Free agent and former Knicks forward Kyle O’Quinn has come to terms with a one-year, $4.5 million deal with the Indiana Pacers.
O’Quinn’s free agency began two weeks ago when he declined a $4.2 million player option with New York.
He joins a Pacers team that finished the season 48-34 and took the Eastern Conference champion Cavaliers to seven games in the first round. O’Quinn adds depth to the center position as a backup for Myles Turner.
O’Quinn averaged 7.1 points and 6.1 rebounds on 58% shooting for New York last season.
While I’m not surprised O’Quinn picked another squad, the price is eyebrow-raising. You’d figure to leave his hometown it’d require more than a $300k raise. However, with New York’s the emphasis on youth, O’Quinn may have gotten the impression he wasn’t in New York’s long-term future. Also, we can’t overlook Enes Kanter deciding to opt-in greatly impacted the money New York has to work with.
Over the last few seasons, O’Quinn has been of our hardest worker and arguably the most consistent bench player. He was the only one who possessed the physical toughness we’ve sorely lacked for years. His game will be missed.