New York Knicks Consider Matching Fields
The Toronto Raptors plan to sign New York Knicks restricted free agent Landry Fields to an offer sheet on Wednesday for an estimated $18.5 million over three years. It has been widely assumed the Knicks would decline to match, but that might not be the case.
“The Knicks have informed me that they are very interested in retaining Landry and at this stage the best I could get from them in terms of a commitment about whether or not the deal would be matched was a 50/50 proposition quote unquote,” said Raptors President and General Manager Bryan Colangelo. “They are trying to work through some other scenarios to see if they can make it viable to sign him.”
Colangelo acknowledged that part of the reason Toronto pursued Fields was to influence the outcome in the Steve Nash sweepstakes, but the Raptors still want to add the small forward to their roster.
“I will acknowledge that (Fields) was a significant or valuable trade piece in a potential sign and trade scenario with Phoenix,” confirmed Colangelo.
“What we feel we have in Fields should it come to fruition is a very valuable piece to a team that is looking to add depth at really two positions, a player between the three and the two spot. Arguably he played more of a three or four position even at Stanford in college and had great numbers. He rebounds the ball extremely well for a small forward or a big two and we think he has a high basketball I.Q., is a trustworthy performer, a guy who knows how to raise the stakes every day in practice, knows how to raise the stakes every time a team steps on the court and I think we have incredible depth now at the small forward position.”
Toronto is not in the least concerned about the appearance of possibly overpaying to obtain Fields’ services.
“Free agency is a funny game,” said Colangelo. “Most of the time you sign a free agent you are overpaying. In restricted free agency you tend to overpay even a little bit more and we put a value on certain players based on a lot of input and a lot of thought and we think at the end of the day there is going to be significant value for what we are going to be paying Landry Fields.”
As of now it appears the Knicks are doing their own evaluation of Fields’ worth to their organization and are still undecided about whether or not they should let this valuable asset go to a competitor in their own division.