Rival guard reveals how close he was to being traded to Knicks

New York Knicks, James Dolan
New York Knicks, James Dolan / Paul Bereswill/GettyImages

The New York Knicks have made several terrible decisions under James Dolan, so much so that even with the team's success in recent seasons, the organization is still routinely clowned for its past.

Ten years ago, the Knicks were close to making a trade with a conference rival, but Dolan called the deal off for fear it'd be another disaster.

Masai Ujiri took over as Toronto's head of basketball operations ahead of the 2013-14 season, and his dream was to turn the Raptors into a championship team. After a shaky start, Ujiri made a trade with the Kings on Dec. 8, 2013, and was close to making another four days later.

In an interview with TSN Sports' Josh Lewenberg, Kyle Lowry said he was certain he would be traded to the Knicks that December.

"Lowry: “I’m dead serious, my bags were packed. I had two duffle bags packed. [I was] sitting in my condo on Lakeshore, my two bags were packed, and I was sitting there waiting for my flight info on Porter Airlines to go to New York. I sat there with two duffle bags full of clothes, as much as I could take, ready to go. That’s how close it was.”"

TSN Sports

Kyle Lowry was sure he'd be traded to the Knicks 10 years ago

Lewenberg wrote that the Knicks were willing to trade Raymond Felton, Metta World Peace, and a first-round pick to the Raptors but didn't want to include Iman Shumpert or Tim Hardaway Jr. in the package. New York's reluctance was enough to cause the deal to fall through, keeping Lowry in Toronto.

It's a good thing for the Raptors that the Knicks didn't want to proceed with the trade, as five seasons later, Toronto hoisted its first Larry O'Brien trophy.

Kawhi Leonard was Toronto's leading force in the playoffs with his 30.5 points per game, but Lowry played an instrumental part in the title run. In Game 6 of the NBA Finals, Lowry finished with 26 points, 10 assists, and seven rebounds to close the series out.

It's weird to think about how things would've played out if Lowry had ended up in New York. The now 37-year-old should be thankful that the trade never went through, or he wouldn't have won a title, that's for sure.