New York is easily one of the most talented teams in the Eastern Conference. They just need to show up in the big games.
Let's take a look at what the lineup will look like and has to offer this season...
Starter: Raymond Felton
Backup: Jason Kidd
After the Knicks refused to match the Houston Rockets' offer sheet, fans were already disappointed. From a fan perspective, adding Felton didn't make them forget.
But regardless of whether they should have matched Lin's offer, Felton is not a bad guy to have run the point, especially when you have Kidd to back him up.
Opposed to Lin, Felton is more of a pass-first point guard rather than ball dominant. Since the Knicks have players who need the ball in their hands to score, Felton can play the role of distributing the ball.
Keep in mind Felton's best year in the league was with the Knicks two seasons ago, as he averaged 17.1 points and nine assists per game. Oh yeah, and he has his familiar teammates J.R Smith, Tyson Chandler and Marcus Camby on the squad.
As for Kidd, you know the great veteran presence he gives, and it's a great thing to have coming off the bench.
Starter: J.R. Smith
Backup: Ronnie Brewer/Iman Shumpert (when healthy)
The shooting guard slot is really a toss-up between any of these guys, but as of now it seems like the Knicks will go with Smith as the starter.
The Knicks recently signed Brewer to a one-year deal, and many would argue that he should start because of his defensive abilities that Smith doesn't bring to the table as much. This is a fair point, and if things aren't working out with Smith, Brewer could easily be made the starter.
New York also has Shumpert who is currently dealing with a left knee injury. He is a great defensive presence and has a lot of potential.
They have a lot of depth here, so regardless of who they choose, there shouldn't be much to worry about here.
Starter: Carmelo Anthony
Backup: Steve Novak
Anthony is clearly one of the league's best scorers and also has the ability to rebound. He creates his own shots and can get to the rim if he needs to. He's an NBA superstar, and you really expect nothing less of him.
But like every season, Anthony has a lot of weight on his shoulders to lead the team, and it's exactly where the criticism arises.
The Knicks will be competing in the newly improved Eastern Conference with other teams of their caliber, so there is no easy road when you get to the playoffs. It's up to Anthony to prove that the Knicks are a legitimate contender for a title.
Novak, on the other hand, is a good shooter to have come off the bench and spreads the floor with his three-point shooting ability.
Starter: Amar'e Stoudemire
Backup: Kurt Thomas
Last year simply wasn't Amar'e's year. Along with the injuries, Stoudemire underachieved and had his worst season since his rookie year.
Many fans have speculated that his poor production was a chemistry problem between him and Anthony. However true this may be, there is no reason for their chemistry not to improve. We've seen superstars in today's game struggle at first but learn to work with each other.
They can yield the same result of improvement.
Expect Amar'e to have a better season than last year. He is still just 29 years old and is one of the best big men in the league. We've seen what he is capable of and it will show again this upcoming season.
As for Thomas, they aren't expecting much out of him considering he will be 40 years old by next season, but he will serve as a big body defensively.
Starter: Tyson Chandler
Backup: Marcus Camby
This is a great 1-2 punch at center, especially from a defensive standpoint. Chandler ranked 16th in the league in blocks last year (89) while Camby finished 19th (85).
Plus, Chandler ranked 15th in defensive rating (98.7) and Camby ranked 10th (98.1).
New York is usually regarded as a team that does not fare well on the defensive side, but it will have great success in shutting down centers.
Also, Chandler led the league in field goal percentage last year and these guys are two of the most well-regarded rebounders in the game today. Evidently, the Knicks should have nothing to worry about here.