Could Amar’e Stoudemire be an option for the Clippers?


While other teams are looking forward to the trade deadline to bolster their units for a) the future or b) the playoffs, the Clippers find themselves waiting on a different type of market: the buyout market.

Last year, Doc Rivers and co. made their mark by bringing on Hedo Turkoglu, Danny Granger and Glen Davis after the three because free agents from their respective teams. While neither of Granger, Turkoglu or Davis were good enough players to turn the tides for a Clippers team that struggled with depth, they made a bad unit usable.

Without assets, the Clippers are again playing the waiting game to see if a veteran talent can wiggle himself loose from his club just in time to join a team for the playoff hunt.

A player who could soon be connected with the Clippers if the buyout is sought after? New York Knicks forward Amar’e Stoudemire, who Yahoo! Sports reports is on the cusp of asking out of the final year of a five-year deal signed back in 2010.

"“It’s not an easy decision to make,” Stoudemire told Yahoo Sports. “Over time, we will see how things pan out. You give yourself a break during the All-Star break. You think about it with your family. …That will give me a good solid week on how to weigh out the rest of the season.”“All possibilities at this point are still open,” Stoudemire said of a possible buyout. “The door is still open for that. But at the same time, I am with the Knicks now. I got to stay optimistic about things and what we are doing here. I can’t really focus on the future because it’s not here."

As a New York Knick, Stoudemire failed to live up to the tag of “franchise-saving superstar” the organization and fanbase had been looking for since the days of Patrick Ewing, whether it had been his inability to mesh with co-star Carmelo Anthony or the injuries that have plagued him as the reason for underachieving. Add in a $23 million salary, one of the highest in the NBA, and you’ve the recipe for one of the worst players in the league.

But at the league minimum, Stoudemire could be useful for a team like the Clippers.

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In comparison to Glen Davis and Spencer Hawes, the team’s two reserve bigs, Stoudemire would be an immediate improvement — this season, Amar’e is averaging 12.2 points on 55 percent shooting, 7.0 rebounds, 1.0 assist, and 1.0 block per game. Defensively Stoudemire has his flaws — he’s struggled on the glass and as a rim protector — but these are the same flaws Hawes and Davis are riddled with.

For Stoudemire, joining the Clippers makes sense because he gets to re-join former head coach Mike Woodson in LA, as well as play with Chris Paul, the best point guard he’d be paired with since his time with Steve Nash. Though Stoudemire has his flaws, it’s no secret his bread and butter on offense comes in the pick-and-roll, and who better to be his lead partner in the Clippers pet play than Paul?

As of now, this is pure speculation — Stoudemire hasn’t been granted his release and the Clippers haven’t expressed interest through the media (or through sources). But with the situation a possibility, it’s something to keep an eye on in the near future.

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