Milwaukee Bucks 110 – New York Knicks 130 (and it’s not preseason!)

I guess at least some of you have heard of Cyberpunk 2077, the ultra-hyped videogame developed by the same team that gifted us the ageless classic Witcher 3 (seriously: it debuted in 2013 and it’s still probably the best open world RPG out there even if you buy it in 2020) that was supposed to have the whole videoludic world go head over heels gaga juuuust before Christmas arrived. Well, things didn’t exactly go as planned (even if some already suspected it wouldn’t have been good since the beginning of the next-gen consoles announcement) and for example PlayStation Network opted to remove the game from its digital stores and to offer a refund to the people who bought a digital copy for the PS4. I mean, that quite unprecedented.

Guess what? I was one of the guys who a) pre-ordered the game for PS4 and b) opted for the refund.

When those money were back on my PayPal account, I went and splurged the cash on The Last of Us 2, a game who I totally forgot came out in 2020 too and the sequel to probably the most critically acclaimed game ever – at least on such a large sales number scale, gun to my head I’d say Disco Elysium probably stole that crown in 2019 but on much smaller numbers. Paradoxically, given the multitude of measures adopted by local governments to ensure we stay home, these days I don’t have much time to play a game on console, but I bought the game on December, 23rd and I’m already at 15+ hours in. The Last of Us 2 is just perfect. It doesn’t try to overachieve. It sticks to its superb guns and, well, delivers the goods every single moment. If I had to find a flaw, it would probably be the fact that the narrative doesn’t contain many (if any, at least halfway into the game; I would wager against there being many anyway, since the original was pretty bereft of) plot twists, but in the end it is so good that even a slight amount of predictability becomes a plus and not a crutch. It hits a very specific high of keeping you thrilled and on your feet – infected people, paramilitary guys and whistling fanatics shooting at you tend to sort that kind of effect – while cuddling you in the comfort of a flawless gaming experience.

Well. Wasn’t this Knicks-Bucks game similar.

I mean, if you told me before the game that we would have won by 20 against one of the presumed best teams in the league I would have concluded that the Bucks would have a depleted roster or that Giannis and one of Jrue and Middleton would have been ejected from the court in the first half. Nope, sir. We just thrashed Milwaukee with their full squad available, Giannis playing 33 minutes and hanging 27/13/5 on us and Middleton adding 22/4/5 for good measure. Funny thing is, during the whole game, I felt the uneasiness of the lead possibly vanishing in the next few minutes, but I never stopped enjoying the experience and I was… confident?… that we would pull away to the end. It was weird, but it made perfect sense.

You have probably already heard about the crazy disparity between our three point shooting (16-for-27) and the atrocious chucking of the Bucks (7-for-38). Now, that’s absolutely true and there are many, many parallel universes where tonight has been a Knicks loss because we shot a very honest 12-for-27 and they went an equally honest 14-for-38 (that’s a 33 point swing, for you counting at home, so in those universes we would have lost 131-118). But the thing is, we weren’t even supposed to be competitive, so this one is more of a legit win than a cosmic fluke. Granted, next time the Bucks will probably roll over us without even looking back, but never forget that we’re a young (?) and rebuilding (???) team, so every single marquee win counts as double XP in getting to the next level. Another thing: there weren’t many instances of hero ball, as pretty much everyone was passing the rock and moving without it, so the game would have been much more aesthetically pleasing even if we had lost. I’m slowly thawing to the thought of a multi-year Thibs tenure.

The really good:

– Julius Randle (29 pts, 14 rebs, 7 ast, +12 +/-) showed us what it means to shed some weight and play under a decent coach. Believe it or not, this is the same Julius we had under contract last year. We knew he had this kind of performance in him, but somehow he was enabled (and a bit forced, ok, without a single capable PG out there with him) to devolve into a whirling dervish entity made of tazmanian devilish spin moves and basketball regrets. This year it looks like he gets the ball in better spots, and most of all his teammates move around him so it’s actually easier for him to hit them in stride with a quick read. Now, again, on a less torrid Knicks night we’re looking at inferior numbers, but they’d hardly be less than 20/14/4, which is still very good. I still think Julius isn’t what we need in terms of roster fit going forward, but if he plays like this he could command a hefty price on the trade block, and that’s probably great. I added probably because we’re still a Dolan-owned team and so we’re definitely unable to build a coherent long-term strategy, so we’ll end up committing to Randle for multiple years if he plays like this.

– Elfrid Payton (27 pts, 3 rebs, 7 ast, +15 +/-) clearly got out of the bed on the right foot this time. He was aggressive since the start and while it’s true that this will probably be his most efficient game of the whole season – seriously, 12-16 from the field and 3-3 from three? – it’s also true that having him be a credible threat to the other team’s defense opens up so many paths to team success that it is imperative that when he plays he’s never tentative and always assertive. I would also point to the fact that Milwaukee’s backcourt isn’t made of sieves on defense, so it’s not like Elfrid has done his damage against weak competition. But the real thing of beauty is the fact that he actually got Mitch involved in a few PnR’s and, guess what, it worked! I suspect, though, that if (when) his shot will abandon him again defenses will collapse and he’ll be way less sharp in directing the team. Then again, here too the endgame should be to send him packing somewhere else while getting some draft compensation along the way, so games like these are pure gravy.

– Mitch Robinson (9 pts, 6 rebs, 1 blk, + 16 +/-) had a kinda meh stats line, but was as impactful as he’s ever been on a basketball court. He played 36 minutes tonight , he committed only 2 fouls, and while he blocked only one shots he altered or deterred a huge number of them. To me, the second most important highlight of the game was when in the third quarter he didn’t bite at three fakes from the Greek Freek, stayed put and anyway altered Giannis’ layup so much that he bricked it from point blank. You do that to the twice-MVP in a contested game, you’re really learning defense. I don’t care if Mitch never gets to 15/12/3. I do care if Mitch makes winning plays, and right now he’s learning to do that. Of course his path to that is easier when he doesn’t have to bang with hunks down low, so we’ll see what happens against the unbeaten Drummond in a few days.

The bad:

– Honestly I would have preferred to see the starters getting pulled out of the game a few minutes earlier, but this is Thibs’ world and then again they didn’t have many reps with the shortened preseason, so eh. Everything else in this game was good. Not even mediocre: good.

The fun-sized good:

– For the trifecta of “let’s hope we’re getting picks”, Alec Burks keeps on being a deadly offensive player. 18 points on seven shots and 5 assists all in 20 minutes are elite production, and honesly nothing about him looks like it’s destined to regress swiftly and painfully to the mean. Yeah of course he won’t hit 4 of 5 from three every night, but he’s effortless in his offensive forays. On a macro level I hate the Burks as a PG experiment because it clearly doesn’t make sense for the future but I understand that in a pinch he could play that role a few times during this season if the injury bug strikes again, so even that gets a pass from me.

