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April 12, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Ian Begley

ESPN New York
  (12:14 PM)

Greetings. Jared Zwerling, in for Ian Begley, will jumping on this chat in a sec. Sorry for the delay.

Jared Zwerling
  (12:15 PM)

Hey guys, Jared here ... I'll get to your questions now.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Do you think that the New York Knicks will be the 2012-2013 NBA Champions for the first time in 40 Years?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:18 PM)

The biggest key right now is the health of their bigs. Offensively, the Knicks have been rolling, but the small ball needs a balance of size to help out in pick-and-roll coverages, to provide rim protection and to set great screens to make it easier on the scorers. The Knicks looked a bit winded down the stretch last night. They took 104 shots, showing that they tried to beat their opponent too much on offense. But the bigs will be needed, especially Chandler and Martin. The Heat is the biggest test. If the Knicks' 3-point shooting is really on, I think they can win the series. That's what it comes down to in my opinion. The 3-point shot is the most volatile one in the NBA, but it can upset the best teams.

jim va.beach [via mobile]

Hey ian. Do you think the bulls have the official blueprint on how to beat the knicks now?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:21 PM)

I think it's still hard to say. The Knicks were without all six of their big men last night, and they nearly won on Melo's potential game-winner. It goes to show you how well the Knicks are stepping up when it matters most in the season. I think personally they looked a bit worn down later in the game. As I said, their roster is not at full strength right now. The Bulls, however, are a great defensive team, no question there. The guys have bought into coach Thibs hard-nosed defensive system, just like the Knicks have under Woodson. I liked how the Knicks played more physical against the Bulls than previous games.

Jason (New York City)

Rumor was yesterday that the Knicks had cut Kurt Thomas and signed James Singleton. Has that move become official? If so, when can we expect him to debut?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:21 PM)

The Knicks are signing Solomon Jones today.

steve (Brick NJ)

I just saw on Twitter that Yahoo sports is reporting Knicks signed Solomon Jones.Who is that

Jared Zwerling
  (12:25 PM)

Confirmed. A 6-10 guy, so obviously size the Knicks needed. I don't know much about his game, but considering the Knicks have done a great job this season bringing in overlooked talent, I trust their judgement. At the end of the day, he just needs to be a big body, grab some boards, get a block or two. Nothing crazy. He will be playoff eligible.

CE (NY, NY)

Tell us something going on behind that scenes that we don't already know---Is Sheed really coming back, are we secretly happy Amare is out? etc etc

Jared Zwerling
  (12:27 PM)

It's too speculative to be honest. Woodson has given no timetable. I do expect a playoff return at some point, but in the first or second round? That's a tough one.

Alex (Chicago, IL)

Thoughts on Solomon Jones. Yahoo is reporting we have signed him. Do you know when he will play?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:28 PM)

He'll be signing today, so he could be with the team tonight.

Syrus (NY)

Ian, are you concerned that melo is playing all these minutes and banging on the post as a big? should we just forget about the 2 and rest?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:33 PM)

The minutes need to be reduced, that's an obvious. I give him a lot of credit for playing big -- in big minutes -- but the Knicks need more frontcourt depth. It's as simple as that. The grind on Melo will only begin to intensify looking ahead, and Chandler, Martin, etc. around him will alleviate some of that pressure off of him.

Syrus (Elmhurst, NY)

Ian, do you think we should call it a Regular season and rest?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:34 PM)

No, go for the highest seed possible. It's important to play at your best even up until the last game of the season. Keep that momentum going.

JOEL JOHN (Atlanta, Georgia)

When will James singleton join the team, and is felton's injury any thing serious?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:37 PM)

Solomon Jones is the guy. Yahoo! Sports reported it first. As for Felton, he was limping last night after the game. His status for tonight is not determined yet. Chandler, Martin and Camby are all out tonight. No bigs once again.

Mike (Port Jeff Station )

Do you have an update on Kenyon Martin's ankle? It looked bad, will he be ready for the first round?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:37 PM)

No update on the playoffs yet, but he's out tonight, along with Chandler and Camby. However, Woodson did say yesterday in Chicago yesterday that Martin was feeling better.

