Blog Entry

Report: Brandon Knight's stock is dropping?

Posted on: June 10, 2011 8:47 pm
Edited on: June 10, 2011 9:37 pm
Is UK point guard Brandon Knight's stock dropping? Posted by Ben Golliver. brandon-knight

On Thursday, we noted that BYU point guard Jimmer Fredette was taking a pro-active stance with his pre-draft workout strategy, essentially challenging UK point guard Brandon Knight and UConn point guard Kemba Walker to work out against him head-to-head.

We applauded that strategy, noting that Fredette really has nothing to lose. Knight and Walker, on the other hand, lose a bit of face publicly if they don't agree to work out against him -- or potentially risk slipping down the board should Fredette convincingly best them in a head-to-head setting. reports that Fredette isn't the only thing that Knight needs to worry about. Until now, he's participated in a limited number of tightly controlled workouts. The site notes that the strategy is rubbing some people the wrong way.
Sources say the Kentucky point guard could be risking his chance to go third overall to Utah by refusing to work out against competition. Knight has an open invitation to join Connecticut's Kemba Walker, BYU's Jimmer Fredette and UCLA's Malcolm Lee in a June 15 workout with the Jazz, but sources close to both sides said he has yet to decide whether to take part.

What's more, there are rumblings that Utah is less than thrilled at the notion that Knight would even consider dictating the terms with the No. 3 pick (although Turkish center Enes Kanter already did just that in his Jazz workout in Chicago in which Toronto also took part). It's unclear whether the Jazz would take a hard-line stance and refuse to take Knight unless he worked out against other top-line competitors, but that appears to be a possibility.

I attended Knight's workout in Sacramento on June 2 and walked away convinced that Knight saw the Kings as his so-called first-round floor at No. 7. The problem there, predictably, is that the one-on-none approach wasn't well received by the Kings' brass either.
Griping from NBA executives whose jobs hinge on their ability to evaluate talent is pretty commonplace this time of year. Imagine if your job was on the line and you didn't have much control during the most important decision-making time of the calendar year? That would be rough, so the complaints are legit.

But the top prospects have all the leverage every year. As long as they don't go out of their way to be rude, flaky or controversial, players who are regarded as top-5 picks are free to set the terms of their workouts and meetings with teams. It's a classic limited supply, loads of demand scenario that tips the balance in the players' favor.

Now, as for Knight specifically. His personality is top-notch. He's a hard-working, team-first, high-IQ point guard who developed his game during his one year of college and has been regarded as an elite NBA prospect for years. He manages to enjoy the big moment without having a big ego.

Any team that passes on him because he is playing his hand wisely is nuts. But if they want to grumble because they can't see more of him? Totally understandable. 


Since: Apr 1, 2008
Posted on: June 11, 2011 3:38 pm

Report: Brandon Knight's stock is dropping?

I watched the BYU-Florida game, and I watched a guy who couldn't be bothered to go after a big rebound at the end of regulation, or play defense in overtime. Florida attacked his side of the zone every time and he was a turnstile. How about those challenges? It's the Sweet 16, and you won't play hard unless you're trying to shoot? What kind of leadership is that?

Meanwhile, I watched Kemba - whether he was hitting his shots or not - go after every big defensive rebound in the postseason that he could, take on big defensive challenges on big possessions (Brandon Knight in the final minute, Preston Knowles down the stretch in BE final in his fifth game in five days), chase down guys on breakaways (Doron Lamb), dive on the floor after key loose balls, and do anything it took to win. He even made the call in the huddle to get Jeremy Lamb the ball down the stretch against Arizona (and then deliver him the ball) - those plays turned that game around when it looked like Arizona was taking over. 

Fredette's a great player, and I wouldn't want to guard him either since you have to go out 30 feet from the basket and not relax for a second. But his effort in the Florida game would tell me everything I needed to know about him. I'd take him any day of the week - for a game of HORSE. 

Since: Jan 27, 2009
Posted on: June 11, 2011 2:42 pm

Rather have Fredette leading my team...

Who do you want leading your team, someone who steps up to a challenge or someone who is afraid he will be exposed as not very good?

Look Jimmer, Knight, and Walker all have talent.  Each will be drafted.  The point is, if I was playing, I would want the coaches and the executives to know that I am not afraid to play against anyone.  "I'm your guy, not this guy."

To those who think Jimmer cannot compete, people who have guarded both Jimmer and Kemba disagree with you.

My favorite quote from the NBA combine:

"It wasnt just the commentators who had an opinion on Fredette; some of the players did too.  Ford spoke with Kawhi Leonard and Malcolm Thomas of San Diego State, asking them who they would rather guard between Fredette and Kemba Walker (SDSU played them both this year) and reported they both said they would rather guard Walker any day of the week."

Love it!!

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