If all goes as planned, the New York Knicks will have a frontcourt full of "Dream Shakers."
Hakeem Olajuwon, one of the greatest players in NBA history and the architect of the legendary "Dream Shake" post move, will spend several days next week training some of their players at the team's practice facility in Greenburgh, N.Y.
They both have to realize that the most important thing is not how great you are individually. You're remembered for how many games you win. So to get to play with another great offensive player should help you. It should make your job easier. You have to work well together. You can't be competitors with one another.
-- Hakeem Olajuwon on Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony
Olajuwon worked out with Stoudemire earlier this summer, training the Knicks center for two-and-a-half weeks in the gymnasium on his 400-acre ranch outside of Houston. Olajuwon, who was able to excel alongside superstar teammates Ralph Sampson and Clyde Drexler, said there's no reason Stoudemire and Anthony can't have similar success playing next to one another.
"They both have to realize that the most important thing is not how great you are individually," Olajuwon said. "You're remembered for how many games you win. So to get to play with another great offensive player should help you. It should make your job easier. You have to work well together. You can't be competitors with one another."
While Olajuwon has taught Stoudemire back-to-the-basket post moves, he said the Knicks' game plan should not be simply to post up Stoudemire while Anthony dominates the perimeter.
"It shouldn't be Amare just staying in the post because he can be a scorer in the paint and outside," Olajuwon said. "It's the same thing for Carmelo. He can score in the post and outside. So if Carmelo is in the post, Amare can be at the foul line and he can make that shot. If Amare's in the post, Carmelo can make the shot from the free-throw line, too. They shouldn't be competing against each other; they should be complementing each other. They need each other to win."
But Olajuwon doesn't think the Knicks need to be a two-man show offensively. He sees great offensive potential in Chandler, who averaged 11 points per game for the Knicks last season, three above his career average.
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"You can see that he has great timing by the way he rebounds, blocks shots and catches lobs," he said. "He's got great timing and reflexes. I haven't seen him use any moves of his own, though. But there's no way a guy with that kind of talent and timing should not have effective moves. So I want to teach him some moves so he can use all of that talent. If you add some moves to all the talent and energy he's got, it will open up a whole new door for him. That's what he should be looking to add to go to the next level."
Chandler is excited about working with Olajuwon. He was scheduled to work with the two-time NBA champion earlier this summer but had to pull out because of the Olympics.
Olajuwon played with Knicks coach Mike Woodson for three seasons in Houston, and it is Woodson who set up next week's training sessions.
In recent years, the former Rockets star has become renowned for working with today's elite players. In addition to Stoudemire, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Dwight Howard have all flown to Olajuwon's ranch to learn from him.