Keith SchlosserThough the NBA playoffs are still going on, that doesn’t mean staffers from those already eliminated can afford to take days off. In the weeks ahead, scouting efforts are likely to be amped up in anticipation of next month’s NBA Draft.
And while the Knicks do not own a first-round pick, there’s still work to be done. With Phil Jackson looking to put his own stamp on the squad, potential trades are certainly a possibility.
Perhaps with that in mind, Knicks’ Assistant General Manager Allan Houston was included in the multitude of executives who traveled out to Santa Monica to take in a workout featuring a handful of prospective draftees currently represented by BDA Sports (Eric Pincus, May 23).
Likely first-round picks Zach LaVine and Aaron Gordon headlined the workout, but also sprinkled in among the small group were some potential second round choices, and perhaps even a diamond in the rough or two worth keeping an eye on and experimenting with heading into NBA Summer League.
It should also be noted that Houston will serve as General Manager for the D-League affiliated Westchester Knicks during the upcoming season as well. Without as many assets as the team would like, the Knicks will need to continue getting creative in their quest to reel in worthwhile talent. Taking a chance on a few young guns, while observing them closely in the minor league, is one way to explore doing so.
In addition to getting a closer look at some potential draftees, the workout represented quite a large gathering of executives from across the league. If nothing else, it’s an excellent opportunity for them all to network.
Also on hand, according to Pincus, was Mike Dunleavy. The longtime NBA coach is a self-proclaimed candidate for the Knicks’ head coaching job after meeting with Jackson last week. Perhaps he and Houston also had a chance to talk hoops out in Santa Monica.