- Go with a reduced rotation of say 6 or 7 guys. The Knicks play best when they have a more balanced attack. When they rely too heavily on Amare, Carmelo and Chauncey to carry them they do not win.
- Not move the ball around and have players continually stand around and watch Carmelo and Amare on offense.
- Rely too heavily on the 3 pointer.
- Continually allow opponents second and third chances on offense.
- Allow their opponents too many easy lay-ups
Corey Brewer played 30 minutes tonight in the Mavericks victory over the Clippers. He had 20 points, 6 rebounds (including 5 offensive rebounds), 4 assists, 4 steals and left me with a broken heart. The dude can flat out play.
“He was incredible,” big man Tyson Chandler said. “I love to see that effort. He was everywhere, and that’s exactly what we need. Those are game-changing plays — stealing inbounds, making deflections, even little things that didn’t show up on the stat sheet. When we have guys playing like that, I think it’s really contagious.”
There is speculation that Amare, Carmelo and Chauncey may get some rest now that the Knicks are set for the playoffs. I am on my knees begging D’Antoni to rest these guys because without some rest we stand no chance in the first round. It would also be a whole lot of fun to actually watch Andy Rautins, Derrick Brown and the rest of the bench actually getting serious minutes (I am pretty sure D’Antoni could not identify half his bench in a police lineup).
The Knicks crushed the Raptors tonight. Though they won by only 13 it never felt that close. The Knicks did not play a ton of defense but they scored a lot of points and just kept hitting shots. Everyone shot well and the Knicks ultimate key, Toney Douglas had a streak of fire trailing him all night. Based on how the Knicks are playing, here are their keys for winning in the playoffs:
- Shoot above 50% from 3 point land. The Knicks seem unbeatable when they are on from downtown (of course, what team wouldn’t be).
- Have a plan for winning when you shoot under 50% from downtown (it seems obvious but it is very worth stating).
- Convince the other team to agree to some weird neither team plays defense pact.
- Pass the ball, get everyone involved, play the same way your coach instructed you to do in junior high.
- Get Anthony Carter and Shelden Williams involved in the game (similarly, buy Jared Jeffries an all-expenses paid vacation to Hawaii that happens to coincide with the playoffs).
- Reduce Amare and Carmelo’s minutes to under 25 minutes a night for rest of the regular season as it is quite obvious that D’Antoni will up their minutes 49 a night in the playoffs.
- Borrow Mozgov from the Nuggets for the playoffs, it is not like they are even using him.
Oh, and hats off too DeMar Derozan who had 36 points tonight which would be his second highest scoring night of the season…can you say KNICKS EFFECT!!!
- The….race for 8th in the East (AKA the team who gets to be swept by the Bulls in the 1st round) is just about over. And the winner is….The Bobcats because they get to avoid the brutal beatdown the Bulls are going to provide.
- I hope you like the teams that are in the playoffs this year because the only lottery teams I can see even possibly making it next year are Milwaukee, LAC, and Houston.
- I know it’s bad PR but please trade Steve Nash in the offseason. If Sarver is going to blow up a team that was 2 wins away from the NBA finals, why torture Nash by keeping him around to deal with the fallout?
- By low, sell high. This simple real estate concept also works in the NBA. Unfortunately the Pistons have never heard of this term before.
- Washington as put together a ton of young talent and should be a team to recon with in the near future. Just kidding, they stink. Other than Wall (and I’m worried about his knee already) and McGee they have a lot of garbage. At least they have the Redskins and the Nationals….is D.C. built on an indian burial ground?
- Mr. Kardashian on New Jersey came out of nowhere and has been one of the league leader in rebounds the last two months. Never thought I’d say this but Humphries might be a nice piece for the Nets to keep going forward.
- Cleveland lost on Sunday against the Knicks, finishing the season series against them 3-1. Now I’m only very embarrassed instead of completely.
- If you are in Anaheim are you excited to get an NBA team or do you realize it’s the Kings and you probably won’t see a playoff game unless you drive to LA?
- I have nothing to say about Utah, other than they are bad and getting worse and I think Jefferson and Favors are both overrated.
Let’s crack the champaign because I think this is all the celebrating the Knicks will get to do this season. Charlotte lost tonight and the Knicks beat the Cavs. The Cavs still scored 107 points, enough to win most nights but the Knicks beat them with the D’Antoni system of just trying to outscore your opponent and getting your rest while they play offense. Bring on the playoffs!!!
Coach Mike D’Antoni coming to New York was a pretty big deal. The Knicks were coming off the Isiah Thomas era (or should I say error). The Knicks had only won 23 games in 2007-08 and had not made the playoffs since 2003-04. The team had become a joke and that is tough to do in one of the biggest markets in all of sports. The Knicks needed a big time coach who was going to bring respect back to New York basketball and his name was Mike D’Antoni.
Coach D’Antoni was a star coach coming to a star town. He had a ton of success in Phoenix and was considered one of the best coaches in the NBA. While there was always a knock on him that his teams played little defense, no one could deny that his teams had a lot of success. His Suns averaged 58 wins a year for a four year stretch where they were contenders every year and may have won a title if Joe Johnson does not break his face or Amare does not get suspended.
Despite all his former success in Phoenix, is D’Antoni overrated? Was he a really a great coach in Phoenix or did he just have a ridiculous amount of talent? The same question can be asked about Phil Jackson, is he a great coach or is he just lucky to have spent his career coaching Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant? D’Antoni did have the only MVP at PG (and he was a two time MVP) in the last 20 years on his team in Steve Nash. Nash was also a PG that was perfect to execute the D’Antoni style of offense. The Suns also had an explosive Amare Stoudemire. They had great role players like Joe Johnson, Shawn Marion, Quentin Richardson (when he was good), Boris Diaw, Leandro Barbosa, Grant Hill, Raja Bell and Shaquille O’Neal. In his first full year they had 5 players average double figures, his second year 6 players, 5 players his third year and 7 players his fourth year. D’Antoni’s Phoenix teams all had deep rosters with a great deal of balance. My argument is that while D’Antoni did a great job with this team, he gets too much credit for their success. They had a loaded roster and D’Antoni just proved that he can coach well when he has a loaded roster. He can coach well when his roster fits well into his system. Just like Phil Jackson can lead your team to a championship as long as your roster includes the greatest player ever (Jordan) or the greatest player since Jordan.
Coach D’Antoni came to New York and success did not follow. His teams won 32 and 29 games in his first two years, barely distinguishable from from the lack of success Isiah had with this team. It would be hard to argue that Isiah would have had a worse record with the team during the 08-09 and 09-10 season. The Knicks where a team in disarray and playing solely for the summer of Lebron/summer of 2010. They changed their roster over dramatically and did all they could to free up cap space. D’Antoni clearly did not make these teams better. They played little defense and were not very good on offense. D’Antoni did nothing to adapt to the talent he had around him and seemed convinced that those first two years were lost years.
So this brings us to 2010-11 and the team we have with Amare and Carmelo. I am not advocating that we should bring back Isiah but I doubt we would have a much worse team with Isiah. A coach is supposed to make a team better. Make the sum of the parts better than the individual parts. The D’Antoni system can make a player look better on offense and below average on defense. Is that what we need with Amare and Carmelo on our roster, a coach that will make us look better on offense?
D’Antoni has done nothing to truly distinguish himself as coach of the Knicks. He is still riding high from the four great years he had in Phoenix. Maybe he made those teams better but I have yet to see even the potential that D’Antoni will make these Knicks teams better now or going forward.