Grading Knicks’ No. 42 2022 NBA Draft pick Trevor Keels
Heading into the 2022 NBA Draft on Thursday night, the New York Knicks held both the 11th and 42nd pick, primed to add two young and budding players to the relatively young squad.
As it turns out, the Knicks would trade the 11th pick and Kemba Walker for multiple first-round picks in the future, clearing cap space in the process. However, they did end up drafting a player by the end of the night.
With the No. 42 pick, the Knicks selected Trevor Keels, a guard from Duke University.
Keels was a player that was projected to be drafted in the first round, as were four other Duke players. Of the latter, Keels was the one to slide in the draft and the Knicks ended up capitalizing on it.
In 36 games for the Blue Devils this season, Keels averaged 11.5 points along with 2.7 assists and 3.4 rebounds, leading Duke to the Final Four alongside his teammates.
Keels was the third-best scorer coming from that Duke squad, trailing only this year’s top pick Paolo Banchero and 26th overall pick Wendell Moore Jr.
Despite being a second-round pick for New York, he will be an important player to keep an eye on going forward as the Knicks’ point guard blunders continue. Keels possesses a physical style of basketball, getting into his defenders as he explodes to the rim at will.
While his weakness remains to be his 3-point shot, he has plenty of time to refine his jumper before the season starts and it will be a point of focus when watching Keels play in the NBA Summer League.
Born in Clinton, Maryland, Trevor Keels made his mark on the game playing for St. Paul VI Catholic High School, which is located in Chantilly, Virginia.
As a senior, Keels averaged 28.7 points, 9.1 rebounds, and 7.2 assists as a five-star recruit, appearing in the McDonald’s All-American game as well as the Jordan Brand Classic.
After a solid 2021-22 campaign with the brotherhood of the Duke Blue Devils, Keels declared for the draft. He opted not to sign an agent, giving him the opportunity to return to Duke.
When the deadline came around for whether he would keep his name in the draft, Keels decided to officially enter the draft.
Final grades and thoughts for No. 42 pick Trevor Keels:
This wasn’t what fans had in mind for our only draft pick of the night, but there’s a great deal to be hopeful about.
Keels was projected to be a first-round pick from a Duke team that reached the Final Four, beating teams such as Arkansas, Michigan State, and Texas Tech to reach the March Madness semifinals.
This pick for the Knicks is a solid one since they need to address their point guard woes and he could very well end up being one of the second-round steals of this year’s draft.
Not to mention, Keels will have no issue playing under the bright lights at Madison Square Garden since he had the best game of his short stint as a Blue Devil, scoring 25 points in his Duke debut.
Despite Trevor Keels being drafted in the second round, he is an NBA-ready prospect and should make some noise heading into the season. I believe New York would be crazy not to offer him a full roster spot when October rolls around and the season is in full swing.
Final Grade: A