Knicks Morning News (2017.02.04)

  • [NYPost] LeBron’s Carmelo speculation leaves door open for trade
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 5:25:06 PM)

    LeBron James wasn’t lobbying for Carmelo Anthony on the eve of their Garden showdown, but he also left open the door for his longtime compadre, who may want greener pastures beyond Broadway. Anthony has his first trade audition Saturday, when the Knicks host the Cavaliers, who have been approached by Knicks president Phil Jackson about…

  • [NYPost] How the Knicks can be the loser of the Barkley-LeBron feud
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 3:52:19 PM)

    It’s hard for Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek to feel sympathetic about LeBron James’ complaints the Cavaliers are too “top heavy” to repeat as NBA champions. The Knicks are struggling not to be bottom feeders in the Eastern Conference with a lineup that should make James appreciate the roster he has in Cleveland. “I guess Kyrie…

  • [NYPost] Kevin Love cools Knicks trade talk with Cavs prediction
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 2:04:00 PM)

    New York is a nice place to visit. But the Cavaliers’ Kevin Love doesn’t see himself living there. At least as a Knick. In fact, Love doesn’t see himself leaving Cleveland any time soon. “No, I don’t,” Love said when asked by reporters Friday at the Cavs practice facility in Independence, Ohio, if he expects…

  • [NYPost] Derrick Rose knows he’s not safe from a Knicks fire sale
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 1:33:59 PM)

    Derrick Rose realizes it could be him, too. With the Knicks exploring deals for Carmelo Anthony in an attempt to get younger, Rose, who heard rumors at the trading deadline last February with the Bulls, knows he’s not safe, either. Rose, whom the Knicks obtained via trade last June, has an expiring contract and has…

  • [NYPost] Carmelo Anthony silent as LeBron awaits, rumors swirl
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 10:00:49 AM)

    Carmelo Anthony remained silent Friday at Knicks practice, refusing to make himself available to talk about Saturday’s matchup with LeBron James and the Cavaliers, his fourth-quarter Brooklyn benching or his cloudy future. Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said he believes Anthony handled his one-night demotion well on Wednesday, when Anthony sat the final 15 minutes as the young…

  • [ESPN] Derrick Rose on Knicks: ‘The rebuild could be me going, too’
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 11:57:14 PM)

    Derrick Rose on Knicks: ‘The rebuild could be me going, too’

  • [ESPN] LeBron on Melo: ‘I just want him to be happy’
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 9:23:36 PM)

    LeBron on Melo: ‘I just want him to be happy’

  • [ESPN] Love expects to be in Cleveland ‘for long time’
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 1:49:20 PM)

    Love expects to be in Cleveland ‘for long time’

  • [NYTimes] His Future With Knicks in Doubt, Derrick Rose Chases Improvement
    (Saturday, February 04, 2017 1:13:33 AM)

    Rose, who has missed the team’s past three games with a sprained left ankle, said he tries “to be better every game, every practice, every day.”

  • [SNY Knicks] GEICO SportsNite: Hornacek discusses Carmelo’s playing time
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 11:41:45 PM)

  • [SNY Knicks] Rose doubtful for Saturday’s game against Cavaliers
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 11:10:13 PM)

    Knicks G Derrick Rose is doubtful for Saturday night’s game against the Cavaliers due to his sprained left ankle, head coach Jeff Hornacek told reporters Friday.

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis says life on court would be harder if Knicks trade Melo
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 3:45:22 PM)

    Kristaps Porzingis thinks it would be detrimental to his development if the Knicks traded Carmelo Anthony.

  • [SNY Knicks] TheKnicksBlog Podcast: To Tank or Not to Tank
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 2:45:41 PM)

    Anthony Donahue and Moke Hamilton are back on TheKnicksBlog Podcast as they continue to debate the Carmelo Anthony trade rumors, and if the Knicks should (and could) make a move for the playoffs.

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks remain interested in trading Melo to Cavaliers
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 1:15:11 PM)

    The Knicks remain interested in trading Carmelo Anthony to the Cavaliers, despite the fact that Cleveland refuses to include Kevin Love in a potential deal.

  • [NYDN] Knicks best served keeping Melo, despite flaws, not chasing Love
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 8:25:17 PM)

    From everything we’ve seen, the Cavs want no part of dealing Kevin Love for Carmelo Anthony.

  • [NYDN] Knicks point guard Derrick Rose labeled as ‘doubtful’ vs. Cavs
    (Friday, February 03, 2017 8:23:33 PM)

    The Knicks are likely going to contend with the defending champs without their starting point guard.

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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).

    143 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2017.02.04)”

    1. big game for the Tank tonight — if we keep it close or even somehow pull this game out, you can say goodbye to willful tanking.

    2. Brutal interview at The Vertical yesterday where Chris Mannix and Bobby Marks both argue that it doesn’t make sense to trade for Melo this season, since teams that get eliminated in, say, the second round (like presumably the Clippers and the Celtics) will be more willing to then pay more for Melo after the season. I don’t buy that due to Melo’s opt out after next season. Why trade more to get one postseason out of Melo when you can trade the same amount to get two postseasons out of Melo? Especially when the Clippers don’t even know who will be on their team next season! But whatever, whether or not I am right as to the optimal time for a team to trade for Melo, I don’t like that a major site like The Vertical is putting it out there that the Knicks should wait. I find it very hard to believe Melo actually gets dealt if he is still a Knick at the end of the season. Plus, of course, now is the time to get rid of Melo because the Knicks need to get one of those top picks in the draft and having him here actively hurts that (as his presence likely eliminates the chance of an active tank).

      And yes, Frank, you’re spot on that if the Knicks play the Cavs tough tonight (or even perhaps win), then it would be hard to see them willfully tank any time soon. I think Ben R. made the point earlier, and it is a very important one to make, that willfully tanking is a very important part of the tank process. Everyone is close now, but when teams start willfully tanking next month, they will separate from those teams that are just shitty but not intentionally trying to lose. The Knicks so far are clearly in the same “shitty team that is not trying to lose” category with every other team, which is why they are all close, but we really need them to move into the “intentionally trying to lose” category when the other “shitty teams that are not trying to lose” do the same. Will it happen? I have no idea.

