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  1. #241
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    Quote Originally Posted by htr10 View Post
    Reportedly, Derrick Rose’s 1st place MVP vote was the “consensus fan” vote.
    That’s puts you in the minority “Broadway”😂 I guess you that went over your head😳

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    If you cant attract free agents or draft talent, how are you supposed to get better. Right!

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    RJ racked up more than 2,000 points, pulled down 500 rebounds and passed out 300 assists before turning 21.

    The only other guys who have done that are Kobe, Kevin Garnett, LeBron James, Tracy McGrady, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant and Luka Doncic.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.duk...ketball-record

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    Knicks offseason preview: NBA Draft big board, salary-cap situation, internal free-agent priorities, more
    By Mike Vorkunov and Sam Vecenie Jun 14, 2021 44

    The Knicks’ season came to a close earlier this month with a thud. A five-game first-round loss to the Hawks was an unceremonious end to what had been a very exciting and surprising regular-season run. Still, it was a boom time for the Knicks. They made the playoffs for the first time since 2013 and seem to have redirected the franchise in a positive direction.

    Now comes the hard part: the offseason. They’ll try to build on their progress. They have cap space galore, draft picks by the bucketful and, like in “Goosebumps,” they can choose their own ending. What should they do? The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie and Mike Vorkunov got together to talk it through and figure out the best next steps for free agency, the trade market and the draft.

    What goals are the Knicks trying to achieve this offseason?

    That’s a good question. The plain answer is they’re trying to get better. The how, the who and the when are still uncertain. The Knicks’ front office has remained a black box since Leon Rose took over last March. Other than telegraphing Tom Thibodeau as the team’s next coach, Rose has been hard to read. It seems likely the 2020-21 season accelerated their timeline. If you expected 41 wins and the fourth seed in the East from the Knicks, then you either should have cashed out in Vegas by now, or you’re such an orange-and-blue-tinted homer you can’t be reasoned with. But the Knicks did it. They got a huge leap from Julius Randle, a nice sophomore jump from RJ Barrett and good play from rookie Immanuel Quickley.

    So how do they improve on that for next season? There are a lot of factors to weigh. One is that this season is among the hardest to read in recent memory because of the toll of daily COVID testing and the health protocols each team followed, the condensed schedule, the lack of fans in arenas for a good portion of the season and the trickle-down factors that come with all that.

    The big question is how and when they should leverage the considerable assets they hold. There is roughly $50 million in cap space this summer. They have five first-round picks over the next three years (though two will come in July, at 19 and 21, and another is the 2023 Mavericks pick, which seems like it would be in the 20s because Luka).

    The short term needs are clear — New York must find a major upgrade at point guard and continue to build up the talent on the roster — and you can be sure Tom Thibodeau will be pushing the front office to improve the roster now, but it’s a question of how to achieve that while still maintaining long-term flexibility. The Knicks can be in the hunt when the next big star wants out; they just need to have the pieces to trade for him. And they do, though not quite to the same degree as the Thunder or Pelicans. Until that moment comes, they can build around Randle and Barrett with smart free agent signings, while also deciding which of their many free agents to bring back. The Knicks had a very nice 2020-21 season but it doesn’t mean they need to run it back. — Vorkunov

    Who are the true building blocks for the Knicks as they move into this exciting new era?

    Barrett, Quickley and Randle come to mind first. Barrett is 20 and just came off a second NBA season in which his shooting improved tremendously, while he showed growth as a scorer and defender. The Knicks invested the No. 3 pick in him in 2019 and it is beginning to pay off. He still has a lot to work on, but it’s conceivable that his floor is a very good starter on a good team down the line, and maybe even much better.

    Quickley emerged as a late-first gem from the 2021 draft. He showed scoring and shooting promise as a rookie and that he can handle being an on-ball guard. He is already receiving Lou Williams comps, and that might be where he’s going. If he can continue to develop as a playmaker and become a three-level scorer, his ceiling could be even higher.

    Randle made the leap into an All-Star this season. He was tremendous, holding up the Knicks offense while generating shots for teammates and hitting 41 percent of his 3s. His playoff debut was a clunker, but it shouldn’t take away from what he did during the regular season.

    There are other young players on the Knicks roster who could fit here, but they also might not for various reasons. The Knicks took Obi Toppin eighth in the 2021 draft, but he was not very good as a rookie, though he showed more promise in his limited playoff minutes. Still, he’s already 23 and while he did get better as a cutter, shooter and defender during the season, it’s still hard to say any of those are strengths for him right now.

