Serious, palpable and justified doubts quickly ushered over Madison Square Garden and New York Knicks president Phil Jackson’s decision-making when the team acquired point guard Derrick Rose from the Chicago Bulls via trade in June.
Now, six months later with the Knicks improving and looking like a playoff team, Rose has shown eye-popping flashes of his former MVP level and now talk has turned to whether or not New York will look to renew the 28-year-old’s current contract or wait until next summer to reach a brand new deal.
The Knicks have yet to discuss a new contract or extension with Rose, who is making $21.3 million in the final year of the five-year, $94.3 million deal he signed with Chicago, or his agents and are waiting until either the end of the season or next summer to perhaps broker a deal, the New York Post reported Tuesday.
The timing of the deal, either during the season or after, will likely be the most critical factor due to Rose’s long history with injuries. Before last season, when Rose appeared in 66 games, he played in only 100 out of a maximum 312 games in the four previous seasons, according to New York Daily News. The vast majority of those missed games were due to serious injuries to both of Rose’s knees that required major surgery.
It’s a fact that led many to question Jackson’s acquisition of Rose, but thus far the three-time All-Star has provided stability at a position that’s been a glaring need in New York for some time. Rose has started all 18 of the Knicks games this season, ranking third on the team in scoring with 16.4 points on 43.7 percent shooting while tallying 4.8 assists and 4.1 rebounds over 32.1 minutes per game.
Rose has also scored 20 or more points in three games this season, and though New York’s lost each of those contests, he put up his best game of the season Monday with 30 points on 10-for-20 shooting with seven rebounds and four assists when pitted against Oklahoma City’s triple-double machine and point guard Russell Westbrook.
Rose told The Post he’s not thinking about his next contract but rather the team’s success.
“I haven’t talked to them about it,’’ Rose told The Post. “It’s been more about winning games. We’ll see. I’m more concerned with trying to win games, but it’s something I’d have to talk about with my family and team.’’
Still, as the season goes on and if the Knicks climb the Eastern Conference for their first shot at the playoffs in three years, Rose’s next contract could become a larger issue if he helps New York flourish.
For Rose, staying healthy and waiting until the summer would mean a much more lucrative deal. Under the current collective bargaining agreement between the NBA and the player’s union, Rose could sign a three-year extension worth $75 million, The Post reported. Rose would only be eligible for a 7.5 percent raise per the CBA.
However, if he holds out until 2017, Rose could coax a maximum-level deal worth $175 million over five years with New York and the first year of the potential could be worth as much as $29 million. Should Rose bolt the Knicks and sign elsewhere, he could only ink a four-year deal.