The Knicks choke away another one at home...this time to the goddamn Raptors. I'll have a few notes in the morning. Shit!


Not Cool.

If you're a blog-reader or a blogsmith (A much cooler word than "blogger"), you've surely heard of the malarky that's been going on with Scoop Jackson and Yay Sports. Scoop blatantly plagiarized the Yay, only to backpedal later. He's offered some apology and citation now, but hasn't fully acquiesced to the Cavalier's desire that he simply drop the mimicry. The term in question is the phrase "Orange Roundie", which the Cavalier has so hilariously used to personify the new basketball.

Says he:
All we want is the character name pulled off that column. That's it. The concept he can steal all he wants - although we don't think that's cool either, it happens every day. We own "Orange Roundie" though - we have plans for "Orange Roundie". None of those plans involve anyone thinking it came from Scoop Jackson.
As Yay Sports is one of my favorite blogs on the internet, and his cause is certainly righteous, I wholeheartedly stand by this sentiment. Scoop needs to remove that business from his article, issue a public apology, and really get his shit together. More bizarre to me, however, is that Scoop even imagined he could get away with this. Nevermind that blogsmiths like the Cavalier are some of the biggest and most constantly informed basketball fans out there. To me, it's more that Scoop would never actually use the phrase "Orange Roundie". Even when giving it citation, it's just not something that would be in his sort of dramatic, punchy vocabulary. Even if you had never heard of Yay Sports, you'd still think Jackson sounds like a fool. It's kinda like me writing as I am right now, and then randomly insterting that sounds completely different. Then shall each soul before the seat of mercy return to its sad grave and flesh and form to hear the edict of eternity. You see? I threw in something from Dante's Inferno and it sounded positively retarded. This is how Scoop comes off to me.

Anyway, I was bummed by Scoop's actions, and I hope a fairly solid writer such as he can even this out with the blog community and with the Cavalier. He did something really not cool, and it's up to him to clear it up.

Pistons 108, Knicks 100

So, the Knicks head home to New York 6-12, having lost the last game of their road trip to a hot Detroit team. To me, this game was pretty much a duplicate of Wednesday's game, except the Pistons hit quite a few tough shots down the stretch, whereas Cleveland couldn't quite put the game away. Overall, I was fairly impressed, and unusually calm about the loss. By the way, sorry about the lack of a preview this afternoon. I simply wasn't home at all until later. A few game notes:

- What the shit is up with Gus Johnson's glasses? They're these big black grandpa-looking things with thick plastic frames. I can't find a picture anywhere, so here's a pic of Chicken Little instead:
You're welcome.

- I like to see my Knicks happy, and there was plenty of smiling going on today... a sharp contrast to the emo kids we saw a few nights ago.

- The Detroit P.A. system is by far the worst in the league. They have all these crazy-ass sound effects, and the announcer guy sounds like he's getting electrocuted while he's talking. It's kind of like a combination between a pinball machine and a Vince Vaughn movie, if you can imagine that. Actually, come to think of it, it kind of reminds me of this:

- Mittens had his fifth straight 20+ point game, putting up 24 on 9-15 shooting. Some haters might point out that Curry hasn't been doing much rebounding during this stretch, but I'm not all that worried. He's showing improvement in that area, and the Knicks' forwards- Lee, Balkman, and Richardson- do so much bounding that it doesn't really matter. As a team, they usually win the rebounding battle, so that's enough for me. Curry looks good.

Keep fighting the good fight, Eddy."

- Renaldo can dunk from really far out. I wouldn't be surprised if he could throw it down from near the free throw line.

- The ball movement looked pretty solid throughout. It's amazing how much Curry's newfound ability to catch passes has opened up the Knicks' offense. The guards are starting to trust the big men a little more, and there are many more points in the paint and trips to the free throw line.

That's all I've got for tonight. The Knicks head home to face the Raptors tomorrow evening. Peace out.

P.S: This whole business with Yay Sports is pretty ridiculous and...actually I'm gonna make this a new post.


Knicks-Cavs Crumbs

Sorry if anything's screwy or delayed. Blogger's having issues like whoa. Anyway, the Knicks' next game is on Friday in Detroit. Let's have a look around the world wide web for responses to the dramatic win in Cleveland. (Savor the moment, bitches!)

Deadspin points out one of those bogus Knicks ads.

Knickerblogger and his glorious commenters talk about last night's game. It is mentioned, and I agree, that the accusation that Nate hasn't improved as a point guard is pretty misguided. Regardless of the stats, he's doing much better when instructed to handle the ball and bring it up.

My favorite pic of the year so far:

Too bad The Cavalier is an embittered Cavs fan, 'cause he coulda had fun with that one.

