The New York Knicks almost have an identity.
It is there.
We all know it works, but, at certain times, head coach Mike Woodson, and even the players, don’t fully accept it.
Play Carmelo Anthony at the four, surround him with two knock down catch-and-shoot three point shooters and a penetrating point guard who can run pick and roll. From the center position, you need a low usage player, who is a threat when he dives to the basket. The center needs to be able to cover up for some of the defensive flaws in the group, just as Chandler has.
The formula works, as we’ve seen in large chunks across two seasons.
This idea – this fact – does make for an awkward situation. It wasn’t supposed to be this way.
New York’s blueprint was to be a high-powered offensive machine built around Amar’e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. They got the good offense down, but the problem is Stoudemire doesn’t have anything to do with it.
In 2011, STAT was replaced by a combo of Melo, Jared Jeffries and Steve Novak. He wasn’t missed one bit.
In 2012, STAT was replaced by Melo, Chris Copeland and Steve Novak. His contributions were, once again, not needed.
Amare’s inability to stay healthy creates more problems than are needed. It’s a pain the ass to integrate him into the rotation and adjust schemes to cover up his flaws defensively. The annoying process has taken place multiple times over the course of the last two seasons for a variety of reasons.
STAT makes Mike Woodson’s job harder. Woodson seemed to struggle with rotational decisions the most when Stoudemire was playing or trying to keep the rotation in primed for his return. It puts Woodson in a tough situation with a high salary player, who believes he is more important than he actually is.
I think it’s best for both parties, the Knicks organization and Amar’e, if they part ways. Stoudemire is an inhabitant to the Knicks truly, 100%, getting behind what makes this team its best.
I don’t think a trade is possible.
New York needs to buyout the final two years of his contract, if James Dolan is willing to spend the cash.
Dolan over the years has paid Stephon Marbury, Steve Francis, Eddy Curry and many others to do nothing, so why not continue the tradition.
It won’t create any additional cap space, but buying out Stoudemire would open up an additional roster spot to fill with a player that fits within the framework of the team better. Glen Grunwald found Chris Copeland, Pablo Prigioni & Kenyon Martin on cheap, affordable contracts. It gives him one more space to look for value in a variety of different areas.
If Stoudemire were to stay healthy (a ridiculous idea, but just in case) it would be even more difficult than it was this season. The scenario needs to be avoided.
There is more than enough evidence that shows the Knicks are a better team when Stoudemire is not around. The issues he brings isn’t worth the value of having his expiring contract around two seasons from now. New York has the opportunity to be very good again next if they accept who they are and don’t stray from it.