The New York Knicks 2013 preseason schedule is underway, and as always, Empire Writes back is here to break down what you should feel good about, and what should leave you scratching your head in the 2013 New York Knicks training camp preview.
Who’s In: Jeremy Tyler*, Ike Diogu*, Cole Aldrich*, Josh Powell*
Who’s Out: Marcus Camby (Traded)
Projected Depth Chart: Tyson Chandler, Ike Diogu*, Cole Aldrich*, Josh Powell*, Jeremy Tyler*
*Strong candidate to be cut prior to season
How it all breaks down
One of the most glaring offseason needs for the Knicks front office was to find a legitimate backup center to play behind Tyson Chandler, who after logging heavy minutes last season, broke down late in the year and was hardly effective in the playoffs. (Side Note: What’s the under/over on the number of Roy Hibbert nightmares that Tyson Chandler has on a weekly basis? I say 3, let’s move on.)
Unfortunately for Tyson Chandler and the rest of the Knicks roster this need went unaddressed. During summer league in Las Vegas it looked as if the Knicks just might have stumbled into a young athletic big man in Jeremy Tyler, that is before Tyler cracked a bone in his left foot, causing him to miss all of training camp, and making him a long shot to make the roster.
After the injury to Jeremy Tyler, the Knicks found themselves in “Let’s see how much s*@t we can throw against the wall and hope something sticks” mode. So far that plan is not looking so good.
Currently, the Knicks have Former lottery pick Cole Aldrich, Ike Diogu, and Josh Powell as their options at backup center. While Aldrich’s pedigree gives him a leg up on the competition, Diogu has probably looked the best of the group, although that’s not saying much. Josh Powell has looked serviceable, and showed the hustle that you want out of a player fighting for his NBA life, but in the end the talent is just not there in Powell’s case.
With a log-jam at power forward, Knicks head coach Mike Woodson could go in a different direction if he chooses. Kenyon Martin served as an undersized but effective backup last season, it just seems unlikely that Kenyon will be able to play 15-18 mpg and stay healthy throughout an 82 game campaign.
The other options involve Amar’e Stoudemire and Andrea Bargnani. So yeah, that’s not good.
The best case scenario for the Knicks is that either Aldrich or Tyler work our for them, and allow Mike Woodson to limit Chandler’s minutes during the regular season. If the team cannot find an effective backup to Chandler, it could look very ugly down low if Tyson is ever forced to miss time with an injury.