Should the Knicks make this trade?
There are a lot of factors that would go into New York trading for Myles Turner. Between moving on from Mitchell Robinson, Turner’s current contract, and Joel Embiid possibly requesting a trade, this would be a risky move for the Knicks.
Let’s analyze Robinson and Turner’s current contracts:
- Turner ($20.98 million)
- Robinson ($17 million)
- Turner ($19.93 million)
- Robinson ($15.7 million)
2025-26 (Turner will be free agent in 2025)
- Robinson ($12.95 million, last year on contract)
Over the next two seasons, Robinson will make over $8 million less than Turner, which is important given that the Knicks should want to avoid creeping into the luxury tax.
Bleacher Report’s main point for a Robinson-Turner trade is that the deal would help “to space the floor while not sacrificing rim protection.” Robinson’s three-point shot is nonexistent, while Turner shot 37.3% from three on 4.0 attempts per game last season.
Tom Thibodeau loves his traditional centers. Isaiah Hartenstein shot 46.7% from three in 2021-22 with the Clippers, although that was on less than half an attempt per game. Thibodeau didn’t play to Hartenstein’s strengths last season, and while there’s reason to believe trading for Turner would be different, would his offensive strong points be implemented into New York’s offense?
Moreover, there’s the Embiid saga. If the Knicks had to choose between trading for Turner at a lower cost versus trading for Embiid at a high cost, the answer would be Embiid. New York has been accumulating assets for a reason, and the front office would look foolish if they traded for Turner only for Embiid to be made available a few months later.
While fans may want the front office to at least consider a trade like Bleacher Report’s proposal, it doesn’t seem feasible. The Knicks would presumably want more in return for Robinson, while the Pacers may not be satisfied with a top-10 protected first-round pick.
The best bet is to keep Mitchell Robinson. He doesn’t have Turner’s offensive skillset, but he’s a better rebounder. In a Thibodeau offense, the Knicks are better off sticking with the younger center who’s on a cheaper contract.