New York Knicks 2016-2017 NBA Champions

The following page contains a lot of words.

Why blow up this team?

Knicks management’s approximate plan right now:

Keep Carmelo, sign Lamarcus Aldridge in 2015 offseason

Their 2015 lineup: Felton, Hardaway, Smith, Anthony ,LMA

This lineup plays no defense and Melo, LMA, Felton, and JR will all have declined

Can you see this lineup beating George/Stevenson/Hibbert or Durant/Westbrook/Ibaka or Parsons/Harden/ Howard or Paul/Griffin or….

This is Knicks Management’s BEST CASE scenario, but why would LMA ever leave Portland? He is playing with Lillard, and Batum and they are championship contenders.

The current plan is to AIM for mediocrity. Instead, I propose...

(All trades work according to ESPN trade machine)


TRADE #1: Tyson Chandler and Cole Aldrich for Kendrick Perkins, Steven Adams, and Andre Roberson

OKC does this for their title push, getting a massive upgrade at the center position. They don’t even lose depth with Aldrich in effect replacing Perkins.

Knicks get young prospect with great potential in Adams and another young player that I know nothing about but makes the salaries work.

TRADE #2: JR Smith for Landry Fields and Dwight Buycks

Toronto welcomes a player who, for all his flaws, is better than John Salmons. They are looking to compete this year, and Smith contributes to their team.

For the Knicks, this deal is partially to rid themselves of a player who has worn out his welcome. However, there are other benefits. Fields is younger, bigger, healthier, and more willing to move the ball. I truly believe that he can get his career back on track on a team other than the Raptors. Crucially, his contract also finishes one year earlier than Smith’s, so if he is not successful the Knicks can move on. Buycks is another young prospect with potential whose game I like.

TRADE#3: Carmelo Anthony and Beno Udrih for Eric Bledsoe, Emeka Okafor, Archie Goodwin, and 2014 1rst round pick

Earlier in the year, the Suns might have been hesitant to do this trade. Now, however, they have proven they can win and be a good team without Bledsoe. Carmelo has also solidified his position as easily a top 10 player. The Suns with Carmelo would be an elite team

For the Knicks this is a move for the future. Bledsoe is not a better player than Carmelo now, but he most likely WILL be in two to three years time, when the Knicks have financial flexibility and are looking to attract big name free agents. Bledsoe is a restricted free agent, so the Knicks can match any offer that he receives this offseason. Goodwin is another unproven prospect with potential. Finally, the 1rst round pick in this year’s draft will give the Knicks yet another young prospect. The expectation for all these raw prospects is not that they all achieve their potential, but that at least one or two turn out to be keepers.

REST OF 2013-2014 SEASON

  • Fire Woodson
  • Promote Herb Williams to interim head coach

Starting lineup: Bledsoe, Shumpert, Fields, Stoudemire, Adams

2nd Unit: Prigioni, Hardaway Jr, World Peace, Bargnani, Tyler,

Bench: Martin, Felton, Murry, Perkins, Okafor, Roberson, Goodwin, Buycks

*3 players will have to be cut likely Okafor (has not played this year), Roberson, and ideally Felton or Perkins

The Knicks should try and play with high pace and swarming defense as best as they can (Herb, no switching!). They should run the offense through Bledsoe and Stoudemire. Fields, Shumpert, and Hardaway will play free and loose. Adams and Tyler will have an opportunity to develop. Injuries to STAT and/or Bargnani would have Martin step in, and injuries to Fields and/or World Peace would have Shumpert slide over to the small forward and play two point guard lineups.

I am fully confident that this lineup would make the playoffs. A simple coach and roster change would be enough to invigorate any team, but this extends beyond that. To win in this terrible eastern conference, you do not need fantastic individual scorers or whatever JR Smith is. Simple fast breaks, ball movement, and competent defense easily makes the playoffs. The difference between Felton and Bledsoe would be the most profound. Bledsoe is a fantastic guard, both offensively and defensively. Having him would raise the play of other players who are currently struggling.

So, play the season out, make the playoffs = playoff experience

2014-2015 SEASON:

  • Draft "Prospect A" with Suns pick
    • Another player added to young talent pool.
  • Hire new Head Coach
    • Self explanatory
  • Free Agent fill ins
    • World Peace, Murry, and Martin all may or may not still be here. Another backup SF would be nice.
  • The goal is to compete not tank
    • Build on (hopefully) last years playoff run
    • Should see improvement from almost everybody (except Prigioni, sorry Pablo)
  • Make 3rd or 4th seed
  • Try for second or even 3rd round
  • Build winning culture

Lineup for this season would be:

Starting lineup: Bledsoe, Shumpert, Fields, Stoudemire, Adams

2nd Unit: Prigioni/Buycks/Murry, Hardaway Jr, (World Peace)/Free Agent/Prospect A, Bargnani, Tyler,

Bench: (Martin), Felton, Murry, Goodwin, Buycks

2015-2016 SEASON (AKA the Lamarcus Offseason):

  • Draft "Prospect B" with own pick
  • Perkins, Bargnani, and Stoudemire all come off the books
  • This is tricky. If Lamarcus Aldridge is willing to sign with the Knicks, then they absolutely should sign him. But do not settle for anything less. If you can sell him on this long term plan and convince him to sign for less, that is the best scenario. Otherwise get value free agent signings.
  • Resign all players for reasonable contracts. If someone gets offered to much, let them go.
  • Call up Leslie if he is ready
  • Do not call up Chris Smith

Lineup with LMA:

Starting: Bledsoe, Shumpert, Fields, Aldridge, Adams

2nd Unit: Buycks/Murry, Hardaway Jr, Prospect B/Free Agent ,Tyler/Prospect A, Free Agent

Bench: Murry, Goodwin, Leslie

Lineup without LMA:

Starting: Bledsoe, Shumpert, Fields, Tyler, Adams

2nd Unit: Buycks/Murry, Hardaway Jr, Prospect B/Free Agent, Prospect A/ Free Agent, Free Agent

Bench: Murry, Goodwin, Leslie

This season could be a bit tricky without LMA because of the losses of Bargnani and Stoudemire who, despite their flaws, are capable offensive players. Big improvements from Hardaway and/or Tyler would make this transition easier. This team would be taking the less is more mantra and shared responsibility to the extreme. However, it is all for a good cause…

If you are losing track of the year, this would be Tim Hardaway Jr’s third season. The NBA changes quickly. Many players who are in their prime now will then be washed up. Players who are raw now will approaching their prime then. The whole point is to get players before they become good. You get them for much better value this way.

With or without Lamarcus Aldridge, this could be a very good team.

If Hardaway breaks out, you can put him in the starting lineup and move Shumpert to the 3.


  • Watch the Raptors draft someone with our 1rst round pick, ouch
  • Resign players who need to be
  • Sign Kevin Durant
    • This is a very plausible signing. Durant is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. No ETO or play options, his contract just ends. Obviously, Durant’s willingness to sign in New York is dependant on the players the Knicks have as well as their recent success. Going back to Anthony, Carmelo is better than Bledsoe now. He won’t be in three years.
    • Out of Hardaway, Shumpert, Adams, Tyler, Prospect A, and Prospect B, there is going to be at least one rising star. If LMA had been convinced to sign for a reduced price (and it would not have to be much less than the max), then Durant would be enticed to do the same (again not that much less) to join with this group of players. If Aldridge was not signed, then the Knicks would have plenty of cap space to give Durant a max contract. If Aldridge was signed to the max and there was no way they could get Durant, then the Knicks could settle for Al Horford or DeMar DeRozen.

2016-2017 SEASON

Best Case Scenario,

Starting: Bledsoe, Shumpert, Durant, Aldridge, Adams

2nd Unit: Buycks/Murry, Hardaway Jr, Fields/Prospect B/Free Agent ,Tyler/Prospect A/ Free Agent

Bench: Goodwin, Leslie

Other less ideal scenarios would either not have LMA, or swap Kevin Durant with someone like Derozan, but in those cases we would most likely already have LMA.

And that’s it. If you got this far, I appreciate you reading this many words. This plan takes patience and the ability to avoid the temptation to settle for consolation prizes (at least early on). This end result would be, I believe, not only a true title contender, but also relatively young and excellent defensively. This plan also results in the Knicks getting an extra 1rst round draft pick and does not require them to give any future ones. Keep in mind this is only an outline of what the Knicks should do. Certainly there would by complications that would require some creativity, but this is, I think, a good base plan.

Please give any and all thoughts.

New York Knicks 2016-2017 NBA Champions

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