The New York Knicks have already made some lasting lineup changes. Could more be on the way?
Shams Charania's latest intel hints that the Knicks "have shown a willingness" to move reserve guards Immanuel Quickley and/or Derrick Rose in a trade. Such a deal, Charania says, would be "a way to sort out the team’s glut at the guard position over the course of the season," a surplus brought about by Jalen Brunson's nine-figure signing. While Brunson has fulfilled expectations thus far, his arrival has created a bit of logjam on the depth chart behind him.
The timing of the rumor is perhaps a bit curious considering that both Quickley and Rose have played relatively strong roles in the Knicks' newly-minted nine-man rotation that has yielded consecutive victories out west in the wake of Mitchell Robinson's injury. The two have come off the bench alongside Jericho Sims and Obi Toppin to produce some solid minutes in relief, even as it has relegated names like Evan Fournier and Quentin Grimes to spectator status.
Putting Rose on the block would make sense from a metropolitan perspective: he's averaging a career-worst 13.5 minutes and 6.7 points per game, having partaken in all 15 contests thus far. Rose did tie his season-best with 13 points in the Knicks' Wednesday win in Denver, granted bigger minutes with Grimes still working off the effects of a foot injury.
Quickley has struggled with his trademark shooting, averaging a career-low 8.9 points while shooting 29 percent from three-point range. He has found other ways to contribute to the Knicks' lineup, putting in a personal-best 4.8 rebounds in over 22 minutes of action.
Moving Rose, Quickley, or both would likely open up opportunities for Grimes once he returns to full strength. Fournier is hard to trade with a massive contract that includes a seasonal cap hit of over $18 million.
Rose, Quickley, and the Knicks (8-7) will return to action on Friday night as a five-game road trip continues against the defending champion Golden State Warriors (10 p.m. ET, MSG/ESPN).
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags
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