Brewer: 'I like our chances'

Before he came to the Knicks, Ronnie Brewer was on a Chicago Bulls team that was considered to be a legitimate NBA title contender.

Listen to the complete interview:

Play Download

Brewer was asked on ESPN New York 98.7 FM’s "The Michael Kay Show" if the Knicks are in a "better" situation to compete for a title than those Bulls teams.

"I think so," he said. "I feel like this situation with the Knicks, that it's a lot better. We're a more veteran team."

"I think a lot of people were saying this wasn't going to work because our team was a lot older but I think were really buying into everything and we’re playing team basketball ... if you look at our core group of guys we're fairly young and (with) Amar'e (Stoudemire) coming back, (Iman Shumpert) coming back from injury I think that's only going to add more depth to our team."

The 2010-11 Bulls made it to the Eastern Conference Finals and lost to the Heat. Last season, Chicago lost in the first round after Derrick Rose went down with an ACL injury.

The Knicks started the season 6-0 and are 10-4 entering Friday's home game against the Washington Wizards.

Said Brewer: "I like where we sit right now and I like our chances in April, May and June."

Here are a couple other highlights from Brewer's interview with Kay and Don LaGreca:

NOVAK'S DUNKING: Steve Novak took a lot of grief from his teammates and fans for pulling up for a layup on a breakaway Wednesday in Milwaukee instead of dunking the ball.

After the game, Novak tweeted, "After reading my Twitter feed, tomorrows one and only mission in practice ... PRACTICE DUNKING! LOL #whiteguyproblems."

Brewer confirmed that the 6-10 Novak can, in fact, dunk and said that Novak didn't want to get his shot blocked by an approaching defender in such a close game against the Bucks.

Added Brewer: "I think we’d rather have him knock down threes than have him than finishing dunks on the break."

ON AMAR’E’S RETURN: Brewer thinks Stoudemire can benefit the Knicks off the bench or as a starter. He's excited for the power forward, who has been sidelined since late October with a left knee injury, to return. Stoudemire is expected to be back in mid to late December.

"I think when you bring a player of that caliber, it can't be a bad thing," Brewer said. "I don't think any of the guys on this team are worried (about) him fitting in. He's a great player on the court, a great player off the court. I think we're looking forward to getting him and Shump.”

ESPNNewYork.com reported on Wednesday night that Stoudemire would accept a role coming off of Mike Woodson’s bench, if he’s asked.

"If he's coming off the bench, I think that means he's going to be one of the best players in the second rotation in the NBA and it's going to be a mismatch problem across the board," Brewer said. "Either way, it can't be a bad problem for Coach Woody."

Asked whether Stoudemire would accept coming off of the Knicks' bench, Brewer said, "At the end of the day it's not about egos, it's not about accolades. I think everyone's buying into the system and we're trying to win a championship, win games ... We're all sacrificing for a bigger goal and that's to win."

GIVING BACK: Brewer, Chris Copeland and the Knicks City Dancers made bedside visits to children at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center on behalf of the Garden Of Dreams Foundation. Brewer, Copeland and the dancers gave out holiday gift bags, took photos and signed autographs.

J.R.'S FLAGRANT REDUCED: J.R. Smith's flagrant foul 1 from the Memphis game on Nov. 16 on Tony Allen has been downgraded to a personal foul. If Smith's flagrant was upheld, he would have earned one point in the NBA's points system for flagrant fouls (five points earns a suspension).

Tyson Chandler's flagrant 1 against the Houston Rockets on Nov. 23 remains a flagrant 1. Chandler elbowed Houston center Omer Asik in the throat. He has one point in the NBA's flagrant foul system.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.