Knicks Linked to Magic Center

The New York Knicks could sign Orlando Magic center Goga Bitadze.
Mar 21, 2024; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Goga Bitadze (35) warms up before the game against the New Orleans Pelicans at KIA Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 21, 2024; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Goga Bitadze (35) warms up before the game against the New Orleans Pelicans at KIA Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports / Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports
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If the New York Knicks are looking for a bargain in free agency, they could look towards signing Orlando Magic center Goga Bitadze.

The Athletic writer Fred Katz listed Bitadze as a potential player the Knicks could sign in free agency.

"Bitadze filled in as a starter, turning himself into more of a brute, defensive-minded presence than ever. He was the embodiment of the Magic’s personality: You don’t get to play if you don’t thrive beating up opponents. That would translate well to the Knicks," Katz writes. "Of course, Bitadze would represent a falloff from Hartenstein, who the Knicks can offer up to $72.5 million over four years. Bitadze would not cost the full midlevel exception or anywhere close to it. But his performance this season may warrant a contract above the minimum, and if the Knicks need a center, he could back up Robinson as well as any other free agent in his price range."

Bitadze, 24, was a first-round pick made by the Indiana Pacers back in the 2019 NBA Draft, but he struggled to make his mark with the team and they released him in the middle of the 2022-23 campaign.

Shortly after his departure from the Pacers, the Magic claimed him off waivers, giving him new life for his career. In his first full season in Orlando, he played a career-high 62 games and started 33 of them. He averaged five points and 4.6 rebounds per game.

While Bitadze got a lot of playing time with the Magic this year, he eventually was knocked out of the rotation when both Wendell Carter Jr. and Moe Wagner became healthy. So now, Bitadze is seeking a spot where he can play.

If the Knicks strike out on Isaiah Hartenstein in free agency, Bitadze could be a good alternative. He has rim-protecting abilities and he won't cost much at all. A similar deal to Hartenstein's (two years, $16 million) may be enough to bring the Georgian center to New York. He could start or come off the bench for Mitchell Robinson and be an underrated addition to the Knicks.

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Jeremy Brener


Jeremy Brener is an editor, writer and social media manager for several Fan Nation websites. His work has also been featured in 247 Sports and SB Nation as a writer and podcaster. Brener has been with Fan Nation since 2021. Brener grew up in Houston, going to Astros, Rockets and Texans games as a kid. He moved to Orlando in 2016 to go to college and pursue a degree. He hosts "The Dream Take" podcast covering the Rockets, which has produced over 350 episodes since March 2020. Brener graduated in May 2020 from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcast Journalism minoring in Sport Business Management. While at UCF, Brener worked for the school's newspaper and "Hitting the Field," a student-run sports talk show and network. He was the executive producer for "Hitting the Field" from 2019-20. During his professional career, Brener has covered a number of major sporting events including the Pro Bowl, March Madness and several NBA and NFL games. As a fan, Brener has been to the 2005 World Series, 2010 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 NCAA National Championship between the Villanova Wildcats and North Carolina Tar Heels. Now, Brener still resides in the Central Florida area and enjoys writing, watching TV, hanging out with friends and going to the gym. Brener can be followed on Twitter @JeremyBrener. For more inquiries, please email