Let me go on record as saying this year’s Knick team is really going to get up the floor more the the Knicks of the past two years.
The reason why I believe this is because in David Lee’s wake, we will get big performances from three guys who will each share a role in the rebounding opportunities up front.
Danilo Gallinari proved to me that he could obsolete David Lee with only improving his rebounding skills. There were times this past season where Gallinari was as active on the boards as David Lee, and I knew then that Gallo would make Lee unnecessary, he has the same competitive fire Lee has plus more skill.
Amar’e is often critizied for not rebounding and defending enough, but I say he’ll be our biggest intimidator in the paint, because he can block shots and he will dunk on you. He’s our best big man since Patrick Ewing, in my opinion.
No one will be expecting to see Anthony Randolph fly in from under the radar and catch rebound dunks like Marcus Camby in that run to the 1999 finals during the lockout year, but I will expect him to be as good as Marcus was in his first season in New York. Man, was he great that playoffs dunking on Mutumbo and just catapulting us into the Finals.
Between those three guys, I think we’ll get opportunities to run. I love the article I read on Randolph, where the coach made him get the rebound first before he could bring the ball up. He had 19 rebounds that game. Mike D’Antoni will definitely be using that knowledge to push Randolph harder than any player since he moved East of the Suns, West of the Moon.
I’ve heard from Hollinger recently that Felton isn’t that great of a pick and roll guard, but for some reason I don’t think it is going to matter that much when we are constantly in transition.
This team will be more like the Mike D’Antoni Suns, and I’m not just saying that because Amar’e is here. We have the young and long athletic types, that part is key to SSoL.
The back court is unclear. Felton will be there for a majority of the minutes at the point, yes, but who else at the other starting guard position? Bill Walker? Azibuike? Chandler? Landry Fields? Toney Douglas? Could be any of those guys. Training camp will determine which.
“We have to be able to play small, and we have to be able to play big,” Donnie Walsh said recently during an interview. How would we look in either mode?
Small Ball for speed
PG Ray Felton
SG Toney Douglas
Big Lineup for power
PG Ray Felton