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New York Knicks to offer Jalen Brunson $110 million, pursuing Dejounte Murray trade

Vincent Frank

Following their questionable strategy during the 2022 NBA Draft, the New York Knicks were forced to release a statement outlining their plans moving forward.

Apparently, said plan is now coming together. New York pulled off its second trade with the Detroit Pistons in the past few days Tuesday evening, sending the contracts of Nerlens Noel and Alec Burks to the Pistons. The Knicks saved a ton of cap room as they prepare to offer Dallas Mavericks star guard Jalen Brunson a huge contract once the NBA free agent tampering period on Thursday.

According to this note from Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports, the Knicks are expected to “present” Brunson with a four-year conract offer on Thursday worth roughly $110 million. That $27.5 million annual salary is a bit higher than previous reports.

Tuesday’s trade with Detroit also means that the Knicks can sign Brunson into cap space rather than relying on the Dallas Mavericks to pull off a sign-and-trade. It also opens up other avenues to upgrade their roster, including chasing after All-Star guard Dejounte Murray of the San Antonio Spurs.

“It’s believed that the Knicks could pivot to trying to make a run at San Antonio’s Dejounte Murray via trade or another target of Murray’s caliber using the many draft picks they’ve stockpiled even if (front office head Leon) Rose, as increasingly expected, secures Brunson’s signature.”

Marc Stein report on the New York Knicks

Related: 2 New York Knicks trade targets

How the New York Knicks can pull off a Dejounte Murray, Jalen Brunson pairing

Dejounte murray trade new york knicks
Mar 30, 2022; San Antonio, Texas, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Dejounte Murray (5) grabs a rebound in the first half against the Memphis Grizzlies at the AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports

It was noted earlier on Tuesday that San Antonio is demanding four lightly-protected first-round picks in exchange for Murray. The team would also reportedly accept three first rounders and multiple picks swaps to move Murray.

New York’s 2022 NBA Draft included the team acquiring multiple future first-round picks. It also has the Dallas Mavericks’ lightly-protected first-round selection in 2023 stemming from the Kristaps Porzingis trade from eons ago.

In reality, New York has the assets to offer up San Antonio in a hypothetical Murray trade despite the conference-rival Atlanta Hawks being most linked to the 25-year-old guard. That includes first-round selections in each of the next two years, another first rounder in 2026 and multiple pick swaps.

As for the Spurs’ reported asking price, they are not necessarily looking to take on proven players. Rather, San Antonio is in rebuild mode and wants to add both draft assets as well as young players to the mix.

Related: Jalen Brunson and top 2022 NBA free agents

How a Dejounte Murray trade to the New York Knicks would look like

  • Knicks get: Dejounte Murray
  • Spurs get: Evan Fournier, Immanuel Quickley, 3 1st-round picks, pick swaps

To take on the remainder of Fournier’s deal, San Antonio could demand Quickley head to Texas in the hypothetical trade. With Brunson and Murray aboard, the Knicks wouldn’t necessarily have a role for Quickley.

The question here is whether Murray and Brunson would be a fit in the backcourt. People around th NBA believe that they would work well together.

Coming off a disastrous 2021-22 campaign, the idea of a core four of Brunson, Murray, R.J. Barrett and Julius Randle would be really nice for the New York Knicks. Whether that’s a pipe dream remains to be seen. What we do know is that Brunson is headed to the Big Apple on a contract many might view to be an overpay.