NY Post: Knicks pick Rokas Jokubaitis could join NBA sooner than expected

From Marc Berman:

Maybe Lithuanian combo guard Rokas Jokubaitis won’t turn into a European “stash” pick after all.

After the Knicks’ second Las Vegas summer-league practice, Jokubaitis, selected 34th in last Thursday’s NBA draft, said it’s still an “option” to come this season, though he’d have to be bought out from his Spanish League team.

That club, Barcelona, is allowing the lefty Lithuanian to play three summer-league games for the Knicks.

“Yeah, there is an option,” Jokubaitis said on a Zoom call Friday. “But it will be very, very intriguing thing. I’m into Europe. But if something will go very well plans could be changed, would change. I don’t know what to expect, but I’m looking forward to summer league and we’ll see how it will go. Right now the plan is to go to Europe, but you never know in basketball, because basketball is a sport where anything can happen.”

I don’t even get this debate. So, Barcelona will let him play three games and if he has somehow proven himself in three games (which is absurd), they’ll let him buy his contract out and the Knicks can sign him to a two-year deal using the room? That doesn’t sound like it makes a whole lot of sense period, no?

But hey, I’ll be looking forward to seeing him play!

By the way, it’s kind of funny how his shitty Olympics has seemed to get a lot of people to sour on Vildoza. Way too small of a sample size, people!

As part of our all-poll content…

Do you think Rokas Jokubaitis will be on the Knicks roster this season?

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224 thoughts to “NY Post: Knicks pick Rokas Jokubaitis could join NBA sooner than expected”

  1. Think Rokas is unlikely unless Vildoza really flames out, and even then he’ll get better experience in Spain than riding the pine here.

    I’m still pretty high on Vildoza. He was playing off the ball at in the Olympics and Argentina didn’t really seem to have it together as a team.

    Vildoza shot poorly from 3, but we all know it’s a volatile shot. His numbers are pretty good otherwise. He was unconscious during the exhibition series.

    It was 4 games, 3 against very strong opposition in Slovenia, Spain, & Aus. Spain & Australia are probably top 4 teams along with USA & France. Slovenia is going to jump a few ranking spots, and it wasn’t just Doncic either (but yeah mostly him).

  2. I’m looking forward to seeing Vildoza and all our rookies play in Summer League. We’ve had a lot of good news recently. Good play from our prospects would just be icing on the cake.

  3. I officially became a citizen of Nashville today! Big move in my life. Super excited. Decided to change careers and just do something new. I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month. I’m going to be working on the MLS Stadium they’re building downtown.

    Literally went from living in the woods to walking to everything. Also why my stress level is insane. Lol

  4. I officially became a citizen of Nashville today! Big move in my life. Super excited. Decided to change careers and just do something new. I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month. I’m going to be working on the MLS Stadium they’re building downtown.

    Best of luck!

  5. McBride officially signed, too. Terms not disclosed yet. Dunno if they had cap space to spare, if they’re using the room, giving him a minimum deal, or what.

  6. bidiong the not so great: I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month.

    My grandfather and dad were IBEW and Lady Jowles and I work white-collar jobs in the industry. Congrats — it’s a great career, especially on the union side. You’ll never fail to find work in it. The Pacific NW is impossibly expensive to live in, but shops here are killing each other to not just find talented people, but warm bodies to fill out the ranks. You’ll never be hurting for work, so long as projects are still getting funding. And even then, you can always go over to the service side, if that’s more your speed.

  7. bidiong the not so great:
    I officially became a citizen of Nashville today! Big move in my life. Super excited. Decided to change careers and just do something new. I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month. I’m going to be working on the MLS Stadium they’re building downtown.

    Literally went from living in the woods to walking to everything. Also why my stress level is insane. Lol

    Congrats and best wishes Bidiong!

  8. McBride officially signed, too. Terms not disclosed yet. Dunno if they had cap space to spare, if they’re using the room, giving him a minimum deal, or what.

    They definitely had cap space after Grimes took less than his cap hold, right?

  9. No need to speed Rokas in,
    he’ll play against strong competition in ACB and Euroleague (for instance, the Milano’s Euroleague team has 7 former NBAers including former Knicks Jerian Grant and Chacho Rodriguez) and he can come here next summer.

    The Knicks are a very deep team and playing significant minutes overseas is better for him than playing garbage time (rarely available with Thibs) or in the G-League.

  10. bidiong the not so great: I officially became a citizen of Nashville today! Big move in my life. Super excited. Decided to change careers and just do something new. I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month.

    Congrats Bidiong, on the new job, new city, new way of life. Good luck and all the best!
    PS: About the stress you can always come here, we’re here for each other.

  11. Just to make it clear, in the other thread i was not advocating for us to get rid of Vildoza, it’s just that i don’t see the money working, if all values are like announced. So i thought, this only makes sense if they waive Vildoza, just that. But then TNFH suggested we waive him and sign him with the room exception, so Vildoza is here to stay. ;)
    About Rokas, he looked too raw for the NBA, at least one year in Barcelona is recommended, maybe two depending on how he develops.

  12. Theo Pinson, a vibrant joy in locker room & bench, has joined the defending champs. Pinson will play for Milwaukee's summer-league team. Pinson is in 4th season & can't be back on 2-way with Knicks – as much as Leon Rose would love to have him. Knicks hold a 2-way spot open.— Marc Berman (@NYPost_Berman) August 7, 2021

    Sims/Simms 2021!

