Knicks blown out in Philly

This one was never close. Philly steamrolled the young Knicks playing on the second night of a back-to-back.

HIGHLIGHTS

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GAME NOTES

Before Wednesday night, the Knicks had played two truly forgettable games this season – consecutive blowout losses to Orlando and Oklahoma City. Since the latter, things had been pretty good, with the team sporting a respectable minus 1.1 net rating over the preceding seven games.

That number is going to dip after what was probably their worst overall showing of the year, a 117-91 loss in Philadelphia. Granted, the team was on the second night of a back-to-back, playing a rested Sixers squad coming off a bad home loss, but they were thoroughly outclassed regardless, shooting a “wait, that has to be a mistake” 34.8% from the field. Most of the guys played a step slow all night on defense and you’ll rarely see a worse shooting night from an NBA team. There were a couple of important takeaways.

  • Big picture wise, the “Frank Ntilikina Development Watch” has now reached Code Yellow (that’s the middle one), approaching Code Orange. He played six minutes in the first half, and over a dozen possessions, he didn’t touch the ball on nine of them, all but one of which never saw him leave the corner. The three possessions he did touch the rock, he shot it … and missed all three. This wouldn’t be a story if there was some agreement that the coaching staff is deploying him in a way that is best for his development, but that’s a major source of contention amongst the fan base and NBA people, alike. As a slight silver lining, we saw some Frank at point guard minutes to close out the game in garbage time. This now officially bears watching on a nightly basis.
  • On the bright side, Damyean Dotson once again played, and once again looked like his regular, active two-way self. The numbers during what little meaningful time there was in this game weren’t great, but he again exuded the presence of a guy who just looks like he needs to be on the court. His three steals stood out.
  • Mitchell Robinson didn’t foul out, so that was a plus. He also had a couple nice blocks on Embiid late. Complain if you want about Frank and Knox, but Mitch is either ahead of schedule, or at worse, right where he should be – looking overmatched much of the time but making a few special plays every night.
  • Speaking of Knox, he had seven points on 3-of-7 shooting and generally looked better than he has in a few games.
  • The starting backcourt of Timmy and Mud shot a combined 1-for-16 from the floor and missed all nine 3-point attempts. Yeah.
  • Lastly, in the irony of ironies, Mario Hezonja may have been the best Knick on the floor, swiping four steals and looking the best he has on offense during a brief stretch in the first quarter. Fizdale’s choices don’t get any easier.

That’s it. Thankfully. The Knicks have two nights off. They look like they’ll need it. They’re home for the Bucks on Saturday.

Knicks win in Memphis for Fizdale

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Knicks Fan TV Postgame Live


MACRI’S GAME NOTES

Hey hey hey there friends … we interrupt your regularly scheduled Tank Job for this important announcement: the Knicks – the New York Knickerbockers – might not be terrible.

Bad?

Yeah, they’re probably still bad.

And they’ll look it on some nights as this season progresses. For right now, though, they’re playing hard, they’re playing smart, and they’re playing together, all culminating in a huge 103-98 win in David Fizdale’s return game, their third in a row.

On to the highlights:

  • Have to start with Kanter. Have to. He was a beast, putting up a 21 & 26 night, which included a stretch in the 3rd where he ate Memphis’ collective lunch on the block, repeatedly posting up and getting buckets, relieving the pressure on New York’s guards to produce points for a key stretch of the game. Perhaps more impressively, his defense was also more than passable. I wrote a few weeks ago that I thought Kanter’s season in NY would end in a buyout, and I might be wrong if he continues to add value like this.
  • Emmanuel Mudiay’s resurgence continues. He didn’t shoot it great, but 17 points on 12 shots is fine any day of the week. He was once again in complete control of the offense – his own and the team’s – and his defense was also far better than what we’ve become accustomed to. His dunk late in the fourth may have been my favorite moment of the season.

  • Noah Vonleh continues to put in work on both ends. Tonight was a quieter effort, but he is a switchable force on the defensive end, his jumper appears to be a thing, and his baby hook is unguardable.
  • Timmy again had a rough night from the field, but he got to the line seven times (two on techs) and hit 3-of-7 from deep. Like Mudiay, the field goal percentage was ugly, but you’ll take 22 points on 16 shots most nights.
  • Other than Frank, the kids struggled tonight, which was to be expected against a tough, veteran squad that’s been hitting on all cylinders. Knox looked overmatched, and Mitch had some rough moments guarding Gasol. Ntilikina, however, had a nice stretch running the offense and looking for his own shot in the second quarter. He didn’t play much in the second half, but in a game where every bucket was going to be critical, it was understandable.
Regardless of how Knicks fans feel about the vets playing more of late, there’s no denying that David Fizdale has this squad playing their asses off. For a franchise where that hasn’t been the case much over the last 17 years, that is step one, above everything else they need to do to go back to becoming a respectable NBA franchise. Kudos to Fiz. He’s go this thing rolling.

Mudiay shines in Knicks win

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

Don’t look now, Knicks fans … we have ourselves a winning streak. New York beat their second presumptive playoff heavyweight in a row, defeating the New Orleans Pelicans 114-109. It was an exciting game throughout, marred only by a brief Anthony Davis injury scare in the 3rd quarter quarter. He returned late, but it wasn’t enough, thanks to the effort of several Knicks, none of which get the game ball. That honor goes to …

