Knicks Morning News (2016.06.03)

  • [New York Times] Warriors 104, Cavaliers 89 | Golden State leads series, 1-0: Warriors’ Bench Blisters Cavaliers on a Quiet Night for Stephen Curry (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 05:18:35 GMT)

    Golden State, which is seeking its second straight championship, routed Cleveland in Game 1 at Oracle Arena.

  • [New York Times] Warriors 96, Thunder 88 | Golden State wins series, 4-3: Warriors Edge Thunder to Extend Dream Season to N.B.A. Finals (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 01:25:30 GMT)

    Golden State, which is seeking its second straight championship, needed to win the final three games of the series to set up a rematch with the Cavaliers.

  • [New York Times] Kerr Pushes All the Right Buttons in Game 1 of NBA Finals (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 07:18:31 GMT)

    Even as he spent the first 43 games of the season on the sideline while recovering from back problems, Steve Kerr always kept his finger on the pulse of the Golden State Warriors.

  • [New York Times] Finals Prove Long Shots Have Chance of Ultimate Victory (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 06:00:28 GMT)

    The NBA Finals have often been decided by the winners of key battles in areas where both teams excel and with three-pointers proving to be the weapon of choice for this year’s protagonists, fans are braced for a battery of long-range bombs.

  • [New York Times] Bench Lift Warriors to First Blood in Finals Series (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 05:54:27 GMT)

    The Golden State Warriors needed a big lift from their bench to down the Cleveland Cavaliers 104-89 in the NBA Finals opener in Oakland on Thursday.

  • [New York Times] Warriors’ Supporting Cast Leads Game 1 NBA Finals Win (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 05:03:50 GMT)

    Stephen Curry realizes every last man on the bench can mean so much to winning a championship.

  • [New York Times] The Latest: Warriors Beat Cavs 104-89, Take Game 1 of Finals (Fri, 03 Jun 2016 03:10:02 GMT)

    The Latest on Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers (all times local):

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    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).

    59 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2016.06.03)”

    1. From Adam Zagoria’s twitter account:

      Phil Jackson & Jeff Hornacek emphasized the triangle today in their group workout, source tells @SNYtv. Interesting to see what Horny says

      Yikes.

      Ideally speaking this will just be a modernized triangle. I have a really hard time believing a guy who gave all those quotes to Zach Lowe about the evils of long 2s, emphasizing the 3 and transition opportunities would go and agree to run an offense seemingly meant to get an open 19 foot jumper.

      And honestly – we probably will have a bunch of holdovers from last year – Lopez, KP, Melo, Grant, Galloway, Thomas, KOQ, Calderon etc. Better to adjust an already existing system than blow up the whole thing and have to start from scratch again.

      I’ve always thought just the addition of competent guards would go a long way to improving this team, triangle or not. Imagine running a bit more, tweaking the system to allow more PNR/PNP and 3 pointers.

    2. Pretty sure Lavor has made a convincing case that the Triangle wasn’t the problem. It is more flexible than people allow. Lots of its sets have been adapted by teams that run effective and even superlative offenses. The problem was terrible guards (or let’s be charitable and say “limited” guards, like Calderon).

    3. I want one or two excellent wings added this offseason. Solomon Hill and Bazemore?

    4. The triangle might be a problem. The roster is definitely a problem. That’s how I think you should think of it.

    5. @2

      More than that it really shouldn’t be hard to tweak the base Triangle to run more spread PNR. GSW does it a lot and there’s a high PNR option we used quite often when Melo brought the ball up where they’d set RoLo up on the block on the strong side and instead of throwing the post entry or the pass to the wing and then cutting to the corner, RoLo would come up and set a screen on Melo’s man.

      We did this a lot towards the end of the season when Grant got more minutes also. The biggest thing is really just altering the spacing a bit with the man on the weak side elbow fanning out further either to the wing or the corner.

      The way I think we operate is we’ll look to push the ball up faster in transition and look for quick hitting shots in the first 10 clocks off of drag screens and high PNR, after which we’ll setup some base Triangle action while also incorporating some UCLA action, which is almost an exact starting setup on the strong side as the Triangle, and HORNS action as well. Also would expect to see some more Flex action given Hornacek’s years in Utah and Phil’s admiration for that system as well as the fact that it’s what he ran as an HC in the CBA before Tex introduced him to the Triangle.

      The big thing is that Hornacek will probably be okay with adopting some of the 2-guard looks in the Triangle as he used a lot of 2 guard fronts in Phoenix to accommodate Bledsoe and Dragic. More or less I don’t think having the Triangle as the base should prevent us in any way from running some of the more uptempo and spread concepts Hornacek used in Phoenix.

