Free agency has begun in the NBA and as expected the New York Knicks have been very quiet in the opening hours.
With very limited salary cap space, that is likely going to be the case for most of the summer, however the Knicks have already been liked to one unrestricted free agent in Washington Wizards forward Trevor Booker.
According to Michael Lee of the Washington Post, the Knicks are one of several teams that have shown early interest in Booker. The others being the Miami Heat, Minnesota Timberwolves, Utah Jazz, Brooklyn Nets, Orlando Magic, and Washington Wizards.
Booker is a four-year pro out of Clemson, who was taken with the 23rd overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves. He has spent all four of his NBA seasons in Washington where he averaged 6.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game while shooting a career-high 55.1 percent from the floor in 21.6 minutes per game last season.
The Wizards declined to make a qualifying offer to Booker over the weekend, making him an unrestricted free agent.
After starting 45 games last season, Booker likely priced himself out of Washington. He was eligible for a qualifying offer of $3.4 million as the 23rd pick in the 2010 NBA draft. But Booker was set to earn an offer nearly $1.3 million higher after what the NBA calls “starter criteria.” Basically that means if a non-lottery pick starts at least 41 games or plays 2,000 minutes, he is eligible to receive the same qualifying offer as the ninth overall pick.
Booker is a guy who could do some good things in a Knicks uniform, but also at the end of the day will likely be outside of the Knicks price range as most free agents they are linked to this offseason will be.
With so much early interest in Booker, I doubt the Knicks stay in the running very long.