Exec Sheds Light on Potential Knicks Trade Involving $73 Million Sharpshooter

Tom Thibodeau, New York Knicks

Getty Head coach Tom Thibodeau of the New York Knicks reacts during the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers.

As the losses continue to pile up for the New York Knicks, many are scheming up ways in which they believe could ultimately save, or at the very least help the team’s prospects during the 2022-23 campaign.

From trades to rotational shakeups, there has been a plethora of ideas thrown out there that, in the eyes of many, should strongly be considered as the remaining days of the club’s 82-game stretch carries on.

And while a large portion of the public discussions on these matters has seemingly been held by the fanbase via social media, there are those in the know who are, in fact, also holding conversations in relation to the team’s current structure and situation.

Just recently, an Eastern Conference executive spoke to Heavy Sports’ NBA Insider Sean Deveney about the idea of New York shopping veteran Evan Fournier at some point in the near future.

Should the swingman be placed on the block, they believe that he’d garner some serious interest from teams across the league, though, admittedly, his contract situation could prove to be a bit problematic when it comes to finding a proper return deal.

“There are a lot of teams struggling to shoot so far, Minnesota comes to mind,” the exec told Deveney. “He would be a good fit there but it is hard for them to put the right contracts together to make that work.

“The Lakers, obviously, but they have nothing really to give back to the Knicks that would help them. Toronto would be a good fit but that’s hard to find a deal there.”

After having signed a lucrative four-year, $73 million deal with the Knicks back during the summer of 2021, through just 11 games into his second season Fournier finds himself relegated to a mere low-usage bench role and, with this, many assume he’s simply fallen from grace with the coaching staff and franchise as a whole.

However, just because the 30-year-old has been demoted, this is not to say New York should be hell-bent on parting ways with him.

Not according to the executive, anyway.

Knicks Could Still Use Fournier

Though the executive believes Evan Fournier could be of great service to any number of teams across the association, they told Sean Deveney that amongst these suitors is also his current employer in the New York Knicks.

“I mean, the Knicks need him as much as anyone right? They can’t shoot either,” the executive told Deveney. 

As things currently stand, the Knicks find themselves ranked 24th in the league in 3-point shooting, converting on just 33.2% of their attempts from distance.

Throughout his 11-year career in the NBA, Fournier has managed to establish himself as one of the game’s premier long-range shooters, sporting a 38.1% 3-point shooting average along the way.

During his time spent as a full-time starter for New York during the 2021-22 season, he finished the year off knocking down 241 of his 619 attempts from deep (38.9%), which currently stands as a franchise record for most made 3-pointers in a season, while the team went on to rank 13th in 3-point percentage (35.7%).

Though he may be struggling during the early stages of year two with the organization, his shooting stroke still seems to be fully operational, as he’s knocking down 37.3% of his attempts from long range, and is converting on just below 40% from distance when receiving 20-29 minutes.

Considering the makeup of their roster, perhaps having Quentin Grimes or Cam Reddish starting over him in the first five lineup is the best course of action for Tom Thibodeau’s squad moving forward.

However, when taking their struggles in the shooting department coupled with his proven efficiency into account, perhaps it may be wise to send a few more minutes of action in his direction.

Knicks Believed to Be ‘Hoarding’ Picks

On November 9, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that many executives and key figures across the NBA believe that the New York Knicks are “hoarding” draft picks in preparation for a possible blockbuster move at some point down the road.

As things currently stand, the franchise finds itself in possession of eight first-round picks through the year 2027 that can either be used to help rebuild the roster organically through the draft or to land a star-caliber player via trade by consolidating some of these said assets together in an outbound package.

Whether or not this is the actual mindset of Leon Rose and company is anyone’s guess at this point. Having said that, should they wish to go all in for an available star player, the Knicks could very easily put together one of the most enticing trade packages out there.

The only question is, will they want to? As we learned from this summer’s Donovan Mitchell sweepstakes, it appears New York has their limits.

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