After last year's rollercoaster season, Knicks fans finally saw signs of progress. The team won its first playoff game in 11 years, Mike Woodson showed potential to whip his team into shape, and the lineup was starting to look complete. Roles were being determined, and every player seemed to have his own skill that was essential to the system.
The offseason also started out well. Woodson signed an extension, the draft wasn't a complete letdown, and Jason Kidd was signed to provide help off the bench and mentor Jeremy Lin. Things were beginning to look great. The team was shaping up well, and I thought for a second the Knicks were finally making good choices.
But that would be too easy. The Knicks can't put faith in a roster and let it grow. They can't trust the same team will get better with time. They can't stick to their word. They have no problem giving away their young talent. They need results now. They are the New York Knicks.
When a player is signed specifically to help develop another player's game, having them both on the same team is something that seems essential, right? Evidence is mounting that New York will not match Houston's offer and Lin will no longer be a Knick. Instead, Raymond Felton was chosen for the job.
They can't stick to their word. They have no problem giving away their young talent. They need results now. They are the New York Knicks.
As a Knicks fan, I have nothing against the decision itself. My problem instead is with timing and other contracts. Financially, signing Felton was the best option. The "poison pill" contract Lin was offered would put the team in a lot of trouble down the road and be extremely risky to match. I get it. What I don't get are the lies. Why claim Kidd was signed to help Lin? Why say Lin's contract will definitely be matched? At least be honest with your fans.
I have nothing against him, but if he's not here to help Lin, I don't want Kidd. Yes, he can provide valuable leadership elsewhere, but the team needs a backup point guard that can actually play. It's nice to a have veteran presence, but with 6 points and 5 assists per game at 39, Kidd is too old for a 3-year deal. Without Lin, his contract is $9.5 million of wasted money. With Lin, Kidd would be a steal. Lin proved he has stamina to play major minutes, and Kidd would not have to play much. Instead, he could focus more on developing team chemistry and helping Lin grow.
Now the team will have to rely solely on Felton and Kidd. Outside of D'Antoni's system, Felton doesn't being much to the table. He's an average point guard and won't surprise anyone. His performance last season is what really bothers me. He averaged near career lows in every offensive category and even lost his starting job for a few games. Exactly the type of player New York would pursue.
So now, instead of signing a player who seems to have endless potential, the Knicks will rely on the dwindling abilities of Felton. It gets worse. To acquire Felton, the Knicks traded away Jared Jeffries and Dan Gadzuric and received Kurt Thomas. They now have the oldest player in the league and three of the oldest six. Thomas can barely walk, let alone play basketball. He has minimal worth and is replacing a player with a much higher value.
Although he was not known for his offense, Jeffries played with more heart than anyone on the team. He did all the intangibles and was a great defender. Now, the Knicks are relying on Camby (38) and Thomas (40) for backup. I'll be surprised if either plays more than 20 games next season.
It seems the Knicks feel they can win a championship within three years. Signing Kidd, Camby, and Thomas and letting Lin walk illustrates they are focusing on the present over the future. With monster contracts due to Stoudemire, Anthony, and Chandler, they have no flexibility. Maybe James Dolan thinks that bringing back players from the 98-99 squad will bring the Knicks back to the finals. Whatever his reasoning may be, fans better be happy with what they have, because for the next three years this team will see very few changes.
Fan Hub Action
Michael T Carr May 16th
Another good article, Craig Lowell.
Charlie Lobosco May 1st
This is a very compelling story because Mr. Collins is a very passionate, tough, intelligent, athelete taking on some additional responsibliity to help others as…
Scott Cohen May 1st
Charlie.. very well said.. he does have guts
Scott Cohen May 1st
but it shouldn’t require guts. .like you said it’s nobody’s business but his own
Hisham Zameeth April 30th
best player ever…..
Kareem Musa Mayowa April 29th
We don’t need to be hopeless about the situation bryant his. Because even david villa situation also up to the level of his own to…
Maritess Lim April 28th
I still believe in KOBE’s power…… He is still the best…… He will make it possible no matter what……
mimi_aragon84 April 28th
I feel no pity for him. First of all, it is EAGLE, COLORADO, not Eagleton, secondly he enjoyed success and adulation from fans from 2003…
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