With the Knicks having slipped to 12th in the Eastern Conference, the team will have to decide during the All-Star break whether to look ahead to the future or to push for a playoff spot. According to Ian Begley of ESPN.com, multiple teams around the NBA view Derrick Rose as a potential trade target if the Knicks do decide to sell.
Rose, 28, isn’t the same player he was earlier in his career when he won the MVP award — as Begley writes, the veteran point guard hasn’t been all that effective as a defender or a distributor. Still, Rose has averaged 17.7 PPG with his best shooting percentage (46.2%) since 2009/10, and has shown he still excels at penetrating the lane.
While Rose may draw interest from a few teams, it would be tricky to find a deal that works for both the Knicks and a trade partner. Rose is earning more than $21.3MM this season, so over-the-cap teams looking to acquire him would have to be willing to part with one or two substantial contracts of their own. Meanwhile, the Knicks will have some cap room this summer when Rose comes off the books, so they won’t want to take back long-term salary unless they get a player that can become part of the team’s long-term plans.
Although they haven’t given up on the postseason yet, the Knicks figure to get some calls about Rose in the coming days and it would make sense for the team to listen. Phil Jackson and the front office reportedly want to build the roster around Kristaps Porzingis and Willy Hernangomez, and while Carmelo Anthony‘s no-trade clause figures to prevent the club from moving him, Rose doesn’t have that same ability to veto a deal.