Mookie of A Stern Warning has come up with another funtastic edition of Bloguin's MVP & ROY (Rookie of the Year) rankings. LeBron James and Tyreke Evans lead the pack. He is a little tease into the rationale of the Bloguin crew. Check the rest out here.
Welcome to the mid-March edition of the NBA Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year rankings. Writers across the Bloguin network have entered their ballots, along with commentary. Take a look at who the favorites are to take out the hardware at season end.
Voters allocated 10 votes for their first choice, through to 1 vote for their tenth choice.
1. LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers) - 110 votes
"When you ride a player to the point where you have the luxury to actually sit him by choice because of how far he's taken you in the season, and then promptly lose the 1st game he sits...I think we have a winner. The best team in the league is nothing without arguably the best player in the league." (Da Bull's Eye)
2. Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers) - 87 votes
"Even many former Kobe-haters have converted their ways in the past couple of years. Perhaps "greatest of the past decade" is a title he is undeserved of, but "most dangerous scorer in the league today" is definitely deserved. He is a leader on both ends of the court for a lethal title contending team." (A Stern Warning)
3. Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder) - 80 votes
"He very well could lead the league in scoring, and really, he does it all. The Thunder might have home-court advantage in the playoffs, in the West. That's just sick." (TWolves Blog)
4. Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks) - 74 votes
"Dallas has been on an amazing run. Yes, a large part of that has been Kidd's rejuvenation, but Dirk's the reason they've been up near the top for the entire season." (With Malice)
5. Carmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets) - 66 votes
"Most efficient scorer in the NBA on the only team in the West with a legitimate chance of knocking off the Lakers." (Pacers Pulse) "Nuggets winning three in a row and Melo dropped 30 points in each of those." (Project Spurs)
"The coaches have a lot of confidence in me. I have confidence in myself. I feel comfortable." -- Toney Douglas
"When Toney was on the court, we played a lot better. He hit a big 3-pointer for us and played with a lot of energy." -- Mike D'Antoni
"Either way I look at it, I can't have a bad game because I can control my defense. If I'm not shooting the ball well I can still distribute the ball, create for other people and give us something on the defensive end." -- Toney Douglas
"His decision-making has gotten better but the thing he did, he never wavered from working as hard as he can work. He never backed off. You got to give him a lot of credit. His personality and work ethic has been huge. That's definitely paying off right now."-- Mike D'Antoni
The season is practically over and almost irrelevant as we move closer to July, 2010 but the Knicks are finally finding out how well their rookie point guard can play and lead a team. In the past three games, Toney Douglas has brought early season energy to the game, surprising opponents and re-boosting the Knicks. Where the vets on many teams are dialing it down, for rookies like Douglas it is show and tell time.
Douglas told us, through his play, why he is starting guard material and he can transcend the forced notion that he must be either a point guard or a two guard. Douglas altered the pace in the second half and led the Knicks defense to disrupt the Sixers offensive flow which derived from fast break points early on. Overall, Douglas scored 20 points dishing 7 assists and reining in three steals.
Last night, as Andre Igudola had a horrendous shooting game. He went 0-7 from the tre arc as coach Eddie Jordan curiously kept him in the game as the Sixers lost ground in the 4th and needed the sharp shooting of Jason Kapono to make it closer in the waning minutes.
Knicks Fanatics Blog is growing and getting too big and too busy for me to handle practically alone, even with the occasional great penthouse pieces by other Fanatics such as Statesman, O&B and Peaceman. Consequently, we are looking for new writer(s) to help us keep up with the daily happenings in the NBA and with the Knicks. If you are interested in having your voice heard by a growing intelligent and discriminating audience, please submit an inquiry or application to
Qualifications: The writer must be an intelligent, thoughtful Knicks fan with a little creative side. The writer will not be selected based on his or her Knicks politics. It does not matter whether the scribe is a liberal, conservative, human rights activist or Gullible. The writer simply needs to be thoughtful and ready to fervently defend or quickly abandon his or her opinion. Fear and avoidance are not acceptable options here unless you have been a Fanatic for more than two years -- in that case you would not know fear and avoidance is really a passive aggressive way to tell someone their opinion isn't worth the screen they typed it on.