    6. More or less I don’t think having the Triangle as the base should prevent us in any way from running some of the more uptempo and spread concepts Hornacek used in Phoenix.

      Having slow players who can’t shoot is going to be more of a problem, imho. Hopefully we can add some speed and shooting in FA. At the 1, the 2 or 3-I don’t think it matters where as long as it’s somewhere.

    7. Having slow players who can’t shoot is going to be more of a problem, imho. Hopefully we can add some speed and shooting in FA. At the 1, the 2 or 3-I don’t think it matters where as long as it’s somewhere.

      Definitely. I’m still pretty optimistic about Grant. Long-term we’ll likely still need a better starting PG, but I think he’ll be fine as a starter for the time being as long as we can upgrade on the wing.

    8. RE: Grant,
      As long as Hornacek gives him the rock, I think he’ll be fine. He may not be an all time great, but he comes from a good hoops family, and he was pretty damn good in college. He just needs to knock down more jumpers to keep the defense honest. Ideally, I’d like to see a SG who can play defense, and be a secondary playmaker & ball handler in the backcourt, but I’d be very happy with Bazemore. With his length on defense and his adequate shooting from deep coupled with his steady improvement with playing time, he should be a nice asset. As long as we have Melo & KP to get buckets, a backcourt rotation of Grant/Bazemore/Galloway/Wroten should be fine. The trouble is gonna be replacing Melo. Warts and all, we need that guy- be it for a trade or to score points.

    9. “two excellent wings added this offseason. Solomon Hill”
      There was a thread a week or so ago in which people were debating Solomon Hill and someone predicted that he could be signed for about $12 million/year, and some seemed to think that that would be a good value. Are we talking about the Solomon Hill who plays for the Pacers, or is there another Solomon Hill that I don’t know about? I realize that some on this site scoff at the notion that the ability to score points is maybe a little bit important in basketball but isn’t Solomon Hill the guy who averaged 4 points and 2 rebounds (3 points per game if you exclude his 3 game “hot streak” at the end of the year) a game this year and shot 32% from 3? That’s what qualifies as an “excellent wing” who is worth $12 million/year these days? That’s about the most ridiculous thing I’ve read on this site since someone was claiming, despite all evidence to the contrary, that Jordan Hill is “awesome at basketball.”

    10. Now that I think about it, Galloway might be a candidate to be replaced. He doesn’t even shoot 40% from the field. I love his grit and long arms on defense though. As much of a surprise he was in his rookie season, he really needs to shoot better and find ways to get in the lane. Given the team’s overall lack of shooting, I probably wouldn’t mind replacing him with Jimmer- especially if Phil lands Bazemore. Or maybe replacing Calderon with Jimmer and keeping Galloway, provided that the way Grant ended the season was a sign of things to come.

    11. Reub’s having a laugh with you guys with the Solomon Hill reference. Dude can’t shoot.

      Knicks need a couple of shooters, badly, and some guys who can run a bit. Grant, Wroten, Galloway are all capable of running, but there’s not much shooting there. Unless he’s traded, Calderon really needs to be a bench 2 b/c he can shoot. I’m not optimistic about Galloway. He is what he is…he can’t shoot. He’s fine as an energy guy off the bench, but he needs to be paired with a shooter (Calderon?).

      And, the Knicks need some quality depth. The team was, what, 22-22 until injuries started to wear at the team, as they almost always do? We can pretty much count on Melo missing some time given his age and track record the past couple of years. So, in addition to a starting 2, another 2/3 wing guy for depth would be nice. Hopefully Hernangomez comes over and can add a bit of depth up front.

      A big question will be what to give LT. Was last year a fluke, or did he develop a real 3 point shot? He broke down under increased minutes…will that happen again? Even if they retain him, still need that depth wing guy…

    12. Ideally, I’d like to see a SG who can play defense, and be a secondary playmaker & ball handler in the backcourt

      This is Galloway. As long as you limit the shooting he does off the dribble he’s a perfectly fine SG. Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look to improve the position if the price is right, but Galloway’s main flaw is he can’t create efficient offense off the dribble as a primary option (essentially, he’s not good enough to be a PG, which is fine-that just means you’re a SG). If he’s out there with Grant, or a playmaking wing he’s fine.

