Hey look, Chris Bosh is talking about free agency again...
It was a good get by SNY, who had the all-star big man on The WheelHouse and they got right to the matter at hand. Bosh said "of course" the Knicks are "definitely a team I'm considering" but added "there are a lot of teams out there, including my home team, the Raptors."
Bosh says of the talk the he will pair with LeBron James, "It all depends on the situation" but made it clear he would be very interested in playing with LeBron. Then again, he wouldn't commit to whether he'd choose playing with LeBron over Dwyane Wade, who is already actively recruiting him.
He also shot down the idea that there will be a summit meeting of the big free agents, but said "It would make sense for me and Amar'e Stoudemire to have a conversation" because they both play the same position.
Bosh did leave one intriguing remark at the end of the interview when asked to put a percentage on coming to New York:
"We'll see after draft night," Bosh said with a laugh.
It could have been a simple statement to mean the NBA Draft still has to take place before the Free Agency period begins, but I have heard that the Knicks are trying very hard to make a trade happen on draft night that will be a tone-setter for July 1 and beyond. There is some thought that it involves Tony Parker, but he could be just one possibility among many.
For instance, Bosh - like all of the opt-out players - could be traded on draft night, as well. In this scenario, the Bird Rights go with the player, which changes the game dramatically because now you can re-sign this player after capping out, though they do take up room on your payroll as a cap hold so it's not like you would still have room for two maxes.
The issue for the Knicks is that if the Raptors start taking offers for Bosh on draft night, the Knicks best asset, David Lee, can't be moved until July 1. Lee is a pending unrestricted free agent, but his rights can't be traded on draft night because he was a one-year contract. Here's where Donnie Walsh would have to get creative in working with Bryan Colangelo, who will certainly want to get the most he can out of the Bosh asset.
The hope at 2 Penn Plaza is to send a message on draft night with a blockbuster move to grab the attention of the top free agents. It could be similar to when the Celtics acquired Ray Allen on draft night in 2007, as it set the table for the Kevin Garnett deal a few weeks later.
The fear, of course, is that there is another team (keep an eye on the Houston Rockets) planning to submarine the Knicks' summer plans by pulling off a trade for a key free agent such as Bosh on draft night to remove him from the pool. That would be devastating to the Knicks, who would then have to battle the Bulls and Heat for Amar'e Stoudemire.
And don't sleep on the Heat, either. Wade has been working free agents for weeks and the Heat do have an asset -- though alarmingly unstable -- in Michael Beasley whom they could deal on draft night. The Knicks could try to offer a player such as Chandler and then fill in the blanks with the rights to a pending free agent such as Al Harrington just to make the money work. This might be amenable to Toronto if they're looking for mostly cap flexibility in return while getting back a young asset.
Obviously if they're looking to get talent back for Bosh, the Raps can do better elsewhere with straight-up trade offers.
So, no, draft night won't have a lottery pick for the Knicks. But it still could be a critical night in franchise history that begins with those famous words from David Stern: "We have a trade . . . "