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Gordon Hayward: Coulda been a Knick

6/25/2010

GREENBURGH - Good evening from Knicks headquarters in the leafy suburbs 30 miles away from the Garden, where the boos for commissioner David Stern are coming in loud and clear via Cablevision.

Will be blogging tonight with any and all things Knicks-related, and we'll take a look at who the Knicks select at Nos. 38 and 39 when that hour finally rolls around. As of this writing, the Jazz have just selected Gordon Hayward of Butler with the first-round pick Isiah Thomas sent to Phoenix in the Stephon Marbury trade.

For now, a couple newsy nuggets from coach Mike D'Antoni:

Bill Walker has dropped from 254 pounds to 227 pounds and is completely recovered from knee injuries and is once again displaying the athleticism that made him, along with O.J. Mayo, one of the top high school recruits in the nation in 2007, D'Antoni said.

The Knicks have until Aug. 1 to decide whether to pick up the $854,000 option of Walker for the 2010-11 season.

The wait, at least officially, for Eddy Curry to return to full-court scrimmaging is approximately one week away -- although D'Antoni said he suspected the big man was sneaking in some full-court ball when not at the Knicks' facility each day.

On the Bulls trade of Kirk Hinrich to Washington, which gives Chicago approximately $33 million in cap room (enough to sign two max free agents), D'Antoni quipped: "Looks like our plan was the right one -- clear enough cap space. Everybody's doing it, so that's good. We're on the right track.

"(The competition) is stiff anyway, and everybody is trying to do more or less the same thing. But as long as we can keep the Empire State Building where it is, we'll be OK."

The Knicks may want to consider renting out the observation deck of that building for the afternoon and evening of July 1, when they reportedly plan to fete King James with a gala recruiting party. If you're looking for an impressive presentation site from which to woo LeBron James, you can't do much better than that.