Now that the fun and excitement of draft night has passed, the time has come to get back to the nitty-gritty of roster construction. To that end, the Knicks have done some maneuvering with the 16th and 17th members of their roster: two-way contract players Luke Kornet and Isaiah Hicks.
The New York Knicks have tendered Qualifying Offers to both of their two-way players: Isaiah Hicks and Luke Kornet. Both players are now restricted free agents. The QO is for a two-way contract for 2018-19, which would be the second for both players.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) June 23, 2018
Both players saw a decent amount of time with the big club during the last few months of 2017-18. Hicks scored 4.4 points (on 45.8% shooting) and grabbed 2.3 rebounds in 13.3 minutes of game action over 13 games, and Kornet averaged 6.7 points (39.2 FG%, 35.4 3P%), 3.2 rebounds and 1.3 points in 16.3 minutes over 20 games.
We knew something was going to happen when it was revealed after the draft that Arizona guard Allonzo Trier would be signing a two-way deal with the Knicks—there are only two spots available on two-way deals.
So what happens now? The Knicks can simply gauge the market on both players—the qualifying offer means thy can match any team’s deal. Kornet was clearly the more promising player, but the Knicks will probably have a glut of centers and very few power forwards. Perhaps both will depart.
Personally, I’d be on board with bringing back Luke. Let the UniKornet ride!