NBA Rumors: Knicks Could Trade Dennis Smith Jr. & Kevin Knox To Spurs For DeMar DeRozan
San Antonio Spurs small forward DeMar DeRozan is one of the veteran superstars expected to be moved before the 2021 trade deadline. As of now, the Spurs haven’t shown any strong indication that they are planning to trade DeRozan during the 2020-21 NBA season, but if they don’t have any intention of giving him a decent contract in the 2021 free agency, most people believe that they are better off trading him now than losing him next offseason without getting anything in return. One of the teams that could express a strong interest in acquiring him from San Antonio is the New York Knicks.
In a recent article, Brett Siegel of NBA Analysis Network included the Knicks on the list of teams that could pursue the veteran small forward before the 2021 trade deadline. To convince the Spurs to send DeRozan to New York, Siegel suggested that the Knicks could offer them a package that includes Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, and some of their future draft assets.
Before the 2020-21 NBA season officially started, most people were just expecting the Knicks to spend the entire year focusing on the development of their young player. However, with their impressive start, there’s a growing belief around the league that the Knicks could make moves that allow them to become a more competitive team in the Eastern Conference this year. DeRozan alone wouldn’t turn them into an instant favorite to bring home the Larry O’Brien Trophy, but pairing him with Julius Randle and RJ Barrett could strengthen their chances of ending their seven-year playoff drought.
“The Knicks need an All-Star level player on their roster and even though Julius Randle should be an All-Star for the first-time in his career this season, that is not enough for the Knicks to be a legit playoff team in the East. If they were to trade for DeMar DeRozan though, there is no reason New York should miss the playoffs. Not only is DeRozan capable of being the leader of this young Knicks team, but he can give them that third high-level scoring threat they need.”
Meanwhile, the proposed scenario should be a no-brainer for the Spurs. It would enable them to turn DeRozan’s expiring contract into two young and promising talents in Smith Jr. and Knox and future draft assets. Smith Jr. and Knox may have gone through plenty of ups and downs during their stint in New York, but playing under Gregg Popovich, who is regarded as one of the best coaches in league history, could help them find the right path and start living up to expectations from a lottery pick.