‘There Is Optimism’ Knicks, Immanuel Quickley Get Deal Done: Report

Immanuel Quickley Knicks-Nets

Getty New York Knicks guard Immanuel Quickley celebrates during a game against the Brooklyn Nets.

The New York Knicks have until October 23 to extend the NBA Sixth Man of the Year runner-up Immanuel Quickley, and it’s trending that a deal could be sealed before the new season opens.

“Based on conversations I’ve had with people in the know, there is optimism that a deal can get done,” Fred Katz of The Athletic reported on Monday.

In June, one NBA executive told Heavy SportsSean Deveney that Quickley is looking for a lucrative payday in the neighborhood of what Jalen Brunson ($104 million, four years) got last summer.

“He is going to want nine figures,” the executive told Deveney. “And that’s for four years. I can’t say the Knicks will go that high, but they might have to. He is not a guy you want to send to restricted free agency.”

Quickley is coming off a career season, averaging 14.9 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.4 assists while shooting 44.8% from the field. He showed star potential in 21 spot starts this past season, averaging 22.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.1 assists while shooting 47% from the field and 40% on 3-pointers.

However, Quickley’s performance dipped in the playoffs. In eight games against the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat, the 24-year-old electric guard was held to 9.0 points on a paltry 35% shooting and 24% clip from the 3-point range. His 1.6 rebounds and 1.0 assists across 21.9 minutes off the bench also was not much of help.

Immanuel Quickley Is 6th Man of the Year Betting Favorite

Oddsmakers have installed him as the favorite to win the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award next season finishing runner-up last season.

Quickley is a 5-1 favorite, according to BetOnline, with last season’s winner, Malcolm Brogdon of Boston, trailing him with 7-1 odds.

Two more Knicks reserves have made the betting list.

Josh Hart (25-1) is tied for the eighth-best odds with Indiana Pacers’ Bennedict Mathurin and Brooklyn Nets’ Cam Thomas. Knicks free agent acquisition Donte DiVincenzo is one of the dark horses at 66-1 odds.

Zach Lowe Believes Knicks Can Reach Conference Finals

ESPN senior NBA reporter Zach Lowe believes the Knicks can jump from their second-round exit last season to the Eastern Conference Finals after retaining their core.

“They won a playoff series [last season],” Lowe said on the September 21 episode of the “NBA Today” on ESPN. “They demolished the Cleveland Cavaliers.”

“They competed hard against Miami in the second round. If I’m a Knicks optimist, Philadelphia? They’re a mess. Milwaukee? [They’re] facing some pressureBoston? [They] gotta reinvent themselves around Kristaps Porzingis, some injury-prone guys. Miami? [They] still don’t have Damian Lillard. They got #Heat culture, Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, but don’t have Damian Lillard yet.”

“Why can’t we wake up in May and the New York Knicks are in the Conference Finals? Maybe not the finals; that might be a little much, but why not go to the Conference Finals? This is a good deep team [and] well coached. They’re going to grind defensively,” Lowe continued.

The Knicks are banking on continuity and internal development of their core players such as Quickley after making only a minor tweak to their rotation — replacing Obi Toppin with DiVincenzo.

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