NBA Rumors: Knicks Could Acquire De'Aaron Fox For RJ Barrett, Derrick Rose & Two 2023 1st-Round Picks In Proposed Deal

De'Aaron Fox running the offense
Wikimedia | TonyTheTiger

JB Baruelo

The New York Knicks headed into the 2022 NBA offseason with the goal of finding a new starting point guard.

The Knicks failed to address their major backcourt problem in the 2022 NBA Draft. They are currently heavily linked with Dallas Mavericks point guard Jalen Brunson, whom they are reportedly preparing to offer a four-year, $100 million contract in the 2022 NBA free agency.

If they still fail to convince Brunson to leave the Mavericks, the Knicks are expected to search for a quality floor general on the trade market.

Potential Trade Target - De'Aaron Fox

De'Aaron Fox driving into the basket
Wikimedia | TonyTheTiger

One of the most intriguing trade targets for the Knicks this summer is De'Aaron Fox of the Sacramento Kings. In a recent article, Grant Hughes of Bleacher Report suggested five realistic trades that could happen after the 2022 NBA Draft.

These include the hypothetical blockbuster deal that would send Fox to Big Apple. In the proposed trade scenario, the Knicks would be offering a trade package that includes RJ Barrett, Derrick Rose, and two 2023 first-round picks to the Kings in exchange for Fox.

Is De'Aaron Fox Worth Giving Up RJ Barrett?

RJ Barrett trying to score
Wikimedia | Coachtoes

The idea of trading Barrett for Fox would raise eyebrows among the Knicks fandom, but Hughes believes the swap is worth exploring for the New York-based team. Aside from helping them solve their major backcourt problem, Hughes thinks that Fox is a "safer bet to achieve stardom" than Barrett.

"Fox's age-21 campaign was significantly better than the one Barrett just completed. At the same age, Fox topped Barrett in true shooting percentage (54.4 to 51.1 percent), player efficiency rating (18.1 to 13.7), box plus/minus (1.5 to minus-1.6) and value over replacement player (2.3 to 0.2)."

Knicks Avoid Overpaying Jalen Brunson

Jalen Brunson interacting with fans
Shutterstock | 215437

Trading for a young point guard with huge superstar potential like Fox would also prevent the Knicks from making the same mistake they did last summer when they gave Evan Fournier a four-year, $73 million contract in free agency.

Brunson may have established an impressive performance in the 2021-22 NBA season, but he's still far from becoming an All-Star in the league. For a player who just averaged 16.3 points and 4.8 assists while shooting 50.2 percent from the field and 37.3 percent from beyond the arc, giving him a $100 million contract would be an overpay for the Knicks.

Does The Trade Make Sense For The Kings?

RJ Barrett taking a free throw
Wikimedia | TempleM

The Kings may not have shown any indication that they are planning to trade Fox this summer, but the Knicks' offer may be too good to pass up. Aside from obtaining two future first-round picks, the Kings would also be acquiring another young and promising player who has the potential to become a legitimate superstar in the league. As Hughes noted, the potential arrival of Barrett in Sacramento would address the Kings' need for a "big, dynamic wing."

The departure of Fox won't deeply hurt the Kings' backcourt since they still have Davion Mitchell on their roster. During his rookie season, Mitchell has shown his playmaking skills and elite perimeter defense. Giving him more playing time and a bigger role would help him unlock his potential and become a starter in the NBA.