Expecting to be a competitor this season behind the leadership of Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire, the Knicks need to realize that this core just doesn't work and won't have them competing for rings anytime soon.
Through just about one-third of the shortened season, the Knicks are counting on Baron Davis making a heroic return from a back injury and turning the tide for the season. This pipe dream won't rebuild the dam that has been broken this season. The Knicks need to make personnel changes, and it starts with trading Stoudemire.
After the Miami Heat got their Big Three in LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, it didn't seem long until the Knicks would get their own version, as rumors heated up that Stoudemire, Anthony and Chris Paul all wanted to play together in the Big Apple.
The Knicks got two out of the three parties, but they failed to land Paul, as they were forced to give up almost all tradable assets to the Denver Nuggets in order to bring Anthony aboard. The NBA (New Orleans Hornets) traded Chris Paul to the Los Angeles Clippers at the beginning of this season, and the dream of the newest Big Three died quickly.
Even before the trade took place, the Knicks realized they would be unable to make the move and signed free agent Tyson Chandler to a big contract. While Chandler has been solid, averaging a double-double, he hasn't had a huge impact in the outcome of games.
Without Paul as their new, flashy point guard, the Knicks settled for the soon-to-be 33-year-old Baron Davis.
Yet to play a single game this season because of herniated disks, Davis' impact on the Knicks has yet to be felt. He may come in and be everything this team needed and take them right into the playoffs with a solid finish to the season. The likelihood of this happening—extremely low.
It is most likely that even if Davis helps the Knicks turn around the season, they will once again be facing an early postseason exit if they are fortunate enough to make it.
The combo of Stoudemire and Anthony has yet to—and likely will never—be a dominant duo that will completely dominate games from start to finish. It is clear that in order for this superstar pairing to have success, they need solid role players.
Anthony's ability to create his own shot and score at will are uncanny, but Stoudemire has played his best basketball alongside a great point guard, something the Knicks lack and will continue to lack even with the addition of Baron Davis.
Those role players the Knicks could use so much right now are all donning university blue on the Western Conference's second-best team, the Denver Nuggets. Having to give up such a lump sum to the Nuggets has deflated the Knicks and been the poison in this season's campaign.
The success of the Denver Nuggets this season and the Dallas Mavericks of last season have shown what teams with great role players can accomplish.
The Knicks need to become a better basketball team all around the board. It's time to accept the fact that the experiment just didn't pan out the way they had hoped. By trading Stoudemire for multiple pieces, the Knicks can begin to turn their season around.
With so much given up for Anthony and the hoopla surrounding his "home-coming," the Knicks would be committing PR suicide if they traded Anthony at this point. Anthony is also two years younger and has proven he can play as the only superstar on the team.
A week ago, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith reported on ESPN Radio New York 1050 AM that, "The Orlando Magic—I will preface my statement by telling you that they have categorically denied this, but my sources tell me that they have inquired about Tyson Chandler and Amare Stoudemire going to Orlando for Dwight Howard."
While this trade wouldn't solve the issue of a lack of role players, it would effectively allow the Knicks to run the offense through Anthony, and have a huge dominating force on defense that Chandler has failed to be. This is a trade the Knicks need to be considering as the Mar. 15 trade deadline approaches.
If not this trade, there are certainly more that will come their way if the Knicks are willing to listen. Plenty of teams would welcome the addition of a superstar in Stoudemire. If the Knicks can get fair value, trading Stoudemire must be done.
This grouping is consistently getting outplayed night-in and night-out. It is as if the Knicks are still waiting for Chris Paul to join the show and win them championships. The Knicks' front office needs to realize CP3 isn't walking through that door anytime soon.
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