Preseason: Knicks 96, Celtics 80- “CHAMPIONSHIP OR BUST” – Posting and Toasting
After one game of preseason, it was clear the Knicks were doomed. After Saturday’s rematch with the Celtics, it’s clear, like King Henry said, that the Knicks ought to win the NBA basketball championship. They found some better shots in the Triangle, they knocked a chunk off Wednesday’s towering stack of turnovers, and they actually affected the Celtics with transition defense. Just a few (late, sorry) notes.
– Quincy Acy started in place of Andrea Bargnani and demonstrated some of his value. He managed not to elbow people *constantly* while defending, and actually helped force a turnover or two. And he tried scoring from pretty much everywhere, whiffing an early corner three (he hit those in Summer League, but I don’t think that’s his thing yet), showing some nice touch off a mid-range down-screen, and punching stuff in around the rim. Acy looked a lot more comfortable setting screens and offering hand-offs, too, perhaps because he was playing with a more polished offensive lineup.
– Acy and Jose Calderon had a bit of friction on the fast break, one just not knowing what the other wanted on the move. Preseason is for figuring that stuff out (of course, they’re former teammates, so…)
– Calderon otherwise looked pretty solid, with entry passes on point and a little flurry of pull-up jumpers all his own. He’s got sort of Beno Udrih-y shot selection but…I dunno, just better. He busted ass getting up the floor, too, which is something Phil Jackson has repeatedly noted as a Triangle key. I like Jose Calderon. I think he’s gonna be good.
– The Knicks still have (and will continue to have) issues entering the ball into the strong side post (the innermost corner of the Triangle), and Amar’e Stoudemire thus didn’t get to do much. They found Carmelo Anthony down …read more