New York Knicks: Projecting rookie impact of top 2019 NBA Draft targets

(Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
5 of 5
Duke Zion Williamson (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Duke Zion Williamson (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

1. Zion Williamson

Age: 18
Height, Weight: 6-foot-7, 285 pounds
Slash Line: .680/.338/.640
Season Averages: 22.6 PPG, 8.9 RPG, 2.1 APG, 2.1 SPG, 1.8 BPG, 0.7 3PM

Tuesday’s draft lottery will decide who probably takes Zion Williamson first overall in June. The New York Knicks are in position to have this happen, but so are the Cavaliers and Suns. The next group of teams does not sit far behind in odds, either, so the dream scenario is just that, for now.

That aside, Williamson has a game-changing impact whoever wins the chance to pick him.

A physical profile unlike most in college basketball history, Williamson’s 6-foot-7, 285 frame means nothing towards his freakish athletic ability to soar in transition, catch an alley-oop or block a shot out of nowhere. It even let him do whatever he wanted against opposing frontcourts, as well.

How well does this all translate? The athleticism will, at least. Few others in the NBA can fly in transition like Williamson, using that freakish body type. There are bigger and more talented bodies in NBA frontcourts, though, so he may not find baskets as easily, lowering than eye-opening 68 percent shooting mark.

However, whatever decreases for Williamson, it won’t be by much initially. He’s still just 18 years old and won’t turn 19 until July, so no one should expect a finished product immediately, even though the spotlight will loom large upon arrival.

20 points per game might not happen as a rookie, too, but something like 15 points and seven rebounds seems plausible, with at least 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks added to that.

Next. 2019 NBA Mock Draft as the lottery nears. dark

Williamson can change the Knicks, but those 14 percent odds are a crutch, even as it ties for the highest chance at landing the first pick. That answer will arrive on Tuesday, May 14.