Posts Tagged ‘Tyshawn Taylor’

Nets Take Laughingstock Title Away From Knicks


VIDEO: The Knicks thump the Nets in a 30-point win

BROOKLYN – As the Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks accumulated a surprisingly sad 8-26 cumulative record, it became abundantly clear that neither team could defend to save its season. Entering Thursday’s matchup of the busted boroughs, the Knicks ranked 28th defensively and the Nets ranked 30th.

Only one of the two teams took advantage of this fact, and the Knicks ran away with a 113-83 victory at Barclays Center, ending their nine-game losing streak.

On Wednesday, Carmelo Anthony said his team was “the laughingstock of the league.” But 24 hours later, they’ve been stripped of that title.

The Nets have the worst 3-point defense in the NBA, allowing their opponents to shoot 40.3 percent from beyond the arc entering Thursday’s game. They’re slow and deliberate on both ends of the floor, but really lack the foot speed to help in the paint and then recover to the 3-point line. So it only takes a dribble drive or a ball reversal for their opponent to get an open look from the outside.

The Knicks knew this, moved the ball and fired away on Thursday, hitting a season-high 16 threes on 27 attempts. Anthony (six assists and only 12 shots) shared the ball, Iman Shumpert (5-for-7 from 3-point range) shot with confidence, and the Knicks looked like the team they were last season, when they set an NBA record for 3-point makes and attempts, ranked third in offensive efficiency, and racked up 54 wins.

Against the league’s third-worst defense, the Nets should have been similarly efficient. With Andrea Bargnani and Amar’e Stoudemire as two of their three rotation bigs, the Knicks have consistently been torched on pick-and-rolls this season, often escorting opposing ball-handlers to the basket.

Yet the Nets went a good 10 minutes of the first quarter without running a pick-and-roll once. They too often tried to run their offense through the post, which allowed Bargnani and Stoudemire to stay stationary. The few times they did make those guys move, they got good shots.

Part of that is coaching. Though Brook Lopez led all scorers with 24 points, the Nets’ offense could have been a lot more effective as a whole if he was catching the ball on the move more than in the post. Jason Kidd has to find a way to get the ball and his players moving offensively. It’s far too early to say that hiring him was a mistake, but we’ve seen enough to say that he’s not a very good coach right now.

Injuries are obviously an issue. The Nets are still without Deron Williams, by far their biggest threat off the dribble. With Williams sitting out for the 10th time in the last 11 games, point guard duties were again left to Shaun Livingston and Tyshawn Taylor. Livingston is athletic, but not all that quick. Taylor is quick, but shaky and inexperienced.

Still, Brooklyn could have run more pick-and-rolls with both, or with Joe Johnson, and just tried to make the New York defense move. They didn’t and they lost by 30.

Both Kidd and Kevin Garnett cited the injuries when discussing their struggles after the game. Garnett added that the Nets are making changes in the wake of Lawrence Frank‘s sudden departure from the bench.

“Those things play a big part into this,” Garnett said. “I’m a firm believer when we’re whole and we have our team full throttle, then that’s what I believe in. Obviously, I believe in the guys that’s put on the floor and we’re going to give it an effort, but when you’re playing teams, you want to play at your whole. That’s what I believe in. And I’m not going to believe anything else until we are whole.”

Before the game, Kidd said that “we all feel confident we have enough to win.” After the game, he asked not to be judged until his team is healthy.

“I think you get evaluated by being whole,” he said. “It starts there. And then once that occurs, then you’re evaluated. That’s as simple as it gets.”

Yes, the Nets are missing four of their top eight guys. And Williams’ importance became even more clear on Thursday. But the Nets still lost at home … by 30 points … to a team that hadn’t won in three weeks and is missing its most important player. The injury excuse only goes so far. And while Williams will help the Brooklyn offense, the defense isn’t going to start looking like that of the Heat upon his return.

Tyson Chandler’s eventual return isn’t going to solve all New York’s problems either. The Knicks are still a long way from digging out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves, especially because they don’t get to play the Nets again until Jan. 20. But they do have a relatively soft schedule over the next two weeks and certainly found some confidence Thursday.

Will that translate into a run up the standings? Even if it doesn’t, at least they’re not the laughingstock of the league anymore.

