We all accept a certain amount of risk in exchange for the benefits of things we like to do, whether that’s live in New York, go rock climbing, or go to Maspeth at 4am. The real question is how much risk you really think Cle was putting himself in by being there, and whether you think that amount of risk is unreasonable. And, in spite of what happened, I really think the answer is “Almost no risk at all”. It’s not like this happens every time you go to a strip club.

    38. I grew up not far from maspeth (forest hills). I had friends in maspeth. I don’t think maspeth has a bad reputation at all. I’m a doctor. I’ve gone to strip clubs in around queens with my buddies in the past. This is an eye opening story for me. I’m 40 with kids now, so I don’t really go out much anymore. That could easily have been my friends or I, when we finally had some money and we were in our late 20’s and early 30’s. I feel bad for cleanthony. Hope he makes a full recovery and puts this behind him.

    39. The real question is how much risk you really think Cle was putting himself in by being there, and whether you think that amount of risk is unreasonable. And, in spite of what happened, I really think the answer is “Almost no risk at all”. It’s not like this happens every time you go to a strip club.

      I think you need some work on your risk assessment skills.

      In just the last 12 months or so we’ve had multiple shootings, fights, and robberies among just 450 professionals, many of which I’m sure have matured past the point of hanging out in clubs or picking up strange women at 4:15.

    40. And, in spite of what happened, I really think the answer is “Almost no risk at all”. It’s not like this happens every time you go to a strip club.

      well let’s see

      Cle got shot last night after leaving a strip club
      Chris Copeland got stabbed in April after leaving a club
      Sefalosha got his ankle broken (by police after a fight outside the same club)
      Okafor got into 2 fights a few weeks ago after leaving a club
      JR got into a fight earlier this season at a club
      Glen Rice Jr was shot a few months ago in Atlanta

      that’s 6 incidents just involving NBA players in the last 8 calendar months just off the top of my head.

      I dunno. That doesn’t seem to fall into the “almost no risk at all” category.

    41. Frank,

      I see this kind of thing as a no brainer and get frustrated by it. But there are people that suffer from what I call “don’t blame the victim syndrome” and others more willing to accept these risks. Nether of us is blaming the victim and both of us are trying to suggest ways of keeping the players safer. I think you had some good ideas.

    42. And, in spite of what happened, I really think the answer is “Almost no risk at all”. It’s not like this happens every time you go to a strip club.

      well let’s see

      Cle got shot last night after leaving a strip club
      Chris Copeland got stabbed in April after leaving a club
      Sefalosha got his ankle broken (by police after a fight outside the same club)
      Okafor got into 2 fights a few weeks ago after leaving a club
      JR got into a fight earlier this season at a club
      Glen Rice Jr was shot a few months ago in Atlanta

      that’s 6 incidents just involving NBA players in the last 8 calendar months just off the top of my head.

      I dunno. That doesn’t seem to fall into the “almost no risk at all” category.

      I would argue you’re lumping together very different things here. If you’re talking about the risk of getting in a fight then yeah I think that risk is pretty significant. I also don’t consider it that big of a deal in many cases.

      If you’re talking about the risk of getting yourself in the kind of very, very bad situation that Cle found himself in last night, I think it’s quite a bit smaller.

    43. I would argue you’re lumping together very different things here. If you’re talking about the risk of getting in a fight then yeah I think that risk is pretty significant. I also don’t consider it that big of a deal in many cases.

      If you’re talking about the risk of getting yourself in the kind of very, very bad situation that Cle found himself in last night, I think it’s quite a bit smaller.

      Not sure what exactly happened last night (McCann’s article makes the whole thing seem much more sinister), but presumably all these events could theoretically have been avoided with good security.

      Basically these were all violent crimes/incidents. That’s what security is there to prevent, no?

