Derrick Rose

Knicks To Re-Sign Rose On Three-Year Deal

Knicks combo guard Derrick Rose will return to Madison Square Garden on a three-season, $43MM contract, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (via Twitter).

Rose, 32, is set to re-join New York after a successful 2020/21 season with the club. The Knicks pried Rose away from the Pistons early in the year, and Rose quickly ascended the ranks within the team’s guard rotation, playing major minutes for a playoff-bound New York team, led by Rose’s former coach with the Bulls and Timberwolves, Tom Thibodeau.

After the trade, Rose suited up for 35 regular season contests with New York, averaging 14.9 PPG, 4.2 APG, 2.9 RPG and 0.9 SPG in 26.8 MPG for the team. The 6’2″ vet connected on 48.7% of his field goal attempts, including a solid 41.1% on 2.6 three-point attempts a night, while nailing 88.3% of his free-throws.

Rose elevated his play in the Knicks’ first-round playoff series against the Hawks, eventually stepping into the starting lineup for the team’s final three games of the series. He averaged 19.4 PPG, 5.0 APG, and 4.0 RPG across 35.0 MPG.

Rose, a former three-time All-Star and the 2011 MVP before his career trajectory was permanently altered by a series of severe knee injuries, was first traded to the Knicks from the Bulls ahead of the 2016/17 season. He then played for the Cavaliers and Timberwolves before inking a two-year contract with the Pistons in 2019.

The retention of Rose, in addition to the expected signings of Evan Fournier, Alec Burks, and Nerlens Noel, also announced today, may take the Knicks out of the running for any further big free agent additions this summer.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Free Agent Rumors: Lowry, DeRozan, Knicks, Graham, Jackson, More

Now considered to be favorites to land Kyle Lowry in free agency, the Heat may try to bring in DeMar DeRozan as well, tweets Jordan Schultz of ESPN, confirming a series of reports from the last 24 hours.

Lowry and DeRozan were backcourt partners in Toronto for many years and have remained close friends. Miami is looking at a sign-and-trade as the best way to add Lowry, and is hoping that DeRozan might be available for the mid-level exception. That represents a big pay cut, but sources tell Schultz he might be interested if it means a chance to play alongside Lowry again.

If DeRozan turns down the MLE, the Heat will focus on finding a stretch four, says Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald (Twitter link). There is support among the front office for Jeff Green, according to Jackson, who mentions Bobby Portis, Rudy Gay and Otto Porter as other options.

Meanwhile, Goran Dragic is expected to be part of a sign-and-trade with Toronto for Lowry, but the Raptors are unlikely to keep him. The Mavericks will be among the teams with interest in Dragic, according to Jackson (Twitter link).

Miami would also like to bring back reserve center Dewayne Dedmon, but he may get better offers, says Jackson (Twitter link). The Heat, who only hold Non-Bird rights on Dedmon, may have to offer part of their $3.6MM biannual exception to be competitive.

There’s more as the start of free agency draws closer:

  • The Knicks have some mutual interest with DeRozan, as well as Celtics shooting guard Evan Fournier, writes Ian Begley of SNY.tv. Begley also hears that Bulls guard Tomas Satoransky would be part of the potential return in a sign-and-trade if Chicago lands Pelicans RFA Lonzo Ball, while rival teams expect Duncan Robinson to re-sign with the Heat.
  • While he isn’t necessarily their Plan A or B, Cameron Payne is one of the free agent point guards on the Knicks‘ radar, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. New York has considered a Payne/Derrick Rose tandem at point guard for next season, Berman adds.
  • The Thunder are seen by rival executives as a possible suitor for Hornets guard Devonte’ Graham, tweets Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. Graham is a restricted free agent, so Charlotte can match any offer, but Oklahoma City has the cap flexibility necessary to put pressure on the Hornets.
  • The Pelicans, Knicks, Celtics, and Nuggets are among the teams expected to express interest in point guard Reggie Jackson, per Sam Amick of The Athletic (Twitter link).
  • EuroLeague standout Tyler Dorsey, who previously played for Atlanta and Memphis, is positioned for a return to the NBA and is drawing interest from several teams, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

Knicks Notes: Point Guards, Rose, Grimes, Jokubaitis

Leon Rose has been conservative about spending since taking over as president of the Knicks, but he’s ready to put the team’s more than $50MM in cap space to good use, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. New York has more money available than anyone heading into free agency, and the primary target will be a new point guard.