Morning Shootaround — Nov. 28


VIDEO: The Daily Zap for games played Nov. 27

NEWS OF THE MORNING

Report: Cavs looking to deal Waiters | Knicks have lengthy postgame talk | ‘Cupgate’ in Brooklyn

No. 1: Report: Cavs shopping Waiters – By just about every statistical measure, Cavs guard Dion Waiters is having a bit of a sophomore slump. His shooting percentage has fallen from 41.2 percent as a rookie to 39.9 percent, and his points per game (13.8) and assists per game (2.3) are down, too. Part of the reason for his drop in numbers might be due to the relationship — or lack thereof — that he has with his teammates. According to ESPN.com’s Chris Broussard, the Cavs are shopping Waiters, who has had some clashes with his teammates this season:

Three teams the Cavaliers are known to have spoken with are the New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers, the sources said. The Cavs’ targets are Iman Shumpert in New York, Evan Turner in Philadelphia and Luol Deng in Chicago, sources said.

It is believed Cleveland has reached out to other clubs as well.

Waiters, whom the Cavaliers drafted with the No. 4 pick in 2012, has a contentious relationship with several teammates, including star point guard Kyrie Irving, and sources say he is open to being traded. In fact, although Waiters has not demanded a trade, he brought up the subject in a three-hour meeting last week with coach Mike Brown and general manager Chris Grant, according to sources.

“It’s just nonsense,” Waiters said of the trade rumors following his season-high 24 points in the team’s 95-84 loss to Miami. “There’s been things thrown out there that haven’t been true at all.”

The Cavaliers are looking to shake things up after a 4-11 start. Part of their problem has been the dysfunction in their locker room. Waiters, a 6-foot-4 guard, got into an altercation with forward Tristan Thompson during a players-only meeting after a 29-point loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Nov. 13, sources said.

Sources described the following account:

Irving called the meeting after the game, and every player spoke. When Waiters was given the floor, he criticized Thompson and Irving, accusing them of playing “buddy ball” and often refusing to pass to him. Thompson took umbrage with Waiters’ words and went back at him verbally. The two confronted each other, but teammates intervened before it could escalate into a fight.

However, Waiters and Irving are not close. Waiters believes the Cavaliers have a double standard when it comes to Irving, sources said. Waiters feels that while Irving is allowed to get away with loafing defensively, making turnovers and taking bad shots, he is taken out of games for such things. Waiters has shared his views with Brown and Grant.


VIDEO: Dion Waiters talks about the trade rumors surrounding him

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No. 2: Knicks hold closed-door meeting after loss to Clips — On the heels of a seventh straight loss — this one coming at the hands of the title-contending Clippers in Los Angeles — the Knicks continue to reel and struggle as much as they have all season. They have the third-worst record in the league and another loss would give New York its longest losing streak since 2010. All that negativity and all those bad vibes led the Knicks to hold a postgame team meeting, writes Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com:

After the New York Knicks lost their seventh consecutive game Wednesday night to fall to 3-11 on the season, players and coaches held a 20-minute, closed-door meeting.

“The easiest thing for us to do is just to crumble right now,” Carmelo Anthony said. “We are in a dark place but we have to get out of this. We just have to get out of it.”

“We talked. Everybody talked,” Anthony said. “The players had a meeting, the coaches — everybody had a meeting after the game. We had to talk. We’re trying to figure it out together. We have to put four quarters together. We got to do it for one another. Right now the game is not for nobody. We’re just not making it happen.”

Last season, J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert were two of the big reasons the Knicks won 54 games and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. But both players have struggled this season, and on Wednesday, Smith and Shumpert combined for just nine points on 4-of-14 shooting.

“They have to figure it out, and we have to help them figure it out,” Anthony said. “I really don’t know how we do that but we’re going to keep trying and we’re going to keep trying to figure this out. Them guys have to figure it out on their own, too, and along the way, we all have to be there for one another. The easiest thing would be for us to go our separate ways and separate this team in the locker room but we have to be here for one another right now. The hardest thing to do right now is to remain positive. I know it’s tough but we have to do that.”

Knicks point guard Raymond Felton started Wednesday after missing the previous four games with a back injury, but his return wasn’t enough to improve the team’s fortunes.

“It hurts. It’s something that no team wants,” Felton said. “We don’t want it. We’re not used to it. It’s mind-boggling. I can’t really put it into words. We’ve got to keep fighting. We’ve got to figure this out, someway, somehow.”

“We’re not struggling,” Metta World Peace said. “It’s part of life. You know how life is. We had a bad hair day, you know?”

World Peace signed with the Knicks in the offseason, passing up an opportunity to stay in Los Angeles with the Clippers, largely because of the lure of winning in New York.

“I honestly didn’t even know who the coach was when I was coming to New York,” World Peace said. “I just wanted to win a championship; I didn’t even know who was coaching. I didn’t care. It could have been Aunt Jemima. They could have had the syrup coaching. I was coming here regardless. I just wanted to win a championship here.”

