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New York Knicks Draft Watch: Point Guard De'Aaron Fox, Kentucky Wildcats
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14 Jun 2017 06:28 PM EST

-by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: De’Aaron Fox scored 39 points in Kentucky’s NCAA Tournament win over UCLA. (Image Source: AP Photo)

Owners of the number eight overall selection, the New York Knicks will be picking in the top 10 of the NBA Draft for just the second time in the past eight years. The club is working out prospects, which we will continue to breakdown leading up to the draft. Today we take a look at former Kentucky Wildcats guard De’Aaron Fox, who has expressed a desire to play with Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis and interviewed with Phil Jackson at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago.

Measurables: The former Wildcat stands in at 6’2” without shoes and 6’3 ¼” with, while barely tipping the scales at 169.6 pounds, the second-lightest player at the NBA Draft Combine, with barely any body fat (4.5 percent). He makes up for that with one of the bigger wingspans (6’6 ½”) and standing reaches (8’4”) among the point guards. Fox has 8.5” hands in length, which is about average but just 8’5” in width, which is small, even for a guard.

One of the few potential top-10 picks to show up in Chicago for the NBA Draft Combine, Fox did not participate in the strength and agility drills or the shooting drills.

Skill Set: At his best in attack mode, Fox can slash his way into the painted area in a flash, with the ability to finish or set up his teammates for easy buckets. A terror in the open floor, the Wildcat is tough to lock down one on one. He also has the ball handling skills and understanding of how to change gears to help him blow by defenders.

Drawing comparisons to John Wall by John Calipari himself, Fox is a speedy lead guard who has the talent to attack the rim at will, but still needs to learn to use his acceleration as a “weapon” according to his college coach Not just fast, Fox is also quick. Coach Cal added that Fox is a better overall scorer than Wall at the same stage in their careers.

Not just a talented offensive player, Fox is one of the better defensive prospects in this class with the ability to hound opposing point guards as well as create turnovers. A good on-ball defender, Fox also does an excellent job of jumping the passing lanes as well as any lead guard in this draft.

In addition to getting bigger/stronger, Fox needs to learn how to protect the ball better, while his biggest weakness heading into the NBA is probably his lack of a consistent jump shot and range beyond the three-point arc. If he can improve his stroke, Fox will develop into an All-Star.

Need/Fit: His combination of speed, athleticism, and explosiveness makes him the perfect point guard for today’s NBA, something the Knicks have lacked for years. With free agent to be Derrick Rose unlikely to be re-signed, point guard is New York’s biggest need heading into the 2017 NBA Draft. If he’s there at No. 8, which is unlikely, it would be stunning if the ‘Bockers passed on Fox.

Projection: Top 10

Daniel Mogollon is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America. He is also a voter for the Thorpe and the Rotary Lombardi Award, as well as the Latino Sports MVP Awards. You can reach him via email: danmogollon@gmail.com.

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