Knicks Notes: Morris, Bullock, Vonleh

After officially announcing their deals with Marcus Morris and Reggie Bullock today, the Knicks appear to be just about done with free agency. Damyean Dotson‘s salary for 2019/20 became fully guaranteed because he remained on the roster through Monday, so New York is now carrying 15 players on guaranteed deals. The team has also exhausted its cap room and appears to have used a portion of the room exception to sign Bullock.

Here are a few Knicks-related notes on Morris, Bullock, and more:

  • Morris’ agent Rich Paul wasn’t directly involved in his client breaking his verbal agreement with the Spurs, and preferred that Morris stick to that agreement, a source tells Marc Berman of The New York Post. According to Berman, Morris and the Knicks worked together to strike a deal. As for Morris and Paul, they’re reportedly parting ways after the forward’s tumultuous free agency.
  • A source tells Berman that Bullock is out “indefinitely” and isn’t expected to be ready for the start of the regular season. Ian Begley of reports that Bullock will likely miss at least a month of the season. The details on the veteran guard’s health issue remain a mystery, but that issue helped scuttle the initial two-year deal between the two sides — that $21MM agreement would have been worth more than double the value of their new contract.
  • The Knicks’ goal is to win – not tank – in 2019/20, according to Berman, who speculates that Morris and Julius Randle may end up being the team’s starting forward tandem, with 2018 lottery pick Kevin Knox moving to the bench.
  • After leaving the Knicks for the Timberwolves in free agency, Noah Vonleh told Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic that he had a “great” time in New York last season. “It was a great opportunity,” Vonleh said. “They gave me some playing time, let me be the 4-man, just grow as a player and change the narrative that was on me that was in the league and gave myself another a chance to give myself a new life in the league.”
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21 thoughts on “Knicks Notes: Morris, Bullock, Vonleh

  1. KnicksFanCavsFan

    I’m definietly happy that the Knicks will make some moves towards competing with the current roster they have. They likely won’t be more than a 30-35 win team but it’s progress. What I am against is limiting Knox’ time as a starter. Yes, he’s still young but he’s only under contract for 2 years. I guess who comes off the bench vs who get’s the most minutes aren’t always opposites but I can’t see them signing Morris to 1/$15 if they weren’t going to play him 30-35 minutes. Maybe the idea is for him to mentor under him and then maybe move Morris at the deadline.

    Interesting that Morris decided to part ways with Paul because Paul wanted him to keep his verbal agreement with the Spurs, even if it meant less money for both. Paul, the much maligned is still a good dude.

    • Knox has 3 years left on his RSC, and is a RFA after that. But the Knicks need to find out about Knox this season. You don’t develop young players by letting them meander into their 3rd and 4th years without coherent roles/expectations/goals.

  2. Knicks are at 15 now. All guaranteed.

    Morris at the 3 has been tried, and laughed at, before. Hopefully this is just a ploy to motivate Knox and/or make him earn his minutes. If Knox, in fact, isn’t given a path to starter minutes (like Frank wasn’t last year), then it’s more evidence that the Stooges are incapable of building a team.

    • Luke Adams

      Thanks, fixed. I was counting the total before having added Bullock to my list, hah.

    • Norm Chouinard

      If Knox cannot force his minutes to increase from off the bench vs. 2nd unit opponents, why should he get to start? Can’t he grow as a player from the 2nd unit to start the season?

      • Anything is possible. In Hollywood, guys start in the mail room and end up CEOs. Though even there, it doesn’t happen on a RSC clock.

        Players best develop to expectations when they get opportunities consistent w/ those expectations. I guess there can be shorter term and longer term expectations, but even there (with a RSC clock ticking) a 20 year old guy a team envisions as a foundation piece should have a clear path to that role. Stopover as a 2nd unit guy might help him develop, but understand you won’t know about him as that foundation piece regardless of how good he is in that 2nd unit role.

      • KnicksFanCavsFan

        i think he needs time to feel the game. coming in off the bench you feel if you don’t impact immediately then you’re taken off the floor. bottom line, who needs the minutes more and who are you trying to build around.

        but like i said, maybe he can mentor and thrn be moved by deadline.

    • Curtisrowe

      I am not an enormous fan of PER but it is a somewhat useful measuring stick. Knox had a PER below 9 last year. Which is totally ridiculously awful. He isn’t good.

      • Your right, they should cut him. What’s strange though is that the Celtics didn’t cut Jaylon Brown, or the Lakers Brandon Ingram, after their first years. Just as bad. Worse in Brown’s case than the other two since PER penalizes a guy for playing with a bad team. Do you have any idea why Brown was kept around-?

        • Curtisrowe

          Nice hyperbole. Yeah, lets start talking about cutting, Knox, Brown and Ingram. That sounds fun.

        • KnicksFanCavsFan

          the idea that you want to bail on a kid after his 1st year in the nba at age 19 is ridiculous. aside from his 37% FG% he had a decent first year @ 13/5/4 on 38/43/72 shooting. Knicks are in no position to give up on a talent like that

          i also think GMs need to give some of these 1 and done kids longer leashes. most are still babies.

  3. Andy Roth

    Actually PER is a bogus stat and it’s ridiculous that the mainstream media quotes it. Jonas Valunciunas was 11th ahead of Steph Curry and Kevin Durant and Boban Marjanovic was 15th

    • x%sure

      Centers do get overrated by that stat and another good one, net ORtg-DRtg. So don’t compare 1s and 5s with it and it works.

      Boban was good in limited minutes; I think PER does not account for PT.

      It takes a number of stats to get a picture, and then a limited one… There’s no stat for drawing the toughest defensive assignment.

    • Curtisrowe

      Cool Andy, lets seem some stats about how good Knox was. At anything.

      • x%sure

        Can’t. He was supposed to come hard around screens for jumpers like Allen Houston (said I, of name ?, writing on the Knix pick of Knox). He won’t make sense until he does. Holes in his game would just be personal profile if he did.

        Is it a Knox flaw or a Fizdale flaw that he doesn’t?– IDK yet.

        I note your stat link says he is a leader in long twos. I doubt that changes; he just has to nail-gun them down.
        Actually I doubt he does; just a guy.
        I’m still not sure if DXC was satcastic!

  4. x%sure

    The knicks are going to be a tough team. Everyone they got this summer is tough.
    That alone won’t get you as far in the NBA as in the NCAAs (compare Riley’s Knicks to Calhoun’s Huskeys) but they will get noticed. If they don’t trade players away as anticipated, I’ll say playoffs. Pistons, Heat & Knicks for 2 spots.

    • Norm Chouinard

      The practices are probably going to elevate the games of the young guys which might be the saving grace of too much quality depth.

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