New York Knicks: Marcus Camby

Woody: Knicks must fill leadership void

October, 8, 2013
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GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- No advanced statistic can measure how many wins Jason Kidd's advice helped procure for the Knicks last season. There's no way to know what kind of impact Rasheed Wallace's impromptu locker room talks had on New York's 54-win regular season.

[+] EnlargeRaymond Felton
Tom Russo/USA TODAY SportsWith Jason Kidd in Brooklyn, Raymond Felton says he's ready to step up as a leader.
But we do know this: Veteran leaders such as Kidd, Wallace, Kurt Thomas and Marcus Camby are gone -- and the remaining Knicks will try to fill the void.

"We were loaded with a lot of guys that showed leadership last year," Mike Woodson said Monday. "So guys like Tyson [Chandler] and Amar'e [Stoudemire], [Carmelo Anthony] -- the guys that have been in this league a long time -- have really got to show a little more leadership."

Woodson also mentioned point guard Raymond Felton.

In addition to Felton, Woodson said he's counting on Pablo Prigioni and Beno Udrih -- the other ball handlers on the Knicks' roster -- to fill the void left by Kidd, Thomas & Co.

But the coach singled out Felton in a conversation before training camp.

"He's got to be more of a leader," Woodson said.

That's just fine with Felton.

"I've always been a leader wherever I've payed," Felton said earlier this month. "High school, college, I've always been a leader."

The 29-year-old Felton decided to take a "step back" last year, his first season back in New York. Instead of being a vocal presence in the locker room, he said he wanted to feel his teammates out and get acclimated to playing in New York.

"But after getting one year under my belt, definitely, I'm ready," Felton said.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Source: Knicks interested in Dalembert

July, 13, 2013
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LAS VEGAS -- The Knicks are interested in one of the best centers still available in free agency, Samuel Dalembert, according to a player source.

On Friday, the first day of the NBA summer league at UNLV's Cox Pavilion, Knicks GM Glen Grunwald and Dalembert's agent, Marc Cornstein, were spotted chatting. The Knicks currently have no real backup behind Tyson Chandler, as Marcus Camby, Kurt Thomas and Rasheed Wallace are all gone, and Kenyon Martin and Earl Barron are still free agents.

[+] EnlargeSamuel Dalembert
Ron Hoskins/NBAE/Getty ImagesThe Knicks like Samuel Dalembert, according to a source. Can they get him? That's another story.
At this point, however, the Mavericks are the front runners to land Dalembert, who averaged 6.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 16 minutes per game last season for the Bucks. Sources indicated to ESPNDallas.com that the Mavs are optimistic they will reach an agreement with Dalembert soon.

Dallas can offer him a salary of a little more than $3 million next season without further cap tinkering. New York, on the other hand, can only sign Dalembert for about $1.7 million -- the remaining amount of their mini midlevel exception -- or the veteran's minimum. The 32-year-old center made $6.7 million in 2012-13. While he played in only 47 games, he was constantly shuffled in and out of the rotation, and he eventually made it no secret he wanted to leave Milwaukee.

The Knicks could lose out twice to the Mavericks -- also in the pursuit of big man Brandan Wright. That's because Wright will likely re-sign with the Mavs because they can exceed the cap to sign him using the Early Bird exception. Even though the Knicks are a competitive team that plays in the No. 1 media market in the league, they are cash-strapped. And this hasn't been the offseason for financial sacrifices due to the new CBA, which has resulted in thinning roster spots and fewer opportunities to make more money.

Even beyond obtaining a backup for Chandler, the Knicks need bigs who specialize in rebounding, interior defense and doing the dirty work down low. Martin could return to the Knicks -- they are the leading team to secure his services, according to a player source. Here are other big-man candidates who could come cheap: Lou Amundson, Jason Collins, Gani Lawal, Lamar Odom, Shavlik Randolph, Henry Sims, Tyrus Thomas, Anthony Tolliver and Chris Wilcox.

While in Las Vegas, the Knicks will be closely monitoring bigs Jerome Jordan, Liam McMorrow and Jeremy Tyler, who finished with 10 points and 11 rebounds in the team's summer league debut Friday. Tyler has the most NBA experience out of the three, playing in 63 games since 2011 for the Warriors and Hawks.

The Knicks have five roster spots to fill, and they could use them to book two point guards, two big men and a small forward. Point guards on the Knicks' radar include Aaron Brooks, Daniel Gibson, Charles Jenkins, John Lucas III, A.J. Price, Nate Robinson, Nolan Smith and Sebastian Telfair. Toure Murry, who's in Vegas and scored 11 points on Friday, will get a serious look, too.

