Tonight’s Game: Knicks vs. Timberwolves

The Knicks play host to the Timberwolves tonight at Madison Square Garden.

The game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on MSG and ESPN New York.

Lance Thomas, Lou Amundson, Andrea Bargnani, Alexey Shved and Langston Galloway are expected to start.

Recent Meeting

November 19, 2014 - New York’s struggles continued in Minnesota as a second quarter 37-point outburst help propel the Timberwolves to a 24-point lead as they never looked back defeating the New York Knicks 115-99 at the Target Center. The Knicks shot well on offense but couldn’t figure out a way to stop the Wolves. Carmelo Anthony paced the way with 20 points and four rebounds over 27 minutes. Amar’e Stoudemire continued his stellar season with a 19 point performance off the bench. Jason Smith added 14 points. Kevin Martin led the Wolves with 37 points on 14-20 shooting over 35 minutes. Shabazz Muhammad posted 17 points and eight rebounds over 32 minutes.


Fisher figuring out how to be a coach, not a player

Knicks Derek Fisher has learned a lot in his first season as a head coach, but perhaps the most frustrating aspect for him to deal with is not being out there on the court with his team (Post, March 18).

“This is my first year, but, in my opinion, that’s the most frustrating part of being a coach: you’re not out there,” Fisher said Wednesday after their 104-100 overtime upset victory over the Spurs. “So you’re trying to impart some knowledge and wisdom and thoughts and experiences onto your players.

“A lot of times, you see things in them that they’re still trying to discover in themselves. Being a guy that was just in that position a year ago at this date, there are a lot of things I can relate to and I can offer. Everybody’s not always at a certain place in their journey at the same time [but] hopefully we can continue to grow together so more guys are farther along and we can do things like last night 50 or 60 times in a season as opposed to what we’ve experienced this season.”

Like his team, Fisher, too, has experienced his fair share of ups and downs this season. The transition to head coach hasn’t exactly been a kind one to him, and that doesn’t solely have to do with the Knicks’ talent level.

One of the biggest things Fisher has had to adjust to this season is being able to think on the fly. He doesn’t always make the best decisions, especially when it comes to making them in a timely manner. As he alluded  to in his recent comments, Fisher is no longer able to simply hit the hardwood and do things himself. Instead, he not only has to depend on others, but also insure that he himself is pulling his own weight by communicating what he wants accordingly.

Arguably Fisher’s worst mistake this season has been expecting too much from his players. Perhaps he doesn’t have a win total in mind, but the first-time head coach appears to have too much faith in his team’s ability to make the right decisions on the court. In turn, he’ll often opt to lay low, let things play out, and subsequently not call time-outs when the situation calls for it so he instruct his team. There is such a thing as too much patience.

Alas, Fisher is picking things up as he goes. It remains to be seen whether some of the things he’s learned will translate into better decision-making come next season. Phil Jackson figures to retain Fisher next season, which could prove to be risky. Should the Knicks boast a more talented team and still struggle come this time next season, the five-time NBA champion will likely be the one to blame.

Knick sign Ricky Ledo to 10-day contract

The Knicks will sign guard Ricky Ledo to a 10-day contract (Fisher, March 18).

Update (March 19, 10:45AM): The Knicks have officially signed Ledo, President Phil Jackson has announced.

Ledo, drafted in the second round by the Bucks in 2013 after leaving Providence College without ever playing a game, played a total of 16 games in two seasons with the Mavericks. Ledo (6 foot 7) averaged 15.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.2 assists with the D-League’s Texas Legends this season.

Ledo, 22, is taking the 15th spot on the Knicks’ roster. If he stays until the end of the season, the Knicks will be unable to call up Thanasis Antetokounmpo (Begley, March 18).

Keith Schlosser, Lead Writer

The fact that the Knicks are opting to explore and give a young gun with some upside a chance at this point in the season is very refreshing. It’s exactly what they should be doing.

Though New York has kept its final roster spot vacant for a little bit now, Ledo’s has been someone who on the team’s radar for a while.

A former teammate of Shane Larkin’s with the Dallas Mavericks, Ledo too spent much of his time on assignment with the D-League affiliated Texas Legends. When Dallas signed Amar’e Stoudemire, Ledo was the odd man out and became a full-time minor leaguer.

In 65 games with Texas in parts of the last two seasons, the guard averaged 14 points on 45% from the field to go along with 5.4 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.1 steals.  To read more of this story, click here

The Knicks’ costly win against the Spurs?

Sam Spiegelman

The Knicks shocked the Spurs, pulling out a 104-100 victory at the Garden on Tuesday night. And while the win was all good and fun for fans desperate for some bright spots in an otherwise very dim season, the checkmark in the win column certainly makes the team’s road toward securing the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft a bit more tricky.

With the win, the Knicks moved to 14-53, a half-game ahead of the Timberwolves for the worst record in the NBA. So congrats, Knicks fans, you’re still No. 1 — in terms of losing.

Minnesota is a half-game back (14-52), while Philadelphia is a full game back (15-52) and Los Angeles sits at a distant fourth at 3.5 games back (17-49). Talk about losers.

As the regular season winds down, the Knicks have nine games remaining on the schedule, including Thursday night’s showdown with those Timberwolves and Friday’s game at Philly. Aside from Minnesota, the Knicks have games games remaining against playoff-bound teams such as Toronto, Memphis, the Clippers, Bulls and Wizards.

When comparing the rest of the Knicks’ slate of games to that of Minnesota’s or Philadelphia’s, there’s really only one thing to keep in mind: These teams have 14 or 15 games for a reason.

There’s no reason to try and calculate how many wins and losses each team will wind up with by April 4 because each will likely follow the current formula that got them in this mess to begin with. It’s really those head-to-head showdowns that carry the most weight.

For these final four teams — (see what I did there?) — the race toward securing the top lottery pick marches on.

Fisher files for divorce

First-year Knicks coach Derek Fisher has filed for divorce from his wife, Candace (AP, March 18).

The couple has been married 10 years. They have three children, including twins Tatum and Drew. Tatum was treated for a form of eye cancer in 2007 while Fisher was playing for Utah. Fisher played 18 seasons in the NBA, winning five titles with the Lakers.

Fisher, who filed papers in Los Angeles Wednesday, issued a statement. “This is a difficult time for me personally. For the sake of our children, I ask that everyone respects our privacy during this process.”

Observations from the Knicks’ win over the Spurs

In a frustrating season full of turbulent times for the Knicks, things have become rather predictable. Rebuilding often means cleaning house and (secretly, or not so secretly, depending on the way one looks at it) aiming for more losses that will eventually give way to a higher draft selection.

This season is obviously no different for New York. That said, the team proved to have somewhat of a surprise (perhaps even to themselves as well) in store on Tuesday night. Steadily rising up and overcoming a double-digit deficit that at one point early on seemed unsurmountable, the Knicks emerged victorious over the defending champion Spurs. Continue reading below for a look at how they did it, with some key observations from the contest.

  • It’s not everyday that a struggling team’s role players outperform a contending team’s future Hall of Fame athletes. But that’s exactly what happened for the Knicks. Lou Amundson out rebounded Tim Duncan (8) with a career-high of 17, and Langston Galloway scored a career-high 22 over Tony Parker’s 21.
  • This was arguably Galloway’s best performance of his young career. In addition to his point production, his defense on Parker was second to none. The youngster proved to be a thorn in Parker’s side throughout, chasing him down and pestering the vet from start to finish. Galloway owned a team-high plus/minus of +6, whereas Parker finished with a -4.

To read more of this story, click here