After watching our team get abused and be the laughing stock of the league (and the playoffs) I have surprisingly developed a sense of optimism. Looking forward I envision a young, competitive franchise back on the map, and here's why...
At first I couldn't figure Walsh/D'Antoni's thinking with some decisions such as Marbury being benched, Duhon being overused, keeping Mobley after recognizing his heart condition etc... But now the picture is clearer and it's logical.
We weren't going anywhere last or this year due to our past mismanagement and my conclusion was either someone doesn't know what they're doing (Isaiah) or doesn't care (Dolan) which to me were both illogical. Anywhoo we got Donnie and to most [being that we were so used to malfeasance] some moves were questionable at best and the "2010 plan" definitely not supported if only for the impatience of some including myself, probably wanting instant gratification. Today I see the "2010 plan" and everything is going perfect!
Walsh knew we weren't going to win in at least another 2 years and thus everyone became expendable, his only goal to get under the cap by 2010 to sign free agents (plural), field enough players to get through the season, build a young nucleus, scout our current talent and reverse the culture. Very hard things to do all at once in a new position during your first year.
By clearing cap space for two Max's we are at least guaranteed an allstar. Some want LBJ some want Wade whatever, it doesn't matter considering both (plus more) are the best we've had since forever!!
By developing Wilson and hopefully Gallo we will have at least two, young competent shooters who can defend on the wings -whom at the least are cheap, productive and can be used for a trade if necessary.
By playing Jeffries and whipping Curry into shape we increase their value.
Our immediate issues include no big man, no go to guy. Sh*t we were competitive with this group so imagine. I agree especially after watching Cleveland lose that LBJ isn't the only piece or the savior. But the supporting cast is not far from in place. Another point about LBJ is will he defect or not?
One Ny paper says if Cleveland wins he will leave (he's fulfilled his obligations) one paper says if Clev. loses he will leave (his supporting cast sucks). Both result in the same thing... LBJ a Knick if Clevland wins Championship or not.
But Walsh isn't banking on that, he wants to build a contender from within regardless. He knows we really can't lose in this draft. Not because we're so stacked but because we could use almost any good player and we have assets to move up. I see he's targeting moving up for Thabeet.
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"It is why Walsh is so intrigued with Hasheem Thabeet, UConn's 7-3 junior shotblocker. Walsh interviewed Thabeet during the Chicago NBA Draft combine Wednesday and is the only prospect he views worthy enough to give up a decent asset to move up from No. 8 in the draft. The Knicks were last in shotblocking the past two seasons."
I have read more than once that Walsh recognizes our lack of interior defense and need for a big (duh!). Now I'm not stuck on this rumor but what I see is Walsh will acquire the best big man available by the start of 2010 so there's no rush.
I see KO.com posters mostly want the best guards (or pf) available from
Rubio on down to Lawson etc... and as long as this pick has some talent and isn't complete garbage we can't go wrong imo. Basically we need the Best Player Available so scouting is key but once again Walsh seems to know what he's doing, we need to get back to being used to that!
For those who want instant gratification I feel your frustration and impatience but we can no longer sacrifice long term solutions for short term results. We just are not in a position to afford that luxury. A consistent playoff team can take those types of chances when on the cusp.
For those who don't believe or like Chandler. I say I think his talent is evident but to put things into perspective he isn't an allstar or all NBA player but is rounding into a very good compliment. I can't endorse Gallo because realistically speaking his conditioning or physical condition (back) makes his shooting prowess unimportant. But potentially I guess he's our Turkgaglu (spelling?) or Ginobli.
Duhon looked o.k. when healthy (numbers wise) and I'm convinced he's a stop gap maybe bench player by 2010 at best if he's here.
Lee and Nate are assets now due to the fact all in all they're expendable as far as we're concerned. This comment by Walsh says it all "they're good at the right price". Basically we're not putting our eggs into that basket. We've seen their value and the league will determine their market value which at this point is really no issue. Donnie will only do what's most beneficial for our team period. If Nate does stay and perform at his peak (maybe) during the playoffs he will be considered a BEAST. Lee I really feel is expendable so whatever happens happens.
All in all I can almost guarantee we get two stars by the start of 2010 thus the "2 piece". We're just looking for the "Biscuit(s)". Out of all the guys we have Rookie pick, expiring contracts this and next year, Chandler/Gallo- getting those complimentary players is all but cemented in stone.
Now about D'Antoni to put it simply I don't like his style and lack of consistent defense but to be fair we can't play good defense without the right components. Walsh knows this and will supercede D'Antoni's SSOL by adding solid defenders no matter what by 2010.
Yup everything is looking up- thats Lebron or not. We just want to remain competitive throughout and into the post season and I feel we're well on our way. We really weren't that far. 40 wins? Anything can happen in the playoffs with matchups and circumstances etc... The hardest thing to do now is be patient and wait for a whole year in anticipation. For now we will debate who we want, where we went wrong, who we like and don't. But c'mon please, please don't hate on Walsh until the start of the 2010 season.
***I know he [Walsh] should of gotten Brook Lopez and Gordon and Camby and disrespected Marbury and on and on but you can't rate any move until the deadline- Tip off 2010 to be fair.