Ian Begley: Barring some unforeseen setback, both Frank Ntilikina (knee) and Kristaps Porzingis (hip) will play in the Knicks’ season opener Thursday.
Ian Begley: Frank Ntilikina (knee) didn't participate in contact portions of practice today. Kristaps Porzingis participated in all of practice.
Porzingis, who has a sore hip, practiced on a limited basis with the team Thursday. Ntilikina, who has a bruised right knee, missed his second straight day of practice though he did shoot on his own for an extended period. Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek did not rule out an appearance by either player but sounded as if he’s inclined to hold both out so they are ready to go for the regular-season opener Thursday at Oklahoma City.
Ian Begley: Ntilikina (knee) did not practice today. Porzingis (hip) was limited to non-contact portions of practice. Noah (illness) did not practice.
The hope is Ntilikina, the eighth pick in June’s draft, will return to practice in the next few days and get on the court for the preseason finale Friday against the Wizards at the Garden.
Al Iannazzone: Knicks won't have Porzingis, (hip), Ntilikina (knee), Kuzminskas (calf), McDermott (finger) tonight vs. Rockets. But Ron Baker is available
Al Iannazzone: Porzingis will play tonight. Ntilikina is out tonight and it sounds like tomorrow too with a bruised knee.
Al Iannazzone: No Ntilikina tonight in D.C. and it sounds like he may miss the next preseason game Sunday at Nets.
Al Iannazzone: Hornacek said Ntilikina won't play tomorrow. He doesn't think it has anything to do with summer knee issue. Said he banged knees with Enes.
Alan Hahn: Ntilikina missed practice today with a sore groin. Doesn’t sound serious, but needs to show durability. Missed SL with sore knee. #Knicks
Frank Ntilikina was on the court running and doing some light shooting before the game, and working out after it. Ntilikina’s bruised right knee is improving but there is no guarantee he will play in one of the Knicks’ remaining two summer league games. The Knicks’ first-round pick hasn’t played in their first three — all losses.
June 30, 2022 | 12:16 am EDT Update
“When Kyrie announced he was opting in, I was like ‘okay, we can move on. This won’t be a thing,’ said Windhorst. “But that’s not what my phone was telling me. That’s not what the executives were telling me. That’s not what the agents were telling me. They are saying this ain’t over, because the Nets made it clear to everybody they did not want the status quo. If nothing else changed, they were not going to be happy. They were not sure if that this satisfied that situation.
“It was not just because of the lack of the vaccine mandate. The entire way that Kyrie operated for the last couple of seasons, not just what happened with the vaccine, was part of what Sean Marks, and really by proxy Joe Tsai, was talking about at the end of the season. “I would like to say this can be put to bed, but that’s not what my sources are saying. They don’t know if this is going to work.”
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Get Up that organizations will keep calling about both Irving and Kevin Durant: “Teams are going to continue to touch base with Brooklyn to make sure that they plan to keep this group together,” Wojnarowski said.
Harden owns a $47 million player option for 2022-23 and the deadline to act on it is Wednesday at 5 p.m. ET. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the possibility of Harden declining that option and taking a discount to improve the Sixers’ financial freedom is something entertained by both the star guard and the organization. “In a perfect world for the Sixers, and I think in James Harden’s mind, opting out of that deal and then negotiating a new contract here when free agency opens, gives the Sixers a lot more financial flexibility to go and improve this team in the offseason,” Wojnarowski said. “He can still get long-term, guaranteed money or certainly guaranteed money at a very high number over a couple of years by opting out and it gives the Sixers the ability to add to their roster.
Wojnarowski added that he believes “Harden’s gonna be in Philly … on a new deal,” one that would allow the Sixers to bolster their roster in free agency and “get better in the East to compete for a championship.”
ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said on the most recent The Hoop Collective podcast that he would “keep an eye on Indiana” in regards to restricted free agent Deandre Ayton and that the Pacers were interested in a potential Ayton trade before last season’s February trade deadline (38:20 mark), though the Suns didn’t want to break up their core at the time.