The Knicks play the card of continuity by adding a French flavor.
With a cap of $ 52.6 million, the highest in the league, the Knicks made their biggest addition Monday night when former Celtics swingman Evan Fournier agreed to the terms of a $ 76 million contract. dollars over four years.
Knicks general manager Scott Perry, when working for the Magic, traded for Fournier, 27, in 2014. Fournier has become a solid scorer, although he is not considered an elite defenseman as the departure of Reggie Bullock. Fournier was never on the All-Star squad, but the Knicks pay him a lot.
With Fournier in the bag, Bullock, who started out as a shooting guard, signed with the Mavericks.
Fournier will enter the starting lineup alongside RJ Barrett, and to fill their hole at the playmaker, the Knicks made a deal to bring back Derrick Rose for three years, $ 43 million, which used up the rest of their cap room.
The Knicks essentially retreated on the first night of free agency – also making big commitments to center Nerlens Noel and wing Alec Burks.
Noel and Burks were big parts of last season’s 41-31 playoff squad, but president Leon Rose was still looking for an upgrade to the point guard.
Fournier was traded from Orlando to Boston last season on the trade deadline, and the Knicks held talks with the Magic at the time. Fournier, who averaged 17.1 points and shot 41.3% from a 3-point distance, played for France at the Olympics, which saw them upset the United States squad this week. last. Coincidentally, the Knicks added a Frenchman but will lose another, Frank Ntilikina, who became an unrestricted free agent on Monday.
The Knicks have also agreed to re-sign Noel to a three-year, $ 32 million contract, leaving Robinson’s future in doubt. The Knicks exercised Robinson’s option of $ 1.8 million for the 2021-22 season. His durability is still an issue for the club and a photo on social media always seems to show him in a walking boot taking pictures.
The Knicks had to use their cap space to re-sign Noel, who skillfully replaced Robinson in his injury-plagued season but did not perform well against the Hawks during the playoffs, in which he did not perform well against the Hawks. been dominated by Clint Capela.
There is speculation that the Knicks could look to extend Robinson’s contract before he becomes a free agent in 2022. With the money going to Noel, however, Robinson would now become a significant potential business chip if the Knicks go into the market. trade negotiations with Portland for point guard Damian Lillard.
Burks signed for three years, $ 30 million. He had a sixth man-of-the-year type season until he contracted COVID-19 at the end of the year and didn’t have a good playoffs.
The Knicks had to use the cap space to ink Burks and Noel because they don’t have their Early Bird rights.
Noel saved the Knicks when Robinson broke his hand, then his foot. Noel’s poor playoffs could be attributed to a sore ankle.
In his first season with the Knicks last season, Noel, 27, averaged 5.1 points, 6.4 rebounds and a career-high 2.2 blocks per game.
Some of the Knicks’ most prominent targets were going elsewhere. Chris Paul has re-signed with the Suns and Kyle Lowry has been sent on a contract with the Heat, which will make Miami more formidable in the Eastern Conference as the Knicks try to keep pace.
The targets for the leaders still on the board were Spencer Dinwiddie, Dennis Schroder and Reggie Jackson. Dinwiddie has met the Wizards and Bradley Beal has reportedly been pushing for the move.
The Knicks have also had talks with representatives of swingman DeMar DeRozan, but he’s not the 3-point shooting winger they were hoping to acquire.
Pelicans point guard Lonzo Ball, also a Knicks target, went to the Bulls – another team that could be on the rise – in a signing and trade.
The Knicks could still add a point guard via trade, with the Cavaliers’ Collin Sexton still on the block – not to mention the chance Lillard would ask for a trade. Lillard has the Knicks high on her wishlist, but the Trail Blazers have the last call.
The Knicks have announced their Summer League squad and it’s jam-packed – with all four rookies in Thursday’s draft, 2018 lottery pick Kevin Knox and last season’s two first-round picks Obi Toppin and Immanuel Quickley. Argentina playmaker Luca Vildoza, who signed a four-year contract last spring and currently plays in the Olympics, is also named to the list.
An undrafted player from Thursday, Aamir Simms, a Clemson forward, was also signed to the Summer League squad with a chance to land a two-way G-League contract. Their. The 2021 draft picks, Quentin Grimes, Rokas Jokubaitis, Miles McBride and Jericho Sims will all play. Simms of Clemson was a second-team All-ACC selection, averaging 13.4 points, 6.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game.