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 8 years ago '04        #7441
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Alan Hahn

Home Game No. 35 of yet another losing season -- one more loss from officially clinching the ninth straight --and there was the Garden on a Monday night sold out and rocking as if there was something still to play for this year.

Yes, sold out. 19,763. It was the 21st sellout of 35 home games so far and, more amazingly, the sixth in the last seven games, all of which were when it was quite clear the Knicks weren't going to be anywhere near a playoff race once again.

So, then, why do these people still come?

This was the very next game after the most unsightly of the losses this season (and there are several contenders): Saturday by 20 to the lowly Nets, in yet another game the home team seemed to collectively quit in the determination category.

So, then, why do these people still care?

In Indiana, where basketball is just as much a religion to those people as it is here in the self-proclaimed mecca, they've pretty much stopped showing up. They've stopped paying attention. And that team at least has a lottery pick and a legitimate shot at John Wall.

What they have here at the Garden in an amazing phenomenon, one that is unquestionably unique to this place, this team and these fans. It is something you can't manufacture with pre-recorded sound effects and cheesy crowd meters. It is something you can't duplicate.

But it is something that might be the most valuable a.sset the Knicks can boast when they attempt to lure high-end free agents this summer. Consider the ridiculous amount of energy in the building for a meaningless game for a team playing out the string. Now try to imagine it for a playoff game.

Especially if it's the first playoff game in seven years.

It is something Allan Houston mentioned to me when we talked before this win over the Hawks, pretty much meaningless in the big picture but with a thrilling ending. Houston had a gleam in his eye when he looked out across the court and recalled the roars from those playoff wars and how being a seventh seed or an eighth seed just never seemed to matter once the series made it's way here.

Why do these people care so much?

You would think someone would be curious enough to want to find out.

* * *

* - Everyone in the building expected Jamal Crawford to take that shot at the end of the game. We've seen him do it so many times before. But it was a heck of a pass for what looked to be an easy dunk for Smith, until Wilson Chandler met him at the rim for a sensational defensive play.

"It was all instinct," Chandler said with a sheepish grin, knowing that if he had a second to process the fact that it was one of the game's most ferocious dunkers elevating his way, he might have thought twice about it.

Chandler not only saved the game, he also saved Toney Douglas. The rookie was on his way down the lane for a drive that would have put the Knicks ahead by three with 7.9 seconds left when Smith reached in at just the right time to poke the ball away.

Douglas played 23:34 and shot the ball well (4-for-8), but also was very active on defense and seems to be getting a better understanding of the offense as both a scorer and a facilitator. The most important thing was that he was noticable on the court, which isn't something you could say about him in some of his previous appearances.

"I just wanted to make sure I made an impact, on offense or on defense," he said. "Using my speed and quickness. Knowing who is guarding who. I know Gallo had a lot of mismatches . . . I've learned a lot, man. Me not playing helped me become a better student of the game from the bench. Watching the veterans out there, watching other teams, watching the whole NBA."

* - David Lee had his usual double-double, but the stat that jumped out was the five fouls he collected in the game. It's not that Lee was in major foul trouble, but he did use those fouls wisely. On two occasions in the second half, he took hard fouls to stop what would have been easy layups.

* - Tracy McGrady is expected to be back in the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Spurs in San Antonio, which is the start of a five-game road trip for the Knicks. That is also when Eddy Curry is expected to make his return to the lineup, as well.

* - Joe Johnson cordially answered all of the 2010 questions that came his way before the game and gave a couple of very interesting answers, especially in regards to the prospects of signing with a team that is rebuilding. Read the story here for more.
 8 years ago '04        #7442
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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Brian Windhorst

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Thoughts following the Cavs' 97-95 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.

LeBron James' ankle is fine. You should have seen him dash across the room to see the finish of the Knicks-Hawks game in the locker room after the game.

The scene:

Knicks up one with the the ball in the final seconds. Toney Douglas attempts to drive to the hole but gets the ball stolen by Jamal Crawford.

