How can the Knicks free up the necessary cap space for a Max Contract?



Knicks receive: Chandler Parsons and a lottery protected 2021 first round pick.

Grizzlies receive: Tim Hardaway Jr. and Courtney Lee.

This idea was inspired by Grizzly Bear Blues, the SB Nation account that covers the Grizzlies. The account responded to a question asking “who do you believe is a realistic target that can made a great addition to the Grizzlies?”. Well, Grizzly Bear Blues target was Tim Hardaway Jr.

That made me wonder from a Knicks perspective. The Knicks front office wants to clear as much cap as possible to pursue top tier free agents this summer. The Knicks currently project to have $32 million in cap space and would around $38 million to pursue a Kevin Durant type free agent.

So where do they find the extra $6 million? Take on Chandler Parsons contract. Yes, Parsons is still under contract for next season but by moving Hardaway and Courtney Lee, the Knicks would be clearing an additional $5 million in cap space.

Parsons, now healthy, has left the Grizzlies and it sure sounds like he’ll never play another game in that uniform. The Grizzlies, who sit 2.5 games out of the 8 spot, are in win now mode as long as they have Conley and Gasol under contract. Grizzlies management likely doesn’t want to eat Parsons money without getting any sort of an asset in return.

Memphis is 27th in the league in three pointers made and 22nd in the league in three point field goal percentage. Hardaway and Lee can both help Memphis in that regard.

The real advantage for Memphis would just being able to find useful players for that $24 million they are giving to Parsons. The advantage for the Knicks? Well, they don’t want to win this season anyways so they won’t mind Parsons playing and helping the tank. The heavily protected first round pick would be a nice future asset and they’ll be able to free up money for a max slot this offseason.

Sounds like a good fit for both teams.

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