Mark Jackson

College is college, and you can never trust a draft eligible player’s listed height, and we’ve all heard how Kenneth Faried (above) of Morehead St. can’t shoot a jumpshot, and never even attempts any.  For a four, he’s a midget, right?  At 6’8, 225 lbs.  While we’re at it, should we throw those college stats out the window, even though this young man has averaged 13, 13, and 14.5 rebounds a game since sophomore year?  Thankfully team president Donnie Wheelchair has been watching closely, and hopefully, he is in love with Faried as many outlets are reporting.

We’ll tell you what.  We’ve seen the Knicks blow it in this spot a million times.  The too short four.  Michael Sweetney?  Ouch.  But Sweetney was fat.  How about the too short free agent four?  We’ve seen that a million times too.  Clarence Weatherspoon?  We shudder to recall.

This kid has been the best rebounder in the nation for 3 years, was the best rebounder at the Portsmouth Invitational, and if you put him on the Knicks right now, he’d be their best rebounder by a mile and would rebound Amar’e Stoudemire under the table.  Did anyone notice how little energy Stoudemire played with and how poor his rebounding numbers were since Carmelo arrived?  He’s not the best rebounder to begin with, but 6 a game?  This particular draft seems to be the ideal situation for the Knickks, who can draft for need and pick up the best player in 2 years at that need, if it’s true Faried isn’t expected to go until late in the first round or later.

The Knicks got killed in the paint, especially on the boards, and if they draft this kid from Moorehead St., it’s no longer an issue.   Let the scorers score and let this rebounder from Newark, who’d love love love to be here, rebound.  Not a comparison in any way, and we couldn’t care if this kid doesn’t shoot 5 times a game, but he isn’t that differently sized than Blake Griffin.  For what the Knicks need and will be asking of their four, Faried is going to give it to them: hustle, energy, defense.  And of course, rebounds.  The Knicks will be playing small ball a good deal for D’antoni, which means Faried would be working between Stoudemire and Anthony, and when D’antoni’s gone, the intense Mark Jackson (we hope it’s him so much) will love having Faried on the team.

The Knicks need to forget about Europe and little men.  Especially since they only have 1 pick.  If they can buy themselves another, sure, we’d still rather a big, but we’d understand the logic behind taking a point guard.  But not at the expense of Faried.  And yes, we were the ones who were giddy about Kemba Walker and the Knicks during the Big East Tournament, but that’s understandable.  If that type of lottery talent and home town product is available at 17, jackpot.  But where the Knicks are picking, it is highly unlikely they are going to have a shot at a small man talent great enough to make them pass on their greatest need.


Let’s get this taken care of.  We need at least 8 guys who are ready and able to roll.  Faried makes a solid 3rd of the 8.  The Knicks can address the point after Billups is gone.  They must get a rebounder at 17.  And if Dolan wants to buy us a few extra picks, then we can talk about the lanky kid from Florida or the young one from Michigan.

And please please please no Jimmer Freddette. 

Crack (,

ESPN’s Chris Sheridan reported yesterday that Donnie Walsh has a deal on the table to acquire a first round pick in the 2011 draft.  Though he didn’t mention for what, I would speculate that Wilson Chandler (above) could be involved.  He was whispered to be on the outs with Knicks over the summer, and nearly every Knicks’ rumor of late has seemed to involve Chandler.  Chandler, Isiah Thomas’ last first round selection, has developed into a nice scorer.  And for a Knick, he’s a fairly dependable shooter from the outside.  But at his lofty height, 6’8/6’9–he’s probably best suited to play forward, because he matches up better with forwards than guards on defense.  The Knicks are also extremely high on this year’s 2nd round pick, Landry Fields of Stanford, who seems to have similar talents and is close in size to Wilson Chandler, perhaps making Chandler all the more expendable.,-Explore-Trade-Possibilities-For-Wilson-Chandler-a16089

Chandler’s stats:

