Knicks Have ‘Internal Interest’ in Trading for Rival Guard

Gary Trent, New York Knicks

Getty Gary Trent Jr. and Fred VanVleet of the Toronto Raptors reach in as Jrue Holiday of the Milwaukee Bucks dribbles.

With less than a month remaining between now and the February 9 trade deadline, fans and pundits alike seem to be expecting the highly active New York Knicks to ramp up their efforts to make a midseason transaction, and recent rumblings suggest they may be looking to strike a deal with one of their divisional rivals.

The Knicks have had some interest in pursuing Toronto Raptors guard Gary Trent Jr., according to Brett Siegel of FanNation’s Fastbreak.

“Both the New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns are two teams that have a level of internal interest in Trent ahead of the deadline, sources close to both organizations tell Fastbreak on FanNation,” Siegel wrote on January 10. “However, the asking price Toronto for Trent has not been revealed, and rival executives believe that the Raptors will be aiming to add immediate draft capital given their recent struggles this season.

“New York is a team that is very much looking to upgrade their roster ahead of the deadline, and any combination of Evan Fournier, Derrick Rose, Cam Reddish and Immanuel Quickley could be included in a potential deal for the Knicks to add a player of Gary Trent’s caliber. There is a push within the Knicks’ front office, though, to keep both Rose and Quickley if possible, sources said,” Siegel wrote.

Siegel suggested that the Knicks could feasibly construct a trade package consisting of some of their draft capital and Quickley for Trent, who will turn 24 on January 18.

Currently in his sixth season in the association, Trent is putting forth one of his best campaigns with averages of 18.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.6 steals per game on 44.3% shooting from the floor and 36.7% shooting from distance.

Despite his production, Toronto has “undeniably” made the combo guard available on the trade market, NBA insider Marc Stein reported on January 8.

Knicks Have Interest in Raptors Wing

Trent isn’t the only Raptors player who has been on the Knicks’ radar this season. In late December, the front office reached out to Toronto to inquire about the availability of sixth-year wing, OG Anunoby, according to SNY’s Ian Begley.

Also amid a phenomenal campaign, the 25-year-old is posting averages of 18.2 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.3 steals per game on 46.5% shooting from the floor.

A legitimate two-way player who has the high-end defensive chops to thrive within a Tom Thibodeau-led system, some have gone on to suggest that Anunoby is a player that’s worth offering up “anything in their asset collection” for, even if it means parting ways with some of their young, promising talents along with some draft capital.

Quickley Making Case to Stay With Knicks

Though early season reports indicated that the New York Knicks were open to offloading Immanuel Quickley via trade this season, his recent play has shown that he’d be worth keeping beyond this season.

Over the team’s last 11 games, Quickley has been an absolute revelation for the Knicks, with stellar per-game averages of 19.1 points and 4.4 assists on 47.1% shooting from the floor and 38.8% shooting from deep.

Since being inserted into the starting lineup on a consistent basis on December 27, Quickley has upped his production, posted 20.3 points and 5.9 assists while sporting a +5.9 plus-minus rating.

Throughout this span, the Knicks have gone 4-3 while also ranking seventh in net rating and sixth in plus-minus, thus further showing the level this team is capable of producing at with him serving in a larger role.

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