The New York Knicks and veteran wing Josh Hart appear poised to continue their journeys together for the foreseeable future with league circles believing that Hart reaching a contract extension with the Knicks is inevitable.
In the midst of his sixth season, the 28-year-old Hart has fit right in with the Knicks and head coach Tom Thibodeau with his hard-nosed style and defensive intensity. In fact, Thibodeau regards Hart as a playmaker and relies on him extensively, as evidenced from his playing 36.1 minutes per game for the Knicks this postseason.
Furthermore, as a player that’s now on his fourth NBA team, Hart might be looking for some modicum of stability. Having played nearly two seasons each with the Los Angeles Lakers, New Orleans Pelicans and Portland Trail Blazers, Hart is all but a journeyman at this point.
Nonetheless, when assessing the most recent rumors from HoopsHype insider Michael Scotto, the affordability of his upcoming contract is yet another reason why Hart is likely to remain with the Knicks.
“According to four NBA executives who spoke with HoopsHype, Hart is now projected to be worth $15-18 million annually in free agency this summer. The overwhelming belief is that Hart will decline his $12.96 million player option and re-sign with the Knicks, according to those four executives and many others around the league.”
Among other players in the league, a contract worth $15 million annually would rank among the likes of Malik Beasley and Derrick Rose, two players that aren’t relied upon by their current teams. Consequently, his salary projections might be a little low.
Hart is averaging 12.1 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.0 steal per game in the 2023 NBA Playoffs. He had his best season in 2021-22, particularly in averaging 19.9 points per game for the Blazers.
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