Victor Oladipo Trade Rumors: Some with Knicks View G as 'Really Valuable' Player

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIMarch 5, 2021

Houston Rockets' Victor Oladipo drives in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

The New York Knicks may have some interest in acquiring Victor Oladipo from the Houston Rockets as the franchise continues to covet star power.

SNY's Ian Begley noted Oladipo is still in search of a max contract after reportedly turning down a two-year, $45.2 million extension in Houston. The Rockets won't be able to offer that type of contract until the offseason. ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Houston would likely be willing to listen to offers ahead of the March 25 trade deadline in the meantime. 

That could open the door for the Knicks to pry him out of Texas. 

"There are people in the organization that see Oladipo as a really valuable addition to what they have now," Begley said. "I'm not sure how the top decision-makers feel about Oladipo, but the Knicks would have to commit max money to get Oladipo to New York." 

The Rockets added Oladipo seven weeks ago as part of a four-team deal that sent James Harden to the Brooklyn Nets, so the likelihood of Houston selling low on a marquee asset doesn't favor the Knicks. 

In 15 games since the trade, the shooting guard is averaging 19.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.7 assists per night. At 28 years old, there's a chance he could still play into Houston's long-term plans, but there's no telling how long it'll take the franchise to become a contender again. 

If trading Oladipo helps the Rockets' rebuild speed, it'll lead to a crucial decision for the front office. That just hasn't happened yet. 

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Per Wojnarowski:

"For the Rockets, amid a post-Harden and Russell Westbrook era, there are a number of options with Oladipo, including weighing his value in the trade deadline marketplace; committing to aggressively pursuing a long-term deal in the summer; working with Oladipo on getting value back in sign-and-trade talks in the offseason; or letting him walk to use the cap space on other players in free agency.

"It is typical that teams become more focused in pursuing trades closer to the deadline, which is still nearly four weeks away. Houston has yet to engage with teams on trade talks involving Oladipo, sources said."

At 18-18, the Knicks enter the All-Star break fifth in the Eastern Conference with a legitimate shot at making the playoffs. Adding Oladipo to the mix could help there, depending on the cost.