Knicks Roster Mid-Season Grades

Jay’s Grades

Cole Adrich – C

Carmelo Anthony – A-

Andrea Bargnani – C-

Tyson Chandler – C

Raymond Felton – D

Tim Hardaway Jr. – B+

Kenyon Martin – B+

Toure Murry – A-  Continue reading

End of the 2012/13 Season Grades

These are the grades from Episode 202

Jay’s Picks

Carmelo Anthony – A-
Earl Barron – A
Marcus Camby – D-
Tyson Chandler – B-
Chris Copeland – B+
Raymond Felton – B+
Kenyon Martin – A+
Steve Novak – C
Pablo Prigioni – A
Quentin Richardson – D Continue reading

Knicks Roster Mid-Season Grades

In Episode 170 Marc and Jay gave their mid-season grades for the Knicks roster.  Here are the results:

Jay’s Picks

Carmelo Anthony – A
Ronnie Brewer – C-
Marcus Camby - F
Tyson Chandler – B
Chris Copeland – B+
Raymond Felton – A-
Jason Kidd – A+
Steve Novak – D
Pablo Prigioni – C+
Iman Shumpert – B+
J.R. Smith – B+
Amare Stoudemire – C+
Kurt Thomas – C-
Rasheed Wallace – B+
James White – C+

Mike Woodson – B

Marc’s Pics

Carmelo Anthony – A-
Ronnie Brewer – C+
Marcus Camby – D
Tyson Chandler – B+
Chris Copeland – B+
Raymond Felton – B+
Jason Kidd – A
Steve Novak – C+
Pablo Prigioni – A-
Iman Shumpert – B
J.R. Smith – B+
Amare Stoudemire – C+
Kurt Thomas – B
Rasheed Wallace – B
James White – D

Mike Woodson – C+

Grading all of the Trades

For the weeks leading up to the trade deadline all anyone would talk about is where Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Rajon Rondo were going.  Well none of them got moved.  There were a bunch of other moves, so lets take a look at them:

The Wizards acquire Nene, Brian Cook, Clippers 2nd round draft pick (via Hornets)
The Nuggets acquire JaVale McGee and Ronny Turiaf
The Clippers acquire Nick Young


Denver: B

This was the most surprising move of the day for me.  In the offseason Nene signed a 4 year, 53 million dollar contract.  He also is having a bad season and has been injured constantly, so maybe that made Denver think twice about their franchise center.  In other words Denver decided that their 29 year old center who is injury prone should be sold while his value is still high instead of waiting until the injuries kill Amar’es, I mean Nene’s value and the contract is worthless.

McGee makes dumb mistakes.  A lot of dumb mistakes.  Maybe coach Karl will help with that.  I’m guessing Denver really really hopes that’s the case.  McGee is also only 24 years old, scores as much as Nene and rebounds and blocks much better.  He’s going to get paid this summer, but that contract won’t be as high as Nene’s.  Which is good because Lawson and Faried are going to need bigger contracts soon.

Turiaf and McGee also both fit in the $7 trade exception from the Raymond Felton trade (not as upset about losing him after seeing what a fat mess he’s become in Portland), which means they now have a $13 trade exception.

We’ll see if McGee works well with the rest of the team.  It’s a big risk because Denver is a playoff team right now, but it gives them a lot of cap flexibility and potentially a more lethal scorer in the post.

Washington: D+

I know Washington didn’t want to move forward with McGee or Young, but it looks like they pretty much gave Young away in this deal.  They are also banking on a very high paid and injury prone center.  When you have a young team that is very far away from even making the playoffs I don’t know why you roll the dice on an older center.  By the time Wall and company are ready to make some noise, Nene is going to be as productive as Dampier or worse.  I don’t bet but if I did I would go to the best sports betting sites and put money on Washington really regretting this move in a year or two. Continue reading

Western Conference Mid-season Grades

Oklahoma City Thunder: A+: Having the best record in the league sure silenced the whole ‘Westbrook vs. Durant power struggle’. Reggie Jackson seamlessly filled Eric Maynors shoes after his season ending injury and Harden is making a strong case for 6th man of the year. The only concern in OKC right now is the fact that their starting center, Kendrick Perkins, looks 37 and not 27. With no decent backups this could present a matchup problem in the playoffs should the Thunder run into the Grizzlies or Lakers. Right now though they are enjoying life on the top of the standings.

