In search of a lead guard, the New York Knicks have done their homework in “extensively” scouting draft prospect Cole Anthony.
It’s unclear where the New York Knicks will pick in the 2020 NBA draft, or when the draft will be held, but it’s good to hear the Knicks have done their homework on potential picks ahead of the novel coronavirus that shuddered the scouting season prematurely in March.
According to Ian Begley of SNY, the Knicks have scouted North Carolina stand-out Cole Anthony “extensively” in prep of the draft. Anthony is the son of former Knicks point guard Greg Anthony. The New York Post reported in February that the Knicks were focused on finding a scoring point guard. Anthony struggled to find a consistent shot in college (shooting 38 percent), but averaged 18.5 points for Roy Williams’ team.
A top recruit out of high school, Anthony’s Freshman season at Chapel Hill was interrupted due to a partially torn meniscus in his right knee. He returned from the injury to finish out the ACC schedule before the college basketball season was shutdown.
The North Carolina point guard has trained with former Knicks trainer Chris Brickley since he was 16 years old. Brickley believes Anthony would like to play for the Knicks.
“I’ve asked him about it,” Brickley said to the New York Post. “He doesn’t want to be drafted by a team that puts him to the side and doesn’t make it a priority to develop him. He wants to be put in a situation where he can be with a good coaching staff willing to keep improving his game. He’d love to play in New York for sure. He grew up in Manhattan.”
The NBA lottery slated for May 19 has been postponed indefinitely as the NBA works tirelessly to figure out how to possibly finish the 2019-20 season in the shadow of the pandemic. As it currently stands, the Knicks have the sixth highest lottery odds, with a 37.2 percent chance of securing a top four pick. The Knicks also have a second first round pick from the Marcus Morris trade, which is currently slotted at 27th overall.
After being projected as a top-of-the-lottery prospect entering his Freshman year, Anthony’s knee injury has impacted where he might land in the draft. He could see himself drop to the middle of the first round.
Begley noted in his article that the scouting on Anthony was done by Scott Perry and his “brain trust,” who new president Leon Rose is relying on to prepare for the draft in the wake of an abbreviated scouting season. That is perhaps one reason why he decided to keep Perry on the staff when his option came up on May 1.