BREAKING: Knicks Trade Shump, J.R. for Second-Rounder

Edited to add the official team statement.

The Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith era in New York is over, according to NBA kingslayer Adrian Wojnarowski.

This is the breakdown of the three-team trade, as far as we know at 9 p.m. EST:

The Cleveland Cavaliers have reached an agreement in principle to acquire New York Knicksguards J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert in a multi-team trade that also sends guard Dion Waitersto the Oklahoma City Thunder, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Oklahoma City will give the Cavaliers a protected future first-round draft pick and send guard Lance Thomas to the Knicks, league sources said. As part of the trade, the Cavaliers will send rookie center Alex Kirk, forward Lou Amundson and a 2019 second-round pick to the Knicks, sources said.

At first glance — and assuming this is the exact deal — the trade looks to be a pretty pure salary dump for the Knicks. For more than a year, the team had been openly looking to trade Smith, who owns a $6.4 million player option for next year when the team will have considerable cap space. In addition to the cap space and likely trade exception, the Knicks get a second-round pick for their trouble.

Last summer, the Knicks and Thunder reportedly were close to Shumpert for a first-rounder.

Shumpert, the Knicks’ best two-way player, is the real loss here. The 24-year-old has been maddeningly inconsistent but at times electrifying during his injury-plagued three-and-a-half years in New York. Drafted by the Knicks with the 17th pick in the 2011 Draft, he became a fan favorite with his energetic defense, athleticism, and flat-top haircut. Fans will always remember his put-back dunk in the second round of the playoffs against the Pacers, a remarkable play for a young player having what looked to be a breakout postseason.

The Knicks were approaching a decision on Shumpert, who is almost certainly set to become a restricted free agent at the end of the year. If Smith had picked up his option and the Knicks had matched an offer sheet for Shumpert, the team could have been looking at a payroll of potentially $15 million or more than they will have at the end of the year.

There are lots of ways to evaluate this trade, and fans will likely have mixed reactions. It is extremely tough to see a 24-year-old homegrown talent in Shumpert go. But while the return is light, it seems that this is what big market, 5-31 teams do: They trade away players either counterproductive (J.R.) or non-essential (Shumpert) for long-term plans, and try to maximize cap space and picks. It is a very worthy debate as to whether Smith’s option and a second-rounder is worthy enough of a return.

EDIT: Here is the official team statement:

NEW YORK, January 5, 2015 – New York Knickerbockers President Phil Jackson announced today that the team has acquired forward Lou Amundson, center Alex Kirk and a 2019 second-round draft choice from Cleveland and forward Lance Thomas from Oklahoma City as part of a three-team trade. Guards Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith were sent from New York to Cleveland and guard Dion Waiters from Cleveland to Oklahoma City. Oklahoma City also sent Cleveland a future first-round draft choice. In addition, center Samuel Dalembert has been waived.

“As our journey moves through this season, we will search for the type of players that fit the style we hope to exhibit for our fans. Our desire is to improve our ability to compete,” Jackson said. “In addition, these transactions improve our flexibility to the current roster and the salary cap for future seasons.”

Thomas, 6-8, 225-pounds, averaged 5.1 points and 3.4 rebounds over 20.5 minutes in 22 games (13 starts) for Oklahoma City this season. The Brooklyn, NY-native signed as a free agent with Oklahoma City on Sep. 29, 2014.

Dalembert, 6-11, 255-pounds, averaged 4.0 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.28 blocks over 17 minutes in 32 games (21 starts) for New York this season. He was originally acquired from Dallas in a multi-player deal on Jun. 25, 2014.

Shumpert, 6-5, 220-pounds, averaged 9.3 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.3 assists over 26.0 minutes in 24 games (all starts) for New York this season. The Oak Park, IL-native, averaged 7.9 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.3 assists over 26.2 minutes in 202 games (162 starts) over four seasons with the Knicks after being selected in the first round (17th overall) of the 2011 NBA Draft.

Smith, 6-6, 225-pounds, averaged 10.9 points, 3.4 assists and 2.4 rebounds over 25.8 minutes in 24 games (six starts) for New York this season. The Freehold, NJ-native averaged 15.1 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.8 assists over 31.4 minutes in 213 games (44 starts) over four seasons with the Knicks. He originally signed with New York on Feb. 17, 2012 and most recently re-signed on Jul. 11, 2013.

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Jonathan Topaz is a reporter for POLITICO. He can be reached at jonathan.topaz@gmail.com or on Twitter @JonathanTopaz.

80 thoughts to “BREAKING: Knicks Trade Shump, J.R. for Second-Rounder”

  1. There is nothing JR Smith cannot do on a basketball court.

    Unfortunately, there is nothing JR Smith will not do on a basketball court.

  2. Great move.
    Pure and simple. The Knicks are now in a very strong position for next year, and they get two cap exceptions that would enable them to make more moves before the trade deadline.
    Time to cut bait. JR wasn’t worth the salary he got and has been trouble ever since. SHUMP has never achieved his potential, and more troubling is his game hasn’t changed much.
    Dalembert was going to be waived anyway.

    At least this is a trade for the future, not a typical knicks move where they pay a guy for what he’s done in the past or because he’s a flashy name so they can maybe do something now in a long shot.

    There is method here that can be seen and understood. Now, if we can dump Melo for some junk and picks…

  3. On the down side, all we are getting for Shump is a 2nd rounder and the ability to wash our hands of JR. I always thought we’d get at least a 1 for him. His hair alone is worth a 2nd.

    On the plus side, I might get a chance to play some minutes for the Knicks this year!

  4. Knicks are now officially behind Philly in the standings, which is really kind of an incredible achievement. This team is so far away from even approaching mediocrity, it is laughable.

    At this point Phil Jackson really has to start thinking how he is going to move Carmelo Anthony for some pieces that can be part of a viable rebuild, because staying in “win now” mode when you have a .135 winning percentage isn’t just bad strategy, it is certifiable lunacy. Forget Marc Gasol, forget Wesley Matthews, forget Goran Dragic and forget winning anything with Carmelo Anthony as the marquee player. Shut him down the rest of the year, bring him back for the last 10 games to prove he’s healthy and then do everything you can in the offseason to move him for picks and players on rookie contracts. He has a no-trade clause but the writing is on the wall here and you have to think he’ll start getting a lot less picky about where he’s willing to play.

  5. I said this in the game thread, but we have a real chance of being the worst team in NBA history this season.

  6. The knicks can waive all the players they pick up by Wednesday, along with Dalembert.
    That clears $30 million in cap space for next year.
    And hell yes it’s a good move to use Shump to lose JR’s horrible contract. They weren’t going to sign Shump anyway.

    Great move.

    A first rounder is ridiculous on its face for what the Knicks had to offer.
    Shump is an often injured, defensive specialist who hasn’t improve appreciably offensively and actually declined defensively.

    Now, as I said in the game thread, we just need to move the albatross called Melo.

  7. Am I the only one who doesnt believe there is even a remotely small chance in hell Melo gets traded?? Phil is obviously going to try for a quick rebuild this summer with Melo as the player he is going to build around. If next season is a disaster too than yes talk of trading Melo would then start becoming a possibility but sorry I just dont see any chance he is even going to be considered to be traded before next season.

  8. There is nothing JR Smith cannot do on a basketball court.

    Unfortunately, there is nothing JR Smith will not do on a basketball court.

    I am laughing my ASS off at this. Well done sir!

  9. The Knicks have turned two assets — Chandler and Shumpert — into virtually nothing. But yeah, great move, Phil Jackson’s CLEARING THE DECKS. How many wins do you really think 20 million in cap space and a top pick in an OK draft gets you? They’re a year away from being four years away. Again.

  10. I hate to broach this but, if Cole keeps this up, he may be the sweetener in any deal to dump Calderon. COLEDERON for some expiring contracts.

  11. I think restoring a proper “culture” in the locker room is really important to Phil and dumping Felton and JR were the necessary steps towards that.

    This is a franchise who had JR Smith’s brother on the roster a year ago. This is a step in the right direction.

  12. Also I may be the only one who holds this but I’m not necessarily against “dumping” Calderon – he can still be an outstanding shooter and decent player if they can hide him on defense. There are certainly better options out there for a PG (starting or not), but two more years at $7M for someone who can shoot the lights out isn’t a terrible contract and we can certainly work him into the rotation, especially if we insist on doing the triangle in the future

  13. So the season is “officially” over, even though no right-minded person thought otherwise. A second (in 2019!) for JR & Shump? Jeeze. I thought Shump would fetch a 1st. But it clears a ton of cash and lines us up for the #1 overall pick. We own it right now. Someone’s gotta be 30th.

