The New York Knicks need a starting point guard, much to the secret of absolutely nobody. Despite plenty of optimism at the time of the signing less than 12 months ago, trading Kemba Walker on draft night was the final full stop on that failed acquisition.
Walker was ultimately a short-term solution to a long-term problem. Now, yet another offseason rolls around with fans asking for a sustainable solution to an issue that’s plagued the franchise for over a decade.
Before Walker, the Knicks had Elfrid Payton who, despite having some good moments with the Knicks, ultimately left the team to become the third point guard on the Phoenix Suns.
3 best point guard options for the New York Knicks to pursue
Before him was a myriad of young, athletic point guards who were simply incapable of running an NBA offense efficiently – Emmanuel Mudiay, Dennis Smith Jr., and Frank Ntilikina.
In 2016-17, a newly-acquired Derrick Rose labeled the Knicks a superteam. They promptly finished with a 31-51 record as the former MVP left the team after just one season.
The Knicks had continued their push for experienced point-guards earlier in the decade, with superstar Carmelo Anthony joined by a range of primary ball-handlers in Jarrett Jack, Jose Calderon, and Raymond Felton.
By this point, you get the idea. The fact Walker didn’t work out should now, in retrospect, come as no surprise given New York’s track record. After the team and Walker agreed to sideline him after just 37 games, coach Tom Thibodeau simply went away from even attempting other point-guard options.
The Knicks’ best starting lineup throughout the season was the combination of Alec Burks, Evan Fournier, RJ Barrett, Julius Randle, and Mitchell Robinson. That starting unit won 13 of 25 games, while the team itself finished 37-45 and 11th in the Eastern Conference.
Still, Burks isn’t a sustainable answer for that position. For a team with such little success over the last few decades, it’s mind-blowing the lack of long-term outlook from the front office. The statistical impacts emanating from poor roster construction seemingly continue to fall on deaf ears.