Forget about Melo, we've got important stuff to talk about. Marc Berman had suggested for a while that the Knicks' 51st pick, Thanasis Antetokounpo, would play a year overseas, and now he has a source telling him that definitively:
Greece's Thanasis Antetokounmpo will be able to show his skills when the Knicks open their Las Vegas Summer League schedule Friday, but The Post has learned it will be the last American venue for their second-round selection for a while.
According to source close to the defensive specialist, the Knicks drafted him with plans of stashing him in Europe for one season, even if he has a solid summer league showing.
This is fine if true, but I fail to understand why the Knicks wouldn't just arrange for Antetokounmpo to join their brand new D-League squad. They could keep closer tabs on their prospect and have him in the right system while still matching him up with solid competition.
Perhaps the Knicks just want to hold Antetokounmpo's draft rights without having to sign him and give him a roster spot (which I believe they'd have to do if they wanted to *send* him to Westchester), but I dunno.
As a late second-rounder, Thanasis has long odds to ever really matter to the Knicks, but he matters to my heart and I was hoping he'd stay nearby. We'll see. At least we know we'll get to see him in Vegas.
I just spoke to Thanasis Antetokounmpo about report that Knicks want him to play overseas next year. "I haven't heard anything about that."— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 7, 2014
I've also confirmed that the Knicks would hold Antetokounmpo's draft rights for a year even if he went to the D-League (like the Pelicans and Pierre Jackson last season), so unless Thanasis asks to head overseas (which, with the above quote, wouldn't seem to be the case), I can't figure out why the Knicks would want to do this.