It has been more than two weeks since we heard that a buyout agreement between Joakim Noah and the Knicks was close to being finalized, but Noah remains under contract with the club. Despite the delay, the veteran center is still expected to be waived before next week’s roster deadline, per Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News.
Sources tell Bondy that the Knicks have continued to shop Noah and are holding out hope that an injury or another factor helps create a trade market for him. If the Knicks can’t find a deal within the next week, then they’ll likely waive Noah when they set their 15-man regular season roster, says Bondy.
Considering the Knicks have been resistant to the idea of attaching valuable assets or prospects to Noah to accommodate a trade, the chances of the team finding a suitable deal within the next several days are extremely slim. As such, it’s probably safe to assume that Noah will be waived using the stretch provision, which would keep his current-year cap hit at $18.53MM but would stretch next season’s $19.3MM salary across three years.
By releasing Noah, the Knicks would clear a spot on their projected 15-man roster which could be used to retain Noah Vonleh. The former Blazers and Bulls power forward is on a non-guaranteed contract, but Bondy suggests that New York is interested in keeping him around to start the regular season.
If Noah is waived by the Knicks, he’d become an unrestricted free agent and would be free to join any other NBA team.