[Washington, DC-Based Ezra Troy makes the case that the Knicks were the big winner in the Derrick Rose Trade. His argument is as solid as the Rose highlight reel.]
Sitting at the dentist yesterday, I got hectic texts from my friends. “Derrick Rose has just been traded to the Knicks.”
At first, I could scarcely believe it; I had heard some speculation, but that was it. All of the sudden, it hit me. What would the Knicks have to give up for a former MVP and number one overall pick?
Just three years earlier, the Knicks gave up three quality players, a first round draft pick and two second rounders for another point guard, Andrea Bargnani. So what would the Knicks have to give up for a former MVP? Porzingis? Carmelo Anthony? First round picks?
The answer came to me one minute later in an ESPN alert. The Knicks got Derrick Rose, guard Justin Holiday and a 2017 second round pick. The Knicks gave up… Robin Lopez, Jose Calderon and Jerian Grant. Ok so what else. Nothing.
The Knicks gave up their starting center (a solid NBA center), a 34-year old point guard owed too much money and a first round pick from last year for a former MVP. This seems like the Bulls just giving up the oft-injured Rose, but the Knicks got a steal on the 27-year old former MVP. The one downside? Rose hasn’t played a full season since 2010-2011 when he won MVP.
The Knicks have relatively little to lose. Rose has one more year on the five-year extension he signed with the Bulls worth $21.3 million dollars this year. After this year, he will become a free agent. The salaries of Lopez, Grant and Calderon are worth $13.2, $1.6 and $7.4 million dollars, respectively, or 22.2 million dollars combined. Lopez has two more years after this one worth $13.7 and $14.3 million dollars. Grant who is on his rookie deal signed a four year deal worth $6.3 million with the last two years being team options and gets a qualifying offer of $3.7 million for 2019-2020. Calderon is owed one more year after this of $7.7 million dollars. Even though they are both owed almost the same thing next year, if Rose doesn’t work out, the Knicks are done with him after this year. The Bulls are tied into two more years of $14.4 million with Calderon, three more years of Lopez worth $41.2 million and three more of Grant worth $5.9 million with the last two years being club options (which the Bulls are most likely to pick up) and must give him a $3.7 million dollar qualifying offer for the fourth year.
The Knicks will be free to pursue free agent point guards Russel Westbrook, Steph Curry and Chris Paul next offseason with those three off the books and Rose becoming a free agent next year. The Bulls are tied into millions of dollars for the next three years, in addition to giving the Knicks the star point guard they haven’t had since Stephon Marbury (hopefully Rose plays better than he did in New York).
Rose also gives New York an attractiveness in free agency – 3 core stars and $30 million dollars. Phil Jackson has told Rose that he will actively pursue Kevin Durant in free agency. A player like Durant or Dwight Howard could really push New York over the top and get them to the playoffs for the first time since 2012-2013.
Sorry Bulls fans, looks like the Knicks won this one.