– Frank is still Frank, even when he hits 4 threes. This is where the Burks as a PG experiment might come to fruition, because Frank is totally unequipped to be a lead guard (now in his fourth year, can we please stop arguing about his position in the NBA? Playing FIBA, he can be a PG. But here? Z-Man was right all along, he’s a guard-wing who will provide zero statistical results but can be tactically deployed to achieve a strategic advantage in selected matches. It’s still a cool end-of-inventory weapon to use, like the bricks or bottles in The Last of Us 2). There was a moment in the fourth quarter when he was completely open from the stripe and he still opted to pass it out. It made no sense, and there’s no amount of made threes that will compensate for his offensive inaptitude. Also he was trying to showcase his (admittedly) improved handle, but he chose to do so in the most hilarious way: first of all he used it to advance past halfcourt just for Thibs to call timeout, and the second time he did in front of the extra long limbed Defensive Player of the Year Giannis Antetokounmpo, who annoyedly swiped the ball just like horrible people take away the pickles from burgers.

– I still don’t know what we have in Knox (and I still know that we could have had much more picking someone else two years ago), but here’s my highlight for the game: Knox diving on the floor to angrily, grittily steal the ball from a befuddled Buck in the second half. Knox was very good tonight on a few occasions: on defense he kept Middleton in tow, he rebounded with effort, and he moved twice toward the basket with purpose. His shot, while beautiful to look at, is still totally hit and miss, but if this is the level of energy Knox will bring to the games from now on we can be really satisfied with the early results of the Thibs’ regime.

– And this brings me to the last point: I was never a Thibs’ fan, long before he came here. I actively dislike people who are too serious, too callous, too intense. It’s ok to be that in the right spots, but you’ll wear out your welcome very quickly if you can’t switch gears. Thibs always struck me as a guy who’s legitimately good at understanding things in his field, but who’s not that good at keeping the pace and communicating to everyone. Here, it doesn’t look like that. Maybe he’s perfect for this city. Maybe the circumstances made him a more nuanced guy. Maybe he’s really having the time of his life at his dream job. Now, it’s still too early to know if Thibs is the right one or he’s just the one who looked good enough to bring home to your parents only to have them ask the next Christmas “hey, what’s happened with (insert name)?”, but you can already see a few distinct improvements from the Fizdale tenure. It looks like people know they can be held accountable and they behave accordingly. We’ll see what happens, but you can be sure of one thing: Thibs will always call timeout exactly at the right time. Up by 20, down by 30, he doesn’t care: if the team looks like it’s giving in, Thibs will call it. That’s for sure.

See you next time! Let’s see if I can make it to two recaps in a row :)

Stay safe.

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Farfa

Just an Italian basketball fan with an insane passion for all things Knicks (and yes, linguine Alfredo is not a real Italian dish).

162 thoughts to “Milwaukee Bucks 110 – New York Knicks 130 (and it’s not preseason!)”

  1. Z-man, I’m only giving credit where it’s due :)

    I also noticed I didn’t mention RJ in the recap. That’s another good sign, as he had a 17/8/4 night on not-so-putrid shooting and I didn’t blink once. He’s growing into his role, but he *badly* needs spacing.

  2. Thanks Farfa, good recap. I was about to write no RJ?? when I saw your comment.

    We have a few nice things so far. Let’s see how sustainable this is.

  3. Dinwiddie out for the year with a torn ACL. Bad for the nets both in terms for their current depth and their ability to swing a trade, as he would likely be in a package with one or both of Levert and Allen for a third star.

  4. Disco Elysium is my favorite game for 2019, what a marvelous game. But I would never think about comparing The Last of Us 2 to the Knicks…

  5. Dinwiddie is a guy who I would’ve liked as a potential target for the Knicks in free agency as well. Really sucks for him as a guy who hasn’t made a ton of money in his career and was probably headed towards a huge payday. Wonder what his market looks like now.

  6. Also feel bad for Dinwiddie. Does it help that it’s a partial tear?

    Caris Lavert is a guy I have never gotten. Seems like a lot of empty scoring. and an easy trade chip to move if anyone wants him. Dinwiddie I have always liked, prototype solid but unspectacular NBA guard.

  7. I always thought the idea that the Nets are this incredibly deep team was a little overstated.

    LeVert is a nice player, Shamet is ok, and Jarrett Allen really isn’t a bench player as he gets most of the minutes at C. Beyond that, Prince, Cabarrot, Kurucs?

    And now with Dinwiddie out, I think it’ll be more evident how so so their bench is.

  8. The Nets moved two starters from a playoff team to the bench to accommodate Kyrie and KD, and moved their top two bench players a notch further back in the rotation. So they were plenty deep enough. However, losing Dinwiddie hurts a lot, and makes a Harden deal that much less likely. It’s a big blow.

  9. I think they’re about as deep as it’s possible to be while also having two max guys. They’ve got 6 top-125 guys in Partnow’s player tiers (tied for most in the league) and the bottom of their roster is almost exclusively guys who have already established themselves in a rotation role at some level in the league. Is there a deeper roster in the league?

  10. The Lakers have Morris, Kuzma, Harrell and Caruso

    The Heat have Avery Bradley, Igoudala, Meyers Leonard, Kendrick Nunn

    The Sixers have Howard, Green, Milton, Korkmaz

    Clippers have Lou, Zubac. Kennard, Paterson

    I know not all of those players bowl you over, but the Nets bench doesn’t do much for me either.

    Just my opinion, I guess we’ll find out as the season progresses.

  11. I mean I agree there are a few select teams that are totally reasonable to put up against them, but that doesn’t exactly seem like an argument against their depth. What impresses me is that no matter how you measure depth they stack up pretty well – as I said they’ve got six top-125 guys, i.e. they’ve got as many high-level rotation players as any team in the league. But also their deep bench is impressive as well; guys 9-12 in their rotation in minutes so far are Jeff Green, Taurean Prince, Luwawu-Cabarot and Bruce Brown. Those guys are all pretty decent (although Prince sucked last year) and were all solidly in rotations last year. Even Tyler Johnson who’s their 15th man or something was good for them in the bubble last year. and was a really good player before his injury issues.

  12. it’s kind of staggering how much vitriol randle got last year and how much that narrative has flipped… i guess it helps all the muskets are aimed at payton this year but randle has played the best version of himself so far… hopefully it continues…

    sample size caveats aside… the stuff that looks sort of real are the unassisted fg% (a bump up to .476 from .404 last year)… which coincides with a doubling of his assist%…. those are really good changes because if you just take out all the bad takes and instead of turning it over or missing .. you can convert it into a basket to a teammate… that will lead to huge efficiency gains… it’s easy to notice because it’s so stark when spin to win randle was embroidered in our skulls for all of last year… and those spins encompassed the lion’s share of his bad takes… that’s incidentally key to rj’s improvement also… just not taking as many bad shots and passing more…

    the assist rate isn’t going to be 30% and it could revert but unless there’s a hard relapse i think his assist rate should sit a lot higher… whether that will be effective is open for debate but that’s probably enough to get back some semblance of the new orleans version of randle… who was absolutely a beast and was worth the contract we gave him until he ruined it… pretty happy so far for him cause randle for all the dumb stuff he does on the court… he works extremely hard… the dude is always in phenomenal shape and he’s worked hard on his handling and outside shot…. and usually those types of guys improve…. hopefully it does…

  13. While there’s no way Randle continues at this level it’s worth noting that the Knicks have played against three teams that will probably wind up top ten in defense with big front lines so very impressive so far. Also, he’s done it mostly at the four playing alongside Mitch which is a great sign if it’s at all sustainable.

