Knicks Morning News (2017.05.29)

  • [NYTimes] On Pro Basketball: One Thing LeBron James Can’t Win: A Comparison With Michael Jordan
    (Sunday, May 28, 2017 4:14:16 PM)

    By playing in different eras, the outspoken James and the follow-the-rules Jordan are like apples and oranges.

  • [NYDN] Knicks’ Kyle O’Quinn posterizes Josh Norman in charity game
    (Sunday, May 28, 2017 6:28:32 PM)

    Perhaps the Giants could call on the Knicks’ Kyle O’Quinn for some extra muscle this season.

  • [NYPost] Knicks getting visit from title-winning North Carolina stud
    (Sunday, May 28, 2017 6:31:53 PM)

    North Carolina junior swingman Justin Jackson will bring his championship résumé to the Knicks’ Tarrytown facility next month, The Post has learned. According to an NBA source, Jackson will work out for the Knicks on June 13 ahead of the NBA draft. Jackson interviewed with the Knicks at the the league’s draft combine in Chicago…

  • [ESPN] Knicks’ Kyle O’Quinn posterizes Redskins’ Josh Norman in celebrity game
    (Sunday, May 28, 2017 7:18:59 PM)

    Knicks’ Kyle O’Quinn posterizes Redskins’ Josh Norman in celebrity game

  • 60 replies on “Knicks Morning News (2017.05.29)”

    If the Knicks were to only draft 3 players, of whom one becomes an effective starter with the other two becoming effective rotation players (either starting or not), would you consider such to be a successful draft?

    Any draft where you land 3 players above replacement level is a slam dunk.

    It’s amusing, at times, to see all the trade proposals. That said, a trade requires (at least) one willing partner. I suspect that the lack of one was why the Rubio-Rose trade didn’t happen, as Thibs just couldn’t commit.

    So I’d rather not trade than force a bad trade.

    Any draft where you land 3 players above replacement level is a slam dunk.

    Indeed. The one thing this team is good at is scouting, drafting and developing players.

    Given the anti-Knicks/anti-Phil groupthink narrative that’s pervaded both sports and popular media, even if the Knicks walked away with drafting new three starters, folks would still lampoon Phil and the team.

    With the amount and depth of talent in this draft I wouldn’t be surprised if we could add more than 3 good players by buying a pick or acquiring one as an undrafted free agent. Guys like Kennedy Meeks and Peter Joks don’t even make any of the lists.

    Draft aside, I’m curious as to the staff development that’s going on with last season’s pickups:

    Baker, Cheese, Randle, N’Dour, Holiday, and Willy. Each of them showed enough strengths to warrant futher development.

    I know that Baker and Holiday are free agents, but I think there’s enough interest in their returning on both sides to make it fairly likely, though not guaranteed.

    Each of the six guys mentioned above have attainable pieces they need to add:

    Baker needs to get comfortable shooting NBA 3’s and develop a midrange game. For a guy who’s improved every year he’s played organized basketball, I wouldn’t put achieving such past him.

    Cheese needs to also improve his comfort in shooting NBA 3’s and get stronger to be able to better defend.

    Randle has to continue developing his point guard and defensive skills. He’s already come a long way and I’m not putting it past him to become a capable NBA point guard.

    N’Dour is already a strong defender who just needs to improve his 3 point shooting.

    Holiday, once Rose got hurt, took on attack guard responsibilities and demonstrated aptitude at creating his own shot (Lee also demonstrated this as well). Keep developing that as well as continuing to improve his 3-point shooting.

    Willy needs to get stronger/leaner and develop a perimeter game which should include 3’s. Whatever minor defensive issues he had this season he’s smart enough to figure out how to address them.

    As an aside, I’d really like to see O’Quinn develop his 3-point shooting as it would make him especially valuable, either on this team or as trade bait. Considering he worked after last season to get in shape and become more athletic , I think he can do it.

    That would be a nice bonus that I don’t think they honestly need. If a strong deal finds you, sure (I suspect that’s how the Hardaway-Grant deal materialized). But, otherwise, don’t force it because that’s how you lose trades.

    I like the fact that the Knicks are serious enough about Justin Jackson to bring him in for a workout.

    1. They may be thinking of trading down and already have a PG in mind they can get later
    2. They may think they can get another 1st round pick somehow.

    Of course it could mean they like him so much they are going to use the 8th pick on him because he’s already good, a hard worker, old enough to contribute right away, a needed scorer, and a long term Melo replacement from a winning program.

