Ryan Arcidiacono

Knicks Notes: B. Brown, Tournament, Mitchell, Centers

Bruce Brown was a long shot for the Knicks in free agency, but he still met with them before deciding to sign with the Pacers. The versatile swingman talked to Stefan Bondy of The New York Post about the details of that meeting, which took place on FaceTime.

Head coach Tom Thibodeau was a strong supporter of adding Brown and told him the Knicks needed him to “do the little things to help them win.” Thibodeau made his recruiting pitch along with team president Leon Rose, but they couldn’t compete with Indiana’s offer. Brown signed for $45MM over two years, while New York was limited to $12.4MM per year with its mid-level exception.

“Thibs has always been a fan of mine, even coming out the draft when he was with Minnesota,” Brown said. “And every time I played against him we had a few communications. But this is the first time to actually get a chance to get me.”

There’s more from New York:

  • With the Knicks beginning play Friday in the NBA’s new in-season tournament, Bondy reached out to two of the team’s lower-salaried players to see what the $500K grand prize would mean to them. Ryan Arcidiacono and Dylan Windler, who both have non-guaranteed contracts, said they would use the bonus money to help pay off their mortgages.
  • The Knicks might be a more entertaining team if they had met Utah’s price in trade negotiations for Donovan Mitchell, but there’s no guarantee they would be better, contends Mike Vaccaro of The New York Post. Vaccaro points to the team’s last offer for Mitchell, which would have included RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin, Evan Fournier, two unprotected first-round picks and three more first-rounders. It might have also precluded the trade for Josh Hart and the signing of Donte DiVincenzo. Vaccaro notes that New York still has most of those assets, which can be used for the next big-name player who becomes available.
  • There has been plenty of speculation that the Knicks might be waiting for Joel Embiid or Karl-Anthony Towns to hit the trade market, but Thibodeau is happy with his current center pairing of Mitchell Robinson and Isaiah Hartenstein, per Kristian Winfield of The New York Daily News. “(Isaiah) and Mitch together, it’s a great tandem,” Thibodeau told reporters before Wednesday’s game. “They complement each other extremely well, they support each other, they’re great teammates. You throw Jericho (Sims) in there as well, that position, we feel pretty good about it.”

Three Players On Exhibit 9 Contracts Make Opening Night Rosters

As we explain in a glossary entry, Exhibit 9 contracts are generally handed out by NBA teams to players who will only be with the team during training camp and/or the preseason.

The Exhibit 9 clause protects the team in case the player suffers an injury before the season begins. In that scenario, the club wouldn’t have to pay him his full salary until he gets healthy enough to play — it would only have to pay a maximum lump sum of $15K when it waives the player.

While most Exhibit 9 signees were released in advance of the regular season, three NBA veterans who signed Exhibit 9 contracts survived the cut and made their respective teams’ regular season rosters. Here are those three players:

Note: Hornets guard Edmond Sumner was initially included in this list, but Charlotte waived him on Tuesday ahead of its season opener.

These three players will now be on one-year, minimum-salary contracts that will remain non-guaranteed until January 10. In order to secure their full-season salaries, they’ll have to stay under contract beyond January 7 (a player cut on Jan. 8 or 9 wouldn’t clear waivers prior to the league-wide salary guarantee date of Jan. 10).

As our list of non-guaranteed contracts by team shows, Arcidiacono, Giles, and Stevens are three of the 31 players on standard deals whose salaries for the 2023/24 season aren’t fully guaranteed.

Several of these players will receive partial guarantees by remaining on rosters through the start of the regular season, and a few more have November or December trigger dates that will increase their guarantees. However, none of those 31 players will lock in their full salary until Jan. 10.

Here are a few more items of interest about the NBA’s opening night rosters for ’23/24, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link):

  • The Spurs have the NBA’s youngest roster, while the Clippers have the oldest.
  • Players are earning a combined total salary of $4.8 billion for the 2023/24 season. The Celtics, Nuggets, Warriors, Clippers, Lakers, Heat, Bucks, Pelicans, Sixers, and Suns are the biggest contributors to that pool, as they’re all currently over the luxury tax line.
  • As our roster counts page shows, there are 12 open spots on standard 15-man rosters around the NBA. Those openings belong to the Celtics, Bulls, Cavaliers, Pistons, Warriors (two), Lakers, Heat, Timberwolves, Pelicans, Trail Blazers, and Kings.
  • The Nets and the Suns are the only two teams that haven’t filled all three of their two-way slots, as our tracker shows. They’re each carrying a pair of two-way players, meaning 88 of the 90 spots around the league are occupied.

