New York Knicks big man Kristaps Porzingis hasn’t played in an NBA game since February 8 of last year. He tore his ACL, a devastating injury for any player, especially a 7-foot-3 big man who moves like a guard, to suffer. According to Kevin O’Conner of The Ringer:
The Spurs are also viewed as a team with significant interest in Porzingis, according to league front office sources, though it’d be difficult for San Antonio to create enough cap space this summer. In any case, signing a max offer sheet would make him an unrestricted free agent in 2023 (or in 2022 if it included a player option). If the Knicks keep Porzingis, they’ll likely have to pay him the max one way or the other.
Porzingis is a special player; the way he moves is something never before seen from a player his size. That is, obviously, a good thing for the Knicks. It also makes the Latvian a dangerous prospect. We have never seen somebody quite like Porzingis, which means we’ve never seen somebody quite like Porzingis recover from a torn ACL. Whether he will be able to move the same way and have the same sort of impact are valid questions.
With that said, if Porzingis does heal well, acquiring him would be a massive move for the Spurs – or any other team. The versatility that allows Porzingis to protect the rim, switch on defense and shoot the 3 is special.
The Knicks will probably opt to keep Porzingis, but if the injury scares them off, a team like San Antonio could profit in a major way. Porzingis is still just 23 years old.
Porzingis was an All-Star in 2017-18, his third season in the league. In 48 games that season, he averaged 22.7 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game while shooting 43.9 percent from the field and 39.5 percent from deep.