Kitchen Drawer: Welcome Amar’e Stoudemire: The Prince of a Town Called Madison Square
I’d like to take a second, so sit right there and I’ll tell you how he became The Prince of a town called Madison Square…
Hopefully, a King to follow soon. Power forward Amar’e Stoudemire will be joining the New York Knicks after agreeing to a five-year/$99.7 million contract. He won’t officially sign the contract until Thursday, the first day league rules allow players to do so. Although I prefer Chris Bosh’s overall game because of his rebounding and defense, Amar’e is ultimately the better fit for Coach Mike D’Antoni’s up-tempo, pick-and-roll, “seven seconds or less” style of play. He also craves the spotlight and wants the NYC pressure. Something not everyone is up for. I’ve lived in Phoenix for the past ten years after living in Jersey and have adopted the Suns as my secondary NBA team. I’ve seen Amar’e for his entire career and promise New Yorkers that he will electrify the building at 4 Penn Plaza. He throws it down harder than anyone the Garden has ever called their own and will light up MSG. He’s a TOP 5, offensive big man in the NBA and is an instant upgrade to the Knicks roster. He immediately becomes the franchise player for my rebuilding Knicks and is better than any other “sidekick” LeBron could team with including: Derrick Rose, Brook Lopez or Blake Griffen. His much questioned defense should also improve with the addition of a natural center to play alongside.
STAT (Standing Tall And Talented) is the first piece in a potentially devasting pick-and-roll combo. LeBron James is the ultimate goal. He would play the “Steve Nash” role running the point. Pick and drive to the rim, throwing it down with great authority – spinning and winning, cramming and jamming. Or Amar’e rolling for alley-oop after alley-oop after alley-oop. Or perhaps kicking it out to my man, Danilo Gallinari, the 6′10”, 21-year-old Italian, for wide open looks all day at the threeball… Who you ask?
People call Gallinari a shooter. He shot 38% from 3 last season while making the second most in the NBA. He has range to the logo, he’s underrated as a defender, can play with an attitude (ask KG or Melo), has upside and had better numbers than Rashard Lewis, Hedo Turkoglu and Peja Stojakovic in their respective second-years. Basketball wise, with LBJ (or a solid point guard), Amar’e, Gallinari as a potential third, maybe fourth option, Wilson, TD and some other pieces – I put that up against anyone else in the league – ask Chris Sheridan too. You’d be surprised how superstar players make supporting players better. SEE: Robert Horry, James Posey, Daniel Gibson, Anderson Varejao, Glen Davis, Trevor Ariza, Shannon Brown… Lebron is a walking triple-double machine waiting to happen.
I’ve always thought for LeBron, it was staying home in CLE or bouncing for NYC. His heart is in CLE, but his head is in the lights and fame of NY. I hope. There’s CHI and MIA too. This may help his decision.
Amar’e is on board and you heard it here first – I’m calling him the Prince of Madison Square.
Here’s a little video for you Knicks’ fans out there. I also posted a mix of Gallinari’s season this past season, his first full-season, second overall in the NBA. Notice how this “soft-Euro/one-trick-pony/shooter” throws it down on the likes of Marvin Williams (0:36), John Salmons (1:54), Paul Pierce and Kendrick Perkins (2:29) and Roy Hibbert (3:37). I’m very excited.