The Melo-Drama is over. Thank god for that because we were becoming increasingly tired of hearing all the 'anonymous sources' and 'insiders' doling out rumor after rumor. He's finally landed in his preferred destination of New York and once again the city must be abuzz with Knick fever. Spike Lee has already ordered another oversized jersey -although with what number we're not sure yet, rumor was #13 was to be chosen but we are hearing #7 today. We've heard from everyone and their grandmother the past 12 hours, all with an opinion and many divided as to whether the Knicks gave away too much in obtaining Anthony.
How will the Knicks be going forward? The general feeling is that they gave up too much and received so little in return, as if the only player coming back was Carmelo.If you ask me the New York Knicks are a better team today than they were yesterday. Last I checked they received an upgrade at the point guard position, yes Chauncey is older than Raymond Felton but is a lot more reliable and his experience will serve them well come playoff time. Knick fans shouldn't fret too much, they will make a run at one of Deron Williams or Chris Paul in 2012. They'll have plenty of room in the salary cap – only Stoudemire, Anthony and Renaldo Balkman will be contracted through to 2011-12.
There is so much concern at the players lost, they're crying at the loss of Chandler -who I rate mind you- and his defense. For the casual observer who perhaps isnt familiar with the system Mike D'Antoni plays let me quickly bring you up to speed, I'll say it in a hushed tone so I don't let his secret out, "THE KNICKS DON'T PLAY D!!." They are 29th in the League in points allowed, even Cleveland's defense is better. Marginally I might add but you get my drift. If you're going to lose Chandler who was there to defend a little and score a bit, Carmelo is an upgrade to say the least.
The aquisition I really like for the Knicks is Corey Brewer from the Timberwolves. He adds a bit of athleticism and can give you some points off the bench. At 6'9 he has the length to bother some opponents on defense. Landry Fields will probably be given the promotion into the starting lineup, which brings me to my next point. The Knicks rotation. D'Antoni uses 8 players, even in Phoenix he did when he had a more stacked roster than here, surely the Knicks can fill out those few positions with the players they have? Of course they can.
The one glaring weakness facing the Knicks is the center position. Ronny Turiaf at 6'10 will complete the Knick small ball lineup but when facing centers the likes of Dwight Howard, Kendrick Perkins and Joakim Noah in the playoffs some height would be useful. It would go a long way in allowing Stoudemire to continue in his more natural power forward position. On the upside, Timofey Mozgov wasn't exactly going to be a 'Howard Stopper' either.
New York is currently placed 6th in the Eastern Conference. They probably won't place much higher even with Melo, so why all the hoopla surrounding his arrival? Because now the Knicks have two superstars to build around. As many observers have pointed out, it's much easier to build around superstars than dispensible role players. The Knicks have made a bold move that has made them relevant again. You can decry the forming of these 'superfriends' or 'superteams' but that seems to be the way the modern NBA is moving. Look at Miami, Los Angeles and Boston. It's not one star and his supporting cast, rather a team of players committed to a cause. The whole is greater than the sum of it's parts.
With this trade the Knicks have positioned themselves nicely for a return to the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference, only time will tell if Mike D'Antoni's system is able to win a Championship but the hope has returned to New York. After the deacde they have endured they are entitled to a bit of hope.