Pre-Season Game Thread: Knicks vs. Wizards

It’s the penultimate game of the preseason for the Knicks!

And this game against Washington will mark the first time that the Knicks will face an opposing team’s starting point guard this preseason. Let us hope that it goes well.

Derek Fisher is experimenting a little bit with Jose Calderon still out with a sore calf (he would play if this was a regular season game – in the old Knick regime, I’d say “Jose Calderon scheduled to lose his leg next week” but this new regime is supposedly more transparent, so I’ll take them at their word and presume Calderon is okay and just resting the calf because it is the preseason) so Shane Larkin and Tim Hardaway will start together in the fastest Knick backcourt since…uhmmm….anyone know of a faster starting backcourt for the Knicks than Larkin and Timmy?

Melo, Smith and Dalembart round out the starting rotation.

If you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, here is Phil Jackson’s candid (?) take on each Knick.

Let’s go Knicks!

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53 thoughts to “Pre-Season Game Thread: Knicks vs. Wizards”

  1. The Knicks’ offense is hanging in there, though.

    But yeah, Wall lights up good teams at times. It is almost unfair to pit him against this backcourt.

    Also, Cole’s entrance into the game settled things down a bit. ;)

  2. See, that right there is the thing. It’s not like, “Oh man, Cole Aldrich is an All-Star!” It’s “He can obviously play well in an NBA rotation” and yet he’s apparently the “emergency center”? It just doesn’t make any sense.

  3. Nice, and refreshing, to see the offense looking fairly fluid without Melo on the floor. Last season this lineup would have been a disaster

  4. In Cole’s defense, that swing through foul, the “Kevin Durant” if you will, is one of the most bullshit calls in the game imho. Either don’t call it, or it should be an offensive foul.

  5. Be honest, guys, if Cole was playing for the other team, would you even notice him?

    (I know, HERESY!!!)

  6. Be honest, guys, if Cole was playing for the other team, would you even notice him?

    (I know, HERESY!!!)

    Are you kidding? There are probably a few here on this board that would trade Melo for Cole straight up if they could (plus whatever filler to make the salaries match).

  7. Be honest, guys, if Cole was playing for the other team, would you even notice him?

    (I know, HERESY!!!)

    That’s the whole point. He doesn’t stand out because he so clearly is just a rotation player. He should just be part of the rotation and work in obscurity as just a decent back-up center. Instead, he’s the “emergency center.” That’s the issue. If they just played the guy normal back-up minutes then there’d be nothing to talk about about him because he’d just be a good player.

  8. How about Sam in those last 2 minutes, protecting the rim! That felt good…and Larkin’s looking pretty good…

  9. What we’re seeing is Jackson’s jedi mind tricks at work. Cole realizing he’s being considered as the emergency backup put in a good showing in practice. Fisher seeing Cole give a better effort thought to himself, “gee maybe I should give this guy some spin.” Fisher then decides to put Cole into tonight’s game. Cole then went on to win the starting center spot and lead the Knicks to the championship. #Colespiracy #Jackson mind tricks #why am I using hashtags?

  10. Larkin’s got 4 boards in 22 minutes. He’s like 5’9″ and a point guard.. Bargs is at 5.8 boards per 36 minutes for his career.

    Shump on 3 break actually doesn’t result in disaster. But that’s not a good idea Shump.

  11. I thought the triangle would be good for JR, but early returns have not been promising. He’s been pretty useless in pre-season.

  12. @22
    There is a blurb on P&T that says the Knicks are catching and shooting more. However, the eye test says that JR is definitely not a contributing factor.

    The good news is that JR won’t have to think on the court. The bad news is he needs to think to learn the system.

  13. One of the huge reasons for the drop off last season is that Prigs didn’t get enough of Kidd’s minutes.

  14. Gotta say early returns on Fisher for me are mixed. Don’t really understand what he’s doing w the lineups. Way too much mix and match. Reminds me of Woodson at the beginning of last year. Players like to know their specific roles. Don’t think Fisher is doing that. If he’s trying to “win” this game and test his closing lineup don’t get why Early is in there. He won’t be in at the end of close games.

  15. Cgreene… Are you for real? First of all it’s the preseason and 2nd of all it’s like the 5th game he has coached. Not too mention this roster he has to work with.

    Seriously man.

  16. The best part about this game was the last Wizard possession. Fisher actually put Shump on Wall, and hey guess what? It worked. How many times did Woodson have the opportunity to do just that, but then left it to Beno Udrih?

  17. Does single game plus/minus mean a thing, especially in the pre-season? Absolutely not. Is it at all surprising that Cole had the best +/- on the Knicks? No.

  18. The worst part about this game was the last Knick possession. It worked, but that play look painfully familiar.

  19. I know it was a meaningless pre-season game, but I am irrationally exuberant that the Knicks were finally able to close out Washington.

    When Carmelo isolation come through the flow of the Triangle, he is facing one-on-one defense. My problem with iso-Melo last year was that it came off of contested entry passes followed by quick double teams.

  20. Pablo with 11 points on 4 shots. Straight up G. I still think we would have gone to the ECF if that fucking moron had played him more against Indiana.

  21. Also, why did Shump have an Emmy? I missed the beginning of that segment. Was that for real?

    That’s funny because Shump got it for the Beginnings feature on him.

  22. Seriously the problem isn’t putting Melo in isolation. The problem is when the isolation happens with the other 4 guys all standing on the other side of the floor watching and not providing any easy pass opportunities for him. There’s a reason why Kobe and Jordan were still great isolation scorers within the Triangle and it’s because the spacing it provides makes it very difficult for a defense to load up or double a guy without creating an easy assist opportunity.

  23. +1 to lavor postell (45) and DRed (46).

    It was even worse than that, because Woodson would run every possession through Melo. One additional benefit of the Triangle is that Melo gets to take some possessions off, while remaining a threat on the weak side.

    Melo get at least three easy buckets. One of the fast break off a steal, one on the backdoor off of the entry pass to the high post and one when the defense lost track of him.

  24. @46. I forgot where I read it but there was a stat that said that Melo’s efficiency drastically drops in the 4th quarter last year.

  25. Yeah, it dropped to rather embarrassing levels, really. I think the rest alone will be huge. Woody was just such a joke.

  26. FG % dipped under 30 % last year at 40 + minutes, plus was 1-16 in potential game-winning or game-tying situations, according to Herring.

  27. FG % dipped under 30 % last year at 40 + minutes, plus was 1-16 in potential game-winning or game-tying situations, according to Herring.

    Yeah, the last bit was one of the most shocking stats of all last year. And if I recall correctly, the 1 happened in the very first game, right? The one where Rose came back and then won the game with an uggggggly shot that happened to go in. Melo and Rose just traded ugly shots for most of that fourth quarter.

    I don’t expect a whole lot from this year’s squad, but one thing I predict is that Melo playing in an offensive system he buys into will see a return to the Melo of old, where he dominated the fourth quarter more so than any other star scorer.

  28. That 1-16 looks like a small sample issue. I’d expect at least 25% FG on his potential-game-winning 21-ft turnaround fadeaway triple-teamed left-handed jumpers.

  29. Obviously, there’s a sample issue in Melo’s 1-16, as there was when he was teh most clutchest eva. But his 4th quarter numbers are at least suggestive that part of his ineffectiveness was due to something changing in the late games. Whether that was Melo playing too many minutes, Woodson going iso-heavy late, or something else, or some combination of those factors. I don’t think Melo has anything about his game that makes him uniquely effective in the 4th quarter (unless teams generally generate more open shots in the 4th-which is possible), but if Fisher can get 4th quarter Melo to play at the level of quarters 1-3 Melo, and those Melos play like last year’s Melos, then you’ve got yourself one very effective Melo.

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