With all of the Iman Shumpert rumors floating around lately, there haven’t been many New York Knicks trade rumors that address the Knicks biggest weakness- frontcourt depth.
As Thursday’s deadline inches ever closer, Knicks’ general manager Glen Grunwald could be looking to address that need as he appears to be targeting a former All-Star center, as ESPN’s Chris Broussard reports that the team has been showing strong interest in Phoenix Suns center Jermaine O’Neal.
Sources: Knicks showing strong interest in Phx’s Jermaine O’Neal…Phx also talking w/Toronto about moving Sebastian Telfair
— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) February 20, 2013
O’Neal is a shell of what he once was, but the 34-year-old former All-Star is averaging 6.9 points, 4.5 rebounds, and an impressive 1.3 blocks in only 16.6 minutes per game.
The most impressive part of O’Neal’s season is the fact that he has been healthy, which is a rarity.
O’Neal isn’t a bad thought for the Knicks.
First of all, his price tag should be very cheap, which is a bonus.
Secondly, the Knicks need size badly and O’Neal has been productive, averaging 15.0 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.8 blocks per 36 minutes. That’s production the Knicks simply aren’t getting from any other big off the bench not named Amar’e Stoudemire. In addition, O’Neal would provide a defensive presence that Stoudemire does not.
It’s nice that Marcus Camby and Rasheed Wallace have returned to practice, but you never know how healthy either guy will be the rest of the season.
Of course that’s the drawback with a guy like O’Neal as well.
He makes sense though as he fills a need as a guy that can be productive in around only 15 minutes per game.
If the Knicks are serious about O’Neal, it would take a player to get him and not draft picks as they are currently at the maximum of 15 guaranteed contracts.
Grunwald has until Thursday afternoon to decide whether or not to make a move in order to go for it this season. If anything, he is at least exploring his options.
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