Despite complicating their pursuit of Donovan Mitchell with the RJ Barrett extension, the New York Knicks are reportedly still determined to land the Utah Jazz guard.
In fact, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post, the Knicks don’t see the Barrett deal decreasing their chances of landing Mitchell. They wouldn’t have done that deal if that’s the case in the first place.
“According to a source, the Knicks are ‘hopeful’ they can pull off a Mitchell deal without Barrett. The source says the Knicks would not have come to this Barrett decision if they felt it would kill the trade,” Berman wrote.
While it is true that Jazz boss Danny Ainge wanted RJ Barrett, his priority remains getting the most number of picks possible: which is rumored to be four unprotected first rounders.
Extending Barrett makes it difficult for the Knicks to trade him because of the poison pill provision. While it is still possible to move the young wing, matching salaries in a trade will be a massive and problematic undertaking.
The Knicks still have other young assets to trade, though, which makes a deal for Donovan Mitchell still possible. Obi Toppin and Quentin Grimes have been mentioned as the top potential pieces to be moved, along with Evan Fournier’s contract. At the end of the day, though, a deal will only push through if New York and Utah agree on the number of picks to include in the transaction.