Small forwards being evaluated include Raja Bell, Josh Childress, Dahntay Jones, Metta World Peace, Mickael Pietrus and Shawne Williams. World Peace, who was waived via the amnesty provision by the Lakers on Thursday and has stated that the NBA is not an option for him next season, could clear waivers at 5 p.m. on Sunday. Former Knick Al Harrington, who might not return to the Magic according to the Orlando Sentinel, could also draw some interest.

While the Knicks signed summer league player C.J. Leslie to a partially guaranteed contract -- it would become fully guaranteed on Jan. 7 -- they're still interested in securing a veteran small forward who could possibly start alongside Carmelo Anthony, according to a source. That's because coach Mike Woodson favors using Anthony again at the 4 next season.

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Agent: Camby was healthy for Pacers series

May, 20, 2013
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GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Add Marcus Camby only playing 12 seconds against the Pacers to the head-scratching moves Knicks coach Mike Woodson made in the series.

[+] EnlargeMarcus Camby
Ron Hoskins/NBAE/Getty ImagesMarcus Camby was a non-factor in the Knicks-Pacers series.
While the Pacers outrebounded the Knicks by 52 over six games, Camby was sitting on the bench pain-free, according to his agent, Richard Kaplan.

"He has been healthy for a while now. I'm not sure why he didn't play," Kaplan told ESPNNewYork.com. Camby had been suffering from plantar fasciitis in his left foot down the stretch of the regular season.

Adding to the confusion, Tyson Chandler said Monday that his "strength and physical presence" were lacking against the Pacers, after having lost 10 pounds from the flu. Woodson preferred to play small ball for more offense, but the Knicks could've used Camby.

Camby, 39, who's signed through 2015, will likely return next season. "He's under contract and there is no question they can use him, so one would expect he'd be back," Kaplan said.

• So what's next for some of the other Knicks? ESPNNewYork.com was at the Knicks' practice facility on Monday to collect information.

J.R. Smith: Carmelo Anthony, for one, would like to see Smith back with the Knicks.

"He made a huge step forward as a basketball player," Anthony said. "For him to come out, win the [Sixth Man Award], helping us to win a division title, helping us to win 50-plus games, he was a big part to this team. I definitely would love him back here."

Kenyon Martin: When asked to put his GM hat on, Martin said, "If I say anything, it's bring Kenyon back."

Martin said he's "got a lot in the tank" and would "love to be back."

"I think I proved to people I can still play at a high level," he said. "I had a great time here. Everything's first class, the best team I played on, one of the best-run organizations -- the way they treat the guys -- that I've been around."

Jason Kidd: He's signed through 2015, but hasn't confirmed whether he's returning. His teammates aren't sure of his plans, either.

"I don’t know where his mind is right now," Chandler said. "I think right now everything is so emotional. We're fresh off the series. It's hard to get that out of your mind, especially being a competitor. But I think he should take some time with his family."

Chris Copeland: Copeland, who is from New Jersey and developed well in his rookie season with the Knicks, wants to return.

"To be here has been a dream come true, but to stay here, this place means the world to me," he said. "This is the first team to really give me a shot and give me a chance."

Copeland knows his free-agent value has increased -- "I've grown being under [Woodson's] wing," he said -- but the forward said he's not money-driven.

"If you look at my career overseas, I've never chased the highest bidder. I've never been that guy," he said. "When I'm comfortable, I usually tend to stay in one situation. Finance plays a part, but I have a lot of emotional ties here."

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Four key questions for free agency

May, 19, 2013
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ESPNNewYork.com's free-agency primer explores the Knicks' summer spending, answers some key questions and examines what lies ahead for the team's free agents.

SPENDING SITUATION

The Knicks have several options to explore this summer:

" They can lock up J.R. Smith for $4.9 million using their early Bird rights (if not, that money can't be used for another free agent)

" Use their taxpayer mid-level exception of $3.18 million to bring in someone

" Sign their late-first-round draft pick

" Use veteran's minimum contracts to fill up their roster

There could be more options if Jason Kidd and/or Marcus Camby retire (see more below).

KEY QUESTIONS

1. What are the Knicks' biggest needs?

First, upgrading their frontcourt. As one NBA scout said, "If [Carmelo Anthony] and J.R. are going to win, it's with young, athletic bigs who do the dirty work, protect the rim and finish." With Melo, Smith and the Knicks' perimeter-based offense, they need more lively rebounders.

