Berger: The Knicks have interest in Monta Ellis (Updated 9:22 AM)

USA TODAY Sports

Oh man.

Man, what a free agency period this has already been. Here's Ken Berger:

As the free-agent negotiatiing period opened Monday morning, the Knicks expressed an interest in pursuing a deal with Bucks shooting guard Monta Ellis, league sources told CBSSports.com.

A union of Ellis and the Knicks is viewed as a longshot, as the Knicks only have the $3.2 million taxpayer mid-level exception available. Ellis just opted out of a deal that would have paid him $11 million next season in Milwaukee.

But Ellis, 27, and his Washington, D.C.-based agent, Jeff Fried, are known to be willing to compromise in order to sign with a contending team.

Berger mentions a few other teams showing interest in Ellis.

Interest is just interest. The Knicks probably cannot afford to pay Ellis even a compromised salary, and I cannot conceive of a trade that would allow them to acquire the unrestricted free agent.

Feasible or not, though, I'm detecting a theme. The Knicks have agreed to trade for Andrea Bargnani, a notoriously inefficient, offense-only-if-at-all big man coming off a couple pretty bad seasons that alienated local fans. Monta Ellis is that but shorter and perhaps less reviled.

This might just be a Grant Hill Maneuver, and even if it isn't, the Knicks probably can't have Monta Ellis. Either way, their even wanting Ellis (if it isn't a GHM) leads me to believe the New York front office has ceded control of the franchise to an Xbox plugged into a dune of cocaine. I suppose that's one way to do things.

Update (9:22 AM):

Tim McMahon reports the Knicks are one of the teams inquiring about Jose Calderon, but the same caveats apply: 1. The Knicks probably can't afford Jose Calderon. 2. This could be a Grant Hill Maneuver anyway.

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