Whether it’s on the court, on social media, or recruiting players, New York Knicks center Enes Kanter’s confidence is always sky high. The Knicks—a team who has been stuck in mediocrity for years but has a promising future with young players like Kristaps Porzingis, Kevin Knox, and Frank Ntilikina—have proven big name players do not have winning success in New York and even though it’s the biggest market in the league, players don’t want to sign there.
Enes Kanter isn’t talking about Patrick Ewing, Carmelo Anthony, or Amare Stoudemire, though (all who failed to win a championship in New York). He also says the Knicks aren’t the same and will be a huge destination come the summer of 2019 where the young players will be developed, another draft pick will come on board, and free-agents will sign there.
In an appearance on The Herd with Colin Cowherd, Kanter answered several questions about the Knicks, including the rumors about Kyrie Irving’s desire to play in New York as well as his thoughts of other superstars joining the Knicks.
“Yes, he is,” Kanter said when asked if he thinks Kyrie Irving is interested in joining the Knicks next summer. “And Not just him. Jimmy Butler and you know what, why not Kevin Durant?”
.@ColinCowherd: A lot of people are saying, Kyrie's interested [in joining the Knicks].@Enes_Kanter: Yes he is and not just him. Jimmy Butler and you know what, why not Kevin Durant? pic.twitter.com/9jFUuUlImV
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) July 23, 2018
Although the 26-year-old center doesn’t have any evidence to support his claim, it is known that Kanter has done recruiting through social media and text, including luring LeBron James to New York before signing a four-year, $154 million deal with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Kanter may have wishful thinking about the whole situation, but Irving and Butler did indeed decline their contract extensions offered by their respective teams to test the free agency market next summer. Even before Kanter spoke about the two superstars, along with Kevin Durant joining the Knicks, Frank Isola of the New York Daily News reported the duo of Irving and Butler could be headed to the Mecca next summer.
The New York Knicks will have money to spend in 2019, and with their young players morphing into stars, big-name free-agents may be on board. Maybe not Kevin Durant—who’s won back-to-back championships with Golden State—but Irving and Butler may see a better situation in New York than they already have in Boston and Minnesota.
Who knows, New York may be the next team to beat in the Eastern Conference come the 2019-20 season.
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