Knicks Morning News (2019.06.18)

  • [NYPost] Knicks can’t go wrong with future All-Stars Ja Morant or RJ Barret
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 8:23:42 PM)

    The Knicks may get themselves a potential All-Star on Thursday just by waiting for Memphis to select. According to Ryan Blake, draft consultant to the NBA, the Knicks can’t go wrong with the third pick in the draft at Barclays Center. At No. 2, Memphis will take either Murray State point guard Ja Morant —…

  • [NYPost] Pelicans’ new draft plan could allow Ja Morant to fall to Knicks
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 7:33:09 PM)

    The Pelicans could still have a hand in the Knicks’ future. Following the Anthony Davis trade with the Lakers, New Orleans holds the fourth pick in Thursday’s draft and is exploring all sorts of options. According to an NBA source, New Orleans has explored moving back to gain more assets and also had internal talks…

  • [SNY Knicks] Knicks’ updated odds to land Kevin Durant in free agency
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 5:54:09 PM)

    A week after they were favored to land Kevin Durant, the Knicks are now considered co-favorites with the Golden State Warriors.

  • [SNY Knicks] WATCH: The bottom 5 Knicks lottery picks in the NBA Draft
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 7:05:48 PM)

    The Knicks traded Jordan Hill as a rookie after drafting him eighth overall in 2009. But there have been other busts in franchise history.

  • [SNY Knicks] Sources: Westchester Knicks coach Mike Miller to join David Fizdale’s staff
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 10:26:22 PM)

    Barring an unforeseen change, Westchester Knicks G League coach Mike Miller is expected to join David Fizdale’s staff next season, per SNY sources.

  • [SNY Knicks] Why Knicks draft target RJ Barrett is built to succeed in New York
    (Monday, June 17, 2019 9:30:33 AM)

    RJ Barrett is expected to be selected by the Knicks with the No. 3 pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday, and those close to him believe he is the perfect fit for New York.

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    Mike Kurylo

    Mike Kurylo is the founder and editor of KnickerBlogger.net. His book on the 2012 Knicks, "We’ll Always Have Linsanity," is on sale now. Follow him on twitter (@KnickerBlogger).

    171 thoughts to “Knicks Morning News (2019.06.18)”

    1. No KP. No Zion. No Ja. No AD. No healthy KD. The hope against hope is that Kawhi and Kyrie want to team up on Knicks. If and when we strike out, I could have been more optimistic if we had Ja, Mitch and Mikal but no. Mitch is lone Knick player/pick who rates to be above average at the moment. Maybe a silver lining is that we still have Robinson and he could focus on developing his game on offense which wouldn’t have happened if Knicks were in win now mode.

      What’s depressing is Knick interest in Randle. The focus should be on signing Vonleh and Kornet to value contracts instead of spending 15m+ on Randle. Both of them are younger than Randle and had higher RPMs last season. Noah shot more or less the same from 3 as Randle. The development staff should work to make his shooting motion more consistent (sometimes nice motion and sometimes flat). He’d be an excellent PF (better than Randle) if he could shoot 35%+ from 3.

      Russell is high risk/high reward. I think I would first look if Griffin has any interest in trading Lonzo. The AD trade is scheduled to go through on July 6 so there may be time. Maybe offer Mavs protected pick and the 2 Charlotte picks. I’d even offer Knox and Mavs protected pick but no DSJ. The hope is one of Lonzo or DSJ shows significant improvement in Year 3. That imo is less risky than paying Russell 27m.

    2. I’d be pretty happy with the offseason if we just rented the cap space for picks. I still think the KP deal was a great one. I was never worried about Zion; he was always a fantasy and I was tired of hearing about him. We’ve got the #3 pick, 6 more first rounders in the next 4 drafts, Mitch, and the cap space to add another 2-3 first rounders with bad contracts. This team can position itself really, really well with the right moves in the next few months.

    3. T-Wolves aggressively shopping Wiggins’ apparently.

      Oh no. Please don’t tell me Wiggins is available and we have cap space. I will not be able to sleep until the off-season is over and he is not a Knick.

      And please, don’t pretend Mills & Perry wouldn’t love that guys. Maybe Perry knows better but his selection of Knox and trades for Smith and Mudiay make me doubt that.

      We might *give up* assets to get Wiggins.

    4. @3 sure, and right after that, Dolan is going to fire Perry and hire Phil and Isiah.

      You’re pretty freakin’ damaged, Hubert. Seek help now!

    5. Wiggins has always been way up there on the list of future Knicks. He ticks all the boxes….

    6. If the Knicks acquire Wiggins, I’ll take a three year sabbatical from following the team.

    7. Wiggins has always been way up there on the list of future Knicks. He ticks all the boxes….

      I’ll send you the number of my therapist as soon as I’m sorted ;)

    8. Nice promotion for Mike Miller. Given how good our G-league team has been at developing guards in particular, this seems to be a positive move.

      Based on what I’ve seen from Perry, I would highly highly highly doubt he is dumb enough to take on Wiggins at all much less give assets for him.

    9. Now Julius Randle, there’s a scary yet actually realistic proposition. Why the heck would we want him? That would be a return to dancing the Knicks Shuffle…one step forward, two steps back, trip and bang your head on the curb, repeat for twenty years…

    10. is julius randle all that bad? he’s not great but he’s definitely not a bad player…. and he’s young! and he probably signs for much less than the max at that…. depending on the money involved… and i think the money will probably line up in the 1x mm per year range…. i don’t think randle is all that bad… he’s young!

      this mentality of chasing rings has led everyone on this board to throw out every non-perfect player out there…. don’t let perfect get in the way of good…. and there aren’t many things better than signing a good young player…

    11. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them! says:

      @11 Randle has some good skills, but he’s not a good defender. He will most likely be a liability on that end.

      The Knicks say they are going to emphasize defense this year (never heard that one before) lol

      If they wind up with a lineup of Russell, Randle, and Knox, then Mitchell Robinson should either ask for a trade or have a clause written into his contract for frequent flier miles because he might break the all time record for block attempts helping those guys out.

      If they are serious about defense, assuming they don’t get 2 stars, they should resign Vonleh, keep working with Frank and Dotson, and try to add other 3&D or defense first role players. They should also at least consider trading down for Culver (though it may be too risky to pass on Barrett).

    12. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them! says:

      Wiggins?

      lmao

      If they make a move for Wiggins, we better be getting back 5 1st rounders and a lot of Xanax.

    13. Now Julius Randle, there’s a scary yet actually realistic proposition. Why the heck would we want him? That would be a return to dancing the Knicks Shuffle…one step forward, two steps back, trip and bang your head on the curb, repeat for twenty years…

      Yep. There is no way Randle is signing for less than double digits (likely $15-17 million per) as there are just too many teams with cap space that could use him. A Randle signing is basically Phil 2.0 – “We have the cap space, so we have to spend it on free agents, right?” Which is rightfully our biggest worry.

      Hopefully they’re not actually serious about it.

    14. They’re not trading fir Wiggins.
      No way.
      That goes against everything they’ve said they want to do.

    15. They’re not trading fir Wiggins.
      No way.
      That goes against everything they’ve said they want to do.

      He’s just so bad that I doubt it, too, but I don’t think he really goes against anything they have said. Heck, he still has a rep as a defensive player, ya know?

    16. Everybody knows Wiggins contract is a killer.

      Are we gonna approach Washington for Wall ? Come on

    17. I enjoyed this article on the unfairness of the lack of choice for the NBA’s labor

      One should generally refrain from using words like “unfairness” when talking about people getting paid ridiculous amounts of money to play a children’s game that has no intrinsic value.

      The NBA does not exist for the benefit of Zion Williamson. The NBA exists to make money for the people who pay Zion Williamson. They make that money by entertaining the public. The interests of Zion Williamson come in third.

      Which isn’t to say the league is run perfectly or that players shouldn’t look out for their own interests first, but there’s something unhealthy in looking at someone who is going to become rich and famous doing something they love and fretting because they don’t get absolutely everything they want.

      Mike

    18. I’m D’Angelo Russell-skeptic but I don’t hate the idea.

      I truly despise the Julius Randle idea. He’s got some legitimate skills and could still be improving, but he’s a deeply flawed player who’s cut from an archetype that teams are shying away from (or at least shying away from at any price above, say, ~$7M AAV). I mean, his game isn’t all that different from Willy Hernangomez’, and despite the varying perspectives on him no one would want to pay Willy a significant amount of money.

      Maybe his market collapses and we can get him on a deal that’s movable at any time, in which case I still don’t think it’s a very intriguing idea but sure go ahead I guess. Under any other circumstances it would be a very Phil-esque signing.

    19. I don’t hate Randle, he is a very productive player, but like JK47 said, he’s the type of guy who gives you production in a way you can probably find elsewhere for a lot less money. Montrezl Harrell does about the same as him and got paid a lot less by the Clippers for example.

      It wouldn’t be a disaster as he is young and good, which would be a welcome change of pace for us, but still not a guy I want to pay more than 10-12 million a year.

      On Wiggins, thankfully I think his reputation has suffered so much this year that they won’t pursue him at all. He’s not only terrible, but has been exposed as a player who doesn’t care at all about the game and is totally unwilling to work on his game. That’s the key part, as Perry and Mills have always stated they want guys to be part of a winning culture blah blah blah.

    20. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them! says:

      If you could convince me that Randle’s 3p% last year wasn’t a fluke and that he can learn how to play defense, I would sign him in a minute. He’s good at pretty much everything else.

      However, he’s not a good fit next to Robinson. And when you are a liability on defense it pretty much negates almost everything else you do well these days. Modern offenses target and pummel weak defenders. But he’s going to pile up impressive looking numbers like Kanter. Vonleh is way more limited on offense, but he defends and if he can keep improving his 3 over time he fits perfectly. I’d way rather bring back Vonleh and he’ll be a LOT cheaper.

    21. I don’t know when this bulletproof front office you guys are speaking of took over. Y’all think the same people who gave Hardaway a $76mm deal with a trade kicker, traded a 2nd round pick for Mudiay, and used the 9th pick of Kevin Knox are too sensible to acquire a former #1 pick with a 19.4 ppg average?

      I want to see us get through this offseason before I act like this team is suddenly guaranteed to have enough good sense to not make obvious mistakes.

    22. Randle is a Kanteresque big. He’s legitimately productive on offense, but some significant portion of that is given away because he’s a bad defensive player. He would probably make the Knicks better, but he’s also probably going to be seriously overpaid given how cheaply you can get decent bigs in the NBA right now. Someone compared him to Vonleh yesterday, and while they’re not the same style of player if you can get Noah Vonleh for a low price he’ll give you pretty much the production you’re going to get out of Randle. Maybe a you win another game or two if you have Julius, but given the current state of the Knicks roster who cares about two wins.

    23. He’s not only terrible, but has been exposed as a player who doesn’t care at all about the game and is totally unwilling to work on his game. That’s the key part, as Perry and Mills have always stated they want guys to be part of a winning culture blah blah blah.

      Now this is a good point, and will help me sleep better this month.

    24. There’s not much of a reason to sign Randle when we already have Vonleh and Kornet, two players who equal his production at a fraction of the cost and who aren’t absolutely brutal defensively.

    25. One should generally refrain from using words like “unfairness” when talking about people getting paid ridiculous amounts of money to play a children’s game that has no intrinsic value.

      What the fuck do you mean “no intrinsic value?” The NBA is a multi-billion dollar corporation. People pay a lot of money to go to NBA games and consume NBA content in other ways. Also, do you have a specific wage cutoff at which point you believe workers lose basic labor rights? To what other fields do you apply this cutoff?

      The NBA does not exist for the benefit of Zion Williamson. The NBA exists to make money for the people who pay Zion Williamson. They make that money by entertaining the public. The interests of Zion Williamson come in third.

      Who is the “they” here who makes that money by entertaining the public? Does James Dolan “entertain the public?” Fuck no, none of this would be possible without the NBA’s actual workforce and it’s totally reasonable that said workforce wants more rights and/or higher pay because of that basic, undeniable reality.

      Which isn’t to say the league is run perfectly or that players shouldn’t look out for their own interests first, but there’s something unhealthy in looking at someone who is going to become rich and famous doing something they love and fretting because they don’t get absolutely everything they want.

      In 2011 the NBA owners collectively stopped the entire league because they thought players had too many rights. Was that not a good example of “retting because they don’t get absolutely everything they want,” despite being much more handsomely compensated than literally any player, ever?

    26. There are some rumors apparently that the Pelicans want to trade for #2 to take Barett.

    27. @26 I’m with the owners on this one. If the players are bent out of shape about working conditions in the NBA, they can collectively bargain for better conditions, or form their own league with player ownership, or play in another league. Until then, they are some hybrid of employee/independent contractor with no rights beyond the contract they sign, the collective bargaining agreement and non-NBA specific legal protections.

    28. What the fuck do you mean “no intrinsic value?”

      He absolutely does not know what intrinsic value means.

      There’s always someone with that take, though. I’m of the opinion that labor is labor. You shouldn’t have less rights bc you get paid a lot for your labor.

      Also, Mike, you miss the part where the fans suffer for this. You had the fans ranked second in that equation. How was it good for NBA fans to see the first 7 years of Anthony Davis’s career squandered by the Pelicans? How were we served by being deprived of Chris Paul playoff runs during most of his athletic prime? What good has come from all the talent that got stymied in terrible organizations?

      Arranging optimal marriages between players and teams is about more than getting the player what he wants. It’s about optimizing the league as a whole, which would make more money for the owners, which you said was the most important goal.

      And for the record, considering all of these teams are subsidized by taxpayers in many different ways, I disagree that they can exist primarily to make the most money for themselves.

    29. There are some rumors apparently that the Pelicans want to trade for #2 to take Barett.

      Sweet Jesus…. one time dealer!

      I am getting ready for some 360 degree Linda Blair head spinning and crying here that, “The Knicks got screwed again Barrett will be a first ballot HOF’er” :-)

      Would any of those that follow college hoops closely be mad we got forced to accept Ja Morant?

      I hell…. I’d swap them 3 for 4 with a nice tack on. If Memphis wants Barrett for themselves, so be it, we’ll be fine with Morant at 3. If Memphis takes Morant and NO wants to pair Barrett with Zion to make him happy, give me a #1 to move down and then do a Belicheck and offer the #4 to Atlanta or whomever wants Culver or Hunter or Garland badly enough.

      Options options options……

    30. There are some rumors apparently that the Pelicans want to trade for #2 to take Barett.

      If I were the Pels, I’d use 4th pick to take Bol Bol. NO is at the stage where they could limit his minutes in the first couple of years to help stave off health issues. He could space the floor for Zion to operate in the paint and has more potential than the other slugs in this draft.

      But if Memphis chooses Ja and the Pels want RJ, I’d explore some trades. Not quite sure what Griffin would do since we don’t know how much he values Lonzo and Ingram. I think I’d offer the 3rd pick, Mavs protected pick, and 2 Charlotte picks for Lonzo and Ingram. There’s just a heap of meh out there after Zion and Ja. This roster looks fine to me and would also allow us to take some bad contracts in exchange for picks.

      1: Lonzo/DSJ/Kadeem
      2: Dotson/Trier/Frank
      3: Ingram/Knox/Frank
      4: Vonleh/Kornet
      5: Mitch/Kornet

    31. Does James Dolan “entertain the public?” Fuck no,

      What, you don’t like his song about Harvey Weinstein? How about the Trayvon Martin jam?

    32. God, just when I was talking myself into RJ…

      I think there are a lot of whispers about Ja slipping because of the knee “procedure” right now. One always has to wonder about knees and explosive guards (see: Livingston, Shaun), but if it really is minor, I think most people here would be elated to get Ja. It’s just hard to know what the deal is with his knee this close to the draft, and it wouldn’t shock me if Memphis got spooked and either picked RJ or pulled a trade.

      Regarding a move from 3 to 4, I don’t really recommend it, but if the Pels want RJ bad enough to give us #4 and their 2020 1st to get him, that would be an incredibly prudent move that is so un-Knicksy, I’d have to question if Armageddon was soon approaching.

    33. Stratomatic "I'm tired of the Knicks paying lip service to DEFENSE. Get defenders & two-way players. Then play them! says:

      In the battle between ownership and labor, keep in mind that ownership puts up the capital to own and operate the businesses that employ labor. They could just as easily invest in bonds or any number of other businesses (actively or passively) and earn a market rate of return along with other pleasures.

      So before you can claim that labor is worth more, you have to ensure that ownership is getting an adequate risk adjusted return on the capital invested relative to other alternatives.

      When I say “return”, I am not talking about appreciation of the assets. I’m am talking about earnings and free cash flow. Earnings and free cash flow are what drive intrinsic value. That someone might be willing to pay more for your business at any given point in time could just as easily mean people are irrationally exuberant and not that it’s actually worth a lot more on an intrinsic level.

      I’ve never seen the books of an NBA team. I have no clue how much they actually make. Most likely they generate more cash than they report as earnings due to quirky accounting rules, but I am certain when people talk about appreciation of the businesses that’s not what you should looking at. I am also certain you CAN’T know what is fair unless you fully understand all the numbers and none of us does.

    34. I enjoyed this article on the unfairness of the lack of choice for the NBA’s labor:

      Not only does NBA labor have tons of choice, they actually collectively bargained for this current arrangement. The rookies have little choice, because they were shafted to get better deals for the vets. The Derek Fishers of the world share at least as much blame as the Dolans/Cubans.

      Also, do you have a specific wage cutoff at which point you believe workers lose basic labor rights?

      Basic labor rights? NBA players have better working conditions than just about anyone in the world. They are the privileged of the privileged. They agreed to give up location choice in the early stages of their careers for other benefits like guaranteed contracts, pensions, higher pay, etc. Because of one instance where their working conditions are lesser does not equate to lacking basic labor rights.

      People like to criticize the process. What I want to know is what fairer governance structure they propose? Any organization is going to have different factions that don’t get exactly what they want. Do you want more rookie reps negotiating for the union? Propose a way to reach fairer outcomes instead of saying NBA owners should just give up all bargaining power.

      Someone last week made the ridiculous comparison to Get Out. It’s absurd because not only are NBA conditions better than 99.999% of all humanity’s, but they’re better than other sports. Baseball has far worse working conditions: any player drafted can be held in the minor leagues for 5-6 years at less than the average US college graduate’s pay, often in crappy rural towns with long-distance buses to games. Then once in MLB the team has another 6 years of control, the first three at minimum salary.

      If you are comparing likely future billionaire Zion having to spend 50-100 nights a year in NO to slavery / murder, surely you are going unhinged by the white MLB players who are treated far worse?

    35. I think I’d offer the 3rd pick, Mavs protected pick, and 2 Charlotte picks for Lonzo and Ingram.

      WTF???

      Lonzo Ball has a name and little else. He shoots 41% over 119 NBA free throws if that is humanly possible with a completely broken shot and Frankishly from 3. He generally sucks overall

      at NBA basketball on the few occasions he shows up. Ingram is slightly better but still a well below average NBA player and has real health issues.

      All you really need to know is Kuzma was deemed a far better player than these two.

      Ingram is looking for a payday and Ball is a year away from that with the extra side show dad brings. No thanks….

      https://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.fcgi?request=1&sum=1&player_id1_hint=Lonzo+Ball&player_id1_select=Lonzo+Ball&player_id1=balllo01&player_id2_hint=Frank+Ntilikina&player_id2_select=Frank+Ntilikina&player_id2=ntilila01&idx=players

    36. If New Orleans really likes RJ we should swap the 3/4 with them for like any future asset. RJ isn’t a terrible prospect but he’s not clearly better than a bunch of guys in this draft.

    37. In the battle between ownership and labor, keep in mind that ownership puts up the capital to own and operate the businesses that employ labor.

      The two things the owners need most is arenas and broadcasting infrastructure, both of which is provided them by taxpayers and municipalities.

      They could just as easily invest in bonds or any number of other businesses (actively or passively) and earn a market rate of return along with other pleasures.

      Absurd. American sports leagues are cartels that print money for the people who own them. They’re one of the best investments in the world. No man with a brain and half a billion dollars would look consider owning ETFs over an NBA team.

      I am also certain you CAN’T know what is fair unless you fully understand all the numbers and none of us does.

      We know exactly what percent of BRI the owners keep. And what number do we need to know about whether choice is fair, anyway?

    38. Givony throwing a monkey wrench into things:

      Darius Garland will conduct a last-minute workout in Tarrytown with the New York Knicks tomorrow, a source told ESPN. Garland is in serious consideration for the No. 3 pick. Minnesota, Boston, Chicago are teams looking at potentially trading up to No. 4 with Garland in mind.

    39. Basic labor rights? NBA players have better working conditions than just about anyone in the world. They are the privileged of the privileged. They agreed to give up location choice in the early stages of their careers for other benefits like guaranteed contracts, pensions, higher pay, etc. Because of one instance where their working conditions are lesser does not equate to lacking basic labor rights

      Since you danced around the question, I’ll ask again; do you think there is a wage cutoff for the ability to choose where you work, negotiate your pay beyond somewhat narrow parameters, seek other employment in your field if you’re unsatisfied with your current employer, etc.? What’s the cutoff?

      Obviously, NBA players have it much better than most wage workers. That doesn’t mean we can’t talk about deficiencies in their rights on a board dedicated to…the NBA.

      People like to criticize the process. What I want to know is what fairer governance structure they propose? Any organization is going to have different factions that don’t get exactly what they want. Do you want more rookie reps negotiating for the union? Propose a way to reach fairer outcomes instead of saying NBA owners should just give up all bargaining power.

      Is there any other context in which you’d say forcing capital to actually negotiate with their workforce is tantamount to them “giving up all their bargaining power?” That’s ridiculous.

      If you are comparing likely future billionaire Zion having to spend 50-100 nights a year in NO to slavery / murder, surely you are going unhinged by the white MLB players who are treated far worse?

      Very odd that you specified white MLB players here, especially given that the international (i.e. often non-white) signing market is predatory in many ways, but yes I am a huge critic of MLB’s god awful labor practices.

    40. Apparently we’re bringing Garland in for a workout last minute. Seems like the kind of kid our front office would like.

    41. The two things the owners need most is arenas and broadcasting infrastructure, both of which is provided them by taxpayers and municipalities.

      Any business, from a mom and pop deli on the corner to Amazon, tries to extract any benefit it can from local, state and federal government. Taxpayers are willing to ante up to keep teams in their city, along with the many economic benefits that go along with having a major sports franchise in town. And not all arenas are financed solely by taxpayers.

      Absurd. American sports leagues are cartels that print money for the people who own them.

      Actually, this point is absurd. These associations neither fit the definition of “cartel” nor do they have guaranteed unlimited income, as you suggest. Nearly all franchise owners made their money in other fields, and many are heavily leveraged via venture capital. The “association” benefits all stakeholders, e.g. by protecting players from getting stiffed if a team goes under, as many would if it weren’t for revenue sharing.

      And again, there are choices. Zion can form his own team and go barnstorming.

    42. Garland is a guy you have to at least evaluate. I don’t think there’s enough information on him to justify going 3rd, but he is one of my favorite players in the lottery based on what I’ve read from scouts (which is admittedly not terra firma).

      I like the player Garland projects to be (Steph Curry lite) more than the player Morant projects to be (a Westbrook clone). Morant is a much better bet to reach his projection, though.

    43. WTF???Lonzo Ball has a name and little else. He shoots 41% over 119 NBA free throws if that is humanly possible with a completely broken shot and Frankishly from 3. He generally sucks overall

      Lonzo – 1.2 bpm and 2.6 vorp in NBA. He shot 41% from 3 and 67% FT% in college. I suspect the pressure of playing for the Lakers on a Bron team expected to make the playoffs plus his father’s blabbering making it worse affected his performance. This season on the Knicks the expectations won’t be so lofty and his offensive performance should improve.

      Ingram played well the last 3 months but there’s his whole history and now health concerns.

      I’m not at all high on RJ. He’s been terrible shooter from 3, at the FT line, and on his jumpers from 2. He doesn’t have the burst to get separation 1 on 1 and opponents will just go under the pick in PnR. He’s a below average defender.

      I look at it this way: which is more likely to produce an above average starter: RJ and the Mavs protected pick or Lonzo and Ingram. I think it’s the latter.

    44. More Givony:

      Source: The Atlanta Hawks have been aggressive exploring trades packaging the No. 8 and 10 picks to move up in the draft. Their offer to the Knicks for the No. 3 pick was apparently rebuffed. The Pelicans are considering the possibility of trading the No. 4 pick for 8+10.

      Given the alleged top-heaviness of this draft, I wouldn’t trade 3 for 8 & 10. If we’re trading that pick, it should either be for a player or potentially better draft assets down the road.

