Unlike the Nets, this figures to be a relatively slow offseason for the Knicks. New GM Isiah Thomas already spent much of the season turning over the roster and trading away anyone associated with deposed GM Scott Layden. Only Allan Houston, Shandon Anderson, Frank Williams, Kurt Thomas, Mike Sweetney and Othella Harrington remain from opening day.
A look at their salary situation shows the Knicks paid an incredible 19 players salary last year for a total of $94,395,091. Next season "only" 14 players are under contract but the teams salary total actually increases to $97,135,650. Houston, Tim Thomas, Penny Hardaway and Stephon Marbury will all be making well over $12 million next season. In fact the $59,681,250 in combined salary for those four players is more payroll than what all but eight teams paid in total for last year.
The Knicks do not have a first round pick in this years draft (that was sent out in the trade that brought Stephon Marbury to town) but they do have a second round pick, 44th overall.
As far as free agents go, only Vin Baker and DerMarr Johnson are worth bringing back, if at all. Baker was solid but unspectacular after being signed as a free agent after the Boston Celtics released him due to his problems with alcoholism. Johnson is still recovering from injuries sustained a car wreck a few years ago, although he did show promise when he got on the court last year. Unless Thomas wants to send out Sweetney and Williams, his only young players showing promise, it seems unlikely the Knicks will be active in looking to shake up their roster via trade.
Their best bet at adding talent is by using their Mid Level Exception (MLE) which should be around $5 million per year. Rumored targets include Rasheed Wallace, Memhet Okur and Stromile Swift. Of course any team over the cap can offer these players their MLE and any team under the cap can offer them more money so Thomas will have to sell them on why playing in NYC would benefit their career.