Knicks Lead

Knicks, Mavs Both Appear Stronger After Trade

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Amidst all the rumors surrounding Pelicans star Anthony Davis, the Knicks began the week laying low amongst the rumors. Many fans and writers wavered back and forth on whether the Knicks should be involved with these trade talks in their current situation so instead, to the shock of the NBA world, the Knicks dealt their young superstar, Kristaps Porzingis, to the Dallas Mavericks in a package centered around Dennis Smith Jr.

To expand on these details, we later found out Dallas sent their 2021 and 2023 first round draft picks to New York.

Talks of a Porzingis trade can be traced all the way back to the summer of 2017. From then on, there was much uncertainty surrounding the situation and having torn his ACL in the beginning of last season added to the confusion.

Personnel Carousel

With an ownership change and an uncanny amount of player movement, the Knicks have been a nightmare for a very long time– even pre-Porzingis. With the upcoming free agent class of 2019 headlined by Kevin Durant, DeMarcus Cousins, Kyrie Irving among many others, the Knicks made it clear that this season was going to be a wash and would be building for the future. Prior to this deal, the Knicks had enough room to be able to sign one “Max” player this summer along with having what is looking like a top 3 pick in this year’s draft. And then, this happened:

The 10-win, laughable New York Knicks made perhaps the biggest splash of the 2018-19 season so far. While at first glance this trade looks to have a clear winner in the Mavericks, both sides looked to have benefited in some sense as more details emerged.

Digging deeper into the situation, the Knicks and Porzingis were on shaky ground before entering his contract year. The Knicks needed Porzingis to come back healthy and show them enough to offer him his first real contract. This did not seem too outlandish of a scenario, but clearly there was a disagreement between the two sides. Porzingis’ uncertainty of his future was made clear when this news broke:

Both Teams Swinging Big

A huge gamble for a player of his build coming off an injury of this magnitude, however, with the emergence of Luka Doncic and veteran presence/idol of Porzingis, Dirk Nowitzki, the Mavericks are confident in their ability to persuade Porzingis to sign with them long term.

As for the Knicks, they were able to rid two bad contracts in Courtney Lee and Tim Hardaway Jr., in exchange for two expiring contracts in DeAndre Jordan and Wesley Matthews, who will most likely be bought out in the coming weeks. This opens up enough cap space to sign two max free agents this summer, along with having a very high pick in the coming draft.

Also in the package, the Knicks received two future draft picks in drafts that, in early predictions, are looking to be loaded with talent. The issue with this whole situation is that the Knicks have failed time and time again to lure a big free agents to play in Madison Square Garden. Knick fans can only hope that this time around, things will be different.

While the two teams are clearly going in different directions, only time will tell who the real winner of this trade will be.

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