By Matt Constas on June 20, 2014
After a dismal 2013-14 season, the New York Knicks have plenty of retooling to do this offseason. Phil Jackson will have his hands full trying to build this team back into a contender, but these five bold moves could help expedite the process.
Let's be honest here. Raymond Felton was atrocious for the Knicks last season. In my opinion, he was their worst player. His effort and effectiveness on the defensive end was non-existent, and he was arrested on gun charges in February. With these distractions looming and the fact that he shot 39 percent from the field and 31 percent from three last year, Phil Jackson will should look to move him, as reports already say he is going to do.
This move makes sense. The unrestricted free agent had a solid year with the Washington Wizards, scoring 14.4 points per game and setting career highs in three-point percentage (40.7 percent) and rebounds (6.2). Ariza was drafted by the Knicks and has bounced around a lot in his career, including a stint with the Phil Jackson coached Lakers, which won an NBA title that year (2008-09). Maybe the two will join forces again for a reasonable price.
Despite being a current assistant with the Lakers and a top candidate for their vacant head coaching position, I think Rambis, along with other Jackson "disciples", will join the Knicks' coaching staff. Rambis has been an assistant for Jackson with the Lakers and coached new Knick coach Derek Fisher while there. They had a lot of success, winning two titles and making four Finals appearances while Rambis was on the bench. Look for this to happen.
To end all suspense, Carmelo Anthony will decide to opt out but ultimately agree to do what he said he would consider for the Knicks and take a pay cut. If he does this, he can play for his hometown team that is currently installing a winning culture with minds like Fisher and Jackson. If he takes less money, the Knicks could have some financial flexibility to bring him help before they have more cap space in the summer of 2015.
If 'Melo takes a pay cut, this could very well happen. Even if he doesn't return, Kyle Lowry should be high on the Knicks' priority list. He won't command a max-contract, and the Knicks need help at the floor general position. Lowry had the best season of his career in 2013-14, averaging career highs in points, assists and rebounds per game as well as three-point percentage. This would be a solid move for both sides.
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