Knicks Eyeing A Big Man?

by Paul Raymond | Posted on Monday, June 8th, 2009

The New York Knicks have their eyes on a big man, unfortunately it’s not UCONN center Hasheem Thabeet. The Knicks are believed to be very on Stephen Curry in the NBA Draft, which means they’d be looking for a big man in free agency. The NBA Finals are giving Orlando Magic center Marcin Gortat a big audition.

Gortat is a free agent after these finals and has been one of the better Magic players so far in the series. The Knicks had a huge void in the middle last season, so big they were using David Lee as a center most games. Gortat is a 7 footer with defense as his strength, he can block shots and rebound (3.8 pts, 4.5 rbs, 0.8 blocks over 12:35 minutes a game).

There will be one big question thou, is his success because of his lack of minutes, remember he’s Dwight Howard’s backup so that means only a few minutes a game.

“He’s got the best job in America, playing behind my best player, playing 8 to 10 minutes,” Magic general manager Otis Smith said. “He goes out and does his job and probably has the best work ethic of anyone in the locker room. Can he start for another team? Yeah he can.

Even if Gortat isn’t as good when playing a 20-30 minutes a game he could still be a very valuable addition for the Knicks, especially for the teams $5 million mid-level exception. It could also be a reunion of sorts. Gortat was initially drafted in 2005 by then Phoenix Suns coach Mike D’Antoni in the second round before his rights were traded to Orlando.

“I love New York, I can tell you that,” Gortat said. “It was the first city I landed when I landed in the states five years ago. I love Coach D’Antoni and I know [Danilo] Gallinari from Europe.”


Great even more Europeans wanting to play in New York, think the word is out its easy for them to make a buck and not have to play much?

But yea back to the rumor it looks like some lobbying on his part has already begun, but he’s going to have to work harder than that to get out of Orlando. The Magic are able to match any offer he receives. Which means the Knicks would have to do something us Knick fans are so used to. Overpaying for backup talent.

“I’ll just deal with it and the market will dictate where he goes,” Smith added. “I would like to keep him on our team, but it depends if someone wants to make him a starter and figures out what’s my breaking point. I’m sure teams will make a run for him.”

Drafting Curry and then signing Gortat would be a nice continuation in the rebuilding of the Knickerbockers. Personally, I’d still prefer a trade up to get the fore mentioned Thabeet, but hey us Knick fans never get what we really want.

There’s a lot of rumors about the Knicks right now, I’ll have more posted later today, so who knows what the truth actually is and what will actually take place.

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