Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard and just about every other big-name free agent this summer is rumored to be on the New York Knicks’ shopping list. Whether or not they get any of them, of course, is another story. If New York should happen to miss out on any of them, it could shift to signing players to short-term deals and pushing its cap space into next summer.
Should that scenario come to pass, Ian Bagley of SNY.tv has some players who could be prime candidates for those types of contracts. The two biggest names that jump out? Vince Carter and former Knicks star Carmelo Anthony. Here’s more from Bagley on the chances of either player landing in the Big Apple come 2019-20:
Carter, 42, has said that he plans to play one more season and then will retire. Could those plans include signing with the Knicks this summer?
Carter has spoken highly of Knicks head coach David Fizdale, and gave signing with New York serious consideration last summer, per SNY sources. Carter chose to sign with the young Hawks instead.
There were several factors in his decision, but one of them was the idea that he’d be in close proximity to NBA TV because he has a desire to pursue a career in media when he’s done playing. This is worth noting because it’s fair to assume he could find media opportunities in New York as well.
Let’s get this out of the way at the top: things can always change, but most executives monitoring Anthony’s free agency see the Lakers as the most likely destination for the 10-time All Star.
There may have been interest from New York in a reunion with Anthony if they had a roster with multiple stars ready to win immediately. But with Durant injured and the odds against the Knicks building that kind of team this summer, bringing Anthony back is not currently part of the team’s thinking.
Again, that may be irrelevant because of the Lakers’ interest. But Anthony would have interest in signing with the Knicks and finishing his career in New York, despite how his Knicks tenure ended. It’s worth noting that Anthony handled the spotlight of New York incredibly well during the team’s success and failures while he was here. Given that, he’d be a strong mentor for younger Knicks like Barrett, Knox, Robinson and Trier, who are learning to navigate the attention that comes with playing in New York.
— 10:06 a.m.