LeBron: "Oh, h--- no, you can't turn it over there. But you know J. Crawford loves last-second shots."

Crawford drives length of floor and then dishes to Josh Smith on the baseline with a great pass for what appears to be an open dunk to win the game.

LeBron: "Ohhhhh, great look."

Wilson Chandler comes out of nowhere to reject Smith. The ball bounces into Al Horford's hands and he makes at short putback right at the buzzer.

LeBron: "Wowwwww, looks like the Hawks won."

Wait, officials go to replay. First look shows Horford's shot came after red light. No good, Knicks win (for third time in 11 games).

LeBron: "Oh, no, that's no good, that's no good. Ha, ha!"

In this game of analyzing and then spinning everything LeBron within the free agency prism -- "What? He ordered a vodka tonic? Does that mean the Nets are still in the game?" -- I'm sure that will get all whipped into something. I probably shouldn't even be writing it because I'll be getting calls from New York radio stations for "my take" tomorrow.

But I did write about it because, well, LeBron is moving just fine on that ankle. And to pass along how it is always interesting to watch games with LeBron. Like when he's on the court, he usually sees things before they happen even on TV. He'll predict when players will go for backdoor lobs or scold players for not forcing the opponent into help or to his weak hand. You can really tell he watches a lot of film...on everybody. For that matter, he also reads a lot about the game. He's very up on the happenings in the league.

In this case, he was enjoying the finish of a good game. Perhaps he was happy with the big quasi-chase down block from Chandler. Maybe he wants the Hawks, who are close to the Cavs in the standings, to lose. Earlier he was getting on the Hawks for not fouling before Douglas' turnover, so perhaps he was just cheering quality basketball.
 8 years ago '04        #7443
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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LeBron James is still New York's top target, but upcoming free agent Joe Johnson has been linked to the Knicks quite a bit lately.

Johnson's agent, Arn Tellum, helped orchestrate the deadline deal that sent Tracy McGrady from the Rockets to the Knicks last month.

"I don't think it's a reach to say that Arn could influence Joe's decisions," a Hawks official told the New York Daily News. "There's nothing wrong with that. But we could still offer the most money."

Johnson hinted on Monday that he isn't ready to sign with a team that isn't currently contending.

"I can't backtrack," Johnson said. "I can't go into a situation like when I first got here to Atlanta."
 8 years ago '04        #7444
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alanhahn

Tracy McGrady is IN tonight vs Spurs. Eddy Curry is expected to make his return, as well. Donnie Walsh on trip but only to evaluate players.
 8 years ago '04        #7445
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NYPost_Berman

Curry playing tonight and for rest of season. D'Antoni: "Let's give him a few weeks before we k!ll him.'' Walsh here to monitor Eddy.
 8 years ago '04        #7446
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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and on LBJ news, as insurance, Clippers are saying that they will allow LBJ to pick both the coach and GM if he signs with them in the offseason
 8 years ago '07        #7447
Truth B T0ld 3 heat pts
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New York Knicks rookie Toney Douglas making a quick impression

[pic - click to view]


DALLAS - Unlike Jordan Hill, Toney Douglas is a Knick rookie who makes an impact on the basketball court.

Hill's only contribution came on his way out of the Garden, when he went to Houston as part of the trade that brought Tracy McGrady to the Knicks. The Rockets insisted on getting Hill in the deal, and by giving up on their No.1 pick from last June, the Knicks were able to come away with McGrady's expiring $23 million contract.

If the cap space created by McGrady's money helps the Knicks get LeBron James and one other marquee free agent, then Hill will forever be remembered for helping put his first NBA team on a championship course. But for now, the Knicks can only hope that Douglas will produce more than Hill did during his disappointing stint.

Douglas already has Hill beaten on that score. He led the Knicks as they pulled off a shocker, ending the Mavs' 13-game winning streak in a 128-94 romp here Saturday night. In only his third career start, he more than handled himself like a veteran against Jason Kidd, scoring 21 points on 8-for-10 shooting, passing for eight a.ssists and committing no turnovers in 31 minutes. Tonight in Philadelphia, he will be matched up against fellow rookie Jrue Holiday when the Knicks play the 76ers.

