OTG's All-Decade Team: New York Knicks Edition
With the past decade coming to a close, what better way to ring in the new decade by reflecting on the past. Off The Glass is taking a look at each NBA team and selecting their All-Decade squad, which is defined by one guard, one forward, one center, a role player (someone not selected as an All-Star, or to an All-NBA team), and one wildcard.
Today we are highlighting the New York Knicks.
Guard: JR Smith. The shooting guard was a key piece of the Carmelo Anthony era, offering a solid scoring option alongside of the star forward. Smith averaged career-highs in points (18.1) and rebounds (4.5) per game during the 2012-13 season. The New Jersey native spent his prime in New York, being a big reason for Knicks’ excitement early in the decade before being traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Forward: Carmelo Anthony. Does this really come as a surprise to anyone? Melo made seven All-Star teams in as many seasons after getting traded from Denver in the 2010-11 campaign. His time in the Big Apple didn’t result in a title, but Anthony was a scoring champion and 3x all-NBA selection. As a Knick, he continued his progression and solidified himself as one of the league’s best pure scorers during those years. Despite the sour ending, the Melo era in New York was iconic.
Center: Amar’e Stoudemire. Spending four seasons with the Knicks at the beginning of the decade, Stoudemire played some of his best basketball in the orange and blue. In 2010-11, he made his only All-Star appearance as a Knick after averaging a career-high 25.3 PPG, 8.2 RPG, and 1.9 BPG. Even when Anthony got traded to New York, Stoudemire was still able to remain a force on both ends of the court.
Role Player: Tyson Chandler. The big man wasn’t a major stat sheet contributor, but he did average near double-doubles in point and rebounds per game in his short three year stay in New York. He brought valuable traits to the Anthony era in toughness, defensive ability, and high basketball IQ. A fan favorite, Chandler left his mark on New York via contagious energy and gritty playing styles.
Wildcard: Linsanity. February 4th, 2012 would begin the string of impressive, clutch performances by unknown guard Jeremy Lin. The Harvard product scored 26.8 PPG during the stint that dominated national media storylines. Arguably the peak of the Melo era, Lin’s run will always be remembered by NBA fans around the world.
Team High: 2012-13 season. Despite the Knicks losing in the Eastern Conference Semifinals to the Indiana Pacers, New York finished with a 54-28 record. Fan favorites such as Anthony, Smith, Chandler, Stoudemire, and Raymond Felton were at full force.
Team Low: 2014-15 season. Oh how the end was bitter for Carmelo Anthony. Even though he averaged 24.2 points per game, the Knicks stumbled to a 17-65 record. The harsh realities of the end of an era were beginning to set in, and the future wasn’t necessarily bright.
Upcoming Decade Prediction: The past decade featured some good and bad years; coming off of another 17-65 season, the Knicks have a plethora of young pieces. However, front office failures have damaged the trajectory of the organization. With that being said, New York will make the playoffs at least three times before 2030.