The Knicks missed the Donovan Mitchell deal because they refused to include Quentin Grimes in the deal, reports

Donovan Mitchell was traded from Utah Jazz to me Cleveland Cavaliersbut a large part of the discussion that followed has surrounded a team that was not involved in the deal at all: New York Knicks.

Once it became clear that Mitchell was on the market in early July, several signs indicated that the All-Star guard had ended up in New York. The Knicks have an attractive pool of young talent and future picks at their disposal, and Mitchell, a native of three states, is represented by the CAA – the same agency that Knicks president Leon Rose used to work for.

The stars seemed to be on the line with Mitchell heading to the Knicks, but things fell apart on Thursday and now the Cavs are in a position to become one of the best up-and-coming franchises in the Eastern Conference – not the Knicks.

Details continue to emerge about how negotiations between the Jazz and the Knicks might unravel, and it appears the deal was close to being finalized on Sunday. However, talks stalled, because the Knicks did not want to include 22-year-old goalkeeper Quentin Grimes in the deal, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski said wog pod. New York attempted to replace guard Emmanuel Quikley in place of Grimes, when Utah declined. Here’s Woj in detail:

“Utah wanted RJ Barrett, Quentin Grimes, and three first-round picks from New York. That would have been two unprotected picks and maybe even a protected pick — even a top five protected pick. … But, the Knicks didn’t want to put the Grimes into a deal. They were. Ready to do Emmanuel Quickley, and with Emmanuel Quickley, Utah’s request was three unprotected picks.They appreciated the Grimes more than Quickley, and New York made it clear that we’d do Quickley and RJ, but we want two unprotected picks and the third protected—we basically want what you want for the Grimes, We want to put Quickley in this deal. And that was the end.”

Wojnarowski added that the Knicks administration expected negotiations to eventually resume (even after Barrett signed an extension on Monday, making a potential deal more complicated), but Cleveland lapsed on Thursday and the Jazz pulled the trigger before giving New York a chance to prepare.

It was great to follow the reports of the negotiations. There were versions of the deal that didn’t include Barrett at all, and As Voinarovsky reported that in early July, the Knicks offered Barrett, Obi Tobin and Mitchell Robinson and three unprotected first-round picks for Mitchell, which the Jazz rejected.

After seeing this initial show, it’s hard to understand why the Knicks wouldn’t want to include the Grimes and/or a third unprotected pick from the first round in their latest show. The 25th overall pick in the 2021 draft, Grimes was playing a limited role as a starter last season, averaging six points and two rebounds in 17 minutes per game with shooting splits 40/38/68. But, the Knicks’ front desk is clearly well-respected if it’s an obstacle to getting a NBA-level goalkeeper.

Ultimately, the Knicks may have gotten cold and pulled out of the deal either way, but arguably the most well-connected reporter in the NBA said they could have Donovan Mitchell for the time being if they were willing to include Grimes in the deal.