We are less than three weeks away from the day when all will be said and done. Less than three weeks from knowing where the first steps in the Hall of Fame careers of elected officials will take place. Less than three wee-cut the bait. Do you know what that really means? Rumors. Tons of them. And 99% barely believable, let alone true.
That’s why we’re here today: to recap a bunch of the whispers that have been circulating over the past few days, sum them up and discuss them a bit, and finally give the final verdict of the display and the toast as to whether it’s is good, bad or neutral news for the New York Knicks franchise.
Free agent Jalen Brunson will surpass Fred VanVleet’s $85 million
Uh, oh, bending by the Brunson family. You see, Jalen Brunson may very well be considered the no. 1 free agent in the class of 2022, so all the money he makes in a month will be worth it and probably well spent by whoever ends up having the willpower to pony up those big bucks.
Maybe Zach LaVine is the best FA, yes, but the other names you can think of have all the restrictions or options built into their offerings (Kyrie, Harden, Beal the latter; Deandre Ayton the former). Now, are we sure Brunson is worth an FVV level deal! ?
Marc Stein ($) reports that Brunson will, in fact, command such a huge contract once he officially becomes a free agent in July. That means he expects to sign a deal north of the four-year, $85 million FVV contract snatched from the Raps. Math 101 taught me that 85/4 comes out at 21+ million per pop, which… Oh my God!
Now, I have to say that I believe that might be the case. Go back to the first paragraph of this mini-section. Brunson is a top-notch free agent and will find himself in a market depleted of bona fide performers available for the top contender, let alone the toughest position to manage on a basketball court. It is what it is, and it could end up filling its bag ridiculously.
Doesn’t mean I want the Knicks to pay that amount for him. One thing is to land the best playeranother very different to move forward with the best option, all things Considered. And if you tell me that a maximum Brunson is up for grabs (which would take a hard sign and trade to pull off, mind you) while the other option is with young Immanuel Quickley at the time of his current contract, then I guess you already know my answer.
Verdict: Good. We can only hope the Knicks are able to sign this man, even more so at this exorbitant price, so that’s very good news as the number alone should take New York out of Brunson’s draw.
Dallas not worried about New York signing Jalen Brunson’s father, Rick Brunson
If you’ve been living under a rock for the past week, here’s the news covered by our very own Joe Flynn. It’s correct. The Knicks, because the Knicks, had to land Rick in front of Jalen’s free agency. Of course, the need for an assistant coach was paramount, so necessary, immediate action had to be taken, and Rick Brunson should gloriously fill that staffing gap now by linking up with Tom Thibodeau on the Madison Square Garden sideline.
Nah, bruh. Rick Brunson. Father of Jalen Brunson. I can’t do better if you ask me. The Knicks surely have all corners covered, so when it comes time for pundits and analysts to disparage the franchise once it failed to land Jalen, they can at least say… they has tried and left no stone unturned to poach the youngest of the Brunsons after landing the oldest. LOL. This group.
Of course, the Mavs aren’t afraid of this move. I mean.
Verdict: neutral? Go New York, go New York, go!
Knicks highly unlikely to acquire Donovan Mitchell via trade this summer
Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer updated people a few days ago on the latest developments in Donovan Mitchell’s potential availability and the New York Knicks’ subsequent interest in bringing homegrown talent back into the confines of MSG.
All that Mitchell/Gobert/Jazz drama has been around forever. Utah continues to lose playoffs, Jazz are apparently so close to the firing of head coach Quin Snyder, and the consensus opinion in the NBA community (insiders and outsiders included) is that the St. Lake musicians will eventually end the coach’s ax and move pieces (read: Gobert and/or Mitchell) sooner than later.
We reported a few weeks ago the possibility of Utah moving Gobert in exchange for a few more coins, if only to shake things up a bit. At the end of the day, though, and whether you like it or not, Rudy Gobert is a very legit big man and a bonafide defensive performer every night. It won’t be cheap for anyone interested in his services to trade for him. Does that mean Mitchell might be an easier mover? Maybe. Maybe not.
Mitchell isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, folks. Of course, the Knicks need a point guard and Donovan Mitchell happens to be a very extraordinary point guard. But Mitchell is in the middle of a deal that still has three years to complete and one player option at the end, making it virtually a four-year deal between the guard and the Jazz franchise. Now, on top of that, Utah doesn’t seem all that convinced of New York’s strengths and potential deals ahead.
There have been proposals floated by this or that reporter, but nothing really substantial that would apparently put Utah in a serious business conundrum. That means RJ Barrett and/or Julius Randle, New York’s top two players right now, aren’t cutting him as the main piece the Jazz would get in exchange for getting Mitchell out. I’m not saying it’s totally bad for the Knicks – mainly because this thing being a no-no means New York will continue to stay on the path of homegrown reconstruction, which I’m 100% happy with – but it is actually bad in terms of the value that other franchises think RJ/JR has in the future.
Verdict: Half bad. Not all bad because New York will have to continue its organic development and rebuilding effort with bands like RJ/IQ/Grimes/et. al…but kinda bad because RJ/JR/IQ might not be considered bona fide game-changers by other franchises in the league?
D’Angelo Russell and Collin Sexton dropped as alternate options for Knicks
The same Jake Fischer brought up other names in his column, including P&T favorite Jaden Ivey – who, let’s face it, won’t be available at the Knicks’ 11th pick and would take a big offer for New York to trade and the snatch earlier – and a surprising name in D’Angelo Russell. D’Lo, who plays for Wolves these days, went to Minny via Golden State in exchange for Andrew Wiggins.
Russell is not a wrong player, let’s be real for a minute. That said, this rumor doesn’t have much leg up as it screams toddler reasoning was all used when it came time to elaborate. Yes, the Knicks brought Gersson Rosas into the organization and he was the one who landed Russell in Minnesota. Does that mean the relationship and love is mutual and strong enough that New York is looking to negotiate for D’Lo this summer. Don’t buy it.
Fischer also mentioned the Cavs’ next free agent, Collin Sexton, who has just been hurting all season and will enter the open market in a few weeks. The Knicks are not expected, as Fischer puts it, to make a run on Sexton. And we celebrate.
Verdict: Good. In this, New York has nothing to gain by trading Russell/signing Sexton and everyone better stay put.