Knicks Trade Rumors: RJ Barrett Not 'Untouchable' in Damian Lillard Talks

Adam WellsJuly 9, 2021

New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett (9) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, May 5, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

If the New York Knicks engage the Portland Trail Blazers in trade talks for Damian Lillard, they would reportedly be willing to include RJ Barrett in a package. 

Per Marc Berman of the New York Post, Barrett "is not considered an untouchable in a deal for a superstar."

After making the playoffs this season for the first time since 2012-13, the Knicks may look to make a big splash this offseason to improve their chances of competing for a championship. 

New York has a strong foundation in place, led by Barrett and Julius Randle. The team is still in search of a superstar who can anchor the roster. 

Lillard has been one of the most-talked about superstars who could be moved this offseason.

Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reported last month that the "enormous backlash" to Portland's process for hiring a new head coach, even before Chauncey Billups was hired, and "concerns on whether a championship contender" can be built with the organization could lead to Lillard forcing his way out. 

Lillard has made it clear he's never told anyone that he wants to be traded. 

Drafted No. 3 overall by the Knicks in 2019, Barrett had a terrific second season. The Duke product averaged 17.6 points and 5.8 rebounds per game with a 40.1 three-point percentage in 72 starts during the regular season. 

New York was eliminated from the first round of the playoffs in five games by the Atlanta Hawks.