NY Post: Mitchell Robinson injury overshadows Knicks’ win over Bucks

From Peter Botte:

The Knicks were not the most depleted team on the floor Saturday night in Milwaukee, but the injury news grew worse for them as the night progressed.

Already playing without All-Star forward Julius Randle, the Knicks lost starting center Mitchell Robinson for an extended period for a second time this season. Robinson broke his right foot during the first quarter to put a heavy damper on the Knicks’ 102-96 win over the injury-riddled Bucks, who were missing two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and three other starters.

“Obviously, they care about each other a lot. Mitchell’s been terrific for us, so you hate to see it,” coach Tom Thibodeau said after the game. “It’s a very close-knit group. You feel for Mitchell because of all the work he’s put in. … You feel for a teammate and that’s part of the game. You have to deal with it as best as you can.”

Alec Burks scored 21 points with 10 rebounds and Derrick Rose contributed 13 points in 29 minutes in his return to the Knicks’ lineup for the first time since Feb. 28 following a positive COVID-19 result. RJ Barrett also scored 21 points and Immanuel Quickley (13) nailed four 3-pointers as the Knicks moved two games over .500 (24-22) for the first time since they were 5-3 on Jan. 6.

I thought it was cute how Botte played into the Bucks’ “injury-depleted” narrative when this was clearly just a schedule loss for them, the second night of a back-to-back before they headed out for a road trip. But no, conveniently, all of their top players all got “injured” out of nowhere. Suuuuuuuure.

Anyhow, for a schedule loss, the Knicks made it way closer than it should have been, but obviously this Knicks team is built around Randle in a way that better teams are not built around their best player. This is more akin to when the Wizards play without Bradley Beal, so this was definitely not a cream puff once Randle went out. It should have been a win, no question about it, but once Randle went down, it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park.

It was pretty on brand for Rose to return to action after missing so much time and instantly putting up 15 shots, but eh, I’d still prefer him to Elfrid Payton (which is more a statement about Elf than Rose). Quickley dished out five assists, which was big (although he deferred to Rose a bit more than you’d probably want). If Quickley gets out of this recent shooting slump, that’d be huge.

After the Heat on Monday, the Knicks get another nice schedule break, with the shitty Timberwolves and the shitty Pistons bookending the depleted Mavericks, so this could be the start of a really nice stretch if Randle gets back healthy.

Mitch’s injury was terrible news, but obviously, as we’ve seen, while Mitch is the best of the Knick centers, they have a very good backup center in Noel who is a fine fill-in and Taj is not a bad back-up back-up center. So I’m not too concerned there. It hurts the team, but their depth there is strong. It’s not like, say, Randle going down, ya know?

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247 thoughts to “NY Post: Mitchell Robinson injury overshadows Knicks’ win over Bucks”

  1. Reposted on new thread

    From a Chinese basketball discussion group “ If Shaq and D-Rose had a baby, it would be Zion”

  2. At some point we are going to have to start building a fragility factor into our thinking about Mitch and the team. For me, that means we should sign Nerlens back next year even if it’s a bit expensive. This situation reminds me a little of KP’s early injuries. A couple looked like freak accidents and were dismissed, but basketball involves a lot of contact, hard falls, etc.. and some people handle that better than others. It may be a matter of time before a more serious injury occurs. Naturally I hope not, but we need a good backup C and Nerlens is exactly that.

  3. As an aside, that four hour fantasy auction I did on Thursday? One of the guys I got was Luke Voit, so…yeah. I objected to doing a draft so early and that’s a perfect example of why not to draft so early.

  4. – RJ, IQ and Randle, his 37 points explosion aside, are in a shooting slump (they’ll get better) and Bullock has been out so having Burks has been huge in the last stretch of games.

    – Despite the shooting, I like the way RJ’s playing. He’s defending well, with a lot of rebounds and assists, now it will be nice if he could cut the turnovers but part of it come with the territory. He almost never let his shooting woes impact his overall game.

    – IQ is not shooting well but he’s forcing less and 8 assists in the last two games are good, he’s showing progress and less selfishness.

    – Mitch injury is bad, hope he’ll get well as soon as possible. Noel and Taj are as good as backup bigs go but in the meantime I’m in for Dieng. I think they’ll wait Mitch’s diagnosys to sign him.

    – Knox did a little something, Obi did a little something but his confidence must be really really down otherwise his layup would have been a thunderous dunk, he was scared to do it.

    – Zion is a beast, he comes at you like a cannonball and he’s absurdly quick for his size. Sure it’s not a good rebouder and he’s a lousy defender but with a little bit of improvment on FT shooting he’ll easily guarantee you 30 at night.

    – Very Important Game against Miami, I hope Randle and Bullock will be back.

  5. Yeah, I agree that the rest of RJ’s game is making up for his shooting woes.

  6. At some point we are going to have to start building a fragility factor into our thinking about Mitch and the team

    I wonder how this is going to alter what the front office chooses to do with his contract this summer. Maybe they just keep him on the rookie deal to see if he can get through next season unscathed? We’d have his bird rights, even though he’d be unrestricted next summer.

  7. We love us some Mitch but finding a garden variety shotblocking big is not the hardest thing in the world, and might be a good use of one of our draft picks. So it sucks because we love him but less so in the big scheme of things.

  8. Meanwhile I continue to be astounded by how well Alec Burks is playing. He has been an absolute stud on offense and plays smart, tough D. If what he has done in the last few games is for real, I’d love to re-sign him to a value contract….something like 3 years @ $8 mill. He seems like a brilliant jack of all trades rotation player. Or am I just being fooled by this latest streak?

  9. I loved the Burks signing, but I think the whole point of it from his perspective was for him to prove he was worth getting a real contract, so I don’t think he’ll be so cheap after this season. Like Noel, he came here to get minutes and get paid more on his next deal.

  10. Z-man:
    How much does Burks get offered? What’s the max we can offer him without any rights?

    We can offer him the max because we’re $50M below the cap this offseason

    He’s not worth the max

  11. In a not so good free agents class it will be interesting to see if and who of our “mercenaries” we would be able to re-sign.

    Frank and Ferguson (!!) combine for a huge 25.2M cap hold,
    Rose (that I think will be re-signed), Burks, Noel and Bullock for 28.7M
    (I assume we’ll renounce Payton’s 5.7M right? right?….)

    Burks had made around 60M in his career, maybe we could sign him for 3/30 and give him some medium term security? (Noel and Bullock have way lowest career earnings).

    Question to our Capologists:
    I know that If we go over the cap adding some FA/RFA, signing for instance Lonzo and another player,
    then we could re-sign our FA even if we’re over-capped,
    but is there a limit in the years/money structure we could give them then?

  12. How much does Burks get offered? What’s the max we can offer him without any rights?

    If they don’t want to pay Burks out of cap space, then they would be limited to 120% of his current salary, so not much of a raise, but $7.5 million a year isn’t too shabby.

    That 3/$30 million figure that Max mentioned seems a bit more likely to me.

  13. then we could re-sign our FA even if we’re over-capped,
    but is there a limit in the years/money structure we could give them then?

    Luckily, non-Bird free agents like Burks can be given four-year deals at that 120% figure (with 5% yearly raises factored in).

  14. Max: his confidence must be really really down otherwise his layup would have been a thunderous dunk, he was scared to do it.

    It looked like Obi had a semi-fumble as he was getting ready to gather, so I think that’s why he laid it up rather than dunked it. Don’t disagree with your basic premise, though. I sure wish he’d get a little more than 7 minutes. He was 3-4 during that brief cameo.

  15. But yeah, Burks is a fascinating player, because he’s been so valuable to the Knicks this season, but yeah, if they want to keep him, they’ll likely have to give him a bit more of a commitment, which is fine, but that gets back to the idea of what is this team, going forward? I mean, do they really just want to run this same team back next year and hope that RJ and Quickley improve even more and that the mid-teen draft picks help? Or do you want to dramatically change the roster?

  16. Oh right, being under the cap is huge in that way. So what is he going to be offered? Is anyone going to offer him $10+ mill AAV? He’s already had one nice contract so maybe he’s a bit more about situation than maxing out $. Anything in the 7-digit range for 2-3 years seems reasonable to me.

  17. I like Burks, Bullock, Noel, & Mitch but none of those guys are irreplaceable.

    We also have 4 draft picks this year. We can probably find a longterm replacement for 1 of Mitch or Noel and a wing replacement for either Bullock or Burks.

    MLE is around $9.7M for teams over the cap. We could use that to sign Burks, if we can stay over the cap. Might work if we sign Ball plus Fournier.

  18. We may not be able to make salaries work for two 2022 max FA. There’s worse ways to spend it then Noel & Burks.

  19. By the way, I don’t get the knock on the Nikola Vucevic trade. I don’t even like Vucevic that much and I thought that that deal was fine, even if the Bulls don’t make the playoffs this year. The 2021 pick they owe is top four protected, which means that it only transfers if the pick remains in its current place (which is around #13-14). The 13th pick in the draft for Nikola Vucevic (who makes less money than Otto Porter Jr.), plus a 2023 pick with the same protections. The Bulls now have two All-Stars from this year’s All Star team on their squad. That seemed like a fair price, especially if they use their cap space to add someone like Lonzo Ball this offseason.

  20. Brian Cronin:
    But yeah, Burks is a fascinating player, because he’s been so valuable to the Knicks this season, but yeah, if they want to keep him, they’ll likely have to give him a bit more of a commitment, which is fine, but that gets back to the idea of what is this team, going forward? I mean, do they really just want to run this same team back next year and hope that RJ and Quickley improve even more and that the mid-teen draft picks help? Or do you want to dramatically change the roster?

    I think the key is to not overpay players to the point that they are sticking points in trades. Burks is movable at $7.5 mill but maybe not at $12 mill…think Courtney Lee. Same with Bullock and Noel…if you can keep any of them at a reasonable price, fine. I don’t want Rose or Payton back at any price, but alas Thibs loves Rose so much that I can see them throwing him a bone.

  21. Obi showed a little, very little, against a scrubby third string opponent. Beyond a dunk, midrange jumper and lay-up, his stat line was a long string of zeros. I wasn’t impressed but it’s better than nothing.

    Knox, on the other hand, looked as good as I’ve ever seen him look. Good footwork on D, rebounds in traffic, quick outlet, nice drives and kicks…hardly enough for optimism but fair is fair…he looked better than ever.

  22. By the way, I think Lonzo’s market is going to be robust enough this offseason that I think it made sense that no one traded for him, because anyone who got him would likely have to match a max offer sheet (or let him go), so why trade assets for the right to give Lonzo the max offer that you could just give him anyways this offseason? Is the right to be able to match on a max offer sheet really worth an asset? Seems hard to believe.

  23. that gets back to the idea of what is this team, going forward? I mean, do they really just want to run this same team back next year and hope that RJ and Quickley improve even more and that the mid-teen draft picks help? Or do you want to dramatically change the roster?

    I think they’ll count on improvement from most of the young players and should sign the highest quality free agents they can that are available on fair contracts (mid to upper 20s the oldest). If that means bringing back guys like Burks, Bullock, and Nerlens they should do it, but if they can upgrade a position or two they should do that instead. Personally, I think we’ll be fine as far as role players go. So I would try to move up in the draft or use the excess picks to try to bring an all star quality player. The goal next year should be to be a clear playoff team and not fighting for a playoff spot.

  24. Brian Cronin: By the way, I don’t get the knock on the Nikola Vucevic trade.

    Otto Porter is expiring and Vuc is under contract until 2023, with 24M and 22M on the books for the next 2 years (at least is a declining contract, but still).

  25. Brian Cronin:
    But yeah, Burks is a fascinating player, because he’s been so valuable to the Knicks this season, but yeah, if they want to keep him, they’ll likely have to give him a bit more of a commitment, which is fine, but that gets back to the idea of what is this team, going forward? I mean, do they really just want to run this same team back next year and hope that RJ and Quickley improve even more and that the mid-teen draft picks help? Or do you want to dramatically change the roster?

    I think we have 4 players: RJ (wing), Randle (PF), IQ (6th-7th man), Rose (not that I like him, but Thibs’ version of Linus’ blanket).

    Plus we have Mitch and all the insecurity around his next contract (I don’t think he’s untouchable if a good opportunity arise).

    In trades/FA we desperately need a big upgrade at starting PG and to add a starting SG/SF (with RJ playing the other spot).

    Then we could decide to keep one or two of our other veterans (Burks and one of Bullock/Noel? Could depend on who we draft) at moveable salaries to form a strong bench with IQ, Rose and a mix of Toppin, Knox and the draftees (I’m projecting us out of the lottery or in the low 9-14 spot, that could change).

  26. Otto Porter is expiring and Vuc is under contract until 2023, with 24M and 22M on the books for the next 2 years (at least is a declining contract, but still).

    Right, that’s the point, having him under control for two years at those prices is a good thing. At a time where guys like Otto Porter make $28 million, the Bulls will have an All-Star under control for two more years for $46 million. That’s a very good thing to have.

