While the New York Knicks don’t have the salary cap space to necessarily go out and sign any impact free agents, that doesn’t mean they can’t improve majorly via trade.
According to The New York Times’ Howard Beck, Knicks’ general manager Glen Grunwald is on the verge of pulling off a major deal that would net the Knicks current Toronto Raptors forward Andrea Bargnani.
The rumored deal would have the Knicks sending Marcus Camby, Steve Novak, a first-round pick, and a second-round pick for the Italian big man.
Bargnani has not delivered on his potential after being taken with the first overall pick in 2006. He has career per-game averages of 15.2 points and 4.8 rebounds in seven NBA seasons and is still owed $22.25 million over the next two seasons.
The problem with Bargnani, similar to Amar’e Stoudemire, is his inability to stay healthy. Over the course of the past three seasons, Bargnani has missed a combined 90 of a possible 212 games, including playing in only 56 of 130 regular season games during the past two seasons.
When he is healthy, he started to show signs of beginning to dominate, averaging 21.4 points per game during the 2010-11 season and 19.5 in 2011-12 before being injured much of last season.
He won’t help fix the Knicks rebounding woes as he has never averaged more than 6.2 rebounds in a season.
However in addition to being a deadly catch and shoot player, Bargnani is a much improved defender from the time he came into the league. He still lacks physicality and his rebound rate is flat-out embarrassing for a seven-footer, but Bargnani had very strong Synergy grades, and his other metrics were less awful than usual.
If healthy, he could be the second scoring option that Carmelo Anthony has been asking for.
If the Knicks are able to acquire the big man, it would likely mean a move back to the 3 for Anthony though, which is something I don’t know if he will be necessarily happy with.
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