C.J. Leslie Falls to Knicks for ‘Nothing’
If the draft shook out a certain way, North Carolina State 6-foot-9 combo forward C.J. Leslie could have wound up a Knick with the 24th pick. That’s how high the Knicks had him on their board.
Surprisingly, Leslie went undrafted and the Knicks got him for nothing. The Knicks agreed to terms with Leslie on a rookie minimum contract yesterday, and he will attend training camp and play in the Las Vegas summer league. It’s unclear how much of a guarantee he has agreed to. The Knicks didn’t have a second-round pick Thursday, so they had no way of nabbing Leslie when he kept falling.
Because of the new collective bargaining agreement luxury-tax penalties, several teams took fliers on young international players in the second round, willing to stash them in Europe for a couple of years until they are ready. Leslie fell victim to that strategy, and the Knicks were the beneficiaries.