Stoudemire willing to move to post… with Olajuwon’s help

28 Comments

Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony have yet to really click on the court, and until they do the ceiling for the Knicks is near their lofty goals. The numbers are clear — when both were on the floor together the Knicks were worse. Stoudemire was a pick-and-roll force while Anthony wants the offense to flow through him more where he creates the shot or play for others.

Which means someone needs to make changes, and Stoudemire seems willing to do that.

Stoudemire is a pick-and-roll player — he shot 60.2 percent and scored 1.22 points per possession last season when he shot as the roll man (via MySynergySports). That accounted for 13 percent of his offense. He got 10 percent of his offense on post touches and shot just 40.5 percent.

But Stoudemire sees the Knicks need for offense out of the post so he has been down in Houston for two weeks working with Hakeem Olajuwon to develop some post moves. The goal is to give him the tools to grow the part of his game that fits better with the Knicks offense.

Stoudemire told MyFoxHouston.com that he is optimistic.

“A lot of moves that he has really, really translate to my game. To now develop a post game is going to be remarkable for me. It’s going to catch a lot of my opponents off guard and it’s going to be a great year for me.”

His teacher told the New York Times it’s going well.

“You won’t believe it,” Olajuwon said in a telephone interview from his ranch outside Houston.

“It’s night and day,” Olajuwon said. “What’s so nice is he wants it; he likes the post. He’s always wanted to play there, but he doesn’t have the moves that would give him that option.”

Now, that is coming from a guy trying to pump up his player in public, so take it with a few grains of salt.

But Knicks fans, you need to give Stoudemire some credit here for the effort. New York brought him and Mike D’Antoni in to run one kind of offense, but really never assembled a roster to play that style. They just threw parts together. Carmelo was part of that, a star but one that was going to change how they played.

Stoudemire is the one trying to make the adjustment. He is trying to expand his game. We’ll see how it works out, we’ll see how many touches he gets on the block. But it’s a step toward making him and ‘Melo work well together. And that is what the Knicks need.

Mario Chalmers trips James Harden, Harden shoves him back (VIDEO)

1 Comment

Memphis came back on an 18-2 run late to in the fourth quarter to knock off the Houston Rockets, a very impressive road win that reminds us Memphis is not a team to be written off.

This is the play everyone will be talking about — James Harden squared up looking for a fight.

Mario Chalmers got knocked down by a Harden screen, and while on the ground tries to trip up Harden, and Harden turns around and shoves him. Harden squared up, but as happens in the NBA everyone stepped in, and nothing actually happened.

Neither man was ejected. The referees called it an offensive foul on Harden for the pick, then there were double technicals. Fines may follow from the league.

Metta World Peace joins Lakers’ G League team as ass’t coach

Getty Images
Leave a comment

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) — Metta World Peace has joined the Los Angeles Lakers’ NBA G League affiliate as a player development coach.

The veteran NBA forward was added to the South Bay Lakers’ staff Monday.

World Peace played 16 NBA seasons for six franchises, including six years with the Lakers from 2009-10 and 2015-17. He was a standout defensive player who won a championship alongside Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol in 2010.

While he hasn’t publicly retired, the forward formerly known as Ron Artest will assist South Bay Lakers head coach Coby Karl and his staff.

World Peace earned the longest suspension in NBA history for his role in the Indiana Pacers’ infamous brawl in the stands at Detroit in November 2004, but he matured into a valued veteran leader for the Lakers.

LaVar Ball calls out Wizards, Marcin Gortat doesn’t think that was smart

Getty Images
3 Comments

“I told him after the game, due to all the riffraff his dad brings he’s going to get a lot of people coming at him. He’s got to be ready for that, and I let him know after the game… (I had to) welcome his little young a** to the NBA.”

That was the Clippers’ Patrick Beverley after he tormented Lonzo Ball on opening night, and he speaks for a number of other players I have heard from who said father LaVar wrote checks that Lonzo is going to have to cash, and guys were going to go at him. Not every night, but enough.

Since that rough opener the rookie has had a decent couple of games — averaging 18.5 points, 11 assists, and eight rebounds a night, not efficient but playing better — going against Eric Bledsoe (a capable defender who had checked out mentally in Phoenix) and Jrue Holiday and the Pelicans. Wednesday night John Wall and the Wizards come to town, and that’s another level of competition.

My least favorite thing about this Lakers season is the way the L.A. media sticks a microphone in front of LaVar Ball after every game. I don’t care about LaVar, in the same way I don’t care about the Kardashians.

But what he said has become a thing. After the Lakers loss to the Pelicans LaVar said, “[The Wizards] better beware cause Lonzo ain’t losing again. Not in the same week!”

Wizards’ center Marcin Gortat thought that was funny.

First off, Lonzo is going to lose twice in a week a lot this season — the Lakers are not a good team.

Second, Wall is a top-five NBA point guard by any standard, an All-NBA player who is far more than just quick (although he is that, too). He can shoot, he’s an aggressive defender, and he knows how to set up teammates. He’s going to be more than a handful for Ball. To put it kindly.

Whatever happens Wednesday night (most likely Wall smokes Lonzo) we know one thing for sure: LaVar will say something outlandish. And it will become a thing. The game is secondary for that marketing effort.

Lakers to break out powder blue Minneapolis throwback uniforms this season

Courtesy Lakers
6 Comments

The Lakers have gone a few different directions with alternate uniforms in recent years, such as the black version, but when you have a classic brand you shouldn’t mess with it. Same with the Celtics, Bulls, Sixers, and other classic uniforms — if you’re going to go alternate then go older.

The Lakers are doing just that — going back to Minneapolis.

They are breaking out the George Mikan era jerseys, starting on Wednesday vs. Wizards and in four other games later in the season.

I like it.

Now if the Lakers could get George Mikan in the paint it would help.