The Knicks didn't make the moves I expected, but I'm pleasantly surprised with what they were able to accomplish. They improved their team in the short term without adversely altering their ability to pursue free agents in 2010.
1. Trade Jerome James, Tim Thomas, and Anthony Roberson to the Chicago Bulls for Larry Hughes.
The contracts cancel out here because James and Thomas come off the books after next season and so does Hughes' contract. In the meanwhile, the Knicks get a shooting guard that can step in and help them immediately. When disciplined, Hughes can score on defend. He'll help prevent opposing shooting guard from scoring 61 points at MSG. I'm not a huge Hughes fan, but he should help a lot as the Knicks try and make a playoff push. It goes without saying, good riddance to James and Thomas.
2. Trade Malik Rose to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Chris Wilcox.
Someone explain to me why the Thunder would do this. First, the send back Tyson Chandler because he has been injured. Getting Chandler for Wilcox and Joe Smith was a steal in my opinion, so they must believe he is seriously injured. Then they turn around and trade for Malik Rose? The contracts for Rose and Wilcox come off ater this year, but Wilcox still has upside, while Rose is finished. This should add some additional muscle and athleticism to the Knicks front court.
I think both Hughes and Wilcox will do well under D'Antoni. I didn't think the Knicks were a playoff team before, but now I think they have a very good chance.
Walsh continues to prove he's a pretty shrewd GM. I think the Knicks are finally in good hands.