Archive for the ‘New York Knicks’ category

5 Things the New York Knicks Need to Do to Compete With the Miami Heat

July 17th, 2010
South Beach hasn't seen a gang like this since Scarface took a dip in his fountain, so let's forego the cheesy, traditional, sports-related monikers and call the Miami Heat basketball organization what it is—El Cartel. Pat Riley, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade—forget Chris Bosh—run Miami right now and no one makes a move unless they say so. The goal is complete domination of the basketball world. Natural haters, and those wanting to hate, can rationalize their anti-Heat campaign any which way they want; the reality is this team is a lock to win at least 60 games and make a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals. A lock. And while fans and sportswriters are spending their time calling LeBron a traitor or whatnot, every single general manager and coach in the league is trying to answer the following question: How do we compete with the Miami Heat? Believe it or not, this includes the New York Knicks, a team whose biggest off-season acquisitions this summer, after successfully landing superstar Amar'e Stoudemire, are Raymond Felton and... Anthony Randolph? Yes, the Knicks. How do they, as a work in progress, give a team like the Heat a competitive 48-minute run, let alone challenge them in the standings? By doing five things...

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NBA Trade Rumors: New York Knicks Want Rudy Fernandez

July 16th, 2010

Rudy Fernandez seems to be the hot topic for the Trail Blazers page on Bleacher Report.

Luckily, the smoke surrounding him is starting to clear up now.

The New York Knicks are very interested in trading for Portland Trail Blazer Guard Rudy Fernandez, and apparently the feeling is mutual, as Rudy wants to go to either the Knicks, Bulls, Celtics , Nets, or Heat.

Out of those teams, the team showing the most interest is obviously New York since they need some help at the wing positions.

The reason this trade hasn't already happened is that the Trail Blazers do not have any interest in any of the players that the Knicks are giving in exchange.

So for this trade to go down as soon as possible, the Knicks have to either give the Trail Blazers draft picks or find a third team to make a trade possible.

The best players the Knicks can give for Rudy are Wilson Chandler and Anthony Randolph.

I doubt they would offer Anthony Randolph because he has huge potential to flourish in the Knicks offensive style.

Wilson Chandler might be more available since the Knicks are not sure if he can play the two-guard position properly.

If the trade were to involve New York's draft picks, the Trail Blazers would have to wait a while for the pick since New York owes Houston their next two first round draft picks from the Tracy McGrady deal.

But as Utah has shown, if you wait for a draft pick from a team like the Knicks, you can have a lot of happiness.

I think the Trail Blazers should either get Wilson Chandler from the Knicks since he has value and could be traded in a package for a player like CP3, or they should get the Knicks' 2013 first round pick.

Hopefully, Rudy Fernandez will be gone from the roster in a few days and we'll have a nice draft pick waiting for us in 2013.

A Farewell to David Lee

July 16th, 2010

It's been almost a week since the Knicks have sent David Lee packing for Golden State, and he never got his proper send off.

David Lee was drafted by the Knicks in 2005 out of the University of Florida. Being a reserve for his first few seasons, Lee became a starter and solid contributor once Mike D'antoni arrived on scene as the Knicks head coach in 2008. He had breakout seasons in 2008-09, and 2009-10 where he averaged a double-double.

Last season, he became the first Knick since Patrick Ewing to average 20 points and 12 rebounds per contest. He was also awarded a spot on the East All-Stars, a feat that had not been accomplished by a Knick since 2001.

David Lee was not chased out of town but he was not welcomed back. During the signing of Amar'e Stoudemire and the failed courting of LeBron James, Lee was lost in the shuffle and tossed to the curb like an afterthought.

The Knicks are a better team now than they were two weeks ago, but Lee, playing as an undersized center, held his own these past two years.

A fan favorite, Lee was a player who improved his game week-to-week. His range improved dramatically in 2009-10 and became a quandary to defend. Players who sagged off him paid the price with 15-18 foot jump shots. Those who played him tight were drove past with an array of scoops, finger rolls, and jump hooks.

Lee's game in the post was also high quality. His face up game from eight to 10 feet out was deadly. Lee had an array of weapons including a smooth touch for baby jump shots, and the ability to drive middle with a quick first step. His ability to finish with both hands was also uncanny.

Lee thrived in D'antoni's pick and roll system. He became more adept as time wore on. Lee would often slip the defender with a decoy screen leaving him in a position to seal or catch a lob pass for an easy lay-in.

The high screen and roll also gave the opportunity for Lee to distribute. Catching the ball 18 feet beyond the basket, Lee would often hit cutters with point guard like precision bounce passes. His passing is one of his most underrated parts of his game as he is probably the best passing big man in the NBA.

His defense was his biggest criticism and the key reason why the Knicks did not pursue him more. Lee's natural position is a power forward but because of an undersized Knicks lineup, Lee was forced to play center. Lee was an average on-ball defender but was terrible in his rotations. Not only was he not a threat to challenge shots but he would often shy away from even stepping in the lane to disrupt the offense.

There were even instances where he would literally not move and allow players to get the hoop for unchallenged finishes. Had it not been for this aspect of his game, the Knicks might have been planning their free agency around him.

Despite this, Lee is still the best Knicks player of the last five years. It's sad to see a young star like Lee leave. He has not yet hit his full potential. If he works hard, and improves his defense, Lee could be a top five power forward. His scoring is certainly good enough.

