The trade deadline has come and gone, and the Knicks did not make a deal on deadline day.
They did, however, buy out two veterans, allowing them to find greener pastures. First up was the newly-acquired Wesley Matthews:
Clearly Wes’ two-game tryout where he shot 2-99 from the field was not enough to entice a team to trade for him. We’ll miss you, Wes. But mostly, we’ll miss your sweet ninja headbands that you would only keep on for the first half(-ish) of the game:
And then, of course, there’s the big Turkish guy:
The Knicks are releasing Enes Kanter, league source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 7, 2019
It should be noted, before I get into it, that Enes Kanter always made sure to praise New York City and say that he wanted nothing more than to win here. That’s admirable.
What’s not admirable, however, is how he spent basically this whole season bitching and moaning every time he wasn’t afforded playing time as an eight-year veteran on a rebuilding team full of young players in need of development. It was the most insufferable in the last few weeks, as Kanter weaponized the media to make his “case” for playing time:
Enes was, as you would expect, not thrilled to sit out as Knicks crushed on boards. Said he told a teammate he'd get 30-30 tonight. Instead got a DNP.— Steve Popper (@StevePopper) January 26, 2019
Enes Kanter is not losing quietly. Good for him. https://t.co/NXoOXGvwH1— Stefan Bondy (@SBondyNYDN) December 30, 2018
Whatever. I, personally, am very glad to see him gone. The Knicks, to their credit, handled the situation about as classily as possible:
Knicks GM Scott Perry adds in his statement on the release of Enes Kanter: “We wish him the absolute best moving forward, personally and professionally.” https://t.co/J0bleoyU3Y— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) February 7, 2019
And Kanter, to his credit, also seems to be done with playing games and showed more class on his way out than the other departing big man from last week:
So, there you have it. Kanter’s gone. Wes is gone. Presumably the Knicks can now tank in peace, and will be bringing in some new 10-day guys for tryouts in the near future (Jameel Warney, I see you). Hopefully Kanter finds a new home and Wes has a good time in Indy.
Keep it locked for who the Knicks sign to replace the departed vets. And if you remember Kanter’s time as a Knick later, try to remember the good times: