All right everyone, I haven't made my own personal statement on what I'd like to see happen this summer, and since the topic is decidedly en vogue, here goes.
HWSNBN is most likely not coming. Let's just admit that for a second. Even if only Chicago and Cleveland can be considered legitimate threats, there is a whole field of teams that have smaller but very real chances, such as Dallas, Miami, and the Clippers. All that being said, the only thing that I REALLY want to see happen is intelligent decisions with any other potential signings or trades.
Moving on as quickly as possible, the first thing that needs to be addressed is the Draft, which based on the high levels of enthusiasm on this site regarding draft prospects, is an intriguing topic. I know that we can find a couple of legitimately intriguing prospects at 38 and 39, but what I really hope is that DW gets us a pick in the 15-25 range. It wouldn't commit too much salary to our books and there are definitely going to be high-value players there. We've discussed the possibility of buying ORL and ATL's picks, and maybe that can happen, but I think there are at least a few ways of getting there without giving up Walker, Gallo, Chandler, or DWTDD. We've all discussed ad infinitum the prospects we'd like to see, and I'd just like to give a special shout-out to Eric Bledsoe, Armon Johnson, Jarvis Varnado, and Ekpe Udoh. Here's hoping some of you guys end up in the orange and blue.
So imagining a young core of 5-6 players (plus Curry's soon to be expiring), you have to like the situation the Knicks could find themselves in heading into free agency. Of course, July 1 is when things become more interesting. Looking out at the non-superstars of the Free Agent class, I've already written a post about players I'd like to see the Knicks go after. Having thought about it some more, I've honed it down to a select few: Kyle Lowry, Luis Scola, Channing Frye, and Craig Smith. With the possible exception of Frye, each of these guys looks to be undervalued in this summer's class, especially Smith, who I would imagine can be had for extremely cheap. Lowry and Scola are both players that I think D'Antoni (or any coach) would love to have alongside one (or two) established superstars.
Notice that there aren't any true centers in there; I'm not sure that the answer is out there this summer at the 5 position (Bosh isn't a true center), and if there's one thing I've learned since Patrick Ewing's last sweat dried on the Garden floor, it's you DON'T GO CHASING CENTERS. Just stick to the guards and the forwards you're used to. At least for now. I mean, the only quasi-legitimate available center is Brendan Haywood, and that scares me, since I think he'll wind up getting overpaid. I wouldn't mind seeing DW pull off a great trade for a center, but that involves obtaining a seven-foot, athletic defender on a reasonable contract (possibly Biedrins, although his injury bug scares me) and this sort of thing rarely happens, so I'm not holding on to any major hopes here. With that in mind, it'd be nice to draft big with at least two picks this year.
When it comes to the big free agents, obviously we pursue HWSNBN and Wade. I'll hear arguments for Bosh too, but really only if the signings around him make sense too. Dirk may be the sleeper FA here, especially if you can pair him with an elite slasher/scorer like the first two guys mentioned. I would want Dirk in NY so much more than Bosh, I don't understand why people don't talk this guy up more. As option 1A on his team, he has been as successful as you can be without a championship; as option 1B, I think he'd be better than Gasol in that role, and we all know how that ended. The last guy I would mention is Amare, but I'm not sure I want to see him here with his knees and mercurial effort.
Other than those options, there are also a few players who I think are fool's gold. Drum roll:
All have enough ability to make you think it'd be a good idea, but wait ten seconds, and sure enough, there are at least 2-3 reasons in your head for each of them that you wouldn't want them as your no. 2 option, let alone no. 1. If we wind up signing one of the first two or trading for Okafor I will be severely upset and through my bowl of oatmeal against the wall.
Finally, I'd just like to mention D Lee. The problem there is that other teams won't undervalue him like they did last summer, and so it seems less and less reasonable to pay him what it would take to retain his services. Any figure under 9M and I'd definitely listen, but it seems unlikely.
That's it. Let me hear your thoughts on any of the above topics / ideas.