The Joakim Noah era in New York has come to an end. After months of speculation about what the future holds for the veteran center in the Big Apple, a report by Adrian Wojnarowski and Ian Begley of ESPN indicated that Noah would finally get waived due to his reluctance to agree to a buyout with the Knicks.
The pair of ESPN reporters also indicated that Noah would get waived sometime on Saturday, and soon after that report hit Twitter, Diamond Leung of The Athletic reported that Noah had, indeed, been waived.
The Knicks eventually confirmed the news via their PR team’s Twitter account.
Noah was among the players who got paid during the now-infamous summer of 2016, agreeing to terms on a four-year deal worth a hair above $72 million with the Knicks. However, injuries and an acrimonious relationship with former head coach Jeff Hornacek led to him appearing in 53 games over two seasons, averaging 4.6 points and 7.9 rebounds in 19.9 minutes per game.
While the Knicks did bring in a new regime after firing Hornacek and parting ways with president Phil Jackson, the franchise decided that it wanted to look towards a future that did not include the veteran big man. As for what’s next, Wojnarowski reports that he’s going to get paid handsomely over the next few years and that he’ll hit free agency next week.
Noah’s game is a bit of a weird fit in the modern NBA, especially as he’s gotten older and his body has started to fail him. But all it takes is one team to have a need and fall in love, and if someone thinks the 33-year-old center can still anchor a defense like he did during his prime with the Chicago Bulls, he’ll have a job somewhere.