With Obi Toppin, RJ Barrett, and combo guard Immanuel Quickley already on the roster, it makes sense for the Knicks to use this draft cycle as a chance to find the point guard of their future – especially if they’re confident of keeping or replacing, Mitchell Robinson this off-season.
According to an Eastern Conference executive, who spoke to Heavy.com under the condition of anonymity, TyTy Washington of Kentucky could be the perfect fit in New York.
“I think if TyTy Washington is there, they will take him. We’ll see how workouts go, but they are probably looking at a point guard in this draft. That is a good fit for them. He is a smart, solid playmaker, a pretty good shooter, crafty kind of scorer. Probably not an All-Star, but his best days as a point guard are ahead of him,” The executive said.
Washington is widely regarded as a high-level playmaking guard coming straight out of college, potentially earning him consistent floor time alongside Barrett and Toppin while his offensive game develops under NBA tutelage.
Kevin O’Connor Likes Washington in New York
Washington’s skillset seems like it could be a good fit with the Knicks, especially from a talent-meets-needs standpoint, and given his size, speed, and playmaking ability; New York would be hard-pressed to find a better guard to fit their system in this year’s draft.
Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer projected Washington could fall to the Knicks in early April, so it seems that the fit between player and franchise is widely recognized in the NBA community.
“He sees the whole floor and can make every pass, whether it’s a lob, a dish to a cutter, or a kick out. A lethal midrange scorer who makes 52.5 percent of his floaters and 43 percent of his dribble-jumper 2s. He has every move he needs to become a potent 3-point shooter with side steps and stepbacks, though he’s made just 30.4 percent of dribble-jumper 3s at Kentucky,” O’Connor wrote in the April edition of his ‘NBA Draft Guide’.
What can Washington Bring to The Knicks?
At six-foot-two, Washington has solid size for his position; he also boasts a six-foot-eight wingspan, which could be a sign of potential on the defensive end, especially when considering his natural speed and mobility on the court.
Throughout his maiden season with the Kentuck Wildcats, the playmaking guard averaged 12.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game, shooting 45.1% from the field and 35% from the perimeter through 31 games. Of course, as with all prospects entering the league, there are some concerns, and for Washington, they revolve around his lack of athleticism.
Despite his speed, size, and ability to penetrate off the dribble, Washington lacks the explosiveness to finish strong at the rim and will rely on feints, hesitation moves, and pick-and-roll offense to generate his scoring opportunities. However, it’s unlikely the one-and-done prospect is tasked with leading the Knicks’ offense, so he will have plenty of time to acclimate himself to a higher level of play.
With Kemba Walker’s knee issues persisting throughout the 2021-22 season, it’s almost certain the former Boston Celtics guard looks to find himself a new home this off-season, and with Jalen Brunson far from a sure thing, the Knicks could do well to focus their attention on Washington, and if he falls into their laps on draft night, it could well be a perfect fit for both parties.