HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — If there’s going to be a big man renaissance in New York this season, it will come with a huge assist from one of the all-time great big men in the history of the game.
Knicks coach Mike Woodson, a former teammate of Hakeem Olajuwon‘s, approached the two-time NBA champ about tutoring members of his frontcourt rotation as preparation for the 2012-13 season.
Amar’e Stoudemire, who worked with Olajuwon earlier this summer (above), Tyson Chandler and Marcus Camby will all get a chance to learn from a master. Olajuwon normally tutors big men, but he’s also going to work with Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony, according to Chris Broussard of ESPN.com.
Having Olajuwon school his guys on post moves and the art of winning at the highest level is a masterstroke by Woodson, who knows that the key for the Knicks this season will be finding the right fit between his biggest stars. It’s an understanding that Olajuwon already seems locked in on as well, per the report from Broussard:
“They both have to realize that the most important thing is not how great you are individually,” Olajuwon said. “You’re remembered for how many games you win. So to get to play with another great offensive player should help you. It should make your job easier. You have to work well together. You can’t be competitors with one another.”
While Olajuwon has taught Stoudemire back-to-the-basket post moves, he said the Knicks’ game plan should not be simply to post up Stoudemire while Anthony dominates the perimeter.
“It shouldn’t be Amar’e just staying in the post because he can be a scorer in the paint and outside,” Olajuwon said. “It’s the same thing for Carmelo. He can score in the post and outside. So if Carmelo is in the post, Amar’e can be at the foul line and he can make that shot. If Amare’s in the post, Carmelo can make the shot from the free-throw line, too. They shouldn’t be competing against each other; they should be complementing each other. They need each other to win.”