Time for another NBA preview as we hurdle towards the start of the NBA regular season on October 29th. This has been a running series, so make sure you go back and read the earlier posts, including the most recent, the Minnesota Timberwolves. I don’t like this team, I don’t like this team’s fans, I don’t like them in general. So guess what? I didn’t like what they did this summer. It’s the New York Knicks.
Key Departures: Jason Kidd (Coaching the Nets) Steve Novak (Raptors) Chris Copeland (Pacers) Marcus Camby (Rockets) Rasheed Wallace (Retired Again, sadly)
The Knicks had a very underwhelming offseason, and you know that’s the case when Andrea Bargnani is the big acquisition that’s supposed to put you over the top. There’s a reason Masai Ujiri is doing cartwheels with what he got from New York, in exchange for Bargs. Metta World Peace is going to be great this year. Not because of anything on the court, unless he mentally snaps or something, but he’s just so entertaining off the court. Did you know that he thinks Shumpert is the best shooting guard in the NBA? That about sums him up in a nutshell. Beno Udrih came from Orlando who’s a very capable backup, so well done there. Tim Hardaway is a very good shooter, and at 23, they got him at a great place in the draft. They lost the immortal Steve Novak in the Bargnani trade, not a big deal, but they also lost Jason Kidd to the Nets… As a coach. That just says something about the Knicks, that Kidd went from playing for them, to coaching for their cross town rival the next year. Rasheed Wallace retired again which is a sad occurrence, but he’s no longer able to play an NBA schedule, yet alone be of any real use beyond a technical foul quota that needs to be reached.
The starting lineup goes like this: PG All offense, no defense, SG all defense, no offense, SF all offense, no defense, PF all offense, no defense, C all defense, no offense. See a pattern? Carmelo would rather just stay on the offensive end, and so would Bargnani. Felton is kind of fat, and can’t guard all the amazing point guard in the Eastern Conference. Tyson Chandler is a defensive whiz, and will somehow have to defend for two with Bargnani or Stoudemire beside him. Shump is a very good young guard, and hopefully he can stay healthy, but is also limited offensively. Let’s talk more Bargnani shall we? People talked about him be a player who can “stretch the floor”, yeah that little basketball gem. You tell me how a 40% shooter from the field, and 30% shooter from three can stretch the floor? And is it worth it for that 40/30 shooting, to have one of the worst defensive players in the league? He averaged less that four rebounds last year, AS A SEVEN FOOTER!! That’s historically bad. Four rebounds should just fall into his lap if he’s anywhere near the basket. Needless to say, I don’t like the move, and it won’t do much to beat the Pacers and Heats of the conference.
I asked our Matt Bell to give me some thoughts about the New York Knicks and what he thought they would do in the 2013-14 season.
The Knicks have one of the NBA’s best offensive players in Carmelo Anthony and their offense needs to run through him. They got better on defense with the additions of Metta World Peace and Andrea Bargnani and they already have a ton of talent. The key for the Knicks to make a serious run is going to be Tyson Chandler staying healthy all year. I may be in the minority, but I feel once this team gets the roles all figured out and if Chandler stays healthy they could become a legit threat in the eastern conference this year. The Knicks will win over 50 games this year and will be in the top 4 seeds of the playoffs.
I don’t like the Knicks. I hope that’s come across, and I think they truly will have an average year. They can’t contend with the Heat, Pacers, Nets and Bulls, and their team is so poorly put together. When you rely on two chuckers, Anthony and JR Smith, you’re asking for trouble, and that’s what happened last playoffs, and will probably happen again this playoffs. Plus with the media pressure in New York, and the Nets all loaded up, this team could straight up implode in the middle of the season. Have fun with that Knicks fans. I do actually really like Shumpert though, so there’s that. Don’t say I didn’t anything nice about the Knicks.
Final Prediction: 49-33, 5th Eastern Conference