The NBA trade deadline is on February 21. And just a few days ago, Adrian Wojnarowski from Yahoo! Sports reported that the Phoenix Suns were interested in acquiring New York Knicks second-year guard Iman Shumpert.
It was also reported that the Knicks are just listening to trade offers for Shumpert, and also that a trade with the Suns for Jared Dudley and a future first-round pick would be “unlikely at this point.”
Knicks coach Mike Woodson made it sound like a trade wouldn’t happen but didn’t rule it out completely, saying “if owners came to me and said we have to do a deal, then you do the deal.”
But would it be a good idea to trade Shumpert?
The guard has struggled to return to his rookie form since suffering an ACL injury last season. In the 12 games he’s played so far, he has been a non-factor and has had trouble finding his rhythm on both ends of the floor.
In 12 games, Shumpert has averaged 4.6 points and three rebounds per game. He doesn’t look as explosive on his drives, and isn’t bringing that suffocating defense he brought in his rookie season when he averaged 1.7 steals per game.
But even with his recent struggles, the Knicks should not give up on Iman Shumpert. It’s still too soon to judge his performances being he’s coming off surgery. Shumpert’s game will come back, eventually. He just needs to get his confidence back and gets comfortable with moving laterally. The guard is only 22 years old–the youngest player on the team–and has a lot of potential.
The Knicks’ perimeter defense has been an issue all year long, and giving up their best perimeter defender would be a huge mistake. He’s the centerpiece of their future. He just needs time to get back to form.