Upcoming 2012 Knicks Draft prospects

A big thank you to Ron Cromartie for putting this together.
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Once again it’s time for the New York Knicks to dive into the “Not Fixed” NBA Draft, but in order to go forward into the draft. Let’s take a look back and see what the Knicks have selected from past NBA drafts.

2011-Iman Shumpert-Georgia Tech 1st rd pick 17
Strengths: good penetrator, great defender
Weaknesses: shot selection, consistent jump shot

Iman is the man as far as I am concerned, he brings an edge to the Knicks team of grit and hustle, he throws his body on the line constantly, now if he can only stop injuring himself, he will have an even more productive year.

2010-Landry Fields-Stanford 2nd rd pick 39
Strengths: ok defender, good off the bench.
Weaknesses: lapses on defense.

Think he lost a lot of confidence when Carmelo came to the Knicks, but he amazingly seems to play better with Jeremy Lin. Continue reading

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Episode 85: No Nuclear Winter

The NBA is back!  Well it’s back in a month.  So in the meantime we talk about Andy Rautins moving in with his mom, 5 trade scenarios to bring Dwight Howard to the Knicks, and the top 5 things we are looking forward to for the Knicks 2011/12 season.  We also make a wager on who will have the best record out of the Timberwolves, Wizards, Cavs and Pistons.  Download Episode 85

Is Andy Rautins getting any better by not playing?

The Knicks are not winning the title this year. It is a fact, not a shocker and no fan will be disappointed when the Knicks do not win it. The Knicks are unlikely to go far in the playoffs and most fans will likely be happy if they can just push the first round to 7 games. The bar will be much higher next year when we have a full year of Carmelo and Amare plus possibly a few good pick-ups in the off-season. Knicks fans may not expect to win it next year but they do expect to at least go far in the playoffs.

So, how will the Knicks go from a good team to a great team. They will need to work on their chemistry. They will also need to develop the players around them. They will need a solid bench that can really help them compete the way Big Baby Davis makes the Celtics better or Jason Terry makes the Mavs better. They will also obviously need to get better on defense (but we will not focus on that now).

Where am I going with this? Well the Knicks are not going anywhere this year and unless things fall apart greatly they will at least make the playoffs. Why not use the rest of the season to find out what we have on the bench? Why not give Rautins, Derek Brown and Balkman some playing time? I am not saying these guys deserve to start or that we should give Carmelo a night off but why not run a larger rotation.  Why not give them 10 minutes a night a see if they can earn more minutes especially on nights when their starters suck like last night against the Pacers. Not every game is a must win where your starters need to play 40 minutes when you know you are not going to win it all anyway.

Why not have a longer term approach? Andy Rautins is not getting much better by sitting out for a year. No one would argue Landry Fields would have been better off riding the bench all year. Roger Mason is not playing better lately because he sat on his butt for the first 60 games of the year. Why not give some playing times to guys that could be good role players next year and in the future. Let’s see if some of these players deserve a roster spot next year. If Derek Brown is not good enough to get a look this year, why would he suddenly be good enough next year and why even waste a roster spot on him.

I understand these players practice and D’Antoni sees them there. The players do learn a lot in practice (at least on the offensive side) but it is hard to believe that just practicing without a chance to compete in real games will really develop these players into valuable pieces for the future.

Knicks Roster Mid-Season Grades

Jay’s Grades

Kelenna Azubuike – Inc
Wilson Chandler   - A-
Eddy Curry    – F
Toney Douglas – C+
Raymond Felton   - A+
Landry Fields – A+
Danilo Gallinari – B-
Roger Mason – F
Timofey Mozgov   - D+
Anthony Randolph – D-   
Andy Rautins – Inc
Amare Stoudemire – A
Ronny Turiaf – B-
Bill Walker   - C+
Shawne Williams – B

Marc’s Grades

Kelenna Azubuike – Inc
Wilson Chandler   - B+
Eddy Curry    – F
Toney Douglas – B-
Raymond Felton   - A
Landry Fields – A
Danilo Gallinari – B
Roger Mason – F
Timofey Mozgov   - D
Anthony Randolph – D+   
Andy Rautins – Inc
Amare Stoudemire – A
Ronny Turiaf – B
Bill Walker   - C+
Shawne Williams – B