Tag Archives: Amare Stoudemire

Welcome Back New York

I’m watching this Knicks-Celtics game on ESPN and I can’t tell you how good it feels to see the Garden rocking again like it’s 1995. I’m not one to root for New York teams, but sometimes you get to a point where you need that hated team to be good again. It just makes the game more interesting. It’s been about 10 years since the Knicks were good. I rooted against them for all those years, but eventually, you want that team to be good again, so you can resume rooting against them. It’s just not as fun when teams like the Knicks, Lakers, and Celtics aren’t good. It helps that I have Amare Stoudemire and Wilson Chandler on my FIRST PLACE fantasy team (and Amare just threw down an emphatic dunk!), but it’s great to see Madison Square Garden getting loud for a game against the Boston Celtics. Guys like Amare and Raymond Felton are probably enjoying their best days as professional basketball players.

The Knicks are like the Yankees, the Cowboys, or even the Cubs…. You hate them, but it’s just not as fun to hate them when they’re not good. So here’s hoping the Knicks make it back to the playoffs this year, but ONLY this year. They’ll probably need to pick up a few more guys I don’t like though. Because, all these former Warriors and guys on my fantasy team are making it hard.

Advertisements

Rumors, Signings, and the Upcoming Lockout

Didn’t pay much attention to the NBA free agency bonanza over the three day weekend (or sports for that matter), but caught up the last couple days on the rumor mill, and it sounds like all the rumors that were swirling on Friday, sound just about the same as they do today. Maybe there’s a little more of the I think so and so is leaning towards staying/going here, but nobody’s opinion is truly relevant, since nobody knows what factors are in play for these guys in making their final decisions so rumors will continue. There was one big commitment over the weekend with Amare Stoudemire agreeing to a five year $100M contract with the Knicks. I think it’s good for the guy, he wasn’t going to get a max deal in Phoenix, so why not go where someone that is willing to dish out the cash! He might not be exactly what they were hoping for, and as MCeezy said, they still aren’t relevant without another big player, but he is as worthy as anyone for a max offer. He’ll probably hold his fantasy value rejoining the anti-defensive D’antoni coached team. They might actually come out of this free agency period a winner depending on what else they get. I’m not going to say I think this was the greatest signing, but it’s far from a bad one as some would have you believe. If he somehow recruits another superstar, then he would be an all-time Knicks without even stepping on the court. It was much better than signing Joe Johnson or Rudy Gay to the “max” deals. I’m starting to wonder where Boozer will land since there are really no rumors about him. I do like the ring of Boozer’s Vodka if he ends up on the Nets. D-Wade and Chris Bosh are going to team up in Miami, just as I predicted. It’s tough to tell how much of a supporting cast they can have with only four players (Chalmers and Beasley) on the roster, but if they really don’t care about the money that much, maybe they’ll be able to bring in another big name.

I found the rumor of Carmelo waiting it out until next year’s free agency to go join Amare in New York as a laughable scenario. Does Melo even really have a choice on waiting it out with the lockout scheduled for next year? He could’ve been part of this free agent frenzy, but chose to take the extra year and some extra cash instead of opening up his 2010 summer. The Baltimore native has lived the rough life, so I don’t see him passing up any guaranteed money. Could he really pass on an extension that would guarantee him close to $20M per year for the next three? I’ll say no. The way money is flying around this summer is going to get even crazier after Lebron makes his choice tomorrow. You may think it already has with contracts like Amir Johnson (5 years $34M), Darko Milicic (4 years $20M), Drew Gooden (4 years $39M), but this summer there will be even more of those unfathomable numbers for guys that are at best bench players, especially if all these big free agents end up staying put. There’s a lot of teams waaay under the cap that were hoping to lure a Lebron or Wade to their city, but all these potential suitors forgot one thing, what if they don’t want to leave and want the extra $20-30M guaranteed that these guys can have tacked onto the last year of their contract in their current cities. So in essence, some teams will be overpaying for guys this summer that aren’t going to change a franchise into an instant contender. I’m thinking Richard Jefferson, Luis Scola, Raymond Felton, and Ray Allen will all eventually get some ridiculous money thrown their way from teams that are desperate to make a splash. They are good, but should only be additions to an already good team not THE addition that makes them a team. Continue reading


Doin Free Agency Predictions

We already made a list of the top free agents of 2010, and now we give you the predictions on where we think some of the best players in the NBA will end up. Even though none of the players even know where they are going, we will still try to predict where we think they will go in the super hyped July free agent frenzy.

