Hello from Las Vegas, cheesefaces! Yesterday got kinda wild, and that was even before I walked across the UNLV campus in 100-degree heat to get to an In-N-Out. The J.R. Smith surgery news stole the attention later on (good job public relating, Knicks!), but Metta World Peace did become a Knick yesterday afternoon, bringing the roster to 11 men (counting C.J. Leslie). That number will increase to up to 20 heading into training camp before it's pared down to 15 for the start of the season. Some updates on all of the above:
- I like cheeseburgers. It's too hot here, though. Much too hot. I think I almost died for a cheeseburger.
- F(rank Is)ol(a)ks are pretty pissed off about the J.R. Smith news. The report came out in the Knicks-iest fashion possible, which is to say: remote and untimely in a way that invited aspersions at every level of the organization and left all question-answering to J.R.'s own painkiller-addled tweets. They've since tried to walk the story back via Marc Berman-- J.R.'s patella injury was merely a "chip", the team knew he'd need surgery all along, other teams also knew he'd need surgery, the timing of the surgery was most convenient for the medical staff-- but their explanations only muddy the story. I can't figure out-- nor do I particularly care-- if and how the Knicks mismanaged the surgery and whether they could have leveraged it into a friendlier contract. I do feel pretty certain the Knicks could have saved themselves some ire if they took time to answer some questions and didn't just fart out the news minutes after leaving the Thomas & Mack Center yesterday.
Most of all, I hope J.R.'s going to be okay when it's time for basketball. A "chip", if that's a real thing, sounds a lot friendlier than a torn patella tendon. As Isola's been pointing out this morning, it'll take J.R. some time to find his sea legs once he's cleared to play.
We'll keep abreast of J.R.'s recovery as best we can. But yeah, the Knicks have a tendency to keep the breasts to themselves. It makes things needlessly weird and tense.
Those were things regarding the 11 men under contract. Let's talk about those remaining roster spots:
- Toure' Murry told Babolat Slimmervat he's been formally invited to training camp, which is great. I like Toure' Murry and I think he can help the Knicks. (Also, I'm pretty sure it's Toure', not Touré, but the spelling and pronunciation are still a mystery here).
- I doubt the current lot plus Murry (if he makes the team) would constitute a satisfactory guard depth chart. They've gotta add another ball-handler via free agency, right? On that front, Jared Zwerling names Aaron Brooks again. There are plenty others still out there, including guys in whom the Knicks have previously expressed interest: Nate Robinson, Charles Jenkins, Jamaal Tinsley, D.J. Augustin, Mo Williams (who might take a pay cut for a contender HEY MO THE KNICKS WON TWO GAMES AGAINST THE TEAM THAT ALMOST BEAT THE CHAMPS!), Beno Udrih, Sebastian Telfair...and so on. I'm working off this list. The Knicks should probably be able to find an extra point guard at the minimum if they want one. It might just take a while.
- Note that Zwerling carries the Kenyon Martin interest along, too.
- Zwerling, probably through an agent, hears the Knicks are keeping an eye on 2012 training camp invite Henry Sims, who they faced Monday in that loss to the Pelicans. He's bulked up quite a bit since last year. That's all I noticed about him yesterday.
- C.J. Leslie, who stands to receive some mentoring if he sticks with the team, expressed some enthusiasm for the World Peace signing (while subtly insinuating he isn't that good anymore?).
That's pretty much the extent of what I've seen since yesterday. I'll update if I find anything else and encourage you to pass along whatever you might find. The SummerKnicks' regular season is over and they won't have a game today. We'll know their seeding and schedule once today's games are complete.
Mmhmm. Have a lovely day!