The dream scenario for Rose is to land his former CAA client, Chris Paul, who declined his $44.2MM player option on Sunday. The Knicks are one of two teams that can offer Paul $123MM over three seasons, but there are indications that he prefers to stay in Phoenix after leading the Suns to the NBA Finals.

New York is also interested in Kyle Lowry, who reportedly is leaning toward the Heat, but the Knicks can offer a starting salary up to $39MM, which is more than he could get in Miami. However, Berman notes that would limit the team’s other options, such as finding a scoring wing like Evan Fournier, Duncan Robinson, Norman Powell or Kelly Oubre.

The most likely option may be Dennis Schröder, who won’t be staying in L.A. now that the Lakers have Russell Westbrook. The Knicks scouted Schröder extensively this week, Berman adds, to make sure he’s a good fit for Tom Thibodeau’s system.

There’s more from New York:

  • The free agency process will provide an indication of how much the Knicks value Derrick Rose, notes Ian Begley of SNY.tv. Rose played an important role after being acquired from the Pistons at midseason, but a rival team told Begley that some members of New York’s front office want to let him get other offers on the free agent market before making one of their own.
  • The Knicks traded down before drafting Quentin Grimes, but they knew they couldn’t go lower than the 25th pick, according to Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic. Kelvin Sampson, Grimes’ college coach at Houston, talked to New York general manager Scott Perry during the draft and says the Nuggets were ready to take Grimes at No. 26 if had still been available.
  • Second-round pick Rokas Jokubaitis is expected to spend another year overseas before joining the Knicks, Berman adds in a separate story. The Lithuanian guard will join Barcelona after playing the past three seasons for Zalgiris. New York is already looking at four potential rookies on its roster next season, and Jokubaitis is on board with the plan, according to Donatas Urbonas of BasketNews.

Hollinger’s Latest: CP3, Knicks, Fournier, Bulls, Rose, Pacers, More

There was talk last week that the Pelicans would be a serious suitor for Chris Paul in free agency, but that chatter seems to have faded, according to John Hollinger of The Athletic, who says the veteran point guard is now widely expected to re-sign with the Suns.

As Hollinger explains, he heard the Suns’ initial offer to Paul when the two sides were discussing a possible extension was somewhat “underwhelming,” but the club now appears prepared to offer a more serious package. No one around the league will be surprised if the total value of Paul’s new deal gets up to $100MM or more, Hollinger adds.

Here are several more free agent rumors from Hollinger:

  • Amidst rumors that Evan Fournier‘s price tag may be too high for the Celtics‘ liking, Hollinger suggests that the Knicks may be the team preparing to make an aggressive offer to the free agent wing. Hollinger adds that it’s worth keeping an eye on Mitchell Robinson and the Knicks, since a renegotiate-and-extend deal is a possibility for the two sides. That sort of agreement would give Robinson a raise for 2021/22 and lock him up for multiple seasons.
  • If the Bulls don’t land Lonzo Ball, one of their backup plans may be offering Derrick Rose a deal in the neighborhood of $12MM per year, says Hollinger.
  • Hollinger’s sources expect T.J. McConnell to stick with the Pacers for a deal worth around – or slightly above – the taxpayer mid-level exception ($5.9MM), but the competition for Doug McDermott will be fiercer and Indiana will face tax issues if the team wants to re-sign both players without trimming salary elsewhere.
  • If Richaun Holmes‘ presumed suitors – such as Charlotte and Toronto – end up using their cap room in other ways, he might be squeezed in free agency, allowing the Kings to re-sign him despite only holding his Early Bird rights. If that scenario plays out, Hollinger expects Holmes to sign a two-year deal with a player option so that he can hit the open market again in 2022 with full Bird rights.
  • There hasn’t been much free agent chatter surrounding Nuggets guard Will Barton or Trail Blazers Norman Powell, according to Hollinger, who writes that teams seems to be assuming those two players will remain with their respective clubs.
  • It has been tricky to figure out what the Spurs plan to do with their projected cap room, says Hollinger. Daniel Theis is the most prominent free agent target Hollinger has heard linked to San Antonio.

