Jordan Hill on the Knicks' Mind? | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Sunday / June 16.
  • Jordan Hill on the Knicks' Mind?

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    GREENBURGH, N.Y. –If the Knicks decide they want to go big with the No. 8 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, Jordan Hill is ready to play for them.

    The 6-foot-10 Hill worked out for the Knicks’ brass all by himself on Tuesday afternoon and then went to lunch with GM Donnie Walsh and head coach Mike D’Antoni. A junior out of Arizona, Hill averaged 18.3 points, 11.0 rebounds and 1.7 blocks last season on campus.

    “I can’t say that they really want me but I’m just going to keep going out there and working hard,” he told an intimate group of reporters. “If they do want me, I think I’m a good pick for them. We just got to see how they feel about me.”

    If the Knicks were to take Hill, it would allow them to let free agent and fan favorite David Lee go and would free up cap space.

    Hill has already worked out for Golden State, which picks ahead of the Knicks at No. 7, and will visit Washington (No. 5) Thursday and Memphis (No. 2 ) Sunday.

    Yet ESPN’s Chad Ford has now moved Hill into the No. 8 spot on his mock draft and a report in Tuesday’s New York Post indicated Walsh had secretly coveted Hill because of his skills as a mobile big man.

    “If draft day comes and goes and he’s on their roster, it’s a very good day for the Knicks,” one NBA GM who has spoken recently to Walsh told the Post. “He rebounds, defends, scores, and the key is he can run. Bigs that can run is a requisite in [D’Antoni’s] way of playing.”

    Hill thinks he would fit well in D’Antoni’s system.

    “I fit real good,” he said. “I like to run up and down the court. With Chris Duhon on the point, he’s a pass first guard, so that’s a good thing. [D’Antoni] was the coach with Amare Stoudemire, so we’ll see.”

    The conventional wisdom maintains that the Knicks will select a point guard with their pick. In recent days they have brought in Jonny Flynn of Syracuse, Ty Lawson of North Carolina, Stephen Curry of Davidson, Tyreke Evans of Memphis and Brandon Jennings, who played professionally in Italy last season.

    Because the draft is deep in guards and many teams need them, Hill could fall, and fall to No. 8.

    “It’s hard to say,” Hill said. “I’m just hearing a lot of things on how the draft is. It’s kind of weird. You don’t know what the team needs and how it fits perfect for the team. You just got to hope for the best.”

    He added: “New York is a good place. I would definitely love to play for them.”

    Former Knicks GM and coach Isiah Thomas drafted another Arizona big man, Channing Frye, several years ago and Hill said he’s met Frye several times around campus.

    “He comes back a couple times,” Hill said of Frye. “We all play pickup together.”

    As for his old school, Hill said he thinks the Wildcats could do well under new coach Sean Miller, who left Xavier to take the Arizona job.

    Point guard Nic Wise withdrew from the NBA Draft and was recently invited to try out for the USA team attending the World University Games.

    “They can be real good,” he said. “Sean Miller turned Xavier around and they really didn’t have no star players and he took them to the Elite Eight a couple years ago.

    “Arizona’s a good team and I think he’s going to be a real good fit for them.”


    The Knicks will continue working out potential NBA Draft picks on Wednesday with the following group.

    Nemanja Aleksandrov – Forward, 7-0, 220, Serbia & Montenegro

    Brandon Costner – Forward, 6-9, 230, North Carolina State, junior

    Daniel Hackett – Guard, 6-5, 215, Southern California, junior

    Chartrael Hall – Guard, 6-2, Bellarmine University, senior

    Kyle McAlarny – Guard, 6-0, 195, Notre Dame, senior

    Terrence Williams – Guard/forward, 6-6, 213, Louisville, senior

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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