The New York Knicks are clearly building for the future this offseason, and the latest rumors surrounding possible trades and free-agent targets have fans of the franchise excited about what’s to come.
After hiring Phil Jackson and re-signing Carmelo Anthony, New York has set the groundwork to be a major contender in the Eastern Conference for years. Add in Derek Fisher as the new head coach, and this team has as much upside as any other in the NBA.
Now it’s time for Jackson to work his magic by building a team around Anthony that can seriously contend for a championship. Here are the rumors surrounding those possible moves.
New York Looking to Deal Amar'e Stoudemire?
The New York Knicks and Jackson will be looking to position themselves for a run at the free-agent class of 2015, and that likely means alleviating some of the cap space eaten up this year in order to add picks or players for the future.
With a salary of $23,410,988 next season, Amar'e Stoudemire is reportedly on the trade block.
According to Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report, the Philadelphia 76ers and New York have talked about a deal, but they haven't been able to work out the details:
Philadelphia must get to the salary-cap floor, and Stoudemire would help reach it with his monstrous contract. While it would be a burden for the 76ers this year, he will become a free agent next offseason, and the team can move on without him.
After averaging only 11.9 points and 4.9 rebounds last season (both career lows), Stoudemire will add little on the court for Philly. However, the 12-year veteran could be the offensive teacher to young prospects like Nerlens Noel and eventually Joel Embiid.
Knicks Interested in Omri Casspi?
In a report from basketball insiders Marc Stein and David Pick, New Orleans will likely cut Casspi and allow him to hit the open market, which could lead to a possible deal with New York:
The Knicks need players who can eat up minutes and add depth to the lineup, and Casspi may be the ideal addition to the team. After averaging 6.9 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game last season, he will be a viable option if he signs for around the $3 million he made in 2013-14.
New York needs to find affordable players on short-term deals so it can posture for the big free agents next season, and Casspi has the potential to be a smart addition both schematically and fiscally.
*Stats via NBA.com.