Grade the Trade: Knicks add the point god in controversial deadline proposal

Kevon Looney and Chris Paul, Golden State Warriors
Kevon Looney and Chris Paul, Golden State Warriors / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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Would the Knicks make this trade?

Turning two players who aren't playing right now into one of the league's all-time best point guards seems like a no-brainer, although it must be stated that at 38 years old Chris Paul is not the player that he used to be. He has proven, however, that he still has a lot to offer, and the Warriors' bench units with CP3 at the helm destroyed opponents this season.

Jalen Brunson is going to play big minutes in the playoffs, so adding a second point guard doesn't seem like the largest need. Yet Paul will ensure that the 10-12 minutes per game that Brunson is off the court the Knicks are playing at an elite level, something that they are struggling with right now after trading Immanuel Quickley. Tom Thibodeau may be reluctant to play two small guards together, but Paul's standing in the league and veteran savvy may allow him to slip through the cracks of Thibs' rule.

The other benefit to adding Paul is that the Knicks now have a massive expiring salary with which to go into the offseason and pursue a major trade. If they need to they can waive Paul and walk away, but if they can negotiate a trade for a star player Paul allows them to match salary in a significant way. He would also bring NBA Finals experience to a team that doesn't have much.

Is the cost worth it? Mitchell Robinson is certainly a beloved member of the Knicks roster, but New York's dominance without him, including on the glass, illustrates that he is not indispensable. Isaiah Hartenstein and Precious Achiuwa have played extremely well in his absence, and Kevon Looney comes over in this trade to give them another veteran body.

The Knicks may find a better deal out there involving Evan Fournier's contract, but it's unlikely that it comes in such a way as to add to their collection of draft picks rather than take away from it. This deal gives them a solid veteran to upgrade the backcourt, solves one of their greatest problems (what to do when Brunson is off the court) and gives them a contract to use this summer.

This is a trade that the Knicks should think long and hard about accepting.

Grade: A-

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