New York Knicks: A recent history of draft lottery night

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New York Knicks
New York Knicks Kristaps Porzingis (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

2015: Fell from second to fourth overall

Among the closest the New York Knicks were to first overall, they walked into the 2015 draft lottery with the second-best odds to take Karl-Anthony Towns. That did not happen, and the Knicks fell to fourth overall.

That removed New York from the Towns, D’Angelo Russell and Jahlil Okafor competition. All three were seen as the top players of the 2015 selection show, and Justise Winslow and Emmanuel Mudiay were held in high regard.

Instead, the Knicks chose Kristaps Porzingis and were booed by the fans in attendance. Little did they know Porzingis would blossom into one of the NBA’s top, young big men, pre-knee injury.

The success lasted two-plus years, but as Porzingis rehabbed his knee, he requested out of the organization and landed with the Dallas Mavericks via trade; that brought Dennis Smith Jr., DeAndre Jordan, Wesley Matthews and two first-round picks to New York.

Losing Porzingis might make the 2015 lottery disappointing, but the top 10 did not provide many head-turning talents. Okafor, Mudiay, Mario Hezonja, Stanley Johnson and Frank Kaminsky all floundered. Winslow and Willie Cauley-Stein have taken time to develop. However, Towns and Russell look like bonafide stars.

The Porzingis pick could have looked better without the drama that led to his departure, but Phil Jackson found an international star, nonetheless. It was among the few transactions he was praised for in three unceremonious years.