Saturday, February 22, 2014

W2W4: Brooklyn Nets vs Golden State Warriors, February 22nd, 2014
By Nick Ziegler (@Ziggy26x)

February 22th, 2014

W2W4: Brooklyn Nets vs Golden State Warriors

The Brooklyn Nets will be facing quite possibly their toughest game of the circus road-trip on Saturday in Golden State against the Warriors. Brooklyn is currently 3.5 games behind the Toronto Raptors for the Atlantic Division, and would love to be able to get a big win on Saturday.

- Awaiting a Debut

Only one move was made before Thursdays Trade Deadline for the Nets, as they agreed to trade Reggie Evans and Jason Terry to Sacramento for Marcus Thornton. The trade wasn’t made official until Saturday afternoon, as Terry getting a physical was holding it up. Terry will however not be joining the Kings, as he will be out for the remainder of the regular season with a knee injury, but this will allow Evans and Thornton to both be eligible to play on Saturday. Thornton however is battling a stomach bug so he is listed as a game-time decision for the match-up against the Warriors. Thornton has had a disappointing last two seasons, but has scored over 18 points per game twice in his career, as Brooklyn will hope that he can thrive off their bench.

Knicks Suffer Devastating Loss to Magic In Double-OT

By Kenneth Teape (@teapester725)

Friday, February 21st, 2014

New York Knicks vs. Orlando Magic

Post Game Recap

The Knicks have added yet another disappointing loss to this disappointing season in a game they probably should have won. Tonight the Magic joined the list of teams with poor records to hand the Knicks a loss, winning 129-121 in double-overtime. With the loss the Knicks have fallen 4.5 games behind in the race for eighth place in the Eastern Conference. The Knicks have lost seven of their last nine games with bad losses to the Milwaukee Bucks, Sacramento Kings and now the Magic part of them. The Knicks playoff chances are slipping away with every passing loss as they continue losing close games they should come out ahead in. The Knicks will be back at it tomorrow night in Atlanta to face the Hawks as they finish up their four games in five nights stretch.

Player of the Game: Carmelo Anthony

David Manning/USA TODAY Sports
Anthony did everything he could to get the Knicks a victory tonight but once again it was just not enough. Tonight he continued his scoring barrage, pouring in a game-high 44 points on 16-28 from the field. Anthony was on fire from deep, going 6-10 and making 6-7 from the foul line. At one point he even made nine straight shots as he was on fire. The Magic even started sending double and even triple teams at him but there was no stopping him. Anthony also added 11 rebounds, four assists and one steal to round out his stat line. Anthony also played 50 minutes tonight, which raises the questions of how he will perform tomorrow night with such a quick turnaround. He is doing everything he can to get the Knicks wins and they just keep coming up short. Knicks fans should sit back and just soak in what Anthony is doing recently and throughout the season as he could easily be doing this for another team next season.


With the trade deadline passing Thursday, Raymond Felton finally can be at rest with where he is going to be the rest of the season. Tonight he played quite possibly his best game of the season, scoring 15 points, handing out eight assists, grabbing eight rebounds and playing decent defense with one steal and two blocks. He neutralized Magic starting point guard Jameer Nelson, who finished with three points, four assists and three rebounds. Felton has struggled mightily throughout the season with trade rumors swirling and injuries taking their toll, but he looked as good as he has all season tonight. If Felton is able to get things turned around it would help the Knicks immensely, especially with Iman Shumpert now sidelined.

David Manning/USA TODAY Sports
The perimeter shooting tonight for the Knicks was on point. They were efficient from the three point line all game and used that as the vocal point of their offensive attack. For the game the Knicks shot 15-34 from deep, good for 44.1 percent. Anthony led the way with six makes, while Pablo Prigioni and Tim Hardaway Jr. each made three. Through three quarters they Knicks shot 53 percent from the field and looked to be in control of the game.

The defense through the first three quarters of the game was solid. The point total was a little high at 79, but the Knicks had held the Magic to 40 percent shooting. They went into the fourth quarter up seven points and looked like they were well on their way to their second consecutive victory.


The fourth quarter and overtime were polar opposites for both teams from the first three quarters. The Knicks shooting percentage dropped to 47.4 percent as the offense began to stall at times and Anthony was routinely bailing them out. On the other hand the Magic’s shooting percentage rose all the way to 49.9 percent as the Knicks could not get needed stops. The Knicks went up by four points with under two minutes remaining and were unable to slow the Magic down no matter what they tried. The Knicks have lost games like this all season because they cannot lock down defensively consistently enough when they need to.

David Manning/USA TODAY Sports
The perimeter defense is usually the problem for the Knicks, but tonight they had trouble stopping the Magic from anywhere on the court. Tobias Harris, the Long Island native, was manned with guarding Anthony throughout the night. He lost his cool a little early in the game but locked in later and finished with 22 points on 7-11 from the field. Rookie Victor Oladipo destroyed the Knicks throughout the night, finishing one rebound short of a triple-double to go along with 30 points and 14 assists. Arron Afflalo, whose name was a part of some rumors before the trade deadline, hurt the Knicks as well scoring a team high 32 points along with three rebounds and assists.

