Four Of The Knicks Most Likely Trade Targets

Malik Monk

image via Clutch Points
PositionHeightWeightAgeTeamSalaryYears Left On Contract
Guard6-3200 lbs21Charlotte Hornets$4,028,4002
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Monk’s current shot chart displays his primary struggles are the corner-three and just in front of the foul line (many floaters in this range). It also shows a significant decrease in shot attempts around the rim from the left side, compared to the right. Monk takes just over a third (34.63%) of his shots from three, excluding both corners (may have to do with Charlotte’s dribble handoff offense).

Statistics (2019-20)

Positives

  • 43.4% Field Goal Percentage (56.6% From Inside The Three-Point Line)
  • 80.8% Free Throw Percentage
  • 52.6% True Shooting Percentage

Negatives

  • 25.6% Three-Point Percentage (On 3.5 Attempts Per Game)
  • 1.60 Turnover Ratio
  • 26.5% Turnover Frequency When Handling The Ball During A Pick & Roll
  • 0.8 Steals Per 36 Minutes
  • Net Rating -7.9

Strengths

  • Attacking The Rim
  • Passing
  • Pick & Roll As The Ball-Handler (Shooting Off The Dribble, Rejecting Screens, Getting Into The Paint)
  • Speed, Getting Downhill & Pushing In Transition
  • Getting Over/Through Screens
  • Sliding His Feet Well On Defense (Good Lateral Quickness)

Weaknesses

  • Three-Point Shooting
  • Shot Selection
  • Finishing With His Left Hand
  • Floater
  • Turnovers
  • Help Defense (Doesn’t Dig Much & Rarely Slides To Protect The Rim)
  • Doesn’t Box-Out (Although He Does Look To Rebound Defensively)

Review

Monk is amidst his worst season from three and the charity stripe. A change of scenery and some regained confidence, could help his shooting numbers tremendously. Monk has issues staying balanced when shooting and taking bad shots, hindering his shooting percentages (especially beyond the arc). His shooting numbers should progress significantly in the next few years, making him a very dynamic scorer (three-level threat). He is great at getting into the paint and scoring around the rim, but he could really improve his left-handed finishing and work on developing his floater package. Also, Monk tends to play too fast at times and get out of control, leading to too many turnovers. Defensively, Monk shows flashes of being a very sound 1 on 1 defender. His issues are primarily rotating and playing help defense. He could also improve his rebounding, by being more physical and boxing out (instead of roaming towards the rim).

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Fit

Malik Monk is a combo-guard, capable of playing the 1 or 2, while occasionally playing the 3. Monk is a bit undersized at the 2/3, but his speed and scoring ability allow for him to makeup for his defensive struggles at those positions. He could be a nice fit alongside Frank Ntilikina, manning the backcourt. Ntilikina and Monk could utilize dribble-handoffs, leading into the pick and roll, to generate offensive flow for the Knicks (similar to Charlotte’s offense, highlighting Devonte’ Graham and Terry Rozier). Monk’s driving could free up more open looks for Ntilikina, who is shooting 37% from three when he’s wide open (closest defender is 6+ feet away). Defensively, both players are very quick and can contest the three-point line well (the Knicks are last in the NBA, allowing opponents to shoot 38.5% from three). Monk’s lack of size and defensive capabilities could be shadowed by Ntilikina’s prowess on that side of the ball. Monk would also have ample opportunities to run the offense and play in transition, due to Ntilikina’s passiveness on offense and ability to generate turnovers on defense (Ntilikina is averaging 5.8 field goal attempts and 1 steal per game in 21 minutes of action).

Charlotte’s Interest

Monk has been a disappointment for the Charlotte Hornets, since being drafted at pick 11 in the 2017 draft. Monk is in his third season and has yet to average 20 minutes, 10 points, 2.5 rebounds, and/or over 2 assists per game. Monk has also failed to shoot over 35% from three for a season and is currently shooting a career worst, 25.6% from downtown. The Hornets seem to have their backcourt of the future set, after signing Terry Rozier to a 3 year, $58 million deal and second year standout, Devonte’ Graham, leading the Hornets with 18.3 points and 7.6 assists per game. The Hornets are currently last in 2 point field goals made, 26th in the NBA in rebounds, and 27th in steals. Julius Randle (21.1 points, 10.4 rebounds, 0.9 steals per 36 minutes) and Bobby Portis (16.4 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 0.9 steals per 36 minutes) would be two Knicks who could significantly help Charlotte’s struggling, front court. Charlotte may also have interest in hometown hero, Dennis Smith Jr..

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Jalen Brunson

image via Clutch Points
PositionHeightWeightAgeTeamSalaryYears Left On Contract
Guard6-1190 lbs23Dallas Mavericks$1,416,8523
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Brunson’s current shot chart shows his impressive ability to score from all three levels. Brunson does a great job at using his body and shot fakes to finish around the rim. He is also a really good jump-shooter. His biggest struggles are the corner-threes and just behind the right block (where he has to rely on his right hand and is harder to free up his left to shoot).

