Phil Jackson is just about done overhauling the Knicks’ roster this offseason.
The Knicks officially announced that they have re-signed guard Sasha Vujacic and inked forward Maurice Ndour. They now have 14 players with guaranteed contracts, including only five returnees from last season: Carmelo Anthony, Kristaps Porzingis, Lance Thomas, Kyle O’Quinn and Vujacic. Teams can carry up to 15 players on the roster.
Jackson, the team’s president, made major changes from last season’s 32-50 team, starting with the acquisition of former MVP Derrick Rose from Chicago for Jose Calderon, Robin Lopez and Jerian Grant. The Knicks also acquired reserve shooting guard Justin Holiday in the trade.
Jackson and general manager Steve Mills were busy in free agency, signing Joakim Noah, Courtney Lee, Brandon Jennings, Willy Hernangomez, Mindaugas Kuzminskas and Ndour.
The Knicks also replaced interim coach Kurt Rambis with Jeff Hornacek. They hope these changes lead to their first playoff berth in four seasons and first under Jackson. The Knicks have gone 47-117 in his two seasons as president.
“Here’s what: We have brought change to the Knicks team,” Jackson tweeted Thursday evening. “The real dimension of change is how much the players want to unite in this change.
“It’s not about bonding and being friends, it’s about joining in the effort of playing HARD on every effort. #respect.”
Vujacic signed a one-year deal for the veteran’s minimum. Well-versed in the triangle offense, he averaged 4.9 points in 14.9 minutes in 61 games last season for the Knicks.
The 6-9 Ndour signed a two-year deal. After impressing the Knicks during the 2015 Las Vegas Summer League, he signed with the Mavericks last July and was waived before the regular season.
Ndour played for Spanish Cup champion Real Madrid, averaging 2.1 points and 1.6 rebounds in 9.1 minutes in 18 games last season.