Hours: We need writers willing to contribute frequently, like three to four times a week. During the season we seek to provide information and provocative takes on whatever is happening with or about the Knicks. We actually deal with anything that touches our fancy but 99% of the time it has at least a tangential relationship to the Knicks or the NBA. We try to publish something new at least once daily although all of our writers have at least one job where they make real money. Contributors will also be asked to rep Fanatics by visiting other sites; to write some game recaps and Hotlinks offerings; to become familiar with Ballhype, twitter and other social networking sites; and to consider taking out one or two of the stylish "Comment Women" who host and monitor the comment sections.
Compensation: The job is a non-paying labor of love, unless you count critical responses as a fair wage. You are expected to write just because you love putting your ideas, thoughts and opinions about the Knicks onto the lighted-screen and in front of very opinionated readers.
How To Apply: Send a letter or an e-mail telling us about yourself, your passion for the Knicks, your desire to write and your qualifications (need not be anything heavy). Or better yet, write a post and we'll do the American Idol thing and let the readers do some judging. Ultimately, the writer will be vetted by Fanatics based on posts and applications from the prospects. The posts (and applications) will be published during the search period and Fanatics will be asked to select the best candidates. The absolutely final decision probably will be made by the executive committee of me, myself and I at the next Meeting of Selves.
Special Note To Certified Fanatics: Certified Fanatics are always welcome to submit articles or comments that you think qualify as articles to LIVES via e-mail (
) or the comment section, as long as you advise me that the comments are for penthouse consideration. More often than not, I do not have the time to engage in the entire process of converting comments to articles, without the writer's assistance and stated desire for his or her comment to be elevated for target practice and discussion. As others, such as Statesman, Peaceman and O&B, will confirm, I will willingly assist anyone, given sufficient lead time, in dressing up articles with photographic accoutrements.
Something You Should Know:Knicks Fanatics' objective is to be the best, most unusual blog and home for the critical (not "hopeful") New York Knicks fan or observer, We respect few conventions, believe that the comment section should be better than the penthouse posts and do not count mass approval as a priority or an indicator of quality. We write what we write because we know we're right or because it's just a lot of fun to piss off people who aren't as smart as they act --like it takes a freakin' geneticist to run a team incompetently or to be a snarky, half-wit, humorless reporter or blogger. Give me a break, that shyte isn't that hard. We're serious but we don't take ourselves too seriously, usually. And we know that at some point during the week, a lot of people in the blogosphere are going to miss something really special happening here, and we think that special can be you. Let's do this. Plus you just might be my retirement plan.
Deadline: All applications should be submitted by Sunday, March 19, 2010.
PEACEMAN and LIVES invite you, the Knicks Fanatics and friends, to join us in our new tradition, the annual NCAA March Madness Bracket Challenge. This year we will compete against each other in the Knicks Fanatics Blog group in the Yahoo Sports Tourney as shown in the invitation below. If you want to join us and test your college basketball knowledge against the best, just send an e-mail request for a personal invitation to Lives at
Peaceman, Lives, O&B, Post-Up Prince, JayBee and any other Fanatics who want to join us, are issuing a special challenge to the Force MDs including Harlem, Bronx, Steady, Cooley, Statesman, Modi and DLT (D stands for "in D.C." right?). Peaceman is absolutely positive that our collective college basketball knowledge is far superior to anyone who is living south of Newark Delaware and he is willing to try to prove it once again. (If I recall correctly didn't JayBee kick everybody's buttocks last year and Peaceman was in dead. . . ?). Anyway, come out of hibernation and take this arse whuppin like your Knicks you transplants to Maryland (hence ForceMDs for the uneducated).
The invitation also extends to our newest Fanatics, Shon, Big Daddy, Auggie and others. It's a lot of fun watching the scores, being engaged in the games and seeing the talent that won't be on the Knicks next year because we sold our youth for a game of LeNot-so-good-chance. Come on guys, check out the brackets and figure out if you can handle the challenge. We'll keep score on the blog for the world to see. In addition to bragging rights, the winner gets a free Knicks Fanatics T-Shirt, probably the first one to ever be worn (no guarantee that it will fit).
