New York Knicks: Five worst contract signings in franchise history

New York Knicks Joakim Noah (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
New York Knicks Joakim Noah (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks Allan Houston (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/ NBAE/ Getty Images)
New York Knicks Allan Houston (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/ NBAE/ Getty Images) /

What are some of the worst contracts handed out in New York Knicks history?

The New York Knicks have a difficult history with expensive contracts. Few have worked out in their favor, even including Carmelo Anthony, as the Phil Jackson-led front office wanted to move him just years into the pact.

Dating back to 2000, the Knicks have handed out some of the NBA’s worst deals. These money figures benefited the player but hampered the franchise for up to five years. Bad contracts even have an impact on the 2019 team.

What were the five worst contracts signed in Knicks history, though? Let’s take a look:

Honorable mention: Head coach Larry Brown

After consecutive NBA Finals appearances with the Detroit Pistons, Larry Brown became the golden head-coach signing for the Knicks on a five-year, $60 million contract. It failed miserably, from issues with players to a 23-59 record in 2005-06. The team fired him with cause after that season.

5. Allan Houston: Six years, $100 million

Long before the salary cap spiked, the New York Knicks have Allan Houston a six-year, $100 million contract, starting with the 2001-02 season. This made him the franchise’s highest-paid player ever at the time.

Houston was a good player for the Knicks the previous five seasons, preceding the massive contract with 17.7 points per game on 44.8 percent shooting and 39.7 percent on three-pointers. He even worked on the 1999 NBA Finals team.

The contract’s first two years worked fine, with 20.4 and 22.5 points per game, respectively. The Knicks, however, began their slump in these seasons that lasted for the rest of the decade, including the injuries that began Houston’s quick decline in 2003-04, playing 50 games.

Continued ailments derailed Houston’s 2004-05 season to just 20 games and 11.9 points per contest, which was a career-low aside from his rookie year. He retired afterward, and the rest of his contract remained on the books in 2005-06.

This deal saddled New York’s payroll for most of its span, and, when healthy, the team still struggled. It was the start of a disastrous time for the organization, and it set them back for years.