To Be Frank: A Ntilikina Deep Dive

Note: this post was originally published for The Strickland.

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.

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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Visualizing the NBA’s Trend Toward Positionless Basketball

The NBA has transitioned into a somewhat positionless sport. As the years have gone by, more and more teams have continued to employ lineups that don’t contain centers, or utilize point forwards that guard the paint but facilitate the offense. Players have been thought of less and less as “shooting guards” or “power forwards” and more and more as “wings” or “bigs”. We wanted to visualize this massive change in play style by using data science methods to compare the play style of the current NBA to that of the NBA in the 1980s. Through unsupervised learning, we were able to see how the clustering of player data by position has changed over time, and what that says about how the play style of the league has evolved.

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Left Side, Strong Side – JD Davis & Jeff McNeil

Jeff McNeil and JD Davis are two of the best hitters in baseball.

Hyperbole? You say maybe. I say no.

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An Ode to Mook

Raise a glass.

An ode. A toast, if you will. To Marcus Morris, one of the most respectable yet disrespectable, elating yet frustrating players that have ever played a half-season for the New York Knicks.

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The (Mostly Positive) Early Returns for RJ Barrett

After such a humilating offseason, the New York Knicks need any semblance of hope. They’re currently 1-6 and battling a slew of concerns for this season and beyond. However, they’ve taken solace in the early returns from their #3 overall draft pick in RJ Barrett.

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