Knicks (3-6) Host Rockets (2-6): Preview and Analysis

KNICKS

New York Knicks

Overall Analysis and Expectations

Knicks look to address myriad of problems against Rockets squad with a two game winning streak despite key injuries to Yao Ming (sprained left ankle), Budinger (sprained ankle)  and Aaron Brooks (out due to sprained foot). . . . Three of Rockets six losses by less than four points. Defense has improved dramatically in last three games as they only allowed 97.0 points per game. They are ranked second in points per game at 108.1 ppg. . . .  Expect Knicks to be challenged by Rockets’ inside game and ability to get to foul line. . . .Storyline includes last years trade with Knicks which could totally favor the Rockets if Knicks have worse record because Rockets have right to switch first round draft picks next year. Knicks already surrendered one lottery pick in Jordan Hill.

ROCKETS

PG

Raymond Felton


Toney Douglas

Knicks must learn to control tempo.  They can be much more effective running the primary break and not settling for threes.  Houston susceptible in transition. Too long and fast in half-court game. . . .Knicks will not face speedy Aaron Brooks who is out for several weeks with foot injury. . . .Lowry recently suffered from back spasms

PG

Ishmael Smith Smith

Kyle LowryLowry

SG

Landry Fields


Bill Walker

With Brooks and Yao out, Martin needs to score more. He’s averaging  23.6 points in 31.4 minutes. Another expert at getting to the line from shot fakes. Expect Fields, Walker  and Douglas to be suckered into fouls.  martin an 85% Ft shooter. Poor defender.  Fields, Douglas and Walker can chew him up off the dribble. . . .Lee, may be picking up Budinger’s minutes.  Solid defender. Good mid-range offensive game. . . .

SG

Kevin MartinMartin

courtney Lee

Lee

SF

 

Danilo Gallinari

Anthony Randolph

Gallo tends to disappear in the second half.  His first half cameo’s are largely dependent on lax perimeter D by opponent, but once they get up on him he vanishes.  Would be better with ball in his hand for drives to the basket. He’s so lank and awkward to guard that he could dominate from line. . . .Randolph still a “Not Ready For Prime Time Player.”  He needs an off-season to explore defining his game and refining his shot-shot selections. . . . Battier, not a real scoring threat but can hit tre from corners (38%), is a strong defender and moderate rebounder.  All-round solid player who ran 40 minutes against the Pacers. . . .

SF

 Shane BattierBattier

 Chase BudingerBudinger

PF

 

Amare Stoudemire

 

 

 Luis Scola is going to be a tough match-up for Studdy. Scola has a very savvy inside game and is relentless. Similarly, Scola cannot defensively handle Stoudemire. Although the use of Jeffries and Jordan Hill on Studdy could produce some interesting results including dominance on the defensive boards for Houston. . . . Jeffries minutes are declining however. . . . Chandler can have an excellent game if he gets off the three point line. . . . Jordan Hill making too many mistakes for Rick Adelman’s liking.  Still Jordan has shown improvement and confidence obtained since his time with Knicks.

PF

Luis Scola

Scola

Jared JeffriesJeffries

C

Timofey Mozgov


Rony Turiaf


 Miller performed well in his first start against Pacers in a win.  His line read 23 points, 8 boards and 5 assists. . .Knicks will be without Turiaf in the middle again which clearly hurts strength in middle. . . Scola (11.1 rpg), Chuck Hayes (5.4 rpg in last five games but 13 in loss to Sactown) and Miller (7.3 rpg) are rebounders. . . .

C

Brad Miller Miller

Chuck HayesHayes