The New York Knicks want Donovan Mitchell
For years the New York Knicks have publicly and privately pined over Donovan Mitchell. Their surprising trade for OG Anunoby last weekend signaled two things: the Knicks are willing to take swings to upgrade their roster, and that they desperately need another creator.
Putting the pieces together, it seems obvious that the Knicks would still be in the market for Mitchell, and even have their sights set directly on him. He's a dynamic on-ball creator who considers New York City home and is represented by CAA.
Do the Knicks still have the scratch to come for Mitchell? Here's what a trade could look like from the Cavs' point of view. Want to step into the looking glass? Here's the same deal analyzed from the Knicks' side of things.
The New York Knicks don't want Donovan Mitchell
Wait, what's that? The New York Knicks have leaked through the media (the iconic Marc Stein, to be specific) that they are no longer interested in Donovan Mitchell? What a fascinating development.
There are a lot of possibilities, as what is said (publicly or especially anonymously) is never to be taken at face value. The Knicks could still be very interested in Mitchell and simply throwing up a smokescreen to improve their negotiating position; that's the stance I explore in this piece inside of a classic board game metaphor.
It's also possible that the Knicks are playing wordsmith, telling Stein that they "do not intent to mount an all-out pursuit of Donovan Mitchell." There's a lot of wiggle-room to be negotiating for Mitchell without going "all-out" for him.
Finally, it's very possible that they are no longer looking to trade for Mitchell. OG Anunoby has a lot of leverage to sign a big deal in free agency this summer, and paying Mitchell's next contract on top of Jalen Brunson, Julius Randle and Anunoby is a lot of money and would likely throw them over the second tax apron. Perhaps they are going to try and find a less-expensive wing creator, such as Dejounte Murray or Caris LeVert.