The easiest deal for the Knicks to complete would be the one with Portland. Ratliff, who is suffering from an ankle injury, played for Brown in Philadelphia and is the shot-blocking center he craves. But he’s 32 and comes at a cost of $23.22 million over the next two seasons.
Miles has four more seasons worth $34 million on his deal and has been at odds with new Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan, but the 24-year-old small forward is close with the Knicks’ Quentin Richardson, who lately has won Brown’s praise for his hard work and leadership. Of course, the Knicks have another young former Blazer at small forward in Qyntel Woods, who has shown great promise.
If the Knicks want Ratliff and Miles, all they have to do is include Lee — “the finishing piece,” as the Western Conference personnel expert put it — along with Hardaway’s contract.