2022 NBA Draft: Breaking down Knicks’ three separate trades after Kemba Walker move



Draft night for the New York Knicks is usually pretty straightforward: They make a pick their fans hate, the fans boo it like crazy, and then the negative fan reaction becomes a story in its own right. Thursday night wasn’t so simple, as the Knicks were the busiest team in the 2022 NBA Draft.

They pulled off three separate trades that had players and picks flying all over the place, and it took hours to figure out all the details. Now that the dust has settled, let’s take a closer look at all the moves the Knicks made on Thursday.

Trade Knicks-Thunder

The Knicks receive:

  • 2023 first-round pick via Detroit (protected 1-18 until 2024, protected 1-13 in 2025, protected 1-11 in 2026, protected 1-9 in 2027)
  • 2023 first-round pick via Washington (protected 1-14 in 2023, protected 1-12 in 2024, protected 1-10 in 2025, protected 1-8 in 2026)
  • 2023 first-round pick via Denver (protected 1-14 through 2025)

Thunder receives:

  • Choice #11 (Ousmane Dieng)

The Knicks had the No. 11 pick entering the night, and there was a lot of talk about their potential for progression. Instead, they decided to trade the first round by sending that pick to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for three future first rounds. Although the Knicks need help now, getting three first-round picks in exchange for one is pretty good value.

Trade Knicks-Hornets

The Knicks receive:

  • Pick No. 13 (Jalen Duren)

Hornets receive:

  • 2023 first-round pick via Denver (protected 1-14 through 2025)
  • 2023 second-round pick via New York
  • 2023 second-round pick via Utah
  • 2023 second-round pick (most favorable pick between Dallas and Miami)
  • 2024 second-round pick via New York

Shortly after completing the deal with the Thunder, the Knicks then picked up the phone and entered into a trade with the Charlotte Hornets. They took the first 2023 via Denver they got in the Thunder trade, and packed it with four future seconds for the No. 13 overall pick, which would become Jalen Duren.

Knicks-Pistons Trade

The Knicks receive:

  • 2025 first-round pick via Milwaukee (protected 1-4)

The pistons receive:

Finally, the Knicks then returned the No. 13 pick (Jalen Duren) and Kemba Walker to the Detroit Pistons in a third deal. In return, the Knicks got a 2025 first-round pick through Milwaukee, which the Pistons previously acquired in the trade from Jerami Grant earlier this week.

Home stretch for the Knicks

  • 2023 first-round pick via Detroit (protected 1-18 until 2024, protected 1-13 in 2025, protected 1-11 in 2026, protected 1-9 in 2027)
  • 2023 first-round pick via Washington (protected 1-14 in 2023, protected 1-12 in 2024, protected 1-10 in 2025, protected 1-8 in 2026)
  • 2025 first-round pick via Milwaukee (protected 1-4)
  • 18 million dollars of ceiling space

After all the whirlwind and dealing, the Knicks closed out the night with three future first-round picks and some extra room. It’s no secret that they’re going to use that money to try to sign Jalen Brunson in free agency. They recently hired his father as an assistant coach and now have enough room to make a competitive offer. There’s no guarantee they’ll get it, but they have a much better chance now than before the draft.

The question, however, is whether their tunnel vision for a chance to sign Brunson clouded their judgement. A lottery pick appears to be a high price to pay for ditching Walker’s contract and entering the Brunson contest. It’s easy to argue that they would have been better off doing the first two trades. In this scenario, they keep Duren and walk away with two additional future premieres. As for the ceiling space situation, they could have found something else later.