KNICKS -at- LAKERS - 1/7 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

 
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:48 pm    Post subject: KNICKS -at- LAKERS - 1/7 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

A Blowout...And We Can’t Even Enjoy That... Heading into this game, the Lakers were the only team to remain undefeated against teams under .500. Facing the Knicks, this one looked like a W in the win column with no problem.

Indeed, it was as they retained that undefeated status taking the 117-87 blowout win against the Knicks.

The Lakers turned defense into fastbreak opportunities and they sank 17 threes.

But the win came with a price. Anthony Davis went down hard in the second half on his tailbone and will be out for the next couple of games, at least.

It was a physical game with the Knicks called for two flagrants, but the collision was more of an accidental thing where he got off balance. Thankfully, it wasn’t worse as he put his arms down to brace his fall.

“We believe he will be fine, but a tough night for us,” LeBron said.

"Next man up," he said.


LeBron -- -- We got him a little rest with the blowout, which was nice since he was under the weather. He had 15 points in 16 minutes in the first half. Bullock (and whomever else was guarding him) would sag off him and give him wide open threes tonight. LeBron sank a few, missed a few and passed up taking some. It seemed like a failed experiment by the Knicks as they didn’t even really get challenges in. It’s one thing to bait him into taking threes, it’s another to let him spin the ball, measure and drill. He’d drain 6 of them on 12 attempts. As a result, he didn’t have to attack the paint relentlessly to get the big numbers. We tried to get LeBron into the post on some ATOs as his defenders didn’t have enough strength to handle LeBron there. But, overall, a pretty easy night for him. We need a few more of those. It did break his career-tying streak of 10+ assist games (7 games going back to Dec. 19). The Stats: He scored 31 points on 9-19 shooting (6-12 from three, 7-7 from the line) to go with 5 boards, 5 assists, 2steals, 1 block, 4 turnovers and 2 fouls in 31 minutes. He was a +26.

Davis -- -- He went down hard, landing on his tailbone with a thud late in the third quarter and was on the floor for a long time (pounding his fist in pain). He did not walk well to the locker room. The x-rays were negative. But they ruled him out for the next couple of games. Prior to that, he wasn’t pushing things offensively. He was a bit perimeter-oriented tonight. Very patient in the post finding shooters when the help came. It’s rare we see him surveying the floor like he did in this one and finding teammates like that. But it was a quiet outing offensively. Defensively, he had 3 steals and 2 blocks all in the first half. Our bigs had some really good hands tonight on D. Hoping he gets some good rest in and is able to bounce back after sitting out. Glad we got a little padding in the standings, but we need to step up in his absence. The Stats: He scored 5 points on 2-8 shooting (0-1 from three, 1-2 from the line) to go with 6 boards, 5 assists, 3 steals, 2 blocks, 3 turnovers and 2 fouls in 28 minutes. He was a +10.

Green -- -- He had 9 points in the first half, sinking a couple of threes and a pull-up from a step inside the line after a flyby. In the second half, he had a tip-in for his next score. My favorite sequence, though, was a little two-man action out of the right corner between Green and McGee where DG threw up for McGee to finish. Green’s finding guys for lobs lately. The Lakers could go small in the next one, bringing another guard off the bench and sliding Green into the SF. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 4-8 shooting (2-4 from three, 1-2 from the line) to go with 5 boards, 3 assists, 1 steal and no fouls in 25 minutes. He was a +9.

McGee -- -- He got the Lakers going in the block department as they teamed up to swat 6 shots in the first half. This was a physical game. At one point, Bullock wrangled him to the floor to make sure he didn’t score and then walked past him as McGee stared up, flagrant-1. So two flagrants in this one. With AD out, that will mean more minutes for C’s. JaVale and Dwight need to bring their A games. For McGee that usually means activity on the boards, changing ends at high speed and anchoring the D. (Random weirdness tonight: Both Dwight and McGee took threes.) The Stats: He scored 6 points on 2-4 shooting (0-1 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 7 boards, 2 steals, 2 blocks, 1 turnover and 1 foul in 14 minutes. He was a +3.

Bradley -- -- He had 10 points in the first half, sinking a couple of threes and a couple of layups (he missed a couple more layups, as well). Anytime we can get double digits from him along with his usual D, it’s a very good thing. That looked like a pretty good ankle twist he had in the previous one, but he was moving well. Maybe he couldn’t get a little lift on a reverse layup, but it didn’t look like it hindered him much. The Stats: He scored 12 points on 5-9 shooting (2-2 from three) to go with 1 board, 1 steal and 1 foul in 24 minutes. He was a +9.

Caldwell-Pope -- -- He got his head taken off by Portis on a flagrant-2 foul on the break. He was going in for a dunk and was clobbered. He went to the locker room after that. No concussion, so he returned for the second half. He hit some backbreakers that buried the Knicks for good in his second half stint. Super efficient night. You could probably add two more FTs to his point total because he didn’t take the FTs on that flagrant, so this should have been more like a 17 point game on 5-7 shooting. Nice. The Stats: He scored 15 points on 5-7 shooting (3-4 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 1 boards, 1 steal, 1 turnover and 2 fouls in 18 minutes. He was a +17.

