As a site, we ranked all the NBA teams from worst to best for our release of season previews. Day six’s daily release of a season preview ends up being the creatively built New York Knicks. Corey Bourassa provides a recap of their past season, an offseason recap, and then finally the season preview all of us fans are eager for.
New York Knicks:
Playoffs: Missed playoffs
Although the New York Knicks did not get the worst record in basketball last season, the Knicks were the worst team in the league talent wise. To put things in perspective, even Spike Lee couldn’t watch the Knicks play a game this year. Carmelo had some injuries this season coming off a mega contract, and he was disappointed by the way the Knicks played, and rumors began to emerge he wanted to be traded. Many fans were disappointed by the way Knicks didn’t tank at the end of the season, and decreased their chances of getting the number one pick, so they could hopefully land a potential superstar, but as we know, New York did not get this, and this is were their interesting offseason began.
The Knick’s franchise dream of getting the number one pick did not come true, as they were stunned when they got the fourth overall pick. New York began to inquire about trading up or down in the draft, but nothing ever materialized. New York ended up picking forward Kristaps Porzingis over the likes of Emmanuel Mudiay, Justise Winslow, and Stanley Johnson. Knicks fan booed Porzingis as he walked up the stage, while some fans cried, which was sad and funny debacle to watch. Porzingis put on a show for the Knicks during their summer league, changing quite a few Knick fans minds on selecting him. As of right now, Porzingis does not look to be a huge factor this upcoming season, as New York looks to develop him, and use him as their new franchise cornerstone. The Knicks ended up trading for combo guard, Jerian Grant later in the draft, and he looks to be a promising player going forward. The Knick’s gave up Tim Hardaway Jr for Grant, but with Hardaway already looking like he hit his ceiling, New York was willing to part with what looks like to be a career role player for the higher upside Grant.
During the start of free agency, rumors swirled around that Carmelo Anthony was not happy in New York and was disappointed with what Phil Jackson had done, which then started the trade rumors. The Knicks headed into free agency with their eye on landing another star player to complement Anthony. New York was unable to sign any huge names in free agency, even Greg Monroe turned down the Big Apple for the smaller market, Milwaukee Bucks. Phil Jackson did make quite a few minor moves, which could pay off next offseason. New York signed center, Robin Lopez from Portland to give them a reliable two-way center. Although Lopez is not a star player, he will help add talent to the floor, and will give 100% effort every second he is on the court, and that what was needed in New York. To help on the perimeter, and add another scorer to take the pressure off of Anthony, New York added guard/forward Arron Afflalo, who they look to start at the small forward position, as Anthony is much more dominant playing the power forward position. To strengthen the overall team depth and bench play, New York signed Derrick Williams, Kyle O’Quinn and Kevin Seraphin. All these players should see minutes at the forward positions, as they look to contribute their unique skill sets in minor roles. The Knicks also have some interest in signing point guard Norris Cole, but face competition with the Philadelphia 76ers.
At this point, it looks as if the Knicks are not going to be the team everyone was hoping for, as they look to another season of development and losing. At this point. New York can only hope for a big offseason haul next offseason, as they do not own their first round pick* for next year’s draft. Next year’s free agent class is headed by the former MVP, Kevin Durant. With the work Phil Jackson put in to signing all of these role players, and depth pieces he may not be able to entice Durant to come play in New York, as he looks sold to either Oklahoma City or Washington, but their is quite a bit of other talent to sign. Mike Conley, Nicolas Batum, Al Horford, Brandon Jennings, Hassan Whiteside, Al Jefferson, Joakim Noah, and Roy Hibbert top the list of players New York could target. Conley would be the biggest prize of those names, as he could help shore up defense on the team, as well as be a reliable offensive player. The odds of landing a few of these names is slim, as they have strong loyalty to their current clubs, but you never know what Phil Jackson will be able to pull off. The Knick’s may not be winning a lot of games this upcoming year, but Jackson has put together a squad, which should be a lot more competitive than last season, and at least interesting to watch for the fans, including Spike Lee.
*Denver Nuggets can switch their pick with New York, and then New York sends Toronto the less favorable of the picks.
By: Corey Bourassa
Edited By: Mac Crowe, @Mac_Truck17