After a disheartening loss to the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night, it might just signal the end of the Mike Woodson era with the New York Knicks. There has been rampant speculation that Woodson would be fired soon—presumably before the All-Star break—and with this humbling loss to the lowly Kings, James Dolan will likely get antsy put him out of his misery soon enough.
From there the Knicks might go about reconstructing their roster with the trade deadline approaching. Two such moves that have been discussed before are starting to be re-ignited.
First, lets’ discuss the proposed trade involving Iman Shumpert and Kenneth Faried.
Rumble No. 1: The Knicks, I'm told, are trying to re-engage Denver in what has become a season-long crusade to convince the Nuggets to consent to a trade that essentially swaps Iman Shumpert for Kenneth Faried.
One source close to the situation said the most likely trade scenario — if it ever progresses to a serious stage — would package Shumpert and Beno Udrih to Denver for Faried and Jordan Hamilton. But that's the issue; New York simply hasn't been able to get Denver to seriously consider the idea.
Faried is earning only $1.4 million this season as he heads into a summer where he's eligible for a contract extension. A salary that low obviously makes it tricky for the Nuggets to get something resembling equal value for Faried when he's still on his rookie-scale contract.
Faried will be hard to obtain because of his low salary, but give the Knicks credit for trying. For a team in need of a young, gritty rebounder with upside, trading Shumpert for Faried in this instance makes sense. While Shumpert is extremely talented, the Knicks have a bigger need for a power forward that can defend and rebound, given the ages of the likes of Tyson Chandler, Amar’e Stoudemire and Kenyon Martin.
As for the move to acquire Lowry, well, that may be harder to pull off. The Knicks are interested though, as Frank Isola says on Twitter:
The Knicks are in fact interested in Toronto's Kyle Lowry. Classic Knicks. Could have had him two months ago, backed out now want him again.— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) February 11, 2014
However, sources around the league think with the Raptors currently enjoying a fine season and in line for the #3 seed in the Eastern Conference, they will stand pat and ride it out with Lowry part of the club,
"We've heard it from [Toronto] that he won't be moved," a rival front office executive told Yahoo Sports.
While there are never absolutes – especially if a team makes an unexpectedly rich offer – Toronto officials and sources close to Lowry have emphasized lately that Lowry appears destined to finish the season with the Atlantic Division-leading Raptors.
With the Knicks vastly underachieving, Dolan may want to shake things up before the deadline. No one is safe from the chopping block and the next week or so could be very telling in the direction the Knicks take.
Whether be it a coaching change or making trades—or both—the Knicks simply can’t stand pat, and it’s not likely they will.
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