2024 NBA Mock Draft: Spurs prioritize two-way talents, Magic land surprise steal

Predicting how the first round of the 2024 NBA Draft will unfold with less than a week to go.
Paris Basket v Bourg en Bresse Basket - Betclic Elite
Paris Basket v Bourg en Bresse Basket - Betclic Elite / Aurelien Meunier/GettyImages
25 of 30
Kyle Filipowski
Duke v Houston / Patrick Smith/GettyImages

Pick No. 25: New York Knicks select Kyle Filipowski

The Knicks’ head coach, Tom Thibodeau, certainly plays a significant role in their starters getting increased minutes compared to other teams around the league. However, another factor that plays a role is the fact that the Knicks currently don’t have a reliable bench. They have the 6-foot-4 Josh Hart listed as their backup small forward and power forward and could benefit from having more size on their roster.

Admittedly, Filipowski doesn’t fit Thibodeau’s brand of basketball, as the head coach values tough, defensive-minded players. However, he is the best player available and would be solid value towards the end of the first round. With the Knicks taking a somewhat developmental project in Furphy at No. 24, they could balance out their draft with more of a sure-fire prospect in Filipowski.

Given his ability to stretch the floor, the Duke big man could immediately fill in as a backup stretch four. He significantly improved his shooting by staying another year at Duke, improving from 28.2 percent from three to 34.8 percent. Filipowski would also provide insurance for the Knicks at the center position since Isaiah Hartenstein is an unrestricted free agent and should command a large sum of money given his play this season.