Multiple reports have stated that Pablo Prigioni will return to the Knicks on a three year deal with a team option for the third year.
Prigioni, a 35 year old rookie from Argentina, joined the Knicks last year on a one year deal and was a restricted free agent after receiving a qualifying offer earlier in the off-season.
He played 16 minutes per game last season averaging 3.5 points, 3.0 assists and 1.8 rebounds backing up both Jason Kidd and Raymond Felton for most of the season.
When he was inserted into the starting lineup on March 18th against Utah, the Knicks won the next 13 games and finished the regular season 16-2 overall.
In the post-season his minutes went up as he averaged 4.5 points, 3.2 assists, 1.5 rebounds and 1.3 steals. He scored 14 points in the game six win against the Celtics to help the Knicks advance to the second round.
Tommy DeeI thought Prigioni’s commitment to solid play on both sides of the ball was vastly underrated particularly down the stretch of the season when the Knicks were playing their best ball. His absence in key moments of the playoffs was one of Mike Woodson’s more baffling decisions. He’s a great role player on a very good basketball team.
With the Knicks already re-signing JR Smith earlier today, the good news just keeps on coming on this holiday with Prigioni now coming back as well.
Prigioni is a very solid player who will help the second team stay within the offense by moving the ball and as he showed during the playoffs, can be a threat from behind the arc.
I was a fan of his selfless play, even if he sometimes over passed, and I feel like he is a nice compliment to Felton who is more of a shoot first point guard.
The Knicks now have Prigioni, Smith, Felton, Anthony, Amar’e, Bargnani, Chandler, Shumpert, Hardaway Jr., under contract for next season.
The next step for the Knicks is to see what they will do with the rest of the mini mid level exception and whether they can bring back Copeland or bring in another player like Matt Barnes or Elton Brand.
The Knicks had to find a way to bring back Smith and Prigioni because their limits with the salary cap meant losing them would more than likely make them worse than the year before.
The roster is slowly coming together and now we will have to see what the front office can do with the veteran minimum deals and the rest of the MLE when it comes to filling out the bench.