NY Post: Inside look at how Leon Rose rebuilt the Knicks

From Yaron Weitzman (not a Knick beat guy, interestingly, so it’s almost a certainy that someone in the Knicks front office approached him to do a story on the Knicks. That’s not inherently a bad thing, of course, it’s just interesting):

Aller, Thibodeau and Wesley each boast different skills. Wesley’s the relationships guy. Aller’s all about asset management. Thibodeau can squeeze an NBA win out of D-III roster. Rose’s bet is that by combining their skill sets, by leveraging Wesley’s connections and Aller’s strategic thinking and Thibodeau’s willingness to sell his soul if it meant he’d win that night’s game, by creating a system of checks and balances and then having Rose filter it all before making a final call, this group can rebuild the Knicks.

It’s an ambitious plan, but also a dangerous one. How often will Rose be able to say no to his friends? And how much clashing can these friendships endure?

The good news for Knicks fans is that, based on interviews with more than a dozen NBA sources, all with different connections to the Knicks, it appears that Rose has successfully threaded these needles.

For a front office that for years has struggled with infighting, especially among its last regime when those loyal to now-former team president Steve Mills often clashed with those brought in by general manager Scott Perry, this is a major step. Even if the process hasn’t always been smooth.

There are a number of takeaways from this piece, and I think I’ll rank them in terms of importance…

1. Rose is ultimately making the right calls on a lot of the general stuff. We can argue specifics (like what appears to be the third botched lottery pick in four years and the third in a row outside of the top five, where it is harder to fuck up), but despite some overtures to stupidity, he’s avoided making major franchise-wrecking moves. That’s a major step up over past heads of the Knicks. You can say that you don’t trust that a Team of Rivals approach can work long term, but short term, it has worked and the Knicks are set up really well for long term, as well. It could fall apart as soon as this offseason, but I don’t think anything in this article suggests that Team of Rivals can’t work. That’s a good thing.

2. However, that someone is leaking “We’re a Team of Rivals” when the perception of the Knicks up until this point was “They’re just, you know, a normal team” is a bit concerning.

3. Brock Aller sounds brilliant.

4. Scott Perry should perhaps look to sell his house if he doesn’t want to live near his old job.

5. Thibs comes off like he’d be a bad general manager, but we knew that already. He is who he is, and other than that moronic “Hinkie” attempt at an insult, I don’t think we learned anything new about Thibs.

6. That it’s being made public that he wanted to trade all three of Randle, Barrett and Mitch was probably not ideal. But whatever, players are used to this stuff. Not too concerned.

7. Wesley sounds weird, but hey, Quickley has been great, so good for him. It’s somewhat surprising, then, that they didn’t take Richards with #33, right?

Anyhow, #1 is, unsurprisingly since it was ranked #1, my biggest takeaway from the article, so I think it’s all good… for now.

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257 thoughts to “NY Post: Inside look at how Leon Rose rebuilt the Knicks”

  1. It’s not that a Team of Rivals can’t work; it’s just that it’s in no way preferable to a Team of Non-Rivals with Open Creative Tension. The Knicks’ rivalry is philosophical and factional and strategic when the rivalries at more functional shops are merely tactical.

    Thibs takes the biggest hits, clearly. The “Hinkie” thing and the “he wanted to trade RJ, Mitch, and kinda Randle” are pretty big howitzers across the ol’ bow.

  2. I think it’s fair to say that a Team of Rivals is not what I’d prefer, but I think until it doesn’t work, we can’t say it won’t work.

  3. E, all merc’d out:
    .

    Thibs takes the biggest hits, clearly.The “Hinkie” thing and the “he wanted to trade RJ, Mitch, and kinda Randle” are pretty big howitzers across the ol’ bow.

    It’s possible that this arrow across the bow was tactically designed to keep Thibs from gaining too much stature and power vis a vis the rest of the group. He’s is getting great press and mentions for Coach of the Year. It’s possible Leon approved of this.

  4. That’s a real possibility, as well, but, if so, that’s really trying to thread the needle, no?

  5. Or maybe the Hinkie comment was a joke off the cuff and everyone kind of laughed and smiled when he made it?

    I mean trading Randle? Its rich for anyone on this blog (including Randle defenders) to act like Randle WASN’T the first player we were hoping to trade before this season.

    RJ and Mitch is a bit more problematic but again people are looking at this with hindsight after we’ve seen RJ improve a lot this year and Mitch improve as a starter. Before this season, you could easily make an argument for selling high on those guys. Most of this blog thought RJ had a horrible rookie year and had no path ahead to being a good player. And Mitch was the biggest value chip we had. Again, I would have wanted to keep both of those guys but if they were traded for something good, I don’t think people would have objected.

  6. It’s a little meta, maybe, but if Leon fancies himself as the manager of a team of rivals part of his managerial role and tactics would be to use the press. Definitely possible. If Leon took to the press to prop up Aller and kind of Wes and knock Thibs down a peg, that would be great. Good for him.

    It’s kind of self-promotional to put yourself in a position of putting together a team of rivals and being able to manage them effectively, so it very well could be Leon. The “will he be able to say no to friends?, (strongly implied) yes” is in this vein and could be a tell.

  7. Rose has a fairly incredible reputation for being a straight shooter, and this is definitely not straight-shooting.

    Wesley, Rose, and Thibs have known each other for decades. Hard to imagine they are the ones leaking.

    That leaves Scott Perry and Brock Aller in terms of senior level people. Aller clearly comes out looking the best here, but he presumably is too smart to leak all this and so obviously come out smelling minty fresh when everyone else takes a hit.

    but of course all these people have support staff…and wives and other social circle.

  8. good stuff, Brian. I am personally inclined to give greater weight to the Toppin miss than you. And if you score that as a bigger miss, it changes the math a bit. But he deserves an open mind so far.

  9. Scott Perry is a candidate, but Brock Aller comes out too favorably for me to warm too much to that idea. The writer says Aller (but not Perry) turned down interview requests; I assume that’s legit and honest.

  10. swiftandabundant: Before this season, you could easily make an argument for selling high on those guys. Most of this blog thought RJ had a horrible rookie year and had no path ahead to being a good player. And Mitch was the biggest value chip we had. Again, I would have wanted to keep both of those guys but if they were traded for something good, I don’t think people would have objected.

    I don’t think this fairly resembles our consensus.

    The article states Thibs wanted to trade them for “seasoned veterans.” That’s a subjective term, but my mind doesn’t think of players this blog would have been happy to give up RJ Barrett for.

  11. Yeah what I want to know is if there were strong dissenting opinions about who to pick instead of Toppin. It mentions Vassell and we’ve heard some people liked Hali. But I imagine we won’t hear too much about people who really wanted someone besides Obi until it becomes clear (if) that Toppin is a bust, which is far from clear at this point. But I imagine if Obi is the same player he is now this time next year, you will definitely hear reports of how this guy really wanted this player or that player.

    Disagreeing about a late first round pick is one thing but missing on the higher pick sucks for sure although I still have fait in Obi long term, even if we ultimately end up trading him cause Randle stays here.

  12. swiftandabundant:
    Or maybe the Hinkie comment was a joke off the cuff and everyone kind of laughed and smiled when he made it?

    I mean trading Randle? Its rich for anyone on this blog (including Randle defenders) to act like Randle WASN’T the first player we were hoping to trade before this season.

    RJ and Mitch is a bit more problematic but again people are looking at this with hindsight after we’ve seen RJ improve a lot this year and Mitch improve as a starter. Before this season, you could easily make an argument for selling high on those guys. Most of this blog thought RJ had a horrible rookie year and had no path ahead to being a good player. And Mitch was the biggest value chip we had. Again, I would have wanted to keep both of those guys but if they were traded for something good, I don’t think people would have objected.

    The quote from the article is “At times, meetings with Thibodeau and Aller grew heated. Thibodeau would even mock Aller and call him “Hinkie” (a reference to Sam Hinkie, architect of the Philadelphia 76ers “Process”).” That doesn’t sound like an off-the-cuff joke, what with ‘heated’ and ‘mocked’ being the descriptors here. I don’t thing this is a huge deal, though. This is who Thibs is, we all knew or should have known this. If Rose can keep Thibs on his leash and focused on the court, I don’t see why this couldn’t work.

  13. My Takeaways:

    1. This article does not inspire long-term confidence in Thibs’ personnel making abilities. I just can’t see a guy with his player preferences lasting long these days if they’re unchecked.

    2. I hope Aller wins whatever FO struggles he may have with Thibs down the road. Guy seems like he understands fundamental principles of roster building and management.

    3. Rose’s biggest positive wasn’t even mentioned in the article. It wasn’t balancing all of these agendas represented by Wes, Thibs or Aller since he hired them and they ultimately answer to him whether they like it or not. His biggest positive is managing to keep Dolan away from meddling and taking sides in whatever disputes these different players may have within the organization. And the fact that the article doesn’t even mention Dolan is itself the biggest indicator of this positive development.

    4. World Wide Wes seems like a double-edged sword to me. His loyalties come across as divided between stanning for Kentucky and working for thge Knicks. And no man can serve two masters.

    5. Anyone notice how they mentioned Obi Toppin in the beginning of the article and then never referred to him again as if no one in the FO wanted credit for making that pick? Hmmmm…..

  14. Sign me up for Team Aller, by the way. Also, did anybody ever hear about Brock Aller before this article? Are we sure he isn’t a tulpa created from a decade of Knickerblogger angst?

  15. re: Aller

    but does he even watch the games

    Thibs seems like the kind of guy who, at a crowded poker table, goes all in on pocket 7s because he’s won a big pot with those before.

  16. I don’t know that playing who the mole here makes a lot of sense. The reporter stated it was “ based on interviews with more than a dozen NBA sources, all with different connections to the Knicks”, and there’s no reason not to believe him. It reads like good, well-sourced journalism. A story from inside the knicks draft room doesn’t necessarily need to be told to the reporter by someone there.

  17. This is far from ideal but a lot of you are ignoring the clear upside which is that if this group ever wins a championship there’s an entertaining movie to be made

  18. I wonder how djphan feels knowing that William Wesley is the reason we took Immanuel Quickley and Brock Aller is the likely reason we traded pick 33.

    It could probably be Walt Perrin who leaked the information, as his job (find guys who will develop into good players over time) is directly compromised by Thibs’ desire to trade all assets for the now, and he’d likely be doing Johnny Bryant, the Knicks associate head coach who we poached from Utah as well, a favor by painting Thibs in a poor light.

  19. thenoblefacehumper:
    This is far from ideal but a lot of you are ignoring the clear upside which is that if this group ever wins a championship there’s an entertaining movie to be made

    Who plays Guitar Jimmy? I feel like there’s a perfect actor on the edge of my mind I can’t quite recall.

  20. “Who plays Guitar Jimmy? I feel like there’s a perfect actor on the edge of my mind I can’t quite recall.”

    An aged Jonah Hill or maybe Brett Ratner is hired to get away from directing and act.

  21. Barrettcuda:
    “Who plays Guitar Jimmy? I feel like there’s a perfect actor on the edge of my mind I can’t quite recall.”

    An aged Jonah Hill or maybe Brett Ratner is hired to get away from directing and act.

    I think Giamatti could really pull off the smugness, and after a certain point all doughy middleaged white guys with goatees start to look the same.

  22. Also, if you read the article, it sounds like Brock Aller is second in command. We took his advice to trade back and grab Quickley instead of taking him at 23. We took his advice in free agency by not blowing our cap space and preserving assets for future strategies. Tom Thibodeau got his boy Derrick Rose, but that probably happened because we didn’t view the 41st pick in this draft and Dennis Smith Jr as pieces we need to get better (because we have Quickley and the 31st pick).

