Quick Reaction: Knicks 101, Pistons 79

Detroit Pistons 79 Final
Recap | Box Score
101 New York Knicks
Carmelo Anthony, SF 29 MIN | 5-12 FG | 5-6 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 15 PTS | +19

For our intrepid all-star, I offer this haiku from the noted 19th Century Japanese poet, Kobayashi Issa (Or just “Issa” to his bros)

O snail
Climb Mount Fuji,
But slowly, slowly!

In the first half, it looked like it’d be another game of laying serious mortar, but lo and behold. A few nice post-ups against the uber-ectomorphic Tayshawn Prince led to a classic mid-range step back jumper. So there’s hope. Not to go all Herm Edwards, but WE CAN BUILD ON THIS. Unlike, you know, the aforementioned bricks.

Amare Stoudemire, PF 25 MIN | 7-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 17 PTS | +17

I was all set to say a few nice things about how Amar’e’s learning to adapt without his trademark SUPEREXPLOSIVEGONOW leapability, but I really don’t have time. I’ve got a virgin goat to sacrifice to the Hindu volcano God. Agni I laud, the high priest, god, minister of sacrifice, the invoker, lavishest of wealth, please please please please please let STAT’s back be okay.

UPDATE: Amar’e said post-game that there’s nothing to worry about. His back is fine.

UPDATE 2: I’m still worried,

Tyson Chandler, C 30 MIN | 5-8 FG | 5-10 FT | 17 REB | 2 AST | 15 PTS | +17

You take this one, Kyle Reese…”You still don’t get it, do you? He’ll find her! That’s what he does! That’s ALL he does! You can’t stop him! He’ll wade through you, reach down her throat and pull her fuckin’ heart out!

Landry Fields, G 21 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 4 AST | 2 PTS | +4

Wait, did Landry play? He did? You’re sure. Okay, I’ll take your word for it.

Jeremy Lin, PG 24 MIN | 3-6 FG | 5-6 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 13 PTS | +12

Speaking of injuries, I’d really like to figure out some advance metric to divine why opposing players insist on giving Jeremy Lin 2.3/zetzs straight to the punim** (Goyishe), see below) per game. The fish-slapping dance http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhJQp-q1Y1s didn’t seem to be the cause of his brief sojourn to the trainer’s table in the 3rd quarter and Coach Mister Potato Head kept whatever the reason was close to the vest. Seven turnovers is problematic, but at least 4-5 of them seemed because his teammates were thinking of their evening’s plan(s) or eyeballing the numerous attractive women in the stands to accompany them on the aforementioned evening’s plan(s). One nice development — Lin’s gotten extraplusgood at keeping the opposing PG in front of him/out of the lane.

*Zetz – To smack an individual upside the head (yiddish) “Don’t make me give you a zetz!”

**Punim – A yiddish word for face, or more specifically a cute face. (yiddish) “Oy, look at the punim on that one!”

Mike Bibby, PG 6 MIN | 0-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | +3

Baron Davis, PG 19 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 5 PTS | +7

Do we know what the difference between a good Baron Davis and a bad Baron Davis game is? They’re all eerily similar — some awkward looking fall back jumpers, some nifty passes and some equally galling/goofy ones, topped off by vaguely pesky defense but nothing to write a protracted, detailed letter on like, parchment with a quill and ink that you found in the back of a storage bin that you never threw away for some reason or another and emboss the thing with wax and then use two or three stamps ’cause you can’t tell how much it ways and how much do stamps cost these days anyway? and give to your mailman who still acts friendly even though you speak maybe once a year so he’ll be sure to deliver to your former home about.

So is does that mean a 5 point, 4 assist game is the infamous hobgoblin called consistency? And if so, is that a good thing?

Steve Novak, SF 20 MIN | 3-6 FG | 0-1 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 8 PTS | +1

I have a bone to pick with Mister White (I know, my alternate nickname for Novakaine just isn’t catching on. Humor me). If you’re going to pull the “Discount Double Check” move, you can’t do it like a wan, disaffected Billyburg Hipster. “Yawn. Like, another three. The crowd loves me. That’s just greeeaaaat. Discount Double Whatevs. We got any PBR?” Save it for a slightly bigger moment than the 4th quarter of a blowout win against a putrid Pistons squad, kay? Thanks.

