Wild Trade Proposal Sees Knicks Land ‘Dream’ Draft Target

Obi Toppin, New York Knicks

Getty Obi Toppin, New York Knicks

It’s no secret that the New York Knicks are in desperate need of a point guard, however, it looks increasingly likely that they will miss out on Jaylen Brunson, and the notion of acquiring Donovan Mitchell is nothing more than a pipe dream.

However, the Knicks do still have options, albeit expensive ones. Right now, New York holds the 11th pick in the upcoming draft, and while this year’s class doesn’t project to be littered with Earth-shattering talent, there are still some highly coveted young players sitting amongst the top five or six picks.

One of those players is Jaden Ivey, the Purdue star who is garnering lots of attention from around the league, and who could be the ideal fit next to RJ Barrett for multiple years to come.

The New York Post’s Zach Braziller recently released a new mock draft, one in which he postulates a draft-day trade by the Knickerbockers, a trade that lands them the fourth pick in the upcoming draft, which inevitably gets used on selecting Ivey.

“The Mavericks seem intent on keeping Jalen Brunson. Needing to make a backcourt splash, Leon Rose bites the bullet, and trades one of his best young assets, understanding it is the only way to get to the desired No. 4 spot in the draft. The Knicks own draft night, as a result, moving up from No. 11 to No. 4 for Purdue stud Jaden Ivey. It costs a lot — this year’s first pick, Obi Toppin, and multiple second-rounders go to the Kings,” Braziller wrote on June 15.

Knicks Doing Due Diligence on Ivey

The NBA draft is always difficult to project. Regardless of who is projected to go where, there is always a team that throws things out of sync, and leaves everybody else scrambling back to their big board to re-work their plans.

However, according to SNY’s Ian Begley, the Knicks front office is doing their due diligence on Ivey, and more specifically, which team’s have an interest in drafting the six-foot-four guard. It would seem that New York wants to know how high they would need to move up in the draft if they were truly going to have a shot at landing their point guard of the future.

“Something worth noting: Members of the organization have sought information on which teams have a strong interest in Ivey. So, at the very least, they have an interest in where Ivey may go in the draft. Some mock drafts predict Ivey will go to the Sacramento Kings at No. 4.

The Knicks, as noted earlier this month, have been open to moving up in the draft. It’s fair to assume that New York would have to part with significant assets to acquire Sacramento’s No. 4 pick…The goal would be to add young talent alongside the 22-year-old Barrett. So, the best the Knicks could reasonably offer is multiple first-round picks and a young player (Immanuel Quickley, Obi Toppin, Cam Reddish, Quentin Grimes, etc.),” Begley wrote on June 15.

Is Ivey the Answer for New York

Standing at six-foot-four, Ivey adds some much-needed size to the Knicks’ backcourt, and given his elite-level bursts of speed and high motor, the rookie would be an ideal fit next to Barrett moving forwards.

Ivey’s collegiate scoring numbers of 17.3 points on 46% shooting from the field and 35.8% shooting from deep are also encouraging, as are his 3.1 assists per game, per Sports-Reference. However, it’s the young guard’s ability to attack out of pick-and-roll situations that will have the Knicks front office salivating at the prospect of injecting him into their offensive sets.

The young guard ranked in the top 89 percentile in pick & roll offense as a scorer and passer this past season and given his ability to attack close-outs (he shot 75% when doing so) Ivey looks like he can pressure the rim and force defensive collapses – allowing for secondary drives or easy drive and kick opportunities.

The Kemba Walker experiment didn’t work after his poor season with the Boston Celtics, and Derrick Rose can’t be expected to shoulder the load moving forwards. Of course, as with any rookie, there will be some warts to his game, and he will need to acclimate to the NBA’s physicality and pace, but if the Knicks want a guard that can grow alongside their young core, they couldn’t do much better than making a move for Ivey – even if it does cost them some future assets.


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