    What are tix for the next 76’er game going for? I’m waving my Philly banner right now. Can you see it? Let’s-go-Sixers!

  14. @12 yeah, good point, a starting lineup of Felton, Shumpert, Melo, Chandler and whoever would really catapult us into the NBA elite.

  15. So who’s got this stat handy? If we finish with worst record, what’s the probability of us selecting 1st OR second in the draft? Similarly, if we finish with second-worst record, what’s the probability of us selecting 1st OR second? I just want either Okafor or Towns and, after reviewing Draft Express videos, I have no clue which one will be better.

  16. Right, because I was arguing the Knicks should have kept last year’s team intact, you got it. Ray was coming off the books after this year, and Calderon and JR Smith are making about the same money, so they’ve turned Chandler and Shumpert into…Cleanthony Early and a second round pick. Knicks are on their way — I’m sure this free agent class is lining up to play with Carmelo Anthony, his fraying knee, a draft pick and a coaching staff with a combined win percentage in the low 30s.

  17. Kevin Pelton gave the Knicks an A for the trade (Cavs an A-, Thunder a D). Mainly for shedding so much money this year that their tax bill will be only around 6mil and they could actually get below the tax line before the season is over if they wanted to. Not exactly stuff us fans give a shit about but I guess to Dolan if they are going to suck this year he Im sure loves the fact they get to save alot of money in the process.

  18. This is all part of the Zen Master’s evil plan to derail the Cavs, leading LeBron to reconsider his passion for Cleveland and steering him to NYC where he will team up with Okafor and Durant.

    BOOK IT

  19. I’m all for a proper rebuild, but I don’t understand how an extra few million in cap space is going to make a whole lot of a difference when you have a decimated team featuring Melo and Nothing Else with which to attract free agents. I’d take picks over cap space at this point — was there really no possible low-first round pick available for Shump directly? I’m surprised OKC didn’t want him instead of Waiters, and they are surrendering a late first rounder in the deal. I love OKC but some of their second tier moves the past few years have been real head scratchers.

  20. You all keep talking like this means Melo will be traded. The Knicks are trying for cap space, not young pieces/picks. This is a “win sooner” move even if it means winning fewer games now. It’s nice that we’re locking in the ping pong balls, but as i wrote in the other thread, it smells like 09/10. We’re trying to take shortcuts to being competitive, which might make sense for some young, super asset-rich team like Boston, but in terms of youth/future picks, the only team more impoverished than us is Brooklyn.

    What happens when if there are no bargains this summer? It’s a lot harder to rationalize taking another year off and rebuilding when we have about 1.2 quality young players (our draft pick and Hardaway Jr.). A real rebuild move would have been something like Shumpert and Bargnani for Tyreke Evans and some picks (or better yet, shumpert and Stoudemire for McGee, Gallinari and our 2016 pick). Instead, in the likely scenario we miss on the best FAs, Jackson will be under a lot of pressure to sign the next Amar’e Stoudemire and start this whole process over.

  21. There’s still a chance Phil could turn the trade exceptions into a pick or an asset for the future, but this haul is pretty underwhelming. Can’t believe the Knicks would have gotten less had they waited for Shumpert and Smith to bounce back from their respective injuries.

  22. At this rate we might as well just start planning to woo AD from New Orleans and John Wall x years from now lol

  23. Tim Hardaway Jr. is an erratic shooter who’s proven himself a completely useless defender. I think we can safely stop calling him a building block for the future.

  24. I don’t think shump is worth a first. There’s no Jordans or Kobes to shut down anymore. All the talented guards in the league run pick and roll which shump can’t defend.

    Did I mention he can’t score and is constantly hurt?

  25. Shump can D it up, rebound a and pass a bit. The one thing he can’t do is score. But he’s going to a team with Lebron, Kyrie and Kevin Love. He don’t have to score no more. Great fit. And we get rid of a player that is an avatar for recent shit Knicks teams. So much skill and potential combined with boneheaded shots and awful defense. Fuck JR. So glad we’re done with that asshole.

  26. For the Knicks its almost identical to the Walsh trades leading up to the summer of 2010.

    Yeah, except Walsh was doing it to get LeBron. Who is Jackson targeting in 2015? Al Jefferson?

    Cap space is good to have, but it’s stupid to buy.