A few affordable attractive options are: Al-Farouq Aminu, Lou Amundson and Dante Cunningham. A dark horse is Gani Lawal, who played with Iman Shumpert at Georgia Tech. Lawal, who's playing well in Europe, is an elite athlete and rebounder and will have multiple NBA offers.

The Knicks could also use an explosive backup point guard to help them establish a faster pace. A few affordable attractive options are: Will Bynum, A.J. Price and Sebastian Telfair. A draft possibility could be Shane Larkin. Also, Chris Smith, J.R.'s younger brother, will likely play on the Knicks' summer league team.

In addition, the Knicks could use a power forward who can defend and stretch the offense. Chris Copeland developed well this season on both ends of the floor and could be the answer.

[+] EnlargeAnthony
Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY SportsCarmelo Anthony could use some help in the post.
2. Will they re-sign Smith and Kenyon Martin?

Smith will likely opt out, so the Knicks can sign him for $4.9 million. That will likely be around his maximum price tag. League insiders still view him as an inconsistent scorer, which he was in the playoffs.

"Other teams will be skittish because he is still a wild card," one agent told ESPNNewYork.com. "With the new CBA [collective bargaining agreement], I think he will be good for $5 million."

Smith said he wants to re-sign. He's also better as a complementary scorer to a great scorer (like Anthony), which is why the Knicks are the frontrunners.

Regarding Martin, one source told ESPNNewYork.com that he'll be in the market again for a midlevel deal. But he favors the Knicks, and they want him back. When Kidd said in late April, "he saved our season," that's all you need to know.

3. Can they move Amar'e Stoudemire or make any trades?

Stoudemire would be off the books only if a physician selected by the league and players' association determined that his knees had career-ending implications. But he will play next season. Also, a trade with his uninsured $21.68 million contract won't happen.

Any other trades are unlikely. The Knicks are not taking calls and they're already over the cap, so they won't receive much value back.

4. If Kidd and/or Camby retire, will that clear space under the salary cap to perhaps go after Chris Paul?

First of all, Kidd, 40, hasn't confirmed his plans to play next season. Camby, 39, would like to play. Camby's agent, Richard Kaplan, told ESPNNewYork.com, "He has been healthy for a while now. He's under contract, and there is no question they can use him."

But if Kidd and/or Camby forfeited their salary, the Knicks would be below the $74.31 million apron. Then, they would regain the full midlevel exception ($5.15 million) and the biannual exception ($2.02 million). Paul could take the full midlevel exception, but that would obviously be a big pay cut. (A sign-and-trade is unlikely). However, if the Knicks used those two exceptions, they would be hard-capped at the apron, suffocating future roster movement.

FREE AGENTS

J.R. Smith
Due: Potential unrestricted free agent
Outlook: Likely to be back

Kenyon Martin
Due: Unrestricted free agent
Outlook: Likely to be back but will weigh higher offers

Chris Copeland
Due: Restricted free agent (if he doesn't accept a qualifying offer of $988,872, the Knicks would have to match a higher amount)
Outlook: Likely to be back if he doesn't accept more money (value: $3-$5 million)

Pablo Prigioni
Due: Same as Copeland
Outlook: Same as Copeland (value: $1-$2 million)

James White
Due: Unrestricted free agent
Outlook: Knicks still like him for his defense and could sign him to the veteran's minimum, but if he gets a higher offer with the opportunity for more playing time, he likely won't be back

Earl Barron
Due: Unrestricted free agent
Outlook: Knicks need more youth in their frontcourt, and Barron is a skilled scorer and rebounder (his return is 50/50)

Quentin Richardson
Due: Unrestricted free agent
Outlook: Likely won't be back

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Chandler, Martin and Camby questionable

April, 13, 2013
4/13/13
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The Knicks have announced that Tyson Chandler, Kenyon Martin and Marcus Camby are all questionable for their game on Sunday afternoon against the Pacers.

Chandler (small bulging disk in neck) has missed the last three games, and Martin (severe left ankle sprain) didn't play in four of the last five games. Camby hasn't suited up all month.

Even without their key big men, the Knicks were able to compete with the physical Bulls, albeit without Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson, on Thursday night. On Sunday, the bigger Pacers will have a full strength frontcourt, featuring David West and Roy Hibbert in the starting lineup, with Ian Mahinmi and Tyler Hansbrough off the bench.

The Knicks only need one win to clinch the second seed in the Eastern Conference and secure home-court advantage for at least the first two rounds of the playoffs. The Pacers are currently sitting at No. 3 and could face the Knicks in the semifinals.