    With Grimes signing for less than his cap hold (doesn’t seem like that happens often but Berman says he signed for $1.8M), I’m pretty sure we can sign McBride with space without having to waive Vildoza provided Kemba’s cap hit is exactly $8M.

    Would let us keep the Room Exception, though the roster is at least temporarily full besides the two-way slots.

  13. Pinson clearly had an impact on the locker room and culture, and I do believe there’s value to that, especially on a team that’s so new, where the franchise has such a long history of losing. But with so many guys returning — and the team’s biggest malcontent now playing in Phoenix — you would think that the culture is now in place and Pinson’s chemistry magic is no longer quite as necessary. I prefer devoting both two-way spots to young prospects, whether it’s Sims/Simms or some other combination.

  14. I’m originally from Nashville and lived there the first 22 years of my life. It’s grown a lot since I left there in the early 2000s. There’s a lot going on there! I think you’ll love it! I’ll put together a list of OG Nashville spots to check out for ya. Very happy for you!

  15. swiftandabundant:
    I’m originally from Nashville and lived there the first 22 years of my life. It’s grown a lot since I left there in the early 2000s. There’s a lot going on there! I think you’ll love it!I’ll put together a list of OG Nashville spots to check out for ya. Very happy for you!

    Much appreciated!

  16. i am pretty sure berman above is actually wrong about theo being ineligible for a two-way. this would be irrelevant except that since berman wouldn’t recognize the cba if it was on his toilet paper, we might presume someone from the knicks fed him this mistake.

    the us defensive effort has been there from the start tonight, tho the offense has been 80pct durant or tatum going 1 on 1. but it’s durant so all is good.

  17. Owen:
    I think I may be falling for thisMustapha Fall character…

    Fall is a tough guy for sure. After watching Fournier play, I think I’ll miss Bullock this season.

  18. His defense is poor. But Thibs will sprinkle his magic grit on him and it will all be good.

  19. Owen:
    His defense is poor. But Thibs will sprinkle his magic grit on him and it will all be good.

    I see a little too much of an undisciplined chucker with meh defense for me. I hope I’m wrong.

  20. Seeing Frank in there made me chuckle

    Dametime really only kicks in after he has gotten 25 shots off I believe.

    Rudy Gobert is pretty damn good. They are going to be a tough out.

  21. Weird choice by the French coach to not unleash a certain someone to shut down Durant?

  22. You would never know that Durant missed a whole season just two seasons ago due to a major injury. He’s amazing.

  23. Holiday is by far the best defensive guard on the planet, his defense is ridiculously good.

  24. Fournier isn’t doing great but he’s being defended hard. He made a nice touch pass for an open three at the end of the quarter

  25. Maaaaaan Fournier should’ve shot that instead of passing to you know what never mind

  26. France played tough, gotta give them credit. They needed another scorer to get the big buckets. Without Durant, tough to see USA winning gold here. Amazing player.

  27. You know who played all of the critical minutes for France. What was their coach thinking?

  28. ptmilo:
    fyi i was rooting for frank to hit that corner three he airballed deport me

    I hope we somehow resign him. Someone will.

  29. DudeInKnicksTown:
    You know who played all of the critical minutes for France. What was their coach thinking?

    They did better with him in than with him out even though he didn’t seem to do much. We’ve seen that many times.

  30. best of luck bidiong…was just thinking the other day what trade skills might be a good direction to steer one of the kids in, electrician is a really solid one…

    got a good friend whom does radiology, one of the kids is thinking towards that direction, not an easy job, but, solid work…I was 40 before I learned a decent skill…

    one of the best bits of advice I got when I first moved in to my home was to imagine how things would be in three to six months…that really helped me get past looking at the whole thing in its entirety and all the little details that would need to be taken care of as I settled in…

    enjoy…

  31. okay so, I’m watching frank like I’m not a knick fan and been watching him intently for several years…

    I would look at some film, look at his physical stats and think there may be an NBA rotation player there…

    frank needs a year in the g-league though…he still looks like he’s very unsure on offense…he is getting better at getting in passing lanes on defense…

    I wonder about his level of conditioning though with a lot of his injuries…

  32. ***This is Frank’s career in a nutshell, isn’t it?***

    The Redaction in Action.

  33. As for Fournier, he looks like Jafar from the live-action Aladdin movie. Not sure if that’s a good nickname or not. Depends on how mean he turns out to be, I guess.

  34. This olympics were a solid reminder that the true NBA elite superstars are just levels above other star players. Every single game Kevin Durant was the best player on the court and it wasn’t particularly close. Very entertaining game to watch.

  35. Frank was balling out in the 4th quarter. Amazing
    USA perimeter defense plus KD was too much for France.

    That blocked free throw off the rim by Draymond was crazy. I’ve never seen anything like that and it was legal!

    Fournier looked ok, but Holiday was making his life difficult for most of the night.

  36. Donnie Walsh:
    As for Fournier, he looks like Jafar from the live-action Aladdin movie. Not sure if that’s a good nickname or not. Depends on how mean he turns out to be, I guess.

    I can’t stop laughing now.

  37. I know they had to do it of course, but paying Durant 50+MM in his age 36-37 season makes me a little queasy.
    Harden will be next, through his age 36 season.

    I guess it doesn’t matter, since they’re very likely to win a championship either this coming season or next.

    Bruno Almeida: Every single game Kevin Durant was the best player on the court and it wasn’t particularly close.

    This is pretty much true in the NBA also. Say what you will about his personality – the dude is a ridiculous basketball player. Other than Lebron maybe, Durant is probably the most physically gifted player in NBA history.

