The Knicks were already concerned about the play of Raymond Felton prior to last Thursday’s trade deadline. The team shopped Felton, almost moving him to the Clippers for Darren Collison. But now the team has even more issues to deal with after his arrest on weapons charges Tuesday morning.
We look at the ramifications:
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1. Short term
The NBA said it will not be punishing Felton as the case is dealt with, so Felton will likely be allowed to play. Felton isout on bail, like Plaxico Burress was in his similar 2008 case, but can the Knicks play him? Trials do not happen quickly, but playing someone with a weapons charge hanging over them is not good for public relations.
The Knicks are already flirting with Glens Falls, N.Y.-native Jimmer Fredette — who is set to be let go by the Kings — but the guard is more scorer than distributor (and can’t play defense). They need a free agent for the rest of the season though. Sebastian Telfair is also back from China and available to be signed — cheap.
3. Long term
Felton is under contract next season and one more as a player option. He’ll likely be bought out though. The Knicks have no first-round pick this year. Kyle Lowry and Eric Bledsoe are among the free agents, but they’ll have to be creative to get under the cap. Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler are both locked up, along with their enormous contracts. Of course, Carmelo Anthony could opt out and free up space, but then you'd have a whole lot more issues than just finding a point guard.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports.