The few weeks of “Linsanity” last year, the Knicks offense was really not all that great. The Knicks were winning because they were playing good defense and getting enough points with Jeremy Lin running a pick-and-roll heavy offense with Tyson Chandler and shooters like Steve Novak around the floor.
Chandler likes the Knicks point guards better this year because they are running the offense, and in telling that to the New York Post he said the rookie Lin wasn’t the floor general the Knicks needed. From Newsday:
Chandler said the Knicks didn’t have a point guard to get himself, Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire the ball in their comfort zones last season. In Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd, the Knicks have experienced floor leaders who already have made a difference through the first four days of training camp…
“Baron (Davis) was hurt and Jeremy was a young point guard who was just learning, trying to learn and figure out an offense,” Chandler said. “It was nothing against them and it was definitely nothing against Baron…. Jeremy was a young point guard who was inexperienced, who brought a great light to the organization. But as far as being able to run the offense and putting players in the right position he just wasn’t there.”
Chandler is right, and the fact the Knicks never went out and got a quality point guard to run D’Antoni’s system really speaks to a failing of management. If you’re going to hire a system coach, then get him the players to fit that system, not different players then tell him to adjust.
Also, Chandler praised Lin plenty last year when Lin was a Knick. But that was then, this is now.
We’ll see how much having a more experienced set of point guards helps the Knicks offense, or if they run into the same challenges of trying to get Anthony, Stoudemire and Chandler to play off each other well. I’m not sold the point guard was the issue, but maybe the spacing and interaction will be better.