The Athletic: Three trades that could land the Knicks their new point guard

Over at The Athletic (subscription required and recommended), Mike Vorkunov has three trade ideas for the Knicks to get a new point guard.

Basically, they come down to:

1. No. 27 pick in the 2020 draft and Dennis Smith Jr. for Derrick Rose and the Lakers’ 2021 second-round pick, which is owned by Detroit (after a fairly embarrassing initial mistake where he suggested Detroit’s 2020 second rounder, which they don’t have).

2. No. 27 pick in the 2020 draft, Wayne Ellington and Frank Ntilikina for Paul

3. Julius Randle and the No. 27 pick to Minnesota for No. 17, James Johnson and Juan Hernangomez (sign-and-trade), with the argument being that the #17 pick could be then used on a point guard (kind of a stretch to call it a “trade for a point guard,” though, right?)

I don’t like any of the three trade suggestions, but, well, it’s something to talk about, at least! And it’s something I could do a new post for, as we really needed a new post.

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486 thoughts to “The Athletic: Three trades that could land the Knicks their new point guard”

  1. Pass, Pass, and Pass. No way I’m giving up a 1st for Rose and a late 2nd. Definitely not considering giving up Ntilikina and a 1st for saving OKC money. The Julius Randle thing almost had me until I realized our PG at 17 would either be Anthony or Winston. I can almost be talked into Anthony. I like him, he’s just not the player I want. As far as Winston, I’d love him on the Knicks- just not at 17. I’m not willing to roll the dice on Lewis being there at 17

  2. The Athletic charges people for that tripe? #1 would be terrific if the Athletic were The Onion of sports coverage. And #2 suggests giving up on Frank to get CP3 who will lead us to a better record and worse pick in a stacked draft? And a response to #3 would test the KB.net max characters.

    But to be fair the lunacy is not limited to The Athletic. The chief of the new site Strickland is trying to turn Mitch into Noah, setting him up at the elbow and hitting cutters? Ugh

    You wanna solve the Knicks 1 guard problem and maximize Mitch? Put Kira and Mitch in a spread PnR offense. That would be unstoppable and something on which to build. Kira and Morant’s stats were similar at the same age. Just as Ja benefited from greater spacing and was productive in his 1st year, so will Kira in a spread offense. Everyone bemoans the lack of a 1 guard and is attracted to 3&D guys like the Sirens of Greek mythology (kinda like Greek Freak joining Knicks) when the answer is staring them right in the face.

  3. Apparently it’s not just crummy GMs who want to trade picks and young players for geezers, writers for respected outlets want to do that too. I mean Rose, Johnson and Paul are all over thirty and we’re paying picks and young players to get them? I honestly don’t see the why for any of these trades. It’s like the the writers found random trades for point guards that work in the trade machine.

  4. My firm belief is that the best move the Knicks can make at PG, considering the state of our roster relative to the win curve and all of our assets (cap space, draft picks, and prospects), is to draft Tyrell Terry. He’s an elite shooter, he can pass, he can dribble, and he’s smart/dedicated enough to not be a total zero on defense. His theoretical ceiling may not be as high as every other lottery point guard, but he does have an elite skill (shooting) which is something you can’t say about any other prospect except LaMelo Ball, who has elite passing and handles as a prospect. The last kid we drafted out of Stanford was pretty fun, too, so I wouldn’t mind going back to the well there.

    And of course, I am on Team Conley. It’s a safe trade no matter where you fall on the compete vs tank debate, and it also means we don’t have to watch Julius Randle and Elfrid Payton get in the way of our prospects’ development.

    All that shit Vork is talking about feels like a Bleacher Report piece lol. I guess he had to put some sort of content up, but I don’t have a paid subscription to The Athletic to read articles like that one.

  5. i sort of remember this name: Mike Vorkunov, he’s been a beat writer for a while…actually, just looked at his photo, a lot younger than who i was thinking about…

    yeah, those thoughts may not be the best way forward…

    so, we know rose brought along a few new folks – whom do you think he’ll use to make final choices…maybe wes…

  6. I guess he had to put some sort of content up

    he obviously isn’t tuning in here :)

    derrick rose does raise the question though of what ex-knicks currently playing would you want back on the team?

  7. All that shit Vork is talking about feels like a Bleacher Report piece lol.

    Yeah, definitely not his best piece. He’s better when it comes to insider stuff (you know, stuff you get from having access to the team), like quotes and insights from the coaches on the team. When it comes to armchair GM-ing…not his forte.

  8. Yeah, definitely not his best piece. He’s better when it comes to insider stuff (you know, stuff you get from having access to the team), like quotes and insights from the coaches on the team. When it comes to armchair GM-ing…not his forte.

    Maybe Vork’s trades were based on inside info. Dolan may want wins right away after last year’s debacle. Judged in that context (ie kncksiness), those trades might make sense. The draft/free agency/election: this could be a brutal autumn.

  9. I mean we can all shit on the Chris Paul one but I feel confident saying none of us would be even remotely surprised if that ended up happening right? Hopefully the Knicks are smart enough to see the full picture with CP3 (age, injury history, contract) but he did enough restoring of his superstar luster recently that I can easily imagine us making even worse trades than that to get him.

    Rose on the other hand I can’t see. He has done a nice job of resurrecting his career in Detroit but as a score first guy he’s still an awkward fit for the role of elder statesman organizing the offense and helping the young guys find their niches. I think he’s a more natural fit in a scoring role off the bench for a contender.

    Trading up in the draft obviously depends on who we can get but doesn’t really fit with the other two ideas. Somebody you grab at #17 is (even if things go well) more likely to be the next-after-next PG. No mid-1st rounder is going to come in and act as the stabilizing force in his rookie year. Even if they do find a PG in the draft with any of their picks I don’t think that at all precludes them from looking for a veteran upgrade.

  10. maybe lopez and morris…

    i don’t know, maybe it was just when i was watching, but – i’ve soured on gallo a bit…

  11. I was just thinking back to Layden and Isiah and man, can you even imagine talking yourself into, “Well, you see, we build around Antonio McDyess” and then “Well, you see, we build around Stephon Marbury.”

    I mean, fuck the heck?!

  12. Maybe Vork’s trades were based on inside info. Dolan may want wins right away after last year’s debacle.

    Yep, those trades all seem very Dolan-esque. No doubt that’s why they all seem extremely possible, with the exception of Rose because the Knicks tried it before.

    i can guess tv van be more than just tv – not sure it has the same impact it once did…platforms like youtube, twitch, whatever else is out there that providers user produced content

    It’s all the same art, it just shows up in different places. Some folks paint on canvas, some paint on wood panels, It’s all still painting.

  13. I was just thinking back to Layden and Isiah and man, can you even imagine talking yourself into, “Well, you see, we build around Antonio McDyess” and then “Well, you see, we build around Stephon Marbury.”

    I figure standard practice for folks writing about potential Knicks trades is they look for the kind of thing that only makes sense if you don’t really pay attention to basketball and only have a tenuous grasp on the passage of time. A sort of, “I overheard a guy in a bar talking about how player X is really good, so let’s build around them” kind of thing. It’s not exactly trolling, it’s just writers getting themselves into a Knicks mindset.

  14. Apparently it’s not just crummy GMs who want to trade picks and young players for geezers, writers for respected outlets want to do that too.

    These aren’t investigative journalists for ProPublica, here. They’re guys trying to hit article quotas and fill column space and generate hot takes, whether it’s Bleacher Report or The Athletic. On top of that, they have no skin in the game. You propose a trade, and it somehow comes to fruition? Cool! Now the team is losing again — another article to be written. Team goes on mini win streak? That’s an article.

    I mean Rose, Johnson and Paul are all over thirty and we’re paying picks and young players to get them?

    Clicks generated!

    I honestly don’t see the why for any of these trades.

    Clicks!

    It’s like the the writers found random trades for point guards that work in the trade machine.

    And the clicks!

  15. Grocer: I figure standard practice for folks writing about potential Knicks trades is they look for the kind of thing that only makes sense if you don’t really pay attention to basketball and only have a tenuous grasp on the passage of time.A sort of, “I overheard a guy in a bar talking about how player X is really good, so let’s build around them” kind of thing.It’s not exactly trolling, it’s just writers getting themselves into a Knicks mindset.

    agree…I think you can surmise the same for the people who read them and think it makes sense…then go down to the bar and regurgitate it and then the write hears it and the cycle continues…

  16. I don’t have a subscription to The Ringer but I started to read the beginning of this article this morning and almost spit out my coffee when I first read “Derrick Rose.” Like, seriously? Why the F would we ever want that dude back?

    I’m happy that Rose has resurrected his career as a 6th man scoring option off the bench. Good for him. But this is beyond ridiculous. I’d rather keep Payton for the next year.

    If we don’t do the Conley trade and add a pick, my options would be to let Payton loose and sign DJ Augustin to a similar deal (1 and 1) or just let Payton back for the final year and suck it up. I think DJ is a real possibility with the Thibs connection and he wouldn’t be half bad. I mean, he’s not great but he’s like Raymond Felton level passable starting PG and he can shoot 3’s and played with Thibs. That wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world even if we drafted a PG.

  17. My girlie dreamy wish-post about Kawhi’s ending his career as the GOAT was far better written than this piece of trash by Vorkunov.

  18. Weird that we are discussing Conley, Simmons, and Bledsoe, and this guy is discussing Derrick Rose, and college kids. Seems like he could have generated more clicks with some better players, no?

  19. I respect that writers have to write something to pay for their rent and their food but Please Don’t Fuck with Common Sense/Knicks-Nba Die Hard Fans’ basic knowledge.
    Unless someone is paying you to write “These Exact Nonsense”.

  20. The Athletic charges people for that tripe?

    I concur with Brian that Vorkunov is generally much better and more thoughtful than this piece. In general, The Athletic is my first morning sports read — not just for him, but for beat writers on my other favorite teams, plus columnists like Joe Posnanski — and well worth the full subscription price I pay. For the current deal of $1/month for a year, it’s a goddamned steal.

  21. Sure beats the price on the Defector, which I might still pay for because I miss the old Deadspin so much…

    I like the Athletic.

  22. ” LeBron can be insufferable but can you name another athlete who’s leveraged his position to try to effect real change as much as he has? ”

    I’m really unaware of that.
    Can someone please show me Lebron’s risks for real change ?

  23. It’s all the same art, it just shows up in different places. Some folks paint on canvas, some paint on wood panels, It’s all still painting.

    I know it connects strongly…the kids ages 6 thru 18 all gravitate towards youtube…they really connect to some of those individuals, themes and families…

    I don’t really get it…I just youtube for the music or if i need to figure out how to do something, not so much to follow a particular person(s)…

    godson age 9 is really into this song and video…I asked him how he learned about it (good sounding, well produced pop song from some young youtube personality) – he said from some gaming streamer…

    it’s a growing platform…

  24. More procrastination leading to possibly illegible layout. Reading about Terry and Lewis here made me wonder how they look against each other (and against my man Hali-B). Yeah, I know, it’s all counting stats and doesn’t consider competition and short season and teammates and two of them are sophs. Add in your own caveats. But it’s this or make myself another sandwich. If nothing else, I can state with authority that these are all fairly skinny bastards.

    PLAYA HT WT PTS REB AST FG% 3PT% FT% ST TO
    Tyrese 6’5” 175 15.2 5.9 6.5 50.4 41.9 82.2 2.5 2.8
    Tyrell 6’1” 160 14.6 4.5 3.2 44.1 40.8 89.1 1.4 2.6
    Kira 6’3” 165 18.5 4.8 5.2 45.9 36.6 80.2 1.8 3.5

  25. The Athletic–and Vorkunov specifically–tends to be great. I’m more than happy to pay for it (and am paying the The Defector as well for many, many reasons).

    Having said that…I don’t know what happened here. Seems pretty mailed-in. I guess the third option is somewhat novel and at least debatably appealing?

  26. I find this obsession with getting a PG counter productive.

    The Knicks need a stretch PF, a wing that can shoot, a 6th man scorer (now that Trier is no longer a prospect for that role), and a traditional PG assuming we are going to do what everyone else is doing and give the keys to a PG and run P&R all day long.

    In theory, drafting the best player available is the right thing to do. IMO, the reality is that most teams don’t know who the best player is when their number is up. They have a few players in a tier that are similar and draft for need. We know what the Knicks need (practically a whole new team – lol).

    If there’s a PG available we really like long term, that’s great. If not, draft a stretch PF or shooting wing and just run with Frank/Payton or Frank/DSJr or all 3 again until we have the opportunity to land the starting PG of the future via draft, free agency or trade later (or one of these guys shocks us and gets good enough to start on a serious team (Frank).

    It’s not like the only piece we are missing is a starting PG.

  27. Reposting for strat!

    Jordan did less “in the boxscore” because he shared play making duties with Pippen and the other guards on the Bulls. Their play making was a more team oriented process. His job was to “score” and just make plays and rebound in the flow of the “team” game. The same was true of Kobe in the triangle for LA, We saw that when D’Antoni briefly used Kobe at PG. It was obvious he could get 10 assists anytime he wanted. So could Jordan.

    James is a scoring forward that typically dominates the ball and plays pseudo PG . His teams are generally built to maximize HIM, his skills, and his stats in every way.

    Jordan’s career average FGA/100 possessions, playoffs: 32.5

    LeBron’s: 26.8

    LeBron had a FGA/poss. above 30.0 just once, in 2014-15 at 34.1. Excluding Jordan’s three first-round exits, Jordan did it 8 times.

    LeBron’s AST/poss: 9.2. Jordan: 7.4.

    So yeah, LeBron really dominates the ball compared to “team-first” Jordan.

    IMO, teams are generally better off if they are less dependent on one player like that. A broader more diverse approach seems to win more, especially if that guy has a bad night, is a little hurt, or the other team has a defensive player or strategy that can slow him down a little.

    So the Bulls were worse off?

    Just for fun, here’s James Harden’s career playoff highs per 100 possessions:

    FGA 31.1
    FTA 14.1

    Here’s Jordan’s AVERAGE playoff numbers:

    FGA 32.5
    FTA 12.8

    So the Bulls were essentially playing the Harden Rockets offense, in terms of ball sharing, but, for like, 13 seasons.

  28. Jowles, why do you even bother? Strat just makes shit up left and right to suit his own narrative, like another stable genius who is in the press quite a bit these days. Maybe he’s practicing for a GOP run at the White House in 2028.

  29. What we’re missing is shot creators/playmakers and those are the toughest players to find, much more difficult than 3&D guys. The best place to find them is in the draft and that should be our priority. Kira , Ball and Hayes check that box; Terry and Haliburton do not. Tyrell and Tyrese would fit great next to Luka or Giannis, better than the other three. Kira is better for the Knicks than the double T’s.

    I favor Kira because his elite skill (combination of speed, acceleration, change of direction) should translate very well to the NBA, both in transition and the half-court. The college game is much more congested than the NBA. Kira should thrive in modern NBA environment via drive-and-kick and spread PnR. But the other nice thing about him is that he doesn’t have any glaring weakness like being a lousy shooter, poor defender, poor passer, low IQ, etc. He’s already quite a complete player skill-wise having just turned 19yo in May.

  30. If I had to rank them from good to bad, it would be 3,2,1. I’d rather watch Juancho than Randle, Johnson’s not my cup of tea but is a decent bench player on an expiring, and moving up in this draft is a plus, as I see value in the 10-20 range. Cole Anthony, for example is a terrible lottery pick but at #17 might be a good flyer. Same for RJ Hampton or Madelon. I could live with a deal for Paul, would hate to give up anything for him but it would be nice to see a top-10-ish level PG run a real offense with our young players. Deal #1 makes zero sense.

  31. “Three trade ideas for the Knicks”
    could have been ok as a joke/troll/killing time reading.
    But…
    “that could land their new point guard”
    turns it into something else…
    Something Not Good.

  32. To me it’s not much of a mystery. KD wanted to play for the Knicks and he and Kyrie were on track to do just that. Kyrie had a change of heart and told KD he’s gonna go to the Nets. The pressure in Boston got to Kyrie and he didn’t want a repeat of that playing for the Knicks. KD had to either join him in Brooklyn or hope some star would join him on the Knicks. Kawhi was going to Clippers so KD had no choice presuming he wanted another star on the team. All of this happened before KD’s injury.

    In this scenario, I don’t fault the Knick front office. Given his injury history, I think the KP trade should work out to our benefit. Put it this way: I’d rather have Christian Wood/15m in cap/the 2 Mavs picks than KP.

  33. I’ve decided to root for the Rockets. First, maybe Davis decides to bolt aging Bron. Second, Draymond Green tweeted if Rockets win and you are a center not named KAT, Embiid, or Jokic, your stock is gonna plummet. This might enable us to sign Mitch on the cheap.

  34. “So the Bulls were essentially playing the Harden Rockets offense, in terms of ball sharing, but, for like, 13 seasons.”

    So…are you TRYING to prove stats and analytics are a bunch of garbage that can prove or disprove anything with minimal effort?

    Mike

  35. MBunge:
    “So the Bulls were essentially playing the Harden Rockets offense, in terms of ball sharing, but, for like, 13 seasons.”

    So…are you TRYING to prove stats and analytics are a bunch of garbage that can prove or disprove anything with minimal effort?

    Mike

    paging ptmilo…

  36. If Lebron has 7 points at halftime and you’re losing by 16 you are proper fucked

    That’s the luxury of having AD on your team as well.

    As for the trades, hard pass on all 3 (a 1st for Rose? GTFO). Of the 3, the 3rd seems to be the most palatable. At 17 you could probably get Lewis, Anthony or Hampton. Lewis would be probably the preference.

  37. And then people will start defending him against cancel culture or something stupid….

    So frustrating

    No way the Lakers can blow this right?

  38. 2. No. 27 pick in the 2020 draft, Wayne Ellington and Frank Ntilikina for Paul

    I would be in full support of this trade. Not because I want Paul, but because I’d be amazed if Paul can’t fetch 2 firsts that are better than #27.

    Really this trade makes no sense for either side.

  39. So…are you TRYING to prove stats and analytics are a bunch of garbage that can prove or disprove anything with minimal effort?

    Inferential reading comprehension: not your strong suit.

    Jowles

  40. Idk… I don’t see why option #3 couldn’t work.
    Basically we dump Randle to take on Minny’s salary albatross and get to move up 10 crucial spots in this draft. If they switched Hernangomez with Culver, that would be solid.
    We don’t get a starting point guard, but it’s still an ok trade. We can take Hayes at 8 and Saddiq Bey at 17. There are many more options at 17 than at 27.

