The New York Knicks had been quiet in free agency. They laid back and did not offer any contracts to the best free agents available. It seemed as if the Knicks were finally going to have some sort of direction. That direction was not taking on anymore long, cap-eating contracts. Instead, the Knicks would build through the draft and sign players to reasonable contracts. However, they just signed Tim Hardaway Jr. to a 4-year, $71 million contract. The legend of clueless Knicks continues.
The Clueless New York Knicks
This contract shows that the Knicks cannot do anything right. With Phil Jackson gone, the Knicks have a chance to reset and not make the same mistakes. However, it seems they just cannot help themselves.
What Hardaway Brings to the Knicks
Hardaway is not a bad player. He showed improvement last year with the Atlanta Hawks, after struggling, and even being sent to the D-League, in his first season there. He can score and has shown flashes of turning a game with his scoring prowess.
But he is not a player that is worth $71 million. This was a guy the Knicks traded two seasons ago on draft night for the draft rights to Jerian Grant. Grant was then used to acquire Derrick Rose. And to complete this circle, the Knicks had to renounce Rose’s Bird Rights to make cap space for Hardaway. One can not make this stuff up when it comes to the Knicks.
Hardaway’s offensive game still needs improvement. He does not make teammates around him better because he takes a lot of shots. Sometimes his shot selection can be suspect. His defense needs improvement as well. He is better than he was in his first two seasons with the Knicks, but he is not a good defender.
No Sense of Direction
Even though they have finally signed someone, the Knicks have not solved any of their problems. This signing probably means Carmelo Anthony will not be on this team for long. They still have Joakim Noah’s contract on the books for another three years. They not only take a big hit on the cap space this year, but they take a huge hit for next year. And their biggest issue remains unsolved: who the starting point guard will be.
Frank Ntilikina was their prized draft pick this year. However, it would be tough to envision the Knicks starting an 18-year old from the beginning. They need to bring in a veteran that can be a mentor to Ntilikina. Someone that can play ahead of him for a couple of years and someone that can teach the game. Until they move Anthony, they do not have any cap space remaining to sign this type of player.
The Knicks give hope that things will turn around. But as soon as things look positive, they break our hearts. Once Jackson was fired, it seemed the Knicks were done making moves that made no sense. However, they have proved once again, the clueless Knicks will continue to be a laughingstock of the NBA.