In a two-part series, ESPNNewYork.com is exploring three key qualities of the Knicks' two unique position-based duos: Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd at point guard, and Tyson Chandler and Marcus Camby at center.
The previous post featured the floor generals. Here are the centers:
1. Support: It's as simple as this: If any of the Knicks' perimeter players get beat, guess who's going to be backing them up? "As long as you have Tyson Chandler or Marcus Camby back there to protect the rim, it's a big help," a veteran NBA advance scout told ESPNNewYork.com. At basically every second of the game, Chandler or Camby should be on the court. While Chandler and Jared Jeffries was solid last season, Camby as a replacement will be better. Enough said.
2. Matchups: It's a given Chandler and Camby improve the Knicks' chances of making a deep playoff run. And if they're to match up with Miami, featuring the always artfully attacking LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, they'll need as many long arms, wits and skills as they can in the paint. That's what Chandler and Camby provide. Chandler alone did a great job of altering James and Wade's interior shots in 2011, which helped Dallas win their first championship. With an extra dosage of Camby, that's a promising sign. Then, if somehow the Knicks move on and face off with either the Lakers or Thunder in the Finals, they'll have to deal with Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard, or Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins, respectively. That's why it's a nice luxury to have both Chandler and Camby, especially when dealing with foul trouble. Just hopefully Camby, who turns 39 in March, will be healthy come May and perhaps even June.
3. Versatility: While Chandler and Camby side-by-side will limit the Knicks' offense some -- Amare Stoudemire would likely be on the bench in that scenario -- defensively, the team will be extra menacing down low. "They're both very mobile and so long," the scout said. "They might be able to play Chandler at center and have Camby guard a certain type of stretch forward, or vice versa." Of course, the opposing team's lineup and how the game is playing out will dictate when and how long Chandler and Camby could share the court together. But that intimidating option will always be in Mike Woodson's back pocket.
What are you looking forward to seeing with Felton-Kidd and Chandler-Camby? Leave us your comments below.
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