Knicks Morning News (2021.11.16)

  • Ice cold: Pacers miss 13 straight shots, score 10 fourth-quarter points in loss to Knicks – IndyStar
    [www.indystar.com] — Tuesday, November 16, 2021 7:24:59 AM

    Ice cold: Pacers miss 13 straight shots, score 10 fourth-quarter points in loss to Knicks  IndyStar

  • Diving Into Grimes and Miles McBride’s Playing Time – The Knicks Wall
    [theknickswall.com] — Tuesday, November 16, 2021 7:10:27 AM

    Diving Into Grimes and Miles McBride’s Playing Time  The Knicks Wall

  • #SportsReport: Knicks best Pacers; Celtics top Cavaliers – WAMC
    [www.wamc.org] — Tuesday, November 16, 2021 6:09:00 AM

    #SportsReport: Knicks best Pacers; Celtics top Cavaliers  WAMC

  • Taj Gibson anchors defense as Knicks’ big-man injuries continue – New York Post
    [nypost.com] — Tuesday, November 16, 2021 12:37:00 AM

    Taj Gibson anchors defense as Knicks’ big-man injuries continue  New York Post

  • Line-in-the-sand moment allows Knicks and their fans to exhale – New York Post
    [nypost.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 11:55:00 PM

    Line-in-the-sand moment allows Knicks and their fans to exhale  New York Post Knicks 92, Pacers 84 : Scenes from a real & real fun comeback  Posting and ToastingKnicks limit Pacers to 2 baskets in 4th quarter, win 92-84  CBS sports.comThe New York Knicks Beat The Indiana Pacers In New York On Monday Night  Sports IllustratedNew York Knicks vs. Indiana Pacers: Prediction and betting odds  Daily KnicksView Full Coverage on Google News

  • Former Knicks G Iman Shumpert 1st NBA Player to Reach ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Finals – Bleacher Report
    [bleacherreport.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 11:34:02 PM

    Former Knicks G Iman Shumpert 1st NBA Player to Reach ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Finals  Bleacher Report

  • Knicks 92, Pacers 84 : Scenes from a real & real fun comeback – Posting and Toasting
    [www.postingandtoasting.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 10:04:31 PM

    Knicks 92, Pacers 84 : Scenes from a real & real fun comeback  Posting and ToastingLine-in-the-sand moment allows Knicks and their fans to exhale  New York Post The New York Knicks Beat The Indiana Pacers In New York On Monday Night  Sports IllustratedNew York Knicks vs. Indiana Pacers: Prediction and betting odds  Daily KnicksKnicks limit Pacers to 2 baskets in 4th quarter, win 92-84  CBS sports.comView Full Coverage on Google News

  • N.Y. Knicks 92, Indiana 84 – CT Post
    [www.ctpost.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 10:01:38 PM

    N.Y. Knicks 92, Indiana 84  CT Post

  • Indiana Pacers vs New York Knicks ? Full Game Highlights | November 15, 2021 | 2021-22 NBA Season – Oakland News Now
    [oaklandnewsnow.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 9:59:36 PM

    Indiana Pacers vs New York Knicks ? Full Game Highlights | November 15, 2021 | 2021-22 NBA Season  Oakland News Now

  • N.Y. Knicks 92, Indiana 84 – San Francisco Chronicle
    [www.sfchronicle.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 9:57:12 PM

    N.Y. Knicks 92, Indiana 84  San Francisco Chronicle

  • Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson Ruled Out vs. Pacers with Ankle Injury – Bleacher Report
    [bleacherreport.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 9:25:43 PM

    Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson Ruled Out vs. Pacers with Ankle Injury  Bleacher Report

  • Knicks fans want to see more of Toppin, but fit is a problem – Newsday
    [www.newsday.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 8:20:07 PM

    Knicks fans want to see more of Toppin, but fit is a problem  Newsday

  • Knicks fans can take lesson from how they treated Earl Monroe’s ‘awful’ start – New York Post
    [nypost.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 8:04:00 PM

    Knicks fans can take lesson from how they treated Earl Monroe’s ‘awful’ start  New York Post

  • Knicks news: Derrick Rose on what New York starters ‘need’ to do – ClutchPoints
    [clutchpoints.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 3:43:55 PM

    Knicks news: Derrick Rose on what New York starters ‘need’ to do  ClutchPoints

  • Pacers-Knicks: Game Time, Odds, Schedule, TV Channel, Betting Odds, and Live Stream (Monday, November 15th) – ClutchPoints
    [clutchpoints.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 2:07:27 PM

    Pacers-Knicks: Game Time, Odds, Schedule, TV Channel, Betting Odds, and Live Stream (Monday, November 15th)  ClutchPoints

  • Knicks Go, Top 3-Year-Olds Among Vox Populi Nominees – BloodHorse.com
    [www.bloodhorse.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 1:21:00 PM

