Recap: New York Knicks at Orlando Magic

New York Knicks at Orlando Magic

March 6, 2017

Knicks 115, Magic 105

by Eric Weinstein

 

Yo, didn’t they just play the Magic?

 

After another home loss on Sunday, the Knicks immediately hit the road and went back down to Central Florida to take on the Orlando Magic once again. On March 1st, the Knicks defeated the Magic 101-90, and this game had the same end result, a Knicks victory. This game went a little differently, as New York had to play the catch up game for the first three quarters, without Carmelo Anthony, only to pull away in the fourth. Kristaps Porzingis, Courtney Lee, and Lance Thomas, all stepped up in Carmelo’s absence to get the Knicks a win, 112-105. Lee led the Knicks with 20 points, and Porzingis and Thomas combined for 31 points. Maybe the biggest story of this game was undrafted rookie Chasson Randle, who was playing his first extended minutes as a New York Knick. Randle filled the stat sheet with 7 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists, and was an astonishing +27. To compare, Derrick Rose was a -23, for all those who think the Knicks should resign Rose in the off-season. Evan Fournier led the Magic with 25 points, and Elfrid Payton ended his night with a triple double. 16 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists, and 1 awful haircut for the Magic point guard.

Continue reading

Advertisements

2016/17 Knicks Roster Power Rankings – Week 15

The Knicks went 1-2 since last weeks rankings, although losing in 4OT felt like 2 losses. The offense has been there but the defense is still a huge problem. The Knicks have held exactly 1 team below 100 in January, and that was Philly whom they held to 98 in a loss.
Rank Player Comments Last weeks Rank
1 Anthony, Carmelo If this is indeed Melo’s last few weeks as a Knick he’s going out with a bang. A 30 and a 45 point game this week on efficient shooting might make a couple teams seriously consider making an offer. 1
2 Lee, Courtney Great week for Courtney. Almost won the game a couple times against the Hawks. For those of you who wanted him to shoot more, he’s over 13 attempts per game this week and shooting at a super efficient clip. 5
3 Porzingis, Kristaps Porzingis probably had his best week of 2017. Not saying much because he’s been downright bad or injured most of the time, but had to put him up here after that dunk on Dwight. 9
4 O’Quinn, Kyle We have Noah, Plumlee, and Hernangomez on the team, yet the much smaller O’Quinn defends and blocks shots better than all those guys. 7
5 Jennings, Brandon We got to see all 3 Jennings this week. The one that disappears, the one that scores like crazy, and the distributer that racks up more assists in one game than Rose in a week. Continue reading

New York Knicks vs Charlotte Hornets – 1/27/17 – Game Recap

New York Knicks vs Charlotte Hornets
Game 48: January 27, 2017
Knicks 110, Hornets 107

Written by Eric Weinstein – @ericcweinsteinn

Trade that.

As we all know, the Knicks have been on a rough stretch as of late. Coming into tonight’s game, the Knicks had dropped 14 of their last 18 games, and the finger pointing began. Heartbreaking loss after heartbreaking loss put the Knicks way back in the standings, and Carmelo Anthony has been put on the trading block. Tonight, was different. After the offense went stagnant in the fourth for a stretch, Courtney Lee happened, and the Knicks took over the game. The Hornets could not withstand this burst of offense late, and the Knicks held on to win the game, 110-107.

This was one of the best wins of the season for the Knicks, and is another one of those games where they will give me false hope. Kristaps Porzingis snapped out of his shooting funk, scoring 18 points on 8-11 shooting, even though he was in foul trouble most of the game. Carmelo finished with 18 points on a rough shooting night, but he drilled a jumper to seal the deal at the end of the fourth.

It’s been a really rough month for the Knicks and their fans, and with everything seemingly going down the toilet, the Knicks pulled out a fun win. Stopping all-star guard Kemba Walker, Nicolas Batum, and the Hornets is a tough task, but the Knick defense stepped up in a big way in the fourth quarter. The insertion of Kyle O’Quinn was huge for the team as well, as his brand of defense was exactly what the Knicks needed. Key blocks at the end of the game, along with some big rebounds were what paced the Knick defense. No Noah in sight, I don’t even think he played in the second half, but I could be wrong.

