NBA Free Agency 2011: Players That Can Improve Knicks in 2011-2012
After finally getting to the playoffs for the first time in years, The New look Knicks were swept in four games versus the Boston Celtics. As a possible lockout looms, the Knicks need to look into what went wrong and how they can make the necessary adjustments to get pass the first round next year. Versus Boston, the Knicks were pushed around, hurt and shot poorly over the duration of the series. With many of the 2011 Knicks coming off the books this year, Knick management will have to look at how to make this team bigger, badder and tougher while getting some more shooters in the process. Let's take a look at what MSG should pursue in the off season.
Tyson Chandler is one of the main reasons the Dallas Mavericks are going deep into the 2011 NBA playoffs. He is a legitimate 7ft shot blocker who can post a regular double-double in points and rebounds. He might not be the strongest power player but in D' Antoni's offense Chandler will be able to flourish at times in the open court. Just imagine him paired up with Amare and Carmelo and how he will benefit from all the double teams the two of them will most likely see come next season. He is still under 30 years of age so he's still well in his prime and has the abilty to hit the open 15 footer. If Donnie Walsh can find a way to pry him away as a free agent things in the Garden on 33rd street will be looking up.
2 Guard Depth
As much as New York enjoyed the play of Landry Fields during the season, those same fans cringed at his paltry 1.8pts and 1.3 rebounds in the playoffs. The Knicks need to look at who could spell him when he's struggling or supplant him until his progression grows full circle. Step in free agent Anthony Parker and the Knicks might find themselves a veteran shooting guard who is a big upgrade over Roger Mason. He might be on the old side at 36 but Parker only needs to give team about 20 minutes a night. As a 40% plus shooter from 3pt range, he might be just what MSG ordered for 2011-2012.
The Knicks bench after the trade for Carmelo took away the depth and toughness that they once had. Enter Carl Landry, who could be a potential 6th man of the year might he don a New York Knick's Jersey. Landry is just the type of tough minded workhorse who can play inside out. He is a solid defender who just needs to find a home for the next few years. In addition, Landry plays over the rim and has the ability to score as he showed with Sacramento scoring 18 a game while playing almost 30 games for the Sacramento Kings.
Sam in the Middle?
If getting Tyson Chandler doesn't pan out for New York, they should look no further the 7ft Dalembert. With the Kings going young, the Knicks can have this big for much much less than what it will cost for Chandler. He will still be able to provide the team with rebounding and interior defense in the short term. The big fella has a tendency to force up poor shots but in NY might be the beneficiary of lots of put backs and offensive rebounds. Sam doesn't seem to be slowing down at 30 so he could serve a useful purpose for a year or two.
A Point of Sorts
When Chauncey Billups went down in the playoffs, the Knicks need for a backup point guard painfully showed itself. While Tony Douglas is a quality guard, he is more suited to play the 2 guard due to his scoring prowess. In comes Jose Barea, who was scoring like 40pts a game in the D-League and has found a home in Dallas. With free agency looming and a tremendously large Puerto Rican community waiting to greet him in NYC, Barea might be just the man they need. GM Donnie Walsh should invest plenty of time trying to convince Barea to bring his game up north to New York. Being a career 36% 3pt shooter and his ability to run the pick and roll will make him a dynamic player in NY.
Defense Wins Titles
One type of player the Knicks lacked during the season was one who has been a winner who was all about getting it done on the defensive end. Shane battier can be that man as he has always been a blue collar worker type of player that has solid three point range. He is a career 39% 3pt shooter and has gained the rep of defending the other teams best player. The question now is that is he willing to leave the team he was drafted by for the bright lights of the Big Apple?
After mostly years of watching Kobe Bryant for years and then sent off to the struggling NJ Nets, Sasha deserves to be somewhere where his skill set can be used. The high octane offense New York boasts should be appealing to the free agent to be. In New York, he'll be able to compete for the 2 guard position or be able to play backup as a guard/forward. Shoots over 40% from 3pt range and has the ability to be an emergency backup point guard depending on injuries. Sasha brews confidence and has never met a shot he doesn't like which equates to a good fit at MSG.
Foster in the Paint!
One things the Knicks don't have on their team is tough Charles Oakley type of player responsible for the grit and banging that NBA playoff teams need to succeed. Jeff Foster has had his share of wars so he is more than familiar with this type of play. Just ask Derreck Rose if he agrees? Foster will not need the ball in NY and can focus on rebounding. At 35, can be a had a solid discount.
A True Defensive Minded Coach
It might not come in the form of Lawrence Frank but the Knicks need to end the D' Antoni experiment with his brother. It's just not working so management must look outside and bring in someone who will be able to take the teams style and incorporate the main thing that wins playoffs playoff games...DEFENSE. Donnie Walsh has been around the league long enough to know that defense wins championships.Some coaches to be considered should be , Magic assistant Steve Clifford, Ron Adams from the Bulls or maybe Grizzlies assistant Dave Joerger. Donnie Walsh and the Knicks management will have their hands full this offseason so I guess well all just wait and see.