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Knicks’ reported dream plan: Trade for disgruntled star (Karl-Anthony Towns?)

Knicks forward Kevin Knox and Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - MARCH 10: Kevin Knox #20 of the New York Knicks and Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves hug after the game on March 10, 2019 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

For the first time since Patrick Ewing, the Knicks finally had a young star as franchise player. Then, as only they could, they traded Kristaps Porzingis to clear cap space and get draft picks.

New York struck out with that cap space last summer. Kevin Durant (Nets), Kyrie Irving (Nets) and Kawhi Leonard (Clippers) bypassed the Knicks.

Next summer doesn’t look much better. Anthony Davis will be the only star free agent, and he appears happy with the Lakers.

How will the Knicks ever get their desired star?

Marc Berman of the New York Post:

In the dream scenario, the Knicks, according to the source, envision being in good position to make a blockbuster trade for a star player who could grow “disgruntled’’ with his current situation.

According to the source, another player the Knicks are expected to monitor is local product, Karl Anthony-Towns

The Knicks have some appealing assets – all their own first-round picks, two Mavericks first-rounders, R.J. Barrett, Mitchell Robinson, Kevin Knox, Frank Ntilikina, Dennis Smith Jr. Is that enough to get a star? Depends on the star.

Some players prefer the big-market benefits of New York. The Knicks could also appeal to players who want to lead a team.

Maybe a star will both be disgruntled and desiring of the New York market. And maybe the Knicks will have the assets most appealing to his team.

But that’s a narrow needle to thread.

If the Knicks can get Towns, that’d be great for them. He’s a good young player who’s in the first season of a five-year extension. But that same deal dissuades the Timberwolves from trading him. They’re probably not good enough to keep him happy, but they have time to get there.

The question becomes: What will the Knicks do if they can’t land someone like Towns? Will they patiently rebuild? Or will they trade for a lesser, maybe older, star?

This situation is ripe for New York to make one of its trademark desperation moves.