Knicks Morning News (2017.03.03)

  • [SNY Knicks] Oakley in no hurry to return to Madison Square Garden
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 9:20:00 PM)

    Charles Oakley believes it’s the Knicks’ responsibility to come to him and he’s only concerned with clearing his record

  • [SNY Knicks] Porzingis, a fan of the triangle, scores 20 in return
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 9:50:32 AM)

    Kristaps Porzingis, a fan of the triangle offense, scored 20 points in his return to the court from an ankle injury on Wednesday.

  • [NYTimes] Team Plagiarizes Golden State Warriors. Team Is Undefeated.
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 10:00:43 AM)

    This Texas college coach hasn’t seen Golden State in person. But he knows good basketball, and his team has mimicked the Warriors to perfection.

  • [NYPost] Breaking down players who could be next Knicks point guard
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 8:39:42 PM)

    In a perfect world, the Knicks would steam into free agency this summer and land one of the primo point guards at the top of the heap, a Steph Curry, Chris Paul or Kyle Lowry. If you haven’t noticed, neither the world nor the Knicks are perfect. Forget those top-tier talents. “It’s either through the…

  • [NYPost] Knicks want Derrick Rose to be less predictable and shoot 3s
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 11:45:36 AM)

    PHILADELPHIA – Derrick Rose said it with a straight face. His rarely used 3-point shot will be raring to go as soon as the postseason. Rose, who bedeviled the Magic on Wednesday with his explosions to the rim on his way to an 18-point, seven-rebound, four-assist night, acknowledged the Knicks coaching staff is trying to…

  • [NYPost] Amar’e Stoudemire slammed as sad homophobic man-child
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 9:50:20 AM)

    Amar’e Stoudemire has enough to worry about as the co-owner and ostensible star of a team in the far-flung outpost of Israeli basketball league. He probably didn’t need to attract the attention of a pair of ex-NBA players who slammed the former Knick’s homophobic views. After Stoudemire told an Israeli website he would “shower across the…

  • [NYPost] This is the player Jeff Hornacek has waited all season for
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 7:32:28 AM)

    ORLANDO — Lance Thomas has replaced Ron “Burgundy’’ Baker as Jeff Hornacek’s favorite player. With the Knicks defense rising up, Hornacek dished all the credit to Thomas’ return after a month-long absence. Thomas broke the orbital bone in his face in mid-January when he got clocked by the elbow of Raptors center Jonas Valunciunas. Thomas never…

  • [NY Newsday] Charles Oakley says next move is Knicks’; he’s worried only about clearing his record
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 11:01:44 PM)

    Charles Oakley says he hasn’t been in touch with the Knicks or the NBA lately and doesn’t know if he will ever set foot inside Madison Square Garden again in the wake of his physical altercation with security last month.

  • [NY Newsday] Knicks’ Derrick Rose trying to add three-pointer to his game
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 7:32:00 PM)

    PHILADELPHIA — Derrick Rose has a personal game plan for the playoffs.

  • [NYDN] Derrick Rose on embracing Knicks’ triangle: ‘Do I have a choice?’
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 12:41:29 PM)

    Derrick Rose has a philosophy now with the triangle, a system still like a foreign language to the point guard: “Don’t F’ it up.”

  • [NYDN] Big Apple’s basketball reputation gets dunked in new survey
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 10:12:32 AM)

    It used to be that New York was a basketball town. The capital city of the sport, even.

  • [NYDN] Amar’e Stoudemire apologizes for homophobic joke
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 9:29:31 AM)

    Amar’e Stoudemire is now saying sorry for “joking” about the possibility showering with a gay teammate.

  • [ESPN] Friday’s Knicks News: Rose working to improve 3-point shot
    (Friday, March 03, 2017 4:48:49 AM)

    Friday’s Knicks News: Rose working to improve 3-point shot

  • [ESPN] Rose on running triangle: ‘Do I have a choice?’
    (Thursday, March 02, 2017 8:10:28 PM)

    Rose on running triangle: ‘Do I have a choice?’

  • Liked it? Take a second to support Mike Kurylo on Patreon!

    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).

