Mr. Smile: a Deep Dive into Francisco Lindor

Note: this post was originally published for MetsMerized. Give them a click!

How we feeling, Mets fans?

It’s true – Francisco Lindor, Mr. Smile, is officially headed to Queens. Just as the Dodgers did last offseason, and in shockingly similar fashion, the Mets have acquired a career-prime, marketable superstar to underscore new owner Steve Cohen’s stamp on the team (if that wasn’t strong enough already).

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Game 1 of Season 2: RJ Barrett’s 2020-21 Debut

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland. Give them a click!

When asked in The Strickland’s preseason roundtable what Thibs’ most frustrating lineup trend would be, I said “Elf/guard/RJ/Randle/Mitch is my nightmare, and not because I don’t like RJ and Mitch, but because I do! These guys need the opportunity to not only play with spacing and show the front office whether or not they can be pieces on a winning team one day, but also grow with their current young’uns as much as possible. I’d rather see RJ come off the bench than stand on the wing and watch Elf/Randle buddy ball, or drive to the rim into seven help defenders at once.”

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Prime Mitch: A Robinson Deep Dive

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland. Give them a click!

Knicks basketball is back.

It’s been a whirlwind of a month, from the draft to free agency to training camp, and there’s obviously a ton to talk about in the world of Knicks basketball. They have a brand new 8th-overall draft pick who hails from New York City, a bunch of fresh free agent faces on good contracts, and a brand new coaching staff from top to bottom. Despite all that, the most common talking point the past week has been this:

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Optimizing the Knicks’ Offseason

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland. Give them a click!

The New York Knicks are entering yet another pivotal offseason. 

There are a myriad of decisions to be made by the front office: which free agents to add, which current team options to accept or decline (which they did today), and how many minutes to play each player per game once the season actually tips off. Luckily for them, they have a lot of flexibility — they have control over how they use their salary cap, roster spots, and minutes allocations throughout the season. 

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To Be Frank: A Ntilikina Deep Dive

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland. Give them a click!

Hello. Welcome. I see you’re here to read a deep dive about Frank Ntilikina. I sincerely respect the decision.

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No All-Rookie? No problem: Projecting RJ Barrett’s future

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland. Give them a click!

The third pick in the 2019 NBA draft failed to make an All-Rookie team.

However, you’d be hard-pressed to find a Knicks fan that was significantly disappointed by RJ Barrett’s rookie season. Though he didn’t exactly light up the league immediately like Ja Morant or Zion Williamson, RJ showed a little bit of everything in what was a significantly featured role for the Knicks. Operating at an incredibly high volume, he filled up the stat sheet like few other rookies in the league – and few veterans on his own team:

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Optimizing the Best NBA Expansion Team

Assuming league recovery post-COVID-19, an expansion team (or more) in the NBA feels like more of a “when” than an “if”. Growing team valuations, marketable superstars, and worldwide interest has turned basketball into the sport of the future, and there are plenty of places that could use a squad (looking at you, Seattle).

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Making the Switch: Which Starters Should Come Out of the Bullpen?

All MLB pitchers were starters at one point in their careers.

Growing up through Little League, college, and the Minor Leagues, anyone who is eventually good enough to pitch in the majors was likely the superstar ace of most of their previous teams. However, at the highest of levels, many pitchers have to make concessions to their new reality – the fact that they may be better served – and better serve their teams –  coming out of the bullpen as relievers.

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