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Mike D'Antoni thinks the Knicks can make the playoffs. He's right.

Jul 14, 2010, 2:43 PM EDT

Thumbnail image for D'antoni.jpgHey New Yorkers: Right now is when you can start judging Mike D’Antoni.

The last two years don’t count. Those were the climbing out of the hole years. The paying for the sins of your father years. David Lee was nice, the rest of the roster needed help. None of the pieces were there to run the system

Now, there are some pieces. Amare Stoudemire was made for this system. Raymond Felton is not Steve Nash but is a far sight better than Chris Duhon.

D’Antoni told Alan Hahn of Newsday (in between Summer League games in Vegas) the Knicks have “a legitimate shot” to make the playoffs.

“We’ve got one good piece,” D’Antoni said yesterday. “We’ve got some young guys to develop and we’ve got to add another piece or two or three or whatever we have to do.”

The real key to a playoff run will be to see improved games from the guys around Stoudemire and Felton — Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, and just acquired Anthony Randolph needs to consistently bring the potential he has flashed over the years. He is a guy really suited to this system (and the one in Golden State, but there were Don Nelson issues)

It’s going to take a couple years to really put the whole package together. But a playoff appearance would be one huge step forward. And it could happen.

  1. hnirobert - Jul 14, 2010 at 3:02 PM

    if they don’t make the playoffs he needs to get fired. orlando, miami, boston, chicago and atlanta are locks to get in, milwaukee is very close as well. charlotte and new york, maybe even washington, should round out the top 8.

  2. Dirk Simmons - Jul 14, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    They added Stoudemire, but lost David Lee, who happened to be their best player last year. Lee averaged 20-10 last year. How much do we seriously think this team has improved? A big question is also how Stoudemire will play without one of the best point guards in the league. Lots of question marks, so I wouldn’t put them as a lock just yet.

  3. Jeff - Jul 14, 2010 at 6:37 PM

    One player will not make them a playoff team. They lack more than they have. Get Chris Paul and then they have something working.w

  4. Dave S. - Jul 14, 2010 at 6:46 PM

    Meter’s running? Says who? A blogger? – you’ve got to be kidding me….

  5. Kano - Jul 14, 2010 at 11:22 PM

    Dantoni will be fired before he does anything in the playoffs. He had his shot with the Suns and would not incorporate any D at all with the Suns. He does little teaching of D and rebounding. All he knows is fast break and spot up and shoot 3’s. When in PHX he didnt even have a under the rim play from out of bounds. They need much more than Amare who cant play D at all and cant O bound at all. Yes he will impress some NY fans with his sky dunk at first but when they see he has no idea where to be on rebounds in critical close games they will figure out his Ball IQ isnt very good at all. Amare went to a losing team and I doubt that they will make the playoffs this yr and if they do they are done in the first round. Amare made a huge mistake leaving the Suns for only about 3.5 mil more spread out over 5 yrs. After all Amare said for 3 yrs he deserved the max from a contender. He might have his max but no contender. He will not get close to a title during his 5 yr deal with NY most likely

  6. carl - Jul 15, 2010 at 12:05 AM

    you are on the internet, take advantage of it and do some fact checks, Amari was 11th in the NBA in offensive rebounds, more than no-D. Lee, also, he put up big numbers BEFORE Nash, also, he did this against some of the BEST IN THE WEST, in the play offs. stop over dramatizing how average Amari is, it just shows you do not follow the NBA, PEACE!

  7. Drew - Jul 15, 2010 at 2:16 AM

    I agree. David Lee was a versatile player and their best player. Stoudemire hasn’t shown what he can do without an elite PG. He’s surrounded by a team of adequate, but not great role players. I’ve got Miami, Boston, Orlando, Chicago, Atlanta, and Milwaukee ahead of them. I think Philly will make a little noise this year and there’s usually a darkhorse nobody expected who has a breakout season. Toronto might’ve been that team if the Chandler trade had gone through.
    I’m not expecting anything more than a first round playoff exit from New York.

  8. carnelld - Jul 15, 2010 at 2:20 AM

    No sensible talented African American NBA player will play for Dantoni after seeing how he treated all of the African American players on the Knicks team the last couple of years. Galinaro will not get you far. There were some good African American players on the Knicks squad , Dantoni attempted to destroy them all. Lebron, Dwayne Wade, Bosh and the rest of the top notch players are not stupid.

  9. @CarnellD - Jul 31, 2010 at 2:20 PM

    I don’t that D’Antoini has anything against African-American players. If he did, that would be boneheaded since the majority of America’s basketball players are in fact African-American. I would say that I think the knicks are arguably the worst team in the NBA in terms of management. New York is not the mecca of basketball. In fact, NYC, is really nothing the mecca of anything anymore. The rest of the country has caught up, the best sports teams are no longer there. I think Lebron, Wade, Bosh, made smart moves not to go to New York because there really is no benefit for them going there. Unless you live in New York, and drink the water, you realize New York City, and the teams there are a shadow of their former selves. Yankees, try to buy their way to the top. Jets and Giants, play in Jersey. Knicks haven’t won a championship in almost 40 years. D’antoini is overrated. New York City’s quality of life stinks compared to the rest of the country. Amare left phoenix for NY, which I think was a mistake. Amare should of stayed with the franchise, or went to a team without such a mess.

  10. ctb - Aug 4, 2010 at 8:50 AM

    If the Knicks get Carmelo Anthony & Tony Parker next year they will roll the Heat and Lakers!

  11. tony j - Aug 11, 2010 at 9:16 PM

    Stop crying about David Lee. Remember Bernard King? All ststs and no Defense. How many times did I watch him and kelly tripuka go at each other….scoring 41 and 42 against each other while both teams sucked. David Lee can’t defend so all his ststs were garbage stats. we have a team of players now. Does anybody remember what Clyde scored in game 7 of the ’69 finals???? no because we had a team then. He scored 39 points, TEAM. If you’re a knicks fan you’ll like watching a team being made. It you miss david lee, cheer for the warriors…..

  12. knicks fan age15 - Sep 1, 2010 at 1:01 PM

    now i hate wen ppl say that Amare made a mistake by goin to the knicks..well wen u rele think about he waz actually smart..lyke really how old is steve nash???why sign an extestion with a team knowin that the vocal point of the team might retire….now who knows if the knicks make the playoffs this my opinion i dont want them to becuzz its gonna be a sweep becuzz they are goin to play miami..sooo all the knicks have to do is wait untill next season when carmelo anthony is a free angent and sign him..then with carmelo and amare on one team that will attract chris paul..then the knicks have a title contending team.

  13. VictorCT727 - Sep 4, 2010 at 6:40 PM

    You’re not making any sense. First off NY IS the mecca of basketball. Just because the Knicks haven’t been a good team dosen’t mean anything. The Knicks could move to Baltimore and they’ll still be the same team. When they say NYC is the mecca of basketball they’re actually saying that there are a lot of talented players that live in NYC. Don’t think just because the Knicks aren’t good that NYC is not the mecca of basketball. If you ask me, Lebron going to NY would’nt have matter. He would’ve choked either way(Chicago to). The so called “three amigos in Miami” just shows how much of a joke the NBA is today.

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