Ex-NBA player John Starks says the league is in good shape

john-starksRecently speaking to SLAM, ex-NBA guard John Starks talked about the current state of the NBA, the NY Knicks team, the players, and other things.

“The Knicks are definitely a contender team. They’ve proven that they can beat the upper echelon teams and they’re taking care of business with the bottom half of the teams in the league. They have a well-balanced team. They can play big or they can play small,” Starks said.

“That’s the mark of a championship-style team, that they can play either way. I couldn’t say that in the past – they could only play one way. But with the emergence of Carmelo and the way he’s playing this year, he’s on a mission. And with added pieces like Jason Kidd and Raymond Felton and JR Smith, with his resurgence and the way he’s playing. Having Amar’e back in the mix is going to help a lot,” he added.

Being reminded that Carmelo Anthony made 9 three point baskets in a game, beating Starks’ record, the former star said he didn’t even remember he made 9 of his own shots back in the day.

“To be honest with you I don’t remember. I really don’t get into records, unless people bring it up. I’m glad to see that those nine threes that he made were for a win,” Starks laughed.

With regard to NBA players that he enjoys watching the most, Starks brought up several names.

“Obviously, I’ve got three right here, in Melo, Amar’e and JR Smith, because he reminds me of myself a lot,” Starks said.

john-starks-finger“I love watching Kevin Durant and what he’s doing. It’s just amazing, being 6-11 and having the guard skills and to score the way he scores, and leading his team it’s just been amazing.”

“Then I have to look down to Miami, I love watching LeBron and Wade, those two guys down there. The League is in good shape. You have good young stars and the popularity of the League is continuing to grow.”

Starks answered a question about people comparing him to JR Smith.

“He’s got the mentality as a shooter and a scorer. He doesn’t worry about the last shot that he missed. He continues to believe in himself even when things are going bad. I tell people that’s the mentality you have to have as a shooter, as a scorer out there on the court. You can’t think about the last shot, you just have to believe that the next shot is going to fall. And it serves him well,” he said.

Starks played for the New York Knicks for 8 years, helping the team to reach the NBA playoffs in those 8 seasons.

In 1993-1994 season, Starks helped the Knicks to reach the NBA Finals, where the Knicks faced the Houston Rockets.

Starks played 866 NBA games (420 started), scoring 10829 points (12.5 ppg), grabbing 2129 rebounds (2.5 rpg), and dishing out 3085 assists (3.6 apg).

Starks had his best season with the Knicks in 93-94, averaging career best 19 ppg, 5.9 apg, and appearing in the 93-94 NBA All-Star game.


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