What If… With the 4th Pick The Knicks Draft: Emmanuel Mudiay

With the order of the draft being settled, the writers of KnickerBlogger thought we’d go over the possible outcomes. But since we were whipping out the ol’ Crystal Ball, we decided to go a little past June & see what fate possibly has to offer…

A stopped clock...
A stopped clock…

2015 Draft Order
1 MIN Jahlil Okafor
2 LAL Karl-Anthony Towns
3 PHI D’Angelo Russell
4 NYK Emmanuel Mudiay

What happened on Draft Day 2015
There were no surprises with the first 4 picks of this draft. After the draft, Phil Jackson gave an interview that turned to be one of this oddest. When Howard Beck asked about the risks of Mudiay given the few numbers of games he played, Jackson became uncharacteristically hostile. He belittled Beck as “one of those equation loving fools” and that Jackson “didn’t ask his Casio [calculator] if Jordan could lead the Bulls to a title.” The Knicks President followed by admitting that “he didn’t see much of Mudiay’s games” and that his scouting only consisted of “meeting the young man and see how he handled himself” to know what kind of basketball player he was.

Jackson’s comments made the New York headlines for a day, but summer was a time for the Yankees and Mets. Eventually the back pages turned to the summer classic, and then on to football. Jackson’s admission of failing to scout properly wasn’t forgotten, but no one bothered to poke the bear with follow-up questions about his methods of acquiring players. No one dared take the coach to task. The only thing that mattered was whether or not the Knicks would win in 2016.

What will be written on draft day in 2018
The good news is that Mudiay made his first All Star Game this season. Emmanuel is on a meteoric rise, much like AMC’s Mad-Men spinoff sitcom comedy Peggy & Stan, and is slowly becoming one of the East’s best points. The Knick guard was always able to score at the rim, and is their best distributor since Mark Jackson. In his third year his three point shot has finally come around, and opposing team were no longer able to leave him unchecked on the perimeter. His back-to-back game winning three point shots against Miami and Toronto made ESPN headlines, but also proved to the league that the book on him had to be rewritten.

Which brings us to the bad news. Even with Mudiay making his first All Star Game, the Knicks still landed the 14th pick in the draft. Cap-wise they are strapped with the contracts of the now hobbled Carmelo Anthony who missed 62 games last year, and the mediocre Greg Monroe who unfortunately played in 79 games. New York will be stuck with ‘Melo’s contract for only one more year, and any production he gives the team next year will be a bonus.

Let's dot this!

While a healthy Anthony could be a boost to the offense, the Knicks have a number of problems to address. They still need a shooting guard, competency on the bench, and the defense is still a joke. New York is stuck in the NBA’s middle ground, not good enough to be among the league’s best teams and not bad enough to help themselves in the draft. Jackson hasn’t made a single good decision since selecting Mudiay, and New York has enough holes that they can do well with a number of players that could be available at the 14th pick. The only catch is that they need to grab one that will succeed at the NBA level, something Jackson has failed to do in the last 2 drafts.

On twitter today, Jim Cavan mused “What do Reggie Jackson and Phil Jackson have in common? They both have struck out a lot in New York!” Jackson hasn’t changed his approach much, eschewing modern methods and strategies, and the team has suffered in acquiring any kind of talent. New York needs a solid player today, or they could alienate their budding star, and risk losing him in free agency to a more competent franchise.

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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).

103 thoughts to “What If… With the 4th Pick The Knicks Draft: Emmanuel Mudiay”

  1. I wonder what the media reaction to Mark Jackson running a concussed Steph Curry out to play in a series his team was leading 3-0 would have been?

  2. Longtime lurker, first time post. I thought about calling myself Captain ClashFan but decided that that might not be funny joke given recent developments on the forum. :-)

    At any rate, I’m a long suffering Knicks fan (and Mets and Jets) in Knoxville, TN. I try never to get too hung up on certain players before drafts b/c of the likelihood of being disappointed. I guess if the Knicks do pick Mudiay, that’ll mean either 1. that Phil was serious in his tweet about penetration being important or 2. the Knicks are drafting for someone else and will trade him later.

    I am hoping that Mudiay knocks his workouts out of the park, giving the Lakers some pause so that maybe one of the big men falls to the Knicks (highly unlikely, I know). I’ll be fine with Russell, Mudiay, or even Winslow. Keep the kid, sign a couple of good two-way 2nd tier free agents, and see what happens…

    I really hope Phil has learned his lesson (I’m not a Carmello Anthony fan…I wish he’d signed and traded him) and will try to lay the foundation for a proper rebuild. Unlike some here, I’m not a big critic of the Chandler deal with Dallas despite how it has turned out to date. He took a flyer on some younger guys (Larkin and a couple of 2nd round picks). It was worth a shot.

  3. Having spent some time watching the Mudiay highlights finally he looks a lot different than I expected based on the early reports. Athletically, he has fantastic size for a PG obviously, but in terms of that fast twitch athleticism and explosive leaping ability I wasn’t overly impressed. I didn’t see any absurd poster dunks or anything like that. Obviously he’s still coming into his prime, but I don’t think he’s quite in the category with guys like Westbrook, Wall, Rose athletically (the guys he has been compared to most throughout the year). We should get a bit better sense of this once he starts working out for more teams and his measurements start getting circulated.

    On the plus side though I think his understanding of the game looks quite advanced. More so than many of those athletic freak type guys when they came in the league. He seems to have a really good eye for a pass and to look to pass even when his own scoring is available.

    Obviously he still has a lot of work to do (barely 19 after all), particularly on the jumper, but I think the biggest question is whether taking a PG who’s going to want the ball a lot is a good fit with the triangle or with Melo. I think then having him spend his first 3 years in the league bringing the ball up, entering it to Melo/Monroe in the post and then spotting up for brick-y jumpers on the weakside wing is basically a worst case scenario for his development long term. That’s my biggest concern.

  4. @3

    I can see your concern there but also recall how much better (relatively) the offense got when we started to get penetration and to the line in the form of Galloway and Shved as opposed to shump, calderon, jr smith, and pablo. I think it might be somewhat counter to the style that is typical of the guards (fisher, kerr, etc…) that have played in the triangle but having a guy that can turn the corner on a defender seemed to me to make a big difference and the triangle provided the opportunities for such player. Maybe I am just talking about stylistically since its not like our record showed winning bball but when you are driving and kicking to Lance Thomas and Jason Smith your gonna have a bad time.