"Toney stepped up and gave us some huge things we don't normally have - athleticism and making shots," Mike D'Antoni said. "The thing is, Toney beat out people for the job. He earned his minutes. You don't want to just hand the job to somebody."

Although D'Antoni wouldn't make a commitment, he'd like to have Douglas start the final 16games. In the last month, with nothing to play for, the Knicks' priorities center around giving extended minutes to Douglas, Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler. They're the only three players who are practically guaranteed to be on the Knicks (23-43) next season.

Despite averaging only 14 minutes a game, Douglas wasn't intimidated by Kidd.

"I'm a competitor," he said. "I put on my pants the same way he does. So I feel like I'm going to compete, just like he's a Hall of Famer and he's going to come out and compete. I feel like I can do the same thing."

He did, but still has a ways to go. "He's learning," said Chris Duhon, the Knicks' former starting point guard. "Toney has to learn when to dish it and when not to. He has a scorer's mentality, so he has to remember to be himself, too."



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 8 years ago '06        #7448
DRuNk 24/7 6 heat pts OP
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Just poppin' in letting you guys know I ain't dead yet.
 03-16-2010, 10:57 PM         #7449
7thWonder 
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dwtdd
 8 years ago '07        #7450
Truth B T0ld 3 heat pts
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Douglas, Knicks win second straight on road
PHILADELPHIA -- It's a good thing LeBron James has applied to the NBA to change his jersey number from 23 to 6.

Because right now the Knicks new rookie starting point guard, Toney Douglas, is wearing "23" quite handsomely.

If the final weeks of this losing season mean nothing else, watching a young point guard grow up might be good enough.

Douglas did good again as he guided the Knicks with poise down the stretch. He made a series of big plays and led them to their second straight victory, 94-84, over the Sixers at Wachovia Center. The Knicks (24-43) moved to 2-2 on the five-game road trip that concludes tomorrow in Boston.


AP
DRIVIN' THROUGH: Tracy McGrady drives to the basket between Samuel Dalembert (left) and Andre Iguodala during the Knicks' 94-84 victory over the 76ers last night in Philadelphia.
Photos: Knicks beat 76ers, 94-84
Following up his excellent outing in the stunning Dallas rout on Saturday, Douglas finished with 20 points and dished out seven a.ssists with three steals and got the better of Sixers rookie, Jrue Holiday.

Holiday, the UCLA freshman whom the Knicks had serious interest in before passing on for now-traded Jordan Hill, scored 18 points, with six a.ssists and eight boards in a nice battle.

"Toney made big plays," coach Mike D'Antoni said. "He made plays defensively and when he came out of the game we really dropped off. He's doing different things. He's giving us energy."

Douglas' steal and layup with 3:22 left in the third quarter gave the Knicks their first lead, 66-65, since early in the second quarter and they never trailed again.

Douglas also hit a clutch corner trey that gave the Knicks an 85-80 bulge with 6:50 left and they had breathing room the rest of the night.

"Either way I look at it, I won't have a bad game," Douglas said. "It's the one thing I can control is my defense. I didn't have a good first half shooting, but I thought I did well on the defensive end."

Sitting behind the baseline was Douglas' agent, David Falk, who helped arrange the Knicks obtaining Douglas on draft night when team president Donnie Walsh bought the Lakers' 29th pick with eyes on Falk's client.

"There is a good future here for him," Falk told The Post. "He's a 23-year-old, fifth-year senior so he's ready. But I look at him as a guard. He play can play both positions."

It had been a roller coaster rookie year for Douglas, who has been in and out of the rotation. D'Antoni was thrilled on Feb. 18 when the club obtained the speedy Spaniard Sergio Rodriguez in the Tracy McGrady trade, but he hasn't impressed and played just six minutes last night.

Although it hasn't always seemed that way, Falk said: "They made a commitment to him when they paid $3 million for the pick."

