Tell me if you’ve experienced this. Pretty much as a rule, whenever a Knicks fan discusses Raymond Felton, the conversation usually goes a little like this, “I really like Felton, I do, but…” at which point a litany of concerns — his shooting, defense, conditioning — are called into question.
Everybody likes Raymond, they’re just not sure if they love him, or ever will.
There’s a lot to like in Felton. He’s absolutely displayed an incredible amount of toughness, currently playing through a laundry list of injuries that would probably have me holed up on the couch muttering for my mommy and crying myself to sleep, or as I call it, Tuesday. He’s got a certain fearlessness to him that is endearing, sometimes this manifests itself in a weird overconfidence in which Felton appears to assume he can not miss no matter the evidence to the contrary, but he genuinely seems to relish the spotlight of playing in New York, even if admittedly that’s a perception I may very well be making up in my head.
Additionally, he really is a very solid overall player, runs the pick and roll exceptionally, something that has become a foundation of the team’s offense. His shooting is erratic, to perhaps put it mildly, but he is also a capable shooter at times, certainly able enough to make it a legitimate threat. Generally speaking, a statistical look at Felton’s career would show an above-average starting point guard, with the occasional leaps to borderline All-Star we’ve seen sporadically during his separate stints in New York.
All of which is to say, that the question isn’t so much is Felton any good, he is. But it’s more is he good enough for what this team needs him to be? There have certainly been championship teams with point guards inferior to Felton, but can THIS team win a championship with Felton as its starting point guard?
And I certainly want the answer to that to be yes, because I really like Felton, I do, but…