Another NBA offseason means another year of expectations for the Knicks to acquire a big name. The main subject of this particular offseason has been Chris Paul. This rumored move would be considerably less impactful than the rumored signings of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving from past “pipe-dreams”. Some Knicks fans may even refer to it as a nightmare, and it’s an understandable feeling.
One would first question the reasoning for a rebuilding Knicks’ team to take on a 35-year old point guard who is owed more than $85 million over the course of the next two seasons. Acquiring Paul still leaves New York an eternity away from any sort of serious playoff run in the near future. For nearly any other struggling franchise, these points would be undeniable and would describe this type of move as pointless.
However, we have started hearing small rumors around the league that Paul has one his eyes on the franchise. Why would Paul look to be moved from the Thunder to the Knicks?
Potentially, the Knicks best signing of the current century, William Wesley, was expected to bring both relevance and swagger back to the team upon his hiring. When it comes to networking, there are few better than Wesley. Prior to accepting the job, he knew he was walking into a two-decade long mess.
Wesley wouldn’t bring in Paul for the sole purpose of fighting for an eighth seed. Wesley would bring Paul as the first message to the rest of the league that change is coming to New York. After the ugly fallout with the franchises’ last two stars in Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis, Durant and Irving didn’t even look at the Knicks as a potential destination during free agency. One would imagine that feeling is shared amongst other stars.
Chris Paul is one of the most connected players around the league and his potential positive experience with a reinvented culture in Madison Square Garden could be one of the main keys in finally turning the curve around. Paul is the current president of the Players Association and could be an invaluable ambassador for the Knicks beyond his playing days. The Knicks need a change of culture, and Paul would undoubtedly be the first piece in getting that done.