Oh, these coaches. Oh, these two hapless, problematic coaches.... MORE →
Andrea Bargnani: 46.6 FG%, 15.3 PPG, 1.4 APG, 5.4 RPG, 0.3 SPG, 1.4 BPG, 1.3 TPG, 31.4 MPG
Brook Lopez: 54.2 FG%, 19.3 PPG, 0.5 APG, 5.8 RPG, 0.5 SPG, 2.3 BPG, 1.5 TPG, 28.9 MPG
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA AHAH A HAH AHHAHAHAHAH AH AHAHAHHAHHAHA
|Next: Knicks Bench vs. Nets Bench|
Full Matchup Breakdown:
Carmelo Anthony: 42.3 FG%, 27.7% 3P% 26.3 PPG, 2.5 APG, 9.9 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 0.6 BPG, 2.7 TPG, 40.4 MPG
Joe Johnson: 43.8 FG%, 42.9 3P% 16.0 PPG, 2.7 APG, 3.0 RPG, 0.3 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 1.0 TPG, 33.3 MPG
This is perhaps the oddest matchup of all: Joe Johnson, who normally plays at shooting guard, will go up against Carmelo Anthony, who in recent years has played most effectively at power forward. But New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson's steadfastness in keeping two big men on the floor with Anthony whenever possible and Brooklyn's injury woes have set these two against each other, each their team's most prolific wing scorer.
Anthony's game has been ruthlessly dissected and analyzed over the past three seasons as the face of New York basketball. He represents one of the biggest gulfs between the "eye" test and the "numbers" test; Anthony's offensive scoring touch is nearly unrivaled in the NBA, and he can score from just about anywhere on the floor. But the numbers don't lie: through 16 games, Anthony is shooting a career-worst 42.3 percent from the field and under 28 percent from three-point range. The once-bulletproof forward even drew the ire of teammate Iman Shumpert, who lit into Anthony on the bench following a missed defensive assignment:
Johnson hasn't looked much better -- or elevated his team much higher -- but Joe Cool has been nothing if not consistent, scoring in double digits in all but two games this season and shooting 43 percent from three-point range. He's also not considered a lock-down defender, but has a better reputation on that end than Anthony. He's also got the league's best crunch-time resume, including a game-winning shot against these very same Knicks last season, one of four that he talked me through in training camp:
Anthony is a more versatile scorer, a far superior rebounder, and does an incredible job limiting turnovers despite having the ball in his hands for far longer than Johnson. It's closer than you might think, but Anthony's all-world offensive game both on and off the ball gives him the edge.
|Next: Kenyon Martin vs. Kevin Garnett|
Full Matchup Breakdown:
In a brash move of supreme arrogance, brilliance, and desperation, Brooklyn Nets head coach Jason Kidd announced shortly before the team's Tuesday night game against the Denver Nuggets that lead assistant Lawrence Frank would no longer man the sidelines next to Kidd, demoting him to doing "daily reports" on the team, far away from the bench during games and practices. Kidd cited "differing philosophies" on basketball as the reason, despite having a professional and personal relationship with Frank for nearly a decade. The move came as the Nets flailed at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, far from the championship aspirations the team predicted two months earlier.
The change... MORE →
With the Nets trailing by 24, out came the boo birds at home for the Nets. These weren't just one-time boos, they were multiple-time boos. It wasn't one loud, obnoxious fan, or one small section. These were the type of boos you'd hear at Philadelphia sporting event or even a New York Mets game. These were loud, consistent boos for a soon-to-be 5-13 Nets team with sky-high expectations.
It all started half a year ago.
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Nets top assistant Lawrence Frank was reassigned by head coach Jason Kidd to doing "daily reports" for the team, officially kicking Frank off the bench for games and practices. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the tension between the two had built throughout the season, and this demotion was inevitable:
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When vying for the Brooklyn Nets head coaching job, Kidd pushed desperately to bring Frank on with him at the sidelines. "I'm working as hard as I can (to bring Frank on)," Kidd told Greg Kelly and Rosanna Scotto of Good Day New York in June. "Hopefully he does join the staff, because he would be great." The idea that Kidd could assemble a veteran staff was key in King's decision to hire Kidd, and assemble he did, convincing Frank to join the team as the lead assistant.
Now, after about one month and a 5-12 opening, Kidd has done a 180, sending Frank off the bench. Frank, who reportedly makes more than $1 million as the highest-paid assistant coach in the league, has been reassigned to doing "daily reports" for the team. He won't be on the team's bench for games or practices, and will not travel.
"Lawrence has been reassigned to doing daily reports, and he won't be sitting on the bench or at practice," Kidd said shortly before Tuesday's "So there's been a change. It doesn't change the coaching staff, guys will be there. So that's that."
Frank was considered the defensive guru for the team, but they've struggled on that end of the floor: even with world-class defender Kevin Garnett, the team is dead last in the NBA in points allowed per possession.
"It's about basketball," Kidd said prior to Tuesday's matchup against the Denver Nuggets, multiple times. "We move forward. You learn. But the big thing is, I'm focused, and I have to have these guys ready to go tonight."
Over the summer, Kidd, King, and everyone else within 3,000 miles of the Nets acknowledged that Kidd had a significant learning curve in becoming a head coach. But during Tuesday's press conference, Kidd said he didn't need Frank -- or anyone -- to ease that transition.
"I've been doing it from day one," Kidd said, when asked if he could have done it without Frank. "Understanding what it means to be a coach, having guys ready, that's what I've been doing since summer league."
Kidd added that there would be no replacements to his staff, which is set, but that it was his call and the choice is final. "This is the decision that I had to make, and we made it, and we move on. ... This is about basketball. That's it."
Frank missed six games last year to be with his wife due to an undisclosed illness on her part. He also missed time in preseason to be by her side. Though Kidd stressed that the decision was purely basketball-related, it's not clear if this demotion has anything to do with Frank's personal life.
"It's just different philosophies," Kidd said of the decision. "That's all. ... We'll figure out how to stop people."