  41. At least football is back lol.

    RE: Skip Bayless
    I get what he was trying to say. I think he rushed it and it came out insensitive. He makes a valid point as it relates to being the QB one of the world’s most recognizable sports teams..kinda. Still- that’s something you wanna keep in your back pocket until you figure out a way to express it in a way that shouldn’t offend. In Dak’s case, he has been overly criticized and doubted while performing at a high level. So I seee what Skip’s point was meant to be. But man! During these times? There ain’t enough TP to clean up the shitstorm he has invited upon himself. Sheesh! Since I’ve been working from home, I have been able to actually watch Undisputed. I used to love First Take..I watched it when it was still Cold Pizza. But Undisputed quickly supplanted First Take for me as my favorite talking head sports show. Shannon Sharpe is amazing. But “SKIIIIIIIIIUPPPP!”, you may have permanently damaged the show there pal

  42. LOL I remember back on Cold Pizza, Jay Crawford used to call Skip Bayless “Diabolical Hater”
    Ha! How timeless! That guy makes a fortune from playing bad cop

  43. https://streamable.com/olean1

    Serious question, and we might get a real basketball discussion out of it. Who’s to blame for this shitshow of a rotation?

    (a) Tucker, for giving Rondo a clear path to penetration by getting caught in no-man’s-land, respecting Morris’s corner 3 more than Rondo’s jump shot (forgetting about his ability to drive)

    (b) Harden, failing to read Tucker’s feint, not yelling at Tucker to pick up Rondo, and continuing to close out on Morris even when he knows no one’s at the rim to help Tucker on a drive

    (c) Rivers, for taking his eyes off the ball to pick up Danny Green (he technically should rotate to the rim) — he literally does not see Rondo heading toward the rim until Rondo’s off the ground

    (d) Gordon, for looking like he was on a time delay when Rondo started his dribble

  44. My assumption watching it was that Harden had failed to properly communicate that he’d picked up Morris. But their rotations were a shambles at that point. The Rockets endlessly switch but they aren’t endlessly switchable. Several of their bigger guys have trouble handling smaller quick guards. Paul exploited it in the OKC series, Rondo is exploiting it in this one. Their small ball is really medium sized ball and it’s their main defensive problem.

  45. I think the answer is all of the above. But no one’s going to fix that play on his own, short of very vocal defensive communication.

    (a) Tucker can’t know what’s going on behind him, and could reasonably assume that Harden or Rivers is rotating over for second-level help.

    (b) Harden would have been better off staying near the elbow to cut off a drive, but Tucker is overcommitted to the passing lane and doesn’t really communicate which guy Harden should be picking up.

    (c) Rivers does need to pick up his man, but his off-ball glance was fatally timed.

    (d) Gordon can’t really be faulted for not leaving Davis. If he rotates early, Davis (arguably the best PNR finisher in the league) has an easy drop for a flush.

    Just horrible defense punished by one of the league’s smartest players.

  46. i think it’s mainly harden and rivers. harden trotted lazily toward the corner with the play in front of him. he needs to be screaming to pj he’s got the corner, except that he was meandering so actually he didn’t have the corner. and that would be been fine too — let pj take the corner and give rondo the worse 3 while staying in the middle. more importantly he should have been able to change course and help given where he was standing when rondo put the ball on the floor.

    gordon was slow to react but when you’re alone at the free throw line on AD that’s pretty forgivable, and he probably doesn’t get there anyway. Rivers may have gotten there if he’d been alert. I don’t think Tucker made a big mistake; he should have help behind in that situation and an open corner 3 on a rondo swing is a bad give up.

  47. The Honorable Cock Jowles,

    I think you misunderstood what I said in the Jordan/James debate.

    Jordan had 2 main jobs on the Bulls.

    1. Score like crazy because he was so great at it.
    2. Defend like crazy because he was so great at it.

    The playmaking was spread out between multiple players (Jordan, Pippen, whoever was the other guard, and even other players) because systematically the triangle is designed to create a lot of ball movement and playmaking from everyone. It’s not designed to give one player the ball and let him create most of the plays and get most of the assists.

    Compare that to James. On many of his teams he is the main playmaker and the main scorer.

    He will still get plenty of shots and points, but he’ll also get plenty of assists.

    Put James in the triangle and he’d still score, but he’d get way fewer assists because of the greater SHARED responsibility for playmaking. On the flip side, if you put Jordan/Kobe in charge of playmaking, they’d still score but they also pile up a lot of assists like James does now. It’s not like Kobe/Jordan couldn’t get 10 assists and rebounds a night like guys like Harden, Westbrook, James etc.. It’s that their role was to NO do that. They were playing within a more team oriented structure.

    My second point is that imo a more team oriented structure with playmaking from many players and a lot of ball and player movement is more likely to win championships than one guy doing almost everything averaging triple doubles like Harden, Westbrook, Doncic (for now), or James in many seasons.

    Some will look at the boxscore and say “WOW, that guy does everything well”.

    I say, “It’s going to be harder to win that way. They’d be better off if he did less. I will also say Jordan, Kobe, Bird, Magic could have done that WAY MORE also, but they were smart enough NOT TO “

  48. I think the initial mistake was doubling Davis. Most times the Rockets tried to double seemed like they got burned. The games this series where the rocket’s d was on point they didn’t double except opportunitisticly. The man zone they were running was working better, I think they just have to suck up the bad matchups and hope that help defense makes up the difference.

  49. Responding to Bayless, Prescott said he would be a “fake leader” if he didn’t talk about his mental health issues.

    “I think being a leader is about being genuine and being real… I think it’s important to be vulnerable, to be genuine, to be transparent,” Prescott said. “I think that goes a long way when you’re a leader and when your voice is being heard by so many, and you can inspire.”

    i may not understand all the changes that occur between generations – but, thank god for this younger generation…

    i got to be honest – some music, certain fashion trends and the whole face tattooing thing still puzzles me a bunch (i can barely commit to my next meal, forget permanently marking myself) – but, the level of sensitivity and awareness towards the life of others most definitely seem to be on the rise…

    it’s interesting to note those though that are digging in and holding tight to their traditional paradigms and choosing to remain behind..

  50. The oldest European mummy we have a good record of, Ötzi, had 61 tattoos. One of the Chimichorro mummies, the oldest South American mummies, had facial tattoos. As do quite a few others,

    Not tatted myself but it’s clear where conservatives should stand on this issue.

  51. When i was 15yrs old i wanted an eagle tattoo on my shoulder.
    My mommy didn’t let me do it and i was like: Wait till i get older and ill do it plus more tattoos.
    As time went by i wasn’t burning inside to do tattoos so seems like it was just a puberty/I’m bad kind of thing.
    Nowadays i see 9 out of 10 around me having tattoos. We’re talking about any kind of human beings from little kids to grannies/granpas!
    Some of them are cool, others are sexy, some are kitsch, some are funny.
    Haven’t got any tattoos yet but i wouldn’t say no if someone was giving me let’s say 10000$ such as an advertisement.

  52. “Bodies of Subversion: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo”, by Margot Mifflin, became the first history of women’s tattoo art when it was released in 1997. In it, she documents women’s involvement in tattooing coinciding to feminist successes, with surges in the 1880s, 1920s and the 1970s.

    In 2012, tattooed women outnumbered men for the first time in American history – according to a Harris poll, 23% of women in America had tattoos in that year, compared to 19% of men.

    i’ll be honest, a decade or so ago it took me a bit to get my head around ladies and ink…now, i barely notice it, other than maybe to admire the body it’s imprinted on…

    maintaining a beginner’s mind is not easy, much better though than succumbing to fear – which is exactly how bayless came across: fearful…

  53. GOAT thoughts
    Get at least 6 finals MVP awards/6rings and I’m sold unknown NBA player.
    Especially if you do these Not as a member of a Super Team.

  54. Hobbitball was fun but looks like there’s something missing to be successful.

    LAL vs LAC seem to me like the True Finals of this season.

  55. Did you list Kobe Bryant as a guy who knew when not to do too much? Are we thinking of the same Kobe Bryant?

  56. Maybe I’m crazy, but I think Miami has a real chance.

    People seem to be dismissing their dominance over the Bucks and chalking it up to The Bucks being a choke team in the playoffs but maybe Miami is just that good?

    I think the bubble gives Miami a chance to shock everyone and win the whole thing since there isn’t a home court advantage. I think the Clippers and Lakers are a bit weaker than people think they are and people just assume they’re a cut above Miami because The West is traditionally stronger. But The East has been catching up recently and I think Miami is the real deal. I could be wrong but I think they got a shot.

  57. I don’t think Miami will beat the Celtics.
    I see Bos – Lac finals.
    Of course anything can happen.
    From injuries to chokes and from buzzer beaters to technicals and….

  58. And let’s not also forget babies!
    Mike Conley not missing the first one might have changed a few things.

  59. DEN and HOU are dead in the water, but each of the remaining five teams has a solid chance to take a ring home with them.

  60. As things seem right now all teams have a solid chance on the chip as jowles said.
    I just have a slight suspicion that LAL and LAC have one more nuclear level of play hidden for the next rounds.
    I expect them both to Go Wild on the WCF.

  61. the heat seem to have a lot of different guys contributing, it’s not just jimmy butler, the issue is they’re all so young and you would think inconsistent in their play – but, no fans or fanfare during the bubble – so, we’ll see if they make it to the finals…

  62. I just cross my fingers to have No Injuries and Watch The Best Team getting the Chip.
    As a knicks fan the highlight of each season is the Draft Lottery (lol) but as a basketball fan the NBA Conference Finals and The Finals are the Real Shit! And the best way to enjoy them is without injuries/referee shit/absences and other nonbball interference.

  63. Shams:

    The NBA has informed teams that, for the 2020-21 season, it prefer in-market competition with an amount of fans and reduced travel — instead of current bubble structures.

    More details here, but the league is going to try to get in 82 games next season.

  64. Oh shit, I thought Danuel House was single. Knowing that he was cheating on his wife makes the story a lot less fun.

  65. Yeah, can you imagine an NBA player cheating on his wife?

    Oh sure, but if still makes the story less fun knowing he was cheating on his wife during it.

  66. Adam Silver to the players:
    You are allowed to bring one stripper each one of you in the bubble.
    Lou Williams:
    Oh com on man! That’s not fair!

  67. I think that is why the rockets weren’t playing defense in that video that jowles posted…it appeared that most were in a hurry to get back to house’s room…

  68. I don’t think you can beat a team with two all-NBA level 2-way players with one (Heat) or none (Celts, Raps)

    Lakers are going to be tough to deal with when LeBron and AD are playing 40-45 MPG. Clippers? Depends on which version of Pandemic P shows up.

  69. Great basketball in the bubble.

    Also, I would like to amend my answer to THCJ’s question earlier in the day to:

    E. How is Andrea Bargnani not involved in this play

  70. haha Marcus Smart with the Jowles-at-a-pickup-game-trying-to-shoot-over-a-former-DIII-player floater

  71. I’m surprisingly disappointed that the Raptors lost. I didn’t think I had it in me to emotionally invest in sports anymore…

  72. The Celtics are going to the Finals, and if they get Hayward back, they have a realistic shot against any LA team. They won’t face another defense as stifling as the Raptor’s… By the way, if Siakam plays like the average All-Star he was this year, the Celtics would be packing now. But he did little in games 6 and 7. What a shame :(

  73. I know alot of NBA fans are anxious to see Clips v Lakers in the WCF, but they are seriously sleeping on the ECF. Bos v Mia is gonna be so good. It’s just gonna be pure basketball with 2 phenomenal coaches trying to outwit each other. I can’t wait

  74. The Celtics are going to the Finals, and if they get Hayward back, they have a realistic shot against any LA team. They won’t face another defense as stifling as the Raptor’s… By the way, if Siakam plays like the average All-Star he was this year, the Celtics would be packing now. But he did little in games 6 and 7. What a shame :(

    Yeah, one of the more underrated choking jobs by a good player that I’ve seen in recent years.

  75. Will be rooting hard for the Heat against the Boston Bayless’.

    Also, Stephen A, who I always ridicule, had some great remarks on the topic of Dak so good for him.

    Feel bad for Siakam. I think this rep will be hard to shake although his final line was ok. He has his ring at least.

    I like the Heat to win against the Celts.

  76. The Nuggets are better with Murray as the #1 scoring option/playmaker, Jokic the #2 scoring option/playmaker, and at least one other scorer/playmaker on the court with them. Jokic can do almost anything, but he can’t do everything well every night. Last year they were too dependent on him. With Murray breaking out it takes the heat off Jokic to be great every night.

    The Celtics are close to being great. They have a #1 option and emerging superstar in Tatum, a good 2nd option in Walker (when he’s healthy), a good 3rd option in Hayward (when he’s healthy) and another player that’s not shy with the ball in Brown (though he’s a bit inconsistent for my taste). The defense is solid overall and they have an elite pest in Smart (Frank should be taking notes). They may need another year to really break out and with 2 players not being 100% healthy they are at a disadvantage, but they are very good.

    Miami is an overachiever. They have a very good team, but I think they are 1 star player and some development time for the younger players away from being a serious contender. Their defense and coaching will keep them in games though.

    The Lakers have 2 of the 3 best players remaining, but I think the Clippers are the deeper and more balanced team. George and Kahwi should be able to slow James down a little if they focus the defense that way, but it’s going to be tougher to stop Davis, If George was more consistent, I’d like the Clippers in that series because imo Kahwi is a notch below God. He can get to the basket & score efficiently inside, in mid range, from the 3 point line, off the dribble, under extreme duress, make the right pass/play when required and do it all while being an elite defender. I take it back. He’s 1/2 notch below God. But he’ll need consistent help with the Lakers.

    The Rockets are a joke. I said all along a good big team like LA would dominate them inside and beat them. Plus they play a terrible brand of basketball. (losers)

  77. Rockets Basketball is fun to watch when it’s clicking. It has lots of motion, passing and often balance scoring. One of their main problems lately is that Westbrook has been terrible at scoring. That makes it very hard for them against a good defensive team.

  78. KnickfaninNJ:
    Rockets Basketball is fun to watch when it’s clicking. It has lots of motion, passing and often balance scoring.One of their main problems lately is that Westbrook has been terrible at scoring.That makes it very hard for them against a good defensive team.

    They look good against bad teams and teams that can’t punish them back for their small attack.

    I hate to say this, but imo the Rockets have the two lowest basketball IQ “great” players in the league on the same team. Harden and Westbrook are both great players, but both make way too many terrible decisions trying to do too much. Even worse, they seem more likely to do something foolish under pressure at the end of a close important game.

    At least with CP3 they had a great player with an extremely high basketball IQ. You could hope he would tone Harden down. It must have been frustrating for CP3. But Harden won that political battle because he’s younger and CP3 was injury prone. So CP3 was shown the door. imo the move to Westbrook was a terrible idea. I say that fully excusing his bad play now because he’s been hurt. I’m not sure I would want either of those guys on my team, let alone both. I say that while fully recognizing they are great players that can dominate and do amazing things. It’s just way tougher to win the way they play.

  79. Westbrook and Harden sometimes try to hard to make a great play when it’s not there and then they look stupid for having tried it.

    The trade for Westbrook was bad in that they gave up a lot of draft picks. But otherwise, it gave the Rockets a team that plays together and they’ve made it to the conference semifinals. That’s pretty good. My attitude isn’t championship or bust, it’s put a good product on the floor. I think Houston has done that. Without the Westbrook trade, the team would probably be worse. So if I were a Houston fan, I wouldn’t be complaining.

  80. The trade for Westbrook was bad in that they gave up a lot of draft picks. But otherwise, it gave the Rockets a team that plays together and they’ve made it to the conference semifinals. That’s pretty good. My attitude isn’t championship or bust, it’s put a good product on the floor. I think Houston has done that. Without the Westbrook trade, the team would probably be worse. So if I were a Houston fan, I wouldn’t be complaining.

    My only problem with the trade (and then the Covington deal) is that if they’re going to then fire D’Antoni and possible Morey, then why did they go “all in” on a team that really only works with a D’Antoni coaching approach (I mean, I guess you could get a guy who coaches like D’Antoni, but if you already have the actual guy, why get a disciple)? I could easily see this team doing even better next year than the #4 seed, but not for another coach. The Houston owner is such a dillweed.

    That said, the Lakers and Clippers are so stacked that getting the #3 seed isn’t saying a lot. Sort of like the Nuggets. They’re a fine team, but nobody ever gave them much of a chance at making the Finals, right? And that’s the right call. The Lakers and Clippers are just too stacked.

  81. That’s a good point about keeping D’Antoni. Reportedly, the Rockets do want to keep him, but in their earlier negotiations they weren’t willing to guarantee a long enough contract so negotiations stalled. Now they will negotiate again when the season is over, but other teams want him too. It could prove quite challenging for them to keep him, and even if they do, it’s probably going to be more expensive for the Rockets than it was before.

    And I agree about it being hard to compete with LA and LA unless LeBron and Kawhi start acting old.

  82. The trade for Westbrook was bad in that they gave up a lot of draft picks. But otherwise, it gave the Rockets a team that plays together and they’ve made it to the conference semifinals.

    But the Rockets had made the WCSF the previous three seasons, so it’s not like they had experienced significant failure a la the 2018-19 Lakers.

    Westbrook somehow has a negative BPM and negative WS48 during these playoffs and has nowhere to go but down as his legs age. If they had traded Westbrook for Paul straight up, I’d have considered it a last-ditch effort to get Harden his second star (a real dice throw on an athleticism-first guy who can’t shoot) while he’s still an top-3 offensive player and might have understood it. Throwing in two firsts AND two first swaps is borderline insane.

    He’s not going to suddenly develop a jump shot in the next four months. That contract is already a cinder block and they will never have enough assets to unload it with sweeteners, unless they trade James Harden. So, haha, this is their team. This is that team’s absolute ceiling.

    As I mentioned when the trade went down, why should Morey give a damn about the 2026 draft pick? He probably knows that his days are numbered if he fails to contend for a championship, so going all-in in the short-term is in his best interest, but not necessarily that of the Rockets — a primary reason that the endless revolving door policy of some NBA front offices is hilariously poor management.

  83. I say that while fully recognizing they are great players that can dominate and do amazing things. It’s just way tougher to win the way they play.

    By “the way they play,” you mean it’s giving ~18 minutes per game to a player as terrible as Austin Rivers, right?

  84. Austin Rivers is a weird one. Until very recently I figured he was just Chris Smith, maybe a slightly higher skill set but not really an NBA player, just given more chances to become one than most. But I never really watched him much until the bubble. He actually has a suite of skills — he’s lightning fast, decent passer, decent shooter (35.6 from 3 this year). But it’s like all those skills were thrown in a box, shaken up, and allowed to harden into a jumbled shape. His counting stats are decent, his advanced suck.

  85. “By “the way they play,” you mean it’s giving ~18 minutes per game to a player as terrible as Austin Rivers, right?”

    Yeah. Austin Rivers is really the thing holding Houston back. That’s like saying Bobby Portis was the thing keeping the Knicks from challenging for a playoff spot.

    Mike

  86. Per game:

    TRebs
    Hou 33
    LAL 44,3

    3p%
    Hou 40,0
    LaL 33,6

    Total
    3pm
    Hou 62
    Lal 42

    Smallball is (almost) dead

  87. Imo LA teams are cat toying with their opponents.
    LAC just been careless on the 4thQ and got bitten by Denver mouse on the previous game.

