New York Knicks: 2019 NBA Mock Draft, Sweet 16 edition

(Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
(Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /
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Gonzaga Brandon Clarke (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

18. . F. Gonzaga. Brandon Clarke. 14. player

Age: 23
Height, Weight: 6-foot-8, 215 pounds
Slash Line: .699/.286/.685
Season Averages: 17.0 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 1.8 APG, 1.2 SPG, 3.1 BPG, 0.1 3PM

Brandon Clarke once profiled as a fringe first-round pick, until his play on a nationally prominent team and a standout performance in the Round of 32 propelled him to a mid-first-round selection, potentially sliding into the lottery.

The defensive talent is unquestioned. With an eye-popping 3.1 blocks per game as a 6-foot-8 forward, Clarke has game-changing ability at that end. Normally, those numbers are expected from a shot-blocking, seven-foot center, a la Mitchell Robinson. So how those numbers translate will be interesting.

Plus, with the 36-point explosion over Baylor, Clarke proved himself as a fine scorer, although a three-point shot is nonexistent in his game. He’s also 23-years-old and prehistoric for a first-round pick, which drives his stock as a top-10 pick to someone that should float between No. 12 or 13 and 20.

The Boston Celtics will own multiple picks on draft day — this one via the Sacramento Kings — pending some of them don’t leave via trade to the Pelicans, so this selection could easily be for someone else. If not, Clarke is a solid defensive talent to supplement Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown off the bench.

Clarke is even interesting for the New York Knicks, if they were to acquire a pick in the middle of Round 1. Unless Frank Ntilikina’s return package draws that, it will not happen.