Should the Knicks trade up into the first round of the 2023 NBA Draft?

Michigan Wolverines guard Jett Howard Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Michigan Wolverines guard Jett Howard Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports /

At the trade deadline, the Knicks sent their own first-round pick to the Portland Trail Blazers in return for Josh Hart. While this trade panned out better than most thought, this trade made it so New York would not have a first-rounder in this year’s draft.

Despite having plenty of future first-round picks, it may be worth spending some in order to trade up into this year’s draft in order to acquire more young talent. Not only is there plenty of talent to spare in this draft class, but the Knicks have some holes that could be filled by these players. 

The Knicks should do their best to trade into the first round of the 2023 NBA Draft:

As we mentioned, the Knicks currently don’t have a first-round pick in this year’s draft. However, this shouldn’t stop them from trying to acquire some young talent by trading back into it. The Knicks have limited cap space this offseason, making signing genuine free-agent talents difficult. However, a good way around this is trading away some smaller assets in order to draft a player who’d be on a rookie contract for four years.

Not only do the Knicks have the assets to pull this sort of trade off, but with how stacked this year’s draft class is it makes sense to do so. Not only would this likely save the Knicks money as opposed to signing an aging free agent. However, it could also give them a big piece of their up-and-coming young core.

With guys like Jett Howard, Gradey Dick, and Nick Smith Jr. possibly being available in the late teens to late twenties range, the Knicks are definitely going to want to consider trading up. Not only do these guys fit incredibly well with the Knicks, but they also have the potential to be massive game-changers on day one.

Some of the Knicks’ biggest needs heading into next season are improved three-point shooting, shot creation, and defense. While they wouldn’t help the defense out much, adding either Howard or Dick to the Knicks would be massive for the team’s offense. The three-level scoring they both provide are perfect fits for New York’s bench and the modern NBA in general.

If they wish to focus on their defensive issues, players like Jalen Hood-Schifino could very well be in the Knicks’ range to trade up. Really, there are very few downsides to trading up. New York will be getting a young player with upside, while saving money and not giving up too many assets.

Next. NBA Draft: Finding the perfect fit for each of the top prospects. dark

This year’s draft class is simply too stacked for the Knicks not to inquire about trading up. There’s a ridiculous amount of talent on both sides of the ball that would fit incredibly well with what the Knicks are trying to do. Hopefully, Rose will realize this and maximize the opportunity New York has to acquire some great young talent.