Friday, July 24th, 2009 at 11:00 am  |  44 responses

Frustrated David Lee: On the Block?

by Marcel Mutoni

As everyone and their grandmother knows, the New York Knickerbockers are doing everything they can to have as much cap space as humanly possible for next summer’s free agent bonanza.

This is very bad news for David Lee’s and his bank account, one of their most popular (and productive) players.

The restricted free agent forward is upset with how contract negotiations have gone with the Knicks, and he wouldn’t be entirely shocked should he end up wearing a different uniform next season. ESPN reports:

Speaking publicly for the first time since becoming a free agent on July 1, a clearly frustrated Lee gave a strong indication that he expects to be dealt to another team before the start of the 2009-10 season.

“At the start of this process I was really excited to be in New York, I thought it wouldn’t be too difficult to work something out, but now we’re forced to start looking at different options with sign-and trades and stuff like that,” Lee said. “I’m sure it’s going to be something we’re not expecting, it’s going to be something that’s very complicated. But my gut would be that it’s going to be difficult at this point to get a long-term deal done with New York, that’s my gut. But my gut changes about every three hours, so I really have no idea.”

One of Lee’s main suitors is the Portland Trailblazers, one of the few teams in the League with the money to sign him to a long-term deal. But, hey, good news Knicks fans: Jamaal Tinsley may be on his way home. Rejoice!

Man, should the Knicks lose out on Lee, they better make next summer really count. Otherwise, well, they’ll be back to being … the Knicks. Never mind.

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  • http://www.curtin.edu.au Declan

    Would Lee be happy with a bench role for the Blazers though?

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    He’d make the Blazers front court rotation rock solid and one of the top three teams in the West.

  • albertBarr

    cosign eboy…Portland is itching to make noise and this would probably be better for them than Hedo or Paul Millsap.

  • bingo

    he would also make a great Bull, and i’m pretty sure there would be a starting role for him here in Chicago.

  • http://slamonline.com/ niQ

    Just leave the Knicks already! They clearly don’t appreciate what you’ve done. And the funniest part is, if Lebron DOESN’T go to New York, the Knicks will be left with NOTHING.

  • http://slamonline.com/ niQ

    (and by “don’t appreciate what you’ve done” i mean the Knicks staff, not the fans)

  • http://adfji.com Jukai

    Lee would be great for *add favorite team here*

  • http://gmail dirty frank

    What big name free agent is going to want to go to the knicks if there is no one left on the team to help them win? Is Lebron really going to want to leave a contender to play with Darko, Eddie Curry’s gut, and Chris Duhon?

  • Izzo

    Anyone know how much he is looking for?

  • Jj

    How about Lee for Boozer ?? Utah could make use of Lee, clear some cap space.

    The knicks could get an awesome player on an expiring contract (since they’re looking to clear space for ´10).

    I also know that the knicks are trying to get their first round pick back from the Jazz. Maybe they could work something out to that extent?

  • Prison Mike

    LeBron could learn from Darko’s championship experience.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    about 10 to 12 mil, izzo. I’m so sick of the knicks.

  • Izzo

    I can see why the Knicks would be hesitant, in that case, Bryan.

  • Exile

    Despite reading quite a bit about this guy… I have not really seen many Knicks games in the last couple of years. Despite being energetic, a good team player and a solid rebounder and fan favoriate… where does he lie? Who does his game remind one of?

  • https://slamonline.com Allenp

    Is David Lee “really” better than Andy V?
    If so, but how much? I think his contract should be around what Varejo got, maybe a little less since he plays no defense.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Why is Portland looking at bigs?! They have 2 centers already and only 10 mins available per game at the 4 spot?! They’re ALREADY rock solid inside. They need to look for a 1. Throw money at Sessions, why haven’t I heard this rumor?

  • Czar Ruke

    Lee would be great with the SUNS!

  • http://slamonline.com Walt Williams

    I sure wish the Kings would talk to Lee. Can we make a trade to move forward now? What good is flexibility if you don’t use it? Everyone is so frustrated here in Sac. We were fed the flexibility line since we traded WEBB. How much longer are we supposed to deal with these cap space saving moves? Do something Petrie! We have the cap space! Show me why everyone thinks so highly of you! Sean May is really fat! Exclamation point!

  • Luke

    ”My gut changes about every three hours” Ewww thanks for that personal insight David.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    No disrespect allenp but david lee is a much better player than andy v in my opinion. No doubt he can be a 19 and 12 guy , verajao wouldn’t touch that production.

  • Izzo

    Bryan:I don’t think Lee is a 10mil a year guy either.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    Nah 6 years 50 mil seems about right for that kind of production, its not far off from ten but still.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Z: Jerryd Bayless.

  • http://double-technical.blogspot.com Zee!

    Sessions is being slept on for REAL.

  • https://slamonline.com Allenp

    I don’t take it as disrespect that you disagree with me.
    Having watched Lee, I’m struck by the fact that he doesn’t have a reliable jumper, he doesn’t have post moves and he doesn’t defend.
    He is very active on the glass, has great athleticism and hustles in general.
    So I doubt that David Lee will ever, EVER average 19 and 12 in a normal NBA offense. Now, something run by D’Antoni, maybe, but I don’t think that team would be very successful.

