The New York Knicks have been one of the league's more notorious draft-talent evaluators in recent years—in years when New York hasn’t shortsightedly squandered its pick, that is.
Since 2000, the Knicks made a total of 23 picks—12 in the first round, 11 in the second.
To call it a mixed bag would be a polite understatement.
Indeed, as ESPN New York’s Ian Begley recently noted, New York’s history is rife with draft-day duds:
...In 2002, the Knicks sent their first-round pick to the Nuggets in the Antonio McDyess trade. That pick turned into Nene, one of the top big men in this year’s playoffs.
In 2006, the Knicks’ pick (No. 2) went to the Bulls and turned into LaMarcus Aldridge. In 2007, the Knicks’ pick (No. 9) went to Chicago in a pick swap. The Bulls selected Joakim Noah. The Knicks took Wilson Chandler at No. 23.
In 2010, the Jazz took Gordon Hayward with the No. 9 pick, which was given up by the Knicks in the Stephon Marbury trade. It wasn’t all bad, though. The Knicks’ first-round picks in 2012 (Royce White) and 2004 (Kirk Snyder) haven’t turned into top-tier players.
Amazing as it may sound, the Knicks haven’t exactly whiffed on all their post-2000 swings.
What follows are the five best and worst picks (two of the former, three of the later) that New York has made this millennium.
Why limit our query to the last 14 years? For the simple fact that a particular team’s recent draft history provides a much clearer window into its organizational philosophy—where it’s been and where it’s going—than an analysis of every pick it has ever made.
Let’s just say the Knicks’ window is in dire need of a cleaning.