While many Knicks trade rumors this season have focused on frontcourt players like Marcus Morris, Bobby Portis, and Taj Gibson, several teams that have been in touch with the Knicks recently believe they’re open to moving a point guard, writes Ian Begley of SNY.tv.
Frank Ntilikina and Elfrid Payton certainly won’t be untouchable, but Begley singles out Dennis Smith Jr. as one player who has drawn interest from multiple teams. Sources tell Begley that the Timberwolves are among the clubs with interest in Smith.
Minnesota has been seeking a long-term answer at point guard, and while Smith may not be that answer, he could represent a low-cost flier for the Wolves. DSJ’s stock has slipped since he was selected with the ninth overall pick in the 2017 draft by the Mavericks. He’s averaging just 17.0 minutes per game in New York this season, and has received multiple DNP-CDs since Mike Miller took over for David Fizdale.
Still, Smith is only 22 years old and showed on Tuesday vs. Atlanta that he’s still capable of filling up a box score. In just 13 minutes, he recorded eight points, five rebounds, and five assists.
It’s unclear what sort of return the Knicks would want back in a trade involving Smith. Begley hears from one executive that the club probably can’t realistically demand a first-round pick in exchange for the third-year guard, which doesn’t come as a surprise.