Career Averages Rebounds  
07-08 NYK 35 16 19.6 3.0-6.9 .438 0.3-0.9 .300 1.0-1.5 .630 0.40 0.50 0.8 2.4 1.1 2.5 3.6 0.9 7.3
08-09 NYK 82 70 33.4 5.5-12.9 .432 1.3-3.8 .328 2.1-2.6 .795 0.90 0.90 1.7 3.0 1.1 4.3 5.4 2.1 14.4
09-10 NYK 65 64 35.7 6.3-13.2 .479 0.6-2.3 .267 2.0-2.5 .806 0.70 0.80 1.7 2.8 1.4 3.9 5.3 2.1 15.3
Totals   182 150 31.5 5.3-11.8 .451 0.8-2.7 .308 1.8-2.4 .779 0.7 0.8 1.5 2.8 1.2 3.8 5.1 1.9 13.4
Career Totals Rebounds  
07-08 NYK 35 685 106-242 .438 9-30 .300 34-54 .630 15 16 27 38 89 127 33 255
08-09 NYK 82 2735 455-1054 .432 103-314 .328 171-215 .795 71 75 139 91 354 445 170 1184
09-10 NYK 65 2320 412-860 .479 40-150 .267 129-160 .806 46 49 108 93 255 348 138 993
Totals   182 5740 973-2156 .451 152-494 .308 334-429 .779 132 140 274 222 698 920 341 2432

Chandler shot a very respectable 48 % from the floor last year, improving on his shooting percentage considerably from the 08-09 season to the 09-10 season by cutting down on bad three point shot attempts.  Call us crazy, but we see that as some nice development from the 4th year Knick.  The Knicks obviously haven’t seen it that way.  When pursuing Lakers backup Shannon Brown this summer, the Knicks were believed to have all but assured Brown that he’d see starter’s minutes.  If that was to be the case, then Chandler would obviously be looking at a demotion, or being traded.

While the Knicks might be wise to keep Chandler, and would definitely be wise to acquire a first round pick in the draft next year, especially if they could do so without trading Chandler away, a lot of NY media types are going wild in a foolish attempt to connect the dots between Denver’s Carmelo Anthony and New York.  Knicks’ president Walsh said last week on a conference call with reporters that he was in the market for a first rounder, and when the Nets fell out of the Anthony sweepstakes this week and the news of the Knicks having an offer on the table that would net them a # 1, people are automatically assuming that this draft pick acquisition would be the precursor to a trade for Anthony.

Why would that necessarily be the case?  Keep in mind that the Knicks and Denver have little common ground for such a deal.  While Denver would like to receive a 1st round pick as part of a deal for Anthony, Walsh told WFAN’s Mike Francesa recently that talks with Denver have not gotten off the ground because Denver sees little of value in terms of players the Knicks have to offer.  Just about anyone can get them a draft pick, but who can get the Nuggets the types of players they are seeking in a trade?

Also, it has been rumored that Nuggets’ management will not trade Anthony to the Knicks because they feel that Amar’e Stoudemire’s public comments about Anthony wanting to play for the Knicks essentially amount to tampering–the new tampering that is–when players follow the Dwayne Wade blueprint for recruiting, as players on different teams are allowed to have contact.  While a rule in regard to that type of player contact maay be coming down the road, if logistically possible, we hear the Nuggets are incensed with Stoudemire, and would trade Anthony elsewhere to spite the Knicks.

I don’t think a Knicks’ trade for Anthony is happening.  New York’s best chance to snag Anthony will come after July 1st, if Anthony makes it to free agency.  Trading away their roster to acquire Anthony would leave the Knicks barren yet again, aside from a nucleus of Anthony and Stoudemire.  As long as the Knicks maintain cap flexibility, they will be in the running for top tier free agents for the foreseeable future.  Having just put together a team, finally, after 2 full seasons in limbo, it would be foolish for Walsh to blow it up so soon.

In other Knicks’ news, former St. John’s star, dream teamer, and Golden State general manager Chris Mullin, has accompanied the Knicks to Europe for exhibitons in Milan and Paris.  We have seen Mullin’s inclusion on the trip portrayed a couple ways.  Mullin is close to Walsh, and may be in line to become the Knicks general manager and heir apparent to Walsh as team president.  Why else would an unemployed personnel guy be hanging around the team?  We’d be happy if this were indeed the case.  Mullin, a college teammate of Mark Jackson, might be inclined to hire his old chum–a move we endorse wholeheartedly because we feel that Jackson is a great communicator who would have the ear of all of the Knicks players, and the attention of the league.