The gambling gods have put 2/1 odds on Isiah Thomas being the first NBA coach fired this season. Two things. First, as a coach, Isiah has looked fairly solid in his handling of rotations. It took Larry Brown a full year to get fired, and he didn't do even close to the job that Isiah's doing. Second, James Dolan clearly expressed that he's giving Isiah one season to show progress, or it's his ass. I interpreted this as one season- no less. Maybe I'm wrong, but I expect Zeke to be around until the summer, for better or worse. My gut tells me that Cleveland's Mike Brown will be the first to go. My gut also tells me to eat fish sticks, though, so it's up in the air.

Well, it's TNT NBA Thursday tonight. DET-MIA is kinda blah, but I'll watch it just 'cause Billups is on my fantasy team. Lakers-Jazzes is much more intriguing, as it is the first opportunity for a lot of us East Coasters to see what the shit is going on in Utah. Let the truth be told. Back tomorrow.


Knicks 101, Cavs 98

Whoo! I'm still shaking a little from that one. That was a big win for these Knicks. Curry looked pretty beastly at points, and the guards showed a little bit of chemistry and balance on the attack. Q-Rich shot the lights out and harassed Lebron, and overall I'm very pleased. Game notes:

- I really miss Canon Knicks Gamenight and the old theme music. No idea why they'd get rid of that song.

- Walt Frazier commented that the master of the hook shot was "Abdul Kareem Jabbar". He was also wearing a blue velvet dress shirt.

- Damon Jones is a really shitty ballhandler. I can't think of anyone other than former Knick Frank Williams who's so bad with the ball that they have to back their way down the length of the court.

- What's with that little patch of hair on the back of Drew Gooden's head?

- If you missed it, Nate Robinson was pretty much all alone on a fast break early in the second quarter. Nate resorted to instinct and tried to bounce the ball to himself for the dunk, but got called for a travel and took a hard hit from Sasha Pavlovic. (Nate nearly completed the thing anyway, but thats besides the point). In the ensuing timeout, Isiah motioned for Nate to get his ass out of the huddle, but left him in the game. He immediately came out and got an O-bound and a field goal. I kinda like that. Larry Brown woulda torn the kid a new asshole, but Isiah has a much better understanding of his players. Nate had a few other boneheaded plays in the game, but I liked the way Isiah treated it.

- Also in the second quarter, Richardson buried a three and proceeded to subtly mimic Damon Jones' gallop and finger wiggle celebration. I grinned.


- The Cavs had numerous chances to hit the big shot and push the game out of reach, but continuously missed them. Even Lebron failed to cushion the lead. As someone who roots for the Cavs any time they're not playing the Knicks, I don't like seeing that (except when they're playing the Knicks).

- Michael Jordan had the tongue wag. Lebron James has the O-face.

- Zydrunas Ilgauskus accidentally tipped in a miss for the Knicks. He did this twice in their last game. He is now tied with Kelvin Cato in points for the Knicks this year.

- Humpty fouled Lebron really hard, and then proceeded to get up in his face. Awesome.

- The Cleveland fan pump-up activity in the clutch moments was starting a massive slow clap in the audience. That's just about the stupidest thing I've ever seen, and may have very well cost the Cavs the game. Step it up, Cleveland.

-Huuuge fucking 3-point play from Curry at the end of the game. He threw down the dunk and then spun around and screamed "WHAT, MOTHERFUCKER!" Atta boy.

- Curry has had four 20+ point games in a row. Marbury looked like Marbury in the first half. The Knicks are 6-0 when they have 20 assists or more and are 5-1 when scoring more than 100 points. Them's the facts.

Well hello there, Mr. Marbury. Nice of you to show up.

Alright, well that's all I have for tonight. Solid win, kids. We can sleep well.

EDIT: The Knicks are now 4-1 on Wednesdays.

Knicks-Cavs Tonight

The deflated Knicks head to Cleveland tonight to play Lebron James and his numerous sidekicks. No word yet on whether Q will be returning for tonight's game. His presence would definitely be useful, as there is pretty much no on else on this team who could defend Lebron, even if he was handcuffed, naked, and covered in molasses. No one expects anything from the Knicks tonight, so I guess the only way to go is up. Awesome.

Several other things to touch upon. First of all, I spent some time this morning pondering the play of Renaldo Balkman. Correct me if I'm wrong, but hasn't this guy always been touted as a good defender? Humpty's got a good game, but I would not list defense as one of his strong suits. I think scouts and experts might be too quick to label high-energy, hustle guys as good defensive players. Great defenders like Artest combine effort with strength, speed, and an understanding of good positioning. I just don't see Balkman exuding any of those traits. Overall, the labeling of players as good individual defenders is a little dubious to me. In some cases (not Balkman's), it's just a disguise for a shitty offensive player. I could be wrong. Either way, Balkman could use a summer or two in the weight room and some good coaching before he's really a good defender. Not a bad player, though.

