Alston Wants to Be Knicks Point Guard | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Saturday / June 15.
  • Alston Wants to Be Knicks Point Guard

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    NEW YORK –– The Knicks need a point guard for next season and Rafer Alston is ready to offer his services.

    Alston, who averaged 8.2 points and 3.4 assists while splitting last season with the Miami Heat and the Nets, said in an exclusive interview Friday night that he wants to play for his hometown team next season.

    “I’m a free agent. I’m hoping I can play here in New York…the Knicks,” Alston said after coaching his AAU team, the New York Panthers, to a victory at the Rumble in the Bronx AAU tournament at Fordham University.

    A Queens, N.Y. native who earned the nickname “Skip to My Lou” during his streetball career, Alston turns 34 next month.

    The Knicks have only four players signed for next season and need a point guard now that Sergio “Spanish Chocolate” Rodriguez has inked a three-year deal with Real Madrid.

    “They do [need a point guard] and I would hope I could be it,” Alston said. “I’ll definitely have my agent [Dan Fegan] give them a call, see what’s going on.”

    While the Knicks struggled through a 29-53 season a year ago, Alston wants to stay and help the franchise turn around. New York is armed with more than $30 million in salary-cap space and can afford two max-contract free agents once the frenzy begins July 1.

    “I’m a hometown kid,” Alston said. “I would like to try to have a helping hand in getting them back to the playoffs. It’s something that I would enjoy doing, really getting this city alive again and feeling good about playoff basketball.”

    Alston hopes to be one of the role players who surrounds the big-name free agents who come in — whether it’s LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh or whomever.

    “You need the role guys to win,” Alston said. “You get some top-level role guys along with one of those big-name guys, I think they’ll be fine.”

    Asked what he could bring to the Knicks, Alston said, “Energy. A solid point guard. A true point guard. Sometimes when you have so many scorers on the floor, you’ve got to be able to get those guys the ball. That’s what I do best, running the team and getting those guys the ball.”

    As for his former team, the Heat, Alston said he thinks Wade will stay and can attract other free agents to Miami.

    “I think a lot of people would love to be down there,” Alston said. “Amar’e [Stoudemire] would love to be there.  I think Chris Bosh might want to go. Who knows? I don’t think whichever way those guys go it would be bad. If they stay it wouldn’t be bad. If they left, it wouldn’t be bad.”

    As for where LeBron might land, Alston, like many people, has no idea: “That’s the toughest one.”

    (Photo courtesy NBA.com)

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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