Tyson Chandler, DPOY?

It seems that Tyson Chandler is going to win the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year today. A press release from MSG stated that “NBA AND NEW YORK KNICKS TO MAKE MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT TODAY” at 2pm in their training facility. Hard to imagine what else this could be. The Knicks finished 5th in defensive efficiency this year, their lowest ranking since placing 3rd in 2001.

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Mike Kurylo

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

158 thoughts to “Tyson Chandler, DPOY?”

  1. Mike doesn’t even read his own site anymore, check four threads down. :)

  2. jon abbey:

    Mike doesn’t even read his own site anymore, check four threads down. :)

    Perhaps he–like the rest of us–is trying to avoid you. :)

  3. Obviously Melo is a selfish ballhog and is incompatible with all other players. Also he’s a primadonna and overrated, except when he’s not sometimes which makes it even worse!

    If only Melo was a top five forward in assist percentage or something. Then we wouldn’t call him selfish.

  4. On a more serious note, does anyone know how this injury could potentially affect Shumpert’s potential moving forward? I’m worried about the guy. Look at what the ACL injury did to Bill Walker’s career. Circumstances are different but I can’t help but fear for Shump. He is one of my favorite Knicks in ever.

  5. d-mar: Well, Howard Beck called Melo’s 12-26 shooting in game 2 “ghastly”.

    Beck is getting out of control. I used to have a lot of respect for him.

  6. Reporters are typically beholden to their narrative and will stick with it, unless forced to change by something OBVIOUSLY outside the scope of that narrative changing. (Dirk can’t win a championship, Knicks can’t win with Melo as the centerpiece in the playoffs, etc)

    ruruland: Beck is getting out of control. I used to have a lot of respect for him.

  7. johnlocke:
    Reporters are typically beholden to their narrative and will stick with it, unless forced to change by something OBVIOUSLY outside the scope of that narrative changing.(Dirk can’t win a championship, Knicks can’t win with Melo as the centerpiece in the playoffs, etc)

    As are blog posters

  8. ruruland: Beck is getting out of control. I used to have a lot of respect for him.

    It seems like you don’t like anyone who criticizes melo. ie. Breen

  9. 2FOR18: It seems like you don’t like anyone who criticizes melo.ie. Breen

    It’s one thing to criticize………I have other problems with both of them.

  10. ruruland: It’s one thing to criticize………I have other problems with both of them.

    Breen can get sanctimonious. Is that it?

  11. 2FOR18: Breen can get sanctimonious. Is that it?

    yes… And he tries way too hard to be even-handed. Plus, he doesn’t really understand the game as someone who’s been around so many nba people should.

  12. ruruland: Beck is getting out of control. I used to have a lot of respect for him.

    Respect, by definition, is a high regard for someone’s opinion. Repsect doesn’t mean anything if it’s lost when an opinion doesn’t line up with one’s own. If you want the readers here to respect your opinion, you might want to try acting even the least bit receptive to alternative perceptions of Carmelo, and not lose “respect” for anybody who doesn’t speak glowingly of his team low eFG in game 2.

  13. ruruland: yes… And he tries way too hard to be even-handed. Plus, he doesn’t really understand the game as someone who’s been around so many nba people should.

    My problem with Breen is he repeats the same shit over and over again, even if doesn’t apply. If Melo or STAT makes a shot on an ISO play, he’s ok. If they miss, he goes with the usual: “that’s what happens when you don’t have ball movement” Plus, during game 2, he (and Clyde) kept talking about the Knicks “lack of defensive intensity” in game 1 as being the problem, when we all know it was more about turnovers, Chandler being a corpse and a huge number of foul shots for Miami.

  14. ruruland: yes… And he tries way too hard to be even-handed. Plus, he doesn’t really understand the game as someone who’s been around so many nba people should.

    I like my team’s announcers to be critical when it’s warranted. I can’t stand homer announcers (like John Sterling, who does Yankee radio), so I enjoy Clyde and Breen. Plus they’re both pretty funny.

  15. Z: Respect, by definition, is a high regard for someone’s opinion. Repsect doesn’t mean anything if it’s lost when an opinion doesn’t line up with one’s own. If you want the readers here to respect your opinion, you might want to try acting even the least bit receptive to alternative perceptions of Carmelo, and not lose “respect” for anybody who doesn’t speak glowingly of his team low eFG in game 2.

    Melo had a higher eFG than Lebron, and a better offensive rating (30 points on 31 possessions vs. 19 points on 22 possessions) He also had to guard Lebron the entire game, while Lebron got breaks from Battier. Oh and Lebron doesn’t have to play against his whole defense, which happens to not include Fields, Amar’e, Novak, or Bibby. It’s one thing to insult Melo for having a 3-15 game the first time, he had a perfectly good game in game 2.

  16. Z: Respect, by definition, is a high regard for someone’s opinion. Repsect doesn’t mean anything if it’s lost when an opinion doesn’t line up with one’s own. If you want the readers here to respect your opinion, you might want to try acting even the least bit receptive to alternative perceptions of Carmelo, and not lose “respect” for anybody who doesn’t speak glowingly of his team low eFG in game 2.

    You’re making a lot of assumptions here. I don’t respect many of Breen’s opinions just as Jeff Van Gundy doesn’t respect his opinions — they’re often ignorant.

    Doesn’t mean I don’t have respect for him as an overall broadcaster.

    I have great respect for Beck’s writing talent in the formulaic newspaper format, but I don’t respect a reporter who takes furtive editorial liberties — especially when they are aligned with the sensational, overworn and context-absent meta-narratives of the majority of new york media outlets.

  17. Juany8: Melo had a higher eFG than Lebron, and a better offensive rating (30 points on 31 possessions vs. 19 points on 22 possessions) He also had to guard Lebron the entire game, while Lebron got breaks from Battier. Oh and Lebron doesn’t have to play against his whole defense, which happens to not include Fields, Amar’e, Novak, or Bibby. It’s one thing to insult Melo for having a 3-15 game the first time, he had a perfectly good game in game 2.

    LeBron spent the first quarter getting his teammates involved. Melo spent the first quarter chucking at an unsustainable rate – maybe that’s the coach’s fault, but it was what it was.

  18. d-mar: My problem with Breen is he repeats the same shit over and over again, even if doesn’t apply. If Melo or STAT makes a shot on an ISO play, he’s ok. If they miss, he goes with the usual: “that’s what happens when you don’t have ball movement” Plus, during game 2, he (and Clyde) kept talking about the Knicks “lack of defensive intensity” in game 1 as being the problem, when we all know it was more about turnovers, Chandler being a corpse and a huge number of foul shots for Miami.

    he does. And he’s a populist who plays of the common sentiments… It’s dull and irritating.

  19. ruruland: You’re making a lot of assumptions here. I don’t respect many of Breen’s opinions just as Jeff Van Gundy doesn’t respect his opinions — they’re often ignorant.

    Doesn’t mean I don’t have respect for him as an overall broadcaster.

    I have great respect for Beck’s writing talent in the formulaic newspaper format, but I don’t respect a reporter who takes furtive editorial liberties — especially when they are aligned with the sensational, overworn and context-absent meta-narratives of the majority of new york media outlets.

    One of your memes is ripping on the NY sports media. But when I lived in Denver I had to deal with the likes of Woody Paige, a hack if I ever saw (read) one, so I think it’s not just a NY thing.

  20. 2FOR18: One of your memes is ripping on the NY sports media.But when I lived in Denver I had to deal with the likes of Woody Paige, a hack if I ever saw (read) one, so I think it’s not just a NY thing.

    It’s an entire nation thing, New York just happens to get a lot more national attention.

  21. 2FOR18: One of your memes is ripping on the NY sports media.But when I lived in Denver I had to deal with the likes of Woody Paige, a hack if I ever saw (read) one, so I think it’s not just a NY thing.

    Not defending Woody Paige by a long shot. he’s been awful since Elway retired, really since his “Jagwads” column.

    But we both know how NY is different. Is it possible for one to have personal “memes” ? Just curious.

  22. ruruland: Not defending Woody Paige by a long shot. he’s been awful since Elway retired, really since his “Jagwads” column.

    But we both know how NY is different.Is it possible for one to have personal “memes” ? Just curious.

    Nice. I wish you would use a bit more humor in your posts.

  23. ruruland: he does. And he’s a populist who plays of the common sentiments… It’s dull and irritating.

    Remember, you’re a rare type of fan. An announcer who quoted advanced stats all game would bore most fans. That’s why blogs like this are a great outlet for people like you.

  24. RIP Junior Seau….

    Every year I feel better about not being much of an NFL fan, think this will be the year I give it up altogether….

    When I have kids, they are definitely not playing football….

  25. 2FOR18: Nice. I wish you would use a bit more humor in your posts.

    I wish I didn’t have a compulsion to respond to every anti-Melo post, but we both that’s not changing anytime soon.

    I didn’t even last a day with my Owen and Co. agreement.

  26. 2FOR18: Remember, you’re a rare type of fan.An announcer who quoted advanced stats all game would bore most fans.That’s why blogs like this are a great outlet for people like you.

    I think the market for fans like us is a LOT bigger than most fans like us believe.

    Hubie Brown can go a little technical at times and most love him. JVG doesn’t dumb it down, per se.

    In fact, I think most people are sick of the lowest common denominator approach that’s been around forever.

  27. Owen:
    RIP Junior Seau….

    Every year I feel better about not being much of an NFL fan, think this will be the year I give it up altogether….

    When I have kids, they are definitely not playing football….

    Wow. My guess is that football and boxing will go the way of the gladiator eventually.

  28. ruruland: I wish I didn’t have a compulsion to respond to every anti-Melo post, but we both that’s not changing anytime soon.

    I didn’t even last a day with my Owen and Co. agreement.

    Ha, you didn’t last 5 hours.

  29. Juany8: Melo had a higher eFG than Lebron, and a better offensive rating (30 points on 31 possessions vs. 19 points on 22 possessions) He also had to guard Lebron the entire game, while Lebron got breaks from Battier. Oh and Lebron doesn’t have to play against his whole defense, which happens to not include Fields, Amar’e, Novak, or Bibby. It’s one thing to insult Melo for having a 3-15 game the first time, he had a perfectly good game in game 2.

    One- The Knicks doubled LBJ every time he caught the ball in the post and the entire team basically converged on him every time he drove- Miami played Melo pretty much straight up on the catch and generally rotated one big on drives. Two, you’re ignoring the fact that LBJ also had 9 assists to Melo’s 1. 31 possessions- one assist and other guys were actually hitting shots (unlike game one) so that’s pretty bad. He did have to take several bailout shots, but he also didn’t move the ball as much as he could have. As for his defense, he sure didn’t expend any energy trying to get back in transition and as I previously mentioned, it’s not like the Knicks weren’t giving him a ton of help on LBJ. He didn’t have a terrible game but it was pretty mediocre.

  30. Gladwell is also mounting a campaign against college football, which he argues is even worse, since not only are the athletes doing damage to themselves, they also aren’t getting paid like NFL athletes are.

    I guess if you quit football after college you are generally ok, but there have been notable exceptions.

    2FOR18: Wow.My guess is that football and boxing will go the way of the gladiator eventually.

  31. Juany8: Melo had a higher eFG than Lebron, and a better offensive rating (30 points on 31 possessions vs. 19 points on 22 possessions)

    Lebron had the higher offensive rating but Melo had the better performance overall, per Hoop Data….

