Top 10 Players New York Knicks Should Be Targeting in Upcoming NBA Draft
After a disappointing end to their 2012-2013 campaign, the Knicks brass prepares for the upcoming draft. They have the #24 pick in the first round, which is their only pick. Here are 10 players that the 'Bockers should look to select if should they be available when they are put on the clock. These players are not in any particular order.
Jeff Withey, C, Kansas
Since the Knicks do not have a formidable backup to Tyson Chandler, The seven footer Withey would provide solid defense and offense competence when Chandler needs a rest. He shot 58.2 percent from the field this past season and averaged almost four blocks per contest.
Gorgui Dieng, C, Louisville
As previously mentioned, the Knicks need another option at center. Dieng, with his shot-blocking ability, is a good option if he should fall to the 24th pick. He even possesses the ability to pass at the top of the key and become a facilitator for the offense when he is not in the post. He reminds me of a more athletic version of Hasheem Thabeet.
Jamaal Franklin, SG, SDSU
Although he won't be able to wear long sleeves anymore, Jamaal Franklin could make a difference if he is available to the Knicks. His defensive intensity is reminiscent of his former teammate, current Spur Kawhi Leonard.
In terms of athletic ability, he could match up with some of the faster and better scorers in the East. A combination of Iman Shumpert and Franklin could give opposing teams fits on the perimeter.
Tim Hardaway Jr., SG, Michigan
Hardaway would fit into the Knicks chuck-em-up offensive mentality. The Knicks took a historical level of threes this past season, and drafting Hardaway would be a continuation of that style of play. Not only can he shoot, but he attacks the basket very well, which makes him a more viable draft prospect.
Reggie Bullock, SF, UNC
Bullock has size (6'7", 200 lbs) and shoots well from the field (47.6 percent this past season). His ability to defend a team's top players is important in an Eastern Conference that features a lot of scorers with size (Lebron James, for example).
Lorenzo Brown, PG, N.C. State
With Jason Kidd retiring, the Knicks need a backup point guard. Pablo Prigioni isn't getting any younger. Brown has size (6'5"), handles the ball well and is an effective passer. Drafting him could be part of the transition to a more up-tempo style of play that the Knicks have not had in recent memory
Shane Larkin, PG, Miami
Shane Larkin's quickness, passing ability and leadership were on display during his breakout season at the U. He can create off the dribble and off the pick and roll. He doesn't turn the ball over a lot, which fits into the mold already established by the Knicks, who were up near the top of the league in terms of least turnovers per game.
Erick Green, G, Virginia Tech
This dude can score. He averaged 25.2 points per game for the Hokies this past season. He has shown proficiency when it comes to catch-and-shoot situations and shots off the dribble. Considering that the Knicks are a team that tend to shoot a lot, efficiency in that department is always helpful.
C.J. Leslie, F, N.C. State
Leslie, regardless of the drop in numbers from two seasons ago to this season, is a offensively skilled player who can score, grab rebounds, block shots and get steals. This kind of skill set will be a nice pickup at the end of the first round.
Allen Crabbe, SG, Cal
As previously mentioned, the Knicks love to shoot the ball. Crabbe would fit that style of play very well. His 53.8 percent of shots made off of catch-and-shoot opportunities is perfect for the Knicks, who look to shoot before attacking the basket.