The New York Daily News’ Frank Isola reports that Garden boss James Dolan will be joining the Knicks for tonight’s game in San Antonio. I’ve checked to see if JD & The Straight Shot have any Central Texas gigs to coincide, but sadly, this appears to be a basketball trip.
The Knicks’ players were unavailable one day after losing for the 19th time in 21 games. Washington’s Gilbert Arenas scored 46 points in 30 minutes Saturday night and could have done more damage had his team not been so far ahead that Wizards coach Eddie Jordan rested the All-Star guard in the fourth quarter.
Still, it was an incredible performance and one that again revealed the philosophical differences between Brown and Stephon Marbury, his point guard. Marbury reinjured his left shoulder during Saturday’s loss and likely will sit out tonight’s game against the defending champion Spurs.
Brown can accept the injury rationale, but had a hard time understanding why Marbury ran the team the way he did in the first half. Marbury, who was guarding Arenas, tried to keep pace and ultimately was outscored 33-15 in the half. Marbury recorded just two assists as the Knicks fell behind 71-45 at halftime.
“We tried to run with him and we gave up 71 points,” Brown said.
Later, Brown said that he has to gain control of the team, which may have been a veiled reference to Marbury breaking off plays. In previous seasons, teammates have criticized Marbury for ignoring plays called from the bench.
When asked what he meant by “control,” Brown said: “We can talk all we want but if the team is shooting 65% and we’re turning the ball over and we get in early foul trouble you can’t make it a high-possession game. The second half we didn’t make it a high-possession game. We can’t play like them.”
Marbury has said the Knicks should run more now that he and Steve Francis share the same backcourt. It was a surprising comment since Marbury knows that successful running teams must play defense and rebound. The Knicks, however, don’t stop anyone and they don’t do windows.
The Newark Star-Ledger’s David Waldstein does his part to jumpstart speculation that the Knicks are primed to make a run at Atlanta’s Al Harrington during the off-season. Harrington’s mom describes herself as a Knicks fan — Mike Woodson would like to see her fined for tampering.
There’s no byline on the following item from today’s St. Paul Pioneer Press, which is just as well, given as the situation is pretty obvious to anyone watching Minnesota squander their franchise player’s golden years.
Don’t be surprised if the Timberwolves begin evaluating whether Kevin Garnett, who turns 30 in May, has reached his peak. If so, Garnett, who is being paid $18 million this year and is signed for another $66 million through the 2008-09 season, could be traded while he still has marquee value.
Before the NBA’s recent trade deadline, only one team inquired about Garnett’s availability, and that was to determine whether media reports about his availability were accurate. They were not.