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5 Biggest Issues Facing New York Knicks in 2014 Offseason

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Biggest Issues Facing New York Knicks in 2014 Offseason

Amar'e Stoudemire and Iman Shumpert
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The New York Knicks had a more eventful offseason than anyone had planned when the 2013-14 season ended. With Phil Jackson at the helm, the Knicks are looking to reshape not only the roster, but the attitude from the top to the bottom of the organization. The Knicks are still a bit away from becoming contenders, so Jackson and company will have their work cut out for them. Here are the five biggest issues facing the Knicks in the offseason.

5. Log Jam in Backcourt

Knicks Guards
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5. Log Jam in Backcourt

Knicks Guards
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The Knicks currently have seven guards on the roster. It can easily become eight if Toure’ Murry is retained. The Knicks upgraded at PG with Jose Calderon and Shane Larkin, but added more players who need minutes at the same time. At SG, Fisher needs to figure out how to make the trio of Iman Shumpert, J.R. Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr. work. A trade would be the easiest way, but getting them to play both ends of the court would help as well.

4. Thin Frontcourt

Amar'e Stoudemire Knicks
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

4. Thin Frontcourt

Amar'e Stoudemire Knicks
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks currently have only five bigs on the roster, with Jeremy Tyler a possible sixth. The injury concerns at this position make that number very low. Bargnani is rarely healthy, Stoudemire’s knees always make him a concern and Smith missed time last season as well. If the Knicks are to make anymore moves, it should be adding a big. They can’t afford a repeat of 2013 when Tyson Chandler and Kenyon Martin went down with no replacements.

3. No Cap Flexibility

Andrea Bargnani Knicks
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

3. No Cap Flexibility

Andrea Bargnani Knicks
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

With contracts such as Amar’e Stoudemire and Andrea Bargnani's, the Knicks are left without much maneuvering. They have already used their mini mid-level exception on Jason Smith, leaving them with only veteran minimum contracts to hand out as they are above the salary cap. They have retained their man in Carmelo Anthony, but will have to wait another season to bring in free agents. The only way to improve the roster is through trades currently.

2. Team Defense

Knicks Celebrate Win
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

2. Team Defense

Knicks Celebrate Win
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

In 2013, the Knicks were one of the most giving defenses in the NBA, ranking 24th in points allowed per possession. A porous perimeter defense caused for constant breakdowns, as the Knicks struggled defending the pick-and-roll all season. Raymond Felton was a huge liability last season, but his replacement Jose Calderon is not known to be much better. The Knicks will need to take a cohesive team approach to shore up this end of the court.

1. Rookie Head Coach

Derek Fisher Knicks
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1. Rookie Head Coach

Derek Fisher Knicks
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Just months ago Derek Fisher was trying to win an NBA title as a player; now he’s head coach of the Knicks. How he makes the transition to the bench will be imperative to the team’s success. After a rocky start, Jason Kidd made a nice transition to head coach from player, getting the Nets into the playoffs. Pressure will be immense in New York for Fisher. But, if he can get the Knicks back into the postseason his first year it will be a success.

Kenneth Teape is a New York Giants writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @teapester725, “Like” on Facebook, or join his Google network