The Knicks and Raptors, after starts and stops and rumors swirling around on Sunday night, finally came to a reported agreement on a trade.
The Knicks will officially send at least Steve Novak, Marcus Camby, a 2014 second round pick (From OKC in the Ronnie Brewer trade) a 2016 First Round Pick (Which Denver can swap picks with because of the Melo trade), and a 2017 second round pick for Andrea Bargnani on July 10th.
Bargnani was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2006 draft, out of Italy, and spent the past few seasons battling injuries and declining play before the fans of Toronto turned on him.
He will be asked to possibly start at the power forward position or come off the bench. The assumption seems to be that his ability to stretch the floor will help to open up the paint for guys like Melo, Shumpert and Felton.
For the Raptors, they got rid of his contract and got a first round pick three years from now. That might be cause for celebration in that fine city.
Now the money does not match up as the trade is currently constructed and the expectation is that a player like Quentin Richardson or Earl Barron will be involved in a sign and trade with Toronto to complete this deal.
Like I wrote earlier last night, this trade to me comes down to the simple fact the Knicks gave up a first round pick in this trade. That to me is the only reason why most Knicks fans were against this trade. If it had just been Novak, Camby, S&T Richardson/Barron and two second round picks, nobody could really be that upset about it. Heck, one of the picks is in four years.
But the first round pick Toronto was able to pry from the Knicks seems to be the sticking point. Now although trading away another first round pick is frustrating, I personally believe the Knicks will be good in the 2015-2016 season. With that hope in mind, I figure that first round pick will be somewhere between 22-30. Not exactly prime real estate to find a game changing type player in the draft. So it might not be that bad in the long run.
Is this trade an ideal one? No it’s not.
Bargnani has under performed and been injured the past few seasons. He is not much of a rebounder and his shooting has been poor recently as well. But considering four of the pieces that went to Toronto mean almost nothing to the Knicks, it could seriously be a lot worse. The only question is what happens with that first round pick the Knicks gave up. Only time will tell and we got three years before we find out.
To me, this is a no brainer deal for the Knicks who need a big man to stretch opposing bigs in conference like Hibbert, Lopez and Noah further away from the basket. At the center position solely, Bargnani struggles defensively so it will be interesting to see what the Knicks do to assist his defensive inefficiencies.
Bargnani has two years remaining on his current contract with an $11.5 million early termination option next year that he is expected to waive.
This is a sign, in my mind, that they will shop Tyson Chandler and gauge his value while also committing some minutes for Carmelo at the small forward and not exclusively at big forward. Playing Melo and Bargnani at the 4/5 isn’t a very sound defensive or rebounding pairing. That said, putting Melo at the 3 and adding a tough power forward would round out a pretty balanced front court to play rotation minutes with or without Chandler.
One team that does not appear interested at the moment are the Golden State Warriors, but that could change based on the Dwight Howard situation. I spoke to someone close to the Warriors thinking who said there was nothing brewing on the Chandler trade front.
To be clear I don’t think Chandler is on his way out, but I think the Knicks would like to see what his value is on the trade market.