Bucks 105, Knicks 95

New York Knicks 95 Final
Recap | Box Score
105 Milwaukee Bucks

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Andrea Bargnani, PF 25 MIN | 5-9 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 13 PTS | -25

Yes, it’s an utterly flawed stat, but let’s saunter over to the poor ol’ plus/minus category and see what we…DEAR GOD. Yes, that’s a negative twenty-five. Yes, that’s entirely reflective of how badly the Knicks played when he was on the court, especially in the ongoing Michelson-Morley experiment that is the 4/5 pairing with Melo. There were some nifty post moves smattered hither and yonder, but those were mostly offset by the hilarity of watching him try to take Larry Sanders in the post, resulting in two consecutive turnovers He can’t be in the starting lineup this time on Wednesday. He just can’t (more on this in a jiffy).

Carmelo Anthony, SF 36 MIN | 8-23 FG | 4-7 FT | 9 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 22 PTS | -10

You know when you get your zipper snagged oand your face is curled into a little fist of desperate, inchoate rage as you pull and tear, zip and unzip, your fingers too big to dislodge the surrounding bit of fabric and so you just end up dumbly pulling the entire garment up over your body, lest another human being walk by and see you spastically trapped by a straightjacket of your own devising? Well, that was Melo’s evening in a nutshell. He seemed unsure of where to isolate (and when he did, to limited success), kvetched relentlessly about fouls that were and were not called. He did locate open ‘mates en route to seven assists, and the offense was so discombobulated as a whole, it’s hard to totally fault Melo, but tonight’s game brought back icky memories of last season’s winter of team-wide mediocrity.

Tyson Chandler, C 17 MIN | 3-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -12

Scant action tonight for Tyson, none of it particularly good. As we know all too well, outside of a PnR-centric offense, he tends to disappear. He also looked like a man trying to chase a pen full of agitated barnyard chickens, what with all the times that a Stag got past his original defender. After the game, he unleashed these pearls of wisdom:

Sounds like a great plan, Tyson. You’d probably have better luck to trying to teach Quantum Mechanics to a Pygmy Marmot Marmoset [h/t Seth at P&T, Lord and Protectorate of all hoops-wildlife references], but your heart’s in the right place, and hey, YOLO! Actually, if Tyson’s forced to scramble all season as much as he did tonight, he may suffer a stress-induced cerebral hemorrhage. So, you know, give it a try, but you do only live once.

Pablo Prigioni, PG 17 MIN | 0-2 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | -7

A slew of pest-astic moments, but he seems out of sorts working outside of the two-PG offense (yes, we’ll get there soon. I promise. Now stop fidgeting in the backseat or I’m turning this recap around and we’re all going home). I think some of his lackluster play can be ascribed to whatever illness or malady kept him out of Monday’s game — the Argentine Flu, perhaps? Early in the first quarter, he seemed to sort of limp/stagger off, with Clyde posting the notion that he was hurt. I dunno about you, but the though of a Prig-free ‘Bocker squad made me scurry down to my survival bunker and start busting out the survival seed packets and heavy armaments. Luckily, he returned later in the half, fresh as a daisy, smelling of unicorn farts and seducing ladies and gentlemen both with a devilish, insouciant twinkle in his eye.

Iman Shumpert, SG 29 MIN | 4-6 FG | 1-2 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 11 PTS | -18

Remember the media day quote where Shump expressed his distaste for his personal calling card, stating he’s only prone to perimeter thievery because he so desires the spheroid object, longing nothing more than to return in to the cylinder that is its natural resting place? (I may be paraphrasing a bit.) We got a few of those scintillating moments tonight, plus a nifty two handed putback and a couple of smooth jumpers off the bounce. And for all our fretting about his emotional state after yet another public tongue lashing from Woody, Coach is right: He overpursues like a fiend. OJ Mayo should probably send a sweet presentation gift basket for all of the unimpeded paths to the tin Shump’s overeager lurching provided.

Ike Diogu, PF 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -2

IKE DIOGU PRESEASON ANAGRAM: I OK. GUIDE

C.J. Leslie, SF 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -2

Wait, did C.J. play? Insert “He’s so skinny (How skinny is he?)…that when he stands sideways he gets counted absent,” joke here.

