Report: Knicks are more careful about 2019 free agency than rumors state

Earlier this month, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that Kyrie Irving and Jimmy Butler have interest in joining forces in 2019 when both stars can potentially be free agents and many believe the two want to be in New York and play for the Knicks.

While the Knicks would obviously love for that to happen, creating the cap room to sign Irving and Butler is a longshot and many in the organization aren’t expecting big things to happen in 2019.

According to a report from Sean Deveney of Sporting News, the Knicks could actually play it safe in 2019 instead of going all out like the rumors state they will.

“A lot of the stuff you hear comes from the media and from agents, and that is going to be the case all year,” one league source with knowledge of the Knicks’ plans told Sporting News. “Kyrie Irving comes from the media. Jimmy Butler comes from the media and his agent. That’s not coming from [president] Steve Mills and [general manager] Scott Perry. They’re a lot more careful here.”

The Knicks would have to do a lot of roster maneuvering to create two max-salary slots. Joakim Noah has two years and $38 million left on his deal, Courtney Lee has two years and $25 million left on his contract and Tim Hardaway Jr. has three years and $55 million owed to him.