What Is The Missing Piece For The New York Knicks?

New York Knicks
NBA Analysis Network

What sets teams apart in the NBA? Coaching, defense — sure. While important pieces, they are trumped by the need for a superstar. This is a player that can act as a finisher when games get tight and make a play when needed. This is basketball. Teams with the most talent are going to win more times than not, especially come the postseason.

Enter the New York Knicks. This is a team that made some nice moves on paper in the offseason but they have not translated to much yet.

Julius Randle signed an extension in the offseason. After an All-Star season, New York viewed him as a star but it takes a little more to earn that title. In a recent game against the Brooklyn Nets, a late-game technical foul might have cost the Knicks the game. Of course, Kevin Durant was able to take over. Another late-game blunder, in the form of a turnover this time, halted the Knicks’ effort of posting a 21-point comeback against the Chicago Bulls.

This was move No. 1. Next, New York signed Kemba Walker.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Knicks-Pacers Trade Lands Kemba Walker In Indiana

Walker averaged a career-low 11.7 points this season before the New York Knicks announced that he would be taken out of the rotation. This is because of a lack of production on both ends. Whether this be the Knicks’ fault for not using him the right way or Walker not contributing the way expected, this two-year deal has been a bust.

Finally, Evan Fournier was the big addition in free agency. He earned a four-year deal from the Knicks and it contributing to their hot start from deep. He is shooting 39.4% from three-point range but is not doing much else. Fournier is scoring 13.3 points a night, which is the lowest since his third year in the league back in 2014. 

The Knicks finished as the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference a season ago and entered with expectations this season. It seems as though the Knicks will not reach that level of the Nets or Milwaukee Bucks until they acquire a star.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Knicks-Pacers Trade Lands Kemba Walker In Indiana

It is unknown where this name will come from. Zach LaVine was viewed as a piece before the Bulls went for it all in free agency. Ben Simmons is not a fit, nor should the Knicks want that, while Bradley Beal seems content with the Washington Wizards succeeding.

This leaves some options like the Indiana Pacers and Houston Rockets to look into. Indiana has been linked to many trades in case they decide to blow it up. John Wall is going to be moved at some point and despite a large price tag, could fill in at the top of the offense for the Knicks. 

It is a mystery where this move could come but the Knicks need to do something. This has been apparent since last season when they struggled to score in the postseason. Yes, Randle is a nice player but he is not a superstar that is going to win a game for the Knicks when it matters.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Knicks-Pacers Trade Lands Kemba Walker In Indiana

The front office has been aggressive over the last year and that is something that needs to continue. New York finally has some assets to move and should take advantage as soon as possible.

If this happens, the tide can finally turn in New York and the New York Knicks can be considered a contender.