New York Knicks: Early connections exist with top 2019 free agents

Boston Celtics Kyrie Irving, New York Knicks Allonzo Trier (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics Kyrie Irving, New York Knicks Allonzo Trier (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /
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Golden State Warriors Kevin Durant (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Kevin Durant

The Kevin Durant front was quiet, as he signed another short-term contract with the Golden State Warriors last July. It guaranteed him a third season in the Bay Area, potentially for a third consecutive championship.

Unlike 2017, the noise for his departure has increased for after 2018-19. Why after two titles, two NBA Finals MVPs and a spot on a dynasty?

According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the New York Knicks have “a very good shot at luring” Durant away due to the organizational building and culture. He compared it to LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

It’s also an expensive proposition for Golden State to pay their superstars. They gave Stephen Curry a $200 million deal, Klay Thompson is due next summer, and Draymond Green has a major payday on the way.

Does that squeeze out Durant, one of the NBA’s top players?

A championship may not stop the last Seattle Supersonic from another “pay cut,” as he can accept a maximum contract that starts at $38 million in Year One. That expensive of a deal paints it as the Warriors forced to make a choice on their star talents.

If they don’t have to decide, could Durant pack up and leave for his own team? He can have that in New York, with Madison Square Garden’s bright lights over him for up to four seasons. It’s the chance to erase the perception of an “asterisk” around his name, since he received criticism for hopping from the Oklahoma City Thunder to Curry, Thompson and company in a guaranteed title-winning scenario.

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Durant would re-shape this young Knicks team in 2019-20 and beyond. Do they stand a chance at signing him, though?