    I think they’re seriously considering trading down if Fox, Isaac, and maybe Smith are taken. I imagine it’s a competition between Frank at 8 (or later if we’re lucky) and JJ at 12-15.

    We should really be calling up Denver and Miami, I think. Miami might want Melo’s services and be willing to part with a pick or a swap in the deal and Denver really wants a PG.

    Would anyone consider trading a future 1st round pick plus a player (KOQ) for an extra lottery pick in this draft?

    The problem that arises from swapping with Denver is that the Knicks also really want a PG. Unless they’re willing to throw in Mudiay and the Knicks think they can develop him.

    I suspect that someone is going to want Frank and offer asset(s) should the Knicks pick him at 8. The same might also be true for DSJ. That kind of play was how Philly was able to fleece Orlando by picking Elfrid Payton and then getting back WAY more value.

    Another good play would be to pick Frank, trade him to Dallas for the 9th pick/Yogi Ferrell/JJ Barea/future 1st, especially if Issac is still available. And if by some chance no one else wants to play along, the Knicks would still have drafted a player worth keeping anyway.

    Would anyone consider trading a future 1st round pick plus a player (KOQ) for an extra lottery pick in this draft?

    I’d consider it. I suggested we trade a future first last year with Jamal Murray as the target. If there’s a player the Knicks really like they should be aggressive about acquiring the player.

    if all we’re picking from is monk and ntilikina.. that will suck and we should really think about trading back for multiple picks or even out of the first rd altogether…

    there are some intriguing guys… og anunoby is one…. but the rest.. including justin jackson… are not worth it…

    I’m not a fan of playing poker in the draft. It’s hard enough to figure out who you should actually take. Why complicate it by trying to guess who someone else wants (if a team is smart they are using fake news to mislead everyone anyway) and then figure out who they’d be willing to give us assuming we guessed right about who they actually wanted.

    If the Knicks draft their best option at #8 and someone else wants that player so much they offer us a great deal deal, then they should consider moving that player.

    Another possibility is that some team several slots below us is fairly certain someone between us and then is going to draft the player the want. So they ask us to draft who they want and offer us something enticing to do that.

    no but if someone wants to get to #8 and we’re not going to pick zach collins anyway then we should entertain all kinds of offers… and the rest of the 1st rd looks a lot like last year’s 1st rd…. in which case trading down probably wouldn’t net any value…. it’s better if we could nab a future unprotected 1st… or a young established guy even..

    I want no part of Frank at 8. All the hype is based on his performance in the under-18 tournament last year- the only thing he did well in league play this year is shoot threes. He averaged 4.5 fouls per 36 without racking up great steals or block numbers- what’s going to happen when he has to guard NBA-caliber athletes? Add in 2.7 assists vs. 1.7 turnovers per 36 and he looks two years away from being a rotation player let alone a starter at the point. I can see taking a flyer on him towards the end of the lottery since he is very young and has great length but he just hasn’t been productive enough to warrant picking him that high.

    Justin Jackson is not going to be a good NBA player.

    I was already a fan, but I like the fact that he was told not to leave school last year because he wasn’t a good enough outside shooter and now his 3 point shooting is considered a plus.

    I have to concede I don’t have any strong opinions about this or any other draft. To me, with some exceptions, it’s mostly throwing darts and whoever gets lucky a few times gets the “genius” tag for no good reason. If there’s any real skill to it at all, it’s probably in identifying kids with similar gifts and then separating them based on who is the smartest, who is going to be willing to work the hardest, and who will stay out of trouble.

    If we aren’t going to get a world class athlete that has already demonstrated potentially elite basketball skills (and we aren’t), then I would like to get a player that everyone agrees has a high basketball IQ and that I already know will work his ass off to get a lot better. JJ seems to fit that mold. Plus, he’s not a bad athlete and I know he can play under pressure.

    I’d be shocked if he doesn’t turn out to become a solid NBA player. He may not become an elite player, but we are unlikely to get one of those at #8 no matter what. I’d be very happy to add him.

    I think this draft is too important to whiff. I’d feel way better about hitting 2 doubles than swinging for the fences and striking out.