  14. djphan:
    it’s kind of staggering how much vitriol randle got last year and how much that narrative has flipped… i guess it helps all the muskets are aimed at payton this year but randle has played the best version of himself so far… hopefully it continues…

    sample size caveats aside… the stuff that looks sort of real are the unassisted fg% (a bump up to .476 from .404 last year)… which coincides with a doubling of his assist%….those are really good changes because if you just take out all the bad takes and instead of turning it over or missing .. you can convert it into a basket to a teammate… that will lead to huge efficiency gains… it’s easy to notice because it’s so stark when spin to win randle was embroidered in our skulls for all of last year…and those spins encompassed the lion’s share of his bad takes…that’s incidentally key to rj’s improvement also… just not taking as many bad shots and passing more…

    the assist rate isn’t going to be 30% and it could revert but unless there’s a hard relapse i think his assist rate should sit a lot higher… whether that will be effective is open for debate but that’s probably enough to get back some semblance of the new orleans version of randle… who was absolutely a beast and was worth the contract we gave him until he ruined it…pretty happy so far for him cause randle for all the dumb stuff he does on the court… he works extremely hard… the dude is always in phenomenal shape and he’s worked hard on his handling and outside shot….and usually those types of guys improve…. hopefully it does…

    I agree wholeheartedly with this take. Not sure what he’s doing is sustainable and the aesthetics are never going to be pleasing, but he’s clearly tickling Thibs’ fancy with his overall play. Wherever the numbers level out, what’s happening is not an accident. It makes that 3rd year team option pretty valuable…cutting him at $4millon dead cap now would seem like a bad idea.

  15. Watched the whole game yesterday much to wife and daughter’s dismay. They’ve come to expect me to turn off somewhere between halftime and the beginning of Q4. For their entertainment dollar they were clearly amused by thanasis evil-eye at ignas. We rewound (Tivo) at least half a dozen times. Scary!

    Last year time and again Randle would spin himself into triple teams and cough up the ball, exhibiting neither grace nor style. We all groan at the screen when it happens. Since his back is turned he can’t see the collapse yet we all see it on TV. I think these types of plays are infinitely memorable. I think most people enjoy beautiful basketball more than the ugly version. I think that’s why we all mostly liked Haliburton at 8, and the promise of clever passes and court vision.

    We’ve embraced ugly before – Riley’s Knicks were as ugly as it gets. A win is a win.

  16. Well, KD and Kyrie are both resting tonight vs Memphis, so I guess we’ll see the vaunted Nets bench in all their glory

  17. It’s clear that Thibs is running a Triangle oriented offense like the Warriors ran, where the 1 is moving without and playing off the ball in half-court sets. It’s why a guy like Quickley, who has experience as a sharpshooting combo guard in Kentucky, fits so well with what we’re doing. It’s why I also don’t have an issue with Frank playing the 1 there either so long as he can make his 3s at a respectable rate, which was always the plan Phil and Clarence had for him in their offense. And its also true that Randle has/can filled that “point forward” role in this Golden State triangle offense the way Draymond did when his ability to pass the ball in full and halfcourt sets allowed Steph and Klay to play off the ball more than Mark Jackson’s point guard dominant offense called for. There was a reason he racked up more assists than Steph did for a few years in that offense.

    If you say “play basketball the way the Spurs and Warriors played it” they’ll love the idea.

    If you say “use triangle concepts” all hell breaks loose because you used the word triangle.

    It’s better to say that so far it looks like we are trying to play a slightly different brand of basketball than allowing the PG to dominate all the action. Of course, when you have Steph, Klay, Draymond, and Durant you are going to get great results no matter what offense you run. Still, the idea is to maximize what you have and we seem to be trying to do that with a much more team oriented approach to playmaking. I’m all for it.

  18. I agree wholeheartedly with this take.

    the knicks blow out the bucks on the backs of randle playing like lebron and payton like steph and then z starts agreeing with something i said…

    must be 2020….

  19. If you say “play basketball the way the Spurs and Warriors played it” they’ll love the idea.

    If you say “use triangle concepts” all hell breaks loose because you used the word triangle.

    Clearly this is a real thing that was definitely happening before Strat showed up to bravely speak the truth.

  20. The ball is definitely moving more and that is great.

    I just hope we don’t get destroyed by the Cavs in a late 2020 version of the ice bucket challenge.

  21. djphan: the knicks blow out the bucks on the backs of randle playing like lebron and payton like steph and then z starts agreeing with something i said…

    must be 2020….

    The irony re out recent tiffs is that over the years we agree far more than we disagree.

    Randle reported in great shape, is running the floor like a maniac, and is a beast physically. He’s a very good player when he plays in control and doesn’t take too many bad shots. The only “sustainable” number that really jumps out is his AST%. If he can keep that in the mid-high 20’s and settle into his NOP numbers, he’s a good player.

    I don’t agree that Knox is toast…but can’t blame anyone for thinking that he is.

  22. Great ‘cap Farfa. I actually just plugged in my PS4 for the first time in years and have been soliciting game recommendations. Getting both those and your trademark Knicks wit all-in-one was an unexpected gift.

    It’ll be interesting to see if Randle can develop real trade value. I think he’s probably too niche and/or expensive for true contenders, but it wouldn’t shock me if teams in the not-really-a-contender-but-still-playoff-thirsty category kick the tires. Atlanta can swap Snell and an asset for him, and the Mavs can do the same with James Johnson (we’d have to weigh the costs of worsening their draft pick in any potential deal). He’s playing so well that the wisdom of moving him at all is debatable, but I still think Rose would do so for a real asset. He didn’t negotiate the contract and drafting Toppin was a sign if there ever was one.

    Burks on the other hand will generate a bidding war at this rate.

  23. If you say “use triangle concepts” all hell breaks loose because you used the word triangle.

    It’s hilarious that Strat thinks everyone’s problem with Phil Jackson was the triangle, not the fact that he had no idea how to acquire good basketball players.

  24. Can’t say much about Knox’s play this season yet, but at least his shot selection has been better so far.

  25. What I’m seeing thus far is essentially the same team with a better coach and better roster balance. The Bucks game was an outlier, but we’ve definitely played 4 good halves of basketball against arguably 3 of the NBA’s top-10 teams. The next 6 games will provide a better measuring stick. We play 2 strong teams (UTA, IND) 2 solid but flawed teams (TOR, ATL) and 2 likely lottery teams (CLE, OKC). Quickley and Rivers will likely be back, forcing some rotation decisions in the backcourt. I wouldn’t mind if Thibs keeps Quickley on the bench until he is fully healed so that we can get a better look at Frank.

  26. thenoblefacehumper: It’s hilarious that Strat thinks everyone’s problem with Phil Jackson was the triangle, not the fact that he had no idea how to acquire good basketball players.

