The New York Knicks made a fairly significant splash earlier this offseason when they acquired Andrea Bargnani from the Toronto Raptors. The 7-foot center has played in only 66 games over the past two seasons because of injuries, but he should be able provide the Knicks with some much-needed front court offense if healthy.
While in Las Vegas coaching his Team Melo summer league program, Carmelo Anthony was asked about the moves the Knicks have made this offseason. Overall, he seemed pleased with the front office.
“I’ve been staying under the radar,” Anthony told ESPN.com on Tuesday. “I let them do what they do. We got [Metta World Peace], and I think [Andrea] Bargnani was really a steal for us. He’ll help us spread the floor. We got J.R. [Smith] back and we kept the core guys together.”
Smith is expected to miss 3-4 months after undergoing knee surgery, though New York invested a lot of money in him with a four-year, $24.7 million extension earlier this month. The World Peace signing will give the Knicks depth and experience in addition to bolstering their defense. However, Anthony did acknowledge that the Brooklyn Nets have made the sexier moves.
“It’s special what [Brooklyn] did,” Carmelo added. “J-Kidd will have four or five future Hall of Famers. I played with him for a year and also with USA Basketball and I know his mentality. He knows the game. It won’t be hard for him to deal with those guys because he’ll put them in position and only have to tell them things one time.”
The Nets certainly grabbed more headlines than the Knicks, but that isn’t always a good thing. The product on the court has to live up to the hype. New York was closer to being a championship contender than Brooklyn last season, so the Knicks didn’t necessarily need to do as much as the Nets to improve. Time will tell if either team has done enough.