by Tommy Dee
We’ve written about the Mike D’Antoni situation several times over the past few days and without question, last night’s win plus a Friday meeting with the David Lee-less Warriors may get the Knicks out on a string of wins that would bring security for the coach, at least for a little while.
We are talking about the Kings and the Warriors after all, and they play similar systems so these are the type of real live scrimmages that allow the Knicks to get further comfortable in the system.
Danilo Gallinari had a great game of drawing fouls from behind the arc, and even making a few threes. He was active all night and took it upon himself to go at Casspi as if he were engaged in some battle of Euro dominance.
Speaking of Gallinari, and this is in all seriousness. Take a look at the players taken from 7-14 in that 2008 draft and tell me, which one of them is contributing to Ws for their team. Who of all those players is leading their team to wins? Bayless plays 10 mpg in New Orleans, Joe Alexander is out of basketball for now, the Nets, Bobcats and Clippers have 9 combined wins.
Let’s see if Gallo gets on a roll.
Should the Knicks continue to flop logic would dictate (and through a few conversations) that Mark Jackson would be right atop the list in terms of a replacement.
Fans have been clamoring for the throwback Knicks and it makes sense. I asked a source within a Western Conference team if players have any reservations of a coach who lacks coaching experience and he said, “If you know the game, you can coach the game. You have to be tough in New York. Doc Rivers did it, there’s no reason Mark can’t.”
Mark also had a great relationship with Donnie Walsh in Indiana as a player.
D’Antoni was the right hire at the time based on the plan, and if the team continues to struggle, and while Walsh continue to recover, things sound a little calmer at the moment.
I think Jackson’s time spent analyzing the game helps, and the fact that he was a showman who won’t be shaken by the job. If you surround him with the right people in terms of experience then he’ll be fine i believe. I just hope he would have the ability to teach defense better than he played it (Riley traded him because of it), although no one can argue how much the man got out of his body and how many doubters he proved wrong.
He’s a New Yorker.
Obviously, a big hinderence to letting D’Antoni go would be the idea of having to interview and choose between Jackson and Patrick Ewing whose name would be in the mix as well. But there’s only room for one at the top and from a coaching standpoint Ewing has more bench experience. I think Ewing could be a good fit, but where are the Knicks going to get a back-to-the-basket post player for him to groom. In fact, one has to imagine Jax would want some post play too. This roster has no post players.
This, however all becomes moot if the Knicks play like they did last night. Beat a beatable team on the road and win home games.