2014-15 New York Knicks
The New York Knicks entered the 2013-14 season as a highly regarded and well-respected team that was coming off three consecutive playoff appearances under head coach Mike Woodson and finally seemed to be fixed after years of mismanagement by James Dolan and his ownership group. So of course, with Dolan being Dolan, he made sweeping front office changes right before the 2013-14 campaign started with disastrous results. The Knicks took their cue from ownership and quit playing the hard defense that had made them so successful with Woodson, who ended up fired after a 37-45 season that blew up a lot of gambling bankrolls along the way.
One of the great ironies in all of sports is the fact that the most passionate basketball city in the NBA has gone without a championship since 1973. But all is not lost as the most successful head coach in the history of modern professional sports, Phil “Zen Master” Jackson, has taken over basketball operations for the Knicks.
While an immediate fix is not likely for the Knicks due to the need to clear up some bad contracts from their cap space, one has to figure that better days are eventually ahead. As long as Dolan, perhaps the worst owner in sports, lives up to his promise to not meddle that is.
2014-15 New York Knicks odds to win the 2015 NBA Championship: 40/1
2014-15 New York Knicks Depth Chart
PF-Amare Stoudemire, Andrea Bargnani, Quincy Acy
C-Samuel Dalembert, Jason Smith, Cole Aldrich
SF-Carmelo Anthony, Travis Outlaw, Cleanthony Early
SG-Iman Shumpert, JR Smith, Tim Hardaway Jr.
PG-Jose Calderon, Pablo Prigioni, Shane Larkin
Cleanthony Early, Thanaskis Antetokounmpo, Louis Labeyrie, Jose Calderon, Shane Larkin, Samuel Dalembert, Quincy Acy, Travis Outlaw, Jason Smith
Jeremy Tyler, Shannon Brown, Lamar Odom, Toure Murry, Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Metta World Peace, Earl Clark, Chris Smith
The 40-year-old Derek Fisher may be a big time reach as head coach as he just retired as a player last spring. Fisher and Jackson are familiar with each other as Fisher played for Jackson’s Los Angeles Lakers and won five career title rings as a player. He will get plenty of help from the Zen Master on the famed triangle offense and how to run a NBA bench. Jackson was a member of that 1973 Knicks title team has a total of 11 NBA championship rings as a head coach.
Jackson’s most important immediate contribution to saving the Knicks was talking superstar scoring machine Carmelo Anthony into staying with New York. Anthony is the team captain and has hit his prime with 27 points per game or better the past two seasons and with the scoring ability to make the Knicks a payout threat any time that they take the court. Anthony also led New York in rebounding with 8.1 per game last year.
PG Jose Calderon arrives from Dallas to quarterback the triangle attack and has been a consistent performer with 10.2 points and 6.8 assists per game for his career.
The Knicks will need Amare Stoudemire to get back into form as he dropped to 11.4 points and 4.98 rebounds per game last season which is significantly down from his career average of 18.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.
As long as Jackson is left alone the Knicks will eventually emerge as a bona fide contender. New York may bring betting value as a team that will be lightly regarded by the public, at least in the early going. In the weak Eastern Conference the Knicks have the major potential for a playoff berth.
New York Knicks 2013-14 Statistics
Straight Up: 37-45
ATS Overall: 38-44
ATS Home: 17-24
ATS Away: 21-20
ATS Favorite: 20-18
ATS Dog: 18-26
O/U Overall: 46-36
O/U Home: 23-18
O/U Away: 23-18
Offense Points per Game: 98.6 (20th)
Offense Field Goal %: 44.9 (16th)
Offense 3-Point%: 37.2 (7th)
Offense Free Throw%: 76.1 (13th)
Offense Rebounds PG: 40.3 (27th)
Defense Points per Game: 99.4 (8th)
Defense Field Goal%: 45.8 (19th)
Defense 3-Point%: 37.1 (27th)
Defense Free Throw %: 76.5 (24th)
Defense Rebounds PG: 42.0 (10th)
2013-14 New York Knicks Team Leaders
Points: Carmelo Anthony 27.4
Assists: Carmelo Anthony 3.1
Rebounds: Carmelo Anthony 8.1
FG%: Amar’e Stoudemire 55.7
Steals: Carmelo Anthony 1.2
Blocks: Carmelo Anthony 0.7
2014-15 New York Knicks Roster
G-5-Tim Hardaway Jr