  • Scott Perry took over the GM job about 17 months ago, and quickly realized the roster he was in charge of building was short on talent and athleticism. He didn’t have many options to build this thing by traditional means, as he was short on cap space and extra draft picks. But boy, did he make due. Three Knicks who literally anyone in the NBA could have had – Emmanuel Mudiay, Noah Vonleh and Allonzo Trier – were plucked off the scrap heap and combined to score 66 points tonight. Awesome job so far in his first chance as a head man.
  • Emmanuel Mudiay, several years after the fact, had himself the kind of game the Nuggets envisioned when they drafted him seventh overall in 2015. He’s finally figured out how to use his huge frame and elite athleticism to his advantage, getting six buckets at the rim to go with six from the free throw line on his way to 27 points, including several huge baskets late. If the 3-point shot he’s showing is real, he’s about a 20% improvement on defense away from becoming a dangerous, dangerous NBA player. After the game, Fiz did not rule out him starting at PG for the rest of the year.
  • Mudiay’s late game heroics overshadowed what might be the most efficient game an undrafted rookie has ever had, finishing with 25 points on 12 shots, and added 8 rebounds and 4 assists to boot. He’s already shown himself to be a guy who won’t always have it, but when he does, he can single handedly alter a game. His passing and court vision continues to improve.
  • Noah Vonleh will wind up getting relegated to an afterthought, but his early offense may have kept the game close. He continues to be a threat from deep, netting four threes on his way to 14 points, 11 boards, 5 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks. If there was any doubt as to whether he’s a valuable NBA rotation piece, there isn’t anymore.
  • That the Knicks won this game while getting perhaps Tim Hardaway Jr’s worst performance of the season was telling. Timmy couldn’t buy a bucket and never got into the lane or to the line to make up for it, but after the year he’s had, he gets a pass.
  • Trey Burke was quiet after a scorching four games, finishing with 7 points on 2-for-8 shooting. To his credit, David Fizdale recognized it and didn’t force the issue.
  • Rookies Kevin Knox and Mitchell Robinson had nights where they looked their age, although Mitch did pick up another 2 blocks to go with his 6 fouls in 9 minutes.
  • Lastly, Frank Ntilikina’s defense shined as usual, and he made his only 3-point attempt, which had to feel good. He only played 14 minutes, which is less than we’d all like to see, but he continues to look more comfortable and confident on offense than he did during his down stretch earlier in the season. 
  • #FreeDot
  • Last, but not least, Enes Kanter had a nice two-way game, and for the first time that I can remember, his defense may have overshadowed his offense. Aside from three blocks, he was in solid position for much of the game and contested several shots better than he normally does.
That’s it…Fiz makes his return to Memphis on Sunday night, where the Knicks will look to do the unthinkable and beat three good teams in a row. Do you believe in miracles?

Knicks shock the Celtics in Boston

KNICKS MAKE IT A HAPPY THANKSGIVING

The Knicks played their best game of the season in beating the Celtics on the road, on a back-to-back.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

On Thanksgiving Eve, the Knicks gave their fans something to be very, very thankful for with one of the more improbable wins in recent memory. On the road, against a desperate and reeling Celtics team that had played the best defense in basketball though the first month of the season, the Knicks won 117-109. New York went up by 26 at one point in the 2nd at which point Boston woke up and decided to try. The Knicks withstood several uppercuts from that point forward, but ultimately prevailed. There were no shortage of highlights…

  • Trey Burke is … what is he? Really … I’m asking, because in 25 years of watching the game, have we ever seen something like this? College Player of the Year to All-Rookie First Team to draft bust to out of the league to Knicks late season darling to opening night starter to DNP-CD to savior. That’s quite a path. Burke rescued the Knicks, putting up 29 points on 20 shots and getting two huge buckets down the stretch. He is, in short, an offensive weapon in the modern NBA. What the Knicks decide to do with him for the rest of this season will be fascinating…
  • Mitchell Robinson, he of the “It’s a good thing this car has airbags because I just got my license” experience level, had six blocks in 16 minutes and basically destroyed everything the Celtics wanted to do on offense at multiple points throughout the fourth quarter. Speaking of weapons, he’s a bazooka that doesn’t yet know it. Just think: Perry came on the job with the Melo trade for Ryan Anderson at the two-yard line. It seems his patience was rewarded.
  • Frank Ntilikina continued to remind fools that his offensive struggles are worth wading through, as he D’d up Jason Tatum throughout the fourth quarter, and had a beautiful up and under move midway through the final frame. Fiz left Frank in the game from the 4:50 mark of the third quarter until the final buzzer. It would seem that qualifies as “proper development”
  • Kevin Knox was hitting it from deep, converting both of his 3-point attempts and getting big minutes down the stretch. He looked the part of a lottery pick for much of the night.
  • Resident punching bag Enes Kanter proved Clarence Gaines right by grabbing several key offensive boards just when it looked like the Knicks were losing momentum. His defense also bordered on passable at times. Progress, you are a funny bird…
  • The rest of the Knicks who saw time played well with the exception of Mario (a forgettable evening) and the possible exception of Timmy, who hit several key shots throughout the night but also had some gastly turnovers and missed a key free throw down the stretch that luckily didn’t come back to haunt them. He will have games like this every now and then, but in this year at least, he gets a pass for tonight.
  • Lastly, sadly, Dotson got another DNP-CD. I am going to chalk his second straight “no burn” to Fiz’s tinkering. It should not continue, and if it does, I will be upset.
That’s it … Happy Turkey Day everyone!

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

Knicks lose tough battle with Portland

KNICKS PLAY TOUGH VS PORTLAND BUT LOSE

Against one of the top teams in the West, the Knicks gave an impressive effort.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

REMI SE'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks dropped their sixth straight in a heartbreaker to the Western conference leading Portland Trail Blazers 118-114. David Fizdale’s newest rotation created better spacing than the team has seen all season, knocking down 13 of 29 three pointers and keeping pace with one of the best teams in the league. The vets led the way and the kids held strong for most of the night, but the combination of Damian Lillard and CJ Mccollum proved to be just a little too much in crunch time. Let’s take a closer look:

Emmanuel Mudiay and Trey Burke continued their strong play in roles as starting PG and sixth man. The two combined for 35 points and 7 assists as the Knicks lead ball handlers for the majority of the night. Mudiay is scoring with confidence that he hasn’t shown before, be it on drives to the rack or pulling up for three. Burke, meanwhile, has found the rhythm that carried him through most of last season. The two guards shot a scorching 14 for 24 from the field and made 5 of 9 from three. There may have been some opportunities to create, but it’s hard to complain with that level of efficiency.

