LAS VEGAS -- After three games in the NBA summer league, center Jeremy Tyler has emerged as a compelling candidate to secure one of the Knicks' four remaining roster spots.
Gabe Giordano, the agent for Tyler, who's averaging close to a double-double, told ESPNNewYork.com that he envisions a future for his client on the Knicks.
"While there have been no formal negotiations with the Knicks to this point, there is every indication that the Knicks would like to have Jeremy in training camp," Giordano said. "They have expressed interest in grooming him to become a valuable big man for their organization in the future."
Giordano is hopeful that if Tyler continues to make a "positive impression" in Las Vegas, he could finalize a contract with a team in the next week or two. Giordano believes Tyler's vast basketball experience overseas and in the NBA has prepared him for a permanent roster spot.
"Turning 22 years of age just over a month ago, yet already having several years of professional basketball experience on his resume is a huge plus for Jeremy as he competes for a Knicks roster spot," Giordano said.
So far in Las Vegas, Tyler has played well defensively, moving his feet effectively to protect the basket and talking constantly to assist his teammates. It's the kind of defense that wins over Mike Woodson.
Tyler is also relentless crashing the glass, and he finishes well around the rim to complement his fluid midrange jump shot. On offense, he needs to work on improving his court awareness and passing ability, as well as fine-tuning his true center skills, such as setting picks and rolling to the basket.
After summer league wraps up next week, Giordano said Tyler, who's from San Diego, Calif., will continue to train in Southern California. Meanwhile, Giordano will continue to discuss a deal with the Knicks or elsewhere.
"There are several other teams interested in Jeremy, but we are not at liberty to comment on the details of those interested teams at this point," he said.
On Sunday, Woodson spoke highly of the 6-foot-10 Tyler, even mentioning a potential training camp invite.
"I like him as well as a camp guy because of his body size and the fact that he's so athletic," the coach said. "You might look at him four, five years down the road and say, 'Wow, he finally figured it out.'"
So how did Tyler react to Woodson's vision for him this fall?
"Wow," he said. "I haven't heard anything. It's still early. You've got to let my agents and management group talk to [the Knicks], and hopefully it works out."
At this point, the Knicks have no real backups behind Tyson Chandler. Tyler has a great opportunity to not only make the Knicks' roster, but also be a part of the rotation.
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