"Look at me, I'm skinny. That never stopped me from gettin' busy."

Speaking of Balkman, I'm sure someone else has pointed this out, but his Wikipedia page looks like it was written by a disgruntled Knicks fan in about 45 seconds. Worth a look.

Moving on, Simmons wrote this piece breaking down the Eastern Conference, "The worst conference in history". He makes a few good points, and it's pretty funny, so you might want to check it out...if that's your cup of tea.

Fantastic post from Knickerblogger about some sportswriters' tendency to attack the obvious. It's a very well written post and I wholeheartedly support his case. People are paid to tell me that Isiah Thomas is a bad coach, or that Stephon Marbury loses a lot? It's a little tired. I guess that huge organizations like SI and ESPN have to cover so much material that they can't really go into detail about everything. As far as ESPN goes, Simmons gets away with it cause he's funny and usually writes about only a handful of teams. A diehard fan isn't really gonna learn anything new about their team from an international news source like SI or ESPN. This is why I read the blogs.

Recap later tonight. Go Knicks.


Bulls 102, Knicks 85

Well then. The Knicks lost, but at least they did it in a new, refreshing way. Instead of moseying for 3 quarters and balling for 1, they threw some pretty good D at the Bulls for most of the game, and then collapsed late. Turnovers, free throw misses, and perimeter D plagued New York, who dropped their second straight. Ben Gordon feasted once more on the Knicks' guards, scoring 23. Eddy "Mittens" Curry looked pretty decent for the Knicks, dropping 24 and 8. My game notes:

- By the way, if you've been wondering what I mean by game notes, I actually keep a notepad by my side during the games I watch. If I see something funny or important, I scrawl it out with a Sharpie. I'm a pro.

- I turned on MSG at 8:30 only to find some white guys in helmets playing with sticks on some ice. Befuddled and enraged, I eventually mustered the composure to learn that the game was on MSG 2. Didn't even know that existed.

Isiah?...Steph?...Anybody?...Where am I!?

- It was cute when Renaldo Balkman hit a few threes early in the season during some blowout wins. It's lost it's novelty. Stop, buddy.

- Ben Gordon...ripped-est player in the L? The man is JACKED, son!

Welcome to the gun show.

- In the first half, Ben Wallace looked pretty lost. It looks almost as if Skiles is running plays for him, which isn't really his thing. He settled down and did his thing in the second half.

- Man, not only has Marbury lost his moves and his touch, but he just looks SAD out there. You see nary a smile from Marbury no matter how things are going. If he had hair, it would be a long, slick, emo 'do draped way down over his eyes. Actually, the Knicks are just a depressed team. Everyone except for Nate looks really friggin' sad.

- Right at the end of the second quarter, Curry got called for a charge when he barreled into Malik Allen. The replay showed that in mid-air, Curry somehow karate-kicked Allen twice in the balls, and then landed face-down on top of Allen's legs. Needless to say, Malik needed a good, long breather on the bench after that collision.

- I'm really pumped about the upcoming Sunday Lookalikes. It involves the Bulls.

- Mittens had a good game (and how about that stylish headband?). It wasn't quite up to what his stats might suggest, but I'd say he was getting better position and focusing a lot more than he has been. Curry's moving along.

Ben Wallace appears to have grown a new face on his chest...and that face is wearing a HEADBAND.

Anyway, the Knicks showed a different look against the Bulls. Ultimately, they were too sloppy and lackluster to pull out a victory, and let Chicago run away with it. And, in case you thought the basketball gods had sympathy for the Knicks, they meet Lebron and the Cavaliers tomorrow night. Mmmmm. See ya tomorrow.

Knicks-Bulls Again Tonight

The Knicks head to Chicago this evening, to once again play those dastardly Bulls. As has been the case all season long, Marbury is in the spotlight, this time because of his benching in the last game. And, as has been the case, Marbury's general bitchiness and me-first attitude have been harped upon by various media.

Let me say two things. First of all, Steph seems to be doing his best to say the right things to the papers. Secondly, I have trouble believing that Marbury's status as a cancer and a coach-killer has anything to do with his play. Let's not forget that this guy has been considered a loser for most of his career, yet has been one of the more outstanding individual players of the decade. Even as a Knick, he used to be able to put up 20 and 8 at will, and very well may have been the best point guard in the NBA at some point. Things have changed. From watching him, I really think that being battered and knocked to the floor for the last 10 seasons has taken something off his game. The strength and agility that made him such a fine slasher two or three years ago seem to have dissolved, and have given him less scoring and passing options.(The same could be said for Steve Francis). From that article, I'd that both Isiah and Steph are starting to understand that Marbury's not playing as well as he once was. I'm all in favor of benching guys who aren't playing well.

