Indiana Pacers v Atlanta Hawks - Game Three

Report: Knicks in talks with reserve big man Ivan Johnson


The Knicks are trying to round out the end of their roster, the guys who will rarely get off the bench but can provide a little something when they do.

We told you they are in talks with Jannero Pargo, a point guard who has bounced around but never stuck in the league.

Now comes the report they also are in talks with former Hawks reserve big man Ivan Johnson, according to Jared Zwerling at It just seems to be a matter of money.

The 29-year-old Johnson, who became an NBA player in 2011 and has played for the Hawks, was initially campaigning for a mini mid-level contract. But with remaining attractive free agents like DeJuan Blair and Antawn Jamison in the veteran’s minimum financial ballpark — Blair signed with the Mavericks for that amount — the free-agent market is quickly changing….

The source said, “I think it would be a great fit for Ivan to get big minutes [in New York] and further prove he can play in this league.”

The Knicks have 12 guys on their roster and could bring in a couple guys before the season starts.

While Johnson, a 6’8” traditional power forward, would be buried on the depth chart when you consider the injury history of the rest of the Knicks front line — Amare Stoudemire, Tyson Chandler, Kenyon Martin, Andrea Bargnani — it is likely he would get some quality minutes.

When he’s gotten minutes Johnson has looked pretty good. Last season with the Hawks Johnson played in 69 games, averaged 15 minutes with 6.6 points and 3.9 rebounds a game.

Johnson plays a physical game Knicks fans would love (he likes to be almost an enforcer), and with that he brings a lot of energy and good defense, he’s a strong rebounder and he can finish with authority around the rim. When he just does those things he’s good, but he can take some ill-advised shots and in setting up those shots he can turn the ball over too much. When he plays within himself he’s a quality role player, he just gets outside that role sometimes.

That said, at the minimum this would be a quality pick up for the Knicks bench.

Hezonja throws down one-handed dunk in preseason debut

Orlando Magic Introduce 2015 NBA Draft Picks
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Mario Hezonja, the No. 5 pick in this year’s draft, has never lacked for confidence. The Croatian guard made his pro debut in the Magic’s preseason game against the Hornets on Saturday and did this:

Between Hezonja, Elfrid Payton, Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon, the Magic have a nucleus of young players that has the potential to be a lot of fun. Even if they’re still a few years away from contending, they’re definitely going to be a League Pass favorite this year.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist suffers dislocated shoulder in preseason game

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Solomon Hill
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Preseason is only just getting underway and there’s already a potentially serious injury to report. In the game between the Hornets and Magic on Saturday night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was taken to the locker room after suffering a right shoulder injury. The Hornets announced that he was then taken to an Orlando-area hospital for follow-up x-rays:

A few hours after the game, the Hornets announced that Kidd-Gilchrist has a dislocated shoulder:

Depending on the severity of the injury, he could miss a few weeks or a few months. Hopefully, it’s the shorter end of that timeline. We should know more on Sunday.