The Knicks have recalled Luke Kornet from Westchester.
How did Kornet do in the G-League?
Kornet played great in Westchester, averaging 18.2 points on 48.5% shooting, including a scorching hot 47.5% from downtown on as many as six attempts per game. He also showed his ability to defend near the rim with 2.7 blocks per game. He did this all over 10 games during his stay in Westchester.
What are the roster rules again?
NBA teams are allowed to have a maximum of 17 players on their roster, including two, two-way players. Remember, Luke Kornet is not a two-way player; he is on a regular NBA contract, but with less than three years of experience, the Knicks are allowed to send him to the G-League as many times as they like, while he continues to earn an NBA salary.
Why call him up now?
Since Luke Kornet signed a new contract with the Knicks last summer, he cannot be traded until December 15, which is magically around the same date as when Allonzo Trier’s 45 days are up.
However, trading Kornet1is not so easy since he has automatic veto power as a player on a one-year deal with Early Bird rights.
The Knicks could be looking at the next two weeks as an evaluation period to decide if simply waiving Kornet makes sense to make room for Trier.
They could also be watching Mitchell Robinson get in foul trouble every night and think it’s time to add some depth to the big man ranks.
Do you think the Knicks will eventually waive or trade Kornet?
It’s possible. He is only making $1.6 million, so it wouldn’t be as much of a pill to swallow from a salary standpoint as it would be to cut someone like Ron Baker.
That said, there are so many reasons why Kornet provides value to the Knicks as a big man over the reasons you could list to keep another guard/wing on the roster like Baker.
I know Baker brings hair-flopping energy, and that is valued on a young team, even if it is demonstrated only in practice, but Kornet is a seven foot center who can shoot threes and offer the Knicks depth at a position they could use it.
Unless the Knicks find a way to trade an excess player, given Kornet’s salary amount, I am a bit worried the Knicks end up deciding to waive him over Baker, but we will see.
Can the Knicks convert Kornet to a two-way in place of Trier?
There are a variety of options to convert Allonzo Trier to a standard NBA contract, but there’s much less flexibility in turning a NBA contract into a two-way.
Learn why the idea of turning Kornet into a two-way to make roster space for Trier can’t happenhttps://t.co/brqYRCAikp
— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) November 6, 2018
A NBA contract cannot include more than $50,000 in compensation protection and must be converted to a two-way contract prior to the start of the NBA season.
Kornet has both too much money guaranteed on his contract and it is too late to convert him, even if he didn’t have as much guaranteed.