    Knicks Go, Top 3-Year-Olds Among Vox Populi Nominees  BloodHorse.com

  • Chris Duarte’s Injury Status For Indiana Pacers-New York Knicks Game On Monday – Sports Illustrated
    [www.si.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 12:07:28 PM

    Chris Duarte’s Injury Status For Indiana Pacers-New York Knicks Game On Monday  Sports Illustrated

  • Will the real New York Knicks please stand up? – Elite Sports NY
    [elitesportsny.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 10:30:21 AM

    Will the real New York Knicks please stand up?  Elite Sports NY

  • Order your New York Knicks Nike City Edition gear today – Daily Knicks
    [dailyknicks.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 10:12:00 AM

    Order your New York Knicks Nike City Edition gear today  Daily Knicks

  • P&T Round(ball) Table: How would you change the Knicks’ starting lineup? – Posting and Toasting
    [www.postingandtoasting.com] — Monday, November 15, 2021 10:08:27 AM

    P&T Round(ball) Table: How would you change the Knicks’ starting lineup?  Posting and Toasting

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    74 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2021.11.16)”

    1. And… exhale. Amazing how, um, quickly we have gone from wanting IQ replaced in the rotation by Grimes to IQ being our savior on many nights. It’s almost like a bunch of people on an analytics-focused blog are too easily swayed by small sample sizes. But that would be ridiculous, right?

    2. The time machine bring us to the 90’s, our defense helped the Pacers shot 2-20 in the 4th quarter and we got a nice little labored win.
      The ball did move faster, energy was much higher but the shots didn’t fall for a lot of our players, with few exceptions we’re in a bad shooting slump, but it will pass.
      Now we need to solve the post halftime’s lethargy problem (that dates back to last year).

      Stats Of The Game:
      As noted by Z-Man the Pacers had 0 fastbreak points. We had 10.

      Play Of The Game:
      Both Toppin’s dunks were good, RJ’s one on Rose’s great feed was good but I’ll vote for IQ’s corner three on Dervish Julius’ pass that gave us a lead we never relinquished. Clutch shot by IQ and a very good play for Randle.

    3. My grades:

      Randle C (11-11-5)
      Less sticky than usual, it’s clear he tries, not always with good results. The turnovers (5 TO) are often too dumb and the closeouts too slow, but I commended him for one thing: 1 shot in the 4th (9 mins), when he let the others do their things, worked the boards (4 DREB) and served a cookie to IQ for a critical go-ahead 3.
      Still the fulcrum of our offense, if he learns that he can get his due in the flow of the game and goes back to attack the rim as he did in past seasons (NO’s for instance), while keeping the ball in motion this team can be something.

      Barrett C- (12-6-1)
      Basically unplayable in the first half, finally awakens in the bottom half of the 3rd with a couple of 3s (both on Taj’s assists), went to sleep again, but is there at the end jamming a dunk on Rose’s jewel and hitting the dagger that closed the game. Let’s hope this is the end of his descent into basketball hell.

      Robinson B- (2-2 3 BLK)
      Defended the rim and was more active than the last few games. They tried to involve him more on offense at the start, without much success. He’s too intent to help on Kemba’s turnstiles to be a presence on the defensive board. The already wobble ankle gave up and it’s a problem.

      Walker C + (16-1-2)
      He kept us afloat in the 1st, scoring the first 8 points while his teammates dented the rim with gusto. He attacked the rim and worked the midrange (only 1 3FG). Putting aside the occasional charging fouls, his defense is a never ending black hole. Unplayable (and unplayed) down the stretch.

      Fournier C- (7-3-3)
      Unlucky on a couple of shots in the first half, tried to move the ball and find a rhythm with Randle, but he’s out of synch, too deferential when it’s time to shoot, he refused a lot of open chances. The effort was mostly there on defense but he was always a split second too late.

    4. Quickley A (16-5-1)
      The Lou Williams cosplay at his best… with defense! Perfect from long range (4-4), useful on the boards, he served a nice assist for Mitch’s only basket and hit all the clutch shots he got. Reborn as a Phoenix from his ashes, he’s currently in a string of good games. I’m impressed by his defensive efforts. If he can find a consistent midrange game and learn to use the glass more he can really be the next Sweet Lou.

      Rose A (14-5-7)
      There’s no doubt he must be in the closing lineup, we must be careful to keep him fresh for the long run. Off from 3FG (0-4) but oh so sweet on his drives. His presence makes everyone better and keeps Randle’s ego in check.

      Burks A (8-1)
      Forget the numbers, he turned the game putting the shackles on Brogdon when he was slicing our defense at will. Fierce effort from a player that is finding his form as the season progress, just like IQ.

      Gibson A (2-8-3)
      Where would we be without the Professional Sensei? Again forced to play a lot (29 mins) he dove deep into his bag of tricks to extract a block on Sabonis, cunning deflections, huge offensive rebounds, timely assists.