    13. Galloway was easily the best and only good perimeter defender on the team last year. He’s also able to switch on to bigger players effectively because of his length and he improved tremendously as a corner 3 point shooter and finishing at the rim. Not bringing him back on what will likely be an affordable contract at all of 24 years old would be extremely short-sighted.

    14. Lavor, his overall numbers were down last year, after a hot start (FG%, 3 PT FG%, FT%). I recall lots of 1 for 7 or 2 for 9 type games from him in the second half of the season. So, if he “improved tremendously” in some areas, he must have regressed tremendously in others.

      But, yeah, if he’s “affordable” keep him ($5 mil? Who knows in this market). Maybe last year was a bit of a sophomore slump. I agree that he was the Knicks best perimeter defender last year, but that’s mostly by default. Most everyone else stunk. He got blown by a bunch last year and had a tendency, it seemed, to commit silly fouls crashing into screeners.

    15. Got to watch the Hornacek press conference. Seems like a very chill dude, but also very confident and poised. I think he’s gonna be great (if we can get him some guards)

      Phil, on the other hand, was as weird as ever. Really long pauses before answering questions, non-sequiters right and left and some strange Cuba reference at the end of one his responses.

      I’ve always been amazed how a guy who is so well read and intelligent has so much trouble putting coherent sentences together.

    16. @16

      Most of his regression came from being extremely shitty in the mid-range where he was much better from his rookie season. Mid-range is also the zone where you see the biggest swings in shooting percentages.

      If he can maintain or improve upon the gains he made at the rim and from the corner, while being a plus defender then keeping him makes a lot of sense. At 24 he still has a lot of time to improve as a shooter as well. There’s countless example of guys that improved as shooters over time. Given his defensive talent and plus rebounding for his position, I’d keep him without hesitation bar some insane offer from another team.

    17. Phil, on the other hand, was as weird as ever. Really long pauses before answering questions, non-sequiters right and left and some strange Cuba reference at the end of one his responses.

      I’ve always been amazed how a guy who is so well read and intelligent has so much trouble putting coherent sentences together.

      Hahahahahahaa! Well you know what they say..
      Geniuses are a little..eccentric/weird. Or genius isn’t that far off from insanity or something or other lol

    18. @18 Fair enough, but his overall 3 point % was down. So, if he’s hitting more corner threes, then he must be missing more of all the other threes, which limits his usefulness and simplifies other teams’ defense when he’s on the court.

      Again, I’m not questioning retaining him, but at what price?

    19. Not everyone can speak as well as Jowles can.

      And was Einstein a good speaker? I seriously doubt it!

    20. Phil might just be messing with the media. But, he’s also old and has, allegedly, done some mind altering stuff…so you never know.

      I used to not like his shtick, but since it drives the NY media crazy, I’ve come to enjoy it.

    21. then he must be missing more of all the other threes, which limits his usefulness and simplifies other teams’ defense when he’s on the court.

      Which is why we need to upgrade the talent other than him. We should be focused on upgrading from Sasha, Afflalo and Jose while looking to continue developing Grant, Galloway and evaluating the flyer on Wroten.

    22. @21
      Einstein was reportedly the first person to use the term “goink” in casual conversation!

    23. @21
      Einstein was reportedly the first person to use the term “goink” in casual conversation!

      Ha! I can’t!! lololol

    24. Didn’t Hornacek play both guard positions really well? I wanna say it was the Sixers who had him run point because of Hershey Hawkins? Over the course of his playing career, he’s played with some *understatement* really good guards. Stockton, Hawkins, KJ..maybe he can draw on his experience and get the most out of Grant/Galloway/Wroten.

    25. Well, feels like that presser was a little underwhelming.

      So I guess we’re going to run a more modern triangle
      More PNR/PNP
      Faster pace
      More 3s
      Expects KP to be a top 5 player in the league

      in other words – exactly what we’ve all been saying for 2 years!

    26. Having a coach that can talk about offensive and defensive efficiency instead of points per game is progress to these eyes.

    27. Horny was generally the less ball dominant guard, but he was no slouch as a playmaker himself.

    28. Personally, I’m not going to easily forget the contributions of one Kurt Rambis who gave all he had for this organization.

      @30 Oh yes! I do remember hearing that Einstein was a babe magnet. What did he have that I don’t?

    29. Einstein was actually really eloquent as a speaker and writer

      Isn’t there an urban legend that he was involved with Marilyn Monroe.

    30. Lots of very good teams have incorporated triangle concepts into the modern game. So as far as I am concerned we are on the right track now both in terms of the efficiency of our offense and being able to attract players that otherwise might not have wanted to play on a purely triangle based team.

