Knicks sign rookie guard Tim Hardaway to 4-year rookie contract
The deal is expected to be worth around $6.1 million over four-years, which is a standard scale rookie contract, and should include team/ qualifying options as well. However, rookie scale contracts are not necessarily strictly unalterable and have set parameters. Teams and players do have some flexibility for negotiating the contract, especially for players picked towards the lower end of the draft, since teams picking at those positions often have salary cap issues and try to persuade their draft picks to sign a lower scale deal. The top draft picks always sign to maximum contract possible according to the rookie wage scale.
The 21-year-old Hardaway Jr. was the Knicks’ top draft pick in the 2013 NBA draft, selected 25th overall in the first-round out of Michigan. Hardaway declared for the 2013 NBA draft after his junior season at Michigan. He was a 2-13-2012 All Big Ten First Team selection as he led the Wolverines to the NCAA championship last season.
The 6-foot-6 Hardaway ranked second on the Wolverines in scoring (14.5 PPG and had 4.7 rebounds as well as 2.4 assists per game, while appearing in 107 contests for the Wolverines last season. Hardaway Jr. also improved his 3-point shooting accuracy from 28.3 percent as a sophomore to 37.4 percent in his junior season.
He is the son of five-time NBA-All Star Tim Hardaway Sr., who famously faced-off against the Knicks as a member of the Miami Heat in countless playoff battles. Tim Hardaway Sr. also played for the Golden State Warriors, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets and Indiana Pacers before retiring from the NBA in 2003.
The New York Knicks also signed rookie forward C.J. Leslie, who went undrafted out of North Carolina State, after completing his junior season there. Leslie led the Wolfpack with 5.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game last season. He also averaged 1.23 blocks in 32.4 minutes per game and shot 51.9 percent overall in 35 game appearances for the Wolfpack last season.
Over his entire collegiate career at NC State, Leslie has appeared in 99 games, to average 13.7 points on 49.7 percent shooting, 7.3 rebounds and 1.37 blocks per contest for the Wolfpack.
Both rookies, Tim Hardaway and Leslie are expected to play for the New York Knicks’ Summer League debut at Las Vegas on Friday.