As well as the point guards performed, it was Tim Hardaway who led the way once again with his third consecutive 30-point game. Hardaway’s 32 points led all players, but he also made big plays down the stretch, and beyond just scoring. He added 4 assists and 5 rebounds, coming through with the kind of well-rounded performance that a franchise needs from its best player.

The rookies showed a lot of fluidity playing within the second unit. While Trey Burke was the focal point of their offense, the kids moved the ball quickly and decisively around him. Mitch Robinson continues to be a standout as he was disruptive all night. Robinson had 2 blocks and 2 steals to go along with a number of shots changed inside the painted area. He does have to learn to expect the pass more often, however. His hands are good when he fights for boards but the guards have collectively struggled to get him the ball without a bobble or a turnover.

We probably shouldn’t expect the bigs to hit threes the way they did tonight. But the spacing doesn’t seem like a fluke. The Knicks ran a lot of three guard sets and even went with four guards late. Both Hezonja and Knox are trigger happy from three which can be troublesome, but demands attention. This made the off ball screens and cuts effective virtually all night regardless of who received the ball. The motion away from the ball handler picked up and the results were a lot of easy looks.

The team defense deserves some credit in spite of the result tonight. Against players the quality of Damian Lillard and CJ Mccollum, you hope to make them work moreso than shut them down. For most of the night, the Knicks accomplished as much. Frank Ntilikina’s defense stood out when he matched with Mccollum in the first half and he found fourth quarter minutes trying to contain the Blazers guard again. Collectively the Knicks had stronger rotations and an overall better effort with the main blemish being fouls on three point shooters multiple times.

Last but not least, Noah Vonleh had himself a game. He knocked down a couple of three balls and had a highlight reel dunk in route to 14 points and 14 rebounds. He’s also one of the most consistent defensive players on the team. While Mitch has higher highs with foul trouble lows; Vonleh tends to be a steady presence helping as a four next to Kanter or small ball five. He gives the nightly effort that this New York fanbase can and should appreciate.

Highlights from the game

44-point first quarter by Orlando spells doom for Knicks

KNICKS BATTLE BACK BUT LOSE

After giving up 44 first quarter points, the Knicks battled back, only to lose in the end.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks lost for the fifth time in a row, this time 131-117 on the road to the Magic. They got their doors blown off to start the game, giving up 30 points in a little over six minutes. Their defense shored up from there, at least comparatively, but despite cutting the lead to one point at halftime, they could never keep pace in the second half, and Orlando ultimately pulled away late. On to the important points…

  • Trey Burke had himself another game off the bench. He payed 29 minutes and finished with 31 points on 11-for-20 from the field. This came one game after he ended up with 24 points, which itself came following a stretch where Burke didn’t see the court for three of four contests. He was completely in command of his offensive game, much like when Knicks fans fell in love with him late last year. On defense, he continues to battle despite his size. Along with Hardaway Jr., he is the best pure scorer on this team. Where that leaves him in the rotation moving forward is anyone’s guess.
  • Speaking of Timmy, he finished with an efficient 32 points that included the type of double dip you love to see from him: 10 free throws (he hit nine) to go with 10 3-point attempts (he made half). His defense was up to par.
  • Kanter was a beast on the stat sheet, finishing one rebound shy of a 20-20 game. Many of his rebounds weren’t of the empty calorie variety that some games are filled with (although him stealing a board from Kevin Knox was cringeworthy). That said, his defense continues to render him seemingly unplayable. Again, it is not that he is bad; it’s that this team does not have the defensive support structure to make his deficiencies feasible to deal with on a nightly basis.
  • The Knicks kids mostly had a rough night. Mitch was eaten alive by Nikola Vucevic, who might be the best offensive center in the game right now. He had five fouls in nine minutes and was a non-entity. Allonzo Trier had an unmemorable seven points in 13 minutes. Dotson seems to be lacking aggression on offense of late, and that continued – he took only three shots in 14 minutes. 
  • That said, when he and Frank checked in the game late in the first quarter, the energy of the game completely changed. Frank’s defense in particular was once again very good, although he looked for his shot less than ever, taking one attempt and missing it. He continues to find his way on that end, but he appears to remain deep in the forest. 
  • Lastly, Mudiay had another solid start on offense, but had several defensive lapses. Like Kanter, this team may not have the defensive supporting cast to make his presence on the court a thing that can happen.
Knicks are back in action Tuesday night at home vs Portland, where things do not get one bit easier.

Highlights from the game

Knicks fall short in New Orleans

KNICKS BLOW 19 POINT LEAD

After leading for 45 minutes, the Knicks gave away the game late and lost.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks came out with a night and day effort from their previous two games, holding a sizable lead in New Orleans for three and a half quarters until Anthony Davis (who is playing at the peak of his powers right now) and Jrue Holiday took over, leading the Pelicans to a 129-124 victory. Despite the loss, lots of positives for the young Knicks, starting with great efforts from two unlikely sources…

  • Emmanuel Mudiay had his best half as a Knick, playing in complete control to start the game and ending up with 16 points before halftime on his way to 19 for the game on 8-of-12 shooting. He looked like the point guard that Denver thought they drafted. Int he second half, Trey Burke came on, finishing with 24 points on 10-of-13 from the field. As was pointed out to David Fizdale after the game though, the pair had just one assist between them (New York had just 15 for the game). In response, Fiz said they were just taking what the defense was giving them and being aggressive, which makes sense. Overall, despite the lack of dimes, the Knicks ball movement was the best it’s been in some time, maybe all year.
  • The third nominal point guard, Frank Ntilikina, once again played almost exclusively off ball, but we saw a different player than we’ve seen previously. Despite sharing the court with another ball handler almost all of the time, he was more engaged with the offense, and showed why his future as a Swiss Army Knife may not be one that should be dismissed just yet. He also was back to being disruptive defensive self, even D’ing up Julius Randle for several possessions. On the downside, he still cant hit a three (0-3) and was a team low -16, although that number feels awfully deceptive. 
  • Anthony Davis ate Mitchell Robinson alive at times, and the kid had some other rookie moments where he failed to box out, but boy…tonight was one of those nights that made you realize the Knicks may have gotten a special, special player with the 36th pick in the draft. He continued to show flashes of brilliance, and the defense with him on the floor vs Kanter is not even comparable at this point.
  • Timmy put in work, netting 30 on 23 shots (an efficient night despite only hitting nine from the field). He played a team high 38 minutes This season playing way above his weight class should benefit him and the Knicks in the long run.
  • Allonzo Trier and Kevn Knox both chipped in 11 points as cogs in the new starting lineup. They looked like rookies at times but also showed flashes, especially Knox, who had a few plays that reminded you why the Knicks took him 9th overall.
  • Last but certainly not least, Damyean Dotson had another quietly nice two-way night. He’s struggling with his shot right now but good things seem to happen when he’s in.
The Knicks fall to 4-16, and next up is a Sunday road tilt with the Orlando Magic, who they owe one.

