Despite the talent already on the New York Knicks, the New York brass are hard at work making moves to have this team contending for a title next season. Moves like acquiring Jason Kidd, James White, Pablo Prigioni and Marcus Camby but also resigning Steve Novak and J.R. Smith have them headed in the right direction. Still the Knicks need to make make more additions while also resigning players to be set for the 2013 season. Here are the remaining moves the Knicks must still consider.
Continue to match offers for Jeremy Lin
According to Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports, “They will match any offer on Lin up to one billion dollars,” said one source to Marc Stein. A very wise move by the Knicks because even with the talents displayed by Lin last season, we still don’t know how good this kid can really be. We only had a truncated sample size that didn’t see him play a single playoff game or withstand the rigors of a full season of great fanfare he garnered in his historic “Linsanity” run.
Bottom line the Knicks need Lin for next season, not only for their immediate success but future success as well. If Lin plays as well as he did at the peak of “Linsanity” he will be great trade bait for the Knicks’ real aspiration at the point guard position: Chris Paul. Indeed I would love to see Lin be a Knicks for a long time but Chris Paul is a rare talent and too good to pass up on. And the fact that he didn’t sign extension with the Clippers this offseason means he may still want to play at Basketball’s Mecca in the future.
Find a Shooting Guard replacement for Landry Fields if he leaves
When Landry Fields was drafted two years ago by the Knicks, I was one of many who scratched their heads by the acquisition because we didn’t know much about the Stanford graduate. But in his first season he surprised everyone by breaking out with 9.7 points and 6.4 rebounds in his rookies season. Showing a knack to put the ball in the hoop as well as rebound extremely well for a guard because of his size (6’7).
Fast forward to this season playing alongside Carmelo Anthony, Fields saw his numbers dip and struggle at times. Still this offseason Fields has gotten strong interest from the Phoenix Suns in a potential trade for Steve Nash and now he has agreed to a 19 million dollar offer sheet with the Toronto Raptors. I’m a fan of Field’s attitude and game on this team but matching this offer is on the steep side especially since they’re still other attractive (cheaper) options the Knicks can make to replace Fields.
The Knicks would first have to decide on either promoting J.R. Smith or Iman Shumpert to the starting lineup to fill in Fields’ spot. Next they should consider adding another shooting guard to come off the bench and stretch the floor alongside Novak. Some options the Knicks should consider are Raja Bell, Shannon Brown, and Michael Redd. Both Raja Bell are in their twilight years and are looking to compete for a championship. Bell is reliable shooter and also exceptional defender–although he has definitely lost a step or two. While Redd is still on his comeback trail and produced a solid season with the Phoenix Suns last season and could still shoot from anywhere on the court. But I like Shannon Brown because he’s a younger and extremely athletic option. He could be amazing sparkplug for the Knicks and bring a lot of what Randy Foye–another interest of the Knicks–would bring as well.