The New York Knicks continue to be linked to Duke forward R.J. Barrett with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.
A selection of this ilk likely wouldn’t entice top-end free agents to the long downtrodden organization. Given that the Knicks are hoping to be big-time players in free agency, a move out of the third spot makes sense.
According to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, that could very well happen. The NBA insider notes that New York is considering a move down from the third spot with the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for two top-10 picks (eighth and 10th overall).
Givony notes that this would be a way for New York to add even more assets as a way to lure free agents.
Whether a trade of this ilk could even be on the table depends on a lot of factors.
What got us here: This isn’t like last year’s draft.
- Atlanta acquired the 10th pick in a draft-day deal with the Mavericks last June that sent Luka Doncic to Dallas with Trae Young going to the Hawks.
- Said deal included Dallas moving up from five to three for Doncic.
- It was a lot for the Mavs to pay. Though, Doncic is seen as a generational player. Can the same be said about Barrett?
First two picks: They are already etched in stone.
- The New Orleans Pelicans will be taking Duke’s Zion Williamson at No. 1 overall.
- Meanwhile, the Memphis Grizzlies have already told teams they plan on selecting Murray State guard Ja Morant at two.
- If that’s the case, Atlanta would have its option of any player outside of those two at No. 3 overall.
- This could entice the Hawks as they look to build around the impressive Trae Young.
Would this help the Knicks: We’re not too sure what the plan is.
- Common sense seems to suggest that New York would look to flip these two picks for a top-end starter.
- In turn, this would help entice the likes of Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, among others, to Broadway.
- The question here is whether the Knicks would select two players in hopes of moving them later or trade the picks while on the clock.
As the Knicks look to rebuild an organization that’s seen irrelevant in the NBA, what they do in June’s draft will be telling.
A trade of this ilk would signify larger things ahead in the offseason.