The New York Knicks have made yet another splash via free agency.
This time, they signed former league MVP Derrick Rose.
In recent history, the Knicks have not been afraid to sign big names in free agency, Amar’e Stoudemire, and Carmelo Anthony comes to mind. Although both of those players played well in a Knicks uniform, they could not co-exist, which ended “when he [Stoudemire] reached an agreement on a buyout from the franchise, league sources have confirmed,” to ESPN.
The main problem behind the Knicks struggles is that Anthony is a ball-hog who demands the ball on every offensive play. Also, according to Stoudemire, Anthony had issues with other players gaining stardom (i.e. Jeremy Lin), and Stoudemire had some issues with how Anthony has handled his leadership role on the team.
How much of this is true is anyone’s guess? These comments can be seen as a player bashing on his former team, and its superstar who relegated him to an afterthought, or they can be interpreted as someone giving the world insights on the Knicks locker room.
In Anthony’s defense, when asked about Stoudemire’s comments, Anthony immediately pointed out to Kristaps Porzingis, the Latvian rookie sensation, who took the NBA by storm last season, and became a fan favorite.
So, in the aftermath of this hot mess, the Knicks signed Derrick Rose.
Rose was a sensational, breathtaking, YouTube highlight-reel waiting to happen player in Chicago until April 28, 2012 when he tore his ACL.
Unfortunately, for Rose this was just the beginning of his descent to hell. Following his knee injury, Rose missed the entire 2012-13 NBA campaign. He came back, supposedly, ready for the 2013-14 season, but 10 games into the new season, Rose was sidelined again, this time with a torn meniscus in his other knee.
In February 2015, he was sidelined with a torn meniscus in the same knee he was just sidelined with that injury. However, last season Rose was as healthy as Bulls fans could have imagined. He played in 66 games and averaged 16.4 points per game.
So, based on the latest season in Rose’s career, it would appear the superstar point guard is coming back to his glory days, but will his knees hold the entirety of a grueling NBA season?
Another problem is how will Derrick Rose, a high-volume shoot-first point guard gel with Carmelo Anthony, a high-volume shooter?
These two players have been to numerous All-Star games, and are on posters in every boy’s room across the world, but will their egos accept that there is another big fish in the pond?
And, although he probably will have less of a saying in this love triangle, Kristaps Porzingis will want his as well.
This move has the potential to be great for the Knicks because the Eastern Conference is so weak, this lineup can get them back in the playoffs, or at least relevancy. This move also helps Derrick Rose re-establish himself as one of the best players in the NBA.
But, for as great as this move can be, it can also explodes in everyone’s faces. Now, the Knicks were much smarter this time around than they were in recent years, with the contract Rose signed.
Details of the signing
Bleacher Report’s Jared Dublin details the situation, “the Knicks will have a nearly $32 million charge (150 percent of Rose’s 2016-17 salary) attached to their books for the summer of 2017, per Basketball Insiders, unless they elect to renounce his Bird rights. If they attempt to keep Rose, the Knicks would actually lose cap space until he signed a deal that started with a first-year salary less than the amount due to Lopez in 2017-18.
If Rose gets hurt or doesn’t play well, the Knicks can wash their hands at the end of next season and enter the summer of 2017 with loads of cap space, depending on what they do in free agency this summer. They’d have then dealt away two assets for only a year of Rose, but one can argue it was worth a shot to see if he could recapture the magic.
If Rose does play well, though, that puts the Knicks in an even more precarious position. The best-case scenario is that Rose returns to something resembling his former self and, along with Carmelo Anthony, Kristaps Porzingis and whomever the Knicks sign this summer, helps lead them back to the playoffs for the first time in four years.”
The Dream Kevin Durant
But, the biggest takeaway from Derrick Rose’s arrival in New York City is that free agent Kevin Durant has become (very) interested with what is brewing in the Big Apple.
USA Today reported on June 29, 2016 that the Knicks are now on Durant’s radar following the trade for Derrick Rose, the development of Porzingis, and his good friend Carmelo Anthony.
So, was Rose’s signature Phil Jackson’s master plan to lure Kevin Durant in town to bring the Knicks back to the playoffs?
The front office would have to be pretty good to work the dollars of this hypothetical, for now, move. Plus, signing Durant would also assure the Knicks and their long-deprived fans a bright future with arguably the best player in the world.
Durant’s agency Roc Nation has hinted they’d like him to go to a big market to really capitalize off of his NBA stardom, but the player rejected this notion because it does not bode with his personality.
We will see in the coming days, how all of this turns out, but one thing is sure Phil Jackson can resurrect his career as an executive with the signings of Derrick Rose, and Kevin Durant.
Giannis Antetokounmpo Is The Real MVP
Santa Monica, California was on an award tour like A Tribe Called Quest for the NBA’s end of season grand prize spectacle last night. Hanging out in the coolest performing arts theatre in all of Los Angeles (my apologies to the Hollywood Bowl), the converted airplane Barker Hangar played host to the 2019 NBA Awards. The Emmy’s, Oscar’s and Grammy’s of hoops Tony.
The best of the Basketball best and the cream of the future hops crop descended on this hangar, suited and booted like they were flossing injured courtside.
