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Martin Meltzer Headshot

Catalyst for New York Knicks, Landry?

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Now initially I want to say how much I love what Amare Stoudemire has done for
not only this team but also this city. He not only has taken on the burden of
playing on the world's biggest stage for basketball but also has embraced this
and fans of this city. His leadership qualities are nothing short of exemplary and
we haven't had a player of his quality since Ewing in the early 90's. With all this
said, the catalyst of the New York Knicks is Landry Fields. When he plays well
the team always seems to win -- also he manages to play his best against the best
teams.

Landry has won Knicks fans over in a very short period of time. One major
reason is because we realize whenever there is a big play to be made during
the game, somehow Landry is in the middle of it. Whether it be an important
offensive rebound, three point shot, steal, or pass he always seems to be in the
center of it all and makes the right decision. If you are someone who seldom
watches the Knicks, you don't understand what I mean because you look at his
statistics and you see ten points and seven rebounds a game, that's nothing
special. But when you watch the team you realize you are witnessing a player
that has the potential to be very special. Special isn't a term I use lightly when
talking about basketball players, but I feel it is justified in this scenario.
The most exciting quality of Landry Fields is the level of fearlessness he plays
the game with. He has no fear. It doesn't matter whom he is playing against; he
plays them with the same intensity and fortitude. The best example of this
was against the Miami Heat. I watched that game live in the Garden
and it was apparent to me -- and I hope many others -- that he was the player on the
court for our team the entire game. One specific play that stands out in my mind
was when he went after a missed free throw like he usually does with reckless
abandon and got fouled. While some might think this is a meaningless play
during a 48-minute game, it wasn't, because he changed the whole momentum of
the first half with that one play.

While I told you that it's not about the statistics for Landry, his statistics when you
actually delve into them a little deeper are pretty impressive. First of all he leads
all guards in the NBA in rebounding. I can't remember a rookie second round
pick ever leading all NBA guards in rebounding not only that but he is second on
the Knicks team in rebounding behind just Amare. Along with this he is the only
two-guard in the NBA with over ten double doubles this season and is third on
the Knicks team in double doubles behind just Amare and Felton. These two
things coupled with the fact that he shoots over fifty percent from the field and
close to forty percent from three-point range.

I don't know what NBA executives were thinking letting this guy be taken so late
during the draft. But their poor choice turned out to be the Knicks' good fortune.
Landry led the Pac 10 in scoring and rebounding during his final year at Stanford
but still received no recognition from NBA scouts- but the Knicks guys knew what
they were getting. It's about time the Knicks had some good fortune after over a
decade of misery of having to watch players such as Stephon Marbury. Landry
is the anti-Mtarbury, plays the game the right way and is a consummate
professional on and off the court. As you can probably tell, I myself love Landry
Fields and think he will turn into a player who could be one of these third options
on a championship caliber team.

These reasons plus many more are why Landry is the catalyst for the Knicks and
their continued success. I would be greatly disappointed if any package to get
Carmelo Anthony included Landry Fields and I personally think the Knicks should
fight to keep him in his new home with the fans that love his game.

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