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Knicks Reportedly Plan to Pursue Rajon Rondo, Have Him Force Trade to New York

Getty Images/Brian Babineau
Dan FavaleFeatured ColumnistDecember 26, 2013

Something about the New York Knicks' business model makes you sick to your stomach.

All right, not something—everything.

From the way they report news (covert surgeries, anyone?) to their misplaced liquidation of first-round draft picks (every trade the Knicks have ever made, anyone?), they're simply a flawed team operating under an imperfect set of ideals, chasing false hope.

Optimists who were hoping their 9-19 start might be something of a wake-up call are victims of their own positivity, because the Knicks haven't learned.

According to ESPN.com's Brian Windhorst, the Knicks have a foolproof plan to land Rajon Rondo before he hits free agency in 2015:

According to league sources, the Knicks' first prong is to try to attract the Celtics' Rajon Rondo. This idea has been tossed around in various forms for a while now, it's not shocking. But the way the Knicks are hoping to get Rondo is a little unusual.

It's not in free agency in 2015 but later this season or next summer when he comes back from a torn ACL. The Knicks are hoping Rondo will be interested in making a maneuver similar to what Anthony did back in 2011 and eventually try to force a trade to the Knicks, sources said.

Wow. 

Parroting what Boston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge has maintained all along, Windhorst also writes that Rondo isn't readily available via trade. But these are the Knicks, so they don't care.

The Knicks have been linked to Rondo since July, when the New York Post's Marc Berman reported that Anthony wanted them to trade for Boston's All-Star point man. They landed power forward Andrea Bargnani instead.

In November, the New York Daily News' Frank Isola revealed the Knicks were at it again, attempting to acquire Rondo in a "complex" trade using Amar'e Stoudemire and Iman Shumpert as primary bait. In case you haven't noticed, that didn't go so well.

Not even a month later, Rondo's high school coach, Steve Smith, told the USA Today's Jason Jordan that 'Melo already began recruiting the point guard to come play in New York.

Rondo denied Smith's intimations to The Boston Globe's Gary Washburn, putting us here, wondering how New York's front office still has a right to exist at all.

Hoping that an injured star, who doesn't hold any contractual leverage until this summer at the earliest, will force his way into orange and blue is so in keeping with the Knicks. Well aware they don't have the assets or financial means to absorb the bad deals it would take to picque Boston's interest, they're hoping Rondo does it for them.

Remember when I said this was "foolproof?" I really meant "foolish." 

What makes this even more unsettling is Windhorst's following point.

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 23:  New York Knicks owner (L) Jim Dolan introduces new player (R) Carmelo Anthony at a press conference at Madison Square Garden on February 23, 2011 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

"That may seem contrived, yes, but this isn't a made-up scenario," he writes. "It is a genuine option. You have to give the Knicks this: It has worked before."

Worked when? You mean the Anthony trade? Yeah, let me briefly recap how that's worked out.

In an effort to obtain Anthony at all costs, the Knicks actually paid every cost imaginable, sending prized assets Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, Timofey Mozgov, Raymond Felton and their 2014 first-round draft pick to the Denver Nuggets. Nearly three years later, the Knicks have won one playoff series and descended into their own private financial purgatory, exceeded only by the fiscal quagmire the Brooklyn Nets find themselves in.

Who wants to do that again? That's what I thought.

Putting aside the fact New York doesn't have enough legitimate assets to acquire Rondo—though this could work—the Knicks continue to learn nothing. 

"They're one confident bunch," a league executive told Windhorst of the Knicks. "To listen to them, they expect to have Carmelo re-signed and have another star with him in another year. They're so sure about it you'd think they already know what will happen."

Those are the Knicks in a nutshell: Confident while rarely successful, like a dog chasing his tail, so sure he will catch it, when really he doesn't stand a chance.

 

 

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