    I kinda like the outcome Reub had yesterday. Ntilikina with our 1st pick, Frank Mason with our 2nd. Then I hope we can add a defensive minded forward aith our last pick. Whether he ends up as a great PG or not, he’ll be a solid addition to the backcourt. He can easily add weight and strength and replace Justin Holiday in the rotation. His floor looks to me to be a younger, longer Holiday. That would leave us a backcourt combinaton of Baker/Lee/Randle/Ntilikina/Mason. That’s a solid skillset/age combo to build upon. Especially if we’re not sold on DSJ and Isaac’s not there at 8. We need willing and capable defenders in our backcourt more than anything because guards have made a living in the paint against us the past umpteen seasons. If we were drafting inside the top 3, I’d be singing a different tune. Drafting Ntilikina isn’t a bad move. I think he’s a great fit for a guard prospect for us with his ability to play both guard spots.

    I want no part of Frank at 8.

    He may turn out to be a terrific player eventually, but based on what we see now he could easily turn out to be an “end of the bench player” for a couple of years and max out as a good “3 and D” player 6-7 years from now. I have a boatload of patience, but I’n not waiting that long unless there’s a star at the end wait.

    Ntilikina looks a lot like the Bruno Caboclo pick by the Raptors.

    He will spend a lot of time in the D-League and I have zero confidence that the Knicks will have patience enough to wait 3 or 4 years until he can be useful.

    The more I look at Zach Collins the more I like him. I know we have a couple of good young bigs already but he seems like he might be a safer pick than Ntilikina if both of those guys are still on the board.

    He’s not known as a great passer though, and we all know that centers who can pass are like the most important thing evar, so never mind.


    Mavs would sign on if Frank is their guy. The plus here would be that the Knicks win whether there’s a trade or not. The real question, though, is do the Mavericks have enough assets to get their guy?

    Although, keeping him would absolutely be worth it: he’s physically talented 18 year old with a KP-like work ethic who is already playing professional ball. And an improving jumper that’s already pretty good.

    I get that he may not be starting at first. But isn’t this is really about fitting KP’s timeline? Again, the question with Frank is how quickly and well can the Knicks develop his game. Also, by the time KP finishes his first contract, this kid should be ready to start (at 21-22 years old) and continue growing from there.

    Zach Collins should be a top 5 pick based on his size and statistics alone. He also has impressive tape. It’s to the point where I’d think long and hard about trading Willy Hernangomez for a late lottery pick if we take a point guard at 8.

    I like Zach Collins a bunch. I have him rated 4th on my personal draft board behind only Fultz, Ball, and Isaac. He fouls way too much, but I think that’s because he knew his minutes would be restricted because of seniority. He definitely looks the part of a franchise center in today’s NBA.

    Collins’ ceiling is Tyson Chandler with post moves and a jump shot. That’s a high ceiling.

    The thing about JJ is that he’s improved significantly in every aspect of his game over the past few years to the point where he’s at least break-even in most every category. He’s a very good passer from the SF position and has the tools to be a plus defender, or at least a break even one. He’ll probably never have the frame to be a small ball PF, but we have a raft of 4/5s anyway that we need to distribute playing time between. Having an offensively versatile high IQ guy who can shoot the 3, defend, and pass is really not bad. He’ll be fine–and he’s repeatedly shown that he’s able to improve his game in areas where it’s lacking, as Strat noted, which bodes well for him carving out a niche in the NBA.

    And yeah, we should honestly pick Collins if Smith and Isaac are off the board, but I doubt that it’s gonna happen.

    It’s to the point where I’d think long and hard about trading Willy Hernangomez for a late lottery pick if we take a point guard at 8.

    Trading the most productive player the Knicks have drafted since David Lee with three years at <$2M AAV for a shot at a guy because he was good in college? It's too Knicksy not to. We all know Willy has fully matured as a player at age 22 and his WS48 and WP48 and BPM are all maxed out, so we should sell now while the gettin's good. No way he becomes the next future cornerstone of another franchise.

    (If he stays a Knick and ends up a starter, I have $10 on him being shortlisted for MIP when he hits 20 PPG on 35 MPG.)

    I like Collins just fine, but I wouldn’t draft him in the top 15. After that, I would love it if Phil could scoop up an extra 1st and draft him. At the least, I think he can provide what KOQ did last season. The only advantage I can see with Collins over KOQ is he’s younger and slightly taller. KOQ makes up for that with his length though. It’s a coin flip to me. Trade a package including KOQ for another 1st rounder and draft Collins or keep KOQ. That said, the league loves bigs who show athleticism and size, so Collins is most likely going to be gone in the top 12 so we can scratch the idea of drafting him. Picking him at 8 when we already have Willy and KOQ would be a mistake. Now..if he showed that he was a dominant force inside when he played, then of course you draft him at 8. He came off the bench with energy and looked good doing so- but that does not make him worthy of the #8 pick. I want to see him consistently handle a starting role before I pick him 8th.