      Toppin B- (4-4)
      Nobody electrifies the crowd like he do and last night’s two beautiful dunks were no exceptions. he was active as usual on the boards and, with mixed results, on defense. Problem is, he’s currently 2-19 on 3PFG and incredibly, he hit them in one single game, october 23rd in Orlando. Without those two he’s 0-fer for the season.

      Thibs A
      He mixed, he matched, he motivated, he was rewarded for the long leash he gave to an unwatchable RJ. The ball moved better, the defensive effort was better, he and his staff did a good work in this couple of days.

    5. Maybe last night was a turning point. The offense was still very ugly at times and people are still missing shots but they won because of effort and defense and if they can get that through their head, they can turn this around. I mean, we are 8-6. Its not like we’re bad!

      We got two more home games against teams we should beat. This is a chance to build some confidence and notch some home wins so The Garden doesn’t feel so intimidating for the team. Last night might be the most important game of the season so far if we can build on it.

    6. Probably the most significant development in last few games is that Kemba Walker seems to have woken up and is not washed. Clearly had a tough time on D with Brogdon who is like a half-foot taller than him, which I imagine is why he didn’t see much of the court in the 4th, but even if he is more Lou Williams than Kemba Walker circa 2017, that is still a very good thing.

    7. Via Frank previous thread

      3) Taj Gibson man… I do not understand how that guy was literally jobless last season before we picked him up at the minimum. Especially in a world where Mason Plumlee got like $10MM/year.

      The league is so focused on 3 point shooting, there aren’t many jobs for big men that defend very well, come with energy virtually every night, play their role to perfection, and are pros in the locker room? (lmao at the league)

    8. Nice review, Max. My take — Thibs et al. clearly ordered them to move the ball and make the extra pass. This was great, and made for actual watchable offense, except for one thing.

      It led to hesitation. It really looked like every player who suddenly found themselves open was going, “Wait, I’m open, but have we moved the ball enough yet?” And then they weren’t open so they passed. Or a hesitation and then a shot, which led to a clang. And a LOT of 23 second possessions, which also led to a lot of last-moment desperation heaves.

      So it was super ugly if you were a rim. But I thought it was beautiful, at least in the making. If they can keep playing this way they’ll learn when it’s okay to shoot, and when they do it’s going to be amazing because there are a lot of shooters on this team.

      Fingers crossed they stick with it.

    9. We absolutely have to win the next 2, which should be gimmes for a good team.

      The schedule gets WAY tougher after that, here’s the next 7 – Bulls on the road, Lakers, Suns, Hawks on the road, Brooklyn on the road (although that could be considered a home game lol) Bulls again and Denver

      We could easily go 2-5 in those games.

    10. It really is insane that with all contenders basically having no cap and signing vet minimum guys, DeAndre Jordan for example is on a contender and seemingly nobody went for Gibson. The fact that he and Rose, by far our oldest players, are also the ones hustling and working the hardest out there is still concerning, and frankly it does remind me a bit of the 2012 team, but it clearly works in these scrappy games.

    11. Alan:
      And… exhale. Amazing how, um, quickly we have gone from wanting IQ replaced in the rotation by Grimes to IQ being our savior on many nights. It’s almost like a bunch of people on an analytics-focused blog are too easily swayed by small sample sizes. But that would be ridiculous, right?

      It’s weird, I’ve found as I’ve gotten older that I’m more easily swayed by small sample sizes even though, at the same time, rationally I understand that I shouldn’t be.

    12. Derrick Rose honestly is a revelation. 10+ years removed from his MVP seasons, however many injuries later, and he is putting up his best seasons by WS/48 since his MVP year, highest TS% last year and this year (small sample this year of course) despite having pretty healthy usage (24ish). What an absolute steal of a trade last year (42nd pick = Isiah Livers who I actually like very much, + a non-NBA player in Dennis Smith). Rose is making, what, $14MM this year and next? A bargain.

    13. So how did people feel about the rotation last night? I like the idea of riding Kemba early, which helps keep Rose fresh for late, and in turn keeping Kemba on the bench in those closing minutes when he can’t guard anybody.

      Fournier is a more complicated issue, but it feels like once he gets out of his current shooting slump, he’ll go back into Thibs’ usual “ride the hot hands for the closing lineup” approach. He just hasn’t been hitting shots lately, but I’m sure he will.

    14. Thibs can figure out the minutes, but I absolutely want Rose to be the closer. He’s our best player right now. You can see how he settles the team down when he’s on the court. He might make a mistake (as we all do), but he’s not going to choke anything away.