    44. Thanks, strat, I grew up in the Bronx, so don’t know Queens nearly as well and probably lump Maspeth in with LIC, Jackson Heights, Corona, Elmhurst, etc. Neighborhoods seem to vary a lot in a a seemingly small area, and half the time I can’t tell which “neighborhood” I’m in when I dabble in Queens.

    45. Basically these were all violent crimes/incidents. That’s what security is there to prevent, no?

      I definitely won’t argue against the idea that it’s worth it for these guys have to some type of security. 100% on board with that. Even if you think the risk of something really serious happening isn’t that high (and I still don’t really), it’s a good way to reduce the risk to close to zero at a non-extreme cost.

    46. These guys are targets. The risk reward is screaming that this behavior is dumber than a rock. Again, I don’t blame the kid. He’s the victim. But these kids have to learn how to reduce the chances of getting into trouble or they have to be accompanied by security when they do certain things.

      So is Cleanthony Early to be blamed for not having optimal risk management skills, or isn’t he? If not, then I don’t see the point in harping on them; it’s not like he’s walking into a Detroit crack den. If he is, then come out and say it: to blame him for his “poor” risk management skills is exactly the same thing as blaming the victim in all but the most edgy of edge cases–even if you claim otherwise. This is the same logic used to chastise rape victims and I find it extraordinarily misguided even if the intentions are good (which yours certainly are.)

      What’s your prescription? Don’t take an Uber? Don’t go out past 10 in one of the safest neighborhoods in one of the safest cities in the world? Cle doesn’t need bodyguards–he needs people to stop fucking robbing other people. Requiring a bodyguard is decision-theoretically supererogatory.

    47. Tweet from long-time a-hole Peter Vescey:

      “Pretty sad that robbers got off one more shot than Early did last night. That’d never happen to Melo…”

    48. What’s your prescription? Don’t take an Uber? Don’t go out past 10 in one of the safest neighborhoods in one of the safest cities in the world? Cle doesn’t need bodyguards–he needs people to stop fucking robbing other people. Requiring a bodyguard is decision-theoretically supererogatory.

      Not to turn this into a political argument, but this is just like the gun-crowd saying that guns aren’t the problem, bad people are the problem. No – there are multiple possible reasons for everything, and multifaceted approaches can be undertaken.

      No – I’m not blaming Cleanthony Early. He’s just being a kid who wants to have fun. I’m beyond glad he’s fine. But let’s say you’re the head of Knicks or NBA security and you want to do root cause analysis to prevent future events like this, then among the things you could theoretically do are:

      1) discourage being at a strip club at 4 am
      2) have professional – vetted security drive you home when you need a ride
      3) have professional – vetted security around every time you’re going to go out to potentially dangerous situations. Strip club at 4 am counts.
      4) and yes, work on the problem of people fucking robbing other people

      you don’t have to do all 4, but you should at least consider all 4. And especially 1 through 3 since those are the things you can actually control.

    49. In this case it’s hard to blame him for a lack of situational awareness. He couldn’t have any because he was in a car leaving the area. If he was targeted then it is likely this would have happened just about anywhere he was. Is it a good idea to be out past 2am in most cases? No. Do you stay out past 2am a lot when you’re young? Damn right! Should humans not be assholes? Yes.

      I could die in a horrible accident on my ride home tonight. Life is life, shit happens. It’s good to minimize risk where you can, but you can’t stop every bad thing from happening. If someone had it out for him they would have done it one way or the other. We don’t know if he was targeted because he was in that area specifically or if he has been being watched for some time and this was the night the perps went after him.

    50. I have to say: When I saw a guy get shot to death in an alley in west Chicago, no one ever came to me and said, “Well that’s what you get for walking home in the dark. You should have known better.” Kinda wishing I had had some dudes like some of you on this board to dissuade me from leaving the house after dusk.

      Neighborhoods seem to vary a lot in a a seemingly small area, and half the time I can’t tell which “neighborhood” I’m in when I dabble in Queens.