  88. Giannis Antetokounmpo unfollowed ALL of his Bucks teammates (among others) on Instagram. He’s only following 8 Instagram accounts one of them being his dog’s.

  89. I would give you very good odds that Giannis didn’t actually follow any of his teammates before this reveal that he “unfollowed” then. That’s happened a few times recently, like when Kamala Harris “unfollowed” Joe Biden before the VP announcement was made, only for it to be revealed that she still followed him on her personal Twitter account and the account that people believed she “unfollowed” him on (her campaign Twitter account) never followed any other candidates.

  90. Watching the Lakers, they just seem a lot bigger than the Rockets in a way that makes you think, maybe it’s better to be taller in basketball.

    I mean, Eric Gordon is 6’3 playing small forward. PJ Tucker shouldn’t have to guard AD.

    It kind of feels like Duke playing Valparaiso

  91. Morey has done some very good things but that trade was insanely stupid. CP3 is a huge injury risk but he’s at least good when he plays.

  92. I don’t understand how anyone intelligent could think that Russ/Harden was a good partnership, or that smallball with this group could win a championship. But heck, Morey’s a genius so who are we to criticize?

  93. “But heck, Morey’s a genius so who are we to criticize?“

    Morey is a little like Hinkie in that people who love the idea they represent (“Analytics!” and “Tanking!” respectively), tend to overlook any and all failings.

    Mike

  94. What did in Houston this year and every year is that Harden just isn’t good enough. He can’t play like a superstar for an entire series, much less 4 series in a row.

    Morey has done well retooling the supporting cast year after year, but the whole team is centered around a flawed star. They should consider trading him.

  95. They traded Capela because they were 10-1 without him and figured he was holding them back offensively. But he was a valuable defender in the playoffs for them in years past, and they could have used him in the paint against Davis. That trade seemed myopic, at best.

  96. Agreed on Capela, although didn’t that make Covington possible? He has been really good for them…

    I think the pairing of Russ and Harden was a fatal flaw, given the cap and pieces it costed. At worst, ditching Capela was a small step backwards, but the damage was already done.

  97. I didn’t think it was smart and said so at the time, but the rationale for the CP3-Westbrook swap wasn’t that Westbrook was the better player. It was that he was more likely to be healthy in the playoffs and had a skill set that presented fewer diminishing returns when it came to the partnership with Harden. CP3 was coming off a season that was good by any reasonable standards, but also his personal worst ever at age 33. It wasn’t crazy to think he would fall off a cliff soon.

    Alas, Paul was actually healthier than Westbrook in the playoffs (though there was that whole unpredictable 4 month rest prior to them) and certainly didn’t look like someone whose massive decline is imminent.

    I think the Capela trade was a relatively simple calculation–it’s easier to find something close to Capela’s production and skill set on the cheap than it is Covington’s.

  98. I remember at the time of the Capela trade most of the commentary was that they weren’t going to win the championship the way they were so they might as well try something different and see what happens. They made the second round of the playoffs, so it seems they didn’t get worse. I think it was a decent trade for them.

    But a defense based on speed versus size and strength is hard to maintain at the needed level of effort. They may also have missed House. I don’t know what they do now, but I suspect it will be a buyers market for players in the off season, so maybe they can gat talent cheaply.

  99. I said it was a no-brainer at the time to pay Capela to stay, but clearly I didn’t see that talented rim-running bigs were about to see the MLE become a reasonable offer for their services.

    He’s certainly an overpay now, but the Rockets could have used him against the five different Lakers who could all convincingly play C.

  100. Playoffs Basketball is not RegSeasons’ like.
    And it’s the one that matters most.

    In these series I’d swear i saw Covington and JGreen have the expression of “fuck you MDA – that’s not fair” while guarding AD.

    During the last games you could feel Houston’s roster’s lost faith in smallball.

  101. I don’t understand how anyone intelligent could think that Russ/Harden was a good partnership, or that smallball with this group could win a championship.

    their lack of combined success was simply an unforeseen result of poor forest management…

  102. I think the deal with Capela is the Rockets over the last two years transitioned from running more pick and roll than any team in the league to running the least pick and roll. Capela didn’t fit in their offense anymore

  103. Oof! Morey handed D’Antoni the keys and he is now leaving them in a difficult spot. Yea I know..how can I say difficult with Harden and Westbrook on the roster? They went all in on smallball and now they have no reliable guys taller than 6’8″. They are gonna have to do some wheeling and dealing.

    I think MDA made up his mind when NO fired Gentry. He’d be a fool not to want that job, and they’d be foolish not to offer it. I read on ESPN that he’s expected to be considered for the Philly job, but I don’t see how that job appeals to his ego. And frankly, NO seems like a perfect match for him

    One thing’s for sure, Westbrook is definitely in play for other teams now. But who? Before this news I tried to work out a Westbrook for Bledsoe package, but couldn’t make the numbers work in a way that would help both teams.

  104. If it’s D’Antoni’s decision to leave, then that’s not on Houston. I get the impression that they sort of forced him out, but since he’s such a hot coach, maybe this is his call. And yeah, Houston is basically going to have to go the route of the Suns post-D’Antoni, where they hire someone who knows D’Antoni well enough to approximate his systems.

  105. When the Rockets were negotiating with him last year, They were only willing to give him a contract where they could opt out after a year and he wanted longer term (if I recall correctly). So Rockets management kind of has themselves to blame because they were too cheap with him.

  106. Or..maybe they SHOULD offer up Harden. No matter the player- outside of Giannis, Luka, or Booker maybe- they’re goinna get a few picks depending on the headlining player in the return. Considering Harden really hasn’t been able to carry the team in the playoffs, it just might be worth their while

  107. Before this news I tried to work out a Westbrook for Bledsoe package, but couldn’t make the numbers work in a way that would help both teams.

    Not a chance that the Bucks would want Westbrook. They already have a bulldozing PG who can’t shoot outside 10 feet.

    Or..maybe they SHOULD offer up Harden. No matter the player- outside of Giannis, Luka, or Booker maybe- they’re goinna get a few picks depending on the headlining player in the return. Considering Harden really hasn’t been able to carry the team in the playoffs, it just might be worth their while

    Harden is worth more than 4 non-consecutive, unprotected first rounders. There are only a handful of players worthy of being traded for Harden and it’s unlikely that any of them are touchable due to their value as rookie-contract players. Not a chance they get rid of him, the only reason they’ve even sniffed the conference finals over the last four years.

    It’s like suggesting that the Lakers should have traded LeBron after he failed to carry them to a playoff spot last year.

    In other news, the Clippers are currently collapsing. Still another quarter to play, but that 16-point lead just evaporated.

  108. I’m not sure this series exposed small ball all that much. The Lakers barely played McGee and Howard after game one. They just happened to have one of the only legit bigs in the league that the Rockets couldn’t exploit on the perimeter who could also punish them inside in Davis. I thought the Lakers’ perimeter defense is what won them the series more than their size. Great defensive game plan and execution throughout. And at the end of the day LBJ and Davis>>>>Harden and Westbrook.

  109. as good as shape as he’s been able to get himself in to – jokic is going to need to find another fitness level if he’s gonna carry the nuggs further into the playoffs…

    seems like denver’s been fighting uphill all playoff long…

  110. The Honorable Cock Jowles: Harden is worth more than 4 non-consecutive, unprotected first rounders. There are only a handful of players worthy of being traded for Harden and it’s unlikely that any of them are touchable due to their value as rookie-contract players. Not a chance they get rid of him, the only reason they’ve even sniffed the conference finals over the last four years.

    And that’s my point. MDA is leaving them in a position where they have to retool, unless they hire a smallball coach. I dunno..maybe to Philly for Embiid, Richardson and 3 1sts? It’s harder to trade Westbrook right now IMO. What do u think they should do Jowles?

  111. What do u think they should do Jowles?

    Build around the last few years of Harden’s prime. Doubling-down on their Westbrook mistake would make things so much worse.

    And yeah, losing a series to LeBron and Davis each playing like Playoff MVP is not really an indictment of the Rockets’ way. The Rockets have far less talent up front and zero depth.

  112. When the Rockets were negotiating with him last year, They were only willing to give him a contract where they could opt out after a year and he wanted longer term (if I recall correctly). So Rockets management kind of has themselves to blame because they were too cheap with him.

    Yeah, that’s how I remembered it, as well. In which case, fuck Houston, they deserve losing him.

  113. Denver all but iced it with that Harris triple. Unbelievable comeback. Not giving up easy buckets on defense, that’s for sure.

  114. It’s gonna be hilarious when Denver beats Miami in the NBA Finals.

    You know, just like we all predicted at the start of the season.

  115. Jeez, I got work done for most of the 4th thinking I’d finish up just in time to see the end of a close game. What the hell happened?

  116. “The Rockets have far less talent up front and zero depth.“

    That sure seems like an indictment of Rockets’ management.

    I don’t know if Capella would have helped that much if Houston was going to get so little out of Westbrook. But I think it’s pretty clear that Harden, Star X, and then a bunch of guys is never going to get it done. The big question is can Harden produce at the same level playing in something resembling a normal offense.

    Mike

  117. Yeah, Doc’s tenure in L.A. hasn’t been particularly impressive- lots of underachieving teams. I’m sure he’s safe for another year even if they lose to Denver but he’s definitely lost that Celtics luster. Of course they still might win it all so…

  118. I’m as shocked as anybody with the Nuggets win today. Murray is not the same, he’s totally wiped out after that duel with Donovan Mitchell. I think today was a testament to just how underrated Jokic is..and I don’t understand why he’s so underrated. If the Nuggets find a way to win this series, they match up fairly well with the Lakers. A Denver-Miami finals would be fun

  119. The Honorable Cock Jowles: Build around the last few years of Harden’s prime. Doubling-down on their Westbrook mistake would make things so much worse.

    And yeah, losing a series to LeBron and Davis each playing like Playoff MVP is not really an indictment of the Rockets’ way. The Rockets have far less talent up front and zero depth.

    yeah..I’m at a loss trying to figure out what to do with Westbrook

  120. I expected serious Clippers tonight as everyone.
    Looks like they’re not focused.
    They think they will get it without sweating but they need to step up big if they want this chip.
    A Denver upset would spoil my wcf dream but it would be definitely fair.

  121. Whatever the opposite is of stepping on the throat of your opponent when they’re down, that’s the LA Clippers.

    This series should have been over in 5 games.

  122. d-mar
    September 13, 2020 at 5:03 pm
    “Whatever the opposite is of stepping on the throat of your opponent when they’re down, that’s the LA Clippers”

    They’ve been defunded?

  123. I KNOW it’s a stupid idea and would never happen, but I’m trying to imagine what either team would look like if they traded Harden for Simmons. My brain keeps slipping off the idea. Must be too stupid even for idle fantasies…

    I think the part where my brain really seizes up is trying to imagine Simmons and Westbrook on the same team. What a cluster.

    Harden and Embiid — now that’s a team everyone could hate.

  124. Harden and Embiid or Harden with Giannis (despite the “love” between them) could work but there has to be someone requesting a trade in those situations. And someone willing to spend assets.

  125. Despite the fact that many good coaches became available during the playoffs i feel pretty good with Thibs.
    I believe he’s the best from all those to separate the wheat from the chaff of our roster.

  126. Knew Your Nicks:
    Despite the fact that many good coaches became available during the playoffs i feel pretty good with Thibs.
    I believe he’s the best from all those to separate the wheat from the chaff of our roster.

    I dunno…doesn’t take a genius to figure out who’s good and sucks on the knicks shitty roster…

    If we got a do over right now…I would prefer Donovan…

  127. Wow, up by 15 and then score 35 in the second.

    I am loving the unpredictability of the Bubble playoffs, at least….

  128. Donovan looks cool and smooth.
    I think we need a gunpowder smoked sergeant for our spoiled babies.
    Thibs would either make them Men or make them cry and ask for trade.
    Yes Sir !

  129. Junkfood for thought:

    Florida is the “capital” of Death Metal.
    A Death Metal Star Spangled Banner would be supercool.

    Lebron could have (easily) been in the discussion of the GLOAT (L for Loser) except for the GOAT if you consider how he got 2 of his 3 rings (SA, GSW)
    Guttsy but Lucky also.

    Is it possible that our players in a bubble environment could have been extremely better?

  130. Z-man:
    Bad day for us Jets-Mets fans…

    Sorry, but I disagree. I’m actively rooting for the Mets to finish last in the East. They probably won’t, but I want Brodie fired for sure. I realize he probably will be as long as they don’t make the expanded playoffs, so I really don’t want them to sneak in with a losing record so that idiot can try to save face.

    The Jets weren’t going to win in Buffalo, so the loss is no big deal. I do hold out a very slim hope for Gase, so I’m still rooting for them to win for now, but if they continue to stink, I hope he’s gone. Their GM at least seems to understand they are rebuilding.

  131. Still not sure why Gase was ever hired in the first place. After the job he did in Miami he should have had to rebuild his cred either as a coordinator or a college coach before he got another NFL head coaching job.

  132. DRed:
    Still not sure why Gase was ever hired in the first place.After the job he did in Miami he should have had to rebuild his cred either as a coordinator or a college coach before he got another NFL head coaching job.

    Totally agree. Really dumb ownership, something the Jets, Mets, and Knicks all share. Gase needed to step back to being an assistant coach and get some perspective. There were reports that Peyton Manning contacted the Jets and lobbied for him…

  133. TheClashFan: Totally agree. Really dumb ownership, something the Jets, Mets, and Knicks all share. Gase needed to step back to being an assistant coach and get some perspective. There were reports that Peyton Manning contacted the Jets and lobbied for him…

    if this season turns out to be a shit show (which is very likely) and Darnold doesn’t look like a pro QB…the GM will show Gase the door and turn over the roster…they only have one bad contract…basically start over with a new coach and a new QB…

  134. pepper: if this season turns out to be a shit show (which is very likely) and Darnold doesn’t look like a pro QB…the GM will show Gase the door and turn over the roster…they only have one bad contract…basically start over with a new coach and a new QB…

    Some guy pointed out on a Jets forum that Gase, Darnold, and JD are all CAA clients. FWIW.

    The Jets had a lot of roster turnover from last year; almost the entire OL is new. JD let vets like Robbie Anderson walk and traded away Adams for picks, and then there were no preseason games. They were/are certain to struggle early this year, inc. probably getting blow out again this week. The question for Gase is can he have another “good” second half like last year (6-2 after a 1-7 start) to save his job.

  135. Gotta say…I love watching these last two Nuggets comebacks. They are a FUN team to root for.

    The Clippers seem to lack that edge that is needed to win it all. Maybe they can find that extra gear but they seem to not play with urgency sometimes.

    I’m having to resign myself to the fact that maybe The Lakers are the best team and will inevitably win this whole thing but I gotta hold out hope that Miami (can’t believe I’m saying that), Denver or The Clips can win it all. Feels weird to root for Miami but there is just something about this team with Butler…its just such a match made in heaven…they’re fun to watch. Will never ever root for Boston though.

    If I was Houston, I’d blow it up. They might be stuck with Westbrook but there’s gotta be a team out there that would take Harden. He is still a top 5 player in this league and matched up on the right team could take them to the next level. Not sure who that would be though. Philly? The Bucks?

  136. the great thing about being a jets fan is that it makes it super easy and barely an inconvenience to walk away from football fandom.

    it also burns my soul that the jets passed on Lamar Jackson. how do you not pick a dude that accounted for like 7+ TDs a game!

    Say it with me…. Best Player Available.

  137. Yeah it feels almost sacrilegious to root for Miami as a Knicks fan but I just gotta give them props for this team and how fun they are to watch and Butler is a perfect fit for them.

    Assuming they don’t win it all, I wonder what Riley’s next move will be with this team.

  138. This is the most likeable Miami team I can remember.

    And so well constructed. You’ve got your alpha dog in Butler, a center in Adebayo who can initiate the offense and knock down mid range shots, knock down shooters in Herro and Robinson, veteran PG leadership in Dragic. Plus Iggy and Crowder as defensive stoppers off the bench.

    And a superb coach to put it all together.

    I hope they crush Boston, but I’m thinking it’ll probably go 7 games.

  139. I don’t want the Nuggets to win, mostly because I keep telling people that Jamal Murray sucks and he’s not worth a max-contract. He’s making me look really bad right now.

    Miami against Boston… being a Knicks fan continues to disappoint even when they haven’t played basketball in 6 months

    I’m excited for the series tho

  140. >>> Assuming they don’t win it all, I wonder what Riley’s next move will be with this team. <<<

    He's probably going to pair Butler with Giannis next summer and win another championship or two.

  141. I know we like to blame Dolan for everything, but the day Dave Checketts let Ernie Grunfeld win a power struggle with Pat Riley was probably the day the ship sank.

    If Dolan had Riley working for him the last 20 years, we might even think he was a great owner.

  142. TheRinger published their mock draft. With Haliburton, Vassell, and Nesmith available he has us taking Pat Williams out of Florida State which would be insane. Let’s hope there aren’t any 3 on 3 workouts where Williams looks good.

  143. Rivers seems to have decided that playing Montrezl Harrell against Nikola Jokic is the hill that he wants to die on. And he is, in fact, dying on that hill. The advanced numbers don’t even seem real. Their net rating goes from minus-11.3 in 108 minutes with Harrell on the floor in the series to plus-12.2 in 180 minutes when he’s off. They have a net rating of minus-21.9 in 53 minutes when both Harrell and Jokic are in.

    From the Ringer. They put blame squarely on Rivers

  144. ***I know we like to blame Dolan for everything, but the day Dave Checketts let Ernie Grunfeld win a power struggle with Pat Riley was probably the day the ship sank.***

    There have been many chances to recover from this over the past 25 years.

    Also…

    Larry Brown beats Riley’s Knicks. Dolan hires Brown. Brown is a colossal disaster in NY.

    Phil Jackson beats Riley’s Knicks. Dolan hires Jackson. Jackson is a colossal disaster in NY.

  145. Speaking of the impetus for this post, an interesting Vorkunov comment in a new Athletic conversation between him and the OKC beat writer about possible CP3–>NYC trades:

    I don’t think the Knicks want to trade away their young players and assets unless it’s for a star. So I don’t see them trading their lottery pick, their 2021 pick, or Barrett or Mitchell Robinson. I’d guess that Knox is off the table, too. He’s so young and talented and just recently the No. 9 pick, and the team just hired Kenny Payne, his former assistant coach at Kentucky. I think they’ll probably try to make that work first.

    I hadn’t thought of the Payne/Knox connection when assuming the new regime wouldn’t be married to Knox.

  146. I know I’m a couple days late (just catching up the thread after the weekend) but all the “Rockets can never get it done playing this style” takes kind of falls apart when you consider that two years ago they lost a tight game 7 in the conference finals to one of the greatest NBA teams ever assembled in large part because CP3 pulled a hammy. As others have said though the Westbrook trade looms as a real mistake and I’m not sure how to extricate the last couple years of Harden’s prime from where they’re currently at. I really think they’re just going to have to keep running it back and hope Westbrook plays better (and in fairness he was playing much better before Covid & his injury).

