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Sad Report: Fournier Says Knick Are Holding Him From…..

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JANUARY 05: Evan Fournier #13 of the New York Knicks in action against the Phoenix Suns at Madison Square Garden on January 02, 2023 in New York City.

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New York Knicks defeated the Phoenix Suns 102-83. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)  Mike Stobe/Getty Images  Veteran swingman Evan Fournier remains a member of the New York Knicks despite his hopes to be traded this offseason, and that doesn’t appear to be changing before the start of NBA training camp next week.

According to Zach Braziller of the New York Post, Fournier said during an interview with French radio station RTL that he felt like he was being “held hostage” by the team.  Fournier, who is coming off one of the worst seasons of his career after being removed from the rotation, said he at least wants an opportunity to see more playing time if he isn’t traded:

“I’m still in New York at the moment. I want to leave. But beyond leaving, I want to have the opportunity to get some playing time back. That’s all. That’s mostly it. Because in New York, I feel extremely good. I love living there, I love the franchise, I love playing at Madison [Square Garden], I love the guys on the team.

So I just want to play, that’s all. It’s true that finding another club, changing franchises, if that’s what you have to do to play again, that’s what I would like to do.”  Fournier began the 2022-23 season as a member of the starting lineup, but Braziller noted that it only took until late November for Tom Thibodeau to take him out of the regular rotation. In all, the 30-year-old appeared in just 27 games with seven starts and averaged 6.1 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists while shooting career lows of 33.7 percent from the field and 30.7 percent from beyond the arc.

It wouldn’t have surprised anyone if Fournier was traded this offseason, but New York has been in no rush to move him. Braziller pointed out that the reason for that is “because his expiring $18.9 million contract is a valuable trade chip to match contracts if the right deal comes along.”

While it sounds like his departure from New York is an eventuality, Fournier is still holding out hope that he will be able to earn more playing time as long as he remains on the team.

“If I knew, for example, that the coach was going to give me 10-15 minutes here and there, I know that I could make the most of it and grab minutes gradually and perform well,” he said. “But that’s not even the case.

I don’t have the opportunity to play and even worse, I feel like I’m being held hostage. I hope this situation will resolve itself and I especially hope that the Knicks will give me a chance.”

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