    To be fair, lots of folks here had a problem specifically with the triangle…

  27. I actually just plugged in my PS4 for the first time in years and have been soliciting game recommendations.

    come to cyrodiil (eso) TNFH, happiness and joy await…

    and for the record, not sure if i already mentioned it – but, not only have i earned my first victory royale – i now have a grand total of two solo victories…come get some mister milo :)…

    actually something pretty cool (in this day and age anyway), the boys and i got our first trios victory the other night, if i can just keep them from fighting each other long enough during the match, they both shoot well enough that we’d win most of our matches together…heck, the one god son beat a trio by himself after we died and were spectating…it’s freaky how fast he can build/edit…other than putting up walls or ramps, i don’t even bother trying to build…my normal strategy is to find a house or building and fight within it to minimize someone else’s ability to build and edit well…from there it’s just spray and pray with an AR, and thank goodness for aim assist…

  28. It’s hilarious that Strat thinks everyone’s problem with Phil Jackson was the triangle, not the fact that he had no idea how to acquire good basketball players.

    Phil thought that pretty much any player was good if you taught him how to triangle. You can turn Carmelo Anthony into Kobe Bryant just by triangulizing him! Travis Wear? Wait until you see that guy do triangle stuff. Arron Afflalo? Sure, he’s mediocre, but TRIANGLE Arron Afflalo is going to rule.

  29. I don’t think people said “fire any coach that ever enters the ball to the pinch post” they said “Phil Jackson is a terrible executive and the reasons why are not unrelated to the triangle, which after all is at the very core of his basketball identity”.

    As JK47 said, Phil’s belief in the magical properties of the triangle were an issue because it caused him to misevaluate the team’s place on the win curve. He consistently evinced a belief that the team’s fundamental problem was one related to how they played rather than the level of talent and made bad decisions because of it.

    There’s also the related but not identical problem that a dogmatism about the triangle caused him to make bad decisions as an executive in search of a specific style rather than overall quality. He hired two bad coaches in part because he was determined to make a hire from his coaching tree that would want to play his style. We can never say with certainty about why he did specific player moves but certainly a lot of his worst moves looked partially like chasing players who “fit” the triangle in a specific way at the expense of talent plays (Frank, Noah, Chandler).

    Then there’s the third issue that the triangle, as implemented by the Knicks, led to a regressive style of play. They were 21st, 22nd and 25th in 3PAr in his 3 years – the offense as they implemented it clearly led to very suboptimal shot selection. That’s not the case for every team that uses triangle concepts in their offense (clearly since that’s pretty much every team to some extent) but the offense that Phil and his hand-picked coaches installed objectively sucked.

  30. thenamestam, you put it perfectly. The “triangle” is hardly more revealing in and of itself than “the pick and roll.” Every modern offense has aspects of historical offenses, and can be weighted towards one specific schematic or another. But you MUST adapt to the realities of the game as it currently exists. Phil had this thing about proving doubters wrong rather than trying something new.

  31. Then there’s the third issue that the triangle, as implemented by the Knicks, led to a regressive style of play. They were 21st, 22nd and 25th in 3PAr in his 3 years – the offense as they implemented it clearly led to very suboptimal shot selection.

    Phil took this job basically just to prove that all the three point shooting in the NBA was dumb, and that he could defeat it with his favorite three-sided shape.

    How’d that goink?

  32. I do recall a considerable among of angst and criticism here and especially in the larger Knicks fandom regarding Phil’s rigid insistence upon running a Triangle-oriented offense during his tenure as Knicks President. Now Thibodeau is getting credit for running the same offense. He’s just smart enough not to get caught up litigating Triangle principles to the media and doesn’t call them as such. But if you look at what he’s doing, its basic updated shit Phil ran for years in Chicago and LA, a lot of the same stuff Pop and Kerr respectively run in San Antonio and San Francisco. The difference, as some have already noted here, is that the personnel is somewhat better to run it than when Phil was HC.

  33. Burks tweaked his ankle in the second half, so he may not play tomorrow. And Quickley and Rivers won’t be ready yet, either. Frank’s obviously going to play a bunch, but I’ll be curious to see if DSJ (if healthy) gets off the bench, or if Thibs turns to someone like Harper or Iggy.

  34. Great recap Farfa, thanks! :) And mentioning videogames is always a plus to me, as i’m from the first generation of gamers with the ZX Spectrum in the 80s! ;)

  35. I feel like “how’s it goink” should have fully ended the conversation about Phil’s relevance in the modern NBA, but here we are. And let’s not forget about the myriad asinine illiterate boomer dipshit opinions of Phil’s most vocal supporter, on virtually any subject.

  36. I finally watched the game. It was very enjoyable. I remember the sequence where Giannis stole the ball from Frank. Giannis wasn’t Frank’s primary defender. Someone else was actually guarding Frank. I thought to myself, “does that actually count as Frank being double teamed? Nah, that can’t be a thing”. But really, Frank had been hitting threes and it looked like they started guarding him more closely (although not double teaming him). It’s not surprising he’s not used to that.

  37. I’d like to suggest that various hyper-narcissistic millennial asshats stop using ageism insults such as ‘boomer’ on this site. We don’t put up with racism or sexism here, so let’s be consistent please. I’m fairly confident that assinine illiterate dipshit opinions can be held by people of any age. I suspect you’ll agree too, when you reach maturity.

  38. i’m from the first generation of gamers with the ZX Spectrum in the 80s! ;)

    i had to look up what the heck the ZX Spectrum was: The ZX Spectrum is an 8-bit personal home computer released in the United Kingdom in 1982

    holy cow, i don’t even remember hearing about that…you can still get one on ebay though…

    i got in to D&D a bit during college, the whole idea of “building” a character was intriguing…in ’88 i picked up a commodore 64 and pools of radiance

    i remember a couple of years ago checking on my time /played in the mmo i’m addicted to, it came out to like 9 months or so of continuous play (thousands and thousands of hours)…i’ve been in the game for five years now…i don’t do 20 plus hour weeks like i used to, but, probably still a good 10 hours or so each week…

  39. As we see here, cheapjack ageism has always been a marker of not really being able to fully function in society, going back at least as far as Young Boomer’s asinine illiterate dipshit, “Don’t trust anyone over 30.”

  40. Raven:
    I’d like to suggest that various hyper-narcissistic millennial asshats stop using ageism insults such as ‘boomer’ on this site. We don’t put up with racism or sexism here, so let’s be consistent please. I’m fairly confident that assinine illiterate dipshit opinions can be held by people of any age. I suspect you’ll agree too, when you reach maturity.

    Ouch.

  41. Raven:
    I’d like to suggest that various hyper-narcissistic millennial asshats stop using ageism insults such as ‘boomer’ on this site. We don’t put up with racism or sexism here, so let’s be consistent please. I’m fairly confident that assinine illiterate dipshit opinions can be held by people of any age. I suspect you’ll agree too, when you reach maturity.

    I am loving me some Raven these days…

  42. PS did anyone other than me see the movie “Wild in the Streets” in the theater in 1968? Now there was some ageism shit!

  43. Whoops, forgot that DSJ won’t be going on the road trip, at least not at first, while he tends to his injured quad. So if Burks is out, too, then healthy members of the rotation for tomorrow night are the usual starting five plus Noel, Knox, and Frank.