Knicks Notes: Randle, Draft Night, Point Guards, Gibson

July 31 marked the trigger date for Julius Randle‘s contract guarantee, so the Knicks now owe him the full $19.8MM for next season, tweets Bobby Marks of ESPN. There was no suspense about whether New York would be willing to pay Randle that much in the wake of a career season that saw him win the Most Improved Player award and earn second-team All-NBA honors.

The real intrigue this offseason involves a four-year, $106MM+ extension that Randle is eligible to receive. The Knicks have plenty of incentive to sign him at that figure, as Randle could potentially make a lot more next summer as an unrestricted free agent, particularly if he puts together another All-NBA season. New York will have his Bird rights if that happens and can exceed the salary cap to re-sign him.

Randle joined the Knicks two years ago on a three-year, $63MM contract that carried just a $4MM guarantee for 2021/22. His game blossomed in New York, especially under new coach Tom Thibodeau, as he averaged 24.1 points, 10.2 rebounds and 6.0 assists per night while leading the team to the No. 4 seed in the East.

There’s more from New York:

  • The Knicks’ decision to trade the 19th pick in this year’s draft to the Hornets for a heavily protected future selection was done to free up another $2.4MM for free agency, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post, citing an NBA executive who has talked to team president Leon Rose. New York never planned to use both of its first-round picks Thursday night and was happy to get Quentin Grimes and Miles McBride after trading down.
  • Even if the Knicks can’t lure top targets Chris Paul and Kyle Lowry in free agency, they will have plenty of options at point guard, Berman adds. With more than $50MM in cap space, New York can outbid rival teams for Spencer DinwiddieCameron Payne, Dennis Schroder or Reggie Jackson. Restricted free agent Lonzo Ball remains a possibility, but the Knicks saw him as a better fit in February than they do now, sources tell Berman. Re-signing Derrick Rose, a favorite of Thibodeau, remains on the table, although the front office is debating whether to make a long-term offer to Rose, who will turn 33 in October. The Bulls may get into the bidding for the Chicago native.
  • Saturday’s decision to waive backup center Norvel Pelle increases the chances that Taj Gibson will be back on the roster next season, Berman states in a separate story. A source told Berman the Knicks would consider re-signing Pelle at some point during the season if injuries leave them needing help in the middle.

Eastern Rumors: Ball, Rose, Tucker, Portis, Allen, Williams, Fournier, Schroder, Horton-Tucker

The Bulls are looking to make to major additions to shore up their point guard position, according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

The Bulls have been linked for months to Pelicans point guard Lonzo Ball and there’s thought to be mutual interest between the two sides on a four-year deal worth more than $80MM. If the Pelicans extend a $14.36MM qualifying offer to Ball, he’ll be a restricted free agent — the Bulls would have to give him an offer sheet and hope New Orleans doesn’t match it, or work out a sign-and-trade with the Pels.

The Bulls may have some competition from the Celtics, who have been recently mentioned as a potential Ball suitor after dealing away Kemba Walker. There’s increasing speculation the Celtics will not look to re-sign unrestricted free agent Evan Fournier, says Fischer. That possibility increased significantly after the Celtics agreed to acquire Josh Richardson from the Mavericks.

Chicago is also considering another Derrick Rose reunion and there’s mutual interest. It’s uncertain if the Knicks and head coach Tom Thibodeau can convince Rose, an unrestricted free agent, to re-sign with them if the Bulls make a hard push. However, Chicago will likely need to shed salary in order to bring in both Ball and Rose and the Knicks have plenty of cap room to outbid the Bulls for his services. While that’s a best case scenario in the Bulls’ eyes, they’re intent on adding two point guards this summer, especially with Coby White out indefinitely after undergoing left shoulder surgery, per Fischer.