  5. @1

    The straw man’s union is in an uproar! What concussed(ion) person are we talking about.
    Look, GS was under zero pressure to return him to the game. Curry’s father was in the room. Curry had an actual concussion in 2013 and understands the difference between a concussion and not having a concussion.

    The medical people (Trainers and MD’s) looked at him with his father present and under zero pressure to return him to the game and decided there was no reason to take a precautionary CT scan. Had Curry returned to the game and had a bad out come (see Natasha Richardson) these guys would have been looking down the barrel of an 8 figure law suit. The doctors weren’t green lighting him to play unless they were convinced he was ok.

    Watching the fall in slow motion, I’m sure his shoulder is a bigger problem than his head today. How his clavicle didn’t snap like a twig is a mystery to me. As he fell he tucked his chin raising his occipital area as far off the floor as possible and it only took a glancing blow.

    But to answer your question, once the medical people give the green light for a player to play, and the player asks into the game, no coach is telling the MVP, no, you sit down like a good little boy and let an adult over ride the medical staff’s and your opinion.

  6. Watching the fall in slow motion, I’m sure his shoulder is a bigger problem than his head today. How his clavicle didn’t snap like a twig is a mystery to me.

    This is what I saw as well. We’ve become pretty obsessed with concussions as a sporting culture, and rightfully so, they’re a serious issue that too often aren’t treated that way by the authorities. But it definitely looked like his back and shoulder bore the brunt of the blow. I was pretty shocked he came back into the game just because it was a 15 point lead and my feeling was “Why bother?”, but it seemed like they did the appropriate thing last night – removed him from the game, did some testing, and determined he was okay to return. He looked a little shaky when he came back, but for people to conclude that means he was concussed is silly. A fall like that is going to make you a little wobbly on your feet irregardless.

  7. I think the biggest question is whether taking a PG who’s going to want the ball a lot is a good fit with the triangle or with Melo.

    @3 – I think that the ball needs not be in Melo’s hands and that Melo will need to remember to pass the ball out.

    the offense got when we started to get penetration and to the line

    @4 – This is why I’ve pushed hard for a big, fast, penetrating point guard. It’s also why I think Mudiay might be a good fit.

  8. I saw the Curry situation from a different direction.

    GS was up 3-0 in the series with 2 more games at home (where they are really tough to beat).

    They were down double digits in Houston in the 3rd quarter and the Rockets were playing very well when Curry became available.

    The chances were pretty good that Curry was going to be mildly diminished if he played after having been shook up like that (and he was initially).

    So I saw the chances of them winning the game and it turning out to be critical to the series as minescule. The chances that the doctors were wrong was also small, but the downside if they were could be catastrophic. So why take any chance?

  9. Copied and pasted from 5/25 thread:
    One thing Mudiay brings is size in the backcourt, versatility, and defense. I wouldn’t mind Cory Joseph, but I think his price tag is a bit steep. However, the cool thing about the triangle is, you don’t need a lead guard to be a distributor. Joseph’s game is 20 feet and in, which causes a problem for Melo. And I’m not sure he plays well enough on D to justify the price. Then again, neither does Calderon. But Calderon is lights out from the field- especially when the floor is spread correctly. I don’t think a 2 deep depth chart of Jordan/Cole, Melo/hopefully Portis(if not then bring Amundson or trade TH2 for a PF), Carroll/Lance Thomas or Early, Mudiay/Shved, Calderon/Galloway is a bad thing. Especially if Fish sticks with the triangle. On top of that, Phil would still have presumably 6 mil cap space to play with and trade exceptions. That’s if Phil chooses to rebuild on the fly through free agency. Melo still is a commodity that teams want, so the best move is obviously to trade him at this point- before his trade value dips even further. The market is about to go crazy, we need that deal off the books ASAP if we’re gonna get younger. I mean, they’re talkin max dollars for guys like Monroe, Tristan Thompson and Jimmy Butler. Those guys are not scrubs, but max dollars belong to stars. And no one can name a star out of that bunch. DeAndre Jordan is most likely gonna get max dollars, and I wouldn’t mind paying a younger, stronger, and more mobile version of Tyson Chandler that kinda loot in today’s NBA. Hell..i’d even go after Chandler if he’d take a pay cut and Phil is successful in landing DeMarre Carroll and a guard with star potential.

  10. If we draft Mudiay, IMO it’s better than even money he won’t be a starter until the second half of the season next year (perhaps not until the following year). I think Winslow will contribute right out of the box. So unless we are pretty sure Mudiay is going to be the better player long term and we are willing to swallow missing the playoffs without a first round pick next year, there’s not much downside to thinking about who is more ready now.

  11. mudiay is being talked about a lot with the knicks and i just don’t see it… there’s nothing in phil jackson’s history that he likes pg’s like mudiay or that he even values a ‘superstar’ pg.. one where the offense goes through someone setting the play up… that’s not to mention whether mudiay is deserving of the 4th pick..

    alot of fans are going to be disappointed if they want mudiay in more ways than one…

  12. So I saw the chances of them winning the game and it turning out to be critical to the series as minescule. The chances that the doctors were wrong was also small, but the downside if they were could be catastrophic. So why take any chance?

    Strat makes the case without my hyperbole. Team doctors are not exactly impartial, and it’s also possible to misdiagnose a concussion. Why risk further injury to your most important player in a game you are unlikely to win in a series that you control?

  13. The one concern I have with Winslow is that he played PF a lot for Duke last year. One the hand, it’s impressive he was able to do that, but on the other hand, it’s probably not going to work for him in the pros.

  14. @7 – or put a bandaid/headband combo on it. #whatwouldHinesdo #knickstapeliterally

    As for Mudi, definitely doesn’t have the end to end speed of Russ or JW, nor the change direction at top speed or ability to *consistently* hit max vert leap, in game, of Rose.

    His athleticism, to me, is somewhat like JR Smith. The combine will help clarify this, but hear me out — JR is universally acknowledged as Athletic, but he is not by any means extraordinarily fast with or without the ball, nor does he have explosive-from-a-standstill jumps like Russ (who has caught putback dunks in game literally from a standstill with no momentum lol) and Rose (who’s explosion is most notable after a hesitation move or directional change). But give JR 1 or 2 steps of momentum and boy can he get up. And he has been that way since HS (saw him play in person many times). The video of Mudiay in HS shows him catching putback dunks and doing spinning alley oops. I don’t think Mudiay’s vert is in the stratosphere of JR’s, of course, but he certainly can be categorized as an above the rim finisher, as opposed to say Tyreke Evans, who has a horrible vert and is able to be among league leaders in drive rate due to strength and an incredible handle. Of course drive rate =/= good at driving, but that’s another discussion, haha.

    Weirdly, another example of a specific part of Mudiay “type” of athleticism Is Melo. Specifically, Melo’s First Step. Tremendously fast first step while using superior size/strength is one of Melo’s strongest assets, which he typically makes noticeable on his baseline drives.

    I do think his athleticism has been overblown a bit, esp with the comparisons to Rose/Wall/Russ, but he definitely has the makings of a guard who uses speed and strength to penetrate and finish, and that counts as plus athleticism in my book.

  15. one other note for optimism, should the knicks draft mudiay, lifted from P&T comments :

    Tyreke Evans shot .711
    Jrue Holiday shot .726
    Mike Conley .694
    Kyle Lowry .737 (over two years)
    Eric Bledsoe .667
    Ty Lawson .688 (his freshman year)
    Deron Williams .685 (over three years)

    Those are FT%s for guys pre-nba. They all got better. Obviously this predicts nothing for Mudi, and of course tyreke never really became a respectable jump shooter despite that, but the point is there is certainly precedent for Mudi to at least become respectable. I think I read somewhere that Mudi shot in the 60s, %wise, in HS, as well.

  16. The one concern I have with Winslow is that he played PF a lot for Duke last year. One the hand, it’s impressive he was able to do that, but on the other hand, it’s probably not going to work for him in the pros.

    I don’t see him playing much PF on the Knicks. I see him as a SG in a big lineup and SF in a small lineup.

    I’m struggling with a way to build this steam given our draft options and the FAs that are likely to be available to us.

    I like Monroe, but I’m not a huge fan at 15m or next to Melo unless we get a really strong defender somewhere else in the frontcourt. At the same time, I also prefer Melo at PF even though that has a few downsides. How does that work with Monroe?

    That makes me think of Cauley Stein as a defender if we can trade down. But I’m not a huge fan of Cauley Stein in a non P&R offense. He could turn out to be a zero on offense. That raises other issues.

    No matter where I go I see issues that make me uncomfortable about our ability to fill them longer term. Winslow makes me comfortable because I feel like even though he’s probably a SF, we’ll be able to use him in other ways.

  17. FT shooting generally improves gradually through age 27 or 28. If you want to be optimistic and say Mudiay’s true FT ability is 60%, given his age, he’d peak at around 69/70%. If you want to be really optimistic, some guys have come into the NBA not being able to shoot FTs at all and turned into pretty solid FT shooers.

  18. The only certainty right now draft-wise, is Mudiay goes #4 to the Knicks. However..if LAL likes him better than Towns or Okafor, then that changes. Or..if all this Philly taking Russell at 3 is just a smokescreen and they like Mudiay, then that changes to our benefit as well. No way Winslow or Cauley-Stein should go top 5. If they are the targets, then Phil HAS to trade down and pick up an additional asset.

  19. the somewhat hilarious hypothetical to me is if LAL loves mudiay and takes him, does Hinkie take the great shooting lead guard they badly need, or the best prospect overall left, okafor, despite having 2 blue chip center prospects already.

    Knowing how his philosophies toward team building / asset hoarding trend, I think he’d take Okafor. Which probably is the right move, but it’s still funny.

  20. Given a few weird lottery bounces and we might see Philly roll out an all-4/5 lineup in a few years

  21. Weirdly, another example of a specific part of Mudiay “type” of athleticism Is Melo. Specifically, Melo’s First Step. Tremendously fast first step while using superior size/strength is one of Melo’s strongest assets, which he typically makes noticeable on his baseline drives.

    I’d agree with this- it doesn’t look like he has the end to end speed of Wall or Westbrook but he’s got a very good first step and it looks like he can stop and go/change direction on a dime which is probably more valuable at the end of the day esp. since it’s not exactly like he has to walk the ball up like Andre Miller. He’ll have no trouble getting into the lane- the question is whether his lack of shooting will leave the paint so packed it won’t matter. There are certainly guys who never became great shooters (Rondo, Kidd for most of his career, pre-injury Livingston) who were very successful point guards so it can be done.
    To me, Winslow is less impressive athletically than Mudiay- yes he’s athletic but so is just about every other wing in the league (and many of them have an inch or two on him.) As DRed mentioned he ain’t going to play the four in the NBA- is he going to be a smaller version of Beasley or Derrick Williams who couldn’t bully smaller guys like they did in college? He doesn’t have a blow-by first step (to my eye anyway) and his handle isn’t phenomenal so I wonder if he’s ever going to more than a “three and d” guy. Moreover, I think defensively-oriented wings can be had fairly cheaply in free agency (look at Aminu or Ariza last year) so I’d lean towards either Mudiay or WCS over Winslow.

  22. The Knicks should draft the best player available, no matter the triangle, Melo, or whoever we sign in FA this offseason. Personally i’m a bit down on Porzingis, Winslow and WCS, and would rather have Mudiay, Hezonja or Turner.

    Specially, i wouldnt like Porzingis, his percentages arent that great, and he looks to skinny to be a good defender. OTOH, Hezonja looks great, even with his possible character issues. He is not yet a ‘star’ in europe, so he may not have the same problem other European ‘star’ guards and wings have, when they play few minutes in a losing team, and become dispirited.

  23. Personally i’m a bit down on Porzingis, Winslow and WCS, and would rather have Mudiay, Hezonja or Turner.

    I haven’t seem much of Turner, but someone whose opinion I respect a lot thinks the Knicks should take him.

  24. Given a few weird lottery bounces and we might see Philly roll out an all-4/5 lineup in a few years

    LOL A la Don Nelson when he was Knick coach or Westphal when he was the Sonics coach?

  25. Ok. I’ll be the unpopular guy here. I’m going to assume most of y’all ain’t big college ball watchers. Probably don’t catch many h.s games on ESPN or watch the McDonald’s game and the Adidas game, etc. Mudiay never jumps off the screen in any of those games. As far as his athleticism, that’s debatable since he hasn’t gone up against any NBA athleticism ( and the McD game is kinda suspect. Kosta Kofus looked all world in that game ). Same thing for Russell. The only differences between them were Russell had a jumper going into college and looked like he was quite happy running the o. Mudiay looked like he was able to do everything on the court, minus shoot. If people want Mudiay because Larry Brown recruited him, fine. If people want Mudiay because he was like, a top 5 h.s player and you believe in his potential, fine. But let’s all calm down when talking about any aspect of his game. We have noting to see to make a case, positive or negative. At least with Russell, you know what you’re getting. These kids skills generally get better, but they’re pretty much the same player for their careers. If you feel as though you have to rationalize the pick, or talk yourself into it, trade it. Trade it for multiple picks, late 1st and a 2nd. Shit. Trade it to Boston for the 16,28, and their second rounders. Throw Timmy in there to sweeten the pot. I just hate seeing high draft picks used on int’l players, or guys who haven’t played in college with no discernible athletic advantage over people who have.

