For Evan Fournier, his second season in the New York Knicks is considerably nightmarish in nature.
Fournier didn’t hold back venting out his true emotions with regards to his 2022-23 campaign for the Knicks as he felt he wasted significant time in the club. With this, he is very much looking forward to getting traded as what he said in a recent interview with Yann Ohnona of L’Equipe (h/t BasketNews).
“I would be shot. I’m going to be traded, it’s not possible otherwise,” he said. “Or I’d be stuck, and so would they. They have several players with big contracts coming in. Unless they want to pay a crazy luxury tax… If I stayed, it would be a disaster basketball-wise for my career. I can manage a year without playing. Two… that would be terrible.”
Fournier, 30, had a solid first outing for the Knicks in his first season for them in 2021-22, averaging 14.1 points, 2.6 boards, 2.1 assists and 38.9 percent three-point mark across 80 games.
But the following season, the situation eventually went south for the veteran. As New York ultimately opted to commit on their young guns, Fournier was massively affected and took a huge dip statistically. In 2022-23, he only logged 27 games of play and registered 6.1 points, 1.8 boards and 1.3 assists in a lowly 33.7 shooting percentage from the field.
“You want to spit on everyone. You have hatred. Derrick Rose and I looked at each other and said to each other: ‘What the hell are we doing here?’ During the five-on-five practice, we were on the side like some prospects. Uncool times. And when I realized that wouldn’t change, I took things more slowly,” he said. “I focused on myself and didn’t let the rest get to me anymore. I did three cardio sessions, two weight training sessions per week, a lot of travel work, [analyzing] game situations with an assistant coach Daniel Brady.”
Amid the embattled experience, Fournier revealed that he is not harboring any ill feelings towards head coach Tom Thibodeau and in his preference to take him out of the Knicks’ rotational framework last basketball year.
“I have nothing to say because I have none,” Fournier said about rapport with the specialist.”When he took me out of the five, he just told me he was going to try something else. Then at the first match of a road trip, he announced to me that I was leaving the rotation, and ciao.”
At the end of the day, Fournier is determined to play for a new team next season.
Fournier still has two more years left in his current contract with 2024-25 being a team option. He is set to earn over $18.8MM next season.
“I would be very surprised to be a Knick next year. They pay me 18 million, they have no interest in keeping me,” he said.
“If you want to trade me with a good return, why didn’t you use me? I was coming out of a season where I was the fourth-best 3-point shooter in the league. Why not take advantage of it?” Fournier added. “Now they won’t get anything interesting and that’s normal because I couldn’t show anything [on the court].”