Russell Westbrook is unsettled at the Houston Rockets. What started as rumors surrounding the franchise's future, specifically their star James Harden, have now developed into the possible departure of multiple players. As per the latest NBA Trade Rumors, the New York Knicks are potentially a viable option should the point guard leave. If this were the case, both Westbrook and the Knicks could be looking at a mutually beneficial deal that could reignite the fire in Madison Square Garden.
NBA Trade Rumors: Why the New York Knicks make the shortlist for Russell Westbrook's future
Over the past few days, Russell Westbrook's departure from the Houston Rockets has been one of the main talking points dominating the NBA Trade Rumors. There is doubting the fact that he would be one of the most sought after talents in the NBA. Both the LA Clippers and the New York Knicks have expressed interest in acquiring the fiery point guard, according to Stephen A.Smith, no longer wants to play with James Harden.
This may not be the news that Houston Rockets fans want to hear right now as they fear for their team's future. However, for Russell Westbrook and indeed New York Knicks fans, a move to the East could be enticing for the 32-year-old.
#1 Expectations will be far lower
As the most valuable franchise in the league and with their history, the New York Knicks are still a tantalising prospect for any player. Furthermore, they are one of the only teams who have the capability and the need to acquire Russell Westbrook. With over $130m left on his contract, it is unlikely that any of the title contenders can afford him at the moment. The move to the New York Knicks will bring with it less pressure.
New York Knicks roster under new Head Coach Tom Thibodeau will be mostly filled with developing talent. At this moment, for the franchise, the target would be to get through to the NBA Playoffs. Which is why suggestions in latest NBA Trade Rumors indicate towards New York Knicks being the most viable option for Russell Westbrook.
#2 Return to comfort play
For Russell Westbrook, who is a ball-dominant player, leading a young New York Knicks team will definitely present an exciting challenge. The Westbrook who won MVP of the league in 2017, who broke Oscar Robertson Triple-Double record could be reincarnated in a side looking towards him for leadership.
Russell Westbrook has had the opportunity to succeed, playing with All-Star's Kevin Durant and James Harden but has fallen short with both. With the New York Knicks he could dictate the style of play and become the sole leader of an inexperienced roster.
#3 Battle of New York
Finally, there is the small matter of their New York city neighbours. The Brooklyn Nets, who are looking to make their mark in the East Conference revitalised by the return of Kevin Durant.
It's no secret that there was some bad blood between Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook after the former left OKC Thunder to join the Golden State Warriors. Although the two have reportedly put their grievances aside, pitting his ability against his former teammate and the clamour this fixture would bring for the New York Knicks should definitely excite Westbrook.
The New York Knicks have been looking for a player to break their recent fall from grace and have struggled ever since the departure of Carmelo Anthony. Russell Westbrook could be the floor general they so desperately desire and a cross-city rivalry with Durant could be all the incentive the 32-year-old needs to break out of Houston.
Published 14 Nov 2020, 03:06 IST