Knicks still planning to part ways with Joakim Noah
Despite some rumors saying that Joakim Noah still figures he could be a consistent part of the New York Knicks rotation, the team has remained firm on their stand to either find a trade partner for Noah’s bloated contract or release him if a trade is not possible.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Ian Begley reported the current development in the Knicks camp:
“The New York Knicks remain unlikely to reincorporate exiled center Joakim Noah into the team under new coach David Fizdale and still plan to part ways with the veteran big man before training camp, league sources told ESPN.
Unless general manager Scott Perry can find a trade that includes Noah, the Knicks will use the NBA’s waive-and-stretch provision to release Noah sometime after Sept. 1, league sources said.”
The 2014 Defensive Player of the Year signed a rich contract with the Knicks in the summer of 2016. Both sides agreed to a four-year, $72 million deal. It was also the same year that the Knicks traded for former MVP Derrick Rose.
With his tenacious rebounding and defensive prowess, Knicks fans hoped that Noah would be a fitting defensive anchor for the team. However, a season-ending surgery to a shoulder tear he suffered in an injury-plagued 2015-16 season proved to be a probable cause of Noah’s sudden declining numbers. He struggled in his first season with the team and just logged in 5.0 points and 8.8 rebounds in 22.1 minutes per game. Then, he completely fell out of the team’s rotation in his second season as he just played seven games last year.
The Knicks have been searching the market for a team willing to trade for Noah, but his bloated contract made it difficult to construct a deal. If there’s still no trade deal in place for Noah come September 1, the Knicks will look into waiving his contract.