Suffering from C3P-fatigue yet? Head spinning from all the Dwight Howard rumors? Maybe it’s time to take a little break from the madness, and think about a player that the Knicks might actually be able to afford and/or acquire.
Thus far, all indications are that the team doesn’t think very highly of its own 7-footer, Jerome Jordan, who may or may not be invited to training camp. Which brings us to Plan V. That’s B in Cyrillic, Folks. And Cyrillic is the alphabet that Russians prefer to write in, besides blood.
We’ve been very high on Center Kyrylo Fesenko (Utah Jazz) for quite some time, and it just so happens that he’s an unrestricted free agent.
A very large man, the native Russian checks in at 7’1″, 280 lbs, “soaking wet.” When clothed, he weighs even more. Fesekno also turns just 25-years-old on Christmas Eve, so on the surface, he would appear to satisfy the Knicks’ need for both youth and size.
Plus, those now-disillusioned Timofey Mozgoz groupies would really boost ticket sales at the Garden this season. And there’s almost certainly a “Red Heat” or “Hunt for Red October” nickname-opportunity in there somewhere, too.
On the downside, Fesenko posseses zero offensive game whatsoever, he can’t shoot free throws, and he isn’t known for rebounding or blocking. Oh, and by the way, he tore his meniscus back in September while playing for Ukraine.
Sounds great, right?
Not so fast, the big fella has played in just 132 games during his four-year NBA-career, and has averaged just 8.3 minutes-per-contest. In a Knick-world where cap space is precious, one would think Fesenko can be had on a reasonable one-year deal, if only to see what the staff can get out of him.
Rebounding and shot blocking techniques can be coached. Possessing size roughly equivalent to Rhode Island cannot.
The franchise needs to be creative, and if we learned anything from the development of two other flawed European players – Gallinari and Mozgov – perhaps Mike D’Antoni is the right guy to tap into Fesenko’s immense physical gifts.
If the guy’s a stiff, no harm no foul. Assuming his knee has healed – my sources in Ukraine never seem to answer their telefax anymore – perhaps Fesenko can give the Knicks a defensive presence in the middle of the paint.
For 20-25 minutes a night, it’s a low risk, medium-sized reward proposition.
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