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NBA Draft 2011: Knicks Moving Up? And Other Draft Notes

Rumors have swirled in the past few days that the New York Knicks are talking to the Indiana Pacers about moving up in the first round of Thursday's 2011 NBA Draft. The Knicks, who sit at No. 17, would likely have to part ways with either Toney Douglas or Landry Fields, and would only move up two spots to No. 15, where the Pacers currently sit. You'd hope, if the Knicks made a trade of this sort, that they'd get another Indiana pick (probably a second-rounder), and roster player (Dahntay Jones?). We'll keep an eye on this, but you'd have to wonder who the Knicks have their eye on that they think either the Pacers or Philadelphia 76ers, who pick at No. 16, would take in front of them.

A good possibility is Klay Thompson, the junior guard out of Washington State who is widely regarded as the best shooter in the draft. According to the New York Post, after Thompson's recent workout with the Knicks, Donnie Walsh told Thompson that he reminded him of Reggie Miller. That's certainly high praise coming from Walsh, who drafted Miller to the Pacers in 1987. If the Knicks do draft Thompson, it gives them depth at shooting guard, where he and Landry Fields could battle it out for the starting job. The Knicks still have major needs at center, power forward, point guard, and overall defense from any position, and although they don't have a second-round pick, history has shown that the Knicks will look to add a pick later in the draft. Walsh has done this in two of the past three drafts, simply by just buying an additional choice from a cash-strapped team.

If the Knicks do add another pick, they can look for point guard depth in the second round - maybe UCLA's Malcolm Lee or Villanova's Corey Stokes - or for some size. Florida forward Chandler Parsons had a good workout with the Knicks, and there could be some value there if he falls to the middle of the second round. A mid-second round prospect the Knicks should think about adding if they buy another pick is Oakland center Keith Benson, who stands 6-foot-11.