Suns ask Knicks for Ntilikina, Hernangomez

Knicks rookie Frank Ntilikina has been showing improved play in recent weeks.

The Phoenix Suns, who are actively looking to trade disgruntled point guard Eric Bledsoe, have held discussions with the New York Knicks and are asking for rookie Frank Ntilikina and second-year big man Willy Hernangomez in return, according to a report by Basketball Insiders.

Ntilikina was the eighth overall pick in the 2017 draft. The city of New York recently put up a massive billboard of him in downtown.

Hernangomez, meanwhile, is a 6-11 skilled center who averaged 8.2 points and 7.0 rebounds per game last season. He has not been in the Knicks’ rotation to start this year, however.

Bledsoe, 27, averaged 21.1 points and 6.3 assists last season in 66 games. He is one of the most explosive point guards in the league and played for Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek in Phoenix.

ESPN New York is reporting that the Knicks are opposed to trading Ntilikina and Hernangomez for Bledsoe:

“The Suns have asked about young Knicks such as Frank Ntilikina and Willy Hernangomez in trade talks about guard Eric Bledsoe, sources confirm. But New York have been opposed to trading either young player, sources told ESPN. Hernangomez has not been in head coach Jeff Hornacek’s regular rotation in the first two games of the season, which has left the second-year center frustrated. But Hernangomez’s lack of playing time isn’t a sign that the club is looking to move him. Ntilikina has dealt with several injuries early in his career but the point guard remains part of the young core New York wants to build around and management, as of Monday afternoon, did not want to move him in a Bledsoe deal.”

Suns general manager Ryan McDonough says Bledsoe “won’t be with the team going forward.”

The Denver Nuggets, Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Clippers have also shown interest in trading for Bledsoe.