Former President of the New York Knicks Phil Jackson reportedly wanted to trade Kristaps Porzingis for the number one overall pick; and draft point guard Lonzo Ball.
On the Hoops Hype podcast with Alex Kennedy, veteran NBA reporter Peter Vecsey shed some light on a little-known topic.
Prior to the NBA draft, Phil Jackson attempted to trade the Knicks’ Latvian star, Kristaps Porzingis.
Vecsey says that Jackson was pushing the seven foot forward more-so when the Boston Celtics still held the number one pick.
“People knew, they probably wouldn’t have accepted, but Phil was angling to try and trade Porzingis for the No. 1 pick to Boston and he would have taken [Lonzo] Ball. That’s who he was after. In the end, people might really like that.”
As the reporter notes, New York fans may have welcomed Ball with open arms. His freshman year with UCLA, Lonzo Ball averaged 14.6 points, 7.6 assists, and 6 rebounds per contest.
Finally, the Knicks would have a point guard fit to potentially lead the franchise back to relevancy.
The story line for more than one franchise would have been altered, as the Celtics, Lakers, and 76ers alike would have been faced with different options.
Additionally, this draft selection may have swayed the opinion of veteran forward Carmelo Anthony, who has been working on a trade solution with New York for months.
Last season, Kristaps Porzingis averaged 18.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 2 blocks per game.
There can only be one unicorn, and for now, he plays for the New York Knicks.
Let’s keep it that way, Steve Mills.