New York Knicks: Ranking the trade assets, post-Kristaps Porzingis

New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks 2018 NBA Draft Kevin Knox(Photo by Mohammed Elshamy/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) /

After the Kristaps Porzingis trade, how do the New York Knicks’ assets stand against each other?

The New York Knicks unloaded one-fourth of their roster in Thursday’s Kristaps Porzingis trade, sending the aforementioned player, Tim Hardaway Jr., Courtney Lee and Trey Burke to the Dallas Mavericks.

This cleared arguably New York’s top asset and players to use in salary-centric trades. However, it hardly cleared the cupboard for other transactions, if any follow up the blockbuster.

Who do the Knicks have left that’s valuable towards a deal? Do any of the pieces from the Dallas trade work into this? Let’s take a look:

6. 2021 and 2023 first-round picks (via Dallas)

To trade a player like Porzingis, acquiring draft picks in return almost becomes a prerequisite. For that talent, at age 23, and on a potentially-cheap qualifying offer for 2019-20, it gave the New York Knicks two first-round picks: an unprotected selection in 2021 and a protected one for 2023.

These picks lump together because of their unknown value in the next two-to-four years. It’s anyone’s guess how the Mavericks will play, so it leaves them in limbo.

For now, though, the 2021 pick may be the superior trade chip, since a prospective team would not have to wait for protections to play out. Especially if this draft approaches and the Mavs struggle in 2020-21, it makes this selection more valuable.

Maybe the Knicks don’t wait, though, and target Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans, who have not traded with the Los Angeles Lakers as of this writing. The 2021 and 2023 picks can both move, if necessary, to acquire the 2012 No. 1 overall pick and give New Orleans as much draft flexibility possible down the road.

The Knicks have an interesting history of trading first-round picks, however, despite these not “belonging” to them. Traded selections have become LaMarcus Aldridge, Joakim Noah and Gordon Hayward over the past 15 years.

Will the Knicks take this risk again, whether this season or down the road to win now? It failed before but, for a player of Davis’ caliber, this could let them redeem the past’s troublesome trades.