    45. No man with a brain and half a billion dollars would look consider owning ETFs over an NBA team.

      The Golden State Warriors franchise has increased in value 367% in the last five years. Clippers, 282%. Sixers, Bucks and Raptors — 252%, 233%, 222% respectively. The return on a winning basketball team is simply enormous for these franchisees.

      The worst 1-year gainer was the Cavs at -2% last year, for which I might shed a tear for Dan Gilbert, were it not for the fact that he has turned a $375M investment into $1.3B 14 years later. That’s approximately 9.5% annualized over 14 years, to say nothing of the “prestige” capital that he’s gotten from being the owner of LeBron’s hometown club. Could he have beaten that with ETFs? Maybe. The Spurs’ owners have seen 14% yearly growth over 23 years. Lakers, ~14% as well since it was restructured in 1998. Looking through the rest of the Forbes numbers, I see a pretty consistent return around the low double digits, provided you didn’t buy a team after the NBA signed that crazy TV deal.

      That’s a tremendously stable return for that amount of money, not to mention the immense influence most owners hold in their municipalities.

    46. Working out Garland is basic due diligence in the event of a trade down, and I find him somewhat intriguing (almost entirely via the eye test since he played 4 games), but I’d be apoplectic with him at #3. RJ Barrett is a weird prospect with plenty of flaws, but he’s an objectively good prospect (likely in the 6-8 range in better drafts) whereas Garland is a total enigma. If you’re taking on that risk it can’t be at #3.

      I’d need an extra first from a different draft from the Hawks to move forward. In most drafts 3 for 8 and 10 would represent good value, but in this one you’re dealing with some pretty depressing names in the late lottery range.

    47. Given the alleged top-heaviness of this draft, I wouldn’t trade 3 for 8 & 10. If we’re trading that pick, it should either be for a player or potentially better draft assets down the road.

      What about #8 Clarke and #10 Bol? You get the stretch big to pair with Mitch and Clarke can be your interior wing at 6’8″. Sign a good PG and ship Knox to Siberia. The East is big, man!

    48. Please oh please no Randle (Kanter with more range on his jumper?) or Ingram trade (WTF?).

      If the Knicks stay at three, Barrett is the pick. But, sure, look at any trade that brings back an additional first rounder.

      Forget Randle. Setting aside his lack of D (sick of that), Knox needs to play there. They should be beefing up Knox and have him shoot lots of threes in an attempt to become a decent stretch four. I’m not optimistic, but he needs to play at the four this year. RJB, Trier, and Frank at the two and three.

      And as some earlier said, try to bring back Vonleh and Kornet inexpensively as rotation guys/backups at the four and five. In fact, I’d try to lock up both of those guys on 3-4 year inexpensive deals, if possible.

    49. And Jowles, that’s just capital appreciation, which really is the least important aspect since so few owners ever sell. The revenue and the municipality pillaging is what makes ownership so attractive.

      ABK hasn’t said it, per se, but he is dancing around the perfect rebuttal: this is ultimately on the players for not using their leverage as well as the owners. The owners will cancel a whole season to get what they want. The players aren’t willing to go on strike during the playoffs, or sit out an all star game. So the owners get the system they want.

    50. I wonder if Atlanta would pony up their #1 next year (assuming they still have it, and maybe with top 3 or 4 protection) along with this year’s 8 and 10 to move up to 3? Perhaps not.

    51. I would take the 8 and 10 and draft Coby White and Clarke in a heartbeat.

      The 8 and 10 represents value over the 3 alone according to various assessments of NBA draft pick value. That said, most GMs don’t perceive it that way, and it looks like ATL has the hots for RJ, so the Knicks really should’ve demanded the 8,10 and 17th picks. I think Atlanta would’ve actually taken that, from what I can tell. That would be a coup and a half.

      That said I think the Knicks are pretty silly not to make the 8 and 10 trade–especially in a draft with only two truly guaranteed guys in Ja and Zion (maybe Culver can be a part of this conversation as well). Maybe they come back on the day of and demand an additional pound of flesh, say, a second rounder, to sweeten the pot. That would be clever negotiating–and wishful thinking.

    52. #3 could net better assets than 8,10. But there will be a lot of wheeling and dealing June 20th which coincidentally is my birthday so we have date on our side!

    53. How good will the Hawks be next year?

      Next year’s draft will be much better. For instance, Anthony Edwards projects to be a much better SG prospect than Barrett. I think the Pels and Hawks should both be bad next year, so if we add one of those picks to a Mavs pick (also a bad team in a loaded West) and our own, then the rebuild would be for real. Plus, we could still get the Hawks’ #8 this year.

      But are they ballsy enough to try that?

      #3 pick for #8 pick, #35 pick, and 2020 FRP

    54. Another thing to say:

      Everyone here is overrating Bol Bol. He’s projected to go in the late first, and really can’t be justified in being picked ahead of there imo. He has a navicular fracture in his foot (horrible injury track record for that injury in bigs) and a body type that absolutely can’t put on any weight. And while is block numbers are very good, he is actually maybe the worst defender among bigs in the class–the dude has absolutely no idea how to play any defense whatsoever, and gets by totally on his length. It’s Stoudemire-esque. If he was only hopeless on team d, or only had a navicular fracture in his foot, I’d say he’s a lotto guy. But both together indicate to me that there’s almost zero chance he hits his median outcome. If he recovers from the injury and learns to play literally any defense at all, he’s a multiple all-star. But I don’t wanna be the team making that bet, frankly.

    55. Given the alleged top-heaviness of this draft, I wouldn’t trade 3 for 8 & 10. If we’re trading that pick, it should either be for a player or potentially better draft assets down the road.

      I would jump at the trade on draft night depending on who was available. Draft Clarke at 8 and either Bol, Coby White, or the foreign kid Sekou at 10. Of course, if Atlanta is that interested in moving up then they can also throw in 17 and draft Okeke or a future 1st.

    56. On draft night, if the Knicks and Hawks are still where they are, the Knicks should at least make a call when it comes time to make the #3 pick and see if the Hawks would give up next year’s #1 along with the 8 and 10 to move up. Doesn’t hurt to ask.

      I guess rumors of Cleveland wanting to move up to 3 have vaporized.

    57. In most drafts I would say you have to do that trade, but the player pool at 8/10 in this one is really quite bleak.

      Seeing as how the best players still potentially available are likely Clarke, Hayes, Bol, Washington, and Bitadze and our best young player is a rim running center, it’s even bleaker when you take into account fit (which you probably shouldn’t, but still).

      The only way I’d accept the offer is if we get to pick 10 and Clarke is still on the board and the Hawks took Coby White at #8. Those two guys are worth the #3 pick, but I have my doubts that they’ll both be available (I have a pretty strong feeling White is going to the Bulls at 7).

    58. In most drafts I would say you have to do that trade, but the player pool at 8/10 in this one is really quite bleak.

      My thing is that I feel like everybody after 2 the next 10 or 12 prospects are all at around the same level (except for Reddish and Little who should be drafted in the late 2nd if at all). I’d rather have more shots to get the right guy. Basically, we should treat this year’s draft like the NFL draft because it’s so fucking bad.

    59. Reddish was pretty bad but there’s still some room for optimism about the guy. I still think you get net value if you get Clarke + Reddish or White + Reddish vis a vis Barrett or Culver.

      That said if White were off the board you could do worse than Clarke + Doumbouya, who I think is a little slept on. People either love him or hate him, but I think he’s perfectly cromulent at 10. Goga would be a great pick if we didn’t already have Mitch. Probably the most intelligent thing to do in the event of a trade for 8 and 10–which the Knicks wouldn’t do–is draft Clarke and reach for Okeke/Thybulle/Grant Williams.

    60. I wouldn’t trade 3 for eight and ten, and it’s not a sign that our management is bad that they turned down that offer. We got Knox in that range in a strong draft and Ntilikina in that range in a weaker draft. I’d much rather have a top pick in this draft. It’s also possible that we will get a better offer for number three, so why take this offer now?

    61. @65

      This is not the right way to look at the trade-down scenario. Just because the Knicks screwed the pooch on two particular draft picks in that range doesn’t mean that they’ll get this one wrong, and even if they were likely to get it wrong, it doesn’t mean that it’s not an intelligent play. Over the long-run, you’d get net value even if your team was horrible at drafting.

      Especially in this weak draft, where the guys not named Ja and Zion are unconvincing candidates for perennial all-star-status, I think the trade-down actually makes even more sense.