  147. thenamestsam:
    I know I’m a couple days late (just catching up the thread after the weekend) but all the “Rockets can never get it done playing this style” takes kind of falls apart when you consider that two years ago they lost a tight game 7 in the conference finals to one of the greatest NBA teams ever assembled in large part because CP3 pulled a hammy. As others have said though the Westbrook trade looms as a real mistake and I’m not sure how to extricate the last couple years of Harden’s prime from where they’re currently at. I really think they’re just going to have to keep running it back and hope Westbrook plays better (and in fairness he was playing much better before Covid & his injury).

    Two years ago they had Clint Capela.

  148. We didn’t hire Phil Jackson to coach the knicks when he was still in his prime coaching days. We hired him to be the GM, a job he had no experience in.

    We hired Brown as the coach but Isiah was the GM and the Knicks were still all in win now move mode during Isiah’s time.

    Your post to me points to the need for us to hire competent GM’s. Just as important if not more so than a good coach.

    Riley wanted to be the GM. The Heat had no problem giving him that role while he remained their coach and they’ve been a successful franchise ever since.

  149. I kind of like Pat Williams, but there’s no way the Knicks take him after The Knoxing happened.

    The Jeremy Cohen piece on Mitch is pretty interesting. Basically, it says that it’s very likely that Mitch’s value will never be higher, and if we can get a good trade for him…

    I know that sounds sacrilige, but do you pay Mitch upwards of 15-18 mil a year on his next contract? Because that’s probably what it will take. But maybe he starts shooting 3 pointers and/or learns a strong dribble drive and then becomes worth it?

    But if you get a big offer for him, like 2 firsts, maybe it becomes a hard decision.

  150. Z-man: Two years ago they had Clint Capela.

    True enough but when, for example, Mike makes the claim that “it’s pretty clear that Harden, Star X, and then a bunch of guys is never going to get it done” I don’t think he’s really saying that they’re never going to get it done unless they have Clint Capela.

  151. “The Clippers seem to lack that edge that is needed to win it all. Maybe they can find that extra gear but they seem to not play with urgency sometimes.”

    Lakers had eight players play over 60 regular season games and five played at least 67, including LeBron.

    Clippers had FOUR players play over 60 regular season games and just one played at least 67.

    It looks like taking the regular season seriously and not just a obstacle to avoid on the way to the playoffs might have been a good idea.

    Mike

  152. It looks like taking the regular season seriously and not just a obstacle to avoid on the way to the playoffs might have been a good idea.

    take THAT for data

  153. “take THAT for data”

    It’s sort of amusing how actual results, the winning and losing of games in the real world, are considered LESS dispositive than analytical theorizing.

    Mike

  154. That Ringer mock draft is trash btw. If the knicks take Williams (pf) and Stewart (c) with their first rounders, I’m seriously done.

  155. I did see an article that suggested The Knicks not renew Taj for the one year but do pick up Portis’ final year.

    I’ve always thought we should do the opposite. Taj played well enough and provides some vet leadership, especially with Thibs here. But it did make me think maybe we should let Taj go and bring back Portis.

    Portis is younger and if Thibs could up his game a bit, maybe he’s flippable at the deadline for a second rounder or something? He didn’t play all that much considering how much we were paying him. Then again, he’s kinda doo doo except for the occasional Bulls revenge game.

  156. I do think Portis is more likely to have potential trade value than Taj even though I personally like Taj better. Portis’ player archetype is just more appealing in the modern NBA and if he has a hot year from 3 and shows even a modicum of improvement in his all-around game some contender might talk themselves into him. You wouldn’t get a big return but you might get something. Taj on the other hand is just a backup C in a world where teams are trending smaller and are hesitant to spend big money on even a lot of starting Cs.

    That said, I think the right answer is to turn down both options. Both guys are overpaid and it looks like there’s going to be a real squeeze on the free agent market. Even if you decide you want to bring one back you should be able to do so at a better price.

  157. Has anyone told Mike that the U.S. has now passed Italy in Covid deaths per capita despite Italy having literally 5 times the population density- at least according to Worldometer. (Mods feel free to delete but I figured since there was no game tonight…)

  158. It’s no accident that the two Knicks players other teams have been said to want are Morris and Portis. Everyone want three point shooting. Just looking at three point percentages, Dotson, Bullock and Ellington might generate interest too.

  159. swiftandabundant:
    I did see an article that suggested The Knicks not renew Taj for the one year but do pick up Portis’ final year.

    I’ve always thought we should do the opposite. Taj played well enough and provides some vet leadership, especially with Thibs here. But it did make me think maybe we should let Taj go and bring back Portis.

    Portis is younger and if Thibs could up his game a bit, maybe he’s flippable at the deadline for a second rounder or something? He didn’t play all that much considering how much we were paying him. Then again, he’s kinda doo doo except for the occasional Bulls revenge game.

    i think I saw that same “article” on Fansided…I believe it was titled “5 things Knicks need to do in offseason” and No 1 was “Draft Well” …now there is some quality writing…

    They should not pick up Taj’s option…isn’t it like 10 mllion? After watching one year of Portis…i would not miss his presence on the roster…

  160. of the 30 or so pending free agents we had on the roster to start the season – i thought bullock was going to be the only player we brought back next year (maybe later this year)…well, at least we got something for morris…

    yeah, maybe having a roster full of guys playing for the career wasn’t the best front office path to go down…oh well, what’s another season down the tube – at least we secured another “stellar” draft slot…

    Mods feel free to delete but I figured since there was no game tonight

    just vent at the knicks and make believe you’re talking about the state of our nation…probably the most telling thing about the woodward book is that we find out trump isn’t nearly as stupid as he sounds…even he doesn’t really believe half the shit he says (forest management, it’s all about forest management) to the country (oh but is he a champion to the truly ignorant)…it’s all about expedience and looking “good”…

    as good as some fat immoral fuck with some weird pompadour can look…

    i will say this – well done by nfl films on their piped in crowd noise…

  161. The Clippers have a serious Jokic problem on their hands.

    Jokic has really only had 1 year where he was very good from the 3 point line. The rest of the time he’s been below average and not trending in a way that would make you think he’s better than he looks. But in the playoffs both last year and this year he’s been very good. This year he’s been insanely good. It could be noise, but either way it’s creating a huge problem for the Clippers. He’s getting the best of Harrell when he plays C and Zubac doesn’t (or can’t) play enough minutes. If he keeps hitting 3s at his pace creating space and getting the best of Harrell, I’m not sure what the Clippers can do to stop him. Maybe they should get crazy and give Noah a few minutes on him. They probably should have tried that before it got to game 7. It’s harder to take a risk like that now.

  162. The Portis hate here is overdone. He’s an OK player that can still get better. He’s just overpaid, because well, that’s what the Knicks do when they are desperate because no one wants to play for them.

  163. It’s sort of amusing how actual results, the winning and losing of games in the real world, are considered LESS dispositive than analytical theorizing.

    It’s much more amusing that you consider this anything more than a tiny-sample, arbitrarily-endpointed collection of nothingness.

    Lakers had eight players play over 60 regular season games and five played at least 67, including LeBron.

    Clippers had FOUR players play over 60 regular season games and just one played at least 67.

    It looks like taking the regular season seriously and not just a obstacle to avoid on the way to the playoffs might have been a good idea.

    The 2006-07 Mavs had 10 players play 60+ and 7 players at 70+. 4 of their 5 every-game playoff starters (Terry, Nowitzki, Howard, Harris) played a total of 10,000 minutes during the regular season (over 50% of available minutes).

    It looks like taking the regular season seriously and not just an obstacle to avoid on the way to the playoffs might have been a good idea for them, eh?

    Or what about the 2012-13 Nuggets, who had five players play 80+ games, and lost in 6 in the first round to the Baby Steph Curry Dubs? Did they not take the regular season seriously enough?

    Or maybe the simpler explanation is that it’s perfectly reasonable to expect a 46-win team to take a 49-win team to 7 games? Maybe?

  164. Z-man: Two years ago they had Clint Capela.

    I agree. Capela would have helped in this series.

    A significant part of basketball is match ups. I don’t know why people find that so complicated.

    Smaller teams are faster and can often outrun bigger slower teams.

    The flip side is that bigger teams should have an advantage inside and rebounding.

    If the bigger team doesn’t have bigs that can dominate inside then small ball will have an advantage. But the Lakers have Davis and James. They do most of their damage inside. Houston had no one that could handle them. So whatever advantage they had in speed/quickness (if any) was swamped by the Lakers overall inside scoring and rebounding.

    Before the playoffs even started and Houston was playing really well, I was shouting that they were going to get killed by the Lakers if those two teams met. There may be teams that Houston can beat that would give the Lakers a tougher time than the Rockets did. But the Rockets had almost no shot because they could not rebound or defend the paint against LA’s beast combo. It was a match up issue.

    Morey is a very smart man, but this small ball gambit was idiotic. Even though I’m sure he was smart about it and looked for guys that could switch well and guard multiple positions, it was doomed to failure as soon as he ran into a good big team that could score inside and rebound.

  165. I know Steve Cohen is rich but for some reason I want to send him a muffin basket or something. Just to show my appreciation.

  166. Owen:
    Was his first act firing BVW?

    He’s not the official owner yet so he can’t fire BVW. But I think he will fire that chump at the first opportunity.

  167. I think a team of smaller players who can shoot the lights out from 3 and defend reasonably well can win a ring without a true big, even without a hybrid Clint Capela type. The problem is that you need the perfect combo to do it. Harden and Westbrook are a flawed pairing and take up most of the cap, so building a perfect ssol team around them is clunky at best. Westbrook is just not that kind of player and is poorly suited for a ssol role.

  168. Z-man:
    I think a team of smaller players who can shoot the lights out from 3 and defend reasonably well can win a ring without a true big, even without a hybrid Clint Capela type. The problem is that you need the perfect combo to do it. Harden and Westbrook are a flawed pairing and take up most of the cap, so building a perfect ssol team around them is clunky at best. Westbrook is just not that kind of player and is poorly suited for a ssol role.

    That would definitely work considering it’s basically what the Warriors have been doing since 2014-15.

  169. “Or maybe the simpler explanation is that it’s perfectly reasonable to expect a 46-win team to take a 49-win team to 7 games? Maybe?”

    So…what are you doing with all that money? You know, the money you won by betting the Nuggets would take the Clippers to seven games? I mean, you must have gotten some really great odds when the Clippers were up 3-1 that it would go seven games. I’m sorry I don’t spend more time around this place because it would have been great to read all your posts when the Clips were up 3-1 telling everyone the series would go seven games because, after all, that was the “perfectly reasonable” result.

    Dude, you’re a smart guy but you make yourself look ridiculous by freaking out any time someone blasphemes against your god, ANALYTICS, and suggests there might be some other way of understanding what happens in the game of basketball. I mean, looking up other teams that played a lot of games in the regular season and lost in the playoffs really doesn’t address the point I was making…AT ALL.

    The Lakers, both by the numbers and the eye test, clearly put a lot of emphasis on playing the regular season and being the best during the regular season they could be. The Clippers did not, both by the numbers and the eye test. Now, after stubbing their toe in the first and second round, the Lakers turned in dominant performances, looking as good or better than anyone expected. The Clipppers, on the other hand, legitimately struggled with the Mavs for four games and are now on the brink of elimination against a Nugs team that I don’t think a single person in the country picked to make the conference finals.

    Connecting those different approaches to those different results doesn’t seem like much of a stretch, even if there isn’t some arbitrary statistic to explain it.

    Mike

  170. vincoug: That would definitely work considering it’s basically what the Warriors have been doing since 2014-15.

    Well Durant is sort of a unicorn….and they played guys McGee, Bogut, et. al. as needed. The Rockets don’t have a single big on the roster.

  171. Yeah, what Z-Man said. If the Rockets had won playing no one bigger than David Lee it would be a good analogy. But they had some useful situational bits and pieces.

  172. ***Dude, you’re a smart guy but you make yourself look ridiculous by freaking out any time someone blasphemes against your god, ANALYTICS, and suggests there might be some other way of understanding what happens in the game of basketball…The Lakers, both by the numbers and the eye test, clearly put a lot of emphasis on playing the regular season and being the best during the regular season they could be. The Clippers did not, both by the numbers and the eye test.***

    The problem is, Mike, your take is moot because the regular season and the playoffs happened 4 months apart and under utterly different circumstances. If you’re right, and “the analytics” are wrong, the “count the wins” test is also wrong because Milwaukee (#1 regular season) and Toronto (#2 regular season) are both eliminated despite clearly taking the regular season seriously. And, on top of that, the Clippers aren’t even eliminated yet, and will probably play the Lakers starting this week, which makes your hypothesis premature at best.

    But, all that said, thank you for your basketball take. I didn’t know you had basketball opinions, and I am happy your shared them for discussion.

    -Don

  173. I just got Lady Walsh to agree to give The Wire a try… she was asleep after 10 minutes. As for me, I made it through the first episode. But I feel like it may end up in the one-and-done bin with Breaking Bad, The Sopranos, and The West Wing, cause there is zero percent chance I’m watching it without her (and her parting words were: “this is like watching a low-quality Law & Order zzzzzzz” (…she NEVER stayed awake through an entire episode of Law & Order, either))

  174. well, at least now you have a proven cure for any insomnia that might come along…

    in all fairness, it is pretty gritty and grimy…not exactly chock full of a whole lot of exemplary type characters…

  175. I really liked The Wire…thought of it as educational in a way. We all know that street-level violence and mob/political corruption is rampant in inner cities, and the series brings all that to life through different lenses. The acting is absolutely brilliant. As an educator who has spent considerable time in impoverished schools back in the ’90s, I appreciated that particular lens the most.

  176. I just did a re-watch of the Wire, after never going back after it was done. My gf had never watched it so we jumped back in. We loved it. There was a lot I forgotten all about. I don’t know if we’d go back, like we do for our annual Sopranos re watch, but I wouldn’t rule it out.

    I think Sopranos is easier to watch over and over again, cause its pretty fucking funny.

  177. The fact your wife will fall asleep 10 minutes into any show you really want to watch is something they don’t tell you….

  178. Yeah, I mean Denver isn’t the 8th seed upsetting the 1st seed here. Denver is the 3rd seed and The Clippers are the 2 seed and Denver went to a game 7 last year in the second round. They’re “underdogs” in name only.

  179. Knicks supposedly already have an offer lined up for CP3, although there’s interest from six teams already, including the Bucks and Sixers. The trade reportedly includes Randle and Knox.

    They are going to have to include draft picks to beat other offers, so I’m not into this. I guess we’ll see what happens. When can teams officially start making trades this year?

  180. ess-dog:
    Knicks supposedly already have an offer lined up for CP3, although there’s interest from six teams already, including the Bucks and Sixers. The trade reportedly includes Randle and Knox.

    They are going to have to include draft picks to beat other offers, so I’m not into this. I guess we’ll see what happens. When can teams officially start making trades this year?

    Where did you get this info?

  181. Z-Man, Macri mentioned something along these lines in his newsletter, and I imagine various beat writers have the same. (Macri also suggested Rose isn’t going to overpay for CP3, and put the odds of him coming here at less than 50%, but I can never tell when he’s speaking via sources and when he’s being overly optimistic about this stupid team.)

    Randle would be no great loss, even if his contract is much friendlier than Paul’s. Nor would Knox, unless you believe that Payne can unlock some previously-undemonstrated basketballability within him. So the question is how much more past those two would any of you be comfortable giving up to acquire Paul? (Forget what OKC would want in the event of a bidding war; I’m just asking what the most you would be willing to trade.) Would the Clippers pick be too much? The Charlotte 2nd rounder? The top 10-protected Dallas pick?

  182. I’m not buying into rumors at this time, certainly not before the draft. CP3 probably doesn’t want to come to babysit some kids while he’s still a viable player, so there’s that.

    As to the price, I wouldn’t give up anything of value at all, but I guess I wouldn’t puke at giving up Randle, Knox and pick later than #25.

    I’m glad that Thibs and Rose are going to get a good look at Knox during this pseudo-bubble training camp thing. He has sucked and all, but he’s still young enough to not sell low on. Including him in a trade for a geezer with a possibly bad attitude is pointless.

  183. So…what are you doing with all that money? You know, the money you won by betting the Nuggets would take the Clippers to seven games?

    Haha, so if I think it’s reasonable for a playoff series to go 7 games, that means it’s probable to a degree that should inspire confidence in a cash bet? Do I seem like a person who lights money on fire?

    Dude, you’re a smart guy but you make yourself look ridiculous by freaking out any time someone blasphemes against your god, ANALYTICS, and suggests there might be some other way of understanding what happens in the game of basketball.

    As mentioned, your “analytics” was a bunch of arbitrary nonsense regarding two teams that had slightly different approaches to playing time during the regular season… four months ago.

    I mean, looking up other teams that played a lot of games in the regular season and lost in the playoffs really doesn’t address the point I was making…AT ALL.

    Your point was virtually worthless, though.

    The Lakers, both by the numbers and the eye test, clearly put a lot of emphasis on playing the regular season and being the best during the regular season they could be. The Clippers did not, both by the numbers and the eye test. Now, after stubbing their toe in the first and second round, the Lakers turned in dominant performances, looking as good or better than anyone expected. The Clipppers, on the other hand, legitimately struggled with the Mavs for four games and are now on the brink of elimination against a Nugs team that I don’t think a single person in the country picked to make the conference finals.

    I’m trying to figure out a way where your argument could be less persuasive than it is, and failing.

    I’m looking forward to watching the Clippers beat the piss out of the Lakers next round, just for your ex post facto nonsense to rear its head again.

  184. Donnie Walsh:
    I just got Lady Walsh to agree to give The Wire a try… she was asleep after 10 minutes. As for me, I made it through the first episode. But I feel like it may end up in the one-and-done bin with Breaking Bad, The Sopranos, and The West Wing, cause there is zero percent chance I’m watching it without her (and her parting words were: “this is like watching a low-quality Law & Order zzzzzzz” (…she NEVER stayed awake through an entire episode of Law & Order, either))

    I’ve struggled to get my wife into The Wire as well. I have gotten her more or less through Mad Men, Deadwood, and, just recently, Justified.

    Are you watching early enough in the evening for her? Even if your wife won’t watch, The Wire is worth staying with. I recall my first time through I struggled a bit with the first season b/c there was no easy to root for hero compared to most police procedural type shows.

  185. I have to say, watching the Raps/Celtics was the first time I had watched a bunch of Celtics games in a row like that. They’re generally a team I avoid watching!

    But I was super impressed by Tatum. I mean, I’ve watched him in random games over the last few years but he is definitely one of the best young players out there.

  186. AQI of ~500, less than a mile from the Clackamas evacuation zone. Been wearing a P95 for grocery runs but haven’t left the house for anything else since Wednesday. Truly love seeing the MAGA hats defiantly walking around without a mask these days. Come, pulmonary disease, and claim your prize.

