Charles Barkley gives the Knicks offseason a thumbs-up.
LAS VEGAS — Maybe they’re not so “turrible” after all.
Enduring Knicks hater Charles Barkley has changed his tune about Phil Jackson’s squad, hailing the Zen Master’s low-key, forward thinking moves of the summer during the NBA-TV broadcast of the schedule release Wednesday evening.
“I actually disagree with all the critics of the Knicks,” Sir Charles said. “I think the Knicks should be on national television this year. They actually got NBA players.”
The NBA and its broadcast partners apparently don’t share Barkley’s enthusiasm for Carmelo Anthony, Robin Lopez, Arron Afflalo and Kristaps Porzinigis, scheduling the Knicks for just seven appearances on the TNT, ESPN and ABC.
Knicks president Phil Jackson seemingly whiffed on the big NBA free agents this offseason, but Charles Barkley thinks the Knicks now ‘actually got NBA players’ on their roster.
Whether by design or failure, Jackson did not sign any of the top free agents of the 2015 class. One of the marquee names, LaMarcus Aldridge, was in line for an interview but was turned off by Jackson’s demand that he play center to further the development of Porzingis at power forward.
Jackson did meet with Greg Monroe and DeAndre Jordan, who signed with the Bucks and Clippers, respectively. The Knicks drafted Porzingis and point guard Jerian Grant, before spending their cap space on Lopez, Afflalo, Derrick Williams and Kyle O’Quinn.
Veteran guard Arron Afflalo comes to the Knicks on a two-year deal.
“I give Phil credit,” Barkley said. “He didn’t get any high-profile free agents, but Lopez is a heckuva player. I said the same thing about Grant. And Afflalo has been a solid player for six, seven years. I like what the Knicks did considering they didn’t get any big-time free agents.”
It’s safe to say Barkley — who is recovering from hip replacement surgery — didn’t feel the same way about New York during last season’s 17-65 disaster (or many seasons before that).
“There were times we showed the Knicks and they didn’t have any NBA players,” Barkley said. “And I’m not trying to badmouth the Knicks. They had players who should be in the D-League or overseas. That’s just a fact. They didn’t have any legitimate NBA players.”
This entry passed through the Full-Text RSS service – if this is your content and you’re reading it on someone else’s site, please read the FAQ at fivefilters.org/content-only/faq.php#publishers.Share: