Evan Fournier emerged as a standout offensive player for the New York Knicks during the 2021-2022 season, achieving career-high performances and breaking records. However, as the summer of 2023 arrives, the situation has taken an unexpected turn. Fournier’s limited playing time and defensive shortcomings have caused a rift between him and head coach Tom Thibodeau, raising questions about his future with the team.
Can Fournier’s offensive contributions outweigh his defensive shortcomings?
This past season, Fournier was a positive outlier on the offensive end, scoring a career-high 41-points and eight boards against the Celtics while also setting a new record for the most three-pointers made by a Knicks player in a single season. Nevertheless, time has seemed to fly by rather quickly for the 30-year-old shooting guard.
Now in the summer of 2023, the Knicks are at a crossroads with Fournier. After falling out of the rotation and playing in only 27 games this season with 7 starts, it seems coach Thibodeau does not believe Fournier’s offensive contributions outweigh his defensive shortcomings.
Tensions are rising between Evan Fournier and the Knicks
Fournier has made the tension between him and the team very clear recently. In a recent interview with Yann Ohnona Fournier said, “I would be very surprised to be a Knick next year.”
Coach Thibodeau’s decision to remove Fournier from the rotation was a move not many expected following
his previous season. In 27 games, he averaged 6 points, shooting 33% from the field.
Does Fournier have a trade market?
Fournier’s removal from the lineup has seemingly lowered his trade value. Teams are not eager to acquire the heavy, $18-million dollar salary on Fournier’s deal for the 2023 season. In the event that there will be suitors, the Knicks may have to send more than they would like in order to rid of those numbers.
Fournier still offers an offensive spark when he receives playing time. As a veteran on this Knicks team, other young teams looking for that presence may consider acquiring Fournier. After shooting 39% from three-point-range in 2022, Fournier has been linked to the San Antonio Spurs. Ultimately, Fournier could be on the buyout market as teams prefer to sign him, rather than give up players and draft capital for the disgruntled veteran.