Knicks are emerging as serious suitors for versatile guard, according to insider

NBA: Indiana Pacers at Denver Nuggets
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With the Knicks looking to find bench depth, Brett Siegel of ClutchPoints is reporting that two suitors have emerged as the most aggressive for Bruce Brown. The New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers are emerging as serious landing spots for the 27-year-old guard, as he could galvanize their bench scoring as their sixth man. His experience as a point guard is enticing for the Knicks since he could be a playmaker for the team, and they need someone who can run the offense for the second unit.

It’s a player who could improve the Knicks’ rotation and provide some solid defense with upside as a scorer, and this could be a move that gives them the necessary offense they lack in the second unit.

Will the Knicks Land Bruce Brown This Deadline?

nba: washington wizards at indiana pacers, bruce brown, knicks
Jan 10, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Bruce Brown (11) celebrates a made basket in the second half against the Washington Wizards at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Bruce Brown is averaging 12 points per game on strong efficiency, as he has a 57.1% True Shooting%, and while he isn’t an excellent shooter he does have the playmaking and scoring abilities to help increase their scoring. He isn’t a perfect fit, as the lack of floor spacing could become an issue if the team follows through on the reports of trading Quentin Grimes, they’ll only have one above-average shooter on the court in their second unit, but perhaps they flip the young shooter for someone who can improve their floor spacing.

What the Knicks have as an advantage over the Lakers is that they have much better draft capital than LA, as they own a plethora of first and second-round picks that should allow them to outbid in a deal. Furthermore, Evan Fournier is an attractive option for a seller in a deal since he’s on an expiring contract and could be bought out ahead of the deadline, with more draft compensation coming alongside Fournier since he’s a negative-value asset on the market.

The Raptors aren’t getting a top-flight player in return for Bruce Brown, so capital will likely be what determines who ends up with the 2023 NBA Champion. He’s a strong role player who has produced on some winning teams, but it’s a question of whether the offensive fit for their second unit or not. He ranks in the 61st Percentile in Points per Possession, and he can handle the ball and create looks for other scorers on the court.

NBA: Orlando Magic at New York Knicks
Jan 15, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Miles McBride (2) dribbles in front of Orlando Magic guard Jalen Suggs (4) and guard Caleb Houstan (2) during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Mile McBride, who has been the team’s backup point guard since the trade for OG Anunoby, isn’t the primary ballhandler and shot creator that Immanuel Quickley was, but he still provides a strong three-point shot (43.1%) with defensive skills that aid the bench. With someone who can create looks for him like Brown, he could be re-purposed in this offense as more of a 3&D player and galvanize the offense with his shooting prowess.

While Josh Hart has struggled with his three-point shot he’s usually a consistent shooter, and assuming the Knicks still hang onto Quentin Grimes in this deal, he’s another floor spacer who keeps lanes open for Brown to operate. New York is well-positioned to acquire Bruce Brown if they feel as if he’s a difference-maker for the bench unit, especially if they’re competing with the Lakers in a trade package, and they could solve their bench deficiencies if their scouting translates on the court.