We are on the eve of the first game of the NBA’s Summer League for the Knicks. It was a very busy offseason for the Knickerbockers. They let some familiar faces go, retained some of the most important pieces from last season, and brought in some new star power. Let’s recap some of the biggest news from the New York Knicks offseason.
The Knicks were very busy during the NBA Draft a few weeks ago. The Knicks originally held the 19th overall selection. They had discussions with the Indiana Pacers to move up to number 13 to try and select Chris Duarte out of Oregon. However, the price was too high, so Leon Rose decided to trade back a couple of times and landed Houston guard, Quentin Grimes. Grimes began his college career at Kansas, but ultimately transferred to Houston. He turned into an excellent three point shooter while also demonstrating high basketball IQ on both ends of the floor. The Knicks needed to prioritize three point shooting and they improved that in Quentin Grimes.
The Knicks made one big splash in free agency. The move was not as splashy as someone like Kawhi Leonard. However, Kemba Walker will be very important for the Knicks success. Walker and the Oklahoma City Thunder agreed to a buy out and ultimately decide to sign with the Knicks. Kemba will be joining a crowded New York backcourt that already includes Derrick Rose and Immanuel Quickley. Walker essentially replaces the dreadful Elfrid Payton. Payton simply took minutes away from the far more effective Rose and Quickley. The Knicks now have three guards who can really score the basketball. Combine that with RJ Barrett and Julius Randle and the Knicks offense is one to be reckoned with.
Old Faces Same Places
The Knicks also brought back some familiar faces during this offseason. They re-signed Nerlens Noel, Alec Burks, and Derrick Rose to pretty significant contracts. All three of those players offer something different that contributed heavily to the Knicks success last season. The biggest name to come back however, is Julius Randle. Randle signed a 4 year $117 million contract extension. Randle reportedly left money on the table to commit to the team now and allow them financial flexibility to add more star players down the line.
The New York Knicks became a better team this offseason. They upgraded the guard room by letting Frank Ntilikina and Elfrid Payton go while adding Kemba Walker. They added good pieces through the draft in Quentin Grimes and Miles McBride out of West Virginia. McBride is a prototypical Tom Thibodeau player. He is excellent on the defensive side of the ball. The Knicks are a team that can struggle defensively so adding a player like McBride can really help. With the continued development of RJ Barrett and improved play of Julius Randle, the Knicks should be a team to look out for in the East. The New York Knicks improved a lot this offseason and they should see it pay immediate dividends on the court.
-Pete Chatterton (@Pchat12)
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