  32. 2FOR18: Remember, you’re a rare type of fan.An announcer who quoted advanced stats all game would bore most fans.That’s why blogs like this are a great outlet for people like you.

    David Cone talks up FIP and UZR whenever he does Yankees games. You don’t see casual fans calling for his head.

  33. Owen:
    Gladwell is also mounting a campaign against college football, which he argues is even worse, since not only are the athletes doing damage to themselves, they also aren’t getting paid like NFL athletes are.

    I guess if you quit football after college you are generally ok, but there have been notable exceptions.

    I read an article in SI where they interviewed a bunch of players from a Bengals team from the 90’s, and most of the guys with the worst crippling injuries said they would do it again if they had the choice. And there was once a survey of Olympic athletes where they were asked if they would trade a gold medal for 10 years of their life, and an overwhelming majority said yes.

    It’s sad, but fame and glory and money are intoxicating, and most people couldn’t give a crap if there are serious consequences down the road.

  34. nicos: One- The Knicks doubled LBJ every time he caught the ball in the post and the entire team basically converged on him every time he drove- Miami played Melo pretty much straight up on the catch and generally rotated one big on drives.Two, you’re ignoring the fact that LBJ also had 9 assists to Melo’s 1. 31 possessions- one assist and other guys were actually hitting shots (unlike game one) so that’s pretty bad.He did have to take several bailout shots, but he also didn’t move the ball as much as he could have.As for his defense, he sure didn’t expend any energy trying to get back in transition and as I previously mentioned, it’s not like the Knicks weren’t giving him a ton of help on LBJ.He didn’t have a terrible game but it was pretty mediocre.

    Ok and I’m going to tell you that the Knicks aren’t going to land someone that can but up a better offensive performance against Miami in the next 5 years. If you want to ignore that half of Melo’s shots were late in the shot clock while most of Lebron’s points were in transition that’s fine, I just judge making a shot that the entire league could make at 65 TS%+ as less impressive than a shot that the league could make at maybe a 40 TS%. There could be a discussion about why Lebron gets higher percentage shots more often, but simply citing the percentages without context says nothing about the player’s performance. Neither does citing assist numbers without pointing out that the Knicks have far, far worse help defenders than Miami, as well as worse shooters, and the fact that Lebron initiates the offense a lot while Melo doesn’t. No one complained last year when Dirk had ONE game above a .530 TS% against Miami, including a 9-27 game to end the season, nor the fact that he averaged 2 assists per game even though he plays a similar role to Melo

  35. I like Clyde, not so much Breen. This is because Breen rarely has insights of his own. He knows the most common criticisms and the most common praises for a team, and he generally just repeats them depending on how the team is doing. He is also kind of anal and overly proper, often harping and garbage about professionalism rather than what’s happening on the court.

    More than anything, the Stoudemire injury gives this team an excuse, and I’m sick of excuses. Could we just have good health among our stars for like six weeks? That would end all the ambiguity about this team, all the “ifs” and “buts”.

  36. Melo critics are missing the big fact to criticize his game 2 performance, which is that for a 21 minute stretch spanning most of the second half, he didn’t hit a shot, just 3 FTs. He scored to make it 53-49 just after halftime, and not again until NY was down 13 with 4:16 left in the game.

  37. Owen:
    Juany8: Melo had a higher eFG than Lebron, and a better offensive rating (30 points on 31 possessions vs. 19 points on 22 possessions)

    Lebron had the higher offensive rating but Melo had the better performance overall, per Hoop Data….

    Look he didn’t have a monster game, but if anyone recalls what Lebron did to Rose last year (on a far better team) they’ll stop complaining about Melo putting up 30 points against the best defense in the league, even on middling efficiency. Especially since there’s a reason no one else is getting shots, you’re not gonna beat Miami with zero penetrators on the team and Shump and Amar’e out. Especially with Chandler (who most of this board would say is the team’s best player) being horrendously bad so far this series (illness or not, he still sucked terribly and is on a minute count) If Lebron was putting up a “elbow game” and Chalmers and Battier were out this series would probably at least be competitive.

  38. Yeah, I understand the argument. Doesn’t make me feel better about watching the game though…

    d-mar: I read an article in SI where they interviewed a bunch of players from a Bengals team from the 90?s, and most of the guys with the worst crippling injuries said they would do it again if they had the choice. And there was once a survey of Olympic athletes where they were asked if they would trade a gold medal for 10 years of their life, and an overwhelming majority said yes.

    It’s sad, but fame and glory and money are intoxicating, and most people couldn’t give a crap if there are serious consequences down the road.

  39. Juany8: Ok and I’m going to tell you that the Knicks aren’t going to land someone that can but up a better offensive performance against Miami in the next 5 years.

    First, in five years, Wade will be 35, and my guess is his career will be more or less over.

    Second, if this is the case, it’s time for the Knicks to quit the charade and mine the draft for that player. Dirk certainly had no problem scoring against Miami. While I don’t agree, ruru’s argument certainly makes more sense that Melo passouts aren’t working because we don’t have good ball handlers. I do, however, find that argument ironic since we traded all our good wing dribble-drivers in the Denver deal. I know the idea is that those guys are replaceable via the draft, but I think that is an exaggeration — quality defenders who can shoot the 3 and penetrate against a recovering defense do not grow on trees. Further, 60% of our first round picks for the next 5 years don’t belong to us, 2 of them, again, as a result of the Melo trade.

  40. Ok also my bad on the Dirk stats from earlier, I accidentally read the efg% column lol on bball reference lol. Still had 3 games sub .520 TS%, and more turnovers than assists for the series. Helps that it was Bosh instead of Lebron on him lol, but it’s still a good bit more impressive

  41. jon abbey:
    Melo critics are missing the big fact to criticize his game 2 performance, which is that for a 21 minute stretch spanning most of the second half, he didn’t hit a shot, just 3 FTs. He scored to make it 53-49 just after halftime, and not again until NY was down 13 with 4:16 left in the game.

    It’s true. I have a pretty good feeling something special is going to happen tomorrow. We’ll see.

  42. Doug: David Cone talks up FIP and UZR whenever he does Yankees games. You don’t see casual fans calling for his head.

    Really? I had no idea. On TV or radio?

  43. max fisher-cohen: First, in five years, Wade will be 35, and my guess is his career will be more or less over.

    Second, if this is the case, it’s time for the Knicks to quit the charade and mine the draft for that player. Dirk certainly had no problem scoring against Miami. While I don’t agree, ruru’s argument certainly makes more sense that Melo passouts aren’t working because we don’t have good ball handlers. I do, however, find that argument ironic since we traded all our good wing dribble-drivers in the Denver deal. I know the idea is that those guys are replaceable via the draft, but I think that is an exaggeration — quality defenders who can shoot the 3 and penetrate against a recovering defense do not grow on trees. Further, 60% of our first round picks for the next 5 years don’t belong to us, 2 of them, again, as a result of the Melo trade.

    Maybe. Power forwards who can put up 570-590 efficiency on 25% usage are much rarer.

  44. jon abbey:
    Melo critics are missing the big fact to criticize his game 2 performance, which is that for a 21 minute stretch spanning most of the second half, he didn’t hit a shot, just 3 FTs. He scored to make it 53-49 just after halftime, and not again until NY was down 13 with 4:16 left in the game.

    That’s ghastly

  45. max fisher-cohen: First, in five years, Wade will be 35, and my guess is his career will be more or less over.

    Second, if this is the case, it’s time for the Knicks to quit the charade and mine the draft for that player. Dirk certainly had no problem scoring against Miami. While I don’t agree, ruru’s argument certainly makes more sense that Melo passouts aren’t working because we don’t have good ball handlers. I do, however, find that argument ironic since we traded all our good wing dribble-drivers in the Denver deal. I know the idea is that those guys are replaceable via the draft, but I think that is an exaggeration — quality defenders who can shoot the 3 and penetrate against a recovering defense do not grow on trees. Further, 60% of our first round picks for the next 5 years don’t belong to us, 2 of them, again, as a result of the Melo trade.

    It would be possible to simply tear it down and hope to build through the draft, just realize that landing a players as good as KG and Kevin Love has done absolutely nothing for Minnesota the past 10 years. Everyone says they’d rather watch the team implode and just hope you get lucky with the draft, but how many Knicks fans are really prepared to have a piece of shit team for the next 5 years in the hope that multiple all stars come to them in the draft? You’re telling me there’s a bigger chance of landing a dominant super star over the next five years than there is of Melo getting hot over the course of a playoffs? Of course half the board seems ok with rooting for Denver to win one playoff game every year just because none of their players are payed the max

  46. The level of obfuscation when it comes to Melo is kind of unbelievable. Any poor performance is blamed on his teammates or the opposing defense. Any good performance is in spite of his teammates and a triumph over a superior defense. It’s a classic have your cake and eat it too situation.

    I don’t think Melo played badly in game 2. The bar for efficiency is definitely lower in the playoffs as the numbers show. But all the parsing of the quality of his shot attempts vs. Lebron’s is just ridiculous.

    The reason Lebron gets so many transition attempts is because he is the best ball handler, pound for pound, in the history of the NBA, other than Magic Johnson.

    Melo is not. He simply doesn’t have that kind of dynamism in the open court. Frankly, he really isn’t that great of an athlete. He doesn’t possess the burst with the ball that great open court players do.

    Melo can put points on the board but his skill set is actually beginning to seem quite limited from what I have seen. He isn’t a great transition ballhandler. He doesn’t move really well off the ball. And isn’t a good three point shooter. It’s basically PNR (how good is he in the pick and roll, pretty great right?) and wing ISO jumpshots and a pretty fantastic ability to draw fouls. But there are some pretty big holes in his game for a guy who is lauded as one of the most complete offensive players in the game.

    I should add, I think that being a “complete offensive player” is a silly designation. It doesn’t really matter if you are a hedgehog or a fox out there as long as you can be productive….

  47. And since there is a baseball reference here, I have to put in a plug for Fangraphs.

    It’s amazing how much you can learn about basketball by reading about baseball there….

    “Doug: David Cone talks up FIP and UZR whenever he does Yankees games. You don’t see casual fans calling for his head.”

  48. “It would be possible to simply tear it down and hope to build through the draft, just realize that landing a players as good as KG and Kevin Love has done absolutely nothing for Minnesota the past 10 years.”

    That’s not because looking for those guys in the draft is a bad idea. It’s because they got lucky to find those guys, which can happen to any team given enough draft picks, then wasted the opportunity with incredibly poor management.

  49. Lots of great players can’t do anything in transition, Dirk, Kobe, and Pierce among them. He’s also about as good as Kobe at shooting 3’s, in fact the main area he’s lacking in comparison to him is FT%, and the fact that somehow advanced stats say it’s ok for a primary shooting guard option to have a lower efficiency than a primary small forward option, which makes no sense to me. Plus you’re totally ignoring that he has the best post up game of any non big in the league, which is silly considering it’s his post up game that gets him called the most versatile offensive player in the league.

    Also NOT discussing how a player’s shots occurred is silly, there’s no reason to ignore that unless you’re trying to be reductionistic and make simple math formulas work. It’s not ok to ignore any information in the NBA, the box score does not have exclusivity when it comes to valuable information

  50. Owen:
    “It would be possible to simply tear it down and hope to build through the draft, just realize that landing a players as good as KG and Kevin Love has done absolutely nothing for Minnesota the past 10 years.”

    That’s not because looking for those guys in the draft is a bad idea. It’s because they got lucky to find those guys, which can happen to any team given enough draft picks, then wasted the opportunity with incredibly poor management.

