Can we get Amare some help?
Within the past five years, every article about a move the New York Knicks could make dealt with superstars. There were rumors about LeBron James, Joe Johnson, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Amare Stoudemire all coming to New York at some point, and now those rumors will give way to Deron Williams and Chris Paul.
Let's take a moment to be realistic.
Not every team will be the Miami Heat, and not every superstar will take less money to be a superstar trio. However, there are a few small moves the Knicks could make to go deeper in the playoffs and not break the bank.
Here are some suggestions.
Up until the '07-08 season, Michael Redd was one of the best catch-and-shoot three-point shooters in the game.
However, he's played just 61 games in the past three seasons after tearing the ACL and MCL in his left knee twice. He is not nearly the 20-point scorer he used to be, but due to the injury problems, he could be had cheap. I would recommend signing him to the veterans or bi-annual minimum this offseason.
Worst case scenario: He gets hurt again or is ineffective and you are free of him at the end of the season.
Best case scenario: He's added firepower off the bench and is an X-factor in the playoffs by making teams pay for double-teaming him in the playoffs. He won't be the player he once was, but can still be effective if he's healthy.
I am a big Toney Douglas fan.
At this point in his career, he's more of an instant-offense-type scorer rather than a playmaking point guard. Dallas was able to have three smaller guards in a rotation last year in J.J. Barea, Jason Terry and Jason Kidd and make it work for them, there's no reason the Knicks can't—especially when Chauncey Billups has the ability to guard the one or the two.
Here's what I propose: Call up Cleveland about Ramon Sessions.
At this point, it seems as if Kyrie Irving is the future in Cleveland and Baron Davis will be there to help him along—Ramon Sessions will become the third-string point guard and could probably be had in a trade.
Shawne Williams was the feel good story of the year for the Knicks last year. He went from draft bust and NBA journeyman to a regular in the rotation shooting 40 percent from outside and playing solid defense off the bench.
This past year, he showed that while he was not a star, he was a player any team would love to have, as he has good size, and you can get away with him playing the 4 for brief spells. He shoots three-pointers well and does not take bad shots.
The Knicks should make re-signing him a priority.
Let's be honest here. The ideal situation would bring Tyson Chandler to New York, as he is an unrestricted free agent.
However, between the salaries of Amare Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony and possibly attempting to get Deron Williams or Chris Paul, they won't be able to afford Tyson Chandler.
Samuel Dalembert from Sacramento is not a bad option here. He's a 6'11'' center who blocks shots and rebounds well. He's a free agent, and with Sacramento not looking to contend for a few more years, the Knicks could have a good shot at him.
I remember the summer of 2008, when the Knicks chose Mike D'Antoni to be their head coach. I was hoping they would be aggressive and be able to talk Avery Johnson into coming to New York, but they chose the flashy offensive style over Avery Johnson's no-nonsense defensive style.
It's been said a thousand times, but the Knicks need a coach who will make their players commit to defense. They have missed that ever since they lost Jeff Van Gundy in 2001.
The only issue here: I'm not sure who they can get to come in.
I would not be opposed to them begging Van Gundy to come back, although I'm not sure he would. And while Larry Brown preaches defense, he should not even be considered after he signed for $40 million to essentially do nothing with the Knicks and leave after one season.
At the end of the day, almost any situation that has D'Antoni out of the picture will be a good one.
At the end of the day, Knicks fans want to know that there's hope. They've gone nearly a decade with no hope and the NBA draft to look forward to in the offseason, and they just need a little bit more to be with the Celtics, Bulls and Heat of the East.
Let's hope they take a few of these suggestions and add a few pieces in the offseason.