    62. Re: Ponds, it’s downright insane to me that he isn’t ranked higher in this of all drafts.

      There are plenty of reasonable concerns; he’s small, his AST% doesn’t jump off the page, etc.

      But the dude has shown serious potential (2PT%, STL%, AST/TO) ever since he got to St. John’s and is competing with the likes of Cam Reddish and Nassir Little. I’d probably take him in the late lottery assuming certain guys were already gone.

    63. I stood next to Bol Bol while he was in the boot. Can confirm: there’s no way he’s ever going to “bulk up.” Dude is a stick.

      If the Knicks don’t draft a legitimate franchise player at #3, it’s a mistake to not trade down. The Knicks have four (!!!) positions to fill. They need more picks and more bodies.

    64. I heard Tim Legler on ESPN radio floating the idea that the Knicks are considering Garland at 3 vs taking Barrett. I don’t know enough about garland to comment, thoughts?

      Re Hollis Jefferson, I’d love to pick him up if the price is right – he’d be their best wing immediately. Good defender, high motor, a consistent 3 point shot at being very valuable. With the Knicks “stellar” player development track record that shouldn’t be much of a problem :-\

    65. I say hard no on Garland. The dude really is a legit shooter, but isn’t a PG, like at all–he had a sub 1.0 AST:TO (3.7 ast: 4.3 to per 40 lmao) in his few games at Vandy. Yikes. Could be a decent one-position defender (v good lateral movement), but hasn’t shown much on that end yet (negative DBPM, 1.2 stls per 40). Without the injury, I maybe would’ve pegged him in the late lotto. With the injury, it’s simply too risky for me to pick him in good conscience. People are overweighting his legit shooting and underweighting the fact that he’s really a 6-2 combo guard who can’t playmake and doesn’t play much D.

    66. i think the 8,10 plus their high 2nd might do it. also they have to take any contract we accidentally give mudiay.

      as we’ve discussed, risky reaches with high ceilings make a little more sense with younger draft ages and more expensive rookie scales. but if i was making one i might actually go jontay over bol, crazy as that sounds. i love bigs who can pass and fear those with bad instincts on D. speaking of the barbell draft strategy, grant williams should have some extra value as one of the guys most likely to add value to a good team during most or all of his control years. he seems like pj tucker at least, and maybe more?

    67. you shouldn’t trade down in this draft…. yea someone like coby white might still be there but he might not… and if he’s not you might be picking between reddish and some other scrub… and i have no confidence that the knicks would pick the right guys there anyway….

      i’m pretty sure the knicks rejected it because they have no idea who anyone else is besides barrett, morant, reddish and now garland…

    68. Silky,

      I’m not looking at it that way. I don’t think the Knicks screwed up with those picks. I think they are an OK drafting team that drafted the normal quality of player you expect in the 8 to 10 range. Of course, neither player performed at the hoped for level so far, but that happens to a lot of players in that range. DSJ was also drafted in that range and he’s not exciting anyone either. I expect they will get similarly promising players if they draft at 8 and 10 this year, because that is what teams typically get drafting in that range. I don’t want two un exciting players instead one possibly really good player.

    69. @71

      Co-signed on Jontay, who I’d rank in my top 10 if he were healthier. He looks pretty terrific, but probably will never jump. Like a family-dollar version of Jokic.

      @72

      You do the trade conditional on the certain guys being there, surely. You don’t just trade down blind.

    70. garland’s an ok pick… but not in the top 5…

      i just don’t value small guys who can shoot… and garland’s not a pg… at all… on top of that he missed significant time with a serious knee issue….

      he is the type of guy that could wow in a workout by making all his 3pt shots or something….

      i felt very comfortable in this draft knowing that there’s no possible way we could screw it up… but if we pick garland… we will be…

    71. I’d guess the Knicks don’t want to do any pre-draft trade on the odd chance that Memphis decides to pass on Morant. However, once on the clock….

      If Atlanta would offer all three of their first rounders, that would be hard to pass up.

    72. Next year’s draft will be much better. For instance, Anthony Edwards projects to be a much better SG prospect than Barrett.

      A lot of these guys seem amazing as prep players until they start playing in college and their flaws are exposed. RJ was considered to be an elite blue chip prospect too, until he suited up for Duke and it started to become kind of obvious that his status was overinflated. So I don’t think you can really say that Anthony Edwards “projects to be a much better SG prospect than Barrett” until you get some college freshman data on him.

    73. I’d rather trade the #3 pick straight up for Lonzo versus selecting RJ or taking the #8 and #10 from Hawks. Neptune’s off his rocker but how about the rest of you? Lonzo’s stats:
      – BPM 2017-18 = +1.7 and 2018-19 = +.5
      – PIPM 2017-18 = +1.5 and 2018-19 = +.5
      – Raw plus/minus 2017-18 = +1.2 and 2018-19 = +1.3
      – RPM: 2017-18 = +1.1 and 2018-19 = -.32

      Those are decent metrics for his position which has a long learning curve and we are desperate need of some hope at this position. I don’t think he got worse as a player in his 2nd year; I attribute the deterioration to his role on the Bron-centered Lakers and the carnival environment. Maybe Pels are committed to Jrue and do covet RJ. If so, let’s make this happen Perry.

    74. From a negotiating standpoint, it’s good to keep teams guessing as to who you are going to pick. You never know who is in love with who out there.

    75. Wait, the NBA draft is in two days!?

      We’ve spent the entire year waiting and now everything is happening so fast.

    76. Re: these posts above:

      He’s just so bad that I doubt it, too, but I don’t think he really goes against anything they have said. Heck, he still has a rep as a defensive player, ya know?

      I don’t know when this bulletproof front office you guys are speaking of took over. Y’all think the same people who gave Hardaway a $76mm deal with a trade kicker, traded a 2nd round pick for Mudiay, and used the 9th pick of Kevin Knox are too sensible to acquire a former #1 pick with a 19.4 ppg average?

      I want to see us get through this offseason before I act like this team is suddenly guaranteed to have enough good sense to not make obvious mistakes.

      the Mills + Perry FO (as opposed to the Mills by himself FO) definitely has a type – athletic upside and especially if they are distressed assets. That’s why these “second draft” type guys are who we’ve been picking up. Wiggins is very athletic but is definitely NOT a distressed asset. I can’t for even a second believe that they would use their hard-earned cap space on Andrew Wiggins unless we got a bigger deal in return than the Lakers gave for Anthony Davis.

      Re: the THJ contract – that was Mills. Not Perry.

      Re: Mudiay – not a good use of a 2nd round pick, but we’re talking a 2nd round pick here, not a $30MM/year contract x 4 years.

      Re Knox – the jury is still out on him. Not a great start obviously but let’s see how it goes before we say it was evidence of the ineptitude of a front office.

    77. If Lonzo’s knee checks out, I don’t think it’d be crazy to trade #3 for him.
      He can pass and defend at an elite level already, and not in a “Frank Ntilikina not measurably great at passing and defending but just trust us” but in a way that results in 7 rebounds 7 assists and ~2 steals per 36 and a top 8 defensive RPM (for PGs) his first two years. And everyone tells me that shooting can be taught.

    78. I’m not feeling trading #3 for #8 & #10, and absolutely not for Ingram and Ball, who I view at least as depressed assets. I understand the legit concerns about RJ, but think enough folks out there view him as a potential star to include him when folks say, “this is a top-heavy draft”.

      Perhaps Culver and, say, Garland, end up just as good of pros as RJ. But the illusion, the narrative is that they’re part of the “drop-off” from the top three. I’m fine with the Knicks drafting RJ, but if they do trade #3, I want them to cash in intelligently and use said narrative to their advantage.

      Of course, if Memphis does something other than draft Morant at #2, you pick him at #3 and head for the hills smiling.

    79. I say hard no on Garland. The dude really is a legit shooter, but isn’t a PG, like at all–he had a sub 1.0 AST:TO (3.7 ast: 4.3 to per 40 lmao) in his few games at Vandy. Yikes. Could be a decent one-position defender (v good lateral movement), but hasn’t shown much on that end yet (negative DBPM, 1.2 stls per 40).

      I’m #NeverGarland at #3, but his statistical profile is derived from all of 4 games. I’m not sure how useful it is. I’m not going to say it’s useless because all game data can tell you something, but I’d likely weigh his EYBL numbers and scouting reports more heavily.

