Amar’e Stoudemire is widely considered the best pick and roll man in the NBA. He is 6’11 and wildly explosive. When he drives to the paint he is damn near unstoppable. Last season, Stoudemire shot 63% at the rim and 45% taking 3-9 foot shots. Conversely he shot 44% from 16-23 feet. Pau Gasol, Chris Bosh, Nene Hilario and Kevin Garnett all shot a higher percentage on shots taken from 16-23 feet. Stoudemire is a good mid range shooter but he made his money devastating defenses in the paint and at the rim and he needs to get back to that style of offense.
In last nights game, Stoudemire was 3-5 on shots at the rim, 3-9 feet and 10-15 feet. He was 2-9 on shots 16-23 feet. I understand that part of this is having no point guard and seemingly no pick and roll game in sight right now. That is not Stoudemire’s fault. What is Stoudemire’s fault is his seemingly willingness to just shoot long jumpers. David Lee is a great guy. I love him and Knick fans loved him. He is a good player but he cannot stay with Stoudemire, as shown by Stoudemire’s poster dunk on him last night. Once he realized his jumper was cold, and it was ice cold, Stoudemire should have reverted to his drive and post game. Instead, Stoudemire began firing 18 footer after 18 footer and could not deliver the offensive efficiency that the Knicks needed last night. Against the 6’9 Lee, Stoudemire should have attacked the post and the paint and dominated inside. That is what he is known for and that is what he needs to get back to. This 2-9 from mid-range cannot happen when you are one of the two consistent scoring threats on this team. The Knicks need 20-25 points a game from Stoudemire and he needs to use the most successful aspects of his game to get there.
A lot was made about Stoudemire hitting a 2 three pointers game 1 versus Boston but I do not see that necessarily as a positive. This is why I say that. You’re paying a guy a 5 year max deal to be your dominant, unstoppable inside force. Do you want him shooting 3’s? Yea it is great when he makes them but what happens if he reverts to a 35% shooter from 3. Do you want your dominant power forward working on his 3 point perimeter shooting when his focus should be getting into the paint and postering people? His 3 point shooting is a nice fasset of his game but that, along with his mid range jumper, should not be the emphasis of his offensive game. Stoudemire needs to get back to dominating on the drive and in the paint.
I was at Oracle Arena in Oakland to witness the Knicks ineptitude tonight. I then went home and re-watched the game on TV. I have to say that the Knicks looked awful on TV and worse in person. In a horrible loss, the Knicks laid down against the Golden State Warriors losing 92-78.
Toney Douglas had maybe his worst game as a Knick. He was 0-5 from deep, 3-11 overall with 6 points and 2 assists. Douglas was unable to create rhythm in the Knicks offense. As a result, the offense tonight was stagnant and in-effective. In maybe his worst game as a Knick, Carmelo Anthony shot only 3-13 for 13 points. It wasn’t only that Melo was missing shots but he was missing badly. Amar’e Stoudemire was 5-14 with 16 points and 4 turnovers. Tyson Chandler was in foul trouble all night resulting in him scoring a whole 2 points and a nabbing a grand total of 3 rebounds. Oh and the Knicks had 0 blocks tonight.
A few more notes from the game:
- Douglas is driving me insane. I can’t defend this shit anymore. He is so unable to run this offense and has absolutely no court vision. He had multiple fast breaks in which he either passed late or did not pass at all. He cannot run this offense, he seemingly has no idea what he is doing, he delivers no assists (well sorry, 2 assists tonight in 28 minutes) and he didn’t even shoot the ball well tonight. Tonight, he was a detriment to this team and that cannot continue to happen.
- Walker was actually decent. His defense still sucked but at least he provided scoring off the bench
- Stoudemire’s offensive game is becoming too isolation/perimeter oriented. His money is made with his unstoppable force in the paint but he seems to be in love with deep mid-range jump shots.
- On the bright side, Stoudemire did have 10 rebounds tonight and looked much more engaged on the defensive end of the floor.
- Fields played a great first half. He also played a terrible second half…
- Balkman had another dunk
- The Knicks actually really missed Jeffries tonight. In his absence, Stoudemire was forced to not only play the center position but also was forced to log 38 minutes. Jeffries gives the Knicks the ability to mix and match with both Chandler and Stoudemire. With Jeffries out, D’Antoni was forced (or he could have played more Jerome Jordan who looked pretty decent tonight) to play Stoudemire at the 5 in Chandler’s absence and then play Melo or Balkman (both undersized) at the 4 when Chandler was in and STAT was out.
- Jorts looked like a deer in the headlights for the second straight game and air-balled a 3
- The Knicks had 1 successful pick and roll all night. Right now, they simply cannot run it with any success
- Knicks were out rebounded 47-31. Kwame Brown had 10 boards for the Warriors…
- Bibby played and delivered some nice passes. Exactly what a BACKUP point guard is supposed to do. Unfortunately that far exceeds what our current starting point guard has been doing…
- Novak hit a 3 tonight….in 14 minutes. 14 minutes with 1 shot attempt. Novak can’t do anything else… why is he in the game for 14 minutes if you’re gonna get him one 3 point attempt?
- D’Antoni must do a better job getting this offense to at least move the ball. Tonight they did not pass the ball well at all. There are no pick and rolls, no give and go’s. The offense was just very stagnant tonight. I half attribute that to having no point guard, and I half attribute that to D’Antoni. He has to know what he’s got on this club, I mean he sees them every day. Put in some new plays and get some flow to the offense. Tonight there were just way too many possessions killed by forced isolation jumpers by STAT and Melo.
- Some bald Warriors fan with weird classes sitting in front of me annoyed me the whole game.