Some members of the New York Knicks organization reportedly believe the San Antonio Spurs "crossed lines of accepted behavior" in their efforts to pursue Kristaps Porzingis before he was traded to the Dallas Mavericks in January.
Ian Begley of SNY reported Friday unnamed Knicks executives felt the Spurs "operated outside of accepted NBA norms" while trying to land Porzingis, but exact details about their actions weren't provided.
In January, Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer noted San Antonio had "significant interest" in the 2018 NBA All-Star Game selection.
Although it's unclear what the Spurs did to get on the Knicks' bad side, it does add more depth to one of this offseason's top storylines: free-agent forward Marcus Morris' decision to back out of contract agreement with San Antonio to sign a one-year, $15 million deal with New York.
An NBA general manager told Frank Isola of The Athletic the Spurs are "pissed" about Morris' switch.
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That frustration is likely based on the fact that San Antonio's front office was forced to make other moves, highlighted by the trade of promising stretch 4 Davis Bertans to the Washington Wizards, in order to create the necessary cap space for the veteran forward.
Meanwhile, Morris and agent Rich Paul are "headed toward a breakup over the incident," as the former Boston Celtics star worked out his deal with the Knicks alone and signed with them despite Paul urging him to stick with the original Spurs contract, per Marc Berman of the New York Post.
It's unknown whether New York's displeasure with San Antonio's actions over Porzingis played a role in the team's late push to sign Morris away from Gregg Popovich, R.C. Buford and Co.