Draft Preview # 2.4: Prospect Evaluation

Written by Ian Ellis (iellis2018@yahoo.com)

‘Sup folks, today we look at the most important part of the draft, the players (duh). Let’s see who the heck these people are, their strengths & weaknesses and how they would fit in with our Knicks. There are three tiers I will place all the players in: the hopefuls, the most likely and the buy-a-picks.

Buy-a-Picks

Alright, we’re finally at the end. The Knicks have been rumored to be active shoppers of a second round pick, so these are some players that could be avaliable to pick in the second round. What was my criteria for these players? Well, I just picked some players I liked and whom I think could fit with the Knicks.

Pat Connaughton

Pat Connaughton

NBA Player Comparison: Danny Green

Highlights: HERE

 

Pat Connaughton is probably the player on this list you should keep your eye on the most, as he is planned to workout with the Knicks. Conaughton, a senior wing (SG or maybe SF in small-ball lineups) out of Notre Dame, opened most eyes at the NBA combine where he posted a ridiculous 44” vertical. The reason I have Connaughton as one of my buy-a-picks is because I absolutely love his ‘3 & D’ role player potential. He has good size at 6’5”, has a good solid frame, and as already mentioned is a crazy good athlete. With his physical profile, he is a solid on ball defender (look at this block!), good help defender (averaged 0.9 blocks) and is also a good rebounder at his position as he averaged 7.4 rebounds. In addition, he is a 3 point marksman as he shot the 3 at a 42% clip. Also, while he only averaged 1.5 assists his senior year, his junior year he averaged 3 (probably due to his decline in minutes and the offense being more oriented toward Jerian Grant handling the ball), so I don’t worry about his passing skills. All these good attributes together make me love him because he seems like an ideal role player, someone who can shoot 3’s, rebound, pass and defend.  In terms of weaknesses, he’s already 22 so he’s not gonna get a lot better overall and he is not a particularly good driver, but remember, a team who is drafting  him is drafting him to get a role solid player, not a star, therefore these weaknesses are not that impacting. In terms of player comparison, Danny Green is perfect. Danny Green was a second round pick (Connaughton is projected to be one), both players are 3 point marksmen, good rebounders for their position and good defenders. His Knick fit is perfect because he’s not going to command the ball, he can come off the bench (most likely) or start (if the odds fall that way) and just do anything to impact the game.

Robert Upshaw

Robert Upshaw

NBA Player Comparison: Festus Ezeli

Highlights: HERE

 

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Knicks vs Spurs 11-10-13 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee
The Spurs was an offensive juggernaut during Sunday’s matinee game with the Knicks, leading by as many as 37 points. Danny Green opened up the game by knocking down a couple of quick threes. Within three minutes of the game’s tipoff the Spurs were up 10-0. The Spurs extended on this run, tripling the Knicks score, leading 21-7. The Spurs constantly double teamed Carmelo Anthony, content with the ball swinging to Andrea Bargnani, and letting him beat them.  Unfortunately for the Knicks, Bargnani could not deliver, going 2-6 in the first quarter. JR Smith made his return to the Knicks, after serving his five game suspensions for violating the terms of the NBA’s anti-drug policies, hearing a nice ovation, entering in the game with 7:08 left in the first quarter. JR Smith showed his rust, missing all four of his shots, and turning the ball over twice in the first quarter. Smith finished the game going 1-9 from the field, including four turnovers. The Spurs shot 72% in the first quarter, with Tony Parker leading the way, weaving through the defense, scoring 10 points and handing out 5 assist in the first quarter to jump out to a 35-17 first quarter lead.
            The start of the second quarter, the Knicks did not fare any better, JR Smith air balled a three, which then led to another Danny Green three on the other end. The boos rained on the Knicks again in Madison Square Garden, with the home team losing 42-19. With the constant double and triple teams on Carmelo Anthony in the half court sets, Anthony started to bring the ball up himself, to ignite the offense. Carmelo Anthony had 10 points in the second quarter, going a perfect 4-4 from the field, including a buzzer beater to end the first half. The Spurs led by as many points as 24 in the first half, this cut Spurs’ lead to sixteen points, with the score 61-45.