It appears forward Kristaps Porzingis, the New York Knicks number one trade piece, will be sitting out the Anthony Davis sweepstakes.
The New York Knicks were considered one of the top contenders for Anthony Davis, with a potential package featuring Kristaps Porzingis and their own first-round pick.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported early Thursday morning that Porzingis is reluctant to agree to a future with the Pelicans:
“On the flip side, New York will be unlikely to include Kristaps Porzingis in any Davis trade package once the deadline passes. Porzingis will be a restricted free agent this summer and would have to agree to a sign-and-trade — something he’d be reluctant to do, league sources said.”
Wojnarowski originally reported Anthony Davis’ readiness to move on from the New Orleans Pelicans Monday morning. This coming after a seven-year stint that’s reached no further than the Western Conference Semifinals.
Naturally, the Knicks were linked immediately, but it appears any potential Davis deal is dead in the water. A deal surrounding Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, and a first rounder would likely move the needle, but eventually be outmatched.
Porzingis’ unwillingness to participate in the deal should come as no surprise for Knicks fans. He’s been very vocal about his desire to compete for a championship.
For a Pelicans team shipping out their franchise player, contention seems even further away than with the 10-40 Knicks. It’s also not the first, or even the second time he’s been mentioned in trade talks. At some point, that likely becomes frustrating.
Porzingis isn’t the first player mentioned in these sweepstakes to object playing in New Orleans. Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that point guard Lonzo Ball would rather end up with a team in need of a point guard. That is, should a deal for Davis be struck between Los Angeles and New Orleans.
Sources: Should Lakers/Pelicans trade talks pick up, point guard Lonzo Ball's camp prefers Ball to be moved to a third team that doesn't have an established point guard.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 29, 2019
So, New York will have to maintain the path at hand, as Porzingis enters the restricted market in July.
They are currently on an 11-game losing streak, having captured just one win in the month of January. Things certainly aren’t getting better any quicker in New York.