Metta World Peace, SF 22 MIN | 3-12 FG | 3-6 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 9 PTS | +9

Nothing new under the sun. Some solid individual and team defense. A Smithian ropensity to pass up an easier shot in favor of an off-balance runner/fadeaway/ill-advised drive. Of course, his burgeoning friendship with Iman Shumpert is as heartwarming as mewling baby kittens and as terrifying as those self-same cats, now fully grown, in heat, hissing and trying to claw your eyes out.

Cole Aldrich, C 14 MIN | 0-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | +20

I guess it was Cole’s turn to spin the backup-big-who-might-make-the-roster-assuming-Murry-and-Tyler-have-assured-themselves-of-making-the-roster wheel. And hey (Larry David voice), he looked prettttty good, pretttttty good. He’s still got moves around the basket that look like he’s just a relatively tall bit actor from Hoosiers and/or Glory Road (the goofy fumble of a pick and roll feed from Urdih, only to grab what appeared to be a well-lubricated pig in lieu of a leather ball, followed by a bricked dunk being Exhibit A), but he snaggled more than his share of offensive rebounds and actually provided a presence in the middle as opposed to what occurred when Tyson was sitting on the bench working on his scrapbooking and the large Italian fellow played the position with all the grace, speed, purpose, and effectiveness of a 50-lb wheel of finely-aged Parmesan cheese.

Beno Udrih, PG 31 MIN | 3-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 7 PTS | -3

Such a chucker. And yet another Knick that seems to think a 15-20 footer is the absolute bees-knees, shot selection wise. When they go in, great, but it’s worth noting that Indiana and Chicago led the league in encouraging said midrange shots. You know, the best defenses in all the land. an

Toure’ Murry, SG 13 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 7 PTS | -4

Despite the Knickerbockers attempt to build themselves yet another point out two-guard parts they pilfered from various graves, (See Shumpert, Iman) Toure’s not a floor general. His handle’s too wobbly and really thinks creating means “find a lane for an improbable floater.” His defensive instincts are solid, but he’s still learning how to react to the speed of an NBA game. That said, if the Knicks sacrifice him at the alter of CAA or brotherly love or some shady, under-the-table/Devil’s agreement with the mafia clan that is the Smith family, we’re all gonna throw a major league hissy fit.

Tim Hardaway Jr., SG 34 MIN | 6-13 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 16 PTS | +4

Looks like opposing teams (or at least the Bucks) popped a couple of tapes from the previous couple of games into their Betamax. They were closing a lot quicker on Timmy Jr., so it was neat to see him look to drive on a few occasions. There’s a lot to like here, especially when he’s surrounded by actual rotation players — he’s definitely got the athleticism to be a solid finisher, he gets in a good, low crouch on defense (though his lateral movement isn’t the greatest), and he’s a hellion on the break.

Five Things We Saw

  1. I don’t know about y’all, but I’m running out of “It’s only preseason…” smiley-face stickers to plaster over what is becoming a permanent sour expression. Granted, last year ’round this same time, we were similarly fretting about the rotation and how all these disparate, ill-fitting pieces could ever possibly work together once they finally recovered from injuries and maladies ranging from “nagging” to “needs a trip to Lourdes.”
  2. So yeah, that turned out relatively well. But tonight, the offense once again looked brackishly stagnant. There werew wayyyyyy too many isolation sets for Melo (7 dimes notwithstanding) and very few moments when the ball rotated from the strong to the weak side. The defense remains an ongoing mystery. They were absolutely torched by Mayo, Butler, Ridnour, et al, and it didn’t even look particularly difficult. One pass or half-decent screen and the Milwaukeeans had a wide open look — both on the perimeter and in the paint. Hell, at times it seems that the goal of all the switching and unecessary doubling is to encourage open threes. Part of it is certainly due to the lack of familiarity with Woodson’s system, which if it’s going to work, requires at lot of moving parts to be in harmony. That’s clearly not the case right now. A set rotation would certainly help a ton, but this Rube Goldberg device isn’t going to be made whole till we know who’s the mouse eating the cheese and who’s the little metal ball that the bobbing-head duck bonks into the cup.
  3. I get wanting to experiment with a big lineup (even if it’s really just a tall lineup). But all of this feels like a dumb overreaction to what happened in Nap Town in the playoffs (like an extended sooper-stoopid to start Martin in game 4). There’s an old line about “generals are always preparing to fight the last war, instead of preparing for the new, different one that is yet to come.” The Knicks found an identity last year. Now’s the time when they should be building on that. You have a top 5-ish offense and a defense that’s going to drive a sturdy man/woman to drink/put a lot of dents in rich mahogany desks. That’s okay. There’s something to be said for trying to cobble together a more balanced unit, but they’re risking robbing Peter absolutely blind in order to toss a spare nickel into homeless Paul’s sad, bedraggled hands as they clutch a disposable coffee cup. Please, Son of Wood. You did say you could go back to the two PG lineup if need be. Well, it really, RILLY needs be. This (whatever ‘this’ is supposed to be) isn’t working. Start with Prigs-Felt-Shump-Melo-Tyson. I don’t care if STAT and Bargs have overlapping skill sets. You have no idea how often the latter’s going to be able to suit up, no matter how many times he says his balsa wood knees feel ‘great’ (and it’s not like Bargs has been the bastion of health either). Please?
  4. So in the midst of all this hand-wringing, I have yet another concern, if slightly less grave. Woody’s beard. I fear that it has become self-aware and is trying to devour the rest of his head.
  5. And that’ll do it. One more preview and then this wobbly theatrical construct opens on Broadway. And if you’re really upset about this game (like I was), read this article about Giannis Antetokounmpo. It’ll put all of this First World Problems ish to rest, tout suite.

    Until Friday, then. Go Knicks!

Knicks Morning News (Thursday, Oct 24 2013)

  • [ESPN.com – New York Knicks] Melo, Bargnani an eyesore on defense (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 00:21:12 EDT)

    Mike Woodson said earlier this week that he wants to take a longer look at Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani playing together at power forward and center. Do you think he’s seen enough at this point?Bargnani and Anthony shared the floor for just over 11 minutes on Wednesday when no Knicks center was on the floor. The result wasn’t very pretty. The Knicks were outscored 33-22 in that span in a 105-95 loss to Milwaukee. The Bucks scored roughly three points per minute when Woodson paired Anthony and Bargnani together at power forward and center.

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks nepotism? Woodson says JR’s bro has leg up (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 05:37:12 GMT)

    J.R. Smith is more than just a big brother to Chris Smith. He could be his ticket to the NBA. Mike Woodson revealed that Chris Smith’s hopes of earning one of the Knicks’ final roster spots is enhanced by being J.R. Smith’s younger brother.    

  • [New York Times] Clippers Hold Off Jazz for 103-99 Preseason Win (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 05:25:24 GMT)

    Darren Collison scored 14 of his 15 points in the fourth quarter and Blake Griffin had 15 points through the first three periods, helping the Los Angeles Clippers post a 103-99 preseason victory over the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Kings Edge Warriors in Preseason (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 04:48:53 GMT)

    Isaiah Thomas scored 21 points to help the Sacramento Kings rally in the fourth quarter and beat the Golden State Warriors 91-90 in a preseason game Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Bulls Beat Thunder in Preseason (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 04:25:23 GMT)

    Derrick Rose shook off poor shooting early to hit clutch shots late and Carlos Boozer had 20 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 104-95 preseason victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Oden Returns as Heat Best Pelicans, 108-95 (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 04:10:14 GMT)

    For Greg Oden and his Miami Heat teammates, four minutes on an NBA court in a preseason game was cause for celebration.    

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Pro Basketball: N.B.A. Finals Format Tweaked (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 03:49:35 GMT)

    N.B.A. owners unanimously voted Wednesday to scrap the 2-3-2 finals format and return to 2-2-1-1-1, believing the travel inconveniences teams faced 30 years ago no longer exist.    

  • [New York Times] Suns Rally Past Nuggets for 98-79 Win (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 03:43:23 GMT)

    Eric Bledsoe scored 21 points, including eight in the fourth quarter, and the Phoenix Suns pulled away to beat the Denver Nuggets 98-79 in a preseason game Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Mavs Get Preseason Win Over Hawks (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 03:07:02 GMT)

    Dirk Nowitzki scored 17 points, Monta Ellis added 15 and the Dallas Mavericks beat the short-handed Atlanta Hawks 98-88 in a preseason game Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Bucks Hold Off Knicks in Preseason (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 03:00:49 GMT)

    Caron Butler scored 24 points to lead the Milwaukee Bucks to a preseason victory, 105-95 over the Knicks in Green Bay.    

  • [New York Times] Pierce, Ex-Celtic and Current Net, Straddling Two Cities (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 02:37:09 GMT)

    Paul Pierce traveled with the Nets to Boston, his professional home of the previous 15 years, but he didn’t take part in Wednesday’s preseason game.    

  • [New York Times] Celtics Close Preseason With 101-97 Win Over Nets (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 02:01:09 GMT)

    Avery Bradley and Brandon Bass scored 16 points apiece and Vitor Faverani added 15 points and seven rebounds as the Boston Celtics closed out the preseason with a 101-97 victory over the short-handed Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Barea, Love Lead T’wolves Over 76ers, 125-102 (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 01:42:53 GMT)

    J.J. Barea scored 22 points, Kevin Love added 19 and the Minnesota Timberwolves cruised past the Philadelphia 76ers 125-102 in a preseason game Wednesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Raptors Rout Grizzlies in Preseason (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 01:36:47 GMT)

    DeMar DeRozan scored 21 points, Rudy Gay had 15 against his former team and the Toronto Raptors beat the Memphis Grizzlies 108-72 on Wednesday night, their fifth straight preseason win.    

  • [New York Times] Wizards Beat Cavaliers in Preseason (Thu, 24 Oct 2013 01:27:54 GMT)

    Bradley Beal scored 21 points and Trevor Ariza added 19 as the Washington Wizards erased a 16-point third-quarter deficit before pulling away for a 101-82 preseason victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night.    

  • Preseason Game Thread: Knicks v. Bucks

    In anticipation of the last leg of this too-long road trip, made possible by the installation of fancy newfangled gee-gaws and whiz-bangers at the World’s Most Famous, I asked friend-of-the-blog, Jeremy Schmidt of Bucksketball to provide this handy-dandy primer on the kids from Milwaukee.

    1. There’s been a lot of chatter about Herb Kohl’s “win now/no rebuilding” demands and how it affected the Bucks’ offseason. What did you think of the moves they made? What was the best signing or trade/what was the worst?

    It’s hard not to get swept up in Giannis fever right now, so I’ll say drafting him was the best move the Bucks made this offseason. Kohl certainly wants to contend, so it’s nice to see that John Hammond was able to operate under that mandate but also take a big swing for the fences too.

    As far as trades and signings go, I’ll go with the Brandon Jennings for Brandon Knight trade. Jennings had to go and maybe Knight isn’t the answer at point guard, but the Bucks can take this season to see if he is or isn’t. Then they’ll be in position to either move forward with him or address the position in an upcoming point guard right (possibly) draft. That sounds a lot better than investing four more years into Brandon Jennings.


    2. Who are the youngsters (Young Bucks, if you will) that we should keep an eye on. Feel free to wax poetic about Giannis.
    Giannis will make you keep an eye on him at some point. He’ll do something that draws everyone’s attention at some point and a lot of things that will make you wonder what the fuss is all about the rest of the game. But that one moment, that’s what we’re living for in Milwaukee right now.

    Other than that, John Henson has a swooping lefty hook that’s interesting and a healthy appetite for rebounds. Larry Sanders is known now, but he still blocks shots and gets agitated. Khris Middleton has been getting a lot of minutes at the three and four as a shooter/scorer type, so he might make some plays tonight.

     

    3. When attempting to forecast the seedings in the Eastern Conference, most talk about a top four — Miami, Indiana, Chicago, and Brooklyn — then the Knicks, and then the remaining three playoff spots essentially being up for grabs for any team not located in Philadelphia, Boston, Orlando, or Charlotte. How do you feel about the Bucks’ chances? Where do you think they’ll finish this season?

    Before the preseason started I thought the Bucks were a contender for that sixth spot in the East possibly. Now I think they’re a possible longer shot at the playoffs than anyone in Milwaukee realized. A lot is going to rest of Knight actually being a point guard that can create for his teammates and OJ Mayo being able to handle the number one scoring duties with success. Those are two shaky propositions.
    The early season may be rough, but I’m still thinking they can sneak into the playoffs. The eight or nine spot have been home for the Bucks often over the past 10 years and I suspect they’ll find that home again this season.

    2014 Preseason Roundtable: Predicting the Unpredictable

    In case you didn’t hear, the Knicks signed some crazy guy who was born and raised in New York and plays basketball kind of alright I guess. The KnickerBlogger crew was asked to make their predictions as to what Metta World Peace will bring to the table this season.

    Cronin: I am cautiously optimistic that the career rejuvenation that World Peace showed last season will continue in New York. He surely won’t be lacking for motivation in his return to New York, not to mention a desire to prove Los Angeles wrong in amnestying him. I imagine that he will be dedicated enough on defense for any possibly offensive deficiencies to be masked. In addition, at the very least he will be a perfect guy to bring in to cool down the Lebrons and Durants of the world (especially at the end of the game).

    McElroy: 2 threes, 2 steals, 4 boards, 5 fouls, 82 must-see post-game interviews.

    Fisher-Cohen: Hard for me to see minutes for Metta, honestly, at least not while the team is healthy. The Knicks have about a salary cap’s worth of power forwards already, so Peace is the only spot there’s room for him is as a small forward, and NY really struggled when they were unable to surround Melo with three true threats from downtown. I buy that Peace will be juiced up for the season. I just hope he’s not too juiced because MWP’s brain seems to short out on those occasions when his level of excitement flows up into the red zone.

    Cronin: Don’t you think that a Knick team that finished in the bottom half of the NBA in defense will be able to find room in their rotation for a guy like World Peace who can still bring it on the defensive side of the court, Max?

    Fisher-Cohen: Brian, I guess you could say the same thing about Ronnie Brewer last year. I know it’s not a perfect comparison, but despite his defense and rebounding, Brewer was +12/100 possessions on 41% three point shooting in November and -5.0/100 possessions on 15% three point shooting in December. Peace shot 32% on threes when he wasn’t in the corners and 36.8% — still below average — on corner threes. That makes him a worse shooter than Raymond Felton, probably the worst rotational three point shooter the Knicks had last year. How much will those numbers go down if he’s not playing power forward and therefore is being defended by players who are comfortable defending the perimeter?

    I like Peace and think he can play as a power forward on this team and that there’s a good chance that Stoudemire will get hurt and Bargnani will struggle, making him the best option at there, so I guess i should clarify: In a scenario where the Knicks are better than last year, I don’t see Peace playing much.

    Topaz: The starting power forward on the Nets is Kevin Garnett. The starting power forward on the Pacers is David West, and the backup is Luis Scola. The starting power forward on the Bulls is Carlos Boozer.

    Though much has been made about the NBA becoming a small-ball league, these contending teams in the East apparently didn’t get the memo. World Peace will not have consistent minutes over 82 games, but he will be a vitally important player against bigger teams, a disproportionate amount of which will likely contend for Eastern Conference supremacy. The Knicks could really use someone to spell Melo defensively when he is at the 4 in these games, and MWP is a great guy to do it.

    One more thing about MWP: Don’t confuse weirdness (and gratefulness for one’s teeth) with indifference or lack of effort. World Peace has had an industrious, long, and productive career doing things that many players don’t like to do – play great individual and team defense, bang against bigger players, and defend superstars. He was a very important piece on some very good Lakers teams for four years, and won an NBA championship.

