Knicks And Blazers Come To Terms On Sign-And-Trade

As reported by Jason Quick, a senior writer for The Oregonian, the New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers have come to terms on the details of their sign-and-trade. Portland will receive Jared Jeffries, Dan Gadzuric, Kostas Papanikolaou, Georgios Printezis and some cash. The Knicks will get Raymond Felton and Kurt Thomas. The deal cannot be made official until tomorrow, as Dan Gadzuric is not eligible to be traded until July 16th, according to Alan Hahn.

At first, it was reported the Knicks would include a second-round pick, but it appears the Knicks were able to trade Printezis instead. I think is a better move, since Printezis isn’t likely to come to New York for the next three-years. Here’s the explanation on that, from a previous post I wrote:

The minimum salary for players with no experience in the league is set around $470,000 – significantly lower than the $1.48 million Printezis made this past season. While Printezis could sign for that minimum deal, it’s unlikely he will do so. He’s respected over-seas and will be seeing much more lucrative offers. Unfortunately, it seems as if the Knicks cannot afford to bring Printezis to New York, at least for the next three-years.

Jon Diebler, as well as other international players, were reported as being discussed, but according to this initial report, the Knicks will only receive Thomas and Felton.

The one good thing for the Knicks: It appears Raymond Felton will be signing a three-year, $8,797,352.7 deal with the Knicks, plus incentives. This is based off Quick’s report of Jeffries being signed for the veteran’s minimum of $1,352,181, and Kurt Thomas’ deal being valued at $1,352,181, as well. In my mind, this is a much better deal for Felton than the reported four-year, $18 million one.

I’ve had some ask me how the $18 million deal could be possible, so I’ll answer that quickly. The Knicks hold Jared Jeffries’ early bird-rights, which allow them to go over the salary cap to offer him a contract up to ~$5 million. The Knicks could’ve signed Jeffries to a deal closer to $2.4 million, which would’ve allowed them to take back $5.7 million in first-year salary, leaving Felton a four-year, $18 million deal, as well as Thomas a one-year deal at the veteran’s minimum.

I was always surprised by this report, because why would the Blazers be willing to pay Jeffries nearly double the veteran’s minimum just to help Raymond Felton get his money?

Either way, it appears the Knicks will be signing Felton to the more logical deal, and a deal that still leaves the door slightly ajar to a potential Jeremy Lin return.