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2018 NBA Draft Player Profile: Kevin Knox

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Athletic combo forward in the range of Denver’s pick ... you know what that means ...

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Second Round-Buffalo vs Kentucky Brian Losness-USA TODAY Sports

A one-and-done prospect out of Kentucky, Kevin Knox played all 31 regular season games for the Wildcats and all six postseason contests, leading the team in points and 3-pointers made (and attempted). He helped Kentucky go 26-11 on the year and maintain its record of postseason excellence by winning the SEC conference tournament and getting to the Elite Eight, losing to Kansas State in that round.

College Numbers

Per Game: 32.4 minutes, 15.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.3 blocks, 2.3 turnovers

Per 40: 19.2 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.3 blocks, 2.8 turnovers

Shooting: 44.5% FG, 34.1% 3P, 77.4 FT%, 51.0 eFG%

Advanced: 109.4 Off rating, 102.8 Def rating, 3.3 ORB%, 14.5 DRB%, 9.3 TRB%, 8.7 ASt%, 1.5 STL%, 1.0 BLK%, 14.1 TOV% 24.6 USG%, 4.0 WS (.133 WS/40), 4.8 BPM

Measurables

  • Age: 18
  • Height: 6’9”
  • Weight: 215 lbs
  • Wingspan: 6’11.5”
  • Max Vertical: 36.5 inches

Strengths

Knox boasts an modern NBA forward’s body, standing 6’9” with a wingspan just under seven feet at 6’11.5.” This build, along with his solid athleticism, will likely allow him to play either forward position and the potential to switch onto some guards and centers.

Offensively, Knox plays very well off the ball, cutting at the right times and in the right places to get easy buckets. He spaces the floor well and is never afraid to let loose from deep as he shot 5.6 triples per 40 minutes.

He’s also really young (turns 19 in August), which will give him a lot of time to add weight, develop his skills and acclimate to the NBA.

Weaknesses

While Knox projects as a combo forward, he currently doesn’t have the bulk (215 lbs) to play the four as much as he did in college. He’ll need to add a few pounds to be a modern NBA power forward and stand up to any center worth his salt.

He also lacks motor at times on both ends of the floor. Even with his great physical tools he averaged only 5.4 rebounds and had just 10 blocks (he did rack up 31 steals, which was second on the team). Maintaining focus on the court will be a major development point in his game.

Utah Jazz fit

Knox is a good fit in the modern NBA, being able to play multiple positions, one of which could be a Jazz position of need. If Derrick Favors doesn’t return, Utah will need someone who can play the stretch four. Heck, even if Favors doesn’t go, the Jazz could still use Knox as an effective combo forward.

His lack of effort might remind Jazz fans of another former Kentucky power forward who didn’t like Quin Snyder’s three-hour practices, but there’s always chance he won’t turn out the same.

Likelihood of Jazz drafting him

He projects into the late lottery (around Denver’s pick…hint, hint) so unless the Utah Jazz trade up with Denver not learning from their past two draft day mistakes, he’s not going to be on a plane to Utah anytime soon.