  26. Ok. I’ll be the unpopular guy here. I’m going to assume most of y’all ain’t big college ball watchers. Probably don’t catch many h.s games on ESPN or watch the McDonald’s game and the Adidas game, etc. Mudiay never jumps off the screen in any of those games. As far as his athleticism, that’s debatable since he hasn’t gone up against any NBA athleticism ( and the McD game is kinda suspect. Kosta Kofus looked all world in that game ). Same thing for Russell. The only differences between them were Russell had a jumper going into college and looked like he was quite happy running the o. Mudiay looked like he was able to do everything on the court, minus shoot. If people want Mudiay because Larry Brown recruited him, fine. If people want Mudiay because he was like, a top 5 h.s player and you believe in his potential, fine. But let’s all calm down when talking about any aspect of his game. We have noting to see to make a case, positive or negative. At least with Russell, you know what you’re getting. These kids skills generally get better, but they’re pretty much the same player for their careers. If you feel as though you have to rationalize the pick, or talk yourself into it, trade it. Trade it for multiple picks, late 1st and a 2nd. Shit. Trade it to Boston for the 16,28, and their second rounders. Throw Timmy in there to sweeten the pot. I just hate seeing high draft picks used on int’l players, or guys who haven’t played in college with no discernible athletic advantage over people who have.

    No mura..I can dig it. Your perspective, IMO is a fresh one. We really haven’t seen much of these other guys discussed. We’ve seen WCS a little more than the others, Winslow and Russell only 1 season of college ball, and Winslow played out of position. So yea..I welcome your perspective.

  27. Phil can always trade the 4 and TH2 to BOS for their 1st rounders if he thinks Kam and Hollis-Jefferson are gonna be there. I’d be ok with goin the safe route.

  28. @27 Thanks, it’s just…remember when the Bucks took Yi with the 6th pick? Based on nothing more than highlights and hype? Didn’t work out so well. If the Knicks weren’t chock full of holes, cool. Take Mudiay. Why not? But we’ve got fuck all for talent and for all the talk about trading Melo, it’ ain’t happening unless we send him to a contending team. And in return for that? Crappy draft picks ( which in our situation i would take, sadly ) and end of bench players. Trade the pick. Especially if things shake out the way they’re supposed to. Okafor and Towns were the guys who mattered. If they’re gone, trade the pick for as much as you can possibly get. Include whoever you need to make it happen. Just get some talent. Cause guess what? Free agency might not present a litany of players lining up for a rebuilding project. I HATE being negative but this is the real world.

    We’re going to be fine. Just fine. Everything’s going to be okay.

  29. Same thing for Russell.

    Isn’t one of the knocks on Russell that he consistently was worse against the superior college teams?

  30. Mura, out of curiosity, where would you draw the line for what’s enough to trade the pick for? I know you were just spitballing ideas, but a 1st and a 2nd seems inadequate to me.

    Only way I even consider trading it is if it’s for multiple 1sts, or one of the 5-7 picks + a useful player on a relatively friendly contract (Nugs pick + Wilson Chandler or some shit…maaaybe)

  31. @31 Realistically, any good (not godawful ) trade for Melo is to somewhere he won’t want to go and the ntc kills that. 1st this year and a 1st next year? Sure. Even late round 1st I could live with. An additional player? Of course, especially if they’re a vet ( like Brand ) or a youngster ( can’t think of anybody ), the vet being more likely. The ntc is a killer.

    The option is to keep Melo and try to build around him. Even if it’s at the 3. Building around him is gonna be difficult because what kind of team would you want? Comes down to Phil’s vision.

    prezs2reprsntme (get money) knowing what you know….what would you do?

  32. Thanks, it’s just…remember when the Bucks took Yi with the 6th pick? Based on nothing more than highlights and hype?

    Mura,

    The thing is none of us is actually making the draft pick (unless Phil is secretly posting here – Hi Phil!). The assumption in your posts seems to be that since most posters don’t have much exposure to Mudiay (or Yi), that the Knicks are in a similar boat. There’s simply no reason to think that’s the case. They have an entire network of professional scouts, and basically unlimited resources. There’s no reason that their scouting of Mudiay should be any less complete than their scouting of Winslow (for example) other than the injury issue which limited Mudiay’s game time.

    That’s not to say Mudiay isn’t a risk. I think he is a risky prospect because so much depends on the development of his jumper. It’s just that how risky he is has no relationship to how easy it was for any of us to watch his games this year. If Mudiay had played 10 games at SMU before getting hurt he would be basically the exact same prospect.

  33. @mura

    I personally, as you could guess from my earlier postings above, am a fan of Mudiay. I actually prefer him to Russell. But i’d take either and be content in a heartbeat.

    Because we’re trying to achieve a dumb balancing act of drafting for the time AFTER the Melo deal *and* for contending during his deal, I’d keep the pick unless you could get a highish lottery pick this year and a solid player or 2. But even then, I honestly have no idea what kinda players that would be. All I know is we need to have our, or someone’s, high pick.

    I’m horrible at trade speculation. Even thinking about constructing 3 team trades hurts my brain. So I don’t even bother trying normally.

  34. Shouldn’t the Knicks expect more than the #16 and 28 picks from the Celtics for the #4? If the Celtics offer that, I hope Phil says no.

  35. The #4 pick in this draft is worth a lot more than it has been in recent drafts. Settling for the 16, 28, and 2nd rounders would be such a bad idea. This draft has anywhere from 3 to 8 franchise altering talents. Towns, Okafor, Russell, Mudiay, Winslow, Hezonja, Cauley-Stein, and even Poringis could all be all stars in the league. We could do much better than the Boston package for the #4 pick.

  36. If Phil Jackson doesn’t get the best player at number 4, I think it’s a bad idea, no matter what he wants. Mudiay doesn’t have to be as athletic as those other guards, he just needs to know how to use his athleticism. The Knicks could use a good penetrator, Melo needs this.

  37. I’ve read that Boston covets Ty Lawson and that the Nuggets want to move up in the draft. Okay, how about this:

    Knick get the #7 from Denver and the #16 from Boston.
    Boston gets Ty Lawson.
    Denver gets the #4 pick from the Knicks and #28 from Boston.

