Video: RJ Barrett Will Only Work Out for Knicks; NY Is 'The Place I Want to Be'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJune 10, 2019

Duke's RJ Barrett (5) guards his opponent during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Syracuse in Durham, N.C., Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. Syracuse won 95-91. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
Gerry Broome/Associated Press

Duke star RJ Barrett left little doubt as to his wishes on the night of the 2019 NBA draft June 20.

Barrett worked out for the New York Knicks on Monday and told reporters he doesn't plan on formally meeting with any other teams prior to the draft. He added that New York "is the place I want to be."


R.J. Barrett won't be meeting with any other teams, and says that he wants to be a Knick: "This is the place I want to be, I hope they draft me" https://t.co/E1i11C1C17

The Knicks have the third overall pick, and it seems likely Barrett will still be available when New York is on the clock.

Everybody expects Zion Williamson to be the No. 1 selection to the New Orleans Pelicans, and ESPN.com's Jonathan Givony reported in May the Memphis Grizzlies "appear to have locked in" on Ja Morant with the No. 2 pick.

In his most recent mock draft, Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman projected Barrett to go third overall.

Playing in New York would mean an increased level of scrutiny for Barrett based on the size of the media market and the Knicks' popularity outside of the Big Apple. He would welcome that additional attention.

"It would be a lot of fun, playing in the Garden, the bright lights," Barrett told reporters in May. "They have so much history down there. It would be amazing."

During an appearance on ESPN's First Take on June 6, Barrett also discussed why he'd be equipped to handle the pressure of playing for the Knicks.

Of course, Barrett's dreams will quickly evaporate if the Knicks use their 2019 first-rounder as one of the biggest trade chips in a deal for New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis.

ESPN.com's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Monday that David Griffin, the Pelicans' executive vice president of basketball operations, had spoken to interested parties about what kind of return he's looking for in a Davis trade.

According to Wojnarowski, the Knicks are one of the teams in pursuit of the six-time All-Star.