What Will the New York Knicks Do For Their 8th Pick in NBA Draft 2017?

By Joe Bacaron, Posted: 05/18/17 03:38AM EDT
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Phil Jackson
Phil Jackson has a lot of decisions to make for the New York Knicks' eighth pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Photo : YouTube/TheCrossover)

To say the New York Knicks is in a state of flux would be an understatement. All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony is all but on the way out, while center Kristaps Porzingis skipped the exit interview with the coaching staff and Phil Jackson.

Then the Knicks dropped one spot down after losing the tie-breaker with the Minnesota Timberwolves during the lottery. At the end of the ping-pong balls, the team landed at eighth. However, Jackson looked at the missed chance with glass-half full optimism. "Our opportunity [at] seven could have been 10, so eight we'll live with. I think that we're good at what we do," he added.

His words might just have some truth in them. The last time the Knicks found itself in top 10 in the NBA draft board, it used its fourth pick in 2015 to choose unknown Kristaps Porzingis. The 7-2 center was booed by the Knick crowd in the arena. But the team had the last laugh when the Latvian proceeded to prove his detractors wrong.

In 2008, the Knicks used their eighth pick to choose Jordan Hill, who carved a solid career in the NBA but nothing special. Jackson, the NBA's winningest coach, said they badly need a point guard or a wing, perhaps to prepare for the departure of Anthony.

Almost all the of the projected top 10 players in the 2017 NBA Draft are either point guard or play on the wing, so the Knicks have a lot of choices at the eighth pick. Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball won't be available by then, and so would De'Aaron Fox. But there's still Malik Monk or Dennis Smith.

Another sleeper is Frank Ntilikina of France, a 6-5 point guard who is still 18 years old but have an amazing 7-foot wingspan. But the Knicks have shown that they are willing to gamble on a young unknown player from overseas like they did with Porzingis who was only 19 years old when he was drafted.



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