But if the Pacers lose tomorrow and their next two games against the Celtics and 76ers, and the Nets win all three of theirs -- against the Raptors, Wizards and Pistons -- Brooklyn would take over the third spot. That would mean a potential Knicks-Nets meeting in the postseason.

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Opening Tip: Are the Knicks too old?

March, 20, 2013
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Every weekday throughout the season, ESPNNewYork.com will tackle a burning question about the Knicks in our "Opening Tip" segment.

Today's Burning Question: Did the Knicks make a mistake in filling their roster out with older players?

Back in October, someone asked Knicks GM Glen Grunwald about the risk in signing five players age 35 and older to fill out the Knicks’ roster.

"We don't think we got older," Grunwald said. "We feel we got more experienced and better."

It was hard to argue that point during the Knicks’ 18-5 start. But now, with a large portion of the Knicks’ elder statesman on the disabled list or battling nagging injuries, it’s fair to question Grunwald’s strategy.

The Knicks are 21-21 since that hot start and have been besieged by injuries as they enter the home stretch of their schedule.

In addition to Thomas and Wallace out, Tyson Chandler is sidelined with a neck injury, Amar’e Stoudemire is out following right knee surgery and Carmelo Anthony is questionable due to a right knee injury.

Now, injuries are a part of sports and there’s no way to say with any certainty that the Knicks would've been healthier had they signed younger players.

But one leading orthopedic surgeon isn’t exactly surprised by the injuries to the Knicks’ older players.

"The issue with any type of impact activity ... is just the continued presentation of stress (on the body) day after day," says Neil Roth, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Lenox Hill Hospital specializing in sports medicine and knee and shoulder surgeries. "You need time to recover from all this and I think that, as the players age, the ability to recover as quickly as they used to, 10 years ago, when they were in their 20s, has an impact on them and you start to break down."

That’s what’s happened with the older Knicks, says Roth, who previously worked as an assistant team physician with the Lakers.

The veteran Knicks' wear and tear injuries are signs of overuse for a player who can't handle the workload in his advanced age.

The bones, joints, muscles and ligaments of older players do not respond as well to the nightly pounding the body takes during an NBA season.

So older players can suffer a systemic breakdown because muscles aren’t able to recover as quickly and joints and ligaments can’t handle the subsequent stress placed on the body, Roth says.

Hence, the stress reaction/stress fractures that Thomas and Wallace are suffering through and the nagging foot injuries that Camby’s dealt with.

Of course, it’s worth pointing out that none of the older players the Knicks signed were being counted on to play big minutes. But with the current health of Mike Woodson’s club, it’s natural to wonder if they’d have been better off signing younger bodies.

Question: What do you think?Did the Knicks make a mistake in filling their roster with older players?

Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Rapid Reaction: Blazers 105, Knicks 90

March, 15, 2013
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WHAT IT MEANS: The Knicks' nightmare road trip just keeps getting worse.

New York lost its third straight game on Thursday night, 105-90 to Portland.

The Knicks have lost their first three games on a season-long five-game road trip.

They lost the first two by 29 and 23, respectively.

Playing without Carmelo Anthony (right knee) and Tyson Chandler (left knee) on Thursday, the Knicks went up 13 in the first half but couldn't maintain the lead.

Down 16 at the end of the third quarter, New York cut the lead to four in the fourth, but Portland went on a 14-2 run to take control.

The Knicks have lost five of eight and are 1½ games behind Indiana for second place in the East. They are a game ahead of Brooklyn in the Atlantic Division.

BANGED UP: Anthony stayed in New York after getting fluid drained from the back of his right knee. Chandler sat out with a bone bruise in his left knee.

Early on, without their two stars, the Knicks displayed a balanced attack and consistently attacked the rim.

Nine Knicks scored in the first half, led by 10 points from 35-year-old Kenyon Martin. Marcus Camby came off the bench to score eight, and J.R. Smith added nine, including several strong drives to the rim (and one emphatic dunk). New York had 22 paint points.

They had just five 3-point attempts in the first half.

But Portland outscored the Knicks 26-6 during a stretch spanning parts of the second and third quarters and took a 16-point lead into the fourth.

How'd they get there? Thanks in part to rookie Damian Lillard. Lillard had 26 points and 10 assists and led five Blazers who scored in double figures.

UNHAPPY HOMECOMING FOR RAY: Ex-Blazer Ray Felton got booed early and often at the Rose Garden. Felton came into the 2011-12 season out of shape with the Blazers and quickly fell out of favor with the fans and organization.

