NY Knicks: Trading up in the NBA draft is a strong possibility

NY Knicks, Paul George, Myles Turner (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
NY Knicks, Paul George, Myles Turner (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The NY Knicks are heading into the 2021 NBA Draft with 4 draft picks, and there is a growing expectation that the team won’t retain all of their picks.

Marc Berman of the New York Post wrote that Knicks’ president Leon Rose is “setting his lasers on what it will take to get up into late-lottery position as the full draft order gets set next Tuesday”.

NY Knicks: Trading up in the NBA Draft seems almost expected at this point

This isn’t exactly anything new.

We’ve known for awhile now that the NY Knicks would have two first round picks that would be outside of the draft lottery. Not only that, but they’ll have two 2nd rounders, one at the top of the round and one towards the end of the draft.

There a few factors to consider here – the first being head coach Tom Thibodeau.

New York’s head coach carries a reputation as someone who places most of his trust and responsibilities in his veteran players, with the rookies often having a short leash on the court.

There is really no way to expect 4 rookies to join this Knicks team and all find playing time. The Knicks could focus on developmental prospects with their later picks, the Roko Prakcins and Vrenz Bleijenberghs of the draft – but it seems unlikely.

NY Knicks: Expect Leon Rose to be active during the NBA Draft

It does go beyond just the coach – we have to look at what to expect from Leon Rose and the rest of New York’s front office.

This was a group that was active in last year’s draft, trading up for Immanuel Quickley. “Salary cap guru” Brock Aller has played an active role in making trades involving draft picks.

Looking at the amount of cap space New York has, it seems apaprent they will make some moves to acquire more talent. Whether or not they’re big name players remains to be seen, but this roster is going to be deeper in 2021-21.

It leaves a lot less room for multiple rookies.

New York’s positioning in the draft also seems ideal for a trade up. The general consesus for this draft is that there are 3 top tiers: #1 is Cade Cunninghma, #2 is Mobley/Green/Suggs, #3 is Jonathan Kuminga. After that, who knows what will happen?

Everyone has a different big board. There could be players that the Knicks view as top 10 talents who fall into the pick 12-15 range, and you know New York is going to be itching to move up to draft a player they view highly.

Draft season is here, and Leon Rose isn’t going to mess around.

Next. Knicks Mock Draft 2.0: Trading up in the draft. dark