After a rocky 2015-16 with the New York Knicks, both Michael Scotto of the Associated Press and Ian Begley of ESPN reported that shooting guard Arron Afflalo ($8 million) and forward Derrick Williams ($4.6 million) opted out of their contracts. Begley also added that “more than $30 million in cap space” will be cleared with both players leaving.
Afflalo was brought on by the Knicks because they needed another reliable scoring option and someone who was an above-average defender. In three of the last four years, Afflalo averaged more than 15 points per game, with a career-high 18.2 back in 2013-14; as far as defense, he’s not the best, but he’s certainly not the worst. With his 6-5, 210-pound frame, Afflalo can match up with almost any shooting guard and also doesn’t surrender a lot of size against small forwards.
He appeared in 71 games for the Knicks and averaged 12.8 points on 44 percent shooting but didn’t take too kindly to interim coach Kurt Rambis benching for a stretch of games during the end of the season for Sasha Vujacic.
Alongside Afflalo, Derrick Williams, the second overall pick in 2011 also declined his player option. Still trying to find his niche in the league, Williams averaged 9.3 points and 3.7 rebounds in just 18 minutes of action in 80 games for the Knicks. He doesn’t have much of an offensive game but showed flashes of him being able to attack off the dribble and finish around the basket. Being a fantastic athlete, his talents would best fit a team that can get out and run, unlike the Knicks who finished 26th in pace this year according to Basketball-Reference.