He finished with 11 points and two turnovers, missing eight of 12 shots.

Smith led the Knicks with 33 points. Martin finished with 12.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Knicks have two days off before facing the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday. They wrap up the road trip at Utah on Monday.

Opening Tip: Melo's best season yet?

November, 1, 2012
11/01/12
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Every weekday throughout the season, ESPNNewYork.com will tackle a burning question about the Knicks in our "Opening Tip" segment.

Today's Burning Question: Tyson Chandler is predicting a "breakout" season for Carmelo Anthony. Do you feel the same way?

Marcus Camby has known Carmelo Anthony since the Knicks star was a 19-year-old rookie in Denver.

So when Camby says something about Anthony, you pay attention.

On Wednesday, Camby was asked about his impressions of Anthony following the Knicks' four-week preseason.

"I just think his confidence is at an all-time high, especially coming off the way he performed this summer over in the Olympics," Camby said. "His talent is limitless. To me it seems like he’s getting better and better."

Chandler has spent the past few months with Anthony, traveling across the Atlantic with him for the Olympics and sweating with him through Mike Woodson's first training camp in New York.

So when Chandler says something about Anthony, you listen.

"I expect big things from Carmelo this year. I think this is going to be his breakout year," Chandler said.

"As much as he’s accomplished throughout his career already, I think he’s going to put together a complete season and show you everything that he’s capable of doing out on the basketball floor."

Strong stuff.

Do you agree with Camby and Chandler? Do you think Anthony's on the verge of a breakout season in his third year with the Knicks?

Let us know your thoughts below. You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Top 10 Knicks topics that won't go away

September, 11, 2012
9/11/12
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Just like the team's slogan, "Once a Knick, Always a Knick," its fans and media have their own: "Once it Happens, We'll Always Remember." As Marcus Camby told ESPNNewYork.com earlier this year, "The Knicks' community knows their basketball."

While that applies to many great moments in Knicks history, the past 10 years or so have offered something different: more recurring negatively themed storylines, such as James Dolan consulting Isiah Thomas, which reportedly happened again Friday. Frustration, mounted on top of extreme expectations, tortured Knicks fans over several seasons of futility under Thomas.

Even while the Knicks continue to re-establish themselves, negativity these days, no matter how small, runs deep in New York as if it's an emotional scar after a personal tragedy. You can't stop thinking about it. On top of that, the only thing competitive New Yorkers care about is a championship -- and that hasn't happened in a while.

[+] EnlargeJohn Starks
Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty ImagesJohn Starks. Game 7 of the '94 Finals. 'Nuff said.
On that note, ESPNNewYork.com brought you on Monday the Top 10 Knicks Storylines That Won't Go Away with the upcoming season (and possibly beyond), starting with 10 through six.

Here is the final part of the countdown:

5. If only the Knicks drafted ... For every Iman Shumpert, there has been two Michael Sweetneys. With about a dozen first-round draft picks throughout the past 10 years or so, the Knicks missed the boat several times, like in 2009 overlooking point guards Brandon Jennings, Jrue Holiday, Ty Lawson and Darren Collison. To make matters worse, Stephen Curry was selected right before the Knicks that year -- and he still hears about it from fans.

4. The championship that got away. Perhaps the real root of Knicks fans' frustration comes from John Starks, based on the final two games of the 1994 Finals. With the Knicks up 3-2, Rockets center Hakeem Olajuwon blocked Starks' last-second title-winning shot attempt in Game 6 to force the clincher. Then in Game 7, the Knicks starting two guard shot 2-for-18 in a losing effort. "If only if" will always be brought up until things change in June.

3. Stephon Marbury ripping the Knicks. It's safe to say Starbury wasn't celebrated in New York. He publicly feuded with Larry Brown, then Isiah Thomas and finally Mike D'Antoni. Since then, he's publicly blasted the team. For example, earlier this year when D'Antoni resigned, he tweeted, "Coward's Step down men knock walls down that men like him post up ... #DANPHONY." When Marbury talks Knicks again, expect a back-page story.

2. Charles Barkley ripping the Knicks. The way the Chuckster feels about the Knicks is the same way Bane feels about Batman. Take just Monday, for example, when Barkley compared the Nets to the Knicks. "I think they [Brooklyn] probably have got the best team in New York," Barkley told Newsday. But the blue and orange? "They must think it's 1995. It's 2012. They went out and got 92-year-old Jason Kidd and 92-year-old Marcus Camby."