    80. Atlanta has 2 first next years…..theirs, plus Cle, which is top 10 protected, in which case it would become 2 2nd round picks. I don’t want that asset, and I don’t see them throwing their 1st in next year. I would wait until we are on the clock and see; but I don’t want a bunch of 2nd round picks unless we can do something else with them.

    81. I would refrain from trading down before the draft simply because of the small chance Memphis chooses Barrett or the Pelicans or Hawks trade with them for him. I think Morant is definitely worth it and should be the pick instantly if that happens. If Morant goes to Memphis, then I would want the 8th, 10th and something else, either a high second or a future conditional pick, then it is a good trade.

      Atlanta’s GM reportedly has said he doesn’t want to add 4 or 5 more rookies to his team, so I truly believe they’ll be offering stuff to move up, and Barrett is the only guy they could be looking for as they have no reason at all to pursue Morant with Trae Young. The Knicks could end up with a very good deal if everything goes well.

    82. I would definitely wait to see if Ja drops to us and would most likely take Barrett at #3. But a high, unprotected draft pick in 2020 and a few picks in this draft would probably change my mind. And if they don’t find trade partners, we could probably just buy a late first/early second from a team like Atlanta or Boston, who have too many picks to handle right now.

    83. I definitely wouldn’t make the trade before the draft. Wait and see if Morant is there at three, if not pick Barrett and if there are three players still on the board you like when Atlanta’s first pick comes up then make the deal (and try to get another pick as well). That assumes Barrett is who Atlanta is targeting and they don’t do something else with those picks pre-draft.

    84. I just want us to imagine a team where every starter is a ~2.0 BPM player. Not a superstar, just good. Not swinging for the fences, just drafting solid guys with every pick and letting go of those who severely underperform.

      Then imagine them all being on rookie-scale contracts and still having the space and/or trade assets to snatch up a significant player when he becomes available, a la Kawhi or Jimmy Buckets. That’s what I want, and it’s far more likely to get those players than to get the next guy who’s going to put up a .250 WS48 in the playoffs.

      It seems totally insane for Atlanta to not continue to stockpile these young, promising players, especially since they seem to have a good idea about what a productive player looks like. If they have 10 picks in the next 3 years, you really only need 3 or 4 of them to pan out to have a deep squad with Bird rights aplenty. And maybe you even have enough cap space to sign a max player before you extend Collins and get into Warriors/Rockets cap territory.

    85. IMHO we should be aiming to hit doubles and triples at this point. Trading #3 for #8 and #10 feels a little like gambling that dudes with huge question marks will hit ie. Bol Bol and Cam Reddish or the like. To some extent with RJ you pretty much know what you’re going to get.

      The Ringer has as his comps Jalen Rose, Harrison Barnes, and Rudy Gay.

      I feel pretty good that his floor is Jalen Rose who rebounds better. Jalen Rose played in the league for 13 years and was a good player – not amazing, but a player who contributed.

      I don’t see the Wiggins comp at all given how crazy competitive RJ is as compared to Wiggins who disappears for games at a time. I don’t see Rudy Gay since i would be very surprised if RJ averaged 2 assists/game for his career – I think it’s far more likely he’s in the 3.5-4 assist/36 range. And Harrison Barnes has averaged 1.5 assists/game his whole career.

      I dunno – RJ’s passing ability makes me think the chances of him totally busting are pretty small.

      So unless we’re getting a relatively sure thing in return (ie. Lonzo, who I think is really good) or something very close in value + another asset (ie. trade down to 4, pick Culver or Garland and get another pick) I would much rather take RJ rather than roll the dice and the pupu platter of players in the late lottery or teens.

    86. The ringer comps are wholly subjective and you shouldn’t give them a lot of value.

    87. @89

      The Dallas picks put us in a pretty good position to follow that plan. We can trade down the the 8 and 10 and grab say, Hunter or Doumbouya and Clarke, keeping all future picks plus a 2nd rounder from Atlanta. Then even if we go for a guy like D’Angelo Russell, there would be a 4 year window to add players through the draft and work out which of the prospects should become the rotation players, while Mitch, Clarke, Russell et al have time to develop.

      I really like this plan, specially as it keeps a max slot to work with to absorb a potential available star through trade or to rent for even more assets to eventually get a real superstar through trade.

    88. @91
      Hopefully RJ comps more to Jayson Tatum (99.6) than Cleanthony Early (98.7).
      :-)

    89. IMHO we should be aiming to hit doubles and triples at this point. Trading #3 for #8 and #10 feels a little like gambling that dudes with huge question marks will hit ie. Bol Bol and Cam Reddish or the like. To some extent with RJ you pretty much know what you’re going to get.

      I disagree with literally everything you’ve just said.

      1) We have no NBA-quality player under contract at PG, SG, SF or PF. To use your analogy, it’s like trying to hit a triple when you’ve got no one on base.
      2) The draft is always a gamble, but the #8 and #10 picks are in value not much different than the #3. It’s a different risk, but equal in magnitude.
      3) You do not have to take Bol or Reddish at #8 or #10. You especially don’t have to do it simply because the pundits told you to.
      4) You do not know what you’re getting with Barrett. He could be Wiggins, Barnes or Jimmy Butler. Hell, he could be Kawhi. We have absolutely no clue what his NBA ceiling is. He underachieved at Duke due to poor shooting and there’s no good mitigating explanation as to why.

    90. Why can’t the Knicks take Barrett at 3 and make decision on Atlanta trade when they see who is available at 8? Also I would insist on 1 more asset (#17, early 2nd round pick or next year Atlanta #1).

    91. @96
      They might, though Atlanta might find another trade in the meantime. The scary scenario is Reddish is there at 8 and the Knicks decide to trade and draft him.

    92. that’s a really good point by Tony. no reason to commit before Atl is on the clock

    93. @Jowles – we can agree to disagree on this one. I am not an NBA scout, but pretty much everything one reads about this draft suggests that there is Zion, a huge gulf, then Ja+RJ, then a whole bunch of crapshoot. Garland could be great, but he doesn’t pass and turns it over too much and is tiny. Culver does lots of things well but isn’t athletic and also can’t shoot. Deandre Hunter is a robot that shot well in small samples, good on-ball, but not great off-ball defender. Cam Reddish looks like a really good basketball player and would be super awesome if putting the ball in the basket wasn’t important. Bol Bol has crazy awesome numbers but 74% of the time looks like he doesn’t care at all, gets backed under the rim by Iowa’s backup center, and oh yeah just had a foot fracture. Brandon Clarke’s best position is small ball center but he’s the size of Klay Thompson. etc etc etc.

      Picks 8+10 historically have not been sure things at all, although of course your risk is mitigated by having two bites at the apple. 82games did an analysis a few years ago suggesting that the dropoff is relatively steep after the first few picks in terms of “relative value” whatever that means.

    94. I maintain there’s no reason not to pick Barrett at 3 unless Morant is available. Barrett holds by far the most trade value after Williamson and should be drafted for that alone.

      Of course, if Atlanta can draft for us Clarke and White/Doumbouya/Hunter/Garland we should take those two.

    95. Would anyone be upset if we offered Al Horford 3 years @$25mill per year just to fuck with the Celts?

    96. Nate Silver:

      R.J. Barrett’s No. 1 comp according to our projection system CARMELO is … Carmelo Anthony.

      Barrett seems a worse shooter but a better (and more willing) passer. That said, as much as we all got sick of the guy by the end of his tenure, a young Carmelo-level talent would be a hell of a result with the third pick in a paper-thin draft.

    97. Brandon Clarke’s best position is small ball center but he’s the size of Klay Thompson.

      Klay is precisely the same height (6’5.75″ without shoes) as his small-ball center, one Mr. Draymond Green (who, like Clarke, came to dominate the NCAA by the end of his tenure). And Clarke is a legit 6’7.25″ without shoes, which is plenty tall to play SF through small-ball C in today’s NBA. I would be worried about his wingspan if he weren’t the consensus best interior defender in the NBA last year. (This is backed up by his NCAA 3rd-ranked DBPM of 10.0, an absurd number for a guy whose measurables were “underwhelming,” and just fractions of a point behind Tariq Owens, who also looks like an NBA-caliber prospect.)

      https://www.thestepien.com/2019/06/13/uniqueness-brandon-clarke/

      Clarke’s statistical achievements in having one of the most productive and efficient college seasons that has tangibly contributed to winning that we’ve seen in recent memory is how he’s often identified as a prospect. Put more bluntly, Clarke is viewed by many as an “analytics” play in the draft. But for the people who actually watched full college games this year with regularity it was really Clarke’s play on the floor and how demonstrably better he was than every other player in college basketball save for one that was the draw.

