New York Knicks Make Solid Move in Signing Free Agent Quentin Richardson

Ciaran GowanContributor IIIApril 16, 2013

NEW YORK - JANUARY 14:  Quentin Richardson #23 of the New York Knicks celebrates a teammate's basket in the final minutes against the Washington Wizards at Madison Square Garden January 14, 2009 in New York City. 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 Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
Chris McGrath/Getty Images

With the playoffs less than a week away, the New York Knicks have added one more piece to the puzzle.

According to their Twitter account, they have picked up free-agent small forward Quentin Richardson:

The news comes just a day after the team released center Solomon Jones, who was signed once Kurt Thomas was declared out for the rest of the season following foot surgery.

Richardson—a former Knick—has been out of the league for a year and wasn't too impressive at his last stop with the Orlando Magic.

Still, he's a tested veteran player who should still be capable of providing solid defensive minutes. That alone makes him a great fit with this Knicks team.

The Knicks' new uniforms for this season feature the words "Once a Knick, Always a Knick" and the front office has certainly taken that to heart with its roster moves.

Richardson now joins Thomas, Marcus Camby and Raymond Felton in returning to MSG for the 2012-13 campaign.

It remains unclear just how big an impact Richardson can make at this late stage in his career, but he's always been a good defender and solid shooter. That's a nice skill set to have on the bench in the postseason.

With Iman Shumpert starting at small forward, and Chris Copeland playing well down the stretch, it's unlikely that Richardson will see much court time. But, at the very least, he adds depth, which is essential at this point in the season. 

The move doesn't address the team's desperate need for some size inside, but that might be an indication that things are looking better on the injury front.

Rasheed Wallace returned to action on Monday against the Charlotte Bobcats and the oft-injured Camby was also available for the game. If the pair can be joined by Tyson Chandler and Kenyon Martin for the playoffs, the frontcourt suddenly starts to look a lot stronger.

There has been a lot of clamoring for Delonte West since it became clear the Knicks wanted to add to the roster, but the late-season additions of Martin and now Richardson will only help the team defensively.

The toughness and intensity they bring are exactly what New York will need in the playoffs, so it will be interesting to see how far this team can go.