  27. It seems hard to imagine the Mavericks missing out on the play-in games, so while they’ll probably get two shots at making the playoffs (as they’ll likely finish either #7 or #8), there’s still a chance they’ll miss the playoffs and the Knicks will get their lottery pick. That’d be swell.

  28. Brian Cronin:
    By the way, I don’t get the knock on the Nikola Vucevic trade. I don’t even like Vucevic that much and I thought that that deal was fine, even if the Bulls don’t make the playoffs this year. The 2021 pick they owe is top four protected, which means that it only transfers if the pick remains in its current place (which is around #13-14). The 13th pick in the draft for Nikola Vucevic (who makes less money than Otto Porter Jr.), plus a 2023 pick with the same protections. The Bulls now have two All-Stars from this year’s All Star team on their squad. That seemed like a fair price, especially if they use their cap space to add someone like Lonzo Ball this offseason.

    To me, Vuc is a trap kind of player. His contract is fine, but he has deficiencies that work against winning…terrible defender, never gets to the line…he seems redundant with Markkanen. Not a terrible deal value-wise, but as you asked about the Knicks, where is the team going with him? What is that team going forward?

  29. cybersoze: Otto Porter is expiring and Vuc is under contract until 2023, with 24M and 22M on the books for the next 2 years (at least is a declining contract, but still).

    Vucevic is a 20-10 machine, for that number and not as the number one option he’s a steal (and moveable in future trades).
    I’m more surprised that they give up on Carter, Hutchinson and Gafford so quick…
    They’re running the risk of losing Markannen for nothing, maybe they’re sure there’s no market for him? (I doubt that’s true)

  30. ***Zion is a beast, he comes at you like a cannonball and he’s absurdly quick for his size. Sure it’s not a good rebouder and he’s a lousy defender but with a little bit of improvment on FT shooting he’ll easily guarantee you 30 at night.***

    I feel like somebody who is so “absurdly quick for his size” will probably develop into a good defender as he grows into the league. He’s too strong, and too quick, (and was too good on defense in college) to stay this lousy for too long.

  31. Max: Vucevic is a 20-10 machine, for that number and not as the number one option he’s a steal (and moveable in future trades).
    I’m more surprised that they give up on Carter, Hutchinson and Gafford so quick…

    The so-called 20-10 machines are often the most overpaid guys in the game. Enes Kanter and Knicks-version Zach Randolph are prime examples. Vuc can’t guard the perimeter or the rim, so he’s a huge liability on D. And not drawing fouls suggests that he is not really a go-to guy down the stretch.

  32. I think Wendell Carter Jr is very valuable longterm, but if they want to keep Lavine they needed to make a move. It makes sense. Just a steep price for Carter & 2 picks.

  33. Porter wouldn’t be a terrible flyer for the Knicks. With his health issues I doubt he goes for much

  34. What is that team going forward?

    I think they’re having the same basic issue of the Knicks, in that I think they were prepared to do a general teardown, but then one of their players had a surprising All-Star season (and their coach is so good that he helps them overachieve) and made the team a lot better than it was expected to be, so they’ve decided to try to become a playoff team.

  35. Z-man: The so-called 20-10 machines are often the most overpaid guys in the game. Enes Kanter and Knicks-version Zach Randolph are prime examples. Vuc can’t guard the perimeter or the rim, so he’s a huge liability on D. And not drawing fouls suggests that he is not really a go-to guy down the stretch.

    Agree, they are often the most overpaid guys in the game, he’s not a good defender, he’s not a first option.

    But, as NBA contracts go, his is not a terrible one (and decrease in the last year), he has more range than Kanter or Knicks-version Randolph and they don’t need a first option because they have Lavine (and are going to resign him for the max).

    Do I want him? No!

    Still I can’t find the trade absurd, other teams wanted him (the Celtics for instace) and he has a good reputation in the league.

  36. Max: Still I can’t find the trade absurd

    I agree that on paper it is not a bad value trade, certainly not absurd. More misguided than anything else.

    And the fact that we did not make a “misguided” trade is another sign that this FO is on the right track…for now.

  37. ***The so-called 20-10 machines are often the most overpaid guys in the game. Enes Kanter and Knicks-version Zach Randolph are prime examples.***

    In general I think most 20-10 guys are worth what they are paid. (The only two you mention weren’t even 20-10 guys). But, yeah, most do something besides just score and rebound, which may be where their true value is found. Scoring and rebounding well, while being a negative at everything else, certainly isn’t very helpful. I’m not sure where Vucevic stands, but he’s been a pretty solid pro on paper and I can see it working out okay for them in Chicago.

  38. Deeefense:
    At some point we are going to have to start building a fragility factor into our thinking about Mitch and the team.For me, that means we should sign Nerlens back next year even if it’s a bit expensive. This situation reminds me a little of KP’s early injuries.A couple looked like freak accidents and were dismissed, but basketball involves a lot of contact, hard falls, etc.. and some people handle that better than others.It may be a matter of time before a more serious injury occurs.Naturally I hope not, but we need a good backup C and Nerlens is exactly that.

    This post reads like you’re trying to unjustly shade someone the blog favors with the same shade the blog justly casts on someone you favor.

    Mitch broke a bone on hard contact twice in a season. Unless you are suggesting he has osteoporosis, that’s just bad luck and there’s nothing to suggest he will suffer from chronic injuries.

    Porzingis’ injuries were more worrisome bc they were non contact and involved muscles and ligaments. Rather than being unlucky, they were signs of a troubled body.

  39. Z-man: I agree that on paper it is not a bad value trade, certainly not absurd. More misguided than anything else.

    And the fact that we did not make a “misguided” trade is another sign that this FO is on the right track…for now.

    Fingers crossed!

    On this front, I’m waiting nervously for Drummond to announce his next destination…

    Fuck! Dieng to the Spurs…

  40. Max: Fuck! Dieng to the Spurs…

    GivEn that hE’s ExpEriEnced with Thibs I’m ExpEcting somEonE hErE to spin this accordingly.

  41. It seems hard to imagine the Mavericks missing out on the play-in games, so while they’ll probably get two shots at making the playoffs (as they’ll likely finish either #7 or #8), there’s still a chance they’ll miss the playoffs and the Knicks will get their lottery pick. That’d be swell.

    It is not so improbable that the Mavs are the 7 or 8 seed in the West, in the play-in, and have to play… the Lakers. I think Lebron will be out at least until the end of April and the Lakers have 17(!) games from now until 4/30. They could easily go 5-12 or worse in those games if AD remains out.

    Sucks that Dieng signed with the Spurs, but the Spurs had to release Marquesse Chriss in order to sign Dieng. Picking Chriss up on waivers would not be the worst thing. Definitely could do worse in terms of a backup PF/C. And not that it really matters, but we would get his EB rights.

  42. Frank: It is not so improbable that the Mavs are the 7 or 8 seed in the West,in the play-in, and have to play… the Lakers.I think Lebron will be out at least until the end of April and the Lakers have 17(!) games from now until 4/30. They could easily go 5-12 or worse in those games if AD remains out.

    Sucks that Dieng signed with the Spurs, but the Spurs had to release Marquesse Chriss in order to sign Dieng.Picking Chriss up on waivers would not be the worst thing. Definitely could do worse in terms of a backup PF/C. And not that it really matters, but we would get his EB rights.

    Chriss would have been an interesting sign, alas he’s out for the year with a broken leg.

  43. Max: Chriss would have been an interesting sign, alas he’s out for the year with a broken leg.

    whoops! never mind then

  44. This post reads like you’re trying to unjustly shade someone the blog favors with the same shade the blog justly casts on someone you favor.

    I’m being consistent.

    When Porzingis sprained his ankle badly on a freak play I argued that he doesn’t take contact well because he’s so weak and even though it was freak play it was another sign that there may be more injuries to come given he was always coming up with minor issues with his hip, elbow etc… Everyone called me out and said I was making a big deal about a freak accident. But it happened because he couldn’t take contact and that caused his stuck foot to get twisted. Then came the ACL and the meniscus.

    I’m saying the same thing now.

    Mitch is constantly fighting sprained ankles when he lands poorly and now he’s broken a hand and foot on contact.

    The NBA is a game of hard contact, awkward or hard landings, twists and turns of joints etc.. and some people have tendons, ligaments, and/or bones that handle that stuff better than others.

    Eventually KP proved to be very injury prone (as also predicted by Phil by the way) partly due to his lack of strength and ability to handle those things. Let’s hope Mitch is not on the same path. We don’t want him spraining something or breaking a bone every time he lands hard, awkwardly, or takes a hard shot.

  45. Eventually KP proved to be very injury prone (as also predicted by Phil by the way)

    “I predict this guy will be injury prone. Let’s use the #4 pick in the draft on him”

    #PhilLogic

  46. Yeah – Mitch is so athletic is so many ways, but for such an athletic guy, he lands awkwardly A LOT.

  47. I take back everything positive I’ve said about the Mavs management over the last year or two. I’m pretty sure they are not doing the right things as far as building a championship team goes. They are getting the “offense” part of it mostly right. You want to create space for Doncic to get to the basket and finish or find open shooters if he gets doubled, They ARE mostly looking for shooters. But they are doing it without paying any attention to defense at all and without trying to find another player that create off the dribble to take some of the burden off him. They’ve basically built a team that maximizes Doncic’s stats but requires him to have an efficient triple double almost every night for them to win. That’s not going to work and it’s especially not going to work late in the playoffs when good defenses get physical with Doncic and wear him down. IMO, they should be looking for 3&D type players and at least one player that can create on his own. Reddick is a terrific shooter and will help the offense, but he’s not a defender and he’ll be retired before Dallas is ready to contend. If you are going to pick up Reddick, you should have just kept Seth Curry.

  48. “I predict this guy will be injury prone. Let’s use the #4 pick in the draft on him”

    #PhilLogic

    At least try to be a little unbiased.

    Phil drafted KP because he was convinced he’d be the best player and best fit available at #4. Then Phil got to see him play more, get injuries, had some issues dealing with him etc… and started wondering whether it was worth trading him for a different young player and first round pick or two. If I recall, he was trying for Devin Booker (who everyone here hated and that has since become a scoring beast). All hell broke loose in the Knicks media because he was even considering trading KP and he never found a deal he liked enough. So nothing was done. But he was on record saying it was something he and his people became worried about long before the ACL.

  49. Frank:
    Yeah – Mitch is so athletic is so many ways, but for such an athletic guy, he lands awkwardly A LOT.

    Both he and KP don’t seem to have that “cat like” balance that allows them to adjust their body in mid air quickly so they land squarely. It guess it can’t be easy when you are that tall. There’s probably a reason gymnasts tend to be short.

  50. At least try to be a little unbiased.

    Phil both gets credit for selecting KP at 4, and then for realizing that it was a mistake. Such foresight!

  51. The Mitch news is brutal. This team is exponentially more fun to watch with him healthy. Get well soon big fella. I do wonder how it will affect his contract situation, do the Knicks offer him a low ball extension with the thought that he’ll place more emphasis on security? Just pick up the option to gather more info before making a decision?

    Sucks that Dieng is going to the Spurs. I’m a little surprised given that they have Poeltl. Would’ve been cool to have a center who can shoot. Maybe we give Skal a look?

    Is…is that Joakim Noah’s music?

  52. Strat has been alternating between “the prescient genius Phil Jackson drafted NBA superstar Kristaps Porzingis” and “the prescient genius Phil Jackson knew Kristaps Porzingis was overrated and wanted to trade him” for years now so this thread is nothing new.

    By the way, I don’t get the knock on the Nikola Vucevic trade.

    I guess it depends a bit on your perspective but giving up two lightly protected picks for a 30 year old who isn’t going to get you remotely close to serious contention is pretty antithetical to how I’d want a team to be run.

    It’d be one thing if Vucevic was younger and/or made them at least a ~50 win team (during a regular reason), but being out significant draft capital and financial flexibility while still hovering around .500 is a scary place to be. They can create cap room this offseason if they don’t want to bring back Markkanen, but it’s not clear to me there’s a better way to spend it than on Markkanen.

  53. Looks like we dodged the bullet,
    according to Woj Drummond is signing with the Lakers.

    And Rivers is going to the Bucks.

  54. By the way I hate to be a downer but it’s a pretty bad sign that no one’s proposed solution to the Mitch problem is “play the guy you just drafted 8th overall more”

  55. Max: according to Woj Drummond is signing with the Lakers.

    I suspect he’s going to revert back to the Drummond we saw several years back, but only for the rest of the season. There’s no way in hell he’s taking 30% of his team’s possessions in scoring attempts, which he basically did as a Cav. If I’m LeCoach, I’m telling him that, when at least one of LeLeBron or LeAD is on the floor, he scores when he’s within spitting distance of LeRim or when he’s fed the ball in a PNR. If he does any ISO bullshit, he sits. Probably a .650 TS% for the rest of the year and a LeRing to go with it, unless LMA has anything to say about it in LeFinals. Drummond sucks at his AAV, but if you’re the LeLakers, all you need is a stopgap at the 5 so AD has to play zero minutes against the big boys until crunch time against Daddy Jokic.

