Derrick Rose may soon be an ex-Knick.
According to multiple reports, the Cavaliers are in contract discussions with Rose on a one-year deal. The former NBA point guard also was scheduled to meet with the Lakers Thursday, ESPN reported. The Bucks also have shown interest in Rose.
The Cavaliers can only offer Rose the $2.5 million remaining on their midlevel exception or a minimum contract of $2.1 million. The Lakers have the full $4.3 million room exception and can promise Rose more playing time.
But the ultra-competitive Rose often talked last season about the importance of winning. The Cavaliers are the defending Eastern Conference champions. If their key players stay healthy, they will be the favorites to reach the NBA Finals for the fourth consecutive year.
Rose could play alongside Kyrie Irving in the backcourt or be the Cavaliers’ first point guard off the bench. Cleveland signed one-time Knick Jose Calderon for point guard depth, but he likely would be a third option.
The Knicks are in need of a veteran point guard to help mentor Frank Ntilikina and Ron Baker, but they haven’t shown much interest in bringing back Rose. It was considered a possibility, if not a probability, if Phil Jackson was still the president. But he and the Knicks parted ways three weeks ago.
The Knicks promoted Steve Mills to president and hired Scott Perry to be their general manager. Perry said Monday he would like to add a point guard. But the Knicks don’t have much money to offer a free agent after signing Tim Hardaway Jr. and using the room exception on Baker. All the Knicks have under the cap is about $1.4 million that likely will go to second-round pick Damyean Dotson.
“I’m excited about young Frank, but also I think we’ll need some veteran guidance,” Perry said. “We’ll find out who that will be in the days and weeks to come, but you definitely want to bolster that position.”
The Knicks probably will need to get a point guard through a trade. Perhaps they can acquire one in a trade involving Carmelo Anthony. They have reportedly spoken to the Suns about Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight. Both played for coach Jeff Hornacek when he was with Phoenix.
The Knicks acquired Rose last June. He averaged 18.0 points and 4.4 assists in 64 games with the Knicks.