Knicks Rumors & News
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Minutes following Tuesday’s NBA Draft Lottery, ESPN.com posted a mock draft from Chad Ford, projecting that the Knicks would select 6’10” Italian point-forward Danilo Gallinari with the 6th overall selection. A day later, SI.com and Inside Hoops had followed suit, and how can you blame them? Wrote Ford:

[Derrick] Rose was the Knicks’ primary target, but with Gallinari, new head coach Mike D’Antoni lands the perfect weapon for his new team: a 6-10 point forward who knows how to think the game. D’Antoni played with Gallinari’s father in the Italian League for eight years and knows how good the versatile Italian forward really is.

The ESPN Insider scouting report on the forward reads as follows:

Positives: All-around skills. Point-forward mentality. Beautiful passer. Excellent basketball IQ. Smooth. Excellent slasher to the basket. Good athlete, though not an exceptional one. Good shooter, especially from midrange.

Negatives: He lacks explosiveness. Although he’s not slow footed, he’s not exactly quick either. May be a little too unselfish. Questions about his long-range shooting.

Summary: Many in Italy feel he’s a better long-term prospect than Andrea Bargnani. Right now his game is more suited for Europe, but the Toni Kukoc comparisons are inevitable. He’s having a big season this year and more and more scouts are saying that he’s a potential lottery pick.

Today the Post’s Marc Berman profiles Gallinari, calling him “a tough-as-nails Italian stallion who will become more popular than “The Sopranos” if drafted by the Knicks.” Ironically, Donnie Walsh dispatched Isiah Thomas last week to scout Gallinari in the Italian League playoffs.

We’ll know a lot more after NBA workouts, but it certainly sounds as if the Knicks have an intriguing player on the radar.

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