The New York Knicks traded for Cam Reddish. His fit with the team, contract situation, and future outlook will be debated as soon as he touches the floor for the orange and blue.
Did anyone read anything interesting on Twitter today? Just before 12 noon, an Adrian Wojnarowski tweet sent Knicks Twitter into a frenzy, as he reported that Leon Rose pulled the trigger on a trade that brought Cam Reddish to the New York Knicks in exchange for Kevin Knox and Charlotte’s top-18 protected first-round pick.
New York Knicks: What does Cam Reddish mean going forward?
Just on the surface, this is a clear win for the Knickerbockers. Sure they lose a first-round pick (that was heavily protected through 2025), but they get the chance to take a look at an extremely talented wing player, who has the ability to be a lead scorer in this league. This season, Reddish has improved his three-point percentage, free-throw percentage, but he’s still an inefficient scorer who is shooting 40 percent from the field on 10 shots a game.
Furthermore, Reddish represented somewhat of a gluttony of riches for the Atlanta Hawks at the guard/forward positions. Reddish is eligible for an extension this summer, however, it was going to be hard to find him minutes on a team with DeAndre Hunter, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Kevin Heurter, and Delon Wright. And there’s also this…
As it stands, this is a very low-risk, high-reward deal. Reddish is by no means a sure thing, and there’s a reason the Knicks were able to get him on the cheap. The former Duke standout is also coming off an Achilles injury and recently sprained his ankle. That being said, the more interesting conversation centers around how Thibs uses him, and how he fits with the New York Knicks going forward.
As reported today by both the Athletic’s Fred Katz and Chris Kirschner: before the start of the season, Reddish was looking to take on more of a playmaking role, and he wasn’t the biggest fan of being mainly a catch and shoot option in Atlanta.
In regards to the rotation, Reddish can seamlessly slot in as the top scoring threat with the second unit. With Derrick Rose and Kemba Walker still out with injuries, Reddish can play on the wing with Immanuel Quickley, Quentin Grimes, Obi Toppin, and Nerlens Noel/Taj. If Thibs continues to rely on Alec Burks for the majority of the starter’s minutes at point guard, this most likely means that Kemba’s time in New York is coming to an end.
Some fans have already penciled Reddish in as a potential replacement for Evan Fournier in the starting lineup. However, according to Cleaningtheglass.com, Reddish has played 85 percent of his minutes at the small forward position and 14 percent at the power forward position. As a result, it’s not likely that he takes any minutes away from the enigmatic guard.
When Rose comes back, it will be very interesting to see who will be on the outside looking in. At first glance, Grimes seems to be the likely candidate, which is unfortunate, but then again that may all depend on Reddish’s play.
As previously mentioned, Reddish is eligible for an extension this summer. The Knicks are under no pressure to extend him this summer. They can extend a qualifying offer and make him a restricted free agent and have the option to match any contract that another team offers him. Zach LaVine is probably one of the best examples of a dynamic scorer, who entered restricted free agency, and had questions about his potential outcomes as a player.
Now, even back in 2018, LaVine was more established and a better player than Reddish is today, however, the Sacramento Kings signed LaVine to a four-year $78 million offer sheet and the Bulls matched.
More recently, the Hawks signed Kevin Huerter to a four-year $65 million deal this past October. And with the exception of field goal percentage and rebounds, Reddish’s numbers are better across the board. You have to believe that extension talks start at around that range. And if that’s the case you have to wonder what the future of a team that, has most of its cap space tied to Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, Evan Fournier, and Cam Reddish, looks like.
Those are all questions for another day. At least for the time being, Knicks fans can rejoice as the front office has proven its competence once again. And with the team finally back to a .500 record, the Reddish trade may be just the boost this team needs to get back to their form from last season.