    The problem is you need multiple guys like that, and once you draft the first big guy you lose the window you have to draft other studs. Of the championship teams of the past 2 decades, the only team that totally built its core through the draft was San Antonio, and it’s much harder to find hidden international gems now than it was when Ginobli and Parker were coming out (much better scouting). Either way a true draft blow up that will result in a legitimate chance at a ring will take 5-10 years, and even then the most likely result is a team even more mediocre than the one out there now. OKC had a perfect draft build, but because Lebron went to Miami they’re not likely to ever be favored through the team’s core seasons, and they’re pretty likely to lose either Harden or Ibaka to monetary reasons

  51. “He’s also about as good as Kobe at shooting 3?s, in fact the main area he’s lacking in comparison to him is FT%”

    The main area he is lacking relative to Kobe is everything but scoring. And the gap is quite substantial, though not this year.

    “Also NOT discussing how a player’s shots occurred is silly”

    What’s silly is the way you guys have spent the entire year trying to explain away Melo’s mediocre production as the product of anything else than his own abilities.

  52. “it’s much harder to find hidden international gems now than it was when Ginobli and Parker were coming out (much better scouting)”

    Somehow they found Kawhi Leonard.

    My basic take from your comment is that it’s kind of pointless to try to figure out how to value players and then try to acquire the best, and most undervalued one. Which is pretty par for the course for your general attitude and also, I would say Knicks management, who have put their chips down on overrated scorers for the last ten years.

  53. Owen:
    And since there is a baseball reference here, I have to put in a plug for Fangraphs.

    It’s amazing how much you can learn about basketball by reading about baseball there….

    “Doug: David Cone talks up FIP and UZR whenever he does Yankees games. You don’t see casual fans calling for his head.”

    Coincidentally, Cone has cited Fangraphs on-air before.

  54. If I were going to properly reference Beckett would Godot = an NBA championship with the protagonists in the play being Knicks fans and talking about Melo being what they do?

    Or is Actual Superstar Melo = Godot and arguing advanced stats the way we are going to amuse ourselves in the void….

  55. Juany8: It would be possible to simply tear it down and hope to build through the draft, just realize that landing a players as good as KG and Kevin Love has done absolutely nothing for Minnesota the past 10 years. Everyone says they’d rather watch the team implode and just hope you get lucky with the draft, but how many Knicks fans are really prepared to have a piece of shit team for the next 5 years in the hope that multiple all stars come to them in the draft? You’re telling me there’s a bigger chance of landing a dominant super star over the next five years than there is of Melo getting hot over the course of a playoffs?

    The T-Wolves were managed terribly and, well, they play in MINNESOTA! Here’s the small-market reality: either you build a great team through the draft, or once your superstar becomes a UFA, he’s going to go to another team. KG is really the only exception to this rule. If you’re lucky, he tells you ahead of time and you trade him for some value.

    That means that your job as a GM of a big market team should be to do two things: maintain cap flexibility especially in the years that super stars become FAs, and try to acquire a solid cheap team that can complement the superstar that you either luck into in the draft or steal from some hopeless team like Minnesota.

    Rondo, Love and Marc Gasol are free agents in 2015. If we start now, we could build a nice young core by then. If we don’t, the cupboards will look pretty bare then, and we’ll have a redux of 2010. IMO the real reason we ended up with a concession prize that year is because, due to Isiah’s awful management, we had to sacrifice so much to get cap space and yet still were stuck with Eddy Curry. That meant we didn’t have the cash for two max players and didn’t have the player assets to make ourselves an appealing destination.

  56. Owen:
    “it’s much harder to find hidden international gems now than it was when Ginobli and Parker were coming out (much better scouting)”

    Somehow they found Kawhi Leonard.

    My basic take from your comment is that it’s kind of pointless to try to figure out how to value players and then try to acquire the best, and most undervalued one. Which is pretty par for the course for your general attitude and also, I would say Knicks management, who have put their chips down on overrated scorers for the last ten years.

    Kawhi Leonard is an international gem now?

    He’s not saying “it’s gotten harder to scout internationally, so let’s not even try.” No one ever says that. That’s simple reading comprehension.

    It’s still feasible to draft smart deep into the 1st round and come away with quality players. That’s Kawhi Leonard.

  57. ruruland: Maybe. Power forwards who can put up 570-590 efficiency on 25% usage are much rarer.

    No knock on melo’s game last night, which was fine, but he’s never had a TS over .570, much less .590. Fwiw.

  58. Owen:
    “He’s also about as good as Kobe at shooting 3?s, in fact the main area he’s lacking in comparison to him is FT%”

    The main area he is lacking relative to Kobe is everything but scoring. And the gap is quite substantial, though not this year.

    “Also NOT discussing how a player’s shots occurred is silly”

    What’s silly is the way you guys have spent the entire year trying to explain away Melo’s mediocre production as the product of anything else than his own abilities.

    This year he had an AST% 2 points lower than Kobe (21 to 23) an equal steal percentage, a higher rebound and block percentage. Looking at the per 36 numbers, the only number Kobe beat Melo in is assists, by around .4 a game. Sure Kobe had a down year, he’s getting older, but if you compare Melo’s season to his career stats he’s still fairly close, and Melo actually had a higher WS/48 this year than Kobe did in his last championship year.

    Also, I’m not trying to explain away Melo’s production, I’m trying to interpret it without ignoring the fact that every coach in the history of the league would tell you he’s an elite offensive player, and most coaches game plan for him as if he was the team’s best offensive option, so it’s not just coach speak. Maybe one day statistics will be a tenth of as good a player evaluation tool as someone like Phil Jackson and Gregg Poppovich, until then I’m not going to blindly follow stats I’d get instantly fired for if I used them to make decisions in my job. Intellectual integrity and all that

  59. @59
    Building through the draft is foundation creating dynasty. All repeat champions have taken their top players through the draft. I’m not going argue about Minnesota front office being bad or good. I will say that its many times harder for small market teams to sign role players. When the money is equal, players want to play in the big markets. Small market teams are force take option d,e or f.

  60. Yeah, I know. I was just pointing out that the Spurs success isn’t about international players. It’s a basic moneyball approach of finding value where others don’t see it…

    Doug: Kawhi Leonard is an international gem now?

    He’s not saying “it’s gotten harder to scout internationally, so let’s not even try.” No one ever says that. That’s simple reading comprehension.

    It’s still feasible to draft smart deep into the 1st round and come away with quality players. That’s Kawhi Leonard.

  61. Juany8: Ok and I’m going to tell you that the Knicks aren’t going to land someone that can but up a better offensive performance against Miami in the next 5 years. If you want to ignore that half of Melo’s shots were late in the shot clock while most of Lebron’s points were in transition that’s fine, I just judge making a shot that the entire league could make at 65 TS%+ as less impressive than a shot that the league could make at maybe a 40 TS%. There could be a discussion about why Lebron gets higher percentage shots more often, but simply citing the percentages without context says nothing about the player’s performance. Neither does citing assist numbers without pointing out that the Knicks have far, far worse help defenders than Miami, as well as worse shooters, and the fact that Lebron initiates the offense a lot while Melo doesn’t.

    I replayed the game and counted three times Melo took shots in real bailout situations- catching the ball with 7 seconds or less in the shot clock. He had a lot of catches with 9-10 seconds left on the clock but that’s not a bailout situation- it becomes a bailout situation when you square up and just hold the ball for three seconds waiting to see if a double is going to come like Melo tends to do. I’ve said that the Knicks need to make a concerted effort to get into their set quicker so that Melo is making those catches with 11-12 seconds left on the clock. But it doesn’t change the fact that Melo is very deliberate at times- sometimes to his own and the team’s detriment. Also, Melo was iso’d a ton- that may not be initiating the offense but it puts you in a position where if you’re moving the ball you should be picking more than one assist.

  62. “Also, I’m not trying to explain away Melo’s production, I’m trying to interpret it without ignoring the fact that every coach in the history of the league would tell you he’s an elite offensive player, and most coaches game plan for him as if he was the team’s best offensive option, so it’s not just coach speak. ”

    As I have pointed out before, it’s a given that Melo is going to have the ball in his hands most of the time. Which is why coaches game plan to stop him. And they have done a pretty good job of that as a Knick.

    At some point, it’s not enough to just be a threat. You actually have to deliver results. Not imperceptible increases in your teammates efficiency. Real production in measurable stats.

    You are always harping on how stats don’t really capture what is happening out there. But it really isn’t that true on the offensive end. You can’t really argue the numbers saying Melo has been a very mediocre offensive player this year, let alone for a max contract player. He just has been.

    Also, while I, somewhat famously, think Kobe is overrated, his contributions in his prime across the box score are far far better than Melo’s. It’s not close. Melo doesn’t really do anything very well except take shots. That at least is what I have seen so far….

  63. Kobe is about two years removed from his prime and is overrated. I’m not saying he isn’t a superstar, but he’s not the best post-Jordan player. My list, if we don’t take into account longevity, would go something like this:

    1) Lebron
    2) Shaq
    3) KG
    4) Duncan
    5) Dirk
    6) Nash
    7) Paul
    8) Kobe
    9) Pau Gasol
    10) Howard

    In 5 years, I think the best players will be

    1) Lebron
    2) Unibrow
    3) Durant
    4) Irving
    5) Howard
    6) Marc Gasol
    7) Love
    8) Ibaka
    9) Harden
    10) Greg Monroe

  64. Oh i forgot Bynum. He might be on that second list, maybe around 5th if he can stay healthy that long.

  65. ruruland: Maybe. Power forwards who can put up 570-590 efficiency on 25% usage are much rarer.

    is this a reference to Amar’e or Anthony?

  66. With all the stats cited, do any of you honestly believe that Melo is not the best player on this team not named Tyson? We can debate that rationally. If you buy the premise, why not build the team around a guy that not only can play the 3, but was a beast at the 4. THCJ, if nothing else, I find that you are you try and are usually intellectually honest. Would you disagree? Why all the Melo focus? Why all the irrational hate? Fans loved John Starks, who wasn’t even near Melo in talent or ability. I wish we had 2 more dudes that played like Melo on this team. Sure, he shoots too much at times, but look at the rest of his game. For G-d sakes. To me, most of the critique seems patently absurd, prejudiced (I don’t mean racially, so don’t go there) and I could give a flying sh-t what Beck says or implies. We should genuflect because he writes for the Times? Rant over.

  67. “With all the stats cited, do any of you honestly believe that Melo is not the best player on this team not named Tyson?”

    I accept that. He is our second best player. My argument has never been that he is an average player. He just isn’t great.

    I don’t wish we had four Carmelo’s. That would be twice as duplicative as our current situation. I wish Carmelo was more productive than he has been.

    And the reason we talk so much about Melo is that some people just can’t accept that he isn’t a superstar but actually a pretty mediocre star, maybe third tier, and not all that different from a lot of other guys out there, just with a slightly more gaudy ability to take shots.

    That said, if we are going to build around Melo, I hope we can find the kind of gritty, defensively talented role players and and specialists who can make him look better than he is.

  68. Owen:

    You are always harping on how stats don’t really capture what is happening out there. But it really isn’t that true on the offensive end. You can’t really argue the numbers saying Melo has been a very mediocre offensive player this year, let alone for a max contract player. He just has been.

    Also, while I, somewhat famously, think Kobe is overrated, his contributions in his prime across the box score are far far better than Melo’s. It’s not close. Melo doesn’t really do anything very well except take shots. That at least is what I have seen so far….

    exactly.

    the argument “everybody thinks he’s a superstar, so he must be” is one of the most irrelevant I’ve ever heard, seriously.

    the media does whatever it wants… Tim Tebow is a pathetic QB in the NFL, and the media made a lot of people think he was actually good when it was plain obvious that what he was doing was never going to be sustainable.

    I can’t compare Carmelo to anyone else other than Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady at their primes…

    the similarity is uncanny:
    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=1&p1=cartevi01&y1=2007&p2=anthoca01&y2=2012&p3=mcgratr01&y3=2006

    and even though they are similar, Carmelo grades out as the worst of them (considering Carter and McGrady’s first 9 years in the league)…

    and we have seen the results of having a guy like McGrady or Carter as your “superstar”…

  69. now, do I think it’s impossible for a team to win with Carmelo Anthony as the primary offensive focus? no, it isn’t, just like McGrady and Carter could have won titles too.

    but there has to be a perfect or near-perfect balance of efficient scoring, really really good defense, size and a very good PG who happens to be very unselfish.

    this has never happened to either McGrady, Carter or Anthony… why?

    because it’s VERY hard to gather all those qualities into a team restrained by a salary cap…

    I do think the Knicks have an outside chance to do it, if we can somehow magically turn Amare’s albatross of a contract into useful pieces, but that’s very unlikely as we all know.

  70. oh, by the way, every coach in the league said McGrady was a super duper star, they all game planned for him, and that didn’t meant much.

  71. It’s ironic that you reference the Spurs Owen, Poppovich is famously anti stats, in fact I think he’s one of the few coaches in the league who doesn’t look at anything resembling advanced stats at all. Neither did Phil Jackson though so there you go.

    Now if you’re going to pretend my argument is that “scorers are the bestest” then ruru is right, you’re an intellectually dishonest troll who uses statistics only when it’s convenient and is probably more biased against individual players and opinions than anyone but THCJ on this board. Players like Jamal Crawford and Ben Gordon suck, there’s no point in picking up players who are going to just jack up shots unless you have a bench that is atrocious at scoring and you can deal with the variance for 25 minutes a night. Carmelo is a player capable you can run an offense around on any given game, and he’s someone who can get off a good look against any kind of defensive pressure, both talents that are blatantly ignored by statistics that like to pretend Tyson Chandler and Steve Novak just had incredible offensive seasons.

  72. Bruno Almeida:
    oh, by the way, every coach in the league said McGrady was a super duper star, they all game planned for him, and that didn’t meant much.

    It also never meant much for Chris Paul or KG before he went to Boston. Hell it didn’t work for Dwyane Wade against Atlanta before he got Lebron. Funny how that works. Let’s ignore that Tmac had other max contract players simply taking up bench space in the playoffs. It wouldn’t make the narrative as neat….. Vince Carter sucks though

  73. Wow Barkley actually just tore apart this debate on TNT. He just came out and said most players don’t work unless they’re playing around great players, it doesn’t matter how well you shoot when you’re open when you’re not open and your team needs a score lol.

  74. Juany8: It also never meant much for Chris Paul or KG before he went to Boston. Hell it didn’t work for Dwyane Wade against Atlanta before he got Lebron. Funny how that works. Let’s ignore that Tmac had other max contract players simply taking up bench space in the playoffs. It wouldn’t make the narrative as neat….. Vince Carter sucks though

    I don’t see the difference between T-Mac and Carmelo then, Carmelo also has had a useless max contract player sitting on the bench both times he got to the playoffs…

    like I said, I don’t think it’s impossible for Carmelo to win it, like I said it wasn’t impossible for T-Mac to have done it, but the fact is that when you have a second or third tier superstar, you need to work MUCH more on building just the perfect team for that to happen.

    in McGrady’s 8 good years, it didn’t happen… so far, in Melo’s first 9, it hasn’t either.

  75. Juany8:
    Wow Barkley actually just tore apart this debate on TNT. He just came out and said most players don’t work unless they’re playing around great players, it doesn’t matter how well you shoot when you’re open when you’re not open and your team needs a score lol.

    I don’t think anybody ever argued the fact that it’s not possible to have open shots every single play, and that it’s valuable to have a player who can occasionally make shots while well guarded.

    but this is not the point, seriously… can you honestly say that every shot Carmelo Anthony takes while guarded is necessary?

    because what Barkley just said is that there are moments when your team needs a score and someone needs to take a tough shot…

    if Carmelo only shot while guarded when it was needed, he would be a MUCH more efficient player.

  76. Bruno Almeida: I don’t see the difference between T-Mac and Carmelo then, Carmelo also has had a useless max contract player sitting on the bench both times he got to the playoffs…

    like I said, I don’t think it’s impossible for Carmelo to win it, like I said it wasn’t impossible for T-Mac to have done it, but the fact is that when you have a second or third tier superstar, you need to work MUCH more on building just the perfect team for that to happen.

    in McGrady’s 8 good years, it didn’t happen… so far, in Melo’s first 9, it hasn’t either.

    You’re really going to ignore that Yao Ming and Grant Hill, both better players than anyone we’re discussing, were sitting on the bench during Tmac’s prime? Or that when he went to Houston, he had 2 years where played over 70 games, and those two years he averaged a .172 WS/48?

    The best players of all time couldn’t do shit without other stars and a solid bunch of role players. Melo isn’t one of the best players of all time, but there’s no way he’s out of the top 20 of the league, and since everyone in the top 10 is locked up for the forseeable future…

  77. Juany8… Let’s say Derrick Rose doesn’t play next season. I think putting Anthony on that team would almost entirely replace the loss of Rose. By contrast, put Carmelo Anthony on the Spurs, and he would hurt that team. My guess is if Anthony signed with the spurs for FREE, with the only stipulation being he play 36 MPG, the Spurs would win fewer games. That team already has the weapons to score efficiently, so adding a guy who doesn’t add a huge amount on defense, isn’t great at hitting open shots, loses focus when he doesn’t get all the touches, and bogs down ball movement on offense would only hurt the team. His shots would more often than not be less efficient than the shots the other players would get with Anthony cheerleading. The point is, the ability to create quality shots is only valuable to a team that can’t create quality shots already.

    The same is true of Stoudemire. Put STAT on the Spurs for free, and it’d probably hurt them. The only reason many focus on Anthony is because he joined later. It was the acquisition of him that made no sense for this team.

  78. daJudge:
    With all the stats cited, do any of you honestly believe that Melo is not the best player on this team not named Tyson?We can debate that rationally.If you buy the premise, why not build the team around a guy that not only can play the 3, but was a beast at the 4. THCJ, if nothing else, I find that you are you try and are usually intellectually honest.Would you disagree?Why all the Melo focus?Why all the irrational hate?Fans loved John Starks, who wasn’t even near Melo in talent or ability. I wish we had 2 more dudes that played like Melo on this team.Sure, he shoots too much at times, but look at the rest of his game.For G-d sakes. To me, most of the critique seems patently absurd, prejudiced (I don’t mean racially, so don’t go there) and I could give a flying sh-t what Beck says or implies.We should genuflect because he writes for the Times?Rant over.

    Jon Starks never cost the Knicks draft picks, a young player with the same skills (at a quarter of the cost), and ate up 30% of the salary.

    I’m not prejudiced against any players. LeBron is touted a superstar and as far as I can tell, he has never been overrated. Durant, Howard, Nowitzki (a “choke artist” until he finally had the right team around him), Garnett, Duncan — all superstars.

    The argument that I take issue with is, “Well, the stats get it right for players X, Y, and Z, but they’re wrong about player A’s offense.” Like I’ve said, Carmelo would have to make his teammates substantially better 100% of the time to make up for his middling shooting efficiency at a high volume. I’m not saying he doesn’t effect the way an opposing defense plays; I just don’t think his impact is as significant as a player who both creates “space” for his teammates while doing so at a ridiculously high efficiency (Harden, Nash, etc.).

    He’s a good player, but he’s not worth mortgaging…

  79. Bruno Almeida: I don’t think anybody ever argued the fact that it’s not possible to have open shots every single play, and that it’s valuable to have a player who can occasionally make shots while well guarded.

    but this is not the point, seriously… can you honestly say that every shot Carmelo Anthony takes while guarded is necessary?

    because what Barkley just said is that there are moments when your team needs a score and someone needs to take a tough shot…

    if Carmelo only shot while guarded when it was needed, he would be a MUCH more efficient player.

    I’m not gonna argue that, Melo does need to work on his decision making but it has certainly improved throughout the year. The point is that just because a shot is guarded doesn’t mean it’s a bad shot, it seriously depends on the context. And no matter what the final shot looks like, you have to look at how a team is capable of creating open looks throughout the game. If it’s going to be extremely difficult to create a good look for someone like Novak against a defense like Miami, I’d rather have stretches where Melo gets to actually work his defender on the post or in an ISO so he can get a shot he’s comfortable with. It’s possible to spend so much time looking for a good shot that you’re forced to just take a bad shot anyways, it’s a very complex optimization process that can’t be analyzed solely by the results. It doesn’t help that Baron Davis and Mike Bibby take the full 8 seconds to get the ball upcourt against ball pressure…

  80. Juany8: You’re really going to ignore that Yao Ming and Grant Hill, both better players than anyone we’re discussing, were sitting on the bench during Tmac’s prime? Or that when he went to Houston, he had 2 years where played over 70 games, and those two years he averaged a .172 WS/48?

    The best players of all time couldn’t do shit without other stars and a solid bunch of role players. Melo isn’t one of the best players of all time, but there’s no way he’s out of the top 20 of the league, and since everyone in the top 10 is locked up for the forseeable future…

    dude, I’m not ignoring it, I’m actually agreeing with you.

    all I’m saying is that if you have a 2nd tier superstar (and McGrady was pretty much that except for about 3 or 4 years in his career, where he could have won it probably if he had Hill or Yao fully healthy), you need to build pretty much the PERFECT team around the guy to have a chance at a title, and that is close to impossible to do with a salary cap.

  81. Juany8:
    Wow Barkley actually just tore apart this debate on TNT. He just came out and said most players don’t work unless they’re playing around great players, it doesn’t matter how well you shoot when you’re open when you’re not open and your team needs a score lol.

    Who cares what that bumbling idiot says?

    Ray Allen went from Milwaukee to Seattle midyear in ’02-’03. His change in eFG%? +.003.

    LeBron James went from a middling Cavs team to a stacked Heat team. His change in eFG%? -.004.

    Chandler’s change from the NBA champions to a team without a point guard for most of the season? +.025.

    Do you see how ridiculous this argument is?

    PLAYERS’ STATS DO NOT CHANGE MUCH FROM CHANGES IN THE PLAYERS AROUND THEM.

  82. Juany8:
    Carmelo is a player capable you can run an offense around on any given game, and he’s someone who can get off a good look against any kind of defensive pressure,

    Well, he’s played 6 playoff games as a Knick and shot poorly in five of them so obviously there are some kinds of defensive pressure that he struggles with. I appreciate the fact that he can get a 17 footer up late in the clock- the downside is that you have to live with a lot of 17 footers early in the clock which isn’t a particularly good thing.