Fischer offers up a number of other interesting items:

  • The Bucks are interested in bringing back two of their prominent free agents. They’d like to re-sign defensive specialist P.J. Tucker on a contract in the neighborhood of two years and $20MM. They are also hoping to re-sign forward Bobby Portis and the feeling is mutual. Since the Bucks only have Non-Bird rights on Portis, they’d have to use their mid-level exception to give him a starting salary higher than about $4.3MM.
  • The Cavaliers view the Raptors as their main threat to re-signing restricted free agent Jarrett Allen. Toronto’s interest in Allen surfaced last weekend. However, Cleveland is likely to match any offer sheet for Allen. The Raptors are also eying Kings free agent Richaun Holmes.
  • League sources think Lou Williams, one of the league’s top reserves, could re-sign with the Hawks on a veteran’s minimum deal, sys Fischer.
  • The Knicks, who need to add scoring punch, have expressed interest in Fournier. They’ve also been linked to Lakers guards Dennis Schroder and Talen Horton-Tucker. Schroder will be looking for a new home after the Lakers agreed to acquire Russell Westbrook. Previous reports have indicated the Knicks’ potential pursuit of Fournier and Schroder. Horton-Tucker is a restricted free agent after the Lakers extended a qualifying offer, though the team has the option of pulling it off the table.
  • According to SNY.TV’s Ian Begley, there’s support within the Knicks organization to pursue Nets free agent Spencer Dinwiddie and he’s interested in remaining in New York. Devonte’ GrahamKendrick Nunn, and Kyle Lowry are some other potential targets at point guard. At the wing, the Knicks have some interest in the Spurs’ DeMar DeRozan and they’ve had discussions with the Magic this week regarding a potential Terrence Ross trade.

Eastern Notes: David, Pistons, Rose, Nored, Barrett

The Pistons have hired George David as the franchise’s assistant general manager, according to James Edwards III of The Athletic (Twitter link).

David will report to general manager Troy Weaver, who was hired by the organization in June of 2020. David was previously with the Pistons for nearly two decades, serving in a variety of roles. This includes being the assistant GM from 2012-14.

Detroit owns the No. 1 pick in the draft and finished this season with a 20-52 record, the worst in the Eastern Conference and second-worst in the league.

There’s more from the Eastern Conference tonight:

  • Ian Begley of SNY examines the main factors of Derrick Rose‘s impending free agency. Rose helped propel the Knicks to playoff status this season, averaging 14.9 points, 4.2 assists and 26.8 minutes in 35 regular season games. He’ll be entering his 13th NBA season.
  • The Pacers are finalizing a deal with Ronald Nored to join Rick Carlisle‘s staff, according to Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files. Nored most recently served as an assistant coach with Charlotte from 2018-21, though he’s been involved in coaching and player development since 2013.
  • Knicks swingman RJ Barrett isn’t considered untouchable by the franchise this offseason, Marc Berman of the New York Post reports. However, Barrett – who is coming off an impressive season, averaging 17.6 points per game at just 21 years old – only figures to be available if the opportunity arises for New York to acquire a superstar.

Central Notes: Mobley, Rose, Bulls’ Draft, McDermott, McConnell, Carlisle

Drafting Evan Mobley with the No. 3 pick wouldn’t necessarily mean the Cavaliers would let restricted free agent Jarrett Allen walk, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes. The USC big man is widely considered one of the top four prospects in the draft, and sources tell Fedor the Cavs believe he could thrive at the four or the five, so he should be able to share the frontcourt with a center like Allen. Mobley could also slide over to the middle in some lineups, and his versatility would provide head coach J.B. Bickerstaff with more flexibility.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • The Bulls ought to consider re-signing unrestricted free agent Derrick Rose, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago opines. Rose is coming off a strong season and if he’d be willing to accept some or all of their mid-level exception, it would energize the fan base.
  • The Bulls don’t have a first-round pick but they’re approaching the draft with the idea that they could seize an opportunity to move into the first round, Johnson adds. They were also a presence at the combine, searching for a diamond in the rough with the No. 38 overall pick.
  • Re-signing unrestricted free agents Doug McDermott and T.J. McConnell is a major focus for the Pacers this offseason, coach Rick Carlisle said on Tuesday, per Scott Agness of FieldhouseFiles.com (Twitter link). “The priority is to get the new staff in here, work towards good health as much as we can, try to get McConnell and McDermott re-signed if we can do that,” Carlisle said.
  • Carlisle has yet to officially sign his contract but he plans to do so when he arrives in Indiana on July 5. He’s eager to work with the roster and find ways to make the current group better, according to Agness (Twitter links). “Whatever players are presented to me by management or ownership, I really take a great deal in pride and love the challenge of molding that group into the right kind of system,” he said.

And-Ones: Injuries, D. Rose, Summer League, Hardy, Appling

While it’s hard to say definitively that a shortened 2020 offseason was responsible, injuries were up around the NBA this season, according to data compiled by Baxter Holmes of ESPN.com.