      I stayed in Hyde Park, Chicago for a couple weeks, and it’s shocking how quickly the beauty and extravagant wealth of Hyde Park dissipates to the abject poverty of Garfield Park in just a few city blocks.

      Only in New Haven have I seen such a stark contrast between ultra-wealth and desperation. I lived on the border of East Rock and downtown, and neighborhoods like The Hill, riddled with gang violence, were just a short walk away. And New Haven is a small city!

    51. When I gave my bank information to the Nigerian prince and found the account liquidated … There is a line. I find the idea of taking a date to a strip club, as I think I read, peculiar, but going out late and calling a cab is pretty much smart behavior. Driving would be probable DWI and a subway, if available, would be madness or endlessly long.

    52. @63, Mount Vernon, NY seemed like that the one time I was there to apply for a summer job at the post office. You went from a bilingual McDonalds (in the less PC 80s) to mansions a block up a hill in less than a mile or so it seemed.

    53. No structural damage to Early’s knee so very good news! Now he can go back into Fisher’s friendly doghouse.

    54. Yeah, cities are dangerous. I grew up in Forest Hills, which is considered a safe neighborhood, but there was still a lot of trouble to be had. I agree, you can’t totally avoid trouble. I live in the woods now and, believe me, if something happens with a crazy neighbor, no one is getting here in time (and people love their guns around here.)

      I’m glad the kid survived it and in the aftermath of something like this it is a bit tacky to judge what he could have done differently. I think there’s a larger issue involving a correlation between good habits and effectiveness on the court but to conflate his 29 seconds of playing time with his choice of after party is Vescey-ish. From all reports he’s a good kid and a hard worker, no?

    55. Whoever is familiar with Queens or Google Maps might ask why he (Clearanthony) ended up in that area at all (the robbery spot). With LIE nearby and BQE within the reach why did they go through local streets at 4AM? It is ubersuspicious….

      As for flashing his gold chains and other valuables after midnight the boy who grew up in Bronx should know better, don’t you think?

    56. @71 – Me too. I lived all over Forest Hills. Great neighborhood but there was crime. I had 5 cars stolen there. Two when I was young and three more times in a span of two years after I got married. Being near Queens Blvd, the LIE, GCP and VWE made it an easy get-away to the Shea chop-shops. I too live in the woods (Rockland) these days. My biggest problem is deer now ;)
      @72 is right that there are things we learn the hard way when living in the city.

    57. to blame him for his “poor” risk management skills is exactly the same thing as blaming the victim in all but the most edgy of edge cases–even if you claim otherwise.

      Thank you, Alecto. That’s why I find the moralizing clueless at best. An ex-girlfriend of mine was raped, and she called me for help. In the two minutes I had to get my head together before going over, I went online and read about how I should respond. The very first point was: tell her that it wasn’t her fault. She did not ask to be raped. Did she exercise great judgment? No. But did she ask the guy to rape her? Obviously fucking not. Someone committed a crime, and it wasn’t her. This seems little different.

      About 20 years ago I was walking home through the West Village after a work function. I was wearing a great suit – I never wore suits in those days, but it was a big deal thing that kept me out until 1. So I’m on the empty streets of one of the safest neighborhoods in NYC and someone decides I’m a great target, comes out of nowhere, grabs the lapels of my sweet, sweet jacket, and says gimme your money. Fortunately I had the kind of training that led to a safe outcome, but was I at fault for wearing a nice suit in empty streets late at night? Fuck that.

      It reminds me of Joan Didion’s powerful, incisive essay on the rape of the Central Park jogger. Then as now, I wonder how much unconscious racism has to do with people’s responses.