  38. I was reading the thread and I’m not sure if yesterday’s game told us that we should keep Frank or not? Someone help me with this, please, we all know all things Frank is the most important matter of our lives. :D

    And the same about Jafar… is he good or is he bad? :P Just kiddin, being defended by a DPOY candidate is not easy for anybody.

  39. I am not sure how you leave Mitchell Robinson off the next Olympic team given the way you can goaltend. I can’t think of any American who would do a better job of scraping the rim. Incredibly heady play by Dray knocking that ball off. There were a few big moments. Jrue had a couple huge defense plays, Lavine had a brick that bounced in. It was pretty narrow.

    Gobert was clearly the second best player. It seems the US could have used another big other than Bam and Dray.

    Still, good win but if the US doesn’t bring a player like Durant to the next games they won’t win.

  40. ptmilo: i am pretty sure berman above is actually wrong about theo being ineligible for a two-way. this would be irrelevant except that since berman wouldn’t recognize the cba if it was on his toilet paper, we might presume someone from the knicks fed him this mistake.

    I think he is ineligible because the Knicks claimed him from waivers before the 2019-20 season was over, so that counted as the first season on a Knicks uniform (although we weren’t playing anymore that season). Then he was on a 2-way with us last season, making it two seasons on the same team on a 2-way contract, thus being ineligible to stay on the Knicks on a 2-way contract.
    He split the 2019-20 with the Nets (2nd season on a 2-way contract there) and the Knicks, so he’s eligible to sign a 2-way contract for his 4th season in the NBA with all the teams except the Knicks and the Nets.
    So yeah, Berman was wrong because he is so dumb that he said Pinson has 4 years experience… just go check the Basketball-Reference page, you moron. I can’t believe Berman is this bad at his work and yet keeps the job for decades.

  41. I’m seeing now that Pinson was on a regular contract with the Nets on the 2019-20 season (i thought it was a 2-way), so maybe he only has one year of a 2-way with the Knicks and was really eligible for a 2nd season on a 2-way contract. Either way, Berman is completely wrong on what he wrote.

  42. In case you wanna bet on Paris 24k gold…
    bet on Slovenia!!!
    Congrats Dtricky…Ausies were a better team today.

  43. cybersoze:
    I was reading the thread and I’m not sure if yesterday’s game told us that we should keep Frank or not? Someone help me with this, please, we all know all things Frank is the most important matter of our lives. :D

    And the same about Jafar… is he good or is he bad? :P Just kiddin, being defended by a DPOY candidate is not easy for anybody.

    I watched the whole game. Frank didn’t play much at all in the first half and it was clear that the guards who played for France then were much smoother on offense. But he played most or all of the fourth quarter and he made some plays. He had five points on four shots in eleven minutes, two assists, a rebound and a turnover. This is actually better than he used to be on offense, but not great. France outscored the US 19 to 16 in the fourth quarter and they didn’t win any other quarter, so I can see why the coach kept him in. My conclusion is Frank is improving on offense, but it’s agonizingly slow. If you think he will continue to improve, you could bring him back, but honestly he might fit better on a different sort of team than the Knicks.

    Jafar was one of France’s top scorers for the whole olympics and he was guarded well by a US team that was really working hard on defense. He scored 16 points on 15 shots in 31 minutes despite shooting two for nine from three point land. Most NBA teams are not going to be able to guard him like he was guarded by the US, so he should do better for the Knicks. I see him as able to do his role as secondary scorer for the Knicks, but I’m not expecting to be blown away by his scoring.

    All that said, playing in the Olympics has been beneficial to players in the past and maybe Frank’s and Fournier’s games will be better because of it.

  44. Sorry about the Slovenes. Fun squad.

    It’s amazing how competitive the Australians are at sports with just 25 million people.

  45. Also, Frank did create some havoc on defense in the fourth quarter.

    Not sure why I can’t edit posts anymore but it’s frustrating.

  46. Good point Owen. I focused on his offense because that’s what’s holding him back in the NBA, but he definitely helped France with his defense.

  47. I saw the last 3 minutes of the game. Frank did a good job in crunch time taking a charge. Then he threw up a brick which basically sealed the game. What was Phil Jackson thinking when he drafted him?

    I’m indifferent about seeing Theo go. Nice guy. Good in the locker room. I wish him well.

    Looks like the Knicks have 1 open spot on the roster at the veteran’s minumum. Who would you like to see? I think we need another big, but a big big. One that can collect fouls and can’t get pushed around by some of the massive centers. It’s something we lack. Demarcus Cousins? Tacko Falls? Aron Baynes? Hey, Luke Kornet’s available.

  48. I’m seeing now that Pinson was on a regular contract with the Nets on the 2019-20 season (i thought it was a 2-way), so maybe he only has one year of a 2-way with the Knicks and was really eligible for a 2nd season on a 2-way contract.

    it makes no difference. the same-team limit for two-ways is more than 3 years.

  49. Looks like the Knicks have 1 open spot on the roster at the veteran’s minumum. Who would you like to see? I think we need another big, but a big big. One that can collect fouls and can’t get pushed around by some of the massive centers. It’s something we lack. Demarcus Cousins? Tacko Falls? Aron Baynes? Hey, Luke Kornet’s available.

