The morning practice has come and gone, our bellies are full of the best slices in White Plains, and we're just about ready to head back to our respective learning institutions. Before we take off, though, Osborn and I would like to share what we saw from the Knicks this morning.
When the media were allowed in, the guys were immersed in an incredibly fast-paced three-man fast break drill. Each unit would start off a rebound, go end to end at full speed, then scramble back on defense while the next group assumed possession. There were plenty of alley-oops, some pretty hard falls, and one back-rimmed dunk by Anthony Randolph that would have single-handedly gotten me and Charlie tossed out of practice if it went down.
After a break, the guys ran some five-man, undefended set plays, then scrimmages began.
Take the jump for our notes on what went down!!!
Contrary to yesterday's triumvirate of five-man units, the team was split straight down the middle today, with the blue team made up roughly of the top 7 or 8 guys and the remaining folks in white.
- Anthony Randolph and Landry Fields were the two perimeter standouts this morning. It's becoming evident that Randolph is particularly comfortable with the ball in his hands near the arc. Anthony's lefty stroke looks nice out to about 20 feet and he showed off a stellar shot fake to take his man off the dribble. We don't want Randolph pulling willy nilly from outside, but the fact that he's shooting with some degree of confidence should help him gain a step on bigger defenders. Also faking children out of their boots was Mr. Fields, who got more touches than you'd expect from a second-round rookie. Landry's jumper comes and goes, but he did splash a few threes. On a related note, Fields stayed after hours along with Patrick Ewing Jr., Shawne Williams, and Wilson Chandler to get up some extra threes.
- The match-up between Raymond Felton and Toney Douglas got pretty juicy today. Both showed their chops as defensive gadflies, darting over screens and picking pockets with abandon. Ray's floater is still P&T-approved. I loves me a floater.
- Amar'e Stoudemire is still the loudest guy on the floor, be it the volume of his voice, the seismic trembling of his dunks, or the sheer audacity of his pectoral muscles during his post-practice shirtless shooting sessions.
- But really, here's a list of things that are less ripped than Amar'e Stoudemire: Michelangelo's David, cartoon gorillas, most action figures, this ripped piece of paper, a ripped DVD of It's Complicated, a headstone that says "RIP", Rip Hamilton, Rip Torn, and a person that has been smoking weed every hour on the hour since Thursday.
- I don't know what's in Eddy Curry's head at this point, but it's not basketball. Eddy just didn't look focused with the ball in his hands, and we've yet to see him execute a successful post-up. You can't blame the guy for being distracted, but it shows.
- Timofey Mozgov kept up like a pro in scrimmages and in the three-on-three sprint drills. His shot wasn't falling during the games, but Timo got to his spots in time and looked crisp in both half-court sets and on the fast break. One brilliant pass out of a double team to a cutting Bill Walker gave Charlie and I a shared boner (which is both a feat of biology and oddly appropriate, since we shared a cannoli later in the afternoon).
- You can't read into training camp scrimmages too much, but I will say that if an alien landed in Tarrytown and observed any of this weekend's practices, it would think Landry Fields was first on the swingman depth chart. It's hard to keep track of whether Fields is actually asserting himself more than Wilson Chandler and Bill Walker or if he's just getting to spin more, but those two have been silent by comparison.
- Also, the alien would probably sample some Nicky's pizza. Best slice in White Plains.
- Danilo Gallinari provided the usual fare (some threes, some decent defense), and also appeared to really book it in transition. He was often on the money end of the fast break, and that includes a few finishes with contact.
- Ronny Turiaf had one pretty nice block, but we didn't see much from him otherwise.
- Andy Rautins was pesky (if not a little dirty) on defense, but as was the case in Summer League, just can't seem to connect from downtown. He's going need to pick that up, like...soon if he'd like to play in a game with a scoreboard after this week.
- Kelenna Azubuike's knee rehabilitation exercises bear an odd resemblance to the Dougie.
- Still no Bobby Flay.
That's a wrap, folks. Big thanks as always to the Knicks for letting P&T invade their situation. Charlie and I are headed out this evening, but we'll scour the web to keep y'all fresh on the goings on here in Tarrytown and in Europe this coming week. Thanks for reading, everybody. I and Charlie love you.