The Knicks sent Quentin Grimes to Detroit to facilitate the return of Tom Thibodeau favorite Alec Burks, plus a proven scorer with size in Bojan Bogdanovic.
The Knicks have traded Quentin Grimes, Evan Fournier, Malachi Flynn, Ryan Arcidiacano, and two second-round picks to the Pistons for Alec Burks and Bojan Bogdanovic, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Alec Burks, 32, comes back to a completely different New York team than the one he was traded off of back in July 2022. With the Pistons, he is averaging 12.6 points per game off the bench along with 2.6 rebounds and 1.6 assists. He is also shooting 40 percent from three on 5.7 attempts per game, continuing to prove himself a reliable shot-creator and maker with a struggling Detroit team.
Burks is an old favorite of head coach Tom Thibodeau, and was last utilized as the team’s starting point guard over Immanuel Quickley despite him being a better fit at shooting guard with the Knicks. It was a major point of contention for fans who felt like the team was lacking without a bonafide 1, something they finally got with the team going on to sign Jalen Brunson last season. Burks would be returning to, presumably, run point again with the second unit, which isn’t exactly his wheelhouse but isn’t as bad as him starting as the Knicks’ floor general.
But the real story here is the addition of Bojan Bogdanovic, a 6’7 forward who has averaged nearly 20 points per game on 40% shooting from deep over his last five seasons. He will help spell the injured Julius Randle and OG Anunoby for now and will offer some intriguing mix-and-match potential off the bench once the team is at full strength.
The scoring bunch of Burks and Bojan can unlock space for players like Deuce McBride and Josh Hart, who have been punching above their weight on offense as a result of the loss of Quickley from their roster. They should be able to operate more off-ball and get more flow going with Burks in the rotation.
Seeing Grimes go out the door is painful, but the young swingman will get to go to a team desperate for his shooting-and-defense skillset, which will hopefully give him a bigger role than he would’ve had on this Knicks team down the stretch. What this move means for Thibodeau’s rotations remains to be seen.