Shaq sized in the perfect setting in a place that houses feats of brilliance that take flight like Mike, this event could only be hosted by the one and only, Big Aristotle of the Diesel, Shaquille O’Neal (sorry Drake. Although you troll NBA players better than Kevin Hart telling Kenny Smith he’s so ashy if he smiles his lips will bleed as he goes to take a sip of his water). And the most entertaining NBA player ever (give him his award) laughed, joked, sang, rapped and danced his way to an enjoyable evening in the place he racked up three rings on repeat.
But how about the prize giving? Well your real Most Valuable Player this year is Giannis Antetokounmpo. Say what you will about last year’s MVP and this year’s runner up in the closest of recent races as tight as the Rookie of the Year voting, James Harden racking up triple-doubles like Charles Barkley says Lonzo Ball does triple-singles, but it’s the Alphabet’s time now after slaughtering this season gone. Sure he didn’t come away with the ‘chip like worthy candidate Kawhi Leonard and his (we still hope) Toronto Raptors, but that is his next challenge for the Mamba Mentality tweeted in congratulation by Kobe Bryant who predicted this MVP years back. And in a beautiful and emotional speech, Giannis dedicated all this to his dearly departed dad and his brothers and mom in attendance as every eye not dry in the house got out their seats in unanimous ovation.
And in a truly global game flying the flag outside the United States for each category winner, Antetokounmpo almost doubled up, finishing in second place for Defensive Player Of The Year, under the stifling Eiffel of French fly swatter, Rudy Gobert. As Paul George after an incredible season-no lucky shot-came in third place like he did for the MVP voting. Toronto not only got the ‘chip in the Six however as their X-factor Pascal Siakam came up with the Most Improved Player award ahead of Sacramento sophomore De’Aaron Fox and Brooklyn’s own (if they play their free agent cards right), D’Angelo Russell.
Coach of the Year was bucked by Milwaukee’s Mike Budenholzer dry-erasing for the MVP. And Bradley Beal was passed the Community Assist Award for all the good this All Star has done. Give him a hand for all the ones he has. Whilst the Sportsmanship award went to new Utah Jazz guard Mike Conley Jr., who also racked up the Teammate Of The Year award for his grit n grind time with the Memphis Grizzlies. But who else for the Sixth Man of the Year award then the ‘6 Man’ of all-time, Lou Williams?
And the House Of Highlights Moment of the Year of course went to Derrick Rose. Can you guess for what game?
We have a ball rattling around the rim forever in Toronto that shoots for even more stars though.
But how about that Rookie of the Year award? Who you got? Because in narrowly beating out Atlanta Hawk Trae Young it’s clear the award belongs to superstar right now Luka Dončić after a Maverick season in Dallas. Where the Texan gunslinger from Slovenia is about to draw on them all next season. Look out for the kid like Pat Garrett.
Sager Strong, broadcaster Robin Roberts took home that award named in honour after the suited courtside with a microphone presenter. And her “make your mess your message” speech was the most inspiring of the night after her fight against breast cancer and bone marrow disease, raising awareness. Executive of the Year went to Jon Horst of the Milwaukee Bucks (sorry Rob Pelinka…jokes) but the Lifetime Achievement? Well that went to a former President who has just left office. No not Obama (although POTUS does have game…WAP!). But the Magic man, Earvin Johnson. The Laker legend honoured in California for all he’s done since starting the fast-break of Showtime, to changing the game behind the back without taking a single shot. All the way to walking away from it bravely when he was diagnosed with HIV and then making a comeback so beautifully for the man who will always be purple and gold with all this entrepreneur pulls out the empire of his top hat. Say what you will about his presidency residency but as we look to free agency this crazy offseason, remember who started all this off by bringing the King to Hollywood last Summer, waiting outside his house in his car at one in the morning.
Now that can’t be tampered with.
But all in all last nights NBA Awards show of All-Stars showed us one thing like the NBA Finals. No matter who took home the gold, we all came away winners.
Philadelphia 76ers’ make Marial Shayok Ottawa’s first-ever NBA draft pick
Ottawa’s Marial Shayok has achieved his ultimate dream — becoming the city’s first-ever NBA draft pick. The Philadelphia 76ers selected Shayok with the 54th-pick overall in the second-round of the 2019 NBA Draft.
The former St.Patrick’s Irish high school standout celebrated his special and emotional moment at home with family and friends.
“You did it bro, you did bro…”
“Let’s go baby! You going to Philly…”
For Shayok and his family the historic moment is a culmination of life-long sacrifices that started in South Sudan with his 6’9″ father Makor Shayok moving his wife and three-daughters to America. The elder Makor set post at Alvin Texas Community College and earned a scholarship to the Dayton Flyers, playing from 1990-1992.
Makor’s eldest, Shayok Shayok (born in Miami) and his sister Yar Shayok also followed dad’s footsteps and played NCAA basketball – Shayok going to Bradley and transferring to UMKC and Yar playing with Detroit Mercy Titans women’s program.
The family migrated to Ottawa, Canada in the mid-90’s and on July 26th, 1995 the youngest Shayok was born.
Marial left Ottawa for New Jersey’s Blair Academy after three-years with the St.Pats Irish — he originally committed to the Marquette Golden Eagles but transferred to the Virginia Cavaliers after the coach (Buzz Williams) that originally recruited him bailed on the program in 2015.
Shayok had busy NBA draft process – showcasing his versatile skill-set to 14 NBA front offices. Here is footage of his 76ers’ work-out.