Josh Hart was listed as out due to rest for Team USA’s first exhibition game on Monday, but he was actually sidelined because he was set to become extension-eligible two days later. On Wednesday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the New York Knicks and Hart were finalizing a four-year, $81 million extension. The deal was made official on Thursday.
Hart is now free to play in Team USA’s next two exhibition games on Aug. 12 and 13 in Malaga, Spain. The 28-year-old signed his name to the extension surrounded by beautiful scenery, although he was without one of his biggest supporters — his wife.
The Athletic’s Joe Vardon gave an inside peek (subscription required) at what signing a long-term extension with New York was like for Hart. The guard has been vocal about wanting to remain with the Knicks since the team traded for him before the February deadline. Hart was on the move the past two trade deadlines, but he’ll be in New York for the foreseeable future.
How does he feel about it? Pretty good.
"“It was actually pretty cool, I was just laying down on the training table, getting some treatment, on FaceTime with her and signing the contract,” Hart said. “It meant a lot. I wasn’t highly touted coming out of high school, wasn’t highly regarded in the draft, went through free agency the first time and I was restricted, it was a terrible experience for me, so to be able to do this, it’s a dream come true – just being able to have something that can take care of my parents, my family, my kids."
Josh Hart says signing New York Knicks extension is “a dream come true”
Josh Hart’s status for Game 6 of the second-round playoff matchup between New York and Miami was uncertain because his wife, Shannon, was preparing to give birth to their twin boys. Hart was ready to return to New York, but he decided to play in what ended up being the Knicks’ final game of the season because it was already determined that he wouldn’t make it to the hospital in time for the birth.
Sure, it was disappointing for New York’s season to end, but shortly after, Hart met his sons for the first time. Now, he’s made his dreams come true by signing a long-term extension with the Knicks. As Hart mentioned, the extension is important to him because it ensures he can care for his family.
Hart was the last pick in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft and has now played for four teams, including New York. He hasn’t spent an entire season with a team since 2020-21, when he was with New Orleans, but that should change in 2023-24.
Remember how Jalen Brunson acted when he learned that the Knicks had traded for Hart? That’s how Knicks fans reacted on Wednesday when they learned that Hart and New York were finalizing a four-year extension. The best is yet to come for Hart and the Knicks.