Other reports have stated that Knicks’ owner Jim Dolan has no intention of approving such a hire, citing his ties to Isiah Thomas and because Dolan feels it would be redundant for the Knicks to hire a 3rd personnel executive at this time.

Crack (,

The Knicks love a good circus.  For one, that is what their seasons are like–part comedic, part greusome, with a lot of ‘how did they manage to do that?’ moments.  Not in a good way.  Circus’s love their sideshows to keep the people entertained.  Knicks’ owner Jim Dolan could have settled with Anucha Browne Sanders, but instead opted for a long, public trial in which Isiah Thomas and then Knicks’ star Stephon Marbury got on the stand and anhilated the team’s flagging image.  Do you remember the married Marbury brag in open court about pressuring a 20 year old girl for sex in his Bentley outside the garden?  The farther we go back, we can recall Patrick Ewing in open court, admitting to the world that the Knicks’ legend would have oral sex arranged for him with the dancers when he went into Scores by the Gambino Crime Family.

Since the Knicks had no first round pick last year, there was no benefit to them not doing anything and everything they could to have a good record, especially when selling the proposition/fantasy that they’d be signing Lebron James. 

The Knicks should have been doing everything and anything possible to win games.  And they opt to sit Nate Robinson, perhaps the team’s best scorer, for 5 weeks and 14 games.  The Knicks who can not score and on whom Robinson stars.  Did they really teach Nate Robinson a lesson?  Did they improve their season in any way when the coaching staff banished Nate Robinson, and soured the team’s and player’s relationship, to the point where a scoring machine is traded?

These young players who the Knicks hope to attract have probably all taken note of the Nate Robinson situation, and must have reservations about Mike D’antoni, who was chosen for the job over Mark Jackson, who would have been the far more likely candidate to get along with his players, as he did with his teammates in his excellent career as a point guard in the NBA.  Speaking of point guards and fantasy sells, the Knicks latest pipedream is landing Chris Paul in a trade somehow, despite denials by Paul yesterday that he wishes to stay in New Orleans.  Paul devalued himself by publicly speaking about a trade, and his denial needed to happen.  He’s got to be the good soldier until the Hornets can get him out of there.

But why would they trade him to the Knicks?  This is still a very thin ball club with a bare cupboard when it comes to ammo for a major trade.  The Knicks need to do whatever they can to improve their roster, and keeping improving it, if they are to have any chance at Paul, who when one thinks about it, can imagine ten or more teams putting together a better package for Paul than the Knicks.  Recently Knicks President Donnie Walsh was pandering in the press about Amar’e Stoudemire being the only untouchable player on the team.  Even so, I’m not sure that other teams view the Toney Douglasses and Danillo Galinaris as these great young players, the way the Knicks do. 

This summer, we heard a lot about D’antoni wanting guys who were right for his up tempo system.  But what about when he has a guy like that, like say, Nate Robinson, and he’s unable to get along with him.  Make no mistake–Stoudemire and D’antoni did not see eye to eye when they were together in Phoenix, and Stoudemire was vocally critical of D’antoni.  It shows a major a flaw–the inability to make relationships work with top players.

The best things the Knicks can do to attract top players, is to keep adding young talent and have a coach with a good reputation with the players.  If D’antoni is not that guy, let’s pray the Knicks can get Mark Jackson in there next.  He deserves a chance, and after so much shenanigans and scandals, would be a great face for the franchise.

–Crack (

Newest Knick, point guard Raymond Felton (above).

The Knicks may have lost out on the Lebron James sweepstakes, but one day after announcing the David Lee sign and trade that netted them Anthony Randolph, Kelenna Azubuike, and Ronny Turiaf, the Knicks have solved a problem at a long standing trouble spot, agreeing to terms on a three year contract with former Bobcat and North Carolina Tar Heel, Raymond Felton–who was perhaps the best remaining free agent available.

The Knicks reached an agreement in principle Friday with Felton, the free agent who played five seasons with the Charlotte Bobcats, including the last two under former Knicks coach Larry Brown.