    75 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2017.03.03)”

    1. As I keep saying, you can root all you want for the tank, it’s just not happening. This team is gonna win 32-35 games (a lot depends on that long western trip where we play all good teams, on paper we should get swept, but who knows?) But come hell or high water, they will definitely try to win, at least until making the playoffs is virtually impossible.

      The choices are: enjoy the wins or live the next couple of weeks in basketball hell.

      sigh…

    2. btw I’m not criticizing rooting hard for losses. Just saying that it’s probably not gonna happen that way, barring the unforeseen.

    3. Would it have been smarter for GSW to have gone after Terrance Jones over Matt Barnes?

    4. Would it have been smarter for GSW to have gone after Terrance Jones over Matt Barnes?

      Probably, yes. I don’t know if they knew that Jones was available when they quickly agreed to sign Barnes.

    5. Probably, yes. I don’t know if they knew that Jones was available when they quickly agreed to sign Barnes.

      1st March is the deadline for playoff elegibility, so probably they hurried so Barnes could play in the playoffs if necessary.

    6. Oh, that’s definitely why they rushed the Barnes’ signing. But I thought Jones was available before then, as well, though. If not, then yes, that’s the answer right there.

    7. I still don’t think we win more than 30 but worse things have happened.

      Agreed with both sentiments.

    8. Grant up near a 56% TS, .374% from three. We done fucked up.

      I vaguely remember arguing that his TS% was much better last year in the second half and that he was very likely to improve his shooting further given he has such a strong work ethic. That was right around the time everyone was laughing at the idea that we screwed up because he got off to bad start in very limited minutes. He’s probably never going to be a star PG, but he’s a lot better than what we have now.

    9. Grant up near a 56% TS, .374% from three. We done fucked up.

      And they were playing a system geared towards his style for most of the season. The thing that interests me more about Grant is how Chicago doesn’t seem to know what they have in him, either. It’s weird.

    10. Yeah, Grant is playing well.

      Less than 30 wins is unlikely w/o a real commitment to tanking. We have games vs. Some terrible teams and some teams that are also better served to tank, not to mention playoff teams in weird places, e.g. GSW.

    11. Teams undervaluing players is not uncommon. Does our coaching staff and/or Phil realize how good Kyle O’Quinn is?

    12. Less than 30 wins is unlikely w/o a real commitment to tanking. We have games vs. Some terrible teams and some teams that are also better served to tank, not to mention playoff teams in weird places, e.g. GSW.

      I think 30 wins is about right on the dot, but I do fear it goes over that.

      I think they have 13 “should be losses” and then eight games against Detroit (twice), Orlando, Brooklyn (twice), Milwaukee and Philadelphia (twice). If they go 5-3 in those games, they’d be right at 30 wins.

      But yes, if they go 6-2 in those 8 games and then get a game against, say, Miami or Indiana, then yes, this could quickly be a 33 win team.

      This is where the banked wins early are factoring in.

    13. Teams undervaluing players is not uncommon. Does our coaching staff and/or Phil realize how good Kyle O’Quinn is?

      It’s weird that they traded for him, though, ya know? They traded for him and then went out and signed two big name veteran guards and then got Michael Carter-Williams, to boot, who isn’t good at anything at all. So they seemed to see nothing in Grant at all. It was like they acquired him in the deal because he was the only other halfway decent asset the Knicks had to deal. “Ugh, is this really it? This is all you have other than Lopez? Okay, I guess we’ll take him. If we have to.”

    14. 7th is probably the best case scenario right now. Dallas is probably better than us right now and there’s a chance that the Pelicans put together a few wins to pull ahead of us. The other teams below us are so bad that its hard to see them passing us in the standings.

      We need some Linsanity in the BKN games.

    15. Phil did try to trade O’Quinn for a 1st round pick according to the rumors so I think its safe to say that the former values the latter fairly.

    16. We wouldn’t even need this fucking Triangle bullshit right now if we had a point guard who we could rely upon to run Hornacek’s motion offense.

    17. We wouldn’t even need this fucking Triangle bullshit right now if we had a point guard who we could rely upon to run Hornacek’s motion offense.

