Seems the skies are starting to clear around MSG for the New York Knicks.
Newly appointed head of basketball operations Phil Jackson has already made major changes to the Knicks organization that left much to be desired last year.
Mike Woodson was the first change that needed to happen to change the culture in the Knicks locker room. Once Woodson was fired, Phil Jackson turned to Derek Fisher to coach the Knicks with a knowledge of Jackson’s “triangle offense” and years playing for Jackson when he was coach in LA – it will make sure there is no disconnect between the front office and head coach. Fisher will also bring more of a player perspective as he was a point guard on the Thunder last season and has served as president of the Players union.
Bringing back Carmelo Anthony:
Last season we were all questioning whether Carmelo would come back next season or will he bolt for greener pastures. Phil Jackson met and explained to Anthony his plan for the future and the wholesale changes that will be made and it seems, according to reports, that Anthony will indeed commit long term to the Knicks. In fact, a five year deal is currently being finalized for less than the max which is highly unexpected and very important to the Knicks cap situation.
Trading of Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton:
Jackson has being vowing since he was hired that he would fix the locker room divide that plagued the Knicks last season. It was started by the firing of Woodson and was continued by the trading of Chandler, who had struggled through injury plagued seasons with New York as well as some comments to the media about Anthony and other players that weren’t too flattering. Regarding Felton, it’s tough to decide where he was worse: on or off the court, currently caught up in a gun case and seemingly his inability to figure out how to defend the pick and roll or shoot the basketball with any type of consistency made him a big time liability. In return for these two players the Knicks were able to acquire Jose Calderon, a point guard who is a very solid veteran point guard, Samuel Dalembert, a center who is known predominately for his defense, Shane Larkin, a promising second year point guard out of the university of Miami, Wayne Ellington, a true spot up shooter who has bounced around the NBA since getting drafted out of North Carolina, as well as two second round draft picks.