With less than two weeks to go until NBA teams can officially sign free agents, rumors are swirling around the New York Knicks and their potential acquisitions. While star Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant is the Knicks’ top target, and the main target for every other NBA team, it may be difficult to lure him to New York. As reported by the New York Daily News, Knicks president Phil Jackson is going to have a sit-down with Durant, but it is likely that he ends up back in Oklahoma City or with the Golden State Warriors.
While Durant may not be an option for the Knicks, they may be bringing back a familiar face that played with them from 2004-2009 — Jamal Crawford. At 36-years-old, Crawford would not be in the Knicks’ long-term plans, but he is still surprisingly effective. In 79 games with the Los Angeles Clippers last year, Crawford averaged 14.2 points per game, 2.3 assists, and 1.8 rebounds. While he is not going to do much other than score points, he can help the Knicks win games for the 2016-2017 season.
Knicks to Target Jamal Crawford in Free Agency?: Finally, Jackson will turn his attention to building a suppo… https://t.co/SzJkTWuiKm
— Basketball Insiders (@BBallInsiders) June 26, 2016
In speaking with the New York Daily News, Crawford stated how much he enjoyed his time with the Knicks.
“I’m not talking about any one team but everyone knows how I feel about New York. I really enjoyed my time there.”
Crawford will officially become a free agent on July 1, and it is likely that he has suitors from numerous teams. It is reported that the Clippers, the team that Crawford has been a member of for the past four seasons, are interested in re-signing him, but it is all going to come down to which organization offers the most playing time and the best chance to win.
While the Knicks were not a good team last year in the weak Eastern Conference, they have an excellent chance to be more competitive this season. In addition to Carmelo Anthony being one of the best scoring options in the league, Kristaps Porzingis will also be entering his sophomore season. After an excellent rookie campaign, Porzingis is looking to take the next step and become one of the top big men in the entire NBA.
While Rose has not been the same player since winning the MVP with the Chicago Bulls, he now has a fresh start with the Knicks. Injuries are always a concern with Rose, but he managed to play in 66 games last season, which is the highest number since the 2010-2011 season. With Anthony and Porzingis on the floor, Rose could flourish with the Knicks and look more like the great player that he was earlier in his career.
Reports: Knicks could make free agent run at Jamal Crawford https://t.co/OMtsXEMXDw
— Kurt Helin (@basketballtalk) June 26, 2016
After trading for Rose and being in the market for Joakim Noah, the Knicks are looking for help off of the bench. As the New York Post reports, Noah is currently the Knicks’ top free agent target, assuming that Durant is not going to sign with them.
“The Knicks are desperate for a starting center — their top target is Joakim Noah — and a starting shooting guard after the Derrick Rose blockbuster. They are also desperate to fill out a 15-man roster within the confines of the salary cap. They have just five players under contract.”
If the Knicks are able to land Noah, they could be one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference this year. While the Knicks are looking for help at the shooting guard position, it is unlikely that Crawford would be their starter. He has won the NBA’s Sixth Man Award three different times, and he is probably better suited to come off of the bench.
Rumors will likely continue to connect the New York Knicks to Jamal Crawford. While he is going to have numerous teams interested in him, the Knicks’ recent acquisition of Derrick Rose, the potential to sign Noah, and Crawford’s love for New York could make them the frontrunners.
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