Why Knicks reportedly wanting to keep Derrick Rose in Donovan Mitchell trade makes sense

With trade talks between the New York Knicks and Utah Jazz being stalled, there hasn’t been much said about Donovan Mitchell’s future. New York’s still the frontrunner to land the three-time All-Star, but Danny Ainge’s demands remain high.

We know that the Knicks reportedly don’t have an interest in trading RJ Barrett and that the Jazz are interested in Quentin Grimes, although New York’s reportedly not willing to part ways with him. And according to The Athletic’s Tony Jones, the Knicks reportedly aren’t willing to part ways with Derrick Rose either.

The 33-year-old is entering his 14th season in the league and his fourth with New York, including his one-year stint back in 2016-17.

A nagging ankle injury limited him to 26 games in 2021-22. That, along with Kemba Walker’s struggles, led to Alec Burks being the Knicks’ starting point guard. Now that New York has Jalen Brunson, fans won’t have to worry about a non-point guard playing point guard. And depending on what happens with Immanuel Quickley in trade talks, Rose could end up being the Knicks’ primary backup point guard in 2022-23.

The Knicks reportedly want to keep Derrick Rose out of Donovan Mitchell trade talks

If a trade for Donovan Mitchell doesn’t materialize before the start of the season, then Quickley should be Brunson’s backup. While there are fans who believe that Quickley should be off limits in trade talks, the reality is that he could be making his way to Utah.

New York’s roster as it stands is full of young talent, which is what the Jazz are looking for in addition to several first-round picks in a trade for Mitchell. HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto pointed out that players such as Julius Randle and Evan Fournier are less appealing to Utah because of their contracts, but that Rose could be of interest to the Jazz.

Instead, I see someone like Derrick Rose, who’s owed $14.5 million this season and has a team option for next season, being more appealing to Utah. The Knicks would also be willing to trade Cam Reddish. Then, from Utah’s side, you have the Knicks’ trio of young players who could appeal in Obi Toppin, Immanuel Quickley and Quentin Grimes.

Here’s what Tony Jones had to say about that:

The Knicks don’t want to unload Derrick Rose. He’s long been a favorite of Tom Thibodeau. I know the Knicks want to hang onto him and Grimes. Those guys are priorities.

Tom Thibodeau’s already parted ways with Taj Gibson this summer, so it seems as if he isn’t willing to let go of Rose.

Let’s say that a trade for Mitchell doesn’t happen and that the Knicks decide to slide Quentin Grimes into the starting lineup in place of Fournier, which has been a common topic of discussion. New York’s starters would all be 27 and younger, with Grimes and RJ Barrett being the youngest at 22.

For such a young team, veteran leadership is especially invaluable. And not to mention, Rose has proven that he’s a valuable contributor when healthy. Continuing to have his presence in the locker room would benefit the Knicks as they look to make their way back to the playoffs.

Rose’s $14.5 million salary for 2022-23 could be used as filler in a deal for Mitchell, but that’s not something that New York’s reportedly willing to do, which makes sense. With an 82-game season, it’s vital to have someone like Rose on and off the court.