    3. The best thing about tonight’s game is the Lil Jon promo lol

      “TURN DOWN FOR A 7 FOOT UNICORN CALLED PORZINGIS!!”

      lol..good stuff

    4. I agree Brian, a lot of teams will have to decide soon whether their season is over and they love the prospects in this draft…

      our luck is that outside of the Nets and maybe Philly, most eastern teams are looking like they’ll chase the 8th seed.

      however if Denver and Portland separate themselves from the pack in the west 8th seed chase, upwards of 6 teams might choose to tank (Dallas Minnesota Sacramento New Orleans Phoenix and the Lakers, who need to be top 3 to retain their pick).

      this next week will literally decide the near future of this franchise.

    5. Tanking may not be an easy thing to do: young players and bad players of all ages have an incentive to play their best just to make sure they are still in the NBA next year. Teams, on the other hand, have to be careful not to order players to play crappy because of the potential for a disgruntled player to talk and create an enormous problem for the league.

      The best tanking strategy might be to just play the worst possible lineups in a discreet manner.

    6. Hard to envision teams like the Clippers and (specially) Boston with its young players wanting to make the heavy investment required to bring a cancer like Melo into the lockerroom.

      It’s safe to assume most people see Melo the way we Knicks fans see him and would not want him for the same reasons we want him out of here.

    7. I looked up Danny Ainge in Wikipedia. He was hired in 2003 by the Celtics as director of basketball operations. He didn’t do well at first. To quote Wikipedia

      The 2006–07 Celtics finished with a 24–58 record, second-worst in the team’s history. Following the season, Paul Pierce, team captain and face of the franchise, expressed frustration with the team’s failures. He requested a trade to a contender if management were unable to acquire veteran talent of Pierce’s caliber.

      Circumstances are different here, but it shows that it can take a while to turn a franchise around… and maybe some learning on the part of the GM

    8. Nothing makes teams desperate like getting destroyed by Golden State. Let the Cs lose to Toronto and let the Cavs get waxed by GSW. Draft night will be a very good time to be a Knicks fan.

    9. Marc Gasol is really a giant human being. Nobody in the league used their size like he does. You guys think KP and Billy can work out with him this summer?

    10. Willis wasn’t any bigger than Hernangomez, if I recall correctly. There is more to playing center than pure size.

    11. Willy has worked out with the Gasols plenty while representing his country.

    12. I enjoyed that video, kevin. Especially Gasol’s light footwork to get out of the lane. Dancing With The Stars in his future?

    13. I really think Hornacek needs to fire Rambis if we’re gonna build an actual defense. The Knicks don’t know what they’re doing out there. At least D’Antoni and Woodson’s Knicks had a strategy that they were just bad at. The Knicks this year are clueless on that end.

    14. @11 Willis also retired in 1974, a league where time machine Porzingis would score 90 points in every game and then get a career ending injury in the first week.

      I don’t think Willy has the physical tools to be Marc on defense, but if he can play smart like Marc does, that’s good enough.

    15. I think that Sasha might have some trade value (as a throw in) if we decide to tank or trade Melo. He would be a nice addition to a veteran team looking for some savvy and smarts.

    16. I have to say…

      No to tanking. Play as best as you can. Even a small stretch of competitive play means more to me than adding a high draft pick to a disfunctional organization. Add a smart pick to a team that has potential. Gutting your team is the equivalent to taking four cards in stud poker. Develop the Euros, Ron, Justin. Get kp6 and Lance healthy. Learn to play system basketball, particularly on defense.

      Use Rose’s #for a good FA. Keep Lee, keep Melo, keep Oaq, keep Noah unless someone blows you away. Don’t pay to get those guys out of town PLEASE.

      We’ve always paid the price for the Knicks impatience. I don’t see why anyone’s so hot to be an expansion team. NBA is a sorry league if this is the way forward.

      #fuktheprocess

    17. Play as best as you can.

      The “best they can play” is mediocre, which is the worst thing to be in the NBA.

      We’ve always paid the price for the Knicks impatience. I don’t see why anyone’s so hot to be an expansion team. NBA is a sorry league if this is the way forward.

      If you think that rebuilding is “impatience,” then you’re missing the forest for the trees. I agree that this team has been moronically impatient for years. The goal, then, is to stop being impatient and actually do a patient rebuild, which would require tanking this year and dumping as many useless contracts as possible.

      The notion that you would prefer to see them play a few decent games while the Knicks’ season goes nowhere instead of seeing them lose while building for the future is the very definition of the impatience that has ruined this franchise for years.

    18. What’s funny is that we should be thanking our lucky stars that Phil Jackson is so shitty at putting together teams to make the playoffs. The first time he tried it, the Knicks tanked for the first time in years and ended up with the best thing that’s happened to the franchise since Patrick Ewing. This year, instead of rebuilding around that player, Jackson decided to go for the playoffs again, but “luckily” did such a shitty job that they’re in position to once again tank and hopefully come up with the second-best thing to happen to this franchise since Patrick Ewing (or hell, if they’re really lucky, maybe the best thing to happen since Ewing and KP can be the second-best thing).

    19. Tradingmelo hurts the tank doesn’t help. Without melo the ball moves, and less ego … young guns step up etc.

    20. Tradingmelo hurts the tank doesn’t help. Without melo the ball moves, and less ego … young guns step up etc.

      I think they are worse off without Melo, but really, the most important thing about dealing Melo is that it presumably would lead to an overall fire sale. So long as Melo is here, they’re not going to actively tank and you’re going to need to actively tank with all of the teams out there that will be doing so next month. I agree that it is possible that Jackson’s intention is to trade Melo and still compete (like trading him for players Jackson thinks would help the Knicks right now), but I think that that is unlikely.

    21. Brian
      I’m in the fence about that. the knicks do not go firesale mode either way. Phil would be fired unceremoniously. It just won’t happen.

    22. If Dolan ever authorized a Melo trade centered around draft picks (which is hopefully the type of deal that Jackson is pursuing), then how would he not authorize a complete tear down? I think it comes down to what kind of Melo trade that they make (if they make one at all). Could this be the equivalent of the Ewing deal, only starting with a shittier Knicks team than that one, so even worse for the franchise? Sure. Hopefully not!

      Dolan allowed Glen Sather to do a rebuild with the Rangers, so hopefully it is more a matter of him just trusting Jackson like he trusted Sather.

