If Knicks cut Marbury loose, where might he land?
Posted: Wednesday November 14, 2007 2:37PM; Updated: Wednesday November 14, 2007 3:09PM
Stephon Marbury's days with the Knicks could soon be over. But if New York intends to trade the two-time All-Star point guard, it won't be easy. With a $19 million salary this season (and $21 million next year), Marbury makes too much money for most teams to match up salaries.
If the Knicks decide to part ways, they would probably have to give Marbury a buyout. If so, after clearing waivers he would become a free agent eligible to sign somewhere else for the minimum salary. But a quick rundown of the league's 29 other teams shows only a handful would likely give him a sniff -- even at a bargain rate.
Atlanta: The Hawks have had point guard issues for years, and have long been viewed as a potential home for Marbury (who played one year at Georgia Tech). But Atlanta already has three veteran point guards and used the No. 11 pick in the 2007 draft on current starter Acie Law IV. While it would create a box-office buzz, Marbury just doesn't seem like a good fit for a young, improving team and a coach in Mike Woodson who preaches defense first.
Boston: Would director of basketball operations Danny Ainge dare turn his Big Three into a Big Four? No way. While the Celtics could use a veteran point guard, Marbury is not the answer. They already have enough concerns about one basketball for three superstars.
Charlotte: A lot of folks wonder if Raymond Felton has what it takes to be an elite point guard for this up-and-coming team. But the Bobcats have to find out, and Marbury would only retard Felton's progress.
Chicago: The Bulls could use a true point guard, but Marbury is clearly not the solution. His game is a poor fit for Chicago's drive-and-kick offense, and his spotty D would drive coach Scott Skiles batty. Skiles, by the way, coached Marbury for half a season in Phoenix in 2001-02 before stepping down midway through the season.
Cleveland: LeBron James needs some help, especially at the point, and Marbury's not afraid to take big shots. His pick-and-roll game would seem to fit with Zydrunas Ilgauskas. It would be something of a desperation move on the part of general manager Danny Ferry, but if things went south, it might be worth a gamble.
Dallas: Owner Mark Cuban seems to enjoy making a splash. But with a rising star in Devin Harris, this team has no need for another point guard.
Denver: It could use an upgrade at point guard, and coach George Karl isn't afraid to take on big egos. In some ways, he seems to enjoy it. But like the Celtics, the Nuggets already have enough scorers. The Nuggets need a defender, set-up guy and three-point shooter more than a score-first point guard.
Detroit: Chauncey Billups gives the Pistons all they need at PG.
Golden State: Poor fit for Nellie Ball. Besides, the Warriors already have Baron Davis.
Houston: How about a reunion for Marbury and pal Steve Francis on the Rockets' bench? Forget it. Rafer Alston and Mike James might not be the best PGs in the league, but the Rockets won six of their first eight games.