The Knicks Trade the #11 Pick, Kemba Walker and Four Future Second Round Picks for a Mystery Prize

We were all expecting the Knicks to make some sort of move, and they did, in fact, get very busy on the trade market. They tried all night to move up to either #4 or #5 to get Jaden Ivey, and when that failed, also tried to move up to #7 to get Shaedon Sharpe. That didn’t work, either. All of the players that the Knicks were interested in went before pick #11 and you know how Leon Rose is, if the guy he wants isn’t there, he’s trading that pick (whether there were other players there that Rose should have been interested in) and that’s what he did, dealing the #11 pick to Oklahoma City for three of their treasure trove of future first round picks. The three picks were a lottery protected Denver Nuggets pick that would likely convey next year, but also a lottery protected Washington Wizards 2023 pick (that then becomes a top 12 protected pick in 2024, top 10 protected in 2025, top 8 protected in 2026 and then two 2026 second rounders if it doesn’t convey by 2026) and a top 18 protected Detroit Pistons 2023 pick (top 18 protected in 2024, top 13 protected in 2025, top 11 protected in 2025, top nine protected in 2027 and then a 2027 second round pick if it doesn’t convey by 2027).

The Knicks then used the best of the three picks, the 2023 Denver pick (remember, in the NBA, like the time value of money, the sooner a pick conveys, usually the more valuable the pick is) and four future second round picks to convince Charlotte to part with the #13 pick. The Knicks then selected Jalen Duren, which made everyone think that the Knicks were planning to keep him as a replacement for Mitchell Robinson. Instead, though, they used Duren to dump Kemba Walker on the Detroit Pistons, as well as get the 2025 Milwaukee Bucks pick (only top four protected) that the Pistons had just acquired for Jerami Grant. So instead of the Pistons stealing Mitchell Robinson from the Knicks, the Pistons got Duren, instead.

This move thus opened up $13 million on the Knicks salary cap for this offseason ($8 million from Kemba Walker and the $5 million they now no longer had to pay the #11 pick). Clearly, the Knicks are making these moves with the idea of making more moves in the near future, the question is, what will those moves be?

Until they actually make these moves, I can’t really judge what they did tonight.

Oh, and then the Knicks picked up Trevor Keels from Duke in the second round. I don’t know if they’ll even end up giving him a contract, but we shall see. They might be about to make a move that will clear out enough roster space that they might need Keels.

Four second rounders (two of them their own) and going from a 2023 pick in the 20s to a 2025 pick probably in the 20s, as well, is probably a bit high to clear out Kemba’s $8 million salary, but, again, it all comes down to what they needed to clear Kemba’s salary to do. This might turn out to be an amazing move.

We shall see pretty darn soon, as free agency starts in, what, a week?

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35 thoughts to “The Knicks Trade the #11 Pick, Kemba Walker and Four Future Second Round Picks for a Mystery Prize”

  1. Signed Jean Montero to Exhibit 10 deal. G-League Overtime Elite player from DR played in Spain for a time.

    Vecenie had him at 56.

    Montero came into this past season as a hyped prospect, but it’s hard to see how his set of tools turns into an NBA starter worthy of a first-round pick. His margin for error at this level of size and strength is essentially zero in a modern NBA that prizes perimeter length. He’s a questionable shooter and has some flaws that lead to inefficient play. In a league with a mix of long-term NBA prospects and lower-level college-quality prospects where he was among the oldest and most developed players, Montero was good when he dominated the ball, but didn’t really stand out at an elite level because of his lack of efficiency. He posted a 50.1 true-shooting percentage, a reflection of him not quite looking levels above the competition like many expected. Montero is a top-60 player for me just because he becomes interesting if the shooting off the bounce ever pans out. But even with that, I’m not sure how he turns into anything more than a backup given how valued defensive versatility is in today’s NBA.

