While the Atlanta Hawks have reportedly made re-signing Kent Bazemore a priority, he is expected to garner a lot of interest around the league. One of those teams could be the New York Knicks according to a report by the New York Post’s Marc Berman. However, New York may not ever have a chance to sit down with Bazemore.
According to Berman, Bazemore is not setting up meetings until he knows what Atlanta’s intentions are.
Bazemore is not setting up any meetings with teams until the Hawks make their intentions clear whether they will go for his large asking price.
According to an NBA source, Bazemore is “not ruling the Knicks out because he fills a need for them at the wing.” But the source isn’t sure if the Knicks will come into play. Bazemore’s intention is to stay in Atlanta. But if it doesn’t work out, Bazemore will have a bevy of suitors, including New Orleans and the Knicks.
Bazemore is expected to seek more than double that — a pact starting at at least $16 million. That’s more than the player he replaced in the starting lineup, DeMarre Carroll (four years, $60 million last summer). The Hawks could afford it with their cap space, but reportedly are now trying to get in on Kevin Durant.
Atlanta also has a meeting set with Dwight Howard when free agency opens on Friday. Part of it is due diligence on their part and exploring every available option. The Hawks could also potentially off load more salary via trade if they need to open up more cap room.
As far as Bazemore goes, if this report is correct, then it appears that Atlanta will get the right of first refusal. Bazemore blossomed in his two years with the Hawks and it would make a lot of sense that he would prefer to stay put rather than acclimate himself to a new team.