One of the biggest questions of this Houston Rockets offseason is what should the team do with the the supermax contract of John Wall. The Rockets owe Wall, who will be 31 years old at the start of next season, $43 million this upcoming year and are then on the hook for $47 million for 2022-2023. Wall had a big bounce-back season returning from an Achilles tear, but that’s a lot of cheddar for anyone, let alone a guy who’s no longer at the pinnacle of his career.
Enter the New York Knicks to potentially save the day. According to a report by Evan Massey of Hoop Analysis, the Knicks would be interested in a Wall deal. Massey reportedly spoke to an NBA executive, who had this to say about the Knicks and Wall:
“The Knicks have some level of interest in John Wall. Houston would love to move him and get something of value for him. He isn’t a long-term fit for the Rockets, and if New York really wants him, they have the pieces to get a deal done. Wall isn’t their top priority this offseason, but he could be an excellent fallback option and the interest is there.”
So while that’s far from concrete, the source executive is anonymous, and the reporter isn’t quite Woj as far as breaking NBA news, this would be a very New York Knicks thing to do.
After tasting the playoffs for the first time since 2013, they were ousted in the first round by the Atlanta Hawks 4-1 and are likely looking for a difference maker to take them to the next level. And Wall can still perform at a high level.
He finished this season with the Rockets averaging 20.6 points, 3.2 rebounds, 6.9 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. Pairing him with Derrick Rose (if he re-signs, he’s scheduled to be a UFA) would be straight out of 2011, but man, would that be the Knicks Knicking, or what?
New York only has $54.8 million on the books right now for the upcoming season, with the cap scheduled to be $109 million, so they would have the room to absorb Wall’s massive contract hit. While the Rockets currently have $98 million scheduled for the books next season and would love to free up some additional cap room and hand the starting point guard reigns to Kevin Porter Jr.
Is this likely? My guess is no. It’s no knock on Wall, who’s had one of the most impressive returns to date from an Achilles tear, but it’s that $91 million he still has left on his contract. I’d feel better about it if he was in the last year of his deal, but with two years left, it’s going to be tough to move him.
But hey, if anyone’s going to do it, the Knicks would be near the top of just about anyone’s top five list to make that deal, so you never know.