Knicks Release Diakite, Goodwin, Roby, Washington

The Knicks have waived Mamadi Diakite, Brandon Goodwin, Isaiah Roby and Duane Washington Jr., the team announced (via Twitter).

Diakite, Goodwin and Roby were all signed to Exhibit 10 contracts, which means they could receive a bonus worth up to $75K if they spend at least 60 days the Knicks’ NBA G League affiliate in Westchester.

Washington, on the other hand, was signed to an Exhibit 9 contract. That means he would not be eligible for a bonus if he clears waivers and plays for the Westchester Knicks in 2023/24.

All four players have NBA experience, but were unable to make the Knicks’ regular season roster. Diakite, a 6’9″ forward/center who was born in Guinea, has appeared in 49 NBA games with the Bucks, Thunder and Cavs over the past three seasons.

Goodwin, 28, is a 6’0″ point guard who played 133 regular season games with the Nuggets, Hawks and Cavs from 2018-22. He was out of the league last season.

Roby, 25, spent most of last season with the Spurs, appearing in 42 games and averaging 4.1 points and 2.5 rebounds in 11.3 minutes per night before being released in early March. He spent his first three NBA seasons with Oklahoma City.

Roby signed a multiyear contract with the Knicks on the final day of the 2022/23 regular season that was non-guaranteed for ’23/24. He was recently cut, cleared waivers, and re-signed; now he has been waived again to secure his Exhibit 10 bonus.

A 6’3″ guard who went undrafted out of Ohio State in 2021, Washington spent the past two seasons with the Pacers, Suns and Knicks on two-way deals. He never actually played a game for New York, which waived him in July before re-signing him to a non-guaranteed training camp deal.

By waiving the four players and converting Charlie Brown Jr. and Jacob Toppin to two-way deals, it appears as though DaQuan Jeffries and Ryan Arcidiacono may have made the Knicks’ opening-night roster. Both players were on non-guaranteed camp contracts.

New York is now down to 17 players under contract, with all three two-way slots filled.

Atlantic Notes: Nets, Giannis, Hart, Harden

For the first time in years, the Nets will report to training camp without a superstar on their roster, but they have plenty of assets ready for when the next one becomes available, writes Brian Lewis of The New York Post. Brooklyn is in a transition phase after shipping out Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in separate deals last February. Those trades gave the team a foundation built around Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson, along with a parcel of draft assets that can match any team in the league.

The Nets have seven tradable first-round picks through 2030, along with four others that could be involved in swaps. They own unprotected firsts from the Suns in 2027 and 2029 and one from the Mavericks in 2029. Lewis points out that those picks could greatly increase in value as the core in Phoenix becomes older and especially if Irving and Luka Doncic eventually decide to leave Dallas.

Lewis doesn’t expect Brooklyn to use any of its assets to chase players who are currently on the market such as Damian Lillard, Tyler Herro or James Harden. The front office wants to be fully stocked in case a major star such as Giannis Antetokounmpo, Joel Embiid, Donovan Mitchell or Doncic eventually becomes available.

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Knicks risk missing out on other opportunities if they decide to wait for the possibility of an Antetokounmpo trade, Ian Begley of SNY.tv states in a mailbag column. He points to Raptors forward OG Anunoby as an example of a useful talent who might be available through trade, but New York can’t make a bid for him if the front office is determined to preserve its assets for a run at Antetokounmpo. Begley also notes that Antetokounmpo could ultimately decide to stay in Milwaukee or force his way to another team.
  • The Knicks appear to have Josh Hart penciled in as their backup power forward, Begley adds. New York hasn’t signed anyone to replace Obi Toppin after trading him to Indiana, and using Hart in that role could open up playing time for free agent addition Ryan Arcidiacono.
  • The attention being focused on a potential Lillard deal is holding up any progress the Sixers could be making on a Harden trade, Derek Bodner states on the latest PHLY Sports podcast. Philadelphia talked to the Trail Blazers about a Lillard deal this summer, Kyle Neubeck adds, but he cautions that doesn’t mean the teams were ever close to a deal.

