New York Knicks NBA Draft Picks and History: The Walt Frazier class

New York Knicks Walt Frazier (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
New York Knicks Walt Frazier (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /

The New York Knicks had a star-studded class arrive in the 1967 NBA Draft, picking players who contributed to their championship teams.

The 60s and 70s were the heart of greatness for the New York Knicks, mostly due to their draft successes. They selected Willis Reed in 1964, becoming one of the franchise’s best players and a title winner.

1967 was another premier class for the Knicks, as they selected two more pieces towards those championship aspirations. Who were they? Did other players from that year make an impact?

27. . PG. Southern Illinois. Walt Frazier. 5. player

Slash Line (with Knicks): .492/.783
Career Averages (with Knicks): 19.3 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 6.3 APG, 2.0 SPG, 0.2 BPG

It was a home-run pick for the New York Knicks at No. 5 overall, selecting a point guard from Southern Illinois who starred for them for 10 seasons.

Walt Frazier took a year to break out, but in his second season, he averaged nearly 18 points and eight assists per game on 50.5 percent shooting. That grew and sustained by the year, as he was one of New York’s top scorers through the ’70s. This included All-Star Game appearances from 1970-76.

The icing on the cake was winning two titles, the only two the franchise has still ever won. An accomplishment itself, Frazier is one of the few players to wear the orange and blue to have this accolade.

Frazier had three years with the Cleveland Cavaliers to close his career, but in just 66 games. That span is just a footnote in a Hall of Fame career, which he received an induction for in 1987.

17. player. 27. . PF. North Dakota. Phil Jackson

Slash Line (with Knicks): .449/.731
Career Averages (with Knicks): 6.8 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 1.1 APG, 0.6 SPG, 0.5 BPG

Long before Phil Jackson was a championship-winning head coach and an executive, he played for the New York Knicks for 10 seasons. While not as the team’s star, he was a role player, averaging under 18 minutes per game from 1967-78.

Jackson was also on those same Knicks teams that won championships, which became the first part of his resume, long befoe the titles with the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Jackson also spent two seasons with the New Jersey Nets, before wrapping his career in 1979-80.

. F. South Carolina. Gary Gregor. 24. player. 27

Gary Gregor was selected 24th overall by the Knicks in 1967, but he never played a game for them. Instead, re-entering the draft in 1968 to join the Phoenix Suns as a first-round pick.

SF/SG. Providence. Mike Riordan. 128. player. 27.

Mike Riordan was a 12 round pick of New York’s, landing 128th overall, so the fact he lasted nine NBA seasons was terrific. Parts of four of them happened with the Knicks as a reserve. He found a larger role with the Washington/Baltimore franchise, however, before calling it a career.

The Knicks made other draft picks who did not appear in the NBA:

  • Keith Swagerty (No. 36)
  • Barry Leibowitz (No. 48)
  • Bob Benfield (No. 60)
  • Butch Wade (No. 72)
  • Gil Radday (No. 84)
  • Ray Smith (No. 95)
  • Bruce Kaplan (No. 106)
  • Mark Merkin (No. 117)

dark. Next. 25 greatest players in NYK history

More draft retrospectives will follow on the Knicks ahead of their foray into the 2019 NBA Draft.