  56. The Honorable Cock Jowles: I suspect he’s going to revert back to the Drummond we saw several years back, but only for the rest of the season. There’s no way in hell he’s taking 30% of his team’s possessions in scoring attempts, which he basically did as a Cav. If I’m LeCoach, I’m telling him that, when at least one of LeLeBron or LeAD is on the floor, he scores when he’s within spitting distance of LeRim or when he’s fed the ball in a PNR. If he does any ISO bullshit, he sits. Probably a .650 TS% for the rest of the year and a LeRing to go with it, unless LMA has anything to say about it in LeFinals. Drummond sucks at his AAV, but if you’re the LeLakers, all you need is a stopgap at the 5 so AD has to play zero minutes against the big boys until crunch time against Daddy Jokic.

    He makes absolute sense for the Lakers, for the reasons that you described.
    There’s no one on the Knicks (and many other teams) with enough gravitas to keep him in check,
    LeBron has done that with many players over the year.

  57. thenoblefacehumper:
    By the way I hate to be a downer but it’s a pretty bad sign that no one’s proposed solution to the Mitch problem is “play the guy you just drafted 8th overall more”

    I think it’s because Toppin didn’t play center while Mitch was out with the broken hand,
    and the hive mind is that, barring injuries to Noel or Taj, Thibs won’t give Obi meaningful minutes at the 5…

  58. Kanter with a legit funny tweet about who the Nets will use their last roster spot on for in the buyout market, “Thanos ? or maybe Jesus.”

  59. Deeefense: I’m being consistent.

    I would suggest a consistent attitude isn’t warranted when you’re comparing contact injuries with non contact injuries.

  60. JK47: Phil both gets credit for selecting KP at 4, and then for realizing that it was a mistake. Such foresight!

    I actually think this shouldn’t be overlooked. This is a great quality for an executive to have. Drafting Porzingis at 4 was the right call, and trying to sell high on him two years later when presented with new evidence was also the right call.

    I think Phil got pretty much everything else wrong but I like an executive who can pivot like that.

  61. Obi is not a 5 in any regard right now. Putting him there is an invitation to a blowout. I like that he keeps getting 5-10 minutes of run at the 4, but even those minutes are perilous. And while he looked a bit better yesterday, it was against Milwaukee’s 2nd-3rd stringers. Did anyone notice the play where he jumped to contest a phantom shot? It’s like he’s a full second behind the action.

    That’s the disadvantage to playing to win. Right now, Burks is probably a better option at the 5 than Obi. There is no world right now where Obi at the 5 helps you win. And frankly, it’s a good thing that Obi has to deal with that. Getting played no matter how bad they played didn’t help Knox or Ntilikina develop. It wouldn’t help Obi either. He needs to show in practice that he can play well enough to help the team, and then translate those positives to games. Until then, the nightly cameos are more than he deserves.

  62. re: the Center position…. there’s this new thing where teams have been “going small”.

    Randle could crush it as a small ball 5. Obviously Noel should be be the guy but could we maybe just try it for 6 minutes in the first half or something? I’d rather see Randle at the 5 then five minutes to someone who’s available now just bc he’s tall.

  63. People normally overrate the impact of buyout guys but this year’s market was pretty insane. Tiny sample size aside Blake looks at least rotation worthy with the Nets, Aldridge is 6’11” and can shoot reasonably well so he’s per se useful, and for the reasons Jowles outlined it wouldn’t shock me at all to see Drummond matter down the stretch and in the playoffs. Even Dieng is a lot better than the average buyout guy IMO.

    I don’t really know what to make of it but the NBA should probably do something to further incentivize non-contending teams to roster good basketball players.

  64. Phil is smart for wanting to trade Porzingis but not actually trading Porzingis, but the guys who actually DID trade Porzingis are idiots because they couldn’t recognize how awesome he is.

    Did I do that one right? Somehow no matter what Phil always comes out smelling like roses and everybody else is an idiot.

  65. Even if Drummond remains a 0.0 BPM player, that simply means you don’t have to play a -3.0 BPM scrapheap FA center in the playoffs. That’s a big deal, especially in the early rounds when you want your two superstars to create a lead ASAP and then have your bench retain it. For $26M, that kind of player is crippling. For a minimum contract, a completely different story.

    The Aldridge signing is an A for the same reason. He is too old to pin your hopes to, but he’s not so bad that you can’t ask him for 15 MPG of quality defense and opportunistic offense. Kyrie, KD and Harden will win games on their own, so long as their teammates aren’t giving away the advantage.

  66. New York Knicks assistant Mike Woodson is expected to accept deal to become the next head coach of Indiana University

    From Shams. So Payne and Bryant are staying and Woody is going. I’m fine with that.

  67. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Even if Drummond remains a 0.0 BPM player, that simply means you don’t have to play a -3.0 BPM scrapheap FA center in the playoffs. That’s a big deal, especially in the early rounds when you want your two superstars to create a lead ASAP and then have your bench retain it. For $26M, that kind of player is crippling. For a minimum contract, a completely different story.

    The Aldridge signing is an A for the same reason. He is too old to pin your hopes to, but he’s not so bad that you can’t ask him for 15 MPG of quality defense and opportunistic offense. Kyrie, KD and Harden will win games on their own, so long as their teammates aren’t giving away the advantage.

    Amen.

  68. Alan: From Shams. So Payne and Bryant are staying and Woody is going. I’m fine with that.

    Me too.

    Phoenix beat Charlotte in an ugly overtime game,
    we’re fourth in the East waiting for Atlanta to play in Denver.
    Tomorrow game with Miami is huge.

  69. About the Vucevic trade, I would say that the backlash is less about the trade package given and more about Bulls current situation. Although Vuc’s game will age well, he is not young, and they dont have much talent and are left with the cupboard somewhat empty. Their team projects to be poor defensively and that does not have an easy solution. They are keeping Thadeus Young, but his play this season might be a mirage. So in the next four years they will be a fringe playoff team, have some 1st round exits and then they will have to start again. I am not sure about their cap situation, but this year there are few good FAs. Perhaps they are targeting somebody in 2022 with Lavine and Vucevic in the mix? I have a hard time seeing a path to contention from where they are.

    About Lamarcus Aldridge going to the Nets… I don’t think he is going to be a contributor, but one of the key weaknesses they had when they traded for Harden was a thin bench and that is solved. It feels a bit like cheating, but it will only matter if they have injuries for some reason. Actually I think that they might be worst if some of these veterans take playing time from Claxton.

  70. Shams Charania:
    The Knicks have waived Terrance Ferguson and Vincent Poirier, sources tell TheAthletic

    And Terrance Ferguson’s Knicks stint ends so fast that we didn’t even had time to discuss how he’d elevate to a core piece improving this and that. :D

  71. I imagine they are cutting Ferguson mainly because they need the roster spot to sign another big man. If Mitch had injured himself, he might have gotten at least a little bit of time with the development staff first. Or have I lost track of how many guys we have under contract now that Iggy and Rivers are gone?

  72. They waived Ferguson and Poirier, so now we have 2 open roster spots. One is for a big man, that’s easy. I’m not sure for what is the other, maybe bring Teague in to be the 3rd stringer PG behind Payton and DRose? Or can it be for a backup PF?

  73. Porier & Ferguson were most likely always getting waived. We turned Rivers into a 2nd & Iggy just can’t hack it.

    Teague has to be better than Elf & idk what Centers are left but we need a 3rd even if they backup Taj. Maybe we play Randle at C if Porter gets bought out

  74. The players in college aren’t as good as the NBA’s, never have been — but the styles in college are far more heterogenous and the coaches don’t feel as if they have to wet themselves if a guy deigns to take a mid-range J. And even though the pros are paid and the college guys are “not paid,” the college guys don’t sit out games. Bit of a paradox, that one.

  75. Bobby Marks:
    Best way to look at NYK at the trade deadline is that they paid $700K for a 2021 2nd rd. pick (either PHI or HOU).

    Ferguson and Poirier had $2.3M left on their contract compared to $1.6M of Rivers/Brazdeikis.

    2 open roster spots (must fill one by 4/11)

    $13.5M in cap space

  76. and they did a solid for a couple of other teams which may get them a little good will in the future

  77. Well since we’re crying over spilt draft picks, how about the fact that Malik Monk and Miles Bridges are having really good seasons?

    Ntilikina and Knox, the busts that keep on giving

  78. Just don’t understand the awfulness of free throw shooting these days (as I watch bama UCLA)…

  79. Raptors lose again, people still think they have a chance of passing the Knicks in the standings?

  80. BigBlueAL:
    Raptors lose again, people still think they have a chance of passing the Knicks in the standings?

    I think they will be in the top 10, no strong convictions but they are definitely better than they’ve played. As to today, now that Portland have McCollum and Nurkic back and have picked up Norman Powell, their starting 5 is as good as any in the league…a lot of teams are going to lose to them.

  81. Something that isn’t literally true, but is true in a deeper, spiritual sense: NCAA D1 basketball players are worse at shooting free throws than the general population

  82. Only a fucking rube would think that college players are paid, and that’s fucking factorial

  83. Brian Cronin:
    As an aside, that four hour fantasy auction I did on Thursday? One of the guys I got was Luke Voit, so…yeah. I objected to doing a draft so early and that’s a perfect example of why not to draft so early.

    I actually kept Voit. We had to do our draft then because ours took 8 hours and has a live auctioneer. Many couldn’t make it this week because of Passover.

  84. The NCAA is a cartel that only seeks to line its own pockets and those of the collegiate fatcats who profit at the very top. It makes me fucking sick.

  85. I just got to this thread now, pretty late. It’s amazing how much has changed since the first post of the thread. Some points…
    We were never signing Dieng. According to this Athletic article Gorgui had reason to dislike Thibs.
    The Mitch injury has me down. Drummond didn’t excite me. Mitch did. Alas, I am beginning to think he’s not worth a long term deal. He’s a unique talent but he can’t stay on the court. There’s no replacing him. I’m wondering if there’s a chance he’s back for the playoffs.

  86. Not only do college players get paid — at least the ones on scholarship — but the vast majority get paid far more than their actual “market value.” The basketball market value of the 10th man at Boston College, outside Boston College, is zero.

  87. The NCAA runs 90 championships in men’s and women’s sports, including all of them in men’s American football except the top division. Five of them make a profit — D-1 men’s basketball, lacrosse, ice hockey, wrestling, and baseball. Not exactly the height of sophistication to only know about and comment about things one sees on TV. There’s a whole big world out there beyond the idiot box and Instagram. There’s also Title IX, but I guess we should give the money that supports women’s sports to a handful of men’s football and basketball players instead.

    The NCAA is probably the best thing that’s actually happened for women’s athletics in the United States in the country’s history. A bit surprising that that would apparently bring some to illness but hopefully we can chalk that one up to internet attention-grabbing.

  88. E, all merc’d out:
    There’s also Title IX, but I guess we should give the money that supports women’s sports to a handful of men’s football and basketball players instead.

    No, why the money from the women’s sports? why not the money from NCAA coaches which are stupendously paid?

  89. Because they tried to cap coaching salaries and unfortunately the courts struck it down. I would definitely favor it, but that wouldn’t be enough to subsidize all the women’s and “unprofitable” men’s sports, anyway.

    If the people “sickened” by the NCAA had their way and the NCAA was run as a business, it would run like six divisions — all men’s, all D-I, all with fewer “franchises.” Everything else would be shuttered. That doesn’t really seem like an improvement.

  90. 2 things:
    1. Very happy for Woodson. Does this mean he has to leave the staff immediately? And, who replaces him as the Thibs buffer?

    2. Now is the time to bring KOQ back. That’s the only big I want replacing Mitch for the rest of the season. I like a couple of the available options, but I think KOQ is a better fit. Would be better if Horford gets bought out though

  91. E, all merc’d out: Because they tried to cap coaching salaries and unfortunately the courts struck it down. I would definitely favor it, but that wouldn’t be enough to subsidize all the women’s and “unprofitable” men’s sports, anyway.

    That has no correlation whatsoever. If they have to pay the players and have to do so within budget, they will have to pay less to the coaches. It is not about artificially capping the coaches salary (and of course, not about increasing their budget at expense of other sections)

  92. The evidence indicates that Woodson is a pretty good coach, but I’m kind of glad he has moved on to greener pastures for himself. If anyone was a Dolan spy waiting in the wings to take over if things weren’t going well it was Woodson.

  93. They already do pay the players, and the vast majority of the teams and the vast majority of the sports in aggregate are unprofitable. They are subsidized. If they were to act under purely business principles, there would be about 5% of the teams there are now, maybe fewer — including no women’s teams. That’s massive regression and the polar opposite of progress.