Knicks coach Mike Woodson has come under scrutiny after the team’s poor start but believes they have to have faith in the process and believe they are a win away from turning their season around.

“It’s something we haven’t experienced the last two years but we just have to stay the course,” Woodson said. “This is no time to panic and feel that you can’t get out of it. You win one game and that gets your confidence back going and there’s no telling what can happen so we just have to stay the course, keep grinding and see what happens.”


VIDEO: Carmelo Anthony talks about the Knicks’ postgame meeting

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No. 3: Did Kidd intentionally spill his soda? — The Lakers seemingly had last night’s game against the Nets in Brooklyn in hand, building a lead to as much as 27 points. But the Nets surged back in the second half and managed to tie the game late in the fourth quarter. With 8.3 seconds left in the game and L.A. nursing a 96-94 lead, Nets coach Jason Kidd spilled his soda in a move some are questioning whether it was intentional or not, writes Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork.com:

With 8.3 seconds left in Wednesday’s game against the Los Angeles Lakers and his team out of timeouts, Kidd, who was holding a cup of soda, appeared to say “hit me” to point guard Tyshawn Taylor in order to stop the game so the team could draw up a last-second offensive play.

After Lakers guard Jodie Meeks made the first of a pair of free throws, giving his team a 96-94 lead, Taylor walked toward Kidd near the sideline and collided with his coach, who was holding a cup of soda at the time. The cup of soda spilled on to the court. While it was being cleaned up, the coaching staff drew up a last-second play. Taylor was subbed out of the game for forward Mirza Teletovic.

Adding to the chaos of the moment, while Nets assistant John Welch drew up the team’s final play, two Lakers appeared to be in the middle of the huddle.

Meeks then made the second free throw, and on the ensuing Brooklyn possession, small forward Paul Pierce missed a 3-pointer that would’ve tied the game with 2.2 seconds remaining. The Nets ended up losing to the Lakers 99-94 at Barclays Center.

“Cup slipped out of my hand while I was getting Ty,” Kidd said of “Cupgate.” “Sweaty palms. I was never good with the ball.

“In the heat of the battle, you’re trying to get guys in and out of the game, and the cup fell out of my hand.”

Video replays appeared to show Kidd saying “Hit me,” something Taylor flatly denied.

Said Taylor: “No [Kidd didn’t say that]. I wasn’t paying attention. I just kind of bumped him. I didn’t even know he was holding [anything]. [But] coach was drinking a soda on the sideline. I was like, ‘What’s he doing?’

“It could ice a free throw shooter and be a timeout when you don’t have one, but that wasn’t the thought process. I was just coming out, and he was in my way. ‘Coach, get out of my way, bro.’ “


VIDEO: Jason Kidd spills his soda during the closing moments of the Lakers-Nets game

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SOME RANDOM HEADLINES: The Sixers got Thaddeus Young back in the lineup last night after he had missed some games due to a family issue … Andris Biedrins is practicing with the Jazz, but his return date is unknownKendall Marshall, the 13th pick of the 2012 Draft, will enter the NBA Development League

ICYMI Of The Night: Bulls forward Carlos Boozer gets a lot of (deserved) flak for how he defends the paint. After what Rodney Stuckey did to him, I doubt we’ll see him contest a shot again anytime soon …


VIDEO: Rodney Stuckey gets up to dunk it over Carlos Boozer

Orlando Summer League Tips Off Sunday

HANG TIME, Texas — You’ve got rookies often trying to wildly impress, second-year players who have a better understanding of what is expected and a few veterans who are hoping to get another taste of the big time.

The Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League tips off Sunday with some familiar names from the 2013 Draft and plenty of other hopefuls trying to crack an NBA roster.

NBA Summer LeagueNine first-round picks — led by No. 2 Victor Oladipo, No. 8 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and No. 9 Trey Burke – will take part in the six days of competition that will take place on the Magic’s practice court at Orlando’s Amway Center. The games are not open to the public and will only be attended by media and league personnel. All games will be shown on NBA TV.

A new format will be added this summer with two extra teams and one extra day added to the schedule. Under the new format, each team will play five games over the six-day event, concluding with a championship day. Standings will be based on a seven-point system for each game — three points for a win and one point for winning each quarter.

Here’s a quick look at roster highlights of the 10 teams that will participate:

Boston Celtics — It’s a whole new ballgame for the Celtics’ rebuilding program and there would seem to be plenty of room for new faces to earn a ticket to Boston now that Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Doc Rivers are all gone. New coach Brad Stevens will be on hand to observe, but leading the team will be assistant coach Jay Larranaga. First-round pick Kelly Olynyk, obtained by trade from Dallas, will be the biggest name on the roster, though last year’s draftee Fab Melo is physically bigger. Avery Bradley is being given a rest from duty and Jared Sullinger is still recovering from back surgery.