    58. danVT- I’m from forest hills as well. Grew up in the 80’s and early 90’s. I’m 40. When did you live here? I played bball on the courts at Russell sage junior high school. I remember everyone thinking forest hills was so safe. But like most of nyc during that time menace was right around the corner. I was mugged a couple of times as a kid. And there were numerous run ins with menacing older kids, thugs, and bullies. Somehow I always escaped. Probably a combination of luck, good friends and neighbors, savvy, and speed (ran track in high school). My childhood definitely shaped who I am. Having said that, I still did lots of stupid shit in my 20’s and early 30’s. I’m lucky to be where I’m at in life now.

    59. @72. Does that lead to suspecting the cab driver as being involved?

      As a former federal prosecutor, Rule #1 is suspect everyone until that person can be eliminated.

    60. Rama – no one is trying to blame Cleanthony for being a bad person or whatever. But your point of view is just so….fatalistic, like there’s nothing we can do about it so “oh well”. These guys are told during the rookie symposium and should know that they are targets. Whether it’s because of what Melo said (some people don’t think you deserve what you have so they try to take it) or whether it’s just because you have stuff and they want it, players and other high-profile people have to know that there are bad people (however few in the large scheme of things) that are after them. This isn’t just violent crime — it’s also all these dudes who try to scam them financially. It’s also gold diggers and groupies.

      So I’m on the empty streets of one of the safest neighborhoods in NYC and someone decides I’m a great target, comes out of nowhere, grabs the lapels of my sweet, sweet jacket, and says gimme your money. Fortunately I had the kind of training that led to a safe outcome, but was I at fault for wearing a nice suit in empty streets late at night? Fuck that.

      It’s not your fault – it’s the other guy’s fault of course. But — not sure whether you have kids or not — what would you tell your kids about that situation? What would you tell your daughter or wife or girlfriend about that situation? Would you say to your daughter that it’s not a bad idea to walk the streets of Brownsville by yourself at night wearing fancy jewelry? Of course not.

      (And I mean in a “preventive” sense before anything happens, not after an incident, when they would need unqualified/unconditional support)

      Look – it’s a freak happening for the most part and I feel nothing but sympathy and relief for him. No blame, no “I told you so”, no “it’s your fault”. You can’t live in fear all the time and shut yourself in. But you can (and I can bet you Cleanthony will in the future) do some things to protect yourself.

    61. It reminds me of Joan Didion’s powerful, incisive essay on the rape of the Central Park jogger. Then as now, I wonder how much unconscious racism has to do with people’s responses.

      I could not find this essay online, but just now read some articles about that essay. I don’t see how it is even remotely related to this. As far as I can tell (and I could be wrong because I didn’t get a chance to read the primary source), it was about how everyone descended upon the poor/urban minorities who were falsely accused in this case on the background of a young blonde investment banker getting brutally attacked. It was not about whether it was a great idea for her to be jogging in central park by herself at night.

      When I was living in upper Manhattan a few years back, there is no way in the world I would feel good about my wife walking even a few blocks by herself in the middle of the night.

    62. I agree with everything Frank said.

      We cannot live in a bubble thinking that it’s ok to walk on a dark alley wearing golden jewerly because it’s my right to do so.

      There are a lot of bad people out there and they are not gonna stop because of some PC BS.

      It’s our job to avoid those situations. Sometimes it will happen even with all the attention that will be putting on this.

      It’s a cruel world. Be ready for it.

      With that being said, Cle is the victim. period.

      Best wishes for him.

    63. Pretty interesting exchange between moralizers and counter-moralizers.

      The essential question seems to be: to what degree do individuals have control over what happens to them, given circumstantial conditions?

      It’s easy for conversations like this to devolve into a blame game. But there are legitimate questions worth debating, and using words like “clueless” and “misguided” seems over the top to me. Frank is making points about situational awareness that are a far cry from deserving a shallow “blame the victim” reaction.

      There is no disputing that certain factors and actions increase the likelihood that you will be a victim of a crime, and that taking certain precautions will decrease that likelihood. We all know that. I take precautions nearly every day, and admonish others to take precautions as part of my job. When something bad happens because they didn’t take my advice, do I blame them? Or gloat? Of course not! But do I feel that had they heeded my advice, the bad thing wouldn’t have happened? Absolutely.