Highlights from the game

Knicks blown out in Oklahoma City

KNICKS BLOWN OUT

This game was never close and the Knicks looked completely outclassed in Oklahoma City.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

GAME NOTES by Brad Weir

The Knicks were looking to bounce back after their worse loss of the season on Sunday vs Orlando; but unfortunately, that didn’t happen. The Knicks fall to 4-11 on the season after losing 128-103 to the Oklahoma City Thunder in a game that was decided within the first 7 minutes. Let’s take a dive into how this game unfolded and highlight some takeaways. 

  • Paul George was on fire and dropped 35 on the Knicks in 3 quarters. The Russell Westbrook-less Thunder physically dominated the Knicks in the paint, most notably Steven Adams making Mitchell Robinson his son on every post-up. Robinson had 3 blocks, but anyone who watched the game saw Adams overpower Robinson every time he touched the ball. Mitch shows on a nightly basis that even though the potential is there, he has a long way to go until he competes with the grown men in the league.
  • This game was lost at the 3-point line with the Thunder thoroughly out shooting the Knicks from behind the arc. The Thunder shot 16 -33 (48.5%) while the Knicks shot 7-26 (26.9%). If the Knicks are going to compete with playoff caliber teams, the first place to look is at the 3-point line.
  • Kevin Knox looked good regardless of not shooting efficiently. In his last 3 games, he’s scored 12, 17, and 15, while looking much more comfortable playing against pros. You can see flashes of what type of player he can be, but until he bulks up and learns to play within himself, you’re going to see a lot of stat lines like this one.
    • **Also someone tell Knox to stop learning from Mario Hezonja on how to run a fast break because every time either one of them tries to take a 1-3 contested layup I die a little inside.
  • Kanter is a walking bucket and if he could play even average defense he would be a top 5-10 center in the league. But for every good play Kanter does on offense, he gives up twice as much on D. Enes was seen pointing to himself late in the game, realizing his defensive effort is a major problem to the team trying to get stops.
  • Mudiay is our best point guard? Emmanual Mudiay got his first start and didn’t look too out of place. He had a quality jump shot (what!?!) and attacked the basket in transition. His defense is still a problem, but with the Knicks struggling to score, they need Mudiay’s offense to give them a chance. Meanwhile, Ntilikina continues to do his thing on defense, but still looked really bad on offense, only scoring 4 points and genuinely looking invisible on that side of the floor.

While this was a very deflating game to watch, it was another loss and another step closer to one of those Duke boys. The Knicks take on the New Orleans Friday.

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

Knicks suffer worst loss of season to Orlando

KNICKS SLEEPWALK TO LOSS

For the first time all season, the Knicks looked completely flat and unprepared to play in a blowout loss to Orlando at home.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

I lieu of the smiling poop emoji, here are the things to take away from the first (and hopefully one of the last) one of those games for the Knicks…

  • This one was never close. Sometimes, when someone writes that, they ignore the fact that it was actually close for, like, five minutes. Nope. Not tonight. Knicks went down 10-0, were down by 20 before the end of the first quarter, and despite a mini-burst of energy to begin the second half, never got it closer than 24. The lead ballooned to 34 at one point in the fourth.
  • There was no one culprit. The team just didn’t have the requisite energy to compete with any NBA team, even a bad one like the Magic, who were without Aaron Gordon, arguably their best player. Couple that with the fact that they couldn’t buy a bucket, and are generally not a very good team to begin with, and, well…you get this.
  • The Magic ate on threes they don’t usually make, but were more open than they should have been nonetheless. Nikola Vucevic did his best Wilt Chamberlain impersonation, getting whatever he wanted, with the exception of one stretch in the third quarter when…
  • Mitchell Robinson, New York’s lone bright spot of the night, showed up big time, getting several of his career high nine blocks, which set a new Knicks rookie record. He showed flashes of a level of defensive capability that few bigs in the league possess. 
  • On the downside, Frank Ntilikina was benched for the rest of the game after being pulled six minutes into the first quarter. He missed all three of his shots, and reverted back to the out-of-sorts offensive player we’ve seen a few times this year. After the game, Fizdale said Frank had been struggling and he just wanted to get a different look. It will be interesting to see how they toe the line from here between keeping his confidence up and also not putting him in positions where he’s only hurting his development.
  • Kevin Knox had some nice moments late, and finished with 15 points, aided by 10 trips to the line. He had a put-back dunk in the fourth that got the crowd off its feet. Another learning game for the rook.
  • Lastly, Trey Bure got back in the rotation, taking Ntilikina’s place after he was relegated to the bench. He played with some decent energy and hit a few shots. Still, if Trey Burke is the answer for this team, someone is probably asking the wrong questions.
As a wise man once said, “On to the Next One…”

Highlights from the game

Knicks get much needed win on the road

KNICKS WIN ON THE ROAD

Road wins might be few and far in-between this season, but the Knicks took care of business in Atlanta.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks won a game! Savor it folks…take a whiff of the sweet smell of victory, even if you’re in Camp Tank, because with the schedule they have coming up, there may not be many more in the immediate future. Here are the highlights of the Knicks 112-107 win in Atlanta over the frisky Hawks:

  • Tim Hardaway Jr., only a three nights removed from missing a game due to a back injury, had a wonderful game, getting to the line a whopping 20 times and finishing with 34 points on 22 shots. The shooting numbers were a bit ugly (2-of-11 from deep, 8-for-22 overall) but this is the version of Hardaway Jr. that has a prayer of making his contract look like an asset: one that gets to the charity stripe when he’s not bombing from long range. Hopefully more to come.
  • Frank Ntilikina busted out of his slump, finishing with 14 points on 10 shots, including 2-of-4 from deep. Whether he converts from close range or not, his driving always seems to open things up for himself and his teammates. The only sour note: after a night of stellar defense on Trae Young, he fouled out in 23 minutes, most of which were ticky tack.
  • Emmanuel Mudiay might be an NBA player after all. The moments that make you shake your head in bewilderment continue to decrease, and while his defense will probably always be below average, he played within himself, made the right play at the right time more often than not, took what the defense gave him, and made three 3’s to boot. If his reclamation continues, it’s a great look for the organization.
  • Enes Kanter quietly had a nice game, and earned praise from the coach afterwards, who was “really happy with the way [he] set down and set his feet tonight” on defense. How Fiz has smoothed over Kanter’s demotion might be his best accomplishment to date.
  • Allonzo Trier continues to do his thing, getting 16 points on nine shots in 36 minutes. It’s amazing that just a dozen games into his NBA career, these types of nights are almost expected from the undrafted rookie.
  • Noah Vonleh started off like a man on fire but settled down after the first, finishing with 11 points and 13 rebounds.
  • Damyean Dotson had his quietest game of the season, taking and making his only shot, a three.
  • Mitch had some nice blocks, and continues to be ahead of schedule.
  • Hezonja had some nice minutes, coming in late for Vonleh, which helped settle the team down when they needed it most.
  • Finally, Kevin Knox looked incredibly rusty, missing all six of his field goal attempts in nine minutes. Nowhere to go but up.
Next up: a brutal road game awaits against the machine that is the Toronto Raptors. If they can stay in that one, it’ll be their most impressive accomplishment of the season.

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

Knicks lose to Bulls in a double overtime non-thriller

KNICKS LOSE DOUBLE OT MESS

It might be one of the ugliest basketball games you will see in a while, and the Knicks lost it.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

Rarely will any Knicks game leave me speechless, but, well…ladies and gentlemen, Knicks vs Bulls! Here are your hot, cold and lukewarm takes on a game that nearly, inexplicably went to triple overtime save for Mudiay fouling Zach LaVine with 0.2 seconds remaining…

  • The night started with the excitement of Allonzo Trier starting alongside Frank Ntilikina. News also broke near gametime that Kevin Knox would return. Knox ended up only playing 5 minutes. Tim Hardaway Jr. did not play.
  • The Knick that will get the most attention from this game is Enes Kanter thanks to an outsized stat line of 23 points, 24 rebounds and 7 assists, but Damyean Dotson was arguably the best player on the floor for New York. On a night where most everyone looked like they were defending in quicksand at times, Dotson repeatedly showed an aggressiveness that stood out. He ended up with 18 points on 7-of-14 shooting, and looks like someone who’s going to play a big role on this team regardless of what big names come through the door. His defense faltered against Zach LaVine late, but that’s nothing for him to hang his head over having played 41 minutes. Nice game for the second year player.
  • Speaking of Kanter, he played about as well as he’s capable of. There won’t be many nights where his defense doesn’t negate whatever he manages to do on the offensive end, but this was one of them.
  • Allonzo Trier somehow ended up with 21 points despite a dreadful shooting night in his first career start. He had the shot of the night – a three that tied the game late in the fourth, probably the biggest moment of the young season – as well as several other big baskets, but he also looked overmatched at times when pressured. Overall, what can you say about the undrafted rookie from Arizona other than that he clearly belongs in an NBA rotation, and might have found a city that jives perfectly with his unique flare for the game.
  • Two Knicks reclamation projects, Emmanuel Mudiay and Mario Hezonja, had games that were microcosms of their careers…some moments of near brilliance, but others that make you question whether they belong in an NBA rotation. Fiz will continue to do whatever he can to instill confidence in these guys because he truly believes that’s how culture is built.
  • Frank was bad. He looks out of sorts on offense, and his shooting struggles are clearly in his head at this point. Luckily, he’s still not old enough to drink, so he’s not cuddling up to a bottle of Jack right now to console himself. He’ll be fine. This, too, shall pass…(although it wouldn’t shock me if he sat for a few games at some point this season so he can clear his head and alleviate some of the pressure he’s clearly putting on himself right now)
  • More than anything, this game will be remembered for the fight the Knicks showed, coupled with their lack of composure at times, which resulted in a repeated inability to get a good look. It’s easy to call out David Fizdale, but he was working with arguably the least talented group of offensive players in the league tonight. Not much more he could do.

Knicks have Tuesday off, then lace ‘em up on Wednesday against the Hawks.

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

Knicks fight back and lose in Washington

KNICKS FIGHT BACK AND LOSE

After a dreadful, turnover fueled start, the Knicks fought back against Washington, before ultimately falling short.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The young Knicks showed some grit once again, making it a game on the road against a desperate Washington team, but after knotting it at 86 midway through the fourth, they let the game get away. Ultimately, the final result was less important than the fact that the Knicks stayed in a game they probably had no right being in, mostly on the strength of their defense. In the end, getting outshot 39 to 16 from the charity stripe and turning the ball over 20 times was too much to overcome. The key points from this one:

