Suns 133 (3OT) Knicks 140

Being a bit under the weather, I was unable to watch the entire Knicks game. Luckily the Knicks outlasted their opponents in triple overtime. It’s probably better that I feel asleep in OT, because I don’t think it would have been good for my health to watch such a tense game.

So I leave it to my readers to make their own discussion here. You can rub in how good any of the overtime quarters were. You can talk about Curry hitting two free throws to send it into OT. Maybe you’d like to discuss Frye’s monsterous dunk, or how to convert mpg into aviator gif’s, since I did capture that on my PVR. I’ll even leave it to you to discuss the suspension of Jerome James. Let’s try to stick to yesterday’s events.

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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).

21 thoughts to “Suns 133 (3OT) Knicks 140”

  1. Last night was, without a doubt, Lee’s coming out party. Thinking of the future (since, other than last night, the present is depressing), I’m wondering how a Lee-Frye-Curry frontline would work out. Offensively I think it’s a great lineup, but at this point none of the three plays much defense. Can Lee at the three really work out, or will he just get torched by quicker guys every night? While he did score 23 last night, the guy he was guarding — Marion — had almost 40.

    In a game in which the stats were just gaudy, I thought that Nate Robinson played a great game. He had only 8-4-3, but he had 3 steals, and his game is finally under control. Unlike earlier in the season, he was able to just play a normal NBA game. Now we can only hope that he’ll be able to figure out how to turn the manic energy on and off as needed.

    Robinson, Crawford, Lee, Frye and Curry, it’s something to look forward to.

  2. From the link above, I liked this quote:

    “It seemed like the more and more we kept going to overtime, the more it drained us,” Marion said after playing 60 minutes.

    Funny thing is the Knick announcers talked about how the momentum was shifting in the Suns favor all second half.

    As for David Lee – he’s going to have some good nights, and some downright awful ones. I like the guy – he can rebound & has good hands. However his defense is flat out awful. The thing about playing him is the matchup problem he causes on the defensive end. You can argue that Marion is a tweener, so it won’t be as bad. But what happens when a quicker SF comes to town?

    As for Robinson – he’s still too wild. He throws the ball away way too often, and really tries too hard at times. He made a few drives that he really shouldn’t have. The other thing that really drives me nuts about him – he argues everything. Even the most obvious calls – reminds of Mutombo. Although you have to admire his hustle & his toughness. He really likes to mix it up, and he’s taken his share of licks lately. I’m really scared he’s going to get hurt with the way he throws his body around.

  3. Lee at the three only make sense if he can improve his defense, or if the Knicks acquire some kind of defensive stopper/role player in the mold of Bruce Bowen who can match up against guys like Marion. One positive point about Curry/Frye/Lee is that they would have rebounding shored up nicely, given
    Lee’s ability and the improvement that Curry has shown over the last few games. Though some might argue that the disproportionate amount of fouls called in favor of the Knicks skewed the outcome by eliminating the Suns’ bigs late in the game, this was a hard-fought game that could be a turning point for the Knicks. If I was LB though, next practice would consist of several hours of free-throw shooting, followed by several more hours of free-throw shooting.

  4. My foremost thought on that game…

    We spend a lot of time picking on the deficiencies of players: Lee can’t play D, Curry can’t rebound, etc., etc. Fact of the matter is, 80% or more of the players in the NBA have glaring deficiencies. Very few all-around players exist. The difference between being winners and losers is how well do your teammates cover up your deficiencies with their strengths, and how much do you force the other team to play to your strength.

    Lee has a glaring weakness as a defender at SF…but then again, so does Wally Szczerbiak and he’s been pretty successful. Either one of them will always be a liability on defense, but if they bring enough O to the floor, it may be that their teammates can cover that hole in trade for the scoring and / or rebounding. Curry may never average 10 rebounds a game, but if your PF and SF average 20 combined, 8 will be good enough.

