New York Knicks Season Awards

The New York Knicks season has come to an end, finishing with a record of 17 wins and 65 losses. This placed the Knicks in the 15th spot in the Eastern Conference and 29th overall which gives the Knicks a 19.9% chance to win the 2015 NBA draft lottery. New York won just 5 from their first 41 games but won a solid 12 in the back end of the year. The Knicks had a few highs and bright spots in what was a down season.

So who takes the hardware home this season?

**As the roster was in complete flux and changing every second day the awards will be broken up into pre and post All-Star Weekend**

Pre All-Star Weekend

Zimbio
Zimbio

MVP

Carmelo Anthony

Not one other player came close to challenging Carmelo Anthony for the MVP award. Anthony appeared in 40 games averaging 24.2 points per game, 6.6 rebounds per game, 3.1 assists per game and 1 steal per game en route to an eighth All-Star selection. Anthony led the team with a 21.8 player efficiency rating. During the first half of the year Anthony had virtually no help on the offensive end and was forced into handling the bulk of the offense. Despite being double and tripled team regularly he was still able to put up 24 points a night on 44% shooting from the field.

Anthony’s attitude was surprisingly good despite his team being horrid. He most certainly embraced the role as being a veteran teaching the young-ins. Anthony played within the system and constantly moved the ball and gave everybody an equal opportunity. As Phil Jackson would said, he didn’t go rogue on a consistent basis. Being an MVP is not all about the numbers, Anthony’s leadership and positivity during the toughest stretch of his career should not go unnoticed.

New York Daily News
New York Daily News

Sixth Man of the Year

Amar’e Stoudemire

Amar’e Stoudemire won this award in a runaway. Prior to being bought-out and signing with the Mavericks, the former face of the franchise gave the Knicks 12 points and 7 rebounds on 54% shooting a game in a reduced role off the pine. Stoudemire provided a much needed boost off the bench as the starting five constantly struggled to put points on the board. He was able to provide instant offense and most importantly Stoudemire took pressure off of Anthony.

Stoudemire, who is notorious for being a non-factor when rebounding, was able to finish off defensive possessions. He was also able to get good positioning on the offensive glass which enabled for some easy, second chance buckets. Amar’e seemed to have regained those youthful legs averaging 1.2 blocks per game. The former All-Star was the only player from the second unit to consistently score the basketball and Amar’e was doubled on a regular basis. He was New York’s most valuable bench player.

Charlotte Observer
Charlotte Observer

Defensive Player of the Year

Samuel Dalembert

It’s no secret that the Knicks struggled defensively all year long but throughout the first part of the year Samuel Dalembert was the rock in the middle. The Haitian big man averaged 1.4 blocks per game and 4.5 defensive rebounds per game. He had some success challenging and changing shots in the paint but Dalembert had virtually no competition in this one.

Dalembert was vocal on defense and defended solidly on the pick-and-roll and he used his big frame to his advantaged. Dalembert was formidable on the low block and was virtually immovable, he played good one-on-one defense but there was nothing the Haitian could do when his teammates let their opponent walk straight to the basket uncontested when his back was turned.

Texan Gazette
Texan Gazette

Rookie of the Year

Travis Wear

Travis Wear had no competition whatsoever for this award as he was the only rookie to appear consistently for the first half of the year. Cleanthony Early being injured made it a formality. He went undrafted out of UCLA and impressed Phil Jackson during the summer league and pre-season leading to Outlaw being traded to make room for him. Wear played well on both ends of the court and he was New York’s second best perimeter defender behind Iman Shumpert.

Wear had a smooth jumper and it improved as his confidence grew. He played team basketball and always looked to make the pass. The Californian played solid on ball defense – highlighted by him silencing LeBron James in his second career game. Wear found himself a regular in the rotation due to what would be classified as stellar play for an un-drafted rook.

NBC Sports
NBC Sports

Most Improved Player

Shane Larkin

Larkin only played sparingly in Dallas but he ended up starting the first 12 games of the regular season and 22 games overall. He displayed a nice touch from mid and long range and Larkin’s ability to penetrate and create was a breath of fresh air for the fans. It also helped that he had confidence in himself and Larkin was not hesitant, but decisive. The former Hurricane created plays for not just himself but for his teammates as well.

Larkin was a pest defensively and he consistently tore the ball from his opponents hands. His defensive awareness was also first-class highlighted by his ability to anticipate the play. Larkin was able to get into the passing lane creating steals but he also knew when to leave his man and blind side the offensive player. Larkin was the first point guard off the bench for Derrick Fisher’s squad and he earnt minutes, they weren’t given to him.

Post All-Star Weekend

TheState.com
TheState.com

MVP

Langston Galloway

Galloway was the brightest spot for the Knicks this year and he was the underdog story of the year. Galloway was called up to the Knicks in January and he appeared in 45 games and started in 41 of those. Despite being a rookie Galloway embraced and took on the role as being the leader of the Knicks on both ends of the court. He provided smooth shooting and penetration on the offensive end and he was by no means afraid of the tall trees inside. Galloway was able to draw the defense which allowed him to create for others. His best aspect of his offensive game is that he was born with the clutch gene.

Defensively Galloway was a terrific on ball defender, like Larkin he had quick hands and saw where the ball was going before it got there. Galloway is also a terrific rebounder for a guard, he has a knack as to which way the ball will bounce and where it would end up. The St. Joseph’s product displayed a terrific all-round game both physically and mentally as well as both on and off the court. The un-drafted rookie was a runaway MVP for the Knicks during the back half of the year.

Miami Herald
Miami Herald

Sixth Man of the Year

Shane Larkin

After Derek Fisher solidified his rotation Larkin embraced being the director of the second unit. Down the stretch of this season Larkin had 5+ assists in 9 of the last 14 games and he became more confident with his stroke. Once he got comfortable Larkin seemed fearless out on the court, he was diving for every last ball and Larkin challenged and often beaten the opposition bigs inside. Larkin posted double digit points in 9 of the last 14 games and he also contributed on the boards.

Larkin was playing beyond his years, in other words he was mature and did not resemble a 2nd year player but that of a crafty veteran. The former Maverick found himself logging big minutes in the last month or so of the season and made his mark. Larkin showcased his all-round game which was highlighted by a 15 points, 11 rebound and 7 assist game against the 76ers earlier in the month. He also gave Phil Jackson something to think about over the summer (Larkin becomes and un-restricted free agent on July 1st).

CMG Digital
CMG Digital

Defensive Player of the Year

Cole Aldrich

When Aldrich is locked in and focused you seem glimpses as to why he was the 11th overall selection in 2010. Off the court Cole is a relaxed and humorous fellow and when this personality is out on the court with him it’s obvious why his minutes fluctuate. He played in 61 games this year and posted 5.5 points per game, 5.5 rebounds per game and 1.1 block per game. Aldrich had a great player efficiency rating of 18.16.

After the midseason break Aldrich re-entered the rotation and posted a very solid 1.8 blocks per game. In the season finale he also pulled down 15 rebounds, 7 of which were on the offensive glass. Aldrich’s production for how much court time he received is quite incredible. The former Jayhawk clogged the lane and made it difficult for opposing players to score. Aldrich is a superb help-defender as he regularly comes from the weak side to block shots. In all you could say that Aldrich has perfect timing on the defensive end.

Boston Herald
Boston Herald

Rookie of the Year

Langston Galloway

I mean, is this even a question? Galloway went undrafted after four solid years with St Joseph’s and he made a name for himself almost instantaneously. He averaged 11.8 points per game, 3.3 assists per game and 4.4 rebounds per game in 45 games, 41 in which he started. Galloway wasn’t just a stud offensively either, he displayed an all-round, polished game and his skills are exactly what Phil Jackson and the Knicks are after. He will be part of the Knicks for years to come.

Galloway had his struggles at times offensively but for the most part he shot the ball well from the perimeter and his ability to finish in the paint is quite spectacular. He quickly realised that he needed to add a floater to his arsenal and he did so before the conclusion of the year. Galloway was the Knicks best perimeter defender after the all-star break but he still has work to do on his off-ball defense. Galloway’s ability to grab rebounds is a tremendous asset as no other guard impacted the glass as much as he did. In 45 games as un-drafted rookie Galloway had a player efficiency rating of 12.36.

The Fumble
The Fumble

Most Improved Player

Alexey Shved

The Knicks acquired Shved at the trade deadline and New York was his third team for the season. The Russian earned a starting role and improved out of sight and he didn’t disappoint. Shved had barely spent any time on the hardwood post his rookie year. To put it into perspective Shved was posting 5 points and less than 1 rebound and 1 assist per game with Philadelphia and Hoston, but with New York Shved averaged 14.8 points per game, 4.6 rebounds per game and 3.6 assists per game on 38% shooting from behind the ark.

Shved was seemingly a throw-in piece from the Rockets but he certainly made the most of his opportunity in New York. Shved went from zero to hero in a hurry. Nobody thought that when Shved would put himself on the map like this. He went from being nothing but a scrub to a player who is going to attract plenty of attention in free agency if his qualifying offer is withdrawn.

Other and comical Awards

Teammate of the Year

Pre: Pablo Prigioni
Post: Lou Amundson

Most Enthusiastic Celebrator of the Year

Pre: Iman Shumpert
Post: Tim Hardaway Jr

Shaqutin’ a Fool – Most Embarrassing Moment

Pre: J.R. Smith – pass to Jason Smith’s face
Post: Alexey Shved – sky ball against Detroit that was apparently a shot

Trash Talker of the Year

Pre: Quincy Acy
Post: Tim Hardaway Jr

Most Outstanding Player in a Contract Year Award

Pre: Iman Shumpert
Post: Andrea Bargnani

Disappointment of the Year

Pre: Jose Calderon
Post: Jose Calderon

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s