No. 5 Worst: Kenny Walker
Winning the dunk contest in 1989 was the best thing Kenny Walker did in a Knicks uniform. The fifth overall pick in 1986 was supposed to join Patrick Ewing and create a formidable, youthful front line in Madison Square Garden.
But Walker never really panned out in New York like he was supposed to. Expectations were sky high for the University of Kentucky product and that may have been what ultimately doomed him. Back in 2008, Walker told Mark Lelinwalla of the New York Daily News, “I was a guy that was supposed to replace Bernard King.”
It’s not necessarily Walker’s fault that he didn’t live up to King’s legend, but it was a disappointing pick all the same. The teams of the 90s led by Ewing surely would have been put over the top if Walker lived up to the hype that he came into the league with.
No. 5 Best: Richie Guerin
We didn’t forget about the old-timers. Richie Guerin is sneakily one of the best draft picks the Knicks ever made. The second rounder from way back in 1954 would go on to play on six All-Star teams, make three All-NBA teams, and eventually get inducted into the Hall of Fame. If you’re looking at all-time statistics for the franchise, you can bet that Guerin is close to the top in a litany of offensive categories.
Guerin was born and raised in the Bronx, played his college ball at Iona, and had the best years of his NBA career in New York. He redefined what it meant to be New York tough.
Guerin’s only knock is that he played on some absolutely brutal teams. Despite his individual success, the Knicks only finished with a record above .500 once during his tenure in New York.