New York Knicks: Top five trade assets before 2019 NBA Draft

New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
New York Knicks Dennis Smith Jr. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

What are the New York Knicks’ top trade assets before they enter the 2019 NBA Draft?

An offseason of change is ahead for the New York Knicks. The draft and free agency will revamp a roster that went 17-65 and will potentially not feature most of the same faces, given how many of them had expiring contracts.

Amid the draft and open market is the trade scene. The Knicks were active in January, sending Kristaps Porzingis, Courtney Lee, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Trey Burke to the Dallas Mavericks.

There is no trade deadline to follow this time around. Teams can start moving players after the NBA Finals, and given recent rumors around the Knicks, they could be involved in the chaos.

If general manager Scott Perry and president Steve Mills work the trade market, they have intriguing pieces to move or have valued by other teams. What are their best assets?

5. Dennis Smith Jr.

Dennis Smith Jr.’s first two NBA seasons have been turbulent. He appeared as the Dallas Mavericks’ point guard of the future for 2017-18, until Luka Doncic arrived in the 2018 NBA Draft and took over the ball handling duties.

One rift and one trade later, Smith became the New York Knicks’ starting point guard. This happened upon arrival, with Emmanuel Mudiay and Frank Ntilikina both out with injuries.

Smith, like his time in Dallas, was inconsistent. Still just 21 years old, but his results were either 20 to 30-point games and double-digit assists or, more often than not, sub-40 percent shooting nights, creating an inefficient stat line.

So it’s difficult to pinpoint Smith’s value, but at a young age, the athleticism and the potential shown on the court, there is stock in him as another team’s future point guard, if it reaches that moment.

Smith might become trade bait, anyway, if someone like Kyrie Irving or Kemba Walker sign or Ja Morant arrives in the 2019 NBA Draft. Maybe the Knicks find a future first-round pick for the North Carolina State product.

There is value in Smith. How high might depend on the team and their opening at point guard, but he should draw something worthwhile in return.