FanPost

Steve + Ray = Problem Solved!

Hi all. This is my first post here (I've been reading the site without an account for about a month). I know you're all sick of trade suggestions, as am I, but at least this one doesn't involve 'Melo!

Anywho, down to business. It's safe to say we can agree that the Knicks' two most prominent needs are a backup PG and a big, and if it wasn't abundantly clear before (it was), the Lakers made sure that changed last night. I've been sitting on an idea that I hope is able to solve both of these problems at the same time; it's a bit outside the box, but no one ever complained about that, right? Right?

So what is this genius (or absolutely ridiculous) idea? Follow the jump! Or just look at the title.

A lot of people who don't want the Knicks to trade for Steve Nash think we are much better off with Raymond Felton, and I agree with that sentiment completely. However, what if we were to trade for Nash without giving up Felton and keep them both? Obviously, neither Nash nor Felton want to be a backup PG, and I don't blame them. But there's another option.

Let's start with the business of actually acquiring Steve Nash: http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=494wpmx

This trade might seem unbalanced in the Knicks' favor, and I can agree to some degree. On the other hand, besides the fact that every trade is at least somewhat unbalanced (look across the river at the Nets' proposed trade for 'Melo: in my opinion, the Nets are getting fleeced, at least by the Nuggets), this trade is actually good for the Suns in the long run. If you'd like to feel better about the Knicks' size, look no further than the Suns for comfort. This trade effectively turns Steve Nash into Anthony Randolph, who is 15 years younger and would have time to develop his skills with a rebuilding team, and Bill Walker, who makes shots and grabs rebounds sometimes. Also, it turns Robin Lopez, who mostly sits on the bench while taking time off once in a while to anger Timofey Mozgov, into Eddy Curry, who mostly sits in front of the fridge while taking time off once in a while to watch the Knicks play the Suns. (Has anyone else seen him at a single other game this year? I sure haven't.) Think about it: Lopez can scream at Mozzie every single day with the Knicks, and Eddy Curry can watch every single game since he seems to like Phoenix. Win-win.

In all seriousness, though, the trade makes the Suns bigger while also giving them an okay swingman off the bench as well as cap relief with Eddy Curry coming off the books. The Knicks can even throw in a second rounder that the Suns can hope turns into half the man Landry Fields is if need be. Afterwards, the Knicks can even sign Earl Barron as insurance to fill the open roster slot. This trade would effectively take the Knicks out of the running for Carmelo Anthony, but I for one think this trade is better for the team.

As such, the Knicks roster would look like this (assuming they sign Barron):

Guards: Nash, Felton, Fields, DWTDD, Mason, Rautins, Azubuike

Forwards: STAT, Gallo, Wil, Extra E

Centers: Turiaf, Lopez, Mozzie, Barron

Now that the trade's completed, the problem of Nash and Felton both being worthy of starting roles needs to be addressed. In his time here, Felton has proven to be a gritty defender, if nothing else; one who can at least keep up with those bigger than him. Also, he's averaging more than 18 ppg and has the ability to grab a fair amount of rebounds for a guard. Why is this important, you ask? Because Raymond Felton's going to be the Knicks' starting 2-guard.

I know what you're thinking, that Felton is 6-1 and way too small to be a shooting guard, and that's true. But in this scenario, Felton wouldn't be playing shooting guard for more than 15 minutes a game, and his hustle should make up for a lack of size and allow him to at least adequately defend most 2-guards for what amounts to a third of the game. The rest of the time, for about 20 minutes, he'll play point guard while Nash sits. This way, Nash plays between 28 and 30 mpg, giving him ample rest. Felton, meanwhile, plays starter's minutes while getting to learn a bit from Nash and play a solid amount of minutes at the point. By now, Felton is comfortable enough with Amar'e that he would still be able to effectively run the offense when Nash is on the bench even while getting less time there. This also helps the Knicks, because I can safely say that they would have the best point guard rotation in the league in that an All-Star caliber point guard would be on the floor for 48 minutes a game. As a side effect, it allows Toney Douglas to exclusively play shooting guard and Gallo to come off the bench (which I think may eliminate a bit of his inconsistency).

The rotation could look something like this: 

(If a smaller lineup is preferred, either Fields or Gallo can start at the 3, with Wil and STAT at the 4 and 5.)

PG: Nash, Felton

SG: Felton, Fields, Douglas

SF: Wil, Gallo, Fields, Extra E

PF: STAT, Gallo

C: Lopez, Turiaf

Extended garbage time only: Mozzie, Mason

Inactive: Azubuike, Rautins, Barron

Obviously, D'Antoni and Walsh would have to convince a few people to make some sacrifices, namely Nash, Felton, Fields, and Gallo. However, I'm fairly confident that in the interest of helping the team, all four guys will be willing to do what is asked. Fields and Gallo leave the starting lineup, but will get good minutes off the bench. Felton backs up at point and has to play a new position, but still gets a lot of minutes. He's a smart guy, so I think he'll adapt to playing shooting guard quickly. Nash takes a bit of a hit in minutes, but is reunited with D'Antoni and Stoudemire. All of them get the chance to compete for a championship. I personally feel this is a deep roster that can make a serious run in the playoffs.

As I said before the jump, this is kind of out there, but I don't see any reason why it can't work. If you can, please tell me; I'm more than willing to listen. Thanks for reading!

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