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What Does NBA G League Draft Mean For Westchester Knicks?

In the previous four years, the Westchester Knicks have found great value in the G League Draft.

Portland Trail Blazers v New York Knicks Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

The NBA G League Draft is on Saturday and the Westchester Knicks won’t be on the clock until the end of the first round. The Knicks have a majority of their roster filled out— two two-way players and three returning & three affiliate players— but the team will search to find more talent in the draft. Westchester currently holds all of their draft picks— the last selection in each round— but likely won’t have all four on their opening night roster.

Here’s a look back at all of Westchester’s draft picks the past four seasons.

2014

2nd round (28th overall): Joseph Bertrand*
4th round (64th overall) : Todd Mayo (played 24 games)
5th round (82nd overall): AJ Ussery (played 3 games)
6th round (100th overall): Sherrod Wright (played 1 games)
6th round (101st overall): Dwayne Mitchell (played 1 games)
7th round (113th overall): Kevin Tiggs*

2015

1st round (2nd overall) : Jimmer Fredette (played 42 games)
2nd round (23rd overall) : J’Mison Morgan*
3rd round (57th overall) : Kevin Capers (played 85 games)
5th round (76th overall) : Jordon Crawford (played 80 games)
6th round (95th overall) : Duke Mondy*

2016

1st round (16th overall): Max Hooper (played 3 games)
3rd round (60th overall): Lasan Kromah (played 2 games)
5th round (104th overall): Dane Miller*
6th round (126th overall): Jason Carter*
6th round (131st overall): Bobby Ray Parks Jr.*

2017

1st round (5th overall): Paul Watson (played 46 games)
2nd round (45th overall): Hanner Mosquera-Perea*
3rd round (57th overall): Princeton Onwas (played 3 games)
3rd round (59th overall): Jordan Downing (played 20 games)
3rd round (60th overall): Davon Hayes*
4th round (83rd overall): Henry Uwadiae*

*: Did not play for team

Fifty-four percent of the team’s draftees went onto play in Westchester, but only six suited up in 10 or more games. The most notable draft class came in 2015 where the team selected Jimmer Fredette, Kevin Capers, and Jordon Crawford.

The former No. 10 overall pick used the G League platform to receive quality playing time to show that he was deserving of another crack in the NBA. He lit up the NBA’ minor league with the scoring prowess he’s known for and had a great impact on the team. Along with that, Fredette was able to form a productive backcourt alongside Travis Trice and was a veteran presence on a young team. He is the only Westchester drafted player to earn a call-up and make a G League All-Star Game.

Kevin Capers and Jordon Crawford were selected later in that draft and played significant roles in the franchise’s history.

Capers, who played in the second most games in team history, didn’t see much action early on in his career. He played 9.3 minutes per game in his rookie season, but the former Westchester guard had flashes where he was able to showcase his talents. Despite not playing much, he soaked in tons of knowledge from his teammates. Capers returned for a second season and was able to carve out a solid role on the team and played a different role that he didn't see at the professional role. The Florida Southern product averaged 12.4 points, 4.0 assists and 2.5 steals per game in his final 10 games with the Dub Knicks.

Crawford, who played in the third most games in team history, displayed his hustle and grittiness on defense on a nightly basis in his nearly two seasons with Westchester. With the depth of the team’s backcourt during the 2015-16 season, Crawford provided an instant spark throughout the season with his ability to get to the basket and his defensive tenacity. Despite being traded to the Canton Charge in February of 2017, Crawford made a great impact in the organization.

In 2017, Westchester used their first round pick to add Paul Watson and he made an impact on the Knicks, as the team finished with the best record in the G League. Watson’s defensive instincts and versatility made him a valuable piece on one of the top defenses in the NBA G League. As a 3&D player, the second-year forward showed he can stroke it from deep. He shot 44.1 percent from three in December, which included a 22-point performance on 4-of-5 shooting from deep against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. He will look to continue to raise his stock in his second season in Westchester.

The Westchester Knicks have shown that they can find value in the NBA G League Draft. There have been a few players who had stellar seasons with the team and a few players who have played immense roles in the growth of the franchise. There could be a 2018 draftee that makes the team’s opening night roster and brings a spark to Westchester this season.