  187. The Chris Paul stuff has gained some steam recently. I was under the impression we were avoiding talking about it out of a kind of magical thinking.

    Anyway, it would be stupid to give up literally anything of even remote value for Chris Paul as it’s very unclear how him coming here could be a net positive in terms of our long-term standing and very easy to see it being a net negative.

    For that reason I honestly wouldn’t even be happy about a straight salary dump, but that’s a pointless discussion because there will be other bidders.

    We’re one of the few teams with serious cap space in an offseason where it’s likely teams will be looking to shed salary. That puts us in a unique position to do something, you know, smart if we use just the smallest amount of creativity.

    Imagine blowing all of that up because we just had to pay (a lot) for Chris Paul’s age 36 and 37 seasons.

  188. The Athletic has some potential CP3 to Knicks trades and they’re pretty meh at best.

    1. Paul for Randle, Payton, Ntilikina, and Knox

    2. Paul for Ntilikina, Bullock, and the 2020 LAC pick

    3. Paul and Hamidou Diallo for Ntilikina, Knox, Bullock, the 2020 LAC pick, and the 2021 Mavs pick

    The first one is fine I guess since we wouldn’t be giving up any real long term assets (no, I don’t have any faith that Ntilikina or Knox will develop into good NBA players) but the 2nd trade is bad and the 3rd one is a disaster.

  189. ***I’ve struggled to get my wife into The Wire as well. I have gotten her more or less through Mad Men, Deadwood, and, just recently, Justified. Are you watching early enough in the evening for her? Even if your wife won’t watch, The Wire is worth staying with. I recall my first time through I struggled a bit with the first season b/c there was no easy to root for hero compared to most police procedural type shows.***

    See, I don’t really watch much TV. My wife watches a lot of shows at night while I work, and then when I join her in the room (pretty late) I pretty much tune out what she has on. But she was looking for a new show last night, and I suggested The Wire (per the suggestions of this board as well as pretty much everybody else). She agreed, and the opening credits were promising because She loves Idris (of course), and didn’t even know he was in it, and she likes the main guy, who was apparently in a show called The Affair that I “watched” with her (even though I have no recollection of it). So she was revved after the opening credits. Then the street-lingo dialogue started and everything felt dated and the main actor’s American accent was annoying her, so she made the Law & Order comment and rolled over.

    I didn’t love the episode, but didn’t mind it, and would watch more if it was on. But there’s no way I’m waiting for her to fall asleep every night, and then starting episodes of the Wire by myself at 1am, even in a pandemic. I’m just not drawn to the tv enough to go that route.

  190. ***Low-quality Law and Order? The actual fuck***

    Hey, don’t knock her. Unlike me, she likes The Beatles :)

  191. I will say, The Wire is incredible but season one is a slow build for sure. It gets really good but it takes awhile. Once you get to the end of season two, though, the rest of the show just gets better and better (I love season two on the docks with the unions which some people don’t like).

  192. NO way I give up a first rounder for CP3, especially the 2021 Dallas pick. I have irrational hope that Dallas is gonna have some injury bad luck next year, will miss the playoffs and we end up with a top 5 lottery pick.

  193. oh yeah, more tv talk…

    finished up on the mandalorian, finally started getting in to it during episode 6 (the prisoner)…it’s funny, i had heard nick nolte was in the series, but, didn’t know which character he played, during episode 6 there was this totally old and disheveled merc leader whom i assumed was nolte (the dude looked straight crazy)…turns out nolte actually played the ugnaught – and, did a phenomenal job at it…

    also finally dove in to the final story arc (episodes 709 – 712) of the clone wars…holy cow, i had heard that the final story arc of the clone wars may be the best star wars “movie” to date – i would have to agree…it was amazing: ahsoka, maul, rex and order 66…the animation was pixar level and the storyline was incredibly satisfying…

    re-watched both the revenge of the sith and the rise of skywalker (also did some reading on the history of the sith and the knights of ren) and it all made so much more sense…

    still much prefer matt lanter’s anakin over christensen’s…

  194. Don’t know if any of you watch The Boys on Amazon, but it’s easily my favorite show on TV right now. I won’t give out any spoilers, but it’s about super heroes controlled by a shady corporation, with a cabal trying to take them down.

    Just brilliant, I look forward to watching it like I used to look forward to Breaking Bad

  195. d-mar:
    Don’t know if any of you watch The Boys on Amazon, but it’s easily my favorite show on TV right now. I won’t give out any spoilers, but it’s about super heroes controlled by a shady corporation, with a cabal trying to take them down.

    Just brilliant, I look forward to watching it like I used to look forward to Breaking Bad

    yep…my son and I are totally into it…

    I am just finishing up Sharp Objects on HBO…eight episode mini series…pretty good but very dark…

  196. The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    AQI of ~500, less than a mile from the Clackamas evacuation zone. Been wearing a P95 for grocery runs but haven’t left the house for anything else since Wednesday. Truly love seeing the MAGA hats defiantly walking around without a mask these days. Come, pulmonary disease, and claim your prize.

    That’s really unbelievable, can’t imagine how surreal of a year it’s been for what by all accounts is a beautiful, mellow (npi), livable city…with a fun basketball team!

    Take care of those lungs and if worse comes to worse I’ll work on getting all of your open arrest warrants taken care of so that you and the missus can return to NY.

  197. that clippers pick is way too valuable to give up for Paul.

    next season i’s probably going to be a weird one anyway, so his impact would be muted. and after that he’s 37.

    i think it’s important that we don’t have terrible PG play but we don’t need to overthink this. I’d be fine bringing Payton back or giving someone like Rondo a one year deal to be a stopgap.

  198. d-mar:
    Don’t know if any of you watch The Boys on Amazon, but it’s easily my favorite show on TV right now. I won’t give out any spoilers, but it’s about super heroes controlled by a shady corporation, with a cabal trying to take them down.

    Just brilliant, I look forward to watching it like I used to look forward to Breaking Bad

    That sounds interesting! I’m going to give it a try. Like Donnie Walsh, I don’t really watch that much TV.

    DW, by the way, one of my lures for my wife is to make a nice dinner for her in exchange for her watching a show with me that night. That’s how I lured her to Mad Men and Deadwood. Do that 3-4 nights in a row, watching one episode each night, and see if it “takes.” If not, oh well….

  199. The Boys is very violent, which might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and basically every protagonist is motivated by violence against women, but the main villain is terrifying and it’s pretty well acted. Karl Urban is really great in comic book media.

  200. Just dropping in since we’re talking shows. The Wire took me two years to get through the first 7 episodes or something, then saw the rest of the series in 3 weeks. So tough start.
    For comedy: Schitt’s Creek
    For drama: Ozark – slow start as well, but an excellent show. Season 3 was by far the best.
    For Me+Wife: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Well made, well acted, well scripted comedy.
    Me minus wife: BoJack Horseman – Yes a cartoon, like Family Guy, bu actually funny and mature

  201. As far as I can tell the entire theory of even a relatively low priced CP3 acquisition relies on the idea that he’s not going to decline much in his age 36 and 37 seasons. Even if you knew you were getting this years production it’s still a slightly dubious proposition – you’re giving up assets for not quite all-nba level play attached to an absolutely massive salary and with no long-term upside for a team that isn’t ready to win now. On the other hand he would give us more of a coherent theory as a team and restore some respectability.

    But it’s a pretty obvious problem if you’re talking about the best case scenario for a trade and there’s still a good case for not doing it. More likely in my estimation is that something will go wrong for the 36 year-old undersized PG with a bad history of lower body injuries.

    I know all of society seemingly suffers from a lack of ability to remember anything that happened more than ten minutes ago but it’s worth recalling that he was seen as close to a total albatross this time last year and while he had a nice bounce-back from a health perspective this year it’s not actually true that this was some huge renaissance season – his .193 WS/48 and 4.4 BPM (while still excellent obviously) were much more in line with his 18-19 season than they were with the still basically prime numbers he put up his first year in Houston.

  202. one more…i just blew the first two seasons of Barry on HBO..that is some funny shit…henry winkler is in prime form..

  203. I’m not thrilled with ANY of the proposed CP3 trades that are being floated.

    I’m all for accelerating things with some “good” veterans, but at CP3’s age it seems rather pointless to give up anything. I’m a believer in players like him having a positive impact on the development of younger players and potentially even getting them a playoff run that accelerates their experience further. But I’m not in favor of giving up anything of value up for him. I’m not even in favor of giving up Knox as part of it. He’s been disappointing (as many of us expected), but he’s so darn young and far away physical maturity I’d rather give him another year or two before throwing in the towel for 2 years of CP3 when we suck.

    Some of the other ideas are brain damage level stupid.

  204. Deeefense:
    Charles “guaranteed” a Clippers win tonight.If you are a Clippers fan, be afraid, be very afraid.:-)

    well…yesterday they were a 7.5 point favorite…

  205. CP3 will not produce enough to justify his contract, which is not the end of the world if he’s still a good player, but on the 2020-2021 knicks what is the point of that? If they just want to give us CP3 in a salary dump with some of the guys we probably don’t want back anyhow that’s not a huge problem but if we’re giving up future assets for him we’re suckers.

  206. I am very excited for the way the outcome of Nuggets-Clips game will help people decide whether Jokic should have lost all that weight or not.

  207. no thanks to cp3 if we have to “seriously” kick in to make it happen, doesn’t seem like it’ll simply be a salary dump opportunity though…

    Karl Urban is really great in comic book media.

    – the movie Dredd totally caught me off guard, i really expected it suck, but it definitely didn’t suck…lena headey helped a bunch with that though…plus, who doesn’t want a drug that slows time…

    he was hilarious in thor: ragnorok, although cate blanchett stole the show…doom (actually video game stuff) was okay…star trek work, not so much, lord of the rings did great…

  208. I am very excited for the way the outcome of Nuggets-Clips game will help people decide whether Jokic should have lost all that weight or not.

    honestly, it looks like a lot of his turnovers are fatigue related…he’s gotten himself in a lot better shape, but – he needs to reach another level of fitness to get denver in to the finals…

  209. If Jokic can remain a sustainably good 3 point shooter, he’s one of the best offensive players in the league. Personally, I prefer Cs to be good rim protectors, but when you are potentially that good on offense the team can focus on perimeter defenders to mitigate any weaknesses he has on defense. I don’t watch enough Nuggets basketball, but even though he doesn’t protect the rim, most of the time he seems to be doing a pretty good job otherwise.

  210. I am very excited for the way the outcome of Nuggets-Clips game will help people decide whether Jokic should have lost all that weight or not.

    It’ll be a one-point margin and the takes will still come in piping hot. Can’t wait for Mike Bunge’s aNaLyTiCs.

    Jokic has been one of the best offensive players in the league

    fixed that for you

    Here you go, bud: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okIwFBdbEOc

  211. AQI of ~500, less than a mile from the Clackamas evacuation zone. Been wearing a P95 for grocery runs but haven’t left the house for anything else since Wednesday.

    I’m about five miles from the Bobcat Fire. Our AQI here is around 170, and it suuuucks. I can’t imagine what something around 500 must be like.

  212. fixed that for you

    :-)

    If/when he’s hitting 3s at 38%-39%-40% clip he’s an unstoppable force because he does everything else on offense well and would also be opening the floor for others. If he’s a below average 3 point shooter, he’s a very very good offensive player but he’s going to run into matchups and defensive strategies where he’s shut down or limited. Without an above average 3 (or at least average) he’s more of 1a scoring option and playmaker (which is damn good). The handful of really great offensive players pretty much can’t be stopped. IMO, he’s not at that level yet, but he has been in this series.

  213. CP3 costs $38.5M. I can’t see any way a trade works. I’m not giving up picks for someone that is half my age or more (I’m 62).

  214. NBA players made 38.9% of their corner threes this season. They’re making 42.8% inside the bubble. That could also reflect statistical randomness. Harris, who has drilled four of his five corner 3-pointers in Disney World, says he doesn’t notice fans when they’re hovering over him in the corners.

    i heard one of the announcing crews mentioning just how well lit the courts are where they’re playing…

    i’m happy to announce, i’m fairly well lit myself at the moment…

  215. Not just you on the corner 3.

    The way the transition 3 has also become so commonplace is pretty remarkable. I cna remember when Dirk would do it and people were shocked.

    Also, Robert Williams is my kind of guy. Excuse me, Time Lord

  216. That was an offensive foul on Walker, in my opinion. He goes straight into Herro’s body with his shoulder.

  217. Fawning over players that good organizations have drafted and developed isn’t really much different from what James Dolan has done since he’s been the owner. It’s one thing to want the Knicks to draft better, but when the Knicks find objectively good prospects in Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, and to a lesser extent a guy like Langston Galloway and fail to develop them? That’s because no matter who we put in this building, the development system we’ve had in place fails everybody. We have been a revolving door of talent that we couldn’t figure out. We can’t get Mitch to stop fouling. We couldn’t fix KP’s shot chart. We couldn’t triangulate Langston Galloway into a useful player. We think RJ Barrett is a shooting guard who needs to share the floor with Elfrid Payton and Julius Randle. You wanna talk about a fundamental misunderstanding of how to put guys in position to be impactful? How about starting Allonzo Trier at PG and playing Marcus Morris with two other bigs?

    The Knicks could have drafted anybody and they would have plateaued and then regressed. Maybe the best thing for our young guys is they got to spend 6 months away from the developmental staff. Did you see what happened to Dennis Smith Jr in his first full season as a Knick? It’s night and day.

    Drafting better players is a start, but we’ve seen better players than Tyler Herro and Brandon Clarke get drafted by the Knicks and that really didn’t amount to shit.

  218. d-mar:
    We focus a lot on Playoff P and his struggles but Lou Williams and Montrezl have been really bad all playoffs

    I forget where I read it but the Clippers have a terrible +/- with Harrell on the court this series. Denver and Jokic go off whenever he’s on the floor.

  219. You can take the Claw out of Toronto, but you can’t take the Clippers out of…. the Clippers?

  220. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a good shooting team shoot as bad as the Clippers. They are putting up brick after brick.

  221. Wow, just saw this: Also, the Clippers traded more first round picks (5) for Paul George than field goals he had tonight (4).

  222. There’s nothing you can do when your two best players shoot like that.

    What you can do is actually try to get the #1 seed so you avoid the toughest road through the playoffs.

    The Clippers were the worst “flip the switch, regular season don’t matter team” possibly in league history and this is probably the best thing for the NBA and its fans since Hinkie ejected himself from the Sixers.

    Mike

  223. Clippers sucked but I gotta give props to the Nuggets’ defense. They didn’t give up any easy buckets, played good help defense and forced George and Leonard into a lot of bad shots. They’re a well coached team and they deserved to win.

  224. recorded both games…just finished 3rd quarter of boston and miami, the thing that sticks out most is how well they move the ball on offense (seems like a lot of assisted baskets) and how each squad has 3 or 4 guys every defensive possesion going for the rebound…

    this is enjoyable basketball to watch…

  225. Wow. I guess the clippers should have tried harder in the regular season after all…

    Not sure how to explain the Heat and the Celtics, though.

    Normally, I’d expect Denver to lose to the Lakers in 5. But I don’t know what to expect anymore.

    That Bam block was otherworldly.

  226. There’s only one question that can be asked about last night..

    Fuck happened?

    I guess with the combination of load management, injuries, and the mid-season trade- we should have seen this coming because the Clips really didn’t have time to gel. Maybe I’m still underrating the Nuggets, but I felt like the Clips should have ousted them and would have a good chance against the Lakers. But I’ll tell you what- if Murray has caught his second wind, the Lakers might be in trouble. Jokic needs to keep being aggressive for it to happen because the Lakers really have no answer for him. Millsap can focus all his energy on slowing AD and making open shots when the defense collapses. That will help. I got the Lakers in 6, but I’m really interested in seeing how the WCF plays out. Can Malone out-coach Vogel here? Can Murray endure this series and still play well? Will MPJ be consistent and be able to outplay Kuzma? This will be a fun one.

    Looks like after the bleak outlook the NBA had before the restart, the season will end in greatly entertaining fashion. Sheesh!

  227. Jonathan Wasserman’s new mock draft has the Knicks taking Vassell at 8 (with Killian Hayes and Isaac Okoro still on the board, among others), Nico Mannion at 27, and Isaiah Joe at 38. In terms of other prospects of interest around here, he has Poku going to Brooklyn at 19, and Grant Riller going to the Sixers with our original second round pick at 36.

    Thoughts?

  228. Also, this tweet is the first I’ve heard of the Knicks having pick swap rights with the Clippers next year (presumably from the Morris trade). I can’t imagine a scenario where we’d want to exercise those rights, but is this real?

  229. Not surprised I fell asleep at halftime but I was surprised when I woke up and saw the outcome.

    That’s a beastly line from Jokic and Murray with quite a scoring clinic.

    Paul George, woof

  230. If Killian is on the board at 8 you take him there, no questions asked. Drafting Vassell over him would be foolish, I think. Especially given this team’s need for a legit PG prospect (which, unlike Ntilikina, Hayes is and it’s reflected in his statline and tape–though Z-Man and I will disagree on that). Drafting Mannion at 27 would be silly if we drafted Hayes, but merely fine if we didn’t. I imagine Tre Jones would still be available at 27, and would prefer him to Mannion if we’re looking for a PG with that pick. I think taking VCJ/Paul Reed and Dotson with #27 and #38 respectively would work just as well, though. Another person I’d look at with the later picks is Xavier Tillman, who is a 6’9 center but would play power forward in the NBA (unless he became Draymond Green). He can’t shoot all that well but his numbers scream “impact player”–this year he averaged 15 and 11 with 3.5 assists per game, 2.5 blocks, and 1.3 steals, with only two turnovers per game, while shooting 60% from 2 point range. Kind of a PF who can do it all even if he can’t really stretch the floor all that well (which is the #1 thing he’d be working on in the NBA).

    Also not a Grant Riller fan really. In general I’d like to see a PG and a PF complement to Mitch drafted, so I’d be fine with trading up with our latter two picks for, say, Poku, who I think would pair very well with Mitch given his game. Paul Reed could work too, since he has a post and face up game and shot 33% from three, which is enough to keep defenses honest.

  231. Alan:
    Also, this tweet is the first I’ve heard of the Knicks having pick swap rights with the Clippers next year (presumably from the Morris trade). I can’t imagine a scenario where we’d want to exercise those rights, but is this real?

    That sounds familiar. I’m no one really talked about it much since it seems incredibly unlikely that we would be able use it ourselves.

  232. I can’t imagine a scenario where we’d want to exercise those rights, but is this real?

    It’s real. I remember laughing about it when the trade details came out.

  233. I’ve truly never seen anything like what happened with the Clippers. Not just blowing the 3-1 lead but that they had huge leads in each of the 3 closeout games! According to ESPN’s little win probability thing their probability of winning game 5 peaked at 94%, game 6 at 97% and last night at a measly 87%. The Clippers lost the 2nd halves of those games 67-49, 64-35 and 50-33 respectively.

