The New York Knicks want in on the Anthony Davis trade talks, and they seem poised to make a big push for that be the case. While much of the chatter has surrounded the New Orleans Pelicans star potentially landing with the Los Angeles Lakers, the team is set to hear a vast number of offers.
After ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Davis’ agent, Rich Paul, revealed the All-Star big man will not re-sign with the Pelicans and wants a trade, the chatter ran wild. It’s not likely to slow anytime soon either, and ESPN’s Ian Begley piggybacked off the original report to cite that the Knicks will be “aggressive” in pursuing a trade for Davis.
It’s an interesting point from Begley about having to match Boston’s trade offer over the summer. The Celtics cannot trade for Davis until July 1 because of the designated rookie exception making it so he and Kyrie Irving could not be on the same roster together. This is why the push for teams to acquire Davis now has taken center stage.
With the Knicks putting themselves in the mix for Davis, we’re going to take a look at the best possible packages the team could put together.
*Note: All trades created with the ESPN NBA Trade Machine.
Knicks’ Offer With Young & Upside for Anthony Davis
*Knicks send a lightly-protected first-round pick to Pelicans
The Knicks have a variety of ways they could consider going with a deal, but it’s safe to assume that for the Pelicans to even consider a trade, it would need to include young pieces and picks. Kevin Knox and Mitchell Robinson could be centerpieces, depending on how the Pelicans view the duo. Both players have legitimate upside, won’t break the bank and can contribute immediately.
As far as the Tim Hardaway Jr. aspect of the deal goes, he’d provide a scoring punch to help fill the void of losing Davis. One big question would be whether the Pelicans want to take on a deal like his which features a decent cap number for the coming seasons. His contract wouldn’t leave the team in a tough spot for free agency so I can see him being an interesting part.
Potential Anthony Davis-for-Kristaps Porzingis Deal
If the Pelicans want to roll the dice a bit and make a push for Kristaps Porzingis, then this could be an intriguing avenue to take. Porzingis has yet to return from the torn ACL he suffered last year but seems to be getting close. The big factor in this situation would be if the Pelicans believe they have a chance to re-sign him after the year, fortunately, the other pieces in this deal help with that a bit.
Although Frank Ntilikina’s value isn’t sky-high right now, he has the potential to turn into a solid NBA player and possible replacement for Elfrid Payton, should the Pelicans opt against re-signing him. Enes Kanter’s deal is one that helps address the cap situation of this trade and gives New Orleans a big man capable of helping this season.
Draft Pick-Heavy Offer From Knicks for Davis
*Knicks send two first-round picks (2019 protected, 2020 unprotected) and 2022 second-rounder
If the Pelicans opt for a full-blown rebuild, this could be a decent starting point. The duo of Knox and Robinson make for a solid duo to pair with Jrue Holiday, Julius Randle and Nikola Mirotic. Although this isn’t the most appealing deal for the immediate success of the franchise, adding two first-round picks (assuming the Knicks are willing to go that) far adds a drastic amount to the value.
Specifically, if the Pelicans could negotiate the protections on a 2019 first-round pick that benefit them, it gets even better. Beyond that, the 2022 second-round pick is worth noting, as that is expected to be the “double draft” which marks the first year high school players can enter their names.