As Holmes details, this season’s All-Stars missed 19% of a possible 1,944 games, the highest percentage in NBA history. Additionally, teams were missing an average of 5.1 players per game due to injuries, rest, and non-COVID-related illnesses, which is the highest mark since ESPN’s Kevin Pelton began tracking that info in 2009/10.

Players and coaches alike have noted that the 2020/21 season has taken a greater mental and physical toll than a typical year, but the NBA insists that the rate of injuries over the last few months has been about the same as normal, Holmes writes.

“Injury rates this season were virtually the same as last season, and any suggestion to the contrary is inaccurate,” NBA senior VP David Weiss told ESPN. “The number of serious injuries was lower this season than last season. Although more players this season missed a single game because of an injury or rest, injuries resulting in many games missed were in line with normal historical trends. To operate this season safely in a pandemic has been physically and mentally challenging for everyone involved, and players and teams have risen to the challenge and avoided an increase in serious injuries.”

Here are  more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • League spokesperson Tim Frank confirmed that the first-place MVP vote awarded to Knicks point guard Derrick Rose was the result of a cumulative fan vote rather than from a media member, per Marc Stein of The New York Times (Twitter link). While that makes some sense, it’s still a bit odd, given that past fan votes for the MVP award haven’t been nearly so outside the box, writes Dan Feldman of NBC Sports.
  • As previously reported, the Las Vegas Summer League will return this year from August 8-17, the NBA confirmed on Wednesday in a press release. All 30 NBA teams will be involved and will play five games apiece — the two teams with the best records after four games will meet in a championship contest on August 17.
  • Meanwhile, the NBA G League has officially confirmed the previously-reported news that five-star recruit Jaden Hardy is joining the G League Ignite for the 2021/22 season. Hardy is considered one of the best prospects in the 2021 recruiting class.
  • Keith Appling, a former Michigan State star who had a brief stint with the Magic during the 2015/16 season, was charged with murder on Monday, per an Associated Press report. Appling is accused of killing Clyde Edmonds, 66, in Detroit on May 22. He was initially arrested on May 24.

Knicks Notes: Lillard, Rose, Free Agents, Vildoza

The Knicks should be at the front of the line if the Trail Blazers decide to trade Damian Lillard, contends Mike Vaccaro of The New York Post. Lillard is one of the most popular Portland players ever and has been a fixture in the city since he was drafted in 2012. But he will turn 31 in July and could bring a huge collection of assets in return if the Blazers opt to rebuild.

Lillard is owed more than $127MM over the next three seasons and has a $48.8MM player option for 2024/25. He would provide an instant solution to New York’s long-running point guard problem and would bring some star power to the franchise. He’s still as explosive as ever as a scorer, averaging 28.8 points per game this season and shooting 39.1% from three-point range.

The Knicks have the assets to make a deal work, including five first-round picks over the next three years, Vaccaro adds. They also have young talent to offer, such as rookies Obi Toppin and Immanuel Quickley, second-year guard RJ Barrett and third-year center Mitchell Robinson.

There’s more from New York:

  • If Lillard isn’t available, the Knicks will pursue other options to upgrade their backcourt this summer, and Ian Begley of SNY.TV hears that Derrick Rose‘s performance after being acquired from the Pistons will affect their strategy. If they can re-sign Rose, the Knicks will be less likely to spend big on another veteran point guard and may turn to restricted free agents such as Devonte’ Graham, Lonzo Ball or Kendrick Nunn. New York talked to the Pelicans about a possible Ball trade before the March deadline, but there’s not a consensus on him among the front office, according to Begley.
  • With their playoff run over, Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau met with newly signed guard Luca Vildoza on Thursday and watched him in a workout, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. Former Knicks guard and current Timberwolves assistant coach Pablo Prigioni believes his fellow Argentinian has a bright NBA future. “(Vildoza is) really, really good,’’ Prigioni said. “I really like him. Very talented, got a great shot and knows how to pass. I’m really excited to see Luca next season with the Knicks. Tom’s going to like him.’
  • Thibodeau held a long meeting with his players on Thursday and decided to delay the traditional player evaluation conferences for about two weeks, Berman adds in a separate story. A source said Berman wants his players to unwind from the stress that COVID-19 brought to the season.