I, wannabe swami and grand knicks poobah, predict this headline coming in 2013. postingandtoasting members get this preview free of charge!
seriously though, i think knicks fans are sleeping on a difference maker. nevermind your ray allens or randy foyes. landry fields has better upside than either. do we remember this kid shot 39.3% from the 3 point line in his rookie season? I don't remember, but that's because that was before i was a knicks fan! however, i did look it up and saw he made 86 out of 219. he was a pretty good shooter during his stanford days as well. this past season was a serious anomaly.
ray allen's best days are behind him. he's never going to be the same player again. landry fields, on the other hand, is a terrific finisher on alley oops, plenty of which will be provided by ivy league mate jeremy lin. if fields can refind his shooting stroke, he provides everything you want from a shooting guard. defense? yes. perimeter shooting? yes. court smarts? yes. ability to slash to basket? yes. intangibles? yes.
if fields can just manage to shoot 33% from the 3 point line, that's enough where his man needs to stick with him and provides the necessary spacing for the rest of the team. add in his nice backdoor cuts and ability to finish on those cuts and you have a bonafide offensive threat. i recall a thread where someone mentioned he changed his shooting stroke this past season and that was the reason for his shooting woes. i find it easy to believe that a guy who has had a good perimeter shot for most of his life will manage to find it again.
if jeremy lin can continue to improve as well, we're looking at one of the strongest backcourts in the league. i've been seeing some real negativity on the toronto and brooklyn sites regarding lin. makes no sense to me considering this is the first season in which lin has gotten any real playing time. if you were to compare lin's first real year to russell westbrook's first year, lin has 44.6 FG% compared to westbrook's 39.8. lin has 32% 3 point shooting compared to westbrook's 27.1%. lin has 6.2 assists compared to 5.3 for westbrook. 1.6 steals compared to 1.3.
in conclusion, the knicks don't need to do squat in free agency to get better ... any free agent coups will just be gravy. you can count on landry and lin to put in the work necessary to improve. add in the fact that we'll have a slimmer, motivated melo and things are looking awesome.