Bragging rights. Hmmm. Come to think of it, I extend the challenge to DanL and Knicksfanblog to start their own Yahoo group so we can see how much you folks really know about basketball. Perhaps you can redeem yourselves for taking so long to be slightly critical of the mess that Donnie Walsh has exacerbated. Oh wait, you haven't been critical yet, huh. We look forward to e-seeing you at the brackets. LOL.
"We had to be on our toes here because we didn't want to get beat by 50 points again. The way Dallas has been playing, if we didn't bring our best effort that was going to happen again. That was motivation for us to come in and play our best." -- David Lee
"Revenge is sweet sometimes. That's a really good team over there, but we just caught them at the right time. They were ripe for the picking. When you've had that much success and you know the Knicks are coming in and you feel you can score 150 points on them in your sleep -- that team didn't show up today. I guess we caught them by surprise." -- Al Harrington
"Obviously they didn't play great tonight. But I've been in the West before and every game is crucial for them. I don't know how much they overlooked us. But they just thought maybe it would be easy for them. But we played at a high level." -- Mike D'Antoni
GAME OBSERVATIONS AND NOTES:
Perhaps one of our Fanatics will kindly give us their observations of this game. Unfortunately, as I mentioned in the comments, we were among the many in almost-South New Jersey who were without power during this game. Unfortunately, I need to wait for "Knicks In 60" to proivde some personal observations to the stats. Can somebody tell us what happened and what are Toney Douglas and Bill Walker doing to make the Knicks so uber-competitve. I am very disappointed that I missed this game.
"Toney Douglas came in and did a great job, Bill Walker. You can't play the game without energy and hustle. You just can't do it. They came in and gave us that little bit...after we were down so many, it's hard to make it up." -- Mike D'Antoni
"It's catching up to me. I can feel myself breaking down. That's why it's so hard for me to attack the basket." -- Tracy McGrady
"Well we went to the big line-up and for whatever reason they don't seem to want to compete like they're going to have to compete if they want to stay in the NBA and play NBA teams." -- Dan D'Antoni
The Honeymoon for the Knicks' organization much lauded phrases ("The Plan" and "The System") appears to be over. With roughly a month since the NBA's trade deadline, which lifted the dreams of many Knicks' fans, a deflating post december and post trade deadline swoon has left many fans grasping at straws in an effort to find the light at the end of a perpetually dark tunnel. As the teams' record continues to plummet, a once uncritical, and according to some fans complicit, New York Media has finally begun to question the soundness of the coaching hire and offensive system brought in by the organization's management. Also, a critical eye amongst fans and pundits has ventured to reassess the fundamental soundness of the item that current GM and President of Basketball Operations, Donnie Walsh, calls "the plan." In short , with the loss in momentum for the organization since late December/early January not only have the Organizations Management, Coaching hires and approach to rebuilding been the targets of fan and media frustration so have many of the players acquired in the card shuffle to clear salary cap space.
The extirpation of Flotsam on the Road to 2010:
Out of many sources of criticism directed at members of the Knicks' organization, the ire directed at the team's stable of players over the years since "The Plan" was announced has had the most effect in rationalizing and tempering the card shuffle clearing the road to the 2010 free agent class. The road leading to a foretold Shangri-La of a cap space powered Nirvana in the summer of 2010. has seen the ouster of previously valued Knicks such as Jamal Crawford, Zach Randolph, Nate Robinson, Jared Jefferies. Less valued, underutilized or simply under performing Knicks such as Jordan Hill, Renaldo Balkman, Mardy Collins, Darko Milicic, Kurt Thomas, Jerome James and Stephon Marbury have also seen their exits. For several of the players listed a long cold march down the gallows pole preceded their ouster- e.g., the isolation of Marbury, the Benching of Robinson, and the resignation of the seven foot center Milicic to the Knicks bench where his height might have been better served to help bolster the Knicks small frontcourt and woeful post defense. In the 2010 card shuffle personnel associated with the organization and perceived as road bumbs on the road to "The Plan" have experienced the fall out media criticism and fan fervor and rationalizations justifying the targeting scope on those players' tenure with the Knicks.