The deal could be finalized as early as Saturday. Three days ago, Duhon signed a free agent contract with Orlando.

Felton’s contract is believed to be a three-year deal worth approximately $25 million, which doesn’t preclude the Knicks from pursuing Chris Paul or Tony Parker next summer. The Knicks were also considering Luke Ridnour, but felt that Felton was the better player to go along with Amar’e Stoudemire and Danilo Gallinari.

Raymond Felton’s career stats:

05-06 CHA 80 54 30.1 0.391 0.358 0.725 1.0 2.4 3.3 5.6 1.3 0.1 2.27 2.26 11.8
06-07 CHA 78 75 36.3 0.384 0.330 0.797 0.7 2.8 3.4 7.0 1.5 0.1 2.95 2.31 14.0
07-08 CHA 79 79 37.6 0.413 0.280 0.800 0.5 2.5 3.0 7.4 1.2 0.2 2.70 2.33 14.4
08-09 CHA 82 81 37.6 0.408 0.285 0.805 0.7 3.1 3.8 6.7 1.5 0.4 2.78 2.33 14.2
09-10 CHA 80 80 33.0 0.459 0.385 0.763 0.7 2.9 3.6 5.6 1.5 0.3 2.10 2.15 12.1
Career 399 369 34.9 0.410 0.327 0.782 0.7 2.7 3.4 6.4 1.4 0.2 2.56 2.28 13.3

Felton is 26 years old, is a career starter, and has only missed 11 games in his NBA career.  He represents perhaps the best point guard solution the Knicks have come up with since a young Mark Jackson.

–Crack (

Newest Knick Amar’e Stoudemire (above).

Stoudemire’s career stats:

Career Season Averages
02-03 PHX 82 71 31.3 0.472 0.200 0.661 3.0 5.7 8.8 1.0 0.8 1.1 2.30 3.28 13.5
03-04 PHX 55 53 36.9 0.475 0.200 0.713 2.9 6.2 9.0 1.4 1.2 1.6 3.22 3.42 20.6
04-05 PHX 80 80 36.1 0.559 0.188 0.733 2.7 6.2 8.9 1.6 1.0 1.6 2.36 3.48 26.0
05-06 PHX 3 3 16.7 0.333 0.000 0.889 2.0 3.3 5.3 0.7 0.3 1.0 0.33 1.33 8.7
06-07 PHX 82 78 32.8 0.575 0.000 0.781 2.7 6.9 9.6 1.0 1.0 1.3 2.83 3.60 20.4
07-08 PHX 79 79 33.9 0.590 0.161 0.805 2.3 6.8 9.1 1.5 0.8 2.1 2.20 3.72 25.2
08-09 PHX 53 53 36.8 0.539 0.429 0.835 2.2 5.9 8.1 2.0 0.9 1.1 2.83 3.08 21.4
09-10 PHX 82 82 34.6 0.557 0.167 0.771 2.8 6.1 8.9 1.0 0.6 1.0 2.60 3.43 23.1
Career 516 499 34.3 0.544 0.190 0.758 2.7 6.3 8.9 1.3 0.9 1.4 2.57 3.43 21.4
All-Star 5 2 17.8 0.578 0.333 0.643 3.2 4.6 7.8 1.0 0.8 0.6 1.40 2.00 16.8

The Knick “braintrust”, faced with the possibility of the music stopping and being left without a chair, after putting three years stock into the Lebron James charade, continued the games by adding forward Amar’e Stoudemire.  Stoudemire, who underwent the dreaded microfracture surgery in 2005, has never been the same player since the injury.  Because of the injury, the Knicks will not be able to insure the nearly $100 M contract.

Sound familiar?  When I close my eyes I can hear Isaiah Thomas talking like Michael Jackson about Eddy Curry.

While the Nets impressed Lebron James Thursday with a contingent that included Avery Johnson, Russian billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov, and recording legend and James’ buddy Jay-Z, and don’t think it of little consequence that Johnson and Jay-Z are black, Curry happened to be the only contemporary “ambassador” from the Knicks to meet with James, who scorched the Knicks and their hapless coach, Mike D’antoni when granted a personal audience with James.  It was probably the first time Curry has ever been right, too.

