Knicks Notes: Anunoby Trade, Murray, Barrett, Quickley

The Knicks will remain active on the trade market after acquiring OG Anunoby, Precious Achiuwa, and Malachi Flynn from Toronto on Saturday, league sources tell Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

Having previously named Dejounte Murray as a possible Knicks trade target, Scotto reports that New York is still interested in Murray following this weekend’s deal. However, the team would no longer be able to offer Immanuel Quickley, who might have been a key piece of any outgoing package for the Hawks guard.

Scotto also spoke to multiple NBA executives to get their thoughts on the Anunoby trade for the Knicks. One of those execs questioned whether it might have been overpay, but acknowledged that the team remains well positioned to make another big move and said that justified the decision to part with two talented scorers in Quickley and RJ Barrett. A second exec is curious to see what New York’s front office has up its sleeve for its next move.

“There’s not a lot of shot creation for other players on the roster now, and there’s a lot of pressure on (Jalen) Brunson,” the exec told Scotto. “I get why New York made the trade. The team was playing selfishly. Anunoby is a better fit with what they have than Barrett.”

Here’s more on the Knicks and their latest trade:

  • The Knicks players who weren’t involved in Saturday’s deal had mixed feelings about the move, as Peter Botte of The New York Post details. “This probably for me is one of the toughest ones just because of the relationship I built with those two,” Julius Randle said, referring to Barrett and Quickley as “little brothers” and suggesting he’ll continue to root for them. Taj Gibson expressed excitement for the addition of Anunoby but said that it “kind of sucked” to say goodbye to the two departing Knicks: “I’ve been around them since they came into the league. Great young men. It’s just tough, one of the tough parts about the business. Being able to see them this morning and talk, it was tough.
  • Zach Kram of The Ringer, John Hollinger of The Athletic, and Keith Smith of Spotrac took a closer look at the five-player trade from both the Knicks’ and Raptors‘ perspectives, breaking down why it could be a win-win move for the two Atlantic rivals. Smith also explores each team’s financial situation and considers how new deals in 2024 for Anunoby and Quickley will affect their cap outlooks going forward.
  • Frustration about roles and playing time had been mounting in the Knicks’ locker room, according to Fred Katz of The Athletic, which is one key reason why the front office was motivated to make a consolidation trade sooner rather than later. Within Katz’s story, which examines the trade in greater detail, he cites league sources who say the Knicks and Celtics briefly discussed a deal centered around Quickley and Marcus Smart in the offseason before Smart was sent to Memphis. In other words, the team has been mulling swapping Quickley for an elite defender for a while.
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