According to the latest NBA trade rumors, the New York Knicks received interest from both the Detroit Pistons and Orlando Magic for Frank Ntilikina's services. Both offers came around the beginning of last season, with the Pistons making more than one inquiry. The Magic, meanwhile, consider Ntilikina a project with a high ceiling.
However, talks never materialized, as the New York Knicks' demand for a first-round pick was not entertained. NBA trade rumors suggest that other offers followed, but the New York Knicks remained adamant about their asking price.
Frank Ntilikina was effectively banished from Tom Thibodeau's starting lineup last year in favor of Elfrid Payton. The Frenchman is currently a free agent and is looking for a new landing place ahead of the start of the 2021-22 season.
NBA Trade Rumors: Frank Ntilikina could be an effective role player for various teams despite unsuccessful stint with New York Knicks
Despite his substantial flaws, Frank Ntilikina remains one of the most intriguing reclamation projects in the league. Ntilikina, a defensive specialist, is a player who possesses the ability to play lockdown defense against opposition guards. Drafted in 2018 by the New York Knicks with the 8th overall pick, the French international has failed to make his presence felt in the Big Apple.
But there is a reason why teams like the Orlando Magic and Detroit Pistons are still enamored by Ntilikina's potential. He is a regular fixture in the French national team, and his skillset suits European basketball better, but there is a good probability of him finding success in an NBA setup as well.
Ntilikina came into the league as an 18-year-old prospect with the New York Knicks but is now entering critical years of development. If he can find a coach and an NBA team who can get the best out of him, Ntilikina can still execute a role player's job to near perfection on a playoff-contending team.
The two teams that come to mind are the Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs, both of which follow a defense-oriented approach. Several NBA players have blossomed late in their careers, and Ntilikina is still just 22, meaning his best years are still ahead of him.
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