The New York Knicks are ranked 11th in Chad Ford and John Hollinger’s 11th edition of their “Future Power Rankings.” These rankings are designed to project “the on-court success expected for each team during the 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons.” The ESPN duo rate teams according to the following areas and scores: players (0-400); management (0-200); money (0-200); market (0-100); and draft (0-100).
Quite frankly, the rankings and scoring seem exceedingly arbitrary, but they do provide filler for a lull in summer B-ball conversations just as much as Shaq becoming a Celtic in the twi-light of his career does. Do you think the Knicks future is brighter than Ford and Hollinger project? Some see Ford and Hollinger as Knicks haters. What do you think about their assumptions?
11. New York Knicks | Future Power Rating: 523
The Knicks didn’t hit the home run they were hoping for this summer in free agency, but they still significantly improved their roster. In fact, the Knicks moved up a whopping 12 spots in our player ratings, the most of any team this summer. Of course, the fact that they ranked 27th out of 30 in March puts the major move forward into perspective.
Last season, the Knicks didn’t have a lot going for them as they tried to keep the payroll lean in an attempt to lure two superstars to New York. The addition of Amare Stoudemire, Anthony Randolph, Raymond Felton and Ronny Turiaf to holdover Knicks Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, Toney Douglas and Bill Walker should make a significant impact in the win column.
But the summer rebuilding effort wasn’t enough to propel the Knicks into the overall top 10 in our future rankings. Knicks fans might have been hoping for more after years of waiting, but ranking fourth in the East (11th overall) means that fans should eventually get to see their team win a playoff series for the first time since 2000.
The good news for the Knicks is that the team will retain some cap flexibility in the future. Once Eddy Curry comes off the books next summer, the Knicks should have enough money to make another significant addition (assuming the new CBA allows it) or could use Curry’s expiring contract as a trading chip at the deadline.
The bad news for the Knicks is that they paid a high price to get Amare and Co. this summer. The team lost All-Star forward David Lee in the Anthony Randolph swap and traded 2009 lottery pick Jordan Hill in February to create cap space (as part of the Tracy McGrady deal). The Rockets now have the right to swap picks with the Knicks in 2011 and own the Knicks’ 2012 first-round pick as well (though it’s top-five protected). That has pushed the Knicks to No. 29 in our draft category.