  83. max fisher-cohen:
    Juany8… Let’s say Derrick Rose doesn’t play next season. I think putting Anthony on that team would almost entirely replace the loss of Rose. By contrast, put Carmelo Anthony on the Spurs, and he would hurt that team. My guess is if Anthony signed with the spurs for FREE, with the only stipulation being he play 36 MPG, the Spurs would win fewer games. That team already has the weapons to score efficiently, so adding a guy who doesn’t add a huge amount on defense, isn’t great at hitting open shots, loses focus when he doesn’t get all the touches, and bogs down ball movement on offense would only hurt the team. His shots would more often than not be less efficient than the shots the other players would get with Anthony cheerleading. The point is, the ability to create quality shots is only valuable to a team that can’t create quality shots already.

    The same is true of Stoudemire. Put STAT on the Spurs for free, and it’d probably hurt them. The only reason many focus on Anthony is because he joined later. It was the acquisition of him that made no sense for this team.

    I’m not going to argue against this either, you don’t need several primary offensive options on a team, at some point it’s better to have efficient finishers who can expend all their effort on running, rebounding, and defending. Only one person can ever be doubled with the ball at once anyways, at some point things like spacing need to also be considered.

    Personally I think even Miami would be better trading off Dwyane Wade for legit center and a solid wing or two. Maybe to Philadelphia for Jrue Holiday, Spencer Hawes, and Thaddeus Young or something, that’s clearly not as good a package as Dwyane Wade but Miami would probably get better since Wade and Lebron duplicate each other.

  84. Juany8: I’m not gonna argue that, Melo does need to work on his decision making but it has certainly improved throughout the year. The point is that just because a shot is guarded doesn’t mean it’s a bad shot, it seriously depends on the context. And no matter what the final shot looks like, you have to look at how a team is capable of creating open looks throughout the game. If it’s going to be extremely difficult to create a good look for someone like Novak against a defense like Miami, I’d rather have stretches where Melo gets to actually work his defender on the post or in an ISO so he can get a shot he’s comfortable with. It’s possible to spend so much time looking for a good shot that you’re forced to just take a bad shot anyways, it’s a very complex optimization process that can’t be analyzed solely by the results. It doesn’t help that Baron Davis and Mike Bibby take the full 8 seconds to get the ball upcourt against ball pressure…

    I agree, but I’d choose a bad shot with 3 left on the shot clock because you tried to find a better shot and it just wasn’t there, over a pull-up 19-footer with 17 left in the clock and Luol Deng over you, every time.

    when I watch the Spurs, I get the feeling that maybe it’s not that impossible to get open shots most of the time, but it can only happen with a brilliant coach and an incredibly focused roster with a variety of specific skill sets.

    since we aren’t anywhere near that, the Knicks are going to have stretches were Carmelo ISO’s are perfectly acceptable and the best way to score on some specific situations.

    but that doesn’t mean that the team shouldn’t be looking for options to make sure ISO’s are a last resort, and not the norm.

  85. The Honorable Cock Jowles: Who cares what that bumbling idiot says?

    Ray Allen went from Milwaukee to Seattle midyear in ’02-’03. His change in eFG%? +.003.

    LeBron James went from a middling Cavs team to a stacked Heat team. His change in eFG%? -.004.

    Chandler’s change from the NBA champions to a team without a point guard for most of the season? +.025.

    Do you see how ridiculous this argument is?

    PLAYERS’ STATS DO NOT CHANGE MUCH FROM CHANGES IN THE PLAYERS AROUND THEM.

    If you’re only looking at eFG% and TS% sure, they don’t change much in many cases. A player’s ability to hit an open shot is a player’s ability to hit an open shot, that’s not up to discussion. What is up for discussion is how a player changes the total distribution of shots. You don’t need to make Chandler or Novak shoot a higher percentage, you need to get them more shots they can take at that efficiency. As individuals, they have no ability to do that against serious pressure, so the team needs to figure out how to get them open so they can take those shots. That’s where players like Anthony come in, especially against the better defenses.

  86. I really don’t understand how Melo taking difficult shots in this playoffs series is a bad thing. Is there some kind of mythical “open man” that never gets the ball? There is no dribble penetration. There is not even a remote threat of dribble penetration. Miami is overplaying the passing the lanes at will because there is no dribble penetration. Swinging the ball from side to side will not get open shots. Dwyane Wade, of all people, is guarding Novak and not giving him any breathing room.

    If there’s an offensive strategy that the Knicks can pull off, taking into account their current personnel and Miami’s defense, where Melo doesn’t get the lion’s share of touches, please educate me.

    Otherwise, you are arguing hypotheticals for next season when there’s a playoffs series going on RIGHT NOW.

  87. Bruno Almeida: dude, I’m not ignoring it, I’m actually agreeing with you.

    all I’m saying is that if you have a 2nd tier superstar (and McGrady was pretty much that except for about 3 or 4 years in his career, where he could have won it probably if he had Hill or Yao fully healthy), you need to build pretty much the PERFECT team around the guy to have a chance at a title, and that is close to impossible to do with a salary cap.

    Even Paul Pierce and Dirk needed pretty ideal conditions to win a ring. Dirk might be better than Melo, but the team Dirk had around him last year was MUCH MUCH better than this Knicks’ team. So was the team around Paul Pierce (the dude had trouble going deep in the playoffs when teams like New Jersey were making back to back Finals in the East). I’d say Melo probably would have won a ring or 3 playing with Kobe’s teammates his whole career too, especially since he probably wouldn’t have fought with Shaq as much.

    Also, having a real point guard in Jeremy Lin should make a noticeable impact on the offense. If you want Melo to take less fadeaways (which I do) then there needs to be some other way to get shots, the Spurs actually have 3 players you can run offense around for stretches, the Knicks have 1 and a half depending on how you feel about Stoudemire.

  88. THCJ–I appreciate (but do not agree) with the argument about giving up the farm for Melo, but guys, the closing is done. Can we ever move on to the home improvements? On a more basic level, I believe (just my opinion), that Melo, Chandler and Lin (if healthy) are a fine nucleus to ground a very, very competitive squad. I am pretty down on Stat, BD and even JR, to a lesser extent. My biggest concern by far is Amare’s contract. That is not because of the injury, but because he has NO role on this team. He was signed as a PF and isn’t. I really do not know what he is at this point. As much as mortgaging the future irks some of the posters, it just kills me when a player can’t perform relative to the specified skill set of the position. So when Owen argues that Melo is basically average, I cannot agree, but I would agree relative to Stat. BTW, that’s probably why Melo, who is a 3, looks decent at the 4 in comparison.

  89. Juany8: If you’re only looking at eFG% and TS% sure, they don’t change much in many cases. A player’s ability to hit an open shot is a player’s ability to hit an open shot, that’s not up to discussion. What is up for discussion is how a player changes the total distribution of shots. You don’t need to make Chandler or Novak shoot a higher percentage, you need to get them more shots they can take at that efficiency. As individuals, they have no ability to do that against serious pressure, so the team needs to figure out how to get them open so they can take those shots. That’s where players like Anthony come in, especially against the better defenses.

    but that’s not the point.

    THCJ’s argument has been that for guys like Chandler or Novak, being around Anthony as the starting SF or Shawn Marion or Stephen Jackson doesn’t make much of a difference.

    LeBron went from having Antawn Jamison as his best teammate to having Dwayne Wade, and his efg% is pretty much the same.

    I do believe some guys, like LeBron, Dwight Howard or Chris Paul seriously affect teammates production… but Carmelo is not one of this guys, imo.

  90. Juany8: Even Paul Pierce and Dirk needed pretty ideal conditions to win a ring. Dirk might be better than Melo, but the team Dirk had around him last year was MUCH MUCH better than this Knicks’ team. So was the team around Paul Pierce (the dude had trouble going deep in the playoffs when teams like New Jersey were making back to back Finals in the East). I’d say Melo probably would have won a ring or 3 playing with Kobe’s teammates his whole career too, especially since he probably wouldn’t have fought with Shaq as much.

    Also, having a real point guard in Jeremy Lin should make a noticeable impact on the offense. If you want Melo to take less fadeaways (which I do) then there needs to be some other way to get shots, the Spurs actually have 3 players you can run offense around for stretches, the Knicks have 1 and a half depending on how you feel about Stoudemire.

    but Shaq is the one that was the true superstar in those Laker teams, I’m sure Melo would have won those titles in place of Kobe, even though Kobe is the superior player.

    however, I don’t think Kobe – Melo together could win those titles, their skill sets are pretty much the same.

    and that’s why I said, unfortunately with the way things are, the Knicks need Melo taking those shots… but the team needs to do whatever it takes to make sure, for the future, that this is not the way to go.

    which gets pretty tough to do when you have 2 max contracts clogging up all the cap…

  91. Doug:
    I really don’t understand how Melo taking difficult shots in this playoffs series is a bad thing. Is there some kind of mythical “open man” that never gets the ball? There is no dribble penetration. There is not even a remote threat of dribble penetration. Miami is overplaying the passing the lanes at will because there is no dribble penetration. Swinging the ball from side to side will not get open shots. Dwyane Wade, of all people, is guarding Novak and not giving him any breathing room.

    If there’s an offensive strategy that the Knicks can pull off, taking into account their current personnel and Miami’s defense, where Melo doesn’t get the lion’s share of touches, please educate me.

    Otherwise, you are arguing hypotheticals for next season when there’s a playoffs series going on RIGHT NOW.

    This. Saying Chandler and Novak should take more shots because they shoot a high percentage, without providing a single reasonable way for those shots to happen in a planned way, means nothing. Melo shouldn’t be forcing passes to Novak and Landry so that they can then stand there waiting for someone talented to come by and take the ball from them 25 feet from the basket with half the shot clock gone. Miami is seriously lucky they managed to pick up players like Haslem, Battier, Mike Miller, and Chalmers for almost nothing, they’re all above average defenders (maybe not Miller) who can space the floor, hit an open man, and get some penetration against rotating defenses (mostly Chalmers) How much better are those players than Jeffries, Bibby, and Fields? The team stumbled into JR, Shump, and Lin this year, there’s no reason players can’t develop but they haven’t yet.

  92. “Now if you’re going to pretend my argument is that “scorers are the bestest” then ruru is right, you’re an intellectually dishonest troll who uses statistics only when it’s convenient and is probably more biased against individual players and opinions than anyone but THCJ on this board.”

    I am not trolling you.

    I am simply asking you to defend your opinion that Melo is a top 20 NBA player with some argument other than “stats are flawed” and “other NBA people think it.” Because, as Knicks fan understand, what other people in the NBA and NBA greats in particular think really doesn’t mean crap. (although I am ok with Barkley in general).

    And how is it trolling to cite objective evidence to support my opinion. It seems a little less trollish than say, telling other people they are bad fans for not supporting Melo, or telling them how silly they are for thinking things that would get them laughed out of the secret nba insider message board.

    Also, I disliked Melo as a player long before he was a glimmer in Jim Dolan’s eye.

    This is a stats focused board. And there is a real reason why people aren’t happy with him. I don’t understand why you and Ruru can’t accept that.

    “Melo does need to work on his decision making but it has certainly improved throughout the year.”

    It’s these kinds of comments I simply don’t understand.

    Decision making is a skill. There are seven years of data showing that Carmelo doesn’t have superstar level decision making ability. Why are you bashing us for calling into question whether it will ever happen?

