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Kevin Knox to Knicks with No. 9 pick in 2018 NBA Draft

The Kentucky forward joins All-Star Kristaps Porzingis as the franchise continues its post-Melo rebuild.

Kevin Knox, posing with NBA commissioner Adam Silver,

Kevin Knox, posing with NBA commissioner Adam Silver, is one of the youngest players in the draft. Photo Credit: George A. Faella

The New York Knicks have found the next piece for their young core, using the No. 9 pick in Thursday’s 2018 NBA Draft at Barclays Center in Brooklyn to select Kevin Knox, a forward out of Kentucky.

Knox joins All-Star forward Kristaps Porzingis, Frank Ntilikina and Tim Hardaway Jr., the team’s three most recent first-round picks, as its post-Carmelo Anthony rebuild enters Year 2.

One of the youngest players in the draft — he turns 19 on Aug. 11 — Knox earned SEC co-Freshman of the Year honors after posting averages of 15.6 points and 5.4 rebounds for Kentucky.

To tip off draft night, the Phoenix Suns used the top overall selection on Arizona center Deandre Ayton, as had been speculated throughout the pre-draft process. The Sacramento Kings used the No. 2 overall pick on Marvin Bagley III, a forward from Duke, followed by the Atlanta Hawks taking European star Luka Doncic, of Slovenia, third in a pick made on behalf of the Dallas Mavericks as part of a trade that includes a future first-round pick for the Hawks.

Jaren Jackson Jr. (Memphis Grizzlies), Trae Young (Dallas, for Atlanta), Harlem native Mohamed Bamba (Orlando Magic) and Wendell Carter Jr. (Chicago Bulls) came off the board with pick Nos. 4 through 7.

Using a pick that originally belonged to the Brooklyn Nets, the Cleveland Cavaliers selected point guard Collin Sexton out of Alabama. Brooklyn originally traded the selection to the Boston Celtics in the ill-fated 2013 deal that brought aging greats Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the borough. The Cavs acquired the pick last fall as part of the deal that sent All-Star Kyrie Irving to Boston.

The Nets have not used their own first-round pick since 2013 as a result of the Celtics trade and a separate deal with Atlanta, which brought Joe Johnson to Brooklyn ahead of the franchise’s first season in the borough in 2012. They enter the offseason in control of their 2019 selection.

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