Report: Several NBA execs think Isaiah Hartenstein could get $13M a year in free agency

David Akerman
3 Min Read
Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

New York Knicks big man Isaiah Hartenstein is in the midst of arguably the best season of his NBA career, and he could end up getting a nice raise because of it.

NBA insider Michael Scotto recently reported that Hartenstein could get $13 million a year in free agency.

“Several executives who spoke with HoopsHype believe Hartenstein could command around $13 million a year in free agency this summer, roughly the full non-taxpayer mid-level exception,” wrote Scotto.

The former second-round pick is currently averaging 7.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.1 blocks in 24.9 minutes per game while shooting 63.7 percent from the field.

He was able to hold down the center position for the Knicks while Mitchell Robinson recovered from an ankle injury that required surgery. Robinson made his return to the court in late March but still has not regained his spot in the team’s starting lineup.

Hartenstein is noticeably better as a starter than as a reserve. In the screenshot below, the first row shows his stats as a starter this season. The second row shows his stats as a reserve.

Isaiah Hartenstein splits

The 25-year-old is set to become an unrestricted free agent following the end of the 2023-24 season and will surely attract interest from all over the league. He made it clear that he wants to stay in New York, however.

“I’m focused on what I’m doing right now,” Hartenstein told Scotto. “I know I’ve put myself in a great position to get a little upgrade. Right now, I’m focused on the Knicks. I love it here, and hopefully, we’ll figure something out, but at the end of the day, business is business.”

The 7-footer was then asked if he’d stay in New York if the money were equal, to which he replied “yeah.”

Knicks fans will surely be happy about that, as he’s helped the team to a 45-31 record so far this season. New York has dealt with tons of injuries to key players but still sits in fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

The iconic franchise was dealt a huge blow on Thursday when it was revealed that All-Star forward Julius Randle would miss the rest of the season due to a shoulder injury. The three-time All-Star is reportedly “devastated” about not being able to return this season.

New York has six games left on its regular-season schedule and could climb as high as second in the conference, as it is only two games back of the Milwaukee Bucks.

That makes Sunday’s contest between the Knicks and Bucks all the more important.

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David is a Miami native and University of Maryland graduate who has experience in writing, editing and video production. He has been following the NBA and NFL for as long as he can remember.