      But that’s the killer thing about this – that’s specifically the type of offense that Grant was good at running!

    18. I mean, Rosen said that Phil is aiming towards getting a PG in this draft, and they’re going to spend he next month ‘evaluating’ players for fit in the triangle, is it possible we’ll see heavy minutes for Baker/Chasson/youth in a way that will actively give us more losses? I dunno, probably not, but maybeeeeee (then again, we stayed pat at the deadline with the talent of a supposed borderline playoff team, so wtf do I know)

    19. Thing is, if we traded Lee, we’d lose more. Dudes not bad. Staying pat might have lost us a good pick, player, and future.

    20. That last game in the season against the Sixers might entail some legendary tank tactics.

    21. I’m hoping New Orleans will beg us for Lee in the offseason. Their flexibility is very limited and he’s exactly what they need.

    22. With Grant & the Bulls they’re probably looking for a PG who is a really good 3 point shooter, since their PG is off the ball more than an average NBA team. I don’t know what they’re doing giving minutes to MCW though.

    23. He doesn’t do anything right! How is he still in the NBA even? That the Sixers got the Lakers’ pick for MCW is still astonishing.

    24. The Triangle thing is SO blown out of proportion. Honestly its the thing people should care about the least. These last few games we’ve run it a tad more than before Phil made the announcement. They aren’t going back to exclusively Triangle but Phil does want it to be part of the Knicks offense. The team went away from it earlier in the season bc they were having trouble with it and Rose missed training camp. Now with the playoffs further and further from being a reality, Phil wants the team to focus on it bc he wants to see which of the young dudes can pick it up. It is the dumbest thing that the media keeps bringing this up. Teams throughout the league run versions of Triangle sets as part of their offense. Phil is not trying to make us only run the Triangle forever end of discussion. Its so dumb to focus your anger on this when there are plenty of things about this team to be upset about.

    25. Agreed, there are many more things about this team to be upset about than the Triangle. Which is sad, since the Triangle obsession is dumb, but there’s so many things wrong with this team that the Triangle obsession is not much of a priority when it comes to the biggest problems with this team.

    26. It’s weird that they traded for him, though, ya know? They traded for him and then went out and signed two big name veteran guards and then got Michael Carter-Williams, to boot, who isn’t good at anything at all. So they seemed to see nothing in Grant at all. It was like they acquired him in the deal because he was the only other halfway decent asset the Knicks had to deal. “Ugh, is this really it? This is all you have other than Lopez? Okay, I guess we’ll take him. If we have to.”

      To add on don’t forget they just picked up Cameron Payne. So they have the 14th and 19th picks in the 2015 draft.

    27. The triangle is discussed a lot in the media because sportswriters, and fans, rarely cite the most common reason a team is bad; the players on it aren’t very good. It’s more compelling to say “Derrick Rose is struggling with the triangle” than “Derrick Rose sucks,” even though the latter goes way further in explaining the Knicks’ struggles.

      If the Phil Jackson was good at acquiring productive players, and thus the Knicks were good, the triangle would either go largely ignored or be spoken of positively.

    28. Side note:

      Would Milwaukee be the best place to implement the triangle? It sucks for them that Parker got hurt and Middleton was hurt but if Brogdon is real then that could be a scary team going forward. They are a team that Miles Bridges could really help. It would give them Parker insurance plus another versatile depth if his game translate. He reminds me of Marquette Jae Crowder. Also, I know they are high on Thon Maker but they should have really gone after Noel to add that versatile big.

      Anyway their players size, ability, and skill sets remind me of a knock off 90s Bulls team

    29. But Phil’s obsession with the triangle is the main reason why he invests in bad players in the first place. He thought the triangle would make Melo into an elite player. He acquired Jose Calderon because he was good fit for the triangle. He brought in Joakim Noah because he’s so good at passing out of the pinch post. He overlooked the obvious glaring flaws of those players because he thought they could be key components of a winning triangle team.

      He looks at things through the lens of “is this guy good for the triangle” rather than “is this guy good at basketball.” Add in the fact that nobody seems to actually want to play the triangle and… well, it’s a problem. Phil’s a bad GM because he’s dogmatic and he thinks he can jam square pegs into triangle shaped holes. See what I did there.