  • Tim Hardaway Jr. took a rough fall in the first quarter, apparently injuring his back, and never looked the same after that. He finished with seven points on 2-for-10 shooting and gave more leeway than usual on defense, which was, umm, not helpful.
  • The bright spots for New York were once again Mitchell Robinson (10 points, including a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line) and Allonzo Trier (nine points in 22 minutes), who got into it with John Wall in the second half and responded by giving the team the offensive spark it was lacking all night. He continues to impress.
  • Frank Ntilikina seemed out of sorts at times thanks largely to am “I care tonight” defensive effort by John Wall. He missed all four of his 3-point attempts, although he didn’t hesitate whenever he was open. The education of a point guard continues.
  • Enes Kanter had a wonderful stat line, finishing with 18 and 12, including a few key put-backs, but again got cooked on defense in several key moments. There just aren’t many matchups left in the league where he’s not going to get exploited on that end.
  • Good Mario was out tonight. He was a team high plus 11, and had a good stat line across the board: 10 points, eight board, three assists and three steals.
  • Finally, Emmanuel Mudiay played for the second night in a row, logging 23 minutes and once again looking competent on both ends (with a couple classic Mudiay moments thrown in)
Knicks have the Bulls tomorrow at home. They’ll be favored. We’ll see if they bounce back like a young team should.

Highlights from the game

Everything you need to know about the Knicks loss to Indiana

KNICKS LOSE ANOTHER HEARTBREAKER

It seems like this same headline is repeating itself, but the Knicks, once again, battled, but couldn’t put together 48 minutes in the loss.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks lose another heartbreaker 107-101, but the mission of this season continues to be a success, as the young guys are getting valuable minutes and learning what it takes to pull out these types of games…

  • Tim Hardaway Jr. had arguably his best game as a Knick. He was lights out from deep, finishing the game 7-for-10 from behind the arc, a career high. More importantly though, he got to the line at the level of other elite guards around the league, finishing 10-for-10 from the charity stripe. While he won’t always be automatic from deep, this version of Timmy is absolutely an asset, even on his current contract.
  • The Knicks had no answer for Domantas Sabonis all night long. He had his way down low, usually against Enes Kanter, who was exposed on defense more than usual, which is saying something. Sabonis showed how a true low post presence can still be a weapon in today’s game, as every one of his shots came within the flow of the offense. Meanwhile, the Burke / Kanter pairing on the second unit is revealing itself to be more untenable by the game.
  • The Frank Ntilikina Point Guard Tour had its first bump in the road, with Frank having arguably his worst offensive game of the season. He was 2-for-8 from the field, and while he had some nice passes throughout the game, couldn’t get the team into its offense late in the game. This was definitely a learning night for the young Frenchman, although his coach did say after the game that he, along with the other young guys, are “making some jumps,” and that he was happy with his aggressiveness.
  • Noah Vonleh continues to impress in every way. He had another double-double, and every one of his 10 boards seem to come in traffic. He is an asset on both ends, along with…
  • Damyean Dotson. Phew…the Knicks might have themselves something here. There should be a federal investigation as to why he didn’t get minutes last year under Jeff Hornacek. Perhaps he Dot roomed with Kurt Rambis on road trips and refused to push the toothpaste from the bottom of the tube. Who knows. Moving forward though, the Knicks should play the former second round pick upwards of thirty minutes a night. It’ll be interesting to see whether his spot in the starting lienup is secure even after Kevin Knox makes his return.
  • Lastly, Allonzo Trier keeps doing his thing. 6-for-7 from the field in 23 minutes is pretty good for a guy who nobody bothered to draft.

See everyone on Friday for the Knicks Game Watch – Slattery’s Midtown Pub on 36th and 6th!

Highlights from the game

Know Your Opponent: Brooklyn Nets

KNOW YOUR OPPONENT

Get ready for the Knicks next match-up against the Nets.

NETS LOST YESTERDAY TO GOLDEN STATE

Caris LeVert & His Strong Start to the Season

By Justin Carter

NETS NOTES

Brooklyn is 2-4 and playing on the second night of a back-to-back.

D’Angelo Russell thinks he complements Caris LeVert well.

“I think we both are able to play off the ball. We’re both able to create. We just flow. We’ve got a chemistry that’s connecting well together,” Russell said. “I think the next step is getting other guys involved at the same time and finishing games.” They combined for 48 points and 13 assists against the Warriors on Sunday, and coach Kenny Atkinson said he likes their chemistry as well. Russell is heating up after a slow start with 23.3 points, 6.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 4.3 triples over his last three games.

Allen Crabbe hit 4-of-11 shots and four 3-pointers for a season-high 14 points, five rebounds and two assists in Sunday’s loss to GSW.

The rise of Caris LeVert and the strong play of Joe Harris might impact Crabbe’s usage going forward, but he does appear to be over his ankle injury. And this was a far cry from his 0-for-7 shooting night last Wednesday.

D’Angelo Russell hit 9-of-14 shots and five 3-pointers for a season-high 25 points, six rebounds, six assists and a block in 30 minutes of Sunday’s loss to the Warriors.

He got off to a slow start this season, but has rendered Spencer Dinwiddie somewhat useless of late, and has really turned it on over his last two games. He’s averaging 24.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 5.5 3-pointers over his last two games, hitting 18-of-30 shots, good for 60 percent, and has also knocked down 11-of-17 3-pointers in his last two, good for 65 percent.

Joe Harris hit 2-of-6 shots (all 3-point attempts) to finish with seven points, three rebounds, three assists and two turnovers in 30 minutes of Sunday’s loss to the Warriors.

Harris entered the game at No. 4 in the league in 3-point percentage (59.3%), and hit his first two of the night. However, he missed his next four triples (and shots), but has still hit 15 of his last 23 shots from beyond the arc, good for 65 percent. He’s been a bit quiet in his last two games, scoring just seven points in each of them, but if you are looking for 3-pointers in your fantasy league, he’s probably available.

Notes via RotoWorld

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Everything you need to know about the Knicks loss to Golden State

KEVIN DURANT PUTS ON A SHOW

For three quarters it looked like the Knicks were going to shock the Warriors, but then 25 fourth quarter points by Kevin Durant happened.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks entered the fourth quarter with a lead against the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors, possessors of all six infinity stones and lords of the realm. With 7:46 left in the game, New York was still up by one following a Trey Burke 3-pointer. They were outscored by 29 the rest of the way thanks to a Kevin Durant onslaught for the ages.

