Knicks Notes: Williams, Point Guards, Mills, Baker

The Knicks may submit an offer sheet to Suns forward/center Alan Williams, relays Marc Berman of The New York Post. GM Steve Mills has expressed a desire to get younger, and the 24-year-old Williams fits that blueprint. This was Williams’ second season in Phoenix, but the first time he saw any significant NBA action. He appeared in 47 games, averaging 7.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per night. Because Williams is a restricted free agent, the Suns can match any offer he receives. Berman states that salary might have been an issue for Phoenix if it had signed Paul Millsap, but it becomes less important now that the Suns are no longer pursuing the All-Star power forward. Berman adds that if the Knicks do acquire Williams, they will seek takers for Kyle O’Quinn‘s $4.5MM salary.

There’s more news from New York:

  • Entering a free agent market rich in point guards, the Knicks’ options may now be down to George Hill and Derrick Rose, Berman writes in a separate story. Jeff Teague signed with the Timberwolves Friday night and Jrue Holiday re-upped with the Pelicans this morning, taking away two potential New York targets. The Knicks have about $16MM in cap room, which likely won’t be enough for Hill, but Courtney Lee is being shopped to create more. The Nuggets and Pacers are reportedly also chasing Hill, which increases the chances that Rose might return to New York. The Knicks reached out to Rajon Rondo and Darren Collison, but Berman indicates they aren’t serious about either one.
  • With Phil Jackson out of the way, Mills is free to run the organization his way, tweets Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders. That includes trying to shed salary, get younger and find players who can contribute on both offense and defense.
  • One of those changes is to make Kristaps Porzingis the focus of the offense, something that Jackson resisted, posts Ian Begley on ESPN Now“That’s his next steps in his growth as a player, to be able to handle some of that,” coach Jeff Hornacek said. “He’s going to have to take that next step of taking over. I think he’s probably ready for that.” It’s not clear what that means for Carmelo Anthony‘s future in New York.
  • One Knick who is sad to see Jackson leave is Ron Baker, Berman relays in another piece. Baker agreed to a new two-year deal last night that will probably give him the team’s cap-room exception. “Obviously, I really enjoyed Phil Jackson, he taught me a lot,’’ Baker said. “The past year he wasn’t just a mentor but a really good friend. … That’s how the business goes sometimes.”

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