How desperate are the Knicks & can the Nets take advantage?

If the past twenty years say anything about their current emotional and mental state, I’d say VERY desperate! The perennially disfunctional New York Knicks are once again pinning all their hopes on Free Agency. Despite having one of the worst rosters on the face of the Earth and a disgruntled prospect (with star potential) that reportedly wants out, the Knicks staunchly believe they’ll land a star or two this off-season.

If this sounds familiar it’s because we’ve seen this flaming car wreck before. Back in 2010, former President of Basketball Operations Donnie Walsh painted the Knicks into a corner when he risked everything on the slim hope of landing LeBron James and Chris Bosh in free agency. Both stars reportedly colluding to join up in Miami a year prior to their contracts expiring, which led to the Knicks out bidding themselves to sign Mr. Glass, aka Amare Stoudemire.

The reason I bring this up is because I wonder if the Nets can take advantage of the situation. In 2009 prior to the Free Agency bonanza, Donnie Walsh was offered the Wizards selection (#5) inexchange for Wilson Chandler and cap relief. The idiot said no and lost out on the chance to pick and choose between Ricky Rubio and Stephen Curry, both guards being better then anything the Knicks have now. He valued the cap space far too much and refused to accept the reality that NO ONE wants to play for a losing team.

I see this situation being similar and wonder if the Nets can trade for the Knicks lottery pick this year in exchange for the cape space they covet. Looking at this year’s salaries, Brooklyn can move Allen Crabbe’s $18 million (+ player option), Kenneth Faried’s expiring $13.7 million, Jared Dudley’s expiring $9.5 million and Treveon Graham’s $1.5 million (2 years) in exchange for Tim Hardaway’s $17.3 million (3 years), Courtney Lee’s $12.2 million (2 years), Lance Thomas $7.1 million (2 years) and Mario Hezonja’s $6.5 million. That’s $43,198,430 going to the Nets and $43,306,646 heading to the Knicks, with around $25 million in savings this off-season. The Knicks get what will no doubt be useless cap space while the Nets receive an unprotected 1st this year, a future unprotected 2nd rounder and a reclamation project in Mario Hezonja.

I’m sure Knicks fans are looking at this thinking, "that’s way too much", but NO ONE wants Hardaway/Lee/Thomas. If the Knicks want the cap space to drool all over Durant and Leonard and their agents then they’ll need to sacrifice for the cap space. I’m sure Nets fans are reading this and thinking, "don’t lose the cap space", but the thing is it’s foolish to expect Durant or Leonard to leave teams with better records and lots of money on the table to join the Nets. Why not offer the deal and see if the Knicks are stupid enough to bite? If they accept then our respected front office has a lottery pick to work with as well as a shot at Zion Williamson.

I know legions of Nets fans are dreaming of signing Durant &/or Leonard but the odds are not in their favor. The last impact Free Agents to move were Kevin Durant and LeBron James x2, since Gordon Hayward kinda sucks. Paul George, Kawahi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, James Harden, Victor Oladipo, DeMar DeRozan, Kyrie Irving and a healthy DeMarcus Cousins all moved via trades.

It’s better to take a chance on a trade/the draft, something they can control, vs placing all their hopes on Free Agency which is something they can’t control. No one can control nor guess what a Free Agents will do but said Free Agents. Besides I keep reading from fans the desire to sign the right guy or the high character guy, someone that buys into the Nets culture. That is more likely with a Uber talented rookie pick then a jaded veteran on a hefty salary. I mean just look at the locker room disfunction created by Kyrie Irving in Boston and Jimmy Butler in Philadelphia!