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Toronto Raptors Should Swap Landry Fields for Knicks' Steve Novak & Kurt Thomas

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 03:  J.R. Smith #8 of the New York Knicks slautes teammate Steve Novak #16 after his fourth quarter basket against the San Antonio Spurs at Madison Square Garden on January 3, 2013 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. The Knicks fdefeated the Spurs 100-83. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Patrick BrittonAnalyst IFebruary 19, 2013

When Mike Woodson made the decision to move New York Knicks All-Star Carmelo Anthony to power forward this season, he left a huge whole at Melo’s old position. Ronnie Brewer has started the majority of the games at small forward for the Knicks, but has averaged just 3.7 points per game and 2.2 rebounds per game for them.

It’s no secret that the Knicks could use some help at small forward. They would be wise to bring back Landry Fields. While Fields’ salary doesn’t match his productivity, he is still an upgrade over Brewer and has fit well with Melo and co. in the past.

While the Toronto Raptors are filled with players who can make three-pointers, only John Lucas and Kyle Lowry can make them at a high percentage. Toronto needs a forward who can space the floor for when Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan drive to the basket, making Novak a perfect fit.

Steve Novak isn’t just a good shooter, he is an amazing one. ESPN NBA analyst Jeff Van Gundy has constantly called Novak the best shooter he’s ever seen. Novak has shot 44.7 percent from beyond the arc this season and a ridiculous 94 percent from the free throw line.

Although Novak is not as good as Fields, his salary is much more affordable for the Raptors. Fields is owed $6.25 million over the next two years, while Novak’s salary is about $3.6 million annually over the next three seasons.

Toronto would also need to take on Kurt Thomas’ expiring contract for this trade to work. Thomas is an experienced power forward who can rebound and play defense. The Raptors could use his presence inside after trading Ed Davis to the Memphis Grizzlies.

The Raptors could be over the luxury tax next season, so they should trade to cut salary where they can. This trade works under ESPN’s trade machine.

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