James White's agent, William McCandless, told ESPNNewYork.com Tuesday that the small forward will "unlikely" return to the Knicks for the 2013-14 season.
White has a team option for around $1 million next season that the Knicks have to decide on by June 30. If they decline, White will become an unrestricted free agent.
McCandless said White values playing time, which happened sporadically for him in New York. He started 16 games in the regular season and averaged 7.6 minutes and 2.2 points per game.
McCandless said White will field NBA offers this offseason. The 30-year-old is still valued for his versatile defense and transition game. He earned the nickname "Flight" years ago for his Olympic-caliber jumping ability.
"He's going to have NBA interest, for sure. I know that," McCandless said. "More teams like him today than liked him this time last year. More teams feel like he can help."
However, McCandless said White won't hesitate to return overseas, where he spent five years (2007-12) before signing with the Knicks for the veteran's minimum of $854,389. White also has a strong allegiance of fans in Europe.
McCandless said if White wants to make the most money, he'll continue on his previous international path, which could take him to China. Contracts in China, where White could land, are typically higher than European contracts by the month because the season is shorter.
"China will jump out of its shoes at some point and come running on James," McCandless said. "We've had numerous inquiries by power teams in Europe that can pay into the millions."
If the Knicks pass on White, they'll be able to sign another player to the veteran's minimum.
FREE-AGENCY SURPRISES COMING? GM Glen Grunwald used two words Tuesday to describe what the front office needs to do this summer: "Be creative."
"I think we've got some ideas on what we can do," he said. "We have to be aggressive and creative in terms of our approach to this offseason -- not only just in terms of players, but also in getting our existing players better."
Grunwald added, discussing the team's financial wiggle room: "It's probably not likely to get under the tax threshold, but sign-and-trades are available. You just can't acquire a player through free agency, but half of the equation works. I think there will be some opportunities. Free agency is always a little unpredictable. Teams are out there working it. We’ll see where it all turns out at the end."
MELO AND LEBRON TO WORK TOGETHER? Anthony's business manager Robert "Bay" Frazier confirmed with ESPNNewYork.com that he's discussing potential business together with LeBron James' agent, Rich Paul. What those collaborations could be are unknown at this time. Something to keep in mind: Melo and LeBron both have early termination options going into the 2014-15 season.
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