    The one thing the Knicks did last night (for about 50 minutes anyway, including 15 big ones) was play as a team. They covered each other’s weaknesses, and made each other better using their individual strengths. This is precisely what I expect from them more and more as the season goes on…that’s the LB way. If they just do that every night…even if Curry doesn’t become a better rebounder, and Lee doesn’t become a better defender, and Nate doesn’t get any more in control…if they just play as a team…they will get to 30+ wins and have a lot more confidence going into next year. Last night showed that the ability is there, they just had to work together instead of as individuals.

  5. At the conclusion of last night’s game i was comparing our current miserably bad team to the miserably bad team of Scott Layden’s. What I realized is record and such aside, days are just better now. No matter how unsuccesful, this unit is consistently exciting. Win or lose, there is running and dunking in the Garden. In the days when guys like Ward, Sprewell and Houston around, I remember any fast break play being a HUGE deal. Now, though the record is poor, there are highlight plays being made. We also have legitimate candidates for the dunk contest, rookie of the year, and the sixth man award. Losing is just more fun than it used to be.

  6. By the way, I thought of this because of Lee’s double pump stuff in traffic (a very nice one), and Frye’s facial on Pat Burke, which may be the most badass dunk I’ve ever seen by a Knick (excluding the fact that it was on a bald irishman).

  7. Like I mentioned in the comments of the other entry, the reason that this knick five-man rotation looks better is because it IS.

    This year, the Knicks have been undone by the fact that a very large percentage of the minutes have gone to just outright terrible players.

    Malik Rose has been terrible this year.

    Quentin Richardson has been terrible this year.

    Mo Taylor has been terrible this year.

    Antonio Davis has been terrible this year.

    Jerome James has been REALLY terrible this year.

    Trevor Ariza has been bad this year.

    Nate Robinson has been bad this year (but he can at least claim that he is learning and will improve, while Ariza is taking major steps BACKwards).

    Meanwhile, the following players have been GOOD this year:

    Channing Frye

    Eddy Curry

    David Lee

    Jamal Crawford

    Stephon Marbury

    Jackie Butler

    Qyntel Woods (in VERY little minutes)

    The problem I have had with Larry Brown is that he has given too many minutes to the FIRST group, and not enough minutes to the SECOND.

    Are the second groups all stars?

    No. Most of them have some glaring weaknesses. They just have a lot LESS glaring weaknesses than the first group.

    The reason the Knicks have been so awful is because of the first group. If they played the second group, they wouldn’t necessarily be good, but the odds of them being good would be a lot higher.

  8. That was the best game I’ve seen the Knicks play in a looooooooong time.

    Lee had a great outing, but lets not forget who was the real MVP of the game.

    Starbury Marbury.

    Anytime anyone doubts the man, he always comes back with a stellar performance. He’s still an all-star calibur player, and he’s shown he is fully capable of buying into LB’s system. Check out the box score/recaps–he basically won the game for the Knicks in OT:

    He took over the game, shooting brilliantly in the clutch, and dishing when he saw the open man. Great stuff.

    LB isn’t going anywhere, and Marbury’s contract is untradable. Is that such a bad thing? Marbury is going to retire a Knick, and he can only get better with time. He’s shown a great desire to “play the right way”.

  9. Oh, agreed, NGLI, Marbury is definitely still one of the good Knicks (and my only OTHER problem with Brown was his handling of Marbury at times during the game).

    He’s having a much worse year this year than last, but he is still a high quality player, certainly still better than Sprewell and (for the most part) Houston.

  10. one stat that is holding channing frye back at this point
    atonio davis 19 minutes-7rebounds
    q woods-15 minutes-5boards
    frye-15-2 rebounds

  11. I didn’t get to watch the game — I live in Seattle, and can only “watch” most games at — so I have to try to piece together what happens based on the play-by-play, boxscore, and game recaps.

    A couple questions I’m hoping someone can help me with:

    1. I kept reading on the play-by-play “Marbury missed layup” and “Marbury missed jumpshot” in the closing moments of regulation and the first two OTs. Was he hurting the team in big moments, or are those facts taken out of the context of the flow of the game? Basically, was Marbury clutch or not?