    I know everyone is wary of not giving the Nuggets sufficient credit and fair play to them, they’ve had plenty of opportunities in both series to pack it in and their resilience has been very impressive, but I didn’t think they played some brilliant lights out game that simply gave the Clippers no chance. I generally hate discussion of athletes’ mental states because we never really know and most of the time I think it’s an effort to impose a narrative on one team having good variance in the first half and the other team having good variance in the second half. But it really did seem like something collapsed for the Clippers in a way that went beyond just not playing basketball well down the stretch in this series or anything having to do with the Nuggets.

  234. I find it cheesy that the Lakers tried to win their series after voting to leave the bubble. Clearly the Clippers held up their end of the pact.

  235. I just had a feeling The Nuggets would win last night.

    We often make fun of nebulous ideas like mental toughness, getting “hot”, rough ryda, etc.

    But there is a mental aspect to all games and after games 5 and 6, The Nuggets coming back in both games like that, there is no doubt the Clippers were shook. They missed A LOT of open shots last night. The Nuggets had nothing to lose. They all ready got to game 7, no one said they would win. They came back from 3-1 against Utah. They went to a game 7 last year in the second round. Everyone says they’re a young team, but experience wise they have more experience playing together and playing in high pressure games than The Clippers. Also, not having to play at LA for any of the last 3 games.

    As far as load management…I think if the season had finished like it normally would have, it wouldn’t have hurt the Clips. But between load management, the trades at the deadline, the extended time off…they just didn’t gel.

    I also wonder if in the back of their minds the “we’re the clippers. We’re cursed” idea popped into any of their heads. I believe that stuff can make a difference. In the game if you hesitate for a fraction of a second, that’s the difference between an open 3 swishing and it clanking off the rim.

    But also, I think Denver is better than people are giving them credit. They’re the 3rd seed, not the 8th. They got experience last year and in the first round in tight games.

    Man, I would LOVE a Miami Denver finals. Would be so much more interesting than ANOTHER Celtics Lakers finals with them trotting out all of the old footage from the past, all the BS legacy, historic franchise talk. Watching Lebron AGAIN in the Finals. The incessant Kobe tributes. I know its what the league wants but give me Miami vs. Denver! Give me Jokic and Murray and Butler and Hero!

  236. Also, Morris screwed up the entire series for The Clippers. If he had just kept his mouth shut and not pissed off Millsaps, the Clips would have closed out in 5. Thanks for the first round pick, Clips!

  237. As far as load management…I think if the season had finished like it normally would have, it wouldn’t have hurt the Clips. But between load management, the trades at the deadline, the extended time off…they just didn’t gel.

    This part was really striking to me as well. It was pretty amazing to watch a team in game 7 to go to the conference finals that had such a lack of identity. They didn’t know what their best lineup was; they didn’t know who was in the rotation; they didn’t have a bread and butter on offense or an identity on defense.

    I think along with the hurdles you listed there is something slightly disjointed about this roster. I think it was seen all season as a positive in the sense that they can play all different styles – they can go big or small; they’ve got Kawhi iso-ball and Lou-Harell PnR; they’ve got enviable depth at every position. But when the chips were down instead of playing out as “this team can play any style” it was more like “this team has no style of their own” if you know what I mean.

    This was also probably Doc’s biggest failing as well. Game 7 is a time to ride the guys you trust most and it was abundantly obvious that Doc didn’t have any idea who that was. Seemed like his plan last night was Kawhi and PG and then whoever made their last two shots. The rotation and lineups were all over the place.

  238. thenamestsam: This part was really striking to me as well. It was pretty amazing to watch a team in game 7 to go to the conference finals that had such a lack of identity. They didn’t know what their best lineup was; they didn’t know who was in the rotation; they didn’t have a bread and butter on offense or an identity on defense.

    I think along with the hurdles you listed there is something slightly disjointed about this roster. I think it was seen all season as a positive in the sense that they can play all different styles – they can go big or small; they’ve got Kawhi iso-ball and Lou-Harell PnR; they’ve got enviable depth at every position. But when the chips were down instead of playing out as “this team can play any style” it was more like “this team has no style of their own” if you know what I mean.

    This was also probably Doc’s biggest failing as well. Game 7 is a time to ride the guys you trust most and it was abundantly obvious that Doc didn’t have any idea who that was. Seemed like his plan last night was Kawhi and PG and then whoever made their last two shots. The rotation and lineups were all over the place.

    I disagree a bit about Doc. I don’t think that Doc didn’t have an idea on who his best guys were, it’s that he thought he did and refused to change his mind despite what was happening on the court. There’s no way a coach should watch Harrell get absolutely abused out there everytime he played and not bench him for a different player but Doc refused to because Harrell was one of his guys. Hell, it would be a really difficult decision but he should have benched PG last night.

  239. The Clippers relied on one on one in crunch time…seemed like that rarely got shots through running an offense..it didn’t help that Williams and Harrell went sideways in the bubble or PG13 looked like he was in a fog most of the time…I though even Kawhi took a lot of bad shots….oh well…excuse me while i jump on the nugget bandwagon…

  240. I know we want to talk about “identity” and “matchups” and all that, but here are the Paul George lowlights from last night. Going to rate each shot attempt 1-5, with 1 being “wide open” and 5 being “double-teamed and met at the release point.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBGaXWHgO2w

    (1) late-contested corner three, bricked off the side of the backboard – 2
    (2) drives to the corner and shakes Millsap for a stepback three, bricked – 1
    (3) drives to the rim for a contested layup attempt, denied by Jamal Murray alone – 4 (he needs to make this shot, he’s a damn NBA player)
    (4) drives to the rim for contested layup attempt, denied by Jokic – 3
    (5) action off a Harrell screen, tough contested 3PA, possibly fouled – 4
    (6) open corner three, bricked – 1
    (7) drives to the rim, high contested arcing layup, bricked – 5
    (8) replay of shot #1
    (9) another wide-open 3PA, bricked – 1
    (10) contested stepback 3PA off the dribble – 4

    I can’t speak to Kawhi’s horrendous shooting night, but George had a problem with execution. It’s not about team chemistry when you can’t put the ball in the hole from the corner with your defender two steps away.

  241. vincoug: I disagree a bit about Doc.I don’t think that Doc didn’t have an idea on who his best guys were, it’s that he thought he did and refused to change his mind despite what was happening on the court.There’s no way a coach should watch Harrell get absolutely abused out there everytime he played and not bench him for a different player but Doc refused to because Harrell was one of his guys.Hell, it would be a really difficult decision but he should have benched PG last night.

    agree…he kept going to the well when it was dry and was too stubborn to try something different…or thought it was too late in the season to do that…when for example…seems like Malone was mixing and matching more on a game by game basis…

  242. Re: the Celtics game, it was crazy how they went from superb ball movement and finding open shooters all game to Kemba and Tatum going one on one for basically the last 5 minutes of regulation and OT. Some of their shots were just awful, how does Boy Genius not call timeout and remind them they’re allowed to pass the ball?

    And Tyler Herro, that boy has a big set of cojones, what a steal at #13.

  243. d-mar:
    Re: the Celtics game, it was crazy how they went from superb ball movement and finding open shooters all game to Kemba and Tatum going one on one for basically the last 5 minutes of regulation and OT. Some of their shots were just awful, how does Boy Genius not call timeout and remind them they’re allowed to pass the ball?

    And Tyler Herro, that boy has a big set of cojones, what a steal at #13.

    It’s crazy how much the entire NBA has bought into the idea that you have to iso at the end of games and you can’t run plays.

  244. The Clippers losing to the Nuggets after being up 3-1, having solid leads in all 3 games, and with the more experienced team is inexcusable. If it was anyone other than Doc Rivers he would probably be fired. I think he leads the NBA in blown 3-1 leads in the playoffs. When he won the championship it with was with defense and Thibs was his defensive assistant. #overrated

    Paul George is a very good two-way player, but he’s inconsistent and it seems to me especially inconsistent under extreme pressure. If you would have asked me who was most likely to disappoint in game 7 from either team I would had said George.

    Kawhi performance was monumentally disappointing. The difference is that in past he’s always been especially tough in critical games and critical situations. I’m going to write this off as random negative noise unless it comes out later that he was playing hurt, but It certainly didn’t help his reputation to come up so small in such a big game.

  245. Also, Kawhi is a great player. But I hope this quells the “he’s as good as Lebron” nonsense.

    With both of his championships, he was the best player on the team but the teams he was on were extremely solid all around. He can be the best player on a team but he can’t carry a team the same way Lebron has in the past. He is an otherwordly defender and good on offense, great rebounder. But he can’t be the primary initiator and facilitator the way Lebron can. Also, The Warriors were limping in the finals last year. It was hardly fair.

    I don’t know what the Clips can do next year except run it back and hope chemistry is better.

    I guess they could trade PG for CP3? :)

  246. I really hope we don’t get into a bidding war for Paul. That would be absurd.
    They should just bring in Campazzo or Larkin to play point with Frank/DSJ or Hayes backing him up. Only fill up cap space if you are getting — not giving — picks… or maybe to move Randle.

  247. The Glass Half Rebuilt:
    Fawning over players that good organizations have drafted and developed isn’t really much different from what James Dolan has done since he’s been the owner. It’s one thing to want the Knicks to draft better, but when the Knicks find objectively good prospects in Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, and to a lesser extent a guy like Langston Galloway and fail to develop them? That’s because no matter who we put in this building, the development system we’ve had in place fails everybody. We have been a revolving door of talent that we couldn’t figure out. We can’t get Mitch to stop fouling. We couldn’t fix KP’s shot chart. We couldn’t triangulate Langston Galloway into a useful player. We think RJ Barrett is a shooting guard who needs to share the floor with Elfrid Payton and Julius Randle. You wanna talk about a fundamental misunderstanding of how to put guys in position to be impactful? How about starting Allonzo Trier at PG and playing Marcus Morris with two other bigs?

    The Knicks could have drafted anybody and they would have plateaued and then regressed. Maybe the best thing for our young guys is they got to spend 6 months away from the developmental staff. Did you see what happened to Dennis Smith Jr in his first full season as a Knick? It’s night and day.

    Drafting better players is a start, but we’ve seen better players than Tyler Herro and Brandon Clarke get drafted by the Knicks and that really didn’t amount to shit.

    1000%

    it’s the only reason i’ve maintained a sliver of hope for Frank & Kevin Knox.

    Thibodeau, though, is an elite developmental coach (or at least he was til he got to minnesota). if hopefully he can get something out of them.

  248. Also, Kawhi is a great player. But I hope this quells the “he’s as good as Lebron” nonsense.

    It’s important to remember how well he played up to that point.

    https://www.basketball-reference.com/players/l/leonaka01/gamelog-advanced/2020/#pgl_advanced_playoffs::22

    Look at his playoffs. That’s the game log of a super-superstar. He had two dreadful games — Games 2 and 7 of this series. Everything else was Jordanesque. Dude had a .593 TS% on 29.3% usage across those 13 games.

    You could just as well go back to LeBron’s 2010 series again the Celts, where he put up a three-game string of total garbage:

    Game 4: 22 points, 18 FGA, 11 FTA, 7 TOV
    Game 5: 15 points, 14 FGA, 12 FTA, 3 TOV
    Game 6: 27 points, 21 FGA, 12 FTA, 9 TOV

    I want to remind you that this is 25-year-old LeBron, one season removed from the greatest modern-era playoff performance, and just one season before his virtually unbreakable streak of 8 consecutive Finals appearances.

  249. Jowles, I’m not denying that Kawhi isn’t one of the best players in the league. He is. For sure.

    But when you compare his career to Lebron’s, its not even close. 9 finals vs. 2 titles. 3 titles vs. 2 titles. And then there is just the staggering longevity of Lebron’s regular season dominance. Kawhi took almost 2 years off from basketball. He has to load manager at a much earlier age than Lebron ever did. He’s a phenomenal player but he ain’t Lebron.

    I think Kawhi can’t carry a team in the same way bc he’s not a PG in a PF body like Lebron is.

  250. ess-dog. I’m gonna say it again. DJ Augustin should be our PG for the next season. He could probably be had for a similar deal like we gave Payton.

    God no to CP3. But I’m hoping their just rumors. If you believe the rumors we’re going to trade up for LaMelo, sign FVV, trade for Conley and trade for CP3. I know we have a PG problem but that’s probably overkill.

  251. i still can’t get over that block. it was with his weak hand, too. and he made absolutely zero body contact. so impressed.

    giannis + bam + butler + herro is going to be one hell of a team in 13 months.

  252. “It’s not about team chemistry when you can’t put the ball in the hole from the corner with your defender two steps away.”

    I don’t think ANYONE believes “team chemistry” has much to do with an otherwise good-to-great player just having an awful shooting night. But when you’re up 3-1 on a younger team almost everyone thinks you’re better than and you proceed to blow three straight games where you get a double-digit lead? Yeah, “team chemistry” might have a little something to do with that.

    Mike

  253. kawhi has played up to LeBron’s level, but he doesn’t maintain it as long. LeBron’s a cyborg. his consistency, durability, and longevity sets him apart from anyone i’ve ever seen. MJ gets credit for never losing but he took two seasons off. if he went 8 straight years the way LeBron does, i think he’d have some L’s on his ledger, too.

  254. vincoug: I disagree a bit about Doc.I don’t think that Doc didn’t have an idea on who his best guys were, it’s that he thought he did and refused to change his mind despite what was happening on the court.There’s no way a coach should watch Harrell get absolutely abused out there everytime he played and not bench him for a different player but Doc refused to because Harrell was one of his guys.Hell, it would be a really difficult decision but he should have benched PG last night.

    I’m not sure how different what we’re really saying is but he clearly did different things last night than he had up to that point. The two biggest of those were only 26 minutes for Morris, his lowest of the playoffs (excluding the game he got ejected) despite him clearly being one of their core guys to this point (I believe he had closed every close game). And only 14 minutes for Zubac, his lowest of the playoffs despite him being the only guy with a prayer to stop Jokic (played 30 minutes each of the previous 3 games).

    Maybe it is because Harrell is his guy as you’re saying but reversing course so dramatically from some things they’d been doing previously felt to me like a coach who was just throwing shit at the wall and praying something would stick.

  255. Hubert: giannis + bam + butler + herro is going to be one hell of a team in 13 months.

    Giannis must be livid about that final year on his contract. He could join that team on the first day of free agency and set the stage for a 70-win monster that has depth and requires zero traded draft assets to come to fruition.

  256. “I was never comfortable. I just wasn’t,” Rivers said of the Clippers’ 3-1 series lead. “I just knew conditioning-wise, like, we had guys that just couldn’t play minutes, and that’s hard, you know. I mean, there were two or three times a night where we actually started getting it going, and a guy had to come out. I mean, it is what it is. So no, I was never comfortable. I can tell you that up front. I told our coaches that.”

    so, in the immediate aftermath doc was thinking chemistry and conditioning did them in…

    i’m gonna be rooting hard for the nuggets to rest up and take down the lakers…it’s gonna be tough trying to beat AD, lebron and playoff rondo…

    i get the celts playing well together, but, that is really something else that the heat were able to gel so well in their first year together with this roster…

  257. if i were to bet on it, i bet giannis stays in milwaukee (he just doesn’t strike me as a guy needing a bigger spotlight)…they’re really close – just need a better point and shooting guard…

    if they’re willing to spend, that should be possible for them…

  258. i see judge is coming back soon, hopefully frazier moves over to left and stays there…either hicks or gardner need to sit…

    heck, if frazier, judge or tauchman can play center – i’d sit them both, and back them up with andujar…not sure that will happen though – the organization really likes both hicks and gardner a lot…

  259. Yeah, I agree chemistry had something to do with it. Maybe not with last night per say, but 3 games in a row where you have a double digit lead at some point? Especially in games 5 and 6 where it was double digit in the 3rd quarter?

    Whether you want to call that a lack of chemistry or being “in their heads” (not being in your head and not getting rattled is a part of a team having good “chemistry”)…there was something going on with the make up of the team emotionally and/or mentally that caused this collapse. Cause make no mistake about it, as well as the Nuggets played…it was a collapse by the clippers.

    You can’t just say “oh so and so didn’t shoot well” and that is why they lost. WHY didn’t he shoot well? And why did Kawhi ALSO have a bad game? And what about the dudes who didn’t shoot well or had bad games in games 5 and 6?

    Plus what about guys on the nuggets who didn’t shoot well but the team still won 3 games in a row anyways?

  260. geo:
    i see judge is coming back soon, hopefully frazier moves over to left and stays there…either hicks or gardner need to sit…

    heck, if frazier, judge or tauchman can play center – i’d sit them both, and back them up with andujar…not sure that will happen though – the organization really likes both hicks and gardner a lot…

    gardner needs to be put out to pasture…hicks is awful…

  261. giannis + bam + butler + herro is going to be one hell of a team in 13 months.

    I’ve never felt more inevitability about a free agent destination. The NBA should just agree to not waste everyone’s time and let him do it this offseason.

    I’m of two minds about how Pat Riley assembled this team.

    On one hand, it simply cannot be denied that he benefitted from a lot of luck. People understandably tiptoe around the uncomfortable fact that the Bosh contract was shaping up to be an albatross. Philly could’ve not made the ridiculous decision to jettison Butler. Someone could’ve accepted sweetener for Dragic’s contract when the Heat were trying to give it away this offseason. It was possible no one would emerge to take on the Harkless contract that facilitated the 4-way trade that brought them Butler, and if Nurkic doesn’t get injured it’s equally possible no one is willing to take on Whiteside. Jae Crowder, a throw-in in the Iguodala deal, is playing better than he ever has. I honestly could go on, they’ve truly had a string of random things go their way after signing bad contracts aplenty the likes of which I’ve never seen.

    …and yet, it’s hard to escape the idea that Pat Riley makes his own damn luck. If it were just about any other executive I’d be rolling my eyes at the plaudits they received for all of the above reasons, but with Pat, well, if someone told me he knew it’d all be fine in the end the whole time it’d be hard to argue.

    Regardless, they’ve been one of my favorite teams to watch all season and it’s nice to see Jimmy Butler finally starting to get the credit he’s long been due.

  262. it looks like they’re committed to hicks for another 4 or 5 years (is ellsbury finally off the books – or are they still negotiating his release?) …yikes…i guess they really like the fact that hicks maintains a high pitch to (he walks and strikes out a lot) count, plays a good defensive center field and can switch hit…

    i don’t really feel like digging through his stats…i guess my biggest gripe is he doesn’t make contact a bunch, doesn’t seem to hit for either average or power, and is always getting hurt…

    mostly though – i just want to see andujar bludgeon the ball to death, frazier get the opportunity to turn in to an all-star type player, and tauchman play a very respectable outfield (with decent plate performance)…

    yeah, realistically i just don’t see them moving on from hicks for at least another couple of years though…

  263. gardner needs to be put out to pasture…hicks is awful…

    I think Boone has already said Frazier will play LF full-time and that’s the right move, but I’m hesitant to draw many conclusions from this ridiculous season. There’s just gonna be so much randomness in a 60 game sample.

