Well, that was... let’s just be nice and say “not great.”
The SummerKnicks clearly have the same problems as the regular Knicks with SEGABABAs, as our little diaper dandies came out looking flatter than a crepe being run over by a steamroller driven by Eddy Curry.
There’s not much to celebrate here—our dudes were down by as much as 35 at one point, and our leading scorer played like butt. And yet somehow, the Knicks got a point in the standings for outscoring the Pistons in the fourth quarter. Summer League is weird.
Let’s get into some notes:
- I feel pretty confident saying that Damyean Dotson is going to be a good NBA player. The dude can really, realllllly shoot it. The Knicks seemingly started the game down 20, but the only reason they were even a little bit close early on was because of Dotson. He had 13 points, went 3-6 from three and played some OK defense—I wouldn’t be surprised if we see that same stat line from him a few times this year in the big leagues.
- Jamel Artis just doesn’t stop moving, which was refreshing from a team that mostly looked lethargic today. He quietly scored an efficient 11 points on 4-7 from the field, but also somehow wound up with a team-worst -17 plus/minus. Still though, I liked what I saw from him. He seems patient and lets the game come to him.
- Louis “The Library” Labeyrie had a quiet double-double with 10 points and 11 boards. He looks like he’s finally come into his own physically, but I still have serious doubts he’d be able to hack it against legit NBA bigs. Still, though, not a bad day.
- Chasson Randle was not very good for the second straight day, but on the bright side, he scored a team-leading 16 points and got nuclear from downtown to end the game.
- Don’t let the box score fool you, though—Chasson really did not do that well today. Maybe it’s just a result of being one of the “vets” on the team, but it seemed like he was putting it on himself to be top option on offense, which wasn’t a great look for him. If someone had told me he had somehow scored negative points before his eruption late in the game, I wouldn’t have been all that surprised.
- The Knicks seemingly all dined on grilled cheese sandwiches and mozzarella sticks before the game with explicit instructions to not wipe their hands afterwards — nobody wanted to move around on offense or defense, and nobody could hold onto the damn ball.
- I was all set to write about how Luke Kennard cooked the Knicks because Phil Jackson fell asleep during his workout, and then I looked at the box score and saw he only shot 39% from the floor and 1-5 from three for 14 points. I don’t know why, but it certainly felt like he cooked the Knicks.
- On the other hand, Henry Ellenson and Eric Moreland absolutely wrecked our summer bros. Moreland dropped 15 points on 5-6 from the floor, and Ellenson was all over the place with 14 points, seven boards and four assists.
- The SummerPistons essentially got whatever they wanted in the paint. The SummerKnicks rolled out a very Knicks-like welcome mat there all day and essentially let the Pistons come and go to the hoop as they pleased.
- Luke Kornet’s shot was not falling today. Therefore, he had a pretty bad day.
- Xavier Rathan-Mayes was given the keys to the offense for a little while, and he didn’t seem terribly comfortable in that role to me. He wound up with three assists to two turnovers, but it just looked like he couldn’t wait to get the ball out of his hands when he got across half court.
- Marshall Plumlee was really intent on iso-ing down low and looking for his own shot today. The result was he and his T-rex arms getting stuffed what seemed like 42 times. Similar to Randle, Plums had a seemingly-respectable 10 points and nine boards, until you realize he shot 4-13. Woof.
- Ognjen Jaramaz played three minutes. Canyon Barry and Dominique Jones combined to play 30 minutes. What. The. Fuck.
- Speaking of Barry, he got his first underhanded free throw attempt today, which he made. Immediately after the make, the MSG cameras cut to Jeff Hornacek laughing. This is why nobody else is willing to shoot free throws underhand.
- Again, don’t let the box score fool you about Chasson Randle today:
This pretty much sums up Chasson Randle's day today pic.twitter.com/oPSnayqzKh— Alex Wolfe (@WReedingRainbow) July 2, 2017
- Plumlee had a sequence at the end of the first half that basically summed up the Knicks’ day—he got the ball in the post, tried to weave through three guys for a layup, it rimmed out, he almost got his own board, and then he fell on his face. Yup.
- The Frank Ntilikina commercials on MSG are cruel and unusual punishment right now—I hope our French octopus is ready to rock soon.
One positive to take from today—things probably can’t get much worse! Here’s hoping we maybe get a dose of some Ntillmatic and Jaramaz tomorrow against the SummerThunder...ah, crap.
Hornacek says Ntilikina (knee soreness) is out tomorrow but may play in the final two Summer League games.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) July 2, 2017