After struggling earlier in the 2018-19 NBA season, rumors and speculation continue to swirl that the Washington Wizards are planning to make a huge roster shakeup before the February NBA trade deadline. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported that the Wizards have made every player, including superstars John Wall and Bradley Beal, on their roster available in trade discussions.
With his massive contract extension that is set to kick in next season, most people believe that the Wizards will have a hard time finding a trade partner for John Wall. However, there will surely be NBA teams who still see Wall as one of the elite point guards in the league. One of the NBA teams who could express a strong interest in adding the All-Star point guard to their roster is the New York Knicks.
According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, the Knicks could be planning to make a “major play” for John Wall once the Wizards officially makes him available on the trading block. Berman suggested that the Knicks could engage in a three-team blockbuster deal, where they will be giving up Frank Ntilikna, Damyean Dotson, Courtney Lee, and future draft picks to acquire Wall.
“Some in the league believe the Knicks are stocking up their young assets and will make a major play for Wall if he becomes available. The Wizards (9-14) were said to be ready to break it up after their disastrous start. It would have to be a three-team deal with the Knicks throwing in Ntilikina, Dotson, Courtney Lee (for cap purposes), a 2020 first-round and second-round pick.”
Sam Amico of Amico Hoops believes that the emergence of Emmanuel Mudiay and Trey Burke created the speculation that former No. 8 overall pick Frank Ntilikina will soon become available on the trade market. To facilitate a three-team trade, the Knicks and the Wizards could ask help from NBA teams who are interested in Ntilikina, per Amico. These include the Phoenix Suns, Memphis Grizzlies, and the Orlando Magic.
John Wall could be an intriguing addition to the Knicks, giving them a legitimate NBA superstar who could help Kristaps Porzingis bring the team back to title contention. Wall is still in his prime, and this season, he is averaging 21.3 points, 8.4 assists, and 1.7 steals on 44.3 percent shooting from the field and 32.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
However, trading for Wall proves to be a huge gamble for the Knicks, as it will greatly affect their salary cap flexibility for the summer of 2019. The Knicks are expected to be major players next July, where the likes of Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, Jimmy Butler, and Klay Thompson are set to become unrestricted free agents.