1. The Raptors dodged a bullet with the Knicks at 11
The Knicks were the only division rival that somehow missed the postseason, meaning that some lottery luck could have easily pushed them into the upper echelon of the draft. Toronto can breathe easy knowing that one of its chief rivals won’t be able to add a franchise-changer.
The Knicks might seem dysfunctional, but RJ Barrett is turning into a star and Julius Randle likely won’t be as bad as he was during 2021-22. As is always the case, the Knicks are connected to some of the more interesting names in the trade rumor mill. New York won’t be a tire fire again.
The Raptors should be happy that the Knicks didn’t move up.
The Raptors have enough to deal with in this division. The Celtics might win a title this season, the 76ers will be a tough out as long as Joel Embiid is on the team, and the Nets could be contenders when everyone is healthy. The last thing they need is the Knicks getting up off the mat.
The Knicks may have been a joke for years despite their playoff run two seasons ago, but they are a sleeping giant that could be woken up earlier than expected if Barrett starts becoming an All-Star. Another top pick in the mix would have made things even worse.