The New York Knicks didn’t make a single selection in the 2023 NBA Draft. The team traded its 2023 Knicks first-round pick to the Portland Trail Blazers for Jason Hart at the NBA trade deadline, and while they own several other future first-round picks, they were all protected to the point that none transferred this year. So, what was the Knicks' best decision in the 2023 NBA Draft? It was making no Knicks draft picks at all.

No Knicks draft picks was the best decision the team made in the 2023 NBA Draft

Not making a single pick in the NBA draft sucks. It sucks for fans and it sucks for the people who run the team. For that latter group, it is incredibly tempting to make a small deal for a second-rounder or even a big deal to jump back into the first.

However, for the Knicks, being patient and dealing with the inherent disappointment of sitting out one of the biggest days on the NBA calendar made the most sense.

New York owns three future first-round selections that hypothetically could have transferred in 2023. They have the Detroit Pistons top-18 protected pick, the Washington Wizards top-12 protected pick, and the Dallas Mavericks top-10 protected pick.

Live and breathe the NBA?

🚨 Get viral NBA graphics, memes, rumors and trending news delivered right to your inbox with the Clutch Newsletter.

The Pistons pick was a non-starter, as Detroit finished with the worst record in the NBA last season. The Wizards did slightly better, ending the season with the seventh-worst record, but that wasn’t near close enough to coming to NYC either.

It was the Mavs’ pick that was the closest to moving this season. The team finished with the 10th-worst record in the league after tanking at the end of the season, and the ping pong balls were kind to Dallas, rewarding the cowardly move with the No. 10 spot in the draft.

With all those picks, their own in 2024, and multiple future second-rounders, it would have been easy for the Knicks to make some moves to try to get some of that sweet prospect action in the 2023 NBA Draft.

But here’s the thing. This draft was historic at the very top (Victor Wembanyama) and sold just under that (Brandon Miller, Scoot Henderson). After that, though, it was a bit of a crapshoot, and the prospects dropped from high-end starter potential to role-player level quickly.

And the Knicks are no longer in a spot where taking fliers on high-upside, low-floor players in the draft is beneficial. They are a second-round playoff team now, and they need to act accordingly. The Knicks' draft picks don’t simply equal players now. Each one is an asset that could be used to draft someone but could also be shipped out in a trade to take the team to the next level.

Trying to jump in late on this draft and giving up an asset to do so would have been foolish.

With where New York is now, those assets should ultimately go toward trading for someone like Karl-Anthony Towns, Paul George, Zion Williamson, or who knows who else. In the modern NBA, Wembanyama could become unhappy tomorrow and demand a trade! (Not really, but it feels close to that sometimes).

Plus, drafting players isn’t the only way to get new young players in the door during the offseason, and it seems like the Knicks may have done well in the undrafted free-agent avenue.

The franchise signed two undrafted rookies to two-way contracts since the draft ended.

New York’s first signing was Obi Toppin’s little brother, Jacob Toppin. Jacob is a local product — born in Brooklyn — and the brother of a player on the team, which is pretty standard fare for Summer League rosters. However, Jacob was a legit three-year role player at Kentucky, so he has more games than most NBA nepotism signings.

Next, the Knicks signed Overtime Elite wing Jaylen Martin. He is a 19-year-old combo guard with tons of athleticism and raw skills who could definitely become a 3-and-D role player someday. OTE is still a relatively unknown quantity, so there is some home run potential for Martin as well.

With these two signings, the Knicks got what equates to two late second-round picks without having to use any future draft capital. And that is what is best for the team’s future.

There may be no Knicks draft picks from the 2023 NBA Draft, and that led to a boring night. That said, it was the best move they could have made, and don’t be surprised if it pays off soon. All those picks still in the war chest could be going out for a star in the coming days and weeks.