With that in mind, it's time to start grooming Nate Robinson. The kid's already developing skills very quickly. His shot selection and passing have improved exponentially since last season. If somehow Marbury could be pushed into the role of backup/mentor willingly, he might further sharpen Nate's moves. It'd be a cool little Jedi master/apprentice scenario. Just might be crazy enough to work. Given Marbury's status and history, this is probably a bit of a pipe dream, but a welcome change in my eyes. In short, Marbury is not good at basketball anymore. Nate Robinson is. Ergo, Nate Robinson should be playing more basketball. This is my argument.

A second note...I rarely look at stats, but had a look at the Knicks' averages today. Some interesting discoveries:

- Jamal Crawford, a bench player, leads the team in scoring and minutes

- David Lee, a bench player until today, leads the team in rebounding while playing 25 minutes a game. He's averaging just about a double double with 9.9 and 9.2 a game.

- Stephon Marbury has attempted fewer field goals than Channing Frye

Bizarre. This definitely supports the visually apparent idea that the Knicks are an upside down team, with the bench leading the way. Anyway, I have to go to the fuckin dentist this evening, so I'll miss the first quarter or so...but I'll be back tonight or tomorrow with a recap. This should be an interesting game for two teams reeling from personnel problems. Later.

EDIT: Ben Wallace is questionable tonight because he "sprained his index finger" a.k.a "is in shit water with management".


Enough, Mr. Stern

Go check out the newest podcast from the Basketball Jones. This one might be their best yet. To recap (I listened to it about 2 minutes ago), Tas and Skeets talk to SI.com's Kelly Dwyer, who gives a groggy but hilarious interview on his writing and the state of the NBA.

More importantly, the guys address the recent actions of the man upstairs, David Stern. They make reference to this article by Preetom Bhattacharya, which brilliantly summarizes and argues against Stern's movement to take NBA videos off the internet. Also mentioned is Stern's recent warning to the Mavericks that their benched players were standing and celebrating too much. The views expressed in both the podcast and the article in many ways parallel my own. Here's what I think.

In my opinion, basketball is the most aesthetically pleasing sport in the world. The styles in which players dunk, pass, dribble, and even celebrate are constantly changing. Players are bare to the world, with their faces, hair, and numerous tattoos unmasked by long sleeves, pads, or helmets. Style is just as important and variable as substance.

Basketball as James Naismith invented it is a beautiful and engaging game. However, it is the quirks and the drama in the NBA that make it exceptional to fans like myself, and make it superior to the college game. The NBA has been an arena for expression; be it by a player, a team, or the entire league. If this weren't the case, then we wouldn't see dunk contests, highlight shows, shoe commercials, street basketball, or an All-Star game in Vegas. Styles come from different American regions, numerous foreign countries, and countless schools and systems, making the NBA a sort of melting pot for the basketball world's diverse cultures. The NBA is the foremost league for expression, both physical and emotional.

Thus, I can't really see the point in Stern's actions. The dress code, zero tolerance, limits on celebration, and video banning all draw from the aesthetic aspect of the game. If players become as uniform and robotic as Stern has suggested, then the NBA game will have actually taken an evolutionary step backwards. If two-hand set shots, short shorts, and white high-tops were the most succesful and entertaining facilities, then we'd still be seeing them.

This powerful and well-respected man is overstepping his bounds, and is deliberately alienating the players that make his league special, and the fans that make his league exist. The NBA is the world's most breathtaking and attractive athletic spectacle, and needs to remain so. Let's not forget that this is entertainment, dude.

Again, I reccomend that you listen to that brilliant podcast and feel free to leave comments about this matter. No Knicks tonight. More Bulls action on Tuesday. Peace out.


Sunday Lookalikes

Scott Skiles vs. Atom Ant

Up and at 'em!

Things Fall Apart

Such is life with the New York Knicks. The actual outcome of the Bulls game was typical and unimportant. The effects were enormous. Let's recap:

Channing Frye- Sprained ankle (3-6 weeks)

Quentin Richardson- Strained hamstring (Day-to-day but those injuries tend to nag)

Stephon Marbury- Benched and pissed off (Forever?)

Well, one of my goals when I made this site was to "remain optimistic and lighthearted throughout what should be a very interesting season". In a season that's gone pretty sour, I think I might've lost sight of that. So here it goes. The bright side:

Jeffries is returning soon.

We're 5-10. That's not THAT bad.

It's been exciting.

Chan's absence means we get to see more Lee and Balkman.

Marbury's GOTTA be on his way out at least by the offseason. Marbury leaving a team usually brings good things.

Eddy Curry just had two 20 point games in a row.

Ben Gordon didn't score a lot.

Ummm...Nate Robinson can dunk!

Aight, I'm spent. The Knicks get two much needed days off, but expect to see some sniping and snarking to the press come Monday. It's about to get hella crazy, but as a team and as a fanbase, the Knicks need to keep their heads up. Peace.