Here are some numbers you might like to know. 72: the number of hours, roughly, until the Knicks will participate in a basketball game that counts toward their record. 14: the number of guys on the Knicks roster, including the newly added Steve Novak and not including the non-guaranteed deals of Devin Green and Chris Hunter. 5,000,000: over two years, the number of US dollars the Knicks are still permitted to spend on a fifteenth player because of the CBA's "room" exception. 4: the number of repetitions at which the "here are some numbers" gimmick gets tiresome.
So, the season is pretty much here, and the Knicks still haven't used their room exception. Novak and Baron Davis both settled for less, and it just hasn't happened with James Posey or Bostjan Nachbar or anybody else. The rapidly approaching season tip-off isn't a formal deadline, though, so the Knicks might just save the exception for use at a later point. Kenyon Martin's name is one that's come up a lot recently, as his deal in China frees him up to leave only once his CBA season ends in March (I imagine he's being prevented from fleeing by a team of those armored rhino guards from Kung Fu Panda). Marc Berman hears that Martin might be a target for the exception should both entities remain available until that late in the year. He mentions Wilson Chandler as well, which is a signing I think a lot of us could get behind if Wil was amenable.
I'm not sure how I feel about this. Even discounting the fact that I don't think highly of Martin, (the word "fugazi" still comes to mind, which probably says more about me than it does about K-Mart) I'm instinctively not thrilled with the idea of pocketing the exception when the bench is far from perfect. Then again, with Novak now on board, there aren't too many guys out there right now (Leon Powe is the only name that tickles me) who could give the second unit a different look for $2.5 million a year. And while the bench isn't wonderful, there are certainly enough Knicks demanding minutes to fill a ten- or eleven-man rotation. Okay, I may have just talked myself into wanting the Knicks to save the exception and fill that last spot with a deal for the veteran's minimum. Chris Hunter had previously been my favorite of the non-guaranteed bros, but Devin Green looked excellent last night, so now I'm undecided. There are, of course, vet's minimum options outside of the current roster, but it'd be cool for one of those two to get the opportunity.
So, I started this post thinking I was opposed to saving the room exception, but now I've decided it's just that I think Kenyon Martin is kinda yucky. What say you?