  44. geo: i had to look up what the heck the ZX Spectrum was: The ZX Spectrum is an 8-bit personal home computer released in the United Kingdom in 1982

    holy cow, i don’t even remember hearing about that…you can still get one on ebay though…

    i got in to D&D a bit during college, the whole idea of “building” a character was intriguing…in ’88 i picked up a commodore 64 and pools of radiance…

    Yeah, you’re right, maybe the ZX Spectrum was only an european thing! But it has a cult (like Frank) and to this day there’s people making games for it… a game that fits in 48kb of code, the younger generations will never know how is this possible! :D

    Had to look up your “Pools of Radiance” too, made me remember the first “Prince of Persia”, which is (probably) the best game ever!

  45. Alan:
    Whoops, forgot that DSJ won’t be going on the road trip, at least not at first, while he tends to his injured quad. So if Burks is out, too, then healthy members of the rotation for tomorrow night are the usual starting five plus Noel, Knox, and Frank.

    Next man up!

  46. Raven, I’m not interested in digging in my heels on this one. I would not call you “boomer” because you are an articulate, knowledgeable, considerate and thoughtful member of this board who does not condescend or dismiss opinions with platitudes like “you’ll understand when you’re my age.” That said, it’s not my intention to make anyone feel bad for being older, younger, paler, darker, more feminine, more queer, alternatively abled or anything else like it. So I apologize to you and whoever else felt targeted. I still argue that cultural ignorance, informed by a narrow and particular set of circumstances, is the key factor to being a “boomer” in the pejorative sense, but I’d also not like any friendly fire when I’m taking aim at something very much not about one’s age. So again, I am sorry for that.

  47. Alan:
    Whoops, forgot that DSJ won’t be going on the road trip, at least not at first, while he tends to his injured quad. So if Burks is out, too, then healthy members of the rotation for tomorrow night are the usual starting five plus Noel, Knox, and Frank.

    So Iggy will play a lot more than usual, and maybe Pinson and Harper will also play (but not so much).

  48. Thanks Jowles. So noted. Anyway, it’s more fun, and creative, to use terms like “asshat.” (Apologies to the asshats out there…). And you’ll note that I didn’t disagree with your overall opinion… But I do think that saying there’s a definition of boomer ‘in the pejorative sense’ is equivalent to similar statements about race, or sexual identify, etc. Best to bury that idea in a deep hole.

    The Ja news is heartbreaking. He may be my favorite NBA player. Zion is consistently amazing, but there’s something inevitable about him. Unfair, even. With Ja, he was breathtaking and unpredictable and beautiful to watch. His style certainly lends itself to injury though.

  49. Just looked at the Ja injury. I did the same thing to my left ankle in a local old-fashioned CYO gym at around his age (rolled it over the top) and had to spend a couple of weeks in a cast. Painful as fuck. The worst part for me was I had to drive home with a manual transmission. I remember timing the lights under the el (White Plains Road in the Bronx) so that I didn’t have to step on the clutch pedal.

    My guess is that he’s out a month unless it’s worse than it looked.

  50. Z-man:
    PS did anyone other than me see the movie “Wild in the Streets” in the theater in 1968? Now there was some ageism shit!

    I taught this movie in a course called “I Was a Teenage Teenager.” One of my students commented, “I think you need to be on drugs to like it. ”

    I also am in a band that does a cover of “14 or Fight. ”

    Love it.

  51. Nets running the corpse of DeAndre Jordan out there in OT while Allen is on the bench is something.

  52. Owen:
    Atlanta’s offense could be really good is my sense at the moment

    I’ll say this, if Luka doesn’t take care of his body at least a little bit Atlanta may wind up winning that deal. And that’s with Reddish looking like a bust at the moment. Trae Young is really, really good.

  53. nicos: And that’s with Reddish looking like a bust at the moment.

    I was expecting a 2-14 or something, but his line was not bad tonight…

  54. PerverseOsmosis: I taught this movie in a course called “I Was a Teenage Teenager.” One of my students commented, “I think you need to be on drugs to like it. ”

    I also am in a band that does a cover of “14 or Fight. ”

    Love it.

    I was 10 years old and my older sister dragged me along….scared the shit outta me…

  55. Z-man: I was expecting a 2-14 or something, but his line was not bad tonight…

    You know maybe I was too quick on the trigger- I thought he was Frank/Knox rookie level awful last year but looking at the numbers he wasn’t quite THAT bad. Still, pretty bad but way too soon to write him off.

  56. Who is worse on defense?

    It’s going to be interesting to see how that pans out I agree. I am solidly pro-Luka and not just because he is 6 inches taller.

    Who would you rather have for the next five years? Doncic, jokic, or Young?

  57. Trae is a smallish 6’1″…he might not be able to weather the pounding of playoff basketball year after year…but man, can he score!

  58. Owen:
    Who is worse on defense?

    It’s going to be interesting to see how that pans out I agree. I am solidly pro-Luka and not just because he is 6 inches taller.

    They’re both bad but Luka is much more hideable. And if I was Atlanta and had a time machine I’d still take Luka but Luka looks like he spent the summer smoking on the beach with Vlade. If he’s not going to take care of his body the margin between he and Young should shrink considerably. Even now I think making the deal was a mistake but not a colossal blunder- Ayton and Bagley (both of whom still may wind up being really good) seem like colossal blunders.

  59. I saw Owen’s “Who is worse on defense” and thought he was in the Cam Reddish conversation. So I went back to look at Cam vs. Kevin, as I occasionally do when I’m feeling masochistic. They’re laughably similarly terrible, except Cam looks a tiny bit not worse almost across the board. One’s been trash, the other’s been a small dumpster fire.

  60. nicos: They’re both bad but Luka is much more hideable. And if I was Atlanta and had a time machine I’d still take Luka but Luka looks like he spent the summer smoking on the beach with Vlade. If he’s not going to take care of his body the margin between he and Young should shrink considerably. Even now I think making the deal was a mistake but not a colossal blunder- Ayton and Bagley (both of whom still may wind up being really good) seem like colossal blunders.

    edit: If you could take a time machine back would you rather have Luka or Trae Young and Tyler Herro?

  61. I think Herro is overrated and the perfect guy to trade for Harden. But definitely a quite good player.

    Jokic had a wonderful line tonight. The guy is so good. Who has the record for triple doubles from a center other than Wilt?

  62. Steph is a master pickpocket and turns those TOs into a lot of points on the break, but even he can be attacked mercilessly by teams like the Clippers and Lakers that have a lot of huge wings (and even bigs) who can shoot from all over the place. Trae is even smaller, somehow, and stands no chance against someone like LeBron or Kawhi switching onto him ten times a game in the playoffs. The Hawks haven’t come close to the playoffs so we have yet to see it. But they are in big trouble once they get there. Question is how much can they make it up at the other four positions. Like, John Collins? Not a great start.

  63. The whole triangle discussion really reminds me of the whole thing in soccer about the tiki-taka style Barcelona popularized, and how the game changed and evolved past it eventually to a point where the successful teams are all running variations of the hyper efficient, German driven gegenpressing now. For a moment in time, the triangle was key for some of the best teams in the game, just as the tiki-taka was, but what people analyzing both sports didn’t understand is that there’s a reason only the absolute top teams could run these styles: they purposefully give up on efficiency to maximize very specific talent traits that only very unique superstars are even able to do.

