Multiple reports indicate that New York continues to pitch former-Knick Jamal Crawford to accept less money and years – likely the team’s $2.5 “mini-MLE” for one season – to rejoin the franchise.
In the immortal words of Mr. Marv Albert: YES!
The problem is that Crawford, 31, has undoubtedly garnered better contract offers from other teams, including the Nets, Pacers and Blazers, per Newsday’s Alan Hahn.
In fact, EPSN’s Marc Stein reports that Crawford has already received a two-year, $10m offer from Indiana.
Despite the landscape, bringing the highly-talented guard back to the Garden should remain a top priority for interim-GM, Glen Grunwald.
@JCrossover would be a perfect fit off the bench for the new-look Knicks, capable of providing offense when Carmelo Anthony sits, and as an effective pick ‘n roll partner with Amar’e Stoudemire.
At 6’6″, Crawford is a poor defender and a truly abysmal rebounder, but his ability to break down the defense and connect from long-range would be invaluable in Mike D’Antoni’s system. For his career, Crawford is only a 41% shooter (35% from 3-point-range), but he achieved career-highs in efficiency just two years ago in Atlanta during his first season off the bench.
As the Knicks are rumored to be against including Toney Douglas (good idea) or Landry Fields (debatable idea) in a sign-and-trade for Crawford – a path to clearing enough room under the salary cap – selling the Sixth Man of the Year candidate on the appeal of playing for a Championship contender seems to be their only option.
Surely the Knicks – as evidenced by their signing of Mike Bibby – don’t know if Douglas can carry the load at PG, and Crawford could provide the franchise with a short-term hedge as it also evaluates the long term viability of rookie Iman Shumpert-as-facilitator.
And perhaps Crawford, coming off a disappointing 2010-’11 campaign with the Atlanta Hawks, can be convinced that reestablishing himself on a one-year deal with the Knicks would be the best thing for his long-term income potential.
Unfortunately, the Knicks don’t have much time to wait around on Crawford; F Shawne Williams has expressed his desire to re-sign with the Knicks, but has other offers in hand. At some point in the next 24 hours, the team will need to make a decision on Williams, whose 3-point shooting, versatility and tough defense won’t be easy to replace elsewhere.
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