The Magic are open for business, and it’s no surprise Knicks general manager and former Orlando executive Scott Perry has checked in on his former lottery pick, point guard Elfrid Payton, The Post has learned. According to an NBA source who has spoken to Knicks brass, Perry has interest in reuniting with the 23-year-old Payton at the trade deadline, feeling he can get him at a discount and keep his rookie point guard Frank Ntilikina out of the deal. Of course, it’s unclear how the Knicks will approach the deadline after Tuesday night’s devastating injury to Kristaps Porzingis less than 48 hours before the deadline. The Magic’s new GM, John Hammond, is looking to move on from Payton, who will become a restricted free agent this summer because his rookie contract expires after the season. Payton has shown some improvement this season, averaging 13.2 points, 6.2 assists, and 4.0 rebounds and shooting 51.8 percent — 37.3 percent from 3-point range — but is not known for his perimeter shot. Perry’s interest stems from the organization believing it needs to get more athletic, with Payton the type of quick penetrator who can open the game up. Ntilikina, 19, has yet to show that knack as a rookie. According to the source, Perry still believes in the 6-foot-4 Payton as a potentially solid defender, though advanced metrics show he’s subpar.
Knicks GM interested in trading for Magic point guard he drafted
New York Post | Feb 7