Atlantic Notes: Bargnani, Novak, Knicks, Turner

The Knicks and Raptors hooked up on a significant trade this past summer, with Andrea Bargnani heading to New York. Bargnani and the Knicks visited Toronto this evening for a preseason game, allowing fans and media to revisit the swap. Bargnani called himself “lucky” to have played for the Raptors, as the Toronto Sun’s Ryan Wolstat tweets, though I’m not sure whether the team or the Toronto faithful consider themselves so fortunate, considering their return on the investment in the former No. 1 overall pick. Here’s more fallout from that deal and other news from the Atlantic Division:

  • While Bargnani’s departure from the Raptors was long-rumored, Steve Novak didn’t think he’d be leaving the Knicks, Newsday’s Al Iannazzone notes. “I didn’t expect it,” the sharpshooter said. “You understand this is the business we’re in. New York felt like home. It was a place I love to play and I miss. I miss those guys. It’s not easy being traded. But there’s no doubt Toronto is a great city and good place to be.”
  • New Knicks GM Steve Mills is concerned about the team’s backup centers, but in talking with reporters today, he gave the thumbs-up to Bargnani and fellow offseason addition Beno Udrih, and declared his firm belief in coach Mike Woodson.  Iannazzone and Marc Berman of the New York Post and provide details.
  • If the Sixers don’t extend Evan Turner‘s contract before the October 31st deadline, a strong performance from him this season would boost his trade value and his worth on the free agent market, benefiting both team and player, writes Michael Kaskey-Blomain of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
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