The New York Knicks tried to do a good public relations thing on Monday, unveiling their newest big-money free agent signing, Tim Hardaway Jr., on the same day as they held a youth basketball camp. Once-and-future president Steve Mills didn’t show up to take questions, because of course he didn’t.
The presentation went smoothly, though, as Timmy remains a nice, charming fella. The Knicks made him a “welcome back” highlight video which includes Timmy slamming home a lob from Pablo Prigioni. I’ll admit it: I got a little choked up here.
Hardaway was asked about another old-timey Knick in the perhaps-soon-to-be-traded Carmelo Anthony, and he gave a fine, diplomatic answer, per Ian Begley:
"Yes, we definitely want him back—no question. Just having that veteran leader out there on the floor, a go-to guy who can get you a bucket any given moment of the game, it's great. It's great to have that. You want to have that. It'll be tough for him to leave. But like I say, he has to do what's best for him and his family."
There seems to be a bit of confusion about the Tim-Melo relationship. They got into a few arguments, as teammates are wont to do, but generally got along quite well. Melo seemed genuinely hurt when Hardaway was traded, and tweeted out a farewell message.
Basically, Hardaway gave a bunch of quality answers about his growth as a player in Atlanta following the wake-up call he received when the Hawks sent him down to the D-League in 2015-16. He confirmed that the Knicks want him to keep on improving which made the Internet laugh.
Tim on Knicks: "They said straight up, ‘You have to obviously improve a lot more on defense and improve a lot more on the offensive end.’"— Steve Popper (@StevePopper) July 10, 2017
Hardy-hurdy-durr-harr they gave him lots of money but they also want him to get better. Of course they want him to get better. The Wizards are paying Otto Porter $100 million—do you think they’re telling that kid, “You’re perfect just the way you are???”
Whatever. Timmy is back. Here’s an interview with Jonah Ballow, if you’re interested. Go the Knicks!