    Once we realize that it’s a bad idea for them to act as pure businesses, we realize that they aren’t pure businesses, and from there all the rest of the “sickening” things naturally follow. Which is why these activities have been essentially the same for over 100 years now. The vast, vast majority of them are worthy educational extracurricular activities, just like the “unprofitable” chess club or debate club or intramural sports.

  94. Owen:
    Six steals for Mikal Bridges today

    We have the folks that overvalued “athletic scorers” relative to elite defenders that stay in their offensive lane to thank for that one. Mikal Bridges is probably never going to become a major scoring option on a championship team, but he can be an important piece on a championship team. Drafting one of those and allowing him to develop is better than shooting for the moon and crash landing.

  95. Agree that it’s a good thing the spy is finally gone. His act wore entirely thin in l’affaire D’Antoni and its ancillary l’affaire Lin. Never trusted him a lick after that one and never liked him. His coaching in the Indiana playoff series was dreadful.

  96. In short, players are “compensated” but not “paid.” They do not have the rights that “employees” have and while the dollar value of the “compensation” is more than most student-athletes can earn via athletic performance outside of the NCAA realm, it does not meet the basic standard of an employer-employee relationship. There is a substantial degree of exploitation going on.

  97. Z-man: This article has probably been posted before, but for those interested in the history of the finances of the NCAA and student athletics, it’s worth a read. It’s really a fascinating topic.

    Like almost all of these articles, it has an overwrought and hysterical title, “The Shame of College Athletics.” And from there, it proceeds as all these articles do, to the seedy underbelly of high-end college basketball and a hanger-on adult exploiting it and from there makes all sorts of false extrapolations to the whole. It’s not wholly unfair to call people like Sonny Vaccaro or Nike “shameful” — Nike’s labor practices absolutely are, and the way it’s worked its tentacles into college football and basketball isn’t something I’ve favored — but the extrapolations from those small stories go completely haywire.

    The NCAA is not only Power 5 football and basketball. This can’t be repeated enough. Any story that doesn’t grasp that isn’t really worth reading at this point, or at the very least is easily discreditable.

    There can be no better way to get across the point that Sonny Vaccaro is a slimeball than to cut a bunch of women’s field hockey and lacrosse teams in the nation’s colleges, that’s for sure. That’ll show him!!

  98. Z-man:
    In short, players are “compensated” but not “paid.” They do not have the rights that “employees” have and while the dollar value of the “compensation” is more than most student-athletes can earn via athletic performance outside of the NCAA realm, it does not meet the basic standard of an employer-employee relationship. There is a substantial degree of exploitation going on.

    Wherein college athletes have been forced and brainwashed into neo-Marxian false consciousness. Pay no heed to the joy on their faces when they play or train, or when they or team accomplish something competitively, or on the dozens behind them frothing at the mouth to be similarly “exploited.”

    Having to show up for practice when the coach says doesn’t make a college or high school soccer player an “employee” anymore than having to show up for Hamlet school play practice.

  99. E, all merc’d out: Wherein college athletes have been forced and brainwashed into neo-Marxian false consciousness.Pay no heed to the joy on their faces when they play or train, or when they or team accomplish something competitively, or on the dozens behind them frothing at the mouth to be similarly “exploited.”

    I would say more, lots of young people would PAY to have chance to access the NBA. That doesn not make it morally right, though.

  100. E, all merc’d out: Wherein college athletes have been forced and brainwashed into neo-Marxian false consciousness.Pay no heed to the joy on their faces when they play or train, or when they or team accomplish something competitively, or on the dozens behind them frothing at the mouth to be similarly “exploited.”

    You didn’t actually read the article, did you?

  101. Basically, you have lots of young people that working for free for a chance to be in the NBA and that couldnt care less about college education.

    I am from Spain, and there should be something said about young people here abandoning their studies early for a dream to play in Real Madrid or Barça, but at least they do not make profit from them while they are amateurs, and they can jump to be professionals as soon as their play in the field is worth it.

  102. iserp: Basically, you have lots of young people that working for free for a chance to be in the NBA and that couldnt care less about college education.

    Not true, the vast majority of D-I college basketball players know that they have zero chance of playing in the NBA.

  103. Z-man: You didn’t actually read the article, did you?

    Wherein disagreeing with the poorly-developed premises and prescriptions in a ten-year old article means one hasn’t read the article.

    I totally get the anti-NCAA arguments. They’re almost entirely unpersuasive and don’t even apply to the vast majority of the NCAA’s activities. We’ve socialized the NCAA “economy” at the very highest athletic ends so as a bunch of very worthwhile sports can continue to be subsidized.(*) That does in fact deprive a very, very few athletes of their full “market value.” But even with that, it’s a perfectly fine model and in many ways laudable. All due respect to Boomer-screwed Woke Millennial, it has to be observed that it’s a little strange that he wants to bring hyper-capitalism to the one area of American life to which it’s most poorly adapted.

    (*) And if you want to take it further, Nick Saban and the other vastly overpaid commissars do bear a decent resemblance to the head honchos of late Soviet communism, who all got the best Moscow apartments and vodka even in the midst of general worker squalor.

  104. iserp:
    Basically, you have lots of young people that working for free for a chance to be in the NBA and that couldnt care less about college education.

    I am from Spain, and there should be something said about young people here abandoning their studies early for a dream to play in Real Madrid or Barça, but at least they do not make profit from them while they are amateurs, and they can jump to be professionals as soon as their play in the field is worth it.

    Does Spain open up Real Madrid or Barca to American 16-18s?

    The tie between American sport and schools is unique in the world; Europeans wouldn’t be expected to understand it fully.

    Any NCAA basketball player that truly “couldn’t care less” about college education shouldn’t be playing NCAA basketball. The NCAA wouldn’t lose a dime if it didn’t have them playing. For about ten years or so, between the time all the best high schoolers jumped to the draft and the time that a year after high school was mandated, the NCAA didn’t miss a beat. The NCAA didn’t miss a beat without LeBron James and LeBron James wouldn’t have added a dime to the NCAA’s coffers. The NCAA didn’t miss Luka Doncic, either. The NCAA “economy” isn’t based on having all the world’s best U-20s playing in it.

  105. “Not only do sharecroppers get paid — at least the ones with mandatory selling agreements with landowners — but the vast majority get paid far more than their actual ‘market value’. The market value of the sharecropper, outside the plantation, is zero.”

    College athletics is a sham, it should be abolished and replaced with professional minor leagues, where players actually will get paid–not “paid in scholarships”. It’s also bad for universities writ large, for a host of reasons. It’s simply one of the most baldly inequitable institutions of American athletics.

  106. If college basketball was abolished, the vast, vast majority of its players wouldn’t have “jobs.” There’s no market for them. Look at teams like the Westies. Way better basketball than the University of Michigan, interest in the team about 1/10,000th the interest in the University of Michigan.

    If you made basketball all professional and took away all the publicly-subsidized arenas, there would probably be something like 25 teams that could make a profit of any serious kind. Look at English soccer. Clearly the number 1 sport, all sorts of international appeal, only about 90 pro teams, about 70 or more of which don’t make much and the players don’t make much. There is little market interest in the US in watching the likes of Jared Harper play basketball (at least without the college brands appended to him.)

  107. My daughter is a D-III college athlete. Her only compensation was a slight advantage in admissions. Neither she nor I have any regrets. It was a great deal and she feels lucky to have gotten it.

    The same is true for many, if not most D-I college athletes. They don’t have to accept the deal. For the best ones, there are alternatives…low-level professional leagues (See: Kuminga) overseas (see: Brandon Jennings), or just sitting out until one becomes age-eligible (see: Mitchell Robinson.) E is correct that even the cost of a scholarship for tuition, room, board, etc. plus other percs of being a college-athlete are well beyond what any but the top professional leagues pay, e.g. minor league baseball players get paid like $8000 per season and most are better than most college baseball players.

    But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t exploitation in the way of unfair labor practices, worker protections, opportunities for marketing one’s own likeness, profit-sharing, etc. There’s plenty of room for compromise towards allowing individual stars to capitalize on their talent without destroying NCAA sports.

  108. LOL @ “neo-Marxian false consciousness.” Such drivel. Its always been a favorite line of apologists for capitalist exploitation of labor to blame “Marxists” or “socialists” when workers rise and demand fair compensation. The underlying logic implicit in their arguments, of course, is that laborers are too stupid to know when they are being exploited by themselves. It always has to be an outside agitator indoctrinating a gullible and simplistic workforce into an insidious worldview.

  109. If college basketball was abolished, the vast, vast majority of its players wouldn’t have “jobs.” There’s no market for them. Look at teams like the Westies. Way better basketball than the University of Michigan, interest in the team about 1/10,000th the interest in the University of Michigan.

    And that’s fine! It is not incumbent on the university–an academic institution–to have to support a “market” for amateur athletics. Any “advantages” accruing to women or minor sports in this system can also be met by having minor leagues (see again Europe). The market is bloated, inefficient, exploitative for elite talents, and unfair to other university students (whose tuition and fees are in no small part going to money-losing athletics departments). This is one place where opening up a genuinely free market would yield a real improvement in outcomes.

    Re: Z-Man’s point: I think there’s a feasible middle ground here that you’ve outlined, and I think allowing for profit-sharing/being in control of one’s likeness would go some way towards alleviating a lot of the concerns re: exploitation of talent. I still think, all things considered, pro minor leagues are the way to go, since I think athletics departments are generally bad for universities. But I’d cheer any reform to the NCAA system that allowed for the things you outlined, too.

  110. Z-man: There’s plenty of room for compromise towards allowing individual stars to capitalize on their talent without destroying NCAA sports.

    You’re talking there about maybe 200 players, probably not even that. College fans root for laundry. There’s probably some room to liberalize things in the Instagram era, but that doesn’t really seem to be what the “Death to the NCAA, the NCAA makes me fucking sick, let’s abolish college sports” people are aiming for.

  111. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada: And that’s fine! It is not incumbent on the university–an academic institution–to have to support a “market” for amateur athletics. Any “advantages” accruing to women or minor sports in this system can also be met by having minor leagues (see again Europe). The market is bloated, inefficient, exploitative for elite talents, and unfair to other university students (whose tuition and fees are in no small part goingto money-losing athletics departments). This is one place where opening up a genuinely free market would yield a real improvement in outcomes.

    There’s no market for for-profit minor league women’s sports in the United States. There’s barely a market for major league women’s sports. No one is just going to step in and shell out the subsidies the schools now give to these sports. You’re living in absolute fantasyland.

    And obviously it’s not fine — it’s illegal for a school to have ten men’s teams and zero women’s teams. Nor would it be fine to just wipe out hundreds of women’s college sports teams. How is that remotely “fine!”??

  112. E, all merc’d out: Wherein disagreeing with the poorly-developed premises and prescriptions in a ten-year old article means one hasn’t read the article.

    I totally get the anti-NCAA arguments.They’re almost entirely unpersuasive and don’t even apply to the vast majority of the NCAA’s activities.We’ve socialized the NCAA “economy” at the very highest athletic ends so as a bunch of very worthwhile sports can continue to be subsidized.(*)That does in fact deprive a very, very few athletes of their full “market value.”But even with that, it’s a perfectly fine model and in many ways laudable.All due respect to Boomer-screwed Woke Millennial, it has to be observed that it’s a little strange that he wants to bring hyper-capitalism to the one area of American life to which it’s most poorly adapted.

    (*) And if you want to take it further, Nick Saban and the other vastly overpaid commissars do bear a decent resemblance to the head honchos of late Soviet communism, who all got the best Moscow apartments and vodka even in the midst of general worker squalor.

    I am a boomer and not much of a fan of NCAA sports beyond a passing interest in March Madness. But I know right from wrong, and there’s a ton wrong with the NCAA’s underlying premises that deprive the college athlete of pay and protections while making millionaires out of coaches and athletic directors and billionaires out of advertisers and media giants.

    The same arguments were made about olympic athletes. Now they are professionals and directly reaping the financial benefits of their likenesses and talents. Yet the Olympic torch blows on.

    Your arguments are the same ones that allowed for the exploitation of professional athletes by NBA, MLB, NFL, and NHL until a few of decades ago, or the exploitation of workers in general before collective bargaining became a thing.

  113. Barrettcuda:
    LOL @ “neo-Marxian false consciousness.” Such drivel. Its always been a favorite line of apologists for capitalist exploitation of labor to blame “Marxists” or “socialists” when workers rise and demand fair compensation. The underlying logic implicit in their arguments, of course, is that laborers are too stupid to know when they are being exploited by themselves. It always has to be an outside agitator indoctrinating a gullible and simplistic workforce into an insidious worldview.

    Well, in fairness, here it’s gullible and simplistic outside agitators trying to tell smarter “laborers” they’re being exploited.

  114. Z-man: I am a boomer and not much of a fan of NCAA sports beyond a passing interest in March Madness. But I know right from wrong, and there’s a ton wrong with the NCAA’s underlying premises that deprive the college athlete of pay and protections while making millionaires out of coaches and athletic directors and billionaires out of advertisers and media giants.

