Written by William Lee
The Spurs was an offensive juggernaut during Sunday’s matinee game with the Knicks, leading by as many as 37 points. Danny Green opened up the game by knocking down a couple of quick threes. Within three minutes of the game’s tipoff the Spurs were up 10-0. The Spurs extended on this run, tripling the Knicks score, leading 21-7. The Spurs constantly double teamed Carmelo Anthony, content with the ball swinging to Andrea Bargnani, and letting him beat them. Unfortunately for the Knicks, Bargnani could not deliver, going 2-6 in the first quarter. JR Smith made his return to the Knicks, after serving his five game suspensions for violating the terms of the NBA’s anti-drug policies, hearing a nice ovation, entering in the game with 7:08 left in the first quarter. JR Smith showed his rust, missing all four of his shots, and turning the ball over twice in the first quarter. Smith finished the game going 1-9 from the field, including four turnovers. The Spurs shot 72% in the first quarter, with Tony Parker leading the way, weaving through the defense, scoring 10 points and handing out 5 assist in the first quarter to jump out to a 35-17 first quarter lead.
The start of the second quarter, the Knicks did not fare any better, JR Smith air balled a three, which then led to another Danny Green three on the other end. The boos rained on the Knicks again in Madison Square Garden, with the home team losing 42-19. With the constant double and triple teams on Carmelo Anthony in the half court sets, Anthony started to bring the ball up himself, to ignite the offense. Carmelo Anthony had 10 points in the second quarter, going a perfect 4-4 from the field, including a buzzer beater to end the first half. The Spurs led by as many points as 24 in the first half, this cut Spurs’ lead to sixteen points, with the score 61-45.
OK, I know it’s only 6 games into the NBA season and every single team in the east other than the Pacers have 3 or 4 losses already but I have to wonder if it’s time to reevaluate what was an almost universal understanding that the Knicks would finish 4th or 5th in the conference.
On the plus side JR is coming back tonight, adding some much needed offense and Bargnani had his best game as a Knick with 25 points, 8 rebounds and 5 blocks. Even NBA betting lines seem to feel the Knicks will be competitive even against teams like the Spurs.
The other side of this is Tyson Chandler is out for 4-6 weeks (at least) and as Harris Decker from The Knicks Blog points out, scoring against Zeller and Biyombo is slightly easier than scoring against the Duncans, Gasols and Hibberts of the league.
I’m leaning towards agreeing with our listeners, of whom everyone seems to feel the Knicks will go below .500 in the next 23 games but it should also be noted that as of yet no one in the east is stepping up to bump the Knicks down a spot or two and Pierce and Garnett look completely washed up so far.
I guess what I’m trying to say is I don’t know what to think anymore. My gut says this season is a mess and we should all panic but my eyes are telling me the east is turning out to be as top heavy as always and if the Knicks can stay close to .500 with Chandler out they’ll still hold on to a top 5 seed.
What do you think?
Robert Silverman from Knickerblogger.net joins Jay as we talk about Woodsons adjustments, what going big really means, Bargnani, how the Knicks are affecting our health, Hardaway Jr’s future role on the team and much more
Download Episode 217
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Tagged adjustment, bargnani, furious, hardaway, knickerblogger, knicks, lineup, panic, podcast, robert, silverman
It’s probably OK to panic now
Written by William Lee
The Knicks were upset by the Bobcats Tuesday night 102-97. This was not the worst news of the night, as Tyson Chandler hobbled off the court with 5:25 left in the first quarter. Kemba Walker drove into the paint, and ran into Tyson Chandler’s right leg, both players collapsed to the floor. At first Chandler tried to get off the court on his own will, but was helped off the court by teammates, when it became evident he could not. Chandler was taken into the locker room later on, after icing his right leg on the bench. This may have a crippling effect on the Knicks, as Tyson Chandler is the most important Knick after Carmelo Anthony, especially with the lack of depth at the center position on the team. It could be argued that he is the most important Knick, because of this fact. Kenyon Martin and Amare Stoudemire are on minute restrictions, and Andrea Bargnani at 7 feet isn’t exactly striking fear into anyone manning the paint. This is what makes the Chris Smith signing for the Knicks that much worse, he has taken a spot that should have belonged to a potential back-up center for the Knicks. Knicks D-League affiliate, the Erie BayHawks, recently traded for Jeremy Tyler, who showed potential during his stint with the Knicks’ summer league team. He could potentially be the short term answer, as Tyson Chandler was seen leaving the locker room on crutches. Continue reading
There was a lot of this
Written by William Lee
The Timberwolves jumped out to a 40-19 lead in the first quarter, and never looked back, winning tonight’s game 109-100. The scoring prowess of the two Kevins from the Minnesota Timberwolves proved to be too much for the Knicks to handle. All Star Kevin Love finished with 34 points 15 rebounds and 5 assist. And Kevin Martin was extremely efficient, going 9-12 from the field, including a perfect 5-5 from beyond the arc, finishing the game with 30 points. (He had the best +/- of any player, +26) Both Kevins were in double digit scoring by the end of the first quarter, combining for 24 points. The Timberwolves were looking to push the pace all night, running off of makes and misses from the Knicks. The Knicks didn’t help themselves, committing six turnovers; the Timberwolves took full advantage, converting on all of them, leading to 12 points off of the turnovers.
With 3:56 left in the first quarter, the Knicks were still in the game, the Timberwolves leading 19-15. The turn of the game came with Carmelo Anthony committing his second personal foul, while trying to deny Kevin Love post position. This was a start to a rough night for Carmelo Anthony, as he finished the game going 8-21 from the field, for 22 points. The Timberwolves shutdown the runner up scoring champion from the previous year, Kevin Durant, forcing him to go 4-11 from the field and committing four turnovers Friday night. Continue reading