Since many of us aren't at home in front of the TV at 11 am on a Tuesday (Not really sure why. Does everyone have jury duty?), I took some notes on "Knicks Training Camp Live", MSG's live televised broadcast of the Knicks' Tuesday practice. Here are those notes (some of the earlier timestamps are totally made up, I'm afraid):
- James White sits out practice with a sore right hamstring, but he's on the floor. Marcus Camby's out there, too, despite being mid-way through his calf recovery (his leg looks like it's covered in tape of some sort). Nobody gets to hang out in the training room when there are cameras in the building.
11:00 AM- We get our first look at the Knicks. They're standing in a circle listening to Mike Woodson talk. He's inaudible, but this video gives us a good sense of the kind of stuff he's saying in practice. He's kinda mean.
11:07- Lots of Melo and Amar'e cross-screen practice. Amar'e is wearing a compression shirt with his jersey tied around his neck like a keffiyeh.
11:12- Jason Kidd mic'd up. Jason Kidd has an eerie, barely audible speaking voice, but we hear him talk about how Melo reminds of him Dirk Nowitzki, what with all his pump fakes and foul-drawing ability and stuff.
11:18- Just walkin' through sets.
11:30- Clyde pronounces "mecca" as "meck-er", and I feel very thankful to have Clyde back in my life.
11:36- Raymond Felton, mic'd up: "You got me out here cussin' on TV!". We also hear him chat with Kidd about how they're both righty point guards who like to go left. Kidd doesn't really "go" anymore, but point taken.
11:40- They've been stretchin' and stuff for a little while now.
11:50- MSG shows old film of Marcus Camby leaping on teammates' shoulders after winning the Eastern Conference Finals, then cuts to present day Camby sitting cross-legged and shrugging.
11:56 Footage of a film session: They're talking about the pick-and-roll and how the three guys in the paint-- the big, next big, and nail guy-- need to stay in a triangular formation and react to penetration.
12:00- Herb Williams can be seen pedaling an exercise bike with an expression of unbridled glee while the players are running laps.
12:05- Three-man weaves. Henry Sims travels, no call.
12:18- Four-man weave-type things. Everyone travels, no calls.
12:20- Glen Grunwald on Mike Woodson: "When we were in college together, I never thought he'd become a coach." Then he says nice stuff, of course.
12:23- Everybody's practicing free throws. Al Trautwig: "As Clyde always says, you want to practice your free throws when you're tired."
12:24- Rasheed Wallace is on the court standing on one foot and throwing a basketball off the wall with alternating hands. It's part of a balance drill he's doing, but Sheed would totally do that just for funsies. (Here's a photo of some other stuff he was doing with Dave Hancock).
12:27- Five-on-five halfcourt scrimmages begin. Mychel Thompson, again, is in blue with Felton, Melo, Stoudemire, and Chandler. The white team is Kidd, J.R. Smith, Steve Novak, Kurt Thomas, and Henry Sims.
12:28- Raymond Felton ties his shoes. I was hoping he'd represent Team Bunny Ears, but no luck. Ties 'em like some lame-ass adult.
12:28- Kidd banks in a three over great blue defense. Felton did a great job getting over picks and staying in his face.
12:34- Lots of defensive traps being implemented. Smith and Chris Copeland (in for white) trap Felton beautifully near the halfcourt line. He dives and slides on his belly to evade them (penguin style).
12:37- Oscar Bellfield is in at point guard for blue. They swing the ball around the perimeter crisply, culminating in Melo assisting a lovely Thompson three from the left elbow.
12:37- I'm not sure exactly what the specific transgressions are, but teams keep having to run down-and-back sprints when they mess up.
12:38- Lots of 1-5 pick-and-rolls between Chandler and Felton.
12:38- John Shurna drills a jumper over Thompson, who was contesting it nicely.
12:39- Amar'e posts up Chris Copeland, makes a series of nice moves, then airballs a righty hook. On the next possession, he backs down Henry Sims, doesn't bother with all those moves, and banks one in closer to the rim.
12:39- Copeland drills a jumper over Tyson Chandler. Oscar Bellfield comes the other way and hits a nice floater.
12:47- Chandler slips a pick, then catches a beautiful down-the-middle alley-oop from Melo. On the next blue possession, Melo races down the floor and drills a pull-up three early in the clock.
12:48- Kurt Thomas baseline jumper. Same as it ever was.
12:49- Coming out of commercial, MSG goes out of their way to show a lovely Melo-Chandler pick-and-roll that ended in Melo feeding Amar'e cutting from the weak side for a dunk.
12:50- J.R. does a great job staying with Melo on a baseline drive, refusing to bite on a series of pump fakes. When Melo finally gets a shot off, Henry Sims spanks it into oblivion.
12:50- Felton comes over a Chandler screen and drills a pull-up 20-footer.
12:56- Iman Shumpert is shown working with Dave Hopla. He's doing a drill in which he catches a pass, does a quick dribble move, then banks a mid-range shot off flat feet. He's making pretty much all of them.
12:57- MSG shows Shumpert's injury. I weep and vomit and weep vomit.
1:00- Alan Hahn tells a great anecdote about Rasheed Wallace wandering into a big man skill session and demonstrating a few of Kevin Garnett's post moves to Amar'e.
1:01- Trautwig puzzles over some unevenness in Rasheed's compression shirt. Hahn: "I don't know if that's padding or if that's...Rasheed."
1:06- I've never heard anybody refer to the Larry O'Brien trophy as "The Golden Ball" before, but the Knicks keep doing it during camp. I wonder who on the Knicks would make the best seeker. Felton?
1:12- Al Trautwig interviews Woodson and, at one point, asks him to talk into the camera-- "the little black circle"-- and address the fans watching at home. Woodson addresses us, but does not make eye contact because doing that would probably kill us.
1:20- I love these MSG commercials with video footage of Knicks posing for photos. Nothing is less dignified than video of some trying to hold a smile for a few seconds.
And that's pretty much it. Good stuff. "Training Camp Live" will re-air at 9 PM tonight if you'd rather watch it then take my word for it.