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Rumor: Knicks consider Willy Hernangomez a part of future

Despite hardly getting any playing time this season, Willy Hernangomez is still reportedly part of the New York Knicks’ long-term plans, per Marc Berman of the New York Post.

According to sources, the Knicks still consider Hernangomez, 23, a part of the future. If this stretch of 16-of-20 games on the road tosses the Knicks out of the playoff picture, they certainly will step up their bid to trade O’Quinn at the deadline and open up playing time for the Spanish center who is Kristaps Porzingis’ best friend.

With Enes Kanter and Kyle O’Quinn ahead of him in the depth chart, Hernangomez has featured in just 15 games for the Knicks all season, averaging 5.3 points and 3.4 rebounds in 10.6 minutes per game. However, he’s played just 23 total minutes in December, with five coming in the last 11 games.

The Knicks value Hernangomez enough that they didn’t want to include him in any deal for Eric Bledsoe earlier in the season. But it’s curious that they don’t view him as good enough to earn minutes ahead of O’Quinn, who is a serviceable but unspectacular big man.

Dealing O’Quinn would be a step in the right direction in terms of placating Hernangomez’s desire for more playing time. However, the Spaniard may sow seeds of discontent if he spends the entire season stuck on the bench, which won’t bode well for the Knicks.