2021 NBA Draft mock #21: New York Knicks (via Dallas Mavericks): Jaden Springer
The Knicks have two positions of need this offseason. They have three point guards hitting the open market in Derrick Rose, Elfrid Payton, and Frank Ntilikina. Both Nerlens Noel and Mitchell Robinson could be free agents as well. New York has a $1.8 million team option on Mitch Rob, but accepting it makes him an unrestricted free agent in 2022.
Could the Knicks take two point guards in the first round? There is a lack of big men at this point in the draft making it more likely.
Springer is still 18 years old, and he flashed plenty of potential during his lone season at Tennessee. The 6’4 guard averaged 12.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 1.2 steals, and 0.4 blocks in 25.9 minutes per game. He shot 46.7 percent from the field and 43.5 percent on his 46 3-point attempts.
The 18-year-old profiles as a strong ball-handler, playmaker, and shooter. He is not a jump out of the gym athlete, but he brings energy and effort on the defensive end. Expect Springer to struggle on that end of the floor early in his career. He offers plenty of upside, and the Knicks are happy to pounce at 21 in a pick they received from the Dallas Mavericks in the Kristaps Porzingis trade.
Next: No. 22