  27. wow. there is still possibility for Bargs, Calderon and Jason Smith to be moved. Amare – no takers for that. Melo is the poster boy so he will around. THJ is cheap as chips..

  28. Lance Thomas is supposed to be an effective defender. Alex Kirk a rookie center and Amundson well, a hustle player

  29. Looks like business as usual for the Knicks, sell low. Sure seems like they could have gotten something more than a 2nd rounder. Cap space is nice in theory, but often times doesn’t turn out to be as great as teams ( and their delusional fans) expect it to. They’re back to another rebuild, and we’re along for the ride….AGAIN. 1973 seems like sooooo long ago now. It is Hard Work being a fan of this team.

  30. Donnie, why would we buy cap space when we could have JR and no shump next year for nothing?

  31. Donnie, why would we buy cap space when we could have JR and no shump next year for nothing?

    I think Max F.C. gets it. Use the cap space to acquire assets and keep the bad contracts until they sunset. There is no quick fix here. No LeBron to flirt with. He mentioned Shump + Bargs to NO for Gordon + a future 1st rounder. That’s a move that signifies actual culture change. It uses cap space to rebuild, especially in light of better FAs available in 2016 vs 2015.

    Today’s trade is business as usual for the Dolan Knicks: paying teams to take our own mistakes off our hands… The only reason NY needed to dump Smith at all is because Dolan made that asinine handshake agreement with CAA back in 2012.

    But yay. Knicks have $33 mil to spend this summer. Now all they need are some players to offer it to. Hello, Carmelo Anthony, Roy Hibbert and Patrick Beverly– you’re new Big Three!

  32. Today’s trade is business as usual for the Dolan Knicks: paying teams to take our own mistakes off our hands… The only reason NY needed to dump Smith at all is because Dolan made that asinine handshake agreement with CAA back in 2012.

    Yeah, that’s my issue here. This trade isn’t awful, but it’s just business as usual. Jackson still hasn’t shown himself to be any different than any other regime under Dolan’s ownership. I’m certainly not saying that he won’t prove himself to be better this offseason, but so far it is same old, same old. This is the Jared Jeffries trade all over again, only that deal guaranteed them two max spots in a summer where a bunch of stars were free agents. But yes, I can’t deny that Jackson might still impress during the offseason.

  33. My two biggest issues with the trade, vis a vis the mainstream media’s coverage of the trade:

    1. The deal does not free up as much money as people seem to think it does. Unless the cap rises over what Larry Coon estimates it will be (and Coon tends to be right on these things), With the first rounder and the cap holds, the Knicks now have about $26-27 million in cap room for next season. Not $30 million. Reporters never seem to remember the cap holds.

    but more importantly…

    2. JR Smith had one year left on his deal. If the Knicks waived him after this season, they’d have been allowed to use the stretch provision to spread his $6.4 million salary over three seasons (twice the remaining length on the contract plus one year). Reporters never seem to remember the stretch provision. So the JR cap hit would have been roughly $2 million next season. So the Knicks did not really free up “nearly $7 million in cap space for next season” through this deal. They freed up $2 million. So it was a second-rounder four years from now and $2 million more to spend this offseason.

  34. Not a good trade. At best – if Shump stays mediocre – it’s a wash.

    But didn’t we expect more from Jackson? Something creative? A real prospect for a player who *could* become very useful for Cleveland? I mean it’s not an awful move but it doesn’t have a spark either, and in such a competitive league you need a spark to be successful.

  35. This team has five wins in January. It’s fast becoming one of the worst teams in the history of the league. The roster is completely barren of talent; next year’s roster is Carmelo Anthony, Pablo Prigioni, Jose Calderon, and Tim Hardaway, and that’s pretty much it. That is a pitiful talent base.

    How do you fix that with $27M in salary cap space? You can’t. There are too many holes to fill. The Knicks need perimeter defenders and they need interior defenders. They need rebounders. The shooting guard and power forward positions are absolute black holes, and the point guard and center positions could also use beefing up. The young players under team control are all very iffy propositions: the mediocre Hardaway, the raw Antetokuonmpo, the D-League longshot Galloway… Sure, you’ll have your lottery pick next year but even if you get Okafor or Towns those guys are gonna be 19 years old when the season starts.

    $27M seems like a lot of salary cap space, but not when you have to fill almost every role on the team. There is no quick fix for a team playing .135 ball.

