Your Knicks Free Agency Update

Joe Johnson's stock has dropped rapidly

The NBA playoffs are steaming through the second round with a slew of mismatches, offering little distraction to New York basketball fans trying not to get too far ahead of themselves while thinking about free agency to come. The only competitive series in progress at the moment is the one between the Cavaliers and Celtics, and anyone who says they are watching that simply to see basketball is a liar.

You're watching that, squinting your eyes and trying to imagine what LeBron James would like like if he plied his trade at Madison Square Garden. You're not alone, either. New York Magazine has devoted this week's issue to a love letter to James and they've compiled quite a list of reasons why the King should abdicate his Ohio throne for New York. There's the sandwich at the Carnegie Deli, the houses he could call home and a dozen other things that might appeal to the dreamiest of dream Knicks.

The one that might wind up making the best selling point is Mike D'Antoni. The man might not know how to draw up a defense and he might be a bit more gruff than you'd expect with such a friendly moustache, but Mike Brown isn't exactly putting on a clinic out there in Cleveland.

He's got the biggest weapon in the NBA and a more talented roster than Boston, yet the series is up for grabs because he refuses to exploit either one of those advantages on a regular basis. What's more, he's supposed to be a defensive guru and can't figure out how to stop a one-man attack from the Celtics.

We'll see how compelling all of that turns out to be, but all the eggs aren't in LeBron's basket. There's Chris Bosh, the talented Raptors forward went on Twitter to ask his followers if he should stay in Toronto or head to another town, a move that didn't win him many friends up in Canada. He didn't share many of the suggestions, though we imagine they came in from a variety of places and we're almost certain Bosh will be on the move.

Is he enough for the Knicks? Clearly he's not enough to guarantee a playoff spot, but he's better than anyone the Knicks have on the roster now. If they signed him and used David Lee as a trade chip things could certainly get interesting quickly so start tweeting the man if you want to see him in orange and blue. 

One other big name worth talking about is Joe Johnson, although don't expect to read a plea to get him to New York. The Hawks have put forth a humiliating effort in their series against the Magic and Johnson has been awful in all three losses. After the last game in Atlanta, he complained about booing from the fans when he should have been lucky they didn't storm the court in anger about the performance of the home team. 

That's not going to fly in New York, not for a player that would be coming here in the guise of savior. Johnson's play on the court is enough to end any lingering romance with the notion of him joining the Knicks and the booing thing is the straw that breaks this particular camel's back.  

So that's where things stand at the moment for three objects of the Knicks affection. Hold tight a little bit longer, we're almost to the end of this long road and remain steadfastly optimistic about finding a pot of gold.

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to and in addition to his duties for You can follow him on Twitter.

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