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Knicks Emerging As Frontrunner for Jalen Brunson Free Agency, per Reports

It is reportedly likely that Mavericks point guard Jalen Brunson will take his talents to the Knicks on a potential four-year deal with an excess of $100 million, per NBA insider Marc Stein and ESPN’s Tim MacMahon.

As it stands currently, New York still must find a way to clear the remainder of its cap space and determine whether Dallas can create a sign-and-trade to retrieve assets

Brunson’s named being linked to the Knicks became a bigger story after the Knicks’ move on draft night. Charlotte selected Jalen Duren at No. 13 and traded him to New York. 

However, the Knicks then traded Duren and veteran guard Kemba Walker to Detroit, shedding Walker’s 9.2 million salary in hopes of creating some salary space to pursue Brunson, according to Stein.

Brunson played out the final season of his first NBA contract at $1.8 million in the 2021–22 season. He averaged a career-best 16.3 points, 3.9 rebounds and 4.8 assists during the regular season and played a key role in Dallas’s postseason run. 

Because the Mavericks holds Brunson’s Bird rights, Stein reported that Dallas has the ability to offer Brunson a potential five-year deal north of $100 million.

However, there is a “growing belief” that Brunson wants to play at Madison Square Garden despite his excellent season in Dallas, Stein reported last week. 

Brunson carried over his regular season leap in production into this year’s playoffs. When Luka Dončić missed three games in the Mavericks first-round series against the Jazz, Brunson averaged 32 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists. 

During the entire playoffs, which included the Mavs’ run to the Western Conference Finals, Brunson averaged 21.6 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists.

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