    15. The Knicks feel due for them just shooting the lights out and burying the other teams in 3’s. That was supposed to be our biggest strength this season

    16. Love that closing lineup from last night. Center is prob interchangeable once people get healthy, but still have 4 plausible shooters / playmakers out there, and prob is our best defensive look also. Quickley hitting his stride is so huge – he absolutely makes the defense freak out when he’s out there. Meanwhile, in 452 possessions with IQ on the floor, the Knicks are a +23.4. in the 892 non-IQ minutes, they’re a -8.3. Rose is +21.1 and -13.7. It is crazy how good those two are together. It’s about time they play together in the closing lineup (sorry Kemba/Fournier).

    17. I like the idea of playing Kemba early and then saving Rose for later. Or maybe we should just start Rose?

      I think Fournier is just hesitating right now and that is why he is missing shots (same with RJ). The ball movement was better but like its been said, it led now to hesitating when open. You watch enough basketball and you can almost always tell when a player is going to miss wide open three based on if they hesitate for a second or not. IF they shoot in rhythm with confidence, they may not always make it but when they hesitate, they almost always miss it.

      Its why I’m glad they won the way they did last night off of good defense and effort because it shows them they can win if they play that way regardless of if the offense is there or not. Randle was bad but he gave maximum effort. That rubs off.

    18. So how did people feel about the rotation last night?

      I was unable to catch last night’s game and can’t decipher much difference in the rotation from the box score. It sounds like the biggest difference was an adjustment to the closing lineup. What was different?

      I’ve had no problems with the rotations this year. I think you have to play guys to figure it out. In fact, it speaks rather highly of Thibs’ evolution. Letting guys play through growing pains is the opposite of the “win tonight’s game at all costs” mentality.

    19. It’s interesting how little the 4-man lineup of Rose, Quickley, Barrett, and Randle has been used.
      Only 124 possessions all of last season –> +21 net rating

      This year, only 20 possessions –> +68 net rating

      So only 144 possessions total, but man — sure seems like it deserves some more run.

    20. I don’t know if I would’ve signed up for an 8-6 start before the season, that’s a close call. I do know that if I was also told Randle, Barrett, and Fournier would all be rocking a sub .530 TS% through the first 14 games I would’ve begged for 8-6.

      I’m pretty sure Fournier will rebound. He has a long track record and has just been missing shots he usually hits. I’m not on board with calls to bench him or reduce his minutes–we need what he brings to the table.

      Randle and Barrett…I’m less confident. The fact of the matter is Randle’s shot distribution from last year will in fact more often than not lead to poor efficiency. If he’s not going to change it all that much, I can’t say there’s definitely positive regression around the corner. It’s looking like he’s going to have to make meaningful changes to his shot distribution if he wants to see his numbers improve.

      Barrett just plain doesn’t have much of a track record so it’s tough to say. I’m inclined to think he’ll come around because his current numbers exist at what is hopefully the end of an absolutely brutal stretch, but who knows?

    21. thenoblefacehumper: The fact of the matter is Randle’s shot distribution from last year will in fact more often than not lead to poor efficiency. If he’s not going to change it all that much, I can’t say there’s definitely positive regression around the corner. It’s looking like he’s going to have to make meaningful changes to his shot distribution if he wants to see his numbers improve.

      If last night was any indication, he was way more off-ball than usual… was used as roller a lot or as secondary playmaker off other action. He also gives away a lot of good shots by pump-faking and then dribbling into traffic. He’s a good shooter, should shoot those open or lightly contested 3s!!

    22. The game really could have gone either way, the big thing was the Pacers missed all their 3s. If RJ and Randle don’t start scoring more efficiently we’re going to stay mediocre. 23 points on 28 shots and 6 turnovers/5 assists from the engine of our offense is awful.

    23. Yeah I agree last night was somewhat hopeful. IIRC he had multiple finishes at the rim, which should not be rare for a skilled 6’8″ guy built like a brick shit house, but feels rare. He definitely passes up a lot of 3s in favor of feckless dribble drives and/or long twos–seems like a relatively easy thing to address from a coaching perspective.

    24. The best things that happened last night were IQ playing well and Kemba scoring a bunch of points in the paint.

    25. IQ is like a new man out there, he’s just overflowing with confidence and his quickness (pun intended) is putting a ton of pressure on opposing team’s defenses. I do wish that he’d get to the rim more, although I guess with a shot blocking machine like Turner waiting, last night’s hesitancy might be understandable.

      And thank goodness he broke out of his slump when he did, it almost offsets the prolonged RJ slump

    26. Barrett and Fournier need to get out of their shooting slumps because the inconsistent/barely there defense to start games has to at least get offset by something. We can’t rely on our bench every game to bail us out on slow starts to halves. Starters simply have to play better.

      A shoutout to Taj. As previously mentioned on the board, the value on 3 point shooting and rim protector/roller is so high, old school players like Taj get often forgotten and ignored. Dude knows how to play basketball. And in a league where imo not too many guys have high basketball IQs, guys like Taj still have value…as long you have a coach like Thibs willing to play them.

    27. thenoblefacehumper: The fact of the matter is Randle’s shot distribution from last year will in fact more often than not lead to poor efficiency. If he’s not going to change it all that much, I can’t say there’s definitely positive regression around the corner. It’s looking like he’s going to have to make meaningful changes to his shot distribution if he wants to see his numbers improve.

      tnfh –> check out this Ariel Pacheco thread – lots of Julius as screener/facilitator: https://twitter.com/APachecoNBA/status/1460609456346181637?s=20

    28. I’m okay, at least for some more time, with the current starting lineup.
      I think a “fresh” Kemba can give us offense in spurts at the start, I agree that Julius must take the open shots and I’m sure RJ and Fournier will start hitting shots.

      I love Rose to drive the Bench Mob’s bus and then be there to close and I don’t know how the bench would work with Kemba.

      I doubt Julius would have only taken one shot (a missed driving layup no less) in the last nine minutes with Kemba on the floor. Kemba’s a respected veteran but he’s new to the team, Rose’s trade last year changed this team, he’s a former MVP and a Thibs’ pretorian, his gravitas is different.

      I’m a bit more open about shaking the starting lineup after halftime, those lulls are becoming really annoying (but as an example yesterday I would have start the third with Burks in for RJ, not Rose for Kemba).

    29. thibs on why he stuck with the 2nd unit:

      “Just the way the game unfolded — they had the rhythm going,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said of rolling with Quickley, Rose and Alec Burks. “That’s how we’ll approach it. They [Rose-Quickley] have great chemistry”

      I think this is him perhaps acknowledging the automatic/standard substitution pattern needs to have some flexibility…which is good…showing some willingness on his part to vary it game to game…

    30. Yeah maybe we start Kemba in the first, Rose in the second, bring Kemba back end of 3rd/beginning of 4th and then close with Rose?

      And depending on how Fournier is playing, give IQ more minutes and close with him too? He is pesky on defense and his energy saved us in the 4th. That offensive board was huge.

      RJ should play and close. He needs the experience and is our best wing defender.

      We are good but we’re a deep team and part of the challenge with that is finding the right combo and also knowing who is playing well and giving them minutes.

    31. The difference was they played with a real sense of urgency in the 4th quarter. They battled for rebounds, they rotated hard on defense and IQ brought an insane amount of energy. THAT was the difference.

      We can talk about shot selection or guys not making shots or hesitating. But if they play with that intensity on defense, the shots will eventually fall. Last year they won games they shouldn’t because they grinded it out. This year, they started out 5-1 and drank a little too much of the kool aid too soon. They need to bring it. That’s the difference.

    32. @ShamsCharania
      Cleveland Cavaliers Rookie Evan Mobley will miss 2-to-4 weeks with right elbow sprain.

      Bummer, but also good news regarding the state of the East playoff race.

    33. Interesting backstory from a Fred Katz piece on Quickley’s great play the last two weeks:

      A couple of years ago, before the Knicks even hired Thibodeau, the coach received a call from Dice Yoshimoto, now an assistant under him and at the time a video coordinator at the University of Georgia, which had just played against Quickley and SEC-rival Kentucky. Yoshimoto, who was with Thibodeau in Chicago and Minnesota, too, was impressed with the UK’s relentless sharpshooter. He thought Thibodeau might be, as well.

      “Watch this kid, Quickley. He’s like all the small guards we had in Chicago,” Thibodeau remembers Yoshimoto telling him, a reference to the Bulls’ days with Nate Robinson and D.J. Augustin. “He takes every big shot.”

      So, Thibodeau heeded the advice. He tuned into Quickley. For more background, he called William Wesley, the NBA’s perennial in-the-know personality before he joined the Knicks’ front office last summer.

      “I didn’t know where I was going to be,” said Thibodeau, who was taking a year off coaching at the time. “But (Quickley) was somebody high on our radar.”

    34. Quickley’s free throw rate is down– he has gone from a 122 FTr+ to 107. But he has offset that a bit by increasing his 3-point attempt rate. He has been really hot over the last six games and obviously he isn’t going to sustain that but he is still a valuable player even under the new rules.

      Trae Young’s FTr+ has completely cratered, from 199 all the way to 117. But Trae has done the same thing: he has increased his 3-point attempt rate substantially, and is knocking those down at a pretty good clip.

      James Harden’s FTr+ is the same as it’s ever been, the rule change does not seem to have impacted him at all.

    35. This is both amusing and worrying:

      @FredKatz
      Mitchell Robinson said he’s tried 3 types of playing shoes after is sole blew out in Orlando last month. Started with PGs, then KDs, then Kyries, which he wore in a 16, even though he’s a 14.

      “I’m like, pff,” he said. “I think now it’s about to be some Timbs or something.”