    23. I can live with keeping Phil around another year or two as long as we fire Rambis. He’s the new Herb Williams.

    24. I’m fine with keeping Phil, as well, so long as he changes the direction of the team. If Jackson commits to a rebuild, then sure, let him stick around to do it. My real major problem with Jackson is that the guy won’t commit to a rebuild, and instead keeps doing moronic “compete now” moves with a team that isn’t ready to “compete now,” even though the rare “rebuild” moves he has done have been really good (KP and Willy)! If he changed the way that he does things, then I’d be fine with the guy. The only reason he should ever be dumped is if he just won’t change his approach.

    25. Oh sure, I’m sorry, I don’t mean to dismiss that concern. I agree that you have to move on from Rambis, or at least hire an outside defense coach and let Rambis stay as some sort of associate position. But I don’t think that is as dangerous to the franchise as being unwilling to rebuild, so it is not at the top of my Phil concerns. But yes, Rambis is definitely awful.

    26. It’s true that Phil has tried and failed to both rebuild and compete now. He should’ve learned from isiah mistakes.

    27. Brian, I think two things. One is that we’re not trading Melo without taking back years of salary and giving up prospects. I don’t want the second coming of Jamal and I don’t want Wily on the Clippers. Second is that I believe we have some talent on the team that can get us out of the doldrums. I like Oaq, Lee, the Euros, Ron. I even still believe Melo could be part of a winning mix. It could be as simple as improving at pg. Just put away the hatchet and take out the scalpel. That’s patience. Just draft well and let contracts sunset. That’s patience. Spend wisely. That’s patience. A deal by the deadline that makes us worse and boosts BOS and CLE?

      #meindanke

    28. the impatience part was trading for Rose, signing Noah and Lee and building a win-now team that can’t win.

      the only time we ever unintentionally tanked it got us Porzingis, and Brian is completely right… yes, we can tank and draft a bust, so what? add a bust to this team in place of Rose and it’s still the same mediocre team with no chance of contending ever.

      it’s s choice between committing to mediocrity long term or trying to become good medium / long term, and if it fails, be mediocre long term.

      how can someone really choose the first option? I can’t understand honestly.

    29. Was Rambis not in charge of the defense last year when we had a much better D-rating? Genuinely asking.

    30. and this team do not have young talent, please stop with this argument.

      Kuz is 27, Oak is 26, Holiday is 27. The only real young talent is Willy, and obviously Porzingis. The Knicks starting lineup averages 29 years.

      this team is what it is and it’s completely unreasonable to expect 27 year olds to suddenly develop into parts of a winning team when they are presently part of a mediocre as hell team.

      and drafting smart is about maximizing returns and minimizing risks: that’s what a higher pick gives you.

    31. Brian, I think two things. One is that we’re not trading Melo without taking back years of salary and giving up prospects. I don’t want the second coming of Jamal and I don’t want Wily on the Clippers. Second is that I believe we have some talent on the team that can get us out of the doldrums. I like Oaq, Lee, the Euros, Ron. I even still believe Melo could be part of a winning mix. It could be as simple as improving at pg. Just put away the hatchet and take out the scalpel. That’s patience. Just draft well and let contracts sunset. That’s patience. Spend wisely. That’s patience. A deal by the deadline that makes us worse and boosts BOS and CLE?

      Well sure, if you seriously think that they’d have to trade prospects just to dump Melo, you don’t dump Melo. I don’t see that as likely, but sure, don’t trade assets just to dump Melo. If you have to trade assets along with Melo to get something good in return, then fair enough, but not just to dump Melo.

    32. Was Rambis not in charge of the defense last year when we had a much better D-rating? Genuinely asking.

      No, he only became in charge of the defense this year. Was the defensive system the same last year as this one, though? Probably?

    33. Kuz is 27, Oak is 26, Holiday is 27.

      And they’re also signed for one more year, one more year and just the rest of this season, respectively. So not exactly building blocks for the future.

    34. I would understand danvt’s line of thinking more if we were, say, the Hawks and there were calls for a teardown. I’d still support it but I can see how it would be unappealing to some to tear down a team that was actually good, just obviously not good enough to win it all with the same core.

      I will never understand, however, the idea that we should keep this awful team together. It’s not even like we’d be that much worse if we actively tanked/rebuilt/whatever you want to call it. No one wants to trade the guys who should be part of the future (KP and Willy), that’s just a straw man. We want to trade the guys who have absolutely no chance of being part of the next good (50 win) Knicks team, either because of age, lack of production, or both. I don’t know why that’s a controversial idea. They’re only gonna get worse as time goes on, and consequently the team will get worse.

    35. I don’t understand why people think we have to give up assets to trade Melo.

      I think they might need to give up other assets to optimize the return, but yes, I agree that I think that they could deal Melo right now without adding any other assets if that’s what they wanted to do.

    36. mase, Baker is 23.

      he’s decent, but honestly, he’s a career backup if everything works out for him.

      and you’re right brian, even if the BEST case scenario happens and Kuz, Oak and Holiday inexplicably become legit starters, they are all gone in 1 to 2 years to big contracts elsewhere.

      this team has no building blocks for the future and has the unique chance to add a legit one this summer.

      If we have to pay to get Melo off, Im completely fine as long as no draft picks, no KP and no willy are traded. Everyone else can go.

    37. It’s not even like we’d be that much worse if we actively tanked/rebuilt/whatever you want to call it

      I still remember one of the arguments about why they should re-sign Melo as being “I don’t want to follow a terrible team” and then they won 17 games in the first year of the deal. In other words, yes, they’ve already been bad for no good reason, why not try being bad for a reason for a change?

    38. this team has no building blocks for the future and has the unique chance to add a legit one this summer.

      Just a quick note that I think you meant to write “few” instead of “no” as obviously KP and Willy are strong building blocks. I was going to change it for you, but then realized that that would be super-presumptuous of me. :)

    39. yeah… news flash: we are watching a terrible team already.

      also, the long term core of this team excluding KP is Melo, 32 years old, Noah, 31 and Lee, 31.

      it’s much, much more likely that they will decline even further than they’ll keep their present mediocre performances.

