The New York Knicks are approaching the upcoming off-season with optimism regarding talent acquisition and the upgrading of the roster. The team has the ammo to engage in trade talks for a few big-name players. Alternatively, they can sit still and deploy their draft selections appropriately and allocate the funds to pick up free agents.
One big name that has been floating around the media lately is Damian Lillard, and with the Portland Trailblazers preparing to hire a new head coach and make a few big decisions for the future, one player who could be on the chopping block is CJ McCollum. McCollum recently signed a three-year, $100 million extension, averaging $33 million per season until the 2023-24 campaign.
McCollum is currently 29 years old and had one of his best seasons to date this past year. As a primary shooting guard, McCollum averaged 23.1 points, 4.7 access, and shot nearly 46% from the field. He also connected on 40% of his shots from range over 8.9 times per game. He was a catalyst for Portland, and if the Knicks want to inject a high-profile shooter into the lineup, McCollum could easily fit the bill.
Alternatively, $33 million is a lot to spend on a complementary player â€” the Knicks could potentially lure Chris Paul in for a similar amount to feature as the star point guard.
Nonetheless, if big names are flying off the market and the Knicks are left scratching their heads in contempt, trading for McCollum could make sense. He would give Randle the appropriate shooting option to pair with, demanding some attention and opening up the floor for options like RJ Barrett.
An interesting option for New York, especially if Lillard isn’t dealt and Portland is looking to part ways with above average and expensive talent.
[wpdiscuz-feedback id=”x0wz3n7g6k” question=”What do you think?” opened=”0″]Do you think the Knicks should consider a CJ McCollum trade if other options are off the board? Comment below![/wpdiscuz-feedback]
Taking a look at one stat-stuffing big man the Knicks could target in the draft:
The 2021 NBA draft is thin at the center position, but one young option who could develop into a fantastic traditional big man is Alperen Sengun of Turkey.
The 6â€™9â€, 235-pound 19-year-old has the potential to be an elite scoring big man, as heâ€™s ranked as the 2nd best center in the draft class. Not only is Sengun capable of dominating in the paint with natural instincts and facilitator vision, but he also has an adequate short-range jump shot. At such a young age, he has plenty of room to grow in multiple categories.
While his offense is above average, Sengunâ€™s defense could use a bit of refinement. He still has time to grow and add more mass to his frame, and if he can turn into a solid defender, the Turkey native could end up being a star at the NBA level. Of course, head coach Tom Thibodeau would have to deal with the lack of defense on his end during his rookie season, but he offers instant offense in the paint and a potential long-term solution in the frontcourt. There is a chance he is available with a 19th overall pick for the Knicks this year.
Any interest in Sengun as a prospect rather for the Knicks? Comment below!