El Conclusion: San Antonio Spurs 118, New York Knicks 105

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New York Knicks 105 Final

Recap | Box Score

118 San Antonio Spurs
Tim Duncan, C 30 MIN | 6-11 FG | 5-7 FT | 8 REB | 3 AST | 17 PTS | +10Without Tyson Chandler in the game the Knicks almost begged Duncan to scored by throwing out combinations of Amare Stoudemire and Steve Novak. Most of the Spurs had their way inside, Duncan included.
Richard Jefferson, SF 26 MIN | 0-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +13The shot was not there, but Richard Jefferson earned praise from Popovich after the game for his defense and activity on the glass. Richard Jefferson was able to contribute some without scoring a single point. Meanwhile, Carmelo Anthony dropped 27 points almost to the detriment to his team.
DeJuan Blair, F 14 MIN | 5-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | +3Very efficient game in just 14 minutes of play. Took advantage of Stoudemire’s inability to pay attention to almost anything on defense.
Tony Parker, PG 34 MIN | 12-19 FG | 8-9 FT | 0 REB | 6 AST | 32 PTS | +16After the game Manu Ginobili called the Spurs Tony Parker’s team, and after another solid night it’s hard to argue. Parker is playing with confidence knowing he owns this team, the sort of confidence Jeremy Lin was playing with before Anthony and Stoudemire returned. Parker had 32 points, and we’re almost taking it for granted.
Gary Neal, PG 25 MIN | 4-13 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 12 PTS | +6Before the game Popovich called Neal a big part of the rotation, and his inclusing in the starting lineup is geared towards keeping a steady level of minutes while Manu Ginobili works his way back into gear on the second unit.
T.J. Ford, PG 6 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | -2Ignore the letter grade, this is an incomplete. Ford took a scary spill in the first half given his history of neck problems. He was sore and banged up, but the Spurs reported Ford was relatively okay, all things considered.
Matt Bonner, PF 15 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +8The much anticipated matchup between Bonner and Novak ended up a dud. To be fair, Bonner thrives on kickouts on dribble penetration. Only, there was no need to kick the ball out tonight as any dribble penetration was practically a layup line.
Manu Ginobili, SG 26 MIN | 7-10 FG | 0-2 FT | 4 REB | 6 AST | 17 PTS | +17Was exhausted after the game, choosing to sit before the media. He says his wind is good, which is a lot better than his first return attempt. But his strength and first step are still lacking from what they were to start the season. Looking at the box score, it’s hard to tell.
Daniel Green, G 16 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 8 PTS | -5Finally got some shots to fall. Popovich said the shoulder is no longer an issue.
Tiago Splitter, C 18 MIN | 4-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 10 PTS | +3A solid game from Splitter, though I would like to see that ugly hook shot find its rhythm again.
James Anderson, SG 6 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | +1Limited minutes. Watched a pass sail through his hands, and then made a nice finish in the lane.
Kawhi Leonard, SF 25 MIN | 4-4 FG | 2-3 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | -5I would take the 10 points and six rebounds Kawhi scored, along with his defense, over anything Carmelo Anthony did tonight.

Five Things We Saw

  1. Only Manu Ginobili would think that a pass through a defenders legs in a halfcourt pick and roll set isn’t a crazy pass. His reasoning? Players in the NBA are really tall, and taught to make themselves taller and wider in their defensive stances, which opens up a big hole.
  2. After the game Manu Ginobili talked about how so much of Parker’s improvement comes from his knowing the team is his. Playing with that level of confidence. Watching Jeremy Lin, I couldn’t help but wonder if the inverse were true and his play has leveled off some as the team shifts back to Carmelo Anthony.
  3. Without Tyson Chandler, the Knicks looked Charlott Bobcats bad on defense.
  4. Before the game Popovich stated the Spurs were unlikely to do anything before the trade deadline. In general he also remarked that if a trade made sense, a team would have to do it, but integrating a new player in such a short time with no practices would be very difficult.
  5. Right now Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire look like joyless basketball players. For Anthony, 24 shots and only one free throw attempt is brutal. For a player some call the best pure scorer in basketball, he doesn’t really score all that purely.
  • ziijordan

    Here is what Amare Stoudemire had to say after the game.

    “(The Spurs) don’t have nearly enough talent to compete with us,”
    Stoudemire said. “Our personnel, our talent is off the charts.”

    It appears that Amare is delusional. This guy hasn’t had enough of a spanking by the Spurs throughout his whole career, being denied progress through the playoffs by the Spurs year after year.

  • TD BestEVER

    DJB still keeping it going…..Strong on the Boards with 7 in 14 min and 5-6 from the court…….. He keeps this up, he will have his BEST SEASON yet…….Rebounding rate and FG% are both starting to round back out…..Although he has been shooting very good from the field for the past month or so.