    Nobody has been able to reproduce the triangle properly without a major superstar ball handler like Jordan or Kobe, just like nobody has ever been able to play tiki-taka without Messi, Xavi or Iniesta. It’s just not possible, it relies on not only superstar players, but unique stars who are capable of maximizing what is inherently a less efficient system that relies on unique talents much more than the things a top team can guarantee to reliably have, which is athletic superiority and just overall more talent.

    The reason the gegenpressing is reproducible, just as the pick and roll based offense in the NBA, is because you can run if effectively by simply having more talented and more athletic players, combined with world class work rates and training.

    Of course teams will still run aspects of the tiki-taka or the triangle here and there whenever possible, and it can be beautiful to watch, but to think a system so unique such as these two can be reproducible without the unique stars that allow the system to function is stupid.

  64. Jokic’s stat line for the night:

    19 points, 12 rebounds, 18 assists, 3 steals, 1 block.

    Jesus. 2 of the top 3 players in the game right now are Euros.

  65. Bruno Almeida:
    Of course teams will still run aspects of the tiki-taka or the triangle here and there whenever possible, and it can be beautiful to watch, but to think a system so unique such as these two can be reproducible without the unique stars that allow the system to function is stupid.

    Your comparison reminds me of another in American gridiron football with the West Coast Offense that Bill Walsh’s 49ers dynasty popularized around the NFL during the 1980s. At the time it was considered cutting edge but soon as his coaching tree circulated around the league many teams incorporated its concepts into their play designs. The way I prefer to see it is that these styles like the “Tika Taka”, “WCO” or “The Triangle” are just concepts that are evolving works in progress with numerous iterations dependent upon team personnel, larger changes in sports, defensive adjustments, etc . So rather than have one pure “Triangle” there’s been many variations of that concept. I know Kerr is loathe to straight up call his motion offense a Triangle, but it is just like many of the football teams that adapted the WCO in the late 1990s and 2000s still ran variations of it despite using 1 back or 3 WR sets while abandoning fullbacks and tight ends from the equation.

  66. I agree, it’s always a matter of two things in my opinion, exploring a specific underdeveloped aspect of the game, and putting unique star players in the position to succeed. Barcelona had three small, physically weak players who couldn’t hang with the physical stronger defenders, so they developed a system where they passed the ball around so fast and occupied space so brilliantly that all the physicality was useless, the ball just moved faster than any defender possibly could. My point is that that was the system, the strategy employed AND the players to execute it are the system. There are still brilliant passers in soccer that emulate what Xavi or Messi did, just as there are guys in the NBA or the NFL emulating aspects of those systems, but the system itself can’t be implemented fully without the perfect players to do it.

    So to take over a team and try to implement the triangle first, and then get the players to do it, is an asinine proposition that’s probably never going to work, just as the countless tiki-taka clones all failed miserably because they simply didn’t have the players to do it at the highest level. In the end as things evolve and get mixed up a lot more in complex systems it becomes hard to even recognize what is the inspiration or the parts that come from x or y system, so of course there are “triangle” sets and principles around the league still. But the point is that i don’t think we’ll ever see a full triangle system functioning again like it did for the Bulls, just as we won’t ever see another Barcelona etc.

  67. I’m guessing Fizdale’s positionless, free flowing kill what you eat offense seemed like a can’t miss idea back when he was an assistant in Miami watching LBJ and Wade every day.

  68. Hey Bruno, the triangle called me to thank you for your posts, and he added he’s now in Miami retired, and doesn’t understand how so many people want him to get back to work again! ;)

  69. Looking at the game the game of Zion and Morant.
    Not sure if they could stay healthy in their career.
    Our RJ have a chance to be the best product of that draft

  70. Question for you New Yorkers.
    Regarding the Brooklyn Nets. Obviously they’ll have more success this season done us. Do you cheer for them cause they still represent New York or you still consider them as rivals and would not be happy with their success.
    Does same goes with the Lakers and clippers who seems like real rivals

  71. F the Nets… I’m tired of big 2s 3s 4s… all that garbage. Teams get these superstars and still lose and they ship out other guys like they’re nothing. I don’t like that game and because it’s the Nets I hate it even more… I’ll never root for them…

  72. To add to that. I don’t mind the Mets and I don’t mind the Giants. I root for them… for whatever reason they make a huge deal of Nets vs Knicks, who’s taking over the city. It sews dissent … I’m a prime example of it.

  73. Oh, I’m sure we will be triangling and jiving once again on this board soon enough. I’m just confused when I read people discussing strategy like this, as if triangle, motion offense, tiki-taka etc happens without context.

    To stay in the soccer analogies, the one crack on Messi’s potential GOAT resume is how much he struggles when forced to play in a different way, like he’s struggling now that Xavi and Iniesta are gone, and how he always struggled to win with Argentina and their lack of talent in the midfield. At the end of the day great teams are much more an image of what their best players can do, and they should dictate the way a team plays, but there are always a number of factors, how well the competition figures out a system, how well your current players can perform in it, etc etc. The only constant, for me, is that the development of tactics will always go for the most efficient style of play unless you have a very unique, specific set of circumstances that allow you to deviate from that and make up for the loss of efficiency somewhere else.

  74. I’ve been hooked on NBA2k MyTeam since this summer when they offered 2k20 as a free download on PSN. Since then, I ponied up for $40 copy of 2k21 and pretty much only play that game. MyTeam is a fun mode that’s pretty addicting.

  75. Lugentz Dort Alert! Lugentz Dort Alert! Lugentz Dort Alert!

    He has been replaced by Facundo Campazzo as my favorite name in the NBA but he is balling. 26 points on 11 shots last night and apparently great defense.

    Our main man Enes Kanter led the Blazers to victory last night with Gary Trent Jr. (Ok, Gary was 7-11 from three but only because of the space Enes’ threat created.)

    I kind of wonder how AD doesn’t completely go off on the Blazers I don’t see anyone on the roster who can guard him. But that’s the mystery of AD I guess.

    Ja Morant did not break his ankle. My experience with ankle injuries is that its better to break your ankle then to severely sprain it but maybe that idea is 25 years out of date.

  76. Hey Knickerblogger Fam…

    As the year draws to a close, I just wanted to say “thank you” to you all for this year. This site has been a great place to go to every day to get away from the world and talk basketball (or to talk politics and engage with the world in a (mostly) respectful manner). With everything me and my wife went through this year, this place was a great resource for me.

    And I have some really good news to share. My wife and I are expecting a baby next year in June! We are so excited to get another chance to be parents. Of course, I’m terrified out of my mind. Last year at this time my wife was pregnant and I was scared in a theoretical kind of way but now I know what the worse possible outcome is with being a parent and I am so scared that it will happen again. But I also LOVED being a dad so much, way more than I thought I would and I am so happy to get another chance to be one.

    Of course, it also is really sad and we’ve been told by people in our support group that when you lose a child and then have another, its a huge mix of emotions…happiness, fear, sadness…all mixed into one and that is definitely the case. But above all…it just feels really good to get to plan for the future again. This year has been the hardest one of my life but the good thing is that my wife and I have gone through this together and have actually come out of it closer and stronger than ever. I am beyond grateful for that.

