- Ian Begley, ESPN Staff Writer
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Starting with the first day of training camp and extending through each weekday during the season, ESPNNewYork.com will tackle a burning question about the Knicks in our "Opening Tip" segment.
Today's Burning Question: Are the Knicks too old to compete?
The Knicks added another player past his 35th birthday on Wednesday when they signed Rasheed Wallace.
If you’re scoring at home, Wallace is the fourth Knick above age 35.
Which begs the question: How old is too old?
That question -- in one form or another -- has been posed to several members of the team over the past few days.
Understandably, the Knicks say the veteran presence on their roster is a good thing. They point to the average age of the 2010 NBA champion Dallas Mavericks (29).
Also, as Tyson Chandler notes, the Knicks last season had young players (average age: 28), which made for an exciting but inconsistent on-court product. This year, Chandler argues, the veterans on the team, namely Marcus Camby (38), Rasheed Wallace (38) and Jason Kidd (39), will make the Knicks a more consistent product.
But can the older players stay healthy over an 82-game schedule?
That will be a huge question mark as the season progresses.
Taking the 15th man out of the equation, the average age of the Knicks’ current roster is 31.3.
That’s ancient in NBA years.
Of the 14 guys we expect to make the roster, they have an average career length of 9.2 years, which means they are collectively entering their 10th season. And that counts Pablo Prigioni, 35, as a rookie.
Of course if the veterans stay healthy and productive, this won’t an issue in New York. And age, as they say, will equal beauty in New York. But if not, things could get ugly early around the Garden.
Question: Do you think the Knicks are too old to compete? Or can the veteran presence be a good thing?
Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.
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