The Knicks, as they are currently constructed, lack shooting in their front court. If they want to improve on their 2022-23 campaign, they’ll need to address that weakness this summer. Enter Torrey Craig. The unrestricted free agent, who Fred Katz of The Athletic mentioned as a potential target, is coming off of a strong season in which he averaged 7.4PPG, 5.4RPG, .8BPG, and .9SPG while shooting 45.6% from the field.
Craig, who should win over Thibodeau’s support instantly due to his defense, should be a very solid asset from day one. He was a 39.5% 3-point shooter overall and a 44.3% three-point shooter from the corners last season and his insertion into the rotation would create some much needed spacing for Jalen Brunson, Julius Randle, and RJ Barrett. And with Obi Toppin possibly on his way out, he’d slot in very nicely behind both Randle and Barrett as a backup forward. A reserve unit made up of Immanuel Quickley, Josh Hart, Isaiah Hartenstein, Craig, and whoever else the Knicks decide to go with, could be a deadly one made up of really good defenders and just enough shooting. And with New York’s best perimeter defenders all being 6’5” or shorter, Craig, who is 6’7”, should see some time closing games out in specific matchups as well. The veteran forward also started 60 of the 79 games he played in last season, and should be a nice option as a spot starter if Randle or Barrett were to miss some time.
But unfortunately, signing Craig won’t be an easy task. Phoenix could decide to overpay him to retain him if they decide to continue not caring about the luxury-tax. And some would argue that they should seeing as he’s pretty much the perfect type of player to pair with the star-studded trio of Kevin Durant, Devin Booker, and Bradley Beal. The Suns though could be looking at a multitude of restrictions in upcoming years if they were to resign Craig so they may decide to look elsewhere. But even if they do, many contenders, for all of the reasons listed above, will be interested in the 3-and-D specialist. While it would be amazing to see Craig dawning a Knicks jersey come October, fans would be wise to temper their expectations as securing Craig and his services will be no easy task for Leon Rose and co.