Knicks ‘waiting’ for right deal to act on

Tom Thibodeau, New York Knicks
Feb 15, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau reacts during the game against the Atlanta Hawks during the first half at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks have demonstrated remarkable patience this offseason, refraining from hastily securing a superstar at a potentially excessive cost.

The Knicks have been linked to Minnesota Timberwolves star center Karl Anthony-Towns since the beginning of the offseason. However, according to reports, their interest in him does not seem substantial. Fred Katz from The Athletic elaborates, noting that they are “patiently” awaiting the right star to come their way.

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Why Talks Around Towns Fizzled Out

SNY’s Ian Begley sheds light on why the Knicks drifted away from negotiating a deal with Minnesota. He explains that the Knicks found Towns’ salary daunting.

“What I had heard was that the salary, some people felt that the salary was just too onerous, at least at this point,” Begley commented. “They have felt that the salary was going to really hurt them later in his deal.”

The salary Begley refers to is indeed substantial. Towns is expected to earn over $36 million next season before an extension kicks in, with over $52 million projected for each of the following four seasons.

Towns’ Performance and Drawbacks

Towns, one of the NBA’s top offensive big men, averaged 20.8 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 4.8 assists, shooting 36.6% from the three-point line in 29 games last season. Nevertheless, his defensive limitations and his hefty contract are significant concerns for any potential deal.

While a player like Towns could offer the Knicks the spacing upgrades they desperately need, his expensive contract could significantly constrain the Knicks’ cap space. This limitation could hinder their ability to pursue other star players in future off-seasons.

Knicks’ Smart Financial Move

Consequently, the Knicks’ decision to step back from a large financial commitment could be seen as a wise move by Leon Rose and the team’s front office.

The Knicks have also shown a lack of interest in pursuing other high-profile market names, such as Paul George and Damian Lillard. This approach indicates that they are patiently waiting for the arrival of a star player who can truly transform them into title contenders.

Knicks’ Upward Trajectory and Youth

Considering the team’s youthful roster and upward trajectory, there’s no rush to conduct significant roster changes just for the sake of change. The Knicks are evidently willing to wait as long as necessary for the right piece to fit into their team puzzle.

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