    The same arguments were made about olympic athletes. Now they are professionals and directly reaping the financial benefits of their likenesses and talents. Yet the Olympic torch blows on.

    Your arguments are the same ones that allowed for the exploitation of professional athletes by NBA, MLB, NFL, and NHL until a few of decades ago, or the exploitation of workers in general before collective bargaining became a thing.

    They’re not the same arguments, because a women’s college gymnast or field hockey player isn’t a “worker.” That’s the continuing fallacy. The chess club participant isn’t a worker, the debate club participant isn’t a worker, the women’s field hockey player isn’t a worker, the men’s college basketball player isn’t a worker. The fact that they have a schedule dictated to them and a “boss” doesn’t make them “workers”; the fact that some of the activities charge admission to people who want to see them doesn’t make them “workers.”

    Hit a nail with a rubber hose and this is what you get. It’s inevitable. The better plan is to swap out the rubber hose for a hammer. It works better.

  115. I think the system as a whole would be a lot more defensible if amateur status weren’t treated as sacrosanct. If the NCAA doesn’t give the players a cut of the TV/video game revenue – fine, whatever; there’s a huge labor force that will work for free, because college is fun and sports are fun. But actively forcing players with independent market value to forfeit that value is messed up. This whole conversation centers on maybe 1% of all student athletes – why not just allow them to collect their nike money on the side and call it a day?

    Slight tangent, but I played one of those subsidized sports – one of my teammates also happened to be an awesome surfer. When he got sponsored, he lost his eligibility and subsequently left the team – for receiving money in a completely different sport! Another teammate was an incredible runner. He stayed on the team, and during college, he wasn’t allowed to compete in any races with prize money (also from a completely different sport!). If either of these guys were basketball or football players and the ncaa locked them up for 1-3 years before he was allowed to go pro, they would have been SOL. And if they had suffered a career ending injury during that time, they would have been even more SOL.

    Basketball players have alternative options like the g-league or foreign leagues, but the systems shouldn’t be mutually exclusive. And football players are just truly effed by the system.

  116. There’s no market for for-profit minor league women’s sports in the United States. There’s barely a market for major league women’s sports.

    And obviously it’s not fine — it’s illegal for a school to have ten men’s teams and zero women’s teams. Nor would it be fine to just wipe out hundreds of women’s college sports teams. How is that remotely “fine!”??

    This is a larger social issue, and not one that the university has an obligation or is in a position to solve. What fixes the gender demand and pay gap in sports isn’t a fake market–it’s a complex problem that has to be tackled by a more centralized authority. Also, if you opened up college athletics to genuine market pressures, I think pretty much every department would end up withering and dying, because they are not profitable, and even places like UNC and UGA would not be profitable if there were leagues for football and basketball that operated as genuine competitors.

    Title IX is a good law insofar as it helps secure equality in college athletics, but college athletics is a bad system for doing anything that is remotely fair. So we should get rid of it, or, if we can’t do that for some reason, at least reform it so athletes are given proper worker protections, since they’re obviously workers in the same way graduate students on fellowship are workers.

  117. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada: What fixes the gender demand and pay gap in sports isn’t a fake market–it’s a complex problem that has to be tackled by a more centralized authority. Also, if you opened up college athletics to genuine market pressures,

    So let’s replace the organic NCAA athletic system that makes loads of sense and that a bunch of people love with government-subsidized women’s sports — the ultimate “fake market.” Makes sense.

    The gender and pay gap in sports results from the fact that men’s sports make way more money. Full stop. That’s it. The only way around that is subsidizing women’s sports. The distribution of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament money to women’s college sports IS gender equality.

  118. E, all merc’d out: You’re talking there about maybe 200 players, probably not even that.College fans root for laundry.There’s probably some room to liberalize things in the Instagram era, but that doesn’t really seem to be what the “Death to the NCAA, the NCAA makes me fucking sick, let’s abolish college sports” people are aiming for.

    Every player in any of the major conferences contributes to the overall success of the conference. Just like every factory worker contributes to the car that rolls off the assembly line. No one goes into a car dealership to support the American auto worker. They are interested in the product. If they can buy a car put together by dollar-a-day workers in a developing country, most are happy to do so. Does that make the exploitation of the worker okay?

    I agree that there’s tons of hypocrisy…the same folks who champion the cause of the exploited college athletes who are almost singularly thrilled at their lot in life are running around wearing Nike gear manufactured in some sweatshop overseas. Why not just say that there are some reforms that would not hurt the NCAA or women’s sports and would improve the lot of the typical college-athlete? What would be the tragedy of letting players profit on their own likeness, or market their services to colleges via an agent? You think that if LeBron was offered $1 million to play for Kentucky, that would be more corrupt than paying John Calipari five times that much to coach him?

  119. Silky Johnson, Fleet Admiral of the Tank Armada:
    “Not only do sharecroppers get paid — at least the ones with mandatory selling agreements with landowners — but the vast majority get paid far more than their actual ‘market value’. The market value of the sharecropper, outside the plantation, is zero.”

    College athletics is a sham, it should be abolished and replaced with professional minor leagues, where players actually will get paid–not “paid in scholarships”. It’s also bad for universities writ large, for a host of reasons. It’s simply one of the most baldly inequitable institutions of American athletics.

    Though not dispositive of this argument, it would be interesting to read @cdiggy weigh in on the pov of the athletes. The school he works at is really at the margins of chasing a hoop’s dream in the form of about 7200 men’s basketball scholarships ( divisions 1 and 2) and yet watching the Last Chance U, it is easy to conclude that the players at ELAC happily pursue this dream. To ELAC’s credit, about 7 or 8 players did get scholarships. The elephant in the room is the apparent lack of knowledge on the part of the athletes as to the chances of ever monetizing the basketball abilities on the part of the players and thus the importance of their “free” education. In the satin booty shorts ’70s, I was a walk-on for a rival ( to E’s school) Big 10 JV team and had access to varsity athletes of all sports. The football and basketball players were given a path to not losing eligibility education with little talk about post-sports futures. If you were a starter in hoops or football, the Galbreath family would take care of you after school placing you in decent to lucrative public-facing jobs. If you were a scrub like me, you were on your own.

  120. Z-man: Every player in any of the major conferences contributes to the overall success of the conference. Just like every factory worker contributes to the car that rolls off the assembly line. No one goes into a car dealership to support the American auto worker. They are interested in the product. If they can buy a car put together by dollar-a-day workers in a developing country, most are happy to do so. Does that make the exploitation of the worker okay?

    I agree that there’s tons of hypocrisy…the same folks who champion the cause of the exploited college athletes who are almost singularly thrilled at their lot in life are running around wearing Nike gear manufactured in some sweatshop overseas. Why not just say that there are some reforms that would not hurt the NCAA or women’s sports and would improve the lot of the typical college-athlete? What would be the tragedy of letting players profit on their own likeness, or market their services to colleges via an agent? You think that if LeBron was offered $1 million to play for Kentucky, that would be more corrupt than paying John Calipari five times that much to coach him?

    Yes they all contribute, but only about 200 players (rough guess) have a likeness with any market value.

    I’ve already said I’m fine with some reforms. I’d be fine slapping on a monthly cash add-on to the scholarship, for example. Have you read what the other side is saying though? “The NCAA makes me sick.” “Abolish college sports.” “The shame of college sports.” They aren’t looking for letting college athletes sell their Instagram brand.

  121. @TheHoopCentral
    NBA Agent on Lonzo Ball;

    “Lonzo enjoys playing for the Pelicans but isn’t a fan of New Orleans. However, he really wants to end up with the Knicks or Bulls. That has been a dream of his. It’s likely he will try to leave this offseason.”

    (via @massey_evan)

    Buckle up…

  122. Oh look, E has a position opposed by many in the board and is arguing with multiple people simultaneously, who could have predicted such a thing would occur

  123. Oh look, E has a position opposed by many in the board and is arguing with multiple people simultaneously, who could have predicted such a thing would occur

    I’m sort of with E, (and pretty much 100% behind Z-man). The system works really well for most of its participants. Abandoning it entirely could conceivably do more harm than good. But it’s not perfect, and could certainly be improved with some sensible modifications. NCAA doesn’t necessarily need to pay everyone (though there are definitely arguments to be had for likeness rights), but the fetishization of amateur status is a problem. Coaches can get paid exorbitant sums of money because they bring tons back to the school. If a star recruit can command that kind of salary (either via private sponsorship or directly from the school itself), it’s hard to argue that that shouldn’t be allowed.

  124. Wherein college athletes have been forced and brainwashed into neo-Marxian false consciousness.

    Looks like somebody fell down the Jordan Peterson rabbit hole

  125. Yeah, I take responsibility for today’s moot court session but also yeah I only have opinions for the internet clout, you got me bud!!!!

  126. E, all merc’d out: Yes they all contribute, but only about 200 players (rough guess) have a likeness with any market value.

    This is simply not true. A college athlete is often a star in his/her home town and could make a few bucks e.g. showing up in a team jersey and signing autographs at a local venue to generate sales. We’re not only talking about making millions off of one’s likeness.

    E, all merc’d out: I’ve already said I’m fine with some reforms. I’d be fine slapping on a monthly cash add-on to the scholarship, for example. Have you read what the other side is saying though? “The NCAA makes me sick.” “Abolish college sports.” “The shame of college sports.” They aren’t looking for letting college athletes sell their Instagram brand.

    I agree that the “abolish the NCAA” positions are extreme and fly in the face of the feelings of most college athletes, who are thrilled to be part of a college team and shouldn’t be even remotely compared to exploited sweatshop workers. But there’s a vast middle ground, and you seem to be arguing that the “professionalization” of NCAA sports in a way that shifts profits from advertisers, athletic directors, coaches, and endowments (and that’s just the non-corrupt stuff) will doom small programs and women’s sports. Frankly, it’s a tired, ole argument that the article you criticize crushes. The face of both professional and college sports today is unrecognizable from what it was 60 years ago and largely to the benefit of the athlete. The move towards more “equitable” compensation for athletes is inexorable, and it’s only a matter of time. The NCAA would be wise to get ahead of the curve by meeting somewhere in the middle in a collective bargaining arrangement.

  127. Z-man: But there’s a vast middle ground, and you seem to be arguing that the “professionalization” of NCAA sports in a way that shifts profits from advertisers, athletic directors, coaches, and endowments (and that’s just the non-corrupt stuff) will doom small programs and women’s sports. Frankly, it’s a tired, ole argument that the article you criticize crushes.

    We don’t disagree that much, but it’s an unavoidable fact that the vast majority of the programs the NCAA oversees are unprofitable and would be gone if civilian world business principles were applied to them. So the choices are either (1) they go; or (2) they’re subsidized. So we can’t have civilian world business principles applied. They don’t fit anyway to a university, non-profit setting, but they also don’t fit even to the athletic part of the university, non-profit setting.

    I liked your question about the LeBron James marketing himself to Kentucky through an agent and there probably are other examples of stars marketing themselves to fundraisers/charities, etc. — i.e. other non-profits who have to take in money to subsidize good things. Think of the Red Cross, St. Jude’s, the Leukemia/Lymphoma Society. And of course the stars who help with fundraisers, including political fundraisers, don’t do it for free. But then the analogy breaks down, because LeBron isn’t being paid $1M to raise extra money for the women’s sports teams at Kentucky or the NCAA; he’d be paid the $1M to help Kentucky win more basketball games. I suppose, playing it out, that if someone could show me that getting LeBron to the NCAA in the first place would help the NCAA “raise more money,” I might be able to get behind it — the same way I’d be fine paying the Stones to do a Red Cross fundraiser. But I see no evidence that that’s true.

  128. Z-man: This is simply not true. A college athlete is often a star in his/her home town and could make a few bucks e.g. showing up in a team jersey and signing autographs at a local venue to generate sales. We’re not only talking about making millions off of one’s likeness.

    I think in some cases being a college athlete is a credential sought in public-facing enterprises. Wall Street used to hire many local college athletes as institutional bond sales people and the telecom industry hired an even greater number for again institutional sales.

  129. E, it’s true that a lot of NCAA sports players want to do it, know they are never going to be pros, but get a benefit from the system. But there are some things that are so hypocritical about big time college sports that they make the whole enterprise look bad. If a student at the music is actually paid to perform outside the school the music is proud of that student. It helps the schools reputation. He or she doesn’t get kicked out of the school band or any other music school activity. And such a student is expected to have an agent, not denied it. But in Athletics it’s different. All the examples above show how different. It shouldn’t be that way.

  130. Should the Nets just change their name to
    Harden and the Has-Beens?

    Rarely has an MVP candidacy sprung out of nowhere like this, right? His MVP narrative is on fire right now.

  131. Buckle up…

    Sure sounds like it’ll be a case of which max offer he prefers, right? And whether New Orleans will want to keep him anyways.

  132. I actually kept Voit. We had to do our draft then because ours took 8 hours and has a live auctioneer. Many couldn’t make it this week because of Passover.

