Too many times last season, when Tyson Chandler got into foul trouble, the Knicks would implode defensively and failed to secure rebounds after the first miss. While Josh Harrellson and Jared Jeffries are hardworking role players, they do not serve as solid post defenders, excellent rebounders, or rim protectors.
Marcus Camby helps to alleviate those woes the Knicks had when Chandler was not on the floor. He is an excellent rebounder (above 20 percent TRB) which the Knicks desperately need as Stoudemire has yet to become an average rebounder for his position. Despite all his physical tools, Stoudemire never seems to come up with the rebound the Knicks need. With Camby, that should become much less of a problem.
While Camby does not have the high level athleticism he used to when he excelled as a Knick earlier in his career, he still blocks shots at a respectable rate. This means that the Knicks can continue to protect the rim when Tyson Chandler is not on the floor.
This also allows guards like J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert (when healthy) to put more pressure on the ball knowing that they have either Chandler or Camby is patrolling the middle and able to make up for anytime they get burned on the perimeter.
His post defense will also come in handy, especially with the potential of Dwight Howard staying in the Eastern Conference. The Knicks will need as many quality defenders they can get to throw at post players like Howard, especially since Stoudemire shows little to no ability to defend the post.
In addition, to his individual defense, his leadership and defensive mentality will help to mold the Knicks into a team that is better suited to go deep into the playoffs.
The Knicks must still rely on the improvement of their team from within (both from individuals like Carmelo Anthony, Stoudemire, Shumpert, and Jeremy Lin as well as from the entire team with it comes to defensive and offensive chemistry) to become a true title contender.
However, the signing of Marcus Camby will add much need improvement to areas of severe weakness on the Knicks bench. Not to mention, it is always nice to have a former Knick who reached the Finals with the team on the roster.
If anyone currently playing in the NBA understands what it takes to succeed in New York for the Knicks, it is Marcus Camby.
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