Knicks @ Celtics 12/12/14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

New York got off to a hot start Friday night converting on eight of their first ten attempts, getting a double digit lead midway through the first quarter 18-8. After reports from Chris Broussard of ESPN claiming that there is a poor relationship between Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr., it was nice to see that Anthony and Hardaway Jr. passed the ball to each other, not freezing each other out on the offensive end. It was also good to see Anthony picking Hardaway Jr. up from the floor after an offensive foul committed by Hardaway Jr. late in closing seconds of the first quarter. Hopefully there isn’t any lingering animosity towards each other, and this might sound stupid but studies show that “winning teams touch more” according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Knicks lead 26-19 after one quarter, cooling off a bit after the hot start. Tyler Zeller kept Boston in the game early, going a perfect 3/3 from the field in the first quarter.

After starting off 0/3 from the field Hardaway Jr. got it going in the second quarter, scoring ten of his 16 total points in the period. The second quarter got ugly with both team going ice cold from the field, there was no points scored by either team for a three minute stretch in the quarter. Things got uglier for New York when Iman Shumpert tried to be a pest, and pop the ball away from Zeller, but ended up dislocating his left shoulder instead, going straight to the locker room visibly in pain. This was a huge blow for New York whom was already without J.R. Smith due to a heel injury.

A couple of careless passes to start the second half by Celtics’ point guard and leader Rajon Rando got the Knicks to stretch their lead out. The turnovers were contagious, as Boston turned the ball over six times in the quarter. Zeller again kept the Celtics in the game scoring eight points in the quarter on 4/6 shooting. Zeller finished the game with 19 points and a couple of blocks.

Jason Smith heated up in the third quarter, bailing out New York several times as the Celtics started to apply a lot of defensive pressure to the ball handlers. Smith alleviated that pressure, getting to the open spots, scoring on all four of his attempts, scoring eight of his total 12 points in the quarter.

Marcus Thornton sparked a comeback, bridging from gap late in the third quarter to the start of the fourth. Thornton scored eight points in a 12-4 run that got the Celtics within one possession 75-73, capping off the run on a three-pointer to start off the fourth quarter, New York responded by going on an 11-0 run to lead by 86-73 with 8:42remaining in the game. Jeff Green got mean, almost single handedly getting Boston back into the game, scoring half of his game high 28 points in the fourth quarter. Green scored eight straight points on a 10-4 run that got Boston within six points 96-90 with just under two minutes remaining in the game.

With the momentum shifting towards Boston’s favor, New York got trapped under their own basket with 2.9 left on the shot clock. Green foolishly fouled Anthony on a jump shot, halting all momentum when Anthony knocked down both free throws. Anthony scored 22 points, but also chipped in on defense, blocking three shots, and stealing the ball once.

Green on the ensuing possession made up for the foolish foul by quickly getting up the court and finishing in the lane with a monster jam. Boston double teamed Anthony on the next possession, leading to a turnover as Larkin traveled as he made his move to the rim. Boston caught a break as Larkin was wide open. Boston would again catch another break seconds later, as the referee made an unfavorable call towards New York, when it looked like Anthony got a clean steal, but was called for the foul instead when Green made his move. Green though would split the pair of free throws, New York led 98-93 with 52.8 seconds left in the game.

Boston couldn’t muster up enough offense to complete the comeback, and New York finally snapped their ten game losing streak, defeating the Celtics 101-95.
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The Melo Situation

Written by Nicholas McGowan

The Melo Situation

The countdown of when we as Knicks fans and the world for that matter, will know the future of Carmelo Anthony has started. Melo has the option to opt in for another year in New York and then make up his mind next summer or he can opt out, choose a new team, or opt out in order to solidly a max contract with the Knicks. We as fans hope that if he does opt out, that it is because he will sign the max deal. Yet with the sudden shoulder injury this might further Melo’s thinking in one way or the other, it may make him lean towards locking up a max contract or it might drive him in the opposite direction. He may try now to win as soon as possible knowing that he will still get tens of millions of dollars guaranteed even though it may be 30 million less than what the Knicks can offer. Melo might have also learned that he needs another superstar, someone who can carry the load so that he does not take such a toll on his body for another season. Both of those seem to be the better option than a max deal, and while it depends on Melo’s priorities, (30 million or a legitimate chance at one or more titles), most would choose the titles. Not saying that I would pass up 30 million but if you were Melo and have already made as much as he has, winning would be the one knock against me. Let’s take a look at the possible championship scenarios for Melo.

Beginning with the Knicks, there is a real possibility that they can compete for championship, not next year but in two years. In two years the Knicks have cap space and a first round draft pick that will probability end up be a lottery pick. Going into the 2015-2016 season we would only have J.R. Smith, Raymond Felton, Hardaway Jr, Shumpert, and Pablo Prigioni on our roster. Now lets say Melo decides to resign, add Melo to that roster, add another superstar player or two to that mix. Then add on top of that a top 14 draft pick, this would make us a frontrunner for the title, we would be able to come close to beating the Heat (assuming their current roster does not change drastically) or perhaps even beat them if we add the right free agents. In the already weak Eastern Conference, we would be the second best team. I would put us ahead of both Indiana and Chicago because we have the superior superstar talent. The Nets at this point would have lost Garnett and Pierce and would not be the team they are today. By looking the 2015 free agents there are tons of options that would make us better than the Heat. Those free agents include:

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Episode 157: I Thought We Were the Nets Rivals

http://www.gannett-cdn.com/media/USATODAY/gameon/2012/11/29/11-28-2012-celtics-nets-fight-x-large.jpg

Tommy Dee from The Knicks Blog joins us today.  The Nets Celtics brawl, San Antonio sitting their top 4 guys, Amare as a 6th man, the Nets and Bucks games, listener questions and much more.  Download Episode 157

Around the League

This is a post that I wrote for Popblerd.com.  Check them out for music, movies, sports, basically everything.  Popblerd also started an around the league facebook page that I’m a part of so like the Roundball Soundoff Facebook page!

The NY Knicks are 4-0 for the first time since the 93-94 season. They are the only undefeated team in the NBA and played a lineup consisting of veterans Marcus Camby, Rasheed Wallace and Jason Kidd…in 2012. They are winning by an average of 17 points a game even though their opponents have a 13-2 record against other teams. I wouldn’t have believed any of these things would have happened if you’d told me a few weeks ago.

Boston is having a harder with their new pieces than expected. They are 3-3, with 2 of their wins coming in the last few seconds of the game. On the bright side for the Celtics, Rajon Rondo just had his 30th straight game with at least 10 assists; 3rd all time to Magic Johnson – 44 and John Stockton – 37.

The team many dubbed the best team in New York is 2-2 and have been wildly inconsistent, winning by 30 and losing by 20 in the same week. And in case you missed it, The Nets have a ridiculous mascot. Continue reading

Episode 86: Top Free Agents

We gear up for the upcoming season that is actually happening by talking about Boston possibly trading Rondo, the Chris Paul to NY rumors, half of the Nuggets stuck in China, a listener email, we rank the top 10 white guys in the league, and we guess where the top 15 free agents are going to end up.  Download Episode 86