      That doesn’t mean that if you don’t take those precautions, you should be “blamed” for what happens, or that Frank is in any way suggesting that Cle “got what was coming to him.”

      In this case, seems like Cle’s behaviors were well within normal expectations for a 24 year-old with his working hours and income. On the other hand, there’s no getting around that as a 6’9″ recognizable and somewhat wealthy professional athlete, he’s more likely to be a target for crime than most regardless of where he lives or goes. That’s why many celebrities have bodyguards and advisors (although they can be criminals too!)

      It’s a complex and nuanced issue, and we should be careful about being too judgmental when debating it.

    64. They used three cars, six men, tore the gold caps out of his teeth, and shot him in the knee.

      Something really doesn’t add up here.

      Obviusly Cle is the victim here. Obviously if he had stayed home and watched Making of a Murderer this wouldn’t have happened.

      But it does seem to me that as NBA robberies go this thing is just way way way off the scale. This goes way beyond a garden variety baller heist.

      I got to think Cle owes somebody money or screwed around with someone’s wife.

      But either way this should never happen…

    65. @77 LLCOOLBP
      Yes Bro! I went to PS 101 but not Russell Sage. I’m a little ahead of you age wise. I was just back for Thanksgiving and ran into old friends shooting around in the school yard. Dudes from Queens just speak basketball like a second language.

      I never really felt nervous growing up but I did learn how to take care of myself. Mostly you just find a crowd and there usually is one. You don’t get in the end cars on the subway, etc. One time a guy did the “you want to see a match burn twice?” trick on me. My Les Paul was stolen out of my mom’s car (and we did feel stupid that we left it there) but no one ever took a guitar I was carrying. You learn how to take care of yourself through common sense and experience.

      Of course there a whole other set of rules for the rich and famous. No one deserves to get jacked but at some point you should ask whether an organization or an individual is advantageously safeguarding their future. Whether it’s protecting jewelry, staying safe while partying, or drinking too many Shirley Temples, at some point it’s fair to question someone’s judgement. Maybe not right now for Cleanthony, though.

    66. LLCOOLBP and danvt,
      You might have missed it, but I’m from Forest Hills too. Halsey JHS and FHHS alum. I’m older than both of you though: 57. We moved around a bit within FH. First I lived off of 108th street near Halsey but ended up living near PS 144 just outside the Gardens.

      And I agree with all the things you say davnt about the common sense stuff that we learned.

    67. Yo GONY!

      Yes, really a great neighborhood to grow up in. Lots of school yards and big streets for bikes and skateboards. Now that I have a son, when I go home, I do less and less in the Manhattan. He has his scooter, we buy two balls for the price of one at Sports Authority on Metro and head for 144 or 101. Reliving my childhood has been fantastic. Lots of lessons for him as well. Don’t worry about the person talking to herself outside the Sizzler. Just keep to your own business and keep moving. Weird new shit seems to happen as well. A pigeon dive bombed us under the LIRR track. That never happened to me before. You learn to accept different, novel stuff every day. You keep your wits. Even if it’s just knowing when to cross the street.

    68. Why is my comment awaiting moderation?

      It happens occasionally and randomly, I believe.

    69. GoNy and danVT- awesome to see fellow forest hills guys here. I had a a awesome childhood. I still come home monthly to visit my parents. I live in upstate ny now. I went to Halsey in the late 80’s. Then rode the subway to Bronx science. Great memories growing up. I plan on bringing my kids to the old neighborhood often. I hope my son and daughter get to play some hoops on the playgrounds someday.

    70. I’m just glad y’all knew enough to not bring that Forrest Hills bullshit over to Middle Vilage

      I had a friend in the Bronx and we talked about rival gangs of old ladies…”The Canes against The Wigs”!

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