    Maybe some filler to satisfy all parties. This of course assumes that Denver wants whoever is available at #4 since the Knicks cannot do the deal until they pick.

  38. I think Turner is growing on me in theory. He has nice size and length and seems like the perfect triangle center, he rebounds, blk shots, and spreads the floor.

    So what that he looks unathletic and if his awkwardness is truly based on his weak glutes, someone might get a steal.

  39. Does Boston really want Lawson when they already have Isaiah Thomas? Thomas is basically Lawson on a much better contract. I’d actually prefer #4 for #7 and Thomas to 7 and Lawson- that extra 5 million bucks could really come in handy.

  40. A lot of these guys intrigue me, but they seem to be reaches at the #4 pick.

    So I’m actually quite willing for the Knicks to trade down. Guys like Winslow, WCS and Turner will be available in the #6-7 range, so if the Knicks can get something interesting from Denver in exchange for the #7 pick, I’d certainly do it.

    Hell, here’s an interesting idea – would you deal the #4 pick and a 2018 first rounder to Denver for the #7 pick and the Knicks’ 2016 first rounder? I think I would. I don’t think Denver would, but that’s at least an out of the box proposal. inapplicable idea, so never mind.

  41. My main problem is just a sort of an emotional one, which is we’re about to see another example of “Jordan Hill…one pick after Steph Curry” and “Gallo…one pick after Kevin Love and two picks after Russell Westbrook.”

    So trading down would also be nice in that regard. We wouldn’t have to see Russell go one pick before the Knicks pick.

  42. I dont think we can get our ’16 back from Denver, because we owe it to Toronto in some situations

  43. Shit, you’re right. Oh well. Damn, the Raptors are going to make out very well with that pick, since Denver will likely not be good next season either, so either way Toronto is likely to get a good pick.

  44. I think the Knicks would be best served if they just read all the stuff we talked about here and made moves based off our input.

  45. I don’t get all the love for Russell. I’d be terrified if we were picking him. He’s a good, not great shooter; a good, not great athlete. Maybe I’m wrong and he becomes the next James Harden (I was wrong about James Harden too!) but I think his ceiling is a poor man’s Steph…w/o the quickness or consistency.

    My dream scenario is for Okafor to drop to #4. Not gonna happen, but that would be the only “no-brainer” pick that could possibly fall into our lap if both the Lakers and Sixers decide to go small.

  46. I don’t even care about winning anymore. Not since Tyson left. So basically, you know what I’m thinking? Pick the most athletic, highlight-reel-friendly player available.

  47. @33 No, don’t get me wrong. The Knicks are going to have wayyyy more access to Mudiay than any of us. Every player in the draft is nothing but a prospect, especially when there’s not a “sure thing” like LeBron. So we can draft whoever and they can become a star. Or if not that, at least a starting NBA player. The point I was poorly trying to make is that I’m afraid of hitching my wagon to an unknown quantity in Mudiay when somebody that we’ve actually seen play against actual competition is available. Aside from workouts, where you can get a better representation of their athleticism, I prefer getting someone who I’ve actually seen grow. Someone I’ve seen handle pressure. I’m wiling to bet you’ve done the same thing as any college fan, projecting that player in the pros.

    Ultimately, I know shit. And I know even less about what we’re gonna do in the draft. So, hopefully, it all works out in a much better way than this article.

  48. Screw it. Trade the 4th pick for Anthony Randolph. …i’ve…got…a…feeling….

  49. The Nuggets annoyingly own two other team’s draft picks for 2016, but they both have so much protection on them that they’re not even worth trading for.

  50. No, seriously!

    Okay, so James Harden can be really fun to watch sometimes, but mostly he’s euro-stepping to the line and being stupid-efficient while doing so.

    Contrast that with his former teammate and possible alien Russell Westbrook, who is probably the most exciting athlete with a roundball since Vince Carter was dunking over future-Knick Frenchmen. I mean I might be exaggerating, but since we’re not going to see winning basketball out of the Knicks, we might as well be entertained.

    Do I love Cole? Yes. Do I want to watch him toss sky hooks to the baseline crowd multiple times a game? No.

    Free Cole, or trade him for some dude with a 40″ vertical.

  51. I think we can all agree on one thing and one thing only. Isiah Thomas is the sherpa we need to get us up the mountain of respectability, to the summit of championships! Who’s with me! C’mon…be somebody.

  52. I don’t even care about winning anymore. Not since Tyson left. So basically, you know what I’m thinking? Pick the most athletic, highlight-reel-friendly player available.

    @47 – I hear you loud and clear. That’s why I was so pissed off that PJ held a bargain-basement fire sale in January. As bad as the team was doing, I didn’t want to watch a bunch of D-Leaguers get crushed. It’s so hard to see a good future (in my lifetime?) for this team and I would just like to watch a competitive team.

    How’s this, let’s worry about building the roster for the 2020 season. That’s 5 years. I say 5 years because LeBron will be 36 then and the end of his reign of terror on the NBA will be coming to an end. Until then, everything is futile. How many 1st rounders do we have between now and then?

  53. Harden is very exciting to watch even with the flailin’ and floppin’. Some of his improvisational shit is spectacular, like the Dick Barnett fall back baby jumper he stroked a couple of games ago. But you gotta give Westbrook at least some props. He was a monster for most of this year, despite a broken-footed superstar sidekick and a seriously broken face. The dude made AI look boring.

    You were dead right all along about Harden being a franchise player, no disputing that, props given. But there is something to say about the Westbrook freak show’s entertainment value.

  54. I think I may have changed my mind again. I can live with WCS, Monroe, Melo, a scoring FA, and Calderon for this year. Then next year we look to significantly upgrade PG. If we can trade down and be assured of getting either Winslow or WCS, I say we do it.

  55. I don’t get all the love for Russell. I’d be terrified if we were picking him. He’s a good, not great shooter; a good, not great athlete. Maybe I’m wrong and he becomes the next James Harden (I was wrong about James Harden too!) but I think his ceiling is a poor man’s Steph…w/o the quickness or consistency.

    Z-man,

    I’m 100% with you on this. I know Brian for example has stated multiple times that he thinks there’s a clear cut top-3 in the draft, and I’m just not seeing that at all. I see a clear cut top-2 and then Russell seems very much in competition with Mudiay, Winslow, and the Euros. I would like to hear more from some of the Russell believers about why they seem him as clearly above that pack (if in fact they do).

