The Knicks need a point guard and there is a highly rated one who lives just a few subway stops from the Garden. It could be a perfect match, one that Cole Anthony — the son of former Knicks guard Greg Anthony — would welcome.
“It would be pretty cool,” the Upper West Side native and one-and-done former North Carolina star told The Post in an exclusive interview. “I was a fan for a good amount of time. I do like the Knicks. I think they definitely can use a guard, a good scoring point guard. If that happens, it would be pretty cool to play in front of my little brother.”
The gifted 6-foot-3 Anthony declared for the NBA Draft on Friday and is signing with Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports Management, who also reps Celtics guard Kemba Walker, a fellow New Yorker.
Since his junior year of high school, he has regularly trained with Chris Brickley, who used to work for the Knicks and is a trainer to several NBA stars including Carmelo Anthony. Mock drafts have a wide range for Anthony, known for his relentless work ethic, rebounding ability for a guard and shot-making prowess, ranging from the top five into the low teens.
“What pick you’re drafted at doesn’t mean anything,” he said. “I’d rather be drafted 17th in a really good situation for myself, then go seventh in a terrible situation for myself where I’m behind two other lead guards. It’s really all about fit.”
His one season in Chapel Hill was uneven. The fourth-ranked prospect in the 2019 class according to 247Sports.com, he needed arthroscopic knee surgery in December after partially tearing his meniscus and averaged a team-high 18.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.3 steals in 22 games. His shooting percentages — 38 percent overall and 34.8 from 3-point range — were criticized, but he performed his best after returning from surgery, notching 17.5 points, 4.5 assists and shooting 41.4 percent from the field and 36 percent from beyond the arc over his final 11 games. As a senior at powerhouse Oak Hill Academy, Anthony averaged a triple-double. Before that, he was a star locally at Archbishop Molloy in Queen, the school’s first point guard to start as a freshman.
Anthony attended a lot of Knicks games growing up, before his own career took off and that became his focus. He’s watched less of them in recent years.