New York Knicks: How players picked after Kevin Knox have fared

(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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new york knicks
New York Knicks Kevin Knox (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

The New York Knicks selected Kevin Knox ninth overall in the 2018 NBA Draft. How have the five players picked after him fared as rookies?

The New York Knicks brought Kevin Knox, selected ninth overall, into the fold during the 2018 NBA Draft. He was one of Kentucky’s top players in the 2017-18 collegiate season and looked to continue that success at the pro level.

So far, Knox has settled into a starting role for the Knicks, including winning the December Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month award.

However, shooting struggles have accompanied the 19 year old. He makes fewer than 40 percent of his attempts, as of Mar. 4.

Players across this draft class have varied in success through nearly one season. That goes for selections that went directly after Knox. How have those players fared in their respective rookie campaigns? Are they performing superiorly to the Knicks’ forward talent?

As the 2018-19 season nears its end, let’s look at players that went after Knox — ones the Knicks passed on — and how they have played:

player. 66. . SG/SF. Phoenix Suns. Mikal Bridges. 10

Age: 22
Height, Weight: 6-foot-7, 210 pounds
Slash Line: .432/.345/.783
Season Averages: 8.1 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 2.0 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.5 BPG, 1.3 3PM

One spot after Knox to the New York Knicks, the Philadelphia 76ers selected Mikal Bridges from Villanova. Perceived as a “3-and-D” backcourt player, he was poised to join a Sixers team that needed outside shooting help next to Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and company off the bench.

However, six picks later, the Phoenix Suns traded the draft rights to Zhaire Smith and their 2021 unprotected first-round pick from the Miami Heat to Philadelphia for Bridges.

Since then, the 22 year old has mostly started for Phoenix, playing 45 of 64 games in the main lineup at almost 30 minutes per contest. He’s played as advertised, too, with 1.3 three-pointers made at 34.5 percent and quality play at the other end of the court.

Bridges has provided more than just points, with a steady 3.1 rebounds and 2.0 assists as an alternate ball handler.

If the New York Knicks took Bridges, he could have slotted next to their rotating point guards throughout the season and provided the shred of defense this team sorely needs. That may have negated the need for Allonzo Trier then, however, who’s been a revelation as an undrafted free agent.