  2. Dolan’s Razor. I’d like to think there are more complex and gratifying moves in the world, but the simplest and dumbest explanation seems the most likely: we are going to use these picks to unload Noel and/or Burks so we can wildly overpay Jalen Brunson to return us to the playoffs. And he may still stay in Dallas!

    Also, I spent about an hour tonight arguing about this on Twitter with Turtle from Entourage. So I’ve had saner nights.

  3. This was a slight improvement over L’Affaire Incinerate. This is like the galaxy brain version of that trade. Instead of getting one absurdly protected asset, you get two, plus a pick that’s almost certain to go in the late 20’s. That’s… better! Still not GOOD per se, but hey.

    Let’s see what old Leon has up his sleeve this time. This ought to be entertaining either way.

  4. Thankfully I missed most of the live draft experience while supervising a bunch of 8th graders.

    I got excited for a second when Dieng was the guy on my ESPN feed. Then I got in the car and heard “at #12 they’re making 2 consecutive picks and thoutht we also traded for the #12. Then I checked KB. Oof.

    I don’t think the deal out of #11 in a consensus weak draft is a bad deal,

    The only good thing about this draft is that we can probably speculate that our current young guys are going to play a lot more and that the Mitch returning rumors are true.

    Have we cornered the market in the 2023 draft?

    Will the Pistons shop Killian Hayes?

  5. Ok..I’m still exhausted from getting stuck in 2 separate nearly 2 hour traffic delays on the way home from BWI Monday..so I fell asleep just as the trade with OKC was announced. That said- I’m still very confused by what we did in the draft. I don’t know the total outcome of the apparently multiple trades we made. What is goin on? And why in THEE HELL did we pick Keels over Davison in the 2nd round?

    So lost.

    Leon & Co. BETTER have something up their collective sleeve. I know the first round went bad for us- should have seen that coming when Banchero went #1. I wonder what they’re gonna go with Bamba, Carter, and Issac now. Bamba makes more sense to keep with Banchero in tow, doesn’t it? I wish there was a way to somehow steal Issac in a 3 way deal involving Jules.

    Anyway..someone PLEASE explain to me just what in the fuck

  6. Just got on a plane in Nashville to LGA all excited to read everyone’s hand wringing from last night’s thread and it’s busted. Why can’t I get on there?!?

    Leon’s philosophy: if I just do a bunch of weird shit that no one understands but portends something that will happen later but never actually happens maybe people will forget I’m here!!!

  7. I think sort of lost in the flurry of trades is that half of the four second round picks that the Knicks dealt away were their own second round picks for next year and the following year. So you would have to assume that Rose is planning on competing in the near term, or else those second round picks would be too valuable to trade, right?

    Of course, planning on those seconds not being worth much and actually making those seconds be not worth much are two very different things.

  8. That said- I’m still very confused by what we did in the draft. I don’t know the total outcome of the apparently multiple trades we made. What is goin on?

    The Knicks sent out: Their 2022 pick (#11), Kemba Walker, their second round pick for 2023 and 2024 and two other second round picks that they had previously acquired (Utah’s 2023 second round pick and the more favorable of Dallas and Miami’s 2023 second round pick)

    The Knicks received: Washington’s 2023 lottery-protected first round pick (that then becomes a top 12 protected pick in 2024, top 10 protected in 2025, top 8 protected in 2026 and then two 2026 second rounders if it doesn’t convey by 2026. Washington’s own and a second rounder that it had previously acquired. I don’t recall from who at the moment), Detroit’s top 18 protected 2023 first round pick (top 18 protected in 2024, top 13 protected in 2025, top 11 protected in 2025, top nine protected in 2027 and then a 2027 second round pick if it doesn’t convey by 2027) and Milwaukee’s 2025 first round pick (top 4 protected). The Milwaukee one is probably the most valuable trade chip (it is slightly worse than another pick they received last night but dealt out in a different deal, Denver’s 2023 lottery-protected first round pick).

  9. Totes McGoats as Totes McGoats:
    Ok..I’m still exhausted from getting stuck in 2 separate nearly 2 hour traffic delays on the way home from BWI Monday..so I fell asleep just as the trade with OKC was announced. That said- I’m still very confused by what we did in the draft. I don’t know the total outcome of the apparently multiple trades we made. What is goin on? And why in THEE HELL did we pick Keels over Davison in the 2nd round?

    So lost.

    Leon & Co. BETTER have something up their collective sleeve. I know the first round went bad for us- should have seen that coming when Banchero went #1. I wonder what they’re gonna go with Bamba, Carter, and Issac now. Bamba makes more sense to keep with Banchero in tow, doesn’t it? I wish there was a way to somehow steal Issac in a 3 way deal involving Jules.

    Anyway..someone PLEASE explain to me just what in the fuck

    It’s explained well in the intro to this thread. Knicks’ management decided that having future picks in the first round was better than drafting number 11 this year. So they did a deal with OKC. The details are complicated and we’re hard to figure out so there is a lot of chatter in the previous thread.

    The Knicks did a second transaction where they sent Kemba to Detroit without taking anyone back. The details are complicated but basically they sent a bunch of second round picks out.

  10. With so much unclear it is hard to make many judgments. There is one to make, though: we really should have been able to unload Kemba and Noel to Detroit for Duren (a player they coveted).

    Shedding just Kemba is a very poor return for that (even with the Milwaukee pick).

  11. Brian Cronin: The Knicks sent out: Their 2022 pick (#11), Kemba Walker, their second round pick for 2023 and 2024 and two other second round picks that they had previously acquired (Utah’s 2023 second round pick and the more favorable of Dallas and Miami’s second round pick)

    The Knicks received: Washington’s 2023 lottery-protected first round pick (that then becomes a top 12 protected pick in 2024, top 10 protected in 2025, top 8 protected in 2026 and then two 2026 second rounders if it doesn’t convey by 2026), Detroit’s top 18 protected 2023 first round pick (top 18 protected in 2024, top 13 protected in 2025, top 11 protected in 2025, top nine protected in 2027 and then a 2027 second round pick if it doesn’t convey by 2027) and Milwaukee’s 2025 first round pick (top 4 protected). The Milwaukee one is probably the most valuable trade chip (it is slightly worse than another pick they received last night but dealt out in a different deal, Denver’s 2023 lottery-protected first round pick).

    Thanks, Brian.

    That makes me ok with the moves then- considering the way the draft board was falling. So now we have ammo for a huge trade without giving up so many young players. I like it, but the FO better pull this off.

    I wonder who, though.

    Mitchell?
    KAT?
    Booker? Very longshot, but they will already most likely lose Ayton
    Beal?
    Murray?
    AD?

  12. Nothing last night was egregious but my confidence in Leon was at zero going into the night and it remains at zero.

    None of his individual moves look terrible on paper but when you zoom out it really doesn’t look good at all.

  13. The Knicks now have the following rookie contract players on the roster:
    RJ
    IQ
    Obi
    Grimes
    Cam
    Deuce
    Sims

    Let’s assume for the moment that they will all be in the rotation next season. Let’s also assume that Mitch is re-signed and joins the list of young players with upside. That’s 8 rotation players under age 25.

    Rokas is overseas and Keels and Feron Hunt will be in the G-League.

    They now have all of their own firsts, a likely 2023 pick in the 20’s, a “possible” 2023 pick in the teens (WAS), a pick from DET that will not likely convey until 2025 but probably will convey as a first, and a likely pick in the 20’s in 2025 (MIL).

    We are working on freeing up cap space.

    There’s obviously a big move or two coming, something more than just Jalen Brunson.

  14. The Kemba trade looks terrible on paper. I’m sorry. Just waive and stretch the guy. Paying to undo your own mistakes, when said mistakes will be off the balance sheet next summer, is the exact opposite of what this FO allegedly does in terms of trying to win trades.