False Alarm! Shaquille O’Neal Will Not Join New York Knicks

July 16th, 2010

Earlier in the day, there were reports that the New York Knicks could be coming to a final decision on whether or not to acquire Shaquille O'Neal from the Cleveland Cavaliers in a sign-and-trade deal. This was normal among the NBA teams and not really anything to get riled up about.

Many believe that a move for Shaq could be beneficial to the Cavaliers, as they could get some youth on the team in return. O'Neal may want to retire with the Knicks, as he could reunite with head coach Mike D'Antoni from his days with the Phoenix Suns.

A Knicks official stated that, "I don't think it would work with us on all kinds of levels." This is according to the New York Post .

Shaq is getting older, but I believe the Knicks would be making this move because they may want to draw more fans to Madison Square Garden. The Knicks also seem to like bringing former Phoenix Suns to the Knicks. From Mike D'Antoni to Amar'e Stoudemire, it looks like the Knicks are throwing a party, and all former Suns are invited. 

This deal looks to be dead as the Knicks have little to no reason to be giving up youth for an aging center.

There has also been some buzz about Shaq possibly being sent to the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for Marvin Williams. Shaq has always been seen as a dominant player on a dominant team, and seeing him in an Atlanta Hawks jersey would look very odd.


New York Knicks Fans: Prepare To Lose Your Hair Over Anthony Randolph

July 15th, 2010

Almost a week ago, after the Man Who Would Be King announced he was heading to Miami to party…sorry, play with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, the New York Knicks completed a sign-and-trade deal with my beloved Golden State Warriors which netted us David Lee in exchange for Anthony Randolph, Ronny Turiaf, and Kelenna Azubuike.

I’ve already written about the deal from the Warriors point of view (basically, I love it) but I felt it was my civic duty as a basketball fan and someone who’s watched all three of these guys grow to give Knicks fans a heads-up on what they can expect from their new acquisitions.


Ronny Turiaf

OK, let’s get one thing straight. You are gonna love Turiaf.

He’s an excellent character guy, a great locker room presence, a terrific community outreach bloke…in short, he’s the kind of guy every team needs at least one of. It’s impossible not to love him. In fact, the only part of this deal that saddens me is that we let him go.

On the court, he’s not much on offense so as long as you don’t expect too much from him on that end, you’ll be fine. Nor is he a great rebounderthis could be a problem since you traded away one of the best in the league at crashing the boards for two bigs who tend to be inconsistent on that end.

He is a solid defensive big man who can bang at both ends, protect the rim, and set screens (obviously useful considering you guys have Mike D’Antoni as your coach).

Considering you have Amare, I’d guess Turiaf’s offensive limitations are forgivable. He can also run the floor as well as any big man in the leagueobviously useful since he’s going from the fastest offense in the NBA to the second-fastest (or the other way around).

In short, as long as you don’t expect him to become Patrick Ewing 2.0., you’ll love Ronny Turiaf.


Kelenna Azubuike

I’m not sure how much play you’re gonna get out of Buike, because his knees are up caca creek right now and I don’t know when he’s gonna be fully fit.

Either way, he’s another solid role-player type you guys will love. He can cover both twos and threes (although he’s a little undersized for SF), shoot threes, play good perimeter D, and really catch fire on offense (just ask George Karl). D’Antoni will surely find room for him in the rotation.

Plus, he’s another good guy who you guys are gonna love.


Anthony Randolph

I saved AR for last because obviously I’m gonna spend the most time on him.

Golden State fans were and are bitterly divided over Randolph. Some believe he’s a potential top-10 player, others believe he’s a bust waiting to happen.

I personally fall into the latter camp for two reasons.

1)   He’s a bit of a head case.

2)   He has very low basketball IQ.

The first is easier to rectify; however, I’m not sure if New York is really the place where he’s gonna do so.

You guys are tough. No question about it. I remember watching Knicks games last year and hearing you boo your own team. The expectations you guys have even after a pretty lousy decade are high.

Randolph, meanwhile, has shown a willingness to complain publicly about his coach and the fact he feels he wasn’t getting enough playing time.

Now, we all know that Don Nelson is a few sandwiches short of a picnic these days, but however you look at it, a rookie publicly whinging about his lack of PT doesn’t look good from his side.

Plus, he’s also shown a tendency to break down and make bad decisions on the court, which ties in to part twohis abysmal basketball IQ.

Randolph is a terrific athlete with good ball handling skills for a big man. However, he often seems to think he’s a shooting guard in a skinny power forward’s body. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve cringed as I’ve seen him try to beat his man one-on-one before launching an ill-advised 15-footer which almost always misses.

On this point, his J has some potential, but he fires up so many bad shots it’s near irrelevant. He almost never passes the ball (even when he’s double teamed) and always looks to play iso-style. Which is all well and good for streetball, but not so much for the NBA.

The worrying thing for you guys is that basketball IQ generally isn’t a skill that you gradually develop. It tends to be there or it isn’t. Randolph doesn’t seem to have much of it.

Please be gentle with him at first. Even though it may sound like I’ve been pretty hard on him, I do think he’s a nice kid who could be great if his skill can ever catch up to his physical abilities.

That said, though, prepare to be very frustrated and give up on him about 17times every season.

Good luck. I'll be watching closely for sure. And I hope Amare posterizes Bosh when the Knicks eventually play the Cold.

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