After all of the chaos the past week, the Knicks now enter the 2012-13 season with 13 players under contract. They still need to add a capable 2-guard, but will have to do so for the veteran’s minimum. The problem with that is most of the remaining shooting guards are looking for the mini-mid-level exception or more as far as salary.
The positive thing though is that the Knicks are an interesting option for free agents. For one, the Knicks are contenders on paper, and two, there’s immediate playing time available with Iman Shumpert on the shelf for at least the season’s first two months.
Before I get into available options, let’s look at how the Knicks roster shapes up right now:
C- Tyson Chandler, Marcus Camby
PF- Amar’e Stoudemire, Kurt Thomas, Chris Copeland
SF- Carmelo Anthony, Steve Novak, James White
SG- J.R. Smith, Shumpert (out until January)
PG- Raymond Felton, Jason Kidd, Pablo Prigioni
There’s a definite hole at the shooting guard spot that needs addressed before the season begins and here’s a look at who could be on the Knicks radar.
Jodie Meeks: Meeks is on the Knicks radar and is a guy who can knock down more than his share of shots from the perimeter. He shot 39.7 percent from behind the arc in 2011, before seeing that number dip to 36.5 percent in 2012.
Marco Belinelli: I like Belinelli, who averaged 11.8 points per game in 2012, but he also offers up very little on the defensive end of the floor.
Ronnie Brewer: I like the prospects of potentially adding Brewer, who is also on the Knicks radar. He’s a guy who will accept his role and will commit to playing defense, although he’s not a great shooter, knocking down only 27.5 percent of his three-point attempts in 2012.
Maurice Evans: The nine-year pro out of Texas can play the 2 or the 3, although he’s only 6’5″. He is a veteran who would also accept his role and has made 36.3 percent of his career attempts from behind the arc.
Carlos Delfino: He would be a great fit on this Knicks team, but can likely get a better financial offer from another team. He can play the 2 or the 3, is a solid defender and can knock down open shots.
Sonny Weems: Weems is on the Knicks radar but an option I don’t like. He has the size and athleticism to be a solid defender but just floats on defense and is focused on scoring. However he’s a lousy shooter, knocking down only 24.1 percent of his perimeter shots in his three-year career.