With the 2013-14 NBA season just over two months from it’s start (October 29th), New York Knicks’ head coach, Mike Woodson, still has “no idea who’s going to start” for the Knickerbockers this season.
Woodson stated three obvious starters. Carmelo Anthony (duh), Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton. Chandler and Felton merely boil down to the fact that the Knicks are shallow at both point guard and center, and truly have no other worthy starting options aside from the aforementioned Chandler and Felton.
“That’s what we use camp for. I have no idea who’s going to start,” Woodson said. “Camp should be pretty competitive based on the talent, and that’s how it should be.”
Not to claim that these Knicks don’t have pieces. Their starting battle at shooting guard proves to have many solid options to play alongside Melo on the wings. J.R Smith is an obvious name that vaults into conversation, but it seems like Woodson liked Smith in more of a 6th man role last season. Iman Shumpert is another choice, and my personal pick for who will start at the two in 2013. Shump offers the Knicks some athleticism and a hard-nosed defensive option. Then there’s the rookie, Tim Hardaway Jr. Hardaway looks to be a good fit for the Knicks as a scorer on the wing.
“You’ve got to go in and earn a spot,” Woodson said when asked about Shumpert’s status as a starter. “That’s how I look at it.”
Power forward is another point of interest, and yet another position where Woodson has some interesting choices to make. The Knicks seem to play pretty solid small ball, with Anthony at the four, but also have more options this season, with names like Metta World Peace, Andrea Bargnani, and what is hopefully a healthy Amar’e Stoudemire.
Although I’m sure the Knicks will let both Stoudemire and Bargnani see minutes at the five, behind Chandler. The shuffling units that the Knicks could implement this season are very intriguing to say the least.
“Melo is a player. I could play him at the [two-guard] and he’d be just fine. I don’t know where I’m going to play him yet,” Woodson said. “I’ll play him, I know that, but we have to find two other bodies that fit that starting lineup and who that’s going to be at this point, I don’t know.”
Woodson understands the variety of units he can run with this current roster, and seeing multiple, different looks every night wouldn’t surprise me. Felton, Melo, Metta, Bargnani and Chandler would give the Knicks extreme size, while units like Felton, Smith, Melo, Amar’e and Bargnani could give the Knicks a relentless offensive force. But, I’d expect to see units like Felton, Shump, Melo, Metta and Chandler when the Knicks see the likes on the Indiana Pacers. Something with a bit of defensive force. A lineup the Knicks seemingly lacked last season.
Woodson has many decisions to make before the season kicks off in late October.