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Knicks waive Lou Amundson, Cleanthony Early, Chasson Randle, J.P. Tokoto and Damien Inglis

The Knicks waived guards Chasson Randle and J.P. Tokoto and forwards Lou Amundson, Cleanthony Early and Damien Inglis today.

A few of these players may wind up playing for the Westchester Knicks, the team’s D-League affiliate.

Randle, 6-2, 185-pounds, was signed as an undrafted free agent on Aug. 4, 2016 and appeared in three preseason games, averaging 7.7 points over 15.7 minutes. Tokoto, 6-6, 200-pounds, was signed on Aug. 1, 2016 and appeared in three preseason games, averaging 2.7 points over 12.1 minutes. Amundson, 6-9, 220-pounds, scored two total points over 15 minutes over two preseason games. Early, signed on Oct. 18, and Inglis, signed on Oct. 11, did not appear in preseason action.

The Knicks roster now stands at 15 players.

Knicks guard Derrick Rose won his civil trial today. Here’s the NY Daily News reporting:

Derrick Rose found not liable in civil rape trial

A California jury has rejected a woman’s $21.5 million rape lawsuit against Knicks’ star Derrick Rose.

The jury deliberated for just under four hours Wednesday in Los Angeles federal court before finding the accuser hadn’t proven her claim that Rose and two friends gang-raped her while she was drunk or drugged in her central California apartment.

Rose showed no emotion as the verdict was read, and just shook his lawyer’s hand.

Outside of court, he said he was thankful the jury “understood and agreed with me.”

Knicks re-sign Cleanthony Early

Knicks re-sign Cleanthony Early

The Knicks today re-signed forward Cleanthony Early. He will likely begin the season playing in the D-League.

Early, 6-8, 210-pounds, averaged 1.8 points in 17 games for New York during his second NBA season in 2015-16, a year shortened by a right knee injury. He was assigned to the NBA D-League’s Westchester Knicks on four separate occasions, averaging 15.6 points and 7.3 rebounds in seven appearances.

The Bronx, NY-native was originally drafted by New York in the second round (34th overall) of the 2014 NBA Draft.

Preseason: Celtics beat Knicks 119-107

Saturday night in Madison Square Garden, the Celtics beat the Knicks 119-107.

In the win, R.J. Hunter led the Celtics with 17 points (6-of-8 shooting), plus two steals in just 12 minutes. Avery Bradley had 17 points (6-of-8), and two steals in 17 minutes. And new addition Al Horford shot 5-of-5, including 2-of-2 three-pointers, for 12 points, three rebounds, three assists and two blocks in just 16 minutes.

In the loss, The Knicks were led by 6-foot-8, 216-pound forward Mindaugas Kuzminskas, who had 18 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in just 19 minutes of play. Backup center Willy Hernangomez was also solid with 12 points and 12 rebounds in 24 minutes.

It’s preseason, and teams around the league, including Boston and New York, are essentially just warming up, and playing their starters very limited minutes.

Still, observations can be made:

We saw little from Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas today. No big deal.

Adding Horford sounded like a good move by Boston this offseason, and it sure looks that way on the court. Through the four preseason games he’s played, the former Atlanta Hawk is averaging 11.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks in just 18 minutes per game. And he’s shooting 61.3% FG.

It’ll be interesting to watch Boston’s power forward rotation. The minutes breakdown there will be a compelling coaching decision.

For the Knicks, not having Derrick Rose (currently on trial in California) hurts. Rose has played just one preseason game for his new squad, and looked good. But chemistry development that should have taken place in preseason is now postponed.

But while Rose remains out, Joakim Noah was healthy enough to make his preseason debut. He had five points, five rebounds, an assist and two steals in 19 minutes. He looked rusty, which is to be expected. It’s hard to have a firm opinion on where he’s at just yet.

Kristaps Porzingis is fascinating to watch. As was the case most of last season. Within the first half-quarter of tonight’s game he hit a pair of threes and ran a fast break, which he finished with a bucket. That wound up being most of his production last night — minutes were limited. But he can do amazing things for a young player who stands 7-foot-3.

The Celtics are now 4-1 in preseason. The Knicks are 2-2.

