2018 Free Agency

Reports: New York Knicks center Kyle O'Quinn declines player option, becomes unrestricted free agent

From NBA media reports

New York Knicks center Kyle O’Quinn will become an unrestricted free agent after declining his player option for the 2018-19 season, according to ESPN, the New York Daily News and the New York Post.

In a reserve role, O’Quinn posted career highs in points (7.1), rebounds (4.5) and assists (2.1) last season while shooting 58.5 percent from the field. Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News has more on O’Quinn’s opt-out and what it may mean for the Knicks:

In an expected move, Knicks reserve center Kyle O’Quinn declined his $4.2 million player option and will become a free agent, a source confirmed.

O’Quinn, 28, is still a strong candidate to re-sign with the Knicks after his career season when he averaged 7.1 points and 6.1 boards in 18 minutes. He switched representation recently, dropping Andy Miller – who relinquished his agent certification while being investigated by the FBI – and picking up NBA power agent Mark Bartelstein.

Before settling on Bartelstein, O’Quinn was looking for $30 million on his next deal, according to a source.

The Knicks hold O’Quinn’s Bird Rights so could exceed the salary cap to re-sign him. While O’Quinn had always planned to hit free agency, the larger question lies with Enes Kanter on his $18.6 million player option.

Kanter, who also hired Bartelstein last season, said he was leaning toward opting out. However, league sources believe the center will ultimately pick up the option because he won’t come close to retrieving that salary in free agency.

If Kanter opts in, the Knicks will have very little flexibility for free agency.

O’Quinn, who just completed his sixth NBA season, spent three seasons with the Orlando Magic before being acquired by the Knicks in a sign-and-trade deal in 2015.