    30. The triangle is discussed a lot in the media because sportswriters, and fans, rarely cite the most common reason a team is bad; the players on it aren’t very good. It’s more compelling to say “Derrick Rose is struggling with the triangle” than “Derrick Rose sucks,” event hough the latter goes way further in explaining the Knicks’ struggles.

      Once evidence has been presented (2011) that Derrick Rose does not suck, a metric fuckton of evidence must be presented to show that he does indeed suck (2013-2017) before people believe that he cannot help but suck (2018?).

      E.g., I look forward to the next ten years of New Orleans Pelicans headlines, which will go something like, “Will [new coach, system, teammates] finally give Cousins what he needs to maximize his talent?” because it’s already been established that he’s great (Zach Lowe, shut the fuck up) even though he’s pretty goddamn mediocre. The media loves a good red herring, because simply saying, “He’s not that good,” doesn’t generate a whole lot of discussion, especially when lack of motivation doesn’t really seem to explain his mediocrity.

    31. But Phil’s obsession with the triangle is the main reason why he invests in bad players in the first place.

      Yeah that’s a good point. Phil’s triangle obsession and his penchant for acquiring shitty players can’t be separated. I guess all I’m saying is that if they somehow could be, the triangle probably wouldn’t be a big deal. It seems to be a suboptimal offense but talent tends to overcome that. I mean, OKC was a damn good team for a while with the “have the awesome guys take turns ISOing” offense.

    32. Invests in bad players?

      KP and Willie H are not bad players
      Lee is not a bad player.
      KQ is not a bad player
      DWill, Jennings, Galloway, etc. not bad players for the price of their contracts.

      Rose and Noah are bad players but did Phil get these guys only bc of the triangle? I would say that’s very debatable.

    33. KP and Willie H are not bad players
      Lee is not a bad player.
      KQ is not a bad player
      DWill, Jennings, Galloway, etc. not bad players for the price of their contracts.

      Dude, the team sucks. If Phil doesn’t invest in bad players, why is that the case? Yes, Porzingis and Willy look like good picks. Lee and KOQ are nice players (though it remains to be seen if Phil will extract any value at all from their contracts). It’s a bit weird to cite three guys who aren’t on the team anymore, and who we didn’t get anything for, as evidence of Phil’s allegedly good eye for talent. Regardless, actually being a good, or even not bad, GM requires a lot more than having a few half-decent moves.

      Rose and Noah are bad players but did Phil get these guys only bc of the triangle? I would say that’s very debatable.

      Who knows? Doesn’t matter much.

    34. Well, look at this year’s roster in terms of payroll:

      Melo $24.5M, no trade clause. Phil gave him a max contract to be the centerpiece of the team because he thought he could triangulate Melo into a great player. It failed.

      Rose $21.3M. Bad player. Acquired because the Knicks “needed a penetrating guard” to properly execute the triangle. There were probably other penetrating guards available at a fraction of the price. Horrible value at $21.3M.

      Noah $17M. Old, broken down and no longer effective, was acquired because he’s a good passing center, AKA “good fit for the triangle.” Instantly one of the worst contracts in the NBA the moment it was signed. Good pinch post passing though!

      That’s about $62M of the team’s $103M salary that was spent in an unbelievably misguided way, in large part because of misguided faith in the triangle. Those are mistakes that will live on in future seasons as both players continue to decline.

    35. Yep. It wasn’t a good idea to not deal as many guys as they could.

      It does appear Phil tried to deal KOQ for a mid first round pick and there were zero takers…….

      He couldn’t get anything for Jennings and waived him a day later. If he couldn’t get anything for KOQ on a short cheap contract, I would imagine there weren’t many sniffs at Lee with his much larger,much longer contract as an older guy, even though he is a decent player, along with KOQ.

      Methinks some overestimate the marketability of such players.

    36. @40 Agree I can’t really begrudge him for not getting picks if teams weren’t even interested.

