Tommy DeeLet me first start by saying that I love Amar’e Stoudemire as a player, what he represents as an athlete and how he’s handled himself since declaring the Knicks were back in the Summer of 2010.
But let’s face facts, this Knicks team was built around Carmelo Anthony and the team is better with Anthony logging the majority of minutes at the 4 position. Amar’e, Melo and Tyson Chandler, the team’s 3 highest paid players, have simply not showed the ability to properly space the floor on offense, and simply don’t close games well enough on the defensive end.
If you look at the advanced stats (I know, I know) the trio has its most success when Jason Kidd is at the 1, the problem with that is Kidd doesn’t close games at that 1. Felton does.
Stoudemire proved this year while he was cooking that he can still score and displayed some impressive and efficient performances but his defensive lapses and inability to rebound on the defensive end would find him on the bench at the end of games based off of Woodson’s commitment to defense. This was highlighted last Sunday against the heat as Woodson chose to sit Stoudemire for the last 7 minutes despite the team’s tremendous struggle offensively.
To me, if you can get any offensive production from Kenyon Martin and Marcus Camby, the defense that the duo brings allows for them to be a better unit down the stretch against the game’s top teams. I think once Martin gets himself back into NBA game shape, which he may have already, he can give the Knicks a better combination across the board than Amar’e. He can score without needing any plays run for him, he can defend the other team’s best 3/4 taking that responsibility away from Melo, and, most importantly, you can seamlessly have him on the floor at the end of games with Anthony and Tyson Chandler.
This is not to knock Stoudemire, who just happens to play the same position as Anthony, this is just to make the point that based on how the team is structured with Martin, that the Knicks rotational flow is better without Amar’e, in my opinion.