    40. @44 I meant to write no and add a parenthesis saying “outside of KP and Willy”, but I totally brain farted and forgot about it while correcting something else hahah

      english is hard, the struggle is real.

    41. I will never understand, however, the idea that we should keep this awful team together. It’s not even like we’d be that much worse if we actively tanked/rebuilt/whatever you want to call it.

      I think there’s a very good chance the path Danvt suggests is the right one. I share the belief that getting rid of this version of Melo will not be cheap: we will have to pay with assets instead of receiving them.

      And if that’s the case, incremental improvements, like using Rose’s cap space intelligently, may be the best and fastest road to relevance.

      Among other things, because the odds of tanking AND getting a star in the draft with a 6-10 pick vs a 10-15 pick are very low. We can probably do better by combining cap space and whatever little young talent we have.

    42. If everything’s going right, baker is a starter or 6th man. That’s valuable to have on the roster at 23. How do know he doesn’t develop his three point shooting to become clutch. He shows signs.

    43. If everything’s going right, baker is a starter or 6th man. That’s valuable to have on the roster at 23. How do know he doesn’t develop his three point shooting to become clutch. He shows signs.

      Certainly not saying it won’t happen, but Baker’s TS% is something like 47% right now, right? So seeing him become a good shooter is a bit of a wishcast right now. Which is not to say that it won’t happen, but just that it would require a big leap. KP and Willy, on the other hand, are already performing well, so they’re more realistic to count as building blocks. But sure, they certainly should not, like, dump Ron or anything like that. And if they ever get to rebuild this season, they should let Ron play a lot more.

    44. Baker has a .467 ts% for the season, and is shooting .324 on 37 3pt attempts.

      sorry, but that’s really no indication at all that he’s even an average NBA player, let alone a starter.

    45. Brunio says that Baker’s a career back up. Based on his years of GM experience.

    46. I’ll add that bakers role so far has been the role you expect a vet to assume. Maybe that’s hornaceks being stuck in compete now mode and sometimes strange rotation decisions.

      I’m saying giving him the benefit of the doubt that he may not have a role as this roster is constructed.
      Playing him more is a good way to know if he actually can fill a void not to try and tank cuz that’s putter bf him in a losing predicament

    47. I agree with playing Baker more, might as well see what he can do, right?

      kid tries hard and that’s nice to see… but as Knicks fans we have been used to watching low to no effort for so long that a dude that just tries hard (while showing no real great basketball skills) is suddenly a breath of fresh air.

      and reub, still making jokes about panty hose?

    48. Philadelphia looks pretty good right now

      It’s not like they tanked or anything

    49. Two things I like about baker are toughness and he seems to look for his shot… similar to vujacic but less experience

    50. Philly is 3 games behind the Knicks without Simmons playing a single minute, they have a lot of assets including two lottery picks this year + cap space.

      but yeah, I guess the process was obviously an unbearable failure.

      ps: they are five years removed from the playoffs… the Knicks? 4

    51. In my warped pov I saw linsanity happening in the fourth quarter when baker took roses minutes… and then rose went mia and fucked hornacek over for trying that move which worked

    52. Sure, Melo for Jay Crowder and the Nets pick. Noah for Rubio. Lee for Reddick. Jennings for some gym socks. Just cut Rose and we can watch him at CHI home games sitting in court side seats, ignoring the game and texting.

      In the real world we have to develop who we have. Don’t tell me about Ron’s TS. The guy’s taken like twenty shots all year. Of course he can improve and of course it’s too soon to give up on that. No one likes Kuz either?

      Think about it this way. What if we had Isiah Thomas instead of Derrick Rose?

      #makegooddecisionsphil

    53. I like Baker as much as anyone, his defensive effort is certainly refreshing on this team. He should play more. Having said all of that, he has objectively sucked so far. He’s been worse than Jerian Grant who oddly has a ton of detractors on this board. If you’re relying on him to be part of a young core going forward you might be setting yourself up for disappointment.

    54. @58

      I want to live in your world dude, must be nice there, rainbows and unicorns and a stage with 24/7 reub stand up comedy acts.

    55. KP and Willy are obviously the building blocks. Baker and Plumlee can be useful rotation guys. I like both, but both are at best solid backups on a good team. Plumlee is at least worth having around as a 3rd center, and he’s on a very affordable deal. I wonder if the Knicks will try to sign Baker for a few years on the cheap or risk losing him like they did Galloway? I hope so.

      Kuz, Holiday, and OQ are “hold the fort” guys. Solid guys, but not needle movers, and at an age where they pretty much are what they are. I jokingly say “Don’t Trade Kuz” b/c I like his game. However, yes, you toss any into a deal that could bring back a nice pick or young player. OQ in particular should be moved ASAP as the Knicks are top heavy at C and there should be some teams interested in him as a rebounder. Kuz and Holiday are easy guys to root for, so I hope they can be retained. Holiday might be a victim of the Knicks being stuck with the injury riddled LT contract. He might be too pricey for the Knicks this offseason.

      Rose and Jennings need to go away. Noah is probably a sunk cost at this time, so make the best of a bad situation and make him the backup center/mentor. Maybe, just maybe, his pride at becoming a bench fixture will convince him to retire in a year or two?

      Melo needs to go, too, ASAP, if anything of decent value can come back. It is best for him and the team. Same with Lee.

    56. Sure, Melo for Jay Crowder and the Nets pick. Noah for Rubio. Lee for Reddick. Jennings for some gym socks. Just cut Rose and we can watch him at CHI home games sitting in court side seats, ignoring the game and texting.

      In the real world we have to develop who we have.

      In the “real world,” teams do exactly what you mentioned above all the time (well, not trading Noah, as that’s never happening). Teams rebuild and trade their good “win now” players for future assets and try to dump their bad “win now” players and then just rebuild. The Celtics are two games out of first in the Eastern Conference now with plenty of future assets and that’s precisely what they did a couple of years ago, and the core that they dumped was actually good, so they could have actually still made the playoffs with a winning record, not like this bad core of players.

      There’s no reason that the Knicks should be stuck with this group of players outside of Phil just deciding not do something about it.

    57. LeBron James doesn’t want to wade into the ongoing feud between his friend Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks, or dwell on the trade rumors of Anthony possibly joining the Cavs.

      But Anthony is one of James’ closest friends. And James is going to stick up for him.

