The Knicks have been mired in poor play since the arrival of Phil Jackson as team president. This year in particular there has been a struggle between Jackson and his preferred offense, the triangle, and the players. In an article by ESPN’s Ian Begley, Jackson is optimistic about turning things around in New York.
According to the article Jackson plans to build the team around Kristaps Porzingis, Willy Hernangomez and some of the other young pieces on the roster. The Knicks will have significant cap space this summer, so they could target a good free agent. Depending on what they do with Derrick Rose, they could target a point guard. The Knicks also have their first round pick in this year’s draft and could target a point guard or impact player there as well.
With the plan to develop around Porzingis that means Carmelo Anthony is the odd man out and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Melo, though slightly out of his prime, is still a valuable piece and could warrant a nice package in a trade. The sticking point here is Melo’s no trade clause, so he is in control of where he goes. So he won’t be going to a small city (see: La La Melo’s wife) or a non contender, so options are somewhat limited. But, a team like the Clippers could do something worthwhile and the Knicks would be wise to listen.
Jackson has not been successful during his tenure and many fans blame him, as they should, for the team’s struggles. This will be the team’s third consecutive year missing the playoffs. It’s now or never for Jackson. If the team can have a good draft, sign some key free agents, get a decent package for Melo, and develop the young players; this could be the sign everyone is looking for. But, that might be asking a lot for a franchise and team president that has not shown much over the past three years.