New York Knicks must find a passing big to succeed with triangle offense

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The summer of 2015 will be Phil Jackson's first true test in free agency in his role with the New York Knicks.

When you think of the big man game of the 1990s, we think of back-down, traditional post up centers like Ewing, Olajuwon, Robinson, etc.They required guards to set them up for the most part. They couldn't really "get their own shot."

Generally guys that play the power forward and center positions don't need court vision, but in the triangle offense, they do. The triangle offense requires constant ball movement in order to get the primary shooters open.

It is part of the reason why Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant thrived in the system.Their talents were exploited best in that system, because they we able to find open shots due to the ball movement.

The Knicks have two players that perfectly fit this system. They are J.R. Smith and Carmelo Anthony. According to CBA FAQ, the NBA's salary cap is expected to be $66.5 million with a luxury tax threshold of $81.0 million.

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With Amar'e Stoudamire's salary finally coming off the books at the end of the season, the Knicks will have room to manoeuvre the free agent market. They will be approximately $25 million under the projected cap.

Big options

J.R. Smith will be completing his thirds season with the Knicks this season, and he will have a player option at the end of the season. If he chooses not to exercise that option, he will stand to make more money, even with the Knicks, due to the Bird Exception. This will allow the Knicks to sign Smith and keep their salary cap threshold at $25 million. They should also target to keep Iman Shumpert for his defense, not necessarily his offensive skills.

Two key potential unrestricted free agents are Marc Gasol and Greg Monroe. They are two of the league's best passing big men, and they will probably be expecting a lot of money this summer. The Knicks should be able to afford at least one, if not both of them. As presently constituted, they are definitely not a fit for the triangle.

However, they do have the pieces to perfectly build around for the triangle. It's just a matter of time before the Knicks will contend again.

New York Knicks
Marc Gasol

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