18 Jul 2012 11:19 AM EST
-By Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: Adding Marcus Camby was one of several offseason moves that will strengthen the New York bench. (Image Source: Getty Images)
With the New York Knicks having made their decision to not match the Houston Rockets offer sheet for Jeremy Lin, their offseason is virtually complete except for a minor move here or there. Here are the pass/fail grades for all of their [significant] offseason moves:
7/11 – Sign-and-Trade for Marcus Camby: Pass
The Knicks desperately needed a backup big man to complement Tyson Chandler as a rebounder/defender and even though Marcus Camby is getting up in age he can handle that. Last season the Camby man was a better rebounder per minute than either Chandler or Amar’e Stoudemire. They gave up little to nothing in Toney Douglas, Josh Harrellson [biggest loss], Jerome Jordan and a pair of second-round picks. For more on Camby click here.
7/11 – Re-sign J.R. Smith for 1 Year/$2.8 Million: Pass
With Iman Shumpert’s status in doubt heading into the season—he’ll be back, but we don’t when—the Knicks needed to cover themselves at the shooting guard position. J.R. Smith’s game has flaws, but at the end of the day he is one of the better backup swingmen in the league and his price tag is extremely reasonable. Moreover, he is capable of holding down the fort as a starter and should be better in year two with the Knicks. For more on Smith click here.
7/12 – Sign Jason Kidd for 3 Years/$9.5 Million: Pass
His recent DWI notwithstanding, Jason Kidd should provide the Knicks with a veteran presence, who can provide leadership [if not mentoring] on the court. His game has diminished, but he still has enough in the tank to be a top-notch backup providing New York with the depth they lacked last season. Even if he doesn’t start, you wouldn’t mind having him on the floor in crunch time. For more on Kidd click here.
7/12 – Re-Sign Steve Novak for 4 Years/$15 Million: Pass
The Knicks may have overpaid a little to keep Steve Novak in New York, but so what? It’s only money and that’s New York’s best asset. Novak is a classic role player, who really only does one thing well—shoot three-pointers—and he does it better than anyone else in the league. For more on Novak click here.
7/14 – Chose Not to Match Offer Sheet for Landry Fields: Pass
The Knicks could have used Landry Fields, especially this upcoming season, but the Toronto Raptors offer sheet [3-years/$20 million] goes above and beyond the Stanford man’s value. On a good team, a contending team, Fields is a backup and nothing more. At times he flashes the potential to be more, but too often he would disappear in pressure situations. For more on Fields click here.
7/15 – Sign-and-Trade for Raymond Felton: Fail
Power forward/center Kurt Thomas was part of the package as well, but this deal was made for Raymond Felton to be the ‘Bockers starting point guard. The Knicks traded Jared Jeffries, Dan Gadzuric and their second-round pick. In terms of the trade, New York did not give up a lot and the 4-year/$18 million contract for the UNC man is fair. Felton will be an upgrade over what the Knicks had last season when Toney Douglas, Baron Davis and Mike Bibby logged the majority of the minutes at point guard. However, Felton isn’t a big-time playmaker, he’s average at best, if he’s in shape that is. For more on Felton click here.
7/17 – Chose Not to Match Offer Sheet for Jeremy Lin: Fail
From the very beginning, Jeremy Lin has provided the Knicks with a conundrum. We don’t know how good Lin will be, but we’ve seen flashes of what he can be and that’s potentially an above average point guard. The Knicks would have had to well overpay to retain his services, but that’s what they do and the opportunity cost in this situation was very little. Lin is no sure thing, but the Knicks would have been wise to roll the dice with him rather than Felton. For more on Lin click here.
Daniel Mogollon is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of American. He is also a voter for the Thorpe and the Rotary Lombardi Award, as well as the Latino Sports MVP Awards.
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