    No open roster spot at the moment, unless the team doesn’t pick up Vildoza’s option for next season. Here’s where things stand:

    C: Mitch, Noel, Taj (3)
    PF: Randle, Obi (2)
    SF: RJ, Burks, Knox (3)
    SG: Fournier, IQ, Grimes (3)
    PG: Kemba, Rose, McBride, Vildoza (4)

    That’s 15. Figure Jericho Sims gets a two-way deal, that leaves another two-way slot open, but you can’t sign a vet big man with that. Besides, I think we would do much better with more help on the wing, particularly someone who can defend a little. But as we talked about yesterday, there’s barely anyone left in free agency that qualifies, with our divisive French Prince sadly being one of the best options remaining.

    If the team can make the cap math work to fit all three of Kemba, McBride, and Vildoza into our remaining space, I imagine that’s the 15 we break camp with. Though if Vildoza looks absolutely not ready to make the jump in leagues, McBride looks ready to play immediately, and/or a tantalizing player gets cut by another team, things could change.

  50. I’d look to trade Knox and see if we can get James Ennis with the room exception (if we can actually hang onto it i.e. we don’t need it to re-sign Vildoza after waiving him).

    Our wing depth looks like a pretty big weakness, and I don’t think even the most Knoxtimistic people (side note: our 2018 lottery bust deserves just as many irrational dead enders as our 2017 lottery bust—someone take up his cause) view him as a 3 anymore.

  51. There’s not so much left,
    that said if we really want to cut someone and refill the the roster spot
    I’d rather sign Rondae Hollis-Jefferson as a wing defender than another big.

  52. I saw the last 3 minutes of the game. Frank did a good job in crunch time taking a charge. Then he threw up a brick which basically sealed the game. What was Phil Jackson thinking when he drafted him?

    He also drilled a beautiful three pointer from far that hit nothing but net earlier in the quarter that was really needed at the time, so his offense was a mixed bag, not a total negative.

  53. @wojespn
    All-Star G Jimmy Butler has signed a four-year, $184M extension to stay with the Miami Heat, his agent Bernie Lee tells ESPN. Butler will be locked into the deal — with a player option — through 2025-2026.

  54. I’d look to trade Knox and see if we can get James Ennis with the room exception

    Knox is going to make nearly $6 million this season. If we were using him as salary filler in a larger deal, I could see another team taking a flier on him. But at this stage of the offseason, with how strapped for cap room most of the league is, who both has the space for Knox and thinks they can make something out of him?

    (side note: our 2018 lottery bust deserves just as many irrational dead enders as our 2017 lottery bust—someone take up his cause)

    Admittedly, I’m a longstanding Frankophilie, but it always felt to me like Frank showed more on defense than Knox ever has on offense, even factoring in the occasional games where his jumper looked wet or he was playing like he just drank three Red Bulls. I’m not saying it’s impossible he becomes a useful back-of-the-rotation player for someone, just because he can shoot, but his ceiling on offense just seems lower than Frank’s on defense. And since both are godawful at the other’s specialty, I’m not surprised we’ve argued more about one than the other.

  55. We have 3 Cs, I don’t think we need another big. If we need one, Jericho Sims can play with us for 45 days.

    I’d cut Knox for Frank 100 times out of 100 & I don’t like Frank. Knox is nearly as useless on offense as Frank and is godawful at defense.

    That said, we could just sign another non-crappy player in the league.

    Doubt there’s any real chance we cut Knox anyway. Teams don’t cut #8 picks.

  56. Doubt there’s any real chance we cut Knox anyway. Teams don’t cut #8 picks.

    Yeah, he’ll either play out the season with us (mostly on the bench, since Grimes should get to play ahead of him) or be filler for a mid-season trade. We’re not going to cut him just to create a roster spot.

  57. ptmilo:
    I’m seeing now that Pinson was on a regular contract with the Nets on the 2019-20 season (i thought it was a 2-way), so maybe he only has one year of a 2-way with the Knicks and was really eligible for a 2nd season on a 2-way contract.
    it makes no difference.the same-team limit for two-ways is more than 3 years.

    Oh, ok. I thought there was a 2 year limit for a player on a 2-way contract on the same team.

  58. Early Bird: We have 3 Cs, I don’t think we need another big. If we need one, Jericho Sims can play with us for 45 days.

    The special rules for the 2-way contracts in these 2 covid seasons has carried over to this new season.

    From NBA.com:
    • Two-Way Player Rules: For the 2021-22 season, each two-way player will be paid a flat salary equal to 50% of the minimum player salary applicable to a player with zero years of service. A player under a two-way contract will be permitted to be on the NBA team’s active list for no more than 50 games during the regular season, with no limit on practices, workouts or other activities with the NBA team. In addition, there will be no deadline for signing two-way contracts with respect to the 2021-22 season, a change from the rule in the Collective Bargaining Agreement that prohibits teams from signing a player to a two-way contract after Jan. 15 of any season.

    It’s nice to have them active for 50 games, if managed right, you’ll have them available all the times you need them. And it’s also nice that they don’t need to be sent to the G-League, unless you want it of course, meaning they can practice all year with the first team.

  59. Knick fan not in NJ: All that said, playing in the Olympics has been beneficial to players in the past and maybe Frank’s and Fournier’s games will be better because of it.

    Thanks for the recap, man. Awesome work. :)
    I’m excited about Jafar, i think his problem is defense, and we have the best coach to minimize that flaw.
    And maybe we should bring Frank back, to end the Charlie Ward curse once and for all. There’s not many better options than Frank right now, for 3rd stringer wing.

