Phil Jackson said if the team re-signs Carmelo Anthony, they can compete in the East in the 2014-15 season (Begley, June 5).
Jackson said for the Knicks — who don’t have a draft pick or cap room — it’s more about having a “refreshed attitude.”
“I think they call it a beginner mind,” the Knicks president said. “Needs a beginner mind to start over again. In the process to bond together, that’s what teams do that are successful and come back with ‘OK we can do this. We can collectively get ourselves back on the same page, same breath and same idea of selfless behavior, whatever our roles and get out there and play the game that’s competitive.’ There should be ample opportunity for this team to come back into competition next year.”
Keith Schlosser, Lead WriterJackson hasn’t made any sudden personnel moves since becoming Knicks’ President, but perhaps that’s for the best. His mentality is on point. For this team, achieving success next season should come down to putting mind over matter.
Entering training camp last fall, one could argue that the Knicks actually did look better on paper than they did the season prior. The likes of Andrea Bargnani, Metta World Peace, Beno Udrih, and Tim Hardaway Jr. all appeared to be talent upgrades over some of the team’s departing players.
Having won 54 games and earned the team’s first Atlantic Division title in nearly two decades, the Knicks were only poised to continue building on such accomplishments.
Of course, looking good on paper isn’t everything, especially when a team removes respected veterans from a locker room. Nevertheless, the Knicks are still a talented bunch.
A new voice (in the form of a new coach under the guidance of Jackson) could undoubtedly be the difference maker here.
The talent is there. A new season will provide the Knicks with a fresh slate to put past struggles behind them. Without much cap space until 2015, the current squad needs to start believing in themselves again. It would certainly appear Jackson does.
Sam SpiegelmanWell, Jackson is right.
It’s easy to compete in the Eastern Conference. It has been since LeBron James was drafted by the Cavaliers.
The best teams include the Derrick Rose-led Bulls, James’ Heat team, Boston’s Big Three and the Detroit Pistons featuring ‘Sheed, Chauncey Billups and Tayshaun Prince.
It today’s East, there are the Heat, which could (potentially) lose Bosh and/or James this summer. There’s Indiana, which could take a step back if they lose Lance Stephenson. There’s Chicago and the question if Rose returns back healthy and if they can add some offense in free agency.
So if ‘Melo returns to the Knicks, the team can easily compete. Jackson needs to upgrade at point guard, and I think that’s really a simple fix to the offense. It didn’t flow well through Raymond Felton last year, but when he was at his best in 2012-13, they were the East’s No. 2 seed. That’s a major difference.