    William Wesley’s sole victory and Tom Thibodeau’s sole victory feel like they came as compromises from Rose/Aller. Obi Toppin is clearly the guy Rose wanted most and nobody could talk him off that cliff, but something tells me the early returns on that one will give Perrin and Aller more pull with our first pick this season. They let Leon Rose go unchecked and he left at least two superior players on the board in Halliburton and Vassell.

  23. i don’t really think that there’s anything too special with the knicks approach.. in any organization where people care about what they’re doing you’re going to have people who disagree… and most functioning organizations will bring on diverse viewpoints to advise in their area of expertise to make a decision… this is how c-suites are designed… and the closer you are to decisionmaking.. the egos get bigger and that usually causes friction… even in highly functioning organizations… pop didn’t want to deal hill for kawhi and was fighting buford on it until he relented…. this stuff happens everywhere…

    what’s not normal are people overstepping their bounds… this probably happens alot in basketball because so many people want control of the product on the court but when your coach is angling for many personnel decisions after a failed gm stint and your other advisor is overruling your own scouts people are not exactly staying in their lane…. this is sort of the braintrust design that led to fizdale being enamored with knox in a 3on3 and then magically becoming our pick….

    i don’t really think this was a keyhole into a highly functional organization…

  24. “His job is to sort through different opinions from different people and make the best decision,” one rival executive said. “It certainly seems like he’s doing that well.”

    I agree. And as Glass says, we will learn a lot from seeing how Rose processes the Obi mistake. (Not to say Obi can’t one day be a good player – I’m not as down on him as some – but the player most of us wanted has been vastly superior so far.) No one is right 100% of the time, so Rose has to learn from what worked and didn’t from his first year – which counselors gave better counsel, and which didn’t.

    And yeah, what a terrible GM Thibs was/would be! But I bet his players won’t be upset by this at all – he’s been pretty open and consistent with his praise of all of Mitch, RJ, and Randle, their work ethic, their desire to improve, their importance to the team. And they seem to have bought in, so…I’m not at all worried there.

  25. I wonder how djphan feels knowing that William Wesley is the reason we took Immanuel Quickley and Brock Aller is the likely reason we traded pick 33.

    i totally forgot how connected www was at kentucky… and it’s pretty obvious in hindsight….

    i think we all know how good that process was if quickley was off the board we’d be taking… nick richards….

  26. i think we all know how good that process was if quickley was off the board we’d be taking… nick richards….

    But we wouldn’t have. As Brian pointed out in the intro, we traded out of the 33rd pick once Vernon Carey was off the board, even though Richards was still there. That actually makes me feel better about some of this. Because it suggests that if Wes is in agreement with others, then he can be the tie-breaking vote on something like taking Quickley. But if Wes is off on his own, he doesn’t get to override everybody else. He really wanted Richards, yet we punted on a pick that could have been used to take him with minimal risk.

  27. djphan:
    i don’t really think that there’s anything too special with the knicks approach.. in any organization where people care about what they’re doing you’re going to have people who disagree… and most functioning organizations will bring on diverse viewpoints to advise in their area of expertise to make a decision… this is how c-suites are designed… and the closer you are to decisionmaking.. the egos get bigger and that usually causes friction… even in highly functioning organizations… pop didn’t want to deal hill for kawhi and was fighting buford on it until he relented…. this stuff happens everywhere…

    what’s not normal are people overstepping their bounds… this probably happens alot in basketball because so many people want control of the product on the court but when your coach is angling for many personnel decisions after a failed gm stint and your other advisor is overruling your own scouts people are not exactly staying in their lane…. this is sort of the braintrust design that led to fizdale being enamored with knox in a 3on3 and then magically becoming our pick….

    i don’t really think this was a keyhole into a highly functional organization…

    well said.

    and remember, these guys didn’t actually rebuild the knicks. Our starting lineup until the Rose trade was 5 Steve Mills guys.

    they whiffed on a lotto pick and seem to have gotten very lucky on IQ, as they clearly wouldn’t have taken him if he didn’t go to kentucky

  28. the article says it was Brock’s idea to acquire the 33rd pick. It doesn’t discuss whose idea it was to give it away

  29. But IQ went to Kentucky because he was good, like numerous guards before him…

  30. The Richards stuff was definitely intended as a shot to Wesley, as an attempt to take away a little of his shine. You know, “Yeah, he wanted Quickley early, but had Quickly not been there at #27, he would have wanted Richards there! He just wanted a Kentucky guy!” Not saying that that is the truth, but that’s the framing of it in the article. There are definitely some attempts to put down the non-Aller guys in this article.

  31. He’s too old now, but Joe Pesci would’ve been a good choice to play a Dolan with an explosive temper.

  32. “Joe Pesci would’ve be a good choice to play a Dolan with an explosive temper.”

    Too high-strung and intense. Dolan is really a sloppy drunk and Pesci’s blowups are more sober.

  33. Give Giamatti a chance. He’ll do the best damn Guitar Jimmy you’ve ever seen!

  34. “heated” is so subjective though.

    Like I can get in “heated” debates with friends but it’s not that serious. Did Thibs storm out of the room heated or was he just really passionate about his position? I don’t mind the latter. The former would be worrying.

    Again, Thibs is gonna thibs and push for whatever makes his team most likely to win now. That’s why he’s NOT the GM. It will only become an issue if down road Rose really wants to blow it up, rebuild from scratch and tank for some seasons. But at that point, Thibs wouldn’t be the coach we’d want for that anyways.

  35. Dark horse candidate: Tim Heidecker. Never has a man mastered the facial expressions of smug jackasses like that man has.

  36. “heated” is so subjective though.

    “Heated” combined with “mocked” followed by “some found this tussling strange” is pretty clear cut.

    There is no reasonable way to read:

    At times, meetings with Thibodeau and Aller grew heated. Thibodeau would even mock Aller and call him “Hinkie” (a reference to Sam Hinkie, architect of the Philadelphia 76ers “Process”). Some around the team found this tussling strange. It’s one thing for a group that’s been together for years to debate the organization’s direction; it’s another to have this kind of philosophical disagreement among new hires brought in by a team president, who, in theory, during interviews would have shared his plan.

    as

    Or maybe the Hinkie comment was a joke off the cuff and everyone kind of laughed and smiled when he made it?

    As I note in the post, I’m not particularly worried about it all, either, but come on, “Maybe it was just friendly when the article made it clear that it wasn’t!” isn’t the way to go on this.

  37. “In that case, how bout Meryl Streep as Dolan? I smell an Oscar.”

    The Devil Cares Nada

  38. Don’t tell Thibs about CGI and Scorsese, he’ll try to get it for Rose and Gibson.

  39. They have CGI faces now.Worked in The Irishman.

    Did it though? I mean, it “worked” but it also looks weird AF to me. Like you see CGI young looking DeNiro and Pesci faces walking around with a walker in their elderly bodies. I didn’t like it at all.

    On another level too, it robs opportunities for young actors to play their older counterparts. I mean, imagine if in Godfather 2 they just CGI’d Brando’s face to play Don Corleone in the flashback scenes. There’d be no DeNiro Academy Award winning performance, a performance that basically catapulted his young acting career.

    I’d much rather casting find some young, unknown or up and coming actors to play those scenes than CGI older actors.

  40. “Like you see CGI young looking DeNiro and Pesci faces walking around with a walker in their elderly bodies. I didn’t like it at all.”

    My interpretation of the film was that this choice was intentional. The story was told through the limited perspective of an older man recounting his many regrets throughout a long life. The CGI materialized an eerie feeling of decay that permeated that older man’s story, as if his recollection of his youthful regrets were filtered through his present perspective as a withered senior citizen. So we’re not seeing a bunch of 20 -40 something guys as they were, but as someone 70-something years old remembered them as. It made the story feel very somber in contrast to the full tilt exuberance we saw in Goodfellas, for example.

  41. Did it though? I mean, it “worked” but it also looks weird AF to me. Like you see CGI young looking DeNiro and Pesci faces walking around with a walker in their elderly bodies. I didn’t like it at all.

    Thank you Swift and Abundant – that was exactly my thought while watching that 10 hour movie.

    Very very hard to trick the human facial recognition system. One of the main reasons why plastic surgery does not age very well. We are almost all literally hard wired to spot discrepancies like that.

    The Irishman was a lot like how the Hulk looked in its first stand alone movie, something ain’t right.

  42. Meyers Leonard, dude, there are words that just shouldn’t fall off your tongue so easily.

  43. Meyers Leonard, dude, there are words that just shouldn’t fall off your tongue so easily.

    What’s so weird is if you watch the video, he very deliberately pauses and then lets it fly. It’s like he was weighing the pros and cons and decided in favor of it.

  44. But we wouldn’t have. As Brian pointed out in the intro, we traded out of the 33rd pick once Vernon Carey was off the board, even though Richards was still there.

    we made the pick because of wes… at least that was heavily implied… and it was based purely on the fact that he went to UK….

    He pressed for the team to consider taking Richards at No. 27.

    i mean we don’t know for sure… but we were originally supposed to take maxey and instead we took quickley… and if quickley was off the board… is it crazy to think we wouldn’t have picked richards based on what we know? maybe he didn’t want to give www two picks in a row? who knows… i do know that everything that’s come out after the draft connected us with a lot of UK guys for some odd reason…. and now we know….

    anyway… this palace intrigue stuff is usually almost always a one-sided… and hence skewed.. perspective on things… so i’m not saying we definitely know what would’ve happened…. but knowing what we know from different sources are we really discrediting that we had these kentucky guys much much higher than everyone else?

  45. FWIW, Weitzman wrote this book: Tanking to the Top: The Philadelphia 76ers and the Most Audacious Process in the History of Professional Sports. Definitely makes me think Weitzman will favor a guy like Aller.

    Also, seems like someone in the front office wants a book written about them. To be fair, if Rose turns the Knicks around (or anyone ever does) then it’s a book I’ll buy. I’m also interested if we’ll get more pieces from Weitzman. He’d make a more nuanced mouthpiece for the Knicks FO and I do think this the first report we’ve really had on the FO.

  46. This board will side with Allers (we’re right of course).

    But I also think the board assumes the piece sides with Allers, but the article does a good job of being even handed and feeding into reader’s pre-existing biases. Fans not on this board will love Wes’s irrational confidence in IQ and his “people skills.” Others will read Allers objections to Thibs’s win now moves and think Allers is a moron because a couple win now moves for Thibs would make us a “true contender.”

  47. Early Bird:
    This board will side with Allers (we’re right of course).

    But I also think the board assumes the piece sides with Allers, but the article does a good job of being even handed and feeding into reader’s pre-existing biases. Fans not on this board will love Wes’s irrational confidence in IQ and his “people skills.” Others will read Allers objections to Thibs’s win now moves and think Allers is a moron because a couple win now moves for Thibs would make us a “true contender.”

    I think this is true, too. I spoke with one Knicks writer who is guessing that the primary inside MSG source for the story is Scott Perry, interestingly.

  48. What’s so weird is if you watch the video, he very deliberately pauses and then lets it fly. It’s like he was weighing the pros and cons and decided in favor of it.

    Remember that Giants Pats Super Bowl where they let Ahmad Bradshaw score? He ran really hard to the goal line, realized what was happening, but it was just too late and he fell forward.

    That’s what the pause was. The part of his brain that isn’t stupid was like Eli Manning yelling “stop!”, but the stupid part of his brain had already hit the hole so hard that he had to finish the sentence.

