Darko Milicic: Here We Go Again
I know some of you guys are sick and tired of hearing about Milicic and I don't blame you. However, he was just traded to Minnesota where their GM, David Kahn, sounded as if the guy was actually going to get a chance to play this year.
I never see Minnesota on national TV and know very little about the team. Therefore, I'm asking those guys who are familiar with the Timberwolves if you think Milicic will finally get a chance to play after never seeing the light of day under D'Antoni in New York.
He played in Orlando, he played in Memphis, he can play in Minnesota... You cant judge a guy based on how he played for D'Antoni.. He will play 15 minutes an night, grab a couple rebounds, score a couple points and get a block... Nice backup C...
Milicic will most likely be playing in Europe next year after his contract expires. He will probably have a good career overseas.
The8thDeadlySin, D'Antoni did an excellent job in Phoenix but some of his NY moves and strategies are baffling to me. The Knicks are one of the worst rebounding and shot blocking teams in the league, but he's locked into the same 8 man rotation that doesn't include a legitimate center.
I thought playing a guy like Milicic, who's strengths are rebounding and shot blocking, two things the Knicks seriously lack, would be a logical move.
Hes not getting any playtime, pending the T'Wolves make another trade..
But as the roster stands now, he'll be lucky to get 10mpg....Competing with Jefferson, Love, Hollins(who they really like) for playtime isnt going to be easy
Hes still a solid backup C, dont let his bust status fool you
Yea, I agree.. He was masterful in Phoenix but is unimpressive in NY.. By saying what I did earlier, I mean you can never judge a guy on how good he is based on how he played for D'Antoni.. He has a way of getting everything out of some players and getting absolutely nothing out of others..
The8thDeadlySin, I don't like the way he handles players in New York. He's locked into that 8 man rotation and no matter how badly those guys play, no one else gets an opportunity to prove they can do a better job. You would think he could find time for their number draft choice, Jordan Hill, to get some regular playing time, but that isn't the case.
I agree 100% with that, The Knicks need shotblocking, size, and rebounding...
We have(had?) 2 guys on the bench that are capable of doing that, Hill and Milicic, yet for the majority of the season...they havent even played...
I could understand if we were winning, but were not....clearly the 8 man rotation isnt/wasnt working, yet D'Antoni refuses to change..
I'd honestly think Ryan Hollins has more upside, I wouldn't hinder Hollins development by giving Darko minutes.
I dont think either really have any upside...
But for what its worth, Darko is younger than Hollins, and Hollins is pretty raw
I think Hollins has shown more, Darko ( in my opinion) hasn't shown anything since he was in Orlando. Hollins has better athleticism and has had some pretty good games this season. Hollins isn't the next Jason Thompson, but he could be a more athletic Mikki Moore. he's shooting 70% from the line and usually produces pretty well when given minutes.
Darko not playing in NY under D'Antoni because he is not too good in offense and he can't shoot. D'Antoni loves offensive player and the worst part about his coaching is he only plays 8 players, so there is no chance for Darko to play because they are more than 8 players who can play better offense than Darko (not sure for Jeffries, but even Jeffries may play better offense by running better.) Darko strength is rebounding and blocking shots, but D'Antoni don't really care about those.
D'Antoni's team needs a good shot creator (a pass-first PG) and a bunch of shooters/runners. Currently, the Knicks do not have a shot creator (Duhon is a solid backup and little Nate is out of control). Douglas isn't a passer either and he's a rookie. So he can't really translate his success with the Suns to the Knicks. Also, the shot-in-7-seconds Suns got a much stronger roster than the current Knicks. It's hard to see D'Antoni to ever win a championship because he doesn't care about defense and most of all, he only uses a 8-players rotation which really kills the team when more than one of the core 8 are injured or not available.
I think Darko can be a starter for the TWolves because the Ryan Hollins is the current starting center and they don't have another player over 6-11.
Al Jefferson is a PF at 6-10. Kevin Love is a PF at 6-9 (more like 6-8). They are both PFs and have similar games and that's why they are not starting together. They surely want to try a 7-footer at C, and that's why Ryan Hollins is starting. Now that they have Darko, he maybe thrown at the starting lineup if he can beat Hollins for the job (which he surely has the potential to do). This would probably be the last shot for Darko though.
