Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum piqued the interest of New York Knicks fans with a tweet that presented a fantasy of brighter days ahead.
The New York Knicks are in active pursuit of a franchise player who can help right the proverbial ship. That process has taken New York to the depths of free agency and the only recently embraced asset known to be the NBA Draft.
As Atlantic Division rivals thrive with players who are becoming household names, however, the Knicks’ pursuit continues to prove fruitless.
On Thursday, Mar. 26, the Knicks were offered a reminder of what it is that they have to offer to all future free agents. During a Q&A session on Twitter, Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum was asked what his favorite city is to play in on the road.
Tatum’s answer presented Knicks fans with a reason for optimism, as he made it clear that New York City—and more specifically, Madison Square Garden—was the No. 1 answer.
Sound the alarm.
To be clear: The odds of the Knicks acquiring Tatum at any point in the near future are astronomical. He still has a year remaining on his rookie-scale contract, meaning he won’t be eligible for restricted free agency until 2021.
At that point, it’s all but guaranteed that the Celtics will be offering him a max contract—meaning they’d be ready and willing to match any offer he receives from another franchise.
In other words: One can expect five more NBA seasons to pass before Tatum is an unrestricted free agent.
Nevertheless, a tweet like this offers reason for encouragement from the Knicks’ perspective. A 22-year-old budding superstar has cited Madison Square Garden as a desirable location to play, which implies that others could still feel the same.
If the Knicks can prove to have competent management over the course of the next few seasons, perhaps the allure of The Mecca will return in full.
The New York Knicks may not be signing Jayson Tatum anytime soon, but his endorsement of Madison Square Garden could prove significant long-term.
At the very least, it proves a needed dose of optimism.