LeBron James

Cali4Dre: NY Knicks, where the lights shine brightest and the team has been prostituting itself to him for 5 years now

Chappy: NJ Nets, He decides to learn from the self made billionaire how to become a billionaire himself. He gets his global icon status without winning a championship and has some premium Russian vodka named after him.

By:  Oddly enough, I believe the two biggest names will stay put.  The Cavs are most certainly going to deal Desperado West, and all will be well in Cleveland once again.

MCeezy: Nowhere. I think Lebron’s full of shit. He’s just gonna milk the Cavs for all they’re worth, but he’s gonna have one last fling (or six or seven) visiting other teams – just to see what they would give him. I think the whole “play your whole career for one team” will prove too much for the King to leave his castle. (That one team is also his home town to boot) Cavs season ticket reps can breathe easy.

Dwyane Wade

Cali4Dre: Chicago, home sweet home for “fall down once, get up twice”

Chappy: Miami, he seems to really like south beach, and from what I can tell, he’s the only one that really wants to stay and bring in a new buddy.

By:  Wade being the other of the two “big-big names” – I believe he stays in South Beach.  Miami will deliver on their commitment to pairing him up with another All-Star.

MCeezy: Chicago. I think this is more what I’d like to see than what will happen though. I’m sure Wade would love to go back home and the run the show in Chicago, but I just can’t see him running with Derrick Rose. I think in the end, Miami will just have more to offer.

Chris Bosh

Cali4Dre: Chicago, already sounds sold and getting to know Oprah is at the bottom of his list

Chappy: Miami, Wade talks Bosh into moving to Florida, and is super pumped about the new Predators movie coming out…

By:  Some say Miami, some say Chicago, one thing is for sure – goodbye Canada!  Bosh has been reported saying he doesn’t want to become someone’s second fiddle, so Chicago with Joe Johnson looks good right now.  I’d really like to see Bosh in a Warriors jersey though … wishful thinking.

MCeezy: Miami. For some reason, I can already see him in a Heat jersey. I think the front office sells D-Wade on bringing in another star, and Bosh seems to fit the bill.

Continue reading


Who Will Your Team Want in July of 2010? Rating the NBA Free Agent Class

We’ve had little to no talk on the free agent class on 2010 here on the blog, and obviously this class is the biggest and best we’ve probably ever seen. July 1, 2010 has been etched into owner’s/GM’s minds for the past few seasons, and multiple teams could land a couple of big time players to make them an instant contender. This upcoming July could shape the NBA’s power balance for the next decade to come. I’m a big fan of making lists, so here’s my top twenty free agents. I’ve included some guys on the list that I think may opt out of their contract making the list a little more exciting. I decided to leave off the restricted free agents such as Dirk and Pierce, because it would be strange to see some of these teams actually cut these guys…

#1 Lebron James – 7th season – 25 years old – Player option to be an unrestricted free agent

He’s the first player I can ever think of that had teams scrapping multiple seasons just to make the cap space for him, and another star. He’s the best player in the league, and WILL one day join Oscar on the list of players to average a triple-double. I won’t go into what he’s good at since he can pretty much do everything. If any player in the league can make personnel decisions within his own team, Lebron is that guy.

#2 Dwayne Wade – 7th season – 28 years old – Player option to be an unrestricted free agent

Probably the best guard in the league. He scores wherever he wants, and gets to the line nearly everytime he drives to the hoop. He probably had two of the best five dunks of the season dunking over Varejao, and half the Pacers team. He’s made a crappy Heat team relevant. Hopefully someone else on this list ends up on the same team as him, because if anyone deserves some help it’s this guy. If Miami loses him, they will be counting ping pong balls for years to come.