  56. I changed my mind again. I’ve gone from “I can live with WCS” to “I want WCS”.

    He would fill a big need for the Knicks as a defensive big man that can protect the rim and also switch on the P&R. That’s going to be the toughest spot to fill. His shooting has improved every year. So there’s some reason to think he won’t be a liability on offense or limited to just dunks as time passes.
    He could become a young Tyson Chandler with more shooting range in time.

  57. I would like to hear more from some of the Russell believers about why they seem him as clearly above that pack (if in fact they do).

    I’m a big fan. Most players add value in a single way (scorer, defender, play maker)

    I think Russell can add value in a variety of ways. He can score in bunches, pass well and make plays, but he also rebounds above average for the position.

  58. He could become a young Tyson Chandler with more shooting range in time.

    I don’t know about that-Cauley Stein isn’t much of a rebounder. Or at least he wasn’t in college.

  59. Do I love Cole? Yes. Do I want to watch him toss sky hooks to the baseline crowd multiple times a game? No.

    Objectively wrong.

  60. WHO GIVES A FLYING FLAP ABOUT SHOOTING RANGE, SON

    DUNKS. DUNKS. DUNKS.

  61. I don’t know about that-Cauley Stein isn’t much of a rebounder. Or at least he wasn’t in college.

    Maybe he won’t be as good a rebounder a Chandler, but he’s not bad, especially when you consider he spent some time on the court with Townes.

  62. He was a crap defensive rebounder last year too. He’s pulled down like 17% of DRBs over his 3 year career-at the same age Tyson was pulling down 27% in the NBA. This could be a scheme thing, and if he was guarding dudes out on the perimeter because of his versatility that would effect his rebound rate, but that’s a question I’d need answered before I drafted him. My spreadsheets don’t have all the info.

  63. WHO GIVES A FLYING FLAP ABOUT SHOOTING RANGE, SON

    DUNKS. DUNKS. DUNKS.

    The problem with that school of thinking is that you only get a few dunk opportunities per game (the more the merrier of course).

    Sometimes the defense wins the possession and you don’t get a dunk, layup, free throw, or spot of 3 pointer from Kyle Korver. When that happens, “someone” has to take a lower efficiency shot from mid range, or even worse, the dreaded long 2. The more offensive options you have, the better your chances of getting a decent one instead of a late clock bad one from Melo or someone else. When you have 1 or more very limited offensive options on the court, it makes it a little easier for the defense.

    So while a decent mid range game is not requirement for the C position and you wouldn’t want a guy like that taking many mid range jumpers, if he’s enough of a threat to have to cover, that’s a plus for the spacing and options.

    Cauley Stein has become a much better FT shooter in his 3 years in college and is at least somewhat capable of knocking down an open shot from 15 feet if you leave him all alone. If he continues improving (and I don’t see why he won’t), that’s a good thing.

  64. Adding to what Stratomatic said, it looks like the game is easy for Russell. His court vision and passing isn’t just good, it’s astounding. No-look passes, thread-the-needle passes, bounce passes with english on them. He doesn’t give up his dribble. He drives the lane and can nail it from outside the arc. If the Knicks drafted him and signed a center, I would be happy. I dread watching him play for the 76’ers.

  65. He was a crap defensive rebounder last year too. He’s pulled down like 17% of DRBs over his 3 year career-at the same age Tyson was pulling down 27% in the NBA. This could be a scheme thing, and if he was guarding dudes out on the perimeter because of his versatility that would effect his rebound rate, but that’s a question I’d need answered before I drafted him. My spreadsheets don’t have all the info.

    I don’t have that data either, but if you watch video of him you’ll see him switch and be out on the perimeter from time to time. That’s not typical of many big men and one reason we’d want him to begin with. His OREB rate is pretty good. Like I said, I also don’t think playing next to Townes helped his rebounding stats last year.

    He’s not Chandler as a rebounder, but he can do things Chandler couldn’t. He runs the floor like a Gazelle.

  66. Im holding on to the faint hope that the Lakers somehow take Mudiay which will leave the Knicks with either Okafor or Russell.

  67. I wouldn’t draft WCS. Phil’s gonna sign Monroe so we have to ask how those two would fit. Well, here are some stats courtesy of NBAwowy.com where Drummond and Monroe were on the court together and not on the court together (note: Josh Smith was never on the court in either case). Monroe had a .600 TS%. .54 eFG, and 1.16PPP when he and Drummond were not together. When together, his stats significantly dropped to .515 TS%, .46 eFG and .99PPP. (Monroe played 800+ minutes in each configuration).

    This tells me that Monroe is far more effective at the 5 position which makes some intuitive sense. If you believe that, then the dominoes start to fall. We should avoid players like WCS and Jordan and perhaps even R.Lopez. I’m more and more arriving at selecting Porzingis – he doesn’t have a real comp which makes him a complete wildcard. Other than Towns, I don’t think there’s a sure thing in this draft so might as well shoot for the moon. I really like a front-court of Melo/Monroe/Zinger. It’s flexible enough to work in high PnR, 4-out and Triangle. Then try to sign Joseph and/or Danny Green depending upon Calderon situation. Monroe (24yo), Porzingis (20yo), Joseph (23yo) – that’s the type of age profile we want.

  68. Mudiay form me is like a young Baron Davis.
    I am honestly ok with Mudiay but for some strange reason I feel that there will be a twist and we might draft a different player then Mudiay will turn out to be superstar wearing a different jersey.

  69. I don’t want WCS. The fact he is a Junior and hasn’t shown much growth in three years at Kentucky is a problem.
    12-13: 23.6 mins – Stats per 40: 14.2 pts – 10.5 rebs – 1.6 asts – 1.4 stls – 3.5 blks – 58% TS%
    13-14: 23.8 mins – Stats per 40: 11.5 pts – 10.2 rebs – 1.1 asts – 2.0 stls – 4.8 blks – 58% TS%
    14-15: 25.9 mins – Stats per 40: 13.8 pts – 9.9 rebs – 1.5 asts – 1.9 stls – 2.6 blks – 59% TS%

    That’s basically no improvement over three years and I’m worried that he only averages barely over 10 rebounds per 40 in college and can’t even break a 60% TS% in his third year. His defense is good enough that he is solid as a pick in the mid to late lottery going to a team that needs solid role players but he is by no means a franchise changing talent. We need a home run and he has one of the lowest ceilings in the lottery.

  70. Feels very much like Love is going to walk this offseason. Cavs have Kyrie and Lebron on max contracts, Shump to re-up, JR at 7, and Lebron has already pretty much said that Tristan Thompson is staying which gives TT all the leverage.