  60. bidiong the not so great:
    I officially became a citizen of Nashville today! Big move in my life. Super excited. Decided to change careers and just do something new. I joined the IBEW and am starting as an electrician next month. I’m going to be working on the MLS Stadium they’re building downtown.

    Literally went from living in the woods to walking to everything. Also why my stress level is insane. Lol

    Hey, congrats, fellow Tennessean!

  61. Frank was an impact player in the Gold Medal Olympic game last night. He’ll add more than Vildoza or Knox will. We’ll be making a big mistake not bringing him back. I told you so.

  62. Delighted by the near-consensus on bringing back Frank. Was not expecting that.

    Of course, there’s a strange and unnatural silence emanating from the Portland region…

  63. Over the years, Knicks fans had grown so thoroughly sickened by a particular type of suck (zero conscience, low efficiency chucker with nary a fuck to give on defense) that Frank’s brand of suck (pretty much the exact opposite) was hailed as a welcome change. That’s why many (myself included) warmed up to him and a handful (not me any longer, but I wish I had a reason to) continue to defend him to this day.

    Knox pretty much fits the description of the first type of suck of which we’d all had a bellyful (to be fair, though, he does seem to try on D. He’s just laughably awful at it) It certainly didn’t help that Fizdale gave him the keys to the offense right out of the gate, leaving no opportunity for him to get the benefit of the doubt that young, unknown players getting fewer minutes are sometimes afforded. By the end of his rookie season, Knox was not just badly exposed – he was overexposed. If he had any defenders at the start of the season, they had all headed to the hills by then.

    Diogenes had a better chance of finding an honest man than you would of finding a Knicks fan willing to champion the cause of Kevin Knox. It’s kinda sad ’cause he comes across as a decent human so I feel a bit guilty about the intensity of my loathing of him as a player. I’ll be happy when he’s no longer a Knick. OTOH, I will feel a bit wistful on the day Franks says his final goodbyes. I still have a soft spot for the guy even though I have come to fully accept the fact that he sucks and likely always will. As I’ve said, his was a different kind of suck and, yeah, I’ll miss it when it’s gone.

  64. We don’t have a roster spot for Jalen Johnson or Keon Johnson or any number of guys we could have selected at 19, but we have a roster spot for Frank.

    That is some galaxy brain shit right there.

  65. Have the Johnsons ever played in the final quarter of the Olympic Gold Medal game and impacted it? I’ll wait.

  66. If any team expresses interest in Knox we should hold out for nothing less than the 61st pick in 2028 as a trade return. His talent demands it.

  67. Knox will never ever see the floor this year. He’ll only play at the end of blowouts, and Thibs doesn’t consider it a blowout unless a team is leading by 30 with less than a minute left.

  68. I’m not pro-Frank, I’m just anti-Knox. I’m pro anyone who isn’t Knox. I’d keep Aamir Simms over Frank if he looks good in SL & training camp or most other undrafted FAs or vets. But teams aren’t likely to cut 1st rd picks.

  69. geez…frank had a miracle good few minutes (and sucked the rest of the tourney) and now its a good idea to bring him back…pleez…let it go..stumbling into playing well one out of every five games is not really what we want on the roster…

  70. Didn’t watch the Final but i get the feeling bout Frank’s performance.
    His game ain’t technically great offensively but the kid’s got soul.
    That’s why he’s so beloved by so many while at the same time its impossible for many others to understand why he’s so beloved!

    Soul Power

    Unfortunately Sports ain’t Art to be judged by our feelings instead of the numbers and that’s why as long as Frank ain’t upgrading his numbers he’ll remain a bball enigma living on the edge of a constant debate.

  71. on the other hand …i like fournier over bullock…better handle…can run the team if needed…seems like a similar type of shooter…really battled hard last night…

  72. The wing depth is definitely a concern, especially someone who can defend after losing Bullock. Hollis Jefferson would be my pick of the remaining options.

    Jettison Knox for whatever you can get at some point. His value is likely to decrease even more with sub optimal performances this regular season. I see little hope for him redeeming himself. A giraffe on roller skates is the best description I’ve heard about him.

  73. congrats Bidiong, all the best in this new phase of your life

    and I’ve seen enough. Evan “Jafar” Fournier it is.

    (Jafarnier?)

  74. Uh-oh…

    @wojespn
    Reporting with @RamonaShelburne on ESPN: The NBA has opened up investigations into possible tampering violations involving two sign-and-trade deals completed in free agency: New Orleans and Chicago centered on Lonzo Ball, and Toronto and Miami centered on Kyle Lowry. Story soon.

  75. @wojespn
    Two years ago, NBA elevated maximum tampering fine to $10M for teams and opened door for suspension of executives, forfeiture of draft picks and voiding of contracts. Team execs can also have their communications – such as phone records, texts and emails – randomly audited.

    Be fascinating to see what they do here.

  76. It’s a pretty poorly kept secret, NBA really should do something significant. Else, why have the tampering rule at all.

  77. ooh, interesting news.

    Why isn’t Knox just in the G League? he needs to salvage his career and he won’t do it here.

  78. We need a defensive wing who can make an occasional three. Any ideas on who is out there that fits the description?

  79. Wait, how are we going to re-sign Frank? Hasn’t a smart team already picked him up with the intention of making him a key rotation player and winning many championships? The prophecy has been fulfilled, right? I’m confused.