    36. Frank, loved the Ariel thread. I was especially intrigued to see how IQ was setting multiple screens to free up folks on that Obi roll to the rim for the slam. Behind-the-scenes hyper energy.

    37. A weird thing is that this team has some nifty plays here and there, the Obi alley oop was clearly a play they practiced, you can see Rose directing the play and it works perfectly, yet when it comes to Julius it’s still just give him the ball at the 3 point line and he goes to work. I don’t know how much of that is him wanting to be the isolation scorer that is the typical NBA superstar today or how much it’s an intentional system. We’re all frustrated because this team clearly has more potential than it’s showing, but the little things don’t seem to get solved in a timely manner.

    38. …and in other scrub news, Frank crushed that fake NBA player Doncic plus 9 to plus 4 in his otherwise boxscore-barren 16 minutes.

      Also Rubio scored 28 last night, Which almost makes me feel better about his having gone off on the Knicks (as in, it wasn’t a 1,000 yr fluke).

    39. So how did people feel about the rotation last night?

      i’m hoping thibs starts sending obi to the scorer’s table at around the 7:00 minute mark of the 1st and 3rd quarters…

      julius can’t go for 9:00 minutes to start the game and 3rd quarter…he’s completely gassed by then…

    40. “Watch this kid, Quickley. He’s like all the small guards we had in Chicago,” Thibodeau remembers Yoshimoto telling him, a reference to the Bulls’ days with Nate Robinson and D.J. Augustin. “He takes every big shot.”

      that’s interesting, the heinrich and korver comps that early bird mentioned seem to be a little more accurate than robinson and augustin…

      i was thinking of it more like heinrich and his ability to distribute and shoot…but seems thibs had this more in mind:
      “He takes every big shot.”

    41. Noel out for tomorrow, but Mitch suiting up. I guess it’s good that Mitch’s injury isn’t serious, but part of me would like to see him just take a few games off while still working on conditioning. Seems like he’s dealing with numerous relatively minor injuries that are inhibiting him.

    42. Raven:
      …and in other scrub news, Frank crushed that fake NBA player Doncic plus 9 to plus 4 in his otherwise boxscore-barren 16 minutes.

      Also Rubio scored 28 last night, Which almost makes me feel better about his having gone off on the Knicks (as in, it wasn’t a 1,000 yr fluke).

      It was the typical Frank game. The boxscore was mostly barren. But he was a hound on defense, made a critical steal while the game was close, and nailed a critical 3 pointer while Dallas was making their run.

      The Dallas fans love him and especially love the pairing with Brunson. If he stays healthy and keeps playing like he is now, he should keep that backup role with the best ahead of him. I’m already hearing buzz that he could move ahead of Bullock in the rotation later this year. That’s how much they like him. But he has to do it. The one thing that is clear is that he no longer looks like a deer in the headlights. Now he looks like a mature NBA player.

    43. We need either Mitch or Nerlens to stay healthy long enough to allow the other to get back into peak form.

    44. Dont think we can afford to take any team for granted but yeah it would be nice if we could rest Mitch next two games at least.

    45. Noel out for tomorrow, but Mitch suiting up. I guess it’s good that Mitch’s injury isn’t serious, but part of me would like to see him just take a few games off while still working on conditioning. Seems like he’s dealing with numerous relatively minor injuries that are inhibiting him.

      It’s super annoying that they basically feel forced to keep Mitch playing through injuries. I think they can afford to lose some games now to get Mitch healthy. It seems very short-sighted.

    46. He’s so mature. He’s paying all of his bills on time. I heard he’s cut down on his carb intake too. He never has more than one beer and only on the weekends after dinner. Frank recently opened up a 401K. He’s really maturing. He recently said he’s ready to settle down with the right woman, someone he can take home to his parents, and start a family. Guys, he’s really mature now.

    47. Nice one, Swift.

      Okay, not to switch subjects, but what are people thinking about when they think about Obi’s ceiling? I was reliving the Haliburton-Obi situation in my head recently, and while I was so Team Tyrese, with the pompoms and everything, now I’m not sure. TH does everything really well, but nothing incredibly well. I’d love to have him on my team, but could Obi end up with a more impressive career in the end? I didn’t think I’d have this conversation for another five years, if ever, but here we are.

    48. Frank’s the most valuable 9th man in the league. Dallas would be lost without his 14 minutes/game.

    49. “…But he has to do it. The one thing that is clear is that he no longer looks like a deer in the headlights”

      hip hip hooray! it only took four years to make that leap…

    50. Raven:
      Nice one, Swift.

      Okay, not to switch subjects, but what are people thinking about when they think about Obi’s ceiling? I was reliving the Haliburton-Obi situation in my head recently, and while I was so Team Tyrese, with the pompoms and everything, now I’m not sure. TH does everything really well, but nothing incredibly well. I’d love to have him on my team, but could Obi end up with a more impressive career in the end? I didn’t think I’d have this conversation for another five years, if ever, but here we are.

