Evan Fournier broke the single-season franchise record for most 3s in his first year in New York. Still, that did not keep the Knicks from having buyer’s remorse, as they did with Kemba Walker.
That 2021 offseason, which the Knicks sold as their solution to their woeful offense in their first-round exit, turned out to be a disaster.
The Knicks had to attach their first-round selection in the last NBA Draft to dump Walker’s contract. And it appears they have to go that route again to get rid of Fournier, who’s now become an $18 million bench warmer. But they’re still grappling with that reality. Instead, they’re trying to sweeten the pot by attaching one of their young players.
“They also have communicated that they are willing to attach Quickley or Reddish to Fournier to make a trade work, league sources said.Fred Katz via The Athletic
Will that be enough to bait other teams to take on Fournier’s remaining guaranteed money, which is $36.9 million until next season when they can flip him as basically an expiring salary (his $19 million salary for the 2024-25 season, the final year of his contract, is a team option)?
The caveat is both Quickley and Reddish would need to be paid soon.
Quickley is extension-eligible next summer, with his outside shot streaky at best (career-low 30.9 percent from deep this season). But his defense has grown by leaps and bounds this season.
Quickley’s 106.0 defensive rating is in the 96th percentile, and the 48.4 percent effective field goal shooting by Knicks opponents when he’s on the floor is in the 99th percentile, per Cleaning The Glass. That’s a seven and five percent spike from last season in both defensive metrics.
On the other hand, Reddish has teased again this season with flashes, but he’s entering restricted free agency with still no semblance of consistency in his game.
He’s enjoyed the most efficient stretch in his NBA career in his short-lived stint as a rotation player under Tom Thibodeau, shooting a career-high 44.9 percent from the floor and a 51.5 percent effective field goal percentage.
But just like in his first three seasons in the league, his motor has come and gone. He’s still susceptible to sleeping on both ends as he did in the Knicks’ embarrassing home loss to Dallas Mavericks last Saturday. Reddish was a minus-16, missing all four attempts and had three turnovers in nine minutes off the bench.
Which NBA front office would take a flier on a flawed young player looking to get paid attached to a distressed asset?
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