- Ian Begley, ESPN Staff Writer
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New York Knicks GM Glen Grunwald thinks Tim Hardaway Jr. can help the Knicks immediately.
"He’s a talented young player that can shoot the ball well, is a good athlete and is a really good worker," Grunwald said.
The GM also thought Hardaway Jr. was the best player available to the Knicks when they selected at 24. That was his primary motivation for selecting Hardaway Jr. over players such as UNC forward Reggie Bullock, Murray State guard Isiah Canaan and San Diego State's Jamal Franklin.
Grunwald did not downplay the idea that Hardaway Jr. was selected as insurance in case sixth man J.R. Smith leaves in free agency.
"It’s true we only have two players under contract at the guard position. [Help at guard] is definitely a need, but I think the primary reason we drafted him is we felt he’s the best player available," Grunwald said.
According to scouting reports, Hardaway Jr. is adept at getting his shot off the dribble and getting to the rim.
He also can be a good defender when he is engaged. The biggest concerns about the former Michigan standout are his shot selection and consistency. He also needs to improve his dribble, according to several scouting reports.
Hardaway Jr. impressed the Knicks at his workout in early June.
"We were impressed with his interview. We were impressed with his shooting, his athleticism and his overall demeanor," Grunwald said. "He’s a really good worker and that’s going to be important for a young player to improve over the course of his career."
SECOND FIDDLE: Grunwald also said the Knicks tried to trade into the second round to add another player but hinted that no teams were interested.
"We had a lot of good ideas we thought today, but no one seemed to agree with them, whatever," he said.
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