Unrestricted free agents with CAA connections: Lance Thomas & Ron Baker
Curiously enough, both former Knicks Lance Thomas and Ron Baker are CAA clients. Lance signed with CAA, particularly Leon Rose & Rich Felder, back in January 2019. Ron Baker’s CAA ties date back to the 2016 NBA Draft. His agent, Mitch Nathan, was particularly helpful in getting Baker a 2-year, $8.9m contract in 2017 that was immediately lambasted by many in the NBA media circles.
Of the two players, Lance has the better probability of returning for a second stint in New York, especially if a player, who will be discussed later, returns. Baker last played for CSKA Moscow. Shoulder surgeries significantly slowed down his basketball season since he impressed the Garden faithful during his rookie season.
While Lance doesn’t bring as much to the basketball court compared to other players, his leadership was noted, especially during the 2018-19 season where the Knicks stockpiled losses in the hopes for the #1 overall pick. Thomas was the team captain, and at the time, the longest tenured Knick on the roster.
Veteran leadership is often the key to developing a strong culture and player development. Lance’s hard work behind the scenes was an integral part of team development during his tenure and something the current crop of players could value, if a roster spot is open for him.