NY Knicks: The Pros and Cons of a Russell Westbrook Trade

NY Knicks, Russell Westbrook (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
NY Knicks, Russell Westbrook (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /
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NY Knicks, Russell Westbrook
NY Knicks, Russell Westbrook (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images ) /

The Cons of a NY Knicks Russell Westbrook trade

Why shouldn’t the Knicks trade for Russ?

As we’ve seen, any team lives and dies by Westbrook. For all the reasons the Lakers would want to trade him, the Knicks would want to avoid him.

His defensive lapses have cost games for the Lakers. Although he’s efficient from the corner this season, he is arguably the worst high-volume three-point shooter in NBA history.

Despite his still otherworldly athleticism, Westbrook at the age of 33 is on the other side of his prime and has lost a step (or two) from his MVP days.

He makes $45mm each season over the next two years – so while his contract will be up sooner rather than later, the Knicks would lose all cap flexibility.

The contracts of Fournier, Walker, Fournier, and Knox are all relatively movable alone or in different combinations.

Westbrook’s? Not so much.

As Russ’s most ardent defenders (myself included) would admit, Westbrook needs the ball to play his game.

One of the greatest flaws of the Knicks roster as presently constructed is having a starting five consisting of four ball-dominant players (Walker, Fournier, Barrett, and Randle).

Westbrook does nothing to fix that.

The biggest reason the Knicks would want to avoid Westbrook (and will), is their goal of continuing to compete for a playoff spot this season while developing their young players.

Trading for Russ is an all-in and short-term move for a team looking to make a deep run into the playoffs.

That doesn’t sound like the Knicks this season.

Next. Reacting to a potential Eric Gordon trade. dark