Kobe to Knicks talks sprouting up again...

From Chris Sheridan over at

"New York: If Chicago is one of the logical places for Bryant to end up, that raises the question of which team could make a competing offer. That's where Knicks coach and president Isiah Thomas would come in.

I've known Isiah a long time, so trust me when I tell you he would go to the end of the earth and do whatever it takes to get a deal like this done. He wants his legacy to be something special in New York, and Kobe Bryant could help assure that. Furthermore, Bryant has previously expressed interest in lighting up Gotham.

As a trade partner, what the Knicks lack in quality, they have in quantity. In terms of volume, Isiah could overwhelm almost any other offer out there, starting with combo guard Jamal Crawford, rebounding machine David Lee, Knicks starting power forward Channing Frye, a pair of unprotected No. 1 picks (let's say 2008 and 2010) and sundry throw-ins, including Nate Robinson, Randolph Morris, Renaldo Balkman, et al.

Crawford can score 20 points a night, and he'll go prolific for you at least twice a month. Lee is a double-double man, and the most popular player on the Knicks, an energy guy who will easily play in the league for 10 more years if he stays healthy. He's far from a bum, and the same goes for Frye, who could start for the Lakers for the next seven seasons.

No, there's no superstar in here, but it's a lot of lumber. And if you're rebuilding, you need a cache of young talent. Lee, Frye and Robinson are still on their rookie contracts. Crawford has a reasonable long-term deal ($7.9 next season, with a contract that ends after he makes $10.08 million in 2010-11). The Lakers would actually have cap space, lots of it, after Lamar Odom's contract ends in the summer of '09.

Nothing, however, will happen unless Kobe forces Buss' hand. That hasn't happened yet, and it still might not happen if the Lakers can make a major deal to put some new talent around Kobe and placate him. Certainly we've all heard about the possibility of Jermaine O'Neal and/or other players joining Bryant in L.A.

But if that doesn't happen, I wouldn't be surprised if Kobe pipes up publicly again, this time demanding -- not requesting -- a trade."

That's some high praise for some on those list (Frye = a 7-year starter?  Did Dolan write that?), still an interesting thought.

I really don't know how I feel about it.  I've never been a big Kobe fan but anyone would be stupid to deny his talent.  I still think he's the best player in the NBA not named Tim Duncan (boring as TD is).


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