Knicks Morning News (2016.12.26)

  • [ESPN] Monday’s Knicks News: Celtics hang on for close Christmas day win
    (Monday, December 26, 2016 5:37:22 AM)

    Monday’s Knicks News: Celtics hang on for close Christmas day win

  • [ESPN] Knicks in a giving mood on defense in Christmas Day loss to Boston
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 6:42:20 PM)

    Knicks in a giving mood on defense in Christmas Day loss to Boston

  • [ESPN] Carmelo Anthony stuns cancer patient’s family with car for Christmas
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 6:00:33 PM)

    Carmelo Anthony stuns cancer patient’s family with car for Christmas

  • [NYPost] Kristaps Porzingis marks holiday with huge dunks and pratfalls
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 2:18:15 PM)

    It didn’t turn out to be a Merry Kristaps for the Knicks’ 7-foot-3 Latvian phenom, despite some gaudy numbers posted on a still-healing bruised right knee. Kristaps Porzingis had 22 points on 9-of-16 shooting, 12 rebounds, two steals and four blocks, sprinkled in with a couple of highlight-reel dunks. But his season-high five turnovers, a…

  • [NYPost] Carmelo on Al Horford scrap: ‘A Dominican and Puerto Rican’
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 1:51:07 PM)

    There was a face-to-face showdown. There was a shot to the mouth that drew blood. Things got both chirpy and chippy during the Knicks’ 119-114 Christmas loss to the Celtics at the Garden. After a whistle stopped play in the middle of the third quarter, Carmelo Anthony and Boston center Al Horford got in each…

  • [NYPost] Knicks’ record is hollow until they beat some contenders
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 1:34:49 PM)

    There was blood on Christmas at the Garden. Boston’s Marcus Smart received an elbow to the face on Derrick Rose’s drive to the hole in the first half and came off the court with blood gushing from his mouth. By the end of this holiday matinee, after the Knicks’ spirited rally from nine points down…

  • [NYPost] Knicks fumble away Christmas slugfest in final minute
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 9:44:03 AM)

    Knicks fans nearly got this year’s Christmas miracle at the Garden on Sunday. The Celtics’ Avery Bradley stole it away. The Knicks came all the way back after trailing by 13 in the fourth quarter, but ended up on the raw end of a 119-114 decision before a sellout crowd of 19,812. Carmelo Anthony missed…

  • [NYPost] Carmelo Anthony’s emotional gift to teen fan battling cancer
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 9:09:34 AM)

    Knicks star Carmelo Anthony played the role of St. Nick on Sunday, when he gave a car to 17-year-old fan with cancer just before the game against the Celtics in Madison Square Garden. The 32-year-old forward handed a 2017 Kia Sorento to Jarell Lara, who suffers from a rare form of cancer called Langerhans Cell…

  • [NY Newsday] How Kristaps Porzingis handled his first Christmas Day game with Knicks
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 8:03:10 PM)

    Kristaps Porzingis has made it a goal to play in all 82 games for the Knicks this regular season. But he made it clear in the days leading up to Sunday that some games mean more than others.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks’ late comeback attempt falls short as Celtics win Christmas Day matchup
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 7:47:14 PM)

    The Knicks took the floor at Madison Square Garden on Christmas with their spirit for giving in the right place but their priorities backward.

  • [NYTimes] Facing Another Measuring Stick, Knicks Come Out on the Short End Against the Celtics
    (Monday, December 26, 2016 1:28:31 AM)

    Locked in a duel with surging Boston, the Knicks displayed a lack of cohesiveness as the clock wound down, and the Celtics escaped with a win at the Garden.

  • [NYTimes] Cavaliers 109, Warriors 108: Without Any Title at Stake, Cavaliers Relive Rally Past Warriors
    (Monday, December 26, 2016 1:29:20 AM)

    This time, Cleveland climbed out of a 14-point hole in the fourth quarter. In last season’s N.B.A. finals, it erased a three-games-to-one deficit for its first title.

  • [NYTimes] On College Basketball: UConn Women Say ‘Nah’ to Rebuilding Year
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 11:25:08 PM)

    After losing three superstars last season, the championship Huskies are undefeated again — the latest evidence that Coach Geno Auriemma’s success is based on more than recruiting.

  • [NYDN] Knicks defense falters vs. Celtics as Carmelo passes Elgin Baylor
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 7:13:26 PM)

    Derrick Rose knows the Knicks’ 114 points should have been more than enough to beat the Celtics on Sunday.

  • [NYDN] Knicks fail to complete comeback in Christmas loss to Celtics
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 7:12:23 PM)

    Not even Christmas can soften this rivalry. It only made it better.

