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Assessing the Market: Knicks Edition

Jan 27, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Quentin Grimes (6) makes a three point basket as Miami Heat guard Jaime Jaquez Jr. (11) defends during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks are 12-2 since the introduction of OG Anunoby on January 1, all the way up to fourth in the conference. The team, however, is still in search of a “two way” guard with scoring capabilities and a reserve center. The craving for another big stems from Mitchell Robinson’s surgery on his knee in December, which has him sidelined for at least another month, although Tom Thibodeau is “encouraged” by his progress thus far. Nonetheless, at the pace the Knicks are currently playing, their appetite to trade may be diminishing.

Assessing the Market: Knicks Edition

Anunoby is averaging 15 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists since joining the Knicks, and has seemingly brought the best out of his new teammates. Everyone is seeming to gel, especially Quentin Grimes, who has remained undeterred by trade rumors in the past few weeks. He had 10 points in the fourth quarter in the Knicks resolute win over the Miami Heat on Saturday.

Grimes had to say this about his uncertain future in New York: “I’ve kind of been in trade rumors since my rookie year. So I just try to come in every day, do my job, be professional,” Grimes said, per Ian Begley. “Every time I step on the court, just give it 100 percent. Rumors are going to happen. I just step on the court and try to do everything to help this team win.”

Said like a true baller. Any team would be lucky to have Grimes, a player who is possibly frustrated with his time as a Knick so far. Grimes has not yet had his breakout year Knicks fans were expecting. His numbers are down somewhat significantly from last year, fading from 11 PPG to 7 PPG. Now, there is still a lot more basketball to play–but it begs the question: Would Grimes be better suited somewhere else? My answer is a resounding yes. His time in the shadow of Jalen Brunson has not abetted him, as Brunson is a golden goose for Thibodeau.

What are the Parties Involved?

Grimes has been linked to the Hawks, Wizards, and Jazz ahead of the February 8 deadline. These are teams who will most likely not be contending for an NBA championship this year, but may view Grimes as a valuable piece for the future. It feels like the Jazz are one player away from competing in the west. Although, I do not see them playing past 5 games against anyone in upper half of the conference.Jordan Clarkson is a name to keep an eye on, and could make sense on the Knicks. Kelly Olynyk is a familiar foe to some Knicks fans, and is another intriguing possibility. He even has NYK in his name.

A trade package including Grimes and Evan Fournier is being floated extensively, but nothing concrete has emanated. Fournier’s time in NYC has been very disconcerting as he has been plagued with injuries for the majority of the past two seasons. He is in the final year of his contract (team option),  and will most likely not be resigned by the Knicks. The front office may try to get something out of him before that time comes, but a package with Grimes remains the most probable transaction.

The Last Word

Dejounte Murray is probably the top remaining trade piece–barring Zach Lavine–and is perhaps the kind of guard New York is seeking. However, I do not see the fit with Anunoby’s arrival, as it seems too crowded in the lineup for Murray to make sense. One tidbit: Murray’s contract is a very compelling component of the trade market. He is one of, if not the most, underpaid/undervalued players in the NBA. He earns way more than his 18.2 million dollar salary, and is under contract until 2028. I would be salivating if I were a GM of any team right now. Murray is a fit for both contenders and rebuilders and don’t rule out him remaining with the Hawks.

I really could see Terry Rozier in a Knicks jersey, but he is a Heat now. D’Angelo Russell? Probably not. There are not a lot of enticing options left for the Knicks. It is hard to say if they will make another move before the deadline. They are in the backseat of the Eastern Conference, nonetheless, and are trying to climb their way up. Maybe this means holding on to Grimes, maybe it means going all in for Murray or someone else. The buzz in New York is palpable–let’s hope it stays that way.


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