Julius Randle, the Most Improved Player of Game 2

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

Julius Randle has not been himself.

The Knicks’ newly minted star put up just 15 points in each of Games 1 and 2, the first time all season long he scored 15 or fewer in back to back games. He clearly hasn’t looked himself, and whether it’s the Hawks or himself, somebody has been in his head. However, midway through game 2, Randle made some concrete adjustments that could change the course of the series – or at the very least, force the Hawks to go back to the drawing board.

The first half of Game 2, however, wasn’t it.

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The Ego and Alter-Ego of Nerlens Noel

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

Mitchell Robinson is good at basketball. 

We know this. We have spoken at length about this. Mitchell Robinson was anchoring one of the top five defenses in basketball at 22 years old. Unfortunately, Mitchell Robinson also broke his hand.

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The Butterfly Effect: Has Immanuel Quickley unexpectedly become the Knicks’ best asset?

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

I never check a weather forecast until 1 or 2 days before.

It’s simply far too difficult to predict – infinitesimal changes on one side of the globe can cause massive swings in the climate on the other. As the old saying goes, a butterfly flapping its wings in Tokyo can cause a tornado in Tennessee. The Butterfly Effect – a tiny, seemingly irrelevant occurrence may cause colossal consequences weeks, or even years, later.

On July 1st, 2019, the New York Knicks verbally agreed to sign Reggie Bullock to a 2-year, $21 million contract. 

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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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Tanking is Over, Long Live the Process

Tanking has been a pest for the NBA for over a decade, but no team embraced tanking as blatantly as the Philadelphia 76ers. 47 wins over 246 games, winning one out of every five games over three years, was rewarded with four young players with very cheap rookie contracts: Joel Embiid (4 years / $20M), Jahlil Okafor (4 years / $21M), Ben Simmons (4 years / $27M), and Markelle Fultz (4 years / $37M). 

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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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Central Division Preview: The Bucks (Kinda) Run it Back

Welcome to the fifth of the Corner Three 2019-2020 NBA division-by-division season previews. In each of these previews, we use RJ Garcia’s player-by-player ratings (based on on/off metrics and career trajectory) and per-game minutes projections (taking into account potential minutes lost to injury) to project overall team quality for the upcoming season. RJ and Derek Reifer also provide their own analyses and commentary to provide any context and additional insights.

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Southeast Division Preview: From Salary Capped to Salary Floored

Welcome to the fourth of the Corner Three 2019-2020 NBA division-by-division season previews. In each of these previews, we use RJ Garcia’s player-by-player ratings (based on on/off metrics and career trajectory) and per-game minutes projections (taking into account potential minutes lost to injury) to project overall team quality for the upcoming season. RJ and Derek Reifer also provide their own analyses and commentary to provide any context and additional insights.

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Southwest Division Season Preview: The [Redacted] might be the Title Favorite

Welcome to the second of the Corner Three 2019-2020 NBA division-by-division season previews. In each of these previews, we use RJ Garcia’s player-by-player ratings (based on on/off metrics and career trajectory) and per-game minutes projections (taking into account potential minutes lost to injury) to project overall team quality for the upcoming season. RJ and Derek Reifer also provide their own analyses and commentary to provide any context and additional insights.

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The Uniquely Horrible 2019 NBA Draft

If you’ve been following the NBA Draft this year at all, you’ve heard countless times that this is a weak one outside of the top two, or maybe three, guys – depending on which expert you happen to be reading at the time. This prevailing thought is true, however, most NBA fans don’t seem to be realizing the ramifications of just how weak it is.

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