    And what Max said, +1

  93. Juany8: This. Saying Chandler and Novak should take more shots because they shoot a high percentage, without providing a single reasonable way for those shots to happen in a planned way, means nothing. Melo shouldn’t be forcing passes to Novak and Landry so that they can then stand there waiting for someone talented to come by and take the ball from them 25 feet from the basket with half the shot clock gone. Miami is seriously lucky they managed to pick up players like Haslem, Battier, Mike Miller, and Chalmers for almost nothing, they’re all above average defenders (maybe not Miller) who can space the floor, hit an open man, and get some penetration against rotating defenses (mostly Chalmers) How much better are those players than Jeffries, Bibby, and Fields? The team stumbled into JR, Shump, and Lin this year, there’s no reason players can’t develop but they haven’t yet.

    but that’s why I think ruruland’s argument of “Melo making his teammates better” is bullshit.

    Melo shouldn’t be forcing passes to Novak or Landry when they are guarded, I agree… but if Carmelo’s presence changes so much the game, and opens up opportunities for other guys, then how come against good defensive teams his teammates are always guarded and there are never any other options than taking a contested 18-footer?

  94. daJudge: I believe (just my opinion), that Melo, Chandler and Lin (if healthy) are a fine nucleus to ground a very, very competitive squad.

    Questionable. I think Lin should be traded if you want to max Melo’s value: link.

    To summarize, while on the floor together, Lin and Melo both shoot 40% from the field, shoot lower from three, and get significantly fewer FTAs/36 minutes. While on the floor WITHOUT melo, Lin shoots 49% and while without Lin, Melo shoots 44%.

    It’s a small sample, but it’s not promising. My guess is the issue is neither are good at spot ups. Both are much more comfortable with the ball in their hands.

  95. Doug:
    I really don’t understand how Melo taking difficult shots in this playoffs series is a bad thing. Is there some kind of mythical “open man” that never gets the ball? There is no dribble penetration. There is not even a remote threat of dribble penetration. Miami is overplaying the passing the lanes at will because there is no dribble penetration. Swinging the ball from side to side will not get open shots. Dwyane Wade, of all people, is guarding Novak and not giving him any breathing room.

    If there’s an offensive strategy that the Knicks can pull off, taking into account their current personnel and Miami’s defense, where Melo doesn’t get the lion’s share of touches, please educate me.

    Otherwise, you are arguing hypotheticals for next season when there’s a playoffs series going on RIGHT NOW.

    Agreed, it’s the old Breen rant about “ball movement” when all it results in is passing around the perimeter to guys like Landry Fields, who does useless head fakes and then gives the ball back, just using up shot clock.

    However, I don’t understand why they don’t at least try to run Novak off of screens a la Ray Allen or Korver to free him up.

  96. “I really don’t understand how Melo taking difficult shots in this playoffs series is a bad thing. Is there some kind of mythical “open man” that never gets the ball?”

    It isn’t necessarily. Although perhaps Stat thinks so.

    But that’s really not the issue.

    The issue is that Ruruland and to a lesser extent Juan are trying to extend the reality distortion field that swirls around Melo right over Knickerblogger. And until Melo delivers the goods, like an actual second tier star statistical season, I’d rather not drink the kool-aid.

  97. Bruno Almeida: but that’s not the point.

    THCJ’s argument has been that for guys like Chandler or Novak, being around Anthony as the starting SF or Shawn Marion or Stephen Jackson doesn’t make much of a difference.

    LeBron went from having Antawn Jamison as his best teammate to having Dwayne Wade, and his efg% is pretty much the same.

    I do believe some guys, like LeBron, Dwight Howard or Chris Paul seriously affect teammates production… but Carmelo is not one of this guys, imo.

    Lebron also traded Mo Williams and Anderson Varejao for Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh as teammates and got a worse regular season team out of it. Nobody in the league affects a player’s ability to make the shots he takes, except maybe savants like Nash and Paul. What elite players do is change the number and distribution of shots those players get, and they seriously affect how both the offense and the opposing defense will play. Melo is one of those players, if not one of the better ones.

    As far as two max contracts, I don’t see how Amar’e possibly deserves the max, or how the team wouldn’t be better building around Melo and Chandler than Amar’e and Chandler (who are the real duplicative offensive talents on this team, both get their points rolling to the rim on pick and rolls, but you can’t run a pick and roll with both at the same time) and you know what? Lin, Shump, Melo, Amar’e, and Chandler might actually be a sick starting lineup going forward, we only saw it for a few games this season but it was easily the best stretch of the season, even though Melo still couldn’t make open shots or even free throws. Even if that starting lineup was the best in the entire league, half of it is sitting on the bench and the replacements are crap. Kind of makes a difference against the best team in the league.

  98. Bruno Almeida:

    I do believe some guys, like LeBron, Dwight Howard or Chris Paul seriously affect teammates production… but Carmelo is not one of this guys, imo.

    Yeah. The Melo defense seems to be:

    a) Melo’s sheer presence makes his teammates better.

    b) Melo’s teams don’t contend because his teammates are bad.

    Not sure how both can be true, but I know I’ve heard it both ways here…

  99. Bruno Almeida: but that’s why I think ruruland’s argument of “Melo making his teammates better” is bullshit.

    Melo shouldn’t be forcing passes to Novak or Landry when they are guarded, I agree… but if Carmelo’s presence changes so much the game, and opens up opportunities for other guys, then how come against good defensive teams his teammates are always guarded and there are never any other options than taking a contested 18-footer?

    They’re not, he did just fine when he had Billups and Nene. Look no team that needs Mike Bibby to handle the ball is going to go far in the playoffs, it’s simply not going to happen. If a proper, healthy team next year STILL doesn’t result in a good offense, then I’ll accept that Melo doesn’t do much for an offense, not when they’re going up against Miami with JR Smith as the second best offensive player on the team.

  100. Yeah, that’s what I was trying to say, in 800 characters less…

    Z: Yeah. The Melo defense seems to be:

    a) Melo’s sheer presence makes his teammates better.

    b) Melo’s teams don’t contend because his teammates are bad.

    Not sure how both can be true, but I know I’ve heard it both ways here…

  101. Again, we are not blaming Melo for not beating the Heat. We are simply pointing out that, across his entire career, and in his tenure with the Knicks, he has been pretty mediocre statistically for a max contract player.

    Neither you or Ruruland seem able to admit that.

    Instead, you descend into a web of obfuscation. Advanced stats are specious, his teammates stink, his competition amazing, we don’t know enough about basketball to appreciate him, or the most basic, “just wait, Melo Christ Superstar is right around the corner.”

    All he has to do is play like a real superstar and we will all shut the hell up, I promise…

    Juany8: They’re not, he did just fine when he had Billups and Nene. Look no team that needs Mike Bibby to handle the ball is going to go far in the playoffs, it’s simply not going to happen. If a proper, healthy team next year STILL doesn’t result in a good offense, then I’ll accept that Melo doesn’t do much for an offense, not when they’re going up against Miami with JR Smith as the second best offensive player on the team.

  102. Bizarre argument. If Poppovich somehow won games with inefficient players, you’d have a point, but regardless of whether he looks at advanced stats, he plays efficient players.

    Pop has a better framework for evaluating players’ efficiency than 99% of armchair basketball analysts. And 99.9% better than armchair basketball analysts that pay short shrift to advanced stats.

    (I think Melo’s game and clutchness is invaluable for a championship-caliber team deep in the playoffs. His inefficiency makes him poorly suited, on his own, for carrying an untalented team through the regular season.)

    Juany8: It’s ironic that you reference the Spurs Owen, Poppovich is famously anti stats, in fact I think he’s one of the few coaches in the league who doesn’t look at anything resembling advanced stats at all. Neither did Phil Jackson though so there you go.

  103. The Melo( and the rest of the Knicks) defense has been not getting back in transition, poor help of the helper and no rim protection. I know offense is more fun to talk about, but we played pretty well offensively in game 2. ESP on a DPOY topic….if we don’t stop Miami from scoring 100 again it doesn’t matter how many Melo scores. Hopefully the healthy vocal Tyson changes that. He is the key to the game in my opinion, not melo

    Z: Yeah. The Melo defense seems to be:

    a) Melo’s sheer presence makes his teammates better.

    b) Melo’s teams don’t contend because his teammates are bad.

    Not sure how both can be true, but I know I’ve heard it both ways here…

  104. Z: Yeah. The Melo defense seems to be:

    a) Melo’s sheer presence makes his teammates better.

    b) Melo’s teams don’t contend because his teammates are bad.

    Not sure how both can be true, but I know I’ve heard it both ways here…

    perfectly said.

  105. And if you think you can’t run a good offense around Carmelo, go look at his last few Nuggets teams and compare them to Chris Paul’s last few Hornets teams for a comparison of offensive efficiency. Even though Melo is much less efficient and takes a bigger percentage of his team’s possessions, his Nuggets teams were more efficient on offense every year by one (the one year, 2007, the Nuggets had the second most efficient offense in the whole league) So Chris Paul’s teammates were noticeably less efficient than Melo’s teammates, and Chris Paul got to play with Tyson Chandler, who is shooting noticeably better with Melo than, well, ever.

  106. formido:
    Bizarre argument. If Poppovich somehow won games with inefficient players, you’d have a point, but regardless of whether he looks at advanced stats, he plays efficient players.

    Pop has a better framework for evaluating players’ efficiency than 99% of armchair basketball analysts. And 99.9% better than armchair basketball analysts that pay short shrift to advanced stats.

    (I think Melo’s game and clutchness is invaluable for a championship-caliber team deep in the playoffs. His inefficiency makes him poorly suited, on his own, for carrying an untalented team through the regular season.)

    yeah, and Popovich, the guy who doesn’t care about stats, started DeJuan Blair, who you guys despise, more than 60 games on both this and last season, and routinely finds role players who are much more efficient than flashy, like Danny Green (.580 TS% this year), Matt Bonner (.597 TS%) and Tiago Splitter (.649 TS% this year).

  107. d-mar:
    However, I don’t understand why they don’t at least try to run Novak off of screens a la Ray Allen or Korver to free him up.

    Novak doesn’t move as well as either of those guys. He doesn’t have the foot speed (or the coordination) to navigate through the kind of staggered screens that Boston and Chicago set for those guys especially against a team as athletic as Miami.

  108. formido:
    Bizarre argument. If Poppovich somehow won games with inefficient players, you’d have a point, but regardless of whether he looks at advanced stats, he plays efficient players.

    Pop has a better framework for evaluating players’ efficiency than 99% of armchair basketball analysts. And 99.9% better than armchair basketball analysts that pay short shrift to advanced stats.

    (I think Melo’s game and clutchness is invaluable for a championship-caliber team deep in the playoffs. His inefficiency makes him poorly suited, on his own, for carrying an untalented team through the regular season.)

    I don’t deny any of this, but it certainly means it’s possible to be a fantastic player evaluator without sniffing advanced stats. The part about Melo is something that I think needs to be highlighted, it’s really transition basketball that rules during the regular season of the NBA, and Melo simply doesn’t help much on that regard. Where he’s valuable is in the half court against an elite defense, when exploiting mismatches is the most important thing you can do in the playoffs.

    Oh and Poppovich benched DeJuan Blair for Boris Diaw in the playoffs, he’s certainly looking at how to make his team as efficient as possible but it’s not by playing a bunch of people with high TS%, especially since he cares much more about defense than offense.

  109. Possibly true, but sample size small. The stretch with melo and Lin at the end (just prior to Lin going out) DID result in some very solid wins, the home and home thrashing of Indiana was downright nasty, and if I recall they both were excellent in those games, and, in fact, didn’t even need to play more than about 25 minutes.

