Knicks Pursuing Earl Clark

3:44pm: Knicks coach Mike Woodson and GM Steve Mills have spoken with Clark, sources tell Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, who says there’s a “strong possibility” that Clark signs with the team (Twitter link).

2:18pm: The Knicks are going after the recently waived Earl Clark, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. It’s the latest of a string of reports connecting the Knicks to free agents. The Knicks have considered signing Ike Diogu, have been monitoring Lester Hudson, and they’re interested in Tiny Gallon. Today they auditioned Dahntay Jones. The Knicks won’t rule out a pursuit of Jimmer Fredette, either, and while the team would like to add shooting, its primary focus appears to be strengthening its defense, which isn’t Fredette’s strong suit.

Clark became a free agent this weekend after the Sixers waived him Friday, less than 24 hours after acquiring him via trade from the Cavaliers. He averaged 5.2 points and 2.8 rebounds in 15.5 minutes per game this season in the first of a two-year, $8.5MM deal he signed with Cleveland this past summer. The Cavs are on the hook for only half of that money, since the second season was non-guaranteed. The former 14th overall pick had a strong midseason stretch for the Lakers last year, but he’s otherwise failed to live up to expectations.

The Knicks created two roster openings Monday when they waived Metta World Peace and Beno Udrih in buyout arrangements. They can offer only the minimum salary, and since they’re about $17MM into the tax, they’re set to pay $3.25 in tax for each dollar they spend on filling their two open spots.

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