New York Knicks

Courtney Lee‘s numbers suggest a snug fit beside Derrick Rose, Carmelo Anthony in New York Knicks lineup.

The Knicks got the shooting guard they wanted, agreeing to a four-year, $48 million deal with Courtney Lee on Saturday.

New York and Lee reportedly found a suitable middle ground on contract negotiations. The Knicks came up from a four-year, $40 million offer, while Lee came down from his four-year, $56 million demand.

His other suitors included Sacramento, Brooklyn, Minnesota and Philadelphia, according to Basketball Insiders.

Lee averaged 9.2 points per game as the starting shooting guard for a Charlotte Hornets team that pushed the Miami Heat to seven games in last season’s playoffs. The Hornets acquired Lee from Memphis in a three-team deal at the February trade deadline.


New York marks the seventh team the 30-year-old guard has played for entering his ninth season in the NBA.

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The Knicks’ agreement with Lee is the latest of a summer that has included a four-year pact with 2014 Defensive Player of the Year Joakim Noah, and a trade that sent Robin Lopez, Jose Calderon and Jerian Grant to Chicago for former league Most Valuable Player Derrick Rose.

Lee is heralded as an unselfish professional who has improved each team he’s played for. New York is two seasons removed from its worst record (17-65) in franchise history and missed the playoffs last year after a summertime roster overhaul.

Lee replaces Arron Afflalo, who opted out of his final season in New York and agreed to a two-year, $25 million deal with Sacramento. Here are what the numbers say about the Knicks’ new starting shooting guard.

courtney-lee-basketball-headshot-photoCourtney Lee

Height: 6-5/Weight: 200 pounds
Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
College:
Western Kentucky
Drafted:
2008, 22nd overall by Orlando
2015-16 Season:
9.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.2 steals per game
Previous Teams:
CHA, MEM, BOS, HOU, NJ, ORL
Last Contract: Four years, $21.5 million in Boston

  • Under Jeff Hornacekthe Knicks will be expected to push pace. Lee shot 56.1% in transition opportunities with a .671 effective field goal percentage, which adjusts for the value of a three-pointer. Lee’s 1.40 points per transition play rank him in the NBA’s 95th percentile. No Knicks players averaged more than 1.07 points per play.
  • Lee has been a perimeter shooter all his career. His .378 clip from downtown last season ranked 17th among NBA shooting guards, ahead of Wesley Matthews, James Harden and Devin Booker but below Afflalo.
  • New York has had its woes defending opposing guards. Lee, by the numbers, is one of the league’s better perimeter defenders. When guarded by Lee, opposing players shot only 42.1% in Memphis and 41.1% in Charlotte. In other words, he held his man to lower shooting percentages than Tony Allen (42.2%), Klay Thompson (43.3%) and Andre Roberson (41.3%) and a hair over Paul George, Draymond Green and Kawhi Leonard. (The only Knicks rotation players to hold their man below 45% shooting were Lance Thomas, Langston Galloway, Kristaps Porzingis and, oddly enough, Derrick Williams.)
  • On catch-and-shoot opportunities from downtown, Lee shot 41.3% in Charlotte and 40% in Memphis. Calderon and Thomas were the only Knicks players to shoot better than Lee in those situations last season.
  • Much of New York’s offense will run through Rose and Carmelo Anthony. Lee boasted a 13.8% usage rate last season in Charlotte. He’s a perimeter player who continues to be effective with or without the ball.
  • Lee’s production tapered in the playoffs despite increased minutes. He averaged only 8.6 points on 41.2% shooting in 37 minutes per game against the Heat. It should be noted Lee averaged 13.3 points on 55% shooting in the playoffs with Memphis in 2014-15 and hit a game-winning three in Game 5 against Miami this year.

Scary?

A photo posted by Courtney Lee (@courtneylee) on

Kristian Winfield covers the New York Knicks for ESNY. You can start the conversation on Twitter @Krisplashed.

NEXT: Salary Implications After Knicks Signing Of Lee, Noah

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