At least NY not shut out
Los Angeles Times
Amare Stoudemire, who agreed to a max-level deal with the Knicks on Monday, has turned into an uber civic booster, a one-man chamber of commerce president, vowing to reach out to LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Tony Parker.
But the preemptive strike, more than anything else, does save the Knicks from the worst-case scenario — total embarrassment. It probably won't make a difference in the LeBron Derby but at least the Knicks have emerged with something after strip-mining their roster to prep for the Summer of LeBron.
They have a chatty and persuasive pitchman in the form of Stoudemire.
At this rate, he'll have a sandwich named after him at the Carnegie Deli.
He's no franchise player
Ethan J. Skolnick
Amare Stoudemire has made his name as a finisher, turning many of Steve Nash's perfect passes into assists.
But in New York, he needs to be just the start.
Stoudemire is not a franchise player, not like Patrick Ewing was. You can't build your franchise on someone with brittle knees and defensive inadequacies. Even before his microfracture surgery — and while playing with the likes of Nash and Shawn Marion and Joe Johnson — Stoudemire couldn't get his team to the Finals.
For now, he makes the Knicks, at most, mildly relevant. It's still on Donnie Walsh to make them contenders, by adding at least two comparable pieces, including one at the point guard position like Chris Paul or Tony Parker. Otherwise, Stoudemire's empty baskets aren't likely to fill Madison Square Garden.
Special, but no splash
Once LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh announce their decisions, Boozer should be the next domino to fall. Simply put, there is more money available than top-tier free agents. The teams that miss out in the James/Wade/Bosh sweepstakes could line up for Boozer's services.
Stoudemire's impending signing will help the Knicks in the short term — on the court and at the gate — but he's definitely not the free-agent splash the franchise wanted when it cleared all that salary-cap space. Stoudemire earned praise for helping the Suns to the Western Conference finals, but his past injury issues make him a risk.
Better than nothing
The Knicks had to do something splashy and adding an All-Star power forward with charisma qualifies. You can't sell two years of hope to your fan base without delivering something.
Signing Amare Stoudemire doesn't make up for the past two dreadful seasons. And it most likely won't deliver King James. But the Knicks are on the board.
These opportunities of ample cap space and this many All-Star players in their prime as free agents don't happen often. When they do, you can't be picky and choosy. So good for the Knicks.
Even without Steve Nash and his tendency to forget rebounding and defense at times, Stoudemire is a talent upgrade.