The New York Knicks are in an interesting position as the December 15 trade restrictions lift across the NBA. New York is on the fringes of the East playoff picture but might not have the team to compete with the best in the conference. Should the Knicks make a move to improve the roster or pivot to a future window of contention?
Hornets get: Evan Fournier, Derrick Rose, Quentin Grimes, Miles McBride, 2023 protected first-round pick
Knicks get: Terry Rozier, Kelly Oubre Jr.
Grimes is a developmental asset while Fournier provides more immediate returns with one less year on his contract than Rozier. The first-round pick is nice. The Knicks get more scoring punch in the backcourt and a nice bench piece in Oubre Jr.
Spurs get: Cam Reddish, Derrick Rose, 2024 first-round swap, 2025 first-round swap
Knicks get: Devin Vassell, Keldon Johnson
The Spurs did ink Johnson to a long-term deal so they might not want to deal him. The pick swaps do offer some intrigue, particularly due to New York’s history of changing courses. Vassell provides some much-needed three-point shooting and Johnson is an upgrade over Reddish. Losing Rose hurts but the Knicks get better in this deal.
Suns get: Julius Randle
Knicks get: Cam Johnson, Jae Crowder, Torrey Craig, 2024 protected first-round pick, 2025 first-round swap
Getting out from Randle’s contract would benefit the Knicks a ton, and they get expiring numbers back. They can assess Johnson before making a decision on him and the draft compensation is fair. Meanwhile, the Suns get another offensive force to pair with Deandre Ayton down low. Randle doesn’t have Johnson’s shooting, but he offers some playmaking and production the youngster doesn’t have yet.