The Knicks are hoping they’re going to get the good Joakim Noah who was a key difference-maker on the Bulls a few years ago. But so far this preseason, they’re getting the more recent, banged-up version. Here’s the New York Daily News reporting:

Joakim Noah has spent preseason with injuries

Joakim Noah’s good health didn’t last long.

A day after scrimmaging for the first time since straining his hamstring nearly two weeks ago, the center missed Thursday’s practice due to a “minor sprained ankle,” coach Jeff Hornacek said.

Noah, who missed at least five games in six of the last seven seasons, hasn’t played yet for the Knicks in the preseason because of the hamstring ailment. He then hurt his angle on one of the final plays of Wednesday’s practice, and Hornacek was unsure about Noah’s status Saturday’s game against Boston.

Derrick Rose should be with the Knicks developing chemistry with Carmelo Anthony, Kristaps Porzingis, Courtney Lee and company, but he’s busy in Los Angeles dealing with a serious trial. It’s totally understandable that Rose is staying out there to focus on it. Here’s the New York Daily News with the latest:

Derrick Rose staying in Los Angeles as trial continues

Derrick Rose decided against taking the 2,500-mile commute.

The Knicks point guard missed Saturday’s preseason game against the Nets on Saturday and, according to Jeff Hornacek, will also skip Monday’s contest because he’s in L.A. awaiting the resumption of his $21.5 million civil trial. It means the New York’s biggest summer acquisition won’t make his Garden debut until Oct. 15, at the earliest, when Joakim Noah is also projected to play for the first time.

If Rose’s contentious trial goes one day longer than expected, he won’t play at MSG as a Knick until Oct. 29 in the regular season against the Grizzlies. The Knicks and Rose had previously discussed a scenario where he’d would fly back-and-forth when possible, but that was before the 28-year-old arrived in L.A. and began his graphic testimony.

Rockets vs Knicks pregame notes

Rockets team pregame notes for preseason game vs Knicks tonight:

· The Rockets and Knicks split the 2015-16 season series but Houston has won 20 of the past 22 meetings.

· New York hasn’t swept a season series vs. Houston since going 2-0 in 2002-03.

· James Harden averaged a series-high 25.0 points against the Knicks last season and had 19 assists with just 5 turnovers in the two games.

· Clint Capela averaged 17.0 points and 12.5 rebounds while shooting 70.0% from the floor vs. New York in 2015-16.


· Rockets center Nene and Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony were teammates in Denver for Anthony’s first seven and half NBA seasons.

· Rockets forward Trevor Ariza and Knicks guard Sasha Vujacic were teammates with the L.A. Lakers for part of 2007-08 and won the title the following season in 2008-09.

· Rockets forward Corey Brewer and Knicks center Joakim Noah were teammates at Florida for all three of their collegiate seasons and won the national title in each of their final two seasons.

· Rockets forward Trevor Ariza was the 43rd overall pick by New York in the 2004 NBA Draft and spent his first one and a half seasons with the Knicks, appearing in 116 games with 22 starts.

Injury/Status Report:

· For the Rockets, Patrick Beverley (Left Knee Soreness) is out.

· For the Knicks, Joakim Noah (Sore Left Hamstring) is questionable and Lou Amundson (Sore Lower Back) is out.

Rockets News & Notes:

· The Rockets scored 131 points in their preseason opener against Shanghai on 10/2… Houston’s high in scoring last season was 132 points at the L.A. Clippers on 1/18/16… the Rockets were 23-9 when scoring 110+ points in 2015-16.

· Houston outrebounded Shanghai 52-41 in its preseason opener on 10/2… the Rockets were 26-9 when outrebounding opponents last season, including 10-2 when doing so by double-digits… Houston outrebounded opponents by 2.3 rebounds per game in wins last season (-5.5 rpg in losses).

· James Harden had team-high of 16 points and 10 assists with just one turnover in the preseason opener vs. Shanghai on 10/2… he recorded 23 double-doubles in 2015-16 and had 10+ assists with just one turnover twice.

· Clint Capela started the preseason opener vs. Shanghai on 10/2 and had 10 points with a team-high 11 rebounds… he averaged 8.3 points and 7.7 rebounds in 35 starts last season… Capela scored in double-figures 20 times last season after doing so once as a rookie in 2014-15.

