FanPost

Al Jefferson anyone?


I understand that the Knicks have gone through all that they have in ridding themselves of nearly every player on their roster to save salary cap space.  However, Minnesota is truly rebuilding through a youth movement and they're not exactly sitting on an infinite pile of money.  According to ESPN reports, T-Wolves GM David Kahn has spoken with Al Jefferson about the team looking to move him him and his contract (3 years, $42 mil, but $12 mil annual cap hit) to continue with his youth movement.  Where I question his sanity is that the decision apparently depends on Darko Milicic returning next season... that would concern me if I was a T-Wolves fan, even though he did play well there after the Knicks just gave him away.  Maybe Donnie Walsh was hoping for a future favor from his old pal, Kahn, down the road... can you say Rubio?

So here's my suggestion... Eddy Curry, Wilson Chandler and possibly Toney Douglas to Minnesota for Al Jefferson and the rights to Ricky Rubio.  I know talent-wise that isn't exactly a fair exchange of talent.  However, Curry has only 1 year remaining on his deal and he will actually do what he can to get on the floor this year because he needs a new contract next season.  Even if Curry flops (or Minnesota could buy him out of his final year), they continue to gain significant cap space next season and approximately $30 million (in comparison to paying Jefferson's full contract over the additional 2 years).  As we just witnessed at the Draft, a team wanting to create cap space has significant value (to the point where 1st round picks AND serviceable players are worth giving up in exchange for cap freedom).  I understand the cap space ordeal is because of this year's free agent gold mine... but next year is another good year for free agents.

Back to the suggested trade, the T-Wolves would love Chandler in their rotation and Douglas would be a better bench PG for them than having to figure out a balance between Flynn, Sessions and Rubio (IF Rubio were to ever agree to play for Minnesota in the first place).  Honestly, this deal would really set up the T-Wolves for years to come with the cap flexibility and rotational depth on their roster.  For the Knicks, they would add an actual front court impact player (only 25 yrs old, mind you) who could also be a terrific fit at Center while playing alongside David Lee or another Free Agent Power Forward.  The move would actually (if Douglas was included with Chandler and Curry) create slightly more cap space this year for the Knicks, as well.  Maybe enough to keep Barron as the #2 Center.  Not to mention, having Jefferson in the lineup would make the Knicks significantly more attactive to LeBron and other Free Agents... since they could still sign 2 Max FA players.

I'm sure everyone will think I'm nuts, but I think it is a win-win for both organizations considering each team's approach to rebuilding and the financial resources of each organization.

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