    He is leaving a poisonous atmosphere in Los Angeles to come home. He clearly is willing to take a diminished role, given that the Knicks already were forward-heavy when he signed (and that he already has done it once, joining a contender in the Lakers in 2009 knowing his individual numbers would go down.) He is now on a floor-spacing team that won’t need him to create much on offense, will give him some open threes, ask him to defend bigger guys in important spots, and keep him rested (he will soon turn 34 on my birthday, November 13.) I see no reason why he won’t be a productive, hard-nosed player for the Knicks when they really need him.

    Silverman: He’s going to be fun as all git out to root for. As we’ve seen in the Preseason, his shot selection can be down right atrocious at times, leading to contested fadeaways from the low post, and put-your-head-down-charge-into-a-slew-of-defenders-and-hope-for-the-best drives, but aside from the gloriously jejeune quotes, I think he’ll be a solid, veteran presence that’ll bring plus team defense. So here’s my unpredictable prediction: We won’t see anything weird, or dumb — let alone crazy — from Metta.

    David Vertsberger: Irrational technicals, scuffles, and hilarious sound bites. These I can expect. What I truly wish for? Steady defensive presence, a consistent three-point stroke. Is that too much to ask for? Also – try not to elbow anybody in the mouth. Unless it’s Paul Pierce. You can elbow him in the mouth, MWP.

     

    Knicks Morning News (Wednesday, Oct 23 2013)

  • [New York Daily News] SEE IT: World Peace gives Psycho-T a scare (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 04:43:42 GMT)

    Tyler Hansbrough appeared to be looking for a fight … until he discovered his combatant would be Metta World Peace.    

  • [New York Times] Lakers Return From China, Beat Jazz 108-94 (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 05:12:54 GMT)

    Jordan Farmar scored 13 of his 20 points during a 3:17 span of the fourth quarter, and the Los Angeles Lakers got double-digit scoring from three other reserves en route to a 108-94 preseason victory over the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Stars Sit as Green, Bledsoe Lead Suns Past Thunder (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 04:40:09 GMT)

    Gerald Green and Eric Bledsoe both had 15 points and P.J. Tucker added 13 to lead the Phoenix Suns past the depleted Oklahoma City Thunder 88-76 in preseason play Tuesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Spurs Beat Magic in Preseason (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 02:57:47 GMT)

    Patty Mills scored 22 points and Kawhi Leonard added 19 and the San Antonio Spurs routed the Orlando Magic 123-101 on Tuesday night in their penultimate preseason game.    

  • [New York Times] Pistons Beat Wizards in Preseason (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 02:16:04 GMT)

    Greg Monroe scored 18 points and the Detroit Pistons beat the Washington Wizards 99-96 in a preseason game Tuesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Pacers Beat Hawks in Preseason (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 02:07:05 GMT)

    David West had 24 points and seven rebounds, Paul George had 17 points and Luis Scola scored 16 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 107-89 preseason victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday night.    

  • [New York Times] Sleeping in Opponent’s Shorts? Chicken Before Games? Terry Has Rituals (Wed, 23 Oct 2013 02:06:21 GMT)

    Jason Terry, who is set to make his Nets debut Wednesday, is one of the N.B.A.’s most superstitious players and one of its most accomplished bench scorers.    

  • Knicks Morning News (Tuesday, Oct 22 2013)

  • [New York Times] Sports Briefing | Pro Basketball: Knicks Lose in Overtime (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 03:40:47 GMT)

    Terrence Ross scored 27 points and the Toronto Raptors beat the visiting Knicks, 123-120, in double overtime.    

  • [New York Times] Rose Scores 24 to Keep Bulls Unbeaten in Preseason (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 02:46:01 GMT)

    Derrick Rose scored 24 points to keep the Chicago Bulls unbeaten in the preseason with a 105-84 victory over the winless Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Howard Leads Rockets Over Mavericks 100-95 (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 02:34:18 GMT)

    Dwight Howard had 15 points and 17 rebounds and James Harden scored 19 to help the Houston Rockets to a 100-95 win over the Dallas Mavericks on in a preseason game on Monday night.    

  • [New York Times] Knicks Lose to Raptors in Double Overtime (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 02:25:01 GMT)

    Terrence Ross scored 27 points and the Toronto Raptors beat the visiting Knicks, 123-120, in double overtime.    

  • [New York Times] Irving’s Strong Effort Lifts Cavs Over 76ers (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 01:48:45 GMT)

    Kyrie Irving had 17 points and 12 assists to spoil the homecoming for Evan Turner as Cleveland beat the Philadelphia 76ers 104-93 on Monday night in an exhibition game played at Value City Arena on the Ohio State campus.    

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks’ Kenyon will play when it counts: Woodson (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 03:22:49 GMT)

    Kenyon Martin said Monday morning that the Knicks have mapped out a preservation plan for him for the upcoming season, but the veteran forward would not disclose what that plan entails.    

  • [New York Daily News] Knicks Insider: Bargnani back in 2 OT loss (Tue, 22 Oct 2013 03:17:59 GMT)

    Andrea Bargnani suited up against his former Raptors team on Monday night, one day after the Knicks forward sat out practice with a stiff back. “I feel good. I just needed a little stretch,” Bargnani said before scoring 13 points on 4-for-12 shooting over 29 minutes in the Knicks’ 123-120 double-overtime loss.    

  • Preseason Recap: ‘Ptors 123, Knicks 120 (15 Overtimes)

    New York Knicks 120 Final
    Recap | Box Score
    123 Toronto Raptors
    Andrea Bargnani, PF 29 MIN | 4-12 FG | 5-7 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | -4

    Sure it’s the preseason, but someone’s gotta be with me on this: Bargnani looks a lot better / smoother / sexier / more effective when he’s killing YOUR team during the regular season. Sure, there were some promising notes: jumpers sans hesitation, a beautiful drive and dime-stopped turnaround, a smooth baseline J a few moments later. Still, the sour remains, in the form of roadkill-slow defensive rotations, and the fact that Bargs couldn’t jump over a million-dollar bill if you told him he could keep it.

    Carmelo Anthony, SF 27 MIN | 4-13 FG | 1-1 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 3 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | -4

    I suppose “missing shots in every conceivable way” qualifies as a legit preseason exercise. I don’t know if Melo temporarily replaced his right arm with a splintered yardstick or woven strands of dried kelp or what – touch just wasn’t there. He did haul in a bevy of tough rebounds in traffic, perfectly timed a couple of defensive rakes, and didn’t force the issue to a concerning degree at the other end. Even had the feed on Chandler’s ferocious dunk. As far as tune-ups go, it was akin to watching a stock car going for pole in a grocery store.

    Tyson Chandler, C 20 MIN | 5-6 FG | 5-7 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 15 PTS | -7

    Let’s get this out of the way now: the jumper is a real thing that might damn well work. Anyone who displays Chandler’s brand of free throw mechanics – smooth for a big man, no discernable hitch – oughta have the mid-range J clamped to tool belt. It took a few years (12), but we’re finally here. Overall Tyson looked energize and engaged at both ends of the floor.

    Beno Udrih, PG 34 MIN | 7-13 FG | 3-5 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 19 PTS | -4

    A longstanding totem of Beno’s game has been his mid-range prowess – off curls, dribble-drives, on the break, wherever. We saw a dash of that tonight, along with solid D and a steadfast recognition that he really does grasp his primary preseason function: get the youngens involved. He’d eventually have to snap the reigns on his own account late in the game, but overall it was a balanced, impressive showing from someone who might have a real chance of supplanting Pablo Pri * sniper rifle *

    Tim Hardaway Jr., SG 39 MIN | 4-16 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 15 PTS | -4

    Cut a shaky picture throughout, save for a handful of timely, cold-blooded treys. He was victimized pretty routinely on defense – consistent post-up abuse from Gay and DeRozen early, and Terrence Ross’s perimeter heroics later on. As a late shot-clock, catch-and-shoot option, Hardaway is show-ready. As a reliable 20-plus minute a night rotation player? He’s got a ways to go.

    Ike Diogu, PF 29 MIN | 5-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 10 PTS | +7

    If Ike Diagu doesn’t make this team, I might have to renounce the religion I don’t have. The combination of confident spot-up shooting (mid-range, but seldom so far as to seem ill-advised), paint-scrappin’, and a truly barbaric hate for Tyler Hansbrough maks him a cult hero in waiting. Oh, and Robert thinks he looks like Bob Saget in Full House.

    C.J. Leslie, SF 15 MIN | 2-4 FG | 1-4 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | +6

    I had no idea C.J. Leslie was this skinny. I think you could fit C.J. Leslie into a slot machine or a very narrow bathroom cabinet. The early pull-up was nice, in that I don’t think I’ve ever seen C.J. Leslie make a pull-up jumper. Woody knew he was giving Leslie his longest showcase, and the results were fairly forgettable. I won’t get into why he hasn’t panned out, except to refer you to Mr. Udwary’s terrific piece from earlier today. We’ll just leave it at that.

    Metta World Peace, SF 31 MIN | 6-14 FG | 0-2 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 16 PTS | +1

    We’d been hearing quite a bit about Metta’s training camp showing the last few days, so it was nice to see a tangible translation – aggressiveness at both ends of the floor, and a concerted effort to take terrible shots at the worst possible times. Metta’s leadership is evident, but it’s hard not to question whether “getting his” is really the healthiest thing. At a certain point, isn’t it incumbent upon us to wonder whether Metta’s poor decision-make- HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA OMG I LOVE YOU PEACE!

    Chris Douglas-Roberts, SG 12 MIN | 1-3 FG | 3-3 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | +1

    A guy who appeared poised for a 10-plus year career while at Memphis, now doomed to the dustbin – at least for now. Deferred early and often, which was great for the offensive flow, and piss poor for his professional prospects. Seems like a good dude, so I hope he sticks somewhere.

    Toure’ Murry, SG 34 MIN | 5-13 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 12 PTS | -2

    There’s an element of style-points at play with Murry: the idea that it’s gotta be really, really hard to transition from college two (at a mid-major, no less) to pro one in less than a year. And the deficit is evident, in the occasional shaky handle and corner-gripping instincts. All that aside, the highlights were erudite: a gorgeous lefty lay-in on the break, a pair of contorting and-ones, and that silly third quarter buzzer-beater. The jumper needs some work, as does his propensity for navigating picks like Captain Beefheart on a slalom. Think about it.

    Five Things We Saw

    1. “Clyde, how do you feel about the full beard look from Woodson?”

      “It looks…. huh…. it…. it loo….Wow… I me… it looks….Shit…. OK… it looks good? It looks good. I think it looks good. It looks fine. Yeah… it looks alright.”

    2. Toronto’s gaggle of long, athletic wings gave the Knicks fits the night long; abusing them on turn-arounds and spins like a ballet review, and canning timely threes — contested and wide open alike — when it counted. Hardaway Jr. in particular got barbecued in isolation, the result — SURPRISE! — of undiscerning switches, especially early on.
    3. During the early stages of the third quarter, the Knicks trotted out a lineup of Murry, Melo, Metta, Bargs, and Chandler. You read that right – Melo at the two. I think? It was kind of a disaster. So Woody can go just ahead and file that whole episode in his failure cabinet, right between “ALL EUROS ALL THE TIME” and “JIM TODD TEAM BUILDING AQUARIUM FIELD TRIP”.
    4. I alluded to this at a few points earlier in the cap, but I’ve lately been fascinated – thanks to Metta in particular – by the seemingly disparate functions of preseason play: On the one hand, you want to give your vets as many real-time reps as possible; on the other, every possession that ends with a MWP fade-away left corner three with 14 seconds on the shot clock and not, say, a 1-3 P&R with Murry and Leslie on the right wing, kinda seems like a wasted opportunity. Isn’t it in the best interest of the team to – if not outright feed – at least defer to the hopefuls? Why do guys who have long been guaranteed a roster spot feel the need to try moves and shots they know won’t go over well during the preseason? Why are you falling asleep? That’s rude.
    5. I’ll be honest, I kinda zoned out during those three years of overtime. Mostly because I was busy compiling this:

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