Knicks 2020 Mock Draft: 1st overall pick LaMelo Ball
Pre-Lottery Odds: 9.0%
If you believe the reports coming out of Knicks camp, LaMelo Ball could find himself the first overall pick if New York wins the lottery. While things can change over time, and the addition of college scout Walt Perrin could alter the team’s direction, Ball is reportedly the top point guard on New York’s draft board.
If there is a glaring position of need for the Knicks, it is at point guard. The team believes adding a versatile playmaker can help “unlock” their young core of RJ Barrett and Mitchell Robinson. Dennis Smith Jr’s days in New York appear numbered, and Frank Ntilikina is likely best served in a bench role.
President Leon Rose seems ready to prioritize adding a legitimate offensive point guard to the roster. If they win the lottery, LaMelo Ball is the perfect fit.
LaMelo, who is the brother of NBA point guard Lonzo Ball, has the goods to steal the hearts of the Madison Square Garden faithful with his amazing passing ability. Think Mark Jackson in his rookie campaign. Style would be back on Broadway. Imagine Ball tossing up lob passes to Mitchell Robinson?!
Pairing Ball with RJ Barrett will create an urgency for general manager Scott Perry to add shooting to the lineup. Neither Ball nor Barrett present a three-point threat, which could cause problems if the team also decides to start Mitchell Robinson, whose range extends as far as he can dunk the basketball.
But it seems LaMelo Ball is the right match for the spotlight of New York. I would expect the Knicks to use the top pick to select him.