    Oh yeah, with a live auctioneer, that makes perfect sense to do it early. But ooph, eight hours! My sympathies!

  133. He’s a unique talent but he can’t stay on the court.

    Unless he literally has, like, brittle bone disease or something, I don’t think bone breaks are something specific to a player, so I wouldn’t read too much into it. If this was non-contact stuff or chronic injuries, then it’d be a much bigger deal.

  134. @IanBegley
    Julius Randle is being listed as questionable for the game against the Heat tonight due to the thigh contusion he suffered last week.

  135. He’s gonna sign a max offer sheet with the Knicks and LaVar and the agent are going to agitate against the Pellies matching it and then the Pellies are going to try to extract players and draft picks, while at the same time making it clear that they aren’t going to be browbeat into not matching. At that time, Rose and Aller and the rest will have to earn their money. I’d have preferred to have gotten him at the deadline.

    This is my prediction.

  136. Sure sounds like it’ll be a case of which max offer he prefers, right? And whether New Orleans will want to keep him anyways.

    And also how much either team is willing to give NOLA to prevent a match.

  137. This may come as a shock, but E is arguing against a straw man. He is pointing out the complications that could arise if every single D1 athlete was guaranteed a salary. While I think the ethical case for that is strong, and Silky makes a convincing argument that if the NCAA can’t provide it they shouldn’t be allowed to operate sports leagues that are professional in all but name, it raises enough issues that no one is calling for it to be implemented tomorrow.

    He isn’t engaging with the fact that colleges are banned from compensating their athletes, despite the fact that 82 schools view it as within their interests to spend at least seven figures annually on their football programs when it comes to their head coaches. Schools know how to budget for that such that their women’s programs and less popular sports aren’t destroyed, and simply allowing them to direct those some funds towards athletes wouldn’t change that.

    Nor is he engaging with the fact that D1 athletes who do develop viable markets for their likeness are banned from capitalizing on it (even with the new rules, there are so many exceptions and regulations no one can argue they can actually capitalize on the market), which actually disproportionately hurts the ones that won’t become professional (as Z-Man points out, there is absolutely a market for tons of D1 active athletes to capitalize on when it comes to their likeness).

  138. If the Knicks retain cap space, is there any way to use it after the season concludes?

  139. Brian Cronin: Rarely has an MVP candidacy sprung out of nowhere like this, right? His MVP narrative is on fire right now.

    Draftkings lists Harden as 7:1 to win the MVP. I’m not a betting man but those sure are tempting odds.

  140. There’s no money to pay salaries in the vast majority of the sports, so there’s no case, ethical or otherwise, to be made to pay “all D1 athletes” salaries.(*) The only way you get there is by the profitable factories subsidizing the unprofitable ones and once we’re in that world, we’re not in the real business world anymore and so there’s no need to even talk about the real business world anymore. (We weren’t to begin with, because these are appendages of non-profit institutions, but even if they weren’t, we’re not there.)

    (*) What is the proposal for DI fencing “salaries” or D1 women’s gymnastics salaries?

  141. There are other solutions as well. The article points to the difference between football and basketball. I can see a future where the NCAA is watered down as a governing body and mega-conferences with their own rules emerge. The Big 10, ACC and Pac-12 could form a mega-league with their own playoff structure and player compensation rules and freeze out all the other colleges to fend for themselves and figure it out. Maybe the Knicks FO/CAA/Kentucky partnership becomes a thing and the G-League becomes college-based. Maybe women led by the Megan Rapinoes of the world start boycotting men’s sports altogether and funnel more revenue into women sports infrastructure. But without doubt, the signs are pointing in the direction of change.

  142. Brian Cronin: Oh yeah, with a live auctioneer, that makes perfect sense to do it early. But ooph, eight hours! My sympathies!

    The 8 hours was our shortest run in decades! This is year #30. We only have 13 teams (chartered to 15) this year due to COVID drop-outs. Last year it was 10.5 hours.
    Good luck!

  143. If the Knicks retain cap space, is there any way to use it after the season concludes?

    Yes, they can use it right up until free agency.

  144. Z-man: There are other solutions as well. The article points to the difference between football and basketball. I can see a future where the NCAA is watered down as a governing body and mega-conferences with their own rules emerge. The Big 10, ACC and Pac-12 could form a mega-league with their own playoff structure and player compensation rules and freeze out all the other colleges to fend for themselves and figure it out.

    That isn’t the “future” in football; it’s the way it’s been for decades. It would be way better if the NCAA had actually retained control. The NCAA has never controlled or run the D1 football postseason, or at least hasn’t in the last 40-50 years.

    EDIT: I missed the “player compensation” part, but that’s changed as of about four/five years ago, too. The conferences control that now, too.

  145. The 8 hours was our shortest run in decades!

    Wow! Do you recall which player had the longest bidding for?

  146. Maybe the Knicks FO/CAA/Kentucky partnership becomes a thing and the G-League becomes college-based.

    If the teams aren’t comprised of students, interest will wane dramatically. If the Knicks want to help out a college athletic department, no one should be against it.

    The real “cartel” here is the NBA which (1) forces an age limit on draftees; and (2) artificially fixes draftees’ salaries, thereby encouraging players to skip college years in order to get to their true earning potential more quickly. This is in large part why we never get the four year college star, like Patrick Ewing or Grant Hill, anymore.

    The real answer here is to make anyone who wants to enter the NBA draft eligible to enter the NBA draft, and to stop fixing draftees salaries. We had it that way for a lot of years and it was perfectly fine for all concerned, including the NCAA. The NCAA did not miss LeBron James or Kobe Bryant. It was perfectly fine without them.

  147. On the NCAA.

    As with every political debate, I find myself in the middle. I believe in amateur sports but it’s not an absolute. There’s a limit. If my school sells shirts with my name on the back, I should get a cut. On the other hand, there’s a slippery slope that eventually leads to shady agents.

    Alan Hahn brought up something about a month or so ago. There’s talk of forming an independent professional league for the elite pre-NBA talent. I believe it was for kids ages 16 .

    Quick edit…
    I haven’t read it, but here’s a link to that new league

  148. E, all merc’d out:
    There’s no money to pay salaries in the vast majority of the sports, so there’s no case, ethical or otherwise, to be made to pay “all D1 athletes” salaries. The only way you get there is by the profitable factories subsidizing the unprofitable ones and once we’re in that world, we’re not in the real business world anymore and so there’s no need to even talk about the real business world anymore.(We weren’t to begin with, because these are appendages of non-profit institutions, but even if they weren’t, we’re not there.)

    I’m not sure to what degree any subsidization takes place in D3 athletics, but it is certainly a tiny fraction of what happens at the D1 level. If the end result is more D3-style college sports and more low-level non-college professional leagues, that’s not a bad thing. At the end of the day, there are a ton of D1 schools without any player-driven revenue…the Ivy League and the Patriot leagues, for example. Virtually no one is turning on the TV to see the Princeton-Yale or Colgate-Holy Cross games because of a superstar future pro or pursuit of a national championship. So I don’t agree that college sports is doomed if there isn’t player exclusion from revenue sharing.

  149. Alan: And also how much either team is willing to give NOLA to prevent a match.

    This appears to be shaping up as a huge game of chicken.

  150. Brian Cronin: Wow! Do you recall which player had the longest bidding for?

    We have a “time-out” system. Every team gets 5 per draft. It’s 15 seconds. Alex Rodriquez, in his MVP pre-steroid Yankee years went for $53 – by far the highest paid player ever. Both teams called at least 3 time outs. It was worth every second to watch the two guys go at it.

  151. Brian Cronin: Unless he literally has, like, brittle bone disease or something, I don’t think bone breaks are something specific to a player, so I wouldn’t read too much into it. If this was non-contact stuff or chronic injuries, then it’d be a much bigger deal.

    2018: Left Ankle sprain
    2019: Right Ankle sprain
    2019: Concussion
    2020: Hamstring
    2021: Fractured Hand
    2021: Fractured Foot
    Source

  152. Brian Cronin: Rarely has an MVP candidacy sprung out of nowhere like this, right? His MVP narrative is on fire right now.

    He’s pretty damn deserving, or would be, if Jokic didn’t exist.

    Jokic on the counting stats leaderboard:

    2nd in MP
    5th in FGA
    1st in FGM
    7th in ORB
    6th in DRB
    5th in TRB
    3rd in AST
    2nd in STL
    13th in TS%
    12th in eFG%

    In the era of DNP-CDs, this dude is not only crushing the advanced and rate stats, but putting up NBA Live ’95 “we can’t program a fatigue stat” volume. He’s a hulking C who has played the 2nd-most minutes in the damn league! No question he’s my MVP over Harden.

  153. GoNYGoNYGo – Tired of Tanking:
    On the NCAA.

    As with every political debate, I find myself in the middle.I believe in amateur sports but it’s not an absolute. There’s a limit. If my school sells shirts with my name on the back, I should get a cut. On the other hand, there’s aslippery slope that eventually leads to shady agents.

    Alan Hahn brought up something about a month or so ago. There’s talk of forming an independent professional league for the elite pre-NBA talent. I believe it was for kids ages 16 .

    Quick edit…
    I haven’t read it, but here’s a link to that new league

    The middle doesn’t work on the internet real well. That’s where I am, too, on almost all this stuff. Center-left, even.

    As to Hahn’s idea, everything goes haywire here as opposed to Europe because all our leagues have drafts. If it was just a free-for-all, as it essentially is in Euro soccer, the Knicks could sign LeBron at 12 or 13, pay him to develop, and reap the benefit when he turns 18. The real “cartels” are the leagues and that distorts everything. Of course, if it was a free-for-all, you wouldn’t have 30 profitable teams, you’d have like 10 or 15, so the league’s position serves its interests well — but it’s still pure cartel.

  154. Pretty much every NBA player has ankle sprains though. You list all those injuries like they’re the same. They aren’t. A concussion? How does that prove that Mitch isn’t durable?

    The injuries this year are the more serious ones. The other ones are just what NBA players go through.

    2018-2019 – he played in 66 games (out of 82)
    2019-2020 – he played in 61 games (out of 66 games)

  155. In the era of DNP-CDs, this dude is not only crushing the advanced and rate stats, but putting up NBA Live ’95 “we can’t program a fatigue stat” volume. He’s a hulking C who has played the 2nd-most minutes in the damn league! No question he’s my MVP over Harden.

    Oh, I think Jokic is the clear call, but Harden’s narrative is on fire and I think there’s a decent chance he eventually passes Jokic among the voters. It doesn’t help that the Nuggets aren’t exactly lighting things up in the West.

  156. I’m no expert on the NCAA, being from the U.K. but for what it’s worth, I find the point that taken as a whole, the NCAA is not really that profitable and that the mega mo way in men’s basketball subsidises varsity tiddlywinks at to be at least superficially compelling. But that simply doesn’t cover the fact that by requiring amateur status, the way the NCAA is run compels high level student athletes with $millions in future earnings potential to play for free when they are also currently legally excluded from going straight to the NBA. In that scenario, nobody should be surprised that the g-league ignite model has had some early success. Surely the middle ground is that 17-year-old top tier athletes should be able to choose to go pro, either in the big leagues or a developmental league, or play in college but be allowed to accept endorsement money etc?

  157. Brian Cronin: Oh, I think Jokic is the clear call, but Harden’s narrative is on fire and I think there’s a decent chance he eventually passes Jokic among the voters. It doesn’t help that the Nuggets aren’t exactly lighting things up in the West.

    Yeah, I hear you. The narrative is on fire, and Harden has (surprise!) played out of his mind.

  158. iserp: I am from Spain

    Didn’t knew that i have one of the “nuestros hermanos” (that’s how we call spanish people here in Portugal) here on the forum. Nice. :)

  159. E, all merc’d out: The tie between American sport and schools is unique in the world; Europeans wouldn’t be expected to understand it fully.

    Wouldn’t it be so cool if posters only commented on matters they understand it fully?

  160. E, all merc’d out: As to Hahn’s idea, everything goes haywire here as opposed to Europe because all our leagues have drafts. If it was just a free-for-all, as it essentially is in Euro soccer, the Knicks could sign LeBron at 12 or 13, pay him to develop, and reap the benefit when he turns 18. The real “cartels” are the leagues and that distorts everything.

    I have some more info: Overtime Elite

  161. the ncaa isn’t profitable because it’s a nonprofit organization.. but that doesn’t mean these colleges, conferences and its leadership don’t ‘profit’ immensely from this arrangement…

  162. Are Jeff Teague and Otto Porter both available? Could they help in a limited capacity?

  163. This team would be sort of spicy if we managed to nab Porter and a center or PF off of waivers. Hope we can nab him

  164. The NCAA is only allowed to operate as an exception to antitrust law. In the original dissent, the SCOTUS judge pretty much pointed out all the flaws in the majority’s reasoning and his fears came true. NCAA sports ceased to be amateur, in any meaningful sense of the word, a longtime ago.

