Camby vs. Wallace
Although we are only 30 games into the 2012-2013 campaign, Knicks fans can already say that this is the best season we’ve witnessed in over 10 years. Shocking upsets, crazy comebacks and dominant play at home have defined this young season and are the main reasons why Knicks fans have smiles on their faces. This exciting season has also been defined by the multitude of injuries the Knicks have experienced. Jason Kidd, Raymond Felton, Carmelo Anthony, Rasheed Wallace, and Marcus Camby have all missed significant time this season because of injuries. Iman Shumpert and Amar’e Stoudemire have still yet to make their season debuts due to knee injuries. However, some of these players are extremely close to returning to the court and as this Knicks team becomes healthier it is time to start looking at how minutes should be divided. Out of the unfortunately long list of injured Knicks, the two players who will have the most direct competition for minutes are Marcus Camby and Rasheed Wallace.
Marcus Camby has cemented his legacy as a defensive stalwart who intimidates his opponents through tough interior defense and emphatic shot blocking. Camby has also been one of the best rebounders the NBA has ever seen and has led the league in rebounding rate for the past 3 seasons. Due to a foot injury that he sustained early in the season, Camby has only played 9 games this season. He returned to the court on Christmas day against the Los Angeles Lakers and ever since, we are starting to see the player that the Knicks are paying $13 million. Against the Phoenix Suns, Camby only played 13 minutes, yet he was still able to pull down 9 rebounds. In the heart-breaker against Sacramento, the former defensive player of the year only saw 11 minutes of action but was still able to block 4 shots. Marcus Camby is clearly starting to return to form and is reminding the league why he is still one of the top defenders in the NBA.
Fresh off his 2 year retirement, Rasheed Wallace is back in the NBA and we are lucky enough that he decided to play for our Knicks. In the 20 games that he has played this season, Wallace has proved to be a capable scorer and defender. He still utilizes the post move
s and long range shooting that made him a four-time all-star back when he was a Trail Blazer and Piston. Not to mention, Sheed still provides us with loads of entertainment when he utters his signature catch phrase, “Ball Don’t Lie!” The former Washington Bullet also appears to be quite popular among his teammates as they all have been seen making Wallace’s “3 shots to the head” gesture after a 3 pointer is made.
Hopefully, by February, the Knicks will be at full strength and 100% healthy and it will be interesting to see how Coach Woodson divides the minutes with all the talented pieces he has on the Knicks roster. Some players will steal minutes from their teammates while others may no longer see any playing time (Kurt Thomas). No matter how the minutes are divided, all that really matters is that the Knicks continue to accumulate victories so hopefully the players and fans will understand that. One minute’s battle that will be interesting to monitor is the Marcus Camby vs. Rasheed Wallace situation. It is essentially an offense vs. defense conflict. So, who should see more minutes, Marcus Camby or Rasheed Wallace?