The Knicks did call New Orleans about Anthony Davis, a source told ESPN's Ramona Shelburne, but the Pelicans weren't interested in the Latvian. There was uncertainty over Porzingis' willingness to remain in New Orleans beyond his current contract, sources said.
One Eastern Conference executive cautioned that Paul might not have the same sway to deliver Davis as he did with LeBron. "The dad is going to have a say," the source said, referring to Anthony Davis Sr., who apparently is weighing the vast business potential of his son as the King of New York as opposed to the Prince of Bel-Air.
One NBA source indicated the Knicks, like most teams, would engage with the Pelicans and try to find a way into the negotiations. But to get into the mix for Davis would require the sort of shift that would break apart the Knicks’ plan before it could get started. The teams that have figured to be the front-runners for Davis have a huge head start.
According to a source, the Knicks still don’t know how the Pelicans want to proceed in a return package — whether they seek a long-term rebuild or inherit immediate assets. The Knicks have a ton of future assets, such as Robinson and likely a 2019 top-five lottery pick. Robinson is showing he can be a shotblocking machine. In Monday’s loss in Charlotte, Robinson blocked three shots — and got tagged with two goaltending violations. “The Pelicans have always liked Mitchell,” one NBA source said.
There were reports earlier this season Davis considered New York a potential destination to sign in 2020, but some wonder if that is true. If the Knicks package too many assets and deliver Kristaps Porzingis to New Orleans, they would leave the cupboard bare like they did in the Carmelo Anthony deadline deal in 2011. “[Davis] wants to play for a championship,” one NBA executive said. “I don’t see how the Knicks gut their talent in a trade and then have the personnel to get him to re-sign long-term.”
One NBA talent evaluator said the Knicks’ only major assets are Porzingis and their draft picks. “The only thing of value there to New Orleans is KP and more than one unprotected first-rounders,” he said.
Teams such as the Knicks and Davis’s hometown Chicago Bulls are among the many clubs expected to join the Lakers in pursuing a trade for Davis over the days leading to the 3 p.m. trade deadline on Feb. 7. Yet it might behoove New Orleans to wait until May to get serious about dealing its best player.
The Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks are preparing to make offers for New Orleans Pelicans superstar forward Anthony Davis, league sources told Yahoo Sports. The Lakers’ brass had a meeting Monday morning in large part to coordinate the franchise’s plans, sources said.
Randy Cruz: Windhorst on the Knicks possible getting in the AD sweepstakes: "The New York Knicks need to decide whether they would be willing to make their No. 1 pick, unprotected this year, available. If they would, I believe they can put together a competitive offer that would help the Pelicans do a rebuild and they can get their hands on Anthony Davis in the next ten days. It would be a huge decision, but I think New York would be one of the few teams would be willing to sign an extension with. They are sort of the quiet lurker here."
April 19, 2021 | 11:00 am EDT Update
Just like when both Bryant and James won five NBA titles, Clarkson’s main source of motivation points toward collecting championship hardware. Unlike when Bryant and James both won Finals and regular-season MVP awards, Clarkson’s other source of motivation points toward becoming the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year. “If we’re winning games and we’re doing that, I’ll be rewarded for that,” Clarkson told USA TODAY Sports. “I feel like this is that time and that moment where I’ve impacted the game.”
“If the Sixth Man of the Year award comes and I don’t get it, I don’t need the validation because my teammates, coaching staff and a lot of my peers gave me that,” Clarkson said. “They’re telling me, ‘I respect what you do’ and all of that. So, I know that goes a long way as well. But it’s definitely something I want to get accomplished one of these years. Hopefully it’s this year.”
So after a regular-season loss in Portland, Bryant chewed out his younger teammates over their attitude, work habits and decision making. “I remember him just really getting upset,” Clarkson said. “You’ve seen him come out of his skin and grill us a little bit. But from that point on, I felt all of us had a different look at everything with what we wanted to do. That’s probably, in terms of development, a little wake-up call.”
“It was difficult, yes, because I would have loved to have stayed with a healthy Markelle (Fultz), and a healthy Jonathan Isaac and a newly blossoming Mo Bamba and a healthy Cole Anthony, but I felt like there was just something telling me I needed to shake things up. It kind of felt like I had one foot on the gas and one foot on the brake out in Orlando. “I was giving it my all, you know? I was giving it my all, and it was difficult, man. I didn’t know if everybody was pushing in the same direction.”
Organizationally, I asked? “Yeah, organizationally, in terms of the plan,” Gordon continued. “I think (Magic front office executives) John Hammond, Jeff Weltman, those guys are amazing people — amazing people, and very talented managers as well. But I feel like they got kind of cast into the revolving door out there as well in Orlando. So many coaches — five coaches in seven years (Jacque Vaughn, James Borrego, Scott Skiles, Frank Vogel and Steve Clifford). And it was kind of a different organization after the passing of Mr. (Rich) DeVos (in September 2018) as well. It was just a lot. A lot of uncertainty, an insecure kind of feeling. But I have no doubt in my mind that John and Jeff are going to get that organization back to where it needs to be.
“This year, we have high, high aspirations — championship aspirations,” Gordon, who clearly didn’t get the memo about those hopes no longer being on the table, told The Athletic. “We still feel like we have enough, especially with ‘Joker’ man. When you’ve got that guy on the floor, you have a chance to win every single night. So everybody’s got to step up, everybody has to play their best. But if we’re doing that, then I feel like we have a good chance to go as far as we want to.”
“He’s a genius, man,” Gordon said of Jokic, who is on track to become just the second player in league history to average at least 26 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists per game (Oscar Robertson is the other, and he did it just once). “He’s a basketball genius. That’s really what it comes down to. He’s playing it like it’s chess, seeing it three steps ahead. “I’m starting to learn that you’ve always got to keep your eye on him when he has the ball because he’ll find you. He’ll find you. Even if you don’t think you’re open, you’re open. He’ll pass you open, which is dope. It’s just amazing to play with somebody like that who can actually pass you open and sees the game (like that), and who likes to pass and enjoys passing.”
April 19, 2021 | 10:09 am EDT Update
Law Murray: A source confirms that the LA Clippers will not re-sign Malik Fitts to a second 10-day contract ahead of Tuesday’s game in Portland. Expectation is that Yogi Ferrell will take that spot pending health and safety protocols.