Potential Knicks free agent targets: Josh Jackson, Memphis Grizzlies
As Knicks fans celebrate the indication by Tom Thibodeau that the team plans on utilizing their G-League affiliate more often next season, a young player who has recently used the developmental league to sharpen his game is an intriguing free agent option this offseason. That is, Josh Jackson.
The former lottery pick finds himself a free agent before many of his draft peers (he was selected in the same class as Frank Ntilikina and Dennis Smith Jr.) because of his inconsistent play and questions about his demeanor.
But a stint in the G-League has seemingly rejuvenated his game. Playing 18 games from January until mid-March, he looked like the versatile player selected fourth overall in 2017, averaging 10.4 points, 3.2 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.0 steals per game. After shooting 41.% from the field in his first two seasons, he has connected on 44% of his shots this year.
The Knicks under Steve Mills and Scott Perry often sought out reclamation projects, acquiring several former lottery picks in hopes they could unleash their untapped potential. It hasn’t worked out so far. Perhaps with the helpful scouting eye of Walt Perrin – the former Jazz executive hired to be the head of college scouting in New York – and the coaching of Tom Thibodeau, the Knicks can do a better job of identifying young gems.
Jackson is still only 23-years-old. He might be worth taking a shot on for the right price.