The one negative in this game was the Derrick Rose injury. The back spasms early in the season were the only blemish on the Rose injury record for the year, and tonight another injury reared its ugly head. Even though his defense has been awful, Rose has brought a spark to the offense when he gets into the lane, and he’s been much better than Brandon Jennings this year.

Granted, Jennings was great filling in for Rose tonight, but if the Knicks want to turn this around with the current roster they have, Rose needs to be healthy.

New York goes down to Georgia and they’re looking for a game to steal, and they’ll take on the Atlanta Hawks. The last time the Knicks and Hawks played at the Garden, it was the Hawks who came away with a tough win. The Knicks will need the same contributions from Courtney Lee and Brandon Jennings if they want to leave Atlanta with a win. Here’s hoping they build on this one. Don’t look now, but the Knicks are only two games out of the eighth seed. 21-27.

New York Knicks at Phoenix Suns – 12/13/16 – Game Recap

New York Knicks at Phoenix Suns
Game 25: December 13, 2016
Suns 113, Knicks 111

Written by Eric Weinstein – @ericcweinsteinn

Overtime Stinker.

The Knicks were riding high on a four game road winning streak coming into Phoenix tonight, but couldn’t get the job done against the Suns and lost 113-111. New York spoiled an incredible game from Kristaps Porzingis, who finished this one with 34 points, 8 rebounds and 4 three pointers. Kyle O’Quinn also had an excellent game off the bench, scoring a season high 22 points while pulling down 14 rebounds, a truly remarkable game for KO. Even though these guys were carrying the Knicks, Carmelo Anthony had his second straight bad shooting night, as he finished 3-15 for 13 points. Derrick Rose left the game after the first quarter as his back acted up again. Former Knick Tyson Chandler had a game that was a throwback to his New York days with 13 points and 23 rebounds. Eric Bledsoe had 31 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists for Phoenix.

Takeaways from this Game

#TrapGame:

This was a game the Knicks had to win, and they didn’t. Continue reading

New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks – 11/20/16 – Game Recap

New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks
Game 13: November 20, 2016
Knicks 104, Hawks 94

Written by Eric Weinstein – @ericcweinsteinn

A tough stretch of games started this afternoon at MSG when the Atlanta Hawks came to town to face the Knicks. The Knicks were without Joakim Noah, who had a 72 million dollar cold and was unable to play. Kyle O’Quinn slid into his spot the starting lineup, and had a solid game with 8 points and 8 rebounds. Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 31 points, and Kristaps Porzingis had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Paul Millsap led the Hawks with 19 points.

Takeaways from this game:

The Backup Center Spot

Coming into this season, the backup center position was a real question mark for this team.  Could Kyle O’Quinn and Willy Hernangomez be good enough as the two backup centers? I thought no, but so far this season I have been proven wrong. O’Quinn fit nicely with the starting unit and showed the value of having a center that could step out and consistently hit a 15 foot jumper. His hands were like magnets in the first quarter where he had 7 of his 8 rebounds and a block. Hernangomez continues to impress off the bench with his slick passes and offensive arsenal. Both of these guys need some work on the defensive side, but both have been pleasant surprises.

Melo Mania:

Carmelo had one of those games where he reminds everyone he is still an offensive force in this league. Melo had a game high 31 points, and was scoring from every spot on the court. When he and KP both score like they did today, it makes it really tough for the opposition to keep up. Old school Melo game in this matinee affair at Madison Square Garden.

Holding Home Court:

Clyde always says how the Knicks need to make Madison Square Garden a hostile environment for teams to come and play in. That’s exactly what the boys in blue and orange have done lately, as this was the fourth straight win at the Garden. This was a tough test against an excellent Atlanta Hawks team, a team which plays tough defense and has real talent in Paul Millsap, Kyle Korver, and Dwight Howard, to name a few. The Knicks have shown they enjoy playing in front of the Garden crowd, and it’s important for them to continue to win at home.

The wins on the road will come, but winning in front of a cheering home crowd helps the team’s confidence.

The Portland Trailblazers and their talented backcourt of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum take the 2 train from Brooklyn to Penn Station to take on the Knicks this Tuesday night at 7:30.

