Via Ian Begley
Haddadi over Tyler?
The 7-foot-2 Haddadi, according to the source, had been “in talks with the Knicks a bunch over the last few weeks.” But he wasn’t able to visit New York because he was busy in the Philippines participating in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship, of which he was named MVP.
It’s worth noting that Haddadi’s agent, Marc Cornstein, also represents two of the latest Knicks acquisitions, Metta World Peace and Beno Udrih. Haddadi, like other experienced NBA free-agent big men available, might also have an advantage with the Knicks because Jeremy Tyleris signed to a partially guaranteed contract. That could allow a player such as Haddadi to become the main backup center behind Tyson Chandler and Chris Smith, J.R.’s younger brother, to lock up the 15th roster spot.
The source close to Haddadi believes that J.R.’s deal came with the understanding that Chris would make the team.
“I could still see Chris being on [the roster] at the end of day,” the source said.
The question is: Would the Knicks give Tyler a shot — developing a young big is not part of Mike Woodson’s reputation — or instead bring on a veteran player like Haddadi, who is open to signing for the veteran’s minimum? That’s all the Knicks can offer.
This 15th spot business is starting to become cloudy. I am not sure why Chris Smith is EVER being considered in any form. If they made a deal with J.R. based on his brother Chris making the team, then they did a horrible job. Chris is not an NBA player at this point in his career, if ever. Furthermore, he has proven nothing to the Knicks in the last 2 summer leagues. You cannot justify signing him, especially since they are in need of a “big” to add depth to the center position.
As far as Haddadi goes, I understand the Knicks logic on size and length. Haddadi is a low minutes output player, but has the tools to make an impact in that short stint he will be in, but to say that Tyler is partially guaranteed, and the Knicks are not in the business of developing players for the long-term is foolish. The New York Knicks better get themselves together and start committing to players like Tyler for the long-term or they will be left in the dust by the elite teams who develop young talent while they compete for titles every year.
If the Knicks want to go from year to year with different aging rosters then they will never have a future while playing for the present. NY better get themselves right in the head before they give up on Tyler, for Haddadi or Chris Smith.
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