      He was asked if he thought Anthony’s skills as a player had diminished Saturday morning, about 10 hours before the Cavs were to play the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. His reaction was predictable.

      “He had 25 (points) in a quarter,” James said. “He had 25 in one quarter this year. Very recently. So you tell me? I mean, how many guys do that?”

      Anthony, 32, did in fact score 25 points in the second quarter of a 113-110 loss to Brooklyn on Jan. 19, setting a Knicks record for points in a quarter.

      Anthony is averaging 23 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 2.9 assists. He is not an All-Star for the first time in nine seasons.

      “At the end of the day there’s a lot of deserving All-Stars as well, but he’s still playing at an All-Star level,” James said.

    58. I really do think that that 25 point quarter was huge for Melo’s trade value this season.

    59. come on Lebron, you know last year was a fluke and you NEED a banana boat guy with you to win a title!!!

      trade that non-rough rider Love who’s injury prone anyway to the Celtics and give us the pick!

    60. I’m trying to figure out what might, if anything, cause the Cavs to actually relent and deal Love for Melo. Would maybe dropping out of the 1st seed do it? Is that even possible to happen before the trade deadline?

      But if the Celtics were then to move up to the 1st seed, then why would they want to trade for Love?

      Still seems like the Clips or bust for any potential Melo trade. I’d guess that he’s going to be super motivated to play well tonight in front of the Cavs.

    61. Ron Baker is probably gonna have a real short NBA career. He has mostly stunk in the roughly 300 minutes he has played, he has just looked somewhat refreshing at times because we’re an abused fanbase that is used to watching perimeter players not even attempt to play defense. So Ron-Ron is a breath of fresh air in that department, in that he at least TRIES to keep his man in front of him.

      Other than that, he’s this year’s version of the Wear Bear. Remember that guy?

    62. I’m 100% “all in” on rebuilding around KP and WH. However, I don’t think that means every player has to be a recent draft pick or in his early 20s. There is nothing wrong with having guys like Holiday, Kuzminskas, KOQ and other players in that age range on the team as long as they are on attractive contracts. Those guys will still be productive (and more seasoned) in 2-3 years when hopefully KP, WH, and other young players we add are breaking out.

    63. I agree, stratomatic, but the problem is that none of those guys are on particularly attractive contracts. Holiday is a free agent after the end of this season and O’Quinn and Kuz are free agents after next season. If they were signed long term, then sure, I’d be in no rush to move them, but since they’re not, they probably should be dealt for long term assets.

      But yes, obviously those guys are less important to get rid of than, say, Lee. That guy has got to get when the getting is still good.

    64. baker is worth keeping on in the sasha role to see what he has after an offseason of work… he’s main issue is scoring which a lot of undersized guards have a problem with… if his outside shot evolves than he can be a nice 8th or 9th guy off the bench…

      he hasn’t been good but he’s shown enough on the defensive end to hang onto…

    65. I’m 100% “all in” on rebuilding around KP and WH. However, I don’t think that means every player has to be a recent draft pick or in his early 20s. There is nothing wrong with having guys like Holiday, Kuzminskas, KOQ and other players in that age range on the team as long as they are on attractive contracts. Those guys will still be productive (and more seasoned) in 2-3 years when hopefully KP, WH, and other young players we add are breaking out.

      I agree 100%. The problem is Holiday is expiring and KOQ and Kuz (not sure how good he is anyway to be honest) each have just one year after this one. So they’ll all either cease to be Knicks or cease to be valuable before we can put together a good team. I mean, if KOQ keeps up 80% of what he’s doing this year he’s gonna get a double-digit million AAV contract. It won’t even necessarily be a bad contract in a vacuum, it just won’t make any sense for where we are on the win curve.

    66. It is so crazy how simple it is to judge where a team is on the win curve and plan accordingly and yet this team has basically not done that in the entirety of Dolan’s tenure here (“Okay, so we won 33 games last season. I know, let’s trade two unprotected first round picks for someone! Time to go all in!”).

    67. @72

      the excuses are the part that kills it… as easy as it is to understand what happened, it’s also super easy to make excuses and sell illogical stuff, we see this even on this blog…

      we were unlucky with injuries / chemistry was not there because of a coach / x or y player has been good before, so this was a down year / the team can’t function without x or y position playing well, so a single player would instantly make everyone else play better / our players will develop into great ones (while everyone else’s players magically won’t), etc…

    68. Oh sure, I recall the defenses of the Eddy Curry trade even, and that trade was about as clearly dogshit right off the bat as any trade ever was.

    69. We need a big game from melo and Lee tonite to tickle lebrons buying bone. Let the countdown to the bidding war begin.

    70. Before we start trading away solid assets, we should see how much it’s going to cost to sign them back. For example, I wouldn’t mind signing Justin if he comes with Jrue and both salaries are fair.

    71. Jrue’s salary won’t be fair because NBA free agent salaries for middling players are never fair.

    72. Holiday’s chances of returning really depends on what the Knicks do next. If they don’t make any moves, they’ll have $25 million in cap space and no point guards. In that scenario, if they sign Jrue Holiday, that will take the entire $25 million, at which point Justin would have to re-sign for the MLE. Would he take the MLE? Would he get more on the open market? I really don’t know. If the Knicks go a cheaper route, then it is a question of “Do you want to spend X million on Holiday if you’re not even adding someone as good as Jrue Holiday as a point?”

    73. Derek Rose:

      “Im on a one-year deal so I can’t talk that much about it. The rebuild could be me going, too. I don’t know,” he said. “My job is to focus whenever I’m on the court, just try to win games, try to be positive, try to get better. Like I said from the beginning, I’m chasing something. I’m trying to get back to myself and I’m trying to play consistent games.”

    74. he’s probably worth that much…
      $25m for both holidays is my offer

      Well, since Jrue is definitely making at least $25 million next season, then that doesn’t seem very fair to poor Justin. ;)

    75. Giving a huge contract to Jrue Holiday would be the surest sign that we’ve learned absolutely nothing. That’s not a shot at him, he’s a good player who I actually enjoy watching. We’re just so far from one Jrue Holiday away from contention. I don’t even think we’re one Jrue Holiday away from being good-not-great. We’d essentially be totally locked into the current team plus Jrue Holiday for the foreseeable future.