    Mitchell Robinson is also 23 and has proven himself to be a very good shot blocker and defensive anchor at center. He was playing as well as he ever had this season but missed 41 games due to injuries. He’s young enough and good enough that the Knicks could and should consider him a long-term building block, but he’s also set to become a free agent within the next 15 months, whether this offseason as an RFA if the Knicks don’t pick up his team option for next season or in the summer of 2022 as a UFA. So the Knicks will have to decide soon whether to invest major dollars in him.

    His contract situation looks a lot more complicated than Randle’s, who is up for a four-year, $106 million extension this summer. That’s the max the Knicks can offer him under the CBA, and it seemed far-fetched they would get to this point even seven months ago. Randle is entering the last year of a three-year, $60 million deal, one that includes a partially-guaranteed final season. It seemed uncertain if the Knicks would have picked that up if he played as he had in his first season in New York. Then he went and made an All-Star team.

    Now they have to decide whether to offer him a large multi-year contract. It’s a nice position to be in, for sure, but it does come with some complexity. The extension offer would be based on just one season of high-level play and after a weird, condensed, COVID-19 affected season. And it would kick in next summer, so it’s essentially a five-year deal that would take Randle through his age-31 season. It would be a strong bet that Randle remains this good a shooter, defender and scorer instead of regressing to his prior form. This is all without getting into the discussion of whether Randle should take that deal, too. — Vorkunov
    The Knicks have the beginnings of an exciting core. Is Mitchell Robinson part of it? Photo: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

    Salary Cap and Free Agency Situation

    The Knicks have more salary-cap flexibility than any other team in the NBA. Because of the way they’ve structured all of their contracts essentially to expire this year, they’re in a very advantageous position. But advantages can quickly turn into bad decisions in free agency if you don’t act with some semblance of restraint.

    As mentioned above, Randle is eligible for an extension up to four years, $106 million in base salary, with incentives. It seems unlikely he’d accept that following his breakout season, but weirder things have happened. The Knicks don’t really have any other choice beyond offering a simple extension. He’s not eligible for a renegotiate-and-extend by virtue of only being with the team for only two years. And the team can’t just drop his non-guarantee and re-sign him because to do that, he’d have to pass through waivers, where he would assuredly be claimed by Oklahoma City. So Randle is locked into a cap number of around $21.7 million next season, a slightly higher number than anticipated because he reached $945,000 contract incentives by making the All-Star game and another by making the playoffs with the Knicks.

    Between Randle, Barrett, Quickley, Toppin, Robinson and Kevin Knox, plus the $6.4 million cap hit from the stretched Joakim Noah deal, the Knicks have about $51.7 million on the books. That leaves them with real, manageable space of about $60.7 million if they decide not to do anything. They could also choose to waive and stretch Knox’s money on that final deal over the next three years to add almost $4 million to that number. Having said that, I don’t think they’d actually have to do that if they wanted to clear Knox, as I’d be willing to bet a team would take a shot on trading Knox into cap space for a fake, top-55 protected second-round pick. Realistically, I think the Knicks could get up to almost $66 million in space pretty easily.

    But let’s start by working off of that $60.7 number because it’s where the organization stands now. It can get reduced a bit quickly. With the two cap holds they have on the No. 19 and 21 picks in the 2021 NBA Draft, that takes about $5.3 million off the table, dropping it down to $55.4 million. Next come the non-guaranteed deals of Luca Vildoza and Norvel Pelle. If they decide to keep that duo, the team would be on the hook for about $5 million more. After that? The Frank Ntilikina decision. Ntilikina has a qualifying offer of $8.3 million that would allow the team to have restricted free agency rights over him. We’d be pretty stunned if the team extended that offer, meaning it’s likely he just hits free agency. His cap hold is also up over $18 million, so that won’t be of use to the Knicks, either. It seems likely the Ntilikina era has ended in New York.

    Speaking of cap holds, we get to the Knicks’ free agents, where Rose and company have a variety of different Bird rights situations to deal with. Alec Burks and Nerlens Noel are non-Bird free agents (by virtue of having signed contracts with the team last offseason), which means they’re basically going to have to dip into cap space to retain them at whatever the agreed upon price is if they choose to do so. The team also has several early Bird free agents that it could try to retain within the CBA rules or go into their cap space to sign. The cap hold for early Bird free agents is 130 percent of their previous salary was, while the team can pay up to 175 percent of what the previous salary was in salary under those rules, giving a bit of a surplus value for retaining ones’ own free agents if the team can agree to such a deal.

