If the New York Knicks don’t trade Evan Fournier before the 2023-24 season starts, training camp could be a little awkward for the 30-year-old. Earlier this offseason, Fournier was interviewed by French media outlet L’Equipe, and he unleashed his true feelings about the Knicks.
Fournier desperately wants to be traded, and he said he would use the 2023 FIBA World Cup as a “launchpad” for his career after he played in only 27 games in 2022-23. He had a few solid showings for France, but the team lost their first two games and was eliminated from advancing to the second round, and instead competed in the classification round.
As the start of the new season creeps closer, Fournier is starting to accept he will most likely stay in New York, at least for the first half of 2023-24. In a recent interview with EuroHoops’ Antonis Stroggylakis, Fournier was realistic about his future.
Evan Fournier more realistic about trade entering 2023-24 with Knicks
Evan Fournier said earlier this summer he won’t be able to handle another season where he sits on the bench, but that will happen if he does enter the new season in New York. Barring an injury, there doesn’t seem to be a path for Fournier to return to Tom Thibodeau’s rotation, especially after the Knicks signed Donte DiVincenzo this offseason.
DiVincenzo is coming off a season where he shot 39.7% from three on an average of 5.3 attempts per game. In 2021-22, when Fournier played 80 games, he shot 38.9% from deep on 7.7 attempts per game. Fournier’s biggest issues are his three-point inconsistencies and lack of a presence on the defensive end, whereas DiVincenzo will fit right in with the Knicks’ pesky defense.
Fournier will turn 31 at the start of the season, and he believes he can still contribute, but there isn’t a path for him to do so in New York. If the Knicks make their long-awaited trade for a star before the February deadline, Fournier’s $18.9 million could be thrown into the deal.
If that doesn’t happen, the front office could still try to get something in return for Fournier, as there’s no way New York will pick up his $19 million club option for 2024-25.
While Evan Fournier’s frustrations about not playing makes sense, there’s a reason why he spent most of last season on the bench. If a trade happens before 2023-24 starts, great. If not, he’ll have no choice but to continue to sit back and wait.