Enes Kanter wins WWE 24/7 championship, then immediately loses it


Enes Kanter was a WWE champion… for less than a minute.

WWE’s Raw event came to Madison Square Garden and the former Knick big man returned to the building and went into the ring… to a chorus of boos. Not quite James Dolan level boos, but “you weren’t that great we’re glad you are gone” boos. Which still seems pretty harsh.

So WWE 24/7 champ R-Truth came out to defend him, and Kanter paid him back by shoving R-Truth to the ground, pinning him, and taking the belt. Then showing off his Celtics’ jersey.

But the title didn’t stay with Kanter for long.

Got to say, he seemed to be enjoying himself.

Derrick Rose says Phil Jackson’s devotion to Triangle sunk Knicks


Derrick Rose is on his image rehabilitation tour after a gang rape trial and six years of replacement-level play. He’s got a documentary out to this effect, and now a forthcoming book.

Rose has transparently been attempting to get back in the NBA culture’s good graces, which is unlikely given some of the details of his testimony and his inability to get back to stardom on the court.

Meanwhile, Rose’s experience with the New York Knicks for 64 games in 2016-17 is of interest given the personalities involved — Phil Jackson and Carmelo Anthony, to name a couple.

In an excerpt from his book, Rose said that it was Jackson’s devotion to the Triangle offense that helped doom the Knicks that season. In particular, Rose said that Jackson’s plan didn’t account for the personnel available to him.

Via NY Post:

As for me, I liked Phil, but, come on, man, you’re still running the triangle? He was still forcing them to run it. I’m a slasher, a driving point guard. The triangle is okay, but not for the personnel we had. Melo couldn’t play that way, didn’t want to.

Jo and I used to talk about that all the time. Phil wanted us to play a certain way and we had to listen. What can you do?

Early on in the season, Phil really didn’t force anything. But as time went on, it converted all the way to the triangle and we played through that almost the whole year.

… We were a new team with new players and a new coach, and because of Melo and the way he played, we needed to do something now, and you need some time with that offense.

This is much the same sentiment that many people had during this time in the NBA community. Jackson seemed like he was stuck in a certain era and thought that it was Tex Winter’s system that won him games as opposed to the generational Talent he was blessed with in Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Kobe Bryant, and Shaquille O’Neal.

Several years later, the Knicks aren’t in any better shape and Carmelo doesn’t have an NBA team. For many, it’s possible that that New York team signaled the end of their time making an impact in the NBA

Former Knick, Buck Marshall Plumlee now U.S. Army Ranger

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Marshall Plumlee was a four-year player at Duke, helping the team win a national championship in 2015, who then went on to play 29 games in the NBA between the Knicks and Bucks (he spent much of his two NBA seasons bouncing between the NBA and G-League).

While at Duke he was a member of the ROTC, then became a member of the New York National Guard while with the Knicks. When his NBA career didn’t work out as he hoped, the seven-footer enrolled in the Army.

This weekend, he graduated from Army Rangers school — Plumlee is an Army Ranger. From the military newspaper Stars & Stripes (hat tip to NBA Reddit).

“From the NBA to leading the way!” wrote Gen. David Hodne, head of the Army’s Infantry School at Benning, in a tweet accompanying a photo of himself with Plumlee at the school’s rappel tower. “Proud of today’s Ranger School graduates including 2LT Marshall Plumlee.”

After ROTC at Duke, Plumlee commissioned in the New York National Guard in 2017, while playing for the Knicks. He signed with the Milwaukee Bucks and played for them in the 2018 season. His two older brothers play in the NBA.

Plumlee’s mother, who played college basketball at Purdue, pinned his tab on him.


The Plumlee brothers had Marshall’s back. Miles was there for the ceremony over the weekend (Mason is with Team USA in China for the FIBA World Cup).

For those unfamiliar with the Rangers, it’s an elite fighting unit that often takes on dangerous missions on short notice all over the globe. They have both combat and airborne training, and the two-month Ranger school is legendary for how it pushes its students to get only the best for the unit.

Congratulations to Plumlee, that is an honor earned, not given. He will do our country proud.

RJ Barrett says winning Rookie of the Year is ‘definitely important’


New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson is the early favorite to win the 2019-20 NBA Rookie of the Year. But Williamson will have a challenger in New York Knicks youngster and former Duke teammate RJ Barrett.

Speaking to the New York Daily News this week, Barrett said that he feels as though winning Rookie of the Year is an important milestone for him and the development of a new wave of basketball in New York.

Still, there are some doubters. The NBA’s rookie poll — voted on by 42 members of the 2019 draft class — showed little support for Barrett’s ROY bid.

Via New York Daily News:

“When it’s all said and done and you see the actual results, nobody is going to remember the survey,” Barrett told the News.

“(Rookie of the Year) is definitely important. It’s something I’ve been thinking about since I was a kid,” he said. “So I thought the only way to do that is to work hard.”

We have talked before here on PBT about the hope that Knicks fans are putting in Barrett. The team decided to go for broke this past year by jettisoning Kristaps Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks, creating massive cap space which they were unable to use this summer.

New York is still in play moving forward, but in the meantime they need to work on developing rookies who can play alongside the eventual hopeful free agent signings.

Barrett was one of Duke’s top scorers last season, and the 6-foot-7 forward will try to continue that offensive dominance during his first season in the NBA while getting a handle on defending what might be the league’s most important position.

Rookie of the Year will be a tough ask in the face of Williamson, whose team will likely end with a better record, but it’s not out of the question for Barrett.

Report: Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving pushing Nets to sign Carmelo Anthony

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Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving already got Brooklyn to sign one past-his-prime former star in DeAndre Jordan.

Could they convince the Nets to add another in Carmelo Anthony?

Frank Isola of The Athletic:

The Brooklyn Nets remain interested in potentially signing Anthony, who recently trained with a group of their players in Los Angeles, including Kyrie Irving. In fact, one source told The Athletic that Irving and Kevin Durant, who both joined the Nets in July, are “pushing” the club to sign Anthony.

Anthony’s peers clearly respect him. He was a very good player who main skill – individual scoring – garners the most attention, especially from fellow players.

But Anthony looked washed-up. And that was before his miserable experience with the Rockets and another year of aging. Anthony is now 35. I’d bet against him positively contributing to an NBA team.

Still, the Nets could use another forward with Wilson Chandler suspended. Anthony might better harnesses his talent into a complementary role (though probably not). There’s value in appeasing Durant and Irving. It’s just an end-of-roster-spot on a team facing a year of limbo until Durant returns from injury. Though I think it’s a bad idea, it’s likely a low-impact bad idea.

Want more evidence this a poor plan? The Knicks reportedly would’ve considered signing Anthony if they got Durant and Irving.