    Anyway… bye Meyers.

  49. Sort of unrelated point (only “Sort of” because his name was brought up earlier)…if Kawhi had stayed in San Antonio all of this time, do you think they would have won another title?

  50. I wonder what Perry’s angle would be in leaking this story?

    The only two things I could think is…

    1. The comment about how, during the Mills/Perry time, Perry’s guys had to fight with Mills’ guys, as a sign that it wasn’t Perry’s fault how bad things got.

    2. Perry thinks that this piece makes him look good, which it does not.

  51. Kawhi wasn’t winning shat in San Antonio with the Warriors dominating the scene.

  52. they whiffed on a lotto pick and seem to have gotten very lucky on IQ, as they clearly wouldn’t have taken him if he didn’t go to kentucky

    I think this is pretty unfair (re: IQ). They had intelligence on a guy and used it. That’s not luck. That’s having good connections and trusting those connections.

    Gotta be honest – I am believing more than ever now that aside from the very extremes of players (ie. LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, or on the other end, dudes that just can’t play), environment and work ethic determine outcome. Isn’t it weird that basically no Jets draft pick ever works out, yet the Ravens and 49ers seem to hit it out of the park every year? Or why every player gets better when they go to the Spurs or Raptors or Jazz? But even the good teams need the guys with the right mindset – and this is where having deep knowledge for years about players’ character and work ethic is so important — ergo the hiring of Wes, Kenny Payne (who knows these guys from the recruiting trail since they were probably freshmen in high school), Alex Kline, etc. You never see the Spurs drafting or signing knuckleheads because their Spurs magic won’t work unless the player wants it.

    The stories about the Thibs Twolves are so interesting in this way — Thibs comes into a team that already has KAT, Lavine, and Wiggins, decides he can’t win wit these guys without one of his guys – Jimmy Butler. With Butler they make the playoffs, but Butler knows that KAT/Wiggins are supremely talented but not willing to put in the work, AND that Thibs the GM has already hitched his financial cart to these losers, and so Butler takes off.

  53. Kawhi wasn’t winning shat in San Antonio with the Warriors dominating the scene.

    They literally lost to a Kawhi-led team, though, in 2019.

  54. Alan: I think this is true, too. I spoke with one Knicks writer who is guessing that the primary inside MSG source for the story is Scott Perry, interestingly.

    This kind of makes sense. The article gives some negative feedback to each camp, except Perry’s (assuming he still has enough people to be called a camp).

    From the article:

    For a front office that for years has struggled with infighting, especially among its last regime when those loyal to now-former team president Steve Mills often clashed with those brought in by general manager Scott Perry

    This quote puts some distance between Mills and Perry. There was also the split between Mills and Perry on trading Morris that was made very public immediately before Mills got fired.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Perry is here to stay. He had a good rep in the league prior to joining the Knicks. Personally, I give Perry the benefit of the doubt given Mills’ well-documented ineptitude.

  55. I think this is pretty unfair (re: IQ). They had intelligence on a guy and used it. That’s not luck. That’s having good connections and trusting those connections.

    it didn’t seem like they had any intelligence that wasn’t available to other teams. Wesley just thinks guys who went to kentucky are better than players who didn’t. In this case, it was right. It Kevin Knox’s case…

  56. “They literally lost to a Kawhi-led team, though, in 2019.”

    That Raptors team was deeper than the Marianas Trench. Kyle Lowry, Pascal Siakam, Danny Green, Fred VanVleet, Serge Ibaka, Marc Gasol, OG Anunoby, Norman Powell, etc. And even then it took Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant breaking down late in the playoffs for them to do it. I just don’t see the Spurs benefiting from that situation over the Rockets.

  57. Gotta be honest – I am believing more than ever now that aside from the very extremes of players (ie. LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, or on the other end, dudes that just can’t play), environment and work ethic determine outcome. Isn’t it weird that basically no Jets draft pick ever works out, yet the Ravens and 49ers seem to hit it out of the park every year? Or why every player gets better when they go to the Spurs or Raptors or Jazz?

    I don’t know nearly enough about the NFL to weigh in intelligently on the Jets example, but a disproportionate number of Spurs, Raptors, and Jazz draft picks are ranked very highly by draft models.

    Just using one model, Kawhi was ranked 4th in his class (was drafted 15th), Gobert was ranked 5th (was drafted 27th), Anunoby was ranked 13th (was picked 23rd), VanVleet is the 6th highest ranked UDFA since 2006, Dejounte Murray was ranked 19th (drafted 29th), and Keldon Johnson was ranked 18th (drafted 29th). I could go on but you get the point.

    To be sure, there are plenty of counterexamples (e.g. Siakam). I am NOT saying smart drafting = abiding stringently to draft models. My point is that there are usually reasons to believe these players will have success in the NBA regardless of team (though that’s certainly a factor). It might be their statistical profile, high-level scouting, or some combination of the two but I’m pretty confident those two things determine more future success than what can broadly be called “make up,” though I certainly won’t deny that’s a factor as well.

  58. What’s so weird is if you watch the video, he very deliberately pauses and then lets it fly. It’s like he was weighing the pros and cons and decided in favor of it.

    For whatever reason, I tend to equate anti-semitism with like really old people from last century sometime. It’s not something I would equate to younger folks – except maybe for those white supremacist people. Hmmmm, we see you now Myers Leonard.

  59. Captain Fantastic: For whatever reason, I tend to equate anti-semitism with like really old people from last century sometime. It’s not something I would equate to younger folks – except maybe for those white supremacist people. Hmmmm, we see you now Myers Leonard.

    Leonard is a gamer. For whatever reason younger gamers (I assume mostly white gamers with white friends) have decided racial slurs are perfectly acceptable. I wouldn’t lump Leonard in with that age group, but if he socializes with those groups enough, it probably normalizes the slurs and rubs off.

    In no way is this an excuse, really more an indictment of gamers. I used to consider myself a gamer, but don’t anymore for unrelated reasons (namely a lack of free time).

  60. That Raptors team was deeper than the Marianas Trench. Kyle Lowry, Pascal Siakam, Danny Green, Fred VanVleet, Serge Ibaka, Marc Gasol, OG Anunoby, Norman Powell, etc. And even then it took Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant breaking down late in the playoffs for them to do it. I just don’t see the Spurs benefiting from that situation over the Rockets.

    They won 48 games without Kawhi that year. The last year he played for them, they won 61.

  61. I’ve heard one story of white teens from the tri-state area yelling the n-word while gaming and thinking they’ve done nothing wrong. Some people, likely the private school administrators protecting their wealthy, college-bound student, chalked it up to a generational difference in the acceptability of the word. Of course, the black kid who actually overheard it disagreed.

  62. I’ve got $5 that says he’s waived by the end of the day. We all knew he was a bigoted fuck last summer, wrapping himself in the flag like a good bootlicker, but there’s no way they’re going to keep him on the roster in fucking South Florida of all places.

    I had to look it up: 500,000+ Jews in South Florida. How fucking dumb can this guy be?

  63. Leonard is a gamer. For whatever reason younger gamers (I assume mostly white gamers with white friends) have decided racial slurs are perfectly acceptable.

    I’ve had to speak with the boys reference any type of bigotry talk on the mic. Unfortunately even at their young age the “f” word seems to be thrown around pretty casually.

    Bigotry speech isn’t just limited to white folks. Sadly it permeates throughout society regardless of a person’s sex, religion or color of their skin.

    I used to think it was mostly tied to a person’s educational level; but, that doesn’t really seem to be the case either. I think it mostly comes from parenting.

  64. Same article. Different quotes. Slightly different conclusion…

    # He knew that the Boston Celtics, picking at No. 26, had worked out Quickley and come away impressed. He was worried they’d steal his guy. He wanted the Knicks to pounce.#

    # “Coach says we need shooting, Quickley’s the best shooter,” #

  65. Raven:
    Mike gets Giamatti even as I was thinking it, AND he’s taught me tulpa.

    Glad to be of service haha. Just make sure to think independent beings into existence responsibly, with the Circular Ruins by Borges being a premier cautionary tale.

  66. Captain Fantastic: Bigotry speech isn’t just limited to white folks. Sadly it permeates throughout society regardless of a person’s sex, religion or color of their skin.

    Definitely and unfortunately true.

  67. The only contra-Perry point is that Aller, his main rival, comes out looking too good.

    Re Leonard: Don’t know exactly what he said. Do know that there are way too many words being said by too many people to too many ears being captured and recorded by too many devices. If he used a bad slur, I guess he’s gone but I’m more interested in the first sentence. I preferred playing NHL 95 on Sega Genesis with my buddies and beers and bongs in the privacy of my own apartment. Why would anyone want to broadcast that to the world and why would the world even care? I saw the YouTube clip and the guy’s sitting by himself in a room. Seems kind of stupid. The era-equivalent would be “Here’s Big Country Reeves playing Mario Brothers by himself.” Why would anyone be interested in that?

  68. Giamatti looks great for JD but i wouldn’t mind Zach Galifianakis also giving it a try!

  69. Knew Your Nicks:
    Giamatti looks great for JD but i wouldn’t mind Zach Galifianakis also giving it a try!

    Does Dolan have any similarly shitty cousins, nephews or sons he could play?

  70. The movie Swingers had a good NHL 95 scene. Compare and contrast that with Meyers Leonard sitting in a room by himself talking like a dumb shit.

  71. E, all merc’d out: The only contra-Perry point is that Aller, his main rival, comes out looking too good.

    Aller was against drafting IQ at 25, which doesn’t make him look good to most fans.

  72. #Does Dolan have any similarly shitty cousins, nephews or sons he could play?#

    I thought the movie would be about the knicks!
    Let’s not make it a Kardashianesque reality on Dolans!

  73. Knew Your Nicks:
    #Does Dolan have any similarly shitty cousins, nephews or sons he could play?#

    I thought the movie would be about the knicks!
    Let’s not make it a Kardashianesque reality on Dolans!

    I was thinking more just a cameo. You gotta have Dolan in at least one scene, so you may as well get all the Dolans to pump the scene through the roof.

  74. As to the broader cultural point raised by Leonard and Fantastic geo, your true white supremacists have always hated Jews as much or more than Blacks. We need merely go back to Charlottesville 2017 where the KKK types chanted — infamously and delusionally — “Jews will not replace us.” Your hard cores that a lot of people sloppily turned into “Trump supporters” actually detested Trump because he let his daughter marry a Jew.

  75. Aller was against drafting IQ at 25, which doesn’t make him look good to most fans.

    He was definitely against drafting him at #23, but it doesn’t say what he thought about drafting him once they traded down. It does note that there were a number of folks in the front office who believed that Quickley would be there at #33, but it doesn’t say whether Aller was one of them.

  76. #I was thinking more just a cameo. You gotta have Dolan in at least one scene, so you may as well get all the Dolans to pump the scene through the roof.#

    Lately i like watching SNL videos on YouTube.
    I would love to watch a JDolan related one but it would need Alan to hijack the script to get this done!

  77. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    I’ve got $5 that says he’s waived by the end of the day. We all knew he was a bigoted fuck last summer, wrapping himself in the flag like a good bootlicker, but there’s no way they’re going to keep him on the roster in fucking South Florida of all places.

    I had to look it up: 500,000+ Jews in South Florida. How fucking dumb can this guy be?

    Mickey Arison, the owner of the Heat, is Jewish.