      Yes, Clarke was that damn good. In a year where basically the entire freshman class disappointed, the chasm between Clarke and that lot in regards to feel, instincts, functional athleticism and general effectiveness was stark.

      Clarke is not Zion, but he’s the only other player I saw in the NCAA who looked like a man playing with boys. I will not be surprised when he is the 2nd-best player in this draft.

    98. I think Penny Hardaway/T-Mac could be the best ceiling comp for Barrett, although Penny (like most) had better defensive measurables in college, and both seem like better run/jump athletes than RJ (although RJ is kind of a bruiser). That seems like a win at #3 in a mediocre draft.

    99. Clarke is not Zion, but he’s the only other player I saw in the NCAA who looked like a man playing with boys

      Well he was a man playing against boys.

    100. Berman:

      With Thursday’s draft night approaching, Ntilikina could still be on the move as the Knicks are extremely open to trading him for another draft pick – either a late first-rounder or second-rounder:

      […]

      Ntilkina’s offseason has been one of mystery. He spent loads of time in France following the season finale on April 11. He changed agents and it is believed he came back to the US only last week.

      Ntilikina has not been at the Knicks headquarters in Tarrytown, but instead is working with a trainer in Dallas. It’s unclear if his French trainer, Bateko Cisco, is with him.

    101. A late first would be a fuckin’ win. That would really take the edge off missing out on Zion.

    102. With Thursday’s draft night approaching, Ntilikina could still be on the move as the Knicks are extremely open to trading him for another draft pick – either a late first-rounder or second-rounder:

      Can somebody check on Strat?

    103. 2) The draft is always a gamble, but the #8 and #10 picks are in value not much different than the #3. It’s a different risk, but equal in magnitude.

      I think you don’t do that trade until draft night, if Ja Morant was not available at 3 (and you picked RJ) and there is a couple of players you like at 8. It seems way riskier doing it beforehand, and RJ will keep trade value for long.

    104. Well he was a man playing against boys.

      NCAA D1 players, >750 MP 2018-19 season

      Seniors: 477
      Juniors: 429
      Sophomores: 320
      Freshmen: 189

      Hard to find the data aside from the arbitrary MP numbers. That’s 64% of D1 players ostensibly 21+.

    105. I think you don’t do that trade until draft night, if Ja Morant was not available at 3 (and you picked RJ) and there is a couple of players you like at 8. It seems way riskier doing it beforehand, and RJ will keep trade value for long.

      I agree with this. Who knows what kind of offer Memphis will get to trade down? What if they accept Ingram and Ball for the #2 pick and New Orleans takes Barrett #2 to give Zion his BFF for at least four years? I wouldn’t trade the pick unless it were a serious value (three ATL firsts) or my 2 out of my 3 favorite players were still available when ATL is on the clock at #8.

    106. the knicks have a tantalizing hook baiting strategy when they want to get rid of someone.

      1. tell botp you are “open” to trading player x

      wait,

      if no bites, then

      2. tell botp you are “extremely open” to trading player x and imply he may have fled the sovereign lands

    107. If we could get a late 1st for Frank, hopefully be in a position to draft Okeke, that would be incredible. It would probably be a top 5 move for the Knicks over the last two decades. Right up there with trading THJr to ATL for a mid-round 1st, trading KP to Dallas, drafting DLee with the last pick in the 1st round, and picking up Lin at waivers.

    108. We’re not getting a first for Frank Ntilikina. I mean, think about the teams that have late firsts. They’re good teams, presumably trying to get better. So what use do they have for two seasons of Frank Ntilikina?

      The executive quoted in the article isn’t positive we could even get a second, so I’d take that as a win too.

    109. I’ve been mulling for weeks, and I think were I Perry, I’d trade down if Morant was gone.

      I do think RJ is likely to be a rotation player, but we need more than that, and are asset-poor. If his chance of being better than just a rotation player is, say, 60%, and you can get two players (Clarke and Hunter for me, at the moment, though there are two or three others in the mix) whose chances of being more than just a rotation player are 45%, you trade down. If their chance of busting is higher, so be it: you don’t need to swing for the fences, but you’re not giving up a home run in RJ, so more times at bat with decent odds will bring better results.

      Of course, 8 and 10 isn’t enough, so you ask for 17, too. Bol Bol at 17 makes sense to me. And I’d feel pretty happy with Clarke, Hunter, and Bol. You are likely to get one rotation player, and improve your chances at getting something better – you know, like another Mitch.

    110. I mean, it’s a really tough call, because of loss aversion (“what if RJ does become great and fulfills his promise?”), but making worse decisions because you fear making mistakes is how you lose. Three bites of the apple when there are CERTAIN to be hidden gems like Kawhi is a better path for a team with next to nothing on its roster.

      Also, an unprotected first has much much more value than it used to because of the odds. 6% chance can get you #1, you know?

    111. I’d probably do 8, 10, and 17 but that’s not what their initial offer was

    112. Spitballin is kinda fun…. just looking at Portland’s roster and they have Evan Turner, Harkness and Meyers Leonard coming off the books for 41M. Throw Zach Collins in and that 46M….. enough space to get into the Kawhai/Jimmy Butler sweepstakes. Playing along with mid 20ish Lillard/Mc Collum might be very attractive to top players in a terrific city……

    113. If Atlanta offers 8, 10 and 17 I think we should simply take it and run with it. There’s intriguing guys at the bottom of the draft, like Thybulle, Okeke, Samanic, Alexander-Walker, and we would have three chances at coming up with at least one pretty good prospect out of a weak draft.

      I’m fine with either Barrett or stocking up with young guys, and the best scenario is Morant dropping still.

    114. Here’s how it goes down:

      -We get a 1st round pick for Frank.

      – Frank marginally improves his game

      – 3 years later we sign Frank to a 3 year, $70 million deal

    115. Would anyone be upset if we offered Al Horford 3 years @$25mill per year just to fuck with the Celts?

      We don’t have to, report just came out that he’s leaving Boston.

      Fuck the Celtics!

    116. Al Horford just broke off talks with the Celts and is looking for a 4-year deal. I love his game and think he would be a perfect complement to Mitch. I’d give him a 3-year deal but so would much better teams than us. Four years? Pass.

    117. i was surpirsed to hear horford was gonna opt out and walk from 30 million for next year…horford must have really wanted out of boston, i can’t imagine he’ll make more than 15 million a year if he gets a 3 or 4 year deal…or, am i undervaluing horford?

      has horford made enough, and, simply wants to chase a ring?

      hmmm, think ainge can get hayward to opt out also…

    118. I wonder if Horford grew tired of the infighting and the coddling of Hayward and Irving.

    119. Seniors: 477
      Juniors: 429
      Sophomores: 320
      Freshmen: 189

      Hard to find the data aside from the arbitrary MP numbers. That’s 64% of D1 players ostensibly 21+.

      Fake math!

    120. Lakers are trying to expand Anthony Davis trade and create ability to open max salary slot on July 6, sources tell @BobbyMarks42 and me. Lakers offering contracts of Mo Wagner/Jemerrio Jones/Isaac Bonga to additional teams, so LA can satisfy CBA rules on creating $32M in space.

      I’d take all 3. Can we do that, and demand a second for doing them the kindness?

    121. I wouldn’t be averse to Horford, but I think his timeline and desire for a 4 year deal (at age 33) doesn’t really fit with us. 3 years for $10-15 million though? Sign me up for Horford mentoring Mitch at that price. Could spend money on worse things than a veteran of Horford’s ilk.

    122. If I were Horford and I just saw Durant and Thompson get serious injuries, I’d probably want a long term contract too

    123. Woj just reported on ESPN that the Knicks have zero interest in signing B-List guys like Cousins or Jimmy Butler. That’s actually great news.

    124. Horford will likely be worth every penny of a $25-30 million contract for the next 2 years. After that it’s a total crap shoot.

    125. Is there a deal to be done for Chris Paul’s poop contract and ability to be our coach in the floor for our young team and get assets? Asking for a friend.

    126. Unless I’m missing something, the Lakers could strip the roster all the way down to LeBron, AD, and Kuzma and still not have a full max slot, and that’s assuming AD waives his trade kicker.

