Chat with Ian Begley
Welcome to ESPNNewYork.com! On Friday, New York Knicks writer Ian Begley stops by to chat about the team.
Begley has covered New York sports since graduating from the University of Richmond in 2005. He has covered the Yankees, Mets, Giants, Jets, Knicks, Nets, Rangers and Devils for ESPNNewYork.com. Prior to writing for ESPN's New York site, he worked for the New York Daily News.
Send your questions now and join Begley Friday at 2 p.m. ET!
Ian Begley (2:03 PM)
So the Knicks are looking for the Linsanity to continue tonight against New Orleans. They've also added J.R. Smith. Let's get started.
Max (Oradell, nj)
1. When is melo coming back?2. Do you think JR will evenually start over fields and who would be the first person off the bench?
Ian Begley (2:05 PM)
Max, Carmelo is likely out for tonight and should be back on Sunday against Dallas. D'Antoni said today that Fields will start at SG "for now" My feeling is that they go with him as long as he continues to play as well as he has in the past two weeks. Smith will be the first player off the bench
unloopme (Miami via NJ)
With all the Linning going on, B-Diddy updates have disappeared...what's the latest? We still need his minutes IMO.
Ian Begley (2:07 PM)
I agree. I think Baron will be a valuable veteran presence in the playoffs, if he gets healthy. As of right now, he cannot take contact in practice scrimmages. When he gets back on the practice floor, he'll be about a week to 10 days from hitting the court, barring any setbacks
Ryan Loveless (Harrison, NY)
Has Toney Douglas's minutes been reduced because of shoulder problems? The way Bibby has been playing, I'd still take my chances with Toney..
Ian Begley (2:09 PM)
Toney has struggled mightily with his shot and some have guessed that it has to do with lingering pain from his shoulder surgery, but Toney himself has never said that. Toney also struggles to initiate the offense, often picking up his dribble to quickly before anything gets a chance to develop. I think Smith will supplant Bibby in the backcourt so both Douglas and Bibby won't be regular rotation guys once he arrives
For all the talk about whether or not Carmleo and Lin will mesh, in reality won't Carmelo's return make the Knicks a much more dangerous team? You'll have a team with 3 legitimate threats to score 20 in a given night, defenses wont be able to key into one guy. Thoughts?
Ian Begley (2:12 PM)
I think if Anthony can reduce his isolation attempts and not stop the ball on offense, the Knicks will be fine. That remains an open ended question at this point. Anthony says he'll be able to do this easily and Lin is looking forward to Anthony returning to the floor. Just how it plays out on the floor is one of the biggest story lines surrounding the Knicks for the rest of the way
Dan (Potsdam, NY)
Lots of talk about J Lin's turnovers. Can you comment on what percentage are due to questionable decision-making/play-making, and what percentage are due to teammates not being prepared to catch/handle the pass? We are talking about an offense that wasn't sharing well before his arrival. I guess what I'm asking is if his teammates need an adjustment period to his game before we hang Lin for too many turnovers?
Ian Begley (2:16 PM)
Good one, Dan. I think Lin's turnovers are a product of two things -- high usage rate and a lack of timing on the pick and roll. Lin's usage rate is one of the highest in the NBA (I think he's fourth, just ahead of Carmelo Anthony) so he invariably will be committing a high number of turnovers per game. As Mike D'Antoni noted the other day, Lin's teammates on the screen and roll aren't always coming off the screen properly, and that has led to more than a few turnovers. That being said. the turnovers have been a problem. Both D'Antoni and Lin recognize they need to come down soon.
Do you think JR Smith will have a negative effect on the Knicks great chemistry? After all, he doesnt have the best reputation.
Ian Begley (2:20 PM)
This is a big issue Sarah. The Knicks are trying to add Anthony and Smith to a team that's won seven straight. Not easy. But one glaring weakness for this team through the first six weeks of the season was a lack of shooting. They are 20th in shooting and 26th in 3-point percentage entering play today and Smith is a career 37 percent 3-pointer. He should fill a void there. Chemistry-wise, it's on Smith to fit in to an offense that's running efficiently.
Ryan Loveless (Harrison, NY)
Are the Knicks still shopping Amar'e?
Ian Begley (2:22 PM)
Haven't gotten any indication that they are at this point, Ryan. I think they are content to see what Stoudemire can do with a legitimate point guard running things.
Jon C. (Long Beach, NY)
Is a Shumpert-JR Smith backcourt a good idea off the bench?
Ian Begley (2:24 PM)
Shumpert certainly struggled at times at the point this season. Both guys are known to have quick triggers. I'd imagine the staff gives this pairing a shot but is prepared to pull the plug quickly if they turn it over and take poor shots.
Michael Jordan ruined one decade for me. Isiah Thomas ruined the next decade. It finally looks like the Knicks are a viable contender, as with everyone healthy, they are 12 deep. Can they contend for a title this year?
Ian Begley (2:30 PM)
Haha, sorry about the previous two decades Alex. Glad you made it through OK. Their ability to contend will depend on how well Anthony and Smith can fit into the new-look offense, which features plenty of ball movement. Best-case scenario is those guys fit in flawlessly. Then they'd be one of the most dangerous teams in the East. But I have a hard time seeing it play out that way given the lack of practice time and all the games coming up. Second round seems about right for this team, from my perspective.
Ian Begley (2:32 PM)
Hey guys, Sorry to cut this so short on you but I have to run down to the Garden a bit early today. You guys really know your stuff and it was great to chat with you. Hope to do it again soon!