J.R. Smith, SG 27 MIN | 6-14 FG | 1-1 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 14 PTS | +18

Not sure if you caught this, but in the 2nd quarter, Woodson pulled Earl Smith III aside and told him not to pass up shots after he dumped the ball off to Lin on a fast break. (Lin was then summarily clobbered n the face (natch) and sent to the line. Telling Earl to shoot is like telling me to eat an entire box of Entemann’s Brand Chocolate Eclairs. In the second half, Earl launched shots like I would on an eclair-based sugar rush. Many of them went in, which was nice, but as far as redundancies go, “Telling Earl to take his Shot” is course 1A at the Redundancy School of Redundancies. His defense, even in as torpid an affair as tonight’s was nicey-nice.

Toney Douglas, PG 4 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | +3

Not much to say, but at least we got a vintage ’10 half court steal and finish from Poppa Toney.

Jerome Jordan, C 4 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +3

Hi Jerome

Iman Shumpert, G 20 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 6 PTS | +3

Nice to see Iman’s picked up on the 21 Shump Street meme, and shared it with his athletic cohort, Mr. Revis. They’re vastly different sports, but he really does remind me of Revis, especially in the third when he sprintd half court to literally intercept a pass. I was kinda disappointed he didn’t race out of bounds and spike the ball on Michael Rappaport. That said, Shump does in fact park ninjas. It’s factual

Josh Harrellson, F 12 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-2 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 4 PTS | +3

With the news that Jared Jeffries is going to miss the next two weeks (Cue Thousands of Knick fans doing their best imitation of a gaggle of weeping, bent, withered, Italian women, draped in black wool, wailing as if straight out of a Fellini film), Jorts is going to need to continue to provide solid big boy play off the bench. That Fu Manchu mustache he appears to be starting…uh oh. That ish won’t fly in Lexington. Jorts is gettin’ all Metrosexual, or so it seems. It’s ARTISENAL boar jerky from here on out. More on mustaches later.

Five Things We Saw

  1. If you’ve got a DVR or a torrent or whatever, missed tonight’s game and were thinking of watching it later, do yourself a favor and fuggedaboutit. Even though they won by twenty, it was as aesthetically pleasing as the New York City Sanitation Strike of 1968 when mounds of garbage caught fire and strong winds whirled the filth through the streets. Appropriately enough, Detroit appeared to wave the white flag at the beginning of the third quarter, signaling extended gar-BAJZ time. We should all write Lawrence Frank a nice thank you note for the easy victory, but it was fairly unpleasant to sit through.
  2. Since both teams were literally going through an extended practice session, we did lift the curtain a little on the mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a Motel 6 curtain that is Walt “Clyde” Frazier. Breen lamented the lack of mustaches these days as opposed to the goat rocked by Smith, Woodson et al. Apparently no one’s told Breenie that mustaches are pretty much banished to the realm of hipster a-holes and…er…gentlemen who prefer gentlemen. Clyde then told us that even in the off-season, his college coach told him if he continued to sport a mustache, he wouldn’t eat. There was a game going on (if an awful one) so we never did discover exactly how Clyde’s coach would keep food from Clyde but it certainly conjured images of a creepily Spartan/Fascistic jock dorm in which the underclassmen wash and darn the seniors’ socks whilst clad only in their tighty whiteys while their upper lips are inspected for forestation. Did that just cross the line into the homoerotic? Moving on…Clyde also referred to Jorts’ seriously old-skool hook shot as, “Ah-NACK-air-us” and reminded us how much he digs, “CHAR-clit.” Outstanding!
  3. One new wrinkle we saw tonight — the high/low post offense. For a large part of the third quarter, the Knicks had varying combinations of Chandler, Amar’e and Melo receive the ball in the high post while the other big on the floor established position five feet from the rim. It worked like a charm, and directly led to easy baskets. It’s definitely a deviation from whatever bastardized version of Seven Seconds or Less that we’ve seen the past four seasons. Against a team with a bit more frontcourt fortitude than the Pistons, it might not be as devastatingly eftective, but it’s a new, and interesting gizmo in the ‘Bockers’ toolbox. See that? I just talked hoops there. No arcane references. No overwrought sentences. Mama’s gonna be proud.
  4. And then there’s Michael Rappaport. I’ve never been a big fan of his work but in the “genuine New Yorker” ouvre, he’s certainly carved out a niche. He is a die-hard Knicks fan, did some yeoman work on MTV’s Rock and Jock basketball (though he and Mike Breen, who arbited said game had words. There’s no YouTube footage of Rock and Jock or I’d link. The prior fact just makes me sad), and as a celebrity who falls somewhere between the C and D list, he merited an interview at the half. Some meaningless pablum and then BOOM.