      I am totally baffled as to how the Lakers negotiated one of the biggest trades of all time without coming to any kind of agreement about this crucially important timing aspect. There’s no chance the Pelicans would’ve held up the incredible deal they got in order to get the #4 pick on their own summer league roster (that would be the sole implication for them, as far as I can tell).

      If I were the Lakers I would tell the Pelicans the deal needs to be made on July 30th or else there will be one less first round pick. They’d still have the best offer by a country mile–now that the Celtics offer will almost certainly be gone, the second best very well might contain Frank Ntilikina. Maybe it would be considered kind of scummy to do that after agreeing to a deal, since the Lakers should’ve been responsible for keeping track of their own cap situation (again, I am totally blown away that they seem to have had no idea about this), but I really don’t see a better option for them right now.

    127. I would HATE having Chris Paul and his bloated contract on this team. Fuck Morey., D’Antoni and Houston.

    128. Side note: if we’re able to buy a second rounder besides #55 (blech), does Zach Norvell look like a decent target to anyone else?

    129. @143
      Per Bobby Marka

      Under this scenario, Davis would need to waive all of his $4M trade bonus to make the money work. If there is a taker(s), LAL could sign 1 or multiple players with $32.5M in room on 7/6 and still make the AD trade on the same day. As of now, Los Angels will have $23.8M in room.

      Don’t believe that this plan has more than a coin flips chance of working

    130. Paul would make us significantly better (probably) next year, but that’s as much a function of how shitty our guards are, and it’s not like he’s making us into a contender. So we’re making our own picks worse, the Rockets are still going to be good for at least the short term and Paul is making so much money it hurts our ability to add good free agents when he’s likely to not be that good himself. Houston doesn’t have any other teams picks, so they’d have to give us a lot of picks to make it worth it. There’s probably a point it makes sense but it’s committing the team to a loooong rebuild

    131. The Lakers are idiots for even thinking a third max player is what LeBron and AD need.

    132. I think they want a third guy so they don’t have to play lebron 35 mins a night in the regular season, Kawai might be the blueprint for older/injury prone guys going forward…… Kemba & AD could probably win you 45 games i dunnooo depends on who takes the vet minimums

    133. What are the chances the Celtics miss the playoffs next year? Without Horford and Kyrie Irving, they’re probably looking at a starting line up of Rozier, Brown, Tatum, Hayward, and Aron Baynes or Daniel Theiss. Of course we’ve yet to see the NBA Draft (the Celtics suck at drafting) or free agency, but Boston looks more like a 6th seed and that’s only because I’m not discounting Wonderboy Stevens.

      And the Lakers need to take whatever money they have and turn it into depth. When you have LeBron James and Anthony Davis, all you have to do is call good plays and get guys who won’t miss open jumpers.

    134. Cap people: I’m trying to better understand the Lakers’ plan.

      So the idea is they do things in this order:

      1) Dump Wagner, Bonga, and Jones. This leaves them with around $34M in space.
      2) Sign whatever mini-max player they can (e.g. Kemba).
      3) Trade Lonzo, Ingram, Hart, and all of the goodies for AD

      I’m confused because Lonzo, Ingram, and Hart’s salaries only add up to around $18M, and AD makes around $27M. Since the trade would take the Lakers over the cap, don’t the salaries have to be within $5M of one another? The trade works if you include the salary of the 4th overall pick, but don’t the Lakers have to wait 30 days before they can trade that player? Can they somehow trade the cap hold, using it to fill the remaining salary? Thanks.

    135. Idk I think the Celtics are better off. Williams looked good in limited minutes and Baynes & Theiss are solid. Plus, they are adding 4 picks, one of which should become good, at least. They could go after Rubio and have him lead a young crew… and maybe they trade Brown for a solid vet or a better pick. I hate them, but they still have lots of options.

    136. @155 it isn’t, which is why the Lakers should focus their energy on getting those guys instead of Kemba Walker. After they sign a big name and trade for Anthony Davis, they will literally have no assets left to make their roster better. This is a terrible plan likely to look defensible because Anthony Davis and LeBron James are all world basketball players.

    137. Brandon Clarke seems to be going somewhere between 11 and 17 in mocks. I wonder how hard it would be trade for him. I’d be thrilled to come away with Barrett and him.

    138. I wonder where DeAndre Jordan will wind up. I still can’t believe that he didn’t want to go to a contender before the playoff roster deadline last year.

    139. Horford had a career year at 32 based on shooting 50%+ from mid range. Opting out is probably a very smart move for him. Nail down one last huge payday before you run the risk of showing signs of decline.

    140. Very odd that you specified white MLB players here

      I only brought it up because others made the “Get Out” comparison. My point was it’s not a race issue in this case; many sports have these same rules. As for basic labor rights, there is no “right” to dictate your work location to your employer. The NBA has a partial anti-trust exemption, so the whole league is treated as one entity. Zion et al are free to work for any employer, even to play with other basketball leagues. If they sign with the NBA they get assigned a work location.

      If you disagree with the exemption (which I do, though less so because the players bargain collectively too) that’s one thing, but another to say the labor practices are unfair or the players are treated like slaves. If I sign with Google I don’t get to tell them I’m going to work in Hawaii (unless they let me work remote; hard to do in the NBA!). I go where they want me to, period. Or I’m fired. And by the way, they can move me to different locations at any time.

      Woj just reported on ESPN that the Knicks have zero interest in signing B-List guys like Cousins or Jimmy Butler. That’s actually great news.

      Fantastic news! Let’s hope for a true rebuild strategy!

    141. Ugh, no on CP3. Dude is pretty toast as a star, making huge money. What value does he have to us? The Rockets are good enough their picks will be outside the lottery, so there’s not a ton else they could give us.

    142. Well, he can demand a trade, but is there anyone even willing to trade for him? I really think he has no market, he doesn’t make sense as a 2nd or 3rd piece for most contenders and he would just be miserable and annoying to any non-contending team.

      I think Horford made a very good move for himself. He’s on a slight decline already, but still good enough to have a good market of teams chasing him. The ideal landing spot for him would probably be the Bucks, but I don’t think they have the cap space for him unless Middleton leaves, then they trade Snell and or Ilyasova.

    143. I just hope Darius Garland doesn’t excel at 3-on-3, and that Miles Bridges is nowhere near Tarrytown

    144. @162

      During the mid-nineteenth century origins of the American Industrial Revolution many New England farmers dispossessed from their land and driven into factory work made the comparison between slavery and their wage labor work, seeing it as an attack on their personal liberty. This was such a popular view at the time that it was a centerpiece of the Republican Party.

      We accept it today as a given that capital has the authority to tell labor how, when and where to live. But its not the only way of working. I like the old Republican Party line that the people who work in the mills should be the ones who own them and determine their own destiny.

    145. I only brought it up because others made the “Get Out” comparison.

      I made the comparison, but you’re forgetting the context.

      I specifically compared the image of David Griffin celebrating wildly at the lottery while Zion helplessly looked on to the auction scene where the old white man won the rights to the young black man’s body.

      In both cases a system is constructed to determine how and where a young black man’s youth and vigor is to be spent without him having a say in the matter, and an old white man who did nothing to deserve it is granted new life and reacts with glee at becoming the beneficiary of the young black man’s ability.

      I found the two scenes to be eerily similar.

    146. Besides, you’re missing the point. I’m not likening the NBA to slavery. I just think the draft (and specificially the lottery) sucks and is a stupid way to distribute talent. The players and the fans and the league would all be better off if there was some arrangement by which incoming rookies and teams could be matched based on mutual interest.

      The only reason we don’t have a system like this is because no one would want to go to small markets.

      But here’s the thing: the league doesn’t need small markets. The league would be perfectly fine with 20 teams playing only in cities that can sustain them. There are only two reasons small market teams exist:

      1 – so the cartel of owners could grow

      2 – because said cartel found another municipality it could pillage

      So it’s bad enough these teams exist, subsidized by local governments and large market teams like ours, diluting the talent and entertainment value of the league. But not only do they exist, all the rules are created to favor them, which is even more detrimental to the league, fans, and players.

    147. Isn’t that is little elitist to effectively say to places other than the eastern seaboard, Texas and California “your team is Chicago”? Anyway on choice ask a rookie NYC Dept of Ed teacher if they get to go teach at Stuyvesant or Bronx School of Science or someplace with a little less cachet?

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