Rejoice, Cleveland, you’ve got your prime All-Star Donovan Mitchell. Joining a talented young core who will be a force in Eastern his conference for years to come.
congratulations new york you did not do it Get Mitchell.
And you should be just as happy about it.
Utah executed its second blockbuster trade in three months on Thursday, sending Mitchell to Cleveland for three first-round picks.unprotected First round picks — two pick swaps and a few players Jazz CEO Danny Ainge probably doesn’t care too much. The Cavaliers, who have one of the best backcourts in the NBA, LeBron He James, responded to Mitchell and Darius Garland’s tweet about how tough the backcourt is, replying, “So tough.” did. A piece of deep playoff run. After off-roading Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, the Jazz will spend this season practicing their Wenbanyama pronunciation.
Knicks? They should be glad they avoided it. Negotiations between New York and Utah have been going on for weeks, with the Jazz hoping to extract the same few pounds of meat they did from Minnesota and New York, and doing everything they can to resist it. Monday’s deadline imposed by Leon Rose came and went, followed by the Knicks signing RJ Barrett to a long-agreed extension. This opened the door for last season’s surprise play-in entry, Cleveland, to swoop in and make a deal.
Some will complain about the Knicks refusing to meet jazz prices, but seriously, I’m glad they didn’t. Nothing to do with Mitchell, a player and a better person. Mets—Brought up 2 guards with their best days ahead of them. While Mitchell brought the Cavaliers closer to championship level, the cost of a long-term contract with Mitchell may have set the Knicks back.
Just think: if New York had met Ainge’s asking price? Barrett would be gone. Multiple first round picks and the swap rights Ainge decided to collect would have been out the door as well. Could the Knicks have been better than his 37-win team that missed the playoffs last season?Did they suddenly make it to the playoffs? loaded Eastern Conference? i’m not sure about that.
What will Mitchell’s Knicks team look like? Mitchell-Jalen Brunson’s backcourt is attractive. At least aggressively. But then? Can we expect the return of Julius Randle?Obi He’s a giant leap from Toppin, Immanuel Quickly, and Quentin Rhymes? A big year for Mitchell Robinson? something From Cam Reddish?
Here’s the thing, New York: You’re average. For decades, the Knicks have searched for the basketball silver bullet, signed bloated players to mediocre players, and dumped draft picks in mindless trades. Two Eddie Curry lottery tickets. One more for Andrea Bargnani. The previous front office, routinely run by unqualified executives and James Dolan yes-men, seemed too peerless. When Barrett signed a contract extension this week, he became the first Knicks his first-round pick to sign a contract extension this century.
New York is fine. Not as good as the 41-win team that shocked the NBA during the pandemic-shortened 2020–21 season, and not as bad as the sloppy group that stumbled in its final season. The Knicks have Brunson, a budding Dallas scorer eager for a bigger role. They have Robinson, a 24-year-old shot blocker who still oozes potential. They have Barrett, a 22-year-old forward who just finished a season with 20 points per game. Is he a franchise player? Probably not. But he’s a 6-foot-6 scorer and has his shooting 3-point mid-level 30%. He’s inefficient, but those close to Barrett say working on his finish in the offseason and adding a more sophisticated off-the-dribbling jumper should improve that.
No hurry. at least not. The Knicks have some great young players. They arm themselves with a cache of draft picks. If the scouting department gets its job done, Barrett, Grimes, and Jericho in 2021 are second-round picks who looked sharp in Summer League, but New York organically suggests that even Sims does. will grow. This could increase the endurance of the Knicks.
Relax, New York. While the Knicks head to the play-ins next season, it will be difficult to see Mitchell succeed on a team that should be contending for the top five seeds. The Cavs have spent the last four years drafting smartly, making shrewd trades, and building a team that is Mitchell his level player away from the contenders, so they are in a position to go all-in to get Mitchell. did. The Knicks simply aren’t there yet.
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