If Derrick Rose has his way, he’ll be a member of the New York Knicks for a long, long time.
The 28-year-old point guard will be a free agent over the summer, and the Knicks have already kicked around the idea of signing him to an extension. No matter when his next contract comes, Rose would like it to come from New York.
As he told Steve Serby of the New York Post:
Q: Could you see yourself, if all goes well, to play here in New York for a long time?
A: I would want it to be that way, but it’s not up to me.
Q: Why would you want it to be that way?
A: I love the environment here. I love just everything that comes with New York. I love it.
Rose has, in many ways, helped the Knicks. They haven’t had a driving presence like his at the point guard slot in forever, and the picks-and-rolls between him and Carmelo Anthony have been tough to guard. His chemistry with Kristaps Porzingis isn’t where you want it to be, but the two are still new to each other. He has also played in all of the Knicks’ first 20 games, a feat he hasn’t accomplished since 2011-12, when he was working off an MVP award.
Still, New York would be out of its mind not to explore the point guard market outside Rose this summer. The Knicks should be able to carve out max space, and Stephen Curry, Kyle Lowry, George Hill, Jrue Holiday, Jeff Teague and Chris Paul are all available. Many of them—particularly Lowry, Hill, Holiday, Curry and Paul—would be an upgrade over Rose.
At the same time, the Knicks won’t want to waste time elsewhere only to strike out and have Rose sign somewhere else. Egos are important in this business. But the Knicks must also take into account his injury history, even if his health isn’t a problem this season. If he’s going to command max money over the next four or five years, it doesn’t make sense to tie that much of Porzingis’ prime window to his.
Now, if Rose is offering a discount, something that’s unlikely given past comments, it’s a different story. If he’s not, the Knicks need to consider moving on. At minimum, they need to see if any other floor general is willing to take their cash. And if they end up losing Rose to another team in the process, so be it.