Frank Ntilikina‘s time with the New York Knicks hasn’t been smooth by any means. Now, reports are surfacing that he was shopped.
The New York Knicks made a splash at the February trade deadline by sending franchise face Kristaps Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks. But it appears that’s not the only deal they were looking to execute.
The trade with Dallas netted them point guard Dennis Smith Jr, who many thought ex-President Phil Jackson should have drafted over French guard Frank Ntilikina at eighth overall back in 2016.
So, naturally, rumors are already circling about the 20-year old guard’s fate with the team. Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News reports that New York approached the Atlanta Hawks about a potential deal in February:
“A source told the Daily News that GM Scott Perry, who was hired after the Knicks drafted Ntilikina, approached a member of the Hawks front office to test his appetite for a deal before the February trade deadline. The Hawks, however, have Trae Young and weren’t interested.”
It’s not hard to see why Atlanta didn’t bite. They employ a Rookie of the Year candidate in Trae Young, at only 20 years old.
He’s an offensive juggernaut, constantly launching threes up from half court logos. Ntilikina, on the other hand, has scored just 704 points over a two-year career. Young is on pace to double that just this year.
There’s also no clear-cut target for New York in Atlanta. Would they be interested in draft compensation, or maybe young forward Taurean Prince who’s approaching restricted free agency?
Nonetheless, Ntilikina isn’t wearing a Hawks uniform today. He’s barely wearing a Knicks uniform. He’s only just recently been upgraded to “questionable” for Wednesday night’s game after missing 23 straight.
Frank Ntilikina is averaging 5.9 points and 2.8 assists over 41 appearances this season. He’ll look to fight his fate over New York’s final 11 games.