Kevin Knox is coming to The Garden.
The Knicks tabbed the 18-year-old Kentucky forward with the No. 9 pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday night at Barclays Center.
Along with Knox, Missouri's Michael Porter Jr. and Villanova's Mikal Bridges were among the players on the board.
Knox was booed by some in the crowd, saying after "I like that. It's motivation. A lot of the city wants Porter, but I'm ready to work, I'm ready to get to the organization and try to win some games. help the organization."
In his presser after getting selected, Knox recalled the last time Knicks fans booed a draft pick. Kristaps Porzingis turned out pretty well.
"They booed Porzingis and look where he's at now," Knox said. "...They can chant 'Michael Porter' all they want, they got Kevin Knox."
About being one of the youngest players in the Draft, Knox said he was going to use that to his advantage and just "keep getting better and better" while playing for David Fizdale, who he described as a "great coach," and learning from Kristaps Porzingis.
Knox, who is the second-youngest player in the draft, averaged 15.6 points and 5.4 rebounds in 32.4 minutes per game for John Calipari's Wildcats this past season.
Knox said on Wednesday that he would be patient with a rebuild if he wound up with the Knicks.
"Oh yeah, I would be real patient," he said. "But I'm going to go in there with a competitive mindset, go in there and try to give it my hardest and try and get a starting job. I know it's not going to be easy, but I'll be patient with the coaches."
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The Knicks went with 18-year-old Kevin Knox out of Kentucky over the guys rated ahead of him: Mikal Bridges, Michael Porter Jr., and Miles Bridges.
Was Knox a bit of a reach at the 9th pick? Yes.
Should they have taken the guy I've said to pick since the season ended, Mikal Bridges? Yes.
Could they have taken the high upside of Porter Jr.? Yes. But serious injuries at this young of an age are definitely a major red flag. Not picking him because of that reason indeed does make sense...although if Porter Jr. stays on the court, he could turn into a steal.
With all that being said, Knox fits the one position the Knicks truly needed most. He is 6'9" with a 7-foot wingspan and can shoot the rock. He's the second-youngest player in the entire draft. He's a versatile defender and he can score on the outside and around the rim. He fills a void that the Knicks have and can make an immediate impact in his rookie season.
The downside is that it may take him a few years to grow with this team. I strongly believe that Knox has a higher ceiling than Frank Ntilikina, though. It's a pick that makes more sense than Ntilikina did. With Kristaps Porzingis missing the first half of the season, Knox's role becomes that much more important, playing both the three and the four.
The Knicks clearly thought the upside of Knox was higher than that of Bridges. The safer pick would have been Bridges. The only reason not to pick Porter Jr. was the injuries. If not for that, he could have turned out to be a heck of a pick.
Nonetheless, the Knicks once again didn't go with a pick the fans are going to cheer on draft night. It has, for the most part, worked out in their favor with Porzingis. With Ntilikina, it's way too early to tell. Knox has a lot of doubters already coming in. It will be intriguing to see an 18-year-old try and prove them wrong in the Mecca of basketball and with all the media scrutiny he may face.
Buckle up, kid.