  78. If the film is to be a satire of the Knicks, then Danny DeVito + CGI = James Dolan.

  79. I prefer an office with “nerds” and “bullies” working together than one with only “nerds” or only “bullies”.
    If the final decisions are based on the best possible way to contend for a chip and not to impulsions or math paradoxes then I’m In with this process!

  80. Brian Cronin: He was definitely against drafting him at #23, but it doesn’t say what he thought about drafting him once they traded down. It does note that there were a number of folks in the front office who believed that Quickley would be there at #33, but it doesn’t say whether Aller was one of them.

    Apologies. You’re right, I misread it.

  81. TheClashFan:
    If the film is to be a satire of the Knicks, then Danny DeVito + CGI = James Dolan.

    If we’re going the satire route, we need a flashback scene of Sam Elliot as Phil Jackson getting high on peyote and mumbling about triangles.

  82. The real question is how many people previous to this incident would have bet small sums of cash that Meyers Leonard was in fact Jewish?

  83. I just finished the article. This one part really stuck – maybe because it was literally by itself in the piece:

    “Leon’s communication isn’t always great,” a second person with close Knicks ties said. “He can be hands-off.”

    I wonder how that plays out within the organization.

    Wes is portrayed pretty unfavorably. Aller got himself a big ol’ pic in the article.

    Leon’s a bit of a black hole. Who knows if the not so communicative thing is good or bad, or just his way.

    This article is going to rock the boat a bit with so many media folks involved with the Knicks.

    I know if I was Wes, I’d be on a mission to find every leak in the organization.

  84. I wouldn’t be surprised if Perry is here to stay. He had a good rep in the league prior to joining the Knicks. Personally, I give Perry the benefit of the doubt given Mills’ well-documented ineptitude.

    I agree and hope this is the case. Perry’s job seems to be to negotiate trades and contracts, not to decide what the team needs, and he’s good at that. What is more, if there is anything you would expect a player agent like Rose to know, it’s which GMs are good negotiators for their team.He decided to keep Perry, which is a big vote of confidence.

  85. Internet is fast!

    Googling “Meyers Leonard” gives you that in wikipedia as a result:

    #Meyers Patrick Leonard (born February 27, 1992) is an anti-semitic …#

    If you click in it’s different but the incident is already in his wiki profile on the personal life section.

  86. #Meyers Patrick Leonard (born February 27, 1992) is an anti-semitic …#

    Not anymore in wiki

  87. I wonder if there’s a Wikipedia task force on standby to undo edits on pages of people who do dumb racist things. Like, I already imagine Wikipedia editors to be joyless dweebs, but that would be another level.

  88. They won 48 games without Kawhi that year. The last year he played for them, they won 61.

    Still not better than a Warriors team with KD and Klay.

  89. How about John Torturro reconstructing the legendary Air Bargnani dunk attempt?
    Will that make it through director’s cut?

  90. I wonder if there’s a Wikipedia task force on standby to undo edits on pages of people who do dumb racist things. Like, I already imagine Wikipedia editors to be joyless dweebs, but that would be another level.

    I am one, and fuck you I have my fun, though not as active as I used to be since I have a real life now. When someone’s in the news like this, the page is either locked or subject to quick reversions.

    One of my favorite rewrites was taking Dwyane Wade’s long-ass page and editing it for neutrality. Read like it was hagiography/fanfic for awhile, there. I should do it for all the Celtics.

  91. For some reason a major takeaway from this piece for me is, “Can you imagine if IQ was a Celtic?”

    We owe Worldwide a debt of gratitude, bad process or not.

  92. The Honorable Cock Jowles: I am one, and fuck you I have my fun, though not as active as I used to be since I have a real life now. When someone’s in the news like this, the page is either locked or subject to quick reversions.

    One of my favorite rewrites was taking Dwyane Wade’s long-ass page and editing it for neutrality. Read like it was hagiography/fanfic for awhile, there. I should do it for all the Celtics.

    I’m both shocked and completely unsurprised haha. Please do with the Celtics – editing their wiki pages to be neutral is but one battle in the war to nip the homerism of future Celtics fans in the proverbial bud.

  93. Still not better than a Warriors team with KD and Klay.

    But the Warriors didn’t have KD that Conference Finals (and only had him for four games of the semifinals).

  94. My drachmas:
    A healthy prime Kawhi makes you a contender on his own.
    Having Pop and co also are two good reasons to compete for a chip every season.

  95. Gotta say I’m a little frustrated by how overrated the Knicks have been in some of the league-wide power rankings I’ve seen the last few days. It’s a good problem to have etc etc but it begs the inevitable Knicks-for-clicks schadenfreude when this team gets, like, four games under .500 due to natural reversion and a tougher schedule. There’s no way this team is top-12 in the league (on BBREF’s SRS we rank 17th, RAPTOR has us at 22nd, I’ll optimistically take the former, which leaves us at a decent chance at the non-play-in playoffs in the awful East). All of the national writers are garbage, and it’s amusing that for all of the flack analytics get, these blowhards who cite it when it suits them still value their own narratives over actual analysis.

  96. Mike Honcho: If we’re going the satire route, we need a flashback scene of Sam Elliot as Phil Jackson getting high on peyote and mumbling about triangles.

    Perfect casting! Chris Rock as Steve Mills?

  97. I think Mel Gibson would make a great James Dolan.

    I also think Mel Gibson would make a great Meyers Leonard.

  98. The guy who played Biff on Back to the Future would make a great young Tom Thibodeau

  99. I will point out again that Leon Rose is a rookie GM. It’s not an easy job…especially for the Knicks. I’ll give him a slight pass on the Obi pick…chalk it up to a rookie mistake. He hasn’t made any other big mistakes yet, so I’m in wait and see mode. If he’s smart he will get to where we all seem to be right now…listen to the guys with the most expertise in a given area and filter everything a final time through Aller. Rose owns the Obi pick…strike one.

  100. I lean Zach G for Thibs. He’s got the morphology and irrational grumpiness down pat. Trouble is it’s hard to find an image of him without a beard.

    Gandolfini might’ve been perfect for Leon. Ah well.

  101. Knew Your Nicks:
    Giamatti looks great for JD but i wouldn’t mind Zach Galifianakis also giving it a try!

    I think Galifianakis would make a wonderfully ridiculous Kristaps Porzingis… or at least Janis.

    Manny Jacinto should play Jeremy Lin, but for some reason Dolan always sees him as Ken Jeong

  102. Mike Honcho:
    I wonder if there’s a Wikipedia task force on standby to undo edits on pages of people who do dumb racist things. Like, I already imagine Wikipedia editors to be joyless dweebs, but that would be another level.

    A. I was a wikipedia editor way back when it was new so I take personal offense to this.

    B. You comment regularly on a Knicks fan site, you’re not allowed to call anyone else a joyless dweeb.

  103. vincoug: B. You comment regularly on a Knicks fan site, you’re not allowed to call anyone else a joyless dweeb.

    Ha!

  104. Meyers Leonard’s apology is honestly one of the most ridiculously insincere I’ve seen in a long time. Everything fits in every single possible PR statement made, including “I didn’t know the word”, like why the hell would you even use that damn word for anything other than being offensive? In a situation where you’re angry and purposefully trying to say something hurtful?

    He should fire his PR team asap.

  105. Now that I’ve thought about it from a casting perspective, I’ve found our Dolan.

    Like singers at CPAC, no reputable actor would sign on. There’s just no meat to playing a static super-villain. So Giamanti, and the ghost of Gandofini, and the corpse of Glen Frey are off the table.

    So, our Dolan has to be… Craig Bierko.

    Yes, I know, that’s not who y’all had in mind. But just look at how he wears his pork-pie hat, and the shit-eating grin he can muster to go with it…

    https://flickr.com/photos/169456107@N06/51021348822/in/dateposted-public/

  106. My god, Val Kilmer it is.

    And Donnie, nice try, but he’s got a chin. Automatic disqualifier. Even Mitch McConnell would be better fit.

  107. Igno-Bot 3000: Igno

    I’m not sure which rankings you are referring to. The Athletic has us 13th in this week’s ranking And ESPN has us at 15th. That’s not outrageous for a team that’s over .500. The ESPN one actually predicts in the text that the Knicks will miss the playoffs this year because of the strength of the upcoming schedule.

  108. vincoug: A. I was a wikipedia editor way back when it was new so I take personal offense to this.

    B. You comment regularly on a Knicks fan site, you’re not allowed to call anyone else a joyless dweeb.

    I did kind of walk into that one, didn’t I?

  109. I finally watched the Meyers Leonard video and I think you guys are misinterpreting the pause before he says the word. I don’t think he paused to consider if he should say that word and then decided to say it, I think he was going to say a different word, the n-word, realized he really, really can’t say that, and pivoted to a different slur but one that was less likely to get his ass kicked on the court.

  110. nah, it’s pretty clear where he was going with that. Part of the anti-semitic playbook is this racist idea that jewish people are “sneaky”. So when he got “sniped at” by a “coward”, his mind went straight to correlating that act to his racist perception of jewish people. All of which makes the idea that he didn’t know that the word meant to be quite laughable. That was an incredibly intentional word choice by a man who would only instinctively go there if he’d spent a long time harboring anti-semitism.

  111. Vorkunov has a piece today suggesting names of players the Knicks might target if they’re looking to upgrade at the deadline, while acknowledging the potential cost and warts. So Oladipo’s on there, even as Vork notes that he still can’t shoot and would take possessions away from Randle and RJ. But there’s also Fournier, Bjelica, Kenrich Williams, Reddick, and a few other guys who would be potential Reggie Bullock upgrades.

    I know most of us don’t really want to go any more in for this season than we already did with the Rose trade. But assuming the cost is relatively minor (a 2nd round pick or two, one or both of Frank and Knox), are there any wings you’d be interested in taking into our cap space this year?

  112. The Rose trade is working out better than I expected, but I think that was enough for me.

    And I’d rather give Frank a look at being the Reggie Bullock upgrade.

  113. And I’d rather give Frank a look at being the Reggie Bullock upgrade.

    I’d definitely rather play Frank than Bullock, but even with the hot 3-point shooting, Frank’s offensive ceiling isn’t particularly high. Short-term, it feels like the team needs one more reliable scorer to go with Randle and RJ. On some nights, Quickley is that and more. On others, he can’t hit the broad side of a barn, which is okay since he’s a rookie. Burks briefly looked like that guy at the start of the season, but it doesn’t seem like he ever fully recovered from that early injury.

  114. Yeah, there’s no way Frank is going to help us much as an Evan Fournier. I just don’t think the help is worth an asset. I’m ok with the inconsistency you describe. I’m sure Thibs is not, though.

  115. Lonzo Ball makes so much sense for this season for the reasons being discussed.

  116. Hubert:
    nah, it’s pretty clear where he was going with that. Part of the anti-semitic playbook is this racist idea that jewish people are “sneaky”. So when he got “sniped at” by a “coward”, his mind went straight to correlating that act to his racist perception of jewish people. All of which makes the idea that he didn’t know that the word meant to be quite laughable. That was an incredibly intentional word choice by a man who would only instinctively go there if he’d spent a long time harboring anti-semitism.

    Sure and all that makes sense. But the n-word is like the word that asshole gamers like to use along with various slurs for gay people. There have been multiple controversies over the last several years with pro gamers using it as a general insult.

  117. “I don’t get the sense Lonzo is available or affordable.”

    Nor do I to be honest. Doesn’t change the fact that he’s the best option out there.

  118. Alan: Burks briefly looked like that guy at the start of the season, but it doesn’t seem like he ever fully recovered from that early injury.

