Derrick Rose, the newest guard for the New York Knicks, has been very outspoken and optimistic about the future of his new team. He went as far to say that they and the Golden State Warriors are the only two superteams in the NBA, and the boldness continued on Tuesday.
In an interview with Jared Zwerling of the NBPA, Derrick Rose had nothing but praise for the abilities of all the guys on the roster:
I think [Carmelo Anthony] is going to make the game way easy for the entire team, and that leaves everybody open on the other side, the weak side. You add shooters to that, you add just other threats on the floor, and you’re going to be a dangerous team. And my job is to just come in and just be a point guard. I think it’s the most talented team I’ve played on, even though I haven’t played with them yet—just looking at the stat sheet, working out with them. So my job is to come in and get everybody going, then have my spot where I can try to dominate the game.
This is quite the statement. Back during his days with the Chicago Bulls, they were the only team that was seen as competition to Miami in the Eastern Conference. Not only was Rose playing at an MVP level, but Luol Deng was in his prime and averaging greater than 17 points per game while being a lockdown defender. You can’t forget about Joakim Noah, either, who was a game changer on defense when he was healthy.
Injuries decimated their roster, though, and they only had that one fantastic season. If everyone stayed healthy, they would’ve caused major problems in the East.
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In their current state, New York can’t compete with that. Carmelo Anthony, who is still productive, is a shell of himself. Kristaps Porzingis hasn’t peaked yet, and there isn’t much help outside of Noah and Courtney Lee on the defensive end. On paper, if everyone were in their primes, this team would be incredibly talented–so talented, in fact, that they’d have a legitimate chance of representing the East in the Finals.
Think about it: at their best, Rose is an MVP candidate, Carmelo is the best scorer in basketball, and Noah is of the league’s top rim protectors. This doesn’t account for Porzingis, either, and no one knows what he’s going to be like in three or four years.
I must commend Rose for being so bold in his opinions. He sounds like he really believes in his new team, and confidence like that is something the Knicks have been missing for the last few seasons. Ever since they finished 54-28 three years ago, the Knicks have swum in mediocrity, and Rose’s positive outlook is giving life back to the fans, city, and, hopefully, the organization.
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Contrarily, due to the bright lights of New York City and the ruthlessness of the media, if they don’t produce he’ll be ripped apart with no hesitation.