But…and there’s always a “but”, the real question which is yet to be answered, and that is if the current make up of this Knicks team will let him develop into what Dirk became in 2011. My initial thought it a strong no. The game has changed. We just saw Miami win a championship without starting a traditional center. It was apparent from the way the Eastern Conference, Western Conference, & NBA Finals were played. You can’t win a 7 game series with more than 1 non-shooter on the court at the end of the game. Which is why we’ve seen Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, & Chris Bosh all change their positions from the 4 to the 5, in order to add more shooting into starting line ups, to provide more space for stars like Lebron, Parker, Rondo, and potentially, hopefully, Carmelo.
So essentially, what is perceived to be the Knicks greatest strength, an All-Star front court, might end up being their biggest crutch. The Knicks have to potential to look like that team they looked like at the end of last season, but that’s only at the expense of one of their 3 stars. In order to let Carmelo play that high post role, that means either Chandler, or Amare will have to be watching from the sidelines. That means in crunch time, about 15 million dollars of your team is going to be reserved to a seat in the crowd. Who knows if the Knick’s coaching staff is willing to have a little imagination? Who knows if they have the foresight to see that traditional line ups aren’t ideal anymore? I think they do, which is why they put so much value into re-signing a guy like Steve Novak. Stretch, “Euro” big men like him are going to allow Melo to be Dirk.
Saying Melo can be Dirk, is an indirect way of saying the Knicks can contend for a championship…I’m not ready to say that out right…but that’s kinda how I’m feeling. So if the Knicks start 12-2 out the gate, then I meant it, if not, then I never said this. 23 days till optimistic assumptions become disappointments & pessimistic skeptics become die hards. We can’t wait.