NBA free agency is now largely behind us and, hoo-boy, did it fundamentally change the landscape of the league. With all of the top players now under contract, here’s a look at the biggest losers from free agency in 2019.
New York Knicks
I mean, this is almost too easy. The New York Knicks bet big on landing at least one star this summer and wound up with a bevy of mid-roster guys. A few months ago, the dream was for the Knicks to land Zion Williamson and match him with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. None of that happened.
Instead, the Knicks splashed money on a bunch of average players, with Julius Randle’s three-year, $63 million deal headlining the list. They also handed out two-year deals to Bobby Portis ($31 million), Reggie Bullock ($21 million), Taj Gibson ($20 million), Wayne Ellington ($16 million) and Elfrid Payton $16 million). None of those guys will move the needle a millimeter.
It appears the Knicks are setting themselves up to have a ton of cap space in two years. Basically, they’re psyching themselves up to miss out on Giannis Antetokounmpo in two years.
Meanwhile, the Knicks had to watch in stunned silence as the Nets became the glamour team in New York. Irving and Durant will now be playing just across the East River in Brooklyn while Madison Square Garden will remain a cocoon of sadness.
No matter how you spin this, it has been a disaster for the Knicks.