      As far as whether the triangle as a stand alone system is good, I think the evidence is overwhelming that it sucks. Jordan, Pippen, Rodman, Shaq, Kobe, and Gasol would have won rings in any system with a variety of coaches. Whenever the triangle didn’t have 2-3 all time greats in the lineup it was an unmitigated disaster.

    31. As far as whether the triangle as a stand alone system is good, I think the evidence is overwhelming that it sucks. Jordan, Pippen, Rodman, Shaq, Kobe, and Gasol would have won rings in any system with a variety of coaches. Whenever the triangle didn’t have 2-3 all time greats in the lineup it was an unmitigated disaster.

      shhhhhh coaches make the players

    32. An interesting part of the presser is when Hornacek talked about system basketball – and how it becomes much more important in the playoffs because regular PNR stuff doesn’t work as well then.

      He also said his system would look a lot like the Warriors’ system. I mean, without the Steph Curry/Klay Thompson portion of it, but whatever

    33. I just checked: Tony Wroten had a 48 TS% in college and a 51.6 TS% in his high school senior year. Can’t wait to watch him take all the shots.

      I’m starting to think that his inclusion in the highest level of college basketball and then the very best basketball league in the world has had more to do with coaching hubris than actual playing ability. Terrified for this season.

    34. Whenever the triangle didn’t have 2-3 all time greats in the lineup it was an unmitigated disaster.

      That’s like saying whenever the triangle didn’t have 2-3 horrible starters it was an unmitigated success.

      Come on.

    35. To be fair – that year Scottie took them to game 7 in the EC 2nd round against the Knicks (without Jordan) – they didn’t have anything close to 2 HoFers on the court. Unless we’re thinking Steve Kerr/Kukoc/Horace Grant belong in that conversation.

    36. If you guys just become aware that we always need something negative to harp on – Phil hiring Rambis, MMM, Isaiah – then you’ll notice that we have shifted to the Triangle as the next target.

      The triangle is a viable and successful offense. To say that it doesn’t work is lazy. Y0u can’t take a really bad coach like Rambis, who has awful subbing patterns and X’s/O’s logic, and make a derivation based off of it.

      Klosterman had a great piece I read once on why no one plays the triangle anymore, and basically says the PNR is too easy to emulate, whereas a systems offense is truly unguardable but takes patience and training.

    37. Unless we’re thinking Steve Kerr/Kukoc/Horace Grant belong in that conversation.

      Do you really not think that this guy is deserving of praise for his team’s extreme level of success?

      http://www.boxscoregeeks.com/players/1003-horace-grant

      Jordan’s departure after ’93 didn’t cause a meteoric fall like LeBron’s did. Why? Because Horace Grant was really, really important to those teams. There’s no conceivable way that you can look at his stats (and his 4 consecutive All-NBA Defensive team selections) and come up with anything short of “superstar.” 1991-92 was a freakishly good year for him. Do you find it a little weird that Jordan retired and Grant’s numbers improved year-over-year?

      I mean, then he goes to the Magic with two other superstars and makes another Finals appearance, followed by being on a 60-win team, then he turned 31 as Shaq left and it went downhill.

      The Bulls had peak Horace Grant and they certainly would not have won a threepeat without him.

    38. I always hated the way that Marv Albert pronounced Horace Grant’s name on NBC broadcasts.

      It’s Horace not”Haahrace”

    39. @34 e=mc2 (squared).
      That and great hair!

      @48 Ah, now I know who it is that starts out almost every thread on P&T!
      :-)

    40. And was Einstein a good speaker? I seriously doubt it!

      probably not when he was 12 and independently proved the pythagorean theorem. but then he learned to communicate without haikus. and moved on from triangles.

    41. Einstein liked rumpled, rolled up pants.
      Hence babe magnet!

      I’m not sure you call someone who married his first cousin a “babe magnet”!

    42. I’m not sure you call someone who married his first cousin a “babe magnet”!

      Depends on how hot his first cousin was. I mean was he supposed to just let some other guy marry his hot cousin?

    43. Einstein liked rumpled, rolled up pants.
      Hence babe magnet!

      I’m not sure you call someone who married his first cousin a “babe magnet”!

      Those poor fools at warriorblogger and cavblogger still have to spend their time discussing basketball. But here, we are free to talk about this. Thank you James L Dolan!

    44. Gasol is an all-time great?

      Honestly one of the dumbest fucking comments I’ve read including the stupid shit I’ve said.

      Let me know a system that wins titles without all-time great talent.

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