The New York Knicks landed the No. 11 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft Lottery on Tuesday night. There are a few players in particular who New York could select with that pick, but there’s also the possibility that it could be sent to another team in a trade this summer. A team like the Utah Jazz, of course.
The trade target that’s popped up the most in trade rumors for the Knicks is Donovan Mitchell. For him to be traded, he’s going to have to request one because he still has four years left on his contract and that includes a $37.1 million player option for 2025-26.
If New York would’ve been able to get a higher draft pick, such as a top four pick, it would’ve been easier for the front office to use that as leverage in a possible trade.
But the No. 11 pick still holds value. There’s been one trade in particular that’s been floating around on social media that involves the Knicks trading Julius Randle, Obi Toppin, Immanuel Quickley, and the No. 11 pick to the Jazz in exchange for Mitchell.
The Knicks could use the No. 11 pick in the 2022 draft to trade for Donovan Mitchell.
Many New York fans want to see Randle leave this summer, but if he goes along with Toppin and Quickley, that may be too much for those same fans to bear.
If Mitchell voices to Utah that he wants out and he has an interest in going to the Knicks, the Jazz should be satisfied with that offer. Depending on what happens with Rudy Gobert, Utah would have to enter a rebuilding phase of some sort, and Toppin and Quickley would be key pieces for that reason.
We know that William Wesley, Allan Houston, and Randle were in attendance for Game 1 of the first-round playoff series between the Jazz and Mavericks in Dallas. It’s been speculated that they were there to watch Mitchell, but there’s also Jalen Brunson, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer if he doesn’t sign an extension with Dallas.
But with the Mavericks being in the Western Conference Finals and Brunson upping his value, there seems to be a higher likelihood that Mitchell will end up in New York over Brunson. Utah getting booted out of the playoffs by Dallas helped to increase those odds.
Knicks fans need to prepare themselves for losing young players like Toppin and Quickley in a trade during the offseason, even if it isn’t for Mitchell. And if it ends up being for Mitchell, he won’t come at a cheap price so New York will have to be willing to give up a lot in return.
Randle’s departure wouldn’t be a huge surprise, but both him and Toppin leaving would leave a void in the Knicks’ roster, which is something that the front office is well-aware of.
Perhaps the No. 11 pick will be used in a trade for Mitchell that won’t involve New York giving up as much, but let’s not forget that he’s 25-years-old and is a three-time All-Star.