New York Knicks president Leon Rose has a past connection with point guard Chris Paul as his former agent, which could lead to the organization targeting him in free agency if he elects to leave Phoenix. Having just lost in the NBA Finals, Paul could feel as if thereâ€™s unfinished business with the Suns and star teammate Devin Booker, but if he is seeking a new challenge and a bigger payday, the Knicks could represent potential destination.
Coming off one of his best seasons to date and showcasing his quality at 36 years old, Paul has the leverage in the situation, and heâ€™s seeking a multi-year contract.
Phoenix will try to bring him back on a substantial deal, but if Paul demands more, a stalemate could ensue.
â€œAnd if thereâ€™s a stalemate [with the Suns], keep an eye on the New York Knicks as a potential suitor for Chris Paul,” Bobby Marks of ESPN stated regarding the situation.
Marks also mentioned that the Knicks are one of the only teams with enough money to realistically acquire Paul on the off chance he leaves Pheonix:
If Paul declines the option, that is an indication a new contract is waiting from Phoenix or there is a secondary option with a team that has cap space. The Suns could offer a contract for up to four seasons, and a team such as theÂ New York KnicksÂ that projects to have more than $50 million in room can sign him to a three-year deal. In the unlikely scenario that Paul does leave, Phoenix would have $27 million in cap space.
Paul has a player option for $44 million next season, and if he declines, it will open up the flood gates for him to explore free agency, which would only drive up his price tag. Phoenix would like to avoid any potential bidding war for Paul, and he will likely try to complete a deal before things get crazy during August — he will only benefit from that reality.
This past season, he averaged 16.4 points, 8.9 assists, and shot 50% from the field, including 39.5% from three, over 3.7 attempts per game. As one of the league’s best facilitators on offense, he helped carry Phoenix to the Finals but was simply overshadowed by Giannis Antetokoumpo. If heâ€™s looking for a new challenge, MSG would give him the platform to elevate not only the team but also the city.