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Can D-Rose Really Change The Knicks?

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The New York Knicks have made yet another splash via free agency.

This time, they signed former league MVP Derrick Rose.

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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.

Injury History

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?

The Move

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.

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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.

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Millsap Mishap Could Keep Forward Behind 3 Months

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Poor Paul Millsap.

This campaign after becoming one of the biggest free agent pick ups of the offseason, one of the leagues leading Power Forwards has been put down on the medical report with an injury that could call him off sick for a quarter of a year.

The most reliable player over four periods has spent the bird share of his career helping his former Atlanta Hawks make it to the first round knockout stakes of the playoffs each year. But following the season where they didn’t make the cut of the second one, it was time for a change for the 32 year old number 4 who once looked to be the Utah Jazz, Karl Malone replacement Carlos Boozer didn’t turn out to be early in his career alongside former leading Point Guard Deron Williams.

And in the mile high city of Denver with a would be big-three of sophomore sensation Emmanuel Mudiay, dreaded defender Kenneth Faried and of course The Joker with the last laugh Nikola Jokic, these Nuggets in their new Nikes looked golden and finally past that baby blue Carmelo era (they may as well be as Anthony, now with the blue, white and orange of the Thunder isn’t even a Knick anymore (it’s ‘Old York’ now Knickerbockers)). But now like Ben Affleck looking at the ‘Justice League’ box office returns it’s time to ask the Nugs “why so serious” Batman as an injury to their versatile veteran forward of seasoned upon seasons of experience doesn’t exactly put a smile on their face.

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The All-Star was averaging a helpful handful of exactly 16 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists before tearing the ligaments in his left wrist in a 127-109 loss to the Lakers who themselves recently lost all dunking son Larry Nance Jr. to a broken wrist, but are thankful to be having him return after they cut the turkey this thanksgiving. Millsap and the Nuggets are looking at second opinions from docs offering the same sort of speedy recovery that doesn’t sap their frontline. But if they concur with the original diagnosis, it’s three months in a suit and tie and not to mention cast for Paul who will return in late February after the All Star break he normally never takes off.

The man with the three year, 90 mill deal helped make this outside eight seed threat Denver the new gritty, grinding Memphis of the West. Now without him the older than Richard Jefferson roster is thinner than the air up there in Colorado.

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Somebody Stop The Mask Of Kyrie Irving

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USP NBA: BOSTON CELTICS AT BROOKLYN NETS S BKN BKN BOS USA NY

Smokin’!

Even that phrase delivered at a perfect Jim Carrey pitch can’t quite put into perspective just how hot Celtic Kyrie Irving is right now. Especially in the Boston green, Rip Hamilton face-mask.

Maybe those three little letters would do more justice for this league leader?

You know Menacing, Versatile, Phantom?

No?

How about M-V-P?

Kyrie joins Kobe, former Cleveland Cavalier teammate LeBron James and the man whose about to pass him the Maurice Poldoff torch, Russell Westbrook to be an absolute menace in the Phantom of the Opera face-mask, leaving other teams dead on basketballs biggest stage. He may have fractured and broken some bones in his face, but that won’t stop him as he fractures and breaks the backs and hearts of the faces of all the other franchises he faces off with night after excruciating night.

Those who used to say it must be the shoes (and have you seen his best in show sneaker designs complete with shamrocks like Starbucks on St Patrick’s Day this season heads? Those halloween pumpkin ones were the spice), are now saying it must be the mask.

Sure the plastic profile guard makes for some meme worthy Pinterest fan art appreciation but this guard has made a point at hating it…the sweat inducing mask that is, not the love. These kind of covers can blind you, but like the concussed legend of Celtic great Larry, letting it fly like a Bird above the baskets in the Boston Garden all the way to the rafters (as he saw too hoops like 80’s girls earrings and just aimed for the top one), Kyrie plays through all the pain and frustration. Taking it out on the ball (like opponents on Lakers rookie Lonzo) and the other teams hoops that to him seem bigger than those ones Bruno Mars sang about.

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Take Dallas for example. Irving just masked all his pain by taking the Mavericks for 47 points, 3 rebounds and 6 assists in the last contest that took the Celtics to a sweet sixteen straight. After dropping two games following Gordon Hayward dropping out of the new season before the second quarter of his opening game one even played out, everyone was calling time on these new Celtics as soon as Gordon turned his ankle counter-clockwise. But now one of the best in the association Kyrie is showing LeBron and them he’s just as good as them or anyone alone like this man from down under always wanted to prove. This definition of clutch, who leaves everyone else in the fourth with straws has already shown on a championship scale against Curry of all hot guards that he can take the last shot that really matters. Now forget the Most Valuable Player award for a waning second or even the time his dynamic duo partner in pine Hayward comes back, Irving has the power to dribble drive all the way to the crown on his own.

And it’s going to take more than a mask to stop him.

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The Wind Brings The 2020 All-Star Game To Chicago

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1973. And the first NBA All-Star Game to play in the Windy City of Chicago, Illinois features the last All-Star game in the last season of two lasting Los Angeles Lakers legends. One man who scored 100 points in just one game, Wilt Chamberlain. And one man who was and still remains the one and only logo of this National Basketball Association, Jerry West.

1988. And arguably the greatest All-Star Game of all-time and an even better, best ever All-Star weekend sees Michael Jordan become Michael Jordan. M.J. scored 40 in an 138-133 O.T. A.S.G. win for the East meeting the West. But a day before all that he and the Slam Dunk Contest became even more legendary. As mere moments after storied Boston Celtic great Larry Bird asked “whose coming in second place” before raising his finger in victory before the ABA coloured moneyball ripped through the twine (no Nick Young swag), Money took off from the free throw line like a good doctor for his above the rim J and jumped over everybody including Atlanta Hawk wing spreading, sky-soarer Dominique Wilkins.

Now more than 30 years later after next years All-Star Game in the purple and gold city of Los Angeles and the 2019 one in the redeemed city of Charlotte, the 2020 and 69th All Star Game will be played in Michael’s old town of Chi-city. In the same year as Tokyo, Japan will hold the next Olympic Games, the game of basketball will go back to it’s 90’s roots and an inspired iconic landmark of hoop heaven that didn’t really have the same spirit in the seventies, but really Jumpman took off in the golden era eighties. So much so that the old ’88 All Star Weekend t-shirt is a historical thrift store must find for more than it’s 80’s Tron like, cool, retro logo.

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And with mid-February lovers big blockbuster basketball coming back to the city of wind like the river that runs through it, Chi-town needs this like out of towners need deep dish pizza. You only have to listen to the news or the Common album ‘Nobody’s Smiling’ (you know the legendary M.C. who used to wipe up Jordan’s sweat off the old Chicago Stadium hardwood has to perform at the mid-season classics halftime show) to know this classic city is marred by violence that burns through this second city like fire. The beloved Bulls have even become a “garbage team” to root for too, losing the big-three likes of last seasons Jimmy Butler, Rajon Rondo and Dwyane Wade (who may even be on a farewell All Star tour once his hometown All Star weekend comes crossed off the calendar and everyone is united in the airlines center).

Now this team who relies on sophomore stud Denzel like Oscar hopeful movies will hopefully be back by the next few valentines. As the heart of the city in twenty twenty will want to see something as visionary as Sinatra’s kind of towns history.

That’s just the Chicago way.

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