  80. Why isn’t Knox just in the G League? he needs to salvage his career and he won’t do it here.

    Knox should have spent his first season and a half (at least) in the G League instead of being a tank commander, at least from a player development POV. If I’m the Knicks (or whatever team that trades for him for a 2026 protected 2nd rounder in December), I’m either jettisoning him for whatever I can get (a protected 2026 2RP might be too much to ask for) or I’m playing him as much as is possible without burning the team’s W/L record and deciding whether to keep him. He’s still among the league’s worst players, and almost certainly a bottom-5 player in the last three combined seasons. He is so, so, so bad.

    I don’t mean to say I believe he’ll suddenly get good, but what’s the point of seeing him play against lesser competition when real NBA salary cap dollars are at stake next season and beyond?

  81. thenoblefacehumper: Wait, how are we going to re-sign Frank? Hasn’t a smart team already picked him up with the intention of making him a key rotation player and winning many championships?

    LOL

  82. berman with a nice piece on the kemba knee situation.. maybe nothing earth shattering but he does get a medical expert’s take:

    https://nypost.com/2021/08/06/kemba-walkers-knee-injury-could-become-dicey-knicks-situation

    Hsu said the stem-cell injections demonstrate severe wearing of the articular cartilage.

    Injections of platelet-enriched plasma have been used as a remedy for that malady. But in the past four years, the stem-cell method has gained steam. In this procedure, Walker reportedly had stem cells taken from his hip and injected into his knee cavity.

    “It can help pain and inflammation from arthritis,’’ Hsu said. “But the articular cartilage that lines the bone of the knee is wearing down.’’

    “Any GM would look at history of arthritis knee injuries in guards and would know that he’s on a game count or minutes count,’’ Hsu said. “He’s not going to be available all the time. I don’t know if you want a max salary on a guy like that, especially if you’re in your 30’s. If he was in his 20’s, there’s chance he can regenerate some of that tissue over time. It’s going to be dicey on how much he plays.’’

    I’ve never been a close watcher of Kemba and finally did the youtube daydream of old kemba highlights… and what i’ve noticed is that charlotte kemba cuts and stops at times very volently… almost reminds me of rose in terms of style on his crossovers and stepbacks.. and you can see all the times he’s putting immense stress on his knees like it’s almost bending each time.. made me wince a bit with the post hoc knowledge… i see it way less in his boston highlights probably due to the fact that is when his knee issues started flaring up… there’s obv no question that boston kemba had issues but was kind of eery to watch…

    but also pretty exciting if we get charlotte kemba back… that guy was good..

  83. The Kemba acquisition was great— all upside, very little downside. But it’s a little concerning how thin PG is for us if Kemba goes down for extended periods of time. I know we have several point guard-ish players on the roster, and that we have some other needs, but I’d feel better if some reasonably decent minutes-eating PG was on the roster.

    If and when Kemba goes down, Thibs is probably going to rely too heavily on Derrick Rose, and the cascading effect could be a bummer.

  84. definitely a good opportunity for kem-ba wal-ker to get to see up close how rose was able to adjust his conditioning and game to compete in the here and now…

    hopefully thibs takes pity on those guy’s knees and they spend some time together on the bench…

    thinking back on it, of all the moves so far this off-season, probably most excited to have nerlens back…

  85. I’m not excited about any one player. I’m more excited that all the pieces we hired seem to fit together well. That is much rarer than you might think. Look at Boston not finding a center that fits their team, the Knicks with Amare and Melo, or the current Chicago Bulls.

  86. just got back from a week long vacation in Belize. Did I miss anything? Just kidding, I was able to follow the action via Knickerblogger. Thank you very much. I’m ok with the off season. I think Bullock fits better with this team than Burks, even though I do think Burks is an overall better player. Hollis-Jefferson or Winslow would be my picks for that last roster spot. I can’t see Vildoza getting any playing time on this team now.

  87. You can feel Malcolm Gladwell and Michael Lewis pulling out their typewriters to write thinkpieces on the Japanese women’s basketball team’s improbable success….

  88. Knick fan not in NJ:
    I’m not excited about any one player.I’m more excited that all the pieces we hired seem to fit together well. That is much rarer than you might think.Look at Boston not finding a center that fits their team, the Knicks with Amare and Melo, or the current Chicago Bulls.

    Assuming health — a big if for a team that will start Kemba Walker — the roster makes a lot of sense, yes. We could really use a player like Reggie Bullock, even if I understand why they chose Burks over him. But we’ve got depth at every position and the players largely complement one another. It’s nice to see.

  89. Some questions for the cap experts:
    1. On my spreadsheet, not counting Taj and McBride (they sign later for the minimum), i can only come up with 7.72M in cap space for Kemba (for a 2/15.8M contract); You have more room on your cap calculations?
    2. This means we’ll only sign McBride when we’ll be over the cap, meaning it’ll be only a 2 year contract, right?

  90. RE: Jokubaitis
    I don’t think either of Jokubaitis or Vildoza will play for the Knicks this year. Of course we hold on to Jokubaitis as an insurance policy, but there’s no need to bring him over immediately. We can definitely afford to “stash” him for a season. Which brings me to my next point..

