Despite failing to acquire their top targets last offseason, the New York Knicks still haven’t given up with their dream of adding a legitimate superstar to their roster. With the team currently establishing an impressive performance in the 2020-21 NBA season, they are expected to be more aggressive in adding big names who could strengthen their chances of ending their playoff drought this year. One of the superstars who are currently being linked to the Knicks is veteran center Andre Drummond of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
According to Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report, the Knicks could acquire Drummond before the 2021 trade deadline by engaging in a three-team blockbuster deal with the Cavaliers and the Dallas Mavericks. In the proposed trade scenario, the Knicks would get Drummond and a 2021 second-round pick, the Mavericks would receive Alec Burks, Frank Ntilikina, and Reggie Bullock, and the Cavaliers would obtain Kevin Knox II, James Johnson, and a 2024 second-round pick.
If the deal would push through, Swartz believes that it would help the Knicks, Cavaliers, and the Mavericks in filling up the needs to improve on their roster. Trading for Drummond would make a lot of sense for the Knicks, especially with Mitchell Robinson set to miss the next four to six weeks recovering from an injury. The veteran big man would immediately fill the huge hole in New York’s frontcourt and serve as the team’s temporary center until Robinson returns to his 100 percent health.
Adding Drummond to their roster would improve the Knicks’ performance on both ends of the floor, giving them a very reliable scoring under the basket, a great rebounder, and a quality rim protector. This season, the 27-year-old center is averaging 17.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.2 blocks, and 1.6 steals while shooting 47.4 percent from the field, per ESPN. If things wouldn’t go well in his stint in New York, they could simply let him walk away when he hits the free agency market in the 2021 offseason.
For the Mavericks, the suggested trade would allow them to add two veteran shooters in Burks and Bullock and a young and promising guard in Ntilikina whom they could potentially pair with Luka Doncic.
“Dallas is in desperate need of shooting (35.0 percent from three as a team, 25th overall), which Burks (42.5 percent) and Bullock (38.5 percent) could help address. While Ntilikina’s playing time has been slashed because of the plethora of guards in New York, the 22-year-old could at least serve as a defensive specialist next to Luka Doncic in the Mavericks backcourt.”
Though it would decrease their chances of returning to the playoffs this year, the proposed scenario would greatly benefit the Cavaliers. By sending Drummond to the Knicks, they wouldn’t only be receiving a young and promising talent in Knox II and a future draft asset, but it would also enable them to promote Jarrett Allen to the starting lineup and give him more playing time and a significant role on the offensive end of the floor.