      This is exactly what BC and I are talking about with regards to the win curve. Let’s pretend for a second that Cleveland had the option of giving Jrue Holiday $25m AAV. I wouldn’t begrudge them one bit for doing it. I don’t think he’s worth that in a vacuum but you do what you have to do to assemble a contender. For us? It would be ridiculous.

      For all of the talk about optimists vs pessimists, signing Jrue Holiday to a max or near-max deal would be a very pessimistic thing to do on the part of the front office. It would be an admission that they’ve given up on actually trying to build a contender and just want to sell some playoff merchandise. I really hope that’s not where this is headed.

    76. I’m not opposed to Jrue Holiday, only because he actually plays on both ends of the floor. He’d be the best 2 way guard we’ve had since Charlie Ward. Considering how much of our defensive issues are Rose and Jennings being awful at the point of attack and Melo giving about 24% effort on that end, having a truly good defensive PG would make a huge difference.

      And re: Justin Holiday – nitpicking here by we should have his early bird rights, so we would still be able to use our MLE on someone else if we wanted.

    77. And re: Justin Holiday – nitpicking here by we should have his early bird rights, so we would still be able to use our MLE on someone else if we wanted.

      But not if they just use cap space to sign Jrue. Then they wouldn’t have the MLE available (except for Justin Holiday due to the Early Bird Rights).

    78. I’m not opposed to Jrue Holiday, only because he actually plays on both ends of the floor. He’d be the best 2 way guard we’ve had since Charlie Ward. Considering how much of our defensive issues are Rose and Jennings being awful at the point of attack and Melo giving about 24% effort on that end, having a truly good defensive PG would make a huge difference.

      For what is worth, Jrue Holiday has a negative DBPM for about 2/3 of his career and his defensive rating is 108, exactly league average.

      I think he is just one of those guys that is long and athletic and make us think that he’s good at defense without having any meaningful impact.

    79. Jrue Holiday is a slightly above average player and we’d be insane to pay him 25m. For half that price you can have a superior PG in Ricky Rubio.

    80. I really hope that the Knicks do not end up signing Jrue Holiday. Yes, he’d be the best PG in a while, but that’s a recipe for mediocrity at best. I’d rather trade for Rubio as a hold the fort guy, tank the rest of the season (those can both be done at the same time), and try to get one of the young PG studs out of this draft.

      Just purely tanking is probably best, but I just don’t think that Jackson/Dolan will do that. I think, for better or worse, that Phil wants/has to try to compete even as he also tries a half-assed on the fly rebuild.

    81. I’m fine with a half-assed rebuild if he manages to get that Nets pick. You could sign another Jo Noah contract for all I’d care at that point; come 2-3 years we’d be *set*

    82. @82
      Yeah, I laughed at Rose’s quote. I guess he hasn’t noticed that there are NO trade rumors involving him. He truly believes that he is a superstar.

      Heck, I’d trade him for a first round pick in the 23rd Century in the hopes of one day drafting PG James T Kirk out of Starfleet University, but no one will be offering any nice future assets for Rose.

      His only trade value is as an expiring, so the Knicks will have to take back a player with some years to go in order to dump Rose. Rose’s main value now is to command the Tiger tank as much as possible.

    83. just keep Rose, he’d be instrumental for the continuation of the tank.

      and no Jrue Holiday, he’s average and about to be incredibly overpriced.

      the PG for this team needs to come through the draft, be it Ntilikina or Fox if we can’t get the better prospects.

    84. @94
      Why would they want him back? Oh yeah, and let me say again, Anyone But Rondo.
      :-)

      I think we’ve dreamed that Thibs might want to rent him while unoading Rubio’s contract and at least 1-2 more, but no telling what else the Knicks would have to kick in to make that happen.

    85. Can we please stop talking about this Nets pick, a legit #1 overall pick. It’s not even in the realm of possible returns we could land.

    86. @98
      Maybe if a 3rd team is involved?? Minny might be interested in Lee if he can be flipped to a 3rd team for something they like. Maybe if a Melo to Clips deal never pans out, they could be the third. Supposedly they are interested in Lee.

      Lee for Rubio is close to a salary match, so that is an interesting starting point for trade talks.

    87. That Austin rivers contract is looking better and better

      if that’s so, it’s only because the contract was one of the worst in the league when it was signed

      he is a dogshit NBA player, and if you can’t find one of those in the UFA dogshit-player pile, you shouldn’t be paid millions to make operational decisions for a billion-dollar company

    88. Great news for out tank, The Grizzlies are resting Marc Gasol, Chandler Parsons and Tony Allen tonight against the 19 win Timberwolves!

    89. Anybody who is advocating for signing Jrue Holiday to a big contract should have his fucking head examined.

      Do you guys EVER learn from the Knicks making the same mistakes again and again and again and again and again and again and again? Jrue Holiday has a career .079 WS48. He’s having a career year this year: .101. Why in the name of everloving fuck could anybody possibly think signing a player like that to a $25M AAV contract is anything resembling a decent idea? This is a player worth investing in?

      Of course he’ll be a Knick. He’s perfectly Knicksy. He’ll fit in here great. He’ll lead us to a mid-30’s number of wins for years to come.

    90. Dennis Smith Jr. just had an insane first half against my Canes. I hadn’t looked into him much but his numbers are pretty good. I wouldn’t be mad if we wound up with him.

    91. @101
      Yeah, I just can’t see Minny taking Rivers, unless they for sure can flip Redick for someone/thing else that they want.

    92. @jk47

      IMO, Jrue Holiday is underrated by some advanced stats metrics like WS/48 (BPM does a better job). He’s also easily capable of being better than he is now.

      His problem is that he shoots way too many mid range shots. However, in his case it’s not like some incurable style of play the way it is with other players. He could easily reduce those shots significantly, increase his 3s, and sharply increase his TS% in the same way Hornacek has gotten Rose to reduce his 3s.

      Whether he’s worth a max contract or not is another story, but if you don’t think Jrue Holiday is a very good PG (and getting better), you are wrong. If the Knicks had him this season we’d be a .500 club right now even without improving his shot selection a bit.

    93. @89 – I agree 100%, get Rubio if at all possible. A 26 year old great passing point guard who plays above average defense will fix a lot of problems at a relatively reasonable price.

      No thank you to Reddick – he is a good shooter, but at 33 years old this is exactly the kind of player the Knicks need to stay away from

    94. @106

      Here is the problem with the Knicks mentality. The goat shouldn’t be to make a .5oo team, it should be to make a .600 team. Go big or don’t go at all.

    95. Are the Toronto Raptors looking to make a deal to improve? Would a Lee, OQ, Jennings, or Holiday interest them?

      The Knicks should be looking to help Toronto as a bit of a Machiavellian way to get Cleveland or Boston to be more eager to deal either now or in the offseason.

    96. @106

      Here is the problem with the Knicks mentality. The goat shouldn’t be to make a .5oo team, it should be to make a .600 team. Go big or don’t go at all.

      Obviously agree.

      Let’s assume I am correct that we would be .500 right now if we had Jrue Holiday instead of Rose. We would still have a ton of upside from the development of KP, WH, our likely lottery pick from this year, and any other moves that develop or improve the bench (not even including my speculative view that Jrue can get better). That’s a very good team in 2-3 years.

      If you can find a better young PG at a more attractive price, I’d be all for that. But I’m not seeing it. I’m a big Rubio fan also, but we are going to have to give up something good to get Rubio. So how much more does that net you long term.

    97. I think spending big on players with the idea that you can change their long-standing habits is a bad idea. It can work, but it’s an enormous risk that just isn’t worth it in the case of Jrue Holiday. If we pay him $25m we’re limited to moves around the margins for the foreseeable future. He would have to improve to an extent that I don’t think is possible for that contract to make even a little bit of sense.

    98. @112
      That’s why I’d be way more interested in Rubio for 2 years rather than Holiday at 4. And, at about $11m less per year.

      Toronto is supposedly looking to add a big. Okay, OQ and Holiday for an expiring (they have a couple that seem to match salaries) and a pick?

      Toronto adds some toughness and depth to make a run at the Finals. Pressure on Cleveland?

    99. What if our lottery pick is a PG?

      If we are convinced we have a good enough pick to get a solid starting PG, then we should go in a different direction with our cap space. The one thing that is 100% certain is that we need a new starting PG next year if we want to be any good. Rose is bad and Jennings has been a disappointment also. I think we should probably try to replace both next year.

    100. Dennis Smith Jr. is absolutely crushing it right now (though my Canes are hanging in there and have the lead). I want this guy.

    101. @115
      Then you probably have to get that pick from the Celtics.

      Fallback: Rubio and Ntilikina.

    102. Brian Cronin: Well sure, if you seriously think that they’d have to trade prospects just to dump Melo, you don’t dump Melo. I don’t see that as likely, but sure, don’t trade assets just to dump Melo. If you have to trade assets along with Melo to get something good in return, then fair enough, but not just to dump Melo.

      To add to this point, if this is legitimately what you fear, DanVT — if you don’t want to see the Knicks have to bribe teams to take Melo — then your dream scenario that you are poking that voodoo doll and praying to every living and dead god there is to happen is that Melo gets traded ASAP because he’s been well below prime level for 1.5 years until this recent hot streak, and if he falls back into that rut and it lingers through the season, his value tanks. If he continues to be just slightly above average in 17/18, he opts into his final year then as well.

      And in regard to bad contracts, the Knicks could take on $200m worth of dead salary per year for the next three years and bring back like 1 mid 1st round pick in exchange, and it would still be better for their future than standing pat, re-signing Rose, waiting for the magical gelling to happen.

    103. I’d love to pry Delon Wright in a KOQ/Holiday deal with the Raptors. He was great in college and the D League but has no chance in Toronto behind both Lowry and Joseph. Wright and Poeltl works but that’s unlikely after they just used our lottery pick on Poeltl. We can take Wright, Sullinger’s expiring, and a pick–they have their own and the Clippers’ this year.

    104. Going to the game tonight. I really, really hope they don’t do something stupid like defeat the defending champs at home and screw up the tank. That would be a total disaster, the crowd would probably start throwing things on the court.

    105. I still think flipping O’Quinn and possibly Jennings and Lee for assets should be just as much of priority as moving Melo. I also think that getting Rubio at any cost other than KP, Willy or a lottery pick should be a priority.

      I for one am hoping we tank enough in the draft to get Issac. Fox would be a pretty good consolation prize but I think the only other PG we have a shot at is Ntilikina and I don’t believe in him. He will be a good defender (Rubio already is) but his passing is deliberate and his burst is not impressive.

    106. Anybody who is advocating for signing Jrue Holiday to a big contract should have his fucking head examined.

      Do you guys EVER learn from the Knicks making the same mistakes again and again and again and again and again and again and again? Jrue Holiday has a career .079 WS48. He’s having a career year this year: .101. Why in the name of everloving fuck could anybody possibly think signing a player like that to a $25M AAV contract is anything resembling a decent idea? This is a player worth investing in?

      WS/48 is not the end all and be all of life.
      For instance – he has the 4th highest DRPM of any PG in the league behind CP3, Rubio, and Beverley. He has the 8th highest overall RPM for PGs. Over the past several seasons, he’s been consistently top 10-13 in overall RPM. He has the best DRTg on the Hornets, better than Anthony Davis. He actually has a net + rating despite the fact the Hornets are god-awful, and even worse without him on the floor.

      The Knicksiest thing to do would be to sign a player who can only do one thing well and has weaknesses everywhere else. Getting a legit 2-way point guard who has no obvious weaknesses in his game is actually really important.

      I’m not saying I think it’s the best way forward– just that if we signed him, I wouldn’t be mad at all. He’s only 26. You’d be getting basically his entire prime.

      Meanwhile – Zach Lavine out with torn ACL. I think it is time to start offering Derrick Rose and Courtney Lee to Minny.

    107. That Austin rivers contract is looking better and better

      if that’s so, it’s only because the contract was one of the worst in the league when it was signed….he is a dogshit NBA player, and if you can’t find one of those in the UFA dogshit-player pile, you shouldn’t be paid millions to make operational decisions for a billion-dollar company

      He’s an SG not a 1 guard, that’s the problem. When he and CP3 are on the court together, he’s got a 62 TS and 61 eFG!

