Why the New York Knicks should trade for John Wall
After striking out on Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in free agency and then missing out on Zion Williamson in the 2019 Draft, the New York Knicks definitely have to change their approach coming into the 2020 offseason.
On the Locked On Knicks Podcast, hosts Gavin Schall and Alex Wolfe came up with one option for the Knicks to acquire a star player and maybe even some draft assets along the way: trading for John Wall.
Gavin Schall: Cue everyone throwing up upon hearing this next name: John Wall who has three years, $132 million left on his contract — and an escalating contract that culminates in $47 million in 2022-23.
The case would be as follows: He’s 30 years old, he allegedly — and we’ve heard a lot of players say this before getting permanently injured again — said he feels the best he’s felt since he’s been in the NBA. And it’s the first time he’s played basketball without pain since, I think the quote was, his rookie year.
The question for me is: how much draft capital would the Wizards be willing to give up to get off of him? Could you get that No. 9 pick for taking on John Wall? Would that even be worth it? I’m sure the vast majority of Knicks fans would say no.
The only argument I would make is the Knicks have sort of been of the belief that they’ll be able to get a superstar to come in free agency for the last 20 years. It has never happened. Arguably, they’re more set up now than ever before, and they’re going to take a more measured approach to it. And maybe they can build out a franchise ecosystem where it’s actually like appealing for a superstar to just sign with the Knicks.
But if there is like three years of really good basketball left in John Wall — and I think it’s a little bit of a long shot given how much his game was just based on being so much faster than everyone else and two years of traumatic leg injuries later, like who knows what the guy looks like — I just don’t think you couldn’t do this trade without watching him play 20 regular season games and watching him kick ass in some form or another for 20 games.
But if if the Wizards were saying, “hey, we’ll give you multiple first round picks,” I kind of have a feeling that John Wall could still be a pretty good player. I think people underestimate that the guy, on top of being lightning fast, is just a brilliant, brilliant passer [and] is a pretty big player. I think he’s 6’4” – 6’5” and actually turned himself into a plus 3- point shooter with that was a big weakness for him early in his career. I have a feeling he’s actually going to have like a pretty strong end of end of his career.