1. James Dolan and Isiah Thomas back together again? Some fans believe the Knicks are horribly managed, starting with Mr. Dolan, and now they're bracing for a Thomas return with Scott O'Neil suddenly stepping down. Dolan and Thomas reportedly met Friday in New York City, and speculation of their return together -- which couldn't happen earlier this year because the former Knicks coach and president was employed by FIU -- will continue to mount.

What storyline are you most sick of hearing about? Or is there something else? Leave us your comments below.

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Scout's take: Amare in the post

September, 5, 2012
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Amare Stoudemire insists he's ready to bounce back from a forgettable 2011-12 season. And there are reasons to believe he will do just that.

Stoudemire has been working out all offseason, something he couldn't do last summer/fall because he was rehabilitating from a back injury.

He will enter training camp in basketball shape -- something that didn't happen last year because of added muscle weight he put on during rehab.

[+] EnlargeAmare Stoudemire and Marcus Camby
AP Photo/Mary AltafferJoining forces with Marcus Camby could improve Amare Stoudemire's post game.
And he'll enter this season with an added wrinkle to his game that wasn't there last season: a post-up game.

So, if you're a Knicks fan, there are reasons to be optimistic about Stoudemire coming into the season.

But, as far as his play in the post goes, expectations need to be based in reality.

There's no way Stoudemire can come into the season with the moves of Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon, with whom he worked for two weeks over the summer in Houston. Stoudemire himself said earlier this summer that playing in the post will be one part of his game, but it won't change his overall approach.

And that makes sense.

As one NBA scout who keeps tabs on the Knicks said recently, "He might come away with one or two new (post) moves, but to master it takes more than two weeks. ... He might add it as a wrinkle to his game."

Stoudemire will be best used in the post when he's not sharing the floor with Tyson Chandler, according to the scout.

Chandler draws an extra defender in the paint, which could give Stoudemire less room to work down low, the scout says.

If Chandler were to drift outside the paint, it might not help because he isn't much of a threat to knock down a mid-range jumper. He attempted just two shots from between 10 and 15 feet last season, and went 3-for-12 from 16 to 23 feet.

So a defender wouldn't necessarily be forced to follow Chandler outside of the paint. Instead, he could sag off and be in position to help defend Stoudemire in the post.

"If you want to make it work where Stoudemire's a featured person in the post-up game, (he and Chandler) don't fit very well," the scout said.

That's where Marcus Camby comes in.

Camby is more of a threat to knock down a perimeter shot than Chandler. He went 8-for-21 from 10 to 15 feet and 34-for-81 from 16 to 23 feet last season.

If Camby and Stoudemire shared the floor, a defender would be more apt to pay attention to Camby if he drifted outside the paint for a perimeter shot. This could, in theory, give Stoudemire more space to work in the post.

"You could move Camby up high and he would stay out of his way," the scout said. "(Camby's defender) would still be able to sag and help out (on Stoudemire) but Camby has a better chance of making an outside shot than Chandler does -- neither of them really needs to score but I would think Camby would handle it better than Tyson."

So Camby -- or another big man who can knock down an outside shot -- could be key to Stoudemire's success in the post.

Question: How much impact do you think Stoudemire can have in the post? Do you think he can bounce back from last season?

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Hollinger: NYK had puzzling offseason

August, 2, 2012
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The other day, we asked you to grade Knicks GM Glen Grunwald's moves this offseason.

We're not sure if ESPN NBA analyst John Hollinger participated, but if he had, it sounds like he wouldn't have given Grunwald favorable remarks.

Hollinger wrote an Insider piece today looking at several teams' offseason moves.

Here's a snippet of what he wrote about the Knicks, who added Jason Kidd, Marcus Camby, Raymond Felton and Ronnie Brewer Jr., re-signed Steve Novak and J.R. Smith and let Jeremy Lin and Landry Fields walk this summer:

I don't get what the Knicks did at all. They opened free agency spending like drunken sailors, using some creativity from their front office (in the form of non-guaranteed contracts to bit players) to create the salary ballast to execute three sign-and-trade deals. Unfortunately, they used it to sign a pair of geriatric vets to three-year deals. Jason Kidd and Marcus Camby will likely help them some this season, but this was classic New York shoot-money-out-the-firehouse stuff.

To read Hollinger's full piece, click here (Insider).

Do you agree with Hollinger? Did the Knicks handcuff themselves by signing Camby and Kidd to three-year deals and letting Lin go?

Let us know in the comments section below.