Plays that would have changed with just a little more attention to detail tonight could have turned the game into a Knicks win. The first one came at the end of regulation, when Anthony stepped on the sideline while dribbling to the right corner for his patented pull-up jump shot. Harris stuck with him and needs to be given some credit for the defense he played. The other play came in overtime, when Tyson Chandler attempted to throw down a reverse dunk off an alley-oop pass from Felton and the ball didn’t make it through the basket as it hit off his head. The Knicks have proved time and time again this season that they do not possess the mental fortitude and attention to detail to pull out close games and they showed it once again tonight.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Nets Start Second Half of Season with Victory in Utah
By Nick Ziegler (@Ziggy26x)

February 19th, 2014

Brooklyn Nets vs. Utah Jazz Post Game Recap

Final Score: Nets 105 Jazz 99

The Brooklyn Nets were able to start of the second half of the season on a positive note with a nice win in Utah against the Jazz. The 105-99 win moves the Nets to (25-27) on the season, as they have moved into the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, and are three games back of the Toronto Raptors in the Atlantic Division.

Player of the Game: Joe Johnson

The Nets lone All-Star Joe Johnson may have not been deserving of the nod for the trip to New Orleans, but on Wednesday he played like an All-Star. Johnson led all scorers with 27 points on 10 for 16 shooting, which included him going four for seven from three-point range. Johnson also had two season-highs, as he dished out six assists, and had three steals to go along with his great scoring. It was a very good sign for the Nets to see a game like this for Johnson, who was struggling heading into the break, as the last time he scored 20 or more points was on Martin Luther King Day against the Knicks.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

W2W4: New York Knicks vs. New Orleans Pelicans; February 19th, 2014

By Kenneth Teape (@teapester725)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Pre-Game News and Notes

New York Knicks vs. New Orleans Pelicans

The Knicks will look to get on track tonight against the Pelicans after a tough loss last night to the Memphis Grizzlies. The Knicks will also be looking to exact some revenge on the Pelicans, who beat the Knicks 103-99 December 1st at Madison Square Garden. In that game the Pelicans didn’t even have rising star Anthony Davis, who left the game with a non-displaced fracture in his left hand, and were still able to get the victory. It will be a tough match-up with Davis in the lineup tonight but the Knicks do match-up pretty well with the current lineup the Pelicans are forced to use. Here are some things to look forward to in the game tonight.

-Players News and Notes

The Knicks, who were without Kenyon Martin prior to the All-Star break will be without him again tonight and most likely for the remainder of the road trip. Martin is dealing with more ankle soreness and the Knicks are missing him immensely. Andrea Bargnani has been out a month now and there is still update on his injured elbow. His timetable is still unknown of when he is expected to return to the court.

Two players to keep an eye on also are Raymond Felton and Iman Shumpert. They are the two names brought up most in trade rumors involving the Knicks and if anything is close to being made official on the trade front both players may not be suiting up tonight.

For the Pelicans they will still be without Jrue Holiday. His status has been upgraded and he should be back with the team within a week, but the Knicks will not have to face him. Anthony player they should be happy about not facing is Ryan Anderson. Anderson is out with a back injury. That sound was a sigh of relief by the Knicks, who have been killed by Anderson every time he steps on the court against them.

Match-up Of The Game: Carmelo Anthony/Tyson Chandler vs. Anthony Davis

Kathy Willens/AP Photo
The Knicks front court will have their hands full with Davis no matter who is guarding him. He presents match-up problems against virtually everyone in the NBA as his combination of athleticism and size is not rivaled by many in the league. Davis, in the midst of a breakout career year will cause problems for the Knicks wherever he is stationed defensively. He has the intangibles to make life difficult for Anthony, who would be best suited taking Davis away from the basket. It would help the Knicks a lot by having Davis as far away from the basket as possible to diminish his rebounding and shot blocking abilities.

-Re-Kindle New Orleans Magic

Over the weekend during the All-Star festivities two Knicks put on offensive shows. Tim Hardaway Jr. and Anthony both set the court ablaze with hot outside shooting. Anthony set an All-Star game record with eight three-point makes while Hardaway scored 36 points in the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge Friday night. It would go a long way if both players were able to put on performances reminiscent of that tonight against a Pelicans team that allows teams to shoot a high percentage against them at 46.2 percent.

-Woody’s Rotation

Last night we saw Mike Woodson go against his normal rotations and ride the hot hands throughout the second half. It helped get the Knicks back into the game but also could have been a problem holding that lead; Woodson made only two subs the whole fourth quarter, as Pablo Prigioni played the last 14:29 of the game without a rest. Woodson needed to use the players that were performing, but at what cost?
Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports

Tonight it will be worth watching how he monitors minutes. The Knicks are engaged in trade rumors with seemingly the whole NBA so until the game starts they are not even 100 percent sure which players will be taking the court for them tonight. It would benefit him and the team greatly if he dipped a little deeper into the bench tonight and gave some more minutes to players like Jeremy Tyler and Toure’ Murry with it being the second game of the back-to-back set.