  36. I am baffled at the trade. As it has been said, the cap impact is not that big because we could have chosen to stretch JR and not to resign Shump.

    So,
    if the plan is not to resign Shump, why not just deal him for something of more value, like the 1st rounder OKC gave Cleveland. And if Cle insisted in getting JR into the trade, then we would have the leverage to ask for no less than the 1st rounder. It seems to me that we game a valuable asset just to dump 2 million.

    PS: The trade may still be for the better. But i feel we could have done more.

  37. They gave up an asset to dump two million and gain a second rounder in four years. I agree that that is underwhelming. However, the issue is that only one player in the deal was really wanted, and that was Waiters. Which is why he’s the only one who netted a first round draft pick (volume scoring bias for the win!). The Cavs did the opposite of insisting on getting JR. They took JR to get Shump. And since they were taking JR, they felt that they shouldn’t have to give up anything but a second rounder. Shump is not that much of an asset, so the deal’s probably fair enough. It’s not a particularly good trade but nor is it a bad one. Just another C.

  38. Amazing to me how many people here think that Shumpert on an expiring contract was such a great asset. I just read a stat — of 201 players who have defended more than 200 plays this year, Shumpert ranks 192 in points allowed per possession.

  39. That sounds more like a case of him just playing a lot of minutes on a terrible, terrible defensive team. His defensive win shares were good to great his first three seasons before plummeting this season. And I’m no fan of ESPN’s real plus-minus, but it definitely has its advocates out there and according to Kevin Pelton in his write-up on the trade, it rated Shump as the NBA’s fifth-best shooting guard on defense through last season. Shump had real value out there. But when you’re pairing him with a shitty player, then you’re not going to get good deals done, as we saw last year. Shumpert could have gotten Teague on his own, but not when paired with a shitty player. As we saw from the deafening silence when he was a free agent, teams out there really don’t like JR Smith.

  40. Shumpert and JR were both negative assets.

    JR, because he’s immature, inconsistent, playing horribly and signed through next season. Shumpert because he can’t score, plays overrated defense, hasn’t improved much since his rookie season, is constantly injured and will need to be paid long-term this summer.

    Getting rid of both of them without giving up any *actual* assets or taking on other contracts is a major win. I’d rather have cap space than the dregs of the last regime.

  41. Even if you believe he is overrated, guess who is the doing the overrating? The rest of the NBA! Shump was nowhere close to a negative asset. He wasn’t a great asset, but he was far from a negative asset.

  42. Shump seemed to put work more on his appearance/style (hair/faux glasses) than his actual game, at least by tangible results to a man at a keyboard. After the first few games this season I had thought otherwise, but then his shooting “regressed to the norm” as it always has. In the end he was a crappy scoring wind, who could not run an offense, finish near the rim or keep track of his man. In effect he was good at man to man one on one defense but that is also what the stats say about Bargnani. I can’t say I will miss him.

  43. Shump is less valuable this year. I think Shump is a pretty good player, but this is the NBA. A smart GM just traded a first round pick for one of the league’s worst players because he values his ability to miss a fuckload of shots. Why? Because pointz. Shumpert doesn’t give you pointz and you have to give him a raise to keep him after the season.

  44. Sorry, that’s just not true. The days when we could have turned Shumpert into anything of value were long gone. There’s just not a real trade market for an oft-injured shooting guard who has managed to crack .500 TS one time in four years and is going to be a free agent in just a few months. We punted our chance at getting an asset back for him at last year’s trade deadline. The fact that he was simply not a very good basketball player makes him a poor asset–the added burden of his now-imminent free agency makes him a negative asset, or at least someone not worth trading a draft pick to acquire.

  45. How did they just use him as a sweetener to get the Cavs to take JR if he has negative trade value? The answer is clear – he did not have negative trade value.

  46. Actually, maybe I overstate my case–he obviously had *some* value, to the extent that he allowed us to dump JR Smith, probably one of the worst-reputed players in the league, and his player option for next season, without taking back any salary.