    Elfrid Payton has early Bird rights, but I just can’t see those being particularly relevant given that we don’t think he should receive a salary greater than his $6.2 million cap hold. The Knicks have two relevant early Bird free agents. Derrick Rose has early Bird rights, with a cap hold of about $10 million, and if they choose to keep that on the books, they can pay him up to $13.44 million, giving them about $3.4 million surplus. Reggie Bullock’s cap hold is about $5.46 million, and the team can go up to $7.35 million to re-sign him under those rights. That $13.44 million number seems about right for Rose, but we’re not convinced they’ll be able to retain Bullock at that $7.35 million number after a terrific defensive season in which he shot over 40 percent from 3. They might need to dip further into cap space to retain him.

    Bullock and Rose have combined cap holds of $15.5 million. That means if Bullock is willing to re-sign on a deal starting at $7.35 million and Rose is willing to sign a deal starting at $13.44 million or lower, the Knicks could hold onto them both, use their two draft picks and still have nearly $40 million in cap space. Even if Bullock gets a full mid-level range deal, the team should still have about $35 million to spend. That could give them enough space to retain all of Bullock, Rose, Burks and Noel, and still make a pretty sizable splash. The 2021 free-agent class has the potential to be pretty watered down following a rash of extensions that have taken a star-sized chunk out of the class. But there are still enough players there who could legitimately help New York.

    One unrestricted free agent stands out to us as a perfect fit. Could Spencer Dinwiddie decide to decline his $12.3 million player option, then just go across town to the Knicks on a deal in the $18 million per year range to start? That would fill a positional need at the point guard spot, giving the team another big, creative guard that they need. Norman Powell is also an interesting offensive creator in the backcourt who could be interesting within that price range of $15 to 18 million to start his deal. He had a career year in Toronto and Portland this year, although such a signing would signal that the Knicks see Quickley more as a true point guard who can initiate as opposed to a scoring guard.

    Of course, free agency is not the only way to use cap space. The Knicks will absolutely be an option for teams looking to move salary off of their books, by taking additional positive assets. Could Boston look at sending Kemba Walker home to New York while clearing out their cap sheet a bit as a positive outcome for everyone, given New York’s need at the lead guard spot? Or could the Knicks use those two first-round picks to maybe just take a valuable player into cap space? There are so many options this summer. — Vecenie

    NBA Draft Big Board for Nos. 19 and 21

    Like Mike said early in this story, the Knicks don’t exactly have a clear track record of player type they’re looking for in Rose’s tenure so far. There has been a stigma that the team has a preference for CAA clients due to Rose’s past agency affiliation, but they’ve added players represented by several different agencies in the past year of Rose’s tenure, including Quickley (Roc Nation), Rose (Wasserman), and Burks and Vildoza (Octagon). Honestly, I think we’re still learning about the Rose front office, making them one of the bigger wild cards we’ll see on draft night.

    Let’s assume all of Cade Cunningham, Evan Mobley, Jalen Suggs, Jalen Green, Jonathan Kuminga, Scottie Barnes, Davion Mitchell, Keon Johnson, Josh Giddey, James Bouknight, Franz Wagner and Alperen Sengun are all off the board. It’s not necessarily that those are the clear top 12 prospects or that they’d be the top-12 guys for the Knicks. Rather, based on feedback, I think those are the guys that are least likely to be available at No. 19.

    Here’s a quick little run-through, in order, of where I’d have New York’s board, which is largely based on roster fit and scheme more than front office history.

    Moses Moody, Arkansas: Moody would be a home run for the Knicks at No. 19, in my view, but I think he’s very unlikely to be available. Why? He’s 6-foot-6 with a near-7-foot wingspan. He’s a legitimate shot-maker and a switchable defender, which is something every team is looking for. With Bullock hitting free agency, the team could desperately use another player like this not only as insurance but also just in terms of depth.

    Chris Duarte, Oregon: Similarly to Moody, Duarte would fit as a legitimate 3-and-D wing with strong defensive traits. Duarte is also more ready-made to contribute than Moody is, as he’ll turn 24 years old before playing an NBA game. He’s a purer shooter, having hit well over 40 percent from 3. He’s also just a bit more athletic than Moody is, although, again, I think he has a bit less upside as a self-creating shot-maker long-term. There is a reasonable chance he’ll be available.

