The New York Knicks may be focused on acquiring Donovan Mitchell, but there are other superstars on the trade block.
Kevin Durant, who is currently still on the Brooklyn Nets roster, has made it clear he envisions his future away from his current franchise, and the Nets are probably going to sell to the highest bidder – so for New York, the question is, what would you be willing to give up?
According to a July 26 article by SB Nation’s Ricky O’Donnell, in which he proposes a trade that would land Durant with the Knicks, New York has a legitimate trade offer they could put on the table.
The trade proposal looks like this:
Brooklyn gets: Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin, Immanuel Quickley
New York gets: Kevin Durant
Of course, the Knicks would also need to include multiple future draft picks to get the deal over the line, but there is a world where their offer becomes one of the best potential packages. However, in all honesty, Mitchell does make more sense due to his age and fit with the rest of the Knicks roster.
Mitchell Isn’t the Only Superstar Interesting New York
When news broke that the Boston Celtics had enquired about potentially trading for Kevin Durant, there was a nugget of information that went largely unnoticed, and that was how the Knicks were among a handful of teams to show interest in acquiring veteran guard Russell Westbrook.
“Utah, New York, and Indiana are among the teams who have discussed deals with the Lakers involving Russell Westbrook and draft capital, sources said. There appears no deal imminent in those conversations — as the overall trade market plays out over the next two months of the offseason,” Charania reported on July 25.
Westbrook is entering the final year of his five-year $206 million deal and is set to pocket $47 million this season. However, for the Knicks, any potential move would be geared towards creating max cap space next summer, which would make them players in a deep free agent class.
Westbrook ended last season with averages of 18.5 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 7.1 assists per game while shooting 44.4% from the field and 29.8% from the perimeter.
Teams Unlikely to Want RJ Barrett
While RJ Barrett would be one of the Knicks’ most enticing trade chips, it seems that his current contract situation could be an issue for other organizations, as they look to avoid the negotiating process.
According to an Eastern Conference Executive, who spoke to Heavy.com under the condition of anonymity, Barrett’s impending extension is making him an undesirable asset.
“R.J. is extension-eligible. That is a tough position. He might want max money or something close to it. He is not going to get it. It’s a tough negotiation for the Knicks with that because you have to commit to $30 million per year for a guy who is very good as a scorer and has potential but has not shown he is an elite player, really. There is interest in R.J. but no one wants to trade for him, then take on the job of negotiating with him. Let the Knicks do that,” The executive told Heavy.com’s, Sean Deveney.
If teams are truly taking Barrett off the negotiating table, New York’s chances of signing an additional star take a slight hit. However, the Knicks have a roster full of young, high-upside talent, along with a multitude of future draft picks, so they should still have enough in the cupboard to continue their pursuit of Mitchell, or any other star.
And hopefully, these roster moves will be enough to see New York back in the playoffs next year.