When the New York Knicks pried former Celtics power forward Marcus Morris from the San Antonio Spurs, most thought to themselves…how? The chance to play with a perennial contender under Gregg Popovich should be influential for any player looking to leave their mark on the league.
Morris, though, seemed to favor the greenbacks more-so than his desire to win. The Knicks have a solid roster with plenty of depth, but they lack a true superstar — an influencer that can take their game to the next level. The $14.8 million deal over one year that Morris was offered was simply too enticing.
The contract difference was essentially $5 million, as the Spurs were prepared to offer him about $20 million over two-years. For five-million dollars, I would do a lot more than just play basketball in New York City. What a world we live in.
General manager Scott Perry was excited to bring in Morris, and pairing him with the other free agent signings will increase the chances of success for the Knicks.
“With Reggie and Marcus we are adding two more versatile, hard-nosed and accomplished players to an already improved roster,” Scott Perry said in a release, according to the New York Post. “We value both players’ perimeter shooting ability and their strong presence on the court and in the locker room. We’re excited to have them in New York and are confident they will excel playing for this team under Coach (David) Fizdale.”
In 2018, Morris was a key cog in the Celtics’ roster, hitting on 37.5 percent from beyond the arch, and averaged 13.9 points per game on 44.7 percent shooting. Going into his ninth season, Morris is experienced, and the Knicks will be his fifth team over the span of his career. He’s capable of being a great offensive performer and is a quality shooter, something the Knicks have lacked at times, especially in 2018.
How will Marcus Morris help the New York Knicks off the court?
Marcus’ experience will be influential on a team packed full of youth. His leadership will go a long way in helping players like Kevin Knox and RJ Barrett reach their potential and develop their game.
“He works hard, has a serious approach to his craft, and is an excellent teammate,’’ said a former players of Morris. “Winning is important to him, and he’s focused on getting better. I feel he is a solid starter in this league.’’
The reality of this signing is that he can be a contributor for one-season and if he proves his worth there could be an extension in his future. In the meantime, there’s plenty of value to be extracted when it comes to the 29-year-old.