  47. @45 — I’m not sure where you get your information that his defensive win shares were good to great his first three years but, according to basketball-reference, his defensive win shares per year were 2.5, 1.0, 1.6 and 0.3. Not bad, but not good to great. His defensive ratings were 101, 106, 108 and 111 (a flawed stat, but certainly not trending in the right direction) and his offensive ratings were 96, 108, 100 and 97. His WS/48 were .068, .094, .048 and .020 and his TS% were .484, .516, ,480 and .484. Face it, by any statistical measure, traditional or advanced, and by the eye test, he is a bad basketball player. And he is not “overrated” by anyone in the NBA, as evidenced by the fact that he did not exactly bring back a mother lode of assets in a trade. I think that all of us were hoping that he would be able to deliver on the promise that he showed in his first two years, but he hasn’t improved one iota and, by most measures, has actually regressed.

  48. I’m not sure where you get your information that his defensive win shares were good to great his first three years but, according to basketball-reference, his defensive win shares per year were 2.5, 1.0, 1.6 and 0.3. Not bad, but not good to great.

    It’s a counting stat. So that’s 2.5 defensive win shares in 59 games (pro-rating it to 82 games would put him 0.1 behind that season’s Defensive Player of the Year). That’s great. 1.0 in 45 games and 1.6 in 74 games are good.

    But yes, Shumpert was definitely hurt by three major things…

    1. Defensive stats clearly reward strong defensive team play and the Knicks lost nearly all their good defensive players after Shump’s rookie year (which yes, clearly overrated his abilities that first year as a result. But they were, indeed, overrated. In that NBA GMs rate him as a good defender, even if he isn’t – I’m not even arguing Shump is amazing, just that he is rated as a good defender around the league)
    2. The knee injury obviously
    3. His move to a perimeter defender as opposed to an on-the-ball defender.

  49. A couple thoughts:

    Iman Shumpert isn’t the best basketball player, but he’s still better than Dion Waiters, who is a terrible basketball player.

    Same with JR.

    The Cavs got rid of a terrible basketball player who is also a major headache, and somehow got a valuable first round pick and two players who will probably help them more than the guy they got rid of.

    It’s not a bad trade by any means because we didn’t get saddled with any garbage (like, you know, Waiters), but Phil is 2-for-2 at selling his assets at their absolute lowest point. I don’t expect JR and Iman to flourish like Tyson did, but I do think they’re going to help them more than Waiters ever did.

    Also, what are we going to do with all this cap space and no players on the roster??

  50. Yes, exactly. I am not saying it is a bad trade. It is an “eh” trade. It’s funny, as the info tricked through, it went from being a great trade (when Reggie Jackson was coming over) to being an eh trade (when Jackson wasn’t coming over) to a terrible trade (when it was Waiters going to the Knicks) to an eh trade (when Waiters was not coming over) to being an amazing trade (when a first round pick was coming over) back to an eh trade (when the first round pick was no longer coming over).

  51. “The Cavs got rid of a terrible basketball player who is also a major headache, and somehow got a valuable first round pick and two players who will probably help them more than the guy they got rid of.”
    And one of the guys they got back is not a major headache?

  52. johnno
    January 6, 2015 at 9:26 am
    “The Cavs got rid of a terrible basketball player who is also a major headache, and somehow got a valuable first round pick and two players who will probably help them more than the guy they got rid of.”
    And one of the guys they got back is not a major headache?

    A different kind of headache then Waiters. JR’s a dumbass but a fairly talented dumbass who seems to be able to get along with his teammates. Waiters is a terrible player and all his teammates seem to hate him. All else being equal, I’d rather have JR than Waiters.

  53. Yeah but you’re not supposed to get Shumpert and a future first just for swapping headaches.

    Here’s what bugs me: I think Dion Waiters was valued higher than any basketball player in this trade simply because he was the number 4 pick in the draft. In fact, I think he might be the worst player in the trade. He’s certainly not by far the most valuable, but that’s how he was valued.

  54. Here’s what bugs me: I think Dion Waiters was valued higher than any basketball player in this trade simply because he was the number 4 pick in the draft. In fact, I think he might be the worst player in the trade. He’s certainly not by far the most valuable, but that’s how he was valued.

    The #4 pick stuff definitely helped, but I think it was more that he averaged 15 points per game his rookie year and 16 his sophomore year.

  55. Am I the only one who doesnt believe there is even a remotely small chance in hell Melo gets traded?? Phil is obviously going to try for a quick rebuild this summer with Melo as the player he is going to build around. If next season is a disaster too than yes talk of trading Melo would then start becoming a possibility but sorry I just dont see any chance he is even going to be considered to be traded before next season.