      Haliburton is 2 years younger and is much, much better than Obi is. Haliburton is shooting 50/40/83 from 2/3/FT on pretty good volume; he’s averaging 5.6 assists/game, which would lead the team, and has an AST% of 24 , which would be behind only Rose, even though he’s playing off the ball at SG with Fox at PG; he’s a good defender who’s averaging over 1 steal and 1 block per game and his STL% and BLK% would both be top 5 on our team (I’m ignoring McBride who has a BLK% of 24.6 in 4 minutes), has a positive DWS and DBPM, and is averaging more blocks/game than Randle is.

      Obi can dunk the ball and basically does nothing else. He can’t score from outside of 3 feet of the basket, he hasn’t been a good passer, he’s neutral at best at defense, and he’s terrible rebounder, a slightly worse Eddy Curry in terms of TRB%. He definitely looks like an NBA player which is a huge improvement from last season but I can’t think of any good basketball players whose only skill is dunking the ball.

    51. Alan: It’s almost like a bunch of people on an analytics-focused blog are too easily swayed by small sample sizes. But that would be ridiculous, right?

      This is just great, the best possible comment to start the thread. And about that, i don’t even dare to go check if i fit the profile or not, which already says a lot. LOL

    52. Ntilikina managing a .522 TS% despite shooting 75% and 60% from 16-3P and 10-16 respectively (17% of his total shots, career figures are 34% and 35%) is truly something only he could manage. It’s impressive.

      I am still very much on Team Haliburton mostly for the reasons vincoug described. It’s not clear Obi will be anything more than a rotation filler big (I like his chances to add some value compared to those guys with his ability to get out in transition, but even then you’re not talking about an incredibly unique player). It is clear he’ll be at least that, which is an upgrade from last year, but Haliburton is basically guaranteed to be a very valuable member of any team’s rotation at a minimum.

      For Obi to make this a serious conversation, he needs to make the 3PT shot a reliable weapon, take the playmaking from “produces the occasional fun highlight” to “is reflected in the statistics,” and develop on defense to the point where a coach won’t be terrified to give him more than spot minutes at the 5. It’s a lot to ask.

    53. And it’s definitely a new mood here, powered by the strong play of Quick, DRose and Burks, among other honorable mentions. Even Max started the day giving A’s like it’s no big deal. :D

    54. I still have no idea why the FO didn’t even consider Haliburton. The guy does every perimeter thing you need on offense and defense and even blocks shots with his length to boot. I guess the downside is maybe he seems like an injury risk? It would be amazing to have him instead of Fournier, though.

      Toppin likely won’t be as good, but he is improving in ways nobody could’ve predicted. Maybe he keeps improving his defense and the shot comes around? I wouldn’t put it past him as he seems like a hard worker.

      I don’t see how he isn’t eventually traded, though (except now maybe RJ is the trade candidate?) since he plays Randle’s position. But I love him on the 2nd unit and hope he stays and becomes a good rotation player.

      Speaking of draftees, I can’t wait for Grimes to get some real rotation minutes. I really like his ceiling and am already a fan.

    55. Let’s see if i got it right, Frank is ready to take over the guy that Leon made the huge mistake to let go, which was the most important piece of our great defense last season. Is that it? So is Frank a very good NBA starter now, or did Leon make the right move?

    56. Thanks for taking the air out of my tires guys. I suppose you’re right. I think I was swayed (small sample size alert as per Alan’s opening gambit) by a couple of Obi’s moves to the rim recently — the layups, not the dunks — that had that man among boys, can’t touch this kind of vibe.

    57. Raven: In honor of Owen (and to annoy jowles — hi Jowles), I was being just a tad tongue-in-cheek. To me, 1-4 doth not a mature NBA player make.

      By “mature” I meant he used to look like he was afraid to be in the game. Even last year he still looked like a rookie getting his first NBA minutes. He had that same look on his face a Mike Tyson opponent had when he was walking into the ring to face peak Tyson. lol That’s why I always used to joke he hasn’t reached basket puberty yet. He would look at the bench every time he made a mistake or did something good like a kid looking for approval or afraid to be yelled at. Now he’s not doing that. He just comes out and plays his role the best he can. He’s still slowly inching forward and is 3-5 years away from his peak. For less than 2m a year, I’m sure Dallas is very happy with what they’ve seen so far.

      And yes, not only is there talk of him moving ahead of Bullock eventually, there was even talk of him possibly starting later in the year. That came from Kidd himself. They are high on him eventually developing into a 3&D guard and secondary playmaker to put next to either Doncic or Brunson.

    58. The guys behind Frank on the depth chart are hot garbage. The Mavs’ depth is a real problem and they better hope none of their wings get hurt.

