Workouts Rumors

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During a 25-minute gathering with writers who cover the team, Jackson revealed buzzworthy 7-foot-1 European project Kristaps Porzingas failed to complete his workout Monday with the Knicks because of cramps. With the 76ers leaning toward taking Russell at No. 3, there’s been speculation Jackson would consider Porzingis — despite the notion he could be two years away from making an impact because of his skinny frame. “We had to change the workout,’’ Jackson said. “He had a cramp in the middle of it. He did go through the workup with the medical staff that was impressive.’’
One Eastern Conference scout believes the 6-9 forward would be a strong fit in the team’s triangle offense. “He could be an [Lamar] Odom-type,” the scout said. “He can shoot it and score from the interior, pass and make plays off of the dribble. I like him there.” Two separate scouts said recently that feel as if Looney is one of the most underrated players in the draft. “We could be having a different conversation about Kevon Looney in five years,” one said.
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Looney has worked out for more than 10 NBA teams but said his workout with New York was the most detailed. The workout started with a 20-30 minute film session with Jackson and Fisher. The Knicks’ coach and team president showed the assembled big men a few basic actions in the triangle offense. From there, the players took the floor to run through some sets and play 2-on-2, among other activities. “The competition was pretty good,” Looney said.
Payne, 6-foot-2, 183 pounds, averaged 20.3 points, six assists, 1.8 steals and 2.5 made 3-pointers per game as a sophomore at Murray State this past season. The 2015 Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year worked out for the Los Angeles Lakers (second and 27th overall picks), Sacramento Kings (sixth), Denver Nuggets (seventh), Indiana Pacers (11th) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (14th) and met with the Boston Celtics (16). The southpaw sharpshooter ranked in the top 15 among NCAA Division I players last season in points and assists per game. Draftexpress.com currently projects Payne to be drafted by the Thunder with the 14th pick.