    I saw an article floating the idea of Knox, Mitch, and 2 2nds for Turner. I love Mitch and don’t want to trade him, but with the way this team plays- I’d do this in a heartbeat. In fact, I’d add Vildoza to that trade and keep the 2nds or at least one of them. I would miss Mitch’s versatility and insane athleticism on defense(cue Mitch hopping of the floor after being knocked down to fly out and block a 3 ball), but we really don’t lose much switching Mitch for Turner- if anything at all. It does give us more scoring when the offense goes stagnant. Turner is more likely to stay home on defense than Mitch because he doesn’t cover ground the way Mitch does, which probably lessens the pressure on Fornier and Kemba defensively..at least a tad. We still need solid effort from them out there. Someone get me a line to Rose so I can tell him to make this deal. How would teams defend that lineup? I know Thibs doesn’t like 10 man rotations, but whether we have Mitch or Turner- we have a really nice 10 man rotation

  91. Cyber, we have already officially signed McBride, whereas we have not yet signed Kemba, and have not yet guaranteed Vildoza’s contract for 21-22. So either we used some cap space for Deuce, and the Kemba deal isn’t quite as big as we think, or we signed Deuce using room money and it’s only a two year deal, or… I am unclear on what the deal is regarding signing rookie 2nd rounders to minimum contracts, in terms of length and cap impact. But maybe we just did that?

  92. I haven’t done any cap calculations, but my guess is we agreed to sign Kemba for whatever was left in our cap. Maybe that’s not quite $8M, but that would be ok for me.

  93. Alan: possible tampering violations involving two sign-and-trade deals completed in free agency: New Orleans and Chicago centered on Lonzo Ball, and Toronto and Miami centered on Kyle Lowry.

    I know this was brought up yesterday & I’m late to the party on it… but is it really conceivable that the NBA would go so far as to void these deals – which is apparently now one of the possible penalties for franchises found guilty of tampering.

    I have a difficult time seeing that happening. The only remotely similar precedent that comes to mind is Stern’s nixing of the CP3 to the Lakers deal several years back. That was pretty seismic. Now you’re talking about possibly upending the roster plans of four franchises which would escalate this offseason from wild to batshit crazy. I doubt Silver has the stones to take things that far but if he does…. wow!

  94. Count, I don’t think Silver would cancel the deals, if only because there’s no cap space left in the league and it would screw over Lonzo, et al. The league office is trying to punish organizations for skirting these rules, not players. But you could see some or all of these four teams lose a bunch of draft picks in the process. Though Chicago at this point doesn’t seem to have any draft picks left for a very long time.

  95. Thanks Alan and KFNINJ, it’s probably one of the scenarios you pointed. We’ll have to wait to know the full details.

  96. @Cyber,

    We don’t know the exact deal structures for many of the moves, so it’s difficult to know the exact amount of cap space.

    Some of the reported deals may include unlikely performance bonuses which free up to 15% of a deals value in extra cap space.

    If Vildoza gets cut, it’s easy to fit McBride into cap space. We can then re-sign Vildoza

    If Fournier can be turned into a S&T with Boston & agrees to an ascending deal with 8% increases, then you can get close even without cutting Vildoza. Unlikely performance bonuses or Kemba taking less money could cover it.

  97. Maybe we can sign and trade Jafar from Boston for Vildoza, with the secret agreement they waive him so we can sign him to the rum exception, which would force Silver to have everyone forfeit their drinks.

  98. The NBA is postponing Pacers-Wizards Summer League game tonight in Las Vegas due to health and safety protocols, sources tell @TheAthletic

    Per Shams. Maybe it wasn’t a good idea to hold summer league in a Covid hot spot during a variant surge?

  99. Curious to see SL lineups. Lot of guards to give playing time between McBride, Vildoza, & Rokas who all could be PGs.

    I’d guess IQ won’t get as much burn because he’s a known quantity & plays the same position as the above and also Grimes.

    Not sure if Aamir Simms will play SF or PF, probably a bit of both.

    Hope to see Obi dominate!!!

  100. BigBlueAL: Some real ugly offense at the beginning of this game.

    Indeed. I’m not checking the stats, but maybe FG10% for each team? ;D

  101. Knicks shot 5 for 23 including 1 for 11 from 3pt range in the 1st quarter, Raptors weren’t much better.

  102. Ugly game,
    Some drunk sailors playing pickup at the YMCA,
    with IQ the drunkest of all…

  103. Both Grimes and McBride missing easy layups on fastbreaks,
    IQ shooting like shit,
    Vildoza picked up by Barnes looking like a child…

    At least Obi is doing something on athleticism, Sims with energy…

  104. IQ by far the worst player on the floor…
    Didn’t he read the notes about the new rules on offensive fouls?

  105. Guessing Obi got told to play on the perimeter. He’s going to be a perimeter player in the NBA and there’s no reason he should play inside in SL. Even if he dominates inside it won’t mean much.

    SL lets Obi work on his game and he needs to work on his perimeter game. It’s not about winning in SL.

  106. Obi with 3 consecutive successful post plays! Finally plays the way i want him to play but imo he needs to go to the gym more and strengthen his upper body. Doesn’t convince me as a strong PF

  107. Sims can certainly get up there. I would simply throw the ball in his general direction a lot.

  108. Small sample size theater but hot takes incoming:

    Frustrating game from IQ but he did also put up 8 assists and 6 rebounds, and subjectively his handle/processing speed seemed a little better than last year. Still can’t play pg in pnr coverage but maybe he can pick up spot minutes more competently than last year.

    Grimes didn’t show much but made the right passing reads that lead to hockey assists and played solid enough d, that was enough for me to see for one SL game.

    Obi looks more like a player on both ends, but it’s not hard to when you’re athletic as he is and in summer league.

    McBride looks alright, his midrange is smooth, but I’d like to see him run the offense more and let IQ play SG, just to see what we have.

    Sims can jump really damn high, looks like mitch if Mitch didn’t have ADHD. Great debut.