    If this is how they’re rolling now, they may as well see if they can actually dump Randle for nothing, rather than trying to rehabilitate his value.

  15. I think that an important thing to consider is that the league is getting saturated with talent right now. This would probably have been a good year for expansion, but since that’s not happening, I would be expecting that some very good players are going to shake lose and be available for teams with cap space. So even without a big consolidation trade, just freeing up cap space might lead to some positive developments on our roster.

    Summary: I’m in totally confused trust the process kind of not really but whatever mode.

  16. It’s really hard for me to know how to feel right now. You know me, Mr. Optimism. But generally speaking I am a fan of us making our draft picks. Even doing stuff like trading one to go down for two, I like that. But to completely punt on the pick this year. I don’t know. I know it’s a “weak draft” but we couldn’t use anyone? And I am not a huge fan of using picks to get rid of players. Especially ones who only have a year left on their deal anyways. So if we’re going to attach more picks to shed Noel too…not a huge fan of that.

    That being said, if they feel confident about Brunson, I like that move, even if he’s an overpay. BEcause he is a legitimately good basketball player at a position we desperately need upgraded. And he’s young enough to maybe get better AND fit on our timeline with the other young players. So if we’re resigning Mitch and going after Brunson and shedding some vets…then we’re committing to a core of Brunson, Mitch, RJ, Obi, IQ and I can get behind that. But it’s hard to really know right now. I mean if we somehow shed Fournier and Randle and Noel and really go full youth movement with Brunson holding down the PG position…that could be hella fun and we might be bad enough this year to get another lottery pick next year (plus the Dallas pick we have too).

    So I don’t know. And that is KILLING ME!

  17. Alan:
    The Kemba trade looks terrible on paper. I’m sorry. Just waive and stretch the guy. Paying to undo your own mistakes, when said mistakes will be off the balance sheet next summer, is the exact opposite of what this FO allegedly does in terms of trying to win trades.

    It might, but I’m not a fan of any dead cap. The cost of Kemba was essentially the difference between Denver’s protected 2023 pick (likely in the 20’s) and Milwaukee’s less protected 2025 pick. In terms of trade capital, that’s a pretty insignificant difference.

  18. One has to assume at this point that Leon knows whether or not he can get Brunson no? If he doesn’t know and/or fails to get him there is literally no point to Leon Rose. His son is the kid’s agent. Right? Right?!?

    If that indeed Leon putting his chips in the middle of the table then I’m kind of ok with it. It’s the position of greatest need for this team. He’s young. He’s good. He’s movable if it all blows up. I guess??

    So we roll with:
    Brunson
    Grimes
    RJ
    Randle
    Robinson
    IQ is 6th man

  19. Lost in all of this is that we have no first round player. Like. Now. We traded that person for space and future picks. Usually you get players when you trade players. Ergo the cognitive dissonance.

  20. If we sign him, I fear, “We’re doing this all for JALEN BRUNSON?” is going to be the new “We’re talking bout PRACTICE?” And if we don’t….

  21. Alan:
    If we sign him, I fear, “We’re doing this all for JALEN BRUNSON?” is going to be the new “We’re talking bout PRACTICE?” And if we don’t….

    He can’t not know unless Brunson is keeping his true intentions from both his agent and his own father. Right?