    59. cybersoze:
      Let’s see if i got it right, Frank is ready to take over the guy that Leon made the huge mistake to let go, which was the most important piece of our great defense last season. Is that it? So is Frank a very good NBA starter now, or did Leon make the right move?

      A decent case could be made that if you are going to downgrade the defense with Kemba and Fournier, you probably should keep one of either Bullock or Frank to use as a 3&D role player off the bench. However, since we drafted McBride and Grimes, you could comfortably move on from trying to develop Frank. Those rookies are both 21, looked really good in the summer, and may be ready to take on a role soon, but not yet. So maybe keeping Bullock made some sense.

      Dallas needed to upgrade their defense and playmaking to pair with with Doncic and Brunson. They tried to get another star, but the best they could do was Bullock and Frank. Bullock is the backup 3&D and Frank was supposed to be behind him. But Frank is playing better than Bullock so far and he’s younger with upside. Bullock is still the better player even though he’s off to a bad start, but the talk is that may not be true looking out further and maybe Frank takes over that role.

    60. I would love to see Julius miss a game at some point. Not because I think we’re better without him, but because it would force Thibs to play Obi big minutes and with a more prominent offensive role. And I wouldn’t be surprised if, under those circumstance, he proves to be more than just a human highlight reel.

    61. JK47:
      The guys behind Frank on the depth chart are hot garbage. The Mavs’ depth is a real problem and they better hope none of their wings get hurt.

      Take a look at the on/off.

      The Mavs starters have been garbage because Doncic has not played very well (he was better last night), KP missed games and was playing hurt again (though he’s been excellent recently), and they’ve been using Powell instead of Kleeber. It’s been a hot mess. Brunson, Kleeber, Frank and the rest of the bench have been keeping them in games like the Knicks bench. That will change eventually, but Brunson is a good player and they have a few other useful role players. Brunson just has to be paired with the right player. What they need is an upgrade over Timmy or DFS. They need that “3rd” player and Powell is NOT a starting C.

    62. Alan I’ve had the same thought this season. I also think it would be somewhat fascinating to see what the offense would look like in that scenario. I still think we’d be utterly screwed if Randle missed extended time since our other high usage options are…not ideal, but it would be interesting to see for a game.

    63. i was happy to see a big uptick running randle as the screener for kemba last night. randle is still popping way too much off these sets, which is fine for what it is but it’s not likely to be great offense. he did roll to the rim on the left side off a kemba drop pass and finished impressively over turner (and later repeated but with fournier). but even that left side roll isn’t ideal for him as it often puts him in the position the hawks worked so hard to get him in: half-doubled in mid range on the left side. i think they’d be better off having randle set the screen higher and run him straight down the middle on the short roll. he is by far at his best in the middle of the court where the kick out options are available. and kemba is enough of a pull up threat to make the high pnr work, plus kemba might actually better at driving from a sharp side angle than right down the turnpike at this point. if it’s a randle/obi lineup you could even have obi set a spain pnr screen for randle and have a short court randle/obi blitz which is tailor made for those two.

    64. Well Obi’s per 36 is a hell of a lot better than RJ’s at the moment, pretty much across the board (don’t look at the 3p% please…).

      I know, I know.

    65. As Alan pointed out last year, Obi makes more sense than Haliburton if we intended to draft a guard with our 2nd pick.

      Cole Anthony got taken a couple places ahead of us, IQ wasn’t the knee jerk reaction it seemed at the time, and Pritchard, Bane, etc. were still available. There were a lot of valuable guards late & few (any?) good PFs.

    66. I know it’s early, but I wouldn’t bet against the Warriors winning it all. They look tremendous on both ends.

    67. Early Bird:
      As Alan pointed out last year, Obi makes more sense than Haliburton if we intended to draft a guard with our 2nd pick.

      Cole Anthony got taken a couple places ahead of us, IQ wasn’t the knee jerk reaction it seemed at the time, and Pritchard, Bane, etc. were still available. There were a lot of valuable guards late & few (any?) good PFs.

      Sorry, but no it never makes more sense to draft for need instead of talent. Particularly in the position we were in coming off a 21-45 season. If we had drafted Haliburton, he would have been the best guard on the roster to start last season and he’d be the 2nd best guard this season. He could easily be starting at the 1 or 2 and he’d be an improvement over who we have been starting.

    68. Fournier and Randle had a weird dynamic running PnR last night. In the first half, Fournier was looking for any way possible to get the ball to Randle. He’d get the screen, take one dribble, and immediately look around desperately for Julius like he’d lost his kid in the mall. He never looked to penetrate or find other teammates. It was bizarre. It was like he was a rookie who’d gotten yelled at by Kobe to “just give him the damn ball.”

      I’m pretty sure at halftime either Julius or Thibs said something about it, because in the second half Randle was screening hard for Fournier and then not posting or otherwise looking for the ball. It was like an effort to force Evan to take shots.

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