    I could talk myself into signing Love for 19, Koufos for 8 or whatever’s left, and drafting Mudiay or Russell. Would be a lot of pressure on whoever is center with Melo and Love on the floor but that’d be a pretty awesome triangle front court.

    And Love’s value is probably at an all time low now. Sure it’s a max deal but perhaps we wouldn’t have any other competition?

  71. They were already ready to give Thompson $13 million a year and still re-sign Love, so I doubt adding in the extra $2.7 million will make much of a difference. The Cavs should be one of the teams most helped by the rising cap. They will be able to re-sign everyone if the feel like it and I don’t see why they wouldn’t just do that.

    Of course, Love might not want to re-sign, but I don’t think the other players play much of a role in Love coming back or not.

  72. Win or lose in the Finals, there is no way Love is staying in Cleveland. You can’t have that much money tied up in your starting and back up PFs. Also, with Rich Paul being Thompson agent I never saw him leaving Cleveland unless he went to Toronto.

    So where does Love land? If Towns goes 1 and Okafor goes to LA, will the Lakers try to pair Love with Kahlil?

  73. Also it’s mudiay Winslow Russell or bust for me. No WCS. Simple math for me.who ever tests the best and is available Phil has to pick. No Euros. You just never know with them. Maybe if we had the pick next year

  74. Why would Cleveland want Love back? Dude’s never won a playoff series

    Sounds very Knick-like to me.

  75. I continually astonished that SAS has a job.

    The icerangers are like the bizzaro Knicks. That team just will not die.

  76. I’m on the Hezonja train. Trade down a few spots to pick up an extra player, preferably a pg. Get Hezonja at 5-7. Sign workhorse Millsap. Sign Koufos or Robin Lopez.
    Hezonja becomes a stud and suddenly Melo is your #3 option. Voila.

  77. Whether it is Hezonja or not, I do agree with the basic idea of trading down from #4 to get one of the guys in the #5-7 range. Hezonja is going to be able to score in the NBA. Winslow is going to be able to defend. WCS is going to play excellent defense. These guys all have something good in their favor. Mudiay is likely going to be better than all of them, but not necessarily by a lot. So since they are all pretty good, why not trade down?

  78. I’m on the Hezonja train. Trade down a few spots to pick up an extra player, preferably a pg. Get Hezonja at 5-7. Sign workhorse Millsap. Sign Koufos or Robin Lopez.
    Hezonja becomes a stud and suddenly Melo is your #3 option. Voila.

    How does Melo become 3rd option here?

  79. That’s basically no improvement over three years and I’m worried that he only averages barely over 10 rebounds per 40 in college and can’t even break a 60% TS% in his third year. His defense is good enough that he is solid as a pick in the mid to late lottery going to a team that needs solid role players but he is by no means a franchise changing talent. We need a home run and he has one of the lowest ceilings in the lottery.

    Zone defense, bruh. I’m sure he’ll be a lot like DeAndre in the pro offense. Floor spacer? Fuck no, and thankfully so. But lots of D and dunks.

  80. I don’t get all the love for Russell. I’d be terrified if we were picking him. He’s a good, not great shooter; a good, not great athlete. Maybe I’m wrong and he becomes the next James Harden (I was wrong about James Harden too!) but I think his ceiling is a poor man’s Steph…w/o the quickness or consistency.

    Besides him not being a great defender yet (but also not exactly being asked to do much defense in college, where he was the sole offensive player for a fairly mediocre team OSU team), the only other real knock I hear about Russell is he’s not athletic and I just don’t get that. Is he as athletic as Mudiay? No, but Chris Paul isn’t as athletic as Tyreke Evans. You still take Chris Paul every day of the week and twice on Sundays. In fact, it was their lack of “athleticism” that led to Paul and Deron Williams going #3 and #4 instead of #2 and 3 because the extremely athletic Marvin Williams went #2. That was obviously a bad decision as Paul was clearly going to be a great NBA guard. Russell isn’t going to be Chris Paul, but he’s also going to be a very good NBA guard. Dude had a 58% TS plus shot 41% from three while being the no-doubt-about-it first, second and last option for his team on offense. In college, for a dude who just now turned 19, that’s staggering. When you’re the main option on a mediocre college basketball team, you never get the shot opportunities you’ll get in the NBA. Plus the spacing will be so much better for Russell as obviously everyone can’t fixate entirely on him.

    I think character is extremely overrated in the NBA, but if you believe in that sort of thing, everyone who interviewed him at the NBA combine came away extremely impressed with his maturity. Hell, one of the only hopes I have left is that Russell impresses the Lakers so much that they take him at #2, leaving Okafor to drop to #4.

  81. As an aside, let me take a moment to acknowledge just how amazing Lebron James is. The dude shocks the world by signing with Miami, then proceeds to go to the NBA Finals with them every year he’s there. Decides to go to Cleveland, and then goes to the NBA Finals his first year there. That’s astonishingly impressive. I mean, part of it is that the East sucks, but still.

  82. I think character is extremely overrated in the NBA

    Pop disagrees vehemently.

    I mean, part of it is that the East sucks, but still.

    This year should really come with an asterisk, citing Phil. These were the weakest Eastern Conference Playoffs I’ve ever seen.

  83. Pop also won a title with Stephen Jackson playing a big role. Strong character is nice to have, but I think good coaches can make poor character guys work, as well. Hell, JR Smith might very well win a title this year.

  84. Myles Turner is certainly an intriguing player, but he racked up a lot of his stats against podunk schools. In conference play he was rather pedestrian: .508 TS%, .130 WS40. His combination of skills is really tantalizing: he’s a monster shot blocker and a fierce rebounder, and he did shoot .840 from the free throw line, but he had some stinker games against tough conference opponents. I’m lukewarm overall towards Turner.

  85. Turner also had a shitty coach, though, who likely misused Turner. Turner is a stretch at #4, but he’d be fine around 6 or 7. I really want to trade down now to a team that really wants Mudiay.

  86. Pop also won a title with Stephen Jackson playing a big role. Strong character is nice to have, but I think good coaches can make poor character guys work, as well.

    Yeah, absolutely, but you need to have a strong character foundation. After that, everything goes.

    And I still can’t wrap my head around the thought of JR Smith, NBA finalist. I profoundly despise LeBron’s mannerisms, but boy is he good.

  87. I understand, BC, but every freaking game I watched Russell, he looked very pedestrian. I saw a couple of conference tournament games and his last game in the NCAA tournament. The only thing that jumped out at me was his passing. He seemed very easy to defend. I feel the opposite way…the shots he thrives on will be HARDER to come by in the NBA, where he will be defended every night by someone at least as athletic as him, with bigger bigs protecting the rim. His splits against better teams are troubling.