    Or alternatively, he’s just not that good…

  119. Irrespective of whether Frank should get a stint in the rotation, absent injuries, I don’t see Thibs letting him in. That means he’s gone next year. He and our 15mil cap room are expiring assets. Work those phones Brock!

  120. I think the very act of live gaming in that setting and live streaming brings out those antisocial thoughts and eventually words. So much of life is now so performative that it’s hard to even tell what’s real anymore. Was this “real” anti-Semitism or just an anti-Semitic word used for maximum shock in a setting in which shock value is so much the coin of the realm?

    (This isn’t remotely a defense of the arrested developed loser and likely anti-Semite, so please don’t interpret it as such. For public policy purposes, it’s fine to default to “you used the awful word, you are the thing that people who use the awful word ‘for real’ are,” but there’s more going on that’s worthy of closer examination.)

  121. ***Vorkunov has a piece today suggesting names of players the Knicks might target***

    When is Vorkunov going to do a piece suggesting names of actors they might target to play Knicks?

  122. Hubert:
    I don’t get the sense Lonzo is available or affordable.

    Whoever pays him $100M over the next four years better hope that his contract-year shooting improvement is not a mirage. I’ve always liked Lonzo and thought he was the #1 prospect in that draft class, which doesn’t say much given that there are no real top-tier superstars from that class yet, but he is not going to move the needle anywhere with his 98 TS%+ and 20% USG. Especially not at 25% of a team’s cap. If you go off actual production and age, I’d say he’s more a $12M a year guy. But upside, draft slot, college pedigree, point guard, so he’s gonna get paid.

  123. Donnie Walsh:
    ***Vorkunov has a piece today suggesting names of players the Knicks might target***

    When is Vorkunov going to do a piece suggesting names of actors they might target to play Knicks?

    He better not use any of the names bandied about here the last couple of days. Especially Meryl Streep!

  124. The Honorable Cock Jowles: Whoever pays him $100M over the next four years better hope that his contract-year shooting improvement is not a mirage. I’ve always liked Lonzo and thought he was the #1 prospect in that draft class, which doesn’t say much given that there are no real top-tier superstars from that class yet, but he is not going to move the needle anywhere with his 98 TS%+ and 20% USG. Especially not at 25% of a team’s cap. If you go off actual production and age, I’d say he’s more a $12M a year guy. But upside, draft slot, college pedigree, point guard, so he’s gonna get paid.

    a guy who is less risky and would seem to cost the same amount as Ball is Rozier. With him, at least you’re paying for production instead of upside, name recognition, and the residual value of being picked #2.

    FWIW, none of these guys seem likely to be traded until the offseason. It seems like a seller’s market if you’re desperate to improve your standing before the march deadline.

  125. Lonzo is RFA this offseason. We would probably still have to do a sign and trade to prevent NOLA from just matching our offer sheet. Which reminds me: can anyone think of a case where one team declined to match their restricted free agent’s offer sheet and it worked out well for the team that got that free agent? All I can think about are guys like Lin and TH2, where the teams that got them eventually had to use a sweetener to offload the contract.

  126. I really didn’t want the guy, but I think Derrick Rose is doing a good enough job holding the fort at PG that we can afford to be selective when it comes to finding a long term answer to that position.

  127. The tricky thing with trade targets in my opinion is that the big spot in the rotation that needs an upgrade is Bullock, but because he’s the primary wing defender a lot of guys who seem like potential replacements would actually change a lot of roles fairly significantly. Fournier, for example is a player I like reasonably well and who would be a reasonable target given that he’s expiring and unlikely to cost a ton of assets. And theoretically you could just drop him into the starting lineup and rotation for Bullock without changing much else and madke the offense look quite a bit more dynamic and varied. But I don’t know if he can handle the primary wing defensive assignment every night and I wouldn’t want to put that on RJ at this point either. A lot of the “more shooting” wing names you see thrown around have this problem.

    I keep coming back to the fact that in order for me to feel okay about any trade it’s going to need to be a homerun – something where we get a guy who can help us in a real way right now but also causes no long-term issues and also comes at incredibly low asset cost. That’s a lot to ask and why we should probably just sit tight.

  128. Alan: Which reminds me: can anyone think of a case where one team declined to match their restricted free agent’s offer sheet and it worked out well for the team that got that free agent?

    You say that like Bobby Portis wasn’t worth $15M last year!!!

  129. IIRC, Utah declined to match Portland’s offer sheet for then RFA Wes Matthews – who went on to have some pretty good years for the Blazers.

  130. I know I’m still on an island here, but there is no need to trade assets for a guy that Bradley Beal is going to replace this summer :)

    Once we have the core of Beal, Barrett, Randle, and Mitch in place, Rose & IQ can adequately man the PG spot until we can find or develop the final piece of the puzzle.

    Of course, we’ll have plenty of cap space in the summer of 2022 to address that need after Julius Randle signs that team-friendly contract extension this summer!

    I tell ya, the future is bright when my second cup of coffee kicks in.

  131. You say that like Bobby Portis wasn’t worth $15M last year!!!

    Portis was UFA. We wildly overpaid him just because it seemed like a good idea at the time to Steve Mills.

  132. Barrettcuda: 98 TS% at 20% USG would make Lonzo the greatest player in NBA history.

    You missed a critical symbol in that sentence.

  133. thenamestsam: The tricky thing with trade targets in my opinion is that the big spot in the rotation that needs an upgrade is Bullock, but because he’s the primary wing defender a lot of guys who seem like potential replacements would actually change a lot of roles fairly significantly.

    I think this is right. The real question is how valuable is Bullock’s defense? Thibs thinks it’s pretty valuable otherwise we should see a lot more Burks. I do think Fournier is a significant upgrade and guarantees a playoff spot, but the difference between him and Burks or Bullock is not worth a 1st.

    Rose’s shooting keeps defying my expectations, but I still think we need a PG upgrade more than SG. If Rose works out, then I think Bullock’s small usage can be hid.

  134. Alan, were you aware that WB canceled Pepe Le Pew in the new Space Jam movie because of his contribution to rape culture? I don’t know how I feel about this. You should dedicate a podcast where you discuss the subject with Colbie Smulders.

  135. “You missed a critical symbol in that sentence.”

    Wouldn’t be the first time.

    Glad Brian took my comment out of moderation, though.

  136. Alan: Portis was UFA. We wildly overpaid him just because it seemed like a good idea at the time to Steve Mills.

    Pretty sure he was RFA, otherwise that move is even dumber than I originally thought. Then again, it is Steve Mills.

  137. Well, Mr. le Pew has not yet been canceled from the NYT crossword, per Sunday’s puzzle. Where’s strat to explain to me the limits of NYT’s liberal bias?

  138. I thought Pepe would’ve been canceled awhile ago because of his stereotype as a horny, oversexed Frenchman who smells. But I guess no one cares about offending the French.

  139. Put me down as in the anti-Lonzo camp as well. Good player who fits on absolutely every team and is still very young but there’s absolutely nothing in his record as a player to suggest he’s more than Just A Guy, and he’s 100% going to get paid more than that.

  140. Alan: Portis was UFA. We wildly overpaid him just because it seemed like a good idea at the time to Steve Mills.

    Pretty sure Portis was RFA, otherwise I never would have thought the money made sense. I remember thinking it made at least some sense since we needed to pry him away from Washington(?) and we had the money. Then again, Mills gave Ron Baker $4M and a de facto no-trade clause.

  141. My understanding that the Pepe scene in the Space Jam movie addressed Pepe’s predatory ways and made some sort of joke about the cat getting a restraining order.

    Maybe best to just quietly leave that scene on the cutting room floor.

  142. Best way to interpret l’affaire Le Pew is as just another attack on the mating rituals of white heterosexuals. There’s a lot that goes into that under the surface, including sexual competition, that is a bit beyond the scope of a basketball website. Suffice it to say that things are never as simple, and certainly not as simplistic, as they are too often held to be. We live in a strange, transitional, between-analog-and-digital era. Hopefully the end product will be OK.

  143. E, all merc’d out:
    Best way to interpret l’affaire Le Pew is as just another attack on the mating rituals of white heterosexuals. There’s a lot that goes into that under the surface, including sexual competition, that is a bit beyond the scope of a basketball website.Suffice it to say that things are never as simple, and certainly not as simplistic, as they are too often held to be.We live in a strange, transitional, between-analog-and-digital era.Hopefully the end product will be OK.

    The guy literally holds down a female cat who is clearly uninterested while attempting to force himself on her. It’s a G-rated date rape, and I really hope that date rape is not considered to be a crucial mating ritual for straight men. Seems pretty simple to me.

  144. “Best way to interpret l’affaire Le Pew is as just another attack on the mating rituals of white heterosexuals.”

    I hope this is a joke. But I’m at the point in the convo where Poe’s Law is beginning to apply and I just can’t tell anymore.

  145. Portis was an RFA, and then when Mills made him that offer Washington rescinded their qualifying offer and he technically became a UFA. I have no idea what the difference between rescinding a QO and not matching an offer sheet is. But for all intents and purposes, Washington could have matched our offer if they wanted do.

  146. I’m not a Le Pew scholar by any stretch, though I am a Charles Blow reader — but pursuing an uninterested woman isn’t “rape,” date or otherwise. Just as Andrew Cuomo’s reported stuff, e.g., isn’t “rape.” That’s as silly as the fools who insisted that weed is a “gateway drug” to heroin.

    I’d be happy to discuss it more in a different forum, where it could be an actual discussion. Here, I’m less interested. I’d simply suggest using more precise terminology to describe fundamentally different things; typically that’s how language is used, so we’re basically where we were in the famous/infamous discussion about whether the US was “founded on slavery.” I’m a lawyer and I use language very precisely. That probably puts me out of step. I sense a ritualistic and frankly kind of boring pattern, and with that I’m moving onto basketball.

    I’m still intrigued by both Beal and Ball. I’d put them atop my list.

  147. The whole “joke” of Pepe Le Pew is that he doesn’t give a fuck about consent. That’s the tension that creates the “humor.”

    Not appropriate for a child’s cartoon now, and honestly I don’t know what the fuck they were thinking in 1955 either but good riddance Pepe. Let’s not lament the “cancellation” of this boring, unfunny, one-dimensional character. He sucked in the first place and was pretty much the worst Looney Tunes character to begin with. I was way into Bugs Bunny when I was a kid and I would always get bummed out when a Pepe joint came on back in the day.

  148. Early Bird: I do think Fournier is a significant upgrade and guarantees a playoff spot, but the difference between him and Burks or Bullock is not worth a 1st.

    Someone pointed out yesterday that Leon appears to be managing Dolan pretty well. It begs the question, what type of expectations has Leon set forth for his boss for this season? The hiring of Thibs suggests that Leon could have made Dolan believe that he could pull off a straddle: make the playoffs and improve the Knick brand, while building for the future. If the team were to regress prior to March 25th and jeopardize a post-season berth, it may compel Leon to overpay for a rental like Fornier.

  149. I think the Post article yesterday, as they often are, was ultimately aimed at Dolan. That’s a significant means of communication between Knicks execs and the bluesman.

  150. Dolan doesn’t worry me anymore. Since Phil took over, he’s been very hands off for the most part. He got involved when Phil wanted to trade KP and fired him (right move to fire phil though phil was right about wanting to trade KP). But besides the Oak incident, he’s been quiet and the Oak thing wasn’t entirely on him either.

    I think the only issue with Dolan is that since Phil he hasn’t hire the right people to run the Knicks. But he’s been perfectly fine with the team stinking/rebuilding and hasn’t pushed for some win now move. I mean of course he wanted KD and Irving but there hasn’t been some sort of Melo king’s ransom deal since Melo really.

