Hakeem Olajuwon Says He Can Help Amar’e Stoudemire Reach Potential
Hakeem Olajuwon thinks that he is just the man to help Knicks power forward Amar’e Stoudemire expand and make the necessary adjustments to his game, that will allow him to be successful.
Olajuwon told the New York Post that he would like to have another week-long session with Stoudemire, so that he can help him reach his full potential.
“He put in so much work, was excited and so confident,” Olajuwon told The Post by phone from his winter home in Amman, Jordan. “To see he didn’t get a chance to really show it, I felt very bad for him. I felt for him this season because of how hard he worked. He looked so much forward to the season but with injuries he didn’t get a chance to show what he learned last summer.”
“The desire and enthusiasm he brought was so amazing,’’ said Olajuwon, the Hall of Famer whose team beat the Knicks to win the 1994 title. “It was a good experience for me because he was so eager. With him, it was the excitement. He was so excited.”
Knicks head coach Mike Woodson and Olajuwon were teammates in Houston, so Woodson put out a call to Hakeem last summer to see if he would tutor Stoudemire and teach him low-post fundamentals.
“Mike wanted to go to Amar’e in the post to make it easier for Carmelo [Anthony] and to complement each other,” Olajuwon said. “Amar’e took it very seriously. I’m very impressed with Mike as coach. He tries to find all possible ways to maximize his talent.”
Olajuwon said that Stoudemire should return home this time around with a refined post game, and the proper moves to go along with it.