    2. Why did Frye only log 15 minutes? His stat line looks fine. Why did he give Curry and Lee so many minutes, especially when Curry has been so fragile this year?

    Now, a comment: Lee as SF had better be a temporary move. The guy is a PF who can fill in at SF, but he’s a PF. Three years down the road, the Knicks can have a four-man rotation at the big spots with Curry, Frye, Lee, and Butler that could be as good as any frontline in the league. They’ll just need to add a gamebreaker on the wing and a steady point.

    Regarding the previous comments about defense, I don’t know much about it but I think that becoming a great defender is something that takes time, and has more to do we effort and athleticism than natural talent. Of course, guys like Dikembe had a special gift. But Ben Wallace, Ron Artest, Michael Jordan — I think those guys are/were great defenders because they were athletic, they cared, and they played hard. In the pre-NBA draft workouts, David Lee tested out as the most athletic PF — measured by stuff like vertical jump, bench press, foot speed, etc. I suspect he’ll become a great defender as he comes to understand the league — the guy seems to be a hard hard worker.

    Remember, Ben Wallace was a salary throw-in in the Grant Hill sign-and-trade between Orlando and Detroit years ago. Guys don’t just come into the league and start locking guys up.

    Again, I’m on shaky ground here so if someone has counter examples, please share. Also, please answer my questions listed above!

  12. To answer some of your questions:

    1) Marbury did miss some shots, but overall shot 46% on a night when he scored 32. And in the OT’s Marbury without question won the game by carrying the team on his back.

    2) Frye’s minutes has come up on several boards. Early on it was because of foul trouble. But those were the only fouls he had. I’m guessing that the team that LB felt there was a matchup issue, because Lee played a ton. But when someone came in at one point, it was Rose!

    3)As for Lee, I think you are spot on. The kid is an unbelievable athlete and has a nose for the ball. In a few years he will be a solid all-around player, and a huge rebounder. I think his future lies at playing the 3 or 4 depending on the situation.

    To go back to Brian’s post, let’s hope that LB has settled into this rotation as it seems to be working well. Friday’s game will be difficult because of the length of the Wizards. Have to see how Brown handles it.

    I also hope that Ariza can get back into the rotation (take Rose’s minutes, please!).

  13. on ariza, the guy needs to develop a skill. he needs to either make jumpshots, score with his back to the basket, or become a defensive stopper. he needs to find a role; right now, he doesn’t do anything particularly well, except bring “energy.” guys like that don’t hang around the league very long.

    although, his dunk on ben wallace in that espn game early in the season was nice!

  14. I stand by my earlier rant:

    With about 11 minutes left in the 4th, I was in a state of disbelief about the game against the Suns. First of all, I am stunned that the Knicks were able to put up 61 points (including a 12 point lead) in the first half considering how many of the “little things” they were unable to do.

    Secondly, I am not at all surprised that after that they put up only 20 (by comparison) in the 3rd quarter and that the Suns were within 3 of tying the game at that point (they would tie it later on).

    Thirdly, I’m also not surprised the Knicks were cooling off (despite Jamal Crawford hitting a nice jumper — did you know that Crawford has the highest difference in points/game in wins vs losses this year in the entire league?) and wouldn’t really have been shocked if the Suns win this game. Of course, as I originally typed that, Frye (one of the few bright spots in an otherwise dismal season, even though he ran up 2 quick fouls in the 1st quarter) just nailed a monster dunk. Still, we’ve all seen this self-combustion one too many times recently. Wasn’t this the kind of stuff LB supposed to fix?

    And lastly, Jerome James suspended for “conduct detrimental to the team”? Why am I not AT ALL surprised about that one. In the official report, I wonder if the “detrimental conduct” was specifically listed as “excessively sucking…even for him”, or if they just left that space blank on the form.

