Report: Trio of Western Conference contenders show interest in Joakim Noah

Boston Celtics v New York Knicks

Earlier this week, New York Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek confirmed that Joakim Noah is likely to never play for the team again after they were involved in an altercation.

Things reportedly got heated between the pair after the veteran expressed frustration at not playing significant minutes in a loss to the Golden State Warriors at the end of last month.

Both Noah and the Knicks have mutually agreed that he should stay away from the team indefinitely and Hornacek has since made it clear that they're not expecting him back.

"We've moved on. He's ready to move on and maybe have an opportunity somewhere else," Hornacek said, per ESPN's Ian Begley.

With the trade deadline closed, the likeliest scenario would see the team waive the former Chicago Bulls big man.

As this is looking like a realistic possibility, there is already some interest in him from multiple teams around the league.

According to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, Western Conference contenders the Golden State Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and Oklahoma City Thunder are three teams looking to potentially acquire him.

Chicago Bulls v New York Knicks

With both JaVale McGee and Zaza Pachulia underperforming this season, the Warriors could look to bolster that position with the addition of Noah.

In his best years in Chicago, he won the Defensive Player of the Year award and was one of the best passing big men in the league and both of those qualities would see him be a good fit with the defending champions.

But the other two teams in question may have the upper hand thanks to connections he has with both head coaches.

The 32-year-old played with OKC head coach Billy Donovan during his successful college years in Florida. The Thunder need depth in their roster and want to add more experience and ease the load on youngsters like Jerami Grant and Josh Huestis.

Memphis Grizzlies v New York Knicks

Noah's best years in the NBA came under head coach Tom Thibodeau with the Bulls and a reunion in Minnesota could give him his best opportunity to resurrect his career as he's familiar with the way his ex-coach works.

The presence of former Bulls teammate Jimmy Butler could also give the T-Wolves an advantage.

But this would be an interesting turn of events if the two-time All-Star leaves New York and lands on a championship-calibre team.

New York Knicks v Brooklyn Nets

At this moment in time, however, the Knicks have yet to make a final decision on his future.

For the teams interested, they must be able to secure him by March 1 as that's the last date he'll be eligible for the playoffs.

Per Begley, the two parties are at a standoff currently as the Knicks are reluctant to buy out the full amount of Noah's contract but he's unwilling to give up any money.

He's owed $37.8 million over the next two seasons plus a portion of this season's $17.7 million salary. At present, it seems doubtful that they'll be able to arrange something in the coming days.

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