Ian Begley, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Texas Tech's Jarrett Culver worked out for the Knicks on Wednesday and has workouts scheduled with the Bulls (No. 7 pick), Hawks (No. 8) and Cavs (No. 5). He's already worked out for the Lakers (No. 4).
Based on those workouts, it's clear that Culver is a top 8 pick in the draft.
He said on Wednesday that he thinks his defense is what separates him from other top 2019 prospects.
"Nowadays, it's hard to find people who take pride in defense. But I'm one of them. I take pride in defense. Being at Texas Tech taught me a lot, so I feel like on the defensive side I'm elite," Culver said after his Knicks workout.
Culver, who was set to have dinner with members of the organization on Wednesday night, believes he can make an impact immediately on defense.
That would benefit a Knicks team that has struggled mightily on that end of the floor in recent seasons.
Culver will likely be there when the Knicks select third. Duke's RJ Barrett will also likely be available at No. 3.
Most draft experts in the media would be surprised if the Knicks passed on Barrett, but there are members of the organization who are fans of the 6-7 Culver, who helped Texas Tech reach the NCAA title game this year.
"They know what I have. They know what I can do. So I feel like just talking to the coaching staff and everybody here it's great," Culver said. "I can come in and make an impact on both sides of the ball."
Culver averaged 18.5 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game last year at Texas Tech. He shot 46.1 percent from the field and 30.4 percent from three-point range.
Here's Culver on a few other topics:
On Barrett, who is scheduled to work out for the Knicks next week: "I feel like we're great players, both of us, he has a lot of talent, I have a lot of talent. And at the end of the day it's not our choice where we go, it's for everybody else to choose. So we just put in the work. I know he's working hard, I'm working hard. So it is what it is."
On the Knicks' roster: "Yeah, a lot of talented guys. I mean, it'll be great to play with so many talented guys. I actually played with Mitchell Robinson (in) AAU. I mean, they got a lot of talented guys that's here in New York and I feel like they're going to be a great team. (Robinson's success in his rookie season) didn't surprise me. I played with him. What he did this year is what he was doing when I played with him, blocking every shot, being athletic. He's a great player."
On playing at Madison Square Garden: "It's always special. The Garden is iconic. Just to be out there and play there. That would be a dream. It's not my choice at the end of the day. But it's great out here in New York. I've played at the Garden twice. It was great to play there."