    37. http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/yankees-gm-cashman-relies-tim-naehring-analytics-article-1.2987130

      A pretty interesting cross over piece on how they Yankees meld strong analytics with the eye test:

      To be a former player, or an older-school guy, and not use the analytics to acquire players or develop players…to not utilize that information is ridiculous. It’s right there in front of us.

      You learn so much about the game and about players from a variety of ways. Not only by what your eyes see. But what the numbers indicate. The technology behind it is amazing.”

    38. I would imagine there weren’t many sniffs at Lee with his much larger,much longer contract as an older guy, even though he is a decent player, along with KOQ.

      I could see Lee not getting a first round pick, but I think the issue is that at this point I’d prefer any return on Lee (that didn’t involve taking on money, of course). Future second rounders or whatever. Just get him off of the team. He helps them too much in the short term and he’s so pointless in the long term. And I don’t think that was nearly the approach Jackson was taking at the deadline. It was more, “If you blow me away with an offer, okay. If not, I’m fine standing pat with my assets.”

    39. I could see Lee not getting a first round pick, but I think the issue is that at this point I’d prefer any return on Lee (that didn’t involve taking on money, of course). Future second rounders or whatever. Just get him off of the team. He helps them too much in the short term and he’s so pointless in the long term. And I don’t think that was nearly the approach Jackson was taking at the deadline.

      Again, you are assuming there is a team out there that had a 14 M expiring contract to ship or 14 M in empty cap space to fit Lee into. It doesn’t make much sense to take Jammal Crawford’s contract for 3 more years just to net a second rounder….and give up a somewhat better player

      I mean with his .085WS/48 that Lee is going to have a big positive out come on the season wins wise is pretty questionable. He ain’t Clyde Drexler in his prime.

      Nobody was beating down any doors to get him

    40. If Lee couldn’t be traded for anything (without taking on future money), then that just makes the Lee signing look even worse than it looked like when it was first signed. As one of the only things people really argued in Lee’s favor was, “Hey, at least he should be tradeable if it doesn’t work out.”

    41. Z-Man: they will definitely try to win, at least until making the playoffs is virtually impossible.

      ESPN gives the Knicks a 1.5% chance of making the playoffs. Is that not the same as “virtually impossible”? I don’t think they’re ever going to tank. Jackson in general has shown reliably that he doesn’t care about the margins. He doesn’t care that there’s a 5% or whatever better chance at getting a star for each draft slot you advance. He doesn’t care that you have say a 5% chance of discovering a rotation player and getting him at a discount if you use the end of your bench to sign young players to multi-year unguaranteed deals. He doesn’t care about getting a little more value for Chandler if it means sending him somewhere he’ll be less happy.

      He values these more subjective things like “winning mentality” and “team culture”.

      And don’t get me wrong, I think culture matters. I just think he doesn’t understand the role a president plays in building culture. I think his moves are negatively affecting the culture not just because he’s castrating Hornacek by obsessing about the triangle but because the big picture vision he’s sending from the front office smells impatient and greedy. That’s the contribution he’s making to the culture.

      From a coach, your job culturally is to work to win each individual game. That’s just not the case from the front office.

    42. @35

      it has been kinda fun already, with New Orleans 1-3 since the trade and winning the only game Cousins did not play in.

      and I abhor so much this argument that Phil did what he could, that there were no other possibilities other than staying put… if that’s the case he should get fired today, because why the hell would a franchise pay so much to a dude who can’t do anything other than constructing a terrible core and keeping it together? Fire him and hire me, I would work for 5k a month and I’m 100% I could build a 30-win team and manage to not trade the players for less than their value.

    43. He values these more subjective things like “winning mentality” and “team culture”.

      Nothing screams winning mentality and team culture more than firing off twitter pot-shots about your best player during a 30-win season.

    44. Nothing screams winning mentality and team culture more than firing off twitter pot-shots about your best player during a 30-win season.

      When did he tweet about KOQ? And what did he say?

    45. pot-shots

      like what ya did there sjk…

      well, it would certainly seem old phil is not adverse to risk or swinging for the fences…

    46. I think a lot of you are going to be surprised down the stretch. The schedule is just too easy for them to win fewer than 30 and a fair chance they are closer to 40 wins than 30.
      They beat Orlando easily and while Orlando sucks they had been playing pretty decently with their small lineup.

