Could THIS Man be The Key to the Knicks Making the Playoffs?

Raymond SettlesContributor IAugust 11, 2010

Could THIS Man be The Key to the Knicks Making the Playoffs?

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    The Knicks are in position as is, to battle for one of the last three Eastern Conference playoff spots going into the 2011-12 season. 

    There is a gaping hole for a backup big who can score, grab some rebounds and black a shot or two. 

    Can Eddy Curry, like a slightly inflated Clark Kent, turn into a rotund Superman for eight to 10 minutes a night and send Metropolis (er, New York) into the playoffs?  Let's examine the case...

Ability to Score

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    This man can get up, can't he?  Seriously, the guy has a career average of over 13 points-per-game.  That may not be awe-inspiring, but when you look at how many centers in the league right now cannot put up those kinds of numbers, it gives one pause.

    Surely, he cannot start over Stoudemire or Randolph, but he can surely in a few minutes work, give you about eight points per game.  That's only four makes a game against second-team centers.  He can do that against Chris Wilcox, Spencer Hawes, and Jeff Foster, can't he?

    Mike, utilize this BIG weapon in your arsenal off the pine. He can't get any better sitting there next to Herb Williams. You can deploy him like Truman did in '45. He may not rival Hakeem in the post, but he can back the opposition right down like a young Adrian Dantley!

Ability to Rebound

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    Though the man-child averaged a Chamberlain-like 5.3 rebounds per game for his career, he did that over a 30 minutes per game basis.  Say D'Antoni convinces Curry to rehab his career by playing hard (imagine that, eh?) for say, 12 minutes per game, and that if he can near his average on the glass, he could sucker, er, convince some other team that he deserves another contract?

    What? You say who could be that foolish?

    Well if Amir Johnson can get $34 million from the Raptors, then all hope is not lost for our young (still) Mr. Curry. And no, he doesn't need Isiah to greenlight a new deal for him.  Remember, it was that genius Jerry Krause who pulled the trigger to draft the then nimble 285 pound high school phenom.

    Don't give up hope, Eddy!  If Jerome James can get $30 million from the Knicks, then you too can get an undeserving deal!  What's that?  You say Zeke did that deal, too?  Oh.  Well, we can still hope, can't we?

Ability to Block

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    Look at how Curry is blocking out Marbury!  He is virtually shutting him out of his head (as you can tell by the look on his face).  He, in fact, is even blocking out Steve Francis from the view of what's happening on the court!

    Okay, so blocking shots is a more needed skill on the sieve-like Knick defense. We gotta start somewhere, don't we?  One step at a time, people.  Even if they are baby steps. Real little baby steps.

    Curry's forte has never been blocking shots like Mark Eaton, but he can be convinced to do something different, I'm sure. He can be reminded that he has only played 69 games over the last three seasons combined, and if he does not want to be the Knicks' best paid spectator and cheerleader (the modern-day M.L. Carr?), then he better get out there and protect the rim as if it is the post-game spread!

Ability to Take Up SPACE

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    This 6'11", 275 pound (listed weight) behemoth is truly a space eater!  When Stoudemire, Randolph and the other starters are catching a breather, opponents will be wise to avoid charging into the lane when Mr. Curry is there.

    As surprising as it may sound to D'Antoni, when the second unit is in, it may not be unwise to slow the tempo down to allow the skills, size and (ample) girth of E.C. to pound on the opposition.

    As LeBron James shows here, even stars whose aura seems to envelope the entire NBA cannot hold a candle to the massive man-mountain known as Eddy Curry!

Who Else is Left?

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    When you look over the landscape of available big men in the league, there are no Russells, Jabbars or Thurmonds out there.  You can have Rasho Nesterovic, Primoz Brezec or Kwame Brown (pictured).  If you do not have to sign one of them, why would you?

    Curry is already under contract (though he has woefully underperformed on it) and would not cost you one extra penny than what you have already budgeted on your books.

    Besides, if the goal is to throw as much money at Carmelo Anthony as possible, you can tolerate the less-than awesomeness of one Eddy Curry.  No need to clutter the bench with another near seven-feet, no hustle, no guts, type of guy.

    In this case, One is enough.

Final Assessment

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    Ok, so maybe Curry is not the total answer and key to the Knicks getting into the playoffs, but he can contribute in some way on the court.  And no, I don't mean by falling and hurting the opposing team's best player!  Although...

    All jokes aside, Curry can contribute in some ways.  He does have the ability to score.  That's it.  He is not a good rebounder or shotblocker.  But maybe at his size, he will be able to set screens that free up, Stoudemire, Randolph, Kelenna, Gallinari, D'Antoni, Felton, Turiaf, Bernard King, Ernie Grunfeld, John Starks and even Charles Oakley.

    I wonder if he can still play about 10 minutes a night this winter?