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Ex-Knicks PG Emmanuel Mudiay Reportedly Agrees to 1-Year Contract with Jazz

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJuly 3, 2019

New York Knicks guard Emmanuel Mudiay reacts during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Denver Nuggets, Friday, March 22, 2019, at Madison Square Garden in New York. The Nuggets won 111-93. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
Mary Altaffer/Associated Press

The Utah Jazz made a move to add a top-10 draft pick to their backcourt when they agreed Tuesday to sign free-agent guard Emmanuel Mudiay to a one-year deal.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported the news.

Mudiay entered the league as the seventh overall pick in the 2015 NBA draft and played his first two-plus seasons with the Denver Nuggets.

The New York Knicks acquired him via trade in February 2018, and he was eligible for a qualifying offer for 2019-20 from the Eastern Conference team worth more than $5.7 million, per Spotrac. The Knicks, however, did not extend that offer, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, making him an unrestricted free agent.

Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News explained in April that the Knicks could help create cap space for two max-contract players by relinquishing Mudiay's rights.

"That's a conversation we'll all have at the end of the season. If it happens, great," Mudiay said about staying with the Knicks, per Bondy. "I think that's a good thing because I love everybody in this organization. But at the same time, I know you got to wait for those other guys to make their decisions as well."

Mudiay averaged a career-best 14.8 points, 3.9 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game in 2018-19.

His 32.9 percent shooting from three-point range was concerning for someone who handles the ball so often in today's perimeter-oriented game, but it marked a drastic improvement from the 19.6 percent he shot in 22 games for the Knicks in 2017-18.

There are also defensive concerns with Mudiay, as New York's defensive rating was 114.8 when he was on the court last season and improved to 110.1 when he was off it, per NBA.com.

Mudiay is just 23 years old and put up the best scoring numbers of his career last season. He has shown the potential to be a valuable offensive piece in the backcourt and possesses enough athleticism to make strides on the defensive end.

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