The New York Knicks have defeated all expectations leading up to the All-Star break. While they are just one game over .500, New York is playing superior basketball compared to this point last year.
In fact, the team that we see on the court has an entirely different feel, as they’re 5.5 games back in the Atlantic standings. Normally, the Knicks would be somewhere in the double-digit range in GB at the All-Star break, but they have the talent and ability to climb the ladder slowly but surely.
Adding a star talent before the March 25 trade deadline might be the catalyst to put them over the edge, especially coming off four wins over five games prior to the break. The team has been linked to multiple players over the past few weeks, so let’s take a look at three they could target before the deadline.
Three stars the New York Knicks could be targeting at trade deadline:
1.) Victor Oladipo
The Houston Rockets are expected to part ways with Victor Oladipo prior to the deadline, as they quickly become irrelevant. Oladipo is averaging 19.9 points per game over 32.4 minutes. He’s capable of being a fantastic addition, potentially taking over the starting point guard spot.
However, the Knicks do have Immanuel Quickley, Derrick Rose, and Elfrid Payton. Unless they feel he can be their everyday starter at PG, it might be best to leave him alone. Alternatively, Oladipo is capable of being a bonafide star, and pairing him with Julius Randle might be the perfect match.
As per Marc Berman of the NY Post:
Oladipo, however, remains in play for the Knicks as the Rockets are expected to trade him at the deadline as they slide into oblivion. Oladipo will be a free agent in 2021 and reportedly wants to sign with the Heat. That would make Oladipo a rental as the Knicks look to boost their bid to snap a seven-year playoff drought.
There’s no question that Victor would make New York a better team, but he’s only played in 15 games this year, so that’s a factor to consider.
2.) Terry Rozier
Another name that has bubbled to the surface is Terry Rozier of the Charlotte Hornets. If the Knicks are looking for a point guard, Rozier is capable of scoring efficiently, averaging 20.5 points this year, primarily at shooting guard. His presence might push Quickley down on the depth chart, but if New York paired Terry with a Payton departure, it shouldn’t affect the 25th overall pick.
I like Rozier’s offensive abilities, and he is also careful with the ball in his hands. He has enough court vision to spread the ball around, but he has an eerily similar feel to Quickley. The one statistic that stands out is his three-point percentage, as he’s averaging 7.7 attempts per game and hitting on .439.
3.) Bradley Beal
The Washington Wizards have made it clear that they don’t want to trade Bradley Beal, but if the Knicks offer enough, anything is possible.
So far this year, he’s averaging a career-high 32.9 points to go with 4.7 assists and 5.4 rebounds over 35.7 minutes per game. There is no question Beal is a superstar, and he would immediately inject elite talent into the Knicks’ lineup. The problem is, Washington isn’t going to let him go unless the deal is simply too good to be true.
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