Kuzma -- -- Some late garbage time points for him in this one. He sure seems more aggressive and confident when he’s not playing with his stars. Vogel mentioned him trying to fit in with those guys. I’m really curious as to what we want him to do. The coaches need to work on getting him activated in a manner that flows better offensively. We have a few more games until the midway point of the season. Hopefully, he steps up while AD is out. The Stats: He scored 16 points on 6-11 shooting (2-6 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 6 boards, 1 assist, 2 turnovers and 4 fouls in 21 minutes. He was a +14.

Caruso -- -- The Accountant audited Knox’s defense in the first half, faking a handoff and then reverse jamming on him. The bench loves it. Dwight is over there flapping his wings like a bald eagle, the bench is up, popping headbands, etc. One of those a game and everyone is happy. I want to see some more double digit offensive outings from AC, though. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-4 shooting (0-1 from three) to go with 1 board, 1 assist and 2 fouls in 14 minutes. He was a +10.

Howard -- -- Man, he stepped into a three late in the game and knocked that thing down. Maybe the first one wasn’t a fluke. (We do see him working on that from time to time after games.) Typical beast-mode game tonight. He was rejecting shots, grabbing boards, wagging the finger. The chemistry between Rondo and Dwight is half tragic, half comedy at times. The lobs seem to never be timed right. Rondo threw another pass into Dwight’s shins. And then Dwight was trailing the break and Rondo tried kicking it to a three shooter and threw it right off Dwight instead. It’s ridiculous at times. But when Dwight is shutting down the paint and we’re getting out on the break, then Rondo can be more effective and that unit thrives. Really good work against defensively by Dwight tonight. Offensively, it was more of the garbage man dirty work that we’ve come to appreciate from him this season. A couple of lobs to finish. The Stats: He scored 8 points on 3-3 shooting (1-1 from three, 1-2 from the line) to go with 13 boards, 1 steal, 5 blocks, 2 turnovers and 3 fouls in 25 minutes. He was a +22.

Rondo -- -- Seemed like he played with more intention and purpose in this one. Much better to start to this game as he aggressively attacked the paint or pushed tempo at every opportunity. (Love seeing the ball at the three line with 20 seconds left on the clock still.) He had a drive and dish to AD for a dunk that just made you realize how much of that game we are missing. Very nice to see. Pushing the pace plays to his strengths (although he did fumble, trip and fall on a two-on-one break that should have been a sure score). But otherwise, it resulted in good things. If the D can’t set up in the half court, then he’s not a liability on that end. To make this happen, they have to get stops and play good D, which the Lakers did (Rondo was a +12 with 5 assists in the first half). When they did get into the half court sets, Rondo’s passing was just very sloppy. I mean, it was just straight bad at times (KCP coming off a screen, he missed; LeBron open for a lob, he threw too short; pass into Dwight’s shins as he came weak to strong...not to mention that one he threw off Dwight in transition). So he ended up with 5 turnovers to go with his double-digit assists tonight. Overall, though, good seeing him get into the paint and better seeing that tempo pushed with consistency. The Stats: He scored 8 points on 3-6 shooting (0-2 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 3 boards, 10 assists, 1 steal, 5 turnovers and 2 fouls in 23 minutes. He was a +19.

Daniels -- -- He didn’t hit his onlyu attempt from three in garbage time. I wanted to see THT out there tonight. Win it for the kids. The Stats: He didn’t score on 0-1 shooting from three and had 1 assist and 1 block in 6 minutes. He was a +3.

Cook -- -- In for garbage time, he drained a three off a quick screen in transition and then hit Kuz for one next time down. Nothing else to report. The Stats: He scored 3 points on 1-2 shooting (1-1 from three) to go with 1 assist in 5 minutes. He was a +4.

Dudley -- -- Five minutes and no stats. The Stats: He didn’t shoot or score or rebound or assist in 5 minutes. He was a +4.

Vogel -- -- Key Moment: Obviously, AD going down and missing this upcoming road trip will be huge. But let’s focus one something fun. We’ll go with Dwight stepping into a three straight away midway through the fourth and burying it. Vogel took a timeout after that…but just to get his deep bench in. He kept Dwight in. More blowouts please.

Key Substitution: The Lakers were up by 27 with over 6 minutes left. He could have done it a minute earlier, but he got LeBron out for the rest of the quarter.

