Tagged: Brad Miller

The Centers Of Attention

We previously examined what point guards [1, 2] could be available this summer. Let’s turn our attention to the pivot-men.

Marcus Camby would have been perfect but I didn’t envision the Knicks competing with a 2 year, $20 million offer for a 36 year old. But the fact that Camby banked that much cash speaks to how thin the market is for legitimate defensive centers. Alan Hahn put together a list of bigs for the Fix yesterday and it’s pretty exhaustive. The list included was populated with power forwards and centers and included Amar’e Stoudemire, Chris Bosh, Udonis Haslem, Amir Johnson, Ty Thomas, Chris Kaman, Brendan Haywood, Sam Dalembert, Emaka Okafor, Tyson Chandler, Brad Miller, Shaq, and Jermaine. I’d add the Warriors’ Andris Biedrins, the Rockets Luis Scola, and Tiaggo Splitter, the Argentinian center currently playing in Europe whose rights belong to the Spurs, to the list.

Marc Berman wrote that the Knicks fallback could be Brad Miller. Miller is slightly younger than Camby but is still a very slow 34. Unlike Camby, he does not block shots and he does not accumulate rebounds. It’s true he’s a gifted passer and shooter but so is David Lee. Those weren’t the Knicks’ problems last year. The Knicks need defense in the front court and if the Knicks do come away with only Miller, Berman is going to kill Miller and Donnie Walsh once he realizes that signing Miller accomplished nothing to address that need.

I won’t address every player on the list above but here is my take on a few of them:

  • I’d be happy with either Amare or Bosh. Amare isn’t much of a defender either but he brings an intensity and a nasty demeanor that the Knicks have been lacking.
  • Amir Johnson would be a good get for the bench. He oozes potential and was once compared to a young Kevin Garnett. We’ll see. He can’t be the only guy the Knicks get for their front court.
  • I could see the Knicks addressing their two main needs in one fell swoop by trading for Kaman and Baron Davis. I wouldn’t make the trade unless Eddy Curry was a part of it so that the Knicks retain some flexibility.
  • Haywood is a tough, shot blocking, rebounding defensive big. I’d like to see him here.
  • If it is unlikely that the Knicks would give Camby $10 million I can’t see them being willing to give it to Dalembert unless the Sixers really make it worth the Knicks’ while somehow.
  • I like the idea of trading for Tyson Chandler who will be in the final year of his contract so concerns about his injury history are somewhat mitigated. I’d try to expand the package and get Gerald Wallace. A front court of Chandler, Wallace and Gallo would be pretty nasty.
  • Splitter belongs to the Spurs but he isn’t signed to a contract. According to DraftExpress, Splitter has a reputation as a ferocious defender and rebounder who is nice around the basket on offense. He has an opt-out this summer with his European team and if the Spurs can’t put together a financially impressive deal they might lose him for many years if he chooses to sign an extension overseas. The Spurs are over the cap and can only offer Splitter their mid-level exception. That may very well be enough to get him to the States but if it isn’t the Spurs could explore moving him to a team that is under the cap rather than getting nothing for him for several years or maybe ever. That begs the question though, not having played in an NBA game, how does one gauge whether he is worth more than the mid-level?
  • Don’t forget about Eddy Curry…[vomit].

While it seems like the market is slowly drying up and certainly its discouraging that the Knicks won’t be able to woo the likes of Manu Ginobili or Marcus Camby, there remain options to improve the team.

Knicks Reject Miller and Thomas for Steph? Bad Mojo Rising?

UPDATE (2/19, 9:32 AM): According to Frank Isola, the Knicks rejected the Marbury deal because they are trying to keep their luxury tax payments to a minimum next year. That moderates my bewilderment, slightly.

This I just don’t understand. Marc Stein is reporting that the Kings offered Brad Miller and Kenny Thomas for Steph and the Knicks rejected them. I understand rejecting that proposal if you can get more than that for Steph, like say, Shaq or Iverson, but barring that, why wouldn’t you take on Miller and Thomas, both of whom expire at the end of next year.

For one, Miller can contribute, albiet marginally at his age. He can pass, shoot, and has height.

In addition, both Miller and Thomas can be flipped for assets over the summer or next February, or just come off the books.

I find it wasteful to not use Steph in a trade if there is one to be made that would improve the squad, even if marginally.

If the Knicks are being vindictive, I think it’s a mistake. Sure Steph deserves the treatment he’s been getting, but management shouldn’t put that over the health of the franchise. If the Knicks trade, him and he’s released and signs with the Celtics, well, sanity dictates that you just have to deal with it.

Time will tell whether Stein’s information is reliable, but if it is, and the Knicks don’t get anything else for Steph, then I think management dropped the ball here.

One caveat. I don’t think the Knicks are in cost-cutting mode, but if they are, they can justify letting Steph’s contract expire rather than replacing it with two other contracts that are just as large in the aggregate, but extend over a longer time.

Eerily Quiet

I’ve been scouring the rumor mills daily, as I’m sure most of you are as well, and scuttlebutt surrounding the Knicks is somwhere between scant and non-exsistent. Now, we know from the Crawford/Z-bo trades that DW is a stealth bomber (no one knew either of those guys were about to get dealt until about 10 minutes before it happened, but the difference is that at that time I don’t believe that the vast majority of the national basketball media were canvassing all their sources like they are right now), but I haven’t seen reporters publish many substantial rumors connecting the Knicks to anyone.

It’s not for lack of effort as, our favorites, the always reliable Tommy Dee and Alan Hahn, are certainly working their sources trying to get the goods. It just seems that either (a) the Knicks aren’t really into much of anything heading into the deadline or (b) Donnie Walsh has plugged every single leak that sprang forth from the shiny but crappily built luxury liner that was the Isiah Thomas era.

As always, we’ll keep our eyes out for anything interesting (and plausible) that emanates from the rumor mill (just this morning Chris Alvino picked up on an article in the Sacramento Bee discussing the Kings and Bulls potentially hooking up on a Malik Rose/Brad Miller trade — not sure how much sense that makes unless we plan to flip Miller) and I’ll be trying to ask Bill Ingram about the Knicks during his Hoopsworld chat beginning at noon today (It starts in about 20 minutes. Definitely go check it out — he often has intersting information.). Right now, though, it’s hard to say whether the Knicks plan to make a deal or not. I think it makes sense for Donnie Walsh to make use of some of his assets but, as of this moment, there simply isn’t any great indiciation that he’s going to.