Statistics (2019-20)

Positives

  • 46.6% Field Goal Percentage
  • 78.8% Free Throw Percentage
  • 55.1% True Shooting Percentage
  • 6.7 Assists Per 36 Minutes
  • 5.0 Rebounds Per 36 Minutes
  • 2.3 Turnovers Per 36 Minutes
  • Net Rating 7.5
  • 47.1% Score Frequency On Pick & Roll As The Ball Handler

Negatives

  • 1.0 Steal Per 36 Minutes
  • 34.4% Three-Point Percentage (On 2.0 Attempts Per Game)
  • 2.6 Free Throw Attempts Per 36 Minutes

Strengths

  • Pick & Roll As The Ball Handler
  • Shooting/Scoring From All Three Levels
  • Gets Balanced & In His Legs When Shooting (Impressive Footwork, Especially Off The Dribble)
  • Multiple Speeds When Driving
  • Finishing With His Left Hand
  • Using His Body To Protect The Ball When Finishing At The Rim
  • High Basketball IQ
  • Ball Security

Weaknesses

  • Shooting From Both Corners
  • Matching Speed & Physicality On Defense
  • Giving Shooters Too Much Room
  • Seeing The Man & The Ball On Defense (Gets Caught Ball Watching Or Not Seeing Opponents Driving Too Often)
  • Finishing With His Right Hand

Review

Brunson is a former two-time champion and player of the year from his time at Villanova. He is a very intelligent player that plays under control, with great poise. Brunson displays an uncanny ability to create space for himself and knock-down shots all over the floor. He utilizes multiple speeds and his strong upper body to generate open looks. Brunson thrives in the pick and roll and also has a nice post game against players of similar size. He is a very good passer and consistently makes the right play on offense. He has room to grow, finishing with his right hand and shooting a higher percentage from the corners. Defensively, Brunson’s lack of height and athleticism hurt him. He struggles to stick with quicker guards and can be taken advantage of by bigger players, when he switches on to them. Brunson can improve defensively by seeing the man and the ball at all times and looking to draw more charges when bigger players drive on him.

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Fit

Jalen Brunson is already a fantastic offensive weapon in the NBA. He has consistently demonstrated his ability to create good looks for himself and his teammates in many ways. His formidable shooting and crafty playmaking, would really help the Knicks space the floor and generate open looks for the rest of the Knicks. However, his defensive struggles would be a concern. Brunson struggles at defending the three-point line and the Knicks already own one of the worst perimeter defenses in the NBA. Brunson paired with Reggie Bullock or Damyean Dotson off the bench, could be a nice combination of three-point shooting and additional defense on the perimeter to help Brunson. Mitchell Robinson or another shot blocker would be of value as well, allowing Brunson to play tighter coverage on the perimeter and sacrifice paint touches from being being beat off the dribble more often.

Dallas’ Interest

The Mavericks have been rumored to have interest in adding scoring to their front court. They already have a solidified backcourt in Luka Doncic and Tim Hardaway Jr.. Dallas could utilize Julius Randle, Marcus Morris Sr., or Bobby Portis to fill their need. Porzingis plays away from the basket on pick and pops, most of the time. This makes Julius Randle a really nice fit for them (averaged over 10+ points in the paint per game in his last 3 seasons).

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Landry Shamet

image via Clutch Points
PositionHeightWeightAgeTeamSalaryYears Left On Contract
Guard6-4190 lbs22Los Angeles Clippers$1,995,1204
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Shamet’s current shot chart displays his impressive perimeter shooting. He clearly prefers to shoot from the left side of the floor, but can shoot from three at a high percentage in any zone. Shamet has the ability to score around the rim, but his lack of athleticism makes it tougher for him to score over the premier shot blockers of the NBA. It is worth noting that he rarely settles for a midrange jumper.

Statistics (2019-20)

Positives

  • 38.9% Three-Point Percentage (On 5.8 Attempts Per Game)
  • 94.3% Free Throw Percentage
  • 59.9% True Shooting Percentage
  • 1.1 Turnovers Per 36 Minutes
  • 41.5% Three-Point Percentage On Catch & Shoots

Negatives

  • 2.9 Rebounds Per 36 Minutes
  • 2.2 Assists Per 36 Minutes
  • 0.5 Steals Per 36 Minutes
  • 36.7% Field Goal Percentage On Pull-Up Jumpers

Strengths

  • Perimeter Shooting
  • Catch & Shoot Opportunities
  • Cutting And Relocating Off The Ball
  • Has A Nice Floater & Can Finish With Both Hands
  • Consistent Shooting Stroke (Quick With High Release)
  • Quality Passer

Weaknesses

  • Lacks Explosiveness & Burst
  • Slow Laterally (Hard Time Staying In Front Of Quicker Players)
  • Shooting Off The Dribble
  • Finishing In Traffic Around The Rim

Review

Landry Shamet is an offensive weapon from the perimeter. He has shown to be one of the top, three-point, shooters in the game. Moving off the ball well and spacing the floor, makes him a valuable piece for any team offensively. Shamet can improve his ability to finish/draw fouls against opposing rim protectors and facilitate more off the dribble to take his offensive game to the next level. It is possible that Shamet is used almost exclusively as a catch and shoot player due to that being his role on the Clippers and he may have the tools to show more facilitating in a larger role elsewhere. Defensively, his lack of quickness and athleticism makes it difficult for him to stick with opponents off the dribble. When faster guards put the ball on the deck, he tends to get beat or drop off too far, sacrificing the open jumper. In general, Shamet does a good job contesting the three-point line, but struggles at defending around the rim. It would behoove Shamet greatly on both sides of the ball if he added some strength/weight to his 190 pound frame.

