There's been a lot of change for the New York Knicks ever since the 2013-2014 season ended.
Phil Jackson came in, took over as the president of basketball operations and hired his former Los Angeles Lakers point guard Derek Fisher to be his new head coach and made a lot of changes to the roster; a roster that many thought needed to be cleaned out in order for the Knicks to reload for the future.
But one of those changes didn't include letting Carmelo Anthony walk out the door and into the arms of a team like the Miami Heat or Chicago Bulls; as Jackson realized the Knicks needed Melo going forward for their present and future, which is why he got a five-year, $124 million extension.
Despite the changes to the team around Anthony, the Knicks star forward is still being realistic though, as he told the media this past week that he doesn't expect to see his team hoisting the NBA Finals trophy this season.
"That is something that takes time, and everything has to be in sync, from the front office to the players," he said. We have a lot of work to do, but that is something that motivates me. I know we can start creating the basis for what we want to accomplish eventually. And this is a great start for the process.”
The roster will have a bit of a new feel to it; Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton were dealt, Travis Outlaw, Samuel Dalembert and Jose Calderon were traded for and the team drafted Cleanthony Early this past summer to go along with J.R. Smith, Tim Hardaway, Jr., Iman Shumpert and Amar'e Stoudemire; moves that Melo said were subtle, but good to make.
"I thought our front office did a great job of really trying to put the team together not as far as going to get big names, but trying to get pieces that fit into the system that they are going to be incorporating. I was very excited about the moves that they made and the players that they have on the team. … This is a new beginning for me. This is a new chapter of my life. Although I’m back with the Knicks I do feel like this is a new opportunity for me and for the team and for the city, so I’m definitely excited to get that going.”
Many are still surprised that Shumpert has not been traded along with Stoudemire, although finding a trade partner who could take on both of their contracts seems like a very envious task, which is why both remain on the Knicks for the time being.
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