5:16pm: Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports (via Twitter) that there are no active talks involving a Faried/Shumpert swap. The Knicks reportedly proposed the idea to the Nuggets, but Denver rejected the offer. However, judging by Stein and Begley’s earlier report that several teams have expressed interest in Shumpert, it’s still possible that the young Knicks guard ends up playing for a new team.
2:02pm: ESPN.com’s Marc Stein and Ian Begley have followed up on Isola’s report, writing that while the Knicks and Nuggets continue to talk, several teams have inquired on Shumpert and New York remains undecided on whether or not to move him.
According to Stein and Begley, the Nuggets are believed to be seeking draft compensation in any Faried/Shumpert swap, which may be too high a price for the Knicks to pay.
12:42pm: On the heels of news that Tyson Chandler would be sidelined for several weeks, Knicks coach Mike Woodson said last week that the team would stand pat for now rather than adding a big man. However, it sounds as if New York is open to the possibility of making a major move to bolster its frontcourt. According to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, the Knicks and Nuggets are discussing a potential trade involving Iman Shumpert and Kenneth Faried, and talks have “intensified” in recent days.
While there haven’t been any definitive signals that the Nuggets’ new decision-making group is down on Faried, there have been some curious hints over the last several weeks. Grantland’s Zach Lowe reported last month that Denver was gauging teams’ interest in Faried, and predicted a deal would happen. Additionally, after starting all 80 games he played a year ago, Faried has started just four of the Nuggets’ first six contests, and his minutes are down to 23.7 per game (from 28.1).
As for Shumpert, he has never quite fit in New York as well as expected, though there still seemed to be hope coming into the season that he’d develop into a long-term core piece. For now, it seems more likely that he represents the club’s most valuable trade asset. According to Isola, Shumpert has fallen out of favor with Woodson and owner James Dolan.
The match would make some sense for both sides, considering the Nuggets lost defensive wings Andre Iguodala and Corey Brewer in the offseason and are still without the injured Danilo Gallinari. The Knicks’ frontcourt, meanwhile, is aging and hasn’t been very productive in the early going, particularly since losing Chandler. Still, it’s fair to wonder if both sides may be souring on a young player too soon. Both Shumpert and Faried are just 23 years old and are on rookie contracts through 2015.
Of course, it doesn’t look like anything is imminent at this point, as Isola notes. So even if the Knicks and Nuggets are exploring their options, we shouldn’t assume they’ve made any decisions yet. Both teams won 50+ games in 2012/13 and are off to slow starts this season, but it’s probably still a little early to take any drastic measures.