Thursday night’s 2022 NBA Draft was complete chaos, with teams making 15 trades during the event. One franchise that left its fanbase guessing all night long was the New York Knicks, who entered the night with the 11th pick, before making two trades, ending up with the 42nd pick, and Trevor Keels.
But, it wasn’t that simple, or ugly. In fact, the Knicks wound up receiving three future first-round selections after the deals were completed, in addition to clearing Kemba Walker’s $9.1 million salary from their books.
In the end, the Knicks feel they have a much better chance at signing Jalen Brunson in free agency with the newfound space, and the additional future assets could lead to a bigger deal down the line. Fans understand this, even if they don’t like it.
New York Knicks prez Leon Rose praises roster flexibility
But still, for whatever reason Knicks president Leon Rose felt compelled to make a statement less than 12 hours after the draft took place, trying to address, or possibly clear up any misunderstandings. Or maybe he just felt the need to reduce the heat he’s taking in the Big Apple.
It’s an interesting statement to make, as teams don’t typically have the need to do so after conducting a simple draft, it’s something they do every year. At the time, the trades were confusing, but that’s part of the draft night madness in the NBA. Now that we’ve gotten a chance to understand the full details of the trades, one can see their plan taking motion.
That doesn’t mean it’s gonna pay off. Free agency will be telling, but even more so, will be how the prospects the Knicks passed on develop in their careers. Then again, if the Knicks can get back to the playoffs in 2023, no one will really care how they got there.