    Vildoza continuing his Olympics mediocrity.

    No Rokas, really hope we see him next game.

    It was neither a promising nor a disappointing SL debut

  109. Didn’t watch but from the boxscore it looks like we just missed every 3pt shot we attempted. Presumably we won’t shoot 7/40 on 3s every time.

  110. Per Bondy:

    Knicks coach Dice Yashimoto said Rokas Jokubaitis is “situational” and he’ll play if there’s an opportunity. Not a good sign since he has to go back to Barcelona after the third game.

  111. Grimes seemed to struggle but did wind up making 3 of 8 from 3pt range and he added 4 rebs, 2 asts and a block.

    McBride missed all 4 of his 3pt attempts but was 3 for 4 from 2pt range and hit all 3 FTs. Also had 5 rebs, 2 asts and a really nice steal.

  112. It’s only one game, everything is a hot take but anyway… why watch the game if not to express the sensations?

    I’m dumb so I don’t get why we gave 22 minutes to 26-years old Wayne Selden while Rokas is “situational” and Simms played 2 minutes…
    Maybe a favor to some agent?

    Jericho impressed, high energy, highly athletic, his defense is more polished than I expected, you can see he was coached in college.

    I’m glad to see Obi work on his in & out game, he took a lot of threes (2-10) but was very effective at taking advantage of mismatches. His athleticism is a clear advantage in this kind of contests.

    I was expecting more from IQ, the ass/reb numbers are good, but the defense was bad and he had his usual mad bomber moments (5-17).

    I like McBride, he was active and his defense looks promising,
    Grimes’ shot looks sound, the rookies need to adapt to the new line.

    Vildoza was meh, but he had 3 assists in 8 minutes.

  113. Talking about our division rival Raptors,
    Scottie Barnes looks exactly like a high-lottery pick
    while Malachi Flynn played very well.

  114. I assume IQ and Obi won’t play in all 5 games and I would think Rokas being under contract with Barcelona they won’t play him much if at all to make sure he doesn’t get injured.

  115. Yes, I agree on the Rokas injury-risk,
    probably they just want to see him practice to get a feel.

  116. Vorkunov:

    Knicks prioritized Luca Vildoza today to take a look at him. We’ll see when we’ll see Jokubaitis this week.

  117. We may just want to prioritize looking at Vildoza, IQ, & McBride at PG because we need to get them ready for this year. We can wait on Rokas for a year, so no reason to run him out there right away, especially since he’s only gonna play 3 games anyways.

    Wouldn’t read much into Rokas not playing.

  118. McBride really can’t beat anybody off the dribble, but then again if he COULD beat people off the dribble he’d have been a lottery pick. The rest of his game seems pretty nice.

    Jericho Sims is a large human and he moves fairly well for such a large human. Good hands. Maybe he sticks around in the league as a poor man’s Mitch. Was definitely worth a flyer at 58.

    Grimes looked pedestrian but he knocked down a few shots.

  119. Comps:
    McBride: Marcus Smart
    Grimes: Courtney Lee
    Sims: Dwight Howard
    Luca: Austin Rivers

  120. who the heck is wayne selden and why is he taking luca’s or mcbride’s minutes…

    Sims with eye at rim level, most impressive rook today, easily.

    it’s funny how much his athleticism stands out on the court…

    wow, i don’t think quik could’ve played any worse, that looked awful…obi better learn to dribble, i don’t think thibs wants julius to play the five too much, and he’s too small to play center…i like obi a lot as a rebounder…

  121. We’re going to need a third point guard this season with Kemba and Rose’s health issues. Right now I’d say that McBride is our third best. I just hope that he can shoot.

  122. I agree about IQ, he looked terrible. He looked like he was having a hard time playing point instead of the two guard. I guess that’s one goal of the Knicks, to give him a real stint at point guard, but so far he’s failing at it. Sims was promising, no question. I didn’t get that good a feel for Grimes and McBride except that they didn’t clearly outplay their draft positions, but didn’t look awful either.

  123. didn’t catch the game… correct me if i’m wrong but the new foulbaiting rules went into effect for the summer league right? did that come into play at any point?

  124. They did dj, IQ went up for a three after he got a guy in the air and made an abnormal shooting motion to draw contact and it was a no call. IQ went up to the ref afterward and they informed him about the new contact rules from the look of it.

    Also, too early to say I told you so but Jalen Johnson had 20 points on 8-12 from the field, 1-2 from 3, man I wish we had him on our squad

  125. Jalen Green looking reeeeeeeeeally good.

    Also shouldn’t overreact to one summer league game but I already thought Jalen Johnson was going to make us mad for a long time to come, and his debut certainly did not disabuse me of that notion.

  126. I came to ask which guy we should have drafted was super impressive and that seems to be the answer….

  127. The reason Jalen Johnson dropped as much as he did were attitude and off the court issues no? Don’t think his talent was ever in question.

  128. The Hayes/Cade backcourt looking really nice out of the gate

  129. @MikeVorkunov
    The NBA has added an extra Summer League game for the Knicks tomorrow. The Knicks will play the Pacers at 2pm ET/11am PT

  130. there were questions about johnson’s half court game and really there wasn’t a ton of games to evaluate everything on… the shot and his ability to create off the dribble were legitimate and probably still huge question marks.. that’s on top of some character issues which may or may not have been overblown…

    lots of mystery surrounding him… but what we did see was a lot more good than bad….

  131. Jalen seems exactly the type to light it up in SL. Still would’ve taken him at 19

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