Josh Hart Re-Signing With Knicks Is Inevitable: Insider

Josh Hart, New York Knicks

Getty Josh Hart #3 of the New York Knicks directs his teammates during the first half against the Houston Rockets.

New York Knicks‘ midseason acquisition Josh Hart isn’t going anywhere.

There is a leaguewide belief that Hart will re-sign with the Knicks after he opts out of his $12.9 million player option, according to NBA insider Marc Stein.

“New York’s Josh Hart is likewise generating no shortage of chatter as he approaches free agency with his repeated contributions to the Knicks’ playoff run. However, I have yet to encounter a single team that believes Hart will be gettable. The CAA-repped swingman’s eventual deal to re-sign with the Knicks and a front office helmed by CAA alumnus Leon Rose is more often referred to be rivals as inevitable,Stein wrote on Substack.

In early February, ESPN’s salary cap guru Bobby Marks estimated Hart’s next contract to be valued at around $16-17 million per year. The Knicks can easily offer that as they also acquired his Bird rights, meaning they can go over the cap to re-sign him.

“Hopefully, I can tap his pockets a little bit,” Hart told New York Post after the All-Star break. “That’s the guy that brought me to CAA. I was bummed when he left. He obviously left me in good hands with Aaron Mintz and Dave Spahn. I think [it helps]. … It’s always love with him and me, no matter what side I’m on or whatever it is. I know it’s a business, but I let y’all know my side of it.”

Knicks’ Glue Guy

Hart has become the team’s glue guy since he arrived at the trade deadline, fueling the Knicks to a strong 17-8 finish, including a 9-0 start, in the regular season to clinch the fifth seed. He further raised his level of play in his playoff debut, playing a pivotal role in the Knicks’ 4-1 win upset of the fourth-seed Cleveland Cavaliers in the opening round.

Hart has since joined the starting lineup as the Knicks split the first two games against the Miami Heat in the second round.

Hart is the best rebounding guard in the playoffs, averaging 8.3 per game on top of 11.7 points, 2.9 assists and 1.0 steals while shooting 50% from the field and 36.8% from deep.

Kendrick Perkins Blasts Josh Hart’s Former Teams

Kendrick Perkins criticized Hart’s last two teams for letting him go.

“Can I take a moment right now to say that the [New Orleans] Pelicans and the [Portland] Trail Blazers should be rolling over in a grave, and this is right now a moment for all the general managers to make sure that they do a fair evaluation of their ball club because Josh Hart is the heart of all hearts when it comes down to role players,” Perkins said on May 3 episode of the NBA Today.

“This guy is one of the best role players in the game to date, and I’m not disrespecting him by calling him that. He almost had a triple-double, but it was not what he’s doing. It’s how he’s doing it. He’s attacking the transition. He’s finding guys. He’s playing with a hot basketball IQ. And the most important thing that I love about Josh Hart, he’s not afraid of embarrassment — ‘I don’t care if you want to break my ankles. I’m gonna get up into you. I don’t care if I get dunked on trying to chase down blocks. I’m gonna meet you at the rim.’ — He does it all. And this is a learning moment for a lot of GMs across the league,” Perkin explained.

The Pelicans traded Hart as part of the package that brought them CJ McCollum, Damian Lillard’s former co-star in Portland. Then the Trail Blazers flipped Hart for Cam Reddish and the Knicks’ first-round pick in the upcoming draft, currently pegged at No. 23 by Tankathon.





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