Knicks brace for free agent market
The summer of 2010 is still almost two years away, but on Friday the New York Knicks officially made themselves players in what is expected to be the richest free agent crop in recent history. In two bold strokes, Knicks president
All three of the players the Knicks acquired -- Harrington, Thomas and Mobley -- have deals that expire after the 2009-2010 season.
Under league rules, the Knicks are not allowed to openly court players that are under contract with other teams. But today's transactions sent a clear signal to
But by no means are the Knicks finished dealing. Curry, New York's waistline-challenged center who hasn't played this season after reportedly arriving at training camp at more than 300 pounds, has the low-post skill to make him a marketable commodity -- if he can ever work his way onto the court. Curry's contract runs through the 2010-2011 season, when he will make $11.3 million in the final year of his contract. If the Knicks can find a taker for Curry (Charlotte has reportedly been interested and center-less teams like Miami and Oklahoma City could get in the running) they would be in position to offer max deals to both James and Bosh and have some wiggle room to spare.
While Friday's overhaul was a strong step in Walsh's effort to reshape the Knicks, he still has work to do. Besides dealing with Curry, Walsh will have to make a decision on whether to offer lucrative (and cap-eating) contracts to
And while the Knicks will have the dollars to throw at James and Bosh, they may not have enough of a talent base to entice them. Right now, New York only has four players (Chandler, Curry, Jared Jeffries and rookie Danilo Gallinari) under contract for the '10-'11 season. Walsh could conceivably strike gold in the next two drafts and fill out the roster with solid role players, but the Knicks will not be the most appealing option. New Jersey will have millions in cap room in 2010 and likely a much stronger talent base (point guard
For the Knicks, the money will be there to spend. But even that, and the allure of playing on Broadway, might not be enough.