In the 2013-2014 NBA season the New York Knicks finished ninth in the Eastern conference. The East was disproportionately less competitive than the Western Conference, as the eighth seed in the Western conference, Dallas Mavericks, would have had the third best record in the Eastern conference.
Needless to write, the Knicks last season was abysmal. Out of the 30 teams in the NBA, the Knicks ranked twentieth in points per game, twenty-seventh in rebounds per game and twenty-eighth in assists per game in the 2013-2014 season.
The only redeeming stat of last season for the Knicks is their eighth least points allowed a game. Much of that can be attributed to Center Tyson Chandler, who the Knicks traded this offseason.
So why is Carmelo Anthony most likely to return the struggling Knicks? The short answer is: Potential.
In March of 2014 the Knicks finalized a contract for legendary coach Phil Jackson to become the president of the Knicks organization. This is Phil’s first offseason with the Knicks and already the team traded two marque players.
The Knicks traded Tyson Chandler and point guard Tyson Chandler in return for point guard Jose Calderon, center Samuel Dalembert, young point guard Shane Larkin, reserve guard Wayne Ellington and two second round draft picks in 2014’s draft, three weeks ago.
If the Knicks were pursuing championship contention in the 2014-2015 season, trading Chandler is a major setback. However, if the trade is to free up cap space for the 2015 free agency, it was a fantastic decision.
Currently the Knicks have just above $10 million in salary commitments for the 2015-2016 season. Add Carmelo’s $21 million a year and the Knicks will be at least $35 million under the salary cap for the start of the 2015 NBA free agency.
As much hype is put into this year’s NBA free agency, next year’s will be even more so. Major free agents like, Rajon Rondo, Roy Hibbert, DeAndre Jordan, Marc Gasol, Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge and Kawhi Leonard.
With a commitment from Melo the Knicks could put together their own big three for the 2015-2016 season. While the 2014-2015 NBA season looks gloomy for the New York Knicks, the future looks promising.
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