    So I’m not worried about him intervening for some lopsided trade anymore. I think he finally hired the right person with Leon (or at least good enough).

    I’m not defending him, but even people like Dolan can grow up and mature a bit. I think he’s learned lessons from the early years of running the team and is content now to let others do it while he plays shitty blues.

  151. JK47, this is what is so funny to me. Pepe was like a 3rd string looney tune character. And the Dr. Seuss books that they decided to stop publishing were like his 6 least popular books. These are not big losses and its not “cancel culture” for an entertainment or publishing company to decide to discontinue a now obsolete and unpopular product.

    Its all a distraction. The GOP is happy to engage in real cancel culture, which is cancelling voter rights of POC in this country through legislation, gerrymandering, etc. That is literally the definition of taking away someone’s right to express themselves politically.

  152. E, all merc’d out:
    I’m not a Le Pew scholar by any stretch, though I am a Charles Blow reader — but pursuing an uninterested woman isn’t “rape,” date or otherwise. Just as Andrew Cuomo’s reported stuff, e.g., isn’t “rape.”That’s as silly as the fools who insisted that weed is a “gateway drug” to heroin.

    I’d be happy to discuss it more in a different forum, where it could be an actual discussion.Here, I’m less interested.I’d simply suggest using more precise terminology to describe fundamentally different things; typically that’s how language is used, so we’re basically where we were in the famous/infamous discussion about whether the US was “founded on slavery.”I’m a lawyer and I use language very precisely.That probably puts me out of step. I sense a ritualistic and frankly kind of boring pattern, and with that I’m moving onto basketball.

    I’m still intrigued by both Beal and Ball.I’d put them atop my list.

    Mr. Fancy Nuanced Lawman, could you reach into the depths of your enlightened, non-tribal objectivity and infer for me what this picture represents?
    https://lrmonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Pepe-Le-Pew.jpg

    What, in your estimated view, does Pepe appear to be trying to accomplish? Does physically restraining someone you are sexually coming onto constitute a normal pursuit of an uninterested party? And why, pray tell, does it especially matter if this odious character is removed from the new Space Jam movie?

  153. You all lack the nuance to see that they’re actually just practicing jiu jitsu

  154. “The whole “joke” of Pepe Le Pew is that he doesn’t give a fuck about consent. That’s the tension that creates the “humor.”

    Except in those shorts like ” For Scent-imental Reasons” where the tables are turned and he’s agressively pursued in the end by the cat in a way that makes him feel violated and uncomfortable. I always saw the irony in these types of arcs as a way of subverting rape culture through an act of reversal by putting the victimizer in the victim’s shoes and asking him to confront how the behavior he exhibits would make him feel if he were similarly objectified.

    But as for the joke, I wouldn’t put it into the movie, it’s totally inappropriate.

    Was hoping we could revive the character the way Bugs was despite his sodrid history of blackface in “Southern Fried Rabbit,” begging a slave-driving Yosemite Sam, “Don’t beat me, massa, don’t beat me!”.

    But you’re perhaps right that he’s too one-dimensionally stereotypical to ever be an interesting character since its apparent people can miss the point.

  155. Take the picture to a detective or a jury, tell them it’s evidence of “rape.” See what they say.

    He’s trying to seduce the cartoon cat, apparently. She appears uninterested. If you have pictures of him doing more than that, get back to us. While subjective word and image association will be what subjective word and image association will be, there’s no sense in which the picture actually denotes or connotes “rape.”

    As to the cancellation question, I never found Le Pew the least bit funny and was never really even a Looney Tunes guy that much and I’m actually kind of surprised he’s even a thing anymore. He’s a 1955-era dorky stereotype, the product of an age riddled with them.

    A better example of all this might be the Seinfeld episode that revolves around a guy literally whipping his dick out in front of Elaine — obviously massively supra-Le Pew in caddishness and aggressiveness. But the problem there is, of course, Elaine’s reaction. That episode and probably Seinfeld himself and itself are probably on shaky ground in the current climate. We’ll see. Elaine’s reaction was written for her by men and in any event could easily be repurposed as some kind of “false consciousness.”

  156. So much of life is now so performative that it’s hard to even tell what’s real anymore.

    That’s a wild thought. As younger generations become more and more inundated with content designed to draw attention – what affect will that have on human behavior going forward, not just here in the US, but around the world.

    User supplied content really cuts out a lot of opportunity for moderation.

  157. Today on Knickerblogger: poster introduces standards of criminal investigation or conviction as a rebuttal to allegations of a cartoon character committing a sexual assault against another cartoon character. The alleged intellectual decay of progressivism lurks as subtext throughout. Somehow it leads back to the Framers and slavery and requires no fewer than three threads to contain. Said poster digs heels so deep into the floor that Mike K. sends him a bill.

  158. The other thing I find interesting about this is the fact that everything entertainment wise is supposed to be available to us to chose to purchase/view or not. Between every streaming site, being able to order stuff instantly on Amazon and apple TV where pretty much every movie, tv show is supposed to be available, I feel like there is now this idea that nothing should be discontinued or else its censorship.

    But when we were kids (at least those of us who are mid 30s or older), that just wasn’t the case. Blockbuster didn’t have everything and you couldn’t access everything on amazon or streaming or whatever. I remember flipping out when I found the DVD collection of Get a Life bc it was impossible to find and I paid top dollar to buy it.

    Like 20 years ago would people even notice if Pepe LePeu was no longer airing? Are old Looney Tune cartoons even played on TV anymore? There is endless content available, new stuff being produced all the time. Were parents really clamoring to read the racist Dr. Seuss to their kids or would they have even noticed if they had just disappeared without announcement?

  159. I’m still intrigued by both Beal and Ball.I’d put them atop my list.

    I’m going to stick with Beal but pass on Ball in favor of snagging Rozier down the line in free agency. Projecting our 2022-23 starting lineup (age in parentheses):

    1 Rozier (28)
    2 Beal (29)
    3 Barrett (22)
    4 Randle (28)
    5 Robinson (24)

    6th Quickley (23)
    7th one of our picks in the 2021 draft (the other was part of the Beal deal along with Obi Toppin, Kevin Knox, and our unprotected picks in 2022 & 2023)

    Book mark it, Z-Man! I am prepared for my optimism to be mocked in 16 months.

  160. One of the boys is a big Jessie fan (Disney show I think), I had no idea the show was older (ran from 2011 to 2015). A lot of the humor is aimed at “stereotypes”. I remember catching part of one episode where they relentlessly dogged old people. Even I was getting a little irritated.

    The thought though that came up was how challenging it must be now to put together a show like that in today’s environment.

    Making fun of easily recognized stereotypes is easy humor to hit upon and relate to a child. Change is occurring, it’s not always easy though to identify it at the moment it happens.

  161. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Today on Knickerblogger: poster introduces standards of criminal investigation or conviction as a rebuttal to allegations of a cartoon character committing a sexual assault against another cartoon character. The alleged intellectual decay of progressivism lurks as subtext throughout. Somehow it leads back to the Framers and slavery and requires no fewer than three threads to contain. Said poster digs heels so deep into the floor that Mike K. sends him a bill.

    Maybe add a footnote about Hubert revealing the path to our first championship since 1973.

  162. Shockingly, the term “rape” has now been walked back to “sexual assault.”

    As I said in my very first sentence before getting unfortunately roped into all this, what is really going on is that the way white men depict themselves treating white women is under cultural attack — as is now crystal clear from the to and fro. Pepe Le Pew was a smelly cad marketed as a Lothario. He doesn’t need to be turned into a “rapist” for that to have been a bad thing, although in the spirit of the Leonard discussion the word “rapist” in this context has a pretty obvious performative element. I think that’s a good thing — as I would have said if anyone had asked. But the ritual gonna ritual.

  163. I’mma keep it buck – I thought Pepe was kinda funny when I was a kid watching Looney Toons. He’s totally inappropriate nowadays and that’s fine. Also, I don’t think Chuck Jones was meta enough to think he was replicating real animal mating rituals (where some female species do have to physically ward off unwanted suitors) when he created Le Pew.

    Sidebar: If you’ve gotten through the 2nd episode of Last Chance U, you saw me. The scene where we approach the coach about the Pie the Head Coach promo idea.

  164. The only options from Vork’s list I found even mildly intriguing were taking on OPJ for sweetener and gauging Kenrich Williams’ market. Everyone else comes with the problems ‘stam identified–they’ll either cost too much, or their impact will be so minimal it’s silly to give up literally anything for them.

    There’s no one on the market that could significantly brighten our future, and there’s no one on the market that could make us a lot better right now without giving up more than we should be willing to give up to do so. We already threw Thibs a bone with one bad-but-inconsequential trade. Stand pat and see what happens.

    Re: Pepe LePew, given that children often directly mimic the conduct of their fictional characters of choice, it seems glaringly obvious to me for that reason alone that we should retire the guy whose entire shtick is, to put it as mildly as possible, sexual misconduct.

  165. I still want to know how the lawyer who reads so carefully was able to infer that Pepe, a cartoon skunk, was white?

  166. E, all merc’d out:
    Take the picture to a detective or a jury, tell them it’s evidence of “rape.”See what they say.

    He’s trying to seduce the cartoon cat, apparently.She appears uninterested.If you have pictures of him doing more than that, get back to us.While subjective word and image association will be what subjective word and image association will be, there’s no sense in which the picture actually denotes or connotes “rape.”

    Lol nice moving of the goalpost to the legal standards of a courtroom. Yes, I’m quite sure a judge wouldn’t be convinced that’s evidence of rape, because it’s a fucking cartoon; none of it, in fact, happened, so evidentiary standards will be especially hard to meet in this case. What do you, as an adult hypothetically capably of engaging with subtext, think Pepe intends to do with the cat? It’s a kid show, they’re not going to graphically show the skunk raping the cat or doing anything more than grab her, but the subtext is blindingly obvious. Is grabbing someone and holding them while they try to squirm out of your arms as you try to “seduce” her a totally normal mating ritual for you? Even if we remove the term rape and substitute in sexual assault, does Pepe come off looking any better?

  167. “Re: Pepe LePew, given that children often directly mimic the conduct of their fictional characters of choice, it seems glaringly obvious to me for that reason alone that we should retire the guy whose entire shtick is, to put it as mildly as possible, sexual misconduct.”

    Here’s the thing though, I never ever thought Pepe LePew was a character to be mimicked as a kid. I always felt the entire point of the guy was how comically sleazy, overbearing, and unromantic he actually was. If I was French, I’d have been offended by how American cartoonists represented my culture. But somehow I feel like the critical irony of the character has been completely lost.

  168. I will concur with you, E, that the Pepe discussion is stupid and thread derailing, so I’ll take a vow of silence regarding a certain skunk.

  169. Adults have said for decades that kids imitate what they see on TV and the movies and there isn’t a hint of evidence that that’s the case. Nobody looked at Pepe Le Pew and went out and grabbed the fifth grade girl at the desk next door and no fifth grade Le Pew watcher grew up and said, “I’m going to treat women like Le Pew did.” And no juror in a rape trial said, “The defendant’s not guilty” because the juror consumed too much Le Pew. Just like men and kids didn’t watch Seinfeld and start whipping out their dicks in front of women en masse. That’s not how any of this works.

  170. Barrettcuda:
    LOL I’m sorry for bringing this topic up.

    I escalated it, so it’s probably more my fault than anyone else’s. Sorry, guys – I didn’t intend to pull a BobNeptune.

