boogeydown wrote:looking ahead here but are the Knicks going to have enough cap space to sign 2 max guys in 2019? or just 1 (which Im guessing is Kyrie Irving right now)? Would be sweet to get another guy like Kawhi or Klay Thompson too.
Seems very unlikely. You'd need to move Hardaway for an expiring this year. Which would mean he's vastly overperforming his contact. And, if he's overperforming, why would you trade him?
That being said, Donnie Walsh did exactly that 10 years ago. The Knicks started the season off strong on the backs of Jamal Crawford and Zach Randolph, and Walsh traded them both despite the fact that it killed the season. A major difference, though, is that Crawford and Randolph were Isiah's guys, and Hardaway is Mills' guy.
On a semi-related topic, I know that everyone wants a top 3-5 pick in 2019, and so do I, but I think that you could formulate a pretty nice plan if the Knicks ending up overperforming like the Lakers did last year. Win 35 games by playing the young guys, and it shows that they're really nice pieces. Someone like Kyrie might think he can come in and be the piece that puts the Knicks over the edge.
Also, if the 2019 pick is late lottery, loathe as I am to suggest this, but maybe that makes it easier for the Knicks to trade it if they think the cap implications would make advantageous. Now, I'm no cap expert, but if the Knicks were to trade for either Kemba or Butler, then their 2019 cap hits should be low enough that you could waive and stretch Noah, sign a max free agent, and then sign Porzingis and Kemba or Butler afterwards to maximize your cap space.
If it were up to me, though, I'd take it just a bit more slowly. Trade Lee for an expiring this summer, and you already have a max slot without doing anything else. Sign a max free agent in 2019, wait for Noah's contract to expire and hope that Hardaway plays well enough that he opts out after 2020 as well (if he doesn't, use an asset to trade him, I guess). If both Noah and Hardaway expire after 2020, the Knicks should have room to sign another max free agent then. I could be wrong, but I think that's right.