Young Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis averaged 14.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game as a rookie last season. Despite his height and position, he took a lot of three-pointers, hitting 81-of-243 (33.3%). Normally you don’t want a forward who is taller than most of the league’s centers to shoot many outside shots at all, let alone lots of three-pointers. Unless, of course, he can make them. On that note, here’s the New York Daily News reporting:

Expect even more three-pointers from Kristaps Porzingis this season

Given the green light by Phil Jackson, Kristaps Porzingis is heading into the season unafraid of releasing a pull-up 3-pointer.

The 7-3 Latvian demonstrated the shot in transition during a training-camp scrimmage Thursday, finding open looks as the trailer early in the shot clock. The Knicks hope to get these type of looks more often this season with quicker guards and a faster-paced offense.

“I think that’s a high percentage shot for me. Last year Phil Jackson, he told me that he likes that shot,” said Porzingis, who was left with a bloody nose during the scrimmage after being clocked under the basket. “I wasn’t so sure about it at first. It was early in the offense. I didn’t know if it was the best shot. But once we saw the percentages he said it’s a pretty good look if I get that. The bigs a lot of times, they’re giving me that space, then just take that shot. Once he said that I have his confidence in me and it was just let it go. I’ll probably do the same thing this year.”

This was the biggest Knicks summer in years. Roster moves were made with the clear intention of winning now. And while Phil Jackson is expected to run things for years more, he actually can elect to opt-out after this upcoming season should he choose to move on. Here’s ESPN NY with more:

Phil Jackson has opt-out option after the season

“The proof is in the pudding” was a phrase Jackson used on Friday when asked to assess his presidency thus far. “Fiscally, I’ve been very responsible as a president,” he said. “I don’t think I’ve really had an opportunity to do a lot with the personnel, but we’ve been successful in getting it to a position where we can operate as a basketball team. That’s been our first goal and to eat some dung in the process, we had to do that and live with it.”

If the Knicks struggle this season — or even if they don’t — there will likely be plenty of speculation about Jackson’s future in New York. He has an opt-out in his clause after the season. Jackson said on Friday he hasn’t thought about the option.

“I’ve just been going straight ahead. That really hasn’t been an item for me to think about,” Jackson said. “The fact that I had a clause put in the contract, that in case there was a lockout, that it might be a way to step away from the team or a job that doesn’t have any work action going on for a period of time. So that was one clause. That hasn’t affected what I’m doing now.”

Knicks re-sign Lou Amundson

Knicks re-sign Lou Amundson

The Knicks have re-signed forward Lou Amundson.

He provides bench depth and is not expected to receive much playing time.

Amundson, 6-9, 220-pounds, appeared in 70 games over the last two seasons with New York – including 29 games in 2016-17, averaging 4.3 points and 4.2 rebounds over 15.2 minutes. He holds career averages of 3.7 points and 3.6 rebounds over 12.9 minutes in 428 games over 10 seasons with Utah, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Golden State, Indiana, Minnesota, Chicago, New Orleans, Cleveland and New York.

He was originally acquired from Cleveland as part of a three-team deal on Jan. 5, 2015.

Knicks sign Chasson Randle

Knicks sign Chasson Randle

The Knicks on Thursday signed guard Chasson Randle.

Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this deal merely brings Randle to training camp, where he’d have to earn a regular season contract.

The 6-2, 185-pound guard played in 66 games for CEZ Nymburk (Czech Republic) last season, where he averaged 12.8 points over 20.6 minutes.

Randle headed overseas after a four-year college career at Stanford University (2011-15) and finished as the school’s all-time leading scorer (2,375 points), with averages of 16.5 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.15 steals over 144 games. He was a two-time All-Pac 12 first-team selection (2014, 2015) and was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2015 National Invitation Tournament after leading the Cardinals to the championship at Madison Square Garden.

The Rock Island, IL-native appeared in three games for the Knicks entry in the 2016 Orlando Pro Summer League, averaging 18.3 points, 5.0 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 3.00 steals over 29.7 minutes.

Knicks sign J.P. Tokoto

Knicks sign J.P. Tokoto

The Knicks signed guard J.P. Tokoto today.

Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this deal merely brings Tokoto to Knicks training camp, where he’d have a chance to earn a regular season contract.

Tokoto, 6-6, 200-pounds, spent last season playing for the Oklahoma City Blue (D-League) where he averaged 11.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.54 steals in 28.6 minutes in 48 games (25 starts).

He was drafted by the Sixers in the second round (58th overall) of the 2015 NBA Draft after playing three seasons at the University of North Carolina (2012-15). As a senior, Tokoto averaged 8.3 points, 5.6 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.47 steals over 29.1 minutes in 38 games (34 starts).

The Rockford, IL-native, appeared in five games for the Knicks’ entry in the 2016 Orlando Pro Summer League, averaging 10.2 points and 4.2 rebounds over 27.0 minutes.

Likely Knicks starters in the backcourt next season are Derrick Rose and Courtney Lee. Minutes off the bench will likely go to guards Brandon Jennings and perhaps Sasha Vujacic and/or Justin Holiday.

Knicks sign guard Ron Baker

Knicks sign guard Ron Baker

The Knicks signed guard Ron Baker today.

Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this signing merely brings Baker to Knicks training camp.

The Hays, KS-native, appeared in five games for the Knicks summer league team in this year’s Orlando League, averaging 14.0 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.80 steals over 29.6 minutes.

Baker, 6-4, 220-pounds, played four seasons at Wichita State University, averaging 13.2 points, on 43.3-percent shooting, with 4.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.31 steals over 30.6 minutes in 124 games. He was a part of three Missouri Valley Conference championships (2013, 2014, 2015), nine NCAA Tournament wins, two trips to the Sweet 16 (2013, 2015) and a trip to the 2013 Final Four. As a senior (2015-16), he averaged 14.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.51 steals over 31.6 minutes in 35 games. His postseason honors included: John R. Wooden Second Team All-American; USA Today Second Team All-American and 2015 finalist for Jerry West Award.

It’s always interesting finding out which NYC neighborhood Knicks or Nets players choose to live in. Why, you ask? The Nets’ practice facility is now in Brooklyn, same as their arena. So at this point it’s pretty obvious that Brooklyn is convenient for Nets players. But the Knicks play in midtown Manhattan while practicing at a facility up in Westchester. Big separation there. If a Knicks player wants a house and some space, Westchester is usually the place. But if he wants to walk outside and have NYC action and Madison Square Garden right outside their door (or fairly close), Manhattan is the spot.

As for Kristaps Porzingis, here’s the New York Post reporting:

Kristaps Porzingis finds apartment rental in midtown Manhattan

The 7-foot-3-inch player has leased a corner penthouse that was asking $8,000 a month at Sky, the mammoth rental tower at 605 W. 42nd St.

He also nabbed another two high-floor units for his two brothers, Martins and Janis, because “they are close and like to be near each other,” a source said…

Porzingis’ units have city skyline and river views, floor-to-ceiling windows, chef’s kitchen and spa-like bathrooms.

Knicks re-sign Sasha Vujacic

Knicks re-sign Sasha Vujacic

The Knicks have re-signed veteran guard Sasha Vujacic.

Vujacic, 6-7, 195-pounds, averaged 4.9 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists over 14.9 minutes in 61 games this past season. In 25 starts, he averaged 7.8 points over 22.7 minutes.

He was mostly a backup last season, and now with the additions of Derrick Rose and Brandon Jennings he should have an even smaller role in 2016-17.

A member of the 2009 and 2010 NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers, the Slovenia native has averaged 5.5 points and 15.8 minutes in 539 career games over nine seasons and has also appeared in 65 playoff games. He was originally signed as a free agent by the Knicks on Aug. 7, 2015.

Knicks sign Maurice Ndour

The Knicks signed forward Maurice Ndour today.

Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this is a non-guaranteed contract.

Ndour, 6-9, 200-pounds, spent this past season playing for Spanish Cup champion Real Madrid (Spain), averaging 2.1 points and 1.6 rebounds over 9.1 minutes in 18 games. He appeared in five games for New York’s Summer League entry in Las Vegas, NV last summer, averaging 9.6 points and 4.8 rebounds. He then signed with the Dallas Mavericks on July 23, 2015, and appeared in four preseason games before being waived on Oct. 26, 2015.

