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Beck: The Knicks Tried Hard to Deal Amar'e Stoudemire

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Howard Beck says the Knicks have made every attempt to trade Amar'e Stoudemire.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Howard Beck wrote an article about the Knicks' changing relationship with Amar'e Stoudemire. The meat of the piece revolves around Amar'e's return to these Knicks (coming soon, but not that soon), an occasion Beck does not view with optimism:

It is hard to see where an offense-minded, past-his-prime power forward fits into this gloriously reimagined Knicks universe, but these are the issues that Coach Mike Woodson must confront as Stoudemire nears his return from knee surgery.

Not hard for me to see (to be fair, Beck goes on to name the reasons for both optimism and pessimism), but I get it. There are real, legitimate worries. I just share very few of them. I see a second unit offense badly in need of (a healthy) Stoudemire's interior presence, and I even see iterations of an Amar'e-inclusive first unit that still haven't gotten a fair shake. I also see a defense that can't really get worse and, if anything, could benefit from a big dude willing to protect the weak side. And above all, I see a coach who designed something beautiful and wouldn't interfere without meticulous planning. This is mere prediction, though. All we can do is hope for the best.

The real hook of the article, though, is reporting, not prediction:

This past summer, the Knicks offered Stoudemire to nearly every team in the league — "available for free," as one rival executive put it. But they found no takers because of his diminished production, his health and his contract, which has three years and $65 million remaining (counting this season) and which is uninsured against a career-ending knee injury.

Beck-- who knows what he's talking about here-- doesn't really offer specifics about New York's offseason designs, but, going back to the Mike D'Antoni era, details a deal for Andrea Bargnani shot down by James Dolan in its nascent stages (thank you, James Dolan??) and an offer including both Amar'e and Tyson Chandler for Dwight Howard that never panned out. None of that is especially novel or surprising, given the turmoil of D'Antoni's final months.

I've never really understood the idiom "water under the bridge", but I think it applies here. Shit got weird. Shit, I suppose, could get weird again once Amar'e returns, but I don't detect the same impending doom others do. If the man plays even vaguely like himself, I foresee more boons than drawbacks to his return. We'll just have to wait and see.