Joakim Noah hasn’t been in the headlines for quite a while. This last season with the Bulls was an utter disappointment to say the least. Noah offers a lot to a team; he’s energetic, he hustles, and he’s scrappy. He basically does all of the little things, and he does them very well. Noah fit Coach Thibodeau’s system perfectly, but was lost in the coaching change. Now, as a free agent, he is more than happy to put the last two years behind him, and remind teams why he was once, a highly sought after big.
The Wizards and Knicks are at the front end of the teams pursuing him, but the Warriors and Spurs have shown interest as well. As of today the Knicks have emerged as the clear favorite to sign Noah. I think this is clearly the best decision for Noah and his career. The Knicks will be able to offer him $18 million, and a chance to flourish in the ‘Triangle System’. Noah’s passing, and vision will be valuable assets for the Knicks especially in the ‘Triangle Offense’.
Not only do the Knicks offer Noah a nice little contract, but also a chance for him to return home (he was born in New York City), and to join forces with his old buddy, Derrick Rose. Neither Derrick Rose, nor Joakim Noah seemed happy on the Bulls once Coach Thibodeau left, and i believe this fresh start will be enough to revitalize their careers. Derrick Rose enters this season the healthiest that he has been since his MVP season in 2011, and Noah, who has also struggled with injuries, comes into this year off of ten months of rest.
Let’s not forget about Carmelo Anthony either. Carmelo, at the age of 32, is still one of the best scorers in the league. Although, last year was his lowest PPG average since his second year in the league (21.8 PPG), he averaged a career high in assists, as well as his second lowest turnover rate in his career. He accomplished this on arguably the weakest supporting cast in his career, with the second best scoring option being rookie phenom Kristaps Porzingis.
The addition of another scorer, Derrick Rose, will definitely increase Carmelo’s production, as it will take significant pressure off of him. If they are able to add Noah to the equation, it gives them significant chances of competing with the Cavaliers in the East.
Joakim Noah won’t be relied upon to score, as he never has in his career, but his rebounding, hustle, and rim protection would compliment Melo, Rose, and Porzingis, nicely. It would be a great move for the knicks and their president Phil Jackson, who has taken a lot of heat since taking over the position. First, for hiring Derek Fisher, who failed miserably as the Knicks coach, and also, for drafting Porzingis with last years fourth overall pick (a move that turned out to be a good one in the end). The Knicks most recently hired Jeff Hornacek, who in 2013, took the league by surprise, coaching the mediocre Suns to a 48-34 record.
With three proven scorers, and a proven coach to complete the mix, things are looking bright for the Knicks. The addition of Joakim Noah at center would be the cherry on top for biggest market in the NBA. All that would be left for the Knicks is a few solid role players and watch out LeBron!