New York Knicks Rumors
NBA.com: That’s right. In January 1973, a house that Abdul-Jabbar owned in D.C. was targeted in a home invasion. [Terrorists murdered several people in an attack on the player’s spiritual teacher Hamaas Abdul Khaalis, a rival of Nation of Islam leader Elijah Muhammad. Abdul-Jabbar was not present at the time.] WE: That took Washington out, so it got down to the Lakers or the Knicks. We did everything we could do to talk him out of wanting to be traded. But he said, “Nope. If you don’t, I’ll become a free agent or I’ll sign with the ABA.” Of course we didn’t want that to happen. So we decided to keep it quiet. “Let’s not go public until we have a deal.”
This is considered one of the best point-guard drafts in years, but that doesn’t mean the Knicks will wind up with one, according to an NBA source. If the tanking Knicks wind up with a top-six pick, as the odds now suggest, they haven’t ruled out passing on a point guard to take Josh Jackson, a Kansas combo forward known best for his defense and passing.
Indeed, the Knicks have a yen for the 6-foot-8 Kansas freshman, whom they have identified as a player with a triangle skill set because of that passing ability. Plus, the Knicks may have to fill a void if Carmelo Anthony is traded. Jackson, who averaged 16.4 points, 7.4 rebounds and three assists per game, doesn’t have an elite jump shot, according to a college scout. He also is not considered a terrific shot-maker, but he does many other things well, including desperately needed on-ball defense.
A free agent last summer, center Pau Gasol waited for a call from Knicks president Phil Jackson. Lakers president Jeanie Buss once told confidants Jackson considered Gasol his favorite Laker to coach. Obsessed with the younger, more defense-oriented Joakim Noah, Jackson had tunnel vision when it came to filling his center role. “No, no contact,” Gasol said before he looked as smooth as ever in scorching the Knicks for 19 points Saturday in San Antonio. “I was surprised, too.”
A source told The Post that Jackson felt Gasol was headed for a steep decline and considered a big-money deal risky as he sought a replacement for the traded Robin Lopez. So Jackson passed on the center to whom Porzingis often is compared — while Hernangomez draws comparisons to Pau’s burlier brother, Marc.
“We did Facetime,” Hernangomez said. “I always try to see the replays in games because the games are so late. So the next day I try to see the stats and I feel proud because of what KP did last year, unbelievable year. I talked to him and he told me a couple things on how to be ready this year.” “He was curious,” Porzingis said, adding that the two now break down film together after games. “Some things that I see that he doesn’t see, or some things I don’t even think about and he sees from my game. We watch it together and talk about it.”