San Antonio Spurs: A+: Another year, another dominating regular season when everyone thought they were finally finished. They’ve been doing this without Manu Ginobili. Greg Popovich has been rationing the older players minutes which not only makes his players fresh for the playoffs, but also develops the younger talent on the team. He remains one of the best/underrated coaches in the league. It also helps that Tony Parker is having one of the best seasons of his career.

Continue reading

Eastern Conference Midseason Grades

The season is half over so I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at how each team has fared so far and give them mid-season grades.

Let’s start with the Eastern Conference, going in order of current standing.

Miami Heat: A+: The East is as predictable as the West is unpredictable. I don’t think there’s a person on the planet who didn’t think Miami and Chicago would be the top 2 teams. LeBron is having his best season as a professional and has also managed to stay away from twitter, interviews, hour-long specials, and every other way he put his foot in his mouth last season. The supporting cast is much better this year after signing Battier, getting a steal in Norris Cole in the draft, and having a healthy Haslem and Miller. The road to the finals goes through Miami.

Chicago Bulls: A+: Only one game out of first and that’s with Rose missing a bunch of games. It doesn’t seem to matter who replaces Rose, they continued to win with John Lucas III and Mike James at the point. The best defense in the league and a deep bench. We should really just start the east playoffs with the conference finals, Chicago and Miami are so much better than the rest of the conference it’s almost unfair.

Indiana Pacers: A: This year’s most improved team. People barely talked about the David West signing, that was a very underrated move. You won’t seem them on national TV very often, so they’ve been flying under the radar and have quietly moved up to the #3 seed. This is a young team that’s is in a great situation cap-wise. They’ll need that cap space to make a move to put them in the same league with the top two teams in the conference, but even without making a move, as presently constructed they’ll be a tough out for years to come. Continue reading

Knicks Roster Mid-Season Grades

Grades:

Carmelo Anthony – B:  He played too much iso-ball in the beginning of the season, but since coming back from his injury has been making a huge effort to move the ball around.  His shot is way off right now but we expect him to look more like himself after the all-star break.

Mike Bibby – F:  I know he’s getting old and he’s lost a step, but how did he forget how to shoot and pass as well?  We had to play shooting guards at the point because he was too bad to play more than five minutes.

Tyson Chandler – A: Exactly what we wanted when we signed him. Excellent defender, low post presence and when a good PG is playing can be a factor on offense too.  He’s currently leading the league leader in field goal percentage.  Needs to calm down on techs or he’s going to be suspended for a number of games in the second half. Continue reading

Finals Grades

I’d like to start off by giving a big congratulations to the Dallas Mavericks.

Perfect ending

They surprised just about everyone all throughout the playoffs. They showed a mental and defensive toughness that no one thought was possible. If there is going to be a prolonged strike I’m glad we had such a feel-good story to close this chapter in the NBA out on. From Jason Kidd winning on his 3rd trip to the finals, to Peja and Marion getting a ring after some questionable and controversial exits in the playoffs, to Terry getting the trophy tattooed on his arm, to Dirk beating the team that beat him in ’06 and moving up a few notches in the pantheon of all-time greats.

Time to give out some grades for the finals. I’ll start with the winners, the Dallas Mavericks:

Dirk Nowitzki – Played with a torn tendon in his finger, played with a 101 fever, played through constant double-teams and never once complained. Dominated the 4th quarter in every game, even when he had a terrible 1st three quarters in game 6 he scored the Mavs last 10 points in the series clincher. I can’t think of a more deserving finals MVA. GRADE – A+ Continue reading

Knicks Roster End of the Season Grades

We give our Knicks roster end of the season grades in Episode 62.  Here are the results:

Jay’s Grades

Carmelo Anthony – A-
Renaldo Balkman – Inc
Chauncey Billups – C-
Derrick Brown – Inc
Anthony Carter – B+
Toney Douglas – C+
Landry Fields – B- Continue reading

Trade Grades

Every other week Jay does an NBA column on POPBLERD.  Khendra does the alternating weeks, she’s a good read too.  The following is my reaction to all the trades, which I wrote for popblerd.com this week.  I added Marc and my grades for each transaction.

