At point guard next season, the Knicks have promising rookie Frank Ntilikina and the just-re-signed Ron Baker. They could use a veteran presence running the show if they have dreams of fighting for one of the bottom couple of playoff seeds in the East (not likely, but not a wildly unrealistic dream considering the weakness in the bottom half of that conference).
The Knicks have considered bringing back Derrick Rose or signing Rajon Rondo, but with the Baker signing they don’t have the money for either. Man in charge Steve Mills also is looking at bigger fish such as trading for the Suns’ Eric Bledsoe, reports Marc Berman of the New York Post.
According to a source, the Knicks are among a multitude of teams that have inquired about 31-year-old Ramon Sessions, who played for the Hornets last season….
A source told The Post the Knicks inquired about Suns point guard Eric Bledsoe, whom Jeff Hornacek coached in Phoenix. Bledsoe is 27 with two years and $29 million left on his pact. The Knicks don’t have many trade chips except a future first-round pick and starting shooting guard Courtney Lee.
“Don’t have many trade chips” is a kind way of putting things. The Suns are rebuilding and Bledsoe is their best trade chip, so they will want good young players and picks back, things the Knicks just don’t have. That said, there are other teams who may be willing to deal a point guard for Lee, who could be a “3&D” wing off the bench on a quality team.
The Knicks want to focus on developing their young core — Kristaps Porzingis, Ntilikina, Tim Hardaway Jr., and Willy Hernangomez — but they could use a veteran to both be a mentor off the court and a guy who organizes the offense on it. They will need to find one via trade, find someone willing to sign for basically the minimum, or start Baker. Trade makes the most sense, if they can find a dance partner.
Golden State adding Paul George to it’s stacked roster?
That was always the longest of long shots from actually happening. However, if you’re a smart general manager — and both Kevin Pritchard in Indiana and Golden State’s Bob Myers are smart — you at least pick up the phone and start a conversation. Because you never know what might develop.
George was interviewed by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski for both SportCenter and his podcast, and George talked about possibly going to the Warriors. Indiana called Golden State but asked for Klay Thompson, but that’s as far as things got because the Warriors are not moving one of their top four players. Fred Katz has the transcription at the Norman Transcript from the podcast.
And as the Pacers shopped their best player, they put a call into Golden State, offering George for Splash Brother Klay Thompson, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on a recent podcast he recorded with George.
“Yeah, I think that would’ve been the Chris Paul-to-L.A. situation where they denied that trade,” George laughed. “Yeah, I was aware of it. I would’ve looked forward to it, of just being in a good situation and a chance to compete for a championship. But it didn’t happen. It’s still fun to team up with a special talent and have a chance to compete against that team.”
George was eventually traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder, a move he did not see coming.
Would the Warriors be better with George instead of Thompson? Thompson is a slightly better three-point shooter, George a slightly better defender against larger players (such as LeBron), but the two are close to even. However, it makes no sense for the Warriors to consider this deal — they would need to max out George next summer when he is a free agent, as opposed to two years away for Thompson.
Just let this be a reminder pretty much every player wants to go to the Warriors.
After the Orlando Magic had let him go right after the season, the Sacramento Kings swooped in and picked up Scott Perry to serve as an assistant GM. It was a move applauded around the league as Perry is widely respected, and the Kings then went on to have their best off-season in a long time (Perry alone is not responsible for that, but in Las Vegas a lot of other teams thought Perry had a huge influence on the Kings’ moves).
Now the Knicks are talking about bringing Perry in to become their general manager, working under team president Steve Mills, reports Adrian Wojnarowski and Ian Begley of ESPN.
Good on the Kings for letting him look at a promotion.
Perry would report to James Dolan’s right-hand-man Mills, the man who gave Tim Hardaway Jr. $71 million, plus Perry still would have in place Knicks front office staff that has been in place for several regimes — don’t assume that hiring Perry changes the Knicks culture. It doesn’t. (There’s a reason David Griffin walked away.)
Nonetheless, Perry would still be a quality hire. It essentially would put a smart adult in the room.
The Knicks have an opening because Doland let Phil Jackson go (a good thing) just days before the start of free agency without a Plan B (a very Dolan thing).
Perry is available because when Rob Hennigan was fired as the man in charge of the Orlando Magic, Perry — his assistant GM — was shown the door as well. That surprised people around the league. While the Magic saw Perry as part of the problem in creating too soft a culture in Orlando, outside the organization people saw Perry as the bright mind too often ignored (for example, Perry wanted to pull the trigger on a potential DeMarcus Cousins trade, it was Hennigan who did not).
The Knicks are rebuilding around a young core led by Kristaps Prozingis, and they are trying to trade Carmelo Anthony (likely to Houston. but when is unclear). Perry will help with that if they give him real power and a good staff.
In his first couple of games at the Las Vegas Summer League, in front of a sold-out Thomas & Mack, Lonzo Ball looked like a rookie. There were good things — the way he pushed the pace with ball movement, which was infectious throughout the team — and there were his struggles, particularly his shooting.
Wednesday night, the Lonzo Ball Lakers’ fans have dreamed about showed up — 36 points and 11 assists in an impressive performance.
He shot 12-of-22 overall and was 3-of-10 from three.
Maybe that it was playing in front of LeBron James that fired up Ball. Whatever it was, he should do
This is where I would normally write about not reading too much into a Summer League performance (good or bad), how Ball had some drives to the rim that were uncontested in a way he will not see during the season… but Lakers fans aren’t going to listen to that. So enjoy this and dream big, that’s what being a fan is about.
This was expected after the Lakers announced they had reached a deal to sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
The Lakers announced they have waived David Nwaba. This clears out some cap space the Lakers needed to move to get KCP up to $18 million on that one year contract.
Nwaba had played for the Lakers at Summer League, where he has averaged 9.7 points per game shooting 57.1 percent. Nwaba had started last season in the D-League and when he came up to the big club he brought a defensive energy the Lakers needed. He played in 20 games for Los Angeles and averaged 6 points per game and shot 58 percent.
Nwaba is a free agent now and there’s a good chance a team will grab him on a minimum contract. If not, he will start the season in the D-League again and will get a call up at some point.