Jake Brown | Twitter |
Kawhi Leonard is headed north of the border along with Danny Green to play with Kyle Lowry. The the East wide open with LeBron James gone, and the Raptors are going all-in to try to get to the Finals. They did this trade pretty much knowing that Leonard could leave them next summer, and by all accounts it seems like he will.
Chris Haynes is reporting that Leonard has no desire to play in Toronto. If that is indeed the case, it means Leonard could join Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson, Jimmy Butler, Kemba Walker and others in the free agent class of 2019. And Leonard being unhappy this season in Toronto puts the possibility of him going to the Knicks next summer very much in play.
With the Knicks potentially being able to bring in two max players, it would not be stunning for Leonard to think about coming to New York. One of the best situations possible for the Knicks is if they can end up signing both Leonard and Irving next summer, giving them a stacked big three of Irving, Leonard, and Kristaps Porzingis. Mix that with Kevin Knox with a year under his belt, and Knicks fans would be drooling. It's not bonkers to think it's possible.
Still, Leonard should be the Knicks' backup option to Durant. It's a 1 and 1A type of deal. Either way, if you get one of the two to pair with Irving, you're ecstatic.
With Irving, I truly believe the Knicks have a strong shot to land him. Irving wants that spotlight on him on the big stage, and he's a New Jersey guy. I stand pat on believing Irving will be a Knick next summer.
What would really help the above come to fruition is if the Knicks could trade Joakim Noah's expiring contract and get that $18 million off their hands and on to another team. That would give the Knicks some flexibility and the chance to put together a roster that can compete for at least a shot at an Eastern Conference title.
For now, the Knicks can dream about a pairing of Durant and Irving or Leonard and Irving. They already got some luck with Leonard going to a spot where he likely won't sign after this season. More now than ever, making a splash in the 2019 free agent class is something the Knicks must pull off. They need to end up with two stars.
Let the mayhem ensue...