Brooklyn Nets – The remade and reloaded Nets will have first round pick Mason Plumlee suiting up for the first time along with a pair of last season’s veterans Tornike Shengelia and Tyshawn Taylor. But all eyes during the week will surely on the rookie on the sidelines. After a 19-year playing career that will surely send him to the Hall of Fame, Jason Kidd is taking no time off and going right to the bench. It will be most interesting to see if Kidd is as good in this transition as he was on the court.

Detroit Pistons — Andre Drummond arrived in Orlando a year ago with something to prove to the doubters and then went back to Detroit and showed that he was not merely a summer fling. Drummond will return, but is not expected to play the full slate of five games. The Pistons will have their entire rookie class of 2013 — Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Tony Mitchell and Peyton Siva. New coach Maurice Cheeks may have his work cut out resurrecting the Pistons at the NBA level, but the summer roster is quite capable.

Houston Rockets — After all their maneuvering and salary cap gymnastics to try to land free agent Dwight Howard, the Rockets did not have a first-round pick this year, but may have gotten first-round quality in point guard Isaiah Canaan. Terrence Jones, a No. 1 from a year ago, will be on the team and continuing to show that he’s a keeper and this Houston bunch is also loaded with Patrick Beverley and Greg Smith.

Indiana Pacers – It seems like much longer than just four years ago that Jonny Flynn was the No. 6 pick in the 2009 draft and maybe that’s because he’s mostly been on the outside everywhere he’s gone, trying to justify that selection and prove that he belongs. Now he’s back from playing in Australia and trying to get that third guard spot with the Pacers, who are also bringing in Donald Sloane. This year’s first round pick Solomon Hill will join holdovers Miles Plumlee, Orlando Johnson and Ben Hansbrough from last season’s roster.

Miami Heat — After winning back-to-back NBA titles, the Heat aren’t taking the summer off. In fact, they’re working overtime, the only franchise to be fielding teams at both Orlando and Las Vegas. Miami didn’t have a first-round pick — remember, it was traded for that LeBron fellow. The rosters will be led by last season holdover center Jarvis Varnado and second-round pick James Ennis, a swingman out of Long Beach State. A couple of high profile college guards, Larry Drew II of UCLA and Myck Kabongo of Texas will play for the Heat. Joining the team in Orlando only are Cedric Jackson, Ian Clark, Dewayne Dedmon and D.J. Stephens.

Oklahoma City Thunder — While three rookies Steven Adams, Andre Roberson and Grant Jerrett will be on hand for their Thunder debuts, most eyes of the coaching staff and back in OKC will be on holdovers from the main roster Reggie Jackson, Jeremy Lamb and Perry Jones. Jackson dazzled with his play in Orlando last summer, giving the first hint that he’d be ready to step into the point guard job when Russell Westbrook went down.

Orlando Magic — When it looked like everybody was losing their minds at the top of the draft a week ago, Magic GM Rob Hennigan kept his eye on the prize and simply chose his man Victor Oladipo. Is he a point guard or a shooting guard? Or is he just ready to do anything the Magic ask in the backcourt? Forward Romero Osby, a second round pick, has a lot of folks saying he’s a sleeper. Second-year men Maurice Harkless and Andrew Nicholson are also on the roster.

Philadelphia 76ers —
While many Sixers fans are still reeling from the draft night trade that shipped out the young All-Star and favorite Jrue Holiday, this will be everyone’s first chance to see how his successor measures up.  Michael Carter-Williams will be given the keys to the offense in Philly when the season starts in October, so consider this his going out to take the test for his driver’s license. Nerlens Noel, the prize that came in the trade for Holiday, will not play as he’s still rehabbing his knee injury.  But Justin Holiday, Jrue’s brother, will be back to see if he can stick with the Sixers again.

Utah Jazz – Top draft pick Trey Burke said on draft night that he hopes to be the Jazz’ starting point guard on opening night next season. So he’ll start to press his case by running the summer show. Rookie center Rudy Gobert hopes to get in a few runs maybe by the end of the show in Orlando. He’s currently trying to work out a buyout of his contract with his French team and will need FIBA clearance. Center Enes Kanter is still recovering from shoulder surgery and neither Gordon Hayward or Derrick Favors will play, because they’re both part of the Team USA camp in August. Jazz fans will get to see a Stockton back in uniform. Hall of Famer John Stockton’s son Michael is a free agent signee.