  • [NYDN] Carmelo Anthony gives car to teen with cancer before Knicks game
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 7:09:37 AM)

    Carmelo Anthony helped a 17-year-old fan with cancer step into his new car in the basement of Madison Square Garden.

  • [SNY Knicks] Celtics spoil Knicks’ Christmas, win 119-114 at MSG
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 2:32:55 PM)

    Isaiah Thomas led six Celtics in double figures with 27 points as the Celtics held off a furious comeback by the Knicks 119-114 in a Christmas Day matinee at Madison Square Garden

  • [SNY Knicks] Today’s game: Knicks vs. Celtics
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 10:45:00 AM)

    Carmelo Anthony will appear in his fifth Christmas Day game when the New York Knicks host the Boston Celtics on Sunday at noon at Madison Square Garden.

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis, Knicks ready for matchup vs. Thomas, Celtics
    (Sunday, December 25, 2016 8:45:00 AM)

    Kristaps Porzingis and the New York Knicks will face Isaiah Thomas and the Boston Celtics on Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

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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).

    66 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2016.12.26)”

    1. Anyone read the lance Stephenson tweet?
      If we signed him our bench wouldn’t be bullied. Can he still play?

    2. Is it me or does it look like Curry really shrinks when the going gets a bit rough?
      It’s hard to find fault with one of the stars on a 27-5 team, but somehow, *by those lofty standards* (not by the standards of lesser teams), Curry does not seem like the great, flawless, incredibly gifted pg that mesmerized the basketball world. The ‘decline’ (if the word even applies) began during last year’s playoffs against Oklahoma.

      Once again, very hard to criticize the best free throw shooter in the NBA, but something seems broken by the ultra-high standards he set for himself.

    3. It seems like every time we have a chance to win and put a little distance between ourselves and other teams in the middle of the Eastern conference, we blow it and maybe revert to the mean

    4. #4

      I am just arguing with Golden State fans who swear that Curry didn’t fade in yesterday’s game. It was the refs.

    5. No, I didn’t see the tweet. What does it say?

      https://twitter.com/aclawhorn/status/767824412989071361
      If this is indeed true, then I wonder who gets bumped. It would have to be one of Lance Thomas, Cheese, or Holiday. I’m not sure that I want to see either of those three lose a spot in the rotation or roster. However, if Hornacek decides to use Thomas as a stretch 4 and cut Sasha or Plumlee, then I’m ok with it. Losing Sasha’s experience and intangibles will be rough and we’d have a glut on the wings- but Stephenson on that second unit with Jennings, KOQ, and Willy would be fun to watch

    6. That tweet and the corresponding article was from August 22nd, 2016 I believe. What’s new about it?

    7. We have to stop giving the ball to Melo at crucial times in games or we are suffering from insanity aka doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Rose needs to have the ball in his hands at crunch time, not Melo.

    8. please no Lance, the best part about the second unit is that they are plying in rhythm and sharing the ball, no Lance’s finest traits I would say.

      besides by all accounts Sasha is a consummate veteran and a positive influence all around, helping the younger euros to adjust and to develop work ethic, that’s more important than a .513 career ts% guy that’s like 3 seasons removed from being relevant in the NBA.

      and the rumors are probably just the same rumors that said the Knicks were interested in the summer of 2016 before he went to the Pelicans

    9. That tweet and the corresponding article was from August 22nd, 2016 I believe. What’s new about it?

      Ha! I paid no attention to the date..my bad. Still though, if Hornacek and Phil can keep his head screwed on right, I think he would be a nice addition to that 2nd unit. But that is one big if.

      We have to stop giving the ball to Melo at crucial times in games or we are suffering from insanity aka doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Rose needs to have the ball in his hands at crunch time, not Melo.

      You’re probably right. Hornacek does this and he faces quite the conundrum- no pun intended. If Rose becomes the closer, then Hornacek would hafta worry about Rose’s propensity to jump pass. If Melo remains the closer, then Coach worries about Melo taking too long to read the defense on his isos. Melo’s a devastating scorer in 1 on 1’s and isos, but I probably would lean towards Rose becoming the closer this season as no one can stay in front of him so far this season.

    10. Why do we need a defined closer? Good teams run their offense in the final minute. Let Melo or Rose be the ballhandler but run some action to free up them or a teammate. It doesn’t have to be dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble fling up jumper.

    11. When I linked to the tweet, I noted that the tweeter seems to just tweet random trade rumors. Tome that makes his information worthless other than as space filler. Then I saw a line down Reub catching that the tweet was from August. lol

    12. I would settle for just keeping the ball out of Melo’s hands at crunch time. Use him as a decoy or only when he is red hot and has an advantage.