    Nope, I agree with you.

    You can’t do a long term rebuild when you’re missing a key pick (like we are with our 2016). I still think our best move is to explore trading him to Toronto to get our pick back.

  56. OKC got the third scorer they need! Sure, he’s objectively terrible at scoring, but points man.

    Dion Waiters legitimately believes he’s better than Kyrie Irving and the Cavs were conspiring against him. He sucks and he’s delusional. If OKC plays him big minutes they’re gonna miss the playoffs.

  57. Who is giving us a first round pick for half a season of iman shumpert?

    At this time last year Shumpert could have gotten Teague or Collison without giving up a pick. Those are two guys that the Knicks would be lucky to get with their max contracts next summer. But they can’t. The best they’re gonna do with their new money is throw it at Greg Monroe and hope Detroit doesn’t match it.

  58. I think it is possible that they’ll try for Brandon Knight or Patrick Beverley and then someone akin to Wesley Matthews. That’d be about $22 million there, then use the remaining $5 million on another player. The problem there is that they’ll need a big man still, as they’re foolishly still tied to Melo at the three.

  59. I’m very much in the “eh” category on this trade as well. Shump wasn’t fetching a king’s ransom at this point, and I’m thrilled to see the back of JR, but I’m also in the camp that would have rather have seen us focus on acquiring as many assets as possible in any trades, rather than Jax’s focus on cap space.. Yeah, we have $27M to work with, but the talent base on the roster is zero. Say we get two solid players with that cap space – lets call them Wesley Matthews and Tobias Harris, and draft Okafor. That’s a pretty good outcome it looks like to me – not the best, but far from the worst. Is a Calderon, Matthews, Harris, Melo, Okafor team really that good? With horrible depth and aging, crippled Melo?

    As Max put it elsewhere, free agency is the place where you typically get the least value for $ unless you can get a super duper max guy like Lebron or you find a hit in the bargain aisle. Our current roster is basically Melo and Calderon, more bad value for $. Unless Okafor/Towns is basically Tim Duncan right out of the gate, you can’t add average value to bad value and get great value. This is definitely our best recipe for building a 45 win team next year. I’m just not sure I see the upside down this path.

    Also sidenote: this trade makes it even more obvious how much of a disaster the Tyson trade was. Dalembert who was the secondary piece has now been waived, and with Phil’s focus on cap space it seems pretty clear we’d prefer not to have Calderon at this point if we could ditch him for free. Plus we declined Larkin’s option for pretty much the same reason. Not exactly a haul.

  60. I think it is possible that they’ll try for Brandon Knight or Patrick Beverley and then someone akin to Wesley Matthews. That’d be about $22 million there, then use the remaining $5 million on another player. The problem there is that they’ll need a big man still, as they’re foolishly still tied to Melo at the three.

    Obviously we are all just speculating here, but I think your prices are very low there. That cap rise is right around the corner and I think you’re going to see prices go up, up, up. I think Knight+Matthews is right around $27M, possibly higher. No way do those guys get $22M combined.

  61. Obviously we are all just speculating here, but I think your prices are very low there. That cap rise is right around the corner and I think you’re going to see prices go up, up, up. I think Knight+Matthews is right around $27M, possibly higher. No way do those guys get $22M combined.

    If everyone’s prices go up insanely, then sure, everyone’s prices go up insanely. But Matthews at $10 million is 20% increase on what Trevor Ariza got and he’ll be the same age as Ariza was this past offseason and not substantially better. $12 million for Brandon Knight is a lot of money. The Bucks didn’t extend Knight this offseason, after all, so I dunno if they match on $12 million.

  62. If everyone’s prices go up insanely, then sure, everyone’s prices go up insanely. But Matthews at $10 million is 20% increase on what Trevor Ariza got and he’ll be the same age as Ariza was this past offseason and not substantially better. $12 million for Brandon Knight is a lot of money. The Bucks didn’t extend Knight this offseason, after all, so I dunno if they match on $12 million.

    I think he is better than Ariza, and I think perception of his trajectory (i.e. Matthews has continued to get better while Ariza has basically been flat for a long time) will really help Matthews when it’s time to get paid. Plus Ariza was always a bit of an odd bargain if you compare to what other wings got paid last offseason.

    $12M is what Kemba ended up getting paid last offseason and I think Knight is slightly better, plus rising prices. Obviously there’s no way to resolve this debate until the summer so I’ll leave it there.