      And when was the last time this Knicks team won any game easily?
      They have been playing well enough to win a lot of games. It was a matter of time before things started to break their way a little bit. Throw a few genuinely bad teams in there and they could play out strongly.

      I recognize past performance doesn’t necessarily justify a positive outlook.
      But this was a different team with a healthy KP. He looked good the other night.

    47. The Knicks are exactly at their Expected Wins and Losses.

      i’m gonna view that as a glass half empty kind of thing…

    48. i’m gonna view that as a negative kind of thing…

      Yeah, but they’ve won 2 out of their last 3 games, so they’re trending upward. It’s possible that they win 2 out of 3 of their next 3, and then 2 out of 3 after that. I choose to be an optimist.

    49. Possible is all I’m suggesting.

      This is not a team that if they make the playoffs will survive the first round.
      It’s just a really easy schedule remaining.
      Some sure losses. But a lot of bad teams.

    50. If the Knicks beat all teams with fewer than 30 wins and lose all other games, they would finish the season 11-10 — 36 wins. And that’s pretty generous as it would involve beating all of the following teams with better records: Milwaukee, Detroit x2, Portland, Miami x2. 8th seed in the east right now is projected to win 40 games.

      They also have 4 more back to backs before the season ends. I believe they’ve won one game in the second night of a back to back all season.

    51. At this point I’m resigned to the fact that’s it’s going to take some insane lottery luck to get one of the top guys, we’re not gonna be bad enough. That said, if we get anywhere in the top10 we should be able to land a useful player.

    52. better records, but not good.
      I believe because of injuries to KP, the Knicks have underperformed.
      When KP was sound, the Knicks were a better team.
      Again, I’m probably wrong.
      But this has been a weird season.

    53. Things that have changed:
      1. Noah is gone for the season.
      2. Courtney Lee is playing much better ball.
      3. KP improved health (so far)
      4. The trade deadline is past and players know they are here for the rest of the season and Rose is now playing for a contract (somewhere).
      5. Lance Thomas’ foot problems are behind him.
      6. Jennings was released/Baker gets more minutes

      This large number of (positive) changing factors makes suspect all measures of the Knicks past performance as a projection of future performance.

    54. When did he tweet about KOQ? And what did he say?

      Jowels wins the interwebz for the afternoon. You know V8 doesn’t feel particularly good coming out of your nose :-)

    55. If Lee couldn’t be traded for anything (without taking on future money), then that just makes the Lee signing look even worse than it looked like when it was first signed. As one of the only things people really argued in Lee’s favor was, “Hey, at least he should be tradeable if it doesn’t work out.”

      While that might be an interesting discussion (whether Lee’s contract is market value) it isn’t the discussion at hand. The discussion at hand is, Phil sucks because he didn’t get picks for KOQ and Lee.

      Reports say a first rounder wasn’t available for KOQ. Whether that is true or not, I don’t know.

      Lee had a much larger contract and who could we move him to that: needs a very good shooter (playoff contender), had a tradable pick and either had empty cap space or expiring. I assume you don’t think swapping him for Jamal Crawford and a 2nd round pick was wise.

      Where was the trade? Seriously.

    56. They also have 4 more back to backs before the season ends. I believe they’ve won one game in the second night of a back to back all season.

      2 actually. One against BKN and one against Chicago.

    57. Possible is all I’m suggesting.

      Sorry, I was being facetious. I’m making fun of the “it’s possible” diatribe by Frank before the season re: Rose’s production.

      It’s also possible that if we end up 10th in lottery standings, we can win the #1 overall pick. It’s possible, guys. It’s possible.

    58. No one wants to trade KP, unless Denver is offering Jokic straight-up.

    59. While that might be an interesting discussion (whether Lee’s contract is market value) it isn’t the discussion at hand. The discussion at hand is, Phil sucks because he didn’t get picks for KOQ and Lee.

      Either he did a poor job by not getting something for Lee or he did a poor job by signing a guy he then can’t trade at the peak value of the player.

    60. We tend to win when Cronin doesn’t put up the game thread. God damn it BC!

    Comments are closed.