Another tough test for New York, they’re going to need to bring the tough defense they brought against the Hawks to stop those two dynamic scorers and make it five in a row at home. 6-7.

New York Knicks vs Detroit Pistons – 11/16/16 – Game Recap

New York Knicks vs Detroit Pistons
Game 11: November 16, 2016
Knicks 105, Pistons 102

Written by Eric Weinstein – @ericcweinsteinn

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Kristaps Porzingis show.

The Knicks took on the Detroit Pistons tonight for the second time this season, and evened up the series at 1-1. The story of tonight’s game was Kristaps Porzingis, who led the Knicks with a career high 35 points, along with 7 rebounds and 3 assists. Carmelo Anthony had 22 points, and Derrick Rose had 15 points, with a few clutch baskets in the fourth quarter. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope led the Pistons with 21 points, and missed a potential game tying three pointer at the end of regulation. Long Island native Tobias Harris finished with 19 points and 10 boards.

Takeaways from this game:

Kristaps Kristaps Kristaps:

I don’t want this to become a lovefest for Porzingis, but boy was he special tonight. Porzingis had his career high of 35 points, which is great in itself, but the array in which he scores is incredible. Whether it’s threes, post ups, fade-away jumpers, or that thunderous alley-oop, he had the garden crowd on their feet all night. He only took 22 shots to get to those 35 points, so the efficiency is there, and we are watching him become a star in front of our very eyes.

Props to KO and the bench:

His numbers won’t jump off the page, but Kyle O’Quinn had a really nice game tonight off the bench. He finished with 6 points, 5 boards, 2 assists, and 3 blocks, and this may have been the best defense we have seen him play. Besides, KO, the entire bench played great as well.

Brandon Jennings had 7 assists, Justin Holiday had 9 points and 5 assists, and even Maurice N’Dour had an extremely active 9 minutes.

Joakim Noah:

Joakim responded to the benching positively, as he came out of the gates hot. The Knicks ran pick and roll with Rose and Noah the first play of the game, and continued to use it throughout the game. 7 points and 15 boards for the 72 million dollar man in this one, and these are the type of nights that make him worth that cash.

Ball movement and offensive boards:

The Knicks outrebounded the Pistons 52-40, even with Andre Drummond on the other team. They totaled 19 offensive boards, which is the most I’ve ever seen the Knickerbockers grab in a game. Joakim Noah was a huge reason for that, his activity on the glass was a key to the Knicks jumping out to a first half lead.

Other Notes:

The way the Knicks played tonight, it just felt like there was no way they were going to lose, no matter how close Detroit came. Even though it came down to the final shot, I was never in doubt that New York would come away with the win. One thing to be worried about is the Knicks going to Washington tomorrow night to play the Wizards, and KP played a season high 40 minutes. Rose, Melo, and KP all played heavy minutes tonight, and hopefully won’t be too fatigued going into tomorrow’s game. Knicks and Wizards tomorrow night at 7. Great win tonight, 5-6.

2015/16 Knicks Roster Power Rankings – Week 7

The Knicks went 2-2 this week, beating 2 absolutely terrible teams, and losing to 2 decent teams.  Although the Bucks aren’t nearly as good as the Knicks made them look.  Fisher seems to finally be getting the rotation down to 10 guys which makes my life easier.
Rank Player Comments Last weeks Rank
1 Porzingis, Kristaps Porzingis was the best player on the Knicks for 3 of the 4 games this week.  If only we had a max level super star to help him out. 1
2 Afflalo, Arron His 3 point shot hasn’t been there, but he’s shooting well from everywhere else on the court, rebounding, and playing defense.  I’ll take it. 2
3 Anthony, Carmelo Melo did have a season high in assists (8) against the Mavs, but he’s been shooting 33% for too often to even consider moving him higher on this list. 3
4 Calderon, Jose Look who’s back from the dead!  I almost forgot what it’s like having a PG do point guardy things. 5
5 Seraphin, Kevin Seraphin asked Fisher how he could get more playing time and Fisher said play better defense.  Since then Seraphin has been the most consistant player on the Knicks bench. Continue reading

2015/16 Knicks Roster Power Rankings – Week 6

Three games and three losses.  The Rockets game was tough, that should have been a win.  The most important thing now is to not lose Wednesdays game against the 0-18 76ers.  Everyone is going to be ranked 14th next week if that happens.
Rank Player Comments Last weeks Rank
1 Porzingis, Kristaps Porzingis led the team in scoring against Miami with 11 points….gross.  On a more positive note, other than getting dunked on, Kristaps looked as good or better than Howard for most of the game. 1
2 Afflalo, Arron It’s too bad Afflalos 31 point game ended up in an overtime loss, but it was reassuring knowing that the Knicks have some actual scorers around Melo for a change. 3
3 Anthony, Carmelo A nice game against the Magic was followed up by a turd against the Heat and DNP-??? Against the Rockets.  Not the best of weeks for our superstar. 2
4 Seraphin, Kevin Two straight nice games for Seraphin.  Is it a rule that that Knicks can’t have more than 1 or 2 bench guys playing well at one time? 8
5 Calderon, Jose Calderon has looked much better since the beginning of the season, but 0 assists against the Heat in 25 minutes?  Come on. Continue reading

Open Letter to Knicks Fans: We are Delusional

Written by Devin Thomas (@_knicksss).  Devin also has a Knicks Blog.

 

Dear Knick Faithful,

I have been concerned with the overwhelming positive fan reaction regarding the Knicks’ offseason this summer, so in response, I am reverentially writing this letter to inform you: we are unequivocally the most delusional fan base in the National Basketball Association. I assume you must be pondering: “Who the are you to say something like that?”

Please allow me to overture this by saying, we generally are the most obsessive fans in the league; it is admirable how we consistently fill the World’s Most Famous Arena, whether the team stinks or not. Unfortunately, in regards to our Knickerbockers, while we excel in loyalty, we are severely lacking in intelligence. It is baffling the amount of praise we are giving Phil Jackson for this offseason. Let us not forget Jackson’s draft debacle. Despite what NBA draft experts claim, we were justified in booing Kristaps Porzingis. We decorously assumed the pick was catastrophic. Jackson drafted a player, who will probably make little to no impact, thus effectively wasting another year of Melo’s prime. Don’t be shocked if Melo eventually waives his no trade clause, and decides he wants out of New York. A month later, we’re praising Jackson for taking the long-term approach in rebuilding this team back to prominence, instead of taking the “quick fix” approach, an approach that has bedeviled us for almost two decades. Of course, no one raised the question: how exactly does one rebuild with a 31-year-old star in Melo, who delayed knee surgery, just so he can impersonate John Starks, in an all star game?

In addition, let us also not forget, when Phil Jackson was hired on March 18th, 2014, he stated, he planned to make a big splash in this free agency class. He reiterated this statement in March, as the Knicks were in the middle of the worst season in franchise history, stating, “We know what the first-round pick is going to mean for us, but we also know we’re going to build our team with free agents.”

Jackson, whose $12 million a year salary exceeds league MVP Stephen Curry’s1, failed to make a big splash in free agency, in fact, he failed to even make a ripple. When did our standards become so low, as to where Robin Lopez, a decent center, but certainly not a game changer, Aaron Affalo, a pro who is basically on a one year deal, but is slightly overrated, especially on defense and Derrick Williams, an athletic four, but has been a bust since being drafted number two overall four years ago, warrants a successful offseason? 2, A few months ago, if someone had told you the Knicks would land Robin Lopez, Aaron Affalo, Kyle O’Quinn, and Derrick Williams this offseason, would you have been satisfied? I’ve heard fans claim this was the plan all along; Jackson wanted use cap space, to find role players, who fit his outdated system (The Triangle), instead of max guys like LaMarcus Aldridge or Marc Gasol. Let’s be honest with ourselves, given the chance, do we really think Jackson wouldn’t have signed Aldridge or Gasol? I’ve even heard fans claim players will perform at a higher level in a structured system. For example, Demarre Carroll was a journeyman his first few years in the league, before blossoming into an excellent ‘three and D’ player in Mike Budenholzer’s system in Atlanta and just became the highest paid player on the Raptors. Do we really think Derek Fisher, who arguably was the worst coach in the NBA last season, can pull the same feat?

Continue reading

Episode 302: Free Agency

Marc and Jay take a look at all the free agency moves, give grades for the Knicks offseason so far, and talk about what else needs to be done