    Gardy has carried his weight with his great eye, durability, and defense if you ask me. His low BA seems largely attributable to bad luck (.216 BABIP despite hitting the ball as hard as ever by Hard%).

    Hicks is having a bizarre season but I’m surprised to see someone too worked up about it. He has a 118 wRC+ despite his .209 BA because of his 20.3% BB%.

    Basically I can’t get on anyone for having subpar outcome based stats in this season. There’s simply not enough time for things to correct themselves.

  264. serendipity
    — (s?r ?n?d?p ? ti), (noun) | Recognized as one of the most beautiful words in the English language, serendipity is defined as the occurrence of making pleasant and desirable discoveries by pure accident. It is also deemed as one of the most difficult words to translate in the English due to its whimsical and magical nature.

    yeah, whatever good mojo riley and the heat got going on – we ain’t got none of that…

  265. i can’t even pronounce it , but it would appear we as knick fans are dealing with a significant occurrence of:

    William Boyd coined the term zemblanity in the late twentieth century to mean somewhat the opposite of serendipity: “making unhappy, unlucky and expected discoveries occurring by design”. A zemblanity is, effectively, an “unpleasant unsurprise”.

    an unpleasant unsurprise…pretty sure “unsurprise” isn’t actually a word, like zemblanity itself – but, it all does seem to fit…

  266. I agree that this season is not a good benchmarking tool…I was never in favor of giving Hicks a 7 yr deal..he did nothing historically to suggest he was worth that..I think he’s passive and not sure I want to pay someone to walk all the time…he seems to only hit fastballs (same as Sanchez)…he does play good d but I read that after the surgery his arm is shaky…not good for centerfield…

    I hate that they are jerking andujar around…he would probably merit the DH role over Stanton if we weren’t paying the guy a zillion dollars a year…

  267. the stanton deal had me feeling sooo weird when it was signed: oh wow, we just got the recent nl mvp, dude can crush it – ummm, how much is he gonna cost…

    not everyone can be the beelzebub rays or the athletics – but, c’mon man – hard, really really hard to justify stanton’s salary…there just seems like a lot better ways to account for wins…like a dj lemahieu, luke voight even zack britton…

    one bat a lineup does not make…plus he can’t play the field…no doubt he can carry a team for a while when he’s hot, but…

  268. geo:
    serendipity
    — (s?r ?n?d?p ? ti), (noun) | Recognized as one of the most beautiful words in the English language, serendipity is defined as the occurrence of making pleasant and desirable discoveries by pure accident. It is also deemed as one of the most difficult words to translate in the English due to its whimsical and magical nature.

    Yes, in Portuguese they came with the word “serendipidade” (horrendous word, IMO). It has been used in juridical writing. Although I hate Anglicisms, I have to admit that we just don’t have a word that really captures the full meaning of “seredipidty”, so we have to go with the neologism.

  269. The Glass Half Rebuilt:
    Fawning over players that good organizations have drafted and developed isn’t really much different from what James Dolan has done since he’s been the owner. It’s one thing to want the Knicks to draft better, but when the Knicks find objectively good prospects in Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, and to a lesser extent a guy like Langston Galloway and fail to develop them? That’s because no matter who we put in this building, the development system we’ve had in place fails everybody. We have been a revolving door of talent that we couldn’t figure out. We can’t get Mitch to stop fouling. We couldn’t fix KP’s shot chart.

    The Knicks could have drafted anybody and they would have plateaued and then regressed. Maybe the best thing for our young guys is they got to spend 6 months away from the developmental staff. Did you see what happened to Dennis Smith Jr in his first full season as a Knick? It’s night and day.

    Drafting better players is a start, but we’ve seen better players than Tyler Herro and Brandon Clarke get drafted by the Knicks and that really didn’t amount to shit.

    This. I remember an article by Andrew Sharp on Grantland where he enthusiastically lauded the rise of a young Kawhi Leonard. Being a Wizards fan, he then started to lament and pity himself because his franshise had not drafted a stud like Leonard. A few paragraphs latter, however, he reached the “acceptance” stage and concluded that it didn’t matter who was the player: the problem was the organization, and had Kawhi been drafted by Washington, he would be Jan Vesely.

  270. Clippers-Nuggets
    Dopamine discrepancy
    Nuggets wanted it Far More
    Clippers’ minds were somewhere else

    Heat-Bos
    Heat seem more controlled
    Bos has more energy
    7gms series
    50/50
    My guess: Boston

  271. GOAT talks
    Comparing players needs examination of their teammates also.
    MJ and LBJ had always HOFers (and players that are Top of all times in their position “on their prime”) while Kawhi had either washed HoFers or chubby gritty mfkrs.

  272. Knew Your Nicks:
    GOAT talks
    Comparing players needs examination of their teammates also.
    MJ and LBJ had always HOFers (and players that are Top of all times in their position “on their prime”) while Kawhi had either washed HoFers or chubby gritty mfkrs.

    yep…those cavalier rosters were star studded with future HOF’ers…..not.

  273. The ’07 Cavs team was arguably the worst Finals team of the century and the ’09 Cavs are, by far, the worst 60 win team I’ve seen in my lifetime. They had LeBron with an estimated 31.8 VORP wins and Mo Williams at #2 with 8.3.

    The advanced stats table for the Cavs in the ’09 playoffs is hilarious. You’ve got LeBron with a truly insane 2.9 VORP (7.8 wins against replacement) in just 580 minutes, out of a total 3386 minutes played that playoffs, while scoring 36% of his team’s points on a crazy 47.5 points per 100 poss. — outside of Jordan’s handful of early playoff exits (too small a sample to consider), his top mark was 46.1 in the ’93 postseason.

    You really have to wonder what happens if Detroit and Cleveland switch slots in the 2003 Draft. LeBron was already a clear NBA starter at age 19, and there’s virtually no way that they trade out of the #1 with such a surefire star at #1. Adding him to those incredible Pistons teams — to which he would be a perfect complement, being a two-way superstar by year 3 — all but guarantees a streak of Finals appearances, and I think we’re talking about three- or four-time champion LeBron James before he can legally rent a car. Maybe without the Akron guilt, he heads to LA when Detroit blows up their core after the ’08 season, and wins another chip with late-peak Kobe. Fisher, Kobe, LeBron, Odom, Bynum would be a force of a starting lineup.

    I have a feeling that the Lakers are going to demolish the Nuggets and Celtics/Heat, and we’re going to be treated to another set of hot takes about whether LeBron can ever catch up with Jordan, even with a hand nearly covered in hardware. But it will never be LeBron’s fault that his first seven years in the league were so disappointing from a ringzz perspective. The man produced full-postseason performances over a period of a decade (2018 as well) that we will be lucky to see replicated in our lifetimes. And he’s still arguably the best player on the floor in any given contest.

  274. pre-Rondo back I would say it would have been more competitive …now with Rondo…they don’t lose anything on the 2nd unit…while the nuggets 2nd unit looked shaky last few games…might be time to unleash Bol Bol (is he even on the playoff roster?)

  275. All-NBA Team Announced. In a shocking upset, no Knicks are on the team.

    1st Team: Lebron, Giannis, Doncic, Anthony Davis, Harden

    2nd Team: Lillard, Kawhi, Jokic, CP3, Siakam

    3rd Team: Ben Simmons, Tatum, Butler, Gobert, Westbrook

  276. You really have to wonder what happens if Detroit and Cleveland switch slots in the 2003 Draft. LeBron was already a clear NBA starter at age 19, and there’s virtually no way that they trade out of the #1 with such a surefire star at #1. Adding him to those incredible Pistons teams — to which he would be a perfect complement, being a two-way superstar by year 3 — all but guarantees a streak of Finals appearances, and I think we’re talking about three- or four-time champion LeBron James before he can legally rent a car. Maybe without the Akron guilt, he heads to LA when Detroit blows up their core after the ’08 season, and wins another chip with late-peak Kobe. Fisher, Kobe, LeBron, Odom, Bynum would be a force of a starting lineup.

    Even without LeBron, they could have added Carmelo Anthony. As I once said here, that is not the worst draft blunder of all times – it’s Bagley over Doncic – just because Detroit won the title that very season and reached other 4 Eastern Conference Finals in a row until breaking up their aging core in an ill-advised trade for Allen Iverson in 2008-2009.

  277. Leonam: The Glass Half Rebuilt:
    Fawning over players that good organizations have drafted and developed isn’t really much different from what James Dolan has done since he’s been the owner. It’s one thing to want the Knicks to draft better, but when the Knicks find objectively good prospects in Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, and to a lesser extent a guy like Langston Galloway and fail to develop them? That’s because no matter who we put in this building, the development system we’ve had in place fails everybody. We have been a revolving door of talent that we couldn’t figure out. We can’t get Mitch to stop fouling. We couldn’t fix KP’s shot chart.

    The Knicks could have drafted anybody and they would have plateaued and then regressed. Maybe the best thing for our young guys is they got to spend 6 months away from the developmental staff. Did you see what happened to Dennis Smith Jr in his first full season as a Knick? It’s night and day.

    Drafting better players is a start, but we’ve seen better players than Tyler Herro and Brandon Clarke get drafted by the Knicks and that really didn’t amount to shit.

    This. I remember an article by Andrew Sharp on Grantland where he enthusiastically lauded the rise of a young Kawhi Leonard. Being a Wizards fan, he then started to lament and pity himself because his franshise had not drafted a stud like Leonard. A few paragraphs latter, however, he reached the “acceptance” stage and concluded that it didn’t matter who was the player: the problem was the organization, and had Kawhi been drafted by Washington, he would be Jan Vesely.

    Player development is almost never the difference in a player becoming an all-star or better. Role might make a difference, coaching and osystem might make a difference, but to think that guys like Kawhi and Butler were “developed” into being great players is nonsense. Drafting is 100X more important.

  278. Z-man: Player development is almost never the difference in a player becoming an all-star or better.Role might make a difference, coaching and osystem might make a difference, but to think that guys like Kawhi and Butler were “developed” into being great players is nonsense. Drafting is 100X more important.

    Sure, guys like Kawhi and Butler profited from being drafted by great teams (Spurs and Bulls) that could ease them in their rotations , but I’ve mentioned Leonard because by all accounts he’s a star that was “constructed”, from the shooting form to the offensive moves he displays nowadays. He had all the tools and the defensive instincts when drafted, but the Spurs development team molded him (see here: https://www.expressnews.com/sports/spurs/article/How-the-Spurs-built-Kawhi-Leonard-into-a-monster-6635560.php). Of course, nothing of this works without big commitment from the player, which is something that clearly sets Kawhi apart as an all-timer.

  279. Including LBJ in GOAT talks aint depreciatory for him.

    Otoh getting titles Only along Wade or Kyrie tells something also.
    MJ along Scottie also tells something about his airness.

  280. Z-man: Player development is almost never the difference in a player becoming an all-star or better.Role might make a difference, coaching and osystem might make a difference, but to think that guys like Kawhi and Butler were “developed” into being great players is nonsense. Drafting is 100X more important.

    Obviously you want to identify the right guys, but go pull up Jaylen Brown’s college stat line and tell me that kid projected as one of the 3 best players on a team 4 wins away from an NBA Finals or even as a useful rookie. I would argue that Jaylen Brown was 100% the wrong pick considering that’s Jamaal Murray was on the board and was almost universally a higher rated prospect. The Celtics bet on their player development program and took a kid who had no business being a lottery pick and made him into a two way stud.

    Drafting the right guys is absolutely the first step, but what a guy does once he’s in your program depends a lot on organizational infrastructure. These guys get together with the same 4 or 5 private trainers in the off season, but what they do during the season, at practices, before games, and their workout routine has a lot to do with the team they play for. Teams like Miami, Brooklyn, Toronto, Boston, Utah, San Antonio, and Denver have a better handle on it than teams like Sacramento, Washington, Philadelphia, and New York.

  281. I know this is not a group that values things like mental toughness and ability to play under pressure as much as I do, but I think it’s a factor at the championship level when you are typically up against someone else that has elite talent. I think it can be the deciding factor in those 50-50 circumstances.

    That’s what was so disappointing about Kahwi’s game 7 performance to me. He had a great series overall and is still a great two way player that can score inside, mid-range, outside the arc, from the FT line, off the dribble etc.,. at high usage and high efficiency while also being a very good playmaker and decision maker. There are very few players in the NBA that can do everything at that level. After a healthy Durant and Curry, the pickings get slim. There are other great offensive players, but they all have a weakness or an average skill that a great defensive team can use to slow them down a little or force them to do things they’d rather not do. Kawhi does all that while being an elite defender and appearing to be as mentally tough and in control as any elite player in the league. He’s CLEARLY mentally better than 1 player in particular who shall remain nameless just to avoid the debate. Yet he seemed “out of it” and rattled a few times during this series for the very first time I have seen in his career. It was shocking to me. It’s not about the missed shots. That could happen to anyone. It’s about the look in his eyes, the body language, his mental state, the decisions etc… He was not the same. He was human. Jordan had bad shooting games, but he never had a weak game or two like this.

  282. My only thought about Kawhi would be that I hope this horrific game 7 somehow lands him on the Knicks.

    Although he is 29. Didn’t realize he was that old.

  283. You really have to wonder what happens if Detroit and Cleveland switch slots in the 2003 Draft.

    I don’t believe that was possible. Back in 1997, the Pistons traded Otis Thorpe to the Grizzlies for a first-round pick with a variety of protections on it. By the time the 2003 draft process rolled around, the only protection left was if the Grizzlies won the lottery. Anything from 2 on down went to Detroit. So LeBron would have begun his career in Memphis, on a roster featuring young versions of Shane Battier and Pau Gasol.

  284. The Glass Half Rebuilt: Obviously you want to identify the right guys, but go pull up Jaylen Brown’s college stat line and tell me that kid projected as one of the 3 best players on a team 4 wins away from an NBA Finals or even as a useful rookie. I would argue that Jaylen Brown was 100% the wrong pick considering that’s Jamaal Murray was on the board and was almost universally a higher rated prospect. The Celtics bet on their player development program and took a kid who had no business being a lottery pick and made him into a two way stud.

    This is pure BS. That’s what scouting is…seeing things that others don’t. Ainge and his scouting team find good value again and again in the draft. They don’t go with consensus picks. They find guys like Brown, Smart, Bradley, Rozier based on a draft philosophy and put them in positions to succeed. They don’t turn them into good players. If their metrics said Murray was more risky or didn’t fit their mold as Brown, it’s not a mistake to draft Brown. In retrospect, it may have been a better move to draft Murray, but he may have had a lower floor or character issues or a bad defensive mindset that worried them. Otherwise, their “player development program” would have worked for Jamal too.

    Brown was excellent for a 19yo draftee right off the bat, he didn’t “develop”. He’s gotten better as all players should as they get experience, but he was good right away. He would have been good no matter who drafted him, just might not have been put in as good of a situation as he was by a great coach.

  285. oh my goodness, we may just have reached the absolute nadir of knickdom, discussing the celtics success…life just isn’t fair…

    speaking of life’s inequities, i will share this, while watching the celts and heat last night – it became abundantly clear that erik spoelstra has got some really good hair…he’s pushing 50 and i didn’t notice a single gray in there, thick and soft looking…noticed a shot of riley a couple of games ago – he’s still even rocking a pretty decent hair game…

    fortunately i’ve never really enjoyed “good” hair, so, it’s not like i really got anything to miss, but, yeah, every shot of spoelstra on the sidelines was a sad reminder of my own head lettuce…

    i’ll also add – sign me up to go work for brad stevens, that dude is just so calm and composed, it’s amazing…i’ve been lucky to work for a few amazing people whom were both really sharp and incredibly quick problem solvers, while being able to remain completely calm during the process…that is just a really freaky trait combination right there…

  286. Wow, nice bit of history, Alsep. That team probably makes a few Finals at least…

    Wait, no. The West was stacked.

  287. On the day after the draft, Scalabrini said he was sitting near the Celtics draft booth and when the Heat took Herro, there was an audible gasp and cursing from the Celtics’ people, they were certain he’d be there at #14. What a twist of fate! But it reinforces the idea that the Celtics are excellent at evaluating draft talent.

  288. I always wondered if the reason why Riley saw something in Spoelstra early on was because they both had really good hair that was slicked back with gel. Like one day he was walking down the halls and walked by the video room and he saw a young Spoelstra with his slicked backed hair and thought “who is that kid? I like his style.” And then I wonder if Spoelstra, being smart, when he applied for his job with The Heat thought “I should model my hair after Riley’s so he’ll take a shine to me.”

  289. Herro is the epitome of my draft philosophy for the Knicks. Stop swinging for the fences and just grab guys like him who are sure to be good two-way players. Do that enough times, and you can swing for the fences in free agency, where you have a much better chance of hitting a home run than in the draft.

    I’m a terrible NBA scout so I have no idea who those players are in this draft, but I’m certain there is a guy at #8 who can come in and be the 4th best player on a good NBA team. That makes much more sense to me than trading up for Ball.

  290. Herro is the epitome of my draft philosophy for the Knicks. Stop swinging for the fences and just grab guys like him who are sure to be good two-way players. Do that enough times, and you can swing for the fences in free agency, where you have a much better chance of hitting a home run than in the draft.

    Yup, but of course, Knicks.

    On the day after the draft, Scalabrini said he was sitting near the Celtics draft booth and when the Heat took Herro, there was an audible gasp and cursing from the Celtics’ people, they were certain he’d be there at #14. What a twist of fate! But it reinforces the idea that the Celtics are excellent at evaluating draft talent.

    That’s the annoying thing about the Celtics moving forward. They have MEM’s 1st this year, Milwaukee’s 1st, and Brooklyn’s 2020 2nd. That’s four chances to draft yet another Robert Williams or Daniel Theis, some glue guy who’s going to be a rim-running complement or 3-and-D lockdown defender while Tatum and Brown peak at the same time in 2022 and go 16-2 on their way to a title.

  291. Jaylen Brown was the 3rd pick in the draft and it took him 4 years to become a pretty good player. Marcus Smart was the 6th pick in the draft and it took him 5 years.

  292. “Otherwise, their “player development program” would have worked for Jamal too.”

    This is a genuinely bizarre take, the idea that a player is predestined to reach a certain level no matter what circumstances they find themselves in. That’s like saying the reason there aren’t more nuclear physicists from Africa is because Africans are too dumb to understand nuclear physics.

    Mike

  293. Outside of the fact that we now have the benefit of knowing he’s already damn good as a rookie I’m not sure I understand why Herro was a “safe” pick. He was a one-and-done guy who didn’t kill it his freshman year and had a reputation as a gunner. I’m far from a draft expert but he wasn’t in Pelton’s top 30 last season. I don’t think the reaction if the Knicks had picked him would have been that it was a safe pick.

    This is always the problem with this philosophy. If anyone actually knew which guys would be good in advance then yeah, sure, pick those guys. The devil is in the details. Last year the epitome of a “safe” guy was De’Andre Hunter and he was abysmal as a rookie; in fact he was worse than his rookie teammate who was seen as a massive bust risk in Cam Reddish.