The Sindia, Senegal-native, appeared in 66 games (61 starts) over two seasons at Ohio University, posting 14.9 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.82 blocks, while being named to the All-MAC Second team in both his junior and senior seasons. Undrafted by an NBA franchise in 2015, Ndour played for Senegal’s 2015 national team. He played high school basketball in Japan.

Knicks sign Mindaugas Kuzminskas


New York Knicks President Phil Jackson announced today that the team has signed forward Mindaugas Kuzminskas.

You don’t know who he is. So, here:

Kuzminskas, 6-9, 215-pounds, has averaged 8.3 points and 2.9 rebounds in 221 career games over seven seasons with Siauliai (Lithuania), Zalgris (Lithuania) and Malaga (Spain). He is a four-time Lithuanian All-Star (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013), three-time Lithuanian National champion (2011, 2012, 2013), two-time winner of the Lithuanian National Cup (2011, 2012), two-time Baltic League champion (2011, 2012) and winner of the 2012 Lithuanian Super Cup.

The 26-year-old posted 12.0 points, on 48.6-percent shooting and 3.4 rebounds in 23 games for Malaga last season. The Vinius, Lithuania-native represented his country in the 2013 and 2015 EuroCup, winning Silver medals at both.

Knicks re-sign Lance Thomas

Knicks re-sign Lance Thomas

New York Knicks President Phil Jackson announced today that the team has re-signed forward Lance Thomas.

Thomas, 6-8, 235-pounds, provided consistent scoring off the bench for New York this past season, averaging 8.2 points over 22.3 minutes in 59 games. Although he missed 23 games due to injury, the Brooklyn, NY-native recorded career highs in points scored (484), scoring average (8.2), three-point field goals (44) and attempts (109) and free throw percentage (.857).

The Duke University graduate finished his second season with the Knicks in 2015-16, his fifth overall in the NBA (also with New Orleans and Oklahoma City), and was originally acquired as part of a three-team deal with Cleveland and Oklahoma City on Jan. 5, 2015.

Knicks sign center Marshall Plumlee

The Knicks have signed center Marshall Plumlee.

It is likely that Plumlee will play very limited minutes.

Plumlee, 7-0, 250-pounds, went undrafted by an NBA franchise after completing a four-year college career at Duke University (2012-16) with averages of 3.4 points, on 66.5-percent shooting, and 3.8 rebounds over 14.3 minutes in 124 games (36 starts). He played in 13 NCAA Tournament games and was a member of the 2015 National Championship squad. The West Lafayette, IN-native had his most productive season as a senior, averaging 8.3 points, on 68.8-percent shooting, 8.6 rebounds and 1.61 blocks over 30.5 minutes in 36 games (all starts). His 119 offensive rebounds rank sixth on Duke’s all-time single-season list. He joins his brothers - Miles and Mason – in the NBA, who currently play for Milwaukee and Portland, respectively.

In four starts for New York’s entry in the 2016 Orlando Pro Summer League, Plumlee has averaged 6.0 points and 4.8 rebounds.

Knicks sign Courtney Lee

Knicks sign Courtney Lee

The Knicks have signed guard Courtney Lee.

Lee’s deal is reportedly a $50 million dollar contract over four years.

They team today added center Joakim Noah and guard Brandon Jennings, and recent traded for guard Derrick Rose.

“As a coaching staff, we are all excited to fill out our roster with this caliber of player,” Head Coach Jeff Hornacek said. “We believe that the players we have will give us a good mix of versatility and flexibility on both sides of the ball. This will help us get to the level we want to achieve.”

Lee, 6-5, 200-pounds, has averaged 9.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.02 steals over 27.3 minutes in 600 career games over eight seasons with Orlando, New Jersey, Houston, Boston, Memphis and Charlotte. He has appeared in 50 career playoff games, including a trip to the 2009 NBA Finals with the Magic.

Last season, the Indianapolis, IN-native, averaged 9.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.08 steals over 79 games with the Grizzlies and Hornets. He was originally selected by Orlando with the 22nd overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, following four seasons at Western Kentucky University.

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