Potential Knicks target Fred VanVleet makes free-agency priority clear

Potential Knicks target Fred VanVleet makes free-agency priority clear

Fred VanVleet isn’t messing around. His focus for free agency is simple.

“I’m tryin’ to get paid, man,” the former Raptors point guard said on JJ Redick’s “The Old Man and the Three” podcast. “I am not shy about that.”

In his first year as a starter, the former Wichita State star thrived, averaging 17.6 points, 6.6 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.9 steals while shooting 39.0 percent from 3-point range. He is on the Knicks’ radar, according to sources, though it is uncertain if they see him as a maximum contract player. The Knicks are in desperate need of a point guard, though, unless they can find that player in the 2020 NBA Draft. The Raptors do own his Bird rights, which means they can go over the salary cap to re-sign him.

“I don’t have to tell people that I value winning,” VanVleet said. “Do your research, I’ve never been on a losing team my entire life. That’s what I am about. I won a championship, now it’s time to cash out at 26.

“I am only four years in, but I feel like I am on the verge of blossoming even more with even more of a lead role and taking more responsibility in my game. … It’s not purely numbers, but the numbers do play a big part and I just want to feel my value reciprocated from the other end. Teams can tell you they value you all they want to, but until they show you in numbers then you know what that means.”

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