Corey Brewer

Knicks buy out Corey Brewer, several teams interested


According to Marc Stein of, the New York Knicks have reached a buyout agreement with swingman Corey Brewer. According to Stein, the Celtics, the Spurs, the Thunder, and the Mavericks are “among the teams with the most interest in Brewer.”

The 24-year old Brewer is known for his height, length, versatility, and defensive acumen, but has never been able to score efficiently in the NBA. Brewer is a good athlete who can finish at the rim, but he is a very poor jump shooter who settles for too many outside shots. Brewer is currently shooting 38.4% from the field, and his True Shooting percentage is an abysmal 47.1%.

Brewer played 1,362 minutes for the Timberwolves this season, which was the 6th-most minutes of any player on the team. The Knicks, however, apparently feel that Jared Jeffries is a better fit in Mike D’Antoni’s system, and obviously did not think Brewer could help their team in any significant way. Brewer has been something of a bust up to this point in his career, but he still has the tools to be an effective role player in this league.

Clearly, some of the best teams in the league believe that Brewer’s defensive ability and energy more than make up for his questionable shot selection and broken jumper. He may end up providing some key spot minutes in this year’s playoffs, or he may end up waving a towel while his team tries to win a championship.

James Harden: “I am the best player in the league. I believe that.”

James Harden, Stephen Curry
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James Harden was the MVP last season — if you ask his fellow NBA players.

The traditional award (based on a media vote) went to Stephen Curry (in the closest vote in four years), and that was the right call (in my mind). But from the time it happened Harden did not buy it. And he still doesn’t buy it. In the least — and he’s using that as fuel for this season. That’s what he told Fran Blinebury over at

“I am the best player in the league. I believe that,” he said. “I thought I was last year, too.”

Well, it’s a more realistic claim than Paul George’s.

“But that award means most valuable to your team. We finished second in the West, which nobody thought we were going to do at the beginning of the year even when everybody was healthy. We were near the top in having the most injuries. We won our division in a division where every single team made the playoffs.

“There’s so many factors. I led the league in total points scored, minutes played. Like I said, I’m not taking anything away from Steph, but I felt I deserved the Most Valuable Player. That stays with me.”

That’s very Kobe Bryant of you to turn that into fuel. Defining the MVP Award is an annual discussion that nobody agrees on.

I could get into how Harden was the old-school, traditional stats MVP, how that ignores how Steve Kerr used Curry, and how that opened up the Warriors’ offense to championship levels. Curry put up numbers, but he was also the distraction, the bright star that Kerr used to open up looks for Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and others. Curry’s strength was not just what he did with the ball in his hands, but his gravity to draw defenders even when he didn’t. Did the Warriors stay healthier than the Rockets? No doubt. Should Curry be penalized for that?

It’s simple for Harden — if he can put up those numbers again, if he can be the fulcrum of a top offense, he will be in the discussion for MVP again. And, if he can lead the Rockets beyond the conference finals, nobody will talk about that MVP snub anyway.