(SP) – New York Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis skipped his end-of-season exit interview with Phil Jackson back in April and the Knicks team president is prepared to teach him a difficult lesson about responsibility by forcing Porzingis to play for an NBA team that is not the laughingstock of the entire league.
“Kristaps is only 21 and people that age make mistakes,” said Jackson. “But mistakes still have consequences. And he just may find himself waking up tomorrow on a well-run team that will allow him to compete for a championship some day. I’m not messing around. Then we’ll see how many exit interviews he misses.”
The 7-foot-3 Porzingis averaged 18.1 points and 7.2 rebounds per game this year in his second NBA season while shooting 35.7% from three. He was thought to be the Knicks one building block for a possible hopeful future, but then he skipped his exit interview in protest of another season that was botched by team management.
“Kristaps just wanted to send a message that things need to change and that he wants the Knicks to be a winner,” said Andy Miller, his agent. “He didn’t expect it to lead to this. But now,” Miller added, attempting to stifle a grin, “he feels that what he did was very wrong and that the only way to punish him properly is to trade him away from the Knicks forever.”
Since the news of Jackson shopping Porzingis broke, several other Knicks players currently under contract have asked for interviews in order to skip them and be traded, as well.
“At one practice this year, I drank out of someone else’s water bottle — and I knew it wasn’t mine,” said guard Courtney Lee. “I feel I should be punished for this by being traded from the Knicks.”