Though they lost in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the New York Knicks' 2023-24 season was an overwhelming success.  They emerged as one of the best teams in the league, and are now poised to add to their core with the 24th and 25th picks of the 2024 NBA Drafts. Players like Tyler Kolek and Kel'el Ware would be a few sneaky solid additions for the Knicks with those selections.

An extra hand at point guard

Jalen Brunson is the engine of the Knicks' offense, but New York relied on him a bit too much last season. Brunson's usage rate in the regular season was 31.1% according to, which ranked eighth in the NBA. Brunson's usage rate shot up even higher to 35.2% during the playoffs.

To be fair to the Knicks and head coach Tom Thibodeau, injuries played a big role in why Brunson was so heavily relied upon. Brunson himself got hurt late in the season and during the playoffs but played through it because the Knicks were so deficient in creators in the backcourt. However, they can remedy that situation by drafting Marquette's Tyler Kolek in the first round of the 2024 NBA Draft.

Kolek has garnered some comparisons to Brunson with the way he plays. He too is a small but herky-jerky and physical lefty guard who uses extreme skill and craft to his advantage. Kolek is also one of the best playmakers in this entire draft. He averaged at least eight assists per 40 minutes in each of his three seasons in Milwaukee with the Golden Eagles.

After the Knicks traded Immanuel Quickley and RJ Barrett, they were left a bit barren when it came to perimeter creators. Outside of Brunson, the were two guards with a usage rate above 20% on the Knicks' playoff roster. They were Donte DiVincenzo and Alec Burks. DiVincenzo morphed into one of the best shooters in the league, but Burks was out of the rotation.

The Knicks have to add another player on that front. Kolek would be great for New York's bench units and more than capable of filling in for Brunson if needed. He'd be a great selection for the Knicks with the 24th pick of this draft.

Big man insurance

Indiana Hoosiers center Kel'el Ware (1) reacts during the second half against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Target Center
© Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks have a big decision on their hands in the frontcourt this summer. Isaiah Hartenstein is poised to become a free agent and has earned a hefty payday. The Knicks only have his early bird rights, meaning the most he can get from them is a four-year $72.5 million deal. He can get more than that on the open market. However, the same could be said for Malik Monk but he re-signed with Sacramento a few days ago.

If the Knicks do re-sign Hartenstein, that could mean another domino will drop. Mitchell Robinson could get dealt to make room for Hartenstein's return. If that happens, then the Knicks will need another big to come off the bench. A potential answer for that predicament could come in the form of Indiana's Kel'el Ware.

Ware was a top ten recruit out of North Little Rock, Arkansas in 2022. He was ranked among the likes of Brandon Miller and Jarace Walker, both of whom were top ten picks in the 2023 NBA Draft. Ware struggled with inconsistency and effort with Oregon during his freshman season. That changed after transferring to Indiana.

Ware blossomed into one of the best big men in the country. His effort and overall play and consistency on both ends of the floor rapidly improved.

Ware was a big beneficiary of the transfer portal and should parlay that into becoming a first-round pick. With the current state of New York's bigs, he would make a lot of sense with the Knicks at 25 in the 2024 NBA Draft. With Indiana head coach Mike Woodson's connection with New York, it wouldn't be a surprise if the Knicks opted to go this route with one of their two first-round picks.