The Knicks hadn’t begun negotiations on an extension with Kristaps Porzingis early in free agency and it doesn’t sound like an extension is imminent. The All-Star forward is eligible for a 5-year, $157 million extension this summer but the Knicks would have an additional $10 million in cap space in 2019 – when they hope to sign a top free agent – if they waited to extend Porzingis until next summer. Knicks GM Scott Perry was asked if the Knicks were more likely to wait until next summer to extend Porzingis. “We’ll continue to stay in touch with Kristaps,” Perry said in Las Vegas on Tuesday, per ESPN’s Nick Friedell. “He’s part of our long-term plan
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Signing Kristaps Porzingis to a contract extension by October would also cost them about $10 million in 2019 cap space. Mills and Perry, in careful remarks, didn’t completely rule that out either, though they know more work needs to be done to shed other contracts. “We’ll continue to stay in touch with Kristaps,’’ Perry said. “He’s part of our long-term plan. We’ll figure out at the appropriate time in terms of when we get into that negotiation We’re comfortable where we are with him and we’ll work together with his representation to figure something out.’’
Mike Vorkunov: GM Scott Perry wouldn’t comment on whether Knicks and Kristaps Porzingis have had negotiations on a contract extension. So is he headed towards restricted free agency next summer? “We continue to stay in touch with Kristaps and he’s part of our long-term plan.” — Perry
New York Knicks president Steve Mills believes that the organization has repaired its relationship with young star Kristaps Porzingis and that the club will be well-positioned to attract top free agents in the summer of 2019.
Mills was asked by Smith if he had any concern that Porzingis, who is eligible for a five-year extension worth more than $150 million this summer, would seek a trade from the Knicks as other stars such as Kawhi Leonard and Kyrie Irving have done in recent seasons. “No,” Mills said. “We’ve worked really hard in rebuilding the relationship with KP. For Scott and me, it’s been with his brother (Janis Porzingis). We had to make Janis, who is his agent and his brother, make him feel like he was part of our group and let him understand what we’re doing as a team. Where we’re taking this thing.”
Ian Begley: Kristaps Porzingis was asked if his contract situation – he’s up for an extension this summer – would impact anything regarding his decision to return next season from his ACL injury. He said it would not.
Ian Begley: Hornacek seems to suggest NY may wait until ‘19 to offer KP an extension: “We’re in a good position maybe not for next year, but the year after when somebody like KP, who’s up for the extension, that’s when you can go over the cap & get a free agent in there & still have him.”
When asked about it, Porzingis said he hasn’t thought much about the team’s future. He said he is “confident” that team president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry will make the right decisions to improve the club. “I haven’t been really thinking about that as much. It’s something that, it’s their job, and it’s in their hands, and we’ll see what happens this summer,” said Porzingis, who is eligible for a five-year, $157 million extension this summer. “I haven’t really thought about it, and it’s also not my job. So I’m confident that they will make the right moves.”
Regarding the extension, it’s unclear how Kristaps Porzingis’ injury impacts the timing of the Knicks’ offer. Prior to the ACL tear, the Knicks likely felt comfortable offering Porzingis the extension this summer. Now, they might follow the blueprint the Philadelphia 76ers established with Joel Embiid and construct a contract that is incentivized based on health. It’s also unclear if the bad blood between the organization and Porzingis from the summer of 2017 is still a factor at this point, but the Knicks are optimistic that all parties have moved forward and are on the same page. Porzingis has said that he’ll address his feelings on the extension at the appropriate time but wants to remain in New York. The Knicks still see Porzingis as a franchise cornerstone, despite the injury.
Knicks management is making a huge effort to get on the good side of Janis Porzingis, the agent/brother of Kristaps. Before the Knicks’ 106-101 victory over the Jazz Wednesday night, team president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry spoke amiably with Janis on the sidelines for nearly 30 minutes during warm-ups.
According to a source, Perry believes it’s important to improve that relationship with Janis, a former professional player in Europe.
Janis was quoted two weeks ago in a Latvian magazine, making a threatening remark about his brother’s long-term future as a Knick and creating a furor. According to a source, Janis felt badly about the way the quotes were portrayed.
Knicks general manager Scott Perry wouldn’t address Kristaps Porzingis’ brother/agent’s comments to a Latvian magazine about Porzingis’ future with the team. Janis Porzingis made it seem that it was no slam dunk that Kristaps would sign an extension next summer. “I don’t really want to talk about that right now,” Perry said Wednesday night. “We’re looking forward and ahead. The time to talk about contract extensions, that’s far. We’re living in today. KP is playing some very good basketball right now. He’s playing well and he’s happy with this team. We’ll deal with all that stuff later. But no comment in terms of what was said because I really don’t know.”
In an article published Tuesday, Janis Porzingis suggested that Porzingis would not decide to sign an extension solely because the Knicks can offer him the most money, fueling speculation that Porzingis would leave the Knicks rather than signing a rookie extension. Asked before Friday’s game about the possible fan reaction to his brother’s comments, Kristaps Porzingis strongly indicated that he planned to remain with the Knicks. “I think fans know I’m here in New York, I love New York and I see myself as a Knick for a long, long time,” he said. “And I think they shouldn’t be worrying about that.”
