The Knicks told Tim Hardaway Jr. that he must improve everything
Just days after signing him to a $71 million deal, the Knicks told new signing Tim Hardaway Jr. that his game isn't near where they want it.
If you were a billionaire, it's pretty probable that you would highly value something that is worth $71 million, correct?
So obviously, you would imagine that Tim Hardaway Jr. was a player that the New York Knicks really coveted given that he was signed to a four-year, $71 million deal over the weekend.
I mean, a player at that price tag should be able to come in and immediately contribute to the cause.
You overestimated the Knicks if you thought that was true.
During his introductory press conference, Hardaway told the media (h/t Steve Popper of USA Today) that the Knicks are not satisfied with his game.
"They said straight up, 'You have to obviously improve a lot more on defense and a lot more on the offensive end.'"
For those of you who are new at basketball, that's basically everything. The Knicks just told their big signing of the offseason that he needs to improve everything.
Hardaway, who was drafted by the Knicks in 2013 and traded away two years later, averaged a career-high 14.5 points per game with the Atlanta Hawks last season as his game took a noticeable leap forward. The year before, he averaged just 6.4 points per game.
He's been nothing more than a rotational player for most of his young career as he's only started 62 games in four years. It didn't stop the Knicks from giving him all that money though and possibly putting him in the starting lineup next year as Carmelo Anthony's replacement should they deal him or buy out the last two years of his contract. Hardaway has already expressed his desire to keep Anthony with the Knicks next season (h/t Ian Begley, ESPN New York).
Remember when everyone was feeling good about the Knicks a couple weeks ago? Yeah, me too.