Josh Howard could provide a spark off the Knicks bench.
If New York can sign the forward, it would bolster an already-deep bench.
Howard, 32, was at one point was considered one of the elite small forwards in the NBA. He's not going to put up the same numbers he did during his 2007-08 season with Dallas (19.9 PPG, 7.0 RPG), but he can still contribute in a major way.
In his 43 games with the Utah Jazz last season, Howard averaged 8.7 points per game and 3.7 rebounds. Assuming that he would back up Carmelo most of the time, these numbers aren't that bad and would likely increase with Jason Kidd at the point guard.
However, it's Howard's defense that should entice the Knicks, especially with Coach Mike Woodson's emphasis on that end of the floor. At 6'7", Howard can guard multiple positions, and, best of all, he's looking to sign cheap. Last year, Howard made $2.2 million, but the Knicks should expect to sign for the veteran's minimum.
Do you think the Knicks should push hard for Josh Howard?
Why should Howard be enticed by New York?
For one, he'll be a part of a team ready to compete right now. The Knicks' current roster is a talented one, and each player knows his assigned role. And Howard would know upon signing that he's a backup—yet will be a critical part of the Knicks bench.
Considering the Knicks are lacking at the forward spot, Howard might see the most floor time in New York. Steve Novak is more of a shooter and his defense is lackluster. Chris Copeland has spent the last five seasons playing international ball and has yet to prove he deserves massive playing time. Kurt Thomas is a veteran, but I can't see him making the same contributions as Howard.
The way I see Josh Howard being utilized is at small forward, or you could pair him with Carmelo Anthony by moving Melo to the power forward position. We saw how well Melo played last season at the 4-spot (29.9 points per game with 7.9 rebounds in his first seven games with Amar'e Stoudemire out), so taking Stat off the court for a breather wouldn't be a detriment to the team's game plan.
If the Knicks can sign the forward, New York should welcome him with open arms.