But it seems they’re ready to move on before the trade deadline.
The sense I’ve gotten from talking to other teams who’ve talked to New York is they feel like the Knicks would almost give away Derrick Rose right now.
Rose is earning $21,323,252 this season. No team has enough cap room to absorb his salary. The more cap space a team has, the less that team must send out to acquire Rose. But the NBA’s salary-matching rules make it difficult for many teams to trade for Rose. It’s just too hard to aggregate that much salary without including a player more valuable than Rose or someone on a long-term contract who’d be a dealbreaker for New York.
At least Rose is on an expiring contract. If they can’t dump him now, the Knicks can always let him walk in the offseason.
That expiring deal also limits potential trade partners. Why trade for Rose if you can just sign him in this summer? Because you value what he’ll provide the rest of this season. Rose is limited, but he still scores effectively on drives.
He has been linked to the Timberwolves, which makes sense given his familiarity with Tom Thibodeau from the Bulls and Minnesota’s stubborn insistence on aiming for the playoffs this year. But Ricky Rubio is more valuable than Rose, and the Timberwolves also have Kris Dunn and Tyus Jones at point guard.
There’s no simple fit for him, which could keep him in New York for another few months.
If Rose’s value has sunk this low, he’s in for a rude awakening in free agency.