I am not sure if Darko can be a star in Europe. European team usually put team-first. Darko has a reputation of me-first. I am not sure if he can work well in Europe if he's not the top dog of the team.
Hey Joe, you wrote, "Darko ( in my opinion) hasn't shown anything since he was in Orlando". That's very true but the problem is he can't show anything unless he has an opportunity to play. I suspect Milicic doesn't get off the bench because he fails to work hard, but I don't know that for a fact.
Nonetheless, I don't care who you are, opportunity is the key to success.
realgmbakax, I thought you made some excellent points about D'Antoni and Milicic's lack of offensive skills. D'Antoni does seem to place less value on rebounding and shot blocking.
In terms of PG play, I hope the Knicks get involved and make it a 3-way deal with Sacramento and Houston. Maybe they can get Sergio Rodriguez, whom I think is an upgrade over Duhon, another D'Antoni favorite, despite playing horribly at PG all season long.
very true, but I think he was in a position to succeed in Memphis. He came in to that situation after showing some promise in Orlando and was given time off the bat. He didn't produce and eventually lost his minutes to rookie Marc Gasol at c and rookie Darrell Arthur at pf. I just get sick of people making excuses for this guy. Joe Alexander can still jump out of the gym, but 1 and 1/2 seasons into his career no one is making excuses or saying he just needs a change of scenery. I know he is still young and I know he is still a raw athlete, but he has played his way to the end of the bench on his last two teams. Like you said we don't know his work ethic, but when do we stop saying this guy needs a change of scenery and just accept that he doesn't produce?
JoeWolf1, I agree with everything you said about Milicic. I'm not sure why, but I'm still intrigued by his potential. You don't see many 7 footers with his physical talent. I think the frustration started with his first three years in the league at Detroit where I'm convinced they destroyed and buried whatever self confidence that 18 to 20 year old had.
Anyway, you're right, we should stop making excuses for the guy. Joe, even though I completely agree with you, I still want to see him get one more opportunity to play every night. Then he can prove once and for all, that at the young age of 24, he's never going to make it, or that everyone was wrong about him. I suspect they're right but I'm still intrigued.
I don't know, maybe D'Antoni does not trust them, or they can't run the system he has in place. The name if the game is winning end of story. Don't you think if he thought the players could help the team win he'd play them? When the Knicks win games they do two things ball movement and fastbreak. Speaking of running the ball they seem to do less and less fast breaking every game. Duhon needs to loose his Garden privileges. By the way, how many players do y'all in the rotation? Eight man rotation is fine, the talent is the problem.
I've had no problem the way D'Antoni handles the players this year. These are grown ass men, who play a sport most would kill to play. When are we going to put this on the players? How many times have you watched a Knicks game watch D'Antoni draw up a play go over the play only to see Nate, Hughes, Harrington, Duhon ect.... put up some crazy shot? Only to see D'Antoni barking on them on the sideline. Has D'Antoni had shortcomings this season? Yes, but don't dump this all on him.
By the way people who complain about defense, cut it out. Because you know what type of couch you were getting he was hired. You should be tight about the offense.
The sad part is, if the Knicks could go on some kind of winning streak they could be in playoff contention, because the east is so bad. They would be a low seed but who cares it's the playoffs. The Knicks play like they don't expect to win.
I hear you, I always followed him, and after his stint in Orlando I thought Memphis was his shot to make it, but since then I just gave up on him, If he makes something of himself, great. But I don't expect it.
Soulrebel15, you made some good points but I still disagree slightly with a few of your comments.
An 8 man rotation is OK for a short period of time but not for an entire 82 game season. Even if those eight guys are playing well, they're going to break down physically over the course of such a long season. So for no other reason, I think you should play 9-10 guys every night. That also keeps the guys on the end of the bench motivated and ready to play when you have injuries.
Second, if you read my point above, you would have noticed that I specifically stated that D'Antoni is locked into an 8 man rotation even though some of the guys are playing terrible basketball. It seems that both of us agree that Duhon is a big time problem at PG. If they're not playing well, why is he afraid to go with someone else?
Third, one of my complaints about D'Antoni's rotation is the fact that he doesn't have a legitimate center in that rotation. That's one of the reason the Knicks are near the bottom of the league in rebounding and shot blocking.