    And one thing I am absolutely sure of…he’s not anywhere near the player Chris Paul was or is. I guess vintage Deron Williams is a good ceiling for him, which is certainly very good, but I’m still not convinced he’s a 1. He also really worries me defensively.

    But hell, I didn’t think James Harden would amount to much either!

  88. No, but Chris Paul isn’t as athletic as Tyreke Evans.

    Tyreke came into the league with a max vert of 34. That was less than CP3, or Deron (Overweight Deron!) That was him at his MOST athletic…and he ballooned when he got into the nba after his great rookie year. lol. He’s not really athletic by NBA standards for either PGs, or by NBA standards for 6’6 guys. He doesn’t have hops, isn’t particularly quick…he is just huge, with great handle.

    CP3 dunked on YOUNG Dwight Howard early in his career. Like…ALL up on him. Youtube it. He came into the league with a near 40 inch vert. Even in his older age, he’s still quick as most point guards — you can’t be the best defensive point guard in the NBA on willpower and studiousness alone. The “problem” with CP3 was he was little.

    Dude had a 58% TS plus shot 41% from three while being the no-doubt-about-it first, second and last option for his team on offense. In college, for a dude who just now turned 19, that’s staggering.

    I was looking to find a scoring PG comparison for him so i randomly compared his year to Lillard, and it matches up nicely with some of Lillard’s *later* college years. I think it’s pretty safe to say Russell can get buckets. The worrisome thing is his ability to penetrate and finish , and to play D — hes a bit slow for a guard and relies alot on trickery and mid range shots near the hoop especially against teams over .500 (aka teams with, among other things, bigger faster guys).

    Knicks Fandom aside, the top 2-8 in this draft are going to be *wonderful* test cases in the NBA to discuss down the line. No one is without a glaring flaw, and most don’t really have a great NBA Comp…despite seeming great.

  89. yeah – props to Lebron. They’re making a bit too much out of the “no one has been to 5 straight NBA finals since BILL RUSSELL!!!!!” — Jordan probably would’ve won 8 straight championships if he hadn’t gotten bored and gone to baseball. But still — when your only comps over the last 50 years are Jordan and Russell you definitely belong on or very near the mount rushmore of basketball.

    That said – I will be extremely surprised if GS doesn’t beat Cleveland in 6 or fewer games, and if I had to put $ on it I’d probably say it’ll be 5 games. GS has at least 3 players that can credibly guard Lebron (Klay, Iguodala, Draymond, maybe even Harrison Barnes), and they’re probably the only team that couldn’t care less if Cleveland goes small since they’re better going small too. There’s no one on GS for Blatt to hide Kyrie on — even if you have Shump guard Curry then who is Kyrie going guard? Klay Thompson?

    Re: Phil – everyone wants to kill him for everything – how bad the Knicks were this year, the trades, etc… but one thing is for sure — no one had Steve Kerr on their coaching radar other than Phil — and it was phil’s interest that catapulted him to this GS job. And I’d say he’s turned out pretty well.

    Another thought/speculation on Phil– I think this twitter thing about the 3 pointers is totally overblown and taken out of context. If you look at what he tweets, he has basically said that getting penetration is the most important thing, and good shots come as a result of it, whether they are 3 pointers or high-quality post-up looks, layups, etc. He just doesn’t think that spread PNR is the only way to get penetration -still thinks that passing the ball as opposed to dribbling the ball is the way to make it happen. I don’t think there’s much there that is controversial. He is just having a terrible time communicating it effectively, which is weird since his strength was supposed to be communication.

    cont…

  90. some of this might just be the 140 character nature of twitter and how hard it is to get anything nuanced across with that limitation. some of it might be that he is high when tweeting — that’s almost a given.

    but just the way he makes up words (“disvalue” was just the most recent one – he does it pretty frequently if you listen to the press conferences) makes me wonder if all his marbles are still there — and i mean that in a medical sense. Word finding difficulties… no bueno.

    anyway – total and complete speculation.

  91. @Frank While what you said makes some sense, it does appear that Phil went out of his way to identify teams like GSW and Cavs as not really built for the playoffs. There’s no question he favors a Memphis/Chicago type of team. I remember Phil stating that he believed some type of post-up game is critical to a team’s success. Instead of tweeting, Phil should just do an extended interview with Zach Lowe and explain his philosophy in some detail.

  92. “I remember Phil stating that he believed some type of post-up game is critical to a team’s success. Instead of tweeting, Phil should just do an extended interview with Zach Lowe and explain his philosophy in some detail.”
    Ironic that just yesterday, Lowe posted an article about the return of the back to the basket low post game in the playoffs.

  93. Re: Phil – everyone wants to kill him for everything – how bad the Knicks were this year, the trades, etc… but one thing is for sure — no one had Steve Kerr on their coaching radar other than Phil — and it was phil’s interest that catapulted him to this GS job. And I’d say he’s turned out pretty well.

    I dunno where you’re getting “no one had Kerr on their radar” from. Everyone had Kerr on their radar. He and SVG were the two top coaching prospects last season. Everyone just thought Kerr wanted to go coach in New York for Jackson until Golden State was turned down by SVG and decided that they’d see just how committed Kerr was to the Knicks.

    Another thought/speculation on Phil– I think this twitter thing about the 3 pointers is totally overblown and taken out of context. If you look at what he tweets, he has basically said that getting penetration is the most important thing, and good shots come as a result of it, whether they are 3 pointers or high-quality post-up looks, layups, etc.

    He said that only after getting a ton of shit for just being a dick about Golden State and Atlanta being down 2-1 during the second round. That’s why people made a big deal out of it. He totally trolls Atlanta and Golden State, they then proceed to win every game after his comment, winning their respective series easily and then rather than saying, “Oops, my bad,” he decided to double down on his initial comment. I do agree that it is not a big deal, because whatever, so long as it doesn’t affect the team, he can be a troll on the internet.

  94. I think the only thing the Knicks can truly do to change the culture and give us real hope for the future would be to trade Melo. I appreciate Melo. I think he works hard. I think he wants it bad. But this team is in a huge hole at this point. Few draft picks, threadbare talent on the roster and nothing but a lot of cap space. Imagine all the young players and/or picks we might get in return from a team that would inherently be thinking “win now” (why else would you trade for Carmelo?). Taking and trading Mudiay would be heartbreaking unless it led to more young players which seems unlikely. Forgive me for not having a specific trade scenario to suggest but I think the concept works.

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