Apr 3, 2010, 8:33 PM EDT
Without even attempting to understand Amar’e Stoudemire’s motivations, I will say this: there are times when Amar’e qualifies as a basketball force that’s somehow more than unstoppable. He’s capable of being an on-court power that is completely dominating and intimidating, and his combination of size, speed, and athleticism should make him a sure-fire candidate for a max contract this summer.
The only problem is that this Amar’e, the one that averaged 27.3 points per game on 57.7% shooting to go along with 9.9 rebounds in March, isn’t always the one that shows up. His basketball personas are many; some disinterest and others completely engaged, some liabilities on defense and others active, some prima donnas and others perfectly compliant teammates.
Predicting which Amar’e will show up when is anyone’s guess. That doesn’t take anything away from his March reign of terror, though, and as a reward for a month-long stretch where Stoudemire was brutally effective instead of merely All-Star caliber, he’s been named the Western Conference Player of the Month. It’s a worthy distinction for a guy who’s been terrific basketball for an impressive team.