  171. If it helps matters, I’m smiling and laughing as I write “Le Pew.” I just laughed again.

  172. Just a quick note that the record will show E introduced the standard of rape thanks to his professional, legal precision in misreading “g-rated rape” and “rape culture” as the standalone word “rape”. Nobody walked back their claim, because nobody made the inflated claim.

    Also, not sure why depictions of sexual assault or abuse would be acceptable in a kids cartoon. If defendant would like to plead down, we can forego a trial.

  173. Something can’t be “G-rated date rape” if it isn’t “rape.” And Charles Blow used the words “rape culture.”

    The picture wasn’t sexual assault, either. Kissing a woman against her will could theoretically be, but the picture didn’t include that and it’s not in the same stratosphere as actual rape so it’s either pointless or disingenuous to talk about the two as if they’re remotely the same. I guess Mike is getting at the idea that in his (Le Pew’s) head, Le Pew wanted to have sex with the cat, but if he didn’t take any actions toward that, it’s neither here nor there. Unless of course, the offensive part is Le Pew’s thoughts and imagination on the subject — at which point we’re right back full square at the mating rituals idea. Which is why I said that in my very first comment on the subject.

  174. “As sorry as Eris after she lobbed the golden apple.”

    I think all of Olympus should’ve been embarassed by what happened there.

    BTW, that entire legend should also be canceled. The idea that the great epic war of the Bronze Age Mediterranean was caused by petty female vanity is just sexist and mysogynistic.

  175. Well, the right wing stankosphere got the vapors for a solid four days when it was announced that “McElligot’s Pool” would no longer be published so I can only imagine the howls of outrage now that their favorite French skunk is being sent to the memory hole.

    Or should I say their favorite “freedom” skunk is being sent to the memory hole. Remember that one, Freedom Fries? Glad these totally not hypocritical people are here to save us from cancel culture.

  176. “Or should I say their favorite “freedom” skunk is being sent to the memory hole. Remember that one, Freedom Fries? Glad these totally not hypocritical people are here to save us from cancel culture.”

    Totally agree. And that’s always been the irony with these right-wing cries about cancel culture of political correctness. Its they who are the biggest crybaby snowflakes. They’re just projecting their own bullshit when they decry censorship. Many of these people are the same ones who made sure to boycott the Dixie Chicks when they critized GWB and the Iraq Invasion or supported that Orange Orangutang in getting Colin Kaepernick blackballed from the NFL for kneeling during the anthem in protest of anti-black police brutality.

  177. E, all merc’d out: Something can’t be “G-rated date rape” if it isn’t “rape.” And Charles Blow used the words “rape culture.”

    I don’t think you understand how the MPAA rating system works.

  178. Hubert: Projecting our 2022-23 starting lineup (age in parentheses):
    1 Rozier (28)
    2 Beal (29)
    3 Barrett (22)
    4 Randle (28)
    5 Robinson (24)
    6th Quickley (23)
    7th one of our picks in the 2021 draft

    I thought Beal was only one part of your plan. You really think this team can win a championship? :O

  179. The floor on that team would be in the upper 40’s win-wise, I think. If we could keep Noel I could see that being a legitimate playoff team for years.

  180. Pfft. You want to tell me that team can’t be assembled? You’re probably right. But that’s a 60 win team with Thibs in a post LeBron NBA. The man won 62 with Rose-Bogans-Deng-Boozer-Noah.

  181. The floor on that team would be in the upper 40’s win-wise, I think. If we could keep Noel I could see that being a legitimate playoff team for years.

    Oh, it’d easily be a playoff team for years. But it sounds more like a Joe Johnson/Josh Smith/Mike Bibby/Al Horford style playoff team.

  182. Hubert:
    Pfft. You want to tell me that team can’t be assembled? You’re probably right. But that’s a 60 win team with Thibs in a post LeBron NBA. The man won 62 with Rose-Bogans-Deng-Boozer-Noah.

    I did say the floor would be in the upper 40’s. I would agree that that team would regularly get into the 50’s winwise, but I’m less sure that they would be a true contender. I would hardly be upset with that outcome – having a team that regularly wins 50 games would be pretty great.

  183. E, all merc’d out: The picture wasn’t sexual assault, either. Kissing a woman against her will could theoretically be, but the picture didn’t include that and it’s not in the same stratosphere as actual rape so it’s either pointless or disingenuous to talk about the two as if they’re remotely the same.

    Also, no one mentioned that the cat is smiling- it’s obvious she totally wants it and is just playing hard to get. I mean, she’s not even wearing any clothes!

  184. Wow, I’d totally forgotten about “freedom fries.” Amazing the stuff that comes up here.

    Yeah, I always thought that PLP was some sort of satire of French guys.

  185. Just standing alone it looks like at least a quasi-affectionate quasi-embrace and I have no qualms whatsoever saying that as it’s 100% true. (I looked again as I was walking to the UPS store to mail in my covid test to finally be able to go to MSG!!) Standing alone, and I repeat standing alone, it’s a perfectly normal picture of a “man” and a “woman.” There apparently is a context behind Le Pew and the cat that gets you to darker contextual places, but anyone who gets to those darker places based only on that pic is going about things pretty wrong.

    I’m not sure what exactly is being mocked with the “It’s obvious she totally wants it.” You can’t tell one way or another whether she wants it, there’s no indication the topic has even been broached by Le Pew, no indication that he wouldn’t broach it if that was on his mind, and I haven’t heard anyone anywhere (other than maybe corners of the ‘net in which I don’t travel) suggest that if a woman quasi-affectionately quasi-embraces you, she “wants it.” If that’s the strawman people are looking to pummel, pummel away.

  186. I did say the floor would be in the upper 40’s. I would agree that that team would regularly get into the 50’s winwise, but I’m less sure that they would be a true contender. I would hardly be upset with that outcome – having a team that regularly wins 50 games would be pretty great.

    Yeah, we often talk about avoiding being the Woodson Hawks/Wilkens Cavaliers (and I guess Wilkens Hawks, too), but fuck, at this point, sign me up for that shit.

  187. The Wilkens Cavs really weren’t *that* far away. That can be shot directly into my veins.

  188. Brian Cronin: Oh, it’d easily be a playoff team for years. But it sounds more like a Joe Johnson/Josh Smith/Mike Bibby/Al Horford style playoff team.

    Exactly!
    Or like the current Trailblazers, with Dame and McCollum, that were good enough for: 2nd Rd, 1st Rd, 2nd Rd, 1st Rd, 1st Rd, Conf. Finals, 1st Rd
    Not all that bad, but i’m asking a little more, like the 90s Knicks: 2nd Rd, Conf. Finals, NBA Finals, 2nd Rd, 2nd Rd, 2nd Rd, 2nd Rd, NBA Finals… and then get a new owner that plays the… cof, cof… blues!

  189. One thing I included above that I hadn’t thought of the last time I was discussing Beal:

    we are the only team that can offer three picks in three years. The Dallas trade ensures we have at least one first in 2021 and 2023, so we can trade our first round pick in 2021, 2022, and 2023.

    We also have a huge advantage in the perceived value of our picks. Two unprotected first round picks from the Knicks this summer should sound like potential gold. But if you’re giving Thibs a top 4 of Randle, Beal, Barrett, and Mitch, I’m willing to take my chances that those are non lottery draft picks.

    It’s a big bet that we’ll be better than our recent history. The more I see out of Julius Randle, the more I’m willing to make that bet.

  190. I think Beal is going to be a Knick. Probably this summer, though I’d love to get him this season. The only concerning thing is that Leon may still have a thing for Obi, who would have to be part of the package. He’s not at the very, very apex of the association pyramid, but he’s a great player. He and Wall put a nice scare into the Celtics that one playoff year.

  191. The math on assembling that team, by the way…

    – The key piece that most everyone will disagree with is the Beal deal. I’m betting Toppin, Knox, our 2021, 2022, 2023 picks can get it done this summer. Humor me for second.

    – Randle turns down the extension to try free agency. Beal picks up his option so he can get his max later.

    – We bring back Rose, Noel, some other vets on one year deals to support Randle, Beal, Barrett, Mitch. Let’s call that a 45 win playoff team that gets everyone excited.

    Cap sheet going into the summer of 2022 looks like this:

    Beal – $37mm
    Barrett – $10mm
    Quickley – $2mm
    Our 1st round pick from 2021 (I projected 18th) – $3mm
    Mitchell Robinson’s cap hold – approximately $3mm
    7 empty roster cap holds at ~$1mm each = $7mm

    That’s $62mm in salary out of a $115.7mm cap, leaving ~$52mm to sign Randle and Rozier (or any other PG you like). And the room exception to add one of Thib’s favorite veterans.

    AND, we have a first round pick every single year going forward (Dallas’ in 2023, our own thereafter), so all the claims of gutting the team for Beal were baseless.

    I’m telling you, man, that is the way. Sign me up. If Beal wants a max, give him a max, I’ll ride with that team for 4 years.

  192. m not sure what exactly is being mocked with the “It’s obvious she totally wants it.” You can’t tell one way or another whether she wants it, there’s no indication the topic has even been broached by Le Pew, no indication that he wouldn’t broach it if that was on his mind, and I haven’t heard anyone anywhere (other than maybe corners of the ‘net in which I don’t travel) suggest that if a woman quasi-affectionately quasi-embraces you, she “wants it.” If that’s the strawman people are looking to pummel, pummel away.

    this thread fucking sucks

  193. Holy shit, if I was at a bar and saw a guy force an embrace on a woman while she tried to squirm out his grasp and get her face as far away from his as far as possible, I’d step in to physically intervene. You don’t put your hands on a woman like that without her consent.

    I’d see Pepe Le Pew on Saturday mornings as a kid, and while I knew that you weren’t supposed to imitate his behavior, I didn’t learn until I was older that forcing yourself on a woman and kissing her up and down without consent wasn’t all fun and games. In fact, I had to learn some hard lessons that having the mindset of pursuing a woman relentlessly until she finally said yes wasn’t appropriate either, even if I didn’t touch her. Pepe Le Pew cartoons did not help me respect women or have emotionally healthy relationships with them.

    It’s not just the explicit behaviors. It’s the condoning of those behaviors by presenting them as children’s entertainment.

  194. I guess E is the only one here who can relate to the anguish of constantly being rejected by women because he smells bad…

  195. Hubert: That’s $62mm in salary out of a $115.7mm cap, leaving ~$52mm to sign Randle and Rozier (or any other PG you like). And the room exception to add one of Thib’s favorite veterans.

    Not that i subscribe your plan, but you could spend the cap space before re-signing Randle. We’ll have full bird rights on him and can sign him above the cap… no biggie, it’s only Dolan’s money!

  196. Pepe Le Pew cartoons did not help me respect women or have emotionally healthy relationships with them.

    That’s kind of asking a lot out of a cartoon, don’t you think?

  197. You wouldn’t think “it’s not ok to try and hug and kiss another person without their consent and especially not when they’re clearly struggling to desperately get away from you” would be a controversial position but here we are. This is a “doesn’t know the meaning of ‘consent'” moment here.

  198. the CBA is designed to prevent that, cybersoze. Randle would have prohibitive cap hold far greater than what we’d ultimately pay him.

  199. Hubert: Beal – $37mm
    Barrett – $10mm
    Quickley – $2mm
    Our 1st round pick from 2021 (I projected 18th) – $3mm
    Mitchell Robinson’s cap hold – approximately $3mm
    7 empty roster cap holds at ~$1mm each = $7mm

    That’s $62mm in salary out of a $115.7mm cap, leaving ~$52mm to sign Randle and Rozier (or any other PG you like). And the room exception to add one of Thib’s favorite veterans.