  • Hobson13

    I really think the Knicks would do well to trade Carmelo.  For his entire career he’s really just been a one trick pony and his one trick is that he is a good iso player who can score if given 20+ shot attempts per game.  The guy plays zero defense and on the offensive end he doesn’t really make his teammates better since he is such a black hole. 

    Sure the Knicks were beating bad teams when Linsanity broke out, but with all of Lin’s shortcomings, at least he was getting the entire team involved and they were winning.  The team seemed to have a good vibe on and off the court.  I maintain that it is terrible for team chemisty to expect 5 guys to play some defense (even if it is Dantoni style) only to have one player hold the ball for 14 seconds and jack a shot on the offensive end.  It’s imperative for the team to spread the wealth.

    In the end, a team that is built around super athletes but low IQ guys like Melo, Amare, and JR Smith will only go so far. 

    Trade suggestion:

    NY gets: Dwight Howard, Hedo Turkoglu
    Orlando gets: Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler

    IMO, this trade is actually pretty even with regards to talent seeing that Orlando gets rid of one superstar and a deadweight for two all-stars.  Thoughts?

  • The Heretic

    Carmelo has not sublimated his great talents with the current Knicks’ roster. Once he does, or more specifically, once the team hires a coach that doesn’t force them to play according to his schemes (SSOL) then we will see positive results. 

  • junierizzle

    Good win. I’ll take it. Glad TP is keeping it up and Manu had his best outing since coming back.

    It’s interesting that at one point or another each of the Big 3 claimed the Spurs as their team. Now it’s TP’s turn.

  • DorieStreet

    Reply to first comment–Sour Grapes -Amare still bleeds purple (one of the Suns’ uniform colors) when it comes to the Spurs.

    Reply to second comment– self-inflated assessment; but whatever the true level of talent the Knicks have, the team isn’t going far into the playoffs (if they even make the postseason cut) under their current coach. Mike D’ Antoni will not be at the helm next year.

  • theghostofjh

    Anybody know why the comment edit function works sometimes, but not others?

  • theghostofjh

    Yeah, I was thinking of a similar thing when the Knick’s were winning and Carmelo was out. I was thinking of Howard for Anthony & Chandler, but I wasn’t sure about the second Orlando player. I guess Turkoglu would be as good as anyone else, except that he’s been more effective as sort of a point forward (which fits Orlando), and Dantoni’s offense revolves around a true point guard holding the dribble often and orchestrating (Turk wasn’t very effective in Phoenix with Nash). I was thinking maybe Glen Davis and/or Quentin Richardson could be in the deal?

    But I do agree that the principals make sense: Howard for Chandler and Anthony. I think both teams would be stronger for it, although I think Orlando should in addition trade Nelson for a more pass first point guard. Someone like a Jose Calderon or a Ramon Sessions, for example.

  • DorieStreet

    Offensive flow was hard to get going during the first few minutes of the game. I will dismiss the 17 TOs since half were committed by Tony & Manu (4 each).

    Saw Pop have a brief chat with Danny just before game’s start–probably positive words to him despite start and rotation changes (Green didn’t enter contest until 8:45 of 2nd qtr)- good coaching.

    And just to piggyback on Jesse Blanchard’s post-game notes— Melo’s 26-27th point came with the Spurs up by 17 with 3 1/2 minutes to go in the 4th—–inconsequential.

  • Gomezd

    Would just like to add that it warms my heart to see Roger Mason once again slaying the Lakers, it was beautiful

  • Bry

    What a bizarre thing to say after getting blown out. Even if it was true he’d only be emphasizing how badly they choked. That quote shows what has been Amare’s problem his entire career. He’s absolutely oblivious defensively.

  • Bry

    Yeah, I really like how he’s trending. I also think that Manu and Tiago work really well in the pick and roll.  I think Blair and Splitter will play markedly better (and more minutes) in the playoffs this year than last year.

  • Bry

    It’s also nice to see Bryant ballhogging and throwing up bricks, ignoring his two All-Star big men and losing to bad teams. I wonder who is a more selfish player, Bryant or Carmello?

  • STIJL

    YES.  Neal in the starting unit!!   Now all they need to do is start Leonard…move Jefferson to bench to play with Ginobili and start solidifying a rotational pattern prior to playoffs.

    Didn’t even notice Bonner’s presence in the game. Which…was neither good or bad but probably best served if the majority of his time were spent with the second unit from here on out.  And as with others….agree that starting now Splitter and Blair deserve more time on the court if for anything…to develop some sort of rhythm AND work out their faults (on the court)  prior to playoffs.