    13. @14 I guess that a good rumor from August is still better than a bad rumor from this month.

    14. Why do we need a defined closer? Good teams run their offense in the final minute. Let Melo or Rose be the ballhandler but run some action to free up them or a teammate. It doesn’t have to be dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble dribble fling up jumper

      Unfortunately, this is the team we’re stuck with. GS & San Antonio are the only teams who just run their offense and let the ball movement dictate the closer. We don’t have the shooting or overall talent to do what they do. In Rose’s case, he thrives in the PnR and is at his best this season taking guys off the dribble. Everybody knew that MJ was the closer in Chicago, but the difference between those Bulls and these Knicks- is the Bulls ran the triangle to perfection. If our halfcourt “Triangle aspects” sets were executed better, then we could run our offense better in crunch time. Even still, Hornacek prefers the ball be in his PG’s hands, so it’s logical- with the way he’s been playing- that Rose is the logical choice to be the closer. So I guess the best compromise is letting Rose be the ballhandler while running something to get Melo & KP more space while allowing Lee to be in the corner for 3 as a fallback option.

    15. i didnt mean to make it sound like a trade rumor…
      someone tweeted about ‘d-rose, ‘doesnt get assists and is ball hog, etc.’, something to that affect.. lance defended rose basically saying he gets the job done and is an elite PG, and to STFU’ lol!

    16. 1. Our guards are not keeping players out of the paint well enough (what else is new).

      2. When our guards get beat, we aren’t defending the paint nearly well enough. Noah is invisible at times.

      3. Something is broken on the switches or help defense because guys are often left WIDE open way too often in all areas of the court.

      4. Melo holds the ball and take terrible shots way too often. It’s literally painful to watch at times because you know it’s going to end badly before the play is even half done.

      5. Rose is penetrating well and finishing or getting off good floaters, but he’s not passing out of it well when he draws a double. He’s got to create more for KP and Lee

      6. KP is turning down marginal 3s for even worse 2s too often.

      7. When KP gets a switch and a small man is covering him, neither he or the Knicks are taking advantage of it well. It almost feels like a small negative instead of a screaming positive.

      8. I don’t think Lance Thomas was ever as good as some people thought last year, but this year he’s terrible.

      9. I think the Knicks are better than the Celtics, but the Celtics have players that play smarter.

    17. I don’t like IsoMelo down the stretch, and never have. Yes, Rose is not a good distributor and misses open cutters.

      However, the problem with this team is DEFENSE. They scored 114 yesterday and lost. The scoring is okay. If this team could just improve to average defensively, it could be a 3 or 4 seed.

      It seems to largely be about rotations. Guys are getting lost all the time, leaving a shooter wide open. Jennings is the one most obvious, but he’s by no means the only one. Is it a BB IQ thing, or lack of effort?

    18. @20 para 9 The Knicks have been together for 2 months while the Celtics have mostly been together for 3 years.

      @21 Rose is a closer and a winner. He’s our only one. He needs to have the ball in his hands at the end of games, not Melo.

    19. What do people think it would take to get Tim Frazier from N.O. and/or James Johnson from Miami?

    20. I think people are mad at the offensive struggles because they seem so easy to fix… this team itself has shown stretches where the ball moves and they create great shots, just to fall back in the iso bad plays every time… that’s what pisses me off, this team could be much better than it is on offense.

      i’m not that pissed about the defense because that is what it is, the personnel just isn’t there to be a good defensive team. Rose and Jennings have never been great defenders when they were younger, Lee is meh and Anthony doesn’t give a fuck and doesn’t have the athleticism anymore to be a great defender. Noah was never an elite rim protector and won’t ever be the great defender he was with his body breaking down, and KP is much more suited to be a help defender and shot blocker, who will probably never be a good defender in the first place.

      people say defense is all about effort and I couldn’t disagree more, you also need to have the players to execute defensive schemes and with the athleticism to do it. the knicks have neither and this is the roster that’s ending the season for this team 95% certainly

    21. The iso plays are called sets. Hornacek is calling them. So either the coach likes them or they haven’t had enough time to develop enough alternatives. It’s troubling.
      And at this point Melo is still a better shooter than Rose, not sure why we’d want Rose with the ball at the end. Cause he hit that one game winner with a step back jumper? Don’t wanna rely on that shot either.

    22. I might be very naive, but I don’t think Hornacek is calling a play like this “hey guys, let’s do this set: Rose brings the ball up, everybody space the floor, give the ball to Carmelo in the elbow… he’s gonna dribble a bunch of times, size up his defender with a couple of jab steps and shoot over him!”

