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Knicks reportedly discussed trading Obi Toppin, Evan Fournier for Jarred Vanderbilt, Malik Beasley


NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at New York Knicks Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks could be moving on from Obi Toppin in attempt to bolster the bench (and move on from Evan Fournier’s contract), according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype:

The Knicks and Jazz have had exploratory conversations surrounding Obi Toppin, Evan Fournier, and draft pick compensation for Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt, league sources told HoopsHype.

Vanderbilt is a rugged, defense-minded big man who can play both power forward and center, though under Tom Thibodeau, the 6’9” Vanderbilt would probably exclusively play at the 4. That could be a problem, as he isn’t a threat from the outside. He’s shooting 33.3% from three on only 57 total attempts this season.

Beasley is known as an elite three-point shooter, though he isn’t exactly lighting it up from beyond the arc this season (35.8 3P%). He will jack ‘em up, though (8.6 attempts per game), and he’s a career 38% three-point shooter, so they could be banking on some positive regression.

Personally, I’m not a fan of this deal. Vanderbilt isn’t a good fit for Thibs’ offense. Beasley is a poor defender, so he couldn’t be on the floor at the same time as Jalen Brunson. It just seems like they’re capping their versatility, which is a thing that happens often with Thibs-coached teams. I get that they’re probably going to have to move on from Obi — or get a more creative head coach, but they refuse to do that. Still, I think they can do better.