#3 Amar’e Stoudemire – 8th season – 27 years old – Player option to be an unrestricted free agent

Amar’e looks to have fully recovered from his injury, and looks like he’s back at his 2007-08 form. The knock on him has always been defense, but it looks like he’s made some strides since sitting down with Bill Russell, which Amare said was an eye opening experience. I’m not certain that I see him opting out of Phoenix since he seems to like it there, but why stick with a one year contract when you can get one for six? Especially with his laundry list of injuries. Then again, I could also see him staying in Phoenix to help Nash ride off into the sunset. After all the constant trade talks swirling around him, and him never going anywhere, I’m skeptical that he will leave the valley of the sun.

#4 Chris Bosh – 7th season – 25 years old – Player option to be an unrestricted free agent

Most teams that are in the Lebron sweepstakes are also hoping to team him with Bosh. The predator should make a big impact wherever he lands whether it’s in Chicago with Rose and Noah, or with Lebron or Wade somewhere else. I don’t view him as a alpha dog, but he’s as good a great sidekick that demands a lot of attention from opposing teams. I see him as a Gasol type fit on a championship team. A big part of why they win, but in the end not the sole reason they win. Continue reading


The New Salary Cap Kills Dreams, and Gives Other’s Hope

Stern

Today the salary cap numbers were released for the NBA, and as projected the cap space for next season dropped by close to $1 million from $58.68 million this past season to $57.70 million this upcoming season. It is also projected to drop 5% more next year during the extremely hyped free agency class of 2010.  I know that I’ve been a little depressed and couldn’t really tell what the motivations were for the moves made by my Warriors, but now I feel that this is going to give us the boost we needed, as it may help us get rid of our horrendous owner (back to that later).

Teams that have been clearing cap space for the 2010 free agent bonanza are suddenly realizing that they may not have the cap room they first thought. The Knicks have been the most adamant in trying to get a superstar to the big apple in 2010, as they have been dumping salary like Steinbrenner gives out $100 million contracts. Their obvious goal was to make enough room under the cap to sign a combo of star players and bring the franchise back to contention for a championship. Since they were trying to clear out enough money to sign a combo of players, they haven’t really developed much of a team.80391809NB002_CAVS_CELTICS NB001_ROCKETS_KNICKS During the tirade of trades that would be off the books by 2010 the projected cap was in the $60 million range. Now it appears that number will be around $8 million less than what was projected a year ago to spend on the superstar summer. Basically, instead of signing two superstar free agents, they will have to settle for one superstar and one MLE player. In the Knicks case, it seems that not developing a team worthy enough to entice a superstar, is going to hurt them next summer. As of now, it seems much more likely that Cleveland, Toronto, and Miami can retain their franchise guys, and possibly, for slightly less money than they had originally thought. Does it sound very tempting to a player like Lebron to go to a lottery team like the Knicks or stand pat and keep trying in Cleveland where he knows he’s close. If Lebron isn’t moving to a team with a player like Bosh, Wade, or Amare there isn’t a point for him to leave.  I’m sure he believes he could make them a playoff team, but I doubt he could talk himself into thinking that they were a championship caliber team.

What does this do to the Warriors you may ask? Not only is the cap not a concern to me, even though the Warriors have a lot of their money tied up for many years down the road, it actually could be a franchise changing year for the good of the team! Being a lifelong Warriors fan, I wasn’t old and wise enough to enjoy the early teams they had with Run TMC, so I’m stuck with the visions of the Chris Cohan era, which has produced a whopping 1 playoff appearance in 15 seasons! RunTMC_160x140 This recent news has helped our horrible owner have what alcoholics like to call “a moment of clarity”. Even if this team does get blown up because of the sale, is that really the worst thing that could happen to this franchise? I love the way their team is set up with youth and some veterans, but any longtime Warriors fan will tell you that it can’t get much worse as long as the new owner doesn’t take us for a Donald Sterling type ride. I’d love to see a front office that actually has relationships with the GM, coach, and players. What a concept!


The Sad State of the NBA

With the draft wrapped up and the free agency about to kick into full swing (Highlighted by Ben Gordon and Hedo Turkoglu), it seems like the NBA is in a different state than it has been for most seasons with the vicious economic decline. Instead of hearing about the best players being traded, we hear more about hedo_300_080204the rumors on how so many NBA teams are losing money, and are definitely going to have even more troubles with their payrolls next season. Money is the most valuable part of every organization and it seems that more teams are interested in shedding cap space, than making their teams better to compete for a title. Trade offers aren’t even about talent as much as who is getting the player with the big contract that expires next year. 12 teams accepted the leagues offer to borrow between $13 and $20 million. I won’t completely blame it on players and situations like the highly chronicled Darius Miles who is still sucking cap space away from Portland and just violated the leagues drug policy again. large_DariusBut, he is definitely one of the reasons the league needs to review the collective bargaining agreement before the seemingly imminent lockout in 2011.

My biggest concern for the NBA is the shrinking cap space each season. If the economy continues to go the way it has, the cap will keep falling. In turn, this will make it impossible for teams to stay under the cap especially with the current contract constructions weighted at the end, and put some teams over the cap before the next season even starts. This year will only be the second time in league history that the cap has been lowered from the previous season. Teams know this, and it is making them thriftier than ever. Why do they want to risk hitting the luxury tax for making it one round deeper in the playoffs? They really don’t, and this is going to be the NBA’s biggest problem during the recession! The objective for mediocrity in the league is not going to keep fans around, and without the fans the league will obviously struggle. The seats are already empty in the smaller market areas and terrible franchises. I watched many Clippers games (more than I’d like to admit) this year and most of the time you could hear the other teams fans that happen to live in L.A. at the games cheering over the Clippers’ fans (if there actually were any).

So with Amare on the block, and few interesting free agents out there, what will happen this offseason you ask? I think it’s going to be a lot of low-balling, and there will definitely be a lot of teams giving away superior talent just to relieve their books. With all of the talks surrounding my Warriors, and Amare Stoudemire possibly going to them, I took a step back to see what could possibly be behind it. Sure Amare is a great player when he’s healthy, but even he felt that the Warriors are giving up too much talent for him to want to go to there. It makes me wonder if the Warriors original objective was to have Stoudemire for a one year rental and have a lot of money come off the books instead of having: Biendris (5 years), Wright (3 years), and  Bellinelli (3 years). brad-millerWere the Warriors making a money dump like the Kings did when they gave away Brad Miller to save themselves millions off the cap in the long run? I feel like I can’t trust any move my team is making this offseason without wondering, was this done just for the pocketbook or did they really try to improve the team to make them a contender…


Amare Stoudemire Opting Out!

Well, it’s a 50-50 chance according to him. I’m giddy at the thought of the possible places he could land. I personally think if he did, he would be an amazing player back in the D’antoni system as he’s proved he can thrive with him as a coach before. It’s reported that he made a visit to amare-goggles-phoenix-sunsAtlanta and Chicago as well. Personally, I think he needs to get out of Phoenix.  Teaming him up with Rose, and an unselfish big man in Noah would make them a contender! There have been problems with Amare there since they acquired Shaq. I’m sure the Suns would let him, his fancy goggles, and his $17 million he’s set to make next year walk out the door to free agency if that’s what he wants. Since it’s such a large amount, I can’t see why he’d leave, unless he really does care about a winning championship, or if he finds a team that has a deal in place before he’s eligible! Here’s the article.

So, I have to add to the post now that I’m watching the Cavs play. Don’t you think they could really use a scoring big man for Lebron to throw lobs to, and make Dwight work a little harder on the defensive end? I searched through Cleveland’s upcoming off-season and what their cap will look like, and they have $13 million coming off the books from Szcerbiack, and $7 million coming off the book for Eric Snow’s expiring contracts. That’s plenty to lure the likes of goggle man!

I now believe that he may opt-out!

He said he heard it most from New York and Chicago, telling a Chicago station,Whatever team I go to, I hope they’re ready fora championship run.”