      I think most coaches don’t actually call plays all the time and a lot of teams freestyle on many possessions… the end game plays out of a timeout are obviously called by him, and he might have some “sets” in which the idea is to give the ball to Melo so he can create something, but I definitely don’t think most of the iso plays are actually sets called with the intention of having an iso.

    23. @29 the play tends to call for the other four players to just hang out on the other side of the court, where they don’t make cuts or attempt to get open enough to be a target. It’s designed to not be passed out of.

      @30 not quite that simple, but yes. For better or worse, that’s exactly what they do.

    24. Kyries shot was a bad shot that went in on a broken play

      He’s also better at basketball than Carmelo

    25. Kyrie is also a better off the dribble scorer than Melo with one of the best (if not the best) crossovers in the game today. Hence the problem with Iso-Melo these days – defenders can play tight on him because he’s not scaring anyone off the dribble.

    26. Kyrie is a much better shooter than Melo (.582 ts% for the season), and has 1.22 ppp in his iso plays this season, against Melo’s 0.93… Irving shoots an efg% of 60.6% in isolation plays, while Carmelo shoots 43.6%…

      so yes, give the ball to Kyrie and let him do whatever, don’t do that with Melo, easy.

    27. Right. And with all that he was 10-26. The point is you go to your guys. Melo has come through plenty for the Knicks this year late.

      Including the phx game where he hit a shot to take the lead right before Bledsoe went back Down and the Minny game where some were here openly hoping he missed.

    28. that’s not the point.

      you go to the guy who has a better chance of making a shot, why should it matter if he’s the star or not?

      I’m sorry er, but you are wrong here… according to both nbaminer.com and the nba.com website, Carmelo is shooting 37.5% in clutch situations this season, he’s 12/32, 45.5% in last minute shots (5/11)

      Derrick Rose, as much as I dislike him, is shooting 54.5% in clutch situations, 12/22, and 50% in last minute shots (3/6).

      so no, this team should not go to Melo in clutch situations.

    29. Lol. Ok. Let’s just keep him on the bench then. Put in cheese or LANCE we will be great.

      You just put up great Rose stats and still have to preface it by saying you don’t like him.

      So let’s go to Jennings and Cheese

    30. @40

      that’s not what anyone said, don’t be childish.

      iso melo in the end of games is obviously a bad thing, how can you argue that hitting 37.5% of the shots is good?

      reub argued that Rose is a better option in the end of the games, and he is actually right in this one, that’s all… if this team absolutely has to get someone the ball is isolation, it should be Rose, not Melo.

    31. I don’t care who it is. I think Rose has been great. You are acting like giving it to Melo is some bad thing. He didn’t even get to make a move he got stripped. He could have made an assist we don’t even know. Yet there are like 100 straight posts about melo.

      Call it childish or whatever but that’s how people are acting, better off with him on the bench. I’d be for that just so there can be interesting posts here again

    32. iso melo in the end of games is obviously a bad thing, how can you argue that hitting 37.5% of the shots is good?

      Melo was responsible of 8 of the last points. you want freeze him out after

    33. you were the one who said : “The point is you go to your guys. Melo has come through plenty for the Knicks this year late.”

      I was just arguing that if the Knicks go to their guys, it should be Rose with the priority, not Melo, specially if it is an iso play.

      if Hornacek designs an actual play that isn’t an iso, Carmelo and many other players can be valuable in those situations… however, in the last 5 minutes of a game, Carmelo Anthony is shooting 37.5%,
      that’s all I said, I don’t want to freeze him or unfreeze him or whatever, I just want him to stop dominating the ball and isoing into shit shots that he hits at a 37.5% clip.

    34. Wasn’t KP responsible for 6 of the last 10 points there? He nailed that 3 and had that +1 fast break bucket….

    35. you were the one who said : “The point is you go to your guys. Melo has come through plenty for the Knicks this year late.”

      I was saying from Hornacheks standpoint. I personally dont care. I think the Knicks have good weapons.

    36. Wasn’t KP responsible for 6 of the last 10 points there? He nailed that 3 and had that +1 fast break bucket….

      He made a 3 before KP’s 6 points and a layup to tie the game.

    37. Wasn’t KP responsible for 6 of the last 10 points there? He nailed that 3 and had that +1 fast break bucket….

      I meant in the whole comeback. 3 pointer, assist to Porzingis 3, and the tying layup

    38. I don’t think that anyone is arguing to bench or freeze Melo.

      Regardless of anything he’s still one of our best players.

