Depending on where the luxury tax line gets set, there could be teams looking to dump contracts to save money this offseason, willing to throw a pick or a young player in the mix to make that happen.
The Knicks are willing to take on those contracts, reports Ian Begley of SNY.TV.
A note on the offseason: several teams said the Knicks are open to using their cap space to take on undesirable contracts via trade, SNY has learned.
The Knicks would presumably acquire another draft pick and young player in this kind of trade. New York has the No. 8, No. 27 and No. 38 picks in the draft.
This would be smart team building by the Knicks; they need to get more draft picks and young players to build a core. This is exactly what the Knicks of the past did not do before (taking on Andre Iguodala, for example).
The timing of this leak may be about the Knicks trying to get a feel for the market. As Bagley notes in the story, the Knicks have options on four players — Bobby Portis, Wayne Ellington, Taj Gibson, and Reggie Bullock — and their decisions on those players will decide how much cap space they have (and how many/how big a bad contract they could take on).
Interesting big name “bad contracts” out there include Blake Griffin and Russell Westbrook, both of whom may be available via trade, but to get them would require sending out a lot of players. Someone like Westbrook could sell tickets and win some games for the Knicks in the short term, but he has three more years at north of $41 million on his contract. That is a lot to take on when trying to build a new roster.
Consider this something to watch. The Knicks under Leon Rose are an unpredictable team this offseason.