Jerry (Ramsey NJ)

Ian, What can you tell us about Solomon Jones the6'10 f/c that was just signed?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:38 PM)

He's a big body who will be called upon to do some dirty work. Don't expect anything groundbreaking here. Just some insurance down low.

frank (lebanon)

so knicks win it all?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:41 PM)

They will win or lose on Melo and Smith's scoring efficiency, their 3-point shooting and depending on the health of Chandler and Martin. To beat the Heat, they'll need to really be on from 3-point range. It's the great equalizer in the game today.

Andrew (Queens, NY)

Is there a minutes restriction on shumpert and does Woodson not trust James white just to give him a couple minutes?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:43 PM)

Shump's minutes are being regulated -- sometimes his ACL-repaired leg has felt a bit heavy later in games -- but Woodson has also liked to use Kidd down the stretch.

James (Bronx, NY)

Why does James Singleton make sense for the Knicks? Clearly, it seems as if the Knicks were going to add a big (if anybody) because of their recent injuries

Jared Zwerling
  (12:43 PM)

Nothing is official.

Jason (New York City, NY)

Rumor was yesterday that the Knicks had cut Kurt Thomas and signed James Singleton. Has that move become official? If so, when can we expect him to debut?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:43 PM)

Yes, Kurt Thomas was released.

Mike (Melville NY)

Hey whats going on Ian. Huge Knicks fan, can't wait for the playoffs to see how far this team can go. If healthy, who do you want to see in the game the last 5 minutes of the fourth quarter? We all know defense wins in the playoffs, so do you want Martin, Chandler and Shumpert on the floor? I think it will be tough going with Kidd, Felton and Smith down the stretch, especially when you need to guard guys like Pierce, Paul George, D wade, etc. I think how Woodson coaches the end of games will be the biggest key to success in the playoffs. What are your thoughts?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:46 PM)

Felton, Kidd, Smith, Melo and Chandler is a solid finishing five. Felton's been so aggressive in fourth quarters, making big plays; Kidd has Finals experience and heads-up playmaking; Smith and Melo put your two best scorers on the court; and Chandler is there for a little bit of everything. Shumpert could be in there for defense (replacing Kidd) depending on how he's feeling; Prigioni as well for defense and leadership. That's a credit to the Knicks' versatile roster.

Mike (New York)

Do you have updates on Dwayne Wade's health? Do you think the Heat still beat the knicks if Wade isnt 100%?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:50 PM)

D-Wade is returning tonight. If he isn't 100 percent and maybe not playing, the Knicks have an advantage with Smith. He's been playing like one of the best shooting guards in the league lately. Who on the Heat would check him? And then the Knicks have Melo, their 3-point shooting, etc. The Knicks could hold serve. If Smith is playing like this in the playoffs, that's huge.

Benny (NY)

I'm glad they got another big but it wouldn't hurt to cut James White and give Delonte West a shot. Melo and Woody would set him straight.

Jared Zwerling
  (12:50 PM)

Not happening.

Anthony (NY)

Is Miami a better matchup for us in the playoffs than Chicago?

Jared Zwerling
  (12:55 PM)

Chicago. I wouldn't take my chances against the Heat with LeBron on the court. I'm sure that's how Knicks fan felt back in the day when MJ was in the house.

Mike (New York)

i just noticed this is Jared Zwerling and not Ian Begly. i have been living a painful lie for the last 30 minutes! Just kidding.. We love both of you guys. keep up the great work!

Jared Zwerling
  (12:56 PM)

LOL I'm filling in, thanks.

Anthony (NY)

once amare IS back, how can woodson sit him in the last 5 minutes with a playoff game on the line? you know he wont be happy about that

Jared Zwerling
  (12:57 PM)

He won't be happy about that? Come on, man. He'll be making a late return in the playoffs. At this point, he'll be happy with whatever role. You can't disrupt whatever the Knicks have going on.

Michael (South beach)

Who wins it ??

Jared Zwerling
  (1:00 PM)

The Heat are the favorite, no question.

Smith (Queens)

Any chance the Knicks keep Thomas around as an assistant coach or something? He seems too valuable to not have on the bench and n practice. Not to mention his last game is the reason the Knicks are back on track.

Jared Zwerling
  (1:02 PM)

I was thinking that he could stick around as a voice from the sidelines during practice. The Knicks' organization has high regard for him.

Jared Zwerling
  (1:03 PM)

Guys, thanks for your limited time. My colleague, Ian Begley, got tied up with something last minute today. If I didn't answer your question, please tweet me @JaredZwerling and I'll be sure to answer it.