Knicks: Predicting which potential free agents will return to New York

Reggie Bullock and Elfrid Payton, New York Knicks (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
Reggie Bullock and Elfrid Payton, New York Knicks (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images) /
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Leon Rose, New York Knicks (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

Predictions for how New York Knicks president Leon Rose will handle team options and non-guaranteed deals this offseason.

Prior to the suspension of the NBA season, the New York Knicks were projected to have over $44.6 million dollars in cap room this offseason if they declined the team options and partial guarantees on Bobby Portis, Elfrid Payton, Reggie Bullock, Taj Gibson, and Wayne Ellington.

In fact, only five teams—the New York Knicks, Atlanta Hawks, Charlotte Hornets, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, and Phoenix Suns—were projected to have any cap space this offseason.

With the suspension of play and resulting lost revenue – from both gate receipts and television deals – ESPN’s Bobby Marks believes the salary cap could plunge this offseason by $25-30 million from the previously projected $115 million.

The drop in the cap will be significant for many teams in the league as it will push them further into the luxury tax and limit their ability to spend and re-sign their players.

The changing economic landscape will be an important factor in the Knicks’ direction this offseason, as they will be pressed with several decisions on team-controlled contracts and impending free agents.

The depreciated salary cap will likely soften the market for free agents this offseason, and many players may look to sign short-term deals, allowing them to test free agency once the salary cap increases again.

In this article, I provide my offseason predictions for players who could become free agents this offseason (including Maurice Harkless who is already set to hit the market). This list of players excludes Allonzo Trier and Damyean Dotson as they were included in the predictions for the Knicks’ young core.