Smack / Aug 26, 2012 / 5:58 am

Amar’e Is Only Getting Better; Derrick Favors Is Ready To Rise

Amar'e Stoudemire

Amar'e Stoudemire (photo. King Lawrence)

Before you write off the Knicks as fake contenders because they let Jeremy Lin walk in free agency and replaced him with The Point Guard Formerly Known As Raymond Felton, remember three things: New York has Carmelo Anthony, New York has Amar’e Stoudemire, and New York has Tyson Chandler. Is that the best frontcourt in the NBA? It’s very likely. Consider that the worst player of the trio, Chandler, is the reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year and fresh off a gold-medal run with the U.S. Olympic team. The other Knick on the Olympic team is capable of dropping 37 points in 14 minutes. And the one guy who doesn’t have a gold medal, Amar’e, all he did this summer was spend some time at Hakeem Olajuwon‘s boot camp learning to refine his post moves … Yesterday, Carmelo talked about Stoudemire’s summer schooling with Newsday: “Him going down there (the low-post) and putting me on the wing, now I get to play off of him rather than me going down there and him playing off of me, which could be a deadly weapon if it all works out.” … He’s right. Carmelo is arguably a better post scorer than anybody on the Heat, Celtics, Nets, Bulls, Pacers or any other team you consider a contender in the East. So if Amar’e emerges next season even better in the post than ‘Melo, the Knicks will be a serious problem for the rest of the conference … Speaking of problems, Blake Griffin says he’s back to 100 percent after the knee injury that cost him a trip to the Olympics. That’s a problem for the Western Conference and any mean-mugging seven-footers who feel like getting in Blake’s way underneath the rim … Jermaine O’Neal says his entire body is feeling better than it’s felt in years. We really don’t know exactly what the Phoenix Suns training staff is doing, but they’re obviously miracle workers. You could send the Suns’ trainers over to The Walking Dead and they’d have everybody competing in triathlons within two months … Hit the jump to read about the next big thing in Utah…

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