    I do fear that Melo prevents/will prevent Lin from some of his strengths. Furthering on the Spurs hypotheticals, Lin would be an excellent back up to Parker on the Spurs, Melo would slowly play himself out of the rotation (if all players there now were still there in this hypothetical)

    max fisher-cohen: Questionable. I think Lin should be traded if you want to max Melo’s value: link.

    To summarize, while on the floor together, Lin and Melo both shoot 40% from the field, shoot lower from three, and get significantly fewer FTAs/36 minutes. While on the floor WITHOUT melo, Lin shoots 49% and while without Lin, Melo shoots 44%.

    It’s a small sample, but it’s not promising. My guess is the issue is neither are good at spot ups. Both are much more comfortable with the ball in their hands.

  110. Juany8:
    And if you think you can’t run a good offense around Carmelo, go look at his last few Nuggets teams and compare them to Chris Paul’s last few Hornets teams for a comparison of offensive efficiency. Even though Melo is much less efficient and takes a bigger percentage of his team’s possessions, his Nuggets teams were more efficient on offense every year by one (the one year, 2007, the Nuggets had the second most efficient offense in the whole league) So Chris Paul’s teammates were noticeably less efficient than Melo’s teammates, and Chris Paul got to play with Tyson Chandler, who is shooting noticeably better with Melo than, well, ever.

    look at this team:
    http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/NOH/2008.html

    see the top minute getters, and look at their TS%.

    now look at this team:
    http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/DEN/2008.html

    see a difference?

    Paul won’t magically transform Jannero Pargo or Morris Peterson into a good NBA player, some things are impossible after all.

  111. Juany8: I don’t deny any of this, but it certainly means it’s possible to be a fantastic player evaluator without sniffing advanced stats. The part about Melo is something that I think needs to be highlighted, it’s really transition basketball that rules during the regular season of the NBA, and Melo simply doesn’t help much on that regard. Where he’s valuable is in the half court against an elite defense, when exploiting mismatches is the most important thing you can do in the playoffs.

    Oh and Poppovich benched DeJuan Blair for Boris Diaw in the playoffs, he’s certainly looking at how to make his team as efficient as possible but it’s not by playing a bunch of people with high TS%, especially since he cares much more about defense than offense.

    hm, wrong.

    actually, Diaw has a .650 TS% since he went to San Antonio, which is second on the team only to Ginobili.

    he actually improved almost .100 in TS% putting Diaw over Blair.

  112. Longevity is what makes great players great and is the main reason Kobe is not overrated. He’s been the best player at his position for almost his entire career.

    max fisher-cohen:
    Kobe is about two years removed from his prime and is overrated. I’m not saying he isn’t a superstar, but he’s not the best post-Jordan player. My list, if we don’t take into account longevity, would go something like this:

    1) Lebron
    2) Shaq
    3) KG
    4) Duncan
    5) Dirk
    6) Nash
    7) Paul
    8) Kobe
    9) Pau Gasol
    10) Howard

    In 5 years, I think the best players will be

    1) Lebron
    2) Unibrow
    3) Durant
    4) Irving
    5) Howard
    6) Marc Gasol
    7) Love
    8) Ibaka
    9) Harden
    10) Greg Monroe

  113. Bruno Almeida: yeah, and Popovich, the guy who doesn’t care about stats, started DeJuan Blair, who you guys despise, more than 60 games on both this and last season, and routinely finds role players who are much more efficient than flashy, like Danny Green (.580 TS% this year), Matt Bonner (.597 TS%) and Tiago Splitter (.649 TS% this year).

    He also plays Bruce Bowen and Stephen Jackson, but why mention those guys if they don’t prove your point right? Even though they actually played on Championship teams, while Blair is helping his team to first round losses (ok ok they got swept in the second round 2 years ago)

  114. Tyson is scoring more and more efficiently with Melo on the bench this year.

    I am not sure what season you are referring to but the Nuggets didn’t finish 2nd in offensive efficiency in any year he was in Denver for a full season.

    Juany8:
    And if you think you can’t run a good offense around Carmelo, go look at his last few Nuggets teams and compare them to Chris Paul’s last few Hornets teams for a comparison of offensive efficiency. Even though Melo is much less efficient and takes a bigger percentage of his team’s possessions, his Nuggets teams were more efficient on offense every year by one (the one year, 2007, the Nuggets had the second most efficient offense in the whole league) So Chris Paul’s teammates were noticeably less efficient than Melo’s teammates, and Chris Paul got to play with Tyson Chandler, who is shooting noticeably better with Melo than, well, ever.

  115. Bruno Almeida: hm, wrong.

    actually, Diaw has a .650 TS% since he went to San Antonio, which is second on the team only to Ginobili.

    he actually improved almost .100 in TS% putting Diaw over Blair.

    Right small sample sizes certainly don’t affect anything. If we’re only going to look at 20 games I can make Melo seem like a superstar this season too

  116. “Longevity is what makes great players great and is the main reason Kobe is not overrated. He’s been the best player at his position for almost his entire career.”

    I agree with this, though I think Wade has been better than Kobe for a significant chunk of Kobe’s career. But I do think it’s ridiculous that people consider Kobe a top ten all time player.

    Kobe’s ability to stay on the court has value, although I really think he trades some efficiency in order to extract that value.

    I also think his non-scoring contributions and defense are more vital to his greatness than his scoring.

    Either way, I am getting more comfortable with the idea of him being the second best point guard of the modern era….

  117. Owen:
    Tyson is scoring more and more efficiently with Melo on the bench this year.

    I am not sure what season you are referring to but the Nuggets didn’t finish 2nd in offensive efficiency in any year he was in Denver for a full season.

    Actually you’re right that was just some random ranking bball reference had next to their offensive and defensive ratings. It doesn’t change my point though, in the last few years when Chris Paul was on the Hornets and Melo on the Nuggets, he had a better offensive efficiency every year but one, where the Hornets put up a whole extra point and a half per 100 possessions.

    If you can’t run a good offense around Melo, the Clippers are screwed with Chris Paul.

  118. Juany8: He also plays Bruce Bowen and Stephen Jackson, but why mention those guys if they don’t prove your point right? Even though they actually played on Championship teams, while Blair is helping his team to first round losses (ok ok they got swept in the second round 2 years ago)

    look, Bowen was THE BEST perimeter defender in the NBA, he would play under any coach under any circumstance.

    and there’s a reason Jackson was shipped out of SA right after the title and they never regretted it, they replaced him really easily and won 2 titles after he left… they got it back because Pops thinks (and he may be right) that Jackson’s scoring out of the bench, even though it’s very inefficient, might come in handy sometimes… and he won’t hesistate to glue him to the bench if it isn’t.

    I’m not arguing that a team should have only high TS% guys, I’m saying is that Popovich is a guy who obviously privileges guys with superior specific abilities, be it defending (like Bowen), shooting the 3 (like Bonner, Neal, Green) or rebounding (like Blair), and do this one or two things very, very efficiently.

    if he does that while looking at stats or not, who cares? the stats are consistent to what he does in many ways.

  119. Juany8: Right small sample sizes certainly don’t affect anything. If we’re only going to look at 20 games I can make Melo seem like a superstar this season too

    dude, Popovich has to make a decision on who to start now… and right now, Diaw is shooting really well, so he starts.

    do you really think that if in these 20 games he had the .490 or so TS% he had in Charlotte he would be starting?

    if you do, you’re out of your mind, I’m sorry.

  120. The Hornets in 2007-8 had an offensive rating of 111.5
    The Nuggets in 2009-10 had an offensive rating of 111.8

    So, there you go.

    And actually, the Nuggets had the third best offensive rating in the NBA that year.

    So when the Nuggets lose, I will admit I made a mistake. This year’s Nuggets offense was not actually better, by league rank, than any team in the Carmelo era.

    Juany8: Actually you’re right that was just some random ranking bball reference had next to their offensive and defensive ratings. It doesn’t change my point though, in the last few years when Chris Paul was on the Hornets and Melo on the Nuggets, he had a better offensive efficiency every year but one, where the Hornets put up a whole extra point and a half per 100 possessions.

    If you can’t run a good offense around Melo, the Clippers are screwed with Chris Paul.

  121. Juany8: I don’t deny any of this, but it certainly means it’s possible to be a fantastic player evaluator without sniffing advanced stats. The part about Melo is something that I think needs to be highlighted, it’s really transition basketball that rules during the regular season of the NBA, and Melo simply doesn’t help much on that regard. Where he’s valuable is in the half court against an elite defense, when exploiting mismatches is the most important thing you can do in the playoffs.

    But if Melo’s game is tailor made for the playoffs why do his playoff numbers drop off from his regular season numbers much more than guys like LBJ or Amar’e who rely more on transition or pnr’s- things easier to take away in the playoffs? LBJ’s career TS% is .569 and drops to .562 in the playoffs, his win score drops from .233 to .226. Amare TS% drops from .596 to .580 his win score from .174 to .163. As for Melo, his TS% drops from .544 to .518 and win score from .129 to .099. That’s not a guy who’s flourishing in the playoffs- that’s a guy who’s really struggling.

  122. “If you can’t run a good offense around Melo, the Clippers are screwed with Chris Paul.”

    And I know you are being sarcastic, but this is ridiculous. What kind of argument is this?

    I’ll take my chances with the guy who has led the league in Win Shares in a season.

  123. Owen:
    “If you can’t run a good offense around Melo, the Clippers are screwed with Chris Paul.”

    And I know you are being sarcastic, but this is ridiculous. What kind of argument is this?

    I’ll take my chances with the guy who has led the league in Win Shares in a season.

    and you can make an argument that Paul’s teammates are even worse than Carmelo’s… Blake is good, but he’s a liability on defense, can only score reliably inside of 5-feet and can’t hit free throws.

    and the 3rd best player on the Clippers is who, specially now that Butler (a mediocre player to me) is injured? DeAndre Jordan? Randy freaking Foye? Nick Young? Mo Williams?

    I’m pretty sure Paul wouldn’t mind having Carmelo’s teammates right now (specially if Amare was healthy).

  124. Maybe we can have it both ways? I’ve been a big Melo supporter, but I will admit the stats dont lie. The problem is pretty simple – Melo is extremely talented and therefore he THINKS he can score every time he touches the. So he takes too many tough shots and ends up being a high volume inefficient scorer.

    That being said, I disagree with THCJ and others who wouldnt make The Trade again. Melo’s potential value is he has the talent to possibly BECOME an elite player. I actually believe he’d be a perfect fit on the Spurs – with Pop as coach, he might turn into Pierce – a 60% TS guy. I think the problem is coaching (which, surprisingly, hasnt really been mentioned enough tonight). In that respect, although I like Woodson, I think I would rather see him go, because I think he is too satisfied with the status quo.

    I dont know if we win a title or not with Melo, but with the right coach and the right pieces, we can certainly make it interesting. Kinda like Reggie Miller on those Pacers teams. The reality is, most years if you dont have one of the top 3 guys in the league, you dont win. From 1990-2005, it was Jordan, Hakeen, Shaq, and Duncan. 3 of those guys in the draft and 1 via FA. The last 5 years or so have been an anamoly, with the multiple star framework.

  125. nicos: But if Melo’s game is tailor made for the playoffs why do his playoff numbers drop off from his regular season numbers much more than guys like LBJ or Amar’e who rely more on transition or pnr’s- things easier to take away in the playoffs?LBJ’s career TS% is .569 and drops to .562 in the playoffs, his win score drops from .233 to .226.Amare TS% drops from .596 to .580 his win score from .174 to .163.As for Melo, his TS% drops from .544 to .518 and win score from .129 to .099.That’s not a guy who’s flourishing in the playoffs- that’s a guy who’s really struggling.

