NBA Rumors: Knicks' Signing of Jalen Brunson Under Investigation for Tampering

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVAugust 1, 2022

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 12:  Jalen Brunson #13 of the Dallas Mavericks drives around Alec Burks #18 of the New York Knicks in the first half at Madison Square Garden on January 12, 2022 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

The NBA has opened a tampering investigation into the New York Knicks' free-agent pursuit and signing of point guard Jalen Brunson, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.

Per Haynes, "the league will look into whether the Knicks made contact with Brunson prior to the start of the free-agency period."

Before Brunson signed his four-year, $104 million deal with the Knicks, reports had emerged that New York would pursue him.

On June 24, six days prior to the opening of the league's legal tampering period June 30, NBA reporter Marc Stein wrote the Knicks were "increasingly expected to assemble a four-year offer to Brunson valued in the $100 million range."

Days later, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Knicks were planning to offer a four-year, $110 million deal to Brunson.

ESPN's Tim MacMahon followed up that report with a similar one:

Tim MacMahon @espn_macmahon

At this point, it's widely anticipated that Jalen Brunson will go to the Knicks on a four-year deal in excess of $100M. It remains to be seen how New York will clear the rest of the necessary cap space and whether the Mavs can work a sign-and-trade to recoup assets.

The Knicks also hired Brunson's father, Rick Brunson, as an assistant coach this offseason. Brunson had previously worked with Tom Thibodeau as an assistant on the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves.

As Haynes noted, Brunson reportedly was scheduled to take several visits with teams during his free agency but only met with New York—all of that after the Knicks made several trades this offseason to clear enough cap space to offer Brunson his deal.

The Knicks aren't the only team being investigated for tampering. On Friday, Woj reported the Philadelphia 76ers were being looked at by the NBA for potential tampering in their free-agent pursuit of P.J. Tucker and Danuel House and the re-signing of James Harden.