Knicks Sign Mario Hezonja To One-Year Deal

JULY 6: The Knicks have officially signed Hezonja, according to the NBA’s transactions log.

JULY 1: The Knicks have agreed to a one-year, $6.5MM pact with small forward Mario Hezonja, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN tweets. The 23-year-old comes off of a career-best season in which he averaged 9.6 points in 22.1 minutes per game for the Magic."<strong

Prior to the 2017/18 season, the Magic elected not to pick up the 2015 fifth-overall pick’s fourth-year option and the Croatian swingman responded with a notable increase in production. In 11 February contests, for example, Hezonja averaged 15.5 points and 5.0 rebounds per game.

As we relayed earlier today, Marc Berman of The New York Post had reported that the Knicks had put an offer on the table for Hezonja worth a portion of the club’s $8.641MM mid-level exception. These reported terms would fall in line with that, leaving enough of the MLE available for New York to ink second-round pick Mitchell Robinson, something the club had been set on doing.

While Hezonja had reportedly been seeking a multiyear deal, the Knicks want to retain as much cap flexibility as possible for the 2019 offseason, and only plan on offering one-year guarantees this summer.

The buy-low addition of Hezonja, a young, recent lottery pick, will add depth to New York’s rotation. Hezonja will compete with Tim Hardaway Jr. and Courtney Lee for minutes on the wing, assuming the latter remains on the roster.

[RELATED: Knicks looking to trade Courtney Lee?]

The move will give the Knicks three of the top seven draft picks from 2015. Kristaps Porzingis (No. 4) and Emmanuel Mudiay (No. 7) were also top selections in that draft.

According to a subsequent Wojnarowski tweet, the Blazers, Kings and Grizzlies were also in the mix for Hezonja’s services.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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9 thoughts on “Knicks Sign Mario Hezonja To One-Year Deal

  1. H.Henderson

    Interesting how Porzingis is teammates with two members from his draft class.

  2. x%sure

    New York teams getting bargains, with Ed Davis to Nets for 1/4.4 along with this. Hezonja could flourish away from the Orlando pecking order.

  3. Good risk-reward in this signing, as there was with trading for Mudiay. It’s now on the Knicks to have a development plan for each of them, that includes a path to real playing time. The rest is up to them as players.

    • padam

      Mudiay couldn’t hit the side of a barn. But I do like this signing. Time will tell.

  4. Jason kapono

    Won’t be a headline deal, but this guy can play. One year deal keeping cap space open for Durant next summer.

  5. formerlyz

    I think David Fizdale will develop this guy. He finally got minutes this year

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