Finally, I agree with your time out scenario above, and that's yet another reason to put some of those idiots on the bench and give someone else an opportunity to get in the rotation. And that just might be Jordan Hill, their number one draft choice.
what is wrong wit some of you people. darko didnt play because hes not that good and not better then guys ahead of him. i said that 2 trades ago then 2 trades ago then one trade ago. tired of heaering " will darko finally get a chance" he's had plaenty of chances what more proof do you need?
I think Sergio Rodriguez would be good for the Knicks. At least he can pass and willing to do so. He seems to be the type of PG that D'Antoni would love to play.
This is probably Darko's last shot at the NBA. If he can't beat Hollins for the starter spot, he surely would be out of the league (although he already said he's planning to return to Europe). I am not sure if he has the work ethics or the character to be successful in Europe though. He got talent but he got screwed over by himself and the Pistons. Looking at so many European "bust" (Darko, Koralev, etc). Most of them went to the NBA way too early. They should have stayed in Europe for 2~3 more years, develop some fundamental skills and get a feel for playing as a team before they joined NBA. European teams really focus on develop fundamental skills with the young players and also highlight team playing over individual performance. These are really important lessons for young players. If Darko stayed in Europe for another 2/3 years, he could have been a Marc Gasol type of player at least. Being European prospects, these kids got great opportunities to play professionally in Europe at a very young age (getting paid, being taught of fundamentals/team concepts, and also playing at a high level vs MEN). The NCAA players do not have the same luxury. Usually, the competition would be weaker (compare to pro level in Europe) and the gifted players can play well without having a solid team concept as they can dominate the game against BOYS.
NBA teams do not really teach fundamental skills and most players focused on individual performance over team success, and that really provided a bad environment for developing young raw players. For young raw players to be successful in the NBA, they need really strong work ethic and character in order to success.
D'Antoni's 8-men rotation is a problem because using only 8-players in the season would really drain those 8-players by playoff time. It also rendered the rest of the 4~7 players useless since they haven't played competitively for the entire season. A good team needs to have 10-men rotation in the season and then trim it down to 8-men in playoff. This would allow the 8-core players to remain fresh in playoff and also allows 2 to 3 extra players to be ready in case something go wrong with the core 8.
Looking at what happened in Phoenix a few years ago, they were so close to win the Championship but they missed out because of injuries (players were drained) and suspensions (bench not developed). The first year the Suns were in contention, they lost Joe Johnson to injury. The other year when they faced the Spurs and Amare and Diaw got suspended for stupid reason, the Suns ended up with a 6-men rotation that lost in a close game against the Spurs. The last game was brutal even with Amare and Diaw back because the 6-players were drained by then. If D'Antoni employed a 10-men rotation during the season, he would have a better shot at having healthy players in playoff and players ready to contribute off the bench for emergency. Definitely, D'Antoni is not the one to be blamed for NYK losses, and I certainly think he's the best coach available to the Knicks. I just want to point out that the way how he handle his short bench and playing no defense would make it really difficult for his team to win championship. The Suns with Nash / Amare / Diaw / Marion core almost got him a championship, so it does show that if you have really really good offense, sometimes defense doesn't matter. Regardless, good defense gives a team a better shot at the championship (all championship teams play defense. e.g. Lakers, Celtics, Pistons, Spurs, etc.). Offense wins games and defense wins championship.
Actually, the Knicks should try to go as hard as they can to win some games because Utah owns their 2010 1st round pick anyway, so there's no reason to tank.
realgmbakax, so it looks as if you do agree with me when I say an 8 man rotation doesn't work in the NBA because they play 82 regular season games and that's when the 2nd season starts, the playoffs.
I think you made an excellent point about European players, such as Milicic, coming over way too early. Obviously his Detroit Pistons experience at the age of 18 was a disaster that ended up with his self confidence being shattered.
I also agree that NBA coaches spend very little time on the fundamentals so 18 and 19 year old guys should take more time learning the game before they sign up for the draft. The latest example was BJ Mullens, who should still be at Ohio State this season.
some come over too early and some like darko were never as good as advertised to begin with
I think Darko will get a couple minutes consistently. He is not a horrible player, he just had huge expectations stacked against him. I think Hollins is a better player (I even think he has the potential to be a Tyson Chandler type player), but he could be a nice backup for Hollins, Love, and Big Al. He still is only like 25 and you know what they say..."You can't teach 7 feet"
so hes a 9th -12th man then. is he really wroth talking about?