Dan from Knicks Vision wanted to contribute some thoughts in this space. He writes a great blog and is very passionate and up and coming fan and blogger. In many ways I feel for Dan because he’s young and is dying to see the Knicks be decent. That energy inspires many of us more seasoned Knicks fans who have forgotten success. Dan will be contributing Turning Points following games and here is his first edition:
The problem is for the team is that there was no turning point. Consider the chart above…
Is it possible for a turning point to occur before a team walks out? On Sunday night at the World’s Most Famous Arena, it seemed like it.
Dahntay Jones’s role in the lack of a real turning point should not be understated. He came up with many game-changing plays for the Pacers that stopped the Knicks crowd from getting on their feet. He drew an offensive foul on Carmelo Anthony; he created timely hoops for himself; he got to the line. It was a quality performance for Jones as a whole.
But in reality, did the Knicks beat themselves?
They shot just 36.6% from the field, had just 11 assists total, and allowed the Pacers to make 57.1% of their shots.
If they had pulled together a run, you could have highlighted the turnover Ronny Turiaf forced in the fourth quarter or one of Bill Walker’s threes as the “game changer”, but that type of run was nonexistent. Stoudemire, Anthony and Billups played well, but did they execute when it mattered most – in the final minutes of the game? The blatant, obvious, and answer Knicks fan don’t want to hear is no. The Knicks got down 20, and they stayed down for the entirety of the game. That’s the primary reason a turning point never fully formulated.
The lineup that was most successful against the Knicks was unsurprisingly Tyler Hansbrough, Darren Collison, Brandon Rush, Josh McRoberts, and James Posey. When all five were on the court together, they pulled a +9 in the third quarter put down. If forced to provide one time period where the Knicks lost, it was there.
The turning point may actually occur on Tuesday night, when the Knicks face-off against the Pacers for the second time. If New York comes out rejuvenated and ready for the challenge that lies ahead of them, they can beat anyone.