Predicting the outcome for a season of the Knicks isn’t easy. One day, they’ll look like a promising playoff team and then the next they’ll look like bottom feeders in the East. Which team will we get this year?
I’ve been back and forth on this for this entire off-season. Did the Knicks do enough to propel themselves into the conversation for a late playoff seed? Maybe, it’s hard to tell.
Arron Afflalo, Kyle O’Quinn, and Robin Lopez were the three big additions to the team through free agency. Kristaps Porzingis and Jerian Grant were the two rookies the Knicks ended up with following the end of the draft. Solid additions. Even if these added players are enough to get Carmelo some help, history is not on their side.
Only three teams in the last 20 years (the furthest I went with my research) have made the playoffs the following year after having less than 20 wins the year before. (The 2003-2004 Nuggets, 2008-2009 Heat and 2014-2015 Milwaukee Bucks). Coincidentally, the player that led the 2003-2004 Nuggets from obscurity? Carmelo Anthony…just a thought.
Whether we like it or not, though, the hopes and dreams of Knicks fans do not ride on the shoulders of Carmelo Anthony. Melo will do the best he can to carry the load for the team, but if there if he can’t get any help, then there is no hope for the playoffs. Simple as that.
Remember that Carmelo made the playoffs in each of his first 10 years in the NBA, something that can’t be said by LeBron James or Chris Paul. Anthony knows how to make the playoffs, but the players will need to do more than enough around him to make that a realistic goal.
The idea that the Knicks look terrible this season is flawed. They look much better than last year and I personally love the addition of Arron Afflalo, a player who has proven that he can put up 16 points a game for a team. Robin Lopez can be the defensive stopper in the paint for the Knicks while Seraphin and O’Quinn (two VERY underrated offensive big men) can take the offensive roles.
One main concern is who starts at point. I’ve liked Jose Calderon since his days in Toronto (and especially in Dallas) and believe he can be a good asset, but it seems like he isn’t the man that Phil Jackson wants running the team. Jerian Grant or Langston Galloway will most likely get the nod which, in my opinion, is a mistake.
The East continues to get tougher, but with some of the teams who made the playoffs last year in for a down year, it might not be so foreign to say that the Knicks will make the playoffs this upcoming year.
The Knicks have a steep hill to climb and while the history might not be on their side, Carmelo Anthony is; a player who has already proven it wrong.