The unrealistic 2021 NBA Draft trade the Knicks should actually try to make
Following a standout 2020-2021 NBA season where they shocked many by clinching a playoff berth, the New York Knicks now head into the upcoming 2021 NBA Draft with plenty of expectations to improve the team. And it could begin with a draft-day trade for Cleveland Cavaliers’ rising star Collin Sexton.
For the moment, the Knicks are currently scouring the 2021 NBA Draft, trade market and players available in the upcoming free agency period for a potent point guard. Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard was presumed to be the most notable available point guard ahead of the draft, but all signs point to him staying put with the team for at least another season.
Still, the Knicks should take a chance with the upcoming draft by going all in to trade their coveted first-round picks for Sexton, who would be one viable fit with the team for a multitude of reasons.
There are plenty of trade scenarios that the Knicks could come up with in order to acquire Sexton, but this one potential trade could be just enough to haul in the promising guard.
Knicks’ trade package for Collin Sexton
Cavaliers receive: Kevin Knox, Obi Toppin, Jalen Brunson, Maxi Kleber, Knicks’ 19th overall pick in 2021 NBA Draft, Knicks’ 32nd overall pick in 2021 NBA Draft, Mavs’ 2022 2nd round pick
Knicks receive: Collin Sexton and Larry Nance Jr.
Mavericks receive: Cedi Osman, Damyean Dotson, Dean Wade, Knicks’ 58th overall pick in 2021 NBA Draft
The Cavaliers are leaning towards trading Sexton ahead of the upcoming season, especially as the team is currently not siding with offering him a max contract deal.
The Cavs may not be able to haul in a grand trade package featuring high lottery picks and a few promising talents considering that Sexton only has a mere one year left remaining on his current rookie deal. Still, Sexton still has plenty of trade value and could net the Cavs a trade package featuring the likes of Knicks forwards Kevin Knox and Obi Toppin along with their pair of first-round picks.
Cleveland has been rumored to trade up in the draft to possibly select former Oklahoma State star Cade Cunningham. If the Cavs elect for such a gamble, they could offer the Detroit Pistons or Houston Rockets a trade package featuring their No.3 overall pick in the draft and the Knicks’ 19th and 32nd overall picks should they trade Sexton to them.
More so, the Cavs may soon be looking to revamp their depth over at the forward position. They may not get a long-term answer to this matter with either Knox or Toppin. However, if the Cavs were to acquire the two forwards, it would be a low-risk, high-reward move for the team’s front office.
Knox has had clear struggles on the offensive end for the Knicks, while Toppin failed to make an immediate impact out the gate over his first season with the team. Still, Cavs head coach J. B. Bickerstaff could have what it takes to exploit the potential out of the two, which may involve including them in perimeter offensive sets.
One under-the-radar acquisition in this potential trade for the Cavs would be Jalen Brunson. With Matthew Dellavedova off to Australia to play in the National Basketball League, the Cavs have a new need for a backup point guard. Brunson would fit in well with the Cavs considering his ball-handling prowess coupled with his speed in the perimeter.
For Knicks general manager Scott Perry, he would get the team’s long-term answer at the point guard position with Sexton. As was showcased over the past season, Sexton is a dual-threat guard that can handle a bulk of offensive responsibilities over the course of a game. From his seven 30+ points games to improved play as a passing guard, he has what it takes to elevate the Knicks’ offense under head coach Tom Thibodeau.
On the other hand, a player like Larry Nance Jr. could help fill the Knicks’ depth chart void left by forwards Knox and Toppin in this possible deal.
Finally, the Mavericks head into the upcoming offseason with a glaring need for a score-first small forward. This was evident over the Mavs’ 2021 Western Conference First Round series against the Los Angeles Clippers, where the team had to continue to rely on guards Luka Doncic and Tim Hardaway Jr. to carry the offensive load on a game-by-game basis.
Parting ways with Jalen Brunson and Maxi Kleber may be difficult for the Mavs’ front office to do, but promising scorers like Cedi Osman and Damyean Dotson could help bolster their offense next season. They each had shooting woes last season in the Cavs’ dysfunctional offensive system. Still, they each sure are streaky offensive talents.
The Knicks will have plenty of options on what to do with their first-round picks come draft night, but they can not let such a golden opportunity slip by to acquire one of the rising premier scoring guards in the NBA.