So the anticipated off-season struggle for the Knicks, to build a team next year, begins before the regular season ends as Earl Barron accepts an extension of his 10-day contract, but rejects the Knicks offer for a two-year (the end of this one and all of next season) contract. The following is from ESPN:
The Knicks were hoping to sign Earl Barron to a rest-of-season contract that included 2010-11 for no guaranteed money, but that was turned down. Barron's agents think he might be able to get a better deal in the summer, which is why only a contract for the last few days of the season will be signed today. The Knicks do have interest in signing him once they've exhausted all their cap room this summer.
"He's a guy I'd say we'd be comfortable with. The only reason we're not doing it now is we don't know what the situation is going to be, what the cap is, what our situation will be as to how much (cap room) we have left and who we're going after," Knicks president Donnie Walsh told ESPN.com's Chris Sheridan Sunday.
Earl's agent knows that someone will want to pay this big man, who has been averaging 11.8 pts and 11.7 boards in six games, bigger, guaranteed money. They probably also know that he has a better chance of starting on a team where a big man is appreciated. D'Antoni wants a more athletic big to start, maybe alongside Lee, maybe, which suggests that Barron would be a reserve and hostage to D'Antoni's whimsical eight man rotations. You Go Earl.
Note: Check out Earl Barron's tweets in the right sidebar.