  • jose

    go to new jersey .david lee and courtney lee haha.put in bruce lee and yea…..haha

  • http://www.youtube.com/ The Promise

    I agree with Allep. Sure, Lee has the potential to be a 19 and 12 guy, but I dont think he will reach that.I think hes a 10 and 10 guy for his career, so throwin that much money at him when you already have a loaded frontcourt simply makes no sense. I do hope he goes to a contender. Wow, the Knicks really had better hope they sign a couple of those top free agents next summer, cuz if they dont, they will be so bad, they may cease to exist…

  • http://jaredmintzisthetruth.blogspot.com Jared

    Allenp is absolutely correct. David Lee will never, ever ever ever ever ever, be a 19 and 12 guy. He’s a good hustle player, should probably be a starting 4, but is still undersized and not talented enough to be making 10 mil a year. As a knicks fan I sure do appreciate all he’s done, sh!t he’s been the lone bright spot since 2005, but knicks fans have to hope that Donnie Walsh knows what he’s doing and has a greater plan in place. And as much as I’m living by LeBron or bust for 2010, realistically, they can still do alright for themselves if they can’t get Bron.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    He was at 16 and 11 last year so 18 and 12 is one offensive put back away I’m sure he can do that. In a normal offense he’s maybe a13 to 15 ppg guy but the rebounds will always be there imo.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    And ill say this the knicks are cursed with letting go of talented young guys who turn into more than respectable players elsewhere and we end up looking like morons for it. Notably , trevor ariza, rod strickland ,even doug christie turned out to be solid. So I feel like letting lee walk will come back to bite us in the a$$ like always.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jackgoodrich Jack

    He’s frustrated? Try being a Knicks fan. Frustrated at his greed and asking for a sum of money that noone else in the league is going to pay him, so why does he think he can get it in NY? Loyalty to the player? His loyalty to the club and to the fans only go as deep as his pockets.

  • LeoneL

    I think the Knicks are gonna get better this year so they better not trade David Lee away. I say get Sessions instead of Tinsley. If they want to clear cap space, trade Curry already (good luck on that one)

  • U

    Go the sign and trade. Trade him for Dampier in Dallas, we would love his production along side the German….. what do the knicks get…. nothing, large contract that will eat into cap space next yr… but who cares, as pointed out your doomed anyway, ur the knicks!

  • http://www.sonicbids.com/shaemorin doyouwantmore

    Mark my words. LBJ is the next Patrick Ewing.

  • _J_rod

    I agree with many of the opinions here. Granted, Lee has been a hardnosed player for the Knicks for sometime, but I thought he understood the concept of bringing in saving money for future FA to help the ballclub. He should use that anger and put it into the 09-10 season and be hell bent on making the Knicks a playoff caliber team. If you really want the money, be motivated to help your team become better.

    If sessions becomes a Knick, I have no problem with it. My first choice would be Tinsley. People shouldn’t forget the phenonmenal playoff series Tinsley has played in from 02-05. A playoff caliber guard, who could make the Knicks, including Chandler, Gallo, everyone better. Knick fans don’t truly understand how a Kidd, a miller or Tinsley could help a team. It’s not just about finding a young guard when there’s already two two way players in Nate and Douglas on the team. It’s about proven guards improving the confidence of guys like Chandler, Gallo, Hill, making them understand hwo good they are and at the same time carrying them far into the season with 10-11 in the horizon. You know much confidence, excitement, winning basketball a J. Kidd could do for the Knicks? That’s what it’s about. So yeah, why not Tinsley?

    For this James coming to NY–I’m all for it, but the guy says hes going to stay in Cleveland–don’t bother with him until otherwise. Knick fans sound like groupies. Him, Wade and Bosh aren’t the only ones out there. With all the FA next year, you know how many quality FA you could get with the money that would be thrown at James? I know, James could get you to a chip, but think about the vteran players and possibly a decent big you can bring in. I rather have a team with seasoned, proven, playoff FA aquisitions than just the top 3 FA.

  • Yesse

    Lee would do good in many teams.

  • ab_40

    WHO CARES, he’s a hustle player not much else. go to indiana they need a white athletic american player to play with the stiffs, dunleavy, murphy and now hansbrough. seriously if this guy get’s paid 10/12 mil and odom 6? something is wrong with this leauge.

  • http://leogau.com Leo

    Lee is definitely a solid player, but he’s not worth the $10+ mil he wants. In this market that’s Odom money, and as good as Lee is, he’ll never be as good as Odom.

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    I don’t understand how an organisation can run their best players out of town over the course of a few years and then expect the best player/free agent to feel that somewhere like the New York Knicks is going to be their ideal place to play? Who is LeBron going to play with if he gets here?? Are the Knicks thinking that they are going to get EVERY available superstar free agent next season? The mind boggles.

  • chintao

    When David Lee is one of your best players, you’re essentially starting from nothing anyway. The organization is a wreck, and Lee should be thankful that the Knicks are allowing him to leave while not looking like a complete villain (remarks about his greed notwithstanding). Le Blows Jane can stay in the Mistake by the Lake. Even if he moved to New York, assuming no other decent FA takes the bait, the Knicks would still be at least a few years and a new coach away from the playoffs.

  • http://www.anwilson.blogspot.com rainman10

    Why was there a conversation about Lee and Varejao? I know people have seen Lee play, remember his jumper at Florida and in NY early on? He didn’t have one. It is developing nicely, and he can be a 19 and 12 guy. Is that so much crazier than the 16-11 he just averaged?

  • tk

    Jamaal tinsley? How is that an upgrade (mentally) from starbury? They both r morons!

  • http://slam nyjoe

    The Knicks have 2 choices: 1)Save your pay and next year get LBJ 2)get the eighth and final spot in the playoffs this year(possibly). With the talent of the rest of the teams, your not going to build a team around Tinsley, Sessions, A.I., or Williams. And by the way, tk is right, they are both morons. Us Knick fans have waited too long, we need a face for the team.

  • http://slam nyjoe

    The Knicks should have tried to get Tyson Chandler in a deal for Lee.