Evaluating Knicks basketball at the half-way point is kinda like HotLinks — if you taste them raw, they can make you sick. But you can count on the Knicks marketing department to spice it up and make it seem better than it is. After all that’s their job. According to Knicks News there are some things to be happy about at mid-season beyond us getting closer to the LeBron Sweepstakes in July 2010. Nominal honors were given on-line to David Lee (selected mid-season MVP), Wilson Chandler (most valuable player), Danilo Galinari (Biggest surprise) and Jared Jeffries (Unsung Hero). Regarding Danilo, who the 53rd best 3-point shooter (at 40%) and 297th best 2-point shooter (at 45%) in the league, Knicks.com notes the following:
One very positive surprise this season is the play of Danilo Gallinari. Following an injury-plagued rookie campaign, in which he played just 28 games, nobody was sure how quick it would take the Italian to reach his potential. Well, the second-year forward tied the NBA record for most 3-pointers in a season opener with seven in Miami on Oct. 28 and hasn’t stopped shooting since. He is leading the league with a 109 3-pointers made and 267 3-pointers attempted in 40 games while averaging 14.7 points per game. The fact that he has been this good this fast is a pleasant surprise for the Knicks
It appears that MSG is as surprised as many fans that Danilo has responded so well to back surgery. His development has allowed Garden management to boldly shift the marketing focus to its new-youth in Wilson Chandler and Gallinari as illustrated in their selection of the best plays of the first half of the season. Enjoy.
For a Hotlink minute, in December when the Knicks went 9-6 for the month, it looked deceptively as though the Knicks were going to be a good team. From my perspective, there is no doubt that the talent is there, but they are being misled by Mike D’Antoni who has failed to create an atmosphere that encourages unity and energizes the team. Even former superstar Gary Payton believes the Knicks could have been a competitive team. (Yeah, he said great which hurts his credibility a tad). Sorry Dr. of Glove, Knicks management can’t understand your cure to all that ails them right now. We’re still sucking on LePlacebo.
That optimism created by December just washed away in the Knicks inconsistent sludge-slide in January. One game they would dismantle a team and the next game they would get assaulted by the same team as in the case of Minnesota. After leveling the Timberwolves to atone for the previous 50-point loss to the Mavericks, the Knicks then went on to lose to the Timberwolves by 21. One of our favorite video-analyst at The Knick Blog (formerly Seven Seconds Or Mess) shows us one of many plays on defense where the Knicks fail to communicate.
FEBRUARY HOT LINKS TO BE CONTINUED. . . .