Some Sunday Linkage

Courtesy of Ball Don’t Lie, Business Insider has a piece on how Lebron James has been a boon to the Knicks financially.

In the days leading up to “The Decision,” the Knicks sold 4,000 new season ticket subscriptions to over-eager fans anticipating his move to Manhattan. However, when LeBron eschewed Broadway for South Beach, all those newly-minted season ticket holders were left with only two games — not the 41 they were hoping for — featuring LeBron. The result is a secondary market inventory glut unlike any other in recent sports history.

There are currently 356,000 Knicks tickets available for sale this season across different sites like Stubhub, eBay and Ticketsnow. This equates to an average of 6,535 available tickets/game, or 33% of all available seats. This is 40% higher than the Heat’s 23%.

In the ticket market, the highest-demand teams also have highest quantity of tickets available in the secondary market, as the possibility of profits turns likely attendees into would-be sellers. This year, the Knicks, Heat, Celtics, Bulls and Lakers lead the league in available tickets per game. The Celtics and Lakers both got to the Finals last year. The Heat got LeBron and the Bulls are up-and-comers in a great sports town. The Knicks, on the other hand, will be lucky to capture the 8th seed in the East.

Speaking of Knick tickets, there’s still a few days left to win a pair of tickets to the Heat/Knicks game at the Garden. All you need to do, is buy a t-shirt and send an email. It’s as simple as that.

Next up is Posting & Toasting with 4 steps the Knicks can take to fix the pick & roll.

1. Set real picks

Tommy Dee covered this days ago and he was right on the money. There is a time and place to slip screens, but for most of the simple, two-man sets the Knicks are running, Amar’e would be better off setting a good, hard pick on the opposing guard. Part of the reason Raymond Felton has trouble threading a pass into the rolling Amar’e is that his defender never really gets screened. If Stoudemire waits a beat longer, creates legal contact with the defending guard, and THEN rolls, he’ll give Felton a cleaner look at a pass, as well as the opportunity to penetrate if Amar’e’s man doesn’t hedge enough. Raymond’s short stature and toddler arms make it tough for him to pass over two defenders, so Amar’e’s better off giving all the help he can.

Alan Hahn’s latest Fix, is far ahead of his previous entry. In the former he blames the Knicks loss to Minnesota on three point shooting and the ever esoteric momentum:

The three-point shot is perhaps the game’s most amazing momentum-maker and something Mike D’Antoni called “an awesome weapon.” But as the Knicks learned Friday night in a 112-103 loss to the Timberwolves here at Target Center, that weapon, and the momentum, can also destroy you.

Sure momentum killed the Knicks, if momentum is French for rebound. But in the latter column he blames the Knicks early season woes on the three ball along with another culprit.

Felton knows how to score, but so far he hasn’t shown an ability to be the kind of floor general the Knicks — and D’Antoni — needs. This team needs someone who can recognize situations and get the offense under control when it starts to stray. And this system, with the perpetual green light and so many open looks from the outside as a result of ball movement and motion, can stray very quickly.

Donnie Walsh is going for hip replacement surgery next week. He may need to schedule another replacement operation in another month. It’s not that Felton isn’t a good point guard, but it’s quite possible he’s not the right one for this team, for this offense.

For stat-heads, they’ll want to shake their heads at this D’Antoni quote, and Hahn’s miss on the analysis of it.

But D’Antoni sees the three as “an awesome weapon” and explained the mathematics in how shooting just 33 percent from three is equal to 50 percent from two. But what happens when you shoot zero percent from three and all of those long rebounds turn into momentum-changing transition baskets for the team you were once clobbering by 21 points in a dead arena?

First, I find it interesting that some analysts will talk about how three pointers are more likely to be recovered by the offense, while Hahn posits that they are more likely to turn into fast break points. So anti-number-ites, is a missed three point shot good for the offense or defense? Second he missed the obvious, which is that a two pointer is more likely to result in a trip to the free throw line, hence the 50%/33% analogy doesn’t hold. Three pointers are beneficial to an offense, but only at a rate higher than 33% since they are unlikely to come with some free throws. I wonder what D’Antoni would say if asked that specifically?

Steve Nash is getting a divorce, so how long before someone uses this to fuel the Nash to New York rumor?

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Mike Kurylo

Mike Kurylo is the founder and editor of His book on the 2012 Knicks, "We’ll Always Have Linsanity," is on sale now. Follow him on twitter (@KnickerBlogger).

10 thoughts to “Some Sunday Linkage”

  1. I also read an article talking about how D’Antoni judges which are his best offensive lineups by using eFG%. He has obviously talked alot about how efficient Fields is and how the team in general has to be more efficient.

    I bring this up because I know many here have talked about how D’Antoni’s offense looks dumb and how he apparently just tells everyone to shoot 3’s whenever as if he has no concept whatsoever about what is an efficient offense and stuff. He obviously believes 3pters as an important part of the offense is a positive in a statistical way which it has been proven to be but maybe not to quite the extent that D’Antoni believes they are.

