The Knicks can invite up to four more players to training camp, which begins October 1. Daddy Grun doesn't just hand out golden tickets, though. As was reported last night, the Knicks are holding a "free agent mini-camp" this week, bringing in as many as ten (that's the number Jared Zwerling gives us) guys for auditions. So far, Zwerling's provided two names:
Justin Brownlee is the sturdy forward from St. John's/the D-League who you may or may not have noticed on the Knicks' Las Vegas Summer League team each of the last two years. He's 25, 6'7", and from what I remember, he makes an effort on defense and rebounds appropriately for his size. Based only on his D-League performance and his position, I don't see Brownlee as the kind of guy likely to snatch a real roster spot.
Ricky Davis is Ricky Davis, who you may know from him being Ricky Davis. The legendary chucksmith has been bouncing around foreign leagues for the last few years, most recently getting waived (and replaced with Rashad McCants!) by the Piratas de Quebradillas of Puerto Rico. He'll turn 34 in a week.
Those are the two we know. Remember, these are auditions for auditions. The Knicks are bringing in ten guys to compete for four training camp spots to in turn compete with four others for-- at most-- three real roster spots. And one figures at least some of the C.J. Leslie/Jeremy Tyler/Toure' Murry/Chris Smith group has a leg up on those last three spots. Davis, Brownlee, and the eight other friends are long shots.
On that note, I'm interested to see who the other eight guys are. I imagine names will trickle forth throughout the week. Some of them must be Vegas guys, and I bet at least one or two more are old, familiar veterans (although not Jared Jeffries, I'm afraid). Even before learning those other eight names, we've got a pretty wonderful list of weirdos behind us this summer. This front office leaves no stone unturned, and this summer's lengthy list of veteran stones turned includes Gary Forbes, Sean May, D.J. White, Lester Hudson, Bobby Brown x 10,000, Darius Morris, Quincy Douby, and maybe Hamed Haddadi, not to mention some other pros without NBA experience, including the the famous "big man from Lithuania". The Knicks take the bottom of their depth chart seriously. I'm excited to see who winds up down there. I don't think it'll be Ricky Davis or Justin Brownlee.
One more name from Ian Begley (thanks, abe88):
#Knicks mini camp workouts were conducted today & yesterday. They included 6-9 F Ike Diogu, the leading scorer in the African Championships.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2013
To recap: #Knicks worked out some FAs in the last 2 days. Among them: Ricky Davis, Justin Brownlee, Cole Aldrich, Ike Diogu & Josh Powell.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2013
And DeSagana Diop, too. So, that's seven names. Of them, I'd say Aldrich is the most enticing. He's a big fellow, he's relatively young but also relatively experienced, he pulls down rebounds, and he can finish. For a training camp invite and possible 14th or 15th man, that sounds about right to me.