Knicks Covet Rashard Lewis
30th May, 2007 - 4:33 am
Seattle Post Intelligencer -
According to NBA insiders, the Knicks could make the Sonics a sign-and-trade offer for forward Rashard Lewis that could include Seattle natives Nate Robinson and Jamal Crawford.
Crawford is owed $35 million over the next four seasons, and the Knicks could add Robinson's contract or that of Channing Frye to come within 75 percent of a new Lewis deal, per rules of the collective bargaining agreement.
Wilkens said Tuesday that the Sonics plan to sign Lewis, who opted out of his contract Friday and will be an unrestricted free agent July 1. To execute a sign-and-trade, the Sonics would have to sign Lewis to a new contract and then trade him.
The Sonics have the advantage in re-signing Lewis because they can offer him a six-year deal, compared with five for other clubs, and give Lewis 10.5 percent increases per season, compared with 8 percent for other clubs.
" He is a young player who was having a great year, and he wants to explore the market," Wilkens said. "Yes (there are plans to re-sign him). He is an asset for us. We still want him, and we're going to try everything we can get him signed."
The Knicks, however, have made Lewis a major priority.