Ugh. What a waste of two and a half hours of my life. These Knicks are maddening and if you follow them you have to expect to be perplexed. It all started with the same sloppy, unfocused play that the team has exhibited during their recent stretch of poor play (by the way, at some point it stops being a recent stretch and turns into “most of the season”). The ball didn’t move for most of the game. Just guys jacking up contested shots.
In a game like this it is apparent how badly the Knicks miss having a go to scorer, especially in the post. Yes, I miss Zach Randolph, though I’m not sorry the Knicks traded him. I know Heri, I’m a man of contradictions. Anyway, lets see what Eddy Curry can do. I have a feeling he really could have helped tonight. He’ll be an inside option so the team doesn’t always have to live and die on threes and contested jumpers. How sad is this pining for Eddy Curry. He makes Oliver Miller look like Calista Flockhart:
Watching the team try to score inside is just sad. They either got rejected (the Thunder had eight) or just fumbled around and forced it. The futility inside was especially harmful considering the awful outside shooting. The last several games it seems like Nate can’t hit the side of a barn. Indeed, over the last five games hes shot 24.5%, which is atrocious. The Knicks aren’t going to win a lot of games with their best outside shooter shooting that poorly.
No excuse to fall behind by 23 to the Thunder who only managed to beat four other teams this entire season. The Knicks have the dishonor of being the fifth. That’s what happens when you let your opponent shoot 52%, even though the Thunder had no business making some of those shots (Jeff Green, I’m looking at you).
The fact that the Knicks mounted a comeback that they couldn’t finish makes the loss that much harder to handle. They ran out of gas with about 8 minutes left and could never recover. Even if the team won though, I wouldn’t have been too happy with it.
None of the players look like they did when the team was playing well. What happened to Duhon? He was up there in assists to turnovers for a while. Now it seems like 4 turnovers is the minimum for this guy. As mentioned, Nate completely lost his touch. Chandler still isn’t demanding the ball and taking it to the paint. This is a guy that made KG look like an amateur, but cant get to the rack against Robert Swift, Chris Wilcox, Jeff Green, or Joe Smith? Lee put up nice numbers but it seemed like he was the main test subject of a Desmond Mason rejection experiment, and when the team needed offensive boards the most while mounting their fourth quarter run, he was nowhere to be found. Lee was -25 for the game and when Tim Thomas (!) was +21 in relief.
On the plus side, it seems like D’Antoni might be realizing that Jeffries is a net liability out there, as he barely played in the second half. How do you have a system premised on spacing the floor using good shooters when you start a guy who couldn’t throw a pebble into the East River? I’d rather put Air Bud at center, he’d look better on offense bouncing balls into the basket off his snout. If you are going to wear Allan Houston’s number your jumper should look like you’ve at least played pee wee ball. My jumper looks nicer than Jeffries’. I play ball against my girlfriend (she’s a great player…the Knicks should start her at center if they can’t find Air Bud) from time to time and she’ll tell you that I can hit 60% or 70% of my foul shots…Jeffries can’t (not that he took any tonight).
But enough ranting about Jeffries. You all know my thoughts on him. The only guy who looked OK out there tonight was Harrington, though that possession with a few minutes left where he lost the ball and slapped it around on the ground for 5 seconds until the shot clock basically expired was infuriating.
Well, on to Dallas, Houston and New Orleans. Which team will show up? The one that lost to the worst team maybe ever, or the one that beat the best? Just keep in mind that Boston also lost to Golden State this year and they’ve been slumping.
Anyway, has anyone seen Ricky Rubio play this year? Blake Griffin sure looks good (and would mitigate a loss of David Lee via trade by the way).