He is eligible to sign a five-year rookie extension starting this summer that is worth between 25 and 30 percent of the salary cap (a projected $157 million to $188 million in total). If he wanted to become an unrestricted free agent, Porzingis would have to play his fifth season with the Knicks on a qualifying offer, which would be for $7.5 million — significantly less annual money than he could earn via an extension.
Alan Hahn: Also said this is not the time to talk about the business side. Said brother’s comments were taken out of context. “It is what it is.”
Ian Begley: Asked about possible fan reaction, Kristaps Porzingis said fans should know he loves NY and sees himself as a Knick for a long, long time.
Tommy Beer: Despite comments from Kristaps Porzingis brother – it would be very, VERY risky for Porzingis to decline the Knicks max extension offer this summer. Based on current salary cap projections, the Knicks could offer Porzingis an extension worth $156.6 million in the summer of 2018. That extension would kick in following the 2018-19 season, and would be worth an average of $31.3 million per season. If Porzigis declines that extension offer in 2018, and again in 2019 as a RFA, Knicks would still control his rights through 2019-20. And KP would earn just $7.5 million in 2019-20. Then, once he finally hit unrestricted free agency, NY would still have his Bird Rights…There’s a reason every player offered a max extension off his rookie deal has signed that extension. It’s fiscally imprudent to decline…
Kristaps Porzingis skipped his exit interview to prompt change in the Knicks since Carmelo Anthony never did it himself. And when it comes to Porzingis signing a long-term extension, the Latvian is in no rush and expects to be treated like a superstar. Both those nuggets were revealed by Porzingis’ older brother and agent, Janis, who spoke recently with Latvian website Sportcentrs.
Quoted in the April issue of the Latvian sports magazine Sporta Avize, Porzingis was asked if he will sign a second contract with the Knicks. Porzingis’ four-year rookie deal has two years left and he said he hopes to finish his career with the Knicks — with a caveat. “Absolutely, I want to stay here all my career,’’ Porzingis said, according to the English translation provided by the magazine. “But the thing I want most of all is winning. When the time comes, I will seriously start to think about it. Right now I just try to do my best.”
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July 22, 2018 | 12:15 pm EDT Update
What does the late Los Angeles Lakers owner Jerry Buss have to do with LeBron James joining his team in 2018? The query sounds like a trick question, but a new story has come to light that makes it seem as though Dr. Buss was the one to kickstart the Lakers’ eventual pursuit and signing of their now-superstar all the way back in 2010. The Lakers didn’t have nearly enough cap space then to actually be a serious threat to sign James. But according to Tania Ganguli of the L.A. Times, Buss was thinking beyond that: Buss thought about calling James anyway. Over lunch with his kids, he mentioned the idea, offhandedly. “It’d be good to know that guy,” his son Joey recalled him saying.
League rules allowed teams to meet with any free agent. Why not meet with James to introduce him to the Lakers’ vision? Why not sow the seeds of a future partnership? “LeBron was always somebody that he was interested in,” said Buss’ daughter Jeanie, the Lakers co-owner.
One colleague during that period was Nuggets coach Michael Malone, who was an assistant with the Cavaliers from 2005-10. Impressed with Fernandez’s development in the organization, Malone hired Fernandez as an assistant coach in 2016. “He gets his foot in the door,” Malone said of Fernandez, “and he’s going to find a way to continue to fill gaps and do things that are necessary for the team and the staff to move forward.”
Now, the 35-year-old Fernandez is regarded as an up-and-comer in his field, perhaps a future NBA head coach. There are two primary reasons why. One, he has a thirst for knowledge. And two, as one former boss said, he’s the ultimate “people coach.” “He’s been around Hall of Famers, but he’s also been around the last guys in the G League,” said Mike Gansey, the Cavaliers’ assistant general manager. “Whoever walks through that door, he can relate to them … he’s either watched it, lived it or seen it. That’s why he’s so valuable. “He gives more than basketball. That’s why I think our guys got so much better and people liked him so much … He could read people and knew when he had to get on them and when not (to) and how to treat them to get the most out of them.”
July 22, 2018 | 5:42 am EDT Update
The Thunder, Hawks and Sixers agreed on a deal that involves sending Anthony to the Hawks, and the Hawks plan to buy out Anthony, per USA TODAY Sports. It’s reported that the Rockets are the favorites to sign Anthony once that happens. Morey was asked, “So are we for sure getting Carmelo Anthony?” He responded, “In the mix.” Morey also said, “Yes,” as a reply to, “Does Daryl still have something up his sleeve?”
“It would be a great acquisition for us,” said Harden, who did run into Anthony at Paris Fashion Week last month when Harden was making the rounds with teammate P.J. Tucker. “Melo’s a proven vet. He just wants to win at this point, so it would be great for him to be on our team. The current roster we have now, we’ve got good guys back and we keep making forward progress.”
Italian team Fiat Torino announced the signing of Molloy product Jaylen Morris. Morris had a good rookie season in the NBA G League with the Erie BayHawks as he averaged 12.6 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. In late February, he was called up by the Atlanta Hawks.