The New York Knicks season has been nothing short of a roller coaster. This season, they have essentially made one step forward and two steps back. In reality, the Knicks have yet to show any sign of consistency and haven’t shown to be an elite team on either end of the court.
With a 9-9 record right now, they currently occupy the ninth position in the Eastern Conference. Here, we’ll examine the Knicks’ most likely trade partner following the first month of the 2022–23 campaign.
Of course, it’s too early to write out this campaign, and the Knicks haven’t shown much inclination to dismantle this group. In fact, this trade season, New York seems to be more of a buyer than a seller.
Having said that, it has been claimed that the Knicks are looking to trade a number of players. Men like Miles McBride, Evan Fournier, and Derrick Rose fall within this category. Immanuel Quickley, a 23-year-old man, is the one we believe will most likely be included in a deal.
After the first month of this season, let’s examine the Knicks’ most likely trade target.
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) November 18, 2022
First-round Pick from the Oklahoma City Thunder
Immanuel Quickley has been discussed in trade talks despite having a miserable start to the season, shooting a career-low 35.6 per cent from the field and 27 per cent from beyond the arc.
The Knicks have made Quickley available, but according to Fred Katz of The Athletic, they are determined to secure a premium draught pick for the third-year guard. Remember that Quickley was a first-round selection in 2020. Although he has occasionally displayed potential, he hasn’t developed into a consistently effective player, especially on offence.
The Maryland native has averaged 11.1 points, 2.9 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 1.7 triples per game throughout his first three seasons. His field goal percentage is only 39.2 per cent, and his 3-point shooting percentage is only 36.0 per cent. However, he consistently makes free throws, making 88.2 per cent of them.
His performance this season, though, has decreased significantly. He is making just over 30.0 per cent of his three-point attempts and shooting just under 38.0 per cent overall. Of course, his defence continues to play a significant role in coach Tom Thibodeau’s rotation. For a guard who is 6’3″, Quickley has also developed into a fairly good rebounder. This season, he has been grabbing 4.6 boards per game. Actually, Thibodeau recently praised Quickley in his remarks.
Thibodeau said to Katz, “I think the hardest breaks to stop are the ones where, when you analyse transition, guards grab the long rebounds and they just go with it.” You will undoubtedly be at a disadvantage. I adore those breaks when he bursts forth.
The truth is that Quickely’s offensive effectiveness and efficiency have decreased since his first season. On the other hand, his defence has significantly improved. He is one of the best help defenders on the team and is great at guarding ball handlers. He establishes the pace and goes after any loose balls.
Right now, Quickley may be seen as a player who transitioned from a one-dimensional instant-offence scorer to a worker bee. What value will a player of that calibre have in the NBA of today? Will he bring in anything before the trade deadline? We shall see.
Regarding the Knicks, the big picture is everything. Remember that the young players the Knicks believed would make up the foundation of a major deal are going to lose what makes them most alluring: their low cost. This is because they have delayed long enough in their quest for a star.
Quickley is making $2.3 million this season, according to Spotrac, and will be eligible for a rookie deal in the summer. According to current circumstances, he will make just under $4.2 million in 2023–2024. With Quickley’s skill set and potential, that wage package is still a sufficient one.
Also, keep in mind that the Knicks are stockpiling picks. They certainly seem to be giving draught assets more value than their genuine marginal players, like Quickley. This indicates that selling Quickley for a pick is unquestionably advantageous for NYK. League insiders have verified this. They claim that the Knicks are seeking a future first-round selection in return for Quickley, who will once again be available for a deal this summer.
Naturally, it’s unclear which team will be willing to trade a first-round choice for Quickley. Remember that his lack of offensive improvement might be a problem. Is there a team out there that would be willing to take such a big chance? Is there a team that would be open to paying him more in the future? The Oklahoma City Thunder are currently a possible partner since they might employ Quickley as a backup for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander or Josh Giddey.
Be aware that first-round picks are crucial in the modern NBA, especially in the highly anticipated 2023 drought. So, it’s uncertain whether other teams will even offer the Knicks a first-round pick in exchange for Quickley. A Quickley-centric deal with a second or third player might work if the Knicks are serious about acquiring draught picks.
Of course, acquiring draught assets does not guarantee that the Knicks will employ them when the draught actually takes place. They can package these assets in a different deal for a real and trustworthy star in the future.
In the Donovan Mitchell contest, they were unable to accomplish that, but we believe they will try again. They’ll undoubtedly go for a star again in the future. Stockpiling draught picks would undoubtedly elevate them to a major player in that situation. Whether or not Quickley is involved, we fully anticipate the Knicks to be active in the trade market up until the deadline in February.