    The NCAA can likely retain some schools and sports programs as amateur, but will need to treat others as professional. Since you’re a lawyer E, I’m sure you know what a false dichotomy is. E, kindly stop propagating litigious bullshit and maybe do some actual lawyering.

  165. DudesTown:
    Are Jeff Teague and Otto Porter both available? Could they help in a limited capacity?

    Last I saw the Magic intend to keep Porter. Teague is available.

  166. Alan: And also how much either team is willing to give NOLA to prevent a match.

    Which team will he prefer to play?
    a) Lavine + Pat-Williams + Markkanen + Vuc
    b) IQ + RJ + Julius + Mitch

  167. swiftandabundant: The injuries this year are the more serious ones. The other ones are just what NBA players go through.
    2018-2019 – he played in 66 games (out of 82)
    2019-2020 – he played in 61 games (out of 66 games)

    He was available for 68 games in his rookie season, but got 2 DNP’s in the first 4 games (what a brilliant coach we had at the time).

  168. What worries me about Mitch is his feet. As a person who’s sprained both ankles dozens of times each (once, both at the same time), I understand. The foot break was about him rolling his foot. I’ve done that. Once you turn an ankle (the first times for me were both rebounding a ball on the playground court) the ankle is never the same. My orthopedist pretty much said to expect weak ankles for the rest of my life. Now I’m old, and orthopedic medicine has evolved a lot since then, but I’m reminded about this every time I step funny.

  169. The Honorable Cock Jowles: He’s a hulking C who has played the 2nd-most minutes in the damn league! No question he’s my MVP over Harden.

    With Thibs he’d be 1st playing the whole 48 mins. ;) But yeah, that’s super impressive.

  170. Just a thought.

    Universities make huge investments building arenas and playing fields, hiring coaches, coaching staff, scouts, trainers, medical staffs, buying training equipment, giving out scholarships, etc… It seems obvious they are entitled to earn a profit on all those investments otherwise why not just screw sports and put all the money into passive stock and bond funds and take a nap.

    The debate is really about whether they are making excess profits relative to their investments by taking advantage of the college athletes.

    For example, if some university invests a ton of money in those things and gets a 10% return on all that capital IMO that’s a reasonable return given there are risks the program could fail, the coach suck, the team suck, ratings be very low etc.. If it’s making 20% or 30% there’s a very good case to be made they are using their position to make excess profits and something should be done to address that,

    But without exact numbers (and I certainly don’t know them), most of these opinions are more political than business/economic.

    Beyond that there are other issues like endorsements or the age requirement for the NBA that need to be debated further, but universities are entitled to a good return.

  171. Which team will he prefer to play?
    a) Lavine + Pat-Williams + Markkanen + Vuc
    b) IQ + RJ + Julius + Mitch

    I’m not sure Markkanen is long for Chicago at this point, but it’s an interesting question. If you take the markets out of it, both teams have:

    * An All-Star big man who’s not a Top 10 (or Top 20) NBA player, but who can carry your offense. Vuc has a longer track record, but Randle being at least a competent defender (and perhaps more than that) gives him the edge for me.

    * A young swingman who can also be a secondary playmaker. LaVine definitely has the edge over RJ, even if you think RJ is the better defender.

    As for the others, Quickley at the moment is better than Williams, so it’s a question of how much each can improve. And in a vacuum, I’d probably rather have Markkanen over Mitch, but a healthy Mitch creates a more well-balanced team than playing Markkanen with Vuc.

    The Knicks will also have a bunch of picks in the 2021 draft, and have more salary cap room than the Bulls will. So looking through my homer goggles, I’d pick New York if I was Lonzo.

  172. I think Lonzo would come to NY because even if he’s not motivated by exactly the same things as his father, his father still has some influence. LaVar is motivated to a great degree by money. Chicago is a great city, but it’s not NY. So if the basketball part of it is even close, I think he’ll come to NY.

  173. I like Lonzo and wouldn’t mind paying him, but we should hold firm on rejecting a sign-and-trade. Lonzo is simply not good enough to justify paying for him twice, especially for a team like the Knicks that is still a ways off of contention and will need to allocate resources extremely efficiently to get there. If the Pelicans are so eager to move him, it’s hard to imagine they’d match a max or near-max offer, and if they aren’t eager to move him the trade package needed to land him would likely be substantial.

  174. Since college sports is such a non-issue to me, I’m not going to comment further beyond saying that the momentum is in favor of more player compensation, either in the form of money, rights, or perqs. The horse is out of the barn. I am pretty confident that compromises will be made to make the system better for all involved. May take a few years, even decades, but things are headed that way.

  175. Deeefense:
    Just a thought.

    Universities make huge investments building arenas and playing fields, hiring coaches, coaching staff, scouts, trainers, medical staffs, buying training equipment, giving out scholarships, etc… It seems obvious they are entitled to earn a profit on all those investments otherwise why not just screw sports and put all the money into passive stock and bond funds and take a nap.

    The debate is really about whether they are making excess profits relative to their investments by taking advantage of the college athletes.

    For example, if some university invests a ton of money in those things and gets a 10% return on all that capital IMO that’s a reasonable return given there are risks the program could fail, the coach suck, the team suck, ratings be very low etc..If it’s making 20% or 30% there’s a very good case to be made they are using their position to make excess profits and something should be done to address that,

    But without exact numbers (and I certainly don’t know them), most of these opinions are more political than business/economic.

    Beyond that there are other issues like endorsements or the age requirement for the NBA that need to be debated further, but universities are entitled to a good return.

    It’s easy to find ways to spend money. Do the coaches need to get paid their current salaries? Would they if players could get paid? Could universities get by rebuilding their stadiums every 10yrs rather than every 5yrs? Etc.

    This isn’t the right question to ask at all. How much money goes into a university president’s pocket that could go to players? Universities can always make it look like they don’t have a good return just by spending the money in a way that generates returns elsewhere. How would a free market affect this spending? is more relevant.

  176. Since college sports is such a non-issue to me, I’m not going to comment further beyond saying that the momentum is in favor of more player compensation, either in the form of money, rights, or perqs.

    I have no opinion one way or the other on what will happen or should happen because I don’t know the subject well enough, but I guarantee one thing. There is no free lunch. If they start paying some or all athletes, the money is going to come from someone else either directly or via cuts to something else and that someone is going to be whining about how the new system sucks. :-)

  177. How would a free market affect this spending? is more relevant.

    I don’t know the answer to that, but I also know that what I personally think is fair is not always equal to what is fair or what the market dictates.

  178. Deeefense: I don’t know the answer to that, but I also know that what I personally think is fair is not always equal to what is fair or what the market dictates.

    Free market is probably a mischaracterization if we get technical, but the slightly freer version of the market where the NCAA doesn’t hold a monopoly over college athletes, imposes a restriction against getting paid, and whatever other necessary caveats that would apply in an antitrust suit.

  179. Not to change the subject (or maybe to change it to a more important issue), I think this Heat game is a huge one for NY. If they can somehow beat the Heat, who you know are going to be “up” for this one, and further establish this team as legitimate, I’m going to stop feeling like every game is a battle to prove we aren’t a fluke and finally start feeling like we are actually good.

  180. It seems obvious they are entitled to earn a profit on all those investments

    TIL public universities are for-profit enterprises

  181. I’m pretty sure you don’t have to be an NCAA member to participate in college sports. Alabama could pay football players all it wants and compete against other colleges (or probably any other football team). I’m not sure whether the NCAA bans its members from competing against non-NCAA members, but I highly doubt it. (The SEC might have similar payment rules to the NCAA’s, but at that point it wouldn’t be “The NCAA makes me fucking sick,” it would be “The SEC and ACC make me fucking sick.”

    If you want the NCAA’s governance and efforts in keeping the recruiting field relatively clean, and its tournaments, you have to abide by its rules. That’s the tradeoff. Not really seeing an issue with the tradeoff. A college sports program doesn’t have to join the NCAA. If the NCAA has a rule that says if one team is a member, all have to be, I’d be ok dropping that rule.

    If the NCAA faded away, another association of “Schools whose athletes are amateurs and want to compete against each other under common rules” would rise up in its place, and a bunch of schools and teams would willingly and voluntarily join. At that point, even the specious “monopoly” idea would be rendered even more specious. That’s actually probably where this is all headed anyway.

  182. We’re discussing a max offer sheet because a max offer sheet is what he’s likely going to get, so it’s just a question of whether the Knicks should sign him to a max offer or not.

  183. E, all merc’d out: If the NCAA faded away, another association of “Schools whose athletes are amateurs and want to compete against each other under common rules” would rise up in its place, and a bunch of schools and teams would willingly and voluntarily join.

    That’s essentially what D3, and in a way, certain D1 conferences (e.g. Patriot League, Ivy League) are. They espouse that they only give scholarships based on financial need and applicants still need to meet their academic standards. Of course, these rules are bent to a degree, but the end result is far closer to the idea of an “amateur” league than, say, the Big 10.

    The nice thing is that students have much greater access to games and players are more a part of the school fabric than at other schools. While there is media coverage, it tends to be muted and largely for alumni and such.

    There’s no way the Big 10 ever devolves to that, no matter what happens. It’s just an impossibility.

    The far more likely outcome is that either top athletes will be siphoned off to professional developmental leagues (in baseball players don’t come from NCAA programs) or the NCAA will avoid that outcome by offering more to star athletes to lessen that temptation.

    So teams like Duke and Kentucky will continue to attract some stars who want the college vibe, but many 1-and-done types will go straight to the NBA or paid developmental leagues where they don’t have to pretend to be students or that they have met some sort of entrance criteria. That might knock 30-40 b-ball players out of the college ranks. Bottom line is, most of us will still find March Madness better to watch than any developmental league basketball. I doubt that the incoming revenue stream changes much.

  184. Its his age and the trajectory of improvement he’s shown so far. How often does a 22 year old starting caliber PG who plays good defense and has shown improvement on his shooting become available on the open market. That is why Lonzo could get a max. If he was 28 or even 25 and was putting up the same numbers this year, he wouldn’t be a max possibility. You’re paying for his potential.

    I don’t see why this is hard to understand. We often talk about not paying for past performance with a free agent, which is what usually happens when a free agent is older. But with Lonzo, you’re hoping his best days are ahead of him.

    And its not a bad bet to make. I mean, we did a similar thing last season with 25 year old Randle. It took a season but that bet is now paying off big time.

    Lonzo at 22 gives us a core of Lonzo, RJ, Randle and IQ (and maybe Mitch and our future picks). Randle 26 and everyone else 22 or younger. That’s enticing.

  185. cybersoze: Didn’t knew that i have one of the “nuestros hermanos” (that’s how we call spanish people here in Portugal) here on the forum. Nice. :)

    Thank you, Portugal is an awesome country and I cant wait for the pandemic to stop and make a trip, :)

  186. Watching the Jump on ESPN and they just showed a graphic of the standings for the Top 4 in the East and there were the Knicks at #4. I know they won’t finish 4th but man if you would’ve told me on opening night back in late December that on March 29th the Knicks would be 4th in the East I would’ve slapped you across the face and called you a delusional idiot. And I was one of the most optimistic people here about the Knicks going into this season too!

  187. Its his age and the trajectory of improvement he’s shown so far. How often does a 22 year old starting caliber PG who plays good defense and has shown improvement on his shooting become available on the open market. That is why Lonzo could get a max. If he was 28 or even 25 and was putting up the same numbers this year, he wouldn’t be a max possibility. You’re paying for his potential.

    I agree, perfectly average 22 year old PGs usually make for really good players. Besides, max contracts after the rookie years are not that big, and there is a scarcity of PGs available in FA (possibly driven by the fact that it is the position where they decline earlier, Chris Paul notwithstanding)

  188. Are schools even paying that much out-of-pocket to fund unprofitable sports? The DIII football team I played for had almost everything paid for by a few rich alumni in the booster club. School only paid for the salaries of the head coach and his top two assistants as well as the insurance coverage, booster club funded everything else. I figured most collegiate sports were funded by a similar patronage system.

  189. Z-man: The nice thing is that students have much greater access to games and players are more a part of the school fabric than at other schools. While there is media coverage, it tends to be muted and largely for alumni and such.

    There’s no way the Big 10 ever devolves to that, no matter what happens. It’s just an impossibility.

    That’s 90%+ of NCAA athletics.

    I never say never to anything. If SEC football says tomorrow that they’re dropping out of the NCAA and paying players whatever it takes to get them there, I don’t know that the whole Big 10 decides to join that arms race. Ohio State would, for sure, but only a few of the schools could afford it and at places like Michigan, there would be a lot of sentiment to just throw in the towel and go independent D-3-ish. Schools like Rutgers are losing a bunch of money already and could never hope to compete in that kind of world. Even the whole SEC wouldn’t go along; you’d never see a Vanderbilt football going along with it. Money has already changed the conferences massively in just the past 10-15 years; add even more money and start competing for players monetarily and it would change the conferences to something unrecognizable.

