4. Go all-in on Anthony Davis
From free agency to the trade market, if the New York Knicks strike out on Durant, Irving and even Walker, they can switch gears to the New Orleans Pelicans and their available superstar, Anthony Davis, who, as noted, has just one year left on his contract.
While Davis requesting a trade seemingly makes the Pelicans lose leverage, they will have suitors in the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers. Maybe another team steps up.
So if the Knicks are determined to leave this summer with a superstar, and they fail on in free agency, pushing all the chips in on Davis is the potential next step.
Sending young players and draft assets for a player with unguaranteed future is as risky as any for the Knicks to take. Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, the No. 3 pick and the 2021 and 2023 draft picks from Dallas are all valuable, and surrendering any of them, which will clear most of the roster, is a gamble.
It creates a situation similar to the Carmelo Anthony aftermath in 2011. The roster was top-heavy, while the organization struggled to put pieces around him, leading to four consecutive years of missing the playoffs, before the 2017 trade.
Maybe the Knicks are comfortable doing that to save face, but it creates another obstacle for them to overcome in free agency and sans draft picks to restock the team in future seasons.