    Now Im pretty sure D’Antoni is not the only coach who takes a somewhat statistical analytical view of his offense and its performance and who knows he may be using or misinterpretating the statistics in a wrong way but as Ive mentioned before by reading and listening to him D’Antoni is a pretty smart guy when it comes to basketball. I too believe his performance so far this season hasnt been great obviously but I guess I have more faith in him than some here do in terms of believing he is a smart enough coach who what he is doing. Again I am not absolving him from blame for this season, far from it. But I am someone who respects D’Antoni and still has faith in him that he can hopefully turn this offense around hopefully sooner rather than later.

  2. “Three pointers are beneficial to an offense, but only at a rate higher than 33% since they are unlikely to come with some free throws. I wonder what D’Antoni would say if asked that specifically?”

    One thing you also can’t ignore especially when looking at D’Antoni ball is the way in which three pointers (only in theory so far for the knicks) open up the middle. You force guys to guard the perimeter, and that PNR is so much more difficult to guard. Of course, you still have to make those threes, or else the middle’s not going to open up, but I feel like Amare just isn’t that back to the basket threat that you can dump the ball into. His effectiveness comes from his ability to exploit a recovering defense — to get to the rim more quickly than any other big man.

    As far as the specific question about threes’ relationship to O and D, D’Antoni doesn’t seem too interested in offensive rebounds, but it does seem that his roster/style is conducive to taking advantage of the bad state opposing defenses are generally in after an offensive rebound. You have to have good passing guards though (since guards generally retrieve long rebounds) to take advantage of the chaos. I wonder what percentage of offensive rebounds result in a score. I bet it’s pretty high.

    As far as allowing opposing teams to get on fast breaks, that just hasn’t been the case so far for the knicks this year. They’ve held every team they’ve played so far at or below their season’s average in fast break points. The only game that a team had more than their average was the Chicago game, our best game. This is especially surprising since not only do the knicks shoot a lot of threes, but they are below average in FG%. Missed shots are more likely to lead to running opportunities, right? And they turn the ball over more than the average team, something that generally results in more fast break points.

    This suggests that teams actively try to slow the pace against the knicks, and also that the knicks have done a nice job of getting back on defense. Surprisingly, in our wins, teams have kept to around their average # of fast break points, while in our losses teams average about 5 fewer fast break points than normal.

    Myth: busted.

  3. In today’s NY Times, there’s a little piece about attendance at Heat games, and how you can still see empty seats for games against teams like Boston. Also, they’ve started a promotional campaign called “Fan Up Miami” which encourages fans to be in their seats before the tip-off and stay there until the final buzzer and to show that “Heat fans deserve this team”

    I think the response to that is a resounding NO!!!

    LeBron, aren’t you glad you took your talents to such a mecca of basketball?

  4. Honestly, while yeah, the Decision irked me the same as everyone else, I am sorta feeling sorry for Lebron now. Not, like, dramatically or anything like that, but the whole thing does seem a bit sad. It’s like watching someone do the walk of shame after an embarrassing one night stand, only we see it every Heat game. This guy just sitting there looking like he can’t believe how badly he screwed things up.

  5. I should also add that part of it being sad is that he also looks confused, as though he really just didn’t think things through (or even if he thought the reaction would be bad, he didn’t think it would be this bad). And I suppose that’s understandable, as Kobe Bryant was accused of raping someone and didn’t get the negative treatment Lebron is getting.

  6. I think LeBron is down on the regular season and only cares about the glory associated with a championship. (not to say that he won’t play hard, etc., just that he’s frustrated with having to wait so long to het his hands on his birthright. Until the playoffs, I doubt that he will be a very jolly guy. If his team (or should I say Wade’s team) get knocked out early (please happen!), look out.

  7. Re: three point shooting and O-rebounding-
    I’ve often thought that boxing out is harder for the defense on 3 pt shots. And with our good rebounding guards, it should be an advantage for us to shoot threes.
    As far as opponent fast break points as described by latke, it makes sense. Getting the opposition to play at our speed is beneficial to us. The problem is that an actual fast break isn’t the same as hoisting a quick three from the halfcourt set. We need to run more with the goal being penetration of the lane, and maybe getting open threes on kick outs.
    Honestly, I’m dying to see this offense work properly. I think it can be done with this group.

  8. “King” James’ numbers are down across the board. He’s getting a few more assists but he is not playing like the monster he was the last couple of years for the Cavs. I’m not sold that James and Wade are great complementary players. LeBron is of course the most talented player on the planet, but I can easily see that Miami team imploding in the playoffs.

  9. Does anyone have a link to video of the tribute to David Lee from his MSG return? I missed the start of the game and would like to see that part of the broadcast.

  10. “I think I called “Owen + Landry Fields = Forever” back in the predictions thread to start the season… (right around the time I was predicting a 46 win season!) ”

    I think that might be the funniest thing I have read in a while…

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