      I think we just need a little bit more creativity from our coach/players.

      Those end of the game ISOs that we’ve been doing for the past six years are clearly not working.

    39. I think we just need a little bit more creativity from our coach/players.

      i agree. Problem was that there wasnt even a play. There was creativity on the Noah to Melo play to tie it.

    40. The game winning shot by Marcus Smart was taken after 6 passes. Now granted that was against our shitty defense and rotations, but we should at least try a few passes before Melo dribbles 10-15 times.

    41. You are acting like giving it to Melo is some bad thing. He didn’t even get to make a move he got stripped. He could have made an assist we don’t even know. Yet there are like 100 straight posts about melo.

      I think the fact that he got stripped is evidence of the problem.

      Melo is better at creating and making tough shots than most NBA players, but isolation plays as a whole are low efficiency plays for almost everyone. Melo adds to the woes because he often holds the ball, wastes precious seconds on the clock , and is a bad decision maker. He often tries to FORCE something. That leads to some ridiculously poor shots and frustrating TOs. It’s not winning basketball. You can’t make up your mind you are going to try to score and then force it. Sure, it works on occasion and the fans rejoice. But it’s bad basketball long term. You have to remain flexible.

      The Knicks have 3 good scoring options (Rose, KP and Melo). Of the 3, imo, Rose is the best at creating something from nothing. The ball should go to Rose and they should try to run a play. If that fails he should try to penetrate and create something good for himself while keeping in mind he has 2 other very good scorers and an excellent 3 point shooter (Lee) to kick it out to.

      This “give it to Melo” strategy at the end of games is an obvious loser.

    42. BTW, it still kills me that the game winning shot was made by a guy shooting 28% from 3 point range.

    43. My issue with Melo on those situations is that I find very hard to belive that George Karl, Jeff Bzdelik, Mike Dantoni, Mike Woodson, Derek Fisher, Kurt Rambis and Jeff Hornacek are all calling the same play for the past 13 years.

      I think this is on Melo. Not coach or roster.

      Watching him dribble for 6 seconds, down by 3, with 22 seconds to go, just to commit a turnover was incredibly dumb.

      That’s the advantage in having Rose with the ball in the final shot. He can penetrate and create some havoc in a set defense.

      The downside is that he almost certainly won’t pass and he’s not exactly an efficient shooter.

    44. The problem with every team that’s not GSW or HOU is that they take too many contested shots. CLE actually makes enough of them and defends well enough that they can hang anyway. All NBA teams need to get the memo. The dude with the first open look from three go ahead and launch. You need a great PG to find shooters or drive and get fouled and you need shooters who can make shots. No one should ever take a contested shot. Predicating your offense on the practice is indefensible. Assists are the most important stat.

    45. I have no problem with Melo taking a quick open shot after a pick and roll or after a few passes with the game on the line. That’s team basketball. Dribbling the ball endlessly and forcing it up while the whole team stands and watches you is not good basketball. Why is he being so stubborn?

    46. @59

      yeah, I thought Houston’s success with such a lackluster roster would have shown enough teams and players already that taking bad 2-point shots is not optimal, but I guess most people are too stuck up in the whole idea of how basketball “is supposed to be played” from 20 years ago.

    47. @61 nah they just chuck it up to “James Harden is amazing and we can’t do what they do because we don’t have James Harden” like Mike D’Antoni wasn’t able to do the same thing with Jeremy Lin 5 years ago or even with Ray Felton.

      Also I’m calling bullshit on the Knicks not being able to run our offense down the wire. Jose Calderon was a wide open jumper from 3 away from beating the Spurs in San Antonio. We can do it if the coach calls for it. Derrick Rose has hit last minute shots for us (and Rose is currently at a .563 TS% this month with 5 days left) and we’ve even drawn up plays for KP. Yesterday was dumb as hell and Melo probably did want to be the hero, but I’m certain Hornacek called it and I’m certain he would have gone somewhere else if he didn’t want that play. Another thing is what Phil said in the media rang true; Melo held it too long and it benefited the defense.

    48. Fucking Jokic. 10 minutes, 6 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists. I absolutely hate we didn’t draft him.

    49. It was really weird that Jokic didn’t get into Simmons’ recent “unicorn” discussion about Giannis, KP and Embiid.

    50. The Knicks are currently #5 in the Eastern Conference. They’re the last team in the Eastern Conference with a winning record at the moment. That’s kind of bananas, right?

      A win over Atlanta would be so, so huge on Wednesday.

    51. Oh, as an aside, I don’t think we all gave Noah enough plaudits for his game-tying pass. That was so damned purty.

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