According to a source close to Curry, the Knicks‘ veteran center met with James in Ohio to discuss Curry’s future, which may or may not include having LeBron as a teammate. The conversation, the source said, “had nothing to do with Eddy trying to recruit LeBron to New York.”

In fact, Curry may have been recruiting himself to join James either in Cleveland or Chicago. Curry is entering the final year of his contract and has told close friends he’d welcome a buyout from the Knicks in order to become a free agent.

Curry has talked about returning to his hometown of Chicago to restart his career. The Bulls are one of several teams with salary cap room to sign James, who is expected to visit New York, New Jersey and Chicago when he becomes a free agent on July 1st.

The Knicks “braintrust” was betting on a major summer in free agency, but the summer looks like more of a disaster than anything, with the impending loss of David Lee set to completely offset the Stoudemire signing, especially on the glass, where Lee is perennially one of the finest rebounders in the game.  For those of you who assume Stoudemire and D’antoni have this great rapport and comfort level, think again.  The word out of Phoenix was that they frequently came to loggerheads, and that star guard Steve Nash had to act as a buffer and a peace maker between the two.

Asked about D’antoni in an interview at the end of March, here was Stoudemire’s reply:

Do you agree that Mike D’Antoni not emphasizing defense set you back:

“I think so. With us not really focused defensively and not teaching defense a lot of the finger pointing was towards me saying that I wasn’t a good defensive player but I just was never taught defensive strategy so it really was kind of unfair to put the blame on me. I think over time, it shows now that we are a better defensive team, we got guys that can play defense and my defense is not really that bad.”

This is Stoudemire being diplomatic, too.  This deal was born out of necessity on both sides.  The Knicks needed a player, and the player needed a team to offer 5 years at $ 19 + M a year on average.  The Suns, who know Stoudemire best and who got his best years, were unwilling to pledge to hima 5th season, and the Heat tried to get him on a 5 yr deal for almost $ 25 M less than the Knicks offer.

What’s next for the Knicks, who are about to strike out on the top 3 free agents, and who don’t seem to have the muscle to work out trades for Chris Paul or Carmelo Anthony with their flimsy roster?  We are hearing that the Knicks are looking for a partner in crime to put along aside Stoudemire at the 5, and have their sights set on Dallas big Brendan Haywood.

Can you feel the excitement?

Luckily for the Knicks, Dallas is probably going to lavish Haywood with their own millions, saving New York from more folly.

The Knicks made their bed more than 2 years ago when they hired Walsh who hired D’antoni, over Mark Jackson, the widely respected commentator, New York product, and a much savvier pitchman and face of the franchise when it comes to selling free agents on the virtues of New York, being a guy who actually played here, and did so on successful Knicks teams.  Speaking of Jackson, whom the Knicks have not had a reliable point guard since his departure nearly 20 years ago, the Knicks should foresake their pursuit of a center for now, considering they have Curry in a walk year–likely the only year you will ever see the guy motivated, and try to obtain a quality point guard.  The point guard position has been broken for far too long here, and a permanent fix for less than max dollars would leave the Knicks in decent shape next off season to recruit, should they wisely dump D’antoni, who is unlikely to be extended, as he goes into the 3rd year of a 4 year contract.

With Curry and new Knick “star” Stoudemire already vocal opponents of D’antoni, a alck of success this season, which is almost a certainty, could be the final nail in D’antoni’s already sized and outfitted coffin.  Should they not trade all their assets for Tony Parker, and perhaps get lucky in free agency with pass first point guard Raymond Felton, in whom they have interest, a new coach who desirable players do have interest in playing for could possibly convince Carmelo to play for the Knicks.  The Knicks would also help themselves for the future immensely by keeping their 2011 first round pick, one that has an excellent chance of being a lottery selection.

More of the status quo will only earn them more of the status quo, which right now, is second tier, and second team all the way, in their own city, with the first team being the Nets led by NBA icon Jay-Z.  It’s ironic how the Knicks threw away so much money for so long and would happily continue to do so, but now have slim pickings as far as who they can throw their money at.

–Crack (