Imagine Anthony Davis exciting basketball fans this month in the Big Apple.
Such a scenario might have taken place had the New Orleans Pelicans entertained the New York Knicks’ attempts at trading Kristaps Porzingis and other assets in exchange for the superstar forward, The New York Times’ Marc Stein reported Thursday, citing sources. The Knicks are one of many teams interested in acquiring Davis, who requested a trade from the Pelicans last month, and their willingness to offer Porzingis demonstrates the seriousness of their interest in making a deal prior to Thursday afternoon’s NBA trade deadline.
New York dealt Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks last week in exchange for two future first-round picks, point guard Dennis Smith Jr. and veterans Wesley Matthews and DeAndre Jordan.
The Knicks reportedly plan to pursue Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant and/or Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving this summer in free agency. Davis also might remain part of the Knicks’ long-term plan, as his contract will expire after next season and the team reportedly is one of his four preferred destinations in free agency.
New Orleans appeared unlikely to trade Davis prior to Thursday’s 3 p.m. ET trade deadline and probably will field countless offers for the six-time All-Star this summer. The Davis trade ultimately will be a blockbuster, and the Pelicans will receive a package around which they’ll attempt re-shape their roster.
Whether they succeed will determine if they’ll regret passing on Porzingis.