Knicks had no interest in trading for Russell Westbrook, per report

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks struck out big time during free agency, failing to add any of the top-end players.

It led to the organization releasing a statement before reports indicated that they actually pulled out of a meeting with reigning NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard.

We now have another report indicating that New York had no interest in trading for Russell Westbrook before he was dealt to the Houston Rockets last week.

“From what I was told, the Knicks never had interest in trading for Russell Westbrook when he became available. Yes, the Knicks missed out on big stars in free agency and had a few PR snafus,” Jeff Zillgitt from USA TODAY reported. “But they remained true to their word and were focused on their rebuild without giving up assets. They signed free agents to reasonable deals that still give them salary cap flexibility in 2020 and 2021.”

Unlike their inability to land stars such as Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, New York’s lack of interest in Westbrook can’t be seen as a bad thing. He’s 30 years old and coming off a career-worst season. The former MVP is also owed $170-plus million over the next four seasons.

By the time these Knicks are anywhere near contention, Westbrook will be way past his prime. For once, the lack of a move actually paints New York in a good light.