The NBA trade deadline seems to have been much busier this year than in seasons past.

Here to break down the deals, steals and head-scratchers is our man Jay, whose Podcast (I hyperlinked it) is one you should definitely be listening to.
The Celtics sent Marquis Daniels to the Kings for a 2017 2nd-round pick.
• Injured all the time anyway, clears up a roster spot and clears up some space for Boston. Low risk for the Kings. Who knows, he might even be healthy enough to play a game before the season ends.
Grades:
Jay – Boston (C) Kings (C)
Marc – Boston (C) Kings (C)

The Rockets sent Shane Battier and Ish Smith to Memphis for Hasheem Thabeet and a first-round pick. – Love it for Memphis, they get a solid player in Battier and get rid of their biggest mistake since Big Country Reeves. Memphis looks like they are going to make the playoffs so the Rockets are getting a low 1st round pick and a guy who stinks. Don’t get this one from Houstons side at all.
Grades:
Jay – Houston (F) Memphis (B+)
Marc – Houston (F) Memphis (A)

The Rockets sent Aaron Brooks to Phoenix for Goran Dragic and another pick.
• Aaron Brooks was having his issues in Houston and has been injured a lot this season. Dragic took a huge step back this season. Maybe a change of scenery will do well for both of them.
Grades:
Jay – Houston (C-) Phoenix (B+)
Marc – Houston (D) Phoenix (A-)

The Cavaliers acquired center Semih Erden and forward Luke Harangody from Boston in exchange for a 2013 second-round draft pick, according to a league source.
• A steal for the Cavs as they get a decent young big man for almost nothing. The Knicks couldn’t have swung this deal?
Grades:
Jay – Boston (F) Cleveland (A+)
Marc – Boston (F) Cleveland (A+)

The Charlotte Bobcats traded forward Gerald Wallace to the Portland Trail Blazers for a package that includes two first-round picks center Joel Przybilla and reserve forward Dante Cunningham.
• I like Pryzbilla but he’s not as good as Wallace. Every move Jordan has made has been to save money and this isn’t any different. Enjoy your mid to late first round picks you cheap bastard.
Grades:
Jay – Charlotte (D-) Portland (A)
Marc – Charlotte (C-) Portland (A)

The Bobcats also sent backup center Nazr Mohammed to Oklahoma City for reserve forward D.J. White and the expiring contract of guard Morris Peterson.
• See cheap bastard comment above.
Grades:
Jay – Charlotte (F) OKC (B+)
Marc – Charlotte (F) OKC (B+)

The Boston Celtics agreed to ship center Kendrick Perkins and guard Nate Robinson to the Oklahoma City Thunder for forward Jeff Green and big man Nenad Krstic.
• This and the Deron Williams trades seemed to come out of nowhere. The Celtics, who have the 2nd best record in the NBA this season ended up trading ¼ of their lineup at the trade deadline. The Celtics seem to be trading offense for defense. With Delonte West back, Nate Robinson isn’t as necessary, so now Jeff Green can give Paul Pierce a rest while not losing much scoring-wise. Krstic is serviceable, but If the O’Neals are healthy come playoff time they’ll probably get the majority of the minutes. While Perk is a better defender it’ll be nice to have a center that can shoot. I like this trade a lot for the Thunder. I felt they were a big defensive man away from really making some noise in the west and that’s exactly what they got. They’ve been criticized for their defense this season and just gave their lineup a big upgrade in that department. Green, while very good, wasn’t getting many minutes behind Durant and he’ll probably want more money when his contract is up, so the Nate pickup works for them as well.
Grades:
Jay – Boston (C) Thunder (A+)
Marc – Boston (C-) Thunder (A)

The Atlanta Hawks acquired guard Kirk Hinrich and forward Hilton Armstrong from Washington for guard Mike Bibby, rookie guard Jordan Crawford, swingman Maurice Evans and a first-round pick in this year’s draft.
• I feel Hinrich is a slight upgrade over Bibby. Slight. It’s a good gamble for Atlanta, but they’re still not going to do anything in the playoffs. Washington is starting Wall anyway so they get a pick in the 20’s and hope to get lucky.
Grades:
Jay– Atlanta (C) Washington (B)
Marc– Atlanta (B-) Washington (B+)