Key Stat: The Lakers won the break 32-15. Getting that second unit out in transition for easy ones allows us to extend a lead.
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Theseus
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:50 pm    Post subject:

Get well soon AD
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danzag
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 5:10 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB

GET WELL SOON AD!
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:04 am    Post subject:

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akgolf
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:13 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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governator
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:20 am    Post subject:

The Knicks cures all ailments

3-headed PF vs 3-headed C

I do feel bad tho, living up here in northeast, there was a somewhat cautiously optimistic believe that they were about to pair Unicorn with Zion, KD and Kyrie... yes, everybody thought the Knicks was ‘due’ for a #1 pick but ...DSJ, Barrett (imagine Ja in MSG), Randle and Morris

Should we grab DSJ and give him another change of scenery, $4mil
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:35 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB! Good to see a blowout, glad LeBron got some rest. Now it's time for someone else on this squad to step up. Heal up well AD.
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wolfpaclaker
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:42 am    Post subject:

Lakers began really slow in this one. Felt we were not working for ball penetration. It only started to come more consistently when the second unit came in. Was one of the times where Rondo, AD, Kuzma together really looked good like the offense actually improved over the starters, but that had a lot to do with the starters playing poorly in the 1st Q. Rondo was a lot more decisive and penetrating the defense. Perhaps he saw openings in the Knicks defense. We need more of that from Rondo. He had something like 5 assists after his first stint. Until we get better playmaker, Rondo is going to be needed.

Dwight is a monster, there is no question about it. If he were playing 25 minutes a night, or 28, he would be in consideration for making the all-star team (he would not likely make it, but his numbers would be up there). Remember saying when we signed him, one thing about Dwight he is elite at a few things and if he focuses on them he will show that. People were arguing he is not elite at those things, but screen setting, finishing inside, some positional defense, boards etc. these things Dwight is elite at. You look at elite bigs in the NBA who do those things, Dwight can match them with that. He just does not do anything else - or asked to. I wonder if that 3 point shot is legit, too. Because so many times Dwight stands out there. I know he practices those 3s. Thing with Frank and Dwight, I sense that Frank wants (at least this first season) to focus on just doing what he is elite at. Then maybe we start to add some things to his game next season if he is back. The 3 point spot up shot, and sometimes a few post ups.

Took a long time, but finally seeing some shot making from both Avery and Green at the same time. What a huge difference it can make if Avery begins to make shots again on a consistent basis. At one point in his career, Avery was scoring 16 a night, shooting 38% from 3 pointers. He has the ability to score a lot more than he has shown. We need to get something from him on offense, because when we do, we are the most balanced team in the NBA.

Shame once again going to a tough road trip we will injured. If AD were to be out, you would like it to be during this 5 game home stand. On the road against two good teams, one very good team, without AD. Hoping for a split. Is Porzingis back on Friday? May catch a break and he is still out.
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Dr. Laker
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:31 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB.

I had a bad feeling after Bullock's Flagrant-1 that AD or LBJ might get hurt. It wasn't intentional, but you could sense the Knicks' anger and frustration. Had it been a HS game in the 60s, there would've been a huge fight after the game.
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wolfpaclaker
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:54 am    Post subject:

BTW, for all the talk about our offense, we are the 4th highest rated team in the offense ranking. That is without a consistent 3rd option and with some consistent injuries, plus a new group of guys together for the first time. The other teams are Houston, Dallas, Milwaukee, and we are better than 2 of them on defense. So only Milwaukee is better when you take into accounts both sides of the ball.

Get a 3rd option, or if Kuz steps up as the 3rd guy in the closing lineups in the 4th, I think we can be even better on offense.

Our focus should remain ball penetration. This is our offense bread and butter. Create everything through ball penetration first. I love how we are pushing the ball on offense more and more as well and starting the offense sooner. But 3 forms of attack to look at before any junmpshot are a) dribble penetration b) pass to player on the move towards basket c) post up. Then look for the jumpshots created through those avenues. Love how AD was posting up yesterday - wish he continues that development.

And our focus should remain defense. Players who will be brought in via trade or FA, need to value defense. I do not understand why many still look at a player's offense only. The defense is huge. The Lakers are where they are in the standings primarily because they improved balance on their roster. Ingram can average 24 a night. There are scorers like D'LO out there. Randle is putting up numbers for NYK. We win games because we have 2-way players right now. McGee, Davis, Lebron, Green, Bradley, Dwight, Caruso, KCP. Our rotation has 8 guys that play just as hard on D as O, most nights. That's why we're this good this year IMO. Kuzma is emerging as a defender too. Can't call him 2-way yet, but he is getting there. Not many teams can say they have 9 two-way players in a rotation. We should, at some point. 10, if you potentially add Collison (if he still the same player he was last season, which is not a given).
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Laker7
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 8:55 am    Post subject:

Plus minus January Only

Player PTS
LeBron James 84
Avery Bradley 62
Danny Green 57
JaVale McGee 46
Anthony Davis 41
Alex Caruso 16
Dwight Howard 10
Jared Dudley 4
Quinn Cook 4
Kyle Kuzma -3
Rajon Rondo -10
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope -12
Troy Daniels -14


Kuzma, Rondo, KCP and Daniels with negatives off the bench.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:21 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB. These threads are always a must read for me.
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:26 pm    Post subject:

Dr. Laker wrote:
Thanks, DB.

I had a bad feeling after Bullock's Flagrant-1 that AD or LBJ might get hurt. It wasn't intentional, but you could sense the Knicks' anger and frustration. Had it been a HS game in the 60s, there would've been a huge fight after the game.


Ditto. Wasn’t sure if it was because we were winning comfortably or if it was because of the flagrants.

But I was feeling uneasy about injuries.
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