“It is as bad as it can get,” –Mike D’Antoni
“We cannot come out and lose against New Jersey – they have the worst record in the league – especially at home. We have to play aggressive every game.” — Danilo Gallinari
“It was bad because we lost at home, not necessarily because we played the Nets. I can’t really see why they’re 7-, 8-55.” — Tracy McGrady
If you’re going to be a bricklayer, be the best bricklayer you could possibly be.
The Knicks continued their reconstruction project by throwing bricks at it, as they missed an NBA record 18 three pointers in another demoralizing loss to the lowly New Jersey Nets. Although the Knicks jumped out to an early 16-point lead, they could not sustain the performance, especially considering they played the Bosh-less but energized Raptors the night before.
In the first quarter of this game, the Knicks built a lead with a bit of defensive intensity led by Tracy McGrady, who was very active getting his hands on the ball. McGrady would be a nice player to have for defensive leadership at the minimum salary if he were healthier. However, despite the defensive effort and improved communication, the Knicks slipped into foul trouble. David Lee and Danilo Gallinari, who were on a roll offensively, picked up two fouls each early in the first, which ended with the Knicks ahead by ten,
Offensively, Gallo showed a bit more aggression. The Knicks set him up in the post to take advantage of mismatches caused by switches. Gallo clearly will need the summer to develop a mid-range game and strong moves around the basket, out of the post. David Lee, who has recently shown that he is not happy to be receiving blame for his defensive deficiencies as opposed to praise for improving his game and playing out of position all season long, continued to pop mid-rangers over Lopez.
Devin Harris (31 points) and Brooke Lopez (18 points and 11 rebounds) took control in the third quarter and showed why the Nets may be in the best position to attract quality free agents this summer, . They have an excellent, young guard center tandem in Harris and Lopez. They will have an opportunity for a high draft pick this summer and they will add a new coach — possibly someone like Avery Johnson. They are also moving into a new, more accessible state of the art facility in Newark for a couple of years.
Al Harrington (five misses), Eddie House (four) and Wilson Chandler (three) laid the heaviest set of three-point bricks for the record-making Knicks. . . . Ref Eddie Rush T’d up Brooke Lopez for looking mean at Sergio Rodriguez. Lopez’ star probably scared Rush into blowing the whistle. . . . Check out the new KnicksFanatics T-Shop. We expect to add more products including cups, coasters and welcome mats this summer. . . . Thanks to O&B and Post uP Prince for holding down the fort on the LBE.