  294. Reading this story about Duncan Robinson as I also read this thread on drafting and developing. It’s a great, if really extreme, example of what we’re talking about here. Nobody in their right mind would have drafted him based on his numbers (even his 3pt% — 38%, and I keep reading here about people complaining about older draftees [which I personally think is nuts] — he was 24 on draft night), and the description of how he was developed after coming on board is also really interesting.

    https://www.theringer.com/nba/2020/9/17/21439778/duncan-robinson-miami-heat-boston-celtics-playoffs

  295. DRed:
    Jaylen Brown was the 3rd pick in the draft and it took him 4 years to become a pretty good player.Marcus Smart was the 6th pick in the draft and it took him 5 years.

    This is simply not true.

    In 2014-15 rookie Smart was 4th on his team in minutes and his team went 40-42 and made the playoffs.
    In 2015-16 sophomore Smart was 5th on his team in minutes and his team went 48-34.
    In 2016-17 rookie Brown and Smart played 3,740 minutes combined on a team that went 53-29 and over 800 combined playoff minutes on a team that made the ECFs.
    In 2017-18 sophomore Brown and Smart were 3rd and 5th in MPG respectively and the team went 55-27 and made it to the ECFs again, and Smart and Brown were a big part of their playoff success.

    It’s pretty dubious to say that they weren’t “pretty good” players early in their careers considering their outsized roles on very successful teams. If you want to believe that the rest of the rotation “overcame” their mediocre play, go right ahead. I think it is more likely that the metrics you base your judgment on overvalue scoring efficiency and undervalue defense and other things that contribute to winning basketball. In my opinion, they have always been at least “pretty good” and are now “excellent” in terms of contributing to winning on a well-coached team.

  296. MBunge:
    “Otherwise, their “player development program” would have worked for Jamal too.”

    This is a genuinely bizarre take, the idea that a player is predestined to reach a certain level no matter what circumstances they find themselves in.That’s like saying the reason there aren’t more nuclear physicists from Africa is because Africans are too dumb to understand nuclear physics.

    Mike

    This is too dumb to even respond to (what a surprise!)

  297. >>> This is a genuinely bizarre take, the idea that a player is predestined to reach a certain level no matter what circumstances they find themselves in.That’s like saying the reason there aren’t more nuclear physicists from Africa is because Africans are too dumb to understand nuclear physics. <<<

    I suppose if Einstein had been born in the Belgian Congo, he probably never would have explained the correspondence between energy and frequency.

    But the problem is we're drafting guys who failed math and blaming the system bc they can't split an atom.

  298. JR Smith was second in minutes played on a team that beat Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown and went to the NBA finals-I guess he was really good that season. It doesn’t show up in the stats, but I assume his great defense made up for it.

  299. DRed:
    JR Smith was second in minutes played on a team that beat Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown and went to the NBA finals-I guess he was really good that season.It doesn’t show up in the stats, but I assume his great defensemade up for it.

    Well, yeah, playing as a second wheel to Isaiah Thomas and LeBron James is pretty much the same thing.

  300. Raven:
    Reading this story about Duncan Robinson as I also read this thread on drafting and developing. It’s a great, if really extreme, example of what we’re talking about here. Nobody in their right mind would have drafted him based on his numbers (even his 3pt% — 38%, and I keep reading here about people complaining about older draftees [which I personally think is nuts] — he was 24 on draft night), and the description of how he was developed after coming on board is also really interesting.

    https://www.theringer.com/nba/2020/9/17/21439778/duncan-robinson-miami-heat-boston-celtics-playoffs

    Killian Tillie this year?

  301. This is a genuinely bizarre take, the idea that a player is predestined to reach a certain level no matter what circumstances they find themselves in.That’s like saying the reason there aren’t more nuclear physicists from Africa is because Africans are too dumb to understand nuclear physics.

    This analogy only works if you’re comparing, say, the Raptors’ performance and conditioning processes to a rural high school’s. This is more like comparing the Mayo Clinic to an average medical school.

    Obviously there is a talent qualification process in the NBA — players are ostensibly only selected if they’ve already reached a certain threshold of performance, which is both nebulous and dumb (since teams like the Knicks seem to have a knack for picking the exact wrong prospects) and sort of also real in an estimable way (very few rotation players are as bad as the elite players are good, i.e. there are several >8.0 BPM players but very few <-8.0 BPM players). Part of that qualification process is the guesswork of whether a player is capable of improving substantially. It seems much more likely to me that a franchise would fail upfront (i.e. during prospect selection) than over a period of four years coaxing incremental growth, since tangible improvements to basketball players are remarkably uniform (shooting mechanics, rebounding positioning, efficient screening, etc.).

    The game is not rocket science. And while there have been contemporary basketball geniuses like Mark Jackson, Jason Kidd and Phil Jackson that insist on using pre-Newtonian physics in their research, there are no real trade secrets for long in the NBA. Any coach, trainer or video analyst for an NBA franchise should be able to deduce what makes for successful basketball in the current state of the game.

    I would also guess that team party/nightlife culture plays a much greater role in on-court success than an individual shooting coach or plyometrics trainer.

  302. Its kind of a ridiculous argument because any franchise that has a great development program is probably also going to have a great scouting program. They’ll probably also good stats guys, a good coach, and good players all ready on the team.

    A great basketball program takes all of these things and generally the teams that do well at one thing do well at the other things because they’re just good organizations. The teams that don’t develop well also don’t scout well.

  303. The teams that don’t develop well also don’t scout well.

    I think it’s very easy to pin down which franchises scout poorly — when 10 out of 10 draftees fail to yield a single NBA starter, it would seem obvious that the players themselves are terrible at their jobs, and therefore the people who selected them are also terrible at their jobs — but much more difficult to know who’s developing “the right way,” to borrow a non-falsifiable-claim term from our resident Russian-kleptocrats-are-more-free-market-than-Dems troll.

    There are just too many factors to control for after player selection.

  304. Guys can we all agree that Jaylen Brown was a Cole Anthony level prospect and if the Knicks drafted him this site would have gone haywire?

  305. I think Brown is still a bit overrated, sort of the McCollum to Tatum’s Lillard. Tatum is reminding me an awful lot of a modern T-Mac now that he’s attacking the rim instead of taking those long Kobe twos. (To be fair, McGrady took a lot of those shots too.) Incredible handle, penetrates and attacks the rim as hard as anyone does, and has all of the athleticism to make huge plays on defense, too.

    I’d push the chips in with Brown, though. They’re already such a well-balanced team that you just need Brown to improve his shooting by a tick and they’re a perennial 55-win team until that pair is in their thirties.

    If you picked Brown as your #1 pick in an expansion draft, I think you’d have a tough time developing a contender around him. Good player, but not elite yet.

  306. This is Jaylen Brown’s college stat profile. He did nothing well except get to the line, and even then he was a worse free throw shooter in college than the much maligned RJ Barrett, and he played in a worse conference. Guys with Jaylen Brown’s stat line do not go onto be good basketball players in the NBA.

    This is Cole Anthony’s stat line. Also good at nothing except getting fouled, but he shot 34% to Brown’s 29% from deep, and converted his free throws at a 75% rate.

    Jaylen Brown went 3rd overall and he’s a good NBA basketball player. My point is that a guy who was that awful in college turned out to be a useful NBA player from his first year forward, and that you have to give organizational infrastructure some credit there. If the Knicks took Brown, he’d be a Charlotte Hornet or a Dallas Maverick by now. Good organizations don’t just draft well, but they develop well too.

  307. Yeah, he’s sort of like a longer, worse-3 pt-shooting Anthony Edwards. Sometimes tippy-top percentile athleticism makes up for some of the other stuff, but not all of it.

    God, if Frank could seriously just be Jaylen Brown-bad on offense, he would be a fine enough pick. That’s all I’m asking for!

  308. The Glass Half Rebuilt: Jaylen Brown went 3rd overall and he’s a good NBA basketball player. My point is that a guy who was that awful in college turned out to be a useful NBA player from his first year forward, and that you have to give organizational infrastructure some credit there. If the Knicks took Brown, he’d be a Charlotte Hornet or a Dallas Maverick by now. Good organizations don’t just draft well, but they develop well too.

    And if the greatest organization ever drafted Kevin Knox, he would suck just as much as he does now. Although it seems pretty obvious that great organizations don’t draft the Kevin Knox’s of the world. They trade down with stupid organizations from Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball to get Jayson Tatum (who was voted most likely to be a bust by nearly every stathead here and was an excellent player for his age right out of the gate, not “developed” into one.)

    The key with Brown is that he has elite length and quick-twitch athleticism, a great motor, and good enough smarts and maturity to fit in with their team framework. The Celts probably saw that if they could make a guard out of him, he could dominate physically on both ends. None of the pundits saw him as a guard coming out of college. That’s where scouting comes in. Very few players come into the NBA ready to play, nearly all need to improve. The Celts look for players who they believe are the most likely to improve, regardless of their efficiency stats in college. Athleticism, motor, toughness and IQ seem to be the things they value most.

    Cole Anthony is an interesting case, I think he will be a better pro than most here think he will be, but understand the skepticism. But if the Celts draft him and he turns out to be good, it won’t be because they “developed” him…it will be that they saw something in him that the skeptics didn’t.

  309. ess-dog: God, if Frank could seriously just be Jaylen Brown-bad on offense, he would be a fine enough pick. That’s all I’m asking for!

    Frank simply did not have the athleticism or skill or motor or mental toughness (or stats!) to draft him where we did. Ainge never would have touched him at that spot, given the players still on the board. Same with Knox.

    An interesting question is whether they would have taken RJ or traded down. I think the latter, but RJ does seem to fit their profile in some ways.

  310. Carlos Santana Says Jimi Hendrix’s Music Wouldn’t Have Been the Same Without Acid(LSD)

    Development matters

  311. There is no coaching in the world that could turn Ntilikina into a competent offensive player. Pinning his “lack of development” on coaching would be utter ridiculousness.

  312. Frank needs much sex some drugs and nasty RNR to release his hidden offensive beast!
    His drives for dunks against Centers and his midrange jumpers give me hope.

  313. A 2way Frank would be the bball dream of a lifetime but I wouldn’t mind also watching Frank becoming a hybrid of Marcus Smart, Tony Allen and Thabo Sefolosha.

    The last thing I’d want would be trading Frank for geriatric superstars and watch him blossom in another team. That’d be devastating.

  314. interesting factoid about Miami. They have 7 players shooting over 35% on 3ptrs, and 4 of those are over 40%.

    It’s not the only reason they’re good, but it sure helps.

  315. with no true home court “advantage” during the playoffs – there just might be a chance the lakers don’t walk home with this trophy…

    here’s to wishing for a heat/nuggets final…

  316. virtual smorgasbord of sports tonight

    celts-heat
    isles-lightning
    browns-bengals
    yanks-jays

    gotta keep the thumb loose so I don’t sprain it using the remote…

  317. I wouldn’t compare Frank “French Tickler” Ntilikina to Marcus Smart, one of the most ferocious players I’ve ever seen. It’s truly night and day.

  318. Z-man:
    I wouldn’t compare Frank “French Tickler” Ntilikina to Marcus Smart, one of the most ferocious players I’ve ever seen. It’s truly night and day.

    to even put them in the same conversation is ridiculous…

  319. Knew Your Nicks:
    A 2way Frank would be the bball dream of a lifetime but I wouldn’t mind also watching Frank becoming a hybrid of Marcus Smart, Tony Allen and Thabo Sefolosha.
    The last thing I’d want would be trading Frank for geriatric superstars and watch him blossom in another team. That’d be devastating.

    How about we start with “either way” player first? Where is Ntilikina, statistically, as a defensive player? DBPM of 0.4 is positive, but barely. Defensive WS of 0.8?

  320. Jaylen Brown was like the 5th most valuable Celtic this year I don’t understand why it’s so incredible that the Celtics were able to find a guy like that with the 3rd pick in the draft. He’s a good player, he’s still young and getting better, but if you draft a guy with the 3rd pick and he turns into an all star 7 years later was that really amazing scouting/development?

  321. The problem is that the Celtics don’t really have anyone to hate right now, outside of Danny Ainge (who I have always and will always hate). Who you going to hate on? Taco Fall? Kemba’s one of the most likable players in the NBA. Marcus Smart looks like a horrible person to play against, but he plays fair, just way too hard.

    Don’t get me wrong, I hate the Celtics. It’s just more conceptual right now.

  322. Frank had about a two week stretch this year (around the Dallas games early in the season) where he played with enough energy that I thought getting to Smart’s level defensively MIGHT be possible. Then he tweaked his groin or twisted an ankle or just went back into his shell for most of the rest of the season. He’s a very good man defender but he needs a major- and I mean major- motor upgrade to get to Smart’s level.

  323. It’s true Raven but I still hate them.

    And the Heat are far more rootable. I love Bam. I love Robinson. I like Spo. Jimmy B is a gamer. They still have Haslem on the roster. Would be funny if he retired with 5 championships.

  324. i could/would never in a million years root for the celtics…never…ever..ever…the lakers are close behind…doesn’t matter who is on the roster…

  325. geo: i swear i just read this and all i got was: brown bagels…mmmm, toasty buttery bagels…

    i got fed up with the crappy bagels here in nor cal…starting importing utopia bagels from queens…

  326. I forgot about Kanter! But really, I secretly like him — he’s a very sympathetic character. I’m just really glad he’s not on the Knicks anymore, because I certainly hated his defense.

    Always hated the Lakers, hard to imagine ever not.

    I can’t find it in myself to root for Miami, however. Nobody there I hate (although Riley makes me grit my teeth). I might dislike Herro, but he’s fun to watch. I think it’s the natural smirk on his face. But it’s Florida. Hard no.

    Which means I just have to try and enjoy this game because it’s being played well and the two teams are pretty closely matched. No rooting. Take a bit of fun out of it.

  327. ***Guys can we all agree that Jaylen Brown was a Cole Anthony level prospect and if the Knicks drafted him this site would have gone haywire?***

    This site went haywire with lols when Ainge drafted Brown.
    https://knickerblogger.net/2016-nba-draft-open-thread/

    (This thread contains the prescient JK47 statement:

    “Phil Jackson doesn’t know jack fucking shit about how to put together a winning NBA team, so the best that we can hope for is that he doesn’t give out too many bad long term contracts and doesn’t trade Porzingis before he gets inevitably canned within the next 365 days. Now that the draft is over Phil can get down to serious business like giving out a terrible contract to Joakim Noah and maxing Evan Turner.”

    7 days later Jackson signed Noah to a 4/$72,000,000 that has turned into an 8 year contract, and 368 days later Jackson was canned. Very impressive (even if he was a full three days off in his the prediction)

  328. DRed: Jaylen Brown was like the 5th most valuable Celtic this year I don’t understand why it’s so incredible that the Celtics were able to find a guy like that with the 3rd pick in the draft. He’s a good player, he’s still young and getting better, but if you draft a guy with the 3rd pick and he turns into an all star 7 years later was that really amazing scouting/development?

    You are vastly underrating him.

  329. Kemba, Tatum, Smart and Hayward were more valuable to the Celtics this year. Probably Theis too, if we’re being real. If you want to give Brown credit for being healthier than Hayward I can’t argue with that, but he’s a good player on a team with a bunch of good players, some of whom are more valuable than he is.

  330. ugh, still at work, recording the celts/heat game, trying not to peek at the score – failing miserably at that though :(

    i know this kind of stuff is pretty meaningless (particularly this season), but, since i was a kid of always liked to check the league leaders in stats – nice to see lemahiue and voit leading the league and batting average and home runs…

  331. Derrick Jones, who just committed his second dumb foul, is another under the radar productive guy who we never seem to scrounge up in NYC.

    I mean, Derrick Jones is like the best case scenario for Kevin Knox. And they got him for nothing. Knox made more this year than Jones has made in his first four.

  332. Also, watching the Celtics trying to deal with this zone reminds me of my high school team.

    And the side view they have going is pretty cool

  333. DRed:
    Kemba, Tatum, Smart and Hayward were more valuable to the Celtics this year.Probably Theis too, if we’re being real.If you want to give Brown credit for being healthier than Hayward I can’t argue with that, but he’s a good player on a team with a bunch of good players, some of whom are more valuable than he is.

    By that logic, I guess Klay Thompson is another scrub because Durant, Curry, Draymond and Iggy were more valuable than him.

    And I disagree with you on Hayward and vehemently disagree on Theis. Kemba is a max player and Tatum was also picked at #3 in a better draft (and you hated him too.) So if your argument is that Marcus Smart was a better draft pick and more valuable than Brown (marginally, if that) then okay, you got me.

  334. Did not realize Herro could rebound like this. Although Jaylen Brown had a hell of a rebound and putback a few minutes back too.

  335. That choke job is on Stevens. He had FIVE time outs in his pocket and just watched his team fall completely apart against a zone without doing a damn thing. And while Miami can play poorly, they NEVER have the casual attitude you see out of Boston.

    Mike

  336. Legler made a great point about Butler – he never plays like he has to “get his” I.e. put up 20 plus shots. Just does his job, plays great D and picks his spots when his team needs him to score.

    He’s averaging less than 12 shot attempts per game in the playoffs and is still their playoff MVP so far

  337. Watch Butler on the JJ Redick show. He explains why he left and doesn’t come off as a crazy person.

  338. The Celtics blog is going bananas over this, putting it on Stevens, or on Hayward not being there…so much fun to read.

  339. I mean, losing the first two at home is bad. Now they have to face the Heat in Florida. I don’t see how they can recover.

  340. Can’t help but think, if Antetokounmpo wasn’t suspended for the head butt, the Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat would probably be getting ready to play each other in the NBA finals right about now…

  341. How about we start with “either way” player first? Where is Ntilikina, statistically, as a defensive player? DBPM of 0.4 is positive, but barely. Defensive WS of 0.8?

    It’s hard to have a good win share if your team doesn’t win.

    And that trade for Paul is awful. I’m not sure I could watch the Knicks anymore if they did that. Paul will get injured right away and Frank will bloom. It will be worse than Knicks as usual.

  342. The Celtics blog is going bananas over this, putting it on Stevens, or on Hayward not being there…so much fun to read.

    now that is a pretty noteworthy display of dislike z-man, to go to a celtics site to soak up the sorrow and misery of their fans…

    oh that had to feel good reading that…makes me smile just thinking about it…well done sir…

  343. Frank’s traditional stats per36 remind of Smart’s stats on their 3rd season in the league (despite Frank being 1yr younger)
    Even the stats on France-USA elimination World Cup game where Frank kicked some asses show that not only he played as well as Smart but far better on a very important game sending badass Marcus back to Texas to milk the cows earlier!

  344. Frank/Knox/Portis/Payton+drafts for CP3 is ridiculous even as a joke.
    I’d give it a Borat Pulitzer prize.
    If it’s real i stop watching basketball and start learning about Curling.

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