Former NBA 6th Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson would welcome a trade to the New York Knicks, according to The Athletic’s Joe Vardon.
“A friend of mine, Jordan Clarkson, from the Utah Jazz who would love to come to New York, is another [trade] possibility,” Vardon said on “NY SportsNation Nightly” on January 31.
Vardon’s report came on the heels of Clarkson and the Jazz visiting the Knicks a day before.
Clarkson, the 2020-21 Sixth Man of the Year, recently played at Madison Square Garden against the Knicks. The Filipino-American guard scored 11 points on 5 of 12 shooting in 32 minutes off the bench but the Jazz lost 118-103.
Earlier in January, the Knicks registered interest in Clarkson and another Jazz player, backup center Kelly Olynyk, according to Hoopshype’s Michael Scotto.
“Whatever team can get Clarkson will be a game changer,” an NBA scout told Scotto. “I think he’s the best of the volume scorers available on the trade market.”
Scotto also reported that “Knicks guard Quentin Grimes came up in separate discussions for Clarkson and Olynyk with the Jazz.”
Clarkson is averaging 17.6 points and 4.9 assists this season for the Jazz. He has started in 19 of Utah’s first 40 games.
The 31-year-old Clarkson has Walt Perrin, the former Jazz VP of player personnel, as his strong backer in the Knicks organization. Perrin, now an assistant general manager with the Knicks, played a key role in Utah’s move to acquire Clarkson from Cleveland in 2019.
It did not take long before Clarkson made Perrin look like a genius as the former second-round pick became the league’s top reserve in the following season.
Jalen Brunson, Julius Randle Named as NBA All-Star Reserves
Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle became the first Knicks duo in a decade to become an All-Star in the same season since Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler in 2013.
Brunson celebrated his first All-Star selection with a 40-point outing, willing the shorthanded Knicks (32-17) to a 109-104 against Tyrese Haliburton and his Indiana Pacers on Thursday, February 1.
It was the Knicks’ 9th straight victory as they moved half-game behind current second-seed Milwaukee Bucks (32-16) in the East.
“It was really cool, the whole experience, the night, how we won, obviously what happened before the game,” Brunson said via NBA.com after he was introduced in the pregame as a first-time All-Star. “You always work for certain moments, but you never know how to react once they happen, so it was special.”
Randle, named All-Star for the third time, is unlikely to play in the midseason classic in Indiana with a dislocated shoulder. The Knicks announced he will be re-evaluated in 2 to 3 weeks.
Tom Thibodeau Named Coach of the Month
After guiding the Knicks to their best month in 30 years, Tom Thibodeau earned the NBA Eastern Coach of the Month award.
The Knicks climbed to 3rd place in the Eastern Conference with a 31-17 record after winning 14 of their 16 games in January. It was the franchise’s most wins in a single month since the Knicks went 14-0 in March 1994, the year they reached the NBA Finals and eventually lost to Hakeem Olajuwon and the Houston Rockets in seven games.
Thibodeau would join the Knicks two years later as an assistant coach. They reached the NBA Finals in 1999 but also lost to the San Antonio Spurs and their twin towers of Tim Duncan and David Robinson.
Thibodeau, 66, is in his fourth year as the Knicks head coach. He has piloted the Knicks to two playoff appearances and one series win during his first three seasons.
A two-time NBA Coach of the Year, Thibodeau beat Cleveland’s J.B. Bickerstaff, Indiana’s Rick Carlisle and Boston’s Joe Mazzulla for the monthly award.
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