Tyson talks Knicks' acquisitions

July, 11, 2012
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LAS VEGAS -- On Tuesday, Tyson Chandler huddled with a small group of reporters (mostly local ones from New York) before Team USA practiced at UNLV's Mendenhall Center. He discussed the team's two latest acquisitions: Marcus Camby and Jason Kidd, as well as shared what it meant for J.R. Smith to be back in New York.

Here are some of the highlights:

On Camby: "I'll obviously have a backup, and it will take some of the load off. ... He's probably a better shot-blocker than I am. He chases down shots. I'm more of a possession defender where I like to make things tough for guys, not necessarily chase down a lot of shots. We can start the fast break that way. ... I don't mind him stealing some minutes, but I can see situations down the stretch where we're trying to get stops as well as just mixing it up a little bit. We've got scoring on the perimeter, so we need finishers and guys that are going to defend and rebound."

On Kidd: "Jason is a great defender still in this league, so it's going to really help because we have some great minds now on the defensive end, as well as just vets who understand how to play the game."

On Camby and Kidd's initiative to want to play for the Knicks: "It says a lot about the organization and the team that a guy like Jason Kidd is willing come and play. He only wants to win right now. It's the same thing in a guy like Marcus Camby -- he only wants to win. It says that the organization is going in the right direction. That's the reason why I came to New York. We're going to be title contenders every year."

On Smith: "That's huge having J.R., especially with [Iman] Shumpert out. That 2-guard is very key in the NBA. We all know that J.R. can fill it up. He's great coming off the bench as well as he can be a starter, so it's huge for us to be able to bring him back. ... He takes a lot of the scoring pressure off Melo and STAT, and gives us another option for a guy who can go out there and get you 30 any night."

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

Knicks acquire Camby, re-sign Smith

July, 11, 2012
7/11/12
4:23
PM ET
The Knicks announced Wednesday that they re-signed J.R. Smith and acquired Marcus Camby via a sign-and-trade with the Rockets.

While the Knicks didn't disclose the terms of Smith's contract, sources said he inked a two-year contract worth $2.8 million (a 20 percent increase of his previous year's salary using a non-Bird exception). The deal is guaranteed for the first season and contains a player option for the second season.

The Knicks received Camby in exchange for Toney Douglas, Josh Harrellson, Jerome Jordan and two future second-round draft picks.

"It's exciting when you get the chance to bring a former Knick like Marcus Camby back home," GM Glen Grunwald said in a statement. "His defensive presence, shot-blocking ability and offensive board work will give us nice depth in our frontcourt. In addition, our fan base is very fond of him for what he accomplished here during his four seasons. I also have a great appreciation of Marcus after the time we spent together in Toronto."

The Knicks will soon sign Jason Kidd, likely using their mid-level exception of $3.09 million. The team could reportedly use a small portion of that amount to sign a veteran point guard. One candidate is unrestricted free agent Mike James, whose agent, Bernie Lee, will be meeting with the Knicks to discuss his client later this week in Las Vegas, where the team is participating in summer league. James played this past year on the Knicks' D-League team, the Erie Bayhawks, and was very close to being called up before Jeremy Lin's breakthrough.

Two other point guards in the conversation include unrestricted free agent John Lucas III, also repped by Lee, and Pablo Prigioni, an Argentinian who has already met with the Knicks. The Knicks are also in the market for a combo/shooting guard off the bench, according to a source familiar with the team's free-agency plans. Those could include unrestricted free agents Marquis Daniels, Keyon Dooling, Jonny Flynn, Willie Green, Jannero Pargo and Delonte West.

Speaking of guards, the Knicks are planning to match Lin's offer sheet with the Rockets for three years, $28.8 million.

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

BP: Knicks going back to Isiah years

July, 10, 2012
7/10/12
2:15
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The Knicks have made a flurry of moves in the past seven days. They acquired veterans Jason Kidd and Marcus Camby and re-signed key pieces in Steve Novak and J.R. Smith.

Reaction to the moves -- like most anything else the franchise does -- was mixed. Some praised the Knicks for bolstering their bench. Others questioned why they'd give up so much to acquire two players -- Camby and Kidd -- in the twilight of their careers.

Count Basketball Prospectus's Bradford Doolite among those who are questioning the Knicks. Doolittle definitely doesn't like what the Knicks did; in fact, he hates it.

Writes Doolittle: "The Knicks are assembling an old, expensive team that looks good -- but not great -- on paper and that has nothing but downside in its future.... (G)iven the more punitive aspects of the new C.B.A., the Knicks' future payroll bills may be at levels which would make even (former GM and president Isiah) Thomas blush. After all of the bad, bloated teams, tanked seasons and broken promises, the Knicks are threatening to end up right back where they started."

To read Doolittle's complete take (Insider), click here.

What do you think? Have the Knicks mortgaged their future to be a middling team in the Eastern Conference? Or do you think they have the pieces in place to compete for a title?


Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Reaction to Camby and Smith

July, 10, 2012
7/10/12
9:31
AM ET
MARCUS CAMBY: How many teams in the history of the NBA can say they had two Defensive Players of the Year on the same roster? That's what the Knicks will have with Camby and Tyson Chandler, who recently won it. While Camby is five years removed from hoisting the trophy, the 38-year-old will still make a big impact playing 20 to 25 minutes per game off the bench. Last season in that range of minutes with the Blazers and Rockets, only missing seven games, he averaged 9.0 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and nearly one steal per game.

Next season, the Knicks' biggest competition in the East will likely be the Heat and Nets, especially if they land Dwight Howard. But with "C2" (Chandler and Camby, who have mirror attributes with only age separating them), the Knicks will be a lot more explosive defensively down low. With one subbing in for the other -- and even both of them sharing the paint at times -- the Knicks shouldn't lose defensive momentum in the middle. They'll be able to keep disrupting the opposing team's best penetrators -- as in LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Deron Williams and Rajon Rondo, who never seems to go away in the playoffs -- and obviously D-Howard, who's prone to getting into foul trouble.

And let's not forget about a potential Jared Jeffries' re-signing just yet. Then, if Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire bring it on D consistently, which they did a better job of under Mike Woodson, the Knicks could become the best defensive team in the league. With Woody already at the helm, they were top three in the league in the last 24 games.

By the way, did I mention Iman Shumpert will be returning in January? All in all, Camby coming to New York represents not only what Woodson is all about, but what it takes to win a championship: defense. That's what the Heat proved winning the Finals, limiting Kevin Durant, neutralizing James Harden and making Russell Westbrook shoot 4-for-20 in the decisive Game 5. The Knicks now have most of the chess pieces in place to cause similar infliction. The biggest question will be: Can they operate efficiently on offense?

J.R. SMITH: The last memories of Smith in the orange and blue are of him missing shot after shot against the Heat in the first round of the playoffs. He finished 31.6 percent from the field (24-for-76). Smith, who occasionally falls back into his own game, literally fell back on many of his jumpers -- his biggest bad habit -- and was too trigger-happy in the offense. But you can't just signal out Smith's bricks that led to the Knicks' bad offense. With nearly half of the roster banged up, the Knicks simply played out of rhythm and they looked like a streetball team.

Once the Knicks enter the season healthy, with Smith likely the starting shooting guard, that will enable him to excel at more defined roles -- instead of having to carry more of the load. Those roles will mostly include 3-point shooting, fastbreak finishing and running some pick-and-rolls to score (he's also an underrated passer). He has the ability to go one-on-one, but isolation can't be the name of the game in New York in 2012-13. That's where they got into trouble at times last season and especially during the playoffs.

Smith is the kind of player who plays better with less to do, and he proved he was coachable under Woodson. They seemed to develop a father-son relationship on the court, where Woody always gave Smith a longer stare-down when his young pupil made a mistake. But Smith never appeared to be stubborn or have a temper tantrum; he stood next to Woody on the sideline, patiently, and seemed to pay very close attention to what the teacher was saying.

In fact, when Smith agreed to re-sign with the Knicks on Monday, he mentioned Woodson as a big reason why.

Not only did Smith mature as a person under Woodson -- he still has to watch it a bit on Twitter -- he became a more tenacious defender in New York. While those images of him jacking up jumpers against the Heat left a bitter taste, he earned his stripes on the defensive end. He was all over LeBron James -- even picking him up full court and frustrating his dribble. With Shumpert missing the first few months of the upcoming season, Smith will need to bring that perimeter defense from day one.

The Knicks are confident in Smith's abilities at two guard, which will be pointed out when the Knicks let Landry Fields head up north to Toronto, where he signed an offer sheet for three years, $20 million. Smith also believes in the team. He took less money ($2.8 million) than he could've earned elsewhere.

You can follow Jared Zwerling on Twitter.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
24.1 3.1 0.9 35.9
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsA. Stoude... 7.0
AssistsJ. Calderon 4.6
StealsS. Larkin 1.3
BlocksL. Amundson 1.9