What just happened here? The Knicks made two trades in about 3 hours that just set the franchise up for possibly the biggest move/s in their history. Yesterday the Knicks shipped their top 2 leading scorers out of town so they can clear enough money to make a run at the NBA's biggest name, Lebron James.
In one deal, the Knicks sent Jamal Crawford to the Golden State Warriors for Al Harrington. The other trade, Zach Randolph and Mardy Collins were sent packing to the Los Angeles Clippers for Cuttino Mobley and Tim Thomas.
Knicks President Donnie Walsh is a big fan of Harrington, a man he drafted while with the Indiana Pacers.
"I drafted Al back in 1998, and I think his talents are a great fit for our style of play," Donnie Walsh said. "This trade also gives us more long-term flexibility, while enabling us to remain competitive this season."
What a bold move by Walsh, who put the foundation down on his vision for the Knicks. By the summer of 2010 the Knicks will be under the salary cap and have enough money to go after James. They might even be able to get Lebron and another superstar, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Amare Stoudemire, Steve Nash anyone? The Knicks will take those names and would love to put any of those on the back of their jersey's.
Clearly the direction of the Knicks has changed drastically within the last year. With Isiah Thomas out of the picture the Knicks are doing whatever they can to put a consistent winner on the court. They've benched superstar Stephon Marbury and big time bust Eddy Curry all season, perhaps waiting for another team to make an offer for both or maybe they just simply want to make their lives miserable, who knows. The new head coach Mike D'Antoni wants to win and doesn't deal with drama, hence the benching of Marbury and Curry. His style is up-tempo and aggressive, Marbury and Curry don't fit into his system so why waste everyone's time and have them attempt to fit his mold. They won't do it so let's not bother thinking about it. Marbury and Curry are as good as dead in Knick uniforms.
The plan for the Knicks is in place and ready to go. Now, even after an era in which Madison Square Garden has never seen, the Knicks' days as an NBA laughingstock appear to be coming to an end. The Knicks have played decent this season and gave fans a sense of hope for a competitive season, one that may still happen, but the sign from management indicates change is on the way to MSG and once it hits, the Garden will be rocking again, like the days of the 90's.
"It's always going to be a possibility that one day the face of this franchise is going to change," Mike D'Antoni said early Friday. "(Walsh's) plan is pretty clear... In a couple of years we're going to be under the cap. Everything he will do will lead us to being under the cap in two years. And I'll deal with making sure the team is competitive and we'll try to make the playoffs this year."
Optimism at its best. I like it. Wouldn't it be great if New York had a championship contender in baseball, football and basketball? The Rangers have been inconsistent the last few years so it's hard to call them a championship contender but New York is the sports capital of the world, it's time it's also the Championship Capital of the world. Could we ever see a year where New York could dominate the sports world, much like Boston has done in recent memory? The Celtics, Patriots, and Red Sox all have won championships in the last few years and if it wasn't for Eli Manning and David Tyree's "greatest catch ever" Boston would've won the championship in 3 of the 4 major sports in 2007-08 season. Wow. 2010 looks like a good year for New York, I mean we have enough damn teams around here that we should be in contention every single year. Well, here's to Donnie Walsh and his plan to resurrect MSG. Lebron is on his way to NYC!