      Certainly not saying it won’t happen, but Baker’s TS% is something like 47% right now, right? So seeing him become a good shooter is a bit of a wishcast right now.

      Baker’s a lot like Rivers – He’s an SG not a 1 guard. He’s got a 52TS and 50 efG in 100 minutes when he and Jennings are on the court together. he’s more of a spot up shooter; at the 1 he’s pulling up a lot.

      ***********
      I’d be happy if we rebuild and Rivers/Baker were our SGs next year. Trade Melo for Rivers and Brice Johnson, a minimum deal Doc would have to make. Shop KOQ/Lee/Kuz/Holiday/Jennings for Rubio or Delon Wright or Tyus Jones. Draft a 1 guard.

    108. Jrue Holiday would not make us even a top-4 team in the pathetic East, and would severely limit our ability to improve going forward. I don’t understand why anyone thinks that would be a desirable situation. It would be punting on having anything resembling a contender for the next 5 years or so. This has very little to do with him, I think he’s a good player. He’s just so obviously not going to turn our 30 win team into a 50 win team, or even a 45 win team.

    109. Signing Holiday would not stop us from tanking the rest of this year, selling off Melo, Lee, KOQ, and maybe even Rose for assets. Of course I’m not sure that he would want to sign here in that setting, but I’m just saying I like him as a player, and I wouldn’t be sad if we got him.

    110. The key is to raise a young core together. KP and Willy are already going to mesh like peanut butter and chocolate. We need the other ingredient. Jrue Holliday ain’t it.

    111. I’m not really that interested in whether or not Jrue Holiday is a good player. He might be a’ight. I don’t really care. He misses lots of games every year because he’s injury prone, and people here are giving me the “if he could just play differently than he has his whole career he’d be good” line. I’ve heard that one before. If you’re gonna give out a big honkin’ free agent contract, you’re probably better off keeping your powder dry and waiting for a true impact player to come along rather than giving that money to Jrue Holiday and hoping he stops getting injured all the time and starts playing smarter basketball.

      What I am interested in is the Knicks and Phil Jackson actually learning what the win curve is, and why it’s dumb as hell to keep patching “win now” players into a team that is unquestionably not ready to “win now.” A Jrue Holiday-level player gives you a few extra marginal wins over the chumps that have played PG for the Knicks this year. Great, now you’ve won 40 games instead of 34. Let’s get the banners printed up, “2017-2018 Knicks, #8 Seed, Eastern Conference.”

    112. Grant who oddly has a ton of detractors on this board.

      Grant’s shooting 33% from 3 this year, compared to 22% in his rookie year. His TS is 53 compared to 48 his rookie year. His stats are converging to his play in the 2nd half of his rookie year. He’s better than Rose or Jennings. It would have been much better to have kept him, started him, and even if he evolved to only a plus reserve, that would have been a win. And before you remind me of Justin in the Rose trade, remember our need is a 1 guard plus Grant is younger and his contract situation more favorable to NYK.

    113. Signing Holiday would not stop us from tanking the rest of this year, selling off Melo, Lee, KOQ, and maybe even Rose for assets. Of course I’m not sure that he would want to sign here in that setting, but I’m just saying I like him as a player, and I wouldn’t be sad if we got him.

      If we unload all of our undesirable contracts, we shouldn’t be in a rush to replace them with new ones. I highly doubt Holiday would be the last big contract we give out in this scenario, so we’d really just be restarting the whole LolKnicks cycle. I suppose that’s what we should expect.

    114. Grant is not better than Rose or Jennings. He mostly stands in the corner when he’s on the court and watches the action. When Jimmy Buckets or Dwayne do something good his stats go up.

      Give me Reubio or give me death.
      And PJ Tucker too.

    115. Sad about LaVine. Minny may decide to tank now, though.

      If not, yeah, how about a deal with Lee and Rubio the principals?

    116. The issue with Smith is that he’s horrific defensively and his effort comes and goes. But he’s very, very athletic.

    117. I hope the Knicks aren’t too scared to even talk to Masai because KOQ and Holiday for Wright and one of their firsts makes a lot of sense for both teams.

    118. @129 Or we could include Courtney Lee (who Doc seems to appreciate) in a trade to the Clippers with Melo and include the Wolves as a third party, allowing Reubio to come here with Brice Johnson and Austin Rivers (plus picks), with the Wolves receiving Reddick plus possibly an additional player in the transaction.

      It’s very improbable that the Cavs would trade Love knowing that he’d end up on the Celtics who could keep them from the finals to be honest. What would be the point for them?

      Imagining a team of

      Reubio
      Holiday
      KP
      Willy
      Isaac plus no Melo plus cap space

      And I like it.

    119. If we also added free agent Teodosic we would be in terrific shape at point guard.

    120. delon wright would be excellent… have always been a major fan of his…

      He’s buried behind Lowry and Joseph and KOQ excels at exactly what the Raps need now. Plus they’d probably be willing to part with their or the Clippers’ pick since they have a tight roster and the pick will be in the 20s anyway.

    121. We’re down to #13 on tankathon.com. We’re only 2.5 games behind the Kings at #5, and the Heat, Dallas, and Milwaukee seem to want to win, BUT it may be tough to out-lose Brooklyn, Phoenix, LA, and Philly.

    122. We’re down to #13 on tankathon.com. We’re only 2.5 games behind the Kings at #5, and the Heat, Dallas, and Milwaukee seem to want to win, BUT it may be tough to out-lose Brooklyn, Phoenix, LA, and Philly.

      It’s so freakin’ tantalizing! But they’re also just, what, a game and a half out of the #8 seed, right? They’re teetering on the edge, but if they don’t commit to the tank, those other teams eventually will.

    123. Phil’s obvious plans to deal Melo to me means he’s not going for the playoffs this year. So there’s that.

      Thing is, if he TRIES to lose, will he do that as well as when he TRIED to win?

    124. Phil’s obvious plans to deal Melo to me means he’s not going for the playoffs this year. So there’s that.

      My thing there is that not only do we not know if a deal will actually happen, we also don’t know what Phil is looking for. He might be looking for guys who can help the Knicks now. I agree that I think it is unlikely that that is what he is thinking, but I also honestly don’t know what he’s thinking. I don’t think any of us will until he actually makes a move.

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