Now Douglas has the opportunity to finish their season out as the starting point guard and come back next season as an incumbent if things go right.

"I don't think there's a coach who wants a player who's not unhappy he's not playing," Falk said. "But that's where I come in, to try to keep his head up. I've known Donnie Walsh for 36 years, We talked a lot. Toney still worked hard in practice and the gym and now he's getting rewarded for it."

Indeed, D'Antoni said Douglas' attitude has been exemplary.

"His decision-making has gotten better but the thing he did, he never wavered from working as hard as he can work," D'Antoni said. "He never backed off. You got to give him a lot of credit. His personality and work ethic has been huge. That's definitely paying off right now."

Danilo Gallinari scored 21 points and Wilson Chandler had 12 points, 11 rebounds and four a.ssists.



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 8 years ago '07        #7451
Truth B T0ld 3 heat pts
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Chandler Could Miss Remainder Of Season
Knicks forward Wilson Chandler could miss the remainder of the season with a lingering groin injury.

Chandler is set for an examination on Thursday, after which the team could decide to shut him down.

"If it's the rest of the year, it's the rest of the year," coach Mike D'Antoni said.

"It's kind of tough sometimes because a lot of people don't know," Chandler said. "For the most part, I'm just going to do whatever I can do to help the team win."

Chandler is averaging 15.3 points and 5.4 rebounds for the Knicks this season.

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Last edited by Truth B T0ld; 03-18-2010 at 06:02 PM..
 8 years ago '07        #7452
Truth B T0ld 3 heat pts
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via Hahn's twitter:

Mike D'Antoni asked what Wilson Chandler's injury means to the Knicks: "Might knock us out of the playoff race." :jay:



either this coach is truly delusional or he thinks hes slick. either way, hold this danphony :finger:
 8 years ago '06        #7453
DRuNk 24/7 6 heat pts OP
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 Truth B T0ld said:
via Hahn's twitter:

Mike D'Antoni asked what Wilson Chandler's injury means to the Knicks: "Might knock us out of the playoff race." :jay:



either this coach is truly delusional or he thinks hes slick. either way, hold this danphony :finger:
No, it's delusion. I mean, it would make sense if he were being sarcastic...but D'Antoni's not known for his sarcasm.

/sarcasm
 8 years ago '07        #7454
Truth B T0ld 3 heat pts
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 DRuNk 24/7 said:
No, it's delusion. I mean, it would make sense if he were being sarcastic...but D'Antoni's not known for his sarcasm.

/sarcasm



Was this Dantoni being sarcastic as well?


Last edited by Truth B T0ld; 03-18-2010 at 08:16 PM..
 8 years ago '06        #7455
DRuNk 24/7 6 heat pts OP
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 Truth B T0ld said:



Was this Dantoni being sarcastic as well?
No, but you do understand that you should take quotes with context, right? Especially considering these recent headlines off the RealGM wiretap.

Sorry, but I just find it outrageous how one man's words are held under the microscope and scrutinized daily. I know this is New York and with this media, it comes with the territory...but when do you say when?

I mean, people were calling for Girardi's head after the first loss in the Anaheim series, after taking the first 2 games and sweeping the Twins the series prior. How did that end up?
 8 years ago '04        #7456
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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oh wow, ppl are actually talking in here again....maybe i'll start posting s**t in here again
 8 years ago '04        #7457
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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Alan Hahn

As I surfed through Day 1 of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday, I wondered how Knicks fans are viewing the Tournament this year. Is it harder to watch knowing pretty much all of the top players are out of orange-and-blue consideration because this year's first round pick belongs to the Utah Jazz?

Or do you distract yourself from that reality by scrutinizing the less heralded players to find diamonds in the rough for those two second round picks in Donnie Walsh's pocket?

If you're a hoops junkie, it's impossible not to watch. The basketball isn't as polished (the officiating is certainly awful and often over-the-top) but the passion is intoxicating. Still, it has to be frustrating when a player catches your eye and you hear an annoucer suggest he could be an NBA lottery pick. Scratch him off the list.