    My general point is that I think some people are looking at $27M in cap space and thinking that it’s a ton when in reality it may be more like 2 above-average starters, particularly once you factor in that the Knicks aren’t necessarily going to get their pick of the litter.

  63. My general point is that I think some people are looking at $27M in cap space and thinking that it’s a ton when in reality it may be more like 2 above-average starters, particularly once you factor in that the Knicks aren’t necessarily going to get their pick of the litter.

    I agree that it’s 2 above-average starters. I just think it’ll be 2 above-average starters plus room to sign a much lesser player. Take Beverley for instance, can the Rockets even afford to match a $12 million offer on him?

  64. Well, I’m guessing we’ll be able to see a lot more of Cole after this trade. I know he has a lot of fans on this forum. Maybe too many and then we’d get jokes about why are we obsessing on Cole when we have a chance to go deep into the playoffs this year. Remember that optimistic assessment at the beginning of the season? And then we beat the cavs and the sky was the limit. Now being the worst team in the history of the League is the limit. But back to Cole. You put him in and you get numbers: rebounds and defense and the baby hook here and there. Is it not the case, though, that he’s the only young guy we’ve got with an upside? THJ has already settled into mediocrity. I wonder what the atmosphere is at the Garden now. Will fans show up wearing paper bags like the old Saints trick? A long way from Linsanity, says I.

  65. The problem is not that Jackson is making “bad” trades. It’s that he’s not making good trades.

    What do we have to show for Tyson Chandler (arguably still one of the best Cs in the game)?

    1. Dalembert was having the worst year of his career in the triangle and now he is gone for nothing.
    2. Larkin is probably not going to be resigned.
    3. Calderon is having one of the worst years of his career in the triangle and is now considered a bad contract that may have to be moved (by some).

    So we wound up with two second round picks, neither of which is a rotation player.

    What did we get for Shumpert (a 1st round pick that OKC, CLE, LAC, and others have been interested in)?

    1. We got rid of JR Smith.

    Don’t get me wrong. I love the fact that we are getting rid of JR Smith. But it was not a lock he was going to opt in next year. He might have opted out. Under no circumstances are the Knicks going to be a contender next year anyway. So why not hope he opts out and if not not sit on him for another year and just eat the mistake of resigning him. Then you get to trade Shumpert independently and actually get something back that will help long term assuming you don’t think Shump fits. It’s not that much extra cap space and there’s no guarantee we can use it more effectively next year than the year after that.

    This is Donnie Walsh II. We keep giving up more long term value than we are receiving for some kind of “perceived” short term gain.

    Arguably, we gave away two players that are going to start for contenders (they are already saying Shump will probably start for the Cavs) and we have nothing to show for it.

    There’s no way these are good moves even if you can talk yourself into thinking they weren’t bad moves because the Knicks were going to lose them anyway. The idea is to get something for them!

  66. @73 Those Shump trades were on the table last year and the year before, not this year. Grunwald passed up on trading Shump, not Jackson. I guess he could have tried to make those trades this off season but I don’t think you can fault him for wanting to see if Shump was worth keeping around.

    Shump has spent half of his career injured. His value was potential based and once he went into his final year of his contract, his value plummeted especially after his hot start faded and he got injured, again. And those offers you mention, we have no way of knowing if they were still there by the time Phil took over and this past summer. If we wanted value for Shump the time to trade him was during our 54 win season or even last year as a package for Lowry or Teague.

  67. His d league numbers suggest he can rebound, play defense, and hit shots at a rate high enough to keep defenses honest. Certainly seems worth a shot.

  68. @76 Just because the trades were on the table last year that does not mean there weren’t good trades (or at least better than this) available on the table this year. We don’t know because Jackson did this to get rid of JR and save money. Do you honestly think Shump’s value has declined so much since last year given that the Cavs are already saying they are probably going to START HIM as soon he’s back to 100%?

    @74 I will grant you that JR Smith would opt in at this snapshot in time, but that was not my entire argument.

    1. There’s still more than 1/2 a season to go where he could have returned to form and increased his value. Then he would have been worth more than 6M as one of the better 6th men in the league (albeit a pain in the butt).

    2. Even if he opted in, what’s the big deal if we suffered through another year of him when we are not going to be a contender next year anyway no matter who we sign.

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