Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.
Andrea Bargnani officially a Knick
Andrea Bargnani is officially a Knick.
The team completed the trade for the 7-foot Italian shooter this afternoon. The Knicks sent Marcus Camby, Steve Novak, Quentin Richardson (via sign-and-trade), 2016 first-round pick and second-round choices in 2014 and 2017 to Toronto for Bargnani.
The trade was agreed upon July 1, but couldn’t be finalized until today’s end of the NBA moratorium ended.
“Seven-foot versatile players with a good mid-range offensive game and an ability to stretch the other team’s defense are hard to come by in this league,” Knicks executive vice president and general manager Glen Grunwald said in a statement. “Andrea has proven to be a quality scorer who adds another dimension to our team. We are excited to add him to our frontline.”
Bargnani, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft, holds career averages of 15.2 points and 4.8 rebounds, and has shot 43.7 percent from the field. Bargnani posted a career-best 41 points, with seven rebounds and six assists, versus the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 8, 2010.
Knicks coach Mike Woodson has the option to start Bargnani up front with Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler or bring him off the bench. That could depend on what other moves the Knicks make through trades or free agency. If the Lakers amnesty Metta World Peace the Knicks are expected to try and pick him up.
Either way, the Knicks expect Bargnani to create tremendous spacing on the floor with his ability to draw power forwards and centers away from the basket. He does most of his work on the perimeter.
“Andrea has great size and can create huge match-up problems for our opponents,” Woodson said. “He can score both inside and out. He will be a great complement to Carmelo, Tyson and Amar’e.”
Right wrist and elbow injuries limited Bargnani to just 35 games last season. He averaged 12.7 points and was booed often in Toronto. The Knicks and Bargnani hope a change of scenery will help rejuvenate his career. He averaged 21.4 points two years ago
Camby was a disappointment after the Knicks acquired him last summer. He appeared in 24 games in his second tour of duty with the Knicks and averaged 1.8 points and 3.3 rebounds. There are rumors he could seek a trade or buyout from Toronto.
Novak, a popular Knick, averaged 6.6 points and made 42.5 percent of his three-pointers. For the second straight season he disappeared in the playoffs.
Richardson only appeared in one game for the Knicks and was only added to the deal to make it work when the NBA lawyers failed to approve the trade on June 30. Players’ salaries increased on July 1 and the Knicks needed to add salary.
Enter Richardson, who will make a guaranteed $1.4 million this season.