Report: Knicks could trade Elfrid Payton after Derrick Rose acquisition

New York Knicks, Elfrid Payton

The New York Knicks made an interesting trade over the weekend, acquiring Derrick Rose from the Detroit Pistons. Rose hasn’t started a game this season at 32 years old, but he’s averaging 22.8 minutes per contest off the bench. He’s putting up 14.2 points per game and 4.2 assists, edging current Knicks Elfrid Payton in the scoring department.

The Knicks now have multiple point guards, including Payton, Rose, Immanuel Quickley, and Austin Rivers. This will likely make someone expendable, and Payton might be the player who can attract the most interest and add the most draft capital.

At this point in his career, Rose is more of a rotational player, who can offer Quickley a mentor and teacher. He does provide some spark on offense, but the Knicks might feel IQ is ready to take a step forward into the starting five. If that is the case, NY should be looking for trade partners who want a solid defensive point guard in Payton who is averaging 11.9 points per game.

According to Bleacher Report, teams have inquired about Elfrid Payton, who’s now expendable after the acquisition of Derrick Rose.

After ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Knicks traded Dennis Smith Jr. and a second-round draft pick to the Detroit Pistons for Derrick Rose, Ian Begley of SNY reported “at least one team in playoff contention has shown interest in Elfrid Payton.”

Payton started Sunday’s loss to the Miami Heat, but there will be less need for him following the Rose trade.

In addition to the veteran Rose, New York can turn toward Austin Rivers and Immanuel Quickley to handle the ball. Quickley, who was the No. 25 overall pick of the 2020 NBA draft, has been a pleasant surprise for the Knicks this season with his ability to provide an immediate boost off the bench.

The question remains, is Quickley ready to take that step forward and retain a starting role?

Over 21 games, he’s averaging 12 points over 18.9 minutes, and while his defense is a work in progress, he has the effort and athleticism to develop in every category. I would like to see him move the ball a bit more efficiently and increases assist numbers, but that will likely come with more time on the floor. Payton is simply taking up too many minutes, and while he has been playing well as of late, selling high would be a good move for New York, who likely feel confident IQ can replace his production with ease.