The results of Tuesday's NBA Lottery weren't a disaster for the Knicks, but they certainly weren't ideal.
New York finished with the No. 3 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, earning the chance to select a top college player or to try to trade the pick for an established star.
R.J. Barrett, who could be on the board when the Knicks select on June 20, will meet with New York on Wednesday in Chicago ahead of the NBA Draft Combine, per SNY's Adam Zagoria.
Patrick Ewing, arguably the best player in franchise history, was on the dais for New York when it landed the No. 3 pick. While the Knicks didn't win the top prize -- and the chance to draft Duke's Zion Williamson -- the Big Fella still delivered a solid result.
This is widely considered a draft with three elite prospects at the top (Williamson, Barrett, Ja Morant),and the Knicks will have a chance to take either Morant or Barrett. It depends on what Memphis does with the No. 2 pick.
"Be happy with what we have," Ewing said. "Cherish him, help him, support him, support the team and hopefully good things will come."
Morant, for one, seemed optimistic about the possibility of playing in New York.
"Obviously it's New York. It's somewhere I've never been before. But it's a big spot. And I guess it'd be a great experience," he said on Tuesday night. "Obviously, it'd be great (to play in a big city), the fanbase. But like I said before, wherever I go I'll be happy."
Any Knicks pursuit of Anthony Davis became more complicated. New Orleans landed the No. 1 overall pick, something it had just a six percent chance of doing coming into the Lottery. The Knicks had a 40 percent chance of getting a top-three pick, so they beat the odds.
"We are excited to have the third pick and are confident we will be able to add a great player to our talented young core and the team that we are building," Knicks president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry said in a statement.
Clearly, free agency becomes more important for New York now that it won't have the chance to draft Williamson, who was looking forward to playing in the Big Apple and excited about the opportunity that came with being a Knick, a source said, confirming an ESPN report. The club has enough cap space for two free agents and will get meetings with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, among others.
Another issue moving forward for New York: Does it make sense to trade the No. 3 pick as part of a package for another star or to keep it? And how does New Orleans' winning the lottery change their approach with Davis?
Griffin said, essentially, that the Pelicans are confident that the 2019 No. 1 pick will help them convince Davis to say. But it seems more likely than not that Davis will still seek a trade from New Orleans.
Davis, as SNY reported earlier, would certainly consider re-signing with the Knicks if he felt he could be successful in New York. So the Knicks will have decisions to make as the June 20 NBA Draft approaches.
Whether they keep the pick or trade it, the mere acquisition of it is a solid step in what the Knicks hope will be a quick rebuild. New York hopes to use the pick and its cap space this summer to build a championship-contending team.
So, after losing an NBA-high 65 games last season, the Knicks got a solid win on Tuesday -- the chance to draft a top college player or to try to trade him for a star. It wasn't Zion, but it wasn't a total disaster.
"I was still hoping that we were going to get the No. 1 pick, but three's very good," Ewing said. "…. You look at all the guys that are in this room, they all have great talent. They all have great abilities. And whoever we pick is going to be somebody that is going to help to rebuild the franchise."