Knicks Vs. Heat, Who Has The Advantage?

We all know who the team with the bullseye on their back is this year and that is the team down in South Beach. The Miami Heat are the team to beat and if the New York Knicks want to reach the glory land they will probably have to go through LeBron James and a few of his friends. The Knicks and Heat both made improvements this off-season and are primed for a run at the Eastern Conference title. How does each team look position by position and who has the advantage?

Point Guard: Raymond Felton/Jason Kidd/Pablo Prigioni VS. Mario Chalmers/Norris Cole

Two different types of point guards here on both teams. Felton and Kidd are more game managers and like the half court game. They don’t play much defense but do have the respect of their teammates, which is key at the point guard position. The Heat have two young guns in Chalmers and Cole. Chalmers was one of the more important players in the NBA Finals and played like a great point guard. Rio hits the three and is gradually earning the respect and trust of his superstar teammates and also isn’t afraid to play some defense. Norris Cole flashed brilliance in some games but couldn’t cement a spot in the rotation. He can only get better with his teammates. I think the Heat’s young ballers have the advantage over the Knicks point guards.

Advantage – Heat

Shooting Guard: Dwyane Wade/Ray Allen/Mike Miller VS. J.R. Smith/Ronnie Brewer/Iman Shumpert

What you are going to read right now isn’t going to surprise you. The Heat might have from top to bottom the best shooting guard depth in the league. Wade is still elite and is up there with Kobe Bryant as the NBA’s best 2-guards.

Ray Allen isn’t going to be asked to do much in Miami, just sit back like a fat cat behind the three and wait for the kick out and shoot lights out. Mike Miller’s health is a big concern but if he plays and is effective, it only adds to the three-point threats that the Heat have. With J.R. Smith being the only healthy guard the Knicks have with Brewer and Shumpert both out for opening day, the Knicks weakness might be the Heat’s strength. No brainer here.

Advantage – Heat

Small Forward – Carmelo Anthony/Steve Novak/James White/Chris Copeland VS. LeBron James/Rashard Lewis/James Jones

The premier position battle with these two teams is Carmelo vs. LeBron. Maybe before last season you can make a debate for Carmelo since he is one of the best scorers in the league, but LeBron proved last year he is on another level, by silencing the critics and showed the world there is not much he can’t do.

I think his fourth quarter play is still up in the air and that is where Carmelo shines, but this one isn’t close anymore. Rashard Lewis, like Allen, is just going to be asked to sit in the corner and shoot. James Jones is pretty good at that too. Steve Novak is nice off the bench and his three-point shooting should be taken seriously, but the Heat are better here. LeBron will do that for you.

Advantage – Heat

Power Forward: Amar’e Stoudemire/Kurt Thomas VS. Shane Battier/Udonis Haslem

I guess on paper these are the Heat’s power forwards. I thought Chris Bosh would be listed as one but I guess he is the team’s center. If this is the matchup, the Knicks have it here. Shane Battier isn’t a true PF and really is only effective on offense when he gets his shot going. He is a great perimeter defender but I don’t think he can hold his own in the paint vs. a scoring big man.

Amar’e should be the Amar’e of old which is what the Knicks need. Haslem is a leader but not making on jaws drop. Kurt Thomas gives STAT a nice break off the bench and brings leadership to the Knicks. Just hope no fire extinguisher cases come in the way agian.

 

Advantage – Knicks

Center: Tyson Chandler/Marcus Camby VS. Chris Bosh/Joel Anthony/Dexter Pittman

Really good matchup here in Tyson against Bosh. Tyson is a proven fierce defender while Bosh proved last year he is no cupcake. The Heat are a different team with him on the floor and need him to win. Head-to-head, I think Tyson takes him here. I’ll give Marcus Camby the advantage over Anthony as well. Tyson can handle Bosh and I think he can easily get in his head with a little trash talk.

 

Advantage – Knicks

Coaching: Mike Woodson VS. Eric Spoelsta

A lot of things have been said about Heat coach Eric Spoelstra but now there is one thing you must say about him- NBA Finals champion. At times he seems like he doesn’t know how to handle his super team then he looks like he calls all the shots. Mike Woodson showed last year he knows how to get his player’s respect and he turned a sinking ship around last year with the Knicks. He turned a team that played defense like a bunch of cones on the court to a team that started to play a little hard-nosed defense. Woodson hasn’t been in the same coaching situations as Spoelstra, but I’d take Woodson as my leader over Spoelstra.

Advantage – Knicks

If these two teams butt heads again in the playoffs how will it play out? Hopefully for the Knicks they earn a higher seed than last year and avoid Miami early. An Eastern Conference Finals matchup would be a dream come true for the NBA, but it wouldn’t be for the Knicks. The Knicks need another team to knock off the champs in hopes of making it to the finals. I just don’t think this team as it stands is not built the right way to beat the Miami Heat. I hope I am dead wrong, but Miami will beat them again.

Heat win series 4-2

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