Knicks flush with 2022 NBA Draft roster upgrade options

Replace. Shop down. Use the selection for an established player. Stand pat.

Knicks and President Leon Rose are on the run with options for Thursday night’s 2022 NBA Draft at the Barclays Center. There are a number of directions they can go, a myriad of options to take to upgrade a list that needs a jerk as a result of a sad season of 37 wins.

The most popular would be to find a way to get into the top five to land Jaden Ivey, the mega-talented guard from Purdue who can fill the franchise’s eternal void on point guard.

The Kings have been holding discussions for several weeks about the No. 4 pick, Ivey reportedly prefers to play somewhere other than Sacramento, and the Kings are loaded on point guard with De’Aaron Fox and Davion Mitchell. On Monday, Ivey seemed simply melancholy after finding his way to the Knicks, saying he would be “honored” to play there and picked them up unsolicited when asked about potential fits for his skill set.

6-foot-4 Ivey has made comparisons with Russell Westbrook, Ja Morant and Donovan Mitchell because of his electric first steps and elite athletics and can create a dynamic tandem with the building block RJ Barrett.

Jaden Ivey
USA TODAY Sports

“I do not know exactly what the package is, what it will take. “I guess it will be significant,” ESPN insider Jonathan Givony said in a Zoom interview on Wednesday. “Jaden Ivey has as much stellar power as all the players in this draft. The Knicks need a star, especially in the backcourt. “

Moving up to four, or even five by trading with the Pistons, would clearly require a lot, probably more future choices and one of the Knicks’ young players among Obi Toppin, Immanuel Quickley and Quentin Grimes. They have had talks with these teams, according to several reports, but the more likely scenario is that the Knicks remain at No. 11. At that point, the chances are high that they will have a number of exciting players to choose from among Westchester one-and-done Duke guard AJ Griffin, centers Jalen Duren and Mark Williams, and wingers Johnny Davis, Ochai Agbaji and Malaki Branham.

The Knicks trained Griffin, Williams, Agbaji and Branham and met Davis, this year’s ten big player in Wisconsin, on the draft combination last month. They have done a lot of background work on Griffin, sources said, and his father, Adrian, an assistant coach for the Raptors, previously worked with Tom Thibodeau with the Bulls.

They can choose to surround Barrett with a shooter like Griffin or Agbaji, or maybe the Knicks show their hand by drafting one of the big men, a sign that the upcoming free agent Mitchell Robinson will not return. Then there is the possibility of moving the selection for an established player like on-the-block guard Malcolm Brogdon of the Pacers, although ESPN reported that the Knicks rejected the possible move.

Shopping is also not out of the question. The Knicks have drafted a number of players who are expected to go from the low teens to the early 20s, prospects such as Kentucky pointer Tyty Washington, G-League Ignite winger MarJon Beauchamp and LSU winger Tari Eason.

Knicks
Tyty Washington
AP

6-foot-3 Washington said Wednesday that he has had no further contact with the Knicks since they took him to dinner and hosted him for a training session. That said, the Knicks have become known as the “Kentucky Knicks” and “Orange and Bluegrass,” longtime John Calipari confidante William Wesley hires, and needs a leading guard.

“He’s a prototypical NBA pointer,” Kentucky assistant Oliver Antigua told The Post. “He has great size, arm length, very creative with the ball. He is more athletic than people give him credit for. He’s a guy who’s a three-level scorer. “

As the draft approaches, the Knicks can go several different ways. They have been linked to a number of prospects, and have been involved in trade talks with a number of teams.

Thursday night, Leon Rose has a chance to strengthen the roster. How he does it remains to be seen.