    Trading WHG fro anything less than a top-3 pick would be certifiable. I guess you trade him for 1 and 2, but after that, it’s at best a wash and probably not worth it unless you are convinced that Jonathan Isaac, Josh Jackson or Jason Tatum is a really good bet to be a future superstar, and at worst will be at WHG’s level. Maybe Dennis Smith Jr., who I think has the best shot of guards not named Fultz and Bll to be a top-5 PG, but that’s super risky and I probably don’t do it.

    Put it this way, Willy is exactly who the Sixers hoped Jahlil Okafor would be when they drafted him at #3.

    Jowles, I’m interested in your take on the reverse proposition? if you had the #3 pick in this years draft, would you trade it straight up for Willy? Or better put, what is the highest pick in this draft that you would NOT trade straight up for Willy at this point?

    Yeah I think I’d only trade him straight up for Ball or Fultz. Even then, I’d think about it. Kid is gonna be really, really good.

    I would trade the #3 pick for WHG. I think Ball is going to be a franchise player a la Jason Kidd, the kind of player who put up efficient box scores and makes everyone around him better, and in Fultz I see an Irving/Wall type player (good, but not superstar explosive/crafty PG). Beyond that, no idea. Willy is already good, and he does most of it via his own post moves rather than be the recipient of excellent PG play. I refuse to let players like that go. I mean shit, most of his highlights this year seem to be with Ron Baker at the helm. Sort of like Chandler’s best year coming with Felton as his penetrator. He’s objectively, independently good. Now let’s see what he does with a competent backcourt.

    Zach Collins and KP though? Man. You’re talking about two 3 point shooting rim protecting bigs. One has the ability to lead the league in rebounds and the other one is a franchise scorer. That’s like drafting Tyson Chandler and Dirk Nowitzki except Tyson couldn’t shoot and Dirk can’t defend the rim.

    Willy Hernangomez is my boy, though. He’ll be one of the best players in New York for a long time.

    a pf with minimal defensive impact is not that valuable… that’s roughly what jefferson, okafor or monroe does…

    wily is good but i wouldn’t overrate him… the defense coming around isn’t a foregone conclusion because he doesn’t exactly have crazy athleticism…. that mutes his value significantly….

    Willy has actually been better on defense than advertised both by defensive metrics (positive DBPM, DRPM) and the eye test.

    He’s already better than Jefferson, Okafor, or Monroe on that end, probably (and Monroe is p damn good despite being bad on defense, fwiw.) He certainly has room to improve but the defensive woes are overstated i think.

    @36 and @37 Those are very fair assessments. I did a quick search of guys since 2000 in their 1st or 2nd seasons who played over 1000 minutes, and averaged over 13TRB/36 and .had a TS% over .540. Two guys came up: Kevin Love (2nd season) and Andre Drummond (both 1st and 2nd.) That’s pretty impressive. Go down to 12TRB/36 and David Lee, Dwight Howard, Gobert, Faried, Jokic, and Capela join the list. Yeah, probably shouldn’t trade him.

    Yeah, let’s just keep and build with KP and Willy unless a Holy Grail offer comes in.

    Draft someone nice at 8, trade Melo if possible/reasonable, and try to get another 1st rounder. If not, cross fingers to get someone useful at 44.

    Phil’s gonna sign someone with cap room, any chance someone fairly young and halfway decent is out there?

    I’d think about trading Willy for the 3rd pick, but there’s no way I’d trade him for the 14th pick.

    if the situation comes up that we can trade wily for collins… or anyone out of the other top 7 guys… i would do it…. if it’s for anyone else i would def not….

    maybe i don’t appreciate wily as much but…. a low ftr and low def numbers gives me a bit of pause on his upside…. but certainly it’s likely that he improves… it’s just a matter is that better than someone like fox or collins… and in my eyes.. those guys are very good bets to being cornerstone players…

    Willy has proven to be a good NBA starter with excellent offensive efficiency. Given the history of top 3 busts I’m not sure I would even trade him for Ball (probably would but tough call). He’s really good. Let’s talk about trading OQuinn after that monster dunk or literally anyone other than KP and HG.

    Put it this way- if Willy had to go back into the draft now, where would he be?? Probably 2-3.

    I just had a thought.