The Los Angeles Clippers traded point guard Baron Davis and their 2011 first-round draft pick to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Mo Williams and Jamario Moon.
• Davis gets what he deserved. He signed a huge contract and didn’t try until Blake started playing. Now he’s on the worst team in the league. Karma. Williams might not be as good as Davis when he’s trying but you know Williams will try every game and not show up fat. Cavs get a top 10 pick and the Clips get an OK bench player.
Grades:
Jay – Cleveland (D+) LAC (B+)
Marc – Cleveland (B-) LAC (A-)

The Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Hornets finalized a deal that will send forward Carl Landry to New Orleans in exchange for guard Marcus Thornton and cash considerations.
• Good deal for both teams. Thornton wasn’t playing enough in NO and Sacramento had too many forwards. They should both fit better with their new teams.
Grades:
Jay– Sacramento (B) Now Orleans (B-)
Marc– Sacramento (C+) Now Orleans (B)

The New Jersey Nets have acquired Deron Williams from the Utah Jazz. The Nets will send Derrick Favors, Devin Harris, two first-round draft picks and cash considerations to Utah for the All-Star point guard.
• This deal seemed to come out of nowhere. IF Williams signs an extension than Jersey just made NY look like idiots for giving up half their roster when NJ might have gotten the better player. If he doesn’t sign then Jersey gave away a lot for a 1 ½ year rental.
Grades:
Jay – New Jersey (C) Utah (B+)
Marc – New Jersey (B+) Utah (B+)

The Nets will send the expiring contract of forward Troy Murphy and a second-round pick in 2012 to the Golden State Warriors for center Dan Gadzuric and power forward Brandan Wright.
• Both teams traded forwards that should have gotten playing time but didn’t. Murphy might get bought out, we’ll see. 2nd round pick for Gadzuric is pretty even, both will have about zero impact.
Grades:
Jay – New Jersey (B-) Golden State (C)
Marc – New Jersey (C+) Golden State (D)

James Johnson was traded from the Bulls to the Toronto Raptors for a 2nd round pick.
• Small trade, but Johnson started for the Raptors and helped lead them to victory over his former team in his 1st game.
Grades:
Jay – Toronto (B) Chicago (C)
Marc – Toronto (A) Chicago (C)

The Knicks Acquire Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Renaldo Balkman and Anthony Carter from Denver and Corey Brewer from Minnesota. The Nuggets Acquire Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Timofey Mozgov the 2014 1st round pick and the Warriors 2nd round picks in 2012 and 2013 from the Knicks and Kosta Koufos from Minnesota. The Wolves acquire Eddy Curry and Anthony Randolph from the Knicks.

• I’m so torn on this trade. As a Knicks fan I’ve talked myself into and out of this trade 100 times already. I definitely felt the Knicks gave up too much. Billups for Felton is pretty much a wash because neither was probably going to be around in 2012. Mozgov wasn’t going to be the answer and the Knicks weren’t going to be able to resign Chandler if they waited to the offseason to sign Anthony. So now it’s down to Gallinari for Anthony. No brainer right? Well the Knicks now don’t have enough cap space for a 3rd star and also don’t have any centers other than Turiaf who gets injured if he plays more than 20 minutes. The bench is thinner too, Brewer, Anthony Carter, and Shelden Williams won’t play. Balkman will probably get 10 minutes a game. I’d be more OK with this trade if I didn’t see Kendrick Perkins, Semih Erden, Nazr Mohammad, Nenad Krstic and Joel Przybilla all get traded. Since they were all available for cheap can you really tell me getting Aaron Brooks, Gerald Wallace and Semih Erden wouldn’t have made the Knicks a better team than they are now? Denver made out great on this deal. They get 2 starters, a backup point (unless Felton moves into the starting position) and a big man project. Not to mention the additional cap space and draft picks. They are arguably better now than they were before the trade. The Wolves didn’t give up much and get to see what Randolph can do for the final 30 games of the season and free up cap space with Eddy Currys expiring.
Grades:
Jay – Knicks (C) Denver (A) Minnesota (B)
Marc – Knicks (B-) Denver (A)