We may not have seen the last of this year’s Knicks after all. There is a chance they could be back in some form.
Although the Knicks are unlikely to be part of the postponed season’s restart in Orlando, as The Post previously reported, there is dialogue that the teams not involved may return to the court, according to ESPN.
That would enable said teams to remain somewhat relevant in their respective markets, go through a mandatory training camp this summer and take part in regional fall leagues of four-to-five teams, so they wouldn’t go from March to December – when next season could start — without playing games. There is the belief the NBA will offer such a plan to the Players Association, ESPN reported, after shutting down the season on March 11 due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“The message was something bigger, reminding people that some teams can’t just re-open the doors in nine of 10 months and so easily sell tickets or a sponsorship without having played basketball for that long,” an Eastern Conference official said.
With the date of the 2020 NBA Draft still uncertain and unclear when free agency will be held, it is unknown how these rosters would be formulated. As for the Knicks in particular, it could be an opportunity for its new coach to get to know the roster, with new president Leon Rose expected to replace interim coach Mike Miller. Tom Thibodeau is considered the frontrunner right now.
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A source told The Post there is expected to be more clarity for everyone after Thursday’s Board of Governors vote, when approval of a 22-team restart plan is expected. Three-fourths of the league has to approve the plan for it to pass, but the belief is that will not be an issue.
On a recent conference call, commissioner Adam Silver told league owners that he is targeting July 31 for reopening the league and teams could hold a three-week training camp in Orlando beginning in early July. On Friday, the Knicks opened their practice facility in Tarrytown to give their players in the area a safe place to work out. Most of the roster had left to be with their families in the midst of the pandemic.