    Everyone knows Melo to the Clippers is a sensible option for both LA and Melo. The problem has been figuring out how to get something back to NY that makes sense for the Knicks.

    How about this as the core of the deal?

    The Knicks take back Reddick and trade him to the T-Wolves for Rubio?

    The Clippers would have to add something and there would be other details to work out with Minny depending on how much Reddick makes, but something like that could work. Minny needs some shooting and a veteran SG like Reddick certainly makes sense.

    The other possibility (if Minny is not interested in Reddick at all) would be for NY to keep Reddick and trade Lee for Rubio. Granted, we’d probably prefer to keep Lee because his D is better & the contract would be a little shorter. But if we move Melo we’ll need scoring anyway.

    Adding Rubio would open up the possibilities for who we could draft also.

    Willy can rebound, and specifically is a good defensive rebounder, which in my book counts as “defense” in its own right. He’s not the fleetest of foot, but he’s not a brutal defensive player.

    If anyone is on Instagram, check out KP’s account. He is looking buff in some press shots in Latvia. Looks like the boxing is paying off.

    Reddick’s a free agent

    That’s not an issue if they do a sign and trade. That’s been the scenario discussed that had Reddick coming to NY as part of a Melo deal to begin with. No one has been in favor of it (myself included) because Reddick is older, doesn’t fit the time line with the younger players, and he’ll probably get a bit overpaid. However, if we land Rubio as part it, it makes more sense for us. Then it becomes Rubio for Melo (plus filler moving around). I’ll sign off on that. If Minny is dead set against Reddick but OK with Lee, then it could be viewed Rubio for Melo and Reddick for Lee (plus fillers). Lee wasn’t such a great defender that I’m going to be that upset about that swap because Lee is older also, especially given that if we trade Melo we need more scoring anyway. The details have to be worked out, but Minny needs outside shooting, they want to trade Rubio, we want to move Melo, and we are interested in Rubio. There’s a deal here if the filler is done correctly.

    I think that it’s possible that Collins is selected before we even pick, which would free up somebody for us
    like Isaac. I would consider taking him as long as we get the other Frank. Mason could be a godsend for us but will he be available at pick 44? Draftexpress and Tankathon both have him going after we pick in the late 40s. He has elite shooting skills, a 41″ vertical leap, strength and motor, and is the same size as most of the great PGs in the league like CP3, Conley and Lillard. He’s 23 so he may drop to us.

    Minny will not spend 13/15 million for LaVine’s backup.

    Forget Rubio, we have nothing to offer.

    a situation where i can see us grabbing rubio… is if we decide to trade down with say portland for all of their first rd picks and we decide to trade #20 and #26 for rubio…. and keep pick #15 and presumably take justin jackson.. altho i would probably want anunoby in that scenario….

    i might be able to live with that depending on what was on the board at #8….

    The idea of trading 1 pick for 3 is certainly intriguing., but I still think that Phil and Clarence could pull a rabbit out of the hat at #8.

    What are the PG prospects like for next year? In the scenario that we are able to trade for Rubio via any picks we could potentially score off Portland; is Rubio (a finished product) for a few years any better than a potential long term PG prospect in this draft? Considering the elite PG talent is likely to be gone by 8, I personally don’t mind that scenario @53. Rubio is a nice stop gap if we are going to be lottery bound next year.

    A lot of SG and wings in the next draft, not many great PGs–2 intriguing prospects at most and ones that don’t really speak to me at least.

    Luka Doncic is a point guard (or he will be in our offense). Trevon Duval is highly touted but I have no faith in his film. Shamorie Ponds just had a big freshman year and if he puts on some weight he’ll make a team very happy.

    Doncic plays SG in Europe I’m pretty sure

    Collin Sexton looks alright but he’s a bit off the rails play style wise I’m not impressed by the PG crop.

    I think there’s a reasonably good chance Willy has a better career than Porzingis, so I wouldn’t trade Willy for any package I for which I wouldn’t trade Porzingis.

    Willy is young, cheap, and productive. He is quite literally the least of our problems. Keep him.

    Forget Rubio, we have nothing to offer.

    We do have stuff to offer. Once Rose’s contract comes off the books, we have cap room and can accept Rubio without matching his salary in return. I already proposed trading Kuz and a second round pick for him, but if Philly wants outside shooting we could trade them Holiday instead. It just depends on how much Minnesota wants Rubio gone. Since they considered trading him for an expiring contract (Rose), I think something could be worked out.

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