This is a hopefully brief look at the Knicks salary situation going into this offseason and what kinds of moves they can and can not make to improve the team. First, let’s look at the players already on the roster for next year:
1 + 1 year player option
2 + 1 year player option
2 + 1 year team option
First Round Draft Pick
3 + 1 year team option
The Knicks have $74,469,105 committed to eight players plus their first round draft pick on guaranteed contracts for next year. Barring trade or retirement, these are numbers we can lock in. We’ll get to how trades or retirements could impact the team in a bit. First, let’s look at other relevant salary numbers for the off-season. More
The curtain fell on the 2012-2013 New York Knicks season Saturday night in Indiana and moving forward, the team has a plethora of questions surrounding it’s future. By most accounts, this team overachieved this season. Most intelligent entities pegged the team as a 45-51 win team that might squeeze out a top 3 seed. Not a contender. They won 54 games, a division title, and defeated the rival Celtics in the first round of the playoffs. New York still ended up not being a contender, but they were better than most people (myself included) believed they would be. More
Tyson is awesome, but was he deserving of such a high accolade?
Earlier today, Knicks center Tyson Chandler was named NBA first team All-Defense. Chandler is one of the best defenders in the league, as well as one of the game’s top centers. However, his injury riddled season combined with an iffy Knicks defensive scheme resulted in Chandler being much less effective this season than in his 2011 Defensive Player of the Year campaign. When he won that award last season, he was voted second team All-Defense. This years winner, Memphis’ Marc Gasol, finds himself in the same circumstance. The simple and likely explanation for this is that the coaches are always a year behind in these awards/accolades. Next year, Gasol will replace Chandler on the first team All-Defense.
Quasi-elbowing that was considered a real elbowing, a proclaimed funeral that was actually a near-death experience, clubbing excessively (not seals), Twitter ranting, and the like; J.R Smith has never been the same on the court. The inefficient Sixth Man of The Year in the playoffs as of recent has been worrisome. It’s at a point where people prefer him to be on the bench rather than on the court, so people’s eyes could be saved from the hydrochloric acid being poured into their eyes that is the ghastly shooting percentages posted ever since he came back from his quasi-Bill Cartwright elbow incident on Jason Terry. Of course, it’s J.R in a nutshell; his cool shooting performances resulted in a playoff homecoming of “Bad J.R,” and playoffs “Good J.R” is still nowhere to be found. Let’s take a look at his recent shooting percentages: More
I have no issues with JR winning this award as I would’ve voted for him if I had a ballot. My mock ballot looked like this:
1. JR Smith
2. Ryan Anderson
3. Matt Barnes
4. Jarrett Jack
5. Jamal Crawford.
Winning 6MOY has become an award about wing scorers, and JR certainly would fit into that category, but that isn’t why I think he’s deserving of winning. If you looked at the majority of this season, he was largely inefficient shooting the ball (remember the ridiculous JR for all-star campaign?). Over the last month and a half, he’s been fantastic, but the season isn’t comprised of just it’s last month and a half. If this was an award about efficient scoring, Ryan Anderson is my runaway winner. But it’s not. More
It feels right that the Knicks will have to go through the Celtics on the road back to NBA prominence. Though the Knicks won 54 games, this season means absolutely nothing if they flame out in the first round of the playoffs. The Celtics may not be the the same dominant force we’ve seen been in recent memory, but they are certainly not a team to take likely. We’ve seen unlikely playoff runs before from Doc Rivers’ group in the past, and with the third ranked defensive in basketball another deep run is certainly possible. With all the chaos and tragedy that struck the state of Massachusetts over the last week, you know the Celtics are going to come out fired up and ready to play. All that being said, the Knicks are the much better team and should win this series handily.
Mike Woodson has been a very pleasant surprise this season – re-inventing his previously ball-sticky isolation oriented offense into a spread pick and roll attack that finished third in the NBA in offensive efficiency thus inserting himself into the conversation for coach of the year. Carmelo Anthony had the best season of his career after a wildly disappointing 2011 campaign. JR Smith is going to win Sixth Man of the Year, having transformed himself from an inconsistent long range gunner to an efficient multi-faceted scorer over the last two months of the season. This was the best Knicks season I’ve seen in my basketball watching lifetime, and it’s not close. It’s time for them to take the next step. More
Rejoice!! Not only are the Knicks headed to the playoffs but they wrapped up the Atlantic Division and the 2 seed in the East!! If you had told me in September that the season would play out this way, I would have assumed you were the devil and were interested in attaining my soul. Undoubtedly, the Knicks had a season to celebrate. And on top of that celebration, we also had the NBA’s scoring champion (congrats Melo!) and the potential (probable?) 6th Man of the Year.
Allow me to take a trip back to the previously alluded to past September before the 2012-13 NBA season started, back in the days when many believed the Lakers to be a potential 70 win team and the Andrew Bynum acquisition was a steal for the 76ers, Jonathan Abrams wrote a piece (link to JR Grantland article) about that potential 6th Man of the Year, one Earl Smith III, a.k.a. J.R. Smith, for Grantland. In this article, Abramsʼ general thesis questions J.R.ʼs erratic nature and whether or not it is a function of him being misguided or is it simply a case of J.R. being misunderstood by fans, coaches, teammates, and anyone else even remotely associated with the NBA. While Abrams did a phenomenal job, what he did not stress enough is what J.R. Smith truly has been over the course of his 9 seasons: frustrating. Frustrating to his teammates. Frustrating for his coaches (see Karl, George). But mostly, he has been frustrating to the fans of the teams that have employed him through the years. But that changed this season…potentially? More
All-NBA Team discussions are always fun this time of year so I thought I’d chip in and put mine up here with a little bit of justification for each. Let me know if you agree/disagree with my selections.
G – Chris Paul
G – Russell Westbrook
F – LeBron James
F – Kevin Durant
C – Marc Gasol
The two spots for debate here are Westbrook’s guard spot and the center spot. More
In an effort to add players who aren’t broken and can actually play, the Knicks will sign forward James Singleton (no, not the guy we passed up for Shumpert in the draft) and release the injured Kurt Thomas. The only thing I knew about Singleton prior to writing this post is that his name was James Singleton. I’d heard of him a few times, but couldn’t recall having seen him play. I read around the inter-webs for information and here’s what I came up with:
Singleton stands 6’8 230 pounds and is a forward. He seems positionally versatile due to his size, so I could see him playing multiple positions with the Knicks. Because the Knicks have zero healthy big men, he’ll play power-forward primarily and probably some center too. Basketball-reference had him listed as a power-forward for the Wizards last year. In 12 games with Washington last season, Singleton played well. His TS% was .60 and he recorded a PER of 19.6. Small sample size definitely applies, but I like this guy. I took to Synergy to watch some film on him and I like what I saw. More
All season, despite the media narrative of the Knicks being a defense oriented team, New York’s elite offense has been the catalyst for it’s success. The Knicks score 108.2 points per 100 possessions, a mark that ranks third in the NBA behind only Miami and Oklahoma City. However, the defense has been woefully average all season. New York gives up 103.1 points per 100 possessions, good for 16th in the league behind Minnesota, Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Golden State.
On Wednesday night’s Knicks-Hawks ESPN broadcast, the insufferable Jon Barry said something that spurred me to go look at the stats. He incorrectly spoke about how the Knicks defense has been the difference during the winning streak. Having watched the games, I didn’t think the Knicks were that much better defensively. They’ve had a few great performances (Utah, Boston) and a few not so great performances (Memphis, Charlotte). As I figured, and par the usual, Barry was completely wrong. More