Phil Jackson has his work cut out for him in trying to rebuild the New York Knicks. But the second-year team president also has a pretty good tool at his disposal with the No. 4 overall pick in Thursday's NBA draft.
He could use that pick to select a young player who could be a foundation for the team in years to come. Or Jackson could trade that pick away if he receives an offer worth his consideration.
Jackson acknowledged on MSG Network on Wednesday night that both scenarios are options. He also said something else — something that might strike fear in the hearts of Knicks fans everywhere.
"Well, there can be surprises all the way from 6-foot to 7-foot that would be major surprises,” Jackson said. “But we’re trying to take what we feel is the best potential pick, what will help this ball club out the most and go from there.”
Major surprises. Not sure that's what fans of a team coming off a 17-win season want to hear.
There are plenty of options for the Knicks with that No. 4 pick — guards D'Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay, power forwards Kristaps Porzingis and Frank Kaminsky, and center Willie Cauley-Stein, to name just a few.
Possibilities for that fourth pick have been discussed so much, it's hard to imagine what Jackson might have up his sleeve that could be considered a "major surprise."
And that's what might be worrisome for Knicks fans. Lucky for them, Jackson also had some more reassuring things to say during the same interview.
“We had our crack scouting and staff of guys put together a list [and] we had varied opinions,” Jackson said. “I think there were maybe about six guys for our particular pick that were chosen by them, and I think we’ve narrowed it down to three. So we’re pretty content that we have a good idea of what’s going to come our way and what will be good.”