    Jill Martin: What do you think of Tim Tebow?

    Rappaport You’se know like…two qb’s…Sanchez..blargh…mumble…Tebow should find himself a nice Dominican wife!

    Wait…what? Even if I had a dog-eared copy of Paulo Friere’s “Pedagogy of the Opressed and a score of Critical Race Theory scholars by my side, I couldn’t even begin to parse/unpack that whopper of a statement. I’m so confused…

  5. Alas, this game didn’t alleviate any of the concerns raised by the execrable effort in Toronto. The spacing issues, the turnovers (Dear Agni, the turnovers) and the awful free throw shooting were all still scarily present. That won’t cut the mustard when the Sausage-Makers from Milwaukee come to town Monday. Get it? Mustard, sausage…Milwaukee! I’ll show myself out…
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Robert Silverman

Hey, did you know that in addition to banging the keys here and occasionally for the NY Times and at ESPN, Robert is a playwright, an actor and a wand'ring mendicant/gadfly? He also once wrestled a bear...and lost.

25 thoughts to “Quick Reaction: Knicks 101, Pistons 79”

  1. I’m not as easily amused by these recaps as most others seem to be, but the Rapaport stuff made me laugh.

  2. man, we outrebounded them 54-30, that is impressive even if we were playing Sam Houston St.

  3. It would be really nice to deliver a semi knockout blow to the Bucks on Monday. Of course with all the teams in the East ahead of the Knicks seemingly always winning it sure looks like its 8th seed or bust (well 7th-8th seed since they can pass the Celtics).

  4. This was basically last night’s game except the Knicks tried. Higher FG% wasn’t out of any improvement in the halfcourt offense other than the fact that we made our layups. It was a result of our 18 offensive rebounds and getting up the court quickly on Detroit’s many many misses.

  5. It was an unmemorable game Don’t bother watching the entire game from the DVR The only highlight worth watching is the double ally op in garbage time between Shump and JR.

  6. Harrellson deserves a B at least don’t you think? He played non trivial minutes and got 7 rebounds. For a Knick not named Chandler that is phenomenal in 12 minutes. 4 offensive rebounds. I know I know it was the Pistons but still. We’ll need all the rebounding we can get against the Bucks.

  7. Baron’s defense is indeed “vaguely pesky” — if his man is in front of him, he’ll guard him with that almost-foul-him sometimes-actually-fouls-him peskiness , but seems pretty lazy about going through screens, and is happy to do a defensive switchup instead — I thought the new MO was to stop switching? And I don’t think I’ve seen him boxout for a rebound ever.

    He is also so focused on getting the ball in a big’s hands that he will forgo his own shot even when gets a good look in the paint, and does not seem to consider Novak a top option to dish to, both when Novak is actually open or to create situations to get Novak open. If it’s gonna be a 3, why dish to Mr White if he can shoot that himself? seems to be Baron’s attitude.

  8. The Pistons stink and unlike some of the other bad teams in the league, the Knicks seem to have their number. Greg Monroe looks pretty good on a stat sheet but he has looked incredibly soft every time I have seen him play.

    NYK will need to get the turnovers under control against the Bucks– winning the turnover battle is the Bucks’ bread and butter. They’re fourth in both offensive and defensive TOV%, but they are mediocre across the board in all the other four factors, offensively and defensively. They are also very small, giving the bulk of their C and PF minutes to the 6’10” Drew Gooden and the 6’9″ Ersan Ilyasova. This would seem to be a game where it would be a good strategy to slow down the pace a bit, keep the offense simple, pound the ball inside and wear the Bucks down with sheer size and strength.