    Randle has a $30M cap hold, so you can’t sign Rozier for more than $22M unless Randle takes less than his cap hold.

    I’m also not sure why Beal takes his option when he can opt-out and potentially find a suitor for the 10yr max of $40M . It’s entirely possible no one wants him for that money, but it’ll still be an issue.

    If Rozier and Randle both continue the excellent years they’re currently having, then that won’t work under the cap unless you’re doing something really screwy that I can’t think of off the top. Of course, if they don’t continue their excellent years, then that team is definitely not a contender unless RJ really steps up his production.

    I do think that’s a very good team but only a contender IF :

    (1) RJ and IQ make substantial improvements
    (2) the Knicks are the #1 defense every year.
    (3) Beal really carries the crap out of the offense, by this year’s OBPM he may honestly be capable

    You do have picks left to trade in order to upgrade the rest of the roster.

    Ultimately, if that is our plan then I’d rather try to scoop Beal as a FA when he opts out in 2022 rather than trade for him now. We’d also have flexibility to go after KD or Harden if they opt-out. They’re both older, but potentially more valuable than Beal.

  200. Hubert:
    the CBA is designed to prevent that, cybersoze. Randle would have prohibitive cap hold far greater than what we’d ultimately pay him.

    You’re right, forgot about that, my bad. We’d have 29.7M against the cap from Randle’s cap hold.

  201. You wouldn’t think “it’s not ok to try and hug and kiss another person without their consent and especially not when they’re clearly struggling to desperately get away from you” would be a controversial position but here we are. This is a “doesn’t know the meaning of ‘consent’” moment here.

    No, everyone here agrees with that one. But the claim was that the picture at issue shows that and it doesn’t come even close to showing it. Stick them on a bench at the Met, center their eyes on the Dutch neo-classicals, and no one blinks an eye and obviously no one even thinks for a moment of breaking it up through violence.

    The claim about the picture is completely unpersuasive, even as to the “embrace” part, much less the “rape” part. Like completely, totally, utterly unpersuasive. There’s probably wide agreement on the broader themes at work here, but this is the internet and so agreement is frowned upon. Disagreement on the picture is used as a wedge divisive heuristic to infer imaginary disagreement on the broader themes. Everyone gets it.

  202. E, all merc’d out: No, everyone here agrees with that one. But the claim was that the picture at issue shows that and it doesn’t come even close to showing it. Stick them on a bench at the Met, center their eyes on the Dutch neo-classicals,and no one blinks an eye and obviously no one even thinks for a moment of breaking it up through violence.

    The claim about the picture is completely unpersuasive, even as to the “embrace” part, much less the “rape” part.Like completely, totally, utterly unpersuasive.There’s probably wide agreement on the broader themes at work here, but this is the internet and so agreement is frowned upon.

    She has her feet on his chest to try and escape while physically pushing him away. This is totally unambiguous. Like, how can you look at that picture and believe she’s embracing him?

  203. I’d see Pepe Le Pew on Saturday mornings as a kid, and while I knew that you weren’t supposed to imitate his behavior, I didn’t learn until I was older that forcing yourself on a woman and kissing her up and down without consent wasn’t all fun and games. In fact, I had to learn some hard lessons that having the mindset of pursuing a woman relentlessly until she finally said yes wasn’t appropriate either, even if I didn’t touch her.

    1

    Like, how can you look at that picture and believe she’s embracing him?

    A near-compulsive drive to argue about everything, all the time, always. I was looking for a post about consent that I made after Kobe died and found the same argument from this particular poster about how histrionic everyone is about consent and how they’re missing the bigger picture entirely. Old habits, etc.

  204. They’re animals, but you’re reading the “escape” part completely into it. Imagining it, really. Seriously.

  205. E, all merc’d out: No, everyone here agrees with that one. But the claim was that the picture at issue shows that and it doesn’t come even close to showing it. Stick them on a bench at the Met, center their eyes on the Dutch neo-classicals,and no one blinks an eye and obviously no one even thinks for a moment of breaking it up through violence.

    The claim about the picture is completely unpersuasive, even as to the “embrace” part, much less the “rape” part.Like completely, totally, utterly unpersuasive.There’s probably wide agreement on the broader themes at work here, but this is the internet and so agreement is frowned upon. Everyone gets it.

    Again, E you’re the only one considering the picture in isolation. This isn’t a court of law, the picture isn’t the only depiction of Pepe that exists, and it’s probably the first picture that showed up rather than the most damning.

    If this were an actual trial, then we could flood the blog with enough damning evidence that the case would be decided in summary judgment for at least sexual abuse. I don’t think anyone here cares enough to go through hoops of litigating an actual case, so your adherence to judicial process is unnecessarily pedantic.

    Seeing as G-rated cartoons lack genitalia, you’re technically right there would not be a conviction of rape because it’s impossible for penetration to exist absent genitalia. Again, no one was seriously arguing this.

    If you want us to jump through the hoops of an actual trial, my rate is $300/hr and I bill in 6 min increments.

  206. I don’t think Beal is ever making it to free agency. Either he and Washington will part ways this summer or, if he really loves it there, he’ll sign a Giannis extension.

    I’m not sure why you think Beal needs to “carry the crap” out of an offense with Randle, Rozier, and a mature trio of RJ/Mitch/IQ; or why you think we need to have the #1 D in the league. That team might not be peak golden state but it would be a top offense

    If $20mm isn’t enough to sign Terry Rozier, fine. We can find a good PG for $20mm.

  207. Rose is out again tomorrow night, though the Knicks aren’t saying if he tested positive or if it’s an ongoing contact tracing thing.

  208. A near-compulsive drive to argue about everything, all the time, always.

    Try to find a more compromising, less bullying perspective and you’ll probably find a lot less arguing. I find the proffered interpretations of the picture unpersuasive, and at times severely excessive. That conclusion was reached after close review, entirely in good faith, from a liberal left, entirely pro-woman perspective. I agree with the general gist of the broader themes. You can either accept the wide swaths of agreement, or you can continue to harp on the relatively small disagreement about the picture and then complain about how much the thread sucks.

  209. E, all merc’d out:
    They’re animals, but you’re reading the “escape” part completely into it.Imagining it, really.Seriously.

    They’re anthropomorphic animals. Please describe what the cat is doing in that picture.

  210. Hubert: I’m not sure why you think Beal needs to “carry the crap” out of an offense with Randle, Rozier, and a mature trio of RJ/Mitch/IQ.

    If $20mm isn’t enough to sign Terry Rozier, fine. We can find a good PG for $20mm.

    Yeah, I’ll elaborate a bit.

    Scenario 1: Beal doesn’t needs to carry the offense, but that’ll require Rozier and Randle maintaining their current production, then Randle is getting the max or near it and Rozier is getting at least $25M if not more.

    Scenario 2: Beal needs to carry the offense because Rozier and Randle regress, but you’re able to fit them both onto the team.

    Contender status depends a lot on RJ projections. He’s a pretty unique player, so I’m not sure where he’ll end up production-wise. DJphan probably has a better projection system.

    Randle and Rozier are 2nd tier stars at best and Beal is a low-end #1 star.

    The Clippers Kawhi & Paul George have 2 better players than Beal.
    Nets have arguably 3 and easily 2.
    Giannis + anyone is better.

    We might squeeze out a championship, maybe that’s a good enough shot, but it’ll be more like the perfect storm of Dallas over Miami than as a favorite. There’s definitely a puncher’s chance.

  211. Please describe what the cat is doing in that picture.

    The null hypothesis that she’s leaning back to get a wider look of her quasi embrac-ee’s face, as affectionate embracers do all the time, can’t be remotely disproven. And even consensual embraces are eventually ended in similar ways. Go back to what I said about the Met.

    But of course the burden of proof for such a provocative claim is on the claimants. The burden hasn’t come close to being met.

  212. E, all merc’d out: The null hypothesis that she’s leaning back to get a wider look of her quasi embrac-ee’s face, as affectionate embracers do all the time, can’t be remotely disproven. And even consensual embraces are eventually ended in similar ways.Go back to what I said about the Met.

    But of course the burden of proof for such a provocative claim is on the claimants.The burden hasn’t come close to being met.

    And what’s she doing with her feet?

  213. That team would peak from 2023-2026. There’s no point comparing it to the Nets or any other current team.

    And yes, I’m banking on 22-25 year old RJ being a really good player. I’m high on the kid.

  214. I explained what she’s doing with her “feet.” (Arms were added/edited — one of her arms is on his shoulders). There was a bonus explanation tacked on even — Embrace, then “Come on Pepe, I gotta cook dinner.”

    We’re down to forensic analysis of a cartoon skunk and a cartoon cat. That’s probably a good signal to move on. I’m heeding the signal.

  215. Early Bird: but it’ll be more like the perfect storm of Dallas over Miami than as a favorite. There’s definitely a puncher’s chance.

    I’m thinking of Thibs’ Bulls teams as the comp. They had the best record in the NBA two consecutive seasons with a low-end star*, and they probably would have lasted much longer if not for injury.

    I would sign up for that kind of chance any day.

    (*yes, Rose won MVP once, but come on, that guy was never on a LeBron/Steph/Durant level; peak Bradley Beal is every bit as good as Derrick Rose was.)

  216. ***Wow, I’d totally forgotten about “freedom fries.”…I always thought that PLP was some sort of satire of French guys.***

    You mean freedom guys.

  217. MVP Rose was on that level (not as good as Lebron, of course, but on that basic level. Lebron is just otherworldly). Sadly, he was only MVP Rose for a season and a half.

    Noah, meanwhile, was also as good as Beal (and better than everyone else on that theoretical roster).

  218. Hubert: I’m thinking of Thibs’ Bulls teams as the comp. They had the best record in the NBA two consecutive seasons with a low-end star*, and they probably would have lasted much longer if not for injury.

    I would sign up for that kind of chance any day.

    (*yes, Rose won MVP once, but come on, that guy was never on a LeBron/Steph/Durant level; peak Bradley Beal is every bit as good as Derrick Rose was.)

    I definitely wouldn’t mind that team. I do think there are some cap issues that’d make it difficult to grab Rozier.

    I also think Beal would rather hit free agency than stay with Was. The concern is whether another team makes a move on him than him re-signing with Was.

    Hubert:
    That team would peak from 2023-2026. There’s no point comparing it to the Nets or any other current team.

    I don’t think the current teams are necessarily the issue, but other super teams will form and I think most will be better than our team. Philly is looking like it’ll be a powerhouse for a long time. Denver too if Murray or Porter improve.

    I mean, I wouldn’t trade Jokic or Embiid for any 3 of Randle, Beal, Rozier, or RJ.

  219. Nature is violent.
    Cartoons as Sports are entertainment.
    Eliminating or at least minimizing violence in entertainment may result to a more civilized society.

  220. And let’s NEVER Forget as a species according to Wikipedia’s link for “Entertainment” that…

    #Some entertainment, such as public executions, are now illegal in most countries. #

    In Most!!!!!
    Not All….

  221. I’m pretty sure you could read this thread aloud at an Ionesco convention and receive a standing ovation.

  222. “I’m pretty sure you could read this thread aloud at an Ionesco convention and receive a standing ovation.”

    LOL!

  223. Violence is everywhere.
    From Knicks’ FO to Viggo Mortensen’s filmography and from Looney toons to online video games and wiki editing!
    Less violence wouldn’t hurt anyone tho…

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