5 Reasons Why New York Knicks Are Trash So Far
The New York Knicks Stink So Far, And Here Are Five Reasons Why
Climbing the mountain of adversity is always a daunting task, but nothing worth having ever comes easily. That is especially the case in the NBA. The New York Knicks have been coming up the rough side of the mountain for as long as anybody can remember. This season was suppose to be the one in which the Knicks would finally set themselves apart as at least the second-best team in the Eastern Conference.
Come to think of it, the Knicks were suppose to be the second-best team in the east last year as well ... and maybe even the year before that. So what gives? Why has the team representing the largest media market in the world not been able to get over the hump?
The rest of the conference appears to be strengthening exponentially over the last three years to combat the dominance of the NBA champion Miami Heat. The Pacers have a frontcourt that is filled with talent, Derrick Rose is back in the lineup for the Chicago Bulls, and the Brooklyn Nets have arguably the best starting five in the NBA.
The proverbial barbarians are at the gates, yet the Knicks are shackled with an obscene salary for a player who has not been playing as advertised in two years. With all of the stumbling and bumbling the franchise has been doing on and off the basketball court, fans have little reason to believe that this season will be any less disappointing than any of the last 40.
The following slideshow will document five reasons why I feel the New York Knicks will absolutely suck this season.
Ricardo A. Hazell is a freelance writer for Rant Sports based in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter at NikosMightyDad or add him to your network on Google Plus.
5. Inconsistent Point Guard Play
I have been a big critic of Raymond Felton ever since he returned to the New York Knicks. It's not because he is a horrible player. On the contrary, he is a pretty darn good player and that is precisely the reason why I get on him. At times, it seems as if he has absolutely no idea what a good shot is and is known to be a notorious non-passer as well. A recent 14-point, two-assists outing versus the Toronto Raptors is testament to that mindset. He's currently averaging 5.6 assists per game, but anything less than seven assists per game for a point guard that plays 37 minutes per game and has Carmelo Anthony to pass to is uncivilized. Felton is also shooting 38 percent from the field this season. There are times when Ray will explode for double-digit assists, but those are usually averaged out against those three or four-assist nights we see from him far too often. Beno Udrih hasn't had anywhere near the impact I imagined he would when he was signed. He's only averaging less than a point a game this year! That's disheartening to say the least. I've been seeing too much Pablo Prigioni this season as well. I'd rather my starting guards be younger than 36-years old.
4. A Rising Tide of Talented Post Players in the Eastern Conference
When the Miami Heat won the NBA championship last fall, it was clear they did so in spite of their lack of imposing big men. The entire Eastern Conference appears to be gearing up to take advantage of that perceived weakness. All the early-season contenders have several bigs who can impact games in a variety of ways: Kevin Garnett and Brook Lopez in Brooklyn, Roy Hibbert and David West in Indiana, and Chicago has at least four incorporated in their Goon Platoon that includes Carlos Boozer and Joachim Noah. Funny thing is, Miami's kryptonite is poison to New York as well. The Knicks' primary upgrade this offseason was F-C Andrea Bargnarni. The former first overall pick has been a notorious underachiever and has been almost as fragile as Amar'e Stoudemire throughout his career. The Knicks are vulnerable inside even when Tyson Chandler is healthy, and doubly so when he is not. PF Kenyon Martin is a stop-gap at best. Unless Amar'e Stoudemire miraculously returns to form, the Knicks' lack of inside scoring is a glaring, gaping wound.
3. Power Forward Melo
When people think of small forwards, visions of lithe and graceful aerial acrobats dance through their heads. Though that type of player is still ideal at the position, wing players like LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony are breaking that mold in that they are physically imposing and rely less on speed and athleticism than they do on brute strength. However, that's a double edged sword for Melo. Yes, Carmelo is strong enough to bang with most power forwards in the NBA. However, many of the advantages he enjoys at the three are somewhat neutralized by bigger players. Strength is primary one among them. While Carmelo offers an offensive mismatch to all NBA power forwards, he presents a defensive matchup in favor of some of them as well -- as he naturally would. He's being played out of position because of the Knicks' inability to land a suitable full-time power forward. Melo will likely toe the company line when asked where he'd like to play, but he's a small forward. Ask David West.
2. Amar'e Stoudemire
It is sometimes hard to believe that Amar'e Stoudemire was a 25-PPG scorer in the NBA not that long ago. We know that he has been injured and all and no one is trying to pile on or anything, but that $21 million salary he is slated to make this season could have been spent better elsewhere. I know S.T.A.T. used to stand for something other than standing tall and talent-less, but it most certainly does now. The dramatic decrease in productivity he has exhibited this year would be infuriating if it weren't so sad to see. But, on the bright side, at least he hasn't had surgery within the last three months.
1. James Dolan
Knicks fans cringe at the mere mention of his name as if he is the Lord Voldemort of the Garden. Dolan recently brought back Steve Mills as team president and GM. This is the same Steve Mills who hired the management disaster that was Isaiah Thomas. Mr. Dolan must have a short-term memory problem of epic proportions. It's just the latest in a long line of questionable decisions from the team's ownership. I'm not saying Glen Grunwald was perfect, but Mills' rehiring is definitely a step backwards.
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