Davis submitted a four-team preferred destinations list to the Pelicans in February […] but it is believed that list has been narrowed in focus. Davis is now focused on the Lakers and Knicks as the two desired long-term destinations, league sources told The Athletic. Davis has not given Griffin or the Pelicans a new formal list. He will be a free agent in 2020.
The Knicks, owners of the No. 3 pick in the draft, have been motivated to pursue Davis sooner rather than later. The Lakers still have their young core of players intact, such as Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart, and the No. 4 pick. There is intrigue to see how the Lakers handle these trade talks, after providing less-than-appealing offers to the Pelicans during the trade deadline in February. For the Knicks, securing Davis would be a step to try to begin attracting talent around Davis with a significant upcoming free-agent crop in Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard and Kyrie Irving.
New Orleans could have eager trade suitors -- the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, Boston Celtics and New York Knicks -- should Griffin engage trade talks, but so far that hasn't happened, sources said. Griffin has been determined to make a case to Davis over time.
Anthony Davis would certainly consider re-signing with the Knicks if he felt he could be successful in New York, per SNY sources familiar with the matter. And here's how a Davis to New York trade could work:
Anthony Davis would certainly consider re-signing with the Knicks if he felt he could be successful in New York, per SNY sources familiar with the matter. And here's how a Davis to New York trade could work: Since the goal would likely be to pair Davis with two other stars, the Knicks would first sign their two max free agents in early July, using nearly all of their $70-plus million in cap space. They would then have to send out roughly $21.6 million in salary to satisfy NBA trade rules in a swap for Davis, who is making $27 million in 2019.
There are different ways to get to $21.6 million, but the easiest way to get there is to include their 2019 first-round pick. (The No. 1 pick can earn $9.7 in his first season.) It's worth noting, however, that there is no consensus among the Knicks as to whether they would include the 2019 No. 1 pick in a deal for Davis or any other star.
According to a source, the Pelicans have interest in both of the Knicks’ 2018 draft picks, Kevin Knox, their lottery pick, and second-rounder Mitchell Robinson, who happens to reside 15 minutes outside of New Orleans, in Chalmette, La. The Pelicans were one of the teams who came away impressed by Knox’s potential after his summer league, though he suffered through a roller-coaster rookie year.
Who New Orleans would want in a Davis package is unclear, of course. But you can be sure that the Pelicans would ask for first-round pick(s) in return for Davis. Would Kevin Knox be a player New Orleans asks about? Some people in the Pelicans organization were quietly gathering some intel on Knox recently, sources told SNY. Now, it's common for teams to gather information on players. That's part of the job of the front office/scouting department. But the uncertainty surrounding Davis' future in New Orleans makes their information-gathering on Knox (which was happening before Griffin took over) intriguing.
Worth noting: there is no consensus in the organization about trading its 2019 first-round pick, per sources. That's for Davis or anyone else. New York has seven first-round picks in the next five years, so they could offer future picks in a Davis package as well.
If the Knicks luck out and land Williamson in the draft, a package centered around him and other first-round picks or young Knicks -- such as Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson or Allonzo Trier -- might be enticing to the Pelicans. Even if the Knicks don't trade their first-round draft pick -- and there is no consensus that the organization would definitely trade its 2019 No. 1 pick in a package for Davis, sources said -- the Knicks would need to find a way to surround any incoming stars with other veterans.
When Davis asked to be traded last month, the All-Star forward provided the front office with a list of teams he’d prefer to be traded to. The Knicks were among those teams and Steve Mills, the Knicks president, had informal talks with Demps about a possible deal centered around Davis and Kristaps Porzingis. According to a source familiar with the talks, Demps was not prepared to trade Davis to New York before knowing where the Knicks will select in the 2019 NBA Draft. The Knicks then traded Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks.
Griffin, who won a title in Cleveland with LeBron James, was considering an offer to become Knicks GM two years ago before turning down the job. According to a Knicks source, Griffin lost interest in the job when Mills signed Tim Hardaway Jr. to a free agent contract while the Knicks were negotiating with Griffin to run the team. Griffin, who was led to believe he’d have full autonomy, quickly learned that Mills wasn’t about to relinquish any power. The message was that they would share the duties of running the Knicks. No one knows if that experience would make Griffin reluctant to deal with the Knicks’ front office. Those who know Griffin say his personality is to simply look for the best deal and, if the Knicks offered the most attractive package, he would take it.
Michael Singer: Anthony Davis was asked about allure of NY as a big market: "Great franchise, playing in obviously the Garden, the city, but also you know Milwaukee was on that list, too. It doesn’t matter about big market, small market. It’s about winning for me."
If the Knicks luck out in the lottery with a top-two pick, the Pelicans will pay attention to them on draft night. A potential scenario is the Pelicans crafting a draft-night deal when the picks are revealed. In the Knicks’ case, the trade wouldn’t become official July 1 when they have their $74 million in cap space. The Knicks have plenty of young assets the Pelicans would consider, according to a source. Along with a lottery pick in June and one of the two Dallas first-rounders, the Pelicans can choose between two of the following: Smith, Kevin Knox, Frank Ntilikina, Mitchell Robinson and Damyean Dotson.
Nevertheless, league sources believe the Pelicans don’t see the Knicks as having a strong enough package to offer for Davis, unless they win either the first or second pick in May’s lottery.
This turn of events could be an opening to help spur the Pelicans to find a deal for Davis prior to Thursday's trade deadline, league sources said. The Knicks don't have the assets to make a trade for Davis now, and the Lakers and Pelicans have yet to gain traction in talks. This appears to be an effort on the part of Davis and his agent, Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, to facilitate a deal prior to Thursday's 3 p.m. ET deadline, and spare a prolonged stay into the offseason for Davis with the franchise.
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."
September 21, 2021 | 9:35 pm EDT Update
Landry Shamet: Happy Retirement my friend. Showed me what it meant to be a pro the first day I met you. Forever grateful for you taking me under your wing. Thank you @jj_redick ✊🏽❤️ pic.twitter.com/Fw997NAglH
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