Knicks Sign Ryan Arcidiacono, Waive Dmytro Skapintsev

4:10pm: Arcidiacono signed an Exhibit 9 contract, league sources tell Begley. That means the veteran guard is on a one-year, minimum-salary contract that is non-guaranteed and doesn’t count against the salary cap unless he makes New York’s regular season roster.

The Exhibit 9 language in the deal provides protection to the Knicks in case Arcidiacono sustains an untimely injury during training camp.

3:55pm: The Knicks made a pair of roster moves on Friday, announcing (on Twitter) that they’ve waived center Dmytro Skapintsev and signed free agent point guard Ryan Arcidiacono.

Cutting Skapintsev was necessary in order to open up a spot for Arcidiacono, since New York has a full 21-man roster. Skapintsev, who signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the team last month, figures to end up playing for the Westchester Knicks, New York’s G League affiliate.

As for Arcidiacono, the veteran guard has spent most of the past two seasons with the Knicks, appearing in 10 games for the team in 2021/22 and 11 more in ’22/23 before he was sent to Portland in February’s Josh Hart trade. The Trail Blazers subsequently waived Arcidiacono in April.

According to Ian Begley of SNY.tv (Twitter link), the Knicks were reluctant to include Arcidiacono in the Hart trade and only did so in order to satisfy salary-matching rules. Arcidiacono is the fourth Villanova player on the roster and is known to be particularly close with Jalen Brunson, Begley adds.

In 237 career regular season games with the Bulls, Knicks, and Blazers, Arcidiacono has averaged 4.4 points, 2.0 assists, and 1.9 rebounds in 16.4 minutes per night, posting a shooting line of .424/.373/.807.

It’s unclear if Arcidiacono’s new contract with the Knicks includes any guaranteed money, but he has made the regular season roster despite being on a non-guaranteed deal in each of the previous two seasons, and he has a path to a 15-man spot this fall. New York is only carrying 12 players on guaranteed contracts, with DaQuan Jeffries, Isaiah Roby, Duane Washington, Jacob Toppin, and Charlie Brown Jr. on non-guaranteed deals.

Blazers Sign Jeenathan Williams, Waive Ryan Arcidiacono

3:42pm: The Trail Blazers have confirmed both moves in a press release.

12:00pm: The Trail Blazers are making a change to their standard roster, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that the team will waive veteran guard Ryan Arcidiacono and use the open roster spot to sign guard Jeenathan Williams to a two-year contract.

Williams, who went undrafted out of Buffalo in 2022, has spent his first professional season with the Salt Lake City Stars, Utah’s G League affiliate. In 32 regular season appearances for Salt Lake City, Williams averaged 14.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2.2 assists in 29.8 minutes per game, posting an impressive .523/.417/.848 shooting line.

While the terms of Williams’ new deal aren’t yet known, it’s unlikely to include much, if any, guaranteed money beyond this season, essentially giving the Blazers a free look at the 24-year-old this summer before they decide whether they want to hang onto him for next season.

Arcidiacono began this season with the Knicks and was traded to Portland in the four-team trade deadline deal that sent Josh Hart to New York. The 29-year-old guard has actually played more in Portland than he did for the Knicks, averaging 2.6 PPG and 2.3 APG in nine games (16.2 MPG), though he’s currently sidelined due to lumbar soreness. He logged just 26 minutes in 11 contests for New York.

Arcidiacono won’t be playoff-eligible if he signs with a new team before the end of the regular season.

Due to a plethora of injuries, the Blazers have qualified for multiple hardship exceptions and signed Skylar Mays and Shaquille Harrison to fortify their standard roster. However, hardship signings can only be 10-day deals, so the team couldn’t give Williams a two-year contract without waiving someone on a rest-of-season deal.

