The New York Knicks want Ron Baker back, and extending him a qualifying offer makes that possibility all the more likely.
Ron Baker stepped up during the 2016-17 season for the Knicks. His numbers aren’t remarkable, but he did the little things that made him valuable to the team. The undrafted rookie instantly became a favorite of head coach Jeff Hornacek.
It’s no surprise that New York wants him back. According to Ian Begley of ESPN New York, the Knicks are expected to extend a qualifying offer to their backup point guard.
NYK's expected to extend a qualifying offer to Ron Baker to make him a restricted FA, per sources. More: https://t.co/jq33VsEARn
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) June 29, 2017
The qualifying offer makes Baker a restricted free agent; allowing the Knicks to match any contract offer he receives this summer. This means the 24-year-old isn’t going anywhere.
Derrick Rose‘s pending free agency makes the starting point guard spot a question mark again. If New York brings in a new floor general, it would be nice for them to have a reserve they trust backing him up.
One thing Baker needs to work on is his three-point shooting. After shooting 36.9 percent during his four-year college career from deep, Baker was a dreadful 26.7 percent as a rookie.
Baker’s never going to be a lockdown defender so improving his jumper is the next best shot he has at becoming a long-term backup.