  15. I want to start by wishing everyone a happy new year!
    on to the new year’s list:
    1. lets hope in 2006 LB stops overcoaching and being a control freak coach(did anyone hear him recently in an interview criticizing his sons coaching decision to play zone instead of man in a game for kids 8y/o and under?), he is not a basketball god who is going to bail Isiah out for his dreadful decision making.
    2.Isiah has to own up to these bad moves and start instituting a ‘damage control’ mentality from here on out or be fired. There is something wrong with a guy who trades away 4 unprotected 1st round picks while expanding the salary of an already bloated cap in 2 years.
    3. Dolan is getting raped and I feel for him.
    4. Has anyone noticed the Knicks have a team identity with Curry playing? too bad he’s always hurt and rarely plays but imagine where the team would be if the last minute trade to get Curry wasn’t made? please note we only have 8 wins, would we have 2? 0? we definately wouldnt have more than 8. That’s why sports analysts will tell you that they would ‘ve made the Cyrry trade 10 out of 10 times not because he’s that good but because of the hole that the Knicks were in leading up to it, either that or they are all nuts.
    Not to confuse the issue but Curry alone is not responsible for the 8 wins and it was a collective effort of the best minds in basketball with unlimited resources to bring forth such

  16. one other point, how can Isiah afford not to be in the Artest sweestakes?
    …we’re clearly in a ‘win-now’ mode but aren’t winning.

  17. i don’t know about us being in a “win-now” mode. it’s been pointed out on this site that isiah has made some moves of that nature, but plenty that seem to be for the future (signing 3 draft picks). brown’s new plan to focus on the young players seems to be for the future as well.

  18. i think the point of the article was that we aren’t in ‘win-now’ or ‘win-later’, we’re in the middle and that ain’t good

  19. Gabe…?detrimental conduct?…listed as ?excessively sucking?even for him?… gotta give props to that one. ^_^

    Calm down, New Yorkers… 2006 will look much better than 2005.

    I promise you guys… The roster isn’t that bad. Maybe a few tiny changes, but what can the Knicks do in reality? Perhaps unloading Q, Ariza, Butler or Rose, but don’t expect any impact players joining the team any time soon…and certainly not Artest. Don’t worry, I have a feeling Artest will end up in New York within the next 2-3 years. Davis/Hardaway should be left on the roster after the trade deadline: the cap situation needs to get fixed sooner or later, and now is as good a time as any.

    The players will continue to adapt to Mr. Anal as the season wears on. Really, the Knicks have shown flashes of serious potential:

    Marbury, Crawford, Lee, Frye, Curry???

    We’ve got some talent here. Don’t fret.

  20. Since all discussions seem to lead back to Isiah perhaps it would be useful to put some detail into rather than keep it abstract.

    I think the question before Knick fans (and Thomas critics) is this. Would you rather have the young nuclueus of Curry, Robinson, and Lee that Isiah acquired via trade this past offseason (leaving out Channing Frye who was drafted straight up) – OR – would you rather have kept Thomas and Nazr, added Frye, and one of the top 14 players coming out next season (listed below)?’s top 14 (as of 1/3/06) – this site does a pretty good job of rating the top players coming out, including Euros and prepsters.

    1. Rudy Gay 6-8 220 SF UConn So.
    2. Adam Morrison 6-8 220 SF Gonzaga Jr.
    3. LaMarcus Aldridge 6-11 245 PF Tex. So.
    4. Andrea Bargnani 6-11 240 PF Italy 1985
    5. Rajon Rondo 6-2 171 PG Kentucky So.
    6. Ronnie Brewer 6-7 217 SG Arkansas Jr.
    7. Patrick O’Bryant 7-0 250 C Bradley So.
    8. Shawne Williams 6-9 225 SF Memphis Fr.
    9. Rodney Carney 6-7 205 SF Memphis Sr.
    10. Daniel Gibson 6-2 190 PG Texas So.
    11. Shelden Williams 6-9 250 PF Duke Sr.
    12. Tiago Splitter 6-11 240 PF Brazil 1985
    13. Josh Boone 6-10 237 PF UConn Jr.
    14. JJ Redick 6-4 190 SG Duke Sr.

    Frankly, I don’t think it’s a slam dunk either way, which is why this conversation seems to be at the point where it’s going in circles.

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