14. New York Knicks (via Dallas Mavericks) select Kel’el Ware
The Knicks could have four first-round picks in the 2024 NBA Draft but only come away with two in this mock. The Mavericks selection they own is top ten protected. Everyone thought it would convey last season, but Dallas surprisingly fell out of the playoffs and tanked their final two games to keep it.
New York owns a Pistons pick with a top 18 protection and a Wizards selection that is top 12 protected.
Ware was a top-ten player in the 2022 high school class, but his freshman season made his stock dip. He struggled to get minutes for Oregon and his production was inconsistent when the seven-footer did. Ware averaged 6.6 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks in 15.8 minutes per game for the season. The 20-year-old transferred to Indiana and is expecting to play a larger role as a sophomore, but can he rebuild his draft stock?
The Knicks could use a developmental big man who could replace Mitchell Robinson if he departs when his contract expires in 2026. Kel’el Ware has shown flashes as a rim protector and rebounder with a developing jump shot. He could blossom into a starter if he reaches his ceiling, and Ware will have a chance to play his way into the lottery this season.