The New York Knicks could make a couple of aggressive offseason moves shortly before the upcoming 2022 NBA Draft, including trying to work out a trade with the Indiana Pacers for guard Malcolm Brogdon or big man Myles Turner.
The Knicks are also a potential landing spot for Donovan Mitchell from the Utah Jazz because Spida wants the Jazz to trade him and would love to play for his hometown Knicks.
Of course, the New York City sports media loves to hype up potential trades, so it’s tough to sift through the incessant chatter to find the straight dope. But, the Knicks need a proper point guard if they expect to return to the postseason, which is why Brogdon has been getting a lot of attention in potential trade rumors.
The Knicks secured the #4 seed in the 2021 playoffs, much to the surprise of everyone in the league. The huge leap forward looked like an anomaly after the Knicks came crashing down to earth this past season. The Knicks went 37-45 and missed a chance at qualifying for the 2022 Play-In Tournament when they finished in 11th place in the Eastern Conference.
The bookies don’t have much faith in the Knicks next season, as they’re +20000 odds to win the 2023 NBA Championship.
Tank City or Indy ER?
Were the Pacers trying to tank when they finished the season with a 25-57 record, ranking #13 out of 15 teams? Fans claim injuries were the root of their problems. First-year head coach Rick Carlisle was trying to juggle the lineup with injuries to Brogdon and Turner. Yet in early December, team president Kevin Pritchard told all of the starters they’re on the trading bloc. It was tough to out-right tank in the Eastern Conference when it’s littered with horrendous teams like the Orlando Magic and Detroit Pistons.
The Magic hit the lottery and secured the #1 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft. The Pacers secured the #6 pick in the draft, which is good, but they’ll miss out on one of the top five players like Chet Holmgren, Jabari Smith, Paolo Banchero, Jaden Ivey, or Keegan Murray. There are still some strong prospects in the top 10, including Shaedon Sharpe, Ochai Agbaji, Bennedict Mathurin, AJ Griffin, Johnny Davis, Jalen Duren, and Tyty Washington.
So at least they’ll have some young talent to add to a mix that already includes Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield. With the Pacers rebuilding around Haliburton and Hield, they don’t need Brogdon and his salary, which has him earning $85 million thanks to a four-year extension. They’ll be on the hook for $22.6 million this season.
The Pacers are one of the long shots on DraftKings’ NBA futures page at +30000 odds to win the title next season.
Time to trade Brogdon, Turner
The Pacers decided to implode the team shortly before the trade deadline in February. The Pacers shipped Caris LeVert to the Cleveland Cavs. The Pacers also exiled All-Star Domantas Sabonis to the Sacramento Kings, who haven’t made the playoffs since 2006. The Kings sent Haliburton, Hield, and Tristan Thompson to the Pacers to complete the trade.
A dinged-up Brogdon averaged 19.1 points, 5.9 assists, and 5.1 rebounds per game last season with the Pacers. He shot a career-low 31% from 3-point range. Brogdon shot 40% or better in two of his first three seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks, including 42.6% in 2018-19. In 2020-21, Brogdon averaged a career-best 21.2 ppg with the Pacers.
Turner played just 42 games last season while recovering from a foot injury. He averaged 12.9 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks per game as their rim protector. Turner and the Pacers had a falling out because he believed he could be a bigger contributor on the offensive end, whereas the Pacers wanted him to focus solely on defense. The Knicks are on the shortlist for potential trade partners with the Pacers in exchange for Turner.
The Knicks need a point guard. They signed Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier in free agency last season, but both guards were busts. They could promote Immanuel Quickly as a starter, which the Knicks should probably do, especially if the Pacers ask too much in return for a Brogdon trade.
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