  22. the stand-alone okc trade is hard to dislike. the detroit 23 has a very high chance of conveying; i would say around 98%. the weighted expectation for that pick is something like #17-19 in 2025 (in value terms). typically the 18 is worth maybe 2/3 of the 11, though this one would be 3 yrs removed in time. the wizards 23 is not far off, and should be over 95% to convey as a first. the mean expectation for that pick is maybe the #16-18 in 2024. Similar value expectation. You could argue that these two picks alone have similar net value to the 2022 11, especially if you weren’t enamored with the options this yr. The denver pick, which we flipped, also has a very high chance of conveying, but a lower mean expectation. the mean value there is probably more like the 24th pick next yr. that’s ~40-50% of an average 11th pick, one year removed. overall that is somewhere between fair value and a good bit better that fair value, unless you really loved someone at 11 this year.

    the kemba trade is a bit painful, though unless utah blows it up two of the seconds are probably pretty low value. the trade down from the nuggets pick to the bucks 2025 picks is pretty small, with most of the value disparity in the discount rate. which tends to be pretty low in the nba. it is kind of funny that we fired off so many 2023 picks in the kemba deal, after all the frail optimism about the never-actually-a-thing “double draft.”

  23. We don’t have to sign Brunson. We could use the picks in a trade.

  24. It also seems that when the front office signed all those two year contracts a year ago and said they were aiming at flexibility in 2023, they really meant it.

  25. ptmilo:
    the stand-alone okc trade is hard to dislike.the detroit 23has a very high chance of conveying; i would say around 98%.the weighted expectation for that pick is something like #17-19 in 2025 (in value terms).typically the 18 is worth maybe 2/3 of the 11, though this one would be 3 yrs removed in time.the wizards 23 is not far off, and should be over 95% to convey as a first.the mean expectation for that pick is maybe the #16-18 in 2024.Similar value expectation.You could argue that these two picks alone have similar net value to the 2022 11, especially if you weren’t enamored with the options this yr.The denver pick, which we flipped, also has a very high chance of conveying, but a lower mean expectation. the mean value there is probably more like the 24th pick next yr.that’s ~40-50% of an average 11th pick, one year removed.overall that is somewhere between fair value and a good bit better that fair value, unless you really loved someone at 11 this year.

    the kemba trade is a bit painful, though unless utah blows it up two of the seconds are probably pretty low value.the trade down from the nuggets pick to the bucks 2025 picks is pretty small, with most of the value disparity in the discount rate. which tends to be pretty low in the nba.it is kind of funny that we fired off so many 2023 picks in the kemba deal, after all the frail optimism about the never-actually-a-thing “double draft.”

    Which is kind of what I think….in a strict asset/present vs. future value sense, it was a better-than-neutral night, but from a fan’s perspective in the here and now, it hurts because there are some guys who I would have loved to have rooted for and at least one guy who was available at #11 and #13 is going to be a stud. But something big is coming, something that might have been more harmful to our future store of assets had we not made this trade.

  26. I’m just hoping that we don’t wind up with only the shit end of first round pick swaps every other year before we are actually a contender. So long as we have all of our own firsts every year, there’s hope.

  27. I am with Alan and PT.

    Do t mind the trade of the 11. But paying to get rid of Kemba really hurts.

    There is no chance we will be good next year. We ought to prepare accordingly.

  28. There is no chance we will be good next year. We ought to prepare accordingly.

    I disagree. I think there’s a way for them to be good next year. I don’t think there’s a realistic path to being really good, but just say, re-signing Mitch and adding Jalen Brunson to a team that went 37-45 probably gets the Knicks over .500 next year. That’s “good,” right? Just not a realistic path to being a true contender, but I think there’s a clear path to being a decent team.

  29. There is no chance we will be good next year. We ought to prepare accordingly.

    This is such a silly take. They were the 4th seed the year before. If they upgrade the starting PG position with Brunson, IQ, RJ, Obi, Mitch continue to improve, even incrementally, and Randle bounces back (the biggest if but it’s not some wild shot in the dark that it could happen) they could easily be better than this last season.

    The NBA probably has the most parity it has had in a long time. The difference between a 32 win team and a 50 win team right now isn’t all that much.

  30. It was excellent post btw Brian.

    Good is a vague word. To me good means a sure fire playoff team. Really good is an Conference Finalist contender. Great is a legit title shot. I don’t think they will be any of that.. Andi don’t think we will be that.

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