The Knicks currently hold a six game lead in the Atlantic conference, have the best record in the Eastern conference and have already knocked off the defending NBA Champion Miami Heat twice during the early stages of the season.
As the Knicks have once again become the talk of the town in New York, an ominous cloud seems to be constantly hovering over the team: what happens when Stoudemire returns?
Will he in some way detrimentally impact the current streak the Knicks find themselves on?
Will he in some way negatively impact the zone that Carmelo Anthony has seemingly been in for two months?
Or will he in some way affect the flow of the game by taking possessions away from Anthony and putting some of the supporting cast such as Jason Kidd, J.R. Smith and Raymond Felton in a difficult position trying to get the ball to both of these prolific scoring superstars an equal number of times during the course of the game?
As the potential impact of Stoudemire’s return remains a concern for Knicks fans, most are viewing the situation almost solely in negative light. When Stoudemire began practicing with the team earlier this week, it was as if storm clouds were brewing over the Manhattan skyline.
Due to the Knicks success during Stoudemire’s absence, he has been labeled as some kind of success killing disease that will inevitably spread throughout the entire organizing the second he steps foot back onto the court.
But what no one seems to be exploring is, what happens if Stoudemire comes back and the Knicks are even better?
The Knicks have been winning with Tyson Chandler as their only real scoring threat down low. Add in Stoudemire and now, you not only have two scoring threats in the front court, but also two very strong shot blockers and another big body to take some of the rebounding load off of Chandler.
Stoudemire may or may not have a negative impact on the Knicks current hot streak; that remains to be seen. But we are talking about a player who has averaged nearly 17 points per game, 1.2 blocks per game and 6.1 rebounds per game throughout his entire career.
Add those stats to an already very successful basketball team and maybe, just maybe, Stoudemire’s return may not be the dark day that many Knicks fans are envisioning.
Perhaps Knicks fans might be better off waiting until it actually starts raining before they break out their umbrellas, because who knows, the return of a 17 PPG power forward may actually be a day of joy rather than a day of dread.
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