Trade Breakdown: Josh Hart To The Knicks (Four-Team Deal)

This is the fifth entry in our series breaking down the significant trades of the 2022/23 season. As opposed to giving out grades, this series explores why the teams were motivated to make the moves. Let’s dive into a deal four-team deal involving the Knicks, Trail Blazers, Sixers and Hornets.

On February 9:

  • The Knicks acquired Josh Hart, the draft rights to Bojan Dubljevic, and the draft rights to Daniel Diez (all from Trail Blazers).
  • The Trail Blazers acquired Matisse Thybulle, Cam Reddish, Ryan Arcidiacono, the Knicks’ 2023 first-round pick (top-14 protected), and the draft rights to Ante Tomic (from Knicks).
  • The Sixers acquired Jalen McDaniels, the Knicks’ 2024 second-round pick (from Hornets), and the Trail Blazers’ 2029 second-round pick.
  • The Hornets acquired Svi Mykhailiuk, either the Hornets’, Hawks’, or Nets’ 2023 second-round pick (whichever is most favorable; from Sixers), and either the Pelicans’ or Trail Blazers’ 2027 second-round pick (whichever is most favorable; from Trail Blazers).
  • Note: The Hornets had traded away their 2023 second-round pick in a prior deal.

Note: The Blazers, Sixers and Hornets all generated traded player exceptions in this deal, which can be found here.

The Knicks’ perspective:

Any time you deal away a first-round pick, even if it’s lottery-protected, ideally you want to re-sign the player you’re acquiring, particularly a player who can become a free agent in the offseason like Hart. The Knicks almost certainly would not have made this deal for 25 games of Hart – you can bet that they intend to bring him back, and they have his Bird rights, meaning they won’t require cap room to sign him.

Hart has already said multiple times that he’s looking for a home, is tired of moving, and hopes to remain with New York. That would certainly suggest that there’s mutual interest in the veteran wing sticking with the Knicks, even if the they haven’t publicly said anything about it.

I liked Hart’s fit with the Knicks when the trade was announced, and he has played very well for New York — the team is undefeated in his eight games. He’s averaging 11.5 points, 5.4 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.4 steals on .618/.600/.667 shooting in 27.0 MPG thus far.

Obviously, those shooting splits are unsustainable, but Hart has a lot of desirable qualities that mesh well with the players on the roster. One interesting wrinkle is that Hart has been closing games over RJ Barrett, which I think is smart from head coach Tom Thibodeau – Hart is a better defender and doesn’t need the ball on offense. We’ll see if it continues going forward.

Hart has always struck me as a player Thibodeau would love because he plays with maximum effort, chasing after loose balls all over the court. He is a hard-nosed, versatile defensive player. He also is a solid passer on offense, even if he’s fairly limited as a half-court scorer.

The 27-year-old (he turns 28 on Monday) compensates for his relative lack of half-court scoring by being an absolute bull in transition, often pulling down rebounds and going coast-to-coast. He is one of the best rebounders in the league for a wing, particularly for his size (6’5”, 215 pounds), averaging 7.7 boards per game over the past three seasons.

There are two primary knocks against Hart. One is his all-out playing style has led to a number of injuries. He has missed an average of about 19 games per season in his five years leading up to 2022/23, though he has only been sidelined for three this season, not counting the two games missed due to the trade.

The second is that teams are going to dare him to shoot threes, as he’s only at 34.7% for his career from downtown (the league average is 36.0% this season). He was weirdly reluctant to shoot threes with Portland, going through long stretches where he would pass up wide-open shots. That inhibits offensive spacing and can be problematic when paired with a non-shooting big.

Still, he is a valuable role player who does a solid job defending against tough competition, and his ability to make plays for himself and others — especially on fast breaks — is a nice addition to the Knicks. They’re 27th in pace, so he gives them some extra juice.

Reddish had not played in a game since December 3, and trading a protected first-rounder for him last year didn’t pan out. Arcidiacono and Mykhailiuk rarely saw the court, only playing a combined 66 minutes all season for New York. Trading away three players who weren’t contributing to the team’s on-court success for an impactful role player who almost immediately started closing games is a big deal, especially considering the Knicks have only made the playoffs once in the past nine years.

