I have to admit, I am in a state of glee right now about my beloved New York Knicks. The Blue and Orange have nine players currently under contract for next season, and experts (Seth, Alan Hahn, Al Iannazzone) speculate that it will be 10 and 11 once the Knicks match Jeremy Lin's offer sheet from the Houston Rockets, and resign Jared Jeffries for the veteran's minimum. As happy as I am, I would be remiss if I didn't take the time to personally bid farewell to two homegrown Knicks: Landry Fields and Toney Douglas. (Assuming the Knicks don't match Landry's offer with Toronto).
DWTDD. As Seth mentioned in his personal good-bye, you were wonderful on that painfully inconsistent 2009-2010 Knicks squad. The threes, hard drives to the hoop, and incredible energy on defense was a pleasure to watch. In fact, if I were to make an all-time "Knicks crappy 2000s" dream team, you would be my point guard. Actually, now that I mention it, here is my team:
Knicks crappy 2000s Dream Team
PG Toney Douglas
PF David Lee
I digress. Toney showed a lot of heart, hustle, and actually looked like he gave a crap every game he played in during his rookie season. The following season, he became a cog on a Knicks team that started to win consistently for the first time in a decade, and even led the NBA in three-pointers made in the second half of the season. He was dependable, and a joy to watch.
This season, a nagging shoulder and a lack of confidence ultimately led to the end of Toney's time as a Knick. A fresh start is what he needs, and I think once he regains his confidence, Toney will be a solid player in the NBA for many years.
Ah, Landry. What a wonderful first half of a rookie season you had! Running the floor, hitting the open three, making Donnie Walsh look like a genius! I loved watching you have fun with your friends Danilo, Wilson, Raymond, and Amar'e.
I noticed a changed in you, once the Knicks acquired Carmelo Anthony. You didn't seem as comfortable out there. The Knicks style changed, they were no longer the run and space the floor type of team. They became isolation heavy, and this was something you didn't seem too comfortable in. I don't know if your psyche was damaged, but I was still happy with your season, and expected similar contributions in your sophomore campaign.
Sadly, it seemed your confidence lacked considerably this season as well. Your shot never was in rhythm (except for the Pacers game), and your once reliable free throw shooting became a liability. However, I did see you at your best when you penetrated the basket and went strong to the hole. For whatever reason, when you would be doing well early in games, Mike Woodson would then sit you out for considerable periods and we would never hear from you again. So like Toney, I think a fresh start will serve you well. Enjoy playing in purple, I think it fits you well, and maybe your Canadian buddy Andy Rautins will join you up there too. I would love to see the Andy and Landry show at least once more.