NBA Rumor: Mitchell Robinson Free Agency

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Bulls targeting Mitchell Robinson ahead of free agency

The Post has learned the Bulls are continuing to do their research on Mitchell Robinson ahead of the July 1 free-agency period. The Bulls could be the main competitors for Robinson if the Knicks don’t lock him up to a contract extension on June 30. The Bulls want to enhance their interior defense and believe Robinson could be a good fit slotted alongside offensive center Nikola Vucevic. Chicago reportedly has $49 million in cap space but that’s before they commit to free agent Zach Lavine — if they do commit.

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Meanwhile, an NBA source said center-starved Dallas is not expected to be interested in Robinson at his hefty price tag (at least $11M per year) and have set their sights on cheaper free-agent centers. In February, sources indicated Robinson wasn’t in a good place in his relationship with the Knicks and his uncle tweeted he can’t wait for Robinson to leave New York. However, sources indicate, it’s likely Robinson will simply take the best offer after being paid the NBA minimum his first four years.

Detroit interested in Jalen Brunson, Deandre Ayton and Mitchell Robinson

Michael Scotto: I’ve heard some people in that front office that have an eye for Jalen Brunson. I’ve also heard there are people in the front office that could see Mitchell Robinson, who’s an unrestricted Knicks free agent, as a guy that they’d also look at. Deandre Ayton’s name has been floated out there too. My observation on this is guys like Brunson and Robinson are targets for Detroit because they’ll command less money (than Ayton). With Ayton, you’d have to give him a full max to try to get him there and out of Phoenix going into his (restricted) free agency. I think that would be tough. Whereas, with Brunson, Dallas knows there’s going to be a market for him. One of the reasons they got Spencer Dinwiddie was a hedge to cover themselves depending on what the market bears for Brunson. The Knicks have Robinson entering free agency and also have an eye for Brunson with the relationship with Leon Rose. They do need a point guard looking ahead. Immanuel Quickley is there, but it seems like he’s viewed as a microwave scorer off the bench, and Tom Thibodeau likes him off the bench in that role.

Mitchell Robinson to cash in big in free agency?

Scotto: I spoke to five NBA executives, and I asked them what in their mind is Mitchell Robinson’s projected free agency value as of today? According to those executives, his worst-case scenario is the non-taxpayer mid-level exception, but generally, the projected range for him is between $12-13 million annually, which would be more than what Nerlens Noel got previously in free agency with the Knicks. Most executives think with the Knicks having Robinson’s Bird Rights, most around the league don’t see him walking for nothing.

Since Robinson is a second round pick, his rookie contract has been dirt cheap for the team and he’s due for a big upgrade once free agency comes around. Chatter around the league is that he’d be able to command at least $10 million a year on the open market, whether that’s with the Knicks or somebody else. Heavy.com’s Sean Deveney reveals a three-year, $33 million contract could be the sweet spot for a deal according to an NBA general manager.

“I’m just going to continue to play hard, see what happens,’’ Robinson said when asked again whether he wants to be here next season. “I don’t think about it that much. I just want to hoop. That’s what I’ve got an agent for. He handles that so I can focus on basketball. “We talk here and there,’’ Robinson said of his agent. “He’s going to handle that for me. I trust him. You all can talk to him if you want. I’m just here to play basketball.’’

Robinson will be an unrestricted free agent this summer if the Knicks don’t act. He’s a one-of-a-kind old-school center. Coach Tom Thibodeau held his praise due to the loss, and noted that when Robinson went out for his blocks, the Knicks didn’t often get the rebound. It was unclear whether Thibodeau felt he gambled too much. “Good activity and rim protection was vital,’’ Thibodeau said. “When he goes to block we have to make sure we find a body. He did some good things but we got to finish our defense better.’’ Is he back to 100 percent? “Not all the way yet, but close to it,’’ Robinson said. “Once I get back in shape I’m going to be a problem.
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June 25, 2022 | 8:58 pm EDT Update
“Listen we still run that franchise [Magic]. If they wanna sell it to us, DeVos family, we’re ready to go right now,” O’Neal said on The Big Podcast. “This message go out to the DeVos family, if you’re ready to sell Orlando Magic, sell it to somebody who’s gonna take it to the next level, that’s us. D[ennis] Scott and then, D Scott can pick everybody else. Smart people combined with common sense people and people that’s been there before, you can’t go wrong.”