The Trail Blazers’ perspective:

Portland received a former first-round pick in Reddish and the Knicks’ lottery-protected first-rounder this season for a high-end role player in Hart. Arcidiacono was included for salary-matching purposes and is unlikely to have a role, but he’s not a bad fallback option as a third-string point guard – he takes care of the ball and is a decent shooter.

The Blazers also snagged Thybulle for a second-round pick (to Philly) and sent Charlotte another second-rounder to take a player they didn’t want (Mykhailiuk).

The primary reason the Blazers made this trade is that Hart has an odd contract and is expected to opt out of his player option in search of a long-term raise in free agency. Paying both Hart and Jerami Grant (UFA) would have pushed them into the luxury tax without other cost-cutting moves.

For as solid as Hart is, it’s not like Portland was going anywhere this season whether he was in the lineup or not. It’s a shame, because Damian Lillard has been phenomenal (he’s averaging a career-high 32.3 points with a 65.3 true shooting percentage — he’s at peak Stephen Curry levels of volume and efficiency), but the roster just isn’t good enough to do much beyond fighting for the back end of the play-in tournament.

As previously mentioned, Hart was oddly reluctant to shoot threes this season with the Blazers and I’m not really sure why. However, he will be missed for everything else he provides — most of their problems stem from rebounding and defense anyway, and he was one of their best players in both of those categories.

I like the Thybulle pickup and he looks like a good fit on the roster. He isn’t going to keep shooting 51.6% from beyond the arc like he has through seven games as a Blazer, but he was pigeonholed into a very narrow role with the Sixers and I believe he can provide more all-around value than he showed with them.

Thybulle is an absolute menace on defense and he knows that’s what he’s best at. A part-time wing player earning All-Defensive nods two seasons in a row is practically unheard of, but those awards were well deserved. The Blazers need all the help they can get on that end.

Reddish has now been dealt twice in a little over a year, with his value diminishing pretty drastically – the Knicks gave up a protected first-rounder to acquire him last year, but now moved him and a lottery-protected first to land Hart. The 23-year-old, who was the No. 10 overall pick in 2019, has yet to solidify himself as a solid NBA player.

Like Thybulle, Reddish has played well for Portland so far, averaging 14.1 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.3 steals on .470/.373/.941 shooting in eight games (27.7 minutes). Those numbers far exceed his career averages, which are pretty underwhelming (10.4 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.0 steal on .398/.327/.849 shooting in 161 games (24.7 minutes).

Both Thybulle and Reddish can be restricted free agents in the summer if the Blazers extend each of them a qualifying offer – I don’t think that’s a lock for either player, particularly Reddish.

The first-rounder Portland acquired from New York would currently land at No. 23 overall, which is decent. Definitely nothing to scoff at for a player on a pseudo-expiring contract whom the Blazers couldn’t reasonably afford to retain given the overall state of the team. If the Knicks go in a major slump to end the season and miss the playoffs — which seems extremely unlikely considering how hot they’ve been lately — the Blazers would instead receive four second-round picks.

Another aspect of this deal from Portland’s side is that it probably made them worse in the short term, which increases the odds of missing the playoffs and keeping their own lottery pick. The Blazers owe their pick to the Bulls if they make the postseason – if it doesn’t convey this year, the protections roll over to 2024 (it’s lottery-protected for several years, which makes it difficult for the team to trade future picks due to the Stepien rule).

The Hornets’ perspective:

Charlotte’s side of things is pretty straightforward. The Hornets were concerned about how much McDaniels would cost in unrestricted free agency and decided to move him and get something of value while they could.

I don’t think they necessarily wanted to trade McDaniels, especially after spending four years working with him on developing his game and seeing it start to pay off. Forwards who are 6’9″ with a bit of two-way versatility aren’t exactly common.

The problem is that Gordon Hayward is under contract through next season, the Miles Bridges situation still isn’t resolved, P.J. Washington will be a restricted free agent this summer, and Kelly Oubre is unrestricted. McDaniels is arguably the worst player of the group, making him relatively expendable.

The Hornets are almost certainly getting back their own 2023 second-rounder in the deal, which Philadelphia previously controlled and would currently land at No. 34 overall. Charlotte sent New York’s 2024 second-rounder to the Sixers as part of the multi-team agreement, which was slightly surprising, but if the Knicks are good again next year, that pick would land in the back half of the second round.

