NBA Trade Rumors and News 2014: Top Five Players New York Knicks Should Target for NBA 2014 Trade Deadline
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The midseason trade deadline is about two months away, but the way things have been going for the New York Knicks, help can't get here fast enough.
As of Thursday, the Knicks have lost nine games in a row and are barely above the Milwaukee Bucks as the second-worst team in the entire Eastern Conference. Whereas they were leading the Atlantic Division at this time last year, the defending division champion Knicks now dwell at the bottom of their division and are looking battered, their shots misfiring and their morale plummeting, as indicated by several strong statements in the press by stars like Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire.
And that's just the start of their troubles. Tyson Chandler, the team's defensive anchor, is out for the next few weeks thanks to a leg injury. Their shooting overall is a paltry 42.1 percent, fourth-worst in the NBA. On the glass, the Knicks are getting creamed, averaging only 40.5 rebounds per game, fifth lowest in the league. Granted, the Miami Heat are the worst rebounding team in the NBA, with only 35.7 boards per night, but the Knicks have nowhere near the talent and depth that the defending world champions have at their disposal.
All in all, it's not a promising outlook for the Knicks, who have gone from first to worst in startling time following the departures of veteran leaders Jason Kidd, Kurt Thomas and Rasheed Wallace and injuries to Chandler and starting point guard Raymond Felton. However, there might be some hope on the horizon for the Knicks. They might not have enough to pull the trigger on a guaranteed superstar that can help them win a title this season, but at the very least, they might be able to set their sights on a few pieces that can help put them into position for the following season or years to come.
True, that process is not going to be easy, and it could be tricky considering the Knicks' lack of draft picks to offer and only a few tradable commodities to offer teams, such as defensive ace Iman Shumpert, but New York has a few options that they can try and shoot for on the trade market, especially with a few contracts expiring either next summer or in 2015. But the Knicks have to pull off something if they want to keep reigning NBA scoring champion Anthony happy and in a Knicks jersey. He's the only bright spot this season on a roster filled with aging players, injured stars and question marks. If he goes, with only a fragile Stoudemire and a banged up Chandler to offer, the Knicks revert back to the dark ages that they were mired in before the summer of 2010, when no free agent worth their salt would touch the Knicks with a 10-foot pole.
That being said, they have to look at revamping their aging roster in order to have a shot at some premium free agents out there in 2015 (Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving, LaMarcus Aldridge, Paul Millsap, Rajon Rondo) when they have more cap room and space to play with. The right pieces could help them get there, and here's a few of them they can target by February's trade deadline:
At 6'8" and 228 pounds of solid muscle, the 24-year-old NBA sophomore out of Morehead State is young, athletic and more importantly, he's big. Last season, Faried won the MVP award at the NBA Rising Stars game during NBA All-Star Weekend; he's got nothing but upside to him and the potential to inject some explosiveness into New York's frontline. The Knicks tried trading for Faried using Shumpert last week, only for the deal to fall through after the Nuggets requested one draft pick from New York. The Knicks shouldn't part with more draft picks, but maybe they can sweeten the deal by adding in a few reserve players.
This one's a bit of a longshot. The Boston Celtics have been maintaining that they have no intention of trading the four-time NBA All-Star point guard that helped the Celtics win the 2008 NBA title. However, in light of the Celtics' point guard still recovering from an ACL tear-the same injury that put Derrick Rose on the shelf last year-it could be theorized, especially after Rose went down for the season again recently, that Boston might want to ensure they have all their bases covered when it comes to insuring their future post-the Big Three era. Getting him won't be cheap, and it would cost the Knicks more than Shumpert. It would likely take Stoudemire, Shumpert and perhaps even more draft picks. Yeah, it's a steep price, but for a game-changer like Rondo, wouldn't it be worth it?
Well, if Rondo doesn't pan out, the Knicks could try their luck in trying to pry Bass from the Celtics. At 6'8" and 250 pounds, Bass adds in strong defense and a respectable mid-range jumper to the power forward position. Big, strong and with a finer shooting touch than he's given credit for, Bass could easily help to shore up New York's frontline, and add a little more depth to their roster.
The 6'11" native of White Plains, N.Y. is a seven-year veteran with a smooth shot (47.0 percent field goal shooter this season) and deadly from beyond the arc (39.8 percent from three-point range). But as he's due to make around the $6 million to $7 million mark for the next two seasons, the rebuilding Suns can afford to part ways with Frye for the right price. Frye could add a lot to the Knicks, who are in desperate need of some shooters to fix their field goal woes.
He's versatile in the backcourt, with the ability to play either shooting guard or point guard well. He might not exactly be putting up Chris Paul-type numbers at point guard, but he's reliable and he can be had; his contract expires at the end of the season. Sessions in the backcourt for the Knicks could add some stability, especially with Raymond Felton being banged up and underperforming from last season.
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