Possible Knicks Target Officially Requests Trade: Report

Jae Crowder, New York Knicks

Getty Jae Crowder of the Phoenix Suns.

Though the New York Knicks failed to pull off a blockbuster trade this summer, they could still look into a splashy deal to fill out their roster with a month to go before the 2022-23 regular season starts.

Sports Illustrated’s Brett Siegel suggested that the team pursue veteran forward Jae Crowder of the Phoenix Suns, citing his two-way skill set and postseason aspirations.

“The Knicks believe internally that they have what it takes to get to the playoffs and be competitive, which is why a defensive-minded veteran on the open market is someone that could intrigue them,” Siegel wrote in a story published September 20.

Whether the Knicks are actually interested in making a move for the 32-year-old is unknown. If they are, now would be the time for them to consider it because Crowder and the  Suns have mutually agreed to part ways, according to a September 25 report by The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Across 10 seasons, Crowder boasts career averages of 9.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.6 assists and a steal per game.

Crowder Has Valuable Playoff Experience

Siegel wrote that the Knicks are seemingly approaching the 2022-23 season as if they expect to contend for a playoff spot considering that they shelled out a four-year, $104 million deal to top-billed free agent point guard Jalen Brunson this summer and the fact that they currently have two other players, Julius Randle and RJ Barrett, attached to eight-figure deals.

Crowder, 32, could be an ideal addition to the roster given his 107 games of postseason experience. He has been on nine playoff teams, five of which saw deep runs.

Over the last three seasons, Crowder served as a key rotational piece on two different teams that went to the NBA Finals, posting efficient 3-and-D averages of 10.0 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.1 steals per game on 36% shooting from deep and sporting a defensive box plus-minus rating of 1.2 during this timespan.

Knicks President Sounds Off on Randle

Leon Rose, the Knicks’ president of basketball operations, discussed the 2022-23 team’s promise with MSG Network analyst Alan Hahn and spoke glowingly about power forward Julius Randle.

“I’ve talked to Julius, I’ve seen Julius,” Rose told Hahn on September 23. “He is in phenomenal shape. He’s in a great space. He’s really excited about getting started this year.

“Did he have some rough patches last year? Yes. We all learn from things, and Julius has learned from that and he is ready to go,” Hahn said. “I can tell you from talking to him, I can tell you from being around him. And he looks phenomenal. I think Julius could have a great year.”

Since signing with the Knicks in 2019, Randle has seen his status within the league rise considerably, receiving both an All-Star and All-NBA nod throughout his three seasons whilst boasting impressive per-game averages of 21.3 points, 10.0 rebounds and 4.8 assists along the way.

Despite his being criticized for having “down year,” the 27-year-old actually had an impressive 2021-22, finishing with averages of 20.1 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.1 assists. The only two players who exceeded those numbers in each category last season were Nikola Jokic and Giannis Antetokounmpo, the two most recent league MVPs.

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