2020 is normal in one regard: the NBA playoffs will not include the Knicks.
As long as the proposed 22-team restart format to the NBA season gets approved by the Board of Governors as expected on Thursday, the Knicks’ season is over. The Post previously reported this as a very likely scenario. Instead, all the franchise’s attention will now turn to the NBA Draft Lottery — a date has yet to be set for that — and the hiring of a coach by new president Leon Rose.
The teams with the three worst regular season records – the Warriors, Cavaliers and Timberwolves – will all have a 14 percent chance of winning the lottery, as the odds remain the same from last year’s new format. Right behind them are the Hawks, Pistons and Knicks. The Hawks have a 12.5 percent shot at the No. 1 pick, the Pistons 10.5 percent and Knicks, with their 21-45 record, will be at nine percent and the sixth-best odds to land the top player in the 2020 NBA Draft, which is expected sometime in October now. Last year, the Knicks were one of the three teams with the best odds to land the top pick, but wound up selecting third, and taking RJ Barrett.
The Knicks are one of eight teams that won’t be included in the proposed restart at Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla. But those teams may take part in a four-to-five team fall league and training camp to remain relevant in their respective markets, as ESPN reported has been discussed. The league doesn’t want teams going from March to December – when next season could start — without playing any games.
If this plan does come to fruition, it’s uncertain who would play for the Knicks and who would coach them. The belief is Rose will move on from interim coach Mike Miller, though he may receive an interview and is expected to stay in the organization in some capacity. The Knicks could have eight free agents, with five players – Bobby Portis, Taj Gibson, Wayne Ellington, Elfrid Payton and Reggie Bullock — holding team options and Allonzo Trier, Moe Harkless and Damyean Dotson guaranteed to be free agents.