The New York Knicks struck out on their stated goals in free agency and the backup plan is baffling people around the NBA.
General manager Scott Perry, team president Steve Mills, and the New York Knicks took a big swing in free agency. They wanted to sign two superstars and whiffed. Despite any spin the team wants to put on it, this summer was a failure in that regard.
However, the Knicks didn’t panic and give exorbitant money to players undeserving of max contracts. Instead, they signed players like Julius Randle, Marcus Morris, Wayne Ellington, Taj Gibson, and Bobby Portis to team-friendly deals.
That being said, people around the NBA are not impressed with what the Knicks did.
“Some people were like they did a good job keeping their powder dry, but I don’t even like [Julius] Randle, so I don’t get what they did,” an Eastern Conference executive told Tim Bontemps of ESPN. “I guess it was better than spending $80 million on two free agents. But that’s like saying you’re eating healthier because you didn’t go to McDonald’s for lunch and Burger King for dinner.
“Yes, you’re eating healthier — but only because you couldn’t eat worse.”
It’s easy to criticize the Knicks after this summer, but we’ll have to see how this season plays out. The Knicks have a promising young core to build around and cap flexibility moving forward. However, this writer is firmly on record saying that the Knicks will not make the playoffs.
That doesn’t mean that the Knicks are doomed to mediocrity forever, but it’s difficult to envision New York becoming a title contender any sooner than 2021.