The New York Knicks have yet to make a move to replace Obi Toppin after agreeing to trade him to the Pacers this past weekend. Tom Thibodeau could play Josh Hart, RJ Barrett, or Isaiah Roby at the four when Julius Randle is out of the game, or New York could sign a backup off the free agent market.
Given that free agency officially began on June 30, there aren’t a whole lot of options left for the Knicks. New York is also hard-capped at $172 million after trading Toppin and signing Donte DiVincenzo, so the best that the Knicks could offer is the vet minimum.
There are a few candidates that New York could consider, but there’s one player in particular that should’ve already caught the Knicks’ attention if they are looking to sign a backup. JaMychal Green signed a one-year deal with the Warriors last summer and is currently an unrestricted free agent.
In a piece predicting which free agents each NBA team could still sign, Bleacher Report listed Green as New York’s option.
Should the Knicks consider signing unrestricted free agent JaMychal Green?
JaMychal Green had a decent 2022-23 season in Golden State as he averaged 6.4 points and 3.6 rebounds in 57 games while shooting 54% from the floor. The veteran spent time sidelined with COVID-19 and was hospitalized with a leg infection, which is part of the reason why he didn’t spend more time on the floor.
The 33-year-old was axed from Steve Keer’s rotation early on in the season amidst Golden State’s bench struggles, but soon after he regained his role, Green was dealt an unlucky hand and missed 14 games due to the reasons listed above.
When explaining why Green would be a good fit for the Knicks, B/R’s Zach Buckley wrote:
"The 33-year-old is a quick thinker on offense, a capable switcher on defense and, typically, an above-average shooter from distance. If his shooting holds up—he’s hit 37-plus percent from range in four of the past five seasons—he could add a stretch element to this frontcourt’s attack."
New York needs shooting, which is why signing Donte DiVincenzo was a priority. The Knicks need height now that Obi Toppin is gone and Green could easily replace the 15.7 minutes per game that Toppin played this past season. Green shouldn’t be counted on as a threat from deep, but that’s a range that he can knock down the occasional shot from.
Tom Thibodeau relied on his nine-man rotation halfway through the 2022-23 season, and it was a move that worked out well for New York. Trading Toppin opened up a rotation spot that was almost immediately filled by DiVincenzo, so the Knicks would have to make another similar move before signing Green. It doesn’t seem likely that’s going to happen, especially since HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto reported that the Knicks plan to use Isaiah Roby as the backup power forward.
JaMychal Green would be an okay backup, but replacing Obi Toppin by signing another player doesn’t appear to be New York’s priority.