With Jeff Hornacek on board as the Knicks head coach next season, many expect the team to play at a much faster pace.
Carmelo Anthony has already said he’s looking forward to the up-tempo offense, but the Knicks have a glaring question at the point guard position.
Jerian Grant is a youngster who should be able to run a faster offense, athletically speaking, but he struggled mightily for much of last year and looks at least a few years away from being a viable option at point for New York.
Then there’s veteran Jose Calderon who started 72 games for the Knicks last year. Calderon is getting up there in age a bit — he will be 35 when next season tips off — and seems to have a lost a step on both ends of the court. Many people have questioned whether he will be able to push the pace for the Hornacek-era Knicks.
Calderon doesn’t share those concerns.
“I can fit any system, that’s not my problem. Fast, slow, whatever,” Calderon told NBC Sports. “As the point guard, I try to run my team and do the best for my teammates. That’s all I can do. That’s my job. “
The 34-year-old is just happy to know who will be pacing the sideline for his team next season.
“I’m happy to have a coach,” Calderon said. “I’m happy he is an ex-player as well. It’s always kind of good to [have someone who relates] with what you’re going through, so sometimes that’s good. And, they played really good in Phoenix. You know, really fun basketball. Hopefully, we can play that way and have a little fun out there.”
While Calderon doesn’t have a personal relationship with Hornacek, he has heard good things from some of his peers.
So what can we expect from the Knicks next season?
“I think we got better this year and we are going to get better the next one, for sure,” Calderon told NBC Sports. “I think we are going in the right direction, but like I said, whatever he’s going to tell us to do, we are going to be ready to do it as a team.”
Calderon is currently back in Spain and is expected to suit up for his country this summer at the Rio Olympics.
Spain lost to Calderon’s Knicks teammate Carmelo Anthony and the United States in the Gold Medal Game in both 2008 and 2012, but he’s looking for redemption in Rio.
“Well, hopefully we can get a third chance [to face the U.S.] to get that medal,” Calderon said. “That could be amazing for us and hopefully we get there again.”