Felton Returning To NY?
The Knicks undoubtedly need help in the back court. Outside of a small stretch of Linsanity, the Knicks struggled with ball movement and offensive fluidity all season. Felton will be able to help in those areas.
This wouldn't be Felton's first stint with the Knicks. During the NBA's most absurd free agency period of all-time, during which names like LeBron, Wade, and Stoudemire hit the open market, there was one guy no one was talking about that I knew I wanted. That guy was Raymond Felton.
Felton was selected 5th overall by the Bobcats in one of the league's best point guard draft classes, as Deron Williams and Chris Paul were selected 3rd and 4th. Felton went on to put up solid numbers for the Bobcats, averaging 13.3 points and 6.4 assists in his five seasons there. Keep in mind that he was playing alongside little to no talent. I had seen him play, I liked his game, and I knew I wanted him on my team.
He wore a Knicks uniform for only 54 games, but he played the best he ever had, averaging 17.1 points and 9 assists. He was then shipped to Denver in the Carmelo Anthony trade, where he didn't have as much success (11.5 points, 6.5 assists).
I want Felton back. I wanted Nash, and I would have liked Dragic or Kidd, but now Felton is the best available and I want him signed. A lot of people say that he was only good on the Knicks because he was in Mike D'Antoni's "point guard friendly" system. I don't buy that for one second.
Aside from Steve Nash, how many point guards have been good under D'Antoni? Toney Douglas? Yeah, that guy's awesome.
Chauncey Billups averaged one more point per game and .2 more assists than he did in Denver after being shipped to New York and playing for D'Antoni.
Stephon Marbury was on the Suns when D'Antoni got his first head coaching job, and Marbury put up the same numbers he always had.
Steve Nash has led the league in assists twice since D'Antoni left Phoenix, so you can't credit D'Antoni for all of Nash's success.
Who else is there? No one.
I wouldn't expect Felton to put up the same numbers he did during his first stint with the Knicks, especially considering he'll be playing less minutes due to the presence of Jeremy Lin. However, I think he could be similarly efficient. He's a strong dude who can get it in the paint, make an open shot, and find guys for good looks at the basket; that's all I want.