New York Knicks

Knicks Hope Summer Additions Take Pressure Off 'Melo

The Knicks are hoping that the roster changes they made this offseason will alleviate some of the pressure off of Carmelo Anthony and don’t want the forward feeling like he needs to “do everything” in order to be successful, Ian Begley of ESPN.com relays. “A lot of times he has a penchant to take the ball himself up the court and slow the play down, the development down, by pushing the ball up the court himself or taking the inbound pass,” team president Phil Jackson told the media. “Those are some of the small things that we asked to look at and maybe we could change. With the outstanding guard corps that we have — Derrick Rose and Brandon Jennings, guys who can really push the ball at a certain level — I think he’s going to be much more comfortable allowing them to do what they’re best at.

Derrick Rose Remains Under Investigation By LAPD

While Derrick Rose‘s civil trail stemming from a sexual assault lawsuit is set to begin on October 4, the new Knicks point guard also hasn’t yet been cleared from facing criminal charges. According to a letter from the Los Angeles Police Department, published by TheWhiteBronco.com, the LAPD has an open criminal investigation into Rose, and continues to look into the complaint filed against him by his “Jane Doe” accuser.

The judge in Rose’s civil case ruled that the identity of his accuser must be revealed during the trial. Her lawyer has urged the judge to reconsider that ruling, and as Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News writes, the LAPD’s letter will be used to make that case — Detective Nadine Hernandez said in the letter that the accuser’s identity will remain confidential throughout the LAPD’s investigation.

“The ability to offer anonymity to victims of sex crimes is an invaluable investigative aid to investigators as well as a great comfort to victims of crimes of such a sensitive nature,” Hernandez wrote in the letter.

It remains to be seen how Rose’s civil trial will play out or whether the LAPD’s criminal investigation will result in any charges. Still, while Knicks president Phil Jackson recently downplayed the impact the case(s) will have on Rose and the team, the point guard will likely have to miss portions of New York’s camp and preseason due to the trial, raising questions about the lack of homework the Knicks did on the case prior to acquiring Rose in June.

Knicks Notes: Jackson, Porzingis, Lee

Knicks president Phil Jackson considered the idea of building slowly around Kristaps Porzingis and discussed the thought inside the organization, but ultimately decided for a swifter approach, Ian Begley of ESPN.com reports. The Knicks reeled in Derrick RoseJoakim Noah and Brandon Jennings, who all have injury concerns, but Jackson beleives the health issues are worth the risk, Begley relays.

Here’s more on the Knicks:

  • There will likely be some speculation about Jackson’s future in New York because he has an opt-out clause in his contract that he could exercise after this season, Begley writes in the same piece. “I’ve just been going straight ahead. That really hasn’t been an item for me to think about,” Jackson said. “The fact that I had a clause put in the contract, that in case there was a lockout, that it might be a way to step away from the team or a job that doesn’t have any work action going on for a period of time. So that was one clause. That hasn’t affected what I’m doing now.”
  • The most intriguing addition to the Knicks is Courtney Lee,  who turned down a larger offer from the Sixers to come to New York, Marc Berman of the New York Post writes. Lee seems like a good fit, especially after former Knicks guard Arron Afflalo‘s presence didn’t work so well in the team’s triangle offense, Berman adds.
  • Only Carmelo Anthony remains from the team that Jackson inherited in March 2014, and despite the turnover rate, Jackson said he has been fiscally responsible, Al Iannazzone of Newsday relays.

Knicks Hope Rose's Civil Suit Won't Prove A Distraction

  • The Knicks are hoping that Derrick Rose‘s upcoming  civil suit involving an alleged sexual assault won’t impact his season, Ian Begley of ESPN.com writes. “I think we’re just going to let the process work itself out,” team president Phil Jackson said when asked about the possibility of Rose missing training camp. “We’re not concerned with it. We understand this is a serious subject we’re talking about. But this has to be done outside of our control. It’s something we can’t control. Derrick has expressed that he’s not concerned with it. I mean, he’s quite aware of it. It’s not keeping him up at night. So we’re going with that, OK?
  • Former second round pick Cleanthony Early won’t be attending the Knicks‘ training camp and the forward remains a free agent, Marc Berman of The New York Post notes.

