April 24, 2012; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash (13) passes the ball during the first half against the Utah Jazz at Energy Solutions Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russ Isabella-US PRESSWIRE

NBA Free Agency Rumors: New York Knicks now frontrunner for Steve Nash?

Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

The New York Knicks may have become the front-runner to land Steve Nash, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.

The Knicks are in the process of working out a deal where Nash and the Phoenix Suns would be a part of a sign-and-trade involving Iman Shumpert. The potential deal for Nash would be three years and worth between $27 million-$30 million.

Nash’s named was linked with the Los Angeles Lakers yesterday but any potential deal between Phoenix and L.A. apparently fell through because the Suns do not want to trade Nash to their old rival.

Phoenix would also receive Toney Douglas and Dan Gadzuric as part of the deal. The Suns were close to drafting Shumpert in last year’s draft which could sweeten the deal for them.

The Knicks would prefer not to trade Shumpert but “will if they have to” to get Nash.

The Toronto Raptors previously seemed like the team most likely to sign Nash. Toronto was prepared to offer Nash a 3-year, $36 million deal and also offered restricted free agent Landry Fields a 3-year, $20 million deal in an attempt to prevent New York from getting Nash.

The dream scenario for the Knicks right now would be the sign-and-trade for Nash as well as re-signing Jeremy Lin, according to ESPN’s Marc Stein. The Knicks would be committing upwards of $82 million to five players in the 2014-15 season if they get Nash and Lin.

The Houston Rockets are meeting with Lin today and are expected to offer him a deal worth around $30 million. The deal would be heavy on the back end with Lin making around $5 million per year in the first two years then around $10 million per in the final two.

The Knicks intend to match any offer sheet Lin signs with another team.

The Raptors were the first team to go all in on Nash and now the Knicks have countered. If New York can snag Nash from the Raptors, the move to sign Fields by Toronto will really look bad.

Nash in New York, reunited with Amare Stoudemire and possibly taming the trigger-happy Carmelo Anthony, would be heaven for Knicks’ fans. It wouldn’t necessarily be enough to call the Knicks contenders to the Miami Heat but it has to be seen as progress.

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Tags: Houston Rockets Iman Shumpert Jeremy Lin Landry Fields Los Angeles Lakers NBA Free Agency New York Knicks Phoenix Suns Sign And Trade Steve Nash Toronto Raptors

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