Willy Hernangomez
Willy Hernangomez has been traded to the Hornets (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Willy Hernangomez requested a trade yesterday and his wish was granted rather quickly. Hernangomez will be sent to the Charlotte Hornets for Johnny O’Bryant and two second-round draft choices. The Knicks are likely heading down the tanking route after they lost Kristaps Porzingis for the season.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN was the first to report the news:

Hernangomez still has value as a young player despite averaging 4.4 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 9.2 minutes per game. The plus side is that he comes with a really affordable contract with $1.54 million in 2018-19 and a trigger date worth $1.7 million in 2019-20. Hernangomez fits the modern game and can run the floor the keep up with the high tempo offenses in the modern-day NBA.

The Knicks drafted the Spaniard with the 35th overall pick in 2015. Previously he had played for Real Madrid where he had a successful career overseas. New York sits four games out of the eighth seed and could be looking to make a move to make the playoffs. Still, the Knicks are playing with fire if they decide to trade one of Kristaps Porzingis’ best friends on the team who has had a relationship with Hernangomez even prior to beginning his NBA career. Hernangomez, 23, appears to be on his way out just like fellow center Joakim Noah who is expected to pursue a buyout with the team to get out of New York.

New York will save a bit of money in the transaction saving $1.5 million with the trade for next year. Charlotte will save some money this year, however. The Hornets could be a prime target to trade their star player Kemba Walker and also have an open roster spot to facilitate a trade. For Charlotte, trading a couple second round picks for a player like Hernangomez seems like a risk worth taking.