NBA Trade Deadline: Why NY Knicks Should Make a Move for DeJuan Blair

Ciaran GowanContributor IIIFebruary 15, 2013

SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 20:  Forward DeJuan Blair #45 of the San Antonio Spurs reacts against the Memphis Grizzlies in Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 20, 2011 at AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The NBA trade deadline is fast approaching and the opportunity to strengthen the bench for the second half is something the New York Knicks would be wise to take.

Besides their recent struggles with ball movement and defense—issues which should be worked on from within—the big problem for the Knicks this season has been rebounding.

Outside of Tyson Chandler and the oft-injured Marcus Camby, New York doesn't have another aggressive rebounder on the roster, but adding one now will make everyone's job a lot easier.

There are a lot of options out there for the Knicks, with plenty of other team's little-used players being good fits, however there is one player in particular that stands out if the Knicks can find a way to acquire him.

According to ESPN's Chris Broussard, DeJuan Blair has a good chance of being traded by the San Antonio Spurs before the deadline, and the Knicks should jump on this chance to strengthen the frontcourt.

Blair has been having the least productive season of his four-year career in 2012-13, mainly due to Greg Popovich minimizing his role on the team with another career-low in minutes per game.

Still, even if the Spurs don't value him in their rotation, Blair's relentless work on the glass would make him a perfect fit in New York.

The Pitt product is tough, physical and has long been considered one of the league's best rebounders, even despite his lack of height at 6'7".

It's unclear exactly what it would take to pry Blair from the Spurs, but the Knicks will likely face strong competition from some of the league's other top teams like the Miami Heat.

If anyone, Ronnie Brewer is one of New York's most likely players to be traded, but with Stephen Jackson and Kawhi Leonard in place, San Antonio won't be after a defensive-minded wing.

Instead, New York might have to make a future draft pick (most likely a first-rounder) the main piece going to San Antonio, which would be a worthwhile move considering how young Blair is.

Along with that pick, the Knicks could trade any one of their veteran minimum-players to the Spurs, but should avoid letting go of Chris Copeland if possible.

Outside of Blair, a player like Timofey Mozgov would make sense, but according to ESPN, the Nuggets are looking for a "crazy good" return in exchange for the Russian.

If they can't find a good trade then free agents Kenyon Martin or Lou Amundson would be a good plan B.

Really, though, Blair needs to be the Knicks' priority via trade—with his youth and penchant for hitting the boards, he's a perfect fit if they can find a reasonable deal.