  9. JK47:
    NYK will need to get the turnovers under control against the Bucks– winning the turnover battle is the Bucks’ bread and butter.They’re fourth in both offensive and defensive TOV%, but they are mediocre across the board in all the other four factors, offensively and defensively.They are also very small, giving the bulk of their C and PF minutes to the 6’10? Drew Gooden and the 6’9? Ersan Ilyasova.This would seem to be a game where it would be a good strategy to slow down the pace a bit, keep the offense simple, pound the ball inside and wear the Bucks down with sheer size and strength.

    The Knicks can’t get out rebounded by the Bucks like they did in Milwaukee and really really really cannot let the Bucks get 17 offensive rebounds. 17 offensive rebounds from a front like that features Drew Gooden and Ersan Ilyasova. Even without Chandler that should’ve never happened. If they take care of the boards and play their improved D they should handle the Bucks easily. Still makes me nervous though. Watching the Knicks this year has been excruciating.

  10. Lin said in the postgame interview that his sore knee has been bothering him since ‘a couple days ago’ from ‘overuse’ but should be good for Monday.

  11. Well I am easily amused but well written and funny posts. This was well written and funny. Loved Weekend at Bibby’s. Not sure how I’ll top that but I’ll try.

    I had no clue who Michael Rapport was until you pointed this out. When I saw in him in the stands, I just assumed Brain Scalabrini was scouting the Knicks.

  12. Oh jon abbey, why don’t you go write at Bleacher Report so you can show everyone how you please the not-so-easily amused?

  13. Dude,
    I may be in a weird mood but that had me crying. Like LOL+C. ”

    “Tebow should find himself a nice Dominican wife!”
    Did Rappaport really say that?

    “Ah-NACK-air-us” and reminded us how much he digs, “CHAR-clit.”
    This is the BEST. Truly showing his ubiquity as an analyst.

    “That said, Shump does in fact park ninjas. It’s factual”
    I’m just gonna giggle to myself quietly all day thinking about this one.

    “It’s ARTISENAL boar jerky from here on out.”
    It’s worth losing “comely Jared” if it’s gonna mean more Jorts humor.

    Not sure where the knicks are going but I’m gonna stay glued to the post game threads. Bravo! Weekend at Bibby’s!!!

  14. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    Oh jon abbey, why don’t you go write at Bleacher Report so you can show everyone how you please the not-so-easily amused?

    thanks, I’m spread pretty thin already.

    I personally prefer the Posting and Toasting recaps, which I just discovered recently and which are much more knowledgable than ours often are. jokes are fine, but I don’t need one in every sentence, info and insight is much better. tell me this isn’t a much better read than the above recap:


    I mean, how do you do a recap and not point out that we outrebounded them 54-30?

  15. jon abbey: jokes are fine, but I don’t need one in every sentence, info and insight is much better.


    As a longtime Knick fan, I can certainly grok the whole “laugh to keep from crying” thing. But when seemingly every game review here reads like Open Mike Night at The Improv, well… it does wear a bit thin after awhile. I imagine it would be possible to sprinkle in a bit of straightforward basketball analysis now and again without completely dampening the overall spirit of mirth.

    All IMHO, of course.

  16. I enjoy the recaps. I think posters are able to provide more serious analysis. It’s a nice mix, IMO.

  17. Could the following possibly catch on???

    Lets say “Novakaine”, or “Mr. White”, or, my favorite, “Steve” hits a 3 in the corner and jogs back doing that silly belt thing, could Clyde or Breenie or Spiro scream “Novak finds himself a nice Dominican wife.”

  18. Novak doing the belt thing down by 20 in Toronto the other night was ridiculous, by the way.

  19. ruruland:
    I enjoy the recaps. I think posters are able to provide more serious analysis. It’s a nice mix, IMO.

    yeah, my thoughts exactly.

    I love the recaps, by the way.

  20. Don’t change, Bob. The writing is top-notch. Keep it up, and don’t listen to jon abbey, of all people.

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