I can't tell you how good this feels.
Ok, now that that's done, it's time to get down to business and as we've learned time and time again, that business is the game of basketball. Knicks basketball.
So here are a few things to keep in mind. I know that this is the first order of business around here, but can I ask that the Fire Mike D'Antoni stuff wait until they lose their first game?
Before then the roster still has to be completed and (thanks to Chris Sheridan) the parameters of the deal include two important talking points as it relates to the Knicks.
Owners dropped their insistence on what would have been known as the Carmelo Anthony rule, preventing teams from executing extend-and-trade deals similar to the one that sent Anthony from the Denver Nuggets to the New York Knicks last season. This means that if Dwight Howard, Deron Williams and Chris Paul want to leverage their way out of Orlando, New Jersey and New Orleans, they will still be eligible to sign four-year extensions with their current teams before being immediately traded elsewhere.The amnesty clause is key for the Knicks. People have mentioned possibly using it on Chauncey Billups, but that's ridiculous, Balkman is the player who will moved, and if the Knicks had kept Corey Brewer and signed him to an extended multi-million dollar deal he would have been chopped anyway. I know, the Knicks could have used him in the playoffs, but his agent wanted a place to land him a deal before bargaining. More business.
Teams above the salary cap will be able to offer four-year mid-level exception contracts to free agents each season. Previously, owners were asking that teams be limited to offering a four-year deal one year, a three-year deal the next, then four, then three, etc.
The deal also includes an amnesty provision, which will allow teams to cut one player from their roster whose salary will not fully count against the salary cap or luxury tax.
The MLE was always going to be in play here because big market teams have to spend and they have to be rewarded for spending. But this is the trick. The Knicks have to use it on a one-year deal which brings players like Kurt Thomas or Jeff Foster into play. Source tells TKB that Foster doesn't appear to be in the plans in Indy and Kurt Thomas would love to return to NY. What about a cheaper, more creative option?
I'd also look closely at Chuck Hayes, who may be looking for more years and there in lies the problem. This MLE has to be used on a 1 year deal if you are under the impression that the Knicks can land CP3 or Howard, and when you do the (quick) math it would appear as if the Knicks can make a play for a 3rd star. The great Dan from KnicksFanBlog has more here.
I, myself, think that if the Knicks keep Shawne Williams and Turiaf, and maybe Jared Jeffries, who sources say isn't sure where he stands within the organization's plans, they should turn their attention to a perimeter shooter.And that's not even mentioning Jerome Jordan and Jorts. Even with the addition of Shumpert the Knicks need someone who can stretch the floor, a roll that Roger Mason was expected to fill next year. As it relates to balance they need someone to play 15-20 minutes and be a stretch player from the perimeter. Unless they expect Toney Douglas to play more off the ball this year. Maybe Landry Fields has improved this off season.
As you can see there are a lot of questions and I have to say, I'm so freekin' happy to begin the attempt to start to try to help answer them. Fan of the coach or not, I think real Knicks fans are hoping for a season similar to the one that occurred the last time CBA negotiations went down, at least the last part of the season.