That No. 34 overall selection has real value and could be packaged with other seconds to move into the late first round this June. It could also be paired with Denver’s first-rounder (currently No. 28), which the Hornets control, to move up a little. Either way, it gives them more options in the upcoming draft and for trades.

The Hornets also picked up a 2027 second-rounder from Portland to take on Mykhailiuk’s salary. It’s reasonable to view that as a higher upside pick than the Knicks’ second-rounder they shipped to Philly. President of basketball operations Mitch Kupchak selected Mykhailiuk No. 47 overall back in 2016 when he was with the Lakers, so there is a connection there, but it seems unlikely that the veteran wing will have much of a role going forward.

The Sixers’ perspective:

The key takeaway from the Sixers’ side of things is they moved out of the luxury tax and arguably upgraded on the wing at the same time. I’m not sure I would take McDaniels over Thybulle in a vacuum, but it’s at worst debatable and he certainly provides length and positional size, which the team lacked.

Thybulle is a terrific defensive player, but he wasn’t consistently in the rotation this season due to his offensive limitations. He seemed to fall out of favor with the team after last year’s poor playoff showing, and the Sixers decided to trade him instead of letting him reach free agency.

McDaniels was averaging career highs in all the major counting stats for Charlotte, including points (10.6), rebounds (4.8), assists (2.0), steals (1.2) and minutes (26.7) per game. The 25-year old also hasn’t missed a game this season, which is impressive (he technically did miss one game due to the trade, but that was out of his control).

McDaniels doesn’t stand out in any one particular area, which is sort of a double-edged sword. It means he’s versatile enough to do a lot of different things on the court, but none at an elite level.

The big question mark with McDaniels is essentially the same as it was with Thybulle: can he make enough threes to stay on the court against top teams? With a roster loaded with talented scorers, other types of shots are hard to come by for role players like McDaniels. He is only at 34.1% for his career from deep, including 32.1% this season.

The Sixers picked up his Bird rights as part of the trade, giving them the ability to offer McDaniels more money and years than rival teams. For what they gave up, they likely aren’t committed to re-signing him though, nor should they be. They have the rest of the season to evaluate him and see how he does in the playoffs.

The 25-year-old’s minutes have been cut back pretty significantly since the trade, and his role is more in line with what it would be on a good team (which Philadelphia is). He was getting more run with the Hornets out of necessity due to injuries.

As previously mentioned, the Sixers basically swapped second-round picks with Charlotte, though the one they got back has far less upside. They also received Portland’s 2029 second-rounder for Thybulle — not much of a return, but he was only averaging 12.1 minutes per game with Philly this season and is on an expiring contract.

Knicks, Blazers, Sixers, Hornets Officially Complete Four-Team Trade

The Knicks, Trail Blazers, Sixers, and Hornets have folded two separate trade agreements into a single four-team trade, with press releases from New York and Portland confirming that the deal is official.

The trade combines the Knicks’ acquisition of Josh Hart from Portland with the three-team trade agreement that sends Matisse Thybulle to the Blazers and Jalen McDaniels to the 76ers. Kyle Neubeck of PhillyVoice first reported (via Twitter) that the two deals would be combined into one.

Here are the full terms of the trade:

  • Knicks acquire Josh Hart, the draft rights to Bojan Dubljevic (from Trail Blazers), and the draft rights to Daniel Diez (from Trail Blazers).
  • Trail Blazers acquire Matisse Thybulle, Cam Reddish, Ryan Arcidiacono, the Knicks’ 2023 first-round pick (top-14 protected), and the draft rights to Ante Tomic (from Knicks).
  • Sixers acquire Jalen McDaniels, the Knicks’ 2024 second-round pick (from Hornets), and the Trail Blazers’ 2029 second-round pick.
  • Hornets acquire Svi Mykhailiuk, either the Hornets’, Hawks’, or Nets’ 2023 second-round pick (whichever is most favorable; from Sixers), and either the Pelicans’ or Trail Blazers’ 2027 second-round pick (whichever is most favorable; from Trail Blazers).

