Portland Trail Blazers guard Jamal Crawford will opt-out of his contract and for the second consecutive season become an unrestricted free agent.
And for the second consecutive season, Crawford has his eyes on a possible return to the Big Apple.
ProBasketballTalk’s Kurt Helin recently reported that the Knicks are on Carwford’s radar, along with the Miami Heat, Los Angeles Clippers, Cleveland Cavaliers and Sacramento Kings.
While it’s nice that the former Sixth Man of the Year wants to return to New York, where he played from 2005-09, would he be a good fit in New York right now?
First, looking at the teams he’s interested in, what exactly is Crawford’s goal? With the Kings and Cavs on his list, it’s probably money instead of winning a championship. They can offer him more money for sure.
Miami can only offer Crawford their mini mid-level at most ($3 million, and he made $5 million last year). The Knicks can offer less because they will have to use their mid-level on Jeremy Lin or another point guard.
New York could use the scoring, but Crawford’s numbers have tailed off the past two seasons, averaging only 14.2 points per game with the Hawks in 2011 and only 14.0 PPG with Portland in 2012.
Also consider that the ball doesn’t move well in the Knicks offense and the ball is in Carmelo Anthony’s hands a lot. That means less touches for Crawford and he’s a guy that saw 48.1 percent of his offense come from isolation as the pick-and-roll ball handler last season. At best in the Knicks offense, Crawford would have to be a spot up shooter and he shot only 31 percent from behind the arc this season.
I have always liked Crawford as a player, but he’s 32 years old and really isn’t worth sinking money into this offseason.
In addition, the Knicks need backcourt defense off the bench as much as scoring and Crawford has never been a great defensive guard.
There are other priorities to fill before the Knicks even think about taking a look at Crawford.