Knicks Fans Will Be Thrilled About Their Reported Draft Strategy

The New York Knicks have two first-round draft picks in the late part of the draft back-to-back. An insider reported the team will look to trade them.
New York Knicks v Chicago Bulls
New York Knicks v Chicago Bulls / Michael Reaves/GettyImages

The New York Knicks are fresh off being one win away from their first Eastern Conference Finals appearance in two decades and the franchise is looking to make their window last a bit longer this offseason. According to ESPN's Jonathan Givony, the New York Knicks are looking "into trade scenarios involving their two picks in the 20s to prolong their current competitive window".

This comes as the Knicks have chosen to have a veteran-led roster with head coach Tom Thibodeau not willing to play rookies a high amount of minutes. In recent years, the franchise hasn't really valued the draft. They've either outright traded their picks or traded rookies that they select later on in draft to acquire veteran talent.

Despite playing extremely well for the Knicks during his time with the franchise, Isaiah Hartenstein will likely be leaving New York in free agency as the squad can't offer more than 72 million dollars over 4 years due to CBA rules. According to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, league executives expect teams with space to offer the center around 80 to 100 million dollars over 4 years.

This will likely make it very hard for the Knicks to keep Hartenstein despite the love that he has received from the fans and upper management. With the veteran center possibly leaving the squad, it's easy to see what the Knicks should do.

The Knicks Must Target a Veteran Center or Two to Possibly Replace Isaiah Hartenstein

With the limited space that the Knicks have in free agency, the franchise is probably best suited trying to move one or both of these picks to get a backup center that can start in certain situations. Yes, that may be a bit of an ask for two late first round picks but New York only needs to go after a very specific kind of center.

The franchise only needs to target centers that have a lot of great rebounding potential. While New York fans would love prime Kareem Abdul-Jabbar out there, the franchise doesn't need a superstar to back up Mitchell Robinson. Yes, this possible trade will be extremely important considering Robinson's injury history. Still, the franchise only needs a certain kind of center who can help the franchise on both sides of the glass.

With a rookie unable to crack a Thibodeau rotation in years 1,2 or possibly even year 3 in some situations, it's good that the franchise is looking to shop one or both of these first-round picks.