Lou Amundson Contract Details

  • As expected, Lou Amundson‘s new one-year deal with the Knicks will pay him $1.55MM+ while counting for just $980K against the team’s cap. Amundson’s contract is fully guaranteed, and will give him the opportunity to veto trades, Pincus notes (via Twitter).

Knicks Re-Sign Lou Amundson

The Knicks are bringing a familiar face with them to training camp next week, announcing today (via Twitter) that they’ve re-signed free agent big man Lou Amundson to a new contract. Ian Begley of ESPN.com (Twitter link) hears from a source that the deal is fully guaranteed, while Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops tweets that it’s for one year. It will be worth the minimum, since New York has already used all of its cap space and its room exception.

Amundson, 33, spent most of the last two seasons with the Knicks, though after averaging 20.9 MPG in 41 games (35 starts) with the club in 2014/15, he saw his playing time significantly reduced last season. In 2015/16, Amundson averaged just 1.8 PPG and 1.7 RPG in 7.0 minutes per contest (29 games).

Given his lack of role on the team last season, Amundson did well to earn a guaranteed salary from the Knicks. New York already had 14 players on guaranteed contracts, with J.P. Tokoto, Chasson Randle, and Ron Baker on non-guaranteed deals. Amundson’s deal suggests that he’s a good bet to be on the regular-season roster, with those younger players likely on the outside looking in.

Over the course of the last decade, Amundson has played for 10 different teams, never averaging more minutes per game for any of those clubs than he has for New York during the last two seasons (15.2). In 428 regular-season contests, the UNLV product has posted 3.7 PPG, 3.6 RPG, and a shooting line of .474/.000/.444.

Brandon Jennings "More Hungry Than Ever"

Knicks Passed On Jeremy Lin Because Of Defense?

The Knicks weren’t interested in bringing Jeremy Lin back to New York because of his struggles on the defensive end, a source told Brian Lewis of The New York Post. New York opted to trade for Derrick Rose and sign Brandon Jennings in free agency to sure up the point guard position.

Lin believes that the notion that he has trouble on the defensive end is overblown. “These are knocks on my game that, when I was a younger player, I’d agree with,’’ Lin said. “I’ve improved. It just hasn’t been highlighted.’’

Lewis notes that Lin was 20th among point guards in ESPN’s Defensive Real Plus/Minus. The 28-year-old actually ranked better than both Rose and Jennings in the metric. He also ranked ahead of Rajon Rondo, Kemba Walker, Elfrid Payton and Dennis Schroder among others.

It’s worth noting that none of the aforementioned players carried a plus rating on the defensive end. Neither did Lin and he’ll likely square off against better talent starting for the Nets this year than he did coming off the bench for the Hornets last season.

Brooklyn invested heavily in Lin this offseason, inking him to a three year, $36MM deal. The Nets lack talent in the backcourt, so Lin’s defense will be crucial to the team surpassing its low expectations.

Do you think the Knicks made the right move to pass on Lin? How will he do with the Nets? Take to the comments section below to share your thoughts and opinions.

Porzingis Impressed By Noah, Rose

Joakim Noah‘s intensity has already made an impression on at least one of his new teammates, relays Ian Begley of ESPN.com. At a youth camp today in Westchester, N.Y., Kristaps Porzingis told the story of his first meeting with Noah and the Knicks‘ new center’s dedication to the upcoming season. “That’s the type of guy that we want on our team,” Porzingis said. “He brings that good energy. He brings that spirit, you know? So from the first opportunity that we got to talk, I fell in love with [his intensity].” The addition of Noah should also limit the amount of time that Porzingis spends playing center, which many people believe will eventually become his primary position. Noah, who signed a four-year, $72MM deal with the Knicks in July, is hoping for a bounce-back year after being limited to 29 games last season because of an injured shoulder.

  • Porzingis also addressed Derrick Rose‘s “super team” comment from earlier this summer, writes Barbara Barker of Newsday. Porzingis says the statement was just a sign of confidence and he agrees with Rose that the Knicks have the talent to be very good. He added that Rose has looked impressive in pickup games. “He’s still got it. He’s still Derrick Rose,” Porzingis said. “I’m excited to play with him. He draws so much attention. When he’s driving, he’s so dangerous. I’m going to be wide open, and that’s what I’m looking forward to.”