-Perimeter Play

Even without Holiday, the Pelicans still possess strong perimeter play. They start a capable replacement in Bryan Roberts and have Eric Gordon alongside him in the backcourt. The real problem for the Knicks is former Rookie of the Year winner Tyreke Evans. In the first meeting this season Evans scored 24 points, 10 of which came in the fourth quarter, to go along with seven assists and four steals.

The Knicks will need a spirited effort from their perimeter players to keep up with the Pelicans. An improved performance from J.R. Smith, who is very vocal about his dislike of the mask he needs to wear to protect the broken bone in his face, should become more comfortable with it in the coming days. He was pretty much useless Tuesday in his first game with the mask, shooting 2-8 and grabbing five rebounds to go with one assist.

W2W4: Brooklyn Nets vs Utah Jazz 2-19
By Nick Ziegler (@Ziggy26x)

February 19th, 2014

W2W4: Brooklyn Nets vs. Utah Jazz

The Brooklyn Nets will be in Utah for their first game after the All-Star break, as they continue their circus road-trip, which started off with a loss against the Chicago Bulls last Thursday. Brooklyn will be starting the second half of the season with a (24-27) record, and they are four games behind the Toronto Raptors in the Atlantic Division. 

- Back To Where It Started

Point Guard Deron Williams will be heading back to Utah, the team the drafted him, and also the team that traded him to the then New Jersey Nets. Playing against his former team in Utah, Williams is (0-2). Williams has been banged up so far this season, and his level of play is well down from previous years, so Brooklyn will be hoping that the All-Star break will have helped Williams get a little bit healthy for the second half of the season. Andrei Kirilenko will also be playing the Jazz for the third time in Utah since leaving them after 10 seasons, and like Williams has been unsuccessful trying to get a win in his first two tries.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Knicks Comeback Falls Short in Memphis

By Kenneth Teape (@teapester725)

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

New York Knicks vs. Memphis Grizzlies

Post Game Recap

The Knicks started the second half of the NBA season much like they played throughout the first half; underwhelming with a heart breaking loss at the end. The Knicks had a poor first half against a strong Grizzlies’ defense but they were able to pick it up in the third quarter to make it a tie game going into the fourth. The Knicks picked up momentum and looked to be in control of the game but mental lapses swing the advantage back to the Grizzlies, who took advantage and came away with the win. The Knicks did everything they needed to do to win the game tonight and still came away with a loss. They are now 13 games under .500 and falling further and further behind in the playoff race. Is help on its way? The trade deadline is Thursday at 3 PM ET and the Knicks are apart of plenty of rumors. They will be back at it tomorrow night in New Orleans to take on the Pelicans a in the second game of their four game in five nights trip.

Player of the Game: Tim Hardaway Jr.

Justin Ford/USA TODAY Sports
The rookie put on a show during All-Star weekend during the BBVA Rising Star challenge and carried it into tonight’s game. Hardaway Jr. was the only Knick with a knack from long range, knocking down four of the six Knicks makes from the three point line. He finished with a team high 23 points on 7-15 shooting overall, scoring 14 of those points in the fourth quarter as the Knicks attempted to take over the game. The same story rang true tonight that has throughout the season though as Hardaway Jr. did not help anywhere else in the game outside of scoring, showing that the rookie still has a little ways to go before being a player the Knicks can count on night in and night out.


Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Future For Carmelo Anthony

Written by Kenneth Teape (@teapester725)
Carmelo Anthony has come out and said that he will not be traded at the NBA Trade Deadline next week and that he also wants to remain with the New York Knicks. He went as far as even saying that he will take a pay cut to stay with the Knicks if it meant getting some more talent around him. That is quite possibly the best thing that has happened for Knicks fans this season, as the Knicks already have more losses this season before the All-Star break than they had all of last season.

Even with what Anthony has said, the Knicks will be hard pressed to make changes to the roster. The Knicks are not holding a strong hand from the asset position, having no draft picks to trade until 2018 and not many players other teams want. For this season the Knicks will need a turnaround from the players they currently have to sneak into the post season.

The Knicks can shop Iman Shumpert around again, but his stock is at an all-time low currently; the Knicks have already had trades with the Denver Nuggets for Kenneth Faried and Timberwolves for Derrick Williams, who was traded to the Sacramento Kings, declined. At this point it may be best just to keep Shumpert and hope he can rekindle some of the magic he had during last season’s playoffs. There are no other players on the roster currently that would bring back much in the way of trades, as players like Beno Udrih and Metta World Peace would just bring back filler or maybe a second round draft pick.