$40 million a drop in the pond

Updated: February 1, 2005, 5:38 PM ET
By Chad Ford | ESPN Insider
Chad Ford chat wrap Monday.


New York Knicks: President Isiah Thomas keeps claiming that the Knicks are better off under his tutelage because of an alleged $40 million in expiring contracts he'll have to use this summer.

"We finally put ourselves in a position where there's hope for something better that can come down the road," Thomas said. "You put yourself in a position now where you've got options, and you don't want to cloud that by doing something short term."


Thomas must have learned accounting at the Enron School of Business.

First, the $40 million in expiring contracts that Isiah keeps talking about don't come off the books until the summer of 2006.

Second, one of those contracts, Nazr Mohammed's, is one that Isiah wants to renew. Chances are he'll either get an extension, or re-sign in free agency.

That leaves Penny Hardaway and Tim Thomas' deals that will come off the books in 2006. If Thomas lets both expire, the Knicks still will be roughly $40-45 million over the cap in the summer of 2006. So much for flexibility.

What Isiah really means is that this summer he can shop Hardaway and Thomas' contracts around the league and, for the first time since he acquired them, they'll actually have some trade value.

How much? It depends on a lot of issues.

Chad Ford

ESPN Senior Writer