NBA Scout Evaluates Jordan Clarkson Trade Fit For Knicks

Jordan Clarkson, Utah Jazz, NBA trade rumors
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks are hot right now. They’re the hottest team in the NBA, as they have the league’s longest active winning streak at nine games, and as a result, they have climbed to third place in the Eastern Conference with a 32-17 record.

Basketball fans from the suburbs in North Jersey to the tip of Long Island are stoked about the prospects of an extended playoff run for the Knicks this spring, the likes of which they haven’t seen since 1999, the last time the team reached the NBA Finals.

But by no means should the Knicks stand pat with days to go before the trade deadline. The OG Anunoby trade they made a few weeks ago required them to give up Immanuel Quickley, a key scorer off the bench for them.

They reportedly have interest in trading for veteran guard Jordan Clarkson, who is currently a member of the Utah Jazz. He is averaging 17.6 points and 4.9 assists a game this season, and he could replace the backcourt firepower they lost when they gave up Quickley for a strong defender in Anunoby.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Jordan Clarkson, New York Knicks, Utah Jazz Updates

One NBA scout feels Clarkson would be a nice replacement for Quickley, who put up 15.0 points a game in 30 games for New York this season.

“It would help the Knicks to add another scorer, especially to fill that role [Immanuel] Quickley had before the Anunoby trade. Obviously, OG brings a lot defensively, but there is still a need for more of a scoring punch. [Jalen] Brunson needed more help in the playoffs last year when [Julius] Randle got hurt and [RJ] Barrett wasn’t getting it done. It would be helpful to get another option that can break the defense down and make a play.”

Brunson is playing outstanding basketball right now, but Randle recently went down with a shoulder injury and will miss at least three weeks of action. At the very least, Clarkson could help keep New York afloat while Randle recovers.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Jordan Clarkson, New York Knicks, Utah Jazz Updates

Clarkson, however, isn’t exactly an efficient scorer, and his defense is iffy. The scout addressed those concerns and had a suggestion for how to use him.

“The main concerns I’d have with Clarkson as that option is he hasn’t shot the ball that well as a spacer. He also doesn’t fit that defensive culture they’re building in New York. Ideally, they’d find someone who can run the second unit when Brunson is off the floor, but also still be able to fit cleanly next to him for stretches. It’d be a helpful fit for a sixth-man role, but in general, I think they could do better.”

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Jordan Clarkson, New York Knicks, Utah Jazz Updates

Unless the Knicks are able to trade Randle in a major deal, they don’t seem to have a ton of tradable assets right now. But perhaps Clarkson, who won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award three seasons ago, would be gettable for them.

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