This is a thing now. bluecheese will be doing these once a week or so. Enjoy! - Seth
Well it's finally happened folks! As part of my ongoing quest to bring to light every obscure fact about the Knicks, I will now be writing a weekly column here on P&T recapping that week that was. There may be laughs (unlikely), and there may be tears (even more unlikely), but most importantly there will be a bunch of facts that I can all but guarantee you won't find anywhere else.
This week started positively, with an overtime win over Phoenix extending the winning streak to 5 games, before three straight crushing defeats and a couple of significant injuries that have left us searching for answers once more. But you knew that already, and when I tell you things you already know, I'm not doing my job correctly.
Player of the Week - Carmelo Anthony
Melo could win this award every week, but I'll try to spread the wealth. When a player puts his name in the company of such greats as Melo did this week though, it's hard not to reward him. On Monday he became the first Knick since Patrick Ewing in 1997 to score 29 points and grab 16 rebounds in an overtime win. He followed that up on Tuesday by joining Dwyane Wade and Tony Parker as the only players in the NBA this season with two streaks of consecutive games with exactly 9 field goals made. On Thursday Melo became the first Knick to score 18 points in the first quarter since he did it himself a season ago. Finally on Friday, Melo became the second player in NBA history to shoot 4-23 from the field and still grab 20 rebounds in a game, joining Tim Duncan, who did it on February 17, 2010. It was an up-and-down week for sure, but Melo proved this week that his name should be uttered in the same breath as some other NBA greats.
Opposing Player of the Week - Alex Len
This was a hotly contested award this week. Leandro Barbosa and Goran Dragic took advantage of FARTDOG and Al Jefferson and Blake Griffin took advantage of whatever acronym we decide to give Andrea Bargnani's defense. In the end, though, there was really no competition. Up three with mere seconds left in overtime, the Knicks for once employed the foul to prevent a game-tying shot strategy to perfection. Channing Frye split his free throw attempts and essentially sealed the lone Knicks win of the week.
Lost in that play was what was quite possibly the greatest statistical moment of the season. After Frye missed his first attempt, Jeff Hornacek brought Alex Len into the game for the first time all night to try to grab a rebound off a missed second free throw. Len wouldn't get a chance to do so however, as Frye made the shot. The Knicks called timeout, and Len was removed from the game. Since '05-'06, the NBA has kept track of the amount of seconds each player plays in a game, instead of just rounding off to the nearest minute. In that timeframe, Alex Len is the first Knicks opponent to ever be credited for playing 0:00 in one game!
Bluecheese's Rambling Stat of the Week - (WARNING! May not end in a coherent thought)
On Monday night, Carmelo Anthony scored 29 points and grabbed 16 rebounds to lead the Knicks to a 98-96 victory over the Suns. The last time the Knicks beat the Suns 98-96 was January 25, 1994. Charles Oakley had 6 points and 18 rebounds that night, one of two career games with those numbers. The other came on February 14, 1993, a 102-100 3OT loss to the Magic in which Shaquille O'Neal had 21 points, 19 rebounds, and 9 blocks. It would take another eleven years for a Knicks opponent to record a double-double with 9 blocks, until Samuel Dalembert managed to achieve that feat on April 3, 2004. The Knicks best player in that game was Stephon Marbury, who had 20 points and 12 assists, his fifth career game with those exact numbers. The first time Marbury did that was for the Timberwolves on January 19, 1998. In another game that night, the Knicks beat the Celtics 98-82. The leading rebounder in that game was Chris Dudley with 13, the most rebounds Dudley had grabbed in a Knicks game since November 14, 1995, when he had 17 boards while playing against the Knicks. That night the Knicks were led by Patrick Ewing, who scored 29 points and grabbed 16 rebounds. It was the last 29-16 game in Knicks history...until Melo did it on Monday night!
Last Week in Jared Jeffries History
On January 13, 2010, Jeffries had 15 points and 9 rebounds to help lead the Knicks to a 93-92 victory over the 76ers. That game remains the last time in the history of the NBA that a player has had 15 & 9 in a one point win on the road!
Last Week in Jared Jeffries Shot Tracker History
The Knicks Did It First
There were a few non-Knicks stats that would have been fairly impressive last week, had the Knicks not accomplished them first:
4. On Wednesday, the Magic shot 51% from the field in a 128-125 3OT loss to the Bulls. The last NBA team before Orlando to maintain a shooting percentage of over 50% in a triple overtime game: the Knicks, who shot 56.3% in a 151-145 win over the Pistons on December 27, 2006.
6. On Monday, the Mavericks had three reserves (Brandan Wright, DeJuan Blair, and Wayne Ellington) all grab at least six rebounds in their win over the Magic. The last team before Dallas to have three reserves with at least six rebounds in a win: the Knicks, 8 days earlier in their win over those same Mavericks.
Movie of Last Week - Contagion
So first Tyson Chandler's kids get sick, then Tyson gets sick, then Iman Shumpert gets sick, then Cole Aldrich gets sick, then I get sick (seriously, I was also battling an upper respiratory infection last week that I can only assume somehow came from Chandler. Come to think of it, I did get sick almost immediately after going to the Knicks-Pistons game two weeks ago...), and finally both Kenyon Martin and Amare Stoudemire sprain their ankles. Don't be fooled into thinking for one second that the ankle injuries are unrelated to the virus that was spread throughout the Knicks locker room.
Moral of Last Week
Stay away from Tyson Chandler's children.