    Gotta love the chemistry developing between Ginobili and Splitter and a strong arguement for Manu to remain coming off the bench.  Then if need be…in tight games…finish with Parker, Ginobili, Leonard, Splitter and Duncan.

    Go Spurs Go!!!

    Spurs Win!!!

  • STIJL

     Translation…

    I suck on defense.  Wish Chandler were in this game so I wouldn’t have to look so bad.

  • STIJL

     Solid take Hobson13.

    And that trade would be solid for both teams.  Teams being the key term.  Mello (as an individual) on the other hand…might have major issues.  If he has a no trade clause built into his contract I don’t think he would relinquish that clause.  If he doesn’t…the Magic would have to be rest assured by Mello that he wouldn’t pull the same antics he pulled in Denver.  In short…why would Orlando want to go from dealing with a unhappy player in Dwight to get who might be just as (or worse) dissatisfied player in Mello?

  • etomai

    I wonder if D’Antoni thinks about turning down the Chicago job every time Carmelo stops the ball.

  • etomai

    Wow.  I’m no Stoudemire fan, but that quote was totally out of context.  Not bashing on ziijordan, most of the recap articles only say that part.  I kept looking because it seemed such an odd thing to say.  Just found the full quote, and it’s certainly arrogant, and sour grapes and all that, but not unreasonable:

    “You watch San Antonio tonight,” Stoudemire said. “They don’t have nearly enough talent to compete with us. Our talent level, personnel, is off the charts. But what they do well is they keep the floor spaced and makes sure those guys execute the plays.”That’s something we’ve got to do, keep the floor spaced and keep the ball moving and get everyone involved.”

  • Hunter

    I like that, I think the only reason we kept him this year is for trade purposes. I think he should be claused after the deadline or traded for a bigman. If that hapens, 

    Parker
    Ginobili
    Leanord
    Duncan
    Splitter
    as starters, how scary is that?

  • JetP

    Could we please have a “space” after the box score line in each profile? The format of the +/- and the first word not having a space in between just makes these reports hard to scan quickly.

  • theghostofjh

    Keep our fingers crossed, because we’re done if they don’t.

  • theghostofjh

    True, although Amare can be an effective “help defender” next to a tall defensive-minded center (i.e., Chandler). Probably a good reason why the Knick’s are ranked 9th in defensive efficiency in the NBA, while the Spurs are 14th.

  • theghostofjh

    No, Blair should hold his starting position.

  • theghostofjh

    It’s close.

  • TD BestEVER

     Kobe is basically a basketball god……. SO calling him selfish doesn’t really mean much.  Would you call Zeus selfish for firing too many Bolts, no……..Kobe can and will always be a gunner who believes that he can win a game all by his lonesome if he had too.   That’s what makes him great and a top 5 all time player.  All though if TD can pull off another ring, he would be top 5 also…….hehehe

  • Bry

    The quote sounds less insane in its full context, but it is still unreasonable. He is ignoring defense (last I checked one half of basketball) entirely. On top of that he is acting as if his talent-loaded team is even a .500 ballclub. Yes, the Spurs have excellent teamwork and execution, but they also have talent. Duncan, Ginobili and Parker are all very talented and precisely the people that ate his team alive last night. So, even in context I don’t find his comments reasonable. Really only maybe Miami or OKC could get away with saying something that arrogant.

  • Len

    It’s nonsense.  The Spurs have 2 or 3 future HOF’s.  (Another debate here)

    The Knicks have 0.

  • Len

    Ah, I think your list is a bit off.  Kobe won 3 rings while riding a prime Shaq’s coat tails.  I’d put Duncan over Kobe all day/any day, even without ring number 5.

  • Hobson13

    Interesting.  I didn’t take into account Melo’s no trade clause.  That would certainly be a difficult road block for NY.

  • theghostofjh

    “That’s what makes him great and a top 5 all time player.”

    I don’t agree that he’s a top-five player of all-time. In fact, generally speaking he’s a bit overrated.

  • theghostofjh

    Agree 100%. It was a DUMB comment.

  • Bry

    I strongly agree. TDbestever you’re drinking the koolaid. A guy who seems to NEVER make his teammates better, who has always had a Hall of Fame big man and who’s team has ALWAYS had a massive payroll compared to the rest of the league. Look at Kobe recently and during the time when Shaq was gone and Pau was gifted to them. That tells you all you need to know. He’s a fine 2-guard, and a gifted athlete. But, he’s nowhere near the people that he arrogantly compares himself to. Shaq, over a dozen years, made the people around him better and got them big contracts. When has Kobe ever done that? You’re praising the false idol….

