By SI Wire
November 03, 2014

New York Knicks management has had discussions with the Indiana Pacers about trading guard J.R. Smith for forward Chris Copeland, a former Knick, the New York Post's Marc Berman reported Monday morning.

The Knicks are hoping to clear as much salary cap space as possible to make a run at key free agents in 2015, with Memphis Grizzlies' center Marc Gasol reportedly being the top target.

The team would benefit if it were to trade Smith, or if he opts-out of the $6.4 million he is due to make in 2015-16.

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Smith, 29, is due to make just under $6 million this year.

Copeland joined New York for the 2012-2013 season after a stint in Europe. He left the Knicks for the Pacers in 2013, signing a two-year, $6 million deal. His expiring contract would not burden Indiana if he were traded.

Through three games this year, Copeland has averaged 16 points and 4.7 rebounds in 30 minutes per game.

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However, Berman writes, Knicks' president Phil Jackson doesn't plan to make any deal until Dec. 15, when 2014 draft picks and free agent signings are eligible to be traded.

-Andrew Melnick

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