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Fit

Shamet could be of great help to the Knicks offense. The Knicks offensive play style is conducive to playmakers getting into the paint and shooters stretching the floor. The Knicks are 27th in the NBA in three-point percentage (33.7%) and need better shooters for their system to be efficient for their roster. He also covers the three-point line pretty well, another area where the Knicks need help. The issue with Shamet is he can be too slow to guards 2s, but too small to guard 3s. Pairing Shamet with a 2/3 such as RJ Barrett could prove to be beneficial for both players. Shamet could guard the weaker wing player, while Barrett (who is capable of guarding both positions) pick up the tougher assignment. Offensively, Barrett will have more room to drive with Shamet spacing the floor. Shamet would also get good looks when defenses collapse to stop Barrett from getting open looks around the basket. Also, Shamet’s struggles with interior defense could be shadowed by the Knicks top shot blocker, Mitchell Robinson.

Los Angeles’ Interest

The Clippers are currently tied with the Toronto Raptors for the third best record in the league. After acquiring Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, the Clippers will be all hands on deck in trying to win the championship this season. Los Angeles may be one piece away from winning or losing the title. Marcus Morris Sr. has been rumored to be an asset they are interested in, due to his incredible shooting/scoring ability and veteran leadership. Morris Sr. is currently 5th in the NBA, shooting 43.9% from three and is averaging a career-high, 19.2 points per game.

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Jerome Robinson

image via Clutch Points
PositionHeightWeightAgeTeamSalaryYears Left On Contract
Guard6-4190 lbs22Los Angeles Clippers$3,567,7203
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Robinson’s current shot chart displays his ability to make midrange jumpers and three-pointers towards the top of the key. He appears to be more comfortable shooting from the left side of the floor, while struggling significantly from the corners and 5-10 feet from the basket.

Statistics (2019-20)

Positives

  • 1.9 Turnovers Per 36 minutes

Negatives

  • 33.6% Field Goal Percentage
  • 28.8% Three-Point Percentage
  • 58.8% Free Throw Percentage
  • 42.1% True Shooting Percentage
  • 4.1 Personal Fouls Per 36 Minutes
  • 1.3 Free Throw Attempts Per 36 Minutes
  • 3.4 Assists Per 36 Minutes

Strengths

  • Smooth Shooting Stroke With A High Release
  • Really Good Footwork On Catch And Shoots, Step Backs, & When Utilizing Screens
  • Very Good Mid-Range Jump Shooter
  • Finishes Consistently With Both Hands At The Rim
  • Basketball IQ
  • Getting Into Passing Lanes
  • Solid Help Defender (Rotates Well)

Weaknesses

  • Strength
  • Facilitating (Doesn’t Create As Many Opportunities For His Teammates As Someone With His Scoring & Passing Ability Should)
  • Short Jumpers/Floaters
  • Lateral Quickness (Gets Beat Off The Dribble)

Review

Robinson is your prototypical jack of all trades, master of none. He’s shown spurts of being a very good facilitator and three-point shooter, but his current numbers don’t show that. Like most young players with inconsistent minutes, his play on the court has been inconsistent. Robinson’s game is very dependent on his three-point shooting. When he’s knocking down the triple, opponents are forced to guard him tighter on the perimeter, offering him more opportunity to elude them off the dribble and score around the rim (also sets up his mid-range game). Otherwise, Robinson’s lack of acceleration makes it hard for him to drive past sagging defenders. Defensively, Robinson is pretty technically sound off the ball, but struggles 1 on 1. Adding strength/weight and sharpening his footwork/positioning would help him on this side of the ball.

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Fit

Jerome Robinson would be another young player that will take time to grow with the Knicks. He’s only 22 years old and could be a nice piece down the road. His scoring and shooting ability are exactly what the Knicks have severely lacked from their guards as of late. Robinson could grow into the role of the 6th man in a few years and consistently score off the bench. As for now, he’s had a hard time getting many minutes with the Clippers. He can play the 1 or the 2, giving him a chance to play alongside Ntilikina/another guard off the bench if Dotson moves to the 3 or starts. Robinson would definitely be a longterm, value addition for the Knicks, rather than instant impact.

Los Angeles’ Interest

The Clippers may be in the market for adding veteran shooting, but unwilling to sacrifice any of their usual contributors. Robinson could be a name that pops up for players such as Wayne Ellington or Reggie Bullock. This would be a minor move for the Clippers, possibly giving them one more shooter/weapon off the bench. He could also be apart of a larger deal involving Marcus Morris Sr.. Moving Robinson, a former lottery pick two years ago, could be tough to pry away, unless the Clippers are sold on the return they obtain, takes them over the top.

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