Ian Begley, SNY.tv | Twitter |
If Kyrie Irving ends up in Brooklyn, as some execs from teams pursuing him expect, the Knicks will have to look elsewhere for a potential second star to pair with Kevin Durant.
The best-case scenario, of course, would be a trade with New Orleans for Anthony Davis. The Knicks would likely have to surrender significant assets - including the No. 3 pick and future first-rounders - to land Davis. But his presence would make New York all the more attractive to potential free agents like Durant.
Of course, the Knicks could also pursue other guards/forwards in the free agent class to entice a player like Durant to the Garden.
They will aggressively pursue Toronto's Kawhi Leonard, though Leonard's interest in New York is unknown. What is known is that some around Leonard viewed New York as a destination for the wing before his trade from San Antonio. So the Knicks should get a meeting with Leonard this summer, at the very least.
Would Leonard and Durant have interest in playing together? That's unclear.
Other free agent options include Kemba Walker, Klay Thompson, Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris.
It's logical to expect Walker, Thompson and Butler to receive significant offers from their current teams.
In Walker's case, he's eligible for a super max contract, worth $221 million over five years. The Knicks, or any other suitor, could offer Walker a four-year max contract worth $141 million.
With free agency less than three weeks away, the situation in Charlotte certainly bears watching. If the Hornets offer Walker a max deal, it seems logical to assume that he stays there.
Of course, only Walker -- and Walker alone -- knows what he wants to do this summer. And he probably won't have a strong idea about where he wants to sign until he meets with the Hornets or other suitors in a few weeks. But some opposing execs monitoring Charlotte's free agent situation believe, currently, that if Walker chose to sign somewhere outside of Charlotte, going to New York isn't a likely outcome for the point guard, per SNY sources.
And if that remains the case, the Knicks would have to look elsewhere to find a second star this summer.