Mar, 18, 2012; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Portland Trail Blazers center Kurt Thomas (40) during the first quarter against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena Mandatory Credit: Richard Rowe-US PRESSWIRE

Kurt Thomas: ESPN Player Rank No. 325


We continue looking at the New York Knicks individually and how they were ranked in ESPN’s recent player rankings.

Mar 7, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Portland Trail Blazers center Kurt Thomas (40) during the first quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center. Timberwolves won 106-94. Mandatory Credit: Greg Smith-US PRESSWIRE

So far we’ve seen James White at No. 479 and Pablo Prigioni come in at No. 437. That brings us to Kurt Thomas, who was next on the list at No. 325.

The Knicks acquired Thomas as part of the sign-and-trade that brought point guard Raymond Felton back to the Big Apple.

Thomas, at close to 40-years old, took a big hit in the rankings, dropping 71 spots from a season ago when he clocked in at No. 254.

Despite his age, Thomas can still have some value coming off the bench for the Knicks. He only averaged 3.0 points and 3.5 rebounds last season for the Portland Trail Blazers, but did have decent Per 36 averages of 7.2 and 8.4.

However the Knicks won’t need Thomas to score. he’s a veteran that knows his role and that will be to spell Amar’e Stoudemire and possibly Tyson Chandler. When Thomas is on the floor his job will be to rebound and play defense, something he can still do effectively at his age.

Thomas brings leadership and intangibles to the Knicks, most notably toughness, something the Knicks’ second unit lacked a season ago.

Thomas won’t play major minutes this season for the Knicks, nor would the Knicks want him to, but Thomas could provide a little bit of value throughout the 2013 season.

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