Updated 12:40 AM EST, Wed, Jan 27, 2021

New York Knicks Roster, Season 2014-2015 Predictions & News Update: Phil Jackson Looking to Add Depth to the Starting Lineup?

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If this were summer 2015, talk surrounding the New York Knicks would be more favorable. It isn't, but Gotham sure is preparing for it.

Re-signing Carmelo Anthony was obstacle one. The seven-time All-Star fielded offers from Chicago and Los Angeles-among other places-before team president Phil Jackson lured him back under the guise that new head coach Derek Fisher will build a winning culture.

Had Anthony signed elsewhere, Fisher would have been left with a team centered around Jose Calderon and Iman Shumpert. Not that there's anything wrong with Calderon taking 30 shots a game. The former Maverick is one of the league's top marksmen and fills New York's glaring weakness at the point guard position. He averaged 11.4 points and 4.7 assists in Dallas last season and hit 90 percent of free throw attempts.

Calderon is one of two active NBA players shooting 87 percent from the free throw line, 47 percent from the floor, and 41 percent from three-point land. Regardless of his performance this season, Calderon was a steal.

Addition by subtraction: that's Jackson's mindset heading into the 2014-15 season. Jackson unloaded clubhouse underperformers in Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton to get Calderon, and unsuccessfully shopped the oft-injured, vastly overpriced Amar'e Stoudemire throughout the summer. There's a small market for a 31-year-old power forward due $23 million, especially when he spends more time in street clothes than warm-up gear.

The Pelicans has a similar problem with Eric Gordon. The disgruntled shooting guard wants out of New Orleans, much like the Knicks want Stoudemire out of New York. Either way, both carry abysmal contracts- Gordon is due $30 million over two seasons-that exceed their productivity.

Philadelphia suits Stoudemire solely because they need to meet Collective Bargaining Agreement minimum requirements. They're about $17 million short of the NBA minimum $56.7 million.

In essence, the 76ers would take Stoudemire to fill empty space. Jackson's only quip may be in Philadelphia getting a draft pick or player under a rookie contract to meet CBA rules. Cap space opens up but a key piece in their rebuilding phase is lost.

The free agent class of 2015 includes Marc Gasol, Rudy Gay, Brook Lopez, and LaMarcus Aldridge. Each would require max money. The Knicks have seven players under contract through next summer, none of which are in the front court. If they can't unload Stoudemire, gambling on a second-tier free agent like Greg Monroe or Paul Millsap would still bring much-needed depth.

After all, this is the same club that knew of Stoudemire's multiple injuries and still gave him $99.7 million over five years. Come next summer, avoiding a similar deal may be the best way to go.

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