HEALTHY Knicks Can Succeed
“I think we have a chance to win every game, and in the league, that’s rare” - Derrick Rose
“…They’re saying us and Golden State are the super teams, and they’re trying not to build many super teams…” – Derrick Rose
“Most athletes don’t have an opportunity to say they won a gold medal, better yet three gold medals” – Carmelo Anthony
“I can look back on it when my career is over, if I don’t have an NBA championship, and say I had a great career” – Carmelo Anthony
One google search of Rose or Anthony and you see a list of overblown comments. I give these guys all the respect in the world, exuding confidence before they even suit up for their first game together. Of all the critiques, comments, jokes and disrespect, I am actually one of the few that understand what they mean. I am also one of the few that think these statements mean nothing. I think that the Knicks have all the potential in the world to be a top team in the Eastern Conference. Several things have to go right, with the main thing being health.
Words mean nothing, especially with a microphone being stuffed in your face and you being questioned. In New York, we know this, the way we treat the Knicks organization, we also know not get excited until we see results. But the potential is there. Derrick Rose, who is a former MVP, has known health issues. Even at a sub MVP level, he is still an upgrade to Jose Calderon and anybody the Knicks had at the point in the past 5 seasons. If you saw his play late last season, you can see the confidence is back. Health is a definite concern but Rose played 66 games total, his highest since 2010-2011. And, after the all-star break, he was on a tear averaging around 20 points consistently. Consistency brings confidence, and a confident Derrick Rose is scary, but before we can even get their he needs to be healthy and on the court.
Derrick Rose isn’t the only Knick with injury concerns, we can’t forget about all the time that Joakim Noah has missed. But, have you seen those practice videos? My confidence is at an all-time high. Call me a delusional fan if you want, but at this moment, he looks ready to go. Even coming off of a dislocated shoulder injury, reports are saying that Noah is fully healed. His original injury was a small shoulder tear that he rushed back from. Now with nothing but time to heal and a court to his hometown to play for, I expect a motivated Noah. Though, a history of nagging injuries, I think we can expect the best out of Joakim. His best days may be behind him but the NBA is a proven place where a big man can transform in order to extend his career. No stranger to the gym and a stout IQ, Noah should provide a solid role in New York, even if he sits a few games. He has never played a full season so quality play will be needed from Porzingis and whoever is the number one backup big man. But Noah has proven when effective, he can average a double-double and hit four to five assists. You can’t teach or buy his defensive leadership either.
Nobody wants to admit that the Knicks are a threat. A far better roster on paper but it remains to be seen what happens when these men come together on court. Severe health woes can damper this season but fresh starts for Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah and a spark plug with a chip on his shoulder in Brandon Jennings, can pay dividends. Let’s see what the future holds for this team.