Offseason Report Card: Knicks get two As and three Bs for summer moves

Obi Toppin (1Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Obi Toppin (1Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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New York Knicks, Derrick Rose
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – DECEMBER 03: Derrick Rose #4 of the New York Knicks in action against the Dallas Mavericks at Madison Square Garden on December 03, 2022 in New York City NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Dallas Mavericks defeated the New York Knicks 121-100. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

1. Derrick Rose cut loose

The Knicks declined the $15.6 million team option, making Derrick Rose a free agent

The New York Knicks have been on the Derrick Rose ride twice in his career. In 2016-17 they took a swing on a 28 year old Rose, hoping he could regain some of his MVP form despite the multiple knee injuries. He largely did not, averaging 18 points per game but hurting the team in multiple ways; he lasted only 64 games in New York.

Rose came back in 2021, this time reuniting with former head coach Tom Thibodeau. Rose proved to be the Knicks’ second-best shot creator down the stretch and even averaged 19.4 points per game in the playoffs. That earned him a lucrative multi-year deal…before he was continuously injured and eventually pushed behind a deep stable of guards.

Heading into this offseason, the Knicks had two options. Rose had a team option on his deal worth $15.6 million. The Knicks could either keep Rose at that number and use him as matching salary in a trade, or they could decline it and let Rose sign elsewhere. Given Evan Fournier’s presence as potential matching salary it was a no-brainer to take door number two.

Rose signed with the Memphis Grizzlies as something of a veteran mentor to Ja Morant, and the Knicks have plenty of guards to play; Rose won’t be missed. The financial flexibility under the tax line is worth letting Rose go, so that was absolutely the right move to make.

Grade: A