  • Titletown9903507d

    Props to DJB for his solid game. Splitter still rusty but like how he and Manu hooked up on a nice pick n roll. Hit all of his 2 free throws. Needs to get his hook on again. If Blair continues on this path and Splitter gets back to pre injury quality of play hope this will make Pop take some minutes from Bonner and throw them at Blair Splitter.

  • STIJL

     I can name at least two Laker players that were better than Kobe.  Magic and Kareem.  Magic being by far in the top 5 all time.

    Top 5 all time guards (and not necessarily in order of listing)…Jordan, Magic, “The Big O” Oscar Robinson, Bob Cousy and Isaah Thomas.  Forgot to add Julius Irving. George Gervin and…well…lots of players to consider and Kobe would probably get in the top 10.

  • Deeds130

    He’s a vengeful, jealous, vain, and immature god…

    At least in the regular season these /akers would have a better record if they had Tony Parker instead of KB24. Kobe misses nearly shots as their twin towers take… in an effort to compensate his carreer points total for missing 16 games in a shortened season. Hopefully he’ll keep shooting Bynum and Gasol right out of town, they deserve a better lead guard to play with.

  • Colin

     What do you expect from a guy with a self-imposed nickname of “STAT?”

  • Colin

     Thanks for providing that……..he’s still a knucklehead though. 

  • theghostofjh

    And don’t forget Jerry West.

  • STIJL

     How could I forget Jerry.  Thanks GoJH.

  • Steve

    Hey ya’ll please do not point out Amare’s delusion. It’s a shared delusion over there in NY, and while I hate it for Lin, because I think he could be really good with different personnel around him, and I hate it for a couple of the other guys that work hard out there, I don’t want those other yahoos to ever win anything – even a playoff birth. As long as Amare and Melo believe that they are entitled because of talent, and that talent = wins, it’s much more likely that I’ll get my wish, long before they get theirs. 

    If NY was smart, and really wanted to win (or at least fill the stands), they would get rid of Melo, get Amare to play a little D or liquidate him too, and let Lin and the other guys do what they were doing. They already proved 1) melo and stat weren’t doing it at the beginning of the season. 2) Lin and co did it when those two went down. 3) melo and stat suck the life out of the rest of the team. Why play your heart out when the the two “best” guys on the floor don’t seem to give a care? Why give it your all, make the little subtle hussel plays when the other guys are going to take the credit? Melo is a team spirit killer all by himself. Karl has looked SOOO happy in Denver without ‘Melo. And the stats of the two teams since the trade are telling as well. NY has “all the talent”. Denver is winning more games. 

  • Colin

     How many rings would TD/Shaq have?  I would re-evaluate your Kobe estimation. 

    However, individually, his game most resembles MJ there has ever been.  What separates MJ from Kobe is their ability to truly make sub-par teammates better, which is what MJ did during his last 3 rings. 

  • LPspursFan

    this generation defines ‘talent’ as who can dunk a ball the meanest. eh – what ya gonna do. the Spurs have won all 4 of their rings not by being ‘the most talented group of players,’ but by being the best team. i’m cool with that.

  • LPspursFan

    this generation defines ‘talent’ as who can dunk a ball the meanest. eh – what ya gonna do. the Spurs have won all 4 of their rings not by being ‘the most talented group of players,’ but by being the best team. i’m cool with that.

  • LPspursFan

    of course i’d welcome another big if one were to fall from the sky…but since that isn’t going to happen, i’m pretty content with our bigs. some of that is due to other teams that could run 3 bigs at us can’t anymore.

  • Kirikou

    I disagree. Not enough (corner) 3-point shooting in that line-up. You don’t want Ginobili just standing in a corner waiting for a kick-out after a TP penetration: that would be a waste of his talents as a creator. And Leonard is not yet consistent enough from long range. And who defends on the second unit? Blair, Bonner and RJ? Come on…

  • STIJL

     “Steve was delicious.”

    Sorry…couldn’t help myself.  Nice post and agree 100%

  • Bob

     It’s not just that. MJ had much better shot selection. He didn’t just gun like crazy. Any good shooter taking alot of shots will score alot of points.

  • TD BestEVER

     About as many as Kobe and David Robinson would have……..Kobe for all his faults can flat out Ball……. and I still hate the Lakers………but have to give credit to The Black Mamba for his ability to carry a team…….

  • theghostofjh

    Agree. RJ and Blair should start with the big three. That’s the starting unit that went 50-11 last year before Pop mistakenly took Blair out of the starting lineup for McDyess.

    Second unit should be the following six:

    Ford, Neal, Splitter, Leonard, Green, and Bonner.

  • theghostofjh

    Sure, but he’s not a top-five player of all-time. He’s probably in the top 15 or 20.