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Monday, January 13, 2014
Opening Tip: Let's make a deal?

By Matt Ehalt

When the New York Knicks were floundering last month, James Dolan told the team that no trades were coming and there would be no changes to the coaching staff.

Now, as the Knicks have won five of six and are just a half game out of the playoffs, it begs the question: Should the Knicks revise that stance and make a deal?

There have been no shortage of rumors involving deals with the Knicks. Toronto's Kyle Lowry, Denver's Kenneth Faried, Boston's Rajon Rondo and the Clippers' Blake Griffin are players the Knicks have been linked to. They're also now trying to get in the market for Denver's Andre Miller.

Miller, Lowry and Rondo would provide upgrades at point guard, while Faried gives the team an extra defender and inside presence. Griffin is a superstar who would help any team in the league. Forgetting about the cost, each of these players would make the Knicks a better team the remainder of the year.

For the Knicks, Iman Shumpert has been mentioned in proposed deals. And teams are calling about Tyson Chandler, but the Knicks are saying no. Tim Hardaway Jr. is another young player that other teams have asked the Knicks about. The Knicks would move J.R. Smith, but there appears to be no takers.

There's also Carmelo Anthony, but trading him would signal the Knicks hitting the reset button and be a last-resort option.

By making a move, the Knicks could strengthen themselves for a playoff push and Atlantic Division title. The Knicks are currently 4½ games behind Toronto in the division and a half game behind Brooklyn for the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference. The East is filled with mediocre teams, save for Miami and Indiana, and no team has truly stood out as the third best.

Ultimately, the Knicks have to decide if the price is worth it. The Knicks won't get any of the players they are linked to for pennies on the dollars, so they have to determine if a young player or a first-round pick is a suitable cost. At the moment, they haven't bit on any deal. Could that change in the upcoming weeks?

Question: Should the Knicks make a trade?

Up now: Shumpert said the trade rumors surrounding him "get annoying". ... Here's some notes on the Knicks' interest in Miller. ... An update on the Knicks refusing to part ways with Chandler.

What's next: The Knicks will look for their fifth straight win when they host Phoenix at Madison Square Garden at 7:30 p.m on Monday.