    My bad, if you throw out his first three years where he was awful, he’s pretty much in line with both LBJ and Amar’e.

  126. “The problem is pretty simple – Melo is extremely talented and therefore he THINKS he can score every time he touches the. So he takes too many tough shots and ends up being a high volume inefficient scorer.”

    It might be a little more complex than that.

    It would be great if Melo could cut back on his usage a little bit in order to juice his efficiency a lot. That’s kind of the way it’s supposed to go, according to many. But with the Knicks I have seen something different. Tell me if I am wrong.

    It seems to me, the more he dominates the ball the more efficient he is. And having Lin and Amare on the court with him really seems to hurt him, contrary to the general idea that having other competent offensive players around him is all he has been missing.

    I don’t know why that is. Maybe it’s a coincidence. Perhaps the fault is in Stat or Lin. But from what I have observed, and this is just me, Melo doesn’t really play all that well in two primary ways when he is off ball. He doesn’t move well without the ball, backdoor cuts etc. And he doesn’t shoot well in spot ups.

    He strikes me as a guy who has spent his entire life playing only with the ball in his hands rather than developing other important offensive skills that are pretty helpful when you are sharing the floor with other shot creators.

    See, I can say stuff too without referencing any objective evidence….

  127. And they did it the old fashioned way, amazing. Can you imagine taking The Jimmer with Kawhi Leonard on the board? I love watching the Spurs, it’s like never ending Linsanity. Absolutely no ball-stoppers. A Spurs/Miami final, which is where I think this is all going. Epic.

    BigBlueAL:
    It is ridiculous how deep a team the Spurs are.

  128. Owen:
    “The problem is pretty simple – Melo is extremely talented and therefore he THINKS he can score every time he touches the. So he takes too many tough shots and ends up being a high volume inefficient scorer.”

    It might be a little more complex than that.

    It would be great if Melo could cut back on his usage a little bit in order to juice his efficiency a lot. That’s kind of the way it’s supposed to go, according to many. But with the Knicks I have seen something different. Tell me if I am wrong.

    It seems to me, the more he dominates the ball the more efficient he is. And having Lin and Amare on the court with him really seems to hurt him, contrary to the general idea that having other competent offensive players around him is all he has been missing.

    I don’t know why that is. Maybe it’s a coincidence. Perhaps the fault is in Stat or Lin. But from what I have observed, and this is just me, Melo doesn’t really play all that well in two primary ways when he is off ball. He doesn’t move well without the ball, backdoor cuts etc. And he doesn’t shoot well in spot ups.

    He strikes me as a guy who has spent his entire life playing only with the ball in his hands rather than developing other important offensive skills that are pretty helpful when you are sharing the floor with other shot creators.

    See, I can say stuff too without referencing any objective evidence….

    I still have faith Melo and Lin can work because it seems Melo actually wants that combo to work. He had no problem letting Lin dominate the 4th quarters he did right before he got hurt and you saw him running the floor alot with Lin setting him up for easy transition baskets.

  129. I hope it does work out BBA.

    I am not one that believes it matters a great deal who you are playing with – not at least if you are looking at the total value of a player, although there are definitely superficial things that vary, like shots.

    But in 500 minutes so far, they haven’t looked good together.

  130. Owen it’s reliably hilarious how you paint yourself some kind of long-suffering, valiant defender of Truth and Reason for sports watching. Acting like Juany and Ruru are barbarians at the gate threatening to defile and besmirch your precious blog home? Gold! Anyone that disagrees with you re: Melo is an anti-objectivity, anti-stat Philistine? Outstanding. Tremendous satire. Keep up the great writing.

    Also, Pop probably has proprietary internal metrics available to him that blow TS% and WS/48 out of the water. He is not consulting basketball reference to figure out how to construct his roster.

  131. Can you imagine taking The Jimmer with Kawhi Leonard on the board?

    Sooooooooooo stupid. So was pretty much every other pick after Tristan Thompson and before Leonard (there were some good players picked, but Leonard was clearly better than them).

  132. “Also, Pop probably has proprietary internal metrics available to him that blow TS% and WS/48 out of the water. He is not consulting basketball referencear to figure out how to construct his roster”

    I thought the argument was Pop doesn’t use stats?

    And if he does, and the spurs do use stats extensively from what I have read, more power to them. All I am saying is I wish the Knicks would do the same.

    We have tried hiring scorers who grade out poorly on advanced metrics. It doesn’t work.

    As for the rest, I do value this blog a little more than my personal relationship with Melo.

  133. Brian Cronin: Sooooooooooo stupid. So was pretty much every other pick after Tristan Thompson and before Leonard (there were some good players picked, but Leonard was clearly better than them).

    I don’t have huge problem with Toronto taking Vala whatever his name is or even Charlotte taking Biyombo but what everybody else could have been thinking is beyond me- esp. that run of guards all of whom had big question marks.

  134. I disagree about Biyombo, but yeah, I was foolish to knock Toronto when I haven’t even seen him play in the NBA. So I’ll amend my criticism to being that I don’t like the picks between his pick (#5) and Leonard at #14 I just don’t get what they were thinking to not take Leonard in the top ten. As for Biyombo, I think Leonard was much better than Biyombo, but even if you want to give Biyombo more credit, the key problem is that Charlotte could have had them both!! WTF, Charlotte?!? Oh no, musn’t mess with Corey freakin’ Maggette!

    Man, they don’t know what they’re doing.

  135. Owen:
    I thought the argument was Pop doesn’t use stats?

    Wasn’t my argument. Someone else was arguing that Pop CLEARLY must be consulting TS% to construct his roster.

  136. Brian Cronin:
    I disagree about Biyombo, but yeah, I was foolish to knock Toronto when I haven’t even seen him play in the NBA. So I’ll amend my criticism to being that I don’t like the picks between his pick (#5) and Leonard at #14 I just don’t get what they were thinking to not take Leonard in the top ten. As for Biyombo, I think Leonard was much better than Biyombo, but even if you want to give Biyombo more credit, the key problem is that Charlotte could have had them both!! WTF, Charlotte?!? Oh no, musn’t mess with Corey freakin’ Maggette!

    Man, they don’t know what they’re doing.

    No doubt Leonard has been better than Biyombo- I can just understand Charlotte gambling on a guy who might turn out to be a rim-protecting big rather than a wing. For what it’s worth, Biyombo did block shots at a really nice rate (5.9) without fouling much (3.6 per 36) and his defensive rebound rate was okay for a 19 year old so I’d say there’s a least a chance he turns out to be okay.

  137. Brian Cronin:
    I disagree about Biyombo, but yeah, I was foolish to knock Toronto when I haven’t even seen him play in the NBA. So I’ll amend my criticism to being that I don’t like the picks between his pick (#5) and Leonard at #14 I just don’t get what they were thinking to not take Leonard in the top ten. As for Biyombo, I think Leonard was much better than Biyombo, but even if you want to give Biyombo more credit, the key problem is that Charlotte could have had them both!! WTF, Charlotte?!? Oh no, musn’t mess with Corey freakin’ Maggette!

    Man, they don’t know what they’re doing.

    Biyombo is only 19 and had no training camp or summer league. Of the 50 players who were in the NBA at age 19, only 10 of them were league average or better in WS/48. Biyombo is towards the bottom of that list, but I like Biyombo as a pick more than the “he has a college pedigree” strategy that seems to define every other Jordan pick: Morrison, Kemba, Sean May, Raymond Felton, Augustin. Scary though that the last raw big man Charlotte picked was the preeminent Kwame Brown, who, by the way, had a better 19 year old season than Biyombo.

    Re: Valanciunas pick. I feel like it’s a pretty significant advantage to pick guys and leave them in Europe, especially when they’re really young. It lets your team suck worse for an extra year (better draft pick) while your player gets better without costing you a dime and allows you to have him under his rookie deal for an extra year of his prime. Who knows if he’ll be any good though.

  138. I like Klay Thompson alot and he was picked 11th overall. Was hoping he would be available for the Knicks since he was one of the few players being rumored that the Knicks liked alot (although by draft day I had read several reports that Shump was their guy).

  139. Oh yeah, I like Klay, too, Al. Like I mentioned, there were a few good players taken between #5 and Leonard, but I just don’t think any of them were reasonably going to be better than Leonard. We made a big fuss about how teams were underrating Faried, and they were, but Faried at least had some legitimate question marks about him. Leonard, though, really didn’t.

  140. Al, you’ll appreciate this. I was at the Yankee game tonight in the fancy seats (18 rows behind home plate) courtesy of a friend’s mother (who got them from a client). We got there early enough to see the various club options and, well, it really is not all that impressive. I like the new Yankee Stadium and the actual seats themselves were great, but the club stuff was disappointing.

    My wife is starting to get people to give us tickets at her job. She’s been trying to get Knicks tickets but no go – but we got Yankees tickets for later this month. Yay, corporate opulence!

  141. Brian Cronin:
    Al, you’ll appreciate this. I was at the Yankee game tonight in the fancy seats (18 rows behind home plate) courtesy of a friend’s mother (who got them from a client). We got there early enough to see the various club options and, well, it really is not all that impressive. I like the new Yankee Stadium and the actual seats themselves were great, but the club stuff was disappointing.

    My wife is starting to get people to give us tickets at her job. She’s been trying to get Knicks tickets but no go – but we got Yankees tickets for later this month. Yay, corporate opulence!

    I went to my first ever game at the new YS last summer when I went to NY for a few days. Sat in section 214B which were pretty good seats. Took the stadium tour 6 hours before game time and it was great.

    If you are a Yankee fan cant see how in the world you cant like that stadium (aside from the prices lol) because it is basically a shrine to the Yankees and their history.

  142. Yeah, agreed, I like the new stadium, as well. It was just the club stuff that I found disappointing (the fanciest club has a little tiny bar area and a really big dining area – the dining area, of course, requires you to pay an additional $65 per person to enter for a buffet dinner). That’s only an issue if you have the high-priced tickets, of course, and those tickets seem to be just corporate-purchased (lord knows I wouldn’t pay $250 a ticket, ya know?).

    I haven’t seen the luxury boxes, though. I’ve been to a Knick game in the corporate boxes before, though. They are suh-weeeeet.

  143. Doug:
    Owen it’s reliably hilarious how you paint yourself some kind of long-suffering, valiant defender of Truth and Reason for sports watching. Acting like Juany and Ruru are barbarians at the gate threatening to defile and besmirch your precious blog home? Gold! Anyone that disagrees with you re: Melo is an anti-objectivity, anti-stat Philistine? Outstanding. Tremendous satire. Keep up the great writing.

    Also, Pop probably has proprietary internal metrics available to him that blow TS% and WS/48 out of the water. He is not consulting basketball reference to figure out how to construct his roster.

    Yet players like Lin, Faried and Leonard were predicted to be good NBA players with simple box score metrics, and how’s that turned out?

    ruru and Juany8 are anti-stat! Juany8 consistently derides the use of the box score to evaluate efficiency, and ruru’s posts are largely an explanation of Melo’s talent without reference to his middling shooting efficiency — breakdowns of how his supposed myriad double teams make him a top 10 player.

    I’m surprised that your post has some content! Good job, buddy! I’ve become used to you interjecting your snarky nonsense to turn your nose up without taking a stance, but you did a good job here! Keep it up!

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