First World Problems: Knicks’ Point Guard Situation

The Knicks‘ point guard situation appears to be an evergreen problem. New team president Leon Rose inherits a stable of underwhelming options just as Steve Mills and Phil Jackson did entering their respective regimes. Like his predecessors, Rose is expected to look for upgrades at the position this offseason.

What are some potential options? Prior to the Rose hire, the team had interest in trading for Terry Rozier, as Ian Begley of details. According to Begley, there was some support internally to send a package of Julius Randle, Dennis Smith Jr., and a future first-rounder to the Hornets in exchange for a return that included Rozier and Malik Monk.

While Rozier isn’t the All-Star point guard that New York’s fan base hopes for, he’s an upgrade on the current options. Elfrid Payton and Smith have had up-and-down results in the Big Apple. Frank Ntilikina, who has one more year left on his rookie deal, finally showed some progress but his long-term future with the club is uncertain.

Fred VanVleet will likely be the top point guard available on the free-agent market, though it’s hard to envision Toronto not doing all it can to retain the 2019 Finals hero. Chris Paul could be an option, but his contract gave teams pause last summer and that was before factoring in any sort of coronavirus-related basketball income woes that could suppress the league’s salary cap.

The franchise selecting a point guard atop the 2020 NBA draft might the best option for a brighter future at the position. The Knicks entered the NBA’s hiatus with the sixth-worst record in the league, which would give the team a 9% chance at the No. 1 overall selection, as we detailed earlier this month.

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20 thoughts on “First World Problems: Knicks’ Point Guard Situation

  1. DVail1979

    I may get called stupid but if im the Knicks id give FVV a max offer and see if he bites … He would be the type of all around PG that could lead the next winning Knicks team

    • Michael Chaney

      It would probably take a max offer to get him, especially since I’m pretty sure he’s restricted. So I actually don’t think that’s a crazy suggestion.

      Whether he’s worth that is another question, but he’d be a solid addition on the surface.

  2. Any man wanting to come in to save the Knicks on a max contract must be either stupid or confident he can single handedly take over games on many nights because there will be a lot of load on his shoulders.

    There are mentally tough athletes and then there are guys impervious to any criticism or doubt or relentless pressure, adversity and distraction after distraction after distraction. I think Fred is too conscientious and wise to put himself into that cooker of a lost franchise for the extra dough. He can have an enjoyable and profitable career by many other avenues. He is tough, but is he a masochist?

  3. phillyballers

    The best [this season] get-able PG is CP3. Will he be better than Rozier over the next 3 years? Yes. Rozier offense has come at an expense of his defense. And his offense isn’t as good as CP3.

    FVV is not going anywhere as an RFA, so you can just put that to bed.

    I would trade for CP3. What do they have to lose? They’ll probably draft Toppin and no one wants DSJ except Lefty Orioles so the remaining squad after a trade…

    Robinson, Toppin, RJ, DSJ, CP3.

    But why stop there? Kevin Love, LMA, and DeRozan if he opts in will be on the block too. They have enough contracts to match. All are expiring deals and or partially guaranteed or rookie deals.

    They could probably get Vucevic or Aaron Gordon (trash but a name). Maybe Utah parts with Gobert post-Covid. Idk how aggressive they will be.

      • phillyballers

        Really? Guess I overlooked that. So Toronto only has the 5th year over another team.

  4. Real 2K Insider

    Is Terry Rozier really an upgrade over Elfrid Payton though?

    Payton would be fine if Barrett or Randle could shoot a lick. Or if the team were even willing to stagger that duo instead of starting both.

    The directive to start Barrett irrespective of results worked as well as it did for Knox last season. They should have done what the Bucks did, starting Wesley Matthews and bringing Donte DiVincenzo off the bench.

    Start Bullock and let Barrett work with Ntilikina, Knox, Portis, and Robinson off the bench.

    • 4Quarters

      Agreed. I think RJ & Knox need to be on the floor together for longer stretches. I liked the flashes Frank showed this season, but I dunno if it’s enough to steer him towards being a part of the longterm plan. But when he decides to play with aggression, you can see that there’s talent there (talking about on O)

      I don’t think starting Knox despite results hurt him last year, I just think he’s still finding his game. Last handful of games in the ’18-’19 season, he showed glimpses of an effective slasher…then he came in this year and was mostly spotting up until he started recklessly driving to the hoop in the last few weeks before the suspended season.

      I agree that getting him in the rotation with other longterm options (RJ, Mitch) could help him find where he fits & spots on the floor. ONE PG in that lineup is a must too. A revolving door of teammates won’t help.

  5. mcmillankmm

    Knicks should probably see where they draft first…and then decide who is part of the long-term future. They have the contracts to match up a Rozier trade if it comes to that.

  6. fungie22

    Knicks simply don’t draft well. They haven’t got it right in years!

    • Buckman

      They got Porzingis but lost him due to not being able to build a team or team chemistry.

  7. yanksallday

    Just draft one. This team needs to grow through the draft, past draft woes notwithstanding.

    • bowserhound

      This on top of getting CP3 for 1-2 years to bridge the gap and not put too much pressure on a rookie.

  8. Rozier is another overpaid backup, at least a good team. Sort of like Randle, except Rozier’s bad contract goes on for 2 yrs longer. Swap them (and throw in DSJ)? Perhaps. Certainly no 1st round pick going to the Hornets.

    I want to get rid of Randle, but he’s expiring, so I don’t think the Knicks will need to attach a pick to do that. There are worse expiring contracts out there they could take back or release him as they don’t need his cap space this year that bad.

  9. Buckman

    Without the Knicks and the Coronavirus, there wouldn’t be anything to talk about on HOOPSRUMORS.

  10. brandoningramno1fan

    In my 2K MyLeague, the Knicks actually got the #3 pick and drafted LaMelo Ball. If no luck strikes in the real draft, they should trade for Lonzo. I traded Blake Griffin to them, since they need a PF that can shoot. John Wall went to the Pistons to mentor Theo Maledon, and Julius Randle went to Washington where Bradley Beal is the bonafide #1 option and is mentoring another high pick PG whose name escapes me. Wiseman went to GS, and Anthony Edwards went to Atlanta.

  11. chuckster

    If the Knicks were seriously interested in a CP trade, what could they give OKC?

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