Knicks acquire 6th overall pick in mock trade that includes Mitchell Robinson move

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At this juncture, it appears increasingly likely that the New York Knicks will leverage their draft capital this year rather than trading it for established talent. The team’s lack of depth became glaringly apparent during their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup against the Indiana Pacers.

The Knicks’ playoff run took a downturn following injuries to key players Mitchell Robinson and OG Anunoby. Despite Jalen Brunson stepping up to score at unprecedented levels, the team struggled as the old adage holds true: one player cannot beat an entire team. In light of these challenges, Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report has proposed a trade scenario that could add a versatile piece to the Knicks’ roster.

Proposed Trade with the Knicks-Pelicans

In the suggested deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, the Knicks would send Mitchell Robinson and the 24th overall pick for the number six overall pick and veteran Larry Nance Jr. Although this may seem lopsided, it reflects the high value placed on Robinson in this particular exchange.

Dec 8, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA;  New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (23) looks on during the first half against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Potential Draft Pick: A Look at Stephon Castle

Trading into the top 10 would allow the Knicks to select a player capable of making an immediate impact. Targeting someone like Stephon Castle from Connecticut could be a game-changer. Castle, who just finished his freshman year, averaged 11.1 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 2.9 assists per game, shooting 47.2% from the field and 26.7% from three-point range. At 6’6″ and 215 pounds, he is just beginning to tap into his potential.

Castle’s versatility is one of his most compelling attributes. He can play multiple positions and fulfill various roles on the team, whether as a secondary ball handler or a flexible wing player. His physical strength also allows him to defend effectively against both larger forwards and quicker guards.

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Often compared to Bruce Brown, a solid two-way player, Castle will need time to develop his jump shot and scoring abilities. However, the Knicks’ roster possesses the veteran presence necessary to nurture his development patiently.

Considering Castle’s youth and potential, moving Robinson could create valuable salary cap space and allow the Knicks to focus on developing versatile, younger talent. Robinson’s injury history raises concerns about his reliability, especially during the playoffs. With Robinson scheduled to earn $14.3 million next season, reallocating those funds to bolster other areas, such as increasing the role of Isaiah Hartenstein, might be a prudent decision for the Knicks’ front office.

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