But what about that other kid who catches your eye? Smart player, great range, tough kid. Is he a senior? If not, does he have reason to be an early entry? Could he slip to the second round? Perhaps the Knicks could buy another late pick?

[Bloghost note: I refuse to name any names here at this point because there's no reason to speculate off of one game. I am hardly a college hoops expert, so I can't start considering potential targets until I've seen a few games and some video. I refer you all to fellow Fixer Jon Rothstein, who has college basketball on lock].

So what do you do on a night like this, when the Tournament is in full bloom and yet your beloved Knicks are playing the 76ers at the Garden? Let's see: Gonzaga, Duke and Syracuse are on the schedule tonight....then again, Toney Douglas is going up against Lou Williams and that J.R. Giddens kid should get some burn.

As absurd as that just read, I know many of you Fixers are actually torn. And that's what makes you special.

And that's why the greatest a.sset the Knicks have to sell to free agents this summer has nothing to do with the few players they may keep around next season or the coach with the fun system. It isn't even the Garden, itself, as the venerable basketball stage in the heart of the game's mecca.

It's you people who consistently fill the place at a time when, for pretty much every other franchise in the league, it would be mostly empty.

Tonight, of course, it probably will be. As far as I'm told, there are limited tickets available for the Knicks-Sixers epic at the Garden. This means they're limited at the box office, but on StubHub there are 203 listings for the game, ranging from one ticket to four with prices from $19 to four courtside seats for $10K. But from the Knicks perspective, those seats are sold.

And that's something the New Orleans Hornets wish they could say.

In fact, the Knicks not only have the fifth-highest attendance average this season (19,528), they're sixth in capacity percentage (98.8) which is more of a reflection of how many tickets are sold per night. Since every area has a different capacity size, some may fill the building but average less because their building holds less.

In Dallas (104 percent), Portland (102.5), Cleveland (100) and Orlando (100), they are above or at full capcaity. Capacity at Amway Arena is 17,461, which is why the Magic rank behind the Knicks in average attendance.

The Lakers average 18,997, which is 99.7 percent capacity. A sellout at the Garden is 19,763, which is why the Knicks are at 98.8 percent.

Among those top six teams, only the Knicks have a losing record. In the top 10 rankings for capacity percentage, the only the Knicks and Bulls (98.6 percent/20,619) are under .500.

Ask any GM, coach, player and even scout in the league, they'll tell you this is the most intriguing thing about playing in New York. If 19,528 people show up per night for a 24-win season, how popular would this team be in this city if it actually was a winner?

From Feb. 4, 1993 through Nov. 2, 2003, there were 433 consecutive sellouts at the Garden for Knicks regular season and playoff games. I guess as far as attendance goes, 10 years of sellouts is an amazing run for Broadway.

For perspective, since 1988, Phantom of the Opera has packed The Majestic Theater for 8,575 performances, a Broadway record. So not only did the show start it's run before the Knicks sellout streak, it is still going strong well after it.

Patrick Ewing was the leading man during that Knicks era and, all due respect to The Big Fella, who gave his heart-and-soul in every performance, he wasn't really a marquee star away from the game.

Just imagine if one ever did come here and have success. Could the Knicks challenge Phantom?

Maybe they just need the Phantom to work for them in convincing free agents to sign with the Knicks. I heard he can be pretty persuasive.
 8 years ago '04        #7458
Born_Loser|M 101 heat pts101
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Ric Bucher of ESPN quoted a league source on Thursday when he said that LeBron James might be more interested in coming to the Knicks if they have Hawks' shooting guard Joe Johnson.

"If it's LeBron James they want," Bucher said, "a league source says the Hawks' shooting guard is a very good place to start."
 8 years ago '06        #7459
DRuNk 24/7 6 heat pts OP
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Bill Walker's post-game was classic...

"I got my hands on a lot of balls...pause."
 8 years ago '04        #7460
Jae_Hood_354 139 heat pts139
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toney "the truth" douglas was on fire in the 4th quarter
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