The Knicks had long-term plans for point guard Tony Wroten when they signed him in mid-March, Charley Rosen of Today’s Fastbreak reveals in the latest installment of “The Phil Jackson Chronicles.” Wroten, who was waived in June after New York traded for Derrick Rose, was originally set to get an extended audition this offseason. Jackson, the team president, said the Knicks signed Wroten during the season rather than waiting for free agency because it wanted to have him available for summer league play.
“Signing Tony now also gives us more time to evaluate him,” Jackson said in March about Wroten, who was recovering from surgery on a partially torn ACL in his right knee. “Can he make it all the way back? Can he grasp our philosophy? Tony is only 22 and, if everything does work out, he certainly fits the description of the type of point guard that we’re looking for. It’s a futuristic move for us. A move that gives us another choice. And it’s one of the things we have to do to find suitable talent.” Wroten never appeared in a game for the Knicks. The Grizzlies claimed him off waivers, then released and later re-signed him.
There’s more news from the Atlantic Division:
- Willy Hernangomez, a Spanish center who will face Team USA at the Olympics today, has a chance to be part of the Knicks‘ rotation next season, writes Fred Kerber of The New York Post. That’s the opinion of ESPN’s Fran Fraschilla, who is considered an expert on international basketball. “He does not have ‘starter’ or ‘stardom’ written all over him yet, but he has a chance because of his youth, mobility and size to develop into a good player in time,” Fraschilla said. “If you could find a 6-11 second-round pick who’s only 22 years old and is beginning to prove himself both at the Olympics and in the second-best league in the world in Spain, you’d say it is a bonus for the Knicks.”
- Former overall No. 1 pick Anthony Bennett says he likes the “brand new vibe” in Brooklyn as he tries to resurrect his career with the Nets, relays NetsDaily.com. “For the most part, [I’m] going in here with an open mind, no pressure, just going out there and playing,” Bennett says in a new video posted on YouTube. Bennett signed a two-year deal that will pay him a guaranteed $1,015,696 this season and $1,087,745 if he’s on the roster for opening night in 2017.