In a story for The New York Post, Marc Berman describes how the Knicks came to terms with free agent Evan Fournier while the veteran wingman is in the midst of an Olympic run with the French national team. Berman writes that Fournier’s relationship with former Magic head coach Steve Clifford, a close friend of Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau, likely played a part in the Knicks’ decision to pursue the 6’7″ wing.
“I’d bet the Knicks signed him because Clifford raved to Thibs about how much Fournier wants to win and is about all the right things,’’ a source from Orlando told Berman. “Cliff says that Fournier is one of the toughest players — mentally and physically — that he’s ever coached.’’
We have more news from the Knicks:
- In a separate article, Berman writes that Jericho Sims, the athletic center out of Texas taken with the 58th pick, is likely to receive a two-way contract, thereby limiting him to a maximum of 50 games with the Knicks. Sims is set to play for the Knicks in Summer League.
- According to Ian Begley of SNY, Taj Gibson – who agreed to a one-year, minimum-salary contract to stay in New York – had significant interest around the league, but the Knicks sold him on his importance to their culture and the team’s development going forward.
- Begley also writes that the Knicks and Mavericks were interested in exploring a sign-and-trade for wing Reggie Bullock earlier in free agency, but that it’s unclear if such a deal has been pursued since Bullock committed to the Mavs.
- All of the contracts the Knicks agreed to on Monday — Derrick Rose, Alec Burks, Nerlens Noel, and Evan Fournier — will be not fully guaranteed in their final year, Begley reports. Rose, Burks, and Noel will sign for three years apiece, while Fournier agreed to a four-year deal. Begley erroneously reported on Monday that Burks’ three-year deal was fully guaranteed.
- Finally, Begley writes that with the Knicks are interested in pursuing another point guard with their remaining cap space. Dennis Schroder and Reggie Jackson remain the two most prominent names on the point guard market.