The New York Knicks reportedly turned down a huge trade offer from the Utah Jazz involving All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell.
Appearing on ESPN 700 in Salt Lake City, Tony Jones of The Athletic (h/t RealGM) said the Knicks balked at sending six first-round picks, Quentin Grimes, Immanuel Quickley and Obi Toppin to Utah for Mitchell.
If the Jazz deal Mitchell, it will mark their second blockbuster trade of the offseason, as they sent All-Star center Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves for a package that included several players and four first-round picks.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported this week that the Jazz decided to start listening to offers for Mitchell after initially suggesting they would move forward with Mitchell as the centerpiece of the franchise.
It was then reported by Jones and Shams Charania of The Athletic that the Jazz had spoken to multiple teams about a Mitchell trade, with the Knicks emerging as “the focused destination.”
Utah reportedly zeroed in on the Knicks since they can offer a better combination of draft picks and young players than any team.
The Knicks have eight tradable draft picks, with four being their own and the other four being acquired in trades. They also have some solid, young talent such as Grimes, Quickley and Toppin.
Charania and Jones reported that Grimes is of particular interest to the Jazz after the 2021 first round pick averaged 6.0 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.0 assist per game as a rookie.
The Knicks reached the playoffs as the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference in 2021 with a 41-31 record, but they dropped off significantly last season, going 37-45 and missing the playoffs.
New York made some big changes this offseason in an effort to bounce back, shipping veterans Kemba Walker, Alec Burks and Nerlens Noel to the Detroit Pistons to clear salary-cap space before signing former Dallas Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson in free agency.
Adding Mitchell to a core that includes Brunson, Julius Randle and R.J. Barrett would likely put the Knicks back in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff race, but they apparently have reached a line they are not willing to cross.
Trading six first-rounders and most of their best young players would have made it difficult for the Knicks to make any other changes or improvements in the near future, so the Knicks are reportedly digging their heels in and waiting for a more palatable offer for Mitchell.