Let’s hit the big points:

  • Frank Ntilikina started at point guard, and seemed to answer a lot of questions in the process. He scored 17 points in 26 minutes on 6-of-11 shots, including 3-of-7 from deep. Other than a couple miscues, his defense on Steph Curry (29 points, 10-for-18 overall, 6-of-11 from deep) was solid, which the two-time MVP himself noted after the game. Most importantly, he looked in control and unafraid of the moment, taking what was given to him where appropriate and putting the ball in spots where his teammates could be successful. The Knicks might have found their point guard.
  • Less heralded but similarly impressive was Damyean Dotson, who started alongside Ntilikina and was also a two-way force. He had 12 points and put up another six shots from deep, upping his total to 27 attempts in four games. He looks to be the definition of a modern 3 & D wing (as long as the “D” doesn’t come against “KD”)
  • The Knicks – finally – had a shot profile that resembled a modern NBA offense, jacking 39 threes and making 13. While the percentage wasn’t great, it was a step in the right direction for a team thats been stuck in the 90’s for far too long. It’s the most deep balls New York has attempted since putting up 51 in a quadruple overtime loss to the Hawks on January 29, 2017, and the most in a regulation game since the 42 they tried on April 6, 2014 vs Miami.
  • The Knicks starting front court of Mitchell Robinson and Noah Vonleh didn’t look overmatched. Vonleh continues to shine, especially with his defensive versatility, and while Robinson is clearly raw, he impressed his coach on defense, as David Fizdale noted postgame.
  • Speaking of Fiz, he characterized the fourth quarter dam breaking as the Knicks young players feeling like “we’ve done enough.” He stated they still think they’re playing a 40 minute college game, and that he needs to get them believing they can win these sorts of contests against good teams. Overall, he continues to remain upbeat. If there’s a better coach for this team at this time, I can’t think of one.
  • Fiz didn’t comment on whether the starting lineup would remain in place, only saying “we’ll see how it goes.” Ok.
    Timmy had his moments, but as usual, took several ill-advised threes throughout the game. I’m starting to think this might be a thing.
  • Twitter was ablaze as KD started his fourth quarter takeover, imploring Fiz to remove Kanter and Burke (who had some nice moments in the second half) sooner than he did. Sorry folks…this would have made about as much difference as a kid getting under their desk during those old 60’s air-raid drills. The heat was coming.
  • Lastly, Enes Kanter didn’t sound thrilled during his postgame interview in regards to his being removed from the starting lineup. It’s a situation that bears watching.

Knicks have the weekend off, and then come back to the Garden for their rematch with the Nets on Monday night. The season of development continues.

IN A FEW SENTENCES

Frank was unbelievable in the first half.

Frank also did his thing on defense.

Kanter and Durant exchanged a few words.

Tim Hardaway Jr. took a scary fall, but returned to the game.

Trey Burke found his game again in the third quarter.

As Kevin Durant put up 25 fourth quarter points, Fizdale had something to say.

Know Your Opponent: Golden State Warriors

KNOW YOUR OPPONENT

Get ready for the Knicks next match-up against the Warriors.

WARRIORS LAST GAME

OPPOSING VIEW

Marcus Thompson: This time, Kevin Durant isn’t trying to please everybody or limit his free-agent process

WARRIORS NOTES

  • Tonight’s game at New York is the first game of a three-game road trip for the Warriors… Golden State was 24-6 against the East last season, in- cluding 11-4 at home…. Since 2014-15, the Warriors have a 102-19 (.843) record against Eastern Conference teams, the best record in the NBA.
  • The Warriors have won the last eight meetings against the Knicks, including the last five at Madison Square Garden.
  • After a 51-point night against the Wizards, Stephen Curry is now ranked first in the NBA in scoring, averaging 34.6 points per game in five contests… He also had made 33 treys this season, tops in the league (second is Kemba Walker with 24).
  • Curry has made at least five 3-pointers in each of the first five games of the season… According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that is the longest streak at the start of the season for consecutive games with at least five made 3-point field goals.
  • Notes via via Warriors PR

Kevin Durant made 13-of-18 shots to score 30 points on Wednesday, adding eight rebounds, seven assists, one steal, one block and one 3-pointer.

On most teams this would be the headline, but the Warriors aren’t most teams. Steph Curry stole the show with an incredible shooting exhibition en route to 51 points, so KD’s hyper-efficient, stat-stuffing game gets second billing. His fantasy owners appreciate it, of course, and he’s cruising along with his typical elite value through five games.

Jordan Bell saw daylight in the Warriors’ rotation on Wednesday, scoring eight points on 4-of-4 shooting with three boards, three assists and two blocks in 21 minutes.

Bell’s fantasy upside hasn’t been in question, but he’s fallen out of the rotation with Steve Kerr starting Damian Jones at center and deploying Kevon Looney as the primary backup. This matchup vs. the center-less Wizards was tailor-made for Bell, so it’s hard to get excited about his playing time. Let’s see if he earns minutes again on Friday (at New York) and Sunday (at Brooklyn).

Damian Jones started Wednesday’s game but played only 12 minutes, scoring five points with three rebounds and two assists.

Jones has been very impressive as a starter to open the season, and his reduced role tonight wasn’t a product of his play — he simply wasn’t a good fit against a Wizards team that went extremely small by default. Jones should be back to the 20-minute range vs. Enes Kanter and the Knicks on Friday.

Klay Thompson played through a left ankle injury to finish Wednesday’s game with 19 points on 8-of-17 shooting, two rebounds, one assist and one steal.

Klay only made 1-of-5 triples and his slow start continues in that department, but fantasy owners have nothing to fear. As coach Steve Kerr said before the game, “You know how it is with Klay. Once he gets a few to go, the dam breaks.” He’s a combined 4-of-27 from deep through five games, but the storm surge is coming.

Notes via RotoWorld

Everything you need to know about the Knicks loss to Miami

KNICKS BLOWN OUT IN MIAMI

After showing effort and resiliency in each game to start the season, the Knicks lost this one in a laugher.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

GAME NOTES

After losing a string of close games, the Knicks finally “let the rope go,” as Fizdale put it after the game, and ended up losing in a blowout.

Here are the key takeaways from the game:

  • Miami outscored the Knicks 45-20 in the third quarter. They shot 8-10 from three, while the Knicks missed every attempt they took from downtown (0-8) during the third quarter.
  • Damyean Dotson continues to make the most out of his minutes, after starting the season at the end of the bench. He had 20 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, and 1 block.
  • The Knicks bench outscored Miami’s bench 47-24, and yet the team lost by 23 points. Fizdale said after the game that he will not overreact to one game but look at the 5 games and decide if any lineup changes are needed.
  • I thought Enes Kanter had his lowest energy game I’ve seen in a while. Forget the defense, he had trouble pulling down a rebound, finishing with only five.
  • This might have been Trey Burke’s worst game as a Knick. He shot 1-10 from the floor and had an embarrassing moment when he dribbled the air out of the ball on offense, missed, and then didn’t get back on defense, leading to an open Miami three.
  • Hezonja’s defense continues to be an issue. He shot 4-15 from the field, so if he doesn’t provide offense, it’s tough for him out there.
  • On to the Warriors!

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

IN A FEW SENTENCES

Damyean Dotson was the bright spot, with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Hezonja’s defense was less than ideal.

Fizdale said he would evaluate the lineups after tonight’s game.

David Fizdale and Dwyane Wade share a nice moment at the end of the game.

Know Your Opponent: Miami Heat

KNOW YOUR OPPONENT

Get ready for the Knicks next match-up against the Heat.

HEAT LAST GAME

Miami Herald: Here’s why Spoelstra and Fizdale never expected to be on opposite sides of Heat-Knicks.

HEAT NOTES

Injury Report (via RotoWorld)

  • Hassan Whiteside (groin) is expected to play Wednesday.
  • Justise Winslow (hamstring) is probable.
  • Derrick Jones Jr. (foot) was a limited participant at Tuesday’s practice and is questionable.
  • James Johnson (groin) practiced with the team on Tuesday but has been ruled out of Wednesday’s game.
  • Wayne Ellington (left ankle) has been ruled out of Wednesday’s game.

Down to the wire in Miami

  • Miami’s first three games have been decided by a total of just five points after losing by three to Orlando, winning by one vs Washington, and losing by one to Charlotte. The five-point difference is the least amount of difference over the first three games to start a season in Heat franchise history.

Miami has a sellout streak?

  • I wouldn’t have guessed that Miami finished last season selling out every game and has now sold out 379-straight overall games, which includes both the regular season and playoffs, the eighth-longest sellout streak in NBA history

Assist streak

  • Goran Dragic has dished out at least 1 assist in 187 games, fourth longest in franchise history.

Everything you need to know about the Knicks loss to Milwaukee

KNICKS BATTLE BACK BUT LOSE

Once again, the Knicks showed great heart and resiliency in erasing a 19-point deficit, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a barrage of three-pointers by Khris Middleton.

Knicks Fan TV Postgame

MACRI'S GAME NOTES

The Knicks continued the theme of their early season: coming out a little flat, not letting go of the rope, and then fighting back to make it a game against a more talented team. It ended up being too much Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and a barrage of threes from the Bucks, and the Knicks fell 124-113 in Milwaukee, dropping their record to 1-3.

Here are the key takeaways from the game:

  • Several Knicks had standout performances in the loss, perhaps none more so than Damyean Dotson. After being out of the rotation over the first two games of the season, he scored 14 points in 32 minutes thanks to making 4-of-8 from deep on a shooting stroke that might be the prettiest on the team. Throw in his rebounding (eight boards) and defense (all over the floor), and it’s no surprise that David Fizdale confirmed postgame that Dotson will be a part of the rotation moving forward.
  • Mario Hezonja was key during a few stretches tonight, stabilizing the offense in the first half and hitting several big buckets late. He ended up with 18 points on 8-of-16 shooting, and while he still took a few shots you’d rather not see, he showed why the Knicks were so excited to get him this summer. It was all the more impressive considering he was benched last game for an apparent lack of effort on defense. Said Fiz after the game, “he responded to the last game.”
  • Trey Burke had his best stretch of the season, helping the Knicks rally back from a 19-point halftime deficit with 15 points in the third. He was aggressive looking for his shot, which seems to be when he’s at his best. It helped make up for several instances in the first half where he was beat badly defending the pick and roll.
  • The Knicks slow starts continue to be a concern, something David Fizdale acknowledged postgame, even going so far as to say he’ll consider a starting lineup change after he assesses the tape of the first five games following the trip to Miami on Wednesday. This came after a question about Mario Hezonja and Noah Vonleh’s impact on the second unit, although it’s unclear what change he might be considering.
  • It’s only four games into a season that will likely contain many other close losses, but so far, the new coach’s attitude remains where you want it: “This is the suffering you must go through to become a good basketball team.”
  • Tim Hardaway Jr. continues to score at a solid rate, netting 24 points on a slightly less than efficient 10-for-23 from the field, including 3-of-9 from deep
  • Frank Ntilikina didn’t have a great box score night, but then again, when does he ever. He did lead the team with 35 minutes and looks calm and composed running the offense for several stretches, including most of the fourth quarter.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo looked like the MVP of the league, getting basically whatever he wanted on the floor throughout the night. No one could stop him, although the continually feisty and effective Noah Vonleh came close a couple times. Khris Middleton should book his tickets to Los Angeles for All-Star weekend now. He missed once from deep tonight, allegedly.

Highlights from the game

Postgame Interviews

IN A FEW SENTENCES

Noah Vonleh was impressive on both ends of the court.

Trey Burke sparked the Knicks comeback with 16 third quarter points.

Damyean Dotson used his newfound minutes and didn’t waste them.

These things seem to happen to Ron Baker.