Grading the Trade for the Knicks
The New York Knicks should absolutely pull the trigger on this trade.
The Knicks have rightfully been biding their time, pooling their trade assets and waiting for a star who helps them become legitimate title contenders. Joel Embiid does that; he is the reigning MVP, a two-way star whose versatility on offense allows him to attack a variety of defensive schemes.
Pulling off this trade would give the Knicks a core of Jalen Brunson, Joel Embiid and Julius Randle; Randle is well underwater as the No. 1 option, but he could find a way to thrive as the third option — or the Knicks could move him in a subsequent deal. Josh Hart, Quentin Grimes, Immanuel Quickley and Donte DiVincenzo make for a tough, versatile collection of wings around the stars.
It’s possible to overpay here, even for a superstar like Joel Embiid. The Knicks have to look through to the other side and see a true title contender. The Knicks team that emerges after this deal may not be the title favorites, but they can seriously say they are in the mix.
James Harden may decide to return for one last run with Embiid. Daryl Morey may find the perfect trade package to keep the 76ers winning now and preserve flexibility for the future. Embiid may decide he wants to retire with Philadelphia.
All the signs seem to point to something more disastrous for Philadelphia, however, and if the walls come tumbling down the Knicks are ready and waiting to pounce. This is the kind of trade that could finally bring a Knicks championship after 50 years.