The deal expanded slightly to include the draft rights of three draft-and-stash players, but otherwise looks the same as what was previously reported.

As expected, Portland waived Greg Brown to help open up the necessary roster spots for their incoming players.

For more details on the deal, check out our full stories on the Knicks/Blazers half of the trade, as well as the Blazers/Sixers/Hornets portion.

Trail Blazers To Trade Josh Hart To Knicks

The Knicks have reached an agreement to acquire Josh Hart from the Trail Blazers, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Portland will receive Cam Reddish and a first-round pick as part of the return.

Hart has an expiring $12.96MM contract, while Reddish is earning $5.95MM in the final year of his rookie deal, so at least one more player has to be included to match salaries.

Sources tell Michael Scotto of HoopsHype that Svi Mykhailiuk ($1.97MM) and Ryan Arcidiacono ($2.13MM) are also headed to the Blazers (Twitter link), which will satisfy the NBA’s matching rules.

The pick that New York is giving up is lottery protected for 2023, per Wojnarowski (Twitter link). If it doesn’t convey this year, it will turn into four future second-round picks. That’s presumably the Knicks’ own first-round pick, since the protection terms don’t match up with the other first-rounders they control.

New York appeared to be a late entry into the bidding for Hart, with the first rumors of a deal appearing earlier today. His toughness and tenacity on defense seem to make him a natural fit for coach Tom Thibodeau. The Cavaliers and Heat were among the other teams reported to have interest in trading for Hart.

The 27-year-old wing is expected to decline his $12.96MM option this summer and seek a long-term deal in free agency. He has been part of the starting lineup in Portland since the Blazers acquired him at last year’s trade deadline, and he’s averaging 9.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 51 games this season.

The Knicks gave up a protected first-round pick last February to acquire Reddish, but he has fallen out of favor and hasn’t played since December 3. The 10th selection in the 2019 draft has washed out in Atlanta and New York, but he will have two months to audition for the Blazers, who can make him a restricted free agent with a $7.7MM qualifying offer.

Mykhailiuk, who signed a non-guaranteed deal with New York shortly before the start of training camp, has seen minimal playing time in 13 games.

Arcidiacono has played even less than his teammate, appearing in just 11 games and logging 26 total minutes in 2022/23. Due to the terms of his contract, he had the ability to veto any trade that involves him, but he has signed off on this one, tweets Ian Begley of SNY.tv.

The Trail Blazers will gain some cap relief as a result of the deal and will move well clear of the luxury tax line after flirting with it for much of the season. Assuming no players are added to the deal and it remains a three-for-one swap, Portland will have to cut a player from its 15-man roster to make room for the newcomers.

Knicks To Guarantee Salaries For Arcidiacono, Mykhailiuk

The Knicks will keep guards Ryan Arcidiacono and Svi Mykhailiuk on their roster through the NBA’s league-wide salary guarantee deadline, locking in their full cap hits for 2022/23, reports Steve Popper of Newsday (Twitter link).

This season’s salary guarantee date is January 10. A team wanting to avoid guaranteeing the salary for a player on a non-guaranteed contract must cut the player today so that he clears waivers before that deadline.

Arcidiacono, 28, has played a very limited role in just 10 games for the Knicks this season, logging only 25 total minutes. However, the sixth-year point guard is considered a Tom Thibodeau favorite — Arcidiacono also signed a pair of 10-day contracts and a rest-of-season deal with the Knicks last season despite not being part of the rotation.

Mykhailiuk has only played marginally more than Arcidiacono so far in 2022/23, logging 39 minutes across 12 games. The 25-year-old wing has made 6-of-10 three-pointers in his limited run, increasing his career rate from beyond the arc to 35.6%.

Both Arcidiacono and Mykhailiuk are on minimum-salary contracts and will count against the Knicks’ cap for $1,836,090 this season.

Although their salaries are now guaranteed for the rest of 2022/23, that doesn’t necessarily mean Arcidiacono and Mykhailiuk will finish the season with New York — they could be included in trades or could be cut if the club needs to open up a roster spot. The Knicks aren’t in any immediate danger of surpassing the luxury tax threshold and could afford to eat their modest full-season cap hits down the road if necessary.