Traded Second-Round Picks For 2017 NBA Draft

The 2017 NBA draft is still more than nine months away, but with the start of the regular season fast approaching, it’s worth taking stock of how this season’s results will affect next year’s draft. Depending on how certain teams perform during the 2016/17 campaign, other clubs will have the opportunity to pick up an extra selection or two.

Earlier this week, we looked at the first-round picks that could change hands during the 2017 draft. A few more first-rounders will likely be involved in trades prior to the trade deadline, or leading up to next year’s draft night, but there are already several picks that are ticketed for new teams, depending on where they land.

That’s even more true of the second round — more than half of the league’s second-round picks for 2017 have been involved in trades so far, and while some of those picks will ultimately remain with the sending teams due to protection conditions, many will move to the receiving teams.

Below, you’ll find a breakdown of the second-round picks that could (or will) change hands. For each selection, we make a note of which team is sending and receiving it, the protection or conditions on the pick, and what will happen if the protection language prevents the pick from being conveyed. For instance, the Heat will send their second-rounder to either the Hawks or Grizzlies, depending on where it lands. The team that doesn’t get a pick from Miami this year will get the Heat’s second-rounder in 2018.

Here are 2017’s traded second-round picks:

Atlanta Hawks

  • From: Brooklyn Nets
  • Protection: None

Atlanta Hawks

  • From: Miami Heat
  • Protection: 31-40
  • If not conveyed: Hawks will receive Heat’s 2018 second-rounder (unprotected).

Boston Celtics

  • From: Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Protection: None

Boston Celtics

  • From: Los Angeles Clippers
  • Protection: None

Boston Celtics

  • From: Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Protection: None

Brooklyn Nets

  • From: Boston Celtics
  • Conditions: Nets will receive pick (protected 31-45) if Celtics swap first-rounders with Nets.
  • If not conveyed: Celtics’ obligation to Nets is extinguished.

Brooklyn Nets

  • From: Indiana Pacers
  • Protection: 45-60
  • If not conveyed: Nets will have opportunity to get Pacers’ second-rounder (protected 45-60) in 2018.

Denver Nuggets

  • From: Memphis Grizzlies
  • Protection: 31-35
  • If not conveyed: Nuggets will receive Grizzlies’ 2018 second-rounder (unprotected).

Denver Nuggets

  • From: Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Protection: 31-35
  • If not conveyed: Nuggets will receive Thunder’s 2018 second-rounder (unprotected).

Houston Rockets

  • From: Denver Nuggets
  • Protection: None

Houston Rockets

  • From: Portland Trail Blazers
  • Protection: None

Memphis Grizzlies

  • From: Miami Heat
  • Protection: 41-60
  • If not conveyed: Grizzlies will receive Heat’s 2018 second-rounder (unprotected).

New Orleans Pelicans

  • From: Philadelphia 76ers
  • Protection: None

New York Knicks

  • From: Chicago Bulls
  • Protection: None

New York Knicks

  • From: Houston Rockets
  • Protection: None

Philadelphia 76ers

  • From: Two of Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, and Utah Jazz.
  • Conditions: Sixers will receive the most and least favorable of these four picks.

Utah Jazz

  • From: Two of Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, and Utah Jazz.
  • Conditions: Jazz will receive the second- and third-most favorable of these four picks, including their own.

The following teams technically acquired second-round draft picks via trade and could receive those selections in 2017. However, these picks are heavily protected and won’t be conveyed to the receiving team unless the sending team finishes with a top-five record in the NBA. If that doesn’t happen, the receiving team is out of luck. The details:

Minnesota Timberwolves

  • From: New Orleans Pelicans
  • Protection: 31-55
  • If not conveyed: Pelicans’ obligation to Timberwolves is extinguished.

Orlando Magic

  • From: Sacramento Kings
  • Protection: 31-55
  • If not conveyed: Kings’ obligation to Magic is extinguished.

San Antonio Spurs

  • From: Atlanta Hawks
  • Protection: 31-55
  • If not conveyed: Hawks’ obligation to Spurs is extinguished.

RealGM’s database of future traded pick details was used in the creation of this post.

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