    I just wanted to let you all know because this has been a hard year for everyone, so I thought some good news might cheer you all up.

    Also, its crazy. It took us 4 years to get pregnant the first time and this time it was only a few months (we weren’t even really trying). Also, what is really weird to think about. The due date is right around the time our daughter passed away this year.

  77. Mazel tov, Swifty! Nothing but the warmest thoughts for you and your wife.

    After the year we’ve had — as Knicks fans, but mostly as human beings living in this tire fire universe — any good news is welcome. This is great news.

  78. Mazel Tov, Swift! Wonderful news. Can’t even bear the idea of losing one of my kids. The idea makes me cry. They are the best thing that ever happened in my life. It will be the same for you I’m sure.

    To 2021!!

    What a great community this has been throughout the years. I try to explain it even to my Knicks friends and most don’t truly understand. Would be fun if the NY based folks here could gather for a game at the end of the season. Dare I say playoff game?! Ha.

  79. Congrats to you and your wife, Swift. You deserve it, so yeah there’ll be mixed emotions for sure, but another chance is a blessing you should also cherish with all your hearts. Really, really happy for you! :’)

    This is the first sign that 2021 will be a great year, for us to have this dreadful 2020 in our rearview mirrors as soon as possible.

  80. My experience with ankle injuries is that its better to break your ankle then to severely sprain it but maybe that idea is 25 years out of date.

    This is mostly due to improved soft tissue imaging. Most physicians do not treat what what they cannot “see.” Also, emergency departments now refer you to a specialist in their discharge summary if signs and symptoms do not start improving right away. Some fractures are bad. It depends upon the locations of the fracture and the shape of the fracture as to increased risk of post injury complications.

  81. Best of luck to you and your wife, swift! You’ve had a hell of a year and I’m hoping 2021 treats you right.

    edit: haha jinx

  82. Swift, super congratulations for the good news! Best of everything to you and your wife!

    More good news for 2021!

  83. swiftandabundant: As the year draws to a close, I just wanted to say “thank you” to you all for this year. This site has been a great place to go to every day to get away from the world and talk basketball (or to talk politics and engage with the world in a (mostly) respectful manner).

    Fortunately, my year was as normal as possible, given the circumstances, but yeah i would also like to thank you all for the time you’ve spent writing on this forum. You guys are the greatest, and that’s what led me to leave the lurkiness, because if we have something to say we should say it, even if sometimes it’s to agree with someone. Well, hopefully that happens more than not. :P

  84. Heartfelt congratulations Swift to you and your wife. The strength and dignity you showed on this site in the wake of the profound loss you suffered is truly a triumph of the human spirit.

  85. Swiftandabundant, that’s great to hear. Best of luck to you, your wife, and your coming family member.

  86. happy for you swift.. can’t imagine that sort of rollercoaster but life has a way of rewarding perseverance with good fortune… and glad it’s come your way….

  87. Swiftandabundant, thanks for putting the silly distractions and trivial worries that crowd my mind into perspective with that beautiful post. I mentally loft giant heaps of delicious good fortune toward you and your family.

    BTW, I’ve always wondered: Is your username is an echo of the oft repeated line “fast and bulbous” on Trout Mask Replica?

  88. Congrats swifty! Your eternal optimism about the Knicks and about life is a KB treasure. Here’s to 2021 bringing good tidings to all, and especially to you.

  89. OMG Swift, I hope you and your wife are doing well. I can’t imagine the horror of losing a child, especially one so young. It’s a true testament to your character that you still ring true as a decent, optimistic, and thoughtful interlocutor on this forum over the past months despite the tragedy you have endured. I wish you nothing but the best and may your family prosper in the coming year with its new addition on the way.

    Best wishes.

  90. Ntilakilla:
    OMG Swift, I hope you and your wife are doing well. I can’t imagine the horror of losing a child, especially one so young. It’s a true testament to your character that you still ring true as a decent, optimistic, and thoughtful interlocutor on this forum over the past few months despite the tragedy you have endured. I wish you nothing but the best and may your family prosper in the coming year with its new addition on the way.

    Best wishes.

  91. In far less important news than Swift’s, Burks is now listed as doubtful for tonight. So either an 8-man rotation, or we see one or more of Pinson, Harper, or Iggy play.

  92. congratulations to you swift. may you fire your blinding arrow of incurable optimism straight and true through the generations.

  93. Tonight could get pretty ugly from a shot distribution perspective. Feels like 20+ FGAs a piece for Randle and Barrett assuming we don’t get Super Elfrid again. Two-way slots are valuable and Harper and Pinson aren’t exactly young by NBA standards so it’s probably time to see what we have in those dudes.

  94. I think it would be malpractice to use an 8-man rotation on a rebuilding team. Of course Iggy, Pinson and Harper will play, Thibs is not crazy… i hope! :P

  95. thenoblefacehumper: It’s hilarious that Strat thinks everyone’s problem with Phil Jackson was the triangle

    Only you would think I was making this about Phil Jackson.

    I was talking about the triangle being considered outdated and people that have no clue what they are talking about reacting badly to it even though the Spurs and Warriors use aspects of it in their own offense.

    The triangle is not a system cast in stone. It’s a system of play based on principles. One principle is that instead of having a PG that is the quarterback running the entire offense using penetration, P&R, and scoring a lot on his own (which is where the league has been heading), the triangle is trying to use multiple playmakers, player movement, and player penetration in a variety of ways to get good shots (including passing the ball into the post to get a collapsing defense that way if you have a player like that).

    The advantage is that if a team was run by let’s say Steve Nash, if you could slow Steve Nash down because you have a great defender at that position, you were throwing a major monkey wrench into that offense even though there were a lot of good scorers and shooters on the Suns.

    If you take one playmaker out of action in the triangle, it will hurt, but not nearly as much.

    We are trying to expand the role Randle and RJ as playmakers (as well as Knox, probably Topin, Burks, and others). That takes some of the heat off Payton because the offense is not just about Payton (who has no shot) trying to penetrate and run a P&R with Mitch or shoot 3s. It’s about RJ and Randle penetrating, drawing the defense in, and kicking out to the open man etc… The more ways to get penetration and the more player are moving and passing the less reliant you are on your PG and the much harder you are to stop.

  96. Great news, swift! I’m so happy for you. Thanks for sharing this with us, this really brightened my morning.

  97. They’re both bad but Luka is much more hideable.

    The thing with Luka is that he can’t defend at all, but especially can’t defend fast PGs.

    However, you don’t want to just add a pretty good traditional PG to the lineup for mildly better defense. Then you will get diminishing returns on that player’s offensive skillset given that Doncic will always have the ball. What you want is a PG that’s an elite defender, but that maybe has never been considered a good enough scorer/playmaker to be a traditional PG and get run a team as a starter. That’s where a player like Patrick Beverley comes in. You don’t care that he’s not a primary scorer or playmaker. You are getting the scoring and playmaking that from Doncic, KP etc… But now you’ve locked down the defense better, can stick Doncic and whatever dreg you can find for him to cover, and are still going to get some secondary playmaking and 3 point shooting from Beverley on top of the defense.

    That’s the role Frank should aspire to. He won’t be a traditional playmaking and scoring PG, but there will be teams that run their offense in other ways and that could sure use a lockdown defender at the combo guard position, especially if he’s taller, longer and can switch. But Frank has to get better in several ways to be that player.

  98. Swift, your post brought a tear to my eye. Great news! As someone who’s had a miniscule fraction of that kind of history (multiple miscarriages, not child loss, thank God), the best support someone told me was, another child will never replace the other, but the love you acquire will help you move on and forget a bit. It’s hard, but true. Also, you don’t have to reconcile your happiness and sadness, they’re both your true feelings, and life is like that, you have to allow them both to be.

    Lots of luck, all the best, here’s to 2021!

  99. hi swift, your story and how you’ve communicated it has really touched a bunch of folks…your faith is inspiring…

    the thought I’ve had since hearing it is just how lucky the child will be to have parents that love them as much as you and your wife will love them…

    thank you so much for sharing yourself with us…you and your family will stay in my thoughts and prayers…

  100. It’s been said better and smarter than I ever could, so I’ll just leave it at thank you for sharing, Swift. May 2021 bring you peace, healing, and happiness.

    The same goes for the rest of you. It’s been a privilege and an honor to find refuge on this site with the lot of you during this hideous year.

  101. Swift, congratulations!! I am so happy you and your wife could find this glimmer of hope and happiness after such a terrible and difficult year. The grace and strength you have shown through all that you have gone through is truly inspiring. I wish both you and your wife nothing but fortune and happiness. Thank you so much for sharing your good fortune with us.

  102. Thank you, everyone. I thought some good news might cheer people up.

    Its such a strange thing. We tried for 5 years to get pregnant the first time. Then it happened and we were so happy and then this horrible tragedy. All of our hopes and plans just dashed in a few minutes time. But then not even a few months later my wife gets pregnant again. We weren’t even really trying. It just happened. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. being home all the time and trying to do anything to not feel sad led to a lot of amorous afternoons and evenings. But its just weird that it happened so fast this time.

    The mix of emotions is crazy but we are ultimately very happy. My wife and I have been joking that by the time this kid is a teenager they’re going to be so annoyed with us because we’re going to be the nosiest, most protective parents in the world. And you know what? I will take whatever eye rolls or annoyances that child gives us.

  103. DRed:
    Just don’t raise that kid to be a knicks fan

    How can the kid not be a fan of our big3 of Jalen Suggs, RJ Barrett and Mitchell Robinson?? :D

  104. cybersoze: How can the kid not be a fan of our big3 of Jalen Suggs, RJ Barrett and Mitchell Robinson?? :D

    Sorry, i forgot… and RUNNING THE TRIANGLE (if he has the smartness to see it!) !!! :P

  105. Great News Swift!
    I may not know you personally but your posts don’t lie. You deserve the best!

  106. Congrats to you, Swift. Hopefully the world and our society will look a bit better come June than it is now.

  107. On a different topic, here’s my prediction — whichever team triumphs in the Frank-Sexton marquee match-up tonight wins the game.

    And no, I have no idea what “triumphs” means in this context. I look forward to Farfa explaining it to me tomorrow.

  108. Congrats Swift! Nothing better than teaching your kid how to dribble and shoot. Good luck.

  109. Ja diagnosed with a Grade 2 sprained ankle, will be out 3-5 weeks, just as Z-Man predicted.

    Great news. It could have been so much worse.

  110. Alan:
    Ja diagnosed with a Grade 2 sprained ankle, will be out 3-5 weeks, just as Z-Man predicted.

    I’ve sustained just about every kind of ankle sprain there is (courtesy of converse chuck taylor’s), and the over the top version is the most painful by far. Should heal ok, although might be residual soreness for a long time.

  111. Congrats Swift! Best wishes for a healthy pregnancy. I wouldn’t worry about them being a Knicks fan, they’ll probably go Nets.

  112. You know, Larry Nance Jr. didn’t play in either of the preseason games. Not sure why. He is balling through the first three games.

  113. So we have our usual 5 starters plus Bullock, Noel, Frank, Knox. Don’t really need anyone else, I guess.

  114. So we have our usual 5 starters plus Bullock, Noel, Frank, Knox. Don’t really need anyone else, I guess.

    Isn’t Bullock one of the five starters?

  115. Brian Cronin: Isn’t Bullock one of the five starters?

    Yes, he is. We have the 5 starters – Payton, Bullock, RJ, Julius, Mitch – and 3 of the rotation guys – Noel, Frank, Knox. Then we have one more from the 15-man roster – Iggy – and the two 2-way guys – Harper and Pinson.
    I think they’re all going to play, on a 10-man rotation.

  116. cybersoze: Yes, he is. We have the 5 starters – Payton, Bullock, RJ, Julius, Mitch – and 3 of the rotation guys – Noel, Frank, Knox. Then we have one more from the 15-man roster – Iggy – and the two 2-way guys – Harper and Pinson.
    I think they’re all going to play, on a 10-man rotation.

    I shouldn’t drink before the games… we have 11 available players, not 10. So probably one of them isn’t going to play much.

  117. ahright cybersoze – hit me with it: what tune choice do you have for a slightly angsty tuesday, pre tip off…

    i haven’t been exercising as well as a should lately, so – i got all this internal energy just bouncing around inside me…plus i’m probably sleeping more than i should lately, i’m also slipping again on my chocolate consumption, it’s all that christmas fudge sitting in my kitchen – and, haunting/taunting me…

    right now i have 311’s Amber rolling around upstairs…any good radiohead suggestions maybe?

    more importantly, what you drinking on man…

  118. i was hooked on them corona’s for years, that’s a tasty beer…these days i go more with the pacificos and tecates though…

  119. geo:
    more importantly, what you drinking on man…

    i just made a paloma…felt like some tequila…my son just asked me why i am drinking at 3:30 in the afternoon…

  120. only one real good answer for that: why not

    the real question is – will you still be awake by 9 :)

  121. geo:
    ahright cybersoze – hit me with it: what tune choice do you have for a slightly angsty tuesday, pre tip off…

    Let’s see if this beautiful sound gets you ready for a win in Cleveland! ;)

    POLIÇA – Lime Habit

    more importantly, what you drinking on man…

    Oh, sorry to disappoint you man, i’m not drinking! It was just a joke because i miscounted our available players! ;)

  122. geo:
    only one real good answer for that: why not

    the real question is – will you still be awake by 9 :)

    i told him i was on christmas break and you can do that during this time period…

  123. the real question is – will you still be awake by 9 :)

    probably not…we’ve been watching doom patrol on HBO Max…season 2…and I seem to only make it through half an episode and then pass out….

  124. cybersoze: Let’s see if this beautiful sound gets you ready for a win in Cleveland! ;)

    POLIÇA – Lime Habit

    Oh, sorry to disappoint you man, i’m not drinking! It was just a joke because i miscounted our available players! ;)

    Anytime I make a math error, I like to blame alcohol, too. In fact, I blame it for a lot of things…
    :-)

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