Mar 7, 2012; San Antonio, TX, USA; New York Knicks forward Amar
I know Amare Stoudemire has had numerous knee problems as well as other injuries, but you can’t ignore the fact that when healthy, he’s one of the best power forwards in the game. And what spot do the Houston Rockets need to upgrade the most? You got it, power forward.
The New York Knicks are 13-4 so far this season and that’s without Stoudemire in the lineup. If someone was willing to take on his salary the Knicks would be welcome to dump his contract on someone else. That’s the biggest problem for the Rockets. Are they willing to take on almost $20 million Amare is owed this season with two years remaining? Will Amare be able to stay healthy for the next three seasons? Would it all be worth it?
In order for this trade to work the Rockets wouldn’t just have to take on that huge contract, they would have to give up some pieces as well. Patrick Patterson has had his best season so far in his career but it’s still not anything special. His rebounding, toughness and defense are very poor. He hardly ever plays big and always settles for jump shots. Marcus Morris has shown signs of being a great scorer, but has also shown signs of being immature and not ready to take on a large role. Terrence Jones and Donatas Motiejunas need more time to groom and let’s not even get into the Royce White situation.
If I was the Rockets I would offer Patrick Patterson, Marcus Morris, possibly another player and maybe even a pick to sweeten the deal. It may seem like a lot and a bit of a gamble but the Rockets have shown they need more talent to be able to compete with the big guys on a nightly basis.
Amare just barely turned 30 years old. If he can stay healthy he should at least be his usual self until his contract is up. He would be reunited with former teammate Jeremy Lin, who he played very well with in New York. Stoudemire thrives in a pick and roll offense, so does Jeremy Lin and James Harden. These three guys could eat up their opponent’s defense on a nightly basis with that offense.
Amare’s defense and rebounding are not above average by any means, but he’s better than Patrick Patterson. He can also block a shot or two on a nightly basis. Amare is also the better shooter, scorer and has plenty of toughness. Last season with the Knicks Amare averaged 17 points on 48% shooting, 7.8 rebounds and 1 block in 32 minutes a game. On the Rockets Amare’s averages would go back up to his career averages of 21 points a game as he would be the second option offensively behind Harden. You wouldn’t need to ask much from Amare on the defensive end or rebounding with Omer Asik manning the painted area.
I really do believe this would be the perfect fit for Stoudemire. He needs a team that believes in him and that needs him badly. If he was traded to Houston he would become highly motivated and ready to prove doubters wrong. He just needs to stay healthy. If he can do that I would make this deal immediately.