Finally, the 2022 NBA Draft is nearly upon us. Tomorrow evening, the New York Knicks will make their long-awaited selections. And here’s the question that all of us are wondering: Will New York trade up to select Jaden Ivey?
We’re close to figuring that out. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Washington Wizards have also shown interest in trading up for Ivey. The Sacramento Kings hold the No. 4 pick and have expressed interest in trading down in the draft, but in recent days there’s been more traction between Sacramento and Iowa’s Keegan Murray.
And according to SNY’s Ian Begley, the Knicks have reached out to the Detroit Pistons about moving up to No. 5. The draft talk is nearing the point of being too much to keep up with, but luckily fans are close to getting answers instead of more questions.
Let’s go off the assumption that New York will trade up in the draft, whether it’d be to No. 4 or No. 5. The Knicks won’t get by with giving up something measly in return, so with that being said, here are five players that could be traded on Thursday. Keep in mind that none of this is definite.
5 Knicks players that could be traded during the 2022 NBA Draft
5: Julius Randle
If you’re reading this, chances are that you’re remaining steadfast in your belief that Julius Randle won’t be on New York’s roster in 2022-23. And you very well could end up being right.
Randle’s four-year, $117 million extension doesn’t kick in until the start of next season. He had more downs than ups in 2021-22, which resulted in a large portion of the fanbase turning on him after his previous All-Star and MIP season.
The 27-year-old wrapped up this past year saying that he wanted to stay with the Knicks, and he’s spent time working out during the offseason with a few of his teammates.
But here’s the dilemma. Obi Toppin finally had his time to shine when Randle was out with a quad injury at the end of the season. Continuing to stash Toppin behind Randle in the rotation wouldn’t be fair to Toppin, the fanbase, or the organization. Nor would it make much sense.
New York is going to have to make a decision. And we know that if Sacramento trades the No. 4 pick, the Kings are interested in an “impact veteran.” Randle fits that description. With Mike Brown as the team’s new head coach, Sacramento’s hoping to make it back to the playoffs for the first time since 2005-06.
Would the Kings be satisfied with only the No. 11 pick and Randle? Absolutely not, especially since it’s been reported that they’re looking for something ‘significant’ in return, so if this scenario were to happen, Randle wouldn’t go alone.
Ian Begley reported that the Knicks “talked about offering multiple first-round picks” to Sacramento, but that “it wasn’t enough.” It’s not known which players were included in the deal, but that shows that a trade won’t come easy.
And if Randle isn’t traded during the draft or the remainder of the offseason, he could have a bounce-back season. Or not. If he were to be traded during the draft, it’d most likely be to the Kings.