UNC Basketball: Knicks not interested in Cole Anthony?

Based on current reports, it doesn’t appear that Cole Anthony will follow in his father’s footsteps as a New York Knicks lottery draft pick.

Cole Anthony is one of the most intriguing prospects in this year’s NBA Draft class.

Heading into his freshman season at North Carolina, Anthony was viewed as a lock to be a top-5 NBA Draft pick. However, after a rough season of struggles and injuries, Anthony has seen his draft stock drop a bit.

If you look at recent mock drafts, there’s uncertainty as to where Anthony fits in this draft. Most evaluators see Anthony being selected anywhere from the lower part of the lottery to the middle part of the first round.

At this rate, don’t expect Anthony to be selected within the first six or seven picks. However, could the New York Knicks be an option at No. 8? According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, don’t expect the Knicks to take Anthony if he is still available when they make their selection.

Berman believes that the Knicks are leaning against taking the former Tar Heel point guard with their lottery selection. He also states that Anthony probably isn’t an option if the organization elects to trade down (possibly near the No.14-15 range).

If you recall, the franchise selected Anthony’s father, Greg, with the No.12 overall pick in the 1991 NBA Draft. There is history between the Knicks organization and the Anthony family, and as SNY reported a few months back, the Knicks indeed did “extensive” research on the younger Anthony heading up to the draft.

Recently, there have been a lot of negative things said about Cole Anthony. Elite Media Group’s Trevor Trout made a suggestion that Anthony was a bad teammate, a notion that made some current and former Tar Heels speak up via social media in his defense.

Along with some thoughts that Anthony is a bad teammate, his struggles during his one season at Chapel Hill are concerning to some NBA scouts. Anthony played a majority of the season injured (and missed a bulk of time due to injuries), and he struggled to shoot the ball. The Tar Heels “modest support cast,” as head coach Roy Williams calls it, did not help Anthony’s case, as the roster did not feature many scoring options to help the talented guard out.

Unless Anthony falls to No. 27 (the Knicks second first round pick), don’t expect Anthony to follow in his father’s footsteps with the Knicks. It is possible that Anthony could still be selected by a New York franchise, as the Brooklyn Nets currently hold the No. 19 pick in the upcoming draft.

Regardless, someone is going to take a chance on Cole Anthony. We don’t know where or how high he will be selected, but Anthony is without a doubt one of the most talented players in this year’s draft class.

There will obviously be speculation as we inch closer to this year’s draft, but it is very possible that an NBA franchise could get an absolute steal if Anthony slides down the draft board.

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