    Usman Garuba, Real Madrid: OK, so hear me out: Garuba is the best, most polished defender in this draft. If Tom Thibodeau is involved in the draft process at all, I think there is a real chance he sees Garuba as Taj Gibson reincarnated. He’s that smart and that solid positionally, and arguably even more disruptive due to his length and increased athleticism. The offense will take work, but I can Thibs being a big fan. I don’t think he’ll get to No. 19, though.

    Ziaire Williams, Stanford: Williams is a big shot-creator at 6-foot-8, with real athletic upside. Again, this would be a bit more wing depth. Knicks fans might be inclined to compare Williams to Kevin Knox as both have been billed as 6-foot-8 shot-making wings. But Williams is much twitchier athletically, and his explosiveness translates much better to the NBA court because of it. Williams is all over the map for NBA teams, with the potential to be picked basically anywhere from No. 10 to No. 25 or so.

    Miles McBride, West Virginia: This might be high for McBride for some, but hear me out. Thibodeau loves terrific defensive guards at the point of attack and would be a huge fan of McBride’s energy in that regard. “Deuce,” as he’s known, also has significant upside as a scorer and distributor. His tape is absolutely terrific after West Virginia flipped to more of a four-out offense midway through the year. I actually have him a bit higher than Sharife Cooper on my personal board, and he’d fill a substantial need at the lead guard position.

    Corey Kispert, Gonzaga: Kispert has a case to be the best shooter in this class. The Knicks made a ton of 3s but don’t necessarily have many high-volume gunners quite like Kispert projects to be. Many evaluators think of him as a very similar prospect to Joe Harris in that his mechanics are pristine at 6-foot-7 with a strong frame and great size. He’s also an extremely mature kid who is professional and won’t be blinded by the big lights of New York City. I think I’d side more toward him not being available, but he could be at No. 19.

    Isaiah Jackson, Kentucky: Given the team’s connection to Kentucky and John Calipari-coached players (Randle, Noel, Quickley, Rose, Knox), Jackson has been on the radar as a potential selection to pay attention to. Jackson is also a young player who is a project on offense, but his defensive ability as an athletic shot-blocker is real. And with the uncertainty surrounding Noel and Robinson’s potentially impending free agencies, the team could have a very real need in the frontcourt. I wouldn’t mind this pick. Jackson’s range is seen somewhere between No. 11 and 25.

    Sharife Cooper, Auburn: Cooper is something of a home run swing. He’s arguably the best ballhandler and live-dribble passer in the class. The problem is that he’s one of the worst defenders in the class and isn’t yet a consistent shooter. If he can’t bend the defense as a shooting threat, will he be able to take advantage of his that handle and passing? He’s a polarizing player leaguewide.

    Jalen Johnson, Duke: The Knicks would actually be a really interesting fit for Johnson given how much they used Randle to initiate this year. They’ve clearly shown that they’re willing to use a 6-foot-9 big man to pass and play make at the top of the key. But the key reason Randle was able to be successful with that was that he improved dramatically as a shooter and shot creator for himself, something Johnson struggled with this season. He’s a very polarizing player as he could be off the board in the lottery or get down to around the No. 25 mark if things break wrong.

    Kai Jones, Texas: A super-high-upside big with all of the athleticism in the world. He has the potential to be a shot creator. But Jones is much more of a project than anyone else on the board here. I’m not totally sure that the Knicks with Thibodeau are the best fit for him in terms of patience and willingness to work through some growing pains, particularly on the defensive end, where Jones isn’t the most instinctive guy right now. I think he’s less likely to be on the board, but bigs always have a bit of a wider range on draft night.

    Jaden Springer, Tennessee: Springer had strong scoring numbers this year at Tennessee, and is one of the youngest players in the draft. He also really applies himself at a high level as an on-ball defender against guards. But he’s not really a shooter right now, and his game is more of a power game as opposed to a skilled one, especially around the rim. With some shooting improvement, he has a chance to be a very effective player. He’s another guy that is relatively polarizing among teams. Based on intel, he’s more likely to be available at No. 19 than not right now, but it’s still early.

    Cam Thomas, LSU: One of the best pure scorers in the draft, Thomas brings a lot to the table as a shot-creator and finisher. He finished fourth nationally in scoring this season in college hoops as a teenager. The question is simply what else he does well. The answer right now, unfortunately, is not anything by NBA standards. But he might be so good as a scorer that it’s enough to make him a worthwhile pick. To me though, this just doesn’t really seem like the kind of guy that Thibodeau would be a fan of.

