Trade rumors have been swirling around the New York Knicks again over the last couple days, as the team is reportedly in talks with Toronto Raptors over point guard Kyle Lowry. The Knicks are looking for an upgrade over Raymond Felton at the point, and the Raptors have little use for Lowry after acquiring Greivis Vasquez as part of the Rudy Gay trade.
Making this trade would be a very bad idea for the Knicks. Lowry is good player, and he certainly represents an upgrade over Felton. However, the Raptors are asking for two out of three from Iman Shumpert, Tim Hardaway Jr. and a future first round pick, along with Felton. That price is simply far too high to pay to get Lowry.
Is Lowry better than Felton? Of course, and the numbers back it up. Lowry and Felton play similar minutes per game, but Lowry has better field goal, three point and free throw percentages, and he is averaging more points, assists, rebounds and steals per game. However, he is not so much better than Felton that he is worth giving up Shumpert or Hardaway, the Knicks’ only two promising young players. Futhermore, trading a 2018 first round pick (which is the first pick the Knicks are eligible to trade due to NBA rules preventing teams from trading back to back first round picks) is taking a huge gamble. No one has any idea what the Knicks will be like in 2018, and for all they know they could be trading what ends up being the first overall pick for a very average point guard. That risk is not even remotely worth taking.
Finally, Lowry is in the final year of his contract, and since the Knicks completely capped out, he could prove to be nothing more than a rental for the remainder of the season. Giving up either or both of your only good young players for a four month rental is such an unbelievably bad idea that only the Knicks could come up with it.
The fact is that adding Lowry changes nothing for the Knicks. His presence still won’t get them anywhere near the Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference, and it would cost the Knicks far too much in future assets to accomplish this trade. This is yet another example of Knicks’ management being unable to look past tomorrow, and they continue to show absolutely no concern for building for the future. Trading for Lowry would be another terrible mistake, and the Knicks should not make this deal.