  190. Deeefense:
    Not to change the subject (or maybe to change it to a more important issue), I think this Heat game is a huge one for NY. If they can somehow beat the Heat, who you know are going to be “up” for this one, and further establish this team as legitimate, I’m going to stop feeling like every game is a battle to prove we aren’t a fluke and finally start feeling like we are actually good.

    Well, at least Olynyk can’t hurt us anymore.

  191. Our roster is paper thin. Beyond the top 7 or 8 we have big question marks. We should add a Henson or a Rondae Hollis Jefferson for added depth in case of any further injuries.

  192. E, all merc’d out: I never say never to anything. If SEC football says tomorrow that they’re dropping out of the NCAA and paying players whatever it takes to get them there, I don’t know that the whole Big 10 decides to join that arms race. Ohio State would, for sure, but only a few of the schools could afford it and at places like Michigan, there would be a lot of sentiment to just throw in the towel and go independent D-3-ish. Schools like Rutgers are losing a bunch of money already and could never hope to compete in that kind of world. Even the whole SEC wouldn’t go along; you’d never see a Vanderbilt football going along with it. Money has already changed the conferences massively in just the past 10-15 years; add even more money and start competing for players monetarily and it would change the conferences to something unrecognizable.

    Well paying players to the point that they are sucking huge amounts of cash out of the profit stream is a pretty extreme outcome. There’s a whole spectrum of outcomes in between.

    One thing that shouldn’t be understated is that big state schools like Michigan, Ohio State, UNC, etc. can charge out-of-state students tuition far and above what in-state students pay precisely because the success of their athletics program increases demand for purely academic enrollment. It also increases the revenue stream from fundraising and strengthens alumni networks. And Rutgers is improving in both basketball and football so they will surely make money on the overall deal once the pandemic is over.

  193. Why are we discussing a max contract for this guy and his perfectly average advanced stats? What am I missing?

    I’m not enamored with the idea, but like BC said that’s what it will take. The fact of the matter is we have to use our cap space at some point, otherwise it will just go away by virtue of having to pay Mitch, RJ, IQ, future draft picks, etc.

    Will there be better ways to use it before that point than on a 23 year old point guard who fills multiple areas of need (3PT shooting, playmaking, transition points) for us? Possibly, but when you look at the list of upcoming free agents I’d say that’s far from a sure thing.’

    It’s worth noting that even with Lonzo on a full max, we could still theoretically create around $30M in cap space for the summer of 2022 factoring in Randle and Mitch’s cap holds. The exact number would depend on exactly where all of our picks land, but we’d still have one last shot to do something fairly big before having to pay RJ.

  194. Dink – boosters cover a lot but at the top levels the revenues are gigantic.

    What is often missed in this discussion is the extent to which sports drive fundraising and enrollment. A team like Oral Robert’s will see it’s applications rise substantially in the wake of a deep tourney run. And alumni giving is likewise enhanced significantly by college athletics.

    A lot of the value of college sports is not measured by the athletic departments budget.

    Their is no reasonable argument that the system is good and ought to be kept as it is. There just isn’t. Scrapping it altogether probably isn’t necessary but a lot of it should simply go. Like transfer rules. Players should be allowed to move on the same terms as coaches.

    And the whole Gestapo eligibility racket is ridiculous. It drives me crazy the way the NCAA pretends to put any value on amateurism in football and basketball. It’s a joke.

    I loved in Europe for a while and was amazed that schools and colleges had no teams. And you know what, people got a great education still. It wouldn’t destroy the integrity of our educational institutions to only have a couple sports or none at all. The degree to which athletics drive college admissions is a little insane and getting worse.

    Also, I do think the central question is whether you could take the top 20 players out of the NCAA basketball tournament every year and still have a multibillion dollar product. It’s an interesting question. I think people do root for laundry and enjoy watching others root for laundry, but I think the NCAA believes that would hurt their brand value.

  195. It takes a long time to draft and develop a PG. Getting one who is pretty good, and who is young and on the upswing, seems like a fine idea to me.

    Max Lonzo, keep both of the 2021 first rounders, and bring back some of the more productive veterans, and you’d have a pretty good core with room to grow. Maybe as TNFH mentioned above you can make one more big move to add to that core.

    I think we’re at the point in the win curve where it doesn’t make sense to keep moving forward with a black hole at PG.

  196. I hate paying for potential, RFA deals are usually the worst ones on the market, and I really don’t think Lonzo is the worth a max.

    That being said, it’s not the worst thing to overpay one guy when 4/5 of your starting lineup is vastly underpaid.

    The important thing is that even if we overpay Lonzo, we still have the flexibility to make one more move. Like, I dunno… trade for Bradley Beal :)

    Ball, Beal, Barrett, Randle, Mitch with IQ off the bench? I’m into it. Very, very into it.

  197. swiftandabundant: Lonzo at 22 gives us a core of Lonzo, RJ, Randle and IQ (and maybe Mitch and our future picks). Randle 26 and everyone else 22 or younger. That’s enticing.

    Lonzo’s 23 now and would be 24 before he plays a game for the Knicks- not that makes much of a difference. My issue with Lonzo is that there’s a good chance that he’d wind up in the same role here as he’s playing at NOP- he runs the break and gets the team into it’s initial sets (most of the time) but then goes and stands in the corner while guys who can actually get into the lane dominate the ball in the half court. That’s Reggie Bullock with great secondary playmaking added. He’s never cracked a 30% assist rate which to me is break even for a quality non-scoring point. That’s a pretty good player but not a max guy. Your counting him to make a solid improvement (certainly possible) if you’re paying him anything close to max.

  198. Jeff Teague signing with Milwaukee. So they’ll get to use both of the point guards that some people were arguing the Knicks should have signed instead of bringing back Elf. Speaking of which…

    I think we’re at the point in the win curve where it doesn’t make sense to keep moving forward with a black hole at PG.

    We have to stop dicking around at point guard next season. In an ideal world, Quickley would be that guy, and there are occasional nights where he looks like it, but far more where he seems like Lou Williams 2.0. Barring a miracle, we’re not going to be picking high enough to take Cade or Suggs, and none of the late lottery/teens PG prospects seem like they’d be ready to start and run an offense immediately. CP3 is probably not leaving Phoenix, for reasons we’ve discussed ad nauseum. We could balloon pay Lowry or Conley, but they may both be happy where they are, and are also at an age where non-superhumans at the position (aka, people who are not CP3) can fall off a cliff. So then our free agent options become guys like Dennis Schroder, Patty Mills, Dinwiddie coming off an injury, or Lonzo. We could try trading for someone, but that could cost a lot in assets, assuming there’s even someone as good as Lonzo available.

    At a certain point, we need to see what this team looks like with even competent point guard play. Lonzo’s imperfect, but he brings enough other things to the table on defense and from distance that he may well be our best option. Even at a post-rookie max.

  199. On other news…

    @ChrisIseman
    Knicks say Mitchell Robinson had successful surgery today to repair a fractured fifth metatarsal in his right foot at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.

    At least we know what bone he broke, which I don’t think the team had previously revealed.

  200. Well, at least Olynyk can’t hurt us anymore.

    I hate that guy!

    Well, not really, but you know what I mean. :-)

  201. @InStreetClothes
    Multiple NBA players have suffered 5th metatarsal fractures, including Kevin Durant, CJ McCollum, Ben Simmons, and both Lopez brothers. Inherent risk of re-injury is relatively high and a prolonged absence is likely.

  202. Maybe my google skills need work but I couldn’t actually find what the max contract we can offer Lonzo as an RFA is. All I found was a bunch of outdated articles speculating his next contract at an $18-20mm AAV.

    Anyone know his max? I’m assuming it’s like $28mm. That’s about $10mm higher than I would pay, but this is the benefit of the rookie contracts. You can afford one overpay.

  203. Since I’m all woke up about the NCAA from today’s thread, here’s something I did not know about the NCAA and WNBA, from a Ringer story:

    But the WNBA maintains a strange set of eligibility rules that specifically disadvantages those who play at the college level. While international players are eligible to enter the WNBA at age 20, women who play college basketball can’t join the WNBA until they’re 22 or have completed their undergraduate degree. Although both Bueckers and Clark are clearly capable of outplaying their college competition, they can’t move on to the pros for three more years, unless they take extra classes and graduate early. (Since the NCAA also prevents athletes from profiting off their names, images, and likenesses, Bueckers and Clark also can’t make money off their huge social media followings.)

  204. Anyone know his max? I’m assuming it’s like $28mm. That’s about $10mm higher than I would pay, but this is the benefit of the rookie contracts. You can afford one overpay.

    You’re pretty spot on. The cap is projected to be $112M and he’s eligible for 25% of it. The contract would start at ~$28M and with the 8% increases would be almost exactly $120M over four years.

    Again, it doesn’t exactly scream “great contract,” but the relevant question is whether it’s the best way we can use 25% of the cap before we have to pay guys currently on the roster. I won’t pretend I know the answer but it’s at least not an obvious no.

    What is an obvious no is paying for him in both trade assets (assuming they aren’t nominal) and cap space.

  205. I hate paying for potential,

    It sucks because there’s risk in it, but it’s part both the draft and other salary negotiations. It’s the flip side of not wanting to pay some 35 year old the max for 3 more years even if had great year last year. You know there’s a risk he could decline rapidly.

    I think the trick would be to have some “special” insights that other teams don’t have into which types of players are more likely to improve than others. That way you are reducing the risk relative to average and may still be getting a good value deal.

  206. Following treatment, it may take eight to 12 weeks for the bone fracture to fully heal, with a gradual return to normal activity within four months. Over 90% of 5th metatarsal fractures heal without any problems, and you will be able to return to your usual sports activities.

    That’s longer than I hoped assuming this is applicable in his case.

  207. @NY_KnicksPR
    Reggie Bullock and Julius Randle are available for tonight’s game against Miami.

    All hands on deck, more or less…

  208. On another web site I saw DeMarcus Cousins listed as a possible free agent center for the Knicks since they have a hole at center at the moment. I have mixed feelings about him. I’m not worried about his personality; Golden State players clearly liked him. But I’m worried that he’s mostly offense first and that doesn’t fit the Knicks style of play. On the other hand he seems to be in shape and if it’s him or say, Norvel Pelle, I would lean toward him.

  209. I would be OK with Cousins as long as he realizes he’s 2nd option behind Nerlens and maybe even 3rd option behind Gibson if he’s getting killed in the P&R. Somehow I don’t think he’s going to accept that easily even at this stage.

  210. Apparently, he’s been out of work for a month and is posting videos to prove he’s in Basketball shape and wants to play. He might be flexible. Life has a way of humbling all of us.

  211. KFINJ re our discussion about LeBron’s high ankle sprain, you let on that you were a podiatrist and should therefore be an expert in Mitch-type injuries. Question: Is the fact that it hasn’t been referred to as a Jones fracture suggestive that it’s one of the more common types of 5th metacarpal fractures?

  212. I’d be more than fine with DeMarcus as a backup on a minimum deal. It seems like only yesterday when he was being talked about as a bad max contract risk, the Melo of centers.

  213. The WNBA’s a tough one because without the NBA’s subsidy, they’d go out of business. Not sure it’s good social policy to steer college students away from education to a business that really isn’t any good. (And frankly, there are better things to do with one’s life than playing basketball. Get your few years of fun in college and then move on. With very, very few exceptions. If the basketball side is asking too much of these people in terms of time and commitment when they’re in college, then regulate that.)

  214. Z-man:
    KFINJ re our discussion about LeBron’s high ankle sprain, you let on that you were a podiatrist and should therefore be an expert in Mitch-type injuries. Question: Is the fact that it hasn’t been referred to as a Jones fracture suggestive that it’s one of the more common types of 5th metacarpal fractures?

    Sorry, I think that was KnickfaninCelticLand. I am a scientist, not a podiatrist and don’t know anything about foot fractures

  215. Paying a not star/superstar-youngster top$ while the rest of your team is underpaid don’t seem to me like a great idea lockerroomwise

  216. I guess it’s always a possibility ;-). And my vision is terrible, but I switched to contact lenses years ago

  217. Z-man:
    KFINJ re our discussion about LeBron’s high ankle sprain, you let on that you were a podiatrist and should therefore be an expert in Mitch-type injuries. Question: Is the fact that it hasn’t been referred to as a Jones fracture suggestive that it’s one of the more common types of 5th metacarpal fractures?

    The more common 5th metatarsal fractures only require casting/immobilization. Jones Fractures are unstable biomechanically and requires internal fixation (screw or pins) to heal properly so it sounds like they are treating it like a Jones Fracture. Without an x-ray in front of me to see exact location and shape of fracture line, I cannot tell you more.

  218. Being worried about the younger Knicks being jealous of lonzo’s new contract seems like a really far fetched he’s thing to be worried about. Are IQ and RJ supposed to be mad at Lonzo for getting paid because they’re still in rookie contracts? That’s how it works in the NBA. If your concern was an issue than every NBA locker room would have this problem.

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