The Knicks won only 21 games last season and somehow ended up with the No. 8 pick in the 2020 draft. They were one pick ahead of the Wizards and Suns—two teams that were good enough to be invited to the bubble in Orlando. I’m still upset about this.
Anyway, with the No. 8 pick, the Knicks selected power forward Obi Toppin out of Dayton.
Before I shit all over this selection, let’s actually discuss what Toppin brings to the table. Last season he averaged 17 points per game along with 7.5 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.2 blocks. He shot 63% from the field and 39% from the 3-point line on 2.6 attempts a game.
His best quality is his ability to jump out of the gym and just dunk on guys craniums. After years of watching Frank Ntilikina and Kevin Knox put up weak little bitch layups off the front of the rim, it’s going to change my life seeing Obi Toppin actually slamming it on people.
He’s an athletic big man that can step back behind the 3-point line which the Knicks desperately need. Elfrid Payton and Julius Randle have zero range and just crowd the paint. The paint that already has Mitch Robinson standing there and RJ Barrett attempting to drive to the basket. Toppin can stand at the arch and create some much-needed space on the floor.
*clears throat* THAT BEING SAID, the Knicks needed a playmaker from this draft.
They have an amazing finisher in Toppin and no one to give him the ball in the correct spots. Bad news: Dennis Smith Jr and Austin fucking Rivers aren’t about to have amazing pick n roll moments with Toppin. They look at the ball when they dribble.
Honestly, the biggest fear is that the lack of a starting quality point guard on this roster is that it opens the door to a Russell Westbrook that would completely derail everything they’ve been building these past two seasons.
It’s also important to note that Toppin also played center at Dayton. He’s 6-foot-9 and only weighs 218 pounds. My man is going to get ragdolled out there attempting to defend the paint. I can already tell he’s going to live in foul trouble. He’s walking on the court with 2 personal fouls every game.
But I’m told that the fact he was born and raised in New York is good or whatever. Awesome. He can get a homecooked meal after the Knicks lose 113-76 against LaMelo Ball and Gordon Hayward.
At the end of the day, Obi is a piece. The Knicks need pieces. They drafted a power forward knowing that Julius Randle will still be in uniform spinning into triple teams and turning the ball over on offensive fouls every single night while Obi watches from the bench and when he’s finally on the court he’s going to do spectular shit that will reward him with more time on the bench.
Last year, Knicks fans wanted Zion Williamson. Obi can jump and dunk and excite just like Zion. But he shoots better. This is good, maybe(?)
And the Knicks went so long in my life without ever having first-round draft picks so I will sit patiently and see if Tom Thibodeau can develop these guys into real NBA starters. I’m riding with RJ Barrett, Kevin Knox, Frank Ntilikina and Obi Topiin til I die. Which might be soon because the NBA season starts next month and everyone on Earth has coronavirus and we’re all going to cough in each other’s mouths and kill each other.
Hopefully Obi Toppin is good or whatever.