Are the Knicks Interested in Kwame Brown?

We’re a long way from the end of the lockout, but the rumors keep flooding in.

There’s no question the Knicks need help in the middle … but is unrestricted free agent Kwame Brown the answer? Last week, a New York Post report surfaced that the team was interested in offering a one-year deal to a FA center, including the ex-Bobcat.

Although Brown finished this past season above average, averaging 12.4 points and 7.3 rebounds in his last 12 games, his overall 2010-11 campaign and most of his 10-year career have been average; not to mention, inconsistent. In 2003-04, he averaged 10.9 points per game, but the following season he dropped to 7.0 ppg and then his minutes sunk below 20 minutes per game — until only last season. Averaging 26 minutes per game, he put up 7.9 ppg, 6.8 rpg and 0.6 bpg, while shooting 51.7 percent from the field and 58.9 percent from the line.

If Brown arrives in the Big Apple, don’t expect a big upgrade over last season’s usual starting center Ronny Turiaf, according to Basketball Prospectus’ SCHOENE projection system. If Brown plays Turiaf’s identical minutes from last season (17.8 mpg), he will average 4.3 points, 5.1 rebounds and 0.7 blocks per game in 2011-12 with the Knicks. Compared to Turiaf, who averaged 4.3 ppg, 3.2 rpg and 1.1 bpg in 2010-11, Brown’s numbers would be a downgrade in terms of shot blocking, but not in terms of rebounding. The scoring averages are a wash, but Turiaf shot 64. percent last year and the projection only shows Brown shooting 52.5 percent from the field next season.

I highly doubt Brown is the answer to the Knicks’ hole at center, but a one-year deal wouldn’t hurt anyone.  He would be a good guy for depth, but he’s really nothing but another Ronny Turiaf.  There’s nothing wrong with players like Turiaf, but the Knicks need a little more out of the starting center spot.

Is Kwame Brown the answer?