NBA Rumors: Frank Ntilikina Could Leave Knicks For Mavericks

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JB Baruelo

When they selected him as the No. 8 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, the New York Knicks viewed Frank Ntilikina as one of the young players that would lead them back to title contention. Unfortunately, Ntilikina has failed to live up to expectations from a lottery pick and struggled to make himself fit with the Knicks,

In the four seasons that he played as a Knick, the 23-year-old French point guard only averaged 5.5 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 2.7 assists while shooting 36.6 percent from the field, per ESPN.

Frank Ntilikina Could Soon Join Mavericks

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After four years of working together, the Knicks decided to end their partnership with Ntilikina this summer. In late August, the Knicks renounced their rights to Ntilikina, allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent. Despite failing to secure another contract with the Knicks, the former No. 8 pick still hasn't given up on his NBA dream.

Luckily for him, it seems like he would soon get his second chance. On Twitter, NBA insider Marc Stein revealed that the Dallas Mavericks are currently emerging as the "likely next destination" for the French floor general.

Mavericks Interested In Frank Ntlikina Since 2017 NBA Draft

Instagram | Frank Ntilikina

It's hardly surprising that the Mavericks want to sign Ntilikina on the free agency market. The Mavericks have been interested in bringing Ntilikina to Dallas even before he entered the league in 2017. Had the Knicks passed on picking him in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Mavericks would have used their No. 9 pick to select him instead of Dennis Smith Jr.

Before the 2017 NBA Draft, Marc Berman of tne New York Post revealed that the Mavericks sent team owner Mark Cuban, then-GM Donnie Nelson and director of player personnel Tony Ronzone to Venice, Italy, to meet Ntilikina.

Frank Ntilikina's On-Court Impact On Mavericks


Ntilikina would be an intriguing addition to the Mavericks, giving them another European prospect that they could develop in Dallas. The French point guard still has plenty of things that he needs to improve on his offensive game, but he's a reliable on-court facilitator and a defensive prodigy.

His potential arrival in Dallas would ease the loads on Doncic's shoulder in terms of ball handling and playmaking. Also, Ntilikina could help the Mavericks improve their defensive efficiency that ranked No. 17 in the league last season, allowing 110.4 points per 100 possessions, per ESPN.

Parting Ways Makes Sense For Frank Ntilikina & Knicks


Ending their four-year relationship is undeniably what is best for Ntilikina and the Knicks. Keeping the French point guard no longer makes any sense for the Knicks. For starters, Coach Tom Thibodeau isn't a fan of using young players over veterans, they already have Kemba Walker, Derrick Rose, and Immanuel Quickley as their point guards in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Also, having a fresh start in Dallas would be beneficial for Ntilikina. Playing for a new team could help Ntilikina unleash his full potential and start living up to expectations from a lottery pick,