    Best realistic case outcome: Duarte and McBride. A backcourt foursome of Quickley, McBride, Barrett and Duarte would bring a ton of different valuable traits to the table on both the offensive and defensive end, a really high-end mesh of skills. They’d have four young players who would provide shot-creation, spacing, distribution and defensive intensity together. McBride and Duarte also fit a lot of what this season of Knicks basketball was all about: two-way toughness and team-oriented play. — Vecenie

    (Photo of Julius Randle and RJ Barrett: Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
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    Mike Vorkunov is a staff writer for The Athletic covering the New York Knicks. He has also contributed to the New York Times, USA Today, VICE Sports, and started his career at the Newark Star-Ledger. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeVorkunov.
    Sam Vecenie covers the NBA Draft, college basketball and the NBA for The Athletic. His podcast, the Game Theory Podcast, is regularly ranked among the top podcasts on iTunes. Previously, he worked for CBS Sports, SB Nation, Sporting News, and Vice. Follow Sam on Twitter @Sam_Vecenie.

  5. #245
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    Norman Powell and Josh Hart are 2 names Im reading about. Both probably replacing RB/AB?

  6. #246
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    Julius Randle made All-NBA 2nd Team. Wow, huge accomplishment for him. Puts him behind Kawhi and Ante and same tier as Lebron as far as Forwards in the entire league.

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    Immanuel Quickley makes All-Rookie 2nd Team.

    Wiseman not making either 1st or 2nd rookie team probably biggest surprise to me coming out of the draft. On draft night, I thought he was going to make biggest NBA splash of any rookie.

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    Canadian national team bball coach (TOR HC) Nick Nurse on RJ:

    Nurse also highlighting just how smart RJ Barrett is. Says he picks things up really quickly and has a very infectious energy in practices.

  9. #249
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    Quickley was actually just six voting points away from tying JaeSean Tate for First-Team honors

    Quickley, Desmond Bane, Isaac Okoro, Isaiah Stewart and Patrick Williams have all been named to the All-Rookie Second Team for the 2020-2021 NBA Season.

    LaMelo Ball, Anthony Edwards, Tyrese Haliburton, Saddiq Bey and JaeSean Tate have been named to the All-Rookie First Team, per Shams Charania on Twitter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mafra View Post
    Canadian national team bball coach (TOR HC) Nick Nurse on RJ:

    Nurse also highlighting just how smart RJ Barrett is. Says he picks things up really quickly and has a very infectious energy in practices.
    I don't know .. A little offseason improvement to Quickley's speed & IQ at the combo-guard role will top Barrett's performance, if IQ is given the 6th man-role, plus extra minutes at the SG position next season.

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    Take this with a grain of salt, complete rumor, but source told Daily News that Knicks would be interested in packaging RJ Barrett with picks/other assets to trade for Lillard or Beal. If not an option, Knicks may pursue Sexton, SGA, or Terry Rozier.

    Dont love this news. Feel like we are destined to repeat unfortunate past history.

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    I would include RJ for Dame, only if it coinciding with grabbing a third star to play with Dame and Randle.

    I would not send RJ for Beal, or Sexton, Rozier, or SGA!

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    Barrett scored 23 points, but Czech Republic eliminated Canada in a 103-101 overtime heartbreaker in the Olympic qualifier semifinals in Victoria, British Columbia. Tomas Satoransky won it on a last-second banker. Barrett shot 9-for-17, but missed his final two shots in the final 1:18 of OT.

    He also clanked a free throw in OT that wouldve completed a three-point play. Barrett was 3-for-7 from the free-throw line.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mafra View Post
    Barrett scored 23 points, but Czech Republic eliminated Canada in a 103-101 overtime heartbreaker in the Olympic qualifier semifinals in Victoria, British Columbia. Tomas Satoransky won it on a last-second banker. Barrett shot 9-for-17, but missed his final two shots in the final 1:18 of OT.

    He also clanked a free throw in OT that wouldve completed a three-point play. Barrett was 3-for-7 from the free-throw line.

    Barrett's 3-7 FT shooting cost them the game.
    I was hoping Barrett & Wiggins would have paired up